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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween


Halloween is this evening, so remember to drive carefully if you’re out on the roads as there will be children out trick or treating.

The Roscoe Collegiate High School Seniors have been sponsoring a haunted house this week at the Jaycee Barn in Sweetwater.  The last night is tonight.  Time is from 6:00-10:00pm.  All proceeds go to fund their senior blowout. 

For a scary Halloween greeting, click here



Cutter Davila sets to throw a pass to Shelton Toliver (10) at Gorman.  (Photo courtesy of Lus Pantoja.)
Turnovers were costly as the Plowboys committed six—four interceptions and two fumbles—in a 42-21 loss to Gorman Friday night.  The first, an interception of a Cutter Davila pass in the game’s first minute, set the tone for the rest of the evening as Gorman’s B. J. Ramirez returned it 49 yards for a touchdown. 

Later in the quarter, Gorman’s Dakota Pacheco ran 30 yards for another TD, and the Panthers were off and running.  Pacheco scored on two more touchdown runs in the second quarter, one 20 yards and the other 5, and at halftime Gorman led 27-0.

Roscoe got on the scoreboard early in the fourth quarter when Kevin Lavalais intercepted an errant Zach Carlton pass and returned it 85 yards for a touchdown.  Later in the quarter, Davila completed a pass to Jesus Leanos that went 40 yards for a TD, and Eduardo Gallegos ran 70 yards for another one to close out the Plowboy scoring.

Gallegos had 123 rushing yards to lead the Plowboys, and Davila completed 15 of 31 passes for 204 yards but had 4 intercepted.  

The Plowboys are now 2-6 on the year and 2-3 in district.  This Friday they go to Hamlin to play the Pied Pipers, who are 5-0 in district play and coming off a 39-0 victory over Cross Plains.  Kickoff is at 7:30pm.



2012 Roscoe Plowbots
At the recent Big Country BEST (Boosting Engineering, Science, and Technology) Robotics Competition at Texas State Technical College, Roscoe Collegiate’s robotics team, the Plowbots, took second place and in doing so qualified for the Texas BEST Regional Championships to be held in Dallas, November 9-10. 

First place went to ATEMS (Abilene ISD’s Academy of Technology, Engineering, Math & Science High School) while Sweetwater High School also qualified by winning the robotics division.

A record thirteen schools competed in this year’s event.  Besides the winners, the other participating schools were Clyde High School, Clyde Junior High, Robert Lee, Highland, Jim Ned, Comanche High, Comanche Junior High, Sweetwater Middle School, Rising Star, and Gustine.

Roscoe Collegiate’s team, led by Coach Dan Boren, comprises students from grades 6 through 12.  Junior high students build and run the robot; high school students serve as mentors and deal with the website, marketing, engineering notebook, exhibit, and spirit and sportsmanship; and sixth graders are members of the spirit and sportsmanship team that creates signs and t-shirts and exhibits enthusiasm.

This year’s robot, controlled remotely, has to ascend a metal bar, pick up objects from one location, and deposit them in another location.



At the recent district cross-country track meet, Plowgirl Mirian Solis’s time of 13:10 was good enough for her to qualify for the upcoming regional meet starting at noon this Saturday in Arlington’s Vandergriff Park.      



Early voting in this fall’s general election, which began last Monday, continues daily from 8:30am-5:00pm until this Friday, November 2, at the County Clerk’s office at the Nolan County Courthouse.  Election Day is next Tuesday, November 6, when the polls will be open from 7:00am-7:00pm in the Roscoe Community Center.

For details about the races, candidates, and bond issues, scroll down to the article in last week’s issue of the Hard Times.  



The weather was unseasonably cold over the weekend as the temperature dropped to 32°F early Saturday morning and stayed there for about four hours before warming up again.  Since there was some ice in my birdbath, I feared for my tomatoes and other garden plants, but apparently they made it through the frost okay and are still green and growing. 

Temperatures remained chilly over the weekend but began to rise again on Monday and by yesterday rose to 77°F to create an almost perfect fall afternoon with sunny skies and little to no wind.   

The forecast is for more of the same.  The high today should once again be in the seventies and rise into the eighties tomorrow and Friday, then cool down back to the seventies on Saturday and sixties on Sunday.  Lows should be in the forties and fifties, and there will be a 20% chance of rain.   



(Editor's note: I received the following shortly after posting last week's issue.  As I told Mr. Fitzgerald in my reply to him, we were unaware an Irishman was in our midst at the West Texas Wind Festival but were glad he could make it.)

Dear Editor,

Through the space in your paper, if I can thank the city of Roscoe for the wonderful night we had at the Gene Watson concert on October 20th, it was fantastic.  On looking at the Gene Watson website, I saw that he was in Roscoe.  I immediately called for tickets and was informed that it was free!  I thought this must be a joke or a prank, but no—the assistant assured me there was no charge.

