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Features

  • Samuel Pena, a member of the Pueblo de San Ildefonso, survived an F5 tornado that ripped through the heart of Oklahoma. As the tornado spent over 15 minutes on the ground in Moore, Okla., it tore through several homes and businesses and caused more than $1 billion in damage.
    Pena and his son took cover at the Briarwood Elementary School.
    Pena, though, recalled the harrowing moments as the ultimate moment of survival as he along with his son, Benji, and seven other school boys huddled in the boys bathroom on the southwest side of the school.
    There, the last wall remained standing and according to Benji, Samuel lifted and threw large pieces of wall debris off of the young school boys. While they survived the tornado, Pena’s property suffered extensive damage.
    Pena wrote to Terry Aguilar, Governor for the Pueblo de San Ildefonso, seeking assistance from the Pueblo. Pena stated that while his home remains standing, there is extensive water damage to the walls as well roof damage.
    His home, located on SW 79th Terrace Street, is now made up of temporary walls of board and tarp, while similar materials serve as a roof over their heads.

  • A group of 24 Los Alamos High graduates will embark on an educational tour of Europe from June 13 through June 25.
    The group will be led by Lynn Ovaska, local AP Psych teacher, and also chaperoned by Rob and Kathy Hipwood and Eric Ovaska.
    The 13-day tour will take them to Berlin, Prague, Lucerne and Paris.
    “Our young leaders will learn through the power of visiting actual historical sites, including the concentration camp Dachau. Local guides will give them behind-the-scenes tours of cities and their most famous landmarks, such as Checkpoint Charlie and the Louvre.
    The students will also celebrate their graduation along the way with one evening of Swiss food and folklore, and another evening in Paris floating down the Seine,” Ovaska said.
    The members of this group include musicians, athletes, artists, active church members, lifelong friends, and good neighbors.
    “Educational travel is a valuable experience for living in our global economy. By witnessing new cultures first-hand and experiencing history that is usually learned in textbooks, they plan to strengthen their skills as global citizens,” Ovaska said.

  • A community event showcasing Chamber of Commerce member merchants, businesses and organizations. The weekend will have food, live music, a car show, giant sand pile, bubble pit and other family entertainment.
    ChamberFest will enliven downtown Los Alamos from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday, on Central Avenue between 15th Street and 20th Street.
    Chamber members invite the public to visit their booth and learn more about their businesses. More than 55 businesses and organizations are participating either from their storefronts or from one of the many booths that will be located around Central Park Square.
    The weekend gets started 7 p.m. on Friday, with the Los Alamos County Summer Concert series featuring Warren Hood Band playing rock, country and blues from Austin, Texas, on Central Avenue and Main Street.
    There will be a variety of entertainment staged throughout the downtown on Saturday. The Nomads will be featured on the stage downtown on Central Avenue from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.
    The sand pile sponsored by Los Alamos National Bank and Los Alamos County will form a mini-mountain on Central Avenue in front of C.B. Fox Department Store. Party to Go! will bring out a bubble pit, local vendors will come out to make festive summer foods and the classic car show will fill up the square with Corvettes, classics, hot rods and more.

  • During the next two weeks, I’d like to look at life from two perspectives.
    The first week is a look at life from one’s end.
    If you could think a moment about your own funeral, not in a morbid sense, but from the position of one that attends, what would they say about you?
    There’s a poem by Linda Ellis called, “The Dash.”
    It explains how the really important thing about your tombstone isn’t the date you are born or the date you die, but the dash that represents everything in between.
    Mac Anderson worked with Ellis to put the poem of, “The Dash,” in book form. Anderson, an entrepreneur, has made a philosophy and a business in concentrating on positive attributes.
    If you read any one of a variety of the inspirational resources, they help drive character, leadership or athleticism and put life in perspective.
    If you have been to a funeral for a really good person, did the words spoken make an impact on you? Has hearing about the life of someone good been enough to change you?
    So again, I bring you back to a seat at your funeral. Perhaps you aren’t sure of what would be said about you. Perhaps you can imagine what would be said and you aren’t happy about it?
    Well, you can start fresh any day and that change can start today.

