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Parks &



Horsing Around Memories on the Pecos A Requiem for a Fallen Tree Getting Hitched Outdoors John Tigert’s Success Chamber News & More!

Amazing Food & Friendly Folks! Experience Chapman’s

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Kirstin Carlson, co-owner of Casa de Caballo, and one of her horses Casino Bug, who is actually expecting an April foal by Firewater Ta Fame. Kirstin’s business focuses on training and breeding barrel racing horses.

Photo by Jennifer Coats Photography. Kyle Marksteiner, Editorial Director - Lilly Anaya, Advertising Photography by Kyle Marksteiner, Brand Eye Photography, Jennifer Coats & submitted photos. Special Contributors: Staci Guy, Margaret Barry, Abe Van Luik, Amanda Melvin, Margaret Sage Bemis, Don Eskins & The Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce FOCUS ON CARLSBAD IS PUBLISHED QUARTERLY BY AD VENTURE MARKETING

Ad Venture Marketing, Ltd. Co. • 866.207.0821 • ad-venturemarketing.com All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without permission of the publisher is prohibited. Every effort was made to ensure accuracy of the information provided. The publisher assumes no responsibility or liability for errors, changes or omissions.



F O C U S from the editor

consider being selected to serve on a jury to be a bit of an honor. I like to think of it as society’s way of saying, “Hey, we really need your help for a minute keeping this civilization thing going and we think you are an OK enough dude to trust with this particular case.” Any given case is a pretty big deal for the people on both sides of the courtroom, and they are counting on you and 11 other people who live in your community to be fair and responsible.



You are rolling into the publication right after Christmas break. People are out of town and very understandably have other things on their mind and not much time to talk to some magazine guy. Plus, it is kind of cold out and not always the best setting for photographing an edition heralding the coming of spring. Your best bet is to shotgun into the new year on January 2, work in a sleepless frenzy for a week or so and get ‘er done. And then you get picked for jury duty. A rather lengthy jury obligation, to be specific, and there is no joke I could make in a paragraph about jury duty that has not been made a thousand times before. My name called, I marched to the front of the room like Katniss from The Hunger Games, only without her skill at archery or revolution-inspiring good looks. My fellow tributes and I stared forward as our peers returned to their careers and families and Christmas tree removal efforts. My mind was racing in a thousand directions. My Focus deadline is



I’m not going to lie; when I first heard my name called, my first reaction was something along the lines of, “Oh shoot!” but less appropriate for a community publication. Being selected for jury duty is certainly not something I’m excited about, but it is a responsibility I take very seriously.

approaching! I need time to work! Should I have told them about that? Would they have cared? Why didn’t I go off on a rant, like some of my peers, about some semi-related topic during the jury selection process and probably disqualify myself? Am I one of those idiots who is not very good at getting out of jury duty and at whom everyone else laughs?

This edition of Focus on Carlsbad is about parks and recreation. I did not get an interview with Amy Poehler from the television sitcom “Parks and Recreation,” but this spring edition shares a name with the popular sitcom because Carlsbad’s parks and recreational facilities are a big part of what so many of us love about this town.

Yes, I am one of those idiots. And proudly so.

Despite the challenges, I think you’ll discover some pretty amazing content inside. Special thanks goes to Lajuana Martinez, Lilly Anaya and Staci Guy (our AdVenture Marketing Team) for the extra help in getting this one to print.

Life experiences have taught me that you don’t fully appreciate something until you think you’ve lost it. It’s true with people, and it’s true with the responsibilities and rights and other entrapments of society as well. We’ve got this thing we put together, this civilization, and it is kind of a big deal. There are 300 million of us in this country alone, so we have to work together and even compromise at times. We vote. We take off our shoes while waiting in the airport security line. We sign our kids up for soccer camp. We participate in church pot lucks. We serve on juries. It’s all a part of the process. At the risk of sounding corny, I

Enjoy the magazine and the spring. Finally, if you’ve ever served on jury duty, thanks for doing your part.


Kyle Marksteiner is Editorial Director of Focus on Carlsbad. He can be reached at editor@ad-venturemarketing.com.

“Greetings from Jury Duty” postcard designed by Leah Huxtable & Shawn Bathe. Used with permission. terrificdeluxe.com • shawnbathe.com


John Michael Montgomery

Restless Heart April 26, 2014 January 31, 2014 John Berry April 10, 2014 Ozark Jubilee Umi Garrett Glenn Miller Orchestra Peter Pan Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Rufus Choi Light Wire Theatre - Dino Light The Roys The Alley Cats Alexander & the Terrible, Horrible, Not Good, Very Bad Day Bill Santiago Mariachi Tenampa James and the Giant Peach

February 6 February 18 February 20 February 25 March 1 March 4 March 18 March 28 March 29

April 10 May 2 May 3 May 10

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F O C U S on horses



Photos by Jennifer Coats Photography.