We have learned in our lifetime that very few things are free, especially good things.  Of course I was quite prepared to pay the admission fees to see a legend like Gene Watson who have given us decades of happiness in listening to their great country music.  Each of these singers have their own unique style.  The ones that are no longer with us like Johnny Cash have passed on their legacy of country songs that we will keep listening to until our own number is called and what a legacy that is!

To arrive in a small place like Roscoe on Saturday evening and see all the local community in jubilant mood was a wonderful experience and to visit the various stalls and excellent food stands was exciting to say the least.  We need to see more of this in local communities where the young and not so young and the elderly can sit down and digest the festival’s events. 

Texas is unique in so many ways and is steeped in history.  The size of it alone makes it about six times larger than my home country, a lot of travelling.  Again my sincere thanks to Roscoe, all the bands and of course the great Gene Watson and his band for providing us with such great entertainment.

John Fitzgerald


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

West Texas Wind Festival Enjoyed by All

Cypress Street on Saturday afternoon.
Roscoe was once again the center of activity for the Big Country on Saturday as visitors from area communities joined local folks for a day of fun and relaxation at the sixth annual West Texas Wind Festival.  From the opening of the garage sale at the Community Center early that morning to the fireworks show that closed the festivities that evening, people had plenty to keep them entertained.

The free concert downtown drew the largest crowd of all with people filling Cypress Street and adjacent Old Town Park.  Some danced “on the bricks” in front of the stage while others sat in lawn chairs and listened to the music that filled the air. 

The group Canyon Rim started in mid-afternoon and was followed at about six by the Tennessee Stiffs, a band from Austin that opened for the feature act of the evening, Gene Watson and the Farewell Party Band. 

The Plowboy Mudbog at George Parks Field was another crowd pleaser with a large gathering on hand to watch the powerful vehicles tackle the formidable Blackland mud, and everyone enjoyed watching the kids slog through deep mud in the mudbog “dash for cash.”

The Barbecue Cookoff downtown sponsored by the Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department had a large number of entries for each of the three cookoffs: steak, ribs, and chicken.  I can attest to the quality of the steak since I was one of the judges who took a bite of each of the 24 entries.  I never ate so much good steak at one time in my life, and I was told the chicken and ribs were equally delicious.

At the FFA Ag Barn, Allen Richburg, Cullen Presley, and others held the Roscoe Show-Pig Sale, which lasted all afternoon into the evening and was attended by a large number of sellers and buyers. 

The Roscoe Elementary 5K “Run with the Wind” was held in the morning while the weather was still cool.  About two dozen participants started at the school and ran a course that took them up Ash to Tenth Street, across to Hickory,  then all the way down to Broadway, through downtown to Front Street, then the baseball field, then back to the school—a total distance of 3.16 miles.  Medals were awarded to the top three males and top three females. 

In Memorial Park, kids enjoyed the inflated horses that they raced and moved forward by bouncing, and some even got their photos taken on the live longhorn steer that was stationed there. 

On the streets, vendors sold foods and snacks of all types as well as all kinds of merchandise, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves as they watched or participated in the many festivities.

Thanks are due once again to the organizers of the event, whose hard work and careful planning produced another memorable time for all.


Sights & Sounds of the West Texas Wind Festival, Part 1 (4:00) :

Sights & Sounds of the West Texas Wind Festival, Part 2 (3:50) :

Click on the Play button to view.  To view full screen, click on the small square in the bottom right part of the screen. 


Patty McBride also took a large number of photos of the festival and has made them available.  You can access them by clicking on the descriptions below:

1. The Plowboy Mudbog, Show Pig Sale, BBQ Cookoff, and downtown scenes.

2. The free concert and street dance "on the bricks."

3. The Gene Watson meet-and-greet in City Hall.

Roscoe Elementary 5K Run with the Wind Results:

Top Three Males (with times):
1.    Andy Wilson (22:25)
2.    Guillermo Lara (25:30)
3.    Luke Wilson (27:00)

Top Three Females (with times):
1.    Tamara Alexander (27:09)
2.    Chikwanda Chisanga (30:08)
3.    Carla Sauer (30:51)

1st Prize Men: $35 Gift Certificate – Tractor Supply
1st Prize Women: $35 Gift Certificate – Vickie’s Gifts

Plowboy Mudbog Results: 

Street Class:
1. Roland Matos
2. Tanner Park
3. Pascual Ortiz

Super Street Class:
1. Brady Henderson
2. David Pantoja
3. Brian Owens

Modified Class:
1. Trey Wood
2. Mike Rubner
3. Glenn Owens

Super Modified Class:
1. Abel Alvarez
2. Art Rivera
3. Jesse Martinez

Open Class:
1. Jonathan Nord
2. Adam Galvan

BBQ in the Wind Cookoff Results: 

A correction to one of the awards:  the 2nd place steak box number was read out incorrectly by a cookoff official, and no team responded at the time of the awards with that number. The committee reviewed the numbers on the box and found that it was their mistake and not a cooking team. The winning cooking team was then awarded their prize.

