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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Roscoe Celebrates July 4th This Saturday

Shooter Jennings is only one of many musicians in town this weekend.
Final preparations are underway for Saturday’s big July 4th Celebration, and the event’s organizers are planning a day to remember.

The day will begin at 8am with the Roscoe Lions Club Pancake Breakfast in the open building just west of the Smackers building on Broadway. Then at ten o’clock the parade will come down Broadway, followed by the Plowboy Mudbog at George Parks Field, with the gates opening at eleven and the event beginning at twelve.

During the afternoon, street vendors will be open and selling food and other wares along Broadway, Cypress, and Old Town Park, and the Roscoe Historical Museum will be open for visitors.

The Roscoe Express will be available to shuttle people free of charge between downtown and the Plowboy Mudbog during the afternoon.  There will also be free swimming from 1-5pm at the City Swimming Pool.

Music will begin “on the bricks” of Cypress next to the bank at four-thirty with Aaron Einhouse followed by Saints Eleven at six o’clock. From eight to nine-thirty, Scooter Jennings will take the stage and will play until the ever popular fireworks show at about 9:45.

Here are more details about the various events of the day:


The Lions Club Pancake Breakfast will start at 8am and end at 10am before the start of the parade. Pancakes, bacon, sausage, coffee, and juice will be served for $5/plate in the empty building next to the former Smacker’s Café on Broadway. All proceeds from the ticket sales and breakfast will be used to support the Roscoe Lions Club charitable activities for the year.


Once again, parade organizers invite your participation. They are looking for creativity and variety. Float awards will be presented to best overall, best western, and most patriotic. Prizes will also be awarded to the best antique vehicle, best motorcycle, and best semi. Anything is welcome!

The parade will start at 10:00am.  Line-up will be on West Broadway at 9:30am, and judging will be at 9:45am.

For more information, call Valerie Pruitt at 325-338-4666.


This year’s Plowboy Mudbog at George Parks Field will feature mudboggers from as far away as Dallas, Amarillo, and New Mexico. Registration for entrants begins at 9:30am Saturday morning at the northwest corner of the baseball field at Second and Sycamore Streets.  The driver entry fee is $30.

Entries will be in five classes:

1.    Street: 35” tires and under with limited engine modification.
2.    Super Street: 35” with engine vac under 13”.
3.    Modified: 36” to 39” with limited engine modification.
4.    Super Modified: 36” to 39” with engine vac under 13”.
5.    Open: 40” and over.

Since there’s an advantage in going last rather than first, each mud vehicle makes two runs, with the second run in reverse order from the first.

The public gate will open at 11:00am with mudbog action beginning at noon. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for students 11 to 16. Kids 10 and under are free.  Proceeds will benefit the Roscoe Baseball Little League. The Little League will also run the concession booth.

Time permitting, there will also be a Plowboy Mudbog “Dash for Cash,” an entertaining event featuring kids running through knee-deep mud.

Spectators are encouraged to bring sun block, mosquito repellent, canopy, and lawn chairs. For more information, see the Plowboy Mudbog Facebook page, or contact Felix Pantoja at 325-514-8384.


Swimming at the Roscoe City Pool will be free of charge from 1:00-5:00pm.  The City Pool is located at 4th and Cedar Streets next to the City Park.

For more information, contact Isabel Moore at 325-514-9416.


The music stage will be set up on Cypress Street between the Roscoe State Bank and Old Town Park. Aaron Einhouse will open the show at around four-thirty, followed by Saints Eleven at around six. They will be followed at eight o’clock by this year’s feature act, Shooter Jennings and band, who will play until 9:30 or so.

Aaron Einhouse is a regular on the Texas music circuit. Here is his single “Oh, Susannah” as he and his band performed it on the TV series Texas Music Scene.

Saints Eleven is a Dallas/Denton band who sang at this year’s Outlaws & Legends Music Fest in Abilene. Their music, which lead singer Jeff Grossman calls Americana, is not unlike Texas Country/Red Dirt. They have three albums: I'll Be Fine, I Told You, and Coming Back Around.

Singer/songwriter Shooter Jennings is the son of country-music legend Waylon Jennings and a star in his own right. Over a long career, he has produced several albums and performed or had his songs performed in TV shows and movies. He has also recorded songs with Billy Ray Cyrus, Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Wanda Jackson, and others.


The fireworks show, organized, as always, by City Councilman Robert McBride, will be a memorable event that fittingly tops off the day. The show begins at about 9:40pm and will be done at about ten o’clock.

Those who are still not done celebrating can then go to the Lumberyard, where there will be live music free of charge by the Black Lillies and dancing until 1:00am.

So, if you're in the area on Saturday, make plans to attend, bring lawn chairs and coolers, and help us celebrate the country’s independence!



Mary Cornutt was viciously attacked at 3rd and Cedar by a pit bull while on her early morning jog last Thursday morning, June 22. She was badly bitten and received multiple wounds. She was taken to Rolling Plains Memorial Hospital where she was treated and released.

The dog’s owner, Julie Villa, is receiving a citation for not properly penning the dog. She is also responsible for all medical bills for the victim plus veterinarian fees for putting the dog down and having the head sent to Austin for rabies testing. Fortunately, the results were negative.

Police Chief Felix Pantoja would once again like to remind Roscoe residents to follow the law regarding leash laws and at-large dogs. Recently, several dogs have been seen running loose, and their owners are legally responsible for any damage they may cause. Vicious dogs may in certain cases be classed as deadly weapons and their attacks as third-degree felonies.



Mike Massey’s house six miles southwest of Roscoe was burglarized in the early morning hours of Thursday, June 22, and several valuable items, mostly collectibles, were taken. Massey is offering a $5000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator.

If you have any information that will lead to the solution of this crime, please contact the Nolan County Sheriff’s Office at 325-235-5471 or Mike Massey directly at 325-514-0829.