Horsing Around by Staci Guy


ince leaving her job as executive director of the United Way nearly a year ago, Kirstin Carlson has taken the term “horsing around” to a whole new level. Carlson’s journey into the equine world began when she was a young girl. Her aunt, she says, had a passion for horses and even earned a college degree in horse training. Every chance she got to see her aunt was spent in the saddle, riding horses, until a full-blown passion was born. “I wanted a horse so bad as a little girl,” she recalled. “I would beg my dad for a horse all the time, and when we moved back to Carlsbad – we had been living in Farmington – he finally agreed to buy me one. His name was Cowboy.” Carlson and Cowboy, who had been used for ranch work prior to being purchased by the Carlson family, would spend countless hours practicing barrel racing and eventually went on to compete in barrel racing events. From that point on she said she was hooked and had dreams and aspirations of one day competing at the National Finals Rodeo.

These days, Carlson’s time is still spent with horses, but in a somewhat different capacity. Rather than participating in barrel racing herself, she now focuses her efforts on training and breeding barrel racing horses for others with her business, Casa de Caballo. It’s a joint effort with her father, Ernie Carlson and her husband, Jay Jenkins. She said they have carefully selected some of the best horses and bloodlines available performing in professional rodeo today. So what exactly does breeding and training champion barrel racing horses entail? Apparently a lot!

BREEDING “Breeding does not happen naturally these days. All of those mares out there,” she explained as she pointed to the pasture, “have been artificially inseminated with frozen semen.” Here’s how it typically happens: When she thinks a mare is getting close to

ovulation, she hauls the horse to a veterinarian clinic in Lamesa, Texas. “They will do an ultrasound to see when they think she will ovulate; and they will also try palpation,” she stated. Palpation, it turns out, is the process by which the veterinarian inserts his hand up the horse’s rectum and pats the uterus to try and get a better idea of ovulation timing. The horse typically stays at the clinic until she begins to ovulate. “When they feel like the mare is within a few days of ovulation, they will call the stud (male horse) owner who will FedEx the frozen semen to the clinic – usually overnight – for insemination. The timing has to be perfect.” It can definitely be described as a labor of love. “In the spring I typically go to Lamesa every other week,” she noted. The process of selecting the stud with which to breed a mare is about as complex and involved as building a rocket ship. They look at bloodlines and win/loss records; they determine which stud has been bred with which

The deeper into barrel racing she got, the more knowledge and experience she gained and in turn, the better her horses became. After winning and placing against some tough competition, Carlson took her first step towards achieving her lifelong goal – she purchased her Women’s Professional Rodeo Association (WPRA) permit. Since then, she has gone on to qualify three times to the WPRA Turquoise Circuit Finals and had a career best finish of third-place in the year-end circuit standings. SPRING 2014 | A COMMUNITY MAGAZINE


mare and how well their offspring performed dating back a couple of generations. In fact, there’s database called EquiStat that Carlson and many others use that’s designed to provide in-depth statistics on barrel racing horses, among others, in order to track the earnings of the industry’s top riders, horses, breeders, owners, sires and dams. They will then take all the information they are able to gather and begin the selection process. By the time it’s all said and done, Carlson will sell a barrel racing horse that she has bred and raised for anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000.

TRAINING Louis is a white yearling (a horse that’s about a year old) with a sweet personality but is a bit “nippy.” He has been weaned and is in the process of being halter trained, which Carlson said will help make him gentle-natured. This spring he will be turned out to pasture, where he will remain probably through next summer, and his sole purpose will be to grow big and strong enough to ride. “I believe in keeping them in their natural environment, or as much as possible, until they are ready to ride, which is about two years old,” Carlson explained. After Louis is broken (been made able to ride), she will begin the process of training him to compete in barrel racing. “Some horses mature faster than others, but typically they can start competing at three or four years old,” she revealed.

The gestation period of a horse is 11 months; followed by two years of feeding and waiting for it to grow big enough to ride; followed by a couple more years of training. In most cases, she will work with a horse she is training for five to six days a week.

The thing about horses, she admitted, is that they are a lot like humans. They each have their own personality, which she uses in her training approach. “Some can handle me being a little harder on them and some can’t,” she confided. “A lot of what I do is based on the horse and its personality.”

But Carlson doesn’t limit her training time to horses she has bred. She states on her website, “Whether you have a young colt that needs to be started on the barrel pattern, a finished horse that needs a little ‘tweaking’ to shave a couple tenths off, or a horse with problems on the pattern that need correcting; I can provide you with an honest assessment of your horse’s ability and customize a training program to fit the horse’s needs.”