1. Backyard Grillers
2. GDC
3. Two Peas in a Pod
4. Bar B-Que
5. Up in Smoke

1. Regulators
2. Plum Creek Cookers
3. Son of a Dink
4. Two Peas in a Pod
5. B S Bar B-que

1. Butt Crack Bar B-que
2. Hot Rod Grillers
3. Over the Hill
4. Son of a Dink
5. Tha Jones



Vincent Pantoja (30) opens the scoring with a 66-yard touchdown run.
The shoe was on the other foot Friday night as the Roscoe Plowboys overpowered the struggling Ranger Bulldogs.  The Plowboys scored twice in the first quarter and never looked back as they cruised to their easiest victory of the year.

Vincent Pantoja broke free for a 66-yard scamper to paydirt early in the first quarter, and a couple of series later Eduardo Gallegos followed with a 50-yard run for a touchdown.  Both extra point attempts were good, and at the end of the first quarter the score was 16-0. 

In the second quarter, Esteban Benivamondez ran 34 yards for a score, and Cutter Davila passed for two touchdowns, one to Benivamondez for 6 yards, and one to Shelton Toliver for 57 yards.  The halftime score was 38-0, and the game was over for all practical purposes. 

On the evening, the Plowboys amassed 572 yards of total offense, 379 rushing and 193 passing while holding Ranger to 118 total yards.   The Plowboys are now 2-2 in district play. 

Next up for the Plowboys are the Gorman Panthers Friday evening in Gorman.  The Panthers are 1-3 in district and coming off a 31-18 loss to 4-0 Hamlin in Hamlin.  Kickoff is at 7:30.



Early voting began Monday and will continue daily from 8:30am-5:00pm all this week and next in the County Clerk’s office at the Nolan County Courthouse.  It will end next Friday, November 2. 

Election Day will follow on Tuesday, November 6, when the polls will be open 7:00am-7:00pm in the Roscoe Community Center.

Voters will cast their ballots in several important races for office:

1.    President & Vice President of the United States: *Barack Obama & Joe Biden (D) vs.  Mitt Romney & Paul Ryan (R).  

The Libertarian and Green Parties also have candidates.

2.    U. S. Senator from Texas: Paul Sadler (D) vs. Ted Cruz (R).

3.    U. S. Representative for District 19: *Randy Neugebauer (R) vs. the Libertarian candidate.

4.    Nolan County Commissioner, Precinct 1: *Terry Willman (D) vs. Jerry Hulcy (R).

5.    State Railroad Commissioner: *Dale Henry (D) vs. Christi Craddick  (R).

       *  = Incumbent

Voters will also decide in the Nolan County Bond Election for or against the issuing of general obligation bonds not to exceed

1.     $4,020,000 for improvements, renovation, restoration and equipping of the Nolan County Courthouse.

2.    $10,245,000 for construction and equipping of a new County Jail and acquisition of a site.

3.    $1,425,000 for construction and equipping of new Sheriff’s Offices—with the understanding that, should the third proposition pass but not the second, the County is not obligated to construct the offices.

There are also a number of county and state positions where candidates are unopposed.



A blatant money grab occurred in the Chillerz convenience store at Roscoe’s Shell station Friday evening when a black man, described as in his thirties, of medium build and in grey shorts and a white t-shirt, came into the store and snatched about $200 in cash from a local woman as she was paying out at the counter. 

In the attempt to recover her money, she yelled and chased him out the door as he fled and got into what witnesses described as a late model pearly white Ford Edge.  She continued to hang on to him and tried to get the money back but was unsuccessful and suffered minor injuries when she fell as he drove away.  Unfortunately, none of the witnesses got the vehicle’s license number.

Police are asking anyone who has information about the crime to contact Crime Stoppers at 325-235-8477.  There is a $1000 reward.



For Halloween this year, the City of Roscoe is holding a “Trunk or Treat” downtown on Cypress Street this Saturday, October 27, from 3:00-5:00pm.  Various local organizations will have cars parked along the curbs with open trunks full of goodies and treats for the kids.

Kids are encouraged to wear costumes and/or masks, and adults in costume will also be there.  For more information, call City Hall at 325-766-3871.



The weather was typical for this time of year—a little on the warm side with lots of sunshine, some breezes, and even a little rain. 

The weekend was warm with highs at or approaching 90°F and lows in the mid sixties.  Conditions were just about perfect for the 5K “Run with the Wind” at 9:00 on Saturday morning, but on the hot side that afternoon at the Plowboy Mudbog, at least until some clouds covered the sky around 4:00pm.  The evening, though, was just about perfect for the free concert and the fireworks show downtown. 

