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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Spring Super Sunday II to Feature Mavericks, Merchants' Open Houses This Weekend

The Mavericks
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again, and that’s what the City of Roscoe and the Lumberyard are doing this weekend. This year’s first Spring Super Sunday on April 17 was cool, cloudy, and wet with a high temperature in the fifties, and the turnout was lower than anticipated. So, they’re trying it again—call it Spring Super Sunday Redux, if you will.

Roscoe retailers will once again be open from noon to 6pm, and the Lumberyard will host what should be another great day of country music with the Zac Wilkerson Band opening around 3:00pm, Two Tons of Steel following at five or so, and the Mavericks, who are making their first appearance ever in Roscoe, beginning around 8:30pm and playing until 10:00.

Lumberyard owner Cody Thompson is promising one of the best live shows you’ll ever see when the Mavericks take the stage. If you want to have a good time with plenty of upbeat music, this is the time to do it. The band, led by vocalist Raul Malo, has had several hits and was nominated for a Grammy Award this year. They play an eclectic mix of neotraditional country music, Hispanic, and rockabilly to produce a lively sound that’s sure to get your blood moving.

The Mavericks got their start in Miami, Florida, in 1989. Between 1991 and 2003, they recorded six albums and had 14 hits on the Billboard country charts, including “All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down.” They had a crossover hit in the UK with “Dance the Night Away” in 1998 and won a Grammy for “Here Comes the Rain.” They broke up in 2004 and went their separate ways but re-united in 2012 and released a reunion album, In Time, in 2013. Their latest album, Mono, came out last year.

If you don’t remember them, check out the YouTube recording of one of their best, “All You Ever Do is Bring Me Down” (Click on the title). Others that demonstrate their range include “Dance the Night Away,” “Here Comes My Baby,” and “Born to Be Blue.” Even their upbeat version of Hank Williams’ “Hey, Good Lookin’” is worth a listen just to see how they handle this classic.

Unlike the free concerts on the streets, however, this one won’t be free as the price of the performers will be covered by the Lumberyard. Advance tickets are $30 or $35 at the door, and tables are $240. For reservations, call the Lumberyard during business hours at 325-766-2457.

Roscoe businesses will have open houses that day from noon until 6:00pm, and the Roscoe Express will be carrying patrons from location to location free of charge. Participating businesses are the Blackland Smokehouse, Burritos Zacatecas, Main Street Antiques, McVey’s Native Nursery, Mexico Lindo, Pepe’s Imports, the Rockin’ S Cantina, Roscoe Thrift Store, Southern Belle Salon, the Lumberyard, the Wildflower Boutique, and Vickie’s Gifts.



The $5 million dollar bond proposal for an Early Childhood Center has failed by a final tally of 158-134. The vote was relatively close as a swing of just 13 “against” votes to “for” would have resulted in a different outcome. However, even with the expected taxpayer reluctance to take on an even greater tax burden as well as some resentment about the continued open acceptance of transfers, the proposal might still have passed had it not been for a couple of extenuating circumstances.

One was the mailout of the Nolan County Appraisal District’s valuations for the coming year, which came to property owners just days before the election. The appraisals seemed unusually high with almost everyone I talked to seeing a substantial increase for the coming year, whether or not they had made improvements to their property. Since the oil business is down in the area and housing is more available now, most taxpayers were expecting little increase in valuations. But such was not the case, and many were unhappy at the amount of taxes they will be assessed and were in no mood to think about paying even more.

The other was a controversial e-mail the Superintendent sent to school board members, principals, and a couple of others. It declared that a special-interest group of “Neo-Nazi skinheads” was spreading misinformation about the amount of taxes that would have to be paid if the proposal passed. It also said the group was anti-education and anti-minority. News of the e-mail’s contents spread quickly, and the incident was reported in area media, including newspapers, websites, and television news shows. Some taxpayers considered the allegations unwarranted, unsubstantiated and out-of-line and said they voted against the bond proposal in protest.

But no matter what the reasons, the proposal was not approved by voters, and the plans for an Early Childhood Center at Roscoe’s school must now be scrapped.



RCHS seniors at WTC graduation ceremonies on Thursday. (Photo by Linda Hatcher)
Twenty-four RCHS seniors will already have their Associate’s Degrees when they receive their high school diplomas next Friday evening.

Left side of above photo. Back row, left to right: Ray Bohall, Javier Armenta, Kevin Lavalais, Isaiah Gonzales, Max Nemir, Vincent Pantoja, Luis Villa. Front row: Brena Robison, Ashley Lara, Alejandra Solis, Magali Casas, Cassie Chavira.

Right side of above photo. Back row, left to right: Bernardo Villa, Anthony Ortegon, Rafael Aguayo, Lin Xiao. Front row: Adrian Ortega, Caty Chavira, Lena Martinez, Teresa Herrera, Hannah Hobdy, Victoria Jimenez, Emily Gonzales.


