Port of entry relocation to cost $1.5 million

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The New Mexico Visitors Center near Texico has been closed since September 2014 due to staffing issues.

By David Stevens Editor dstevens@cnjonline.com Taxpayers will spend about $1.5 million to relocate and transform the port of entry at Texico, according to Greg Fouratt, cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Department of Public Safety. Officials last month announced plans to move the port of entry to the former visitor’s center about two miles west […]

Clovis man sentenced to 40 years for shooting at police

Photo from police video
Officials said Eric Gutierrez opened the door briefly after firing five shots at police officers in December 2013, then quickly retreated. Officer Brian Wanzor said he did not fire his weapon because “It didn’t feel safe just shooting blind rounds ...”

By David Stevens Editor dstevens@cnjonline.com Clovis Patrol Officer Brian Wanzor remembers asking, politely, for the man he’d been told was “acting crazy” to please open the bedroom door and come out so they could talk. Eric Gutierrez’ response: five gunshots through the door. “Honestly, I don’t know how he didn’t hit me,” Wanzor said. No […]

Pastor blesses furry family members

Staff photo: Kevin Wilson
Valerie Dewbre of Clovis tries to follow along during the Blessing of the Animals event at Greene Acres Park, despite distractions from her Dachshund, Lexi. Valerie and her husband, Orinn, brought their five rescue dogs to the event.

By Kevin Wilson DEPUTY EDITOR kwilson@cnjonline.com Not that Bonita Knox needed a cue, but she got one from the skies all the same. “Well,” Knox said as the thunder boomed overhead at Greene Acres Park on Saturday, “I think we’d best get started.” Surrounding Knox in a covered seating area on the park’s west side […]

Kevin Mason remembered for love, good cheer

Courtesy photo: Mason family
Kevin Mason

By David Stevens Editor dstevens@cnjonline.com Sarrett Williams did not know Kevin Mason the first time he saw him with Williams’ sister, Tammy. But he did recognize the young airman. “I said, ‘That’s the guy I see dragging  Main all the time, smiling and dancing in the car.’ “He drove a little gray Mazda and I […]

Clovis man killed in Afghanistan crash

Kevin Mason

By David Stevens Editor dstevens@cnjonline.com Kevin Mason was on his way home. The Clovis man, one of five civilians killed in Thursday’s C-130J transport plane crash in eastern Afghanistan, left a wife, Tammy, and three children, said JoLynn Lusk, a family friend. “This was his last trip to go there. He was getting on the […]

Cyclists getting ready for Tour de Taco

Staff photo: Brittney Cannon
Carl Armstrong takes his bike for a spin in his neighborhood on Thursday afternoon. Armstrong said he plans to ride all 60 miles in the Tour de Taco on Saturday.

By Brittney Cannon STAFF WRITER bcannon@cnjonline.com Europe may have the Tour de France, but eastern New Mexico has the Tour de Taco. The 60-mile round-trip tour begins at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Taco Box in Clovis, 136 W. 21st St. Taco Box Owner Tom Martin said cyclists can choose to go the distance to […]

Hall of fame inductee shares roping memories

Staff photo: Brittney Cannon
B.J. Pierce was inducted into the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City on Saturday.

By Brittney Cannon STAFF WRITER bcannon@cnjonline.com Roping calves is a lot like teaching middle school. If anyone can prove that, it’s B.J. Pierce. Pierce taught in Clovis schools for 36 years — 12 at Highland Elementary,  12 at Lincoln-Jackson Elementary and  12 at James Bickley Elementary — and had the honor of being inducted into […]

ENMU gearing up for homecoming game

Staff photo: Jackie Johnson
Eastern New Mexico University homecoming king and queen candidates Ed Alvarez, right, and Heather Kucinski, left, campaign by spreading the word in the Campus Union Ballroom on Wednesday.

By Jackie Johnson STAFF WRITER jjohnson@pntonline.com Eastern New Mexico University students, faculty and alumni are in the midst of celebrating their 81st annual homecoming and preparing for what will be the last homecoming football game at Blackwater Draw. “Homecoming is always special, but I know a lot of alumni that don’t generally come are going […]

Lunar eclipse draws residents outside

Courtesy photo: Ronnie Cain
A full moon lunar eclipse took place Sunday night, causing what is called a “blood moon” or “harvest moon” when the moon goes behind the sun’s shadow. Some ancient civilizations feared lunar eclipses as a sign of death or the end of the world.

By Alisa Boswell MANAGING EDITOR aboswell@pntonline.com It’s not exactly unheard of to see your neighbors pulling lawn chairs out in their front yard when they know a lunar eclipse is coming. There is always an air of excitement any time nature and the cosmos act in ways unusual to their daily — or nightly — […]

Area native awarded for conservation efforts

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Tish McDaniel was awarded the Hamerstrom Award Thursday night by the Prairie Grouse Tech Council for her work in conservation in eastern New Mexico during her life. McDaniel is the second woman to win the award since 1992. The first, she said, was given to Frances Hamerstrom, for whom the award is named.