On Monday morning a front came through, temperatures dropped somewhat, skies darkened, and rain fell for an hour or so.  I got .7” at my house, and that amount seemed pretty general with most people I talked to getting between a half-inch and an inch.  Since then, it’s been warm and sunny with a high yesterday of 81° and a low of 66°.

More of the same is expected today, but a cool front will move through tomorrow bringing the high down into the low seventies and the low tomorrow night into the forties.  There will also be a 20% chance of rain.  Friday’s high will be only in the fifties with the low that night in the thirties, and Saturday will be cool like Friday with temperatures warming back up on Sunday and Monday.



Graveside services were held at 11:00am on Monday for Johnny Orsak, 81, a former Roscoan who passed away on Saturday at the Nolan Nursing and Rehab Center. 

He was born September 10, 1931, in Roscoe and married Betty Mikac in Colorado City on December 14, 1974.  He was a long-time crane operator for Lone Star Industries and retired in 1992.  He was a Lutheran.

Survivors include his wife of 38 years, Betty Orsak of Sweetwater; his son, Billy, of Sweetwater; and a nephew and niece he raised like his own, Terry Carrick of Trophy Club, and Shannon Murphy of Bells; as well as several other nieces and nephews.


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

City Prepares for West Texas Wind Festival

Country singer Gene Watson is the feature artist at this year's free concert.
There should be something for everybody this Saturday as more events than ever are scheduled for this year’s West Texas Wind Festival.  From the opening of the garage sale at the Community Center at 7:00am to the last song of the Gene Watson concert at around 10:00pm, the day will be full of events and diversions in various locations around town. 

The center of activity will be downtown with the vendors’ booths and children’s bounce houses on Cypress and Broadway and in the two downtown parks, along with the music stage “on the bricks” in front of the Roscoe State Bank.

Events will include a garage sale at the Community Center, the 5k “Run with the Wind” starting at the school, the Fire Department cookoff in the area next to the fire station and Community Center, the Show-Pig Sale at the FFA Ag Barn, the Plowboy Mudbog at George Parks Field, and the free concert and fireworks show downtown.  

Each of the Wind Festival’s major events is explained in more detail below:

Garage Sale at the Community Center 

Highland High School’s Class of 2015 will be hosting a garage sale at the Roscoe Community Center starting at 7:00am Saturday morning and running until about 2:00pm.  For questions or more information, call Felix Pantoja at 325-514-8384.

Roscoe Elementary's 5k "Run with the Wind"  

On Saturday morning at 9:00am, runners of all ages will set out on Roscoe Elementary’s first ever 5k “Run with the Wind.” 

Starting in front of the new Roscoe Collegiate Special Events Center on 7th Street, the run will proceed to Ash, up to 10th, down Hickory to Broadway, through downtown to Front Street all the way to Sycamore and the baseball field, then back to the starting point by way of 3rd Street, Cypress, and 7th.  Total distance is five kilometers, or 3.16 miles. 

A map of the exact route is available by clicking here.

Prizes will be awarded to the first-place male and female finishers, and medals given to the top three. 

Registration for the event is $20, and all proceeds go to the Elementary School’s Student Incentive Fund. Participants may pre-register at the Roscoe Elementary School office or at the event’s starting point between 7:30 and 8:45 on Saturday morning.

Showers will be available at the school for participants who want to go from the run directly to the West Texas Wind Festival downtown. 

For more information, phone Roscoe Elementary Principal Andy Wilson’s office at 325-766-3323, or visit the Roscoe Elementary Facebook Page.

The Roscoe Fire Department's Third Annual Cookoff

The Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department will once again host a cookoff with three categories: a 16-ounce ribeye steak cookoff with a first prize of $1500 donated by Fuller Foods of Colorado City; a pork spare ribs cookoff, and a half-of-a-chicken cookoff.  Prize amounts for winners of the last two events are yet to be determined and will depend on the number of entries.

Cost for entries is $80 for all three categories, and contestants must enter all three to be eligible for the steak prizes.  Meat inspection will begin at 8:00am, the cooks’ meeting is at 10:00am, and the turn-in times are 3:00pm for the chicken, 4:00pm for the ribeye steak, and 5:00pm for the ribs. 

Setup starts on Friday evening at 6:00pm.  There will be spaces for dry campers only and no hookups.  Contestants will be supplied with public electricity and a water station but no electricity per cook site.  They will be allowed one camper, one vehicle, up to 12’ x 12’ cover, and up to two pits in the cooking area.

All proceeds will go to the Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department.  For more information, contact Gary Armstrong at 325-235-4110. 

The Roscoe Show-Pig Sale 

Allen Richburg, Cullen Presley, and others have scheduled a major show-pig sale at the Roscoe FFA Ag Barn just southwest of town on the access road to I-20 west.  Over twenty breeders will each be bringing from one to six barrows and gilts from locations all over Texas as well as Oklahoma, Ohio, and Wisconsin.  There will be a total of 100 to 125 July, August, and September show pigs of various breeds for sale.