City Secretary Donna Parker swears in Susie Alford, left, and Edwin Duncan, right.
At its annual monthly meeting at City Hall yesterday evening, the Roscoe City Council swore in two Council members, approved Atmos Energy Corporation to continue handling City gas, and heard reports from the City Manager and Police Chief.

City Secretary Donna Parker swore in Council members Susie Alford and Edwin Duncan to new two-year terms. Alford, whose previous term had expired, and Duncan, who had been appointed to complete the term of former Council member Ken Brawley, ran for new terms to fill the expired seats, but since no others ran, the anticipated election was called off, and they automatically were granted new terms.

The Council approved ordinances #131 and #132, which grants Atmos the franchise to construct, maintain and operate pipelines and equipment in the City of Roscoe, for the transportation, delivery, sale and distribution of gas in, out of, and through the City for all purposes, and providing for the payment of a fee or charge for the use of the public right-of-ways. They also approved a negotiated settlement between the Atmos Cities Steering Committee and Atmos Energy Corporation regarding the company’s 2016 rate review mechanism filings. Atmos Representative Shaun Martin was on hand to explain the ordinances and answer questions the Council had.

The Council also approved the request of American Legion Women’s Auxiliary to use Memorial Park on Memorial Day weekend. It also tabled the awarding of a bid for running the City Swimming Pool since no bids have been received yet.

City Manager Cody Thompson reported on several current and upcoming City activities. Work on the new roof to be installed on the Community Center should begin this week and will take about a week to complete. Thompson expressed a hope that the Roscoe Historical Museum’s roof can be repaired by the same company while they’re here as it will save the City money if they can. He also mentioned the public meeting the Community Center held Monday evening in which Connie Baize was accepted as the Center’s new president.

Work on the old sanitary sewer farm is now about 80% complete. Thompson expressed gratitude that County Commissioner Terry Willman has helped with the project since without his help, they would not be nearly as far along. He also mentioned that the City wants to participate in the County seal coat program once again this summer.

Thompson also reported on some recent problems with the City water. About two weeks ago, when Johnson Controls did some routine maintenance on the water treatment plant, they left a valve closed which blends the RO water with regular water, and pure RO water went through the lines, causing some of the calcium in the lines to be broken loose, which resulted in the water discoloration many homes in the City experienced. The discoloration also prompted the TCEQ (Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) to issue a boil advisory for a couple of days even though the water was still drinkable. The problem is now solved, but there is still an outstanding issue with the TCEQ, who because of the Flint, Michigan, debacle, is currently especially sensitive to any kinds of water problems. Thompson, however, expressed confidence that the problems will be worked out.

He also mentioned that the Roscoe Cemetery has a new worker and assured Councilmember Helen Perry that the grounds would be in good shape by Memorial Day on May 30.

Police Chief Felix Pantoja gave the Council the monthly Police Department report. It was a relatively quiet month for police activity with the exception of six burglaries that occurred in the City. He also said he has yet to find a suitable replacement for full-time duty and is currently shorthanded with only a part-time officer.



The RCHS robot at the recent meet in Lubbock.
The RCHS robotics team has qualified for the state tournament in Austin on July 28-30th. Qualifying indicates that the team finished the year ranked in the top 32 of all Texas teams from all classifications.



Zane Williams
On Saturday night, the Lumberyard will feature country singer Zane Williams and his band. Zane Williams is a Texas country singer/songwriter originally from Abilene. He is described as a “modern-day throwback who is equal parts bar-room entertainer and introspective poet.” His best-known song is probably “Hurry Home,” which won the $20,000 Maxell Song of the Year in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest in 2006. Since that time he has released six albums, Hurry Home (2006), The Right Place (2009, co-produced with Radney Foster), Ride with Me (2011), Overnight Success (2013), Texas Like That (2015), and Snapshots (2016).

Notable videos of Williams’ singles include “Overnight Success,” “Hurry Home,” “Texas Like That,” and “Jayton and Jill.”

For reservations, call the Lumberyard during business hours at 325-766-2457.



Sunrise over wet fields Monday morning. (Photo by Allen Richburg)

This was the warmest week so far this year with afternoon temperatures reaching into the nineties for the first time. Sunday’s high was 91°F as was yesterday’s. All the other days since last Wednesday had highs in the eighties with lows in the fifties or sixties. And since Friday, we’ve also had strong winds, not that unusual for this time of year. The windiest was Saturday with sustained southeast winds reaching 30mph with gusts up to 37. We also got another rain just before dawn on Monday. Kenny Landfried recorded an official total of .67” for Roscoe, but some places west of town got over an inch.

And more may be on the way when a cold front blows through tonight. Today’s high is projected to be 91° but tomorrow’s only 70°, and some forecasters are giving us as much as a 90% chance of precipitation tonight and into tomorrow morning, along with high winds from the northeast. The weekend will be warmer but could also be rainy. Depending on whose weather forecast you believe, the chances for precipitation vary from 30%-40% to 80%-90% on Saturday and Sunday.


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