• On Monday, the White Rock Senior Center will host a course titled, “A Matter of Balance.” The evidence-based program is designed to reduce the fear of falling and increase activity levels among older adults. The class includes eight two-hour sessions, led by master trainers. The team includes Maria Francis, Sharon Tolleson and Judith Rhodes.

    The program is designed for adults age 60 and older that may be concerned about falls, have sustained falls in the past, restrict activities because of concerns about falling or for those that just want to improve their flexibility, balance and strength. Memberships for adults 60 and over are free at both the Los Alamos and Retired Senior Organization. LARSO membership includes both the Los Alamos or Betty Ehart Senior Center and the White Rock Senior Center. A suggested donation for the course is optional for LARSO members.

    Falls are the leading cause of accidental injury death among adults 65 years of age and older in the United States. The program enables participants to achieve significant goals and gain confidence by learning to view falls as controllable, set goals for increasing activity, make changes to reduce fall risk at home and exercise to increase strength and balance.

    The classes at the White Rock Senior Center will be offered on Mondays from May 20-June 17, from 2-4 p.m.

  • Lunch with a Leader will be at Mesa Library at 11:45 a.m. Tuesday. Five Los Alamos residents who are leaders in the field of “Zero Waste” will be the speakers. Sue Barns will talk about the Zero Waste Los Alamos team and food waste; Angelica Gurule will discuss recycling in general in the county and the efforts toward zero waste events (including concerts and other events); Tiffany Pegoda and Elchin Zafarov will educate the community about composting; and Jody Benson will talk about what the Zero Waste Restaurant Team has discovered about what some area restaurants are doing to go green.

    Each of them will talk for about 10 minutes, which will allow lots of time to ask questions about this topic.
    Barns grew up in Northern New Jersey but fell in love with Los Alamos during family visits. She came to work at LANL as an Oppenheimer Postdoctoral Fellow in microbiology in 1996 and remained until 2008.

    Gurule serves as the Environmental Services manager for Los Alamos County.

    Pegoda is the owner of Zia Waste, a new worm composting business in Los Alamos. In 2014, she received her certification in Sustainable Resource Management from the New Mexico Recycling Coalition and Penn State Altoona.

  • The 4-Way Test is a set of guidelines Rotarians aspire to live by:  Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build good will and better friendships? Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

    To encourage thoughtful analysis of these guidelines, Rotary Clubs around the world host writing competitions for students to describe how these principles apply to their lives. The Rotary Club of Los Alamos sponsors this program every year, currently under the direction of Rotarian and School Board member Andrea Cunningham and Los Alamos Middle School Language Arts teacher Brian Appell.

    After eighth-grade essays are submitted, a Rotary committee of judges reads them and determines the best three, based upon an understanding of the 4-Way Test and on general writing skills. Student names are withheld during judging.

    The Rotary Club of Los Alamos is proud to announce this year’s winners: First place, Philippa Fung, daughter of Elizabeth-Sharon and Jimmy Fung; second place, Andrea Chapman, daughter of Dani and Bill Chapman; third place, Charles Wallace, son of Peri and Kevin Wallace. Students each receive cash awards in amounts between $50 and $150.

  • Mia, a mixed-breed boxer, is looking for a home to go to after her owners had to surrender her. Mia is only 10 months old and is a little sad and bewildered these days because of the sudden change.

    Though her owners had no choice but to give her up, Mia doesn’t quite understand why she’s at the shelter. She’s been at the shelter since May 11, according to staff.  They are still trying to figure out her fears, likes and dislikes, but she seems like a gentle enough dog for people to come see her and check her out for themselves. She’s been microchipped, had her check up and she’s in great condition. All she needs now is a loving forever home.

    For more information, call the Los Alamos County Animal Shelter at 662-8179 or email the shelter at psa-officer@lacm.us.