While Carlson trains primarily for barrel racing, she also offers pole bending training; and as part of the entire training experience offers “general education” for each of her clients. In addition, according to her website, all horses sold through Casa de Caballo come with a “lifetime guarantee of riding lessons and consultations at no additional cost”. For more information about Casa de Caballo, visit casadecaballo.net.

The way it breaks down, when Carlson breeds a horse like Louis, specifically for barrel racing, it will be about five years before she is able to see any type of return on her investment.

Linnie Davis for the Love of Horses Scholarship One of the Carlsbad Foundation’s most successful efforts ever has been the Linnie Davis for the Love of Horses Scholarship. Davis was a horse lover who died in 2012 after a lengthy battle with cancer. Linnie and her husband, Mike Currier, were the 2012 recipients of the A.J. Crawford Humanitarian Award. The scholarship will be offered for the first time this year. The recipients must be from Carlsbad or Loving High School with a GPA of 3.25 and actively involved in school and/or community events. In addition, the awardee must participate in horse riding activities and/or plan to be a doctor of veterinary medicine.



Casa de Caballo, LLC 1948 Pecos Highway Loving, NM Website: www.casadecaballo.net Phone: 575-706-2404 Email: kirstinjcarlson@hotmail.com

What we do:

• Casa de Caballo offers a variety of barrel horses from prospects to performers. • All horses sold through Casa de Caballo come with a lifetime guarantee of riding lessons and consultations at no additional cost. • Training rates are currently $24/per day on days that the horse is ridden and $7/per day on days that the horse is rested. This typically works out to a total of $550-$600 per month for training and includes hay and grain. • Specialty services such as veterinary care, farrier services, special supplements, etc. are charged directly to the customer at the actual cost. • Owner Kirstin Carlson will haul and compete on your horse when appropriate and the owner is responsible for all entry fee/ stalling costs as well as $0.10 per mile for hauling. Any additional fees such as “office charges” or RV hookups are divided by the number of horses hauled to the event and assessed to the owners as appropriate.

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Stop by today and learn about all the benefits of becoming a member! 909 W. PIERCE, CARLSBAD • 575.887.1784


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F O C U S on Lake Carlsbad

Memories Pecos on the


she wanted a special way to honor a woman who had been through so much with her. “My mom lived with me for 14 years. She was my companion and my friend.” The two women began living together in 1988 after Read left the Army and began law school. “We moved to Florida together from California and then decided to come back to New Mexico,“ she recalled, adding that she moved to Carlsbad to work with the district attorney’s office. She and her mother picked a house near the PHOTOS BELOW: D’Ann Read sits along Lake Carlsbad on a bench she purchased in memory of her mother, Jeanne, who died in 2002. Also pictured are the engraved plaques around the bench. Photos by Brand Eye Photography.



river because they enjoyed the beauty of the area. “My mom went through everything with me. I still talk about her now as if she’s alive.” When Jeanne died, she was buried near White Oaks, New Mexico, but Read also wanted a closer memorial for her best friend and mother, so she purchased plaques for a concrete bench near Lower Tansill Dam to deliver a special message to her mother.

There are hundreds of messages along the shores of Lake Carlsbad, each immortalized in a plaque adjacent to the sidewalk near one of the many benches. Each plaque delivers a message to or from a loved one, often at a location along the river special to that individual. Some messages provide basic information about a loved one, but there’s also a mix of poetry, Bible verses and serene insight. Most are memorials, but a few have been placed by businesses or in honor of a living relative. “Happily for me, memories are just a pass through fascinating times,” reads

one monument, while another offers, “May the sun shine warm upon your face, the wind be at your back, and the stars in the heavens shine down upon you.” The family of Francisca “Kica” M. Doporto insists she never met a stranger: “May the love she showed her family and friends live though her children,” her monument reads. Michael V.W. Warren’s monument favors brevity: “He was happy here.“ Further down the path, pushing back a pile of leaves reveals a poem: “Lay my spurs upon my chest; my rope and old saddle tree; while my children lay me to rest; go set my horses free.” Nearby, another monument perhaps speaks for every bench along the river: “Sit, relax and enjoy the beauty around you.” It’s a program run by former Carlsbad Mayor Bob Forrest through the Carlsbad Foundation. According to him, the first bench plaque was placed along the river in 1990 by members of the Gerrells family. “I heard they were doing something similar along a lake