The Black Lillies.
When the City’s fireworks show is over at about ten o’clock Saturday night, it may be time for the kiddies and old folks to go home, but the grown-ups who want to continue the celebration are in for a real treat. The Lumberyard has booked a name band, The Black Lillies, and is going all out by inviting everyone to a late-night dance with no cover charge. That’s right—the Lumberyard is footing the bill on this one. It’s a first for them and should be a great way for everyone to wrap up a great Independence Day party in Roscoe.

The Black Lillies are an Americana band from Knoxville, Tennessee, who have been around since 2009. They are led by Cruz Contreras and originally made an impact on the Tennessee music scene with their album Whiskey Angel, which was nominated for the tenth annual Independent Music Awards in 2010. The following year they produced 100 Miles of Wreckage, which peaked at no. 11 on the Americana radio charts. Their third CD, Runaway Freeway Blues (2013) was on in the Americana Music Association’s top five for over five months, and their most recent album, Hard to Please, reached #30 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart. Popular singles include “Same Mistakes” and “Smokestack Lady.”
Kyle Park
On Friday night, Kyle Park will begin the weekend music fest with a return engagement at the Lumberyard. He writes and produces his own songs, which might loosely be termed a part of the current Texas Country genre. Born in Austin in 1985, he formed a band while a student at Texas State University in San Marcos. His first album, Big Time, was released in 2005, and since then he has produced five others, the most recent being Beggin’ for More, released in 2013. His single “The Night is Young” reached #1 on the Texas Country Charts in 2013. Three other singles, “Fit for the King,” “Long Distance Relationship,” and “Turn That Crown Upside Down,” were all Top Ten hits on the Texas Music Chart.

For more information, contact the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.



Puddles at 4th and Cypress yesterday.
Although the weather was varied this past week, it was marked by some unusually cool weather for the beginning of summer, strong chances for rain that didn’t pan out, and then, finally, on Monday, by a shower that didn’t last long but really poured down while it did.

The days leading up to the weekend continued last week’s trend of hot weather. Thursday’s high was 99°F, followed by Friday’s 103°. But then the anticipated cold front arrived, bringing rain to some areas in the vicinity but not to Roscoe. The temperature dropped quickly and refreshingly, though, and fell from over a hundred down into the seventies in less than an hour. The cool temperatures then hung around all weekend until yesterday when the numbers began rising again. Lows that had been at 75° on Friday morning were down to 63° on Saturday, and the difference was noticeably pleasant. Morning temperatures remained in the sixties until this morning, and I took advantage of them by opening my home’s windows and outside doors.

The weekend chances for rain were high, anywhere from 40% to 70%, but the rains never materialized until Monday afternoon, when a storm cloud approached from the southwest and hit Roscoe with a quick, hard shower. I got .6” in my rain gauge, but I talked to some people from Maryneal who said they got 3½ inches and others from Wastella who said they didn’t get a drop. Kenny Landfried recorded an official .35" in east Roscoe and got 1.45" on his farm on Cottonwood Creek northwest of Roscoe. So, the amount people got in this case really did depend on the location because the rainfall and amounts weren’t general.

Yesterday the temperature warmed back up to 90°, today will continue the trend with an anticipated 94°, and tomorrow should top out at around 101°, so our brief break from the heat is apparently over. The weekend will be only slightly cooler with a Friday high of 97°, and 95° on Saturday and Sunday. Lows will be in the low to mid-seventies.  Chances of rain are at 20% through Monday and 0% after that.


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Shooter Jennings to Highlight July 4th Celebration

Shooter Jennings.
This year’s featured artist at Roscoe’s 4th of July celebration on Saturday, July 1, is singer-songwriter Shooter Jennings, the son of country music legend Waylon Jennings. His music is primarily Outlaw Country and Southern Rock.

He was born on May 19, 1979, and spent much of his early years traveling in his dad’s tour bus. He grew up around music and in 2001 left Nashville for Los Angeles, where he formed Stargunn, a rock band, The group released the album The Only Way Up is Down and went on tour. They performed the soundtrack of the film Made, and their song "White Lines N Black Ties" was licensed for the Burt Reynolds film The Crew.

In 2003 the band broke up, and Jennings left rock to begin his country music career. His first album, Put the “O” Back in Country was released in 2005. The same year his song “Busted in Baylor County” was featured in the film The Dukes of Hazzard. His album Electric Rodeo was produced in 2006, followed by The Wolf in 2007, which featured collaborations with Doug Kershaw and the Oak Ridge Boys. Bad Magick: The Best of Shooter Jennings came out in 2009, followed by Family Man in 2012 and The Other Life (2013). In 2014, he began playing with Waylon’s Outlaws, his father’s band.

Over the years he has recorded songs with Billy Ray Cyrus, Asleep at the Wheel, Wanda Jackson, Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Lukas Nelson, and others. Notable singles include the appropriate (for his Roscoe appearance) “4th of July,” “Outlaw You,” and “Gone to Carolina.”

Other musicians performing on July 1 at the free concert and street dance "on the bricks" in downtown Roscoe will be Aaron Einhouse and Saints Eleven.



Roscoe students receiving their FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) Drone Certification last week were Braxton Parrott, Paul Pantoja, Arthur Pope, and Nicholas Limones.

Receiving their BioMed CVA (Certified Veterinarian Assistant) Level Certification from the Texas Veterinarian Medical Association were Jovanah Guzman and Caleb Boren.



Casey Donahew.
Popular Texas Country recording artist Casey Donahew will return to the Lumberyard for a command performance Friday evening. Opening for him is up-and-coming singer Dalton Domino.

Donahew, a singer and songwriter originally from Burleson, began his singing career in 2002 and since then has built up a large fan following on the Texas music circuit. His Texas Country style is similar to that of Pat Green, Randy Rogers, and Robert Earl Keen. His six CDs include one live and five studio albums, including Moving On, Double-Wide Dream, and Standoff. Popular singles
include “White Trash Story,”  “Double-Wide Dream,”  “Fallen,”  “One Star Flag,” and “12 Gauge.”
Dalton Domino.
Dalton Domino, who plays at venues in Lubbock and has released the album Corners with the single, “Corners,” will open for Donahew.