  • The YMCA of Los Alamos has activities that will suit all members of the family.
    INSANITY
    The Family YMCA is offering INSANITY® classes. INSANITY® is a cardio-based total body conditioning program based on the principles of MAX interval training. Each workout is packed with plyometric drills on top of nonstop intervals of strength, power, resistance, and abs and core training moves.
    These classes are taught by Insanity-certified instructors and are available from 9-9:30 a.m., Monday, Wednesday and Friday; 5:30 to 6 p.m. Wednesdays; and 6 to 6:50 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. These classes are free to Y members.
    Red Cross
    Infant/Child CPR
    The Family YMCA is now taking registration for the June 22 session of its American Red Cross Infant/Child Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation certification course.
    The course, taught by an American Red Cross certified instructor, provides training on how to respond to emergency situations, recognize the signs of a heart attack, and provide care for an infant or child who stops breathing, is choking, or whose heart stops beating. Participants who complete the course will receive American Red Cross certification.
    The next class will be held at the Y Express, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., June 22. Cost is $55 for YMCA members and $80 for program members, with a maximum of

  • Los Alamos Youth Leadership registration is due by June 27 at the Family YMCA. The application can be downloaded from the JJAB website. First Step Orientation will take place on Aug. 3 and 4, which will be an overnight camping event. Sean Hall will lead the team building session the first day. The following day will be a physical challenge for students to break out of comfort zones.

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home.
    Be sure to visit the Friends of the Shelter website: lafos.org, where you can get more information about volunteering, adopting, and donating. Also check out our Petfinder page for pictures and to learn more about all of our adoptable pets at petfinder. com/shelters/friendsoftheshelter.html.
    All adoptable pets are microchipped, spayed or neutered, and up-to-date on vaccinations.
    DOGS
    Calypso — A gentle brindle-point black lab mix found roaming near Pueblo Complex. He loves to go for walks, especially if there is a large patch of grass where he can take a break and roll around. He seems to bounce rather than walk, so you know he’s having fun! He prefers a home with a person that is home more often than not. He doesn’t enjoy sharing his home with cats. When left home alone, Calypso might do best in a crate.

  • Time Out Pizzeria, “The Place Where Friends Meet,” is the place to be on Monday, June 3 as they host an Asset building adventure with Minute to Win It games, for the community.
    “Sounds like it would be fun,” Trish Sanchez said, who runs the eatery along with her husband, Omar.
    The restaurant fleshed out the idea with the Assets In Action program, as a way to kick off the summer and inform parents and families about the work of the Assets program in a new space.
    Assets In Action has led several very productive events, as a chance to engage residents and share information in a new way.
    The event begins 6 p.m. Monday with the sale of tickets for 25 cents each. Players will have their names drawn on the spot to earn a chance to play.
    The NBC summer hit show, hosted by Guy Fieri, “Minute To Win It,” uses household items and offers a chance to beat the clock with prizes on the line, although the prizes won’t resemble the high stake of those from the show.
    The Assets In Action program is sponsored by the Juvenile Justice Advisory Board and is a community building project of the Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce.
    The program is eager to work with community businesses to build relationships and spread the message of, “Healthy Community, Healthy Youth.”

  • In a state where local fare consists of staples such as enchiladas, tacos and green chile cheeseburgers, it’s often hard to find a restaurant that offers something different. Sometimes a green chile cheeseburger, or breakfast burrito sounds good and other times, you might crave something that will make your taste buds take notice.
    Creole Nouvelle, located in the VFW building where Mi Casita Mexican restaurant used to be, can definitely help break the humdrum culinary cycle Los Alamosians tend to fall into. With Cajun and Creole dishes on the menu, this eatery is anything but ordinary. This location has seen a few restaurants come and go, but hopefully this one will have longevity.
    After hearing about this place from a few people who sang its praises, a lunch trip was in order to see what all the hype was about. It was a little after 11:30 a.m. on a Thursday and the place had a few occupied tables, but all that changed once noon hit — the place was packed. The dining room is small, but it was clean.

