New hospital administrator says his world revolves around family

Vince DiFranco

By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com Plains Regional Medical Center Hospital Administrator Vince DiFranco said his world revolves around family, which may have given Clovis an edge when he interviewed for the job back in October. “We are used to small towns, we kind of like the quality of life of a smaller community,” DiFranco […]

County’s fourth Dollar General store open

Staff photo: Aubry Buzek
Rocio Montanez stocks seasonal items at the new Dollar General location in Clovis Monday. The store is hosting a grand opening with giveaways at 8 a.m. Saturday at 2201 W. Grand Ave.

By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com HoneyBuns, greeting cards, and toilet paper — these are the most popular items sold at Dollar General stores, according to Communications Coordinator Mary Kathryn Patterson. The county’s fourth Dollar General store is now open and will celebrate with a grand opening 8 a.m. Saturday at 2201 W. Grand Ave. […]

Safety, technology topics at tornado awareness class

Staff photo: Brittney Cannon
Owen Shieh, instructor at Monday’s tornado awareness class at the Clovis-Carver Public Library, shows the class how a classic supercell storm operates.

By Brittney Cannon Deputy editor bcannon@cnjonline.com Knowing the limitations of technology is key — especially when you’re dealing with severe weather. This was just one of the topics covered at the tornado awareness class from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday at the Clovis-Carver Public Library. “You can see the storm rotating on radar, but […]

Course’s fate source of contention

Staff photo: Kevin Wilson
The first hole at the Hillcrest Park Par 3 golf course. On the ground is a faded outline of a day the area was instead used as a youth sports field.

By Kevin Wilson Deputy editor kwilson@cnjonline.com Nestled on the southeast corner of Hillcrest Park are about 15 acres of prime land for recreation. But is it land with promise, or land attached to a promise? The nine-hole municipal golf course dated to 1929, when Hillcrest Park was brought to the Kentucky Heights Addition. The par-3 […]

Egg hunt draws kids of all ages

Staff photo: Aubry Buzek
Brody May, 9, sprinted ahead of the pack to locate Easter eggs.

By Aubry Buzek Staff Writer abuzek@cnjonline.com The joy of Easter came a day early to hundreds of kids in Clovis at the community-wide Easter egg hunt Saturday at the Guy Leeder Softball Complex in Hillcrest Park. Before each age category began the hunt for candy-filled eggs, the kids waited in anticipation behind a yellow tape […]

Minerals focus of ENMU exhibit

Courtesy photo
The Miles Mineral Museum at Eastern New Mexico University was spawned from a collection displayed at a gas station in Roswell more than a half-century ago.

Editor’s note: Following is one in a series of features about destinations some consider treasures of the High Plains. The Miles Mineral Museum at Eastern New Mexico University was spawned from a collection displayed at a gas station in Roswell more than a half-century ago. The college’s Natural History Museum was the brainchild of longtime […]

Mesa Theater undergoing transformation

Staff photo: Aubry Buzek
Since the Mesa Theater was built more than 90 years ago, it has been re-imagined and renovated several times as a movie theater, recording studio, radio station and concert space.

By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com Since the Mesa Theater was built more than 90 years ago, it has been re-imagined and renovated several times as a movie theater, recording studio, radio station and concert space. Now, 55 years after Norman Petty turned it into the world-class recording studio it’s best remembered as today, it […]

Community chips in for wounded warrior

Courtesy photo
A family photo of the Smiths.

By Brittney Cannon Deputy editor bcannon@cnjonline.com In 2011, Dale Smith was a 28 year-old platoon sergeant in the Army, deployed in Afghanistan. He had a wife and two young children back home waiting for his return. He was doing a routine patrol when shots rang out. His platoon was ambushed. He saw a member of […]

Hillcrest Park Zoo heating up

File photo: Tony Bullocks
Sooner the tiger, shown smashing a pinata for a birthday celebration, is one of the top attractions at the Hillcrest Park Zoo.

Editor’s note: Following is one in a series of features about destinations some consider treasures of the High Plains. Now that the weather is heating up, so is the activity of the animals at Hillcrest Park Zoo in Clovis. Reason to go The state’s second-largest zoo is home to more than 100 species of mammals, […]

Home show flaunts local vendors

Staff photo: Aubry Buzek
Abhy, a Pekingese-mix owned by High Plains Humane Society Media and Public Relations Director Gaye Cooke, shows off a handcrafted dog house up for raffle at the Clovis Home and Garden Show. Proceeds from this dog house, and three others up for auction, will benefit a low cost spay and neuter program. The raffle and silent auctions end at the Home and Garden Show today at 3 p.m.