For reservations and more information, contact the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.



Dryland cotton in the area is up and looking good.
Last Wednesday, on a day when the chance for rain was 20% or less depending on which weather forecast you saw, the afternoon heat produced a storm cloud that rolled over Roscoe slightly before sundown with high winds and driving rain. It didn’t last long, but while it did, the rain fell hard enough to total .61”. (Reports south of town were up to 1.5”.) It also brought some cool air on a day that up to then had been seriously hot.

Then on Saturday, Roscoe experienced its hottest day in years when the temperature topped out at an official 105°F (or 107° according to the Weather Channel). There hadn’t been a hotter day in Roscoe since August 12, 2012, when the official temperature was 107°. And Saturday wasn’t the only hot day we had. Wednesday’s high was 97°, Thursday’s 99°, and Friday’s 100°. Sunday’s cooled down to 93°, and Monday’s was only 87°, but yesterday it was back up to 94°, and today should be the same.

Today is the official first day of summer, and the forecast is for continued heat through Friday, which should hit 100°. Saturday, however, will be much nicer with a high of only 88° and a low of 67°, and Sunday and Monday will continue the trend with highs of 78° and 81° respectively. The chance of rain for Sunday is currently set at 40% and for Monday 50%.



A memorial service was held at 11am on Saturday, June 17, at First United Methodist Church in Roscoe for Kenith Walter Brawley, 73, of Roscoe, who passed away at his residence on Tuesday, June 13. Billy Joe Jay officiated.

Kenith was born September 14, 1943, in Roscoe. He graduated from Roscoe High School in 1961. He was a veteran of the U. S. Army, serving two tours in Vietnam. During his service, he received the Vietnam Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, two Overseas Bars, an Air Medal, and the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal. He was a Disabled Veteran and worked as a Civil Draftsman in Fort Worth over thirteen years. After growing up in Roscoe, he lived in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and Fort Worth and moved back to Roscoe in 2008. He also worked as a DJ at KXOX Radio, where he was known as “Skinny Kenny.”

He is survived by two sons: Chris Brawley and wife Sabrina of Haslet, TX, and Matt Brawley of Fort Worth; his mother, Lois Brawley of Sweetwater; a brother, Dennis Brawley of Sweetwater; two sisters, Sandra Mulanax of Roscoe, and Patsy Huntley and husband Dan of Fort Walton Beach, Florida; and three grandchildren, Brittany Brawley, Amanda Brawley, and Aaron Brawley, all of Haslet.

He was preceded in death by his father, Walter Brawley; six uncles; and seven aunts. Honorary Pallbearers were Cody Thompson, Edwin Duncan, Mike Dobbs, Billy Joe Jay, Felix Pantoja and Joe Duncan.


Wednesday, June 14, 2017

City Council Hears Reports, Approves Action Items

City Manager Cody Thompson reports to the City Council yesterday evening.
At its monthly meeting in City Hall yesterday evening, the City Council heard reports from the City Manager and Chief of Police, and approved a number of action items.

City Manager Cody Thompson informed the Council that the sewer line upgrade currently underway is proceeding as planned and reminded them that the entire project will take about six months. Work on Seventh Street from Ash to Main Streets by West Texas Aggregates has also begun. In those three blocks, the street will be widened seven feet on each side, i.e., from the current 14 feet to 28 feet when complete.

The City has purchased a 2007 Toyota Tundra pickup for $11,500. The one it will replace has over 367,000 miles on it and is on its last legs.

The City had several water line breaks this week, and City workers have been busy trying to fix them all. In two cases the breaks were in 8” water mains, which caused neighborhood water outages. City workers have begun mowing the old sanitary sewer plant, and once mowing is complete, it will be sprayed with weed killer.

The Council approved an ordinance establishing a school zone in front of the new Early Childhood Center on Main Street. The work and its expenses will be handled by the State since FM 608 is a state highway. The zone will be on Main from Seventh Street to the I-20 access roads. Signs will not be placed nor slower speeds be required until school begins in August.

Police Chief Felix Pantoja said that the Police Department responded to 101 calls in May. There were two burglaries and two auto thefts. Two utility trailers have also recently been stolen.

Sherry Oliver of 611 Main Street requested permission to keep chickens. The request prompted a general discussion about the City ordinance against keeping chickens, and after some deliberation everyone agreed that it is time to get rid of the ordinance but to maintain certain limitations, particularly as to the number of chickens allowed. Details of what other cities are doing in this regard are needed, however, so the question of the wording of the new regulation and its passage have been tabled until next month’s meeting. In the meantime, the Council told Ms. Oliver that she can keep up to 12 adult chickens at her address.

The Council then approved some routine items including permitting the parade and fireworks show and blocking of downtown streets on July 1. It also authorized the payment of two cents per capita to the Atmos Cities Steering Committee to fund regulatory and related activities.



Lauren Decker of Stamford speaks at the Southwest Energy Summit.
The ninth annual Southwest Energy Summit began yesterday morning at the RCISD STEM Center and continues today with State Senator Charles Perry giving a keynote address this morning. U.S. Representative Jodey Arrington was scheduled to speak yesterday but had to stay in Washington as a committee on which he serves proposed a VA accountability bill that was voted on and passed by the House of Representatives yesterday.

The Summit features speakers from several area energy sources including oil, natural gas, solar energy, nuclear energy and related sectors, as well as wind. It will conclude this afternoon.



Ex-Plowboy Matt Buckley and Coach Jake Freeman
Ex-Plowboy Matt Buckley finished his high school football career as a winner as his Blue team beat the Red team 14-0 in the Myrle Greathouse Football Classic at Shotwell Stadium in Abilene Saturday night. The game is a part of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes All-Star Festival held annually in Abilene and pits star football players from the Big Country against one another.

Buckley will play football for the Hardin-Simmons Cowboys starting this fall. He is attending the University on a scholarship.