The show and sift for sale order will start at 1:00pm with Reggie Spencer of Colorado City as judge.  The auction will begin at 7:00pm with opening bids set at $200.  The auctioneer will be Brodie Harris.

The Roscoe FFA Chapter will run the concession stand. 

The sale will be an excellent opportunity for anyone with kids who are planning to show pigs for the upcoming stock show year.  For more information, consult the Roscoe Show Pig Sale Facebook page, or contact Allen Richburg at 325-236-5666 or Cullen Presley at 325-338-2457.

The Plowboy Mudbog

Another popular event on Saturday will be the Plowboy Mudbog, at George Parks Field on Second and Sycamore Streets.  It is shaping up to be another big crowd pleaser with entries from as far away as Hobbs, New Mexico, and Amarillo planning to attend. 

Admission will be free for kids 7 and under, $2 for ages 9 to 14, and $5 for 15 and over. 

Events will run from noon until finish around 4:00 or so.  Registration for participants begins at 9:30am with the driver entry fee set at $30.  The public gate opens at 11:00, and the driver safety meeting is at 11:45am.  Competition begins at noon and will go until the finish around 4:00pm or so, depending on the number of vehicles entered. 

Vehicles are classed as follows:

1.    Street: 35” wheels and under, limited engine modification.
2.    Super Street: 35”, engine vac under 13”.
3.    Modified: 36”-39”, limited engine modification.
4.    Super Modified: 36”-39”, engine vac under 13”.
5.    Open: 40” and over (no blowers or nos.).

All proceeds will go to Roscoe’s Little League Baseball program.  

For more information, contact Felix Pantoja at 325-514-8384, or consult the Plowboy Mudbog Facebook Page.  

The Free Concert and Street Dance "on the Bricks" and the Fireworks Show

Music will begin in the mid-afternoon on the music stage in the street in front of the Roscoe State Bank.  The first group will be Canyon Rim, a group from Oklahoma that will include one or more local performers, including Roscoe Mayor Pete Porter.

They will be followed about 6:00 by the Tennessee Stiffs from Austin. 

Then at around 8:00pm, the headliner for this year’s event, country music star Gene Watson, will take the stage.   Known in the music business as a “singer’s singer,” he has been recording since the sixties and is looked up to by such younger stars as Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Lee Ann Womack, and Randy Travis. 

He has built a reputation for soulful ballads in the classic country tradition.  Some of his many hits include  “Fourteen Carat Mind,” “Love in the Hot Afternoon,” “Farewell Party,” “Memories to Burn,” “Got No Reason Now for Going Home,” and others.  You can listen to him sing some of his hits by clicking here

He and his band will do a set of about forty-five minutes and then break for the fireworks show, which is set to begin at around 8:45pm.  Following the fireworks, Gene Watson will return to the stage for a second and final set.  



The cards were stacked against the Plowboys in Albany Friday night as they faced the state’s 1A-II fifth-ranked Albany Lions, whose only loss this year came at the hands of top-ranked Munday.  And, although Roscoe actually scored first, the game’s outcome was never really in doubt as the Lions overpowered the Plowboys 69-12 behind their star quarterback, Jake Bumguardner, who threw for one TD, returned a punt for another, ran for two more, and kicked nine extra points. 

Roscoe got on the scoreboard first when Vincent Pantoja went over from the three early in the first quarter, but that would be the end of the scoring for the Plowboys until the latter part of the third quarter when Cutter Davila hit Jesus Leanos for a 12-yard scoring strike.  By then, the score was 55-12 and the game out of reach.

Despite Albany’s dominance, the Plowboys passing game continued to have success.  Cutter Davila completed 21 passes out of 36 attempts for 204 yards and one TD, along with two interceptions.  The rushing game didn’t fare so well, however, as the Plowboys wound up with -10 yards on 23 attempts.

Next up for the Plowboys are the Ranger Bulldogs at Plowboy Field Friday evening.  The Bulldogs are 0-6 on the year and coming off a 52-6 loss to Gorman.

Kickoff is at 7:30pm.


A car detours past the condemned overpass.

The Abilene District of the Texas Department of Transportation will get rid of the current overpass that connects US 84 to I-20 and replace it with a new improved one.  The design work is now being done, bids will go out this winter, and construction will begin soon after that.

The damaged overpass will be removed before that to open up both lanes of westbound I-20.  At present, only one is available. 

The current detour for eastbound US 84 traffic will continue to be used and will in fact be repaired and strengthened due to its increased use, particularly from trucks.  This detour upgrade should be completed in about a month, and will cost about $238,000. 

The detour will apparently remain in effect until the new overpass is finished, whenever that is, hopefully sometime fairly early next year. 

In the meantime, a lot of eastbound US 84 traffic will avoid the hassle of the detour by exiting  US 84 northwest of town, going through downtown Roscoe and proceeding down Main out to Retta Mae’s to get on eastbound I-20.  Drivers who don’t know this shortcut will continue to be re-routed to westbound I-20 east of town and will get off at the Roscoe exit and turn left at Stripes to get back to eastbound I-20.  

