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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

West Texas Wind Festival This Saturday

The Cornell Hurd Band

Plans are being finalized for the fifteenth annual West Texas Wind Festival this Saturday, and organizers anticipate a good crowd, especially for the free concert and the fireworks show.

The downtown streets will be lined with vendors in the afternoon and evening, and downtown shops will be open for business. Vendor applications contact City Hall at 325-766-4150.

The Roscoe Historical Museum will also be open, and the Roscoe Express Shuttle will be on hand to take people to and from selected parking areas, the Plowboy Mudbog, and downtown all afternoon at no charge.

The Plowboy Mudbog competition begins at noon at the baseball field at Second and Sycamore in east Roscoe. It will go on until 4 or 5pm depending on the number of entries. Admission is free.

Music for the free concert and street dance on Cypress Street will begin around five with Lyndall Underwood and the Dusty Creek Band until 7:15 or so. Then at around eight, the Cornell Hurd Band will take the stage to play until the fireworks show at around 9:30pm.

The Cornell Hurd Band is a Texas swing band from Austin, and a former house band for the iconic Broken Spoke. They play a mix of Western Swing, progressive country, rockabilly, Texas standards, truck driving music—a little bit of everything. They’ve been around in one form or another since 1976 and were based in California before making their home in Texas. Back then the band often opened for Commander Cody and Asleep at the Wheel and were influenced by both. Since then, they have played in venues all over Texas, as well as at shows in Switzerland and France. Along the way, they have produced several albums including A Stagecoach Named Desire, Live at the Broken Spoke, and Song of South Austin. Their latest is Rockets, Romance, and the Rhythm of the Road (2020).

Notable singles include “I Got It from the Girl Next Door,” “Heaven, Hell, or Houston,” and “Old South Austin.”

The fireworks show will follow Cornell Hurd’s performance at about 9:30pm and conclude this year’s Wind Festival.

Plowboy Mudbog

As always, mudboggers will be coming in from near and far to try their vehicles in Roscoe’s blackland mud at the Plowboy Mudbog,

Registration for entrants begins at 9:30am Saturday morning at the northwest corner of George Parks Baseball Field at Second and Sycamore Streets. 

Entries will be in five classes, possibly six:
          1. Street: 35” tires & under with limited engine modification
          2. Super Street: 35” with engine vac under 13”
          3. Modified: 36” to 39” with limited engine modification
          4. Super Modified: 36” to 39” with engine vac under 13”
          5. Open: 40” and over.
          6. Tractor Tires (possibly)

Since there’s an advantage in going last rather than first, each mud vehicle makes two runs, with the second run in reverse order from the first. Street and Super Street classes will do both their runs first, and then the rest of the classes will follow in order.

The public gate will open at 11:00am with mudbog competition beginning at noon.  Admission is free of charge, and the concession stand will be open.  

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

Downtown Schedule:
          5:00pm – Lyndall Underwood & the Dusty Creek Band
          8:00pm – Cornell Hurd Band
          9:40pm – Fireworks Show
        10:00pm – Event Ends

Fireworks Show: The always popular fireworks show brings a spectacular conclusion to the day.

So, make plans now to attend, bring lawn chairs and coolers to the free concert, and help us celebrate the day!



Virg Pruitt (3rd from right) speaks at yesterday's meeting.
At its monthly meeting at City Hall yesterday evening, the City Council went into closed session after citizen complaints of mismanagement and questionable activities, and the result was the impending resignation of the City Manager, effective November 1.

The meeting began on a completely different topic when Virgil Pruitt and Roscoe Cemetery maintenance man Skeet Kimbrell complained about conditions at Roscoe Cemetery, saying that several graves were covered with objects such as lights, marbles, and other moveable materials that made cleanup difficult. After some discussion, Mayor Pete Porter said the Council would look into the matter and find a way to solve the problem legally as the plots are private property.