Stoney LaRue
One of the biggest weekends of the summer at the Lumberyard is upon us. On Friday night, Stoney LaRue and the Arsenals will fill the air with “red dirt” classics like “Oklahoma Breakdown” and “My Feet Don’t Touch the Ground.” Saturday night it’s the Mavericks’ turn with the inimitable Raul Malo singing songs ranging from Tex-Mex, Cuban bolero, and blues, to country and rock ‘n’ roll—from songs like “All You Ever Do is Bring Me Down” to “Here Comes My Baby” and from “Dance the Night Away” to “Back in Your Arms Again.” Both groups give enthusiastic live performances, and large crowds for both are expected.

The Mavericks
For reservations or more information, contact the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.

Check out Lubbock radio station Lone Star 99.5fm’s article on this weekend at the Lumberyard.



Monday's sunset. (Photo by Eden Baker.)
This past week has been one of those times when the weather is constant from one day to the next. Temperatures moved into the nineties last Thursday, and since then every day has been pretty much the same. On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday the high temperature was 95°F, on Monday 94°, and then yesterday back to 95°. Early morning lows were either 69° or 70°, skies were mostly clear, and strong winds blew from the south on all those days. Wind speeds ranged from 16 to 20mph with gusts from 28 to 33.

Today will be slightly warmer with a predicted high of 97°, increasing to 99° tomorrow, and then to 104° on Friday and Saturday, and only slightly cooler on Sunday at 101°. Skies will be either sunny or mostly sunny just as they have been for the past week.  Lows will range from 72° to 75°. And the wind will continue to blow from the south. The only chances weathermen are giving for rain are 20% for today, Friday, and Saturday.

Summertime doesn’t officially begin for a week, but according to the weather it’s already here.



Former City Council member Ken Brawley, 73, passed away at his home in Roscoe last night.

Arrangements are underway for a memorial, and cremation will be handled by McCoy Funeral Home in Sweetwater.



George Allen Thomas, 83, of Roscoe, passed away Tuesday, June 6, at Nolan Nursing and Rehab Center in Sweetwater.

Graveside services were at 1:00pm on Friday, June 9, at Roscoe Cemetery with Randall Smith officiating. McCoy Funeral Home in Sweetwater was in charge of arrangements.

George was born April 14, 1934, in Roscoe. He was a graduate of Highland High School and Sul Ross University and was a member of the Roscoe Church of Christ. George lived in Nolan County all his life and was a retired rancher.

He is survived by his brother Parks Thomas and wife Rudy of Maryneal, sister Jackie “Dinky” Walters and husband Jim of Irving, nieces Dee Waller of Georgia, Susan (Thomas) Dent and husband Paul of Maryneal, Lisa Shaw of Midland, nephews Brad Burnett and wife Ida of Weatherford, Jimmy Walters of Irving, Todd Thomas of Maryneal and brother-in-law Cliff Burnett of Roscoe.

George was preceded in death by his parents, Iris Jackie (Jones) Thomas, December 23, 1991, and Oma Thomas, March 2, 2002; sister, Ellen Rae (Thomas) Burnett, July 3, 1996; and great niece Misty Hollingworth, December 31, 2006.

Honorary pallbearers will be Brad Burnett, Jimmy Walters, Paul Dent, Clyde Dent, Cutter Dent and Branson Thomas. Memorials may be made to Hendrick Hospice Care, 1651 Pine Street, Abilene, Texas 79601 or to one’s favorite charity.


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

City Sewer Line Upgrade Begins

The scene on Third Street yesterday morning.
After some delay, the upgrade of Roscoe’s sewer line began in earnest yesterday morning on 3rd Street between Bois d’Arc and Ash Streets with workers from Whitney Underground digging a hole in the street twelve feet deep and installing a manhole and new piping there. The entire project will take about six months to complete.



The future Early Childhood Center on South Main.
The new Early Childhood Center will open in the fall, and when it does, a school zone will be placed on Main Street next to it. Yesterday TxDOT (the Texas Department of Transportation) and City Manager Cody Thompson met to settle on the necessary signage and regulations.

One of the rules concerns the speed limit for vehicles passing through the school zone. Main Street is also FM 608 and, as such, is a state highway. There is a state law that a school zone on a state road can be no more than 15mph below the normal speed limit for that location. The speed limit on South Main next to the Early Childhood Center is currently 45mph, so when school opens in August, the school zone’s speed limit will most likely be 30mph.

The Center will also have a designated entrance and exit onto the lot for people picking up or dropping off children. The setup will be similar to the current system used at the Elementary School.



Kids at the pool yesterday.
Even though the fresh water was cold, there were a lot of happy faces at the City Swimming Pool yesterday as kids enjoyed their first swims of the summer. The pool is open from 1-5pm, Tuesday through Saturday. Daily admission price is $2, and season tickets are available for $75.

For private party reservations or additional details, contact Pool Manager Isabel Moore at 325-514-9416.




8-10am             Roscoe Lions Club Pancake Breakfast
10am                 Parade down Broadway
10am-6pm        Roscoe Historical Museum
10am-10pm      Vendors Open
12pm-4pm        Plowboy Mudbog (Baseball Field)
1pm-5pm          Free Swim (Roscoe Swimming Pool)

Live Music
(Music Stage on Cypress St.)
4:30-6pm          Aaron Einhouse
6-8pm                Saints Eleven
8-9:30pm          Shooter Jennings

9:30pm             Fireworks Show
10:00pm           The Black Lillies (Free at the Lumberyard)

Texas Tech’s Masked Rider will once again be in attendance.



The RCHS STEM Agricultural Research Center
As the locus of wind energy in west Texas, Roscoe will host the ninth annual Southwest Energy Summit at the STEM Center next Tuesday and Wednesday. The Summit will feature seminars with discussions on several energy sources including oil, natural gas, solar energy, nuclear energy and related sectors, as well as wind.

US Representative Jodey Arrington will deliver the congressional keynote speech on Tuesday at 11:30am. He will discuss federal energy policies, his experiences working with the Trump administration, and the outlook for the Southwest.

