• Have you ever wondered what it takes to go on an expedition? How about one that takes you hundreds of feet underground, miles from any access to the surface?
    Come learn all about expedition caving from local caver and PEEC staff member Beth Cortright, 7-8 p.m., April 30 at Mesa Public Library.
    Everything, from cooking meals to using the restroom, is complicated when done in fragile cave environments.
    This presentation will provide details, pictures and videos of a typical caving expedition where a small team of highly trained cavers spend about one week underground.
    During this time, the group lives and works together inside the cave. Based out of a camp, teams travel to predetermined areas in the cave every day to map it to within a few degrees of error.
    The end goal can be pure exploration or related to geology, biology, hydrology, and many other information-seeking sciences.
    Beth Cortright has been caving for about six years. She began exploring underground in southern Kentucky, where she learned to safely explore, survey, and camp in caves.
    Through her adventures with fellow cavers, Beth was fortunate enough to join weeklong expeditions into Lechuguilla Cave in Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Beth will share her experiences in Lechuguilla and many other caves to highlight these important expeditions.

  • On March 31, the Aspen Elementary Mathcounts team was rewarded for its many long hours of math practice and commitment to excellence.
    The team made up of Do Vo, Duncan Fuehne, Tazzler Smith, and Christopher Koh placed 5th at the state Mathcounts competition.
    The state contest was held at Albuquerque Academy, and the Aspen team was the only elementary team to place.
    Do Vo placed fifth as an individual, and Christopher Koh placed 16th. Do’s placing makes him an alternate to the New Mexico National team. If for any reason, one of the top four students cannot participate in the national competition in Washington D.C., Do will compete.
    The Mathcounts Competition Program is designed to excite and challenge middle school students. The program has four levels of competition, local, district, state and nationals.
    The Aspen team had placed second — just behind Los Alamos Middle School — at the Northern New Mexico district competition on Feb. 10.
    Between the district competition and state, the team logged more than 70 hours of practice time.
    The team’s coaches were Phuong Vo and Jane Lataille. They ran the practices like any sport, three times a week, for three hours. Their belief in the boys on the team was demonstrated by the rigorous practice schedule they maintained.

  • I will start by thanking those that volunteer to make the Assets In Action program flow.
    My family does everything from technical items to loading up the vehicles from collecting canned goods for the March on Hunger.
    My Cookies and Conversation volunteers are awesome and spend time at both Los Alamos High School and Los Alamos Middle School talking to youth about fun topics. Yesterday the youth may have heard what prom was like, back in their day.
    The RSVP program at the Betty Ehart Senior Center is where I get most of my seniors from including award winning Kiwanians Don Casperson and Morrie Pongratz.
    Irene Powell calls my volunteers, makes sure the bus picks them up and delivers them and more.
    Irene’s volunteers donated more than 18,000 hours of service to our community last year to a number of nonprofit stations from education, to visitor’s center greeters and the lovely folks that answer the phone when you call.
    Irene and her husband David are also fully trained to head up an emergency shelter for us, should this fire season demand one.
    A special salute to Chamisa sixth graders, alumni and teachers that staffed the dunk tank last weekend to raise money to improve the school.
    Also, thanks to student Council for working to collect canned goods again this month, to help those in need.

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of onsite adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home! Others are currently off-campus in loving foster homes.
    Be sure to visit the Friends of the Shelter Web site: 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. petfinder.com/shelters/friendsoftheshelter.html.
    All adoptable pets are spayed or neutered, have their shots and come microchipped!
    In an effort to help out the Santa Fe Animal Shelter with their intake of 48 animals from a hoarding case in Albuquerque, the Los Alamos Animal Shelter has taken in four dogs from the Santa Fe Shelter. One has already gone on a trial adoption. Here are two more:
    Ruby — A 2-year-old female golden brindle pit bull. She is energetic, but gentle. She loves food, but does not guard it. She enjoys training and is good with adults, gentle children, and most other dogs.
    Poncio — A blonde 4-year-old Chihuahua who is much more friendly than many of his breed. He does not want anyone grabbing at him suddenly, so older, quiet, gentle children would be his preference. He loves adults and most other dogs. Cats are probably bigger than Poncio is.