Then Eddie Brown said that as a former City Manager, he had studied open public records regarding City expenditures and found examples of gross mismanagement and possible illegal activities over the last ten years. He was followed by Michael Owen, who said he had done the same and accused Council member Edwin Duncan of being involved and calling for his termination. These accusations were dealt with later in a closed session.

The Council then approved the appointment of Amanda Fullwood to the Roscoe Community Development Corporation Board. They also approved awarding Administration Services for the City’s American Rescue Plan. This involves $156,000 toward new fire hydrants and repair of old ones as well as replacement of City water valves. The Council also approved appointing engineering services for the project to eHT (Enprotec/Hibbs & Todd, Inc.) of Abilene.  It also appointed eHT to select a provider for the Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Fund.

The Council then approved the Investment Report for the Fourth Quarter. It also discussed procedures for replacing the City debit card with a credit card but tabled any action to next meeting in order to determine the legalities involved in doing so.

The Council then went into closed session to further discuss the issues raised earlier in the meeting by Brown and Owen.

After completion of the closed session, the Council resumed the public meeting. A motion was made and seconded on accepting City Manager Cody Thompson’s resignation on November 1. It passed but with one vote against.



After two weeks with only a five-play contest in Sudan followed by a bye week, the Plowboys resume play Friday with a big road game with Ralls. This will be the first district game for both teams, and it is a big one—the one that will most likely determine the district champion.

The Plowboys are on a 4-game winning streak, while the Jackrabbits have won their last five. Ralls was the pre-season favorite to win District 5-2A-II after their 4-1 district record last year and advance to the area finals before ending their season. They returned 7 starters on both offense and defense this year. They also have played seven full games while the Plowboys have played only four. They lost their first two games to two good teams, Farwell (2A-I), who beat them 42-21, and Clarendon (2A-II), who won 12-8. Since then, they have won five in a row with only the first being close, a 14-13 win over Seagraves. They beat Quanah 48-8, Plains 55-0, New Home 46-6, and Hamlin 68-0.

They have a strong defense, led by last-year’s District Co-Defensive MVP DL Coby Rendon (190), and LB Ryno Garcia (175). In a run-heavy offense, they are led by QB Garcia and running backs Steve Salazar (185) and Benjamin Njenga (175).  

Kickoff in Ralls is at 7:00pm.



This was all that was left of Nick Pantoja's derby car Saturday night as he finished second in the Burnet County Fall Demolition Derby at the Burnet County Fairgrounds.


In the United States, the “delta surge” of the summer continues to recede as most states see drops in numbers of new cases (24% in last two weeks), hospitalizations (20%), and deaths (10%). Hardest hit states remain Alaska, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and West Virginia. However, the numbers are now decreasing in all those states except North Dakota.

Texas remains number 33 of U.S. states in prevalence and spread of Covid-19 as the numbers continue to fall. As of yesterday, 6,211 Texans were hospitalized with Covid-19, compared to 7,769 last week and 9,551 two weeks ago. The number of new cases also fell again this week with a 7-day average of 1,981 fewer than last week. The number of active cases in Texas has also fallen to 180,581 from 214,041 last week. Deaths also decreased with a seven-day average of 8 fewer daily than last week.

In the Big Country, the numbers are better. Taylor County’s number of active cases is down to 1,556 compared to 2,005 a week ago and 61 Covid-19 hospitalizations compared to 76 a week ago with 21 of those in the ICU compared to last week’s 27. Taylor County also reported 5 more Covid-19 deaths since last Tuesday, making 11 total deaths so far in October and 485 overall.

In our four-county area, the numbers are slightly better. Nolan County now reports 43 active cases, the same as last week; Mitchell County reports 12 active cases, 7 fewer than last week’s 19; Fisher County has 6 active cases compared to last week’s 10; and Scurry County has 56 active cases, 24 less than last week’s 80. Nolan County reports 52 total Covid-19 deaths, 1 more than last week with 13 in September.