Let’s hope that the new design makes for a safer connection between these two busy thoroughfares and that “Destruction Junction” is finally consigned to the dustbin of history.  



The weather was beautiful for the most part.  This is that time of year when neither heating nor cooling of the home is required, and doors and windows can be left open.  A couple of days were a little breezy, and it was a little sticky early Friday evening.   But skies were generally sunny or partly cloudy, highs were in the upper seventies or low eighties, and lows in the upper fifties and lower sixties.

The forecast is for more of the same with today’s high in the low eighties.  Tonight and tomorrow night should be somewhat cooler with lows in the high forties, but the lows will go back up into the fifties Friday and the nights following. 

There has been no precipitation and none is in the forecast.



Funeral services were held at 2pm on Sunday at the Roscoe Church of Christ for Clyde H. Ater, 94,  followed by interment in the Roscoe Cemetery.  A resident of Sweetwater Health Center, he died last Wednesday.

Clyde H. Ater was born to Horace and Elizabeth Ater on November 2, 1917.  They lived in Sweetwater and moved to a farm south of Roscoe when Clyde was about seven.  After high school, he studied accounting at Draughan’s Business School in Abilene and met there Shirley Ford, whom he married in 1937.  In 1942, they moved to Portland, Oregon, where he worked in the shipyards until he was drafted in 1944.  He then served in Germany until 1946, when the family, now including two daughters, Jimmie Rae and Judith Lynn, moved back to Roscoe. 

He was an active member of the community and a deacon in the Church of Christ for many years.  He received awards for his conservation farming practices and was named farmer of the year in the late sixties.  He also served on the boards of the Texas Bank & Trust and the H&H Feed Lot.  He established a scholarship fund at ACU and supported Lubbock Christian University.  He was a member of the Roscoe Lions Club and a supporter of the Roscoe Fire Department and the Roscoe Plowboys.  He was an ardent fisherman and bridge player. 

He was preceded in death by Shirley, his wife of 71 years; grandsons Parrish and Dale Berryhill and John Stephenson; and son-in-law Tom Fraley.    

He is survived by daughters Jimmie and her husband, George Plunkett, and Judy and her husband Paul Kester; grandchildren Becky Smith, Matthew Stephenson, Debby McCormick and Ann Simpson; sister Nina Brown; and numerous great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

Online condolences may be expressed at


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Country Music Legend Ray Price to Play Here Friday Night

Ray Price

Folks from all over the Big Country will be converging on Roscoe Friday night when country music great Ray Price brings his act to the outdoor stage of the Lumberyard.  In a year that’s already seen several noted country stars perform here—Asleep at the Wheel, the Bellamy Brothers, Johnny Rodriguez, Mel Tillis, and others—Ray Price will be the biggest name yet.

Both a songwriter and singer, his songs have been a big part of the history of country music for the past half century and have had a major and lasting influence on the genre.  These include “Faded Love,” “Night Life,” “Burning Memories,” “Release Me,” “For the Good Times,” “Crazy Arms,” “Heartaches by the Number,” “The Other Woman,” “My Shoes Keep Walking Back to You,” and many others.

A native Texan, he got his start singing on KRBC radio in Abilene in 1948 after getting out of the Marines.  He joined the Big D Jamboree in Dallas shortly thereafter and then moved on to Nashville.  He roomed there for a while with Hank Williams, had his first major hit in 1954 with “Release Me,” and formed his band, The Cherokee Cowboys, many of whom went on to become stars in their own right:  Roger Miller, Willie Nelson, Darrell McCall, Johnny Paycheck, and Johnny Bush.

A member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, he has won grammies and other prestigious awards, appeared on countless TV shows, and collaborated with the best singers in the business.

Tickets are $15 each, and the weather forecast is for temperatures in the sixties.  All the tables are sold out, but there is still room for you to bring your own chair. 



Former RS&P employees Royce Walker, Bob Brothers, Donald Menn and Willard McFaul beside the new marker.
It’s been several years since Suzie Alford initiated efforts to get a Texas Historical Marker in Roscoe dedicated to the Roscoe, Snyder & Pacific Railway, but yesterday her dream finally became a reality when the City of Roscoe conducted a ceremony commemorating the newly placed marker. 

Her father, Willard McFaul, a lifelong employee of the RS&P, was on hand to reminisce and to read a poem he wrote about the time a confused young man tried to hijack the train and take it to General Robert E. Lee. 

Other long time employees of the railroad were also present and spoke, and several City Council Members and other local officeholders attended, along with other interested parties.  The proceedings concluded with a proclamation by Mayor Pete Porter dedicated to the once prosperous short line that contributed so much to the local community and surrounding area.