    Nature Yoga and Trail Run at 11:45 a.m. at the Nature Center. Optional: Arrive at 10:30 a.m. to join Christa for a pre-yoga run. Admission: yoga or run for $7/$5 for members; yoga and run for $12/$8 for members.


    Matter of Balance class is from 2-4 p.m. begins at the White Rock Senior Center. Trainers Ann Church and Maria Francis will teach the evidence-based program designed to reduce fear of falling and increase activity levels among older adults. The eight-session class meets for two hours each Monday and Wednesday through June 17. Sponsored by the New Mexico Department of Health.  

    Nature Playtime, Sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico from 10-11 a.m. at the Nature Center. Join local families for fun, hands-on activities, hikes, games, and stories in nature. Free.

    Wildflower Walk at 5:30 p.m. at the Nature Center. Take a gentle stroll with Chick Keller and learn about our local wildflowers. Free.


  • This month’s meeting of the Military Order of the World Wars Chapter 229 in Los Alamos will be Tuesday. The speaker this month will be Los Alamos National Laboratory Historian Alan Carr.

    Carr will bring and talk about some original Manhattan District documents. The public is invited to join the group for this interesting presentation.

    The meeting will start at 6 p.m. at the Los Alamos Research Park in the second floor conference room.

    The building is located west of the South Mesa Fire Station. Parking is available east of the fire station and is accessible from the southbound lane of the Los Alamos Canyon Bridge, or east of the Research Park building. Access is through the LANL control stations to West Jemez Road.

    The meeting will begin with a social period at 6 p.m., followed by a brief business meeting and dinner at 6:25 p.m. The presentation will start about 7:15 p.m.

    The dinner meetings are open to interested citizens for the dinner and program with an RSVP, or the program only at no cost.

  • Los Alamos National Laboratory Director Emeritus Terry Wallace will discuss the cosmic and tectonic journey made by the metal gold in three Frontiers in Science public lectures beginning Monday in Albuquerque. 

    "Gold is one of the most fascinating of the 4,500 mineral species on Earth, and no mineral (or metal) evokes more emotion," Wallace said. "But it also has an incredible scientific story: a gold nugget is made of material that was not born in our planet or even our solar system."

    Titled "Gold: from the Big Bang to the Amazon forest," the talks will discuss how the metal was created, how it came to be found on Earth, and the spell it has cast over humankind.

    All Frontiers in Science presentations begin at 7 p.m. and are free to the public.

    The lectures are:

    * Monday at Explora, 1701 Mountain Road, NW, Albuquerque

    * Wednesday at the Jemez Rooms, Santa Fe Community College, 6401 Richards Avenue, Santa Fe

    * Thursday at the Duane Smith Auditorium, 1300 Diamond Drive, Los Alamos

    The lectures are sponsored by the Fellows of Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Frontiers in Science lecture series is intended to increase local public awareness of the diversity of science and engineering research at the laboratory.


    The Los Alamos Little Theatre will perform “8x10 Six” at 7:30 p.m. at the performing Arts Center, 1670 Nectar St. The performance is an evening of eight short plays written by New Mexico playwrights. Cost is $15 for adults and $13 for students and seniors.

    Vermiculture Class at 4 p.m. at the Los Alamos Co-op Market, 95 Entrada Drive. Cost is $13 per person. Pay in advance at the Co-op front desk. Call 695-1579 for information.

    Gentle Walk from 9 a.m.-noon at the Nature Center. A gentle walk for which the emphasis is on discovery, not mileage gained. Free.

    Full Moon Hike and Potluck Dinner from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Nature Center. Join PEEC for a hike under the full moon and a fun potluck dinner. Cost is $8 per family and $4 per person for PEEC and Los Alamos Mountaineer members, $10 per family and $5 per person for non-members.


  • When at the New Mexico Fiber Crawl this weekend, visitors should make sure to visit the Close Knit Yarn Cooperative, which will host the event the entire weekend. Located at 1247 Central Ave., the co-op will feature yarns and other fibers from local dyers and producers such as Wooly Wonka, Mesa Rosa and Enchanted Sky Enterprises.