  • Santa Fe
    Subway, 540 Cordova Road, Suite 3
    Date inspected: May 8
    Violations: Four high-risk violations. Wet rag out of sanitizer bucket, hand washing station has wet rags in it, temperature on display varies from top to bottom, food is overstocked, lids of display refrigerator are open, employees are not washing their hands between glove changes, and ice pooling forms leak in return line in walk-in freezer. One moderate-risk violation. The sides, bottom, and tops of food equipment need to be cleaned, ice tea tops, door handles, bottom of refrigerator have food build-up, shelves have old food build-up, salt, pepper, cheese shakers have food build-up. One low-risk violation. Vents/fans have dust build-up and need to be cleaned.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. Follow-up on May 15.

    Subway, 540 Cordova Road, Suite 3
    Date inspected: May 15
    Violations: None. Follow-up inspection. All violations are corrected.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow-up required.

  • What do you get when you mix fresh fruit donated from Smith’s, a great idea, a lot of participation and a little perspiration?
     You get the first annual Atomic City Glow Run, held May 18 at Chamisa Elementary School.
     The event had 100 registered participants and family members ranging in age from 10-month-old Linus Ploss to some who would prefer not to reveal their age.
     “Last summer when we met as a new PTO we discussed new things that we could try this year,” Parent Teacher Organization President Trisha Colin said. “We had heard of color runs and night runs, and so the Atomic Glow Run was born!”
     The idea was not only seen as fun, but a fundraiser for the whole family.
     White Rock was a glow as participants took off for a 5K run and a one-mile fun run, all kicked off by the Chamisa Cheetah, after a few motivating warm up exercises.
     “We had over 120 runners, about half participating in the one mile and the others in the 5K,” Principal Debbie Smith said. “Davey Torres finished first on the 5K. Our first place youth finisher in the 5K was our own third grader, Wakeiyo Hettinga. The one mile top finishers were sixth graders, Amy Littleton and Haley Capon.”

  • Richard Swenson, a local sculptor who focuses on creating art from unaltered objects such as scrap metal parts found in junk yards and repair shops, displayed his work for visitors of Betty Ehart Senior Center. Featuring animal shapes such as frogs, penguins, bunnies and crabs, the display cases can be found on the second floor lobby of the center.
    The central theme of Swenson’s sculptures is “The Primacy of Nature Over the Industrial Society.” Born and raised on a ranch in North Dakota, the sculptor experienced a world without electricity, running water, or indoor conveniences. His childhood world, unaltered by industrial society, focused on the relationships between man and animal, something that most children of the current generation are not likely to comprehend.
    “It would be a lonesome place in this high-tech world without animals, for we are one of them,” Swenson said, in a quote that stands out within the promotional pamphlet for the display.
    His work has been shown at local venues such as the New Concept Gallery in Santa Fe, as well as out-of-state establishments, such as the Louisiana Art and Science Museum in Baton Rouge, and the Longue Vue House and Gardens in New Orleans.

  • The Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce will host the annual ChamberFest on June 8. Chamberfest provides an opportunity for Chamber members and local businesses to present their products and services to the Los Alamos community.
    Chamber members will set up display booths throughout downtown that have representatives with information about their businesses and many will offer games and giveaways. Claire Roybal and Associates along with Atomic City Corvettes and the Santa Fe Concorso will be hosting a car show and Show-n-Shine.
    The Car Show will bring out corvettes, hotrods, muscle cars, classics, exotics, and motorcycles to a blocked off downtown to show off their unique rides.
    New this year will be a partnership with the Santa Fe Concorso group to bring out some exotics cars valued over $250,000 each. Prizes and the car show are sponsored by Lithia Dodge in Santa Fe, Edelbrock, Pinstriping by Speedy, Yeamans Machine Shop, Henry Valencia Chevrolet in Española, Santa Fe Chevrolet, Sears, Desert Tees, AutoZone, Hagerty Insurance, Napa Auto Parts, O’Reilly’s, Coca-Cola and Meguiars.

