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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Happy New Year!

Christmas is done, winter has officially arrived, and, although it’s too early to really notice it, the days are getting longer. New Year’s Eve is just around the corner, and in just a few days, we’ll all be changing our old calendars for new ones. Before leaving the old year, though, perhaps we should mark its passing by reflecting on the things that happened in and around Roscoe in 2017.

Festivals and the Music Scene

Charley Pride at the Lumberyard on Spring Super Sunday.
In recent years, Roscoe has become regionally known for its annual city celebrations and live country music performances, often by some of the best-known singers in the business. The City sponsors three major festivals, Spring Super Sunday in April, the Independence Day Celebration on or around July 4, and the West Texas Wind Festival in October. These events draw large crowds with live music, street dances, contests, street vendors, and fireworks shows—and this year was no exception.

Spring Super Sunday featured country music great Charley Pride, who performed on the big stage of the Lumberyard to a crowd larger than Roscoe’s population, and many also enjoyed a new festival event, the demolition derby and “Tuff Truck” competition in the old Planters Gin lot just north of the railroad track. The July 4th Celebration had its Lions Club’s pancake breakfast, annual parade, and Plowboy Mudbog competition, the street dance “on the bricks,” and a great fireworks show. Unfortunately, the West Texas Wind Festival was cut short this year when a sudden downpour rained out the show shortly before the featured singer, T. G. Sheppard, took the stage. The rainstorm lasted long enough to ruin the band’s sound equipment and send people running to their cars, effectively ending the day for the celebration. However, it had a happy ending for those who hung around as more sound equipment was located, and T. G. Sheppard later returned to the Lumberyard, where he and his band put on their show originally planned for the free concert and street dance.  

In addition to the City festivals, Roscoe’s reputation as a major music venue was once again enhanced by the live performances of several nationally known artists and groups at the Lumberyard. This year’s lineup included Crystal Gayle, Gary P. Nunn, Johnny Bush, the Mavericks, Dale Watson, and Jo Dee Messina, and those who love the “Red Dirt” sound also enjoyed Randy Rogers, Stoney LaRue, Wade Bowen, Casey Donahew, Micky and the Motorcars, and others.

As in previous years, the Lumberyard received acclaim in Texas newspapers. Here’s an article that appeared in the Abilene Reporter-News in August.

City businesses also prospered in 2017, helped along by Spring Super Sunday and the Christmas Open House, as shoppers from all over the Big Country came to town to check out the wares offered at Vickie’s Gifts, the Wildflower Boutique, the Rockin S Cantina, McVey’s Nursery, and others.

Here's a video sampler (9:50) of Charley Pride's performance on Spring Super Saturday:

Roscoe School

Roscoe’s school system increased its standing as possibly the most accomplished and innovative rural school in the state. In addition to their high school diplomas, 27 of its 28 graduating seniors also received their Associate’s Degrees from Western Texas College, a feat matched by no other high school in the country. This program saves thousands of dollars in college expenses for students, who can enter universities as juniors and go right into their major courses because they have already completed all their general requirements. And the ones who don’t go to college have abilities and credentials that can get them skilled employment.

This year the school showcased two new collegiate programs, Edu-Vet and Edu-Drone. Both offer students valuable experiences and certifications. Edu-Drone students learn to repair and fly drones, leading to FAA Certification for commercial drone flight, and the school is partnering with Office Depot to spread its curriculum to other schools in the nation. Edu-Vet students benefit from working with on-site veterinarians. Located in the STEM Center, the Edu-Vet initiative is also a working pet clinic run by Dr. Betsy Oesch and Dr. John Dedwyler. (For information and appointments, phone 325-766-3529. The Edu-Vet website is at, and the Facebook page is at Edu-Vet Pet Hospital.)

The Early Childhood Center on Main Street.
In August, the school also added a new facility and program for pre-schoolers, the Early Childhood Center, which uses the acclaimed Montessori system for giving kids a jump start in their education. It is one of only a handful of public schools in the state to offer this advantage. Montessori schools are known for their individualized instruction, which allows children to follow their own interests and advance at their own pace. Almost everywhere that a Montessori education is offered, it is done only privately and is not cheap. Children who go to Montessori schools in Dallas, for example, are charged around $11,000 dollars per year in tuition, while those in Roscoe go tuition-free.