    The co-op kicks things off today with a two-hour reception at the Fuller Lodge Throne Room. The reception will start with a talk from artist Sam Buelow at 5:30 p.m. Buelow is scheduled to talk about liminal space and it’s impact on the medium of fiber arts. The actual reception is from 7-9 p.m.

    The Close Knit Yarn Cooperative was started last year, after the owner of the Warm Harts Yarn business retired.  The cooperative had a grand opening in November.

    “The shop is doing very well. It’s a gathering place for knitters and crocheters of all skill levels,” Close Knit Yarn Cooperative member and Board Secretary Joy Betha said.

    The Close Knit Yarn Cooperative is open all weekend also from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., where shoppers and fellow artists can go in and see what they have to offer. The cooperative will also have an open stitching session from 2- 5 p.m. Saturday, where visitors can bring whatever they’re working on and stitch away.

  • Join the Pajarito Environmental Education Center for two community nature-themed events this weekend.

    On Saturday, join PEEC at Los Luceros Historic Site for a community picnic and to learn about pollinators. On Sunday, visit the Los Alamos Nature Center for a community seed swap. Both events are free to attend and are open to the public.

    On Saturday, PEEC is partnering with New Mexico Historic Sites and Audubon New Mexico to host a community picnic at Los Luceros Historic Site. At the event, participants can learn about pollinators and get an introduction to bee keeping.

    PEEC’s education team will host a butterfly survival game for kids to learn about host plants and nectar resources.

    Participants can also dissect flowers at PEEC’s booth. Bring a picnic to this event and enjoy the beautiful property, which will be open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visit peecnature.org for directions.

    In addition to this picnic, PEEC is hosting a community seed swap on Sunday, from 1-4 p.m. Participants can bring seeds to share or collect seeds to plant in their own gardens. If you’re bringing seeds to share from your garden, mark them clearly with the name of the plant and the year from which they were saved.

    The Associated Press

    ALBUQUERQUE — For generations, Mexican-born Gustavo Brambila’s family has worked in the wine industry of California’s Napa Valley in some form. He went to college on a baseball scholarship but the passion of flowery aromas and crisp peach flavor remained in his soul and he eventually got a degree in fermentation sciences.

    His dream: His own vineyard.

    Brambila’s story and others are the focus of “Harvest Season,” a new PBS documentary examining the contributions of Mexican Americans in the wine industry of California’s Napa Valley.

    The film, scheduled to begin airing Monday on most PBS stations as part of the Independent Lens series, shows how the Mexican Americans have shaped the industry as farmworkers and later vineyard owners in one of the richest wine regions in the world.

    Through the eyes of winemaker Gustavo Brambila, Mexican migrant worker Rene Reyes and wine entrepreneur Vanessa Robledo, the documentary shows how the California wine industry’s most silent figures battle weather, climate change and wildfires. They speak of their families’ deep roots with vineyards and how it shapes their dreams for the future.

  • F.A.U.V.E.L: Flattery, avarice, vileness, variability, envy, laziness.

    These are the character traits of Fauvel, a Medieval hybrid creature, part human, part equine. He is the incongruous “hero” of an epic French satire, the Roman de Fauvel.

    Fauvel, despite his utter incompetence, rises to the heights of political influence with the aid of Lady Fortune and her vacuous daughter, Vainglory.

    Ken Perlow, the manager of Severall Friends, the theater company putting on the production said the play is about dysfunction in government, a universal theme many can understand.

    He said his collaborator, Mary Springfels, wanted to do the performance for a very long time, something that would portray a universal theme everyone can relate to.

    “Toadies rush to his side to ‘curry fauvel,’ the original form of the term ‘curry favor’ still in use today,” he said.

    This early critique of the abuse of power is razor sharp, appalling, and very funny,” Perlow said, adding that the audience need not worry about being able to follow along with the message this Medieval French satire presents.