  • Los Alamos High School’s yearbook, Kaboom!: La Loma yearbook, has been recognized for excellence and featured in the 2013 Gotcha Covered Look Book, vol. 11, celebrating the best-of-the-best in yearbook design and coverage.
    Jostens Look Book is a collection of spreads and photos from outstanding yearbooks and their creative themes, cool covers, dazzling designs, relevant coverage, storytelling copy and action-packed photography.
    Along with design excellence, the annually published Look Book honors the important role well-crafted yearbooks play in helping schools chronicle the experiences, stories and achievements most relevant to students and that academic year.
    The Kaboom!: La Loma yearbook was created by the 2011-2012 yearbook staff under the direction of Michelle Holland, Los Alamos High School yearbook adviser.
    “The best aspect of yearbook is not just the cake, it’s the ingenuity and creativity of an enthusiastic staff of students,” Holland said.
    The Los Alamos High School Kaboom!: La Loma yearbook was one of 425 yearbooks selected from approximately 3,000.
    The 2013 panel of judges, comprised of nationally recognized scholastic journalism professionals and award-winning yearbook advisers, selected the best examples of yearbook spreads and covers to make up the 352-page 2013 Look Book.

  • The third annual Fiesta Primavera will be presented by the Pajarito Spanish Dance Alliance at 3 p.m., Sunday in the Pajarito Room of the historic Fuller Lodge.
    This year’s theme, “La Poesía del Baile,” or “The Poetry of the Dance,” focuses on the poetry of flamenco music and how it is interpreted by the dance.
    Ellen Walton, “Elena,” founder of the organization, directs this year’s show in which she and eight of her local students will perform along with guest artists from Taos, Santa Fe and Albuquerque.
    Guests include, singer La Megue, guitarist Ronaldo Baca, and dancers Sara de Luz, Tamara Baca and Catalina Rio Fernandez. Catalina will be joined by her company, Flamenco Nuevo Mexico.
    Flamenco song reflects every joy and sadness in life, often times conveying both extremes in the same song.
    “La Poesía del Baile,” will take the audience on a fantastical journey to southern Spain through poetry, melody and movement.
    Refreshments follow the show. Reservations can be made at 412-0104 or PajaritoSpanishDance@hotmail.com. Suggested donations are $10 for adults, $5 for children. Fuller Lodge is located at 2132 Central Ave.  

  • The Los Alamos High School ‘Topper Band spent spring break in Disneyland and performed at the Main Street parade on April 7. 

  • Santa Fe
    Aldana’s Restaurant, 3875 Cerrillos Road
    Date inspected: April 5
    Violations: Three high-risk violations. All food needs to have date of preparation and be used within seven days. Cutting boards need to be cleaned and made smooth. Refrigerator is not at proper cold temperature. One low-risk violation. Fans and vents in walk-in refrigerator need to be cleaned.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

    Nava Elementary School, 2655 Siringo Road
    Date inspected: April 5
    Violations: Personal food needs to be kept away from any form of food that may cross-contaminate, but overall very clean. One moderate risk violation. Personal medication needs to be kept in designated area, away from food and food storage equipment.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

    Love’s Meat Market, 1700 St. Michael’s Drive
    Date inspected: April 10
    Violations: One low-risk violation for insufficient lighting.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

    Love’s Deli, 1700 St. Michael’s Drive
    Date inspected: April 10
    Violations: None.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

  • The Taos Lilac Festival is blossoming for the first time in Taos, with a three-day free event celebrating the heritage of lilacs, May 17–19.
    The inaugural Grand Festival Weekend will include a pet parade and costume contest; live music and dancing; children’s carousel; food and crafts vendors; and many family friendly activities.
    Lilacs flourish abundantly in Taos and peak the last two weeks of May.

“The Taos Lilac Festival is aimed at celebrating the abundant lilacs that grace our Town, and to promote their care and planting throughout the Taos area,” said co-organizer John Hamilton. “We hope this new event will not only draw visitors to enjoy the fragrant beauty of Taos in the springtime but encourage residents to properly maintain and grow these beautiful flowers which thrive in our town.”

    For the duration of the festival around Taos Plaza, festival-goers can purchase unique art from more than 40 talented artisans who work with a variety of mediums including ceramics, fiber, wood, metal work, jewelry and crafts.

  • The National Muliple Sclerosis Society invites New Mexicans to hop in the saddle and pedal toward a world free of MS during Bike MS: Pedal los Pueblos 2013, presented by Sam’s Club, on Aug. 24-25.
    This annual two-day fundraising ride is fully supported from start to finish and features a unique figure eight route through Northern New Mexico; the route starting in West Texas.
    Registered cyclists commit to raise a minimum of $250 to fund MS education, programs, services and research that directly impact the lives of those affected by the disease. 
    “Bike MS is an exciting opportunity for cyclists, sponsors, volunteers and people living with multiple sclerosis to connect to one another and our mission,” said Maggie Schold, Senior Development Manager for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in New Mexico. “The camaraderie and shared experience of raising awareness and funds makes the weekend a truly special experience. With each mile behind us and each dollar raised, we are moving closer to a cure.”