State Senator Charles Perry speaks in the STEM Center.
The RCISD system model of education got plenty of praise and encouragement at the STEM Advisory Meeting at the STEM Center in October. State Senator Charles Perry and State Representative Stan Lambert both spoke of Roscoe’s importance as a model for other rural Texas schools. State Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller was unable to make the meeting, so Assistant Ag Commissioner and RHS grad Dan Hunter, better known here as Danny, attended in his place. Two Texas Tech professors reported that they are working with the state government of West Virginia to teach them about the Roscoe system model so that they may implement its ideas into their own public schools.

Also in October, RCHS was invited to be one of thirty schools in a global learning network. The group includes schools from the United States, Singapore, Switzerland, Germany, South Korea, and Canada. Schools were chosen for their excellence, equity, and innovation.

Roscoe’s robotics team, led by Coach Dan Boren, continued its annual feats of overachievement. In March, they competed in the Hub City Regional Meet in Lubbock with 45 other schools and finished in first place in the qualifying round. It earned them an invitation to the state tournament in Austin in May, where they finished eighth place out of 32 invited schools. It was a remarkable finish for such a small school. In robotics meets the size of the team’s school is not considered, and everyone competes in the same contest. Thus, almost all the schools represented in the state meet are big ones with hundreds and sometimes thousands of students.

In May, RCHS sophomore Bonnie Wilkinson won the 2A state championship in the triple jump with a distance of 36’11½”. Her sister, Lyndi, won the bronze in the 800-meter run. Lyndi has graduated, but Plowgirl fans look forward to seeing Bonnie do more great things this year and next.

Nick Limones (12) carries the ball behind Rey Martinez (74).
Coach Jake Freeman’s Plowboys once again gave Roscoe fans plenty to cheer about this fall, although their last two games unfortunately kept them from advancing in the playoffs as they had last year. They went into their final regular season game in Hamlin with a 6-3 record and a chance for a share of the district championship, but lost a heartbreaker in overtime 21-14. Then the following week in a bi-district match-up, they once again lost a close one, this time to Farwell 39-32, which ended their season. Even so, since Coach Freeman took over the program, the Plowboys have once again become a 2A team to reckon with in the Big Country, making the playoffs for the past four years—and there’s plenty of optimism about their chances for next year.

City Progress

The ribbon-cutting for the Legacy Tattoo Parlour in February.
Two new businesses have opened in town this year. One is the Legacy Tattoo Parlour on 14 Cypress, across the street from the Lumberyard. It is owned and operated by Manny Arenivaz. The shop offers several kinds of tattoos including custom art, cover-ups, and flash (predetermined patterns displayed on walls of the shop.) The shop minimum is $40 and can go up depending on the size and amount of work necessary. For more information, drop by during business hours, e-mail, or phone 325-766-2200.

The other is the Cotton Belles gift shop on 716 Broadway, where McFaul’s Garage used to be and next door to Windmill Park. It has not yet had its ribbon cutting but had its soft opening during the Roscoe merchants’ Christmas Open House in November and has been open since. It is owned and operated by Susie Alford and Misti De Loera. The shop offers a variety of gifts, t-shirts, jellies, and friendly service. Store hours are 10-5 M-F and 10-3 Saturday. For more information, phone 325-766-3663.

Windmill Park and its mural.
The City also has a new park located on the corner of Broadway and Main Street. It is called Windmill Park because it has a large windmill donated to the City by Jay and Scott Etheredge. The windmill is not a working windmill but is ornamental. It was raised in July by Ivey Windmill of Roscoe and 7 Wells Pump of Colorado City. On the wall next to the Cotton Belles shop is a huge mural painted by Calina Mishay Johnson, the same artist who painted the mural behind the Smackers building on Main Street.

The City sewer system got a major upgrade by Whitney Underground of Valley View this past summer. New lines and manholes were laid in several alleys in south Roscoe as the old lines were over sixty years old and in need of major repair.

Seventh Street was also widened and improved, and several streets got a new sealcoating in the City-County’s annual summer sealcoating project.

All three houses in the Young Farm Estates development have been sold and more are planned for construction in the coming year.

