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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Thursday, June 14, 2001

Council votes to sleep late, approves H2O tank

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., June 14, 2001 -- The Town of Pecos City City, City Council authorized Frank X.  Spencer & Associates to submit plans and specifications to the Texas  Natural Resource Conservation Commission for replacement of a ground  storage tank in Worsham Well Field during the regular meeting this morning  at City Hall.

The city currently is using a water tank at Worsham Field that is close to 40 years old and has never received any maintenance, according to Spencer.

"This tank was built in 1963," he said. "It has never had any maintenance at all because there's only one tank."

In order for the tank to be maintained and repaired, Spencer said that they would need another tank that could be used while that tank was shut off and since there has only been one tank that could not be done.

Spencer informed the Council that the current tank could be repaired but since the tank is in such bad shape doing that would cost just as much as purchasing a new tank.

"This tank is pretty well dilapidated," he said. "The roof has fallen in."

In previous meetings, the Council asked Spencer to look for a used tank to replace the current tank but this morning Spencer informed them that he could not find a tank big enough to replace the current one.

The Council asked City Utilities Director Octavio Garcia if the current tank is a health and safety concern, which he replied with yes.

"I don't think you'll make it another year (with this tank)," he said. "And if it breaks we'll be without water."

The Council agreed that the construction of the new tank should be done as soon as possible.

The Council, along with Spencer, set dates for plans to progress.

The city would start advertising for bids on the construction at the end of July with bidding set to open at the end of August.

The Council plans to award the bid during the regular Council meeting on October 11.

The Council appointed a new member to the Pecos Housing Authority (PHA) Board during this morning's meeting.

Jim Workman was sworn into the PHA with his two sons present at the meeting.

Workman is replacing former board member Alberto Alvarez, whose term with the board has expired. Alvarez just recently moved to El Paso.

City Manager Carlos Yerena asked the Council for their consideration on a landscaping ordinance for the city.

"It's something that'll help with the city's beautification," he said.

Yerena said that the ordinance would require that all new multi-family, commercial and industrial construction landscape 10 percent of the property fronting a public street.

Yerena said that ordinance would only apply in the city limits as well as any extra-territorial jurisdiction and does not state anything specific and the terms are pretty general.

"We're not asking for anything specific," he said.

Councilman Ricky Herrera said that he agreed with ordinance but believed that it should also include new single family houses.

Mayor Pro-Tem Danny Rodriguez asked Yerena if the ordinance would include all of the city's property.

Yerena said that it would.

"We need to set an example," he said.

The Council agreed that the ordinance would be good for the city and approved the ordinance.

The Council also approved the request for closure of Oak Street for the Night in Old Pecos festivities and changing the regular Council meetings to 5:30 p.m. Councilmen said that they hoped the move would encourage citizens to attend the council meetings.

The Council approved the mutual aid agreement between Law Enforcement agencies in Reeves, Jeff Davis, Andrews, Midland and Culberson counties for the Trans-Pecos Drug Task Force service.

In other business, the Council approved reports from the municipal court, juvenile court and tax collector as well as the minutes of the last meeting and the accounts payable.

Red Bluff to allow duck hunting, fighting over minnows

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., June 14, 2001 -- Those who love to hunt will now be able to go duck hunting at  Red Bluff Lake.

Red Bluff Water District Board of Directors voted to allow duck hunting on the west side of the lake during a regular meeting this week at the Red Bluff Water District office.

A representative from the Texas Parks and Wildlife, Philip Dickerson, presented the Board with a contract that would allow duck hunting at Red Bluff.

Dickerson said that the contract could be amended at any time and explained that the only thing missing from the contract itself is the Exhibit A that shows a map of the portion of lake that would be used for hunting.

Board President Randall Hartman said that he had looked over the contract and did not see any problems.

"There's nothing really wrong with it," he said.

The Board also approved hiring a lawyer from Austin, Susan Potts, to represent the water district in fighting off the possible re-integration of the silvery minnow into the Pecos River.

Hartman explained to the Board that he and some other people attended a meeting in Fort Stockton that was sponsored by the Fishing and Wildlife Service.

Hartman said that the meeting was set up for discussion of re-integrating the species of fish into the river.

The silvery minnow has been placed on the endangered species list, according to Hartman.

Hartman said that the officials who were speaking at the meeting had come to the meeting with a decision already made.

"They came to us with their mind made up," he said.

If the state decides to put that kind of fish in the river, the river would have to maintain a constant flow of water, which would be bad for the life of the river, according to Hartman.

Dickerson told the Board that he did not know about the meeting and said that if the Fishing and Wildlife Service approved moving the fish back in, his department would oppose it.

He said that kind of fish has not been seen in that part of the river for about 30 years and since then the river has changed.

"We would oppose it because the river has declined in quality," he said.

The Board agreed that hiring Potts would be the best defense they would have in the fight the minnows.

Owner of Chaparral Village, Bob Crouch, asked the Board to consider building a brush dam near his property on the East Side of the river.

Crouch explained that he has lived on that land for many years and in the past has kept up a small golf course where many kids first learned how to play golf.

He said the weather in the past few years has made it difficult for him to keep the golf course up.

"I've been on the Pecos River since 1969," he said. "The weather has been so dry in the past few years and I've lost all my grass."

Crouch said that he would like to have a brush dam next to his property so he could pump out water for his grounds and he would be glad to pay the water district for it.