Eduardo Gallegos runs 68 yards for a Plowboy TD in the first quarter.
In a hard fought game on Friday night, the Plowboys hung with the Cross Plains Buffaloes for three quarters but were finally worn down by the hard running of Blake Hutchins, and in the end Cross Plains pulled away to win 27-12 and remain undefeated in district play. 

Hutchins, a big 200-pound running back, was essentially the whole show for the Buffaloes.  He carried the ball more than the rest of the team combined and finished the evening with 230 yards rushing on 33 carries.

He started the contest with a bang by running 87 yards for a touchdown on the third play of the game.  He then followed his run by kicking the extra point and the Buffaloes had an early 7-0 lead.

The Plowboys, however, answered on the next series when Eduardo Gallegos broke free for a 68-yard touchdown run.  The extra point attempt was no good, and the score was 7-6. 

Later in the quarter, the Plowboys mounted another long drive and scored another touchdown when Gallegos went over from the one.  Again the extra point attempt failed, and the Plowboys led 12-7.

Unfortunately, that would be the end of scoring for the Plowboys.  Shortly before halftime, Hutchins scored again on a three-yard run.  His extra point kick failed, and the score at halftime was Cross Plains 13-Roscoe 12.

Hutchins ran for another touchdown toward the end of the third quarter and another in the fourth on a drive that started on the Plowboy nine after a dropped punt.  The final score was 27-12.

Nevertheless, the Plowboys played hard the entire game and are clearly improved from the first three games of the season.  Eduardo Gallegos finished the evening with 109 yards rushing on nine attempts, and quarterback Cutter Davila passed for 136 yards with 13 completions to five different receivers on 37 attempts. 

Several players stood out on defense, among them Rafael Pantoja, Landon Jones, Esteban Benivamondez, and Vincent Pantoja.

The Plowboys are now 1-1 in district play.  Unfortunately, they have the task of facing state power Albany in Albany this Friday night.  Kickoff is at 7:30pm.



Children sing in the cafetorium at Roscoe School's Open House.
There wasn’t a free parking place in any of the parking lots or any empty chairs in the cafetorium yesterday evening when the Roscoe School held its annual open house to what may have been the largest crowd ever. 

The program began with songs from children in the early grades, followed by this year’s high school seniors introducing themselves one by one and telling the audience their plans for the future following graduation.  About three quarters of them plan to receive an Associate’s Degree this spring along with their high school diploma.

Following an introduction to this year’s faculty, the assembly in the cafetorium broke up, and parents got to visit their children’s classrooms and they and other visitors see all the new facilities at the school, including the new gymnasium and all the rooms in the new building. 


Front row l to r: Terry Armstrong, Robert Hoffman, Charles Armstead, Elsie Armstead, Gary Armstrong, Zela Armstrong, Virg Pruitt, Justin Moffett, Chad Dornbusch & Willie James; top row l to r: Keegan Pruitt, Mike Rosas & Rebecca Mardis.
In support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Roscoe Fire Department will be wearing pink department shirts all month.  Since one of their family members is recovering from breast cancer, they want everyone to know that they support her and everyone else affected by the disease.



There’s no getting around it—autumn is upon us. 

The weather last week was already cool before another cold front blew in and really chilled things down.  The football game last Friday evening, played in the fifties, was a clear indication that a seasonal change was in the air, and it was downright nippy outside at the Johnny Bush concert at the Lumberyard on Saturday night with temperatures in the low forties and a brisk north breeze. 

Jackets and coats came out of the closet and got their first use in months, and I took advantage of the change Saturday evening by making some corn bread for the first time since last spring.  The high on Sunday was only 46°, and early the next morning we got our first light frost of the year when Kenny Landfried, Roscoe’s weatherman, recorded an official low of 32°F at his home on East Broadway.

Yesterday was much warmer with a high of 85° and a low of 53°.  Today will be cooler with a high in the low seventies but will drop only into the sixties tonight.  Highs for tomorrow and through the weekend will be in the eighties with lows in the sixties.

There will be a 30% chance of showers on Friday night and a 20% chance over the weekend. 


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Plowboys Roll, Shut Out Baird 14-0

Vincent Pantoja (right) sets off on a 16-yard touchdown run in the first quarter.
The Roscoe Plowboys opened district play at Baird Friday night with a 14-0 victory over the Bears.  In doing so, they broke their losing streak and now stand 1-0 in district and 1-3 on the year. 

In a game played in the rain, the Plowboys struck first after a long drive when freshman running back Vincent Pantoja scored on a 16-yard run.  The extra point failed, but the Plowboys had a 6-0 lead which they held for the rest of the first quarter and all of the second. 

Early in the third quarter Eduardo Gallegos broke free for a 60-yard touchdown run, which was immediately followed by Cutter Davila’s successful run for two extra points to put the score at 14-0. 

That score held up for the rest of the game as the Plowboy defense kept the Bears scoreless for the entire evening.  The defense was led by Esteban Benivamondez with nine solo tackles and Rafael Pantoja with eight.