The City and School held elections in May, and there are new faces on both the School Board and City Council. Edward “Spider” Herrera and Kenny Hope, Jr., are now on the School Board, and David Pantoja, a former member, is back after a break. On the City Council, KC Hope has replaced Helen Perry.

As usual, the local wind farms still make the national and international news from time to time. Just last month, I met a French journalist in the Lumberyard who had just finished interviewing Cliff Etheredge, and a couple of weeks ago I visited the new Lithium-Ion Battery Storage System on the Inadale Wind Farm. It is E.ON’s first ever battery storage system for an American wind farm and only its second such system in the U.S. The first was one installed in July on a solar farm in Arizona.

Cotton and the Weather

Some of the fine dryland cotton grown around Roscoe in 2017.
This has been a banner year for cotton farmers in the Roscoe area. It has produced the kind of crop that farmers always dream about but seldom get. The actual amount of rainfall was less this year than last year or the year before. In 2016, Roscoe weatherman Kenny Landfried recorded a total of 28.97 inches, in 2015 33.55 inches, and this year just 23.68 inches.

The big difference in the size of the crop was not how much rain it got but when it got it, and this year it invariably came at the right time for the cotton. The big rain that really made the difference was the 2.43” rain that fell on August 13, with farms west of town getting more like three inches and some up to four. Right after that rain, one farmer remarked that it was a “million-dollar” rain, and, as it turned out, he was right. On this past Friday, the Central Rolling Plains Co-op Gin surpassed 50,000 ginned bales with 725 modules waiting in the gin yard and 4,638 modules still in the fields. Gin Manager Larry Black says this year will break the record for production by the Roscoe gin and estimates a final total of somewhere between 117,000 and 121,000 bales. The current record is the 2007 total of 109,991 ginned bales.

Other facts about 2017 from the official records of Roscoe weatherman Kenny Landfried are these. The last spring freeze came on February 25 when the temperature fell to 29°F, and the first freeze this fall was on October 28, when it dropped to 31°. Like last year, the temperatures this year were generally mild with fewer extremes than usual. The hottest day was the 105° recorded on June 18 and the coldest was January 10, when it dropped to 10°. However, there were only 10 100°+ days this year, compared to the 20 triple-digit days last summer or the record-setting 81 days in 2011.

In short, things continue to move in the right direction for Roscoe, and with continued hard work, creative thinking, and a little bit of luck, the coming year could well continue the trend. In any case, have a Happy New Year, and here’s wishing you all a healthy and prosperous 2018!



Carlton Anderson
New Year’s Eve falls on a Sunday night this year, so the Lumberyard will be celebrating on Saturday night instead. Featured artist will be Carlton Anderson, an up-and-coming singer/songwriter from Nashville. Check out his sound on this YouTube video of his version of “Drinkin’ Problem.”

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



All the tree limbs are covered with ice this morning.
It wasn’t supposed to get this cold. All the predictions a couple of days ago were saying today would be in the fifties. Yeah, right! Was it W. C. Fields who said, “It ain’t a fit night out for man or beast?” Whoever, it was, that’s the way I feel this morning. This miserable weather all started when a cold front moved in on Monday and got worse yesterday with cloudy skies, a misty fog, a strong north wind and a temperature that dropped several degrees below anything that was predicted. The wind chill temperature was in the low teens. Things started icing up around midnight, and today should be a good day not to do any more outside activities or traveling than absolutely necessary.

It wasn’t that way on Saturday when the temperature rose to 61°F. Sunday’s high was cooler at 41° but was still warmer than Monday’s maximum of 36°. Yesterday the high was only 39°, and this morning it’s only 20° with a projected high today of just 31°. Yesterday's mist has frozen on the trees and grass, and it looks like a winter wonderland out there. 

The good news is that tomorrow should be warmer with a high of around 51°, and the weekend should be even warmer with a high of 61° on Saturday and lows above freezing, although skies will remain essentially cloudy. On Saturday, there’s a 30% chance of precipitation, but it’s likely to be only drizzle. At the present time, the weathermen are forecasting a 40% chance for snow on Monday, New Year’s Day. I think I’ll stay inside and watch the football games.


Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you all! Some of you may feel this greeting a little premature since December 25 is not until next Monday, but by next week’s posting on the 27th, Christmas will already be over. So, let this greeting serve notice to those of you who still have gifts to buy that time is growing short, and it’s high time to get her done.