On Wednesday at 9:00am, Texas Senator Charles Perry will deliver the legislative keynote speech and provide updates on energy, infrastructure, and other issues from the recent session of the legislature.

Other sessions will include talks from experts in several energy areas, and the conference will conclude with Regional Energy Solutions tours of various energy sources as well as battery storage, transmission, pipelines, and rail and road.

Participating organizations include the Southwest Energy Coalition, Cline Shale Alliance, Texas Wind Energy Clearinghouse, New Amsterdam Global Solutions, Solar Ranch Development, and Roscoe Collegiate High School.

For more information, phone 325-280-5800, or consult the website at



Several couples in buggies pose in front of wooden buildings at Main and Broadway (then 1st Street), circa 1906. This is one of the photos donated to the Roscoe Museum this week. For a much magnified image of the photo above, click here.
This was a good week for the Roscoe Historical Museum as it got good news on two fronts. The first concerned some early-day photographs found in the bottom of a cardboard box, and the second was news of two 1972 Roscoe interviews from the Southwest Special Collections Library at Texas Tech.

The old photographs found in the cardboard box come from Barney & Betty Johnson of Abilene. The Johnsons frequently make purchases at estate sales and don’t always immediately inspect what they’ve bought. For that reason, they don’t know where the photographs came from, but there are fifteen of them. Five are photos of an old building-moving company that worked in this area, but the others are of early-day Roscoe. Some are from old postcards that the museum already has, but four are unique and previously unseen. Each captures some of the life of early Roscoe that would otherwise be gone forever.

The news from Lubbock is that after a long delay, two interviews conducted in Roscoe in 1972 are now available as transcripts on the Special Collections Library website. One is a discussion of the Roscoe Boys Club and George Parks by Phil Haynes and the other a more general discussion about Roscoe’s history by Walter Potter. Other interviews were conducted at the same time with George Parks, R. E. Gracey, Caffee Welch, Billie Whorton, and Gordon Wood, but the permissions for their public availability have not yet been completed. If and when they are, they will also be made available.

The interview with Phil Haynes is available here.

The one with Walter Potter is available here.



The planned widening of Seventh Street between Ash and Main should begin today. The work will be done by West Texas Aggregates.


3rd SUNDAY LUNCH - There will be NO 3rd Sunday Lunch for June 18th in observance of Father's Day . The next lunch will be July 16.

Have several dates open, so call and book your next event.
Call Misty @ 325-338-1005

Work is scheduled to start on the kitchen renovation June 12. Stay tuned for updates and pictures.



The Black Dirt Revival will be the featured band at the Lumberyard Saturday night. For reservations or more information, contact the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.



Morning sky.
Temperatures continued to be milder than the average for this time of year, and the area got some more rain, most of it the slow, easy kind. The most rainfall came on Friday evening right when Sammy Kershaw was scheduled to appear outdoors at the Lumberyard. The show had to be called off, but Kershaw told those who showed up that they’d get a rain check, which he will honor when he does return at some still unspecified date. For the week I had a total of 1.7” with .02 on Wednesday, .54” in two separate rains on Thursday, 1.04” on Friday, and .1” on Sunday. Several people in surrounding areas, however, reported more than what we got here in town. Kenny Landfried reported an official total of 1.75” for Roscoe over the same time period.

Since Wednesday through Saturday was mostly cloudy, temperatures were moderate with highs in the low eighties, except for Saturday, which got up to only 79°F. Lows were in the low sixties. The sun broke through on Sunday, and since then it's been sunny with steadily rising temperatures. Yesterday’s high was 86°, while today and tomorrow should peak at around 88°. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday will be sunny and hot with highs of 95° and 96°. After that, highs will consistently climb into the nineties.

Rain is not likely in the coming week. There’s a 20% chance on Friday and then nothing after that until next Wednesday, when chances increase to 50%.


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

City Swimming Pool Opens Monday or Tuesday

Summer is for swimming.

If you’re a kid in Roscoe with a little spare time on your hands, life has to be looking up—school is out, and on Monday or Tuesday the swimming pool will open for the summer. The exact date and time will depend on when a new pump arrives and is installed.

This year the pool will be open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 1:00 to 5:00pm.  Price of admission is $2.00 per day with season passes available for $75.

The pool may be rented for private parties beginning and ending between 6:00 and 10:00pm. The fee is $60 for two hours, $70 for three, and $80 for four with a $15 deposit. The price includes an approved licensed lifeguard.

For reservations or additional details, contact Pool Manager Isabel Moore at 325-514-9416.



(Editor's note: This is a slightly edited version of an article from the May 2, 2012, Roscoe Hard Times.)

Miss Roscoe, Christine Clayton, with Maids of Honor Pauline Nance, left, and Norma Eckert, right.
Those of us who are old enough to remember the 1950s will recall what a big deal beauty contests were in those years.

When TV came to west Texas, it brought with it the annual Miss America pageant, which according to Wikipedia was the highest rated program on television well into the early sixties.

On that night, everyone watched the show and made their predictions about who the judges would pick.  When the winner was announced, host Bert Parks would sing, “There she is, Miss America,” and the newly crowned queen, with tears of joy in her eyes, would walk down the runway as the runners up and everyone else applauded—and for the next couple of days she would be the most popular female in the country.

Local beauty contests were also popular, and in 1954 Roscoe held its own pageant with Christine Clayton being crowned Miss Roscoe, while runners up Pauline Nance and Norma Lynn Eckert were designated her Maids of Honor.

Christine was sponsored by the Roscoe State Bank; Pauline was sponsored by Haney’s Drug Store, where she worked at the soda fountain; and Norma was sponsored by Shelansky Dry Goods, where she worked on Saturdays when everybody came to town.

Miss Roscoe went on to compete in the Oak Creek Pageant when the lake officially opened, but the winner was someone from Sweetwater.

Norma, who has supplied me with all these details, also mentions that on the Sunday after the Roscoe pageant, “the pastor of the First Baptist Church preached a sermon on ‘parading around with hardly any clothes on,’ and there we were, the three that placed, on the front row of the choir with everyone looking at us . . . and two of our dads were deacons.”