The Plowboys offense was led by Eduardo Gallegos with 89 yards rushing on 14 attempts and Vincent Pantoja with 38 yards on 9 carries.  Cutter Davila had 38 passing yards with 3 completions out of 11 attempts.

The Plowboys play their second district game Friday night here against Cross Plains.  The Buffaloes are 2-2 on the year and, like the Plowboys, are 1-0 in district play.  They are coming off a 26-0 victory over Gorman. 

Kickoff is at 7:30pm. 



The puddle in my driveway was full on Saturday morning.
This past weekend the Roscoe area got its biggest rain in more than five years* as the remnant of a Mexican hurricane moved up from the southwest and stalled over west Texas for a couple of days before moving on. 

The clouds moved in Thursday afternoon and stayed until 11:00am Sunday morning.  The rain started slowly and in general was slow and light throughout—without any thunder or lightning—but by the time it stopped Saturday evening, it had thoroughly soaked the area. 

Here in Roscoe, most people I talked to got between four and five inches, with more falling on the southwest side of town.  The official total was 4.2”, recorded by Roscoe weatherman Kenny Landfried, at his house on east Broadway.

Farms north of town got about five inches.  The most I heard of was the eight inches Tim Tomlin reported six miles north of town.  Pyron and Wastella got 3.5” to 4.5”, and so did the farms west of town.  The Champion area got five inches or more, as did farms south of town.

The rain wasn’t confined to the local area but was general over the entire region.  Midland got five inches, Snyder more than three, Abilene a little over seven, and San Angelo almost six.  In general, area lakes got some much needed runoff, and fields some deep ground moisture.

Temperatures were cool the entire week with highs in the seventies and lows in the upper fifties as the summer heat now seems a thing of the past. 

The forecast for the next couple of days is for sunny skies with highs in the eighties, but a norther due to arrive on Saturday will bring a high only in the fifties and a low in the lower forties on Saturday night. 

* The last rain bigger—at least in town—was the 6.25” that fell on August 12, 2007.



The damaged support of the US 84 overpass east of town.
“Destruction Junction,” where US 84 joins I-20 just east of Roscoe, was once again in the news—as it has been on countless occasions since it was built in 1959.  Thankfully, there were no fatalities this time, but a truck wreck did cause serious damage to the overpass, and traffic on both major highways was stopped or slowed for hours and had to be re-routed. 

The accident that caused all the damage occurred during a light rain at about seven o’clock on Thursday evening and was probably caused by the wet road.  A big 18-wheeler lost control as it was passing through the underpass westbound on I-20 and slammed into a support column on the right. 

The cab was separated from the rest of the truck, and the driver and co-driver, both injured, had to be rescued through the windshield.  They were taken to Rolling Plains Hospital, where both were reported in stable condition.

The impact knocked out big chunks of the column’s concrete and seriously damaged the entire support, making the overpass above impassable and bringing to an immediate halt all eastbound traffic on US 84.  All westbound traffic on I-20, which has to pass through the underpass, was also stopped.

The resulting detour of about ¾ of a mile re-routed westbound I-20 traffic onto US 84 and then back to I-20 via the US 84 access road.  Eastbound US 84 traffic was—and still is—forced to take the exit just before the overpass to westbound I-20 and then take the Roscoe exit and turn left at Stripes to get back to eastbound I-20.   This detour will be in effect for some time.

An emergency crew was called in to put up temporary supports, and by Saturday, westbound traffic on I-20 was open again but with only one lane usable through the underpass.  The overpass for eastbound US 84 traffic, however, is still unusable and will be for several weeks.  Repairs to the overpass are estimated at $135,000.

Sooner or later, the Texas Department of Transportation should do something about the dangerous junction, which has been the scene of numerous accidents and collisions over the years, as well as several deaths.   


Co-op members at the Open House lunch at the gin.
The Central Rolling Plains Co-op held its annual open house last Thursday with a hamburger lunch at the gin northwest of town.  Gin Manager Larry Black gave a short address to the members present and invited everyone to look over the gin’s recent improvements, especially the new control room, which has touchscreens with the latest technological advances. 

Members also wrote down their guesses for the number of cotton bales to be ginned this year, and a $100 prize awaits the person who gets the closest without going over.  



The Roscoe Collegiate Special Events Center
Have you been hoping for a chance to see the new building and the latest improvements at the Roscoe school?  Well, here it is.  Next Tuesday, October 9, from 6:00-8:00pm, the Roscoe ISD Board of Trustees, administration and staff invite you to attend the 2012 Open House.

After a brief welcome and introductions in the Cafetorium, there will be an elementary program with songs from first and second graders followed by a secondary program from high school seniors with updates on their current status and plans for the future.

These will be followed by student-led tours of the new facilities, including the recently finished new building.

Refreshments of punch and cookies will be served.  Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend.


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