  • The Friends of Santa Fe National Forest’s Earth Day workday will be 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
    Volunteers will do trail work on the Dead Dog Trail and will be picking up trash along Old Buckman Road, all the way to the Rio Grande.
    The participants will meet at the Dead Dog Trailhead, talk safety and then divide up into groups, based on what individual preference is for the day.
    For questions or to sign up for any of the upcoming workdays, call Jennifer Sublett, at jasublett@fs.fed.us call 753-7331. 

  • The Center for Emergent Diplomacy in partnership with the City of Santa Fe, announces the launch of Happiness Santa Fe, an initiative that challenges the way we measure people’s well-being and success.
    By using indicators that look at what makes people happy, our goal is to help policy makers in Santa Fe make better choices for its citizens.
    Sustainable Happiness Week, which began April 13, runs through Saturday.
    Santa Fe City Councilor Peter Ives will read the Mayoral Proclamation regarding the establishment of Pursuit of Happiness Day, and Sustainable Happiness Week in Santa Fe.
    Many special events are planned to take place around Santa Fe in conjunction with the launch and with Sustainable Happiness Week, including the reading of a Mayoral Proclamation, Happiness Ambassadors at the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market, film screenings, and interactive art installations, musical performances and Happiness flash mobs, with more events to be announced.
    A full calendar of events can be found at HappinessSantaFe.org.
    Santa Fe businesses, cultural institutions, and community groups will also be creating “Happiness Happenings” which will spring up around the city to throughout the week engage citizens in activities and conversations centered on happiness, where they can take a popular well-being survey.

  • It just wouldn’t be an Earth Day Festival without entertainment, booths and food.
    PEEC’s 13th Earth Day Festival will be from 10 a.m. to
    2 p.m. on Saturday at Pajarito Environmental Education Center, 3540 Orange Street. Park at the High School and ride the free Atomic City Transit shuttle to the Center.
    This year, the PEEC have two sets of entertainment sponsored by Los Alamos National Bank.
    At 11 a.m., Clan Tynker will perform. Clan Tynker is a family troupe that performs a wide variety of stunts in a whimsical “Old World/ Vaudeville” style of entertainment. The show is an enchanting kaleidoscope of skills from around the world performed to live music. A variety of juggling skills are displayed including balls and clubs. Other highlights of the show consist of stage magic, comedy and wire walking.
    At noon, the Los Alamos-based band the Hill Stompers will perform.
    Food will be available from the following vendors: Taste of New York will serve up hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza; Dosa Dosa will serve organic and vegan items; and Los Alamos Co-op Market offers ice cream and fresh fruit.
    During the day, the public is invited inside the nature center to see Betty the bullfrog or Foxxy the hognose snake, and other displays like live butterflies.

  • The University of New Mexico-Los Alamos is inviting the community to attend their UNM-LA on Display event which will be highlighting their outstanding faculty.  There will be approximately fifteen faculty members sharing their academic projects and innovations currently being used at UNM-LA.
    UNM-LA on Display will run from 4 to 6:30 p.m. on April 25. It will be in the building 2 Lecture Hall, and café area at UNM-Los Alamos and refreshments will be provided. At
    5:45 p.m., the evening will end with retiring Dean of Instruction, Kate Massengale giving her “last lecture”, in keeping with the academic tradition. In this series, academics are asked to think deeply about what really matters to them and then give a hypothetical lecture as if it were their very last.
    Dr. Massengale has been with UNM–Los Alamos since 1993. She began her UNM–LA career as an adjunct English instructor, and in 2009 became the first tenured Associate Professor at UNM–LA.  She took the position of Dean of Instruction in 2008, and has successfully led the Department of Instruction as well as helping to guide the university in new and innovative directions since that time. She will be retiring as Dean of Instruction on June 30.  