Despite all that, she says, “Daddy was still proud of me.”



City Manager Cody Thompson is asking drivers to be aware that school is out for the summer and to watch out for kids in the streets, especially around the baseball field, the park, and swimming pool.

He reminds everyone that mosquitoes are a health hazard as they can carry the West Nile virus. To keep them from multiplying, residents should drain any standing water in yards or containers, clean rain gutters, fill in low areas in their lawns, keep grass mowed, and stay indoors as much as possible at dusk and dawn.

He also wishes to remind residents that there are local leash laws and that they are financially responsible for the actions of their pets. Recently, several dogs have been noticed running free in the streets.



Sammy Kershaw
It’s another big weekend at the Lumberyard as Cajun great Sammy Kershaw brings his act to town for the first time Friday evening. Kershaw, whose hits go back a quarter-century, will be singing the songs that have made him famous, tunes like “You are the Love of My Life,” (Click title for video) “Queen of My Double Wide Trailer,” “Third Rate Romance,” “Don’t Go Near the Water,” and “Yard Sale.”

Both an accomplished singer and songwriter, Kershaw—a third cousin to Doug Kershaw and native of Kaplan, Louisiana—has been performing in honky tonks since childhood. He began after his father’s death when he was 12, and within a couple of years was opening for Ray Price, Merle Haggard, and George Jones. He really hit his stride in the early 1990s with his release of platinum albums Don’t Go Near the Water, and Haunted Heart, with its number one hit, “She Don’t Know She’s Beautiful.” Then followed two certified gold albums, Feelin’ Good Train and Politics, Religion, and Her. Since then, He’s produced eight more studio albums. His most recent, The Blues Got to Me, was released last year.

Kershaw is a member of the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame and the Louisiana Songwriters Association Hall of Fame.

Cameran Nelson
Opening for Kershaw will be up-and-coming singer Cameran Nelson, who was born in Haskell and now calls Blanco home. He’s lived all over Texas and studied music at South Plains College in Levelland. His first full-length album, Happy to Beer, was released in 2013 and nominated for three Texas music awards: Male Vocalist, Rising Star, and Record of the Year. His single “35 Runs Both Ways” was a multi-week #1 on the Texas Regional Radio Report and the Texas Music Chart. His current project, Good Thing Going, has produced two more #1 hits with “Shotgun,” and “You Can Still Wear White.”

For reservations and more information, contact the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.



What's left of "Lake Roscoe" as seen from the baseball field.
This past week was mainly a drying out of the big rain from the week before. The so-called dry lakes in area fields still have water in them, but the puddles are essentially gone, and the sun has been shining all week. We got our first taste of summer last Thursday, Friday, and Saturday when the winds shifted to the southwest and the first seriously hot days of the year were felt. The high on Thursday was 99°F and on Friday 98°--and then on Saturday we got our first triple-digit day of the year when the high rose to 100°. A front then moved through early Sunday morning and cooled things down considerably. Highs on Sunday and Monday were 80° and 83° respectively and lows were in the low sixties, except for Monday morning when the temperature dropped to 59°. There was audible thunder on Sunday and a big cloud with lightning was visible in the southeast, but for the week there was no more precipitation than a light sprinkle early Monday morning.

There’s an excellent chance that the current weather will change as early as tonight as a front moves through. The chances of rain for tonight and tomorrow are over 60%, although the amounts are not expected to be great. The percentage diminishes to 20% for Friday, but then picks up again on Saturday evening when it increases to 50% before falling to 20% again on Sunday. Temperatures will continue to be relatively mild. The forecast high for today is 83°, tomorrow 82°, Friday 86°, and Saturday 88°. Morning lows will be in the mid-sixties.


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Twenty-Eight Seniors Graduate at Friday Commencement

RCHS Class of 2017
A chapter of life closed for twenty-eight Roscoe Collegiate High School Seniors Friday evening as they received their diplomas and successfully completed their high school careers in the Special Events Center.  Even more impressive is the fact that twenty-seven of them had already received their Associate’s Degree from Western Texas College in a ceremony held on May 5. The only graduating senior not to receive an Associate's Degree was newcomer Melanie Arenivaz, who nevertheless was able to amass 40 college credit hours in her time at RCHS.

      Caleb Ward, Valedictorian               Johnathon Cuellar, Salutatorian
Valedictorian of the Class of 2017 is Caleb Ward, who had an overall grade average of 97.03.  He plans to attend Lubbock Christian College.  Salutatorian is Johnathon Cuellar with an overall average of 93.03.  He is going to Texas Tech.

Here is a list of the class of 2017:

Christian Nathaniel Acuña* ⱳ             Jetly Dean Hobdy* ⱳ
Isaias Ray Aguilar* ⱳ                             Tyler Adam Jowers*
Melanie Serena Arenivaz                       Mitchell Garrett Madden*
Javier Armenta*                                      Roadey Dakota Mann* ⱳ
Joseph Brayden Beal* ⱳ                        Braiden Louis Moore* Φ
Matthew Hendrix Buckley*                   Jayce Corbyn Phillips* ⱳ
Angelica Maria Castillo*                        Quinten Dale Saddler*
Karina Guadalupe Cisneros*                 Shirley Marie Sanchez*
Katelyn Marie Collins*                            Lacey Leann Silva*
Johnathon Edward Cuellar* ⱳ              Saxton Wade Stewart* ⱳ
Juan Jose Garcia Solis* ⱳ                      Bergan Quinn Treviño *
Justin Nicholas Gardner* ⱳ                  Caleb Don Ward* Φ
Mayda Alejandra Guia*                          Lyndi Kay Wilkinson*
Jovanah Renae Guzman* Φ                  Austin Kye Willman*

* = WTC Associate’s Degree
ⱳ = TSTC Welding Certificate
Φ = Phi Theta Kappa (WTC Honor Society)

Here are the Top Ten finishers gradewise in order:

1.  Caleb Ward
2.  Johnathon Cuellar
3.  Braiden Moore
4.  Jovanah Guzman
5.  Karina Cisneros
6.  Justin Gardner
7.  Shirley Sanchez
8.  Bergan Treviño
9.  Christian Acuña
10. Brayden Beal



Braiden Moore and Lyndi Wilkinson receive awards from Jason Freeman.
The Devon Reece Freeman Memorial Scholarship awards were given to two graduating seniors, Braiden Moore and Lyndi Wilkinson at the commencement exercises in the RCHS Special Events Center on Friday night.