I’m all caught up with my shopping this time around and feeling pretty proud of myself, but it hasn’t always been that way. When my kids were small and I was living in larger places than Roscoe, I can remember making those last-minute dashes to Toys R Us only to find mostly empty shelves and a few scattered toys here and there. For all the complaints we hear about the way things are now, shopping online for gifts is a vast improvement over those dashes of desperation. That is, unless you’re looking for those Fingerling monkey puppets. I hear they’re in short supply!

In any case, here’s wishing my season’s greetings to you, one and all, and here’s hoping this Christmas will be your best ever!



Stock Show winners show off their prize belt buckles.
Here are the results of the Roscoe FFA Stock Show held in the Ag Barn on Friday:

Class 1
1st - Ty Fullwood - Fine Wool Cross
2nd - Ty Fullwood - Fine Wool

Reserve Grand Champion - Ty Fullwood - Fine Wool
Grand Champion - Ty Fullwood - Fine Wool Cross
Showmanship - Ty Fullwood

Class 1 - Lightweight
1st - Aidan Richburg - Hampshire
2nd - Zeke Murphy - Berkshire
3rd - Dax Drake - Berkshire
4th - Fernando Ramirez - Yorkshire

Class 2 - Heavyweight
1st - Zeke Murphy - Spot
2nd - Aidan Richburg - Black Cross
3rd - Dax Drake - Duroc
4th - Fernando Ramirez - Fernando Ramirez - Spot

Reserve Grand Champion - Zeke Murphy - Heavy Weight Spot
Grand Champion - Aidan Richburg - Light Weight Hampshire
Junior Showmanship - Aidan Richburg
Senior Showmanship - Zeke Murphy



Keegan Pruitt with RVFD Fire Chief Gary Armstrong. 
At its recent celebration of the Christmas holidays and safe year, the Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department recognized Keegan Pruitt as this year’s Volunteer Fireman of the Year for his service to the Department and community. A senior at Highland High School, Keegan plans to go to the EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) School and Fire Academy at TEEX (Texas A&M Engineering Extension).

The Department also recognized the number of years each member has served, from the longest at 32 to the most recent at one.

The Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department wishes to thank the community for its continued support.



In their final game before the Christmas break, the Plowboys won a close one from the Winters Blizzards 61-58.

Scores by quarters:
Plowboys          25        36        51        61
Winters             10        19        35        58

Individual Plowboy scoring: Brandon Lavalais 14. Jose Ortega, 13, Caleb Gray 10, Junior Martinez 8, Clemente Aguayo 5, Brayan Medina 4, Camden Boren 4, Reece Boydston 3.

The Plowboys' next games will be in Eden in the Concho County Classic Tournament on December 27-28. Their first game on December 27 will be against Miles. 



The Plowgirls lost a game to Anson in a game played at the RCHS Special Events Center Friday evening 43-24.

Scores by quarters:
Anson               12        21        35        43
Plowgirls          12        14        16        24

Individual Plowgirl scoring: Kinzie Buchanan 8, Veronica Cuellar 5, Bonnie Wilkinson 4, Baylor Trevino 3, Victoria Martinez 2, Alexis Arce 1, Liberty Saenz 1.

The Plowgirls are also off for the Christmas break and will play Eden next in the Concho County Classic Tournament in Eden on December 27. 



Yesterday's cloud cover moved east in the afternoon.
The weather this past week has been just about as normal as it ever gets for December in west Texas. The historical monthly averages for December in Roscoe are 57°F for highs and 30° for lows. Since last Thursday the highs have been 54°, 53°, 53°, 60°, 63°, and 60° respectively, and the lows 34°, 32°, 35°, 39°, 38°, and 47°. The only real change during the week was yesterday’s overcast skies until about 3pm and the rain that came early yesterday morning. It wasn’t much, just enough to get the ground wet, but it was something different than we had for the previous days.

That will change as today and tomorrow will be considerably warmer with a high of 69° today and 77° tomorrow. Tomorrow’s warmth will be coming from the southwest along with strong breezes of 20-30mph. Then tomorrow night, a norther will blow in, changing the wind direction and dropping the temperature to a low of around 32°. Friday’s high will reach only 45° under cloudy skies and a 20% chance of precipitation. Saturday will be sunny with a high of 56° and light southwest winds, but the wind will change Saturday evening and once again come from the north, dropping the low to 26°. Sunday will be cold. The high will be only 37° with a strong north wind of around 20mph.