  • This weekend is an excellent chance to support kids throughout the community, starting in the heart of White Rock.
    Chamisa Elementary will host a carnival from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., to raise the final portion of money for some shade structures. This is a great time for alumni to come back and get their spot in line for the staff member dunk tank.
    If sports are your arena, then head on down to the baseball fields near overlook, for opening day.
    One year, at opening day, a gentleman announced, “Remember there’s no crying in baseball.” I remember thinking, of course there is crying in baseball. Have you ever been to a T-ball game?
    Rumor has it that Alex Kirk returns to his hometown to toss out the first pitch. How wonderful for younger kids to see someone who started as one of them, endure to accomplish his current success, with a bright future ahead.
    Oh and someone tell Eva Pacheco, at LAHS that there’s no better time than now for autographing those shoes.
    If you head uptown, it is Earth Day and some lovely PEEC activities.
    Those who enjoy a little shopping on the weekend can keep that money on the hill, with the Pegasus Parking lot sale. You can find your one-stop treasure hunting excursion and aid a high school project.

  • The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of onsite adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home! Others are currently off-campus in loving foster homes.
    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. petfinder.com/shelters/friendsoftheshelter.html.
    All adoptable pets are spayed or neutered, have their shots and come microchipped!

  • Los Alamos Business Assistance Services, a program of Los Alamos Commerce & Development Corporation, is offering a seminar on the Upgraded Commercial Property Database from 1-2:30 p.m. on April 18 at the Small Business Center conference room, 190 Central Park Square.
    The seminar is free to chamber members or $25 for nonchamber members. If you are interested, please contact Katie Stavert at 661-4805 or katie@losalamos.org.
    LACDC has been a referral resource for commercial property for many years and has made many referrals leading to tenancies throughout the community. LACDC has developed an upgraded property inventory tool that includes the ability for property owners and brokers to log in to the web and change basic information and status for their properties. Attendees at the workshop will learn how to log in and work with the system.
    They will also learn about premium features that are available to promote their properties.
    With the improved inventory tool, LACDC is now able to accurately estimate occupancy rates for the area market for various types of commercial properties and in various submarket areas.

  • Channing Concho from Albuquerque, Kansas Begaye from Rio Rancho, and April Yazza from Zuni, will compete for the title of the 2013 Miss Indian World as part of the 30th Annual Gathering of Nations, at “The Pit” in Albuquerque, on April 25 and April 27.
    As part of the Gathering of Nations powwow, the Miss Indian World pageant is a competition of Native American women representing their different tribes and traditions. This year, 16 women will be competing for the yearlong title as a Cultural Goodwill Ambassador for all Native and Indigenous people.
    The Miss Indian World Pageant begins with the talent presentations April 25 at 7 p.m. at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (at Isleta Pueblo) and continues through the weekend. The 2013 Miss Indian World will be crowned April 27 at 7:30 p.m. at the powwow.
    Tickets for the Miss Indian World Pageant on April 25 are $14 and will be available at the box office/door the night of the event.
    For more information call Marissa Livingston, from JKPR, at 505-797-6688 or at mlivingston@jameskorenchen.com. 

  • Lisa Bravo is the Director of Education and Training for the Children’s Success Foundation and Psychotherapist, that has been teaching and writing about the Nurtured Heart Approach for 10 years.
    The Nurtured Heart Approach, according to Bravo, was developed by her colleague, Howard Glasser, in the 1990s.
    “It began as a therapeutic approach for addressing the behavioral needs of children DX with ADD, ADHD and a host of other behaviorally based components,” Bravo said.
    On Monday, many LAPS staff, from the middle and high school, will spend a day of professional development learning the approach and the ease of implementation for the classroom.
    “I specialize in working with difficult teens in my practice and I can assure you that what they need the most from us is relationship and connection,” said Bravo. “This training will address the emotional needs of these young adults and how to foster emotional competency.”
    Bravo was excited to see the LAPS district focus on the upper-grade levels, when many communities tend to just focus on elementary-aged students.
    When the Los Alamos Juvenile Justice Advisory Board identified a gap that needed to be filled, they stepped in to help.

  • The following restaurant inspection reports were provided by the New Mexico Environment Department.
    Los Alamos
    Lee’s Chinese Buffet, 124 Longview
    Date inspected: April 1
    Violations: None.
    Status of Establishment: Inspection issued after complaint. No follow up required.

    China Palace, 759 Central Ave.
    Date inspected: April 1
    Violations: None.
    Status of Establishment: Inspection issued after complaint. No follow up required.

    North Road Inn, 2127 North Road
    Date inspected: April 2
    Violations: One low risk violation for chemical exposure.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.
    Santa Fe
    Cleopatra Cafe, 3462 Zafarano Road
    Date Inspected: March 27
    Violations: None.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.

    Evangelo’s, 200 W. San Francisco St.
    Date Inspected: March 27
    Violations: One moderate risk violation for contaminated equipment.
    Status of Establishment: Approved. No follow up required.