  • Whether it’s through spider webs, tattoos, licorice, a telephone, a wheelchair, the Declaration of Independence or other means, those who see Los Alamos Little Theatre’s “8x10 Six” will find themselves delighted with every story.

    “8x10 Six” is a series of eight one-act plays that pay off in the end, much like the short stories of Shirley Jackson or O. Henry.

    Some might find it hard to keep focused viewing eight plays in the space of two hours, but all of the plays were well-paced and easy to follow.

    Also, the theater offers a 15-minute intermission in the middle, when audience members can catch up with their neighbors over punch and cookies.

    But that probably won’t be necessary, as all of the plays were tightly written, with not a piece of dialogue wasted.
    Although all of the actors turned in good performances in this series, it’s always nice to see Terry Beery and Eric Bjorklund work together, as they make a good comedy duo.

    In their turn in “Red Licorice,” they play two aliens on Earth who are on an important mission. Their dialogue, full of witty repartees that at times resemble a tennis match, kept the audience laughing and engaged as they went about their task.

  • Join the Bradbury Science Museum and the Los Alamos Creative District for Science On Tap Monday, May 20 at 5:30 p.m. at project Y cowork, 150 Central Park Square. 

    This discussion will feature Dr. Cathy Wilson of the Lab’s Earth and Environmental Sciences Division.

    Dr. Cathy Wilson is an observational and computational hydrologist and geomorphologist working with the Lab’s Earth and Environmental Sciences Division.

    She is also the curator of an exhibit at the Bradbury Science Museum, “Climate Perspectives: Change in the Terrestrial Arctic,” which helps visitors of all ages learn about the complex topic of climate change.

    For the latest information about changes in the Arctic permafrost, please join the conversation at Project Y on May 20.

    On Tap is a series of discussions hosted in downtown Los Alamos. Each month features one On Tap with a rotating theme.

    The Pajarito Environmental Education Center partners with the Creative District to host Nature On Tap. The Los Alamos Historical Society and Fuller Lodge Art Center host History and Art On Tap, respectively. The Bradbury Science Museum hosts Science On Tap every month.

    Registration for this event is not required.

    Admission is free.

  • Take a full moon hike with the Pajarito Environmental Education Center, astrophysicist Galen Gisler and hiker Jean Dewart on Friday.

    Before the hike participants will gather at the Los Alamos Nature Center for a social potluck dinner, starting at 5:30 p.m.

    Registration is required for this outing and space is limited, so sign up soon!

    PEEC will provide water, cups, plates and utensils for the potluck and participants should bring a dish to share. Before leaving for the hike, Gisler will give participants a brief preview of the evening’s sky in the planetarium. The group will then carpool to a trailhead to enjoy a short hike and to view the full moon and night sky. Attendees should plan to hike about two miles, round-trip. The group will finish hiking by about 8:30 p.m. and return to the nature center.

    Hikers should dress for the weather. Wear layers and bring a hat and gloves. Please bring a headlamp or flashlight (red lights are preferred for better star viewing). Admission for this hike is $8 per family or $4 per person for PEEC and Los

    Alamos Mountaineers and $10 per family or $5 per person for non-members.

    For more information about this and other PEEC programs, visit www.peecnature.org, email programs@peecnature.org or call 505-662-0460.

  • Chef Laurence Peña of Chartwells Food Services has been promoted to director of Food Services.

    The K-12 program of Compass Group USA, services all seven school sites, for Los Alamos Public Schools.

    Pena replaces Chef Mia Holsapple, who has taken a promotion within Compass Group.

    Pena has a 20-plus year career, and has managed in the retail, hotel, tribal enterprise and restaurant fields.

    He has also served as a Tribal Council Member for six terms.

    He grew up in Southern California, going to college in New Orleans and returning to New Mexico influenced by his love of food.  