Christmas Day will be only slightly warmer under mostly sunny skies with a projected high of 47° and a low of 27°. So, if you happen to get a new jacket or coat for Christmas, you can try it out immediately.



Funeral services were held for Steven Christopher Hagerman, 32, at 2:00pm Friday, December 15, at Roscoe Church of Christ with Dan Boren officiating. Interment followed at Roscoe Cemetery. He passed away at his home on Sunday, December 10.

Chris was born April 25, 1985, in Abilene. He was a graduate of Roscoe High School and member of the Roscoe Church of Christ. He lived in Roscoe all his life and loved to listen to music and play his drums. He also loved to be on the Roscoe Plowboys’ sidelines standing with the coaches on game nights. He attended the Lions World School for the Blind in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he obtained his small engine repair certification. He was the owner-operator of Hagerman NAPA Auto Parts Store in Roscoe.

He is survived by his parents, Pat and Steve Hagerman of Roscoe; sister, Stephanie Sanders of Huntsville; brother, Kyle Hagerman of Roscoe; maternal grandmother, Elnor Freeman of Roscoe; and niece and nephew, Chloe and Carson Sanders of Huntsville. He is also survived by a host of uncles, aunts, cousins and friends.

Chris is preceded in death by his maternal grandfather, Jerland Freeman; paternal grandparents, Lucille and Verlin Paul Hagerman; aunts, Terri Teltschik and DaNetta Hagerman; and uncles, Freddy Freeman and Larry Hagerman.

Pallbearers were Jerad Alford, Jeremy Baker, Travis Williams, Chase Strother, Clint Hunter and Shane Hunter.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

City Council Hears Report, Approves Grant Contract

Cody Thompson reports to the City Council at last night's meeting.
At its monthly meeting at City Hall yesterday evening, the City Council heard the City Manager’s report on public works along with water and sewer updates. Chief of Police Felix Pantoja was gone to Galveston on City Police business. Council members also set a date for this year’s Independence Day Celebration and approved awarding engineering and grant services to an Abilene firm in conjunction with the City’s application for state funding for sewer improvements.

City Manager Cody Thompson reported that the recent problems with the City water supply are now over as new membranes have been installed at the City Water Treatment Plant. Water going to residents is once again as pure and fresh as originally intended. The problems arose with the clogging of the old membranes more quickly than anticipated. Since this will be an ongoing problem with the amount of minerals present in water coming from the City wells, a new system of rotation of the membranes has been employed with the most clogged membranes being sent for cleaning to a company that performs such tasks. The cost of the most recent replacements was $39,000. This new system should produce good water without necessitating raises in residents’ water bills.

The existing homes at Young Farm Estates have now been sold, and two or three new ones are planned for construction in coming months. Some commercial development is also possible in the coming year.

Sewer-line improvements behind VP Tire Company and the new Cotton Belle shop have been completed as planned with the loan funds.

Patching of streets and cleaning up around town for the holidays is underway. City Christmas lights are up, and lights for the Windmill Park will be partially installed. When the park gets more electrical power, more lighting will also be put up.

The Roscoe Express, which is available for use by local groups, was recently used by the Baptist Church for Christmas carolers.

The date for this coming year’s July 4th celebration was set for June 30. July 4th is on Wednesday, and since Roscoe’s July 4th Celebration always takes place on Saturday, either June 30, the Saturday before, or July 7, the Saturday after, were possibilities. After some discussion, a vote was taken, and June 30 won by a 3-2 vote with Mayor Porter abstaining. Next year’s West Texas Wind Festival will be on October 20, the third Saturday in October, as usual.

The Council then approved awarding the professional service contract for grant management and engineering services to Enprotec/Hibbs & Todd of Abilene for a Sewer Facility Improvements Grant from the Texas Department of Agriculture’s Community Development Block Grants. Roscoe applied unsuccessfully for the grant this past year, but is optimistic about getting it this coming year. If Roscoe fails to receive the funding, then the contract with eHT will be terminated.

Christmas Lunch at City Hall will be on Thursday, December 21, 11am to 1pm.