By Brittney Cannon STAFF WRITER bcannon@cnjonline.com Patricia “Tish” McDaniel has traveled from Argentina to the Gulf Coast hiking, observing and studying everything she can about critters in their natural habitats, soaking up every sunrise and even having a jumpy encounter or two with coyotes. This world traveler got her love of nature from eastern New […]

Festival officials hoping for best

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Chamber of commerce Executive Director Karl Terry said a lot of new fun is coming with the 42nd annual peanut festival next month.

Staff report Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce officials are hoping for the best with the additional costs for this year’s annual Portales peanut festival. There was temporary panic among chamber and city officials earlier this year when Roosevelt County commissioners voted to close the Roosevelt County Fairgrounds for 11 months following the county fair. “It […]

Guest column: Addicts fighting battle of heroic effort

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Cutline: Vicki Williams Jinks, with her son Seth.

Editor’s note: Vicki Williams Jinks is a 1978 graduate of Muleshoe High School. This excerpt is from a speech she’s written in hopes of helping those who struggle with addictions. In November 1993, I looked at my third baby and saw a face of pure sweetness. Little did I know all that I would learn […]

Clovis roper being inducted into hall of fame

B.J. Pierce

Staff reports Clovis’ B.J. Pierce, a three-time world-champion calf roper, is among nine cowboys being inducted this weekend into the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City. Pierce, 89, won calf-roping titles in 1952, 1953 and 1955 in the International Rodeo Association competition, according to a nomination letter. He was elected in June. Pierce […]

New grocery scheduled to open

Staff photo: Tony Bullocks
Raintree Thriftway Supermarket Dairy Manager Eddie Marez of Clovis stocks the dairy section Monday afternoon. Store officials expect to open on Oct. 1.

By Brittney Cannon Staff writer bcannon@cnjonline.com Area residents should have a new option for buying groceries next week. Raintree Thriftway is scheduled to open Oct. 1 at Llano Estacado and Norris streets. Owner Kyle Brewer, who also owns and operates S&S Supermarket at Hilltop Plaza — he said that store will remain open after Raintree Thriftway […]

Official doesn’t expect roundabout problems

Staff photo: Tony Bullocks
A vehicle exits the roundabout Monday near the Raintree Thriftway Supermarket.

By Brittney Cannon Staff writer bcannon@cnjonline.com With the opening of Raintree Thriftway drawing near in northeast Clovis, that once-secluded part of town is expected to see heavier traffic flow. That means residents who don’t normally encounter the roundabout at Norris and Llano Estacado will be navigating it along with those who live in the area. […]

Jobs return to Portales with reopening of peanut plant

Staff photo: Alisa Boswell
Gov. Susana Martinez joined area officials Monday to celebrate the opening of a new peanut plant in the location of the former Sunland Peanut plant.

By Alisa Boswell Managing Editor aboswell@pntonline.com After two years, Portales is again home to a major peanut processor. Ready Roast Nut Company officials announced their plans Monday to create up to 200 jobs at a luncheon and ribbon cutting ceremony at the site of the former Sunland Peanut company. Sunland Peanuts closed its doors in […]

Businesses ‘hanging in there’ behind construction

Staff photo: Tony Bullocks
Construction continues along Mabry Drive in Clovis. Officials said last week it should be complete by spring.

By Brittney Cannon Staff Writer bcannon@cnjonline.com Road construction on Mabry Drive is into its third month and the business owners in the area say they’re hanging in there so far. K-Bob’s Steakhouse customers have been “hit or miss,” since construction began in mid-July, said General Manager David Sammons. Sammons said the restaurant has  been promoting […]

CCC celebrates with trip back in time

Staff photo: Kevin Wilson
Natalie Daggett, CCC’s director of institutional advancement, holds up a copy of old software from the time capsule sealed in 2000; that was the 10th anniversary of the school’s start to dropping its association with Eastern New Mexico University as a branch campus.

By Kevin Wilson DEPUTY EDITOR kwilson@cnjonline.com A video presentation that led off Clovis Community College’s celebration on Friday featured dated television commercials, retrospectives and a home video of the 1990 scene at the Curry County Courthouse. That was when a 42-vote margin paved the way for the school’s separation from Eastern New Mexico University. “I […]

Trinity Lutheran celebrating 50th

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Children and their leaders stand in front of an art project completed at Trinity Lutheran Church’s 2010 Vacation Bible School. The project consisted of boards painted by the children, who were told to paint whatever they wanted. In 2011, the boards were used in the construction of a local Habitat for Humanity house.

By Brittney Cannon Staff Writer bcannon@cnjonline.com Sharon Cowman and her husband, Jim, started going to Trinity Lutheran Church in Clovis about six years after it opened its doors in 1965. Soon after, she said they joined the church because of its friendly atmosphere and strong community involvement. Plus, Cowman said they had a strong youth […]

Athletes preparing for Special Olympics equestrian events

Staff photo: Tony Bullocks
Shelly Cox, with Dakota a year ago, is ready to compete this weekend.

By Brittney Cannon Staff Writer bcannon@cnjonline.com Shelly Cox has found her “happy place,” riding horses. It’s a hobby she  took up around 2004 when she began competing in Special Olympics New Mexico’s equestrian events. When her mom died two years ago, she was positive that riding her retired ranch horse Dakota was her favorite thing […]