  • The Chimayó Art Fair will be from noon to 8 p.m., June 1 and 2. The May 23 issue of Diversions had the start time listed
    incorrectly.  

  • Vehicles lined up May 11 for the ROTC cadets car wash to raise funds for summer activities.

  • Wow, I can’t believe the final week of school has arrived.
    I would like to take a moment to thank all of the Asset Champions that have made so many Assets related projects come to fruition.
    Those that have helped me along the way include; Aspen Elementary School’s Tammy Moore, Barranca Elementary School’s Kay Sawdener, Chamisa Elementary School’s Valerie Adams-Harris, Mountain Elementary School’s Scott Johnson, Piñon Elementary School’s Karen Forsyth, Los Alamos Middle School’s Dawn Barr and Los Alamos High School’s Kathy Boerigter.
    Our final push has included food drives with Aspen, Chamisa, Mountain, Piñon and LAMS.
    The results were feeding families struggling through financial issues, feeding hungry school aged children, and large-scale project that will feed a large number of families throughout the summer when school programs are not available.
    Thanks to Tom Nagawiecki for supporting our effort by allowing us to use new recycle bins.
    Chamisa and Mountain both took part in a last ditch effort to build the bonding to school Asset with crafty projects that will beautify the school even after students have grown.

  • Due to a change in the schedule for the Los Alamos Airways commuter plane, June 7 will be the only day eight people will get to the take the Air Tour to view the ruts of the Santa Fe Trail. The flight in the Cessna Caravan plane will leave Los Alamos at 8:30 a.m. for a round trip to San Miguel del Vado, the former entry for the United States covered wagons crossing the Pecos River and entering Mexico Territory in the 1800s. A check mailed to Inez Ross, 614 47th St., Los Alamos, NM 87544, for $81, will hold a seat. It is a first come, first serve basis. For more information, contact Inez at inezaross@gmail.com. 

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of onsite adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home!
    Be sure to visit the Friends of the Shelter website: lafos.org, where you can get more information about volunteering, adopting, and donating. Check out our Petfinder page for pictures and to learn more about all of our adoptable pets. petfinder.com/shelters/friendsoftheshelter.html.
    All adoptable pets are spayed or neutered, have their shots and come microchipped!
    Calypso — A gentle brindle-point black lab mix found roaming near Pueblo Complex. He loves to go for walks. He prefers a home with a person that is home more often than not, and he doesn’t enjoy sharing his home with cats.
    Cessna — A German Shepherd/lab mix that was found near the Los Alamos airport last summer. He would love to find a new family that will take him out for long walks. Cessna prefers not a home with other male dogs. Call sponsor at 231-3624.
    Coconut — White male maltese or maltipoo found on Ridgecrest. His family never came for him, so now wants to go home with you. Call 920-8203.
    Marmaduke — A brindle pit mix with loads of energy! Marmaduke learned how to walk on a leash and would probably be a good hiking dog. He seems to get along better with female dogs.

  • The Pajarito Environmental Education Center is hosting a three-planet event.
    Mercury, Venus and Jupiter will come very close together. PEEC and the Pajarito Astronomers will be there with telescopes to help viewers enjoy this event.
    The telescopes will be set up for twilight sky viewing starting about 8:45 p.m., about 45 minutes after sunset. Besides these planets, there will also be some galaxies to view.
    Public is invited to dress accordingly and if the viewing is good, the event will last until around midnight.
    The three planets will form a tight triangle that will fit into a 2.5 degree circle above the western horizon. After they set at around 9:35 p.m., the rings of Saturn and then the galaxies can be observed.
    For more information, call PEEC at 662-0460. 

  • Cub Scouts from Pack 22 and 27 worked to collect canned goods on May 11 at Smith’s location in Los Alamos and White Rock. Donations were accepted throughout the day in addition to the box collection by the United States Postal Service. Cub Scout and Boy Scouts participated in the community event.