City Hall will be closed for the Christmas holidays from Friday, December 22, through Monday, December 25.



The Plowboys hosted the Roscoe Tournament this past weekend and won one game while losing four. Then yesterday evening they beat Trent here at home 90-15.

Here are the final scores, the scores by quarters, and individual scoring for each game:

TLCA (San Angelo) 61 – Plowboys 60

TLCA                 21        38        46        61
Plowboys          12        22        36        60

Individual Plowboy scoring: Jose Ortega 15, Junior Martinez 14, Caleb Gray 9, Jayden Gonzales 7, Brandon Lavalais 4, Brayan Medina-Solis 4, Reece Boydston 3, Micheal Wright 2, Camden Boren 2.

Plowboys 64 – Big Spring JV 37

Plowboys          12        32        46        64
Big Spring JV   13        18        28        37

Individual Plowboy scoring: Lavalais 14, Martinez, 11, Gonzales 9, Gray 9, Ortega 6, Boydston 5, Clemente Aguayo 4, Medina 4, Boren 2.

City View (Wichita Falls) 58 – Plowboys 42

City View         17        33        44        58

Plowboys            5        11        24        42 

Individual Plowboy scoring: Gray 15, Boydston 6, Ortega 5, Martinez 5, Lavalais 4, Medina 4, Aguayo 2, Wright 1.

Bronte 69 – Plowboys 56

Bronte              18        39        59        69
Plowboys         17        26        42        56

Individual Plowboy scoring: Martinez 19, Boydston 13, Gonzales 8, Ortega 7, Aguayo 3, Lavalais 2, Wright 2, Boren 2.

Ira 39 – Plowboys 33

Ira                      8        18        29        39
Plowboys          6        12        23        33

Individual Plowboy scoring: Martinez 7, Medina 6, Boren 6, Gonzales 3, Anglin 3, Ortega 2, Lavalais 2, Wright 2, Boydston 2.

Plowboys 90 – Trent 15

Plowboys         34       57        73        90
Trent                  5          5          9         15

Individual Plowboy scoring: Martinez 16, Boydston 11, Medina 10, Ortega 9, Aguayo 8, Boren 8, Anglin 7, Wright 6, Gonzales 5, Lavalais 4.

The Plowboys will play Anson here at home Friday. Their next scheduled games after that are in the Eden Varsity Tournament on December 27-28.



The Plowgirls played only one game this past week, a loss to Hawley 58-30 in Hawley last night.

Scoring by quarters:
Hawley             19        29        45        58
Plowgirls            7        16        20        30

Individual Plowgirl scoring: Kinzie Buchanan 13, Bonnie Wilkinson 9, Liberty Saenz 3, Baylor Trevino, Ainsleigh Nelson 2.

Their next games will be in the Eden Varsity Tournament on December 27-28.



Ice in my birdbath on Thursday morning..
The Roscoe area got its first hard freeze since last spring last Thursday morning when the temperature dropped to 26°F with a wind chill of 17°. The low for the week, though, was on Friday when the mercury dropped to 23°. The highs for Wednesday and Thursday only reached 40°, and we were given a 90% chance for precipitation, but got only enough to get the sidewalks wet. The weather cleared Thursday evening and on Friday the high rose to 51°.

Then we had a beautiful weekend with clear skies and little wind. Saturday’s high was 61°, Sunday’s 67°, and Monday’s 70°, although lows were cool at 33°, 34°, and 37° respectively. Yesterday, a mild front moved through and dropped the high to 57° and this morning’s low to 36°. Today should be warmer, though, with the temperature reaching 69° this afternoon. Highs for the rest of the week and Sunday will be in the fifties with lows in the thirties.

There is no rain in the forecast.



Steven Christopher Hagerman, 32, passed away at his home on Sunday, December 10. Services are pending with McCoy Funeral Home in Sweetwater.


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

E.ON Lithium Battery System at Inadale Wind Farm an American First

The Lithium-Ion Battery System at Inadale Wind Farm.
E.ON’s new lithium-ion battery system about five miles northwest of Roscoe will be only its second such system installed in the United States and its first specifically for a wind farm. E.ON’s first, the Iron Horse Energy Storage & Solar Project, opened in July at the University of Arizona’s Tech Park.