By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com Warm weather and sunny skies attracted spring-ready area residents to the Clovis Home and Garden Show Saturday. Show co-chair Todd Farrell said organizers expect to see more than 3,000 people attend the show over the weekend. “We did this so mom-and-pop stores have a place to show their goods,” […]

Local takes reins at events center

Joelle Reed

By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com Tomorrow is the first day on the job for Clovis resident Joelle Reed as the general manager of the Curry County Events Center. Global Spectrum Regional Vice President Rick Hontz said when its were seeking candidates for the position, the goal was to find someone local and show them […]

Q&A: CCC president talks education issues

Becky Rowley

Clovis Community College President Becky Rowley discussed several issues as part of a periodic series checking up on the general state of higher education in New Mexico. Question: Now that this year’s 60-day session of the New Mexico Legislature has adjourned, what do you see as the most immediate concerns for higher education in the […]

Individuals, businesses honored

Staff photo: 
Joshua Lucero
Workhorse of the Year award winner Megan Hamilton, left, talks with Warm Heart of the Sunbelt award winner Ronnie Birdsong as they prepare to have their photo taken by Hamilton’s husband Bobby Hamilton, right, Friday night during the Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce Banquet at the YAM theater.

By Joshua Lucero Staff writer jlucero@pntonline.com Honored and surprised were a couple of the words that came to mind for Warm Heart of the Sunbelt award winner Ronnie Birdsong Friday night during the annual Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce banquet. Birdsong, Eastern New Mexico University’s Vice President of University Relations and Enrollment, said her heart […]

Jamboree provides annual excitement to Floyd

Staff photo: Alisa Boswell
Portales native Will Banister sings “Cold, Cold Heart” during the opening night of the Floyd Jamboree. Banister has put out two albums and has toured across Europe.

By Alisa Boswell MANAGING EDITOR aboswell@pntonline.com FLOYD — There was no denying the usual air of excitement Thursday night during the opening night of the annual Floyd Lions Club Jamboree. The new addition of a dinner hour before the show gave long-time attendees a chance to catch up with old friends and reminisce about their […]

Airport water upgrade close

Staff photo: Aubry Buzek
The Clovis Municipal Airport is just weeks away from completion on a project that will provide fresh water and add fire hydrants to the facility.

  By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com The Clovis Municipal Airport is just weeks away from completion on a project that will provide fresh water and add fire hydrants to the facility. Construction began in February to address problems with stagnant water in the dead-end pipes. “The way the water system was laid out we […]

Floyd Jamboree turns 65

File photo
The annual Floyd Jamboree is scheduled Thursday through Saturday with area residents enjoying old country tunes played by the young and old.

  By Alisa Boswell Managing editor aboswell@pntonline.com This year marks a special anniversary in Roosevelt County — it’s been 65 years since the annual fundraiser Floyd Lions Club Jamboree began. “It’s like an institution around here. Sixty-five years is a pretty good longevity,” said Master of Ceremonies Dave Nash. “If there’s anything longer than that, […]

County employees take top honors in Great American Cleanup

Staff photo: Joshua Lucero
Norma Delarosa accepts the Great American Cleanup’s first-place award on behalf of the Curry County team Saturday afternoon at Clovis’ Parks and Recreation Department after the team collected 147 bags of trash. The event included 23 teams and more than 300 people with the top three teams collecting 323 bags of trash from around the city.

  By Kevin Wilson Deputy editor kwilson@cnjonline.com Curry County took top honors in the city of Clovis’ Great American Cleanup, with more than 50 dozen bags of trash cleared from various places throughout the city limits. The team of county employees compiled 147 bags, topping both the Cannon Air Force Base 551st Special Operations Squadron […]

Plenty to do at Oasis State Park

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More than 80 species of birds call Oasis State Park home.

  Editor’s note: Following is one in a series of features about destinations some consider treasures of the High Plains. There’s plenty to do at Oasis State Park now that warm weather is here, starting with a spring trout fishing derby next weekend, Saturday and March 29. Reason to go The park is a true […]

Breaking horses his living

Staff photo: Tony Bullocks
Tripp Townsend of Earth, on board Dallas Fort Worthy, shows what the horse can do at Friday’s afternoon Ranch Horse Competition & Demonstration at the Curry County Events Center. Townsend took first place in the competition.

By Brittney Cannon Deputy editor bcannon@cnjonline.com Tripp Townsend grew up on a ranch, riding horseback and managing livestock in Earth and later on the Blackwater Ranch east of Portales. His dad urged him to do something else with his life and get a different job, but ranching is just in his blood. “It’s just all […]

Crowds expected for Great American Cleanup

File photo
Johnvic Remo collects garbage with his father Dean during one of the annual Great American Cleanup events in Clovis.

By Aubry Buzek Staff writer abuzek@cnjonline.com Officials say to expect hundreds of community members Saturday for the Great American Cleanup, a day of volunteering and competition to see who can pick up the most trash around town. Teams can register now or just show up at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Clovis Parks and Recreation […]