Hartman and Board member Lloyd Goodrich explained to Crouch that the water district had no authority to say he could or could not build a dam.

"You have to apply for a dam with the state," Hartman said. "You can't build anything across the river without proper authority."

Goodrich said that it is a great battle to try and build anything across the river.

"This is an enormous legal process," he said. "All the water that goes down the river is spoken for."

No action was taken on that matter.

In other business the Board approved the water report, accounts payable and the minutes of the last meeting.

Mariachi festival on Saturday

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., June 14, 2001 -- If you like Mariachi music, the Reeves County Civic Center is  the place to be, Saturday, June 16.

Two local groups have gotten together to bring to Pecos a Mariachi Festival, featuring several groups from different areas.

Comite 88 and the Evening Optimist Club are sponsoring the 2001 Mariachi Festival which is set to begin at noon Saturday. Music, fun and food will be provided at the civic center until 2 a.m.

Cover charge for the event will be $10 for adults and children age 12 and older and $3 for children three years through 11 years.

Mariachi groups performing include Mariachi Los Rayos from Guanajato, Mexico; Mariachi Matamoros from Temple; Mariachi Los Solecitos from El Paso; Mariachi San Luis from Midland and Packita La De Ojinaga, Mexico.

While enjoying the music, attendees can enjoy a variety of "goodies" including gorditas, tripitas, corn on the cob, asadero and chile verde burritos, chicharones burritos, along with an assortment of items to drink.

Both groups sponsoring the event are non-profit organizations that use the proceeds to fund local scholarships for deserving Pecos High School senior students.

Everyone is invited to come out and have a good time and help the youth in the community.

Nacho teaches kids, gets laughs, despite dumb partner

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., June 14, 2001 -- The laughter of the children of Pecos was heard through the halls  of Pecos Elementary yesterday afternoon.

That laughter was caused my none other than the ventriloquist, Nacho Estrada and his dummy Maclovio.

Estrada's sense of humor can make everyone around him laugh, children and adults.

When asked how he first got started, his said with a funny grin, "After they introduced me."

However, Estrada first started teaching 4-year-olds and seventh and eighth grade Special Ed in a school in Eagle Pass.

In order to help them learn Estrada decided to use his talent as well as his dummy, Maclovio. In using Maclovio and reverse psychology, Estrada soon had the attention of the children, he said.

He was then able to teach them how to read and write so that they soon went back to their regular classrooms.

While teaching one day, Estrada made the mistake of referring to Maclovio as a dummy.

With that, a student went home and told his father what his teacher had said. The student's father phoned his brother, who was a member of the school board.

The school board member then phoned the Superintendent who then phoned the Principal. The next day Estrada was call to the Principal's Office to explain his comment. Asking Estrada who Maclovio was, he told the Principal that he was a dummy. With that Estrada was excused from the office only to have everyone show up during a class session to observe.

After everyone had seen the teaching methods Estrada had used, the Principal suggested he resign because he felt that Estrada's calling was to teach other teachers how to make teaching fun and enjoyable.

Estrada is now a full time ventriloquist, motivator and education consultant, who travels around the World performing for children as well as teaching conferences.

"I have been to Puerto Vallarta, Panama, Germany, Canada and Holland," Estrada said. "When I went to Holland, I had to speak very slowly. They had a bilingual program there and they invited me to come," he said.

Estrada's programs focus on dropout prevention, drug abuse presentations and environmental issues.

Estrada's program begins with teaching the children that it is important to sit up straight and pay attention because that is how they learn. He tells them that this shows respect for other people.

Performing for adults and children is different for Estrada because they view the performances from different perspectives.

"Its different because there is a lesson to be learned. The children learn respect," Estrada said. "The teachers learn how to care and love the children." Learning should be fun.

"The children come and hug you. I don't ask," Estrada said.

Estrada considers dealing and interacting with the children the best part of his job. He recalls one incident in which a 5 year old boy of the Kickapoo tribe in Eagle Pass was talking to the Maclovio in baby talk.

"I remember thinking that this boy must be spoiled to be talking to the dummy in baby talk," Estrada said. "I looked over at the teacher who had a tear coming down her check and I asked her what was wrong with the little boy."

"She told me that the child did not talk," Estrada said. "The child was able to talk to the dummy but not to people. That is one of the fascinating things I've seen."

Good hygiene is also a part of his programs, telling the students that they must wash their hands every time that they are about to eat.

Though the majority of the performances are done in English, Estrada will speak proper Spanish, as well as Tex-Mex Spanish, he said.

Estrada's method of using Spanish and Tex-Mex Spanish in his programs helps children who do not speak English to associate with his programs.

"Everyone should know Spanish," Estrada said. " It is the third most used language in the world and the first in the business world."

Estrada has received numerous awards. His last was the FBI Citizen of the Year. This award is the highest award that is given by the FBI.

Entries needed for parade scheduled for July 4

PECOS, Thurs., June 14, 2001 -- Entries are still needed for the West of the Pecos Parade scheduled for July 4 in Downtown Pecos.

The group will gather on Highway 17 at 8 a.m. The parade will begin at 10 a.m., travel down Highway 17, turn left on Oak, go around the West of the Pecos Museum where the Old Timer's will gather and head back on Cedar where it will end at the Buck Jackson Rodeo Arena grounds. A story in Wednesday's Pecos Enterprise incorrectly stated that it would begin at the rodeo grounds.

Anyone wanting to join the local festivity can call the chamber at 445-2406.

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Pecos Enterprise
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