A part of the Inadale Wind Farm, the 9.9 megawatt battery system is almost ready for operation and scheduled to go online around the first of January. It will be followed by a similar 9.9 megawatt system for the Pyron Wind Farm, its third in the U.S. and its second for a wind farm. E.ON calls the two local projects Texas Waves, and lessons learned from the Arizona solar project are being applied to them. In turn, lessons learned from the Texas Waves systems will be applied to future E.ON projects.  

These energy storage systems alleviate one of wind energy’s problems, which is that electricity from wind energy is produced when the wind blows and not necessarily when it is needed. However, battery storage allows stored wind energy to be fed into the transmission lines at such times, making wind a more reliable energy source.  

E.ON is partnering with Greensmith Energy, the leading provider of energy storage software and services for the Texas Waves projects.

NBC Nightly News is planning to film and run a story on the Texas Waves project when the Inadale Farm system opens in January.

For more detailed information, see the press releases for the Iron Horse and Texas Waves projects. For the Iron Horse Project in Arizona click here. For the Texas Waves project, click here.



Jose Ortega, Defensive Co-MVP and Jacob Rainey, Defensive Newcomer. 
The All-District selections for District 4-2A-II football have been made, and there are plenty of Plowboys on the teams. Jose Ortega was named Defensive Co-MVP along with Hamlin’s Shawn Montanez, and Jacob Rainey is the Defensive Newcomer of the Year. The District MVP and Offensive MVP, as well as the Staff were all from Hamlin.

Here are the Plowboys selected to the First and Second Offensive and Defensive Teams and to Academic All-District:

Defensive Co-MVP: Jose Ortega, Jr.
Defensive Newcomer: Jacob Rainey, Fr.

First-Team Offense
Running Back: Francisco Garcia, Sr.
Receivers: Brandon Lavalais, Jr., Jose Ortega, Jr.
Offensive Line: Paul Pantoja, Sr.,

Second-Team Offense
Quarterback: Jayden Gonzales, Jr.
Receivers: Micheal Wright, So.
Offensive Line: Parker Payne, Sr., Joel Guia, So.

First-Team Defense
Defensive Tackle: Tait Fullwood, Sr.
Defensive End: Paul Pantoja, Sr.
Inside Linebacker: Nick Limones, Jr.
Defensive Back: Diego Garza, Sr.
Utility Player: Clemente Aguayo, Sr.

Second-Team Defense
Defensive End: Parker Payne, Sr.
Outside Linebacker: Clemente Aguayo, Sr.
Defensive Back: Brandon Lavalais, Jr.
Punter: Jose Ortega, Jr.

Academic All-District
Seniors: Clemente Aguayo, Francisco Garcia, Parker Payne
Juniors: Nick Limones, Jayden Gonzales, Coltin Watts
Sophs: Junior Martinez
Freshman: Jacob Rainey
Honorable Mention: Tristan Brooks, Sr.; Coltin Watts, Jr.; Rey Martinez, Jr.; Garrett Bowers, So.



Clemente Aguayo shoots a jumper.
The Plowboys won their first home basketball game yesterday evening by defeating Leuders-Avoca 52-38.

Score by quarters:
                                         1          2          3          4
Plowboys                      14        23        36        52
Leuders-Avoca             11        16        22        38

Plowboys’ individual scoring: Jose Ortega 9, Jayden Gonzales 8, Junior Martinez 6, Micheal Wright 6, Anglin 5, Clemente Aguayo 5, Brandon Lavalais 4, Medina 4, Boydston 3, Camden Boren 2.



Kinzie Buchanan shoots for two of her 18 points against Leuders-Avoca.
The Plowgirls lost a close game in overtime to the Leuders-Avoca Lady Raiders in the Special Events Center yesterday evening 52-47.

Score by quarters:
                                    1          2         3          4         OT
Leuders-Avoca         5        20       34        45        52
Plowgirls                  11        18        27        45        47

Plowgirls’ individual scoring: Kinzie Buchanan 18, Bonnie Wilkinson 9, Victoria Martinez 6, Veronica Cuellar 6, Liberty Saenz 1.