    His passion is creating menu items which are an infusion of Classic American, French, Creole, New Mexican and Modern American cuisines.

    Pena is the former executive chef of La Mesita Eatery and a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu, with a degree in Hospitality and Restaurant Management.

    Chef Pena is from the Pueblo de San Ildefonso, where he lives with his wife Melanie and their children, Taylor, Justin, Christian and Emelia.

    Pena has plans to soon announce a free summer food program within the next two weeks.

    The program will feed children under 18 for free throughout the summer.

  • By Mary Ann R. Burmester

    You’ve reached a settlement with your soon-to-be-ex, either by direct negotiation or after mediation. You think you’re done and want to celebrate. Sorry to burst your bubble, but there’s still a long road ahead of you.

    The next step is to draft the pleadings that memorialize the agreements reached. The four most common final pleadings are:

    •Marital Settlement Agreement (“MSA”) that addresses dividing up the property and debts, spousal support and child support. There is also a lot of language that attorneys call “boilerplate” that you should go over with your lawyer carefully. It’s like the fine print in any contract.

    •If there are children involved, the Parenting Plan deals with legal custody (decision-making) and visitation. Some lawyers put the child support provisions in the Parenting Plan, keeping all child-related provisions in one document; other lawyers put child support in the MSA, keeping all money-related provisions in one document.

    •Next, the Final Decree of Dissolution of Marriage is prepared, which includes the legal name change if the wife wants it.

  • Making memories is important as your family continues to grow, no matter what ages we discuss. This month, or sometime during the summer, try to start a new memory that can be carried out for years to come. The problem is some traditions get lost as children become adults.

    I love to hear family traditions that can be done no matter where you are or how things change. I know a family that, “watches,” a certain baseball game together each year. The beauty is that they do it, even if they aren’t even in the same state. Today’s technology allows for easy access via cell phone, Facetime or Skype. It might allow us to, “do,” something together, even if we aren’t together when we do it.

    I also believe that you make some family in life as you go throughout this journey of life. I have a very good friend from Great Britain. When William and Kate got married, I made an attempt at scones and probably gave her some un-remarkable tea to enjoy during the early morning festivities.

    When Harry and Meghan got married, I made the scones once again.

  • Dusty, a purebred longhair, arrived at the shelter April 29, and is now looking for a forever home. Dusty, who is just 5 years old, arrived as a surrender because her original owners could not take her to their new place. 

    Fortunately, Dusty doesn’t have to go through a lot of prep for adoption, since she’s been vaccinated and her owners kept her in excellent health. 

    The only thing missing in Dusty’s life is another owner who will care for her forever this time around. 

    Dusty has no behavioral issues, and seems to get along with anyone that wants to give her all the love and attention she deserves and needs. 

    She’s very well behaved as can be seen in this lovely picture of her… a very content kitty indeed.

    For more information, call the Los Alamos County Animal Shelter at 662-8179 or email the shelter at psa-officer@lacm.us.

  • It’s been a busy spring at Bandelier National Monument and the parking lot in Frijoles Canyon is filling up! The wait is over - shuttles will start back up Thursday. 

    The shuttles are free, have really big windows to take in the scenery along the way, and run seven days a week from Thursday through Oct. 16. 

    Starting at 9 a.m., they leave the White Rock Visitor Center every half hour on weekdays and every 20 minutes on weekends.  

    Every run stops at Juniper Campground and then proceeds to the Bandelier Visitor Center in Frijoles Canyon then stops at the campground again on its way back to White Rock. 

    “The County of Los Alamos and Atomic City Transit provide us with a terrific service”, said Bandelier Superintendent Jason Lott. “We just don’t have enough parking, and the shuttles make it possible for visitors to have a relaxed, enjoyable day at the park without having to wait in a long line for a parking space.”  

    Visitors who arrive at the park before 9 a.m. or after 3 p.m. may drive into Frijoles Canyon without taking the shuttles.