Roscoe Collegiate ISD reports 1 positive student and 2 positive staff in Early Childhood, 1 positive student and 2 positive staff plus 5 students and 1 staff quarantined in Elementary, and no positives or quarantined in Secondary.

Here are the estimated active cases of the Big Country’s counties (compared to last week’s number in parentheses): Howard, 153 (160); Jones, 140 (141); Stephens, 113 (115); Brown, 101 (162); Scurry, 56 (80); Erath, 45 (51); Nolan, 43 (43); Coke, 25 (31); Callahan, 23 (27); Eastland, 17 (25); Comanche, 13 (18); Coleman, 13 (17); Mitchell, 12 (19); Knox, 11 (0); Haskell, 10 (6); Runnels, 9 (6); Fisher, 6 (10); Stonewall, 3 (4); Shackelford, 2 (2); Throckmorton, 1 (1); Kent, 0 (1);. The total of all these counties is 796, a drop of 213 from last week’s 1,009. The total has been diminishing every week for over a month now as the numbers continue to go in the right direction in the Big Country.
Selected west Texas counties’ estimated active cases (with last week’s in parentheses): Lubbock 2,530 (3,781); Midland 1,223 (1,372); Wichita (Wichita Falls) 997 (1,378); Ector (Odessa) 935 (1,424), Tom Green (San Angelo) 464 (741). The total for these counties is 6,149, a drop of 2,547 from last week’s 8,696. So, these more populated counties are also moving in the right direction.  



The western sky on Sunday afternoon.
This past week has been marked by summerlike heat and high south winds, but with the prospect of possible showers today and tonight.

After the previous week’s milder days with highs in the eighties, daily temperatures returned to the nineties, starting with Friday’s high of 93°, Saturday’s 94°, Sunday’s 95°, and Monday’s 94° before mostly cloudy skies dropped yesterday’s high down to 84°. Strong south winds accompanied the heat. Friday and Saturday had sustained winds of 20mph with gusts up to 35mph. On Sunday afternoon, the wind picked up to 25mph with gusts up to 40mph, and the sky turned brown with high flying dust. A wind advisory was issued for several counties in the area, including Nolan County. Monday was similar, and so was yesterday although the sky had returned to its normal blue color.

Today that all changes as the wind dies down to 5-10mph and shifts to the west-southwest. Skies will be cloudy with a high temperature this afternoon of only 80°. There is a 20% chance of showers this afternoon. Those chances will increase to 24% early tonight before clearing later. Tomorrow, the morning clouds will clear to mostly sunny skies in the afternoon. The high will be about 90° with southwest winds returning and with chances of rain decreasing to 17%.

On Friday, the winds shift to the north, and high temperatures will drop into the seventies for the following days. Friday and Saturday’s highs will be around 73°, Sunday’s 76°, and Monday’s 79°, all with lows in the forties and with no rain in the forecast.



Memorial services for Jessie Buford “Bud” Byars, 69, of Clyde were at 3:00pm on Monday, October 11, at Bailey-Howard Funeral Home Chapel in Clyde with Brother Larry Hooper officiating. He died on Friday, October 8, at his home in Clyde.

Bud was born February 5, 1952, in Sweetwater to Richmond Joe and Vivian (Brown) Byars.  He attended school in Roscoe and Clyde.  Bud was an independent trucker and a shade tree mechanic.  He loved building old cars and racing them, and he loved to play pool with his friends.  He was a member of the Baptist Church.

Bud is survived by two sons, Philip Byars of Corpus Christi and James Junek of San Marcos; six daughters, Jessica Davis of Abilene, Roberta Seaton of Abilene, Tammy Seaton of Abilene, Coni Byars of Corpus Christi, Angela Byars of Clyde and Tana McKillip of Abilene; one brother, James Byars of Clyde; one sister, Joanne Byars of Clyde; 22 grandchildren; and 17 great-grandchildren.

Bud was preceded in death by his parents and one sister, Carole Jones.

Online condolences may be made at


Roscoe FFA's annual fundraiser.

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