Front: Tristan Brooks. First row: Becca Shaw, Liberty Saenz, Riley Sheridan, Braxton Parrott, and Martin Luna. Back: Arizona Guevara, Mitchell Madden, Christian Acuña, Caleb Ward, Camden Boren, Ryan Highsmith.

The RCHS Plowbots finished a respectable eighth of the 32 teams who qualified for the State FIRST Robotics Competition in Austin. Their finish is noteworthy because the competition is not divided according to classes based on school sizes, and they were competing primarily with 5A and 6A schools.

The Plowbots entered as a wildcard team based on their success in the regional meets they competed in. They lost in the state quarterfinals to the eventual runners up.


by Doc Pietzsch

Front row: Jackie Smith, Doc Pietzsch, Sally Turner, Tommy Santiago, Jimmy Smith. Back row: Ronnie Wade, Jimmy Wallace, Cynthia Richburg, Tommy Meredith.
The Roscoe High School Class of 1967 met at the Holiday Inn Express in Sweetwater on Friday, May 19, exactly 50 years after their graduation on May 19, 1967. After reminiscing and visitation, the group went to Buck's for dinner, after which they returned to the Holiday Inn for more reminiscing.

On Saturday morning, they met again with time devoted to remembering deceased classmates: E.H. Pursley, Shirley Pickering, Harold Arpe, Mitchell High, Barbara McDonald, Jim Rayburn, Carroll Reed, Steve Smith, Carol Wilkins, Linda Pietzsch, and Melba Jones.

Jackie Smith and Tommy Santiago gave power point presentations of the class history. After more visiting, the reunion concluded with lunch at Allen's Family Style Meals in Sweetwater.

Those attending were Jackie Smith, Tommy Santiago, Norman Neves, Cynthia Richburg, Sally Turner, Jimmy Wallace, Jimmy Smith, Tommy Meredith, Ronny Wade, and Doc Pietzsch. Of those attending, all but Tommy Meredith and Norman Neves started first grade together at Roscoe Elementary.

A good time was had by all.



It’s springtime, the weather is nice, and the Lumberyard is planning another big weekend with Roger Creager on Friday night and Shinyribs on Saturday. Both will take the stage at 9:30pm.

Roger Creager
Roger Creager, who holds a degree in business from Sam Houston State and a degree in agriculture from Texas A&M, is a native of Corpus Christi but got his start in music while at Texas A&M in the late nineties. To date he has released seven albums, including Long Way to Mexico (2003), Live Across Texas (2004), Here It Is (2008), Surrender (2012) and Road Show (2014). Popular singles include “The Everclear Song,” “For You I Do,” “Gulf Coast Time,” “Long Way to Mexico,” “Things Look Good Around Here,” and “I’m From the Beer Joint.”

Shinyribs is one of the fastest-moving bands in the Texas scene right now. They exploded onto the Austin scene at Ray Benson’s club, The Rattle Inn, and have been drawing large crowds ever since. Led by Kevin Russell, their most recent album, Okra Candy, follows their first two, Well After Awhile, and Gulf Coast Museum.

For reservations or more information, contact the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.



The rain pours down on Friday morning.
The Roscoe area finally got the big rain everyone had been hoping for. It came on Friday morning, and it was a gully washer with reports of amounts up to seven inches, although it was less than that in most places. Here in town there were several reports of four inches and up. The official amount recorded by Roscoe weatherman Kenny Landfried was 3.87”. He also reported that six inches fell around Champion Creek, and several others had totals in the five to six inch range. The seven inches was reported by Royce Walker northwest of Roscoe. West of town reports were around four inches. There was more rain in the west and northwest and less east of town. Colorado City got 6.7” and Westbrook over 7”. Many terraces were broken in the process, and farmers will be busy with repairs as soon as they can get in the fields.

No one was happier about the big rain than the frogs, who could be heard all over town on Friday and Saturday nights. It rained again early Monday morning, but the amounts were far less. Kenny Landfried got an official .28” in town, but some in the country got as much as an inch or more. In any case, those big cracks that were in the ground are all gone, east Broadway has some serious puddles in several intersections, area lakes have water going over the spillway, and the fields will have some deep moisture when cotton planting begins.

Along with the rain came some seriously cool weather for May. Thursday’s 94°F was just a memory by Saturday when the high was 74°, and Sunday was even cooler with a high of 69°. The sun came out long enough on Monday to warm things up to 77°, but the coolest high of the week was yesterday’s 67°. Nights were correspondingly cool with lows in the mid-fifties. I had to put some extra cover on the bed to stay warm enough to sleep.

Today that should all end, though, with sunshine and a high of 83°. And I don’t think anyone is ready for tomorrow’s projected high of 99°. Ouch! That’s a difference of 32 degrees over yesterday’s high, and Friday and Saturday are predicted to be just as hot. Sunday should be much nicer with a high of 82° and the outlook for next week is for highs in the eighties with lows in the sixties.

As they say, if you don’t like the weather around here, just stick around for a while. It will change.



Major Bob Anthony
Major Bob Anthony was the son of Mr. and Mrs. L. G. Anthony, 300 Ash St., and husband of Marjorie Stevenson. He was a graduate of Roscoe High School and played basketball at McMurry College. After entering the Army Air Corps in 1941 and training in California and Colorado, he served in the USA and the Pacific. He was awarded the Presidential Citation and Purple Heart. A bomber pilot, he was killed in action during a raid on Tokyo, August 8, 1945, two days after the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.