December clouds in the east on Sunday afternoon.
The weather we had over the weekend and up to Monday evening was too good to last. From Friday through Monday, afternoon temperatures rose into the seventies with some clouds but also plenty of sunshine. Morning lows on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday were 53°, 56°, and 51° respectively, and if you didn’t already know it was December, you wouldn’t have guessed it. 

However, all good things must come to an end, and a norther blew in Monday afternoon, causing the temperature to quickly drop. Yesterday’s high of 51° was 25° colder than Monday’s 76° and with a strong north wind felt even colder than that. Yesterday morning’s low was 35°, the same as this morning’s, and the prediction for tomorrow morning is 29°. The high for today will reach only 40° and tomorrow only 41°. Rain has been predicted since midnight, but so far there has not been enough to measure. The Weather Channel website gives our area a 90% chance of precipitation today and 40% tonight, but indicates that the amount is likely to be light, not more than .2" or so.

The good news is that the prediction is for a warming trend through Sunday. Sunny skies should return on Friday with a high of 55°, Saturday 65°, and Sunday 67°. Lows should also be slightly warmer with 36° on Friday, 38° Saturday, and 39° Sunday.

After today, there is no more rain in the forecast.



Funeral services for Roberta Catholene (Bankhead) Campbell, 85, were held at 10:00am on Friday, December 1, at Champion Baptist Church with Reverend Bruce Parsons officiating. She passed away at her home on Wednesday, November 29.

Roberta was born in Roscoe on December 27, 1931, to the late Robert L. and Mary Emma (Williams) Bankhead and lived in Nolan County all of her life. She graduated from Highland High School and was a lifelong member of Champion Baptist Church. She had been the pianist and organist at the church since she was a little girl. Roberta married J. L. Campbell June 11, 1949, in Roscoe. He passed way December 18, 2011. She retired from Highland School District as the Cafeteria Manager after many years of service.

She is survived by her daughter Patsy Sanford of Roscoe; son, Robert L. Campbell and wife Jeanette of Snyder; grandchildren, Shae Sanford of Clyde, Kyle Sanford and wife Brooke of Roscoe, and Courtney Campbell of Abilene; her great-grandchildren, Seth, Tyson and Sadie Sanford of Clyde, and Aubree and Emberlee Sanford of Roscoe; and her sister, Ethelyn Blackwell of Maysville, Missouri.

Roberta is also preceded in death by five sisters, Hautine Bankhead, Evelyn Hard, Latane McKibben, Neil Bankhead, and Nelda Bankhead; three brothers, Doris Bankhead, Troy Bankhead, and Edsel Bankhead; and sister-in-law, Frances Petty.

Pallbearers were Wendell Bankhead, Ray Carnathan, James Wells, and Wilford Petty. Honorary pallbearers were Randall Bankhead and Chase Schuchard.

The family requests in lieu of flowers, memorials be made to Hospice of the Big Country, 4601 Hartford, Abilene, Texas 79605.



Anthony Keith "Tony" Tidwell, 71, of Litchfield, MN, died on Thursday, November 30, at his home in Litchfield. A Remembrance Visitation will be held from 3:00 to 6:00pm on Saturday, December 16, at the Johnson-Hagglund Funeral Home in Litchfield.

Anthony Keith Tidwell, the son of Ramon and Mary (Terry) Tidwell was born on June 15, 1946, in Pasadena, Texas. He grew up in Roscoe and graduated from Roscoe High School in 1964 and from the Wright State University in Ohio in 1983 where he studied geology. He was united in marriage to Amy Knieff in Dallas on August 29, 1980. He served in the US Air Force from 1969 to 1977 and continued to be active with the Tan Son Nhut Air Base and the Together We Served groups. When he was younger, he was a trampolinist and coached softball. He enjoyed operating his ham radio, fishing, panning for gold, metal detecting, golfing, visiting and attending high school sporting events.

Anthony is survived by his wife Amy Tidwell of Litchfield, MN; children Ramon (Katie) Tidwell of Chaska, MN, Juli (Joshua) Rubin of Little Canada, MN, Matthew (Danielle) Tidwell of Buffalo, MN, and Debra Tidwell of Abilene; 8 grandchildren; and a sister Marie (Homer) Shipley of Universal City, TX. He was preceded in death by his mother, Mary Ellen Tidwell, and father, Ramon Edward Tidwell; brother, James Tidwell; and a sister, Patricia Tidwell.

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