Robert J. Klepper, 68, of Roscoe passed away Monday, May 22, 2017, in Abilene. He was a 1966 graduate of Roscoe High School.

His wishes were to be cremated and no other services are planned. All arrangements are under the direction of McCoy Funeral Home.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

RCHS Teams Up with Office Depot to Provide Drone Courses to Other Schools

Dusty White, right, instructs students in drone flight.
In keeping with its goal of providing a model for other schools for new, more effective methods of instruction, Roscoe Collegiate High School through Edu-Drone, Inc., is embarking on a business venture with Office Depot to disseminate its drone-course curriculum nationwide to interested schools and school districts.

Over the past year, RCHS has developed a ground-breaking course taught by experienced drone operators. In doing so, the school has established a curriculum that teaches high school students how to repair and fly drones while also preparing them for FAA certification as drone pilots.

The class is a win-win both for students and businesses. For the students, certification provides immediate employment and career opportunities, and for businesses, the program produces qualified potential employees who can come in and quickly help them get up and running in this new, rapidly expanding field.

Office Depot has made a promotional video for Edu-Drone that describes Roscoe Collegiate’s curriculum for the course. It is accompanied by a flyer that explains how schools can obtain this curriculum for their STEM Certification Programs to prepare students for the "$82.1 Billion in U.S. Economic Impact and 100,000 Jobs Projected in the Drone Industry by 2025."

Proceeds from the sale of the curriculum will benefit the Roscoe school and community.

The video is available by clicking here.

The flyer is available by clicking here.

For more information, contact Office Depot at



Bonnie Wilkinson with her gold medal on the winners' stand after winning the triple jump.
After their performances at the Area Meet in Odessa, the Wilkinson sisters, Bonnie and Lyndi, had high hopes for winning medals at the UIL State Track & Field Meet in Austin last weekend—and that’s just what they did. Bonnie brought home the gold by winning the triple jump with a distance of 36’11½”, which she achieved on her final jump. It was her personal record at an official meet. Lyndi, a senior running in her final high school meet, also had a personal best for the 800-meter run with a time of 2:18.85, which was fast enough to earn her third place and a bronze medal. Both are significant achievements, especially when you consider that there were 208 2A UIL high schools in Texas with track teams this year.

Bonnie, a sophomore, also finished fourth in the 400-meter race with another personal best, 59.25 seconds, which was less than a half-second behind the third-place finisher.

The Plowgirls’ 4 x 400 meter relay team—Jaci Alexander, Lyndi Wilkinson, Jaleigh Morales, and Bonnie Wilkinson—finished eighth with a time of 4:11.78.



As a result of their strong finish at the Hub City Regional Meet in Lubbock back in March, the Plowbots, Roscoe School’s Robotics Team, qualified for the State Meet and will be competing this weekend, May 19-20, in the FIRST Division State Championship for Competitive Robotics at the Austin Convention Center in downtown Austin.

The Plowbots are coached by instructors Dan Boren and John Cox. Team members include Driver—Camden Boren, Navigator—Braxton Parrott, Pilot—Becca Shaw, “Gearman”—Tristan Brooks, Lead Mechanic—Martin Luna, Game Analysts—Brayan Medina-Solis and Ryan Highsmith; and Scouts—Caleb Ward, Christian Acuna, Arizona Guerra, and Riley Sheridan.

The parking lot was full at the Community Center Saturday..
May 21 - 11:30am-1:30pm
Mexican Pile On, dessert and drink $7
We hope to see you then!!!

Our May Trades Day was a great success!!  Thanks to all vendors & to all who came and supported our event.



RCHS Seniors put a fresh coat of paint on the old Doc Daily building on Main and Broadway.
If you wondered what was going on with all the activity at the building on the southeast corner of Main and Broadway or outside the Methodist Church last week, you were seeing the RCHS seniors performing some community service before they leave for college and the workforce.

One group planted trees to shade the playground at the Open Door Child Care Center and did landscape work for First United Methodist Church. Another group painted the building on the corner of Main and Broadway as well as cleaned up downtown.

The AVID College Readiness class at RCISD plans to serve the community throughout the year next year. If you have any community service needs, please contact Kellie Seals at the high school: (325) 766-3327.

                                                                                    --Kellie Seals



Storm clouds in the northwest yesterday evening.
Back when I was a boy growing up in Roscoe, there was always a fireworks stand on the edge of town before Christmas and the Fourth of July. The big exploding fireworks back then were cherry bombs, silver hammers, and baby giants. All were bigger and more powerful than the smaller Black Cat firecrackers that everyone also bought. The very thought of what a cherry bomb would do to a tin can or red ant bed created quite a bit of anticipation. However, the greater the anticipation, the greater the disappointment when you lit the fuse on one, ran away as quickly as possible, and put a finger in each ear—only to see the fuse go out and the mighty cherry bomb become a harmless dud.

That’s pretty much the way I felt last night when the predicted rainstorm passed over Roscoe. For several days, the forecasters had been predicting a big storm for Tuesday night. As the day for the storm drew closer, the percentages for the chance of rain went up until by yesterday meteorologists were predicting anywhere from 85% to 100%. Well, last night finally came, and the storm approached from the west with plenty of wind, lightning, and thunder. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a big dud. My rain gauge recorded a grand total of .04”, not even enough to create a small puddle in my driveway. What a disappointment!

Fortunately, we are now being told that the chances of rain will be 80% on Saturday. So, maybe we’ll get a substantial rain then. If not, then there’s another possibility next Tuesday, when chances are currently at 50%. In any case, this area needs a good, substantial rain. The black land is so dry that there are cracks in it, and May is over halfway gone.

The coming week will have temperatures pretty much the same as last week with highs in the eighties except for Saturday and Sunday when they will dip into the seventies. Lows will be in the sixties except for the weekend when they fall into the fifties. Skies will be sunny or partly cloudy, and farmers and ranchers will be scanning the skies for rain clouds.


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