“May the sun shine warm upon your face, the wind be at your back, and the stars in the heavens shine down upon you.” near Wink, Texas. I drove out there, but I never could find the town or the lake. We came back and decided to try it anyway.” It costs $1,000 to purchase a plaque

next to one of the benches or $2,000 for plaques on both sides of a bench. The cost covers expenses, which have gone up a bit since the project began, and landscaping in the immediate area. Carlsbad Monument provides the materials at low cost. Forrest has remained in charge of the project throughout his four terms as mayor and then continuing during the terms of Gary Perkowski and Dale Janway. There are presently some 250 memorial plaques along the river. “There has not been much vandalism,” he noted. “The ones put in 24 years ago look like you put them in yesterday.” He said many of the stories from individuals who purchase plaques are very touching. One woman was never able to find her son’s remains, but she purchased a plaque in his memory as a way of obtaining closure. In another instance, a group of athletes raised PHOTOS BELOW: A special poem honors Carlsbad resident Katie Kirkes who died in a car crash in 2008. Katie at a rodeo competition.



“Sit, relax and enjoy the beauty around you.” money to purchase a memorial for a respected coach who passed away. The family and friends of Katie Kirkes, a beloved singer and rodeo performer who died in a car accident in 2008, purchased two plaques in front of a single bench near the Carlsbad Dog Park. “Our Singing Angel Katie Leigh,” proclaims one marker. “In our hearts you’ll forever be. Like early morning dew, we begin our day with memories of you.” Katie’s mother, Kitten, said her sister-in-law wrote the poem and that Katie is still greatly missed every day. “She could sing and had sung the National Anthem at the AJRA Rodeo and several civic centers,” she recalled. “She could dance, was in CHS Troubadours and Show Choir, and competed in junior rodeos, high school rodeos and college rodeos. She took over Farm Bureau Insurance

from her grandparents. She was loved by her family, her wide circle of friends and customers.” D’Ann Read also purchased two plaques for her mother. One side offers basic memorial information while the other delivers one of the river’s many poetic messages: “There are other worlds to sing in …” “I’d seen something on the internet about a telephone operator who talked to this little boy when his canary died,” Read recalled. “She was trying to explain death to this young boy, and so she said, ‘Don’t worry. There are other worlds to sing in.’” Later in his life, according to the story, the boy tried to track down the operator to meet her. She’d passed away, but she’d left him that same message: “There are other worlds to sing in.”

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“I thought my mother would appreciate that,” Read concluded, adding that she walks her dog to her mom’s bench almost daily. A few years ago, the area between the railroad bridge and the beach parking lot was closed to additional memorials due to the number of benches already in that area, but there are many spots left along the river. “We try to keep them at least 30 feet apart,” Forrest said of the benches, noting that he tries to look for options to please everyone. “So many people had spots along the river where their granddaddy fished or they remember spending every summer, all day long, down by the beach.” “It’s just a way of remembering a little bit of everybody,” he maintained, “and every one of them is different.”

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1 • Team Roping was part of the Shannon J. Shaw Memorial fundraiser. HONORING JERRY SPINKS



2 • Family members of Jerry Spinks decorate a picture in his honor. The picture went on display as part of the Rose Bowl Parade. CARLSBAD LIGHT PARADE

3 • Participants in the annual Carlsbad light parade wave to the crowd. MAYOR’S PRAYER BREAKFAST

4 • The Mayors’ Prayer Breakfast this year was hosted by the mayors from Carlsbad, Loving and Artesia. 4


5 • The bean bag toss was one of many favorites at this year’s Fallapalooza. HOMECOMING CELEBRATION

6 • Local cheerleaders led the way during this fall’s Homecoming celebration. 5





7 • Alice O’Neal celebrates her birthday at the North Mesa Senior Center. BARK IN THE PARK

8 • Cold weather did not deter this year’s Bark in the Park event. DANCE PARTY

9 • Students dance during a visit by “Poppin John” to the P.R. Leyva Auditorium. 9



10 • Deanna Taylor demonstrates her paddle boarding on Lake Carlsbad.



F O C U S on the garden


Let’s Talk... Community Gardens! by Margaret Barry

It’s no secret to anyone who has tried

gardening in Carlsbad, especially vegetable gardening, that it can be a real challenge. Take the weather from last summer. We were met with one relentless problem after another, from late frosts to record setting high temperatures, from exceptional drought to hail and rain in the form of deluges. It was shocking to plants and gardeners alike, and as I stated in my last column, it had serious implications for the few growers for the Carlsbad Downtown Farmers’ Market (CDFM). The prevailing definition in the media these days of a “food desert” is a location where there is short supply of fresh, locally grown, organic fruits and vegetables. Our in-town supermarkets do a good job of supplying this community with fruits and veggies, but little is locally grown, it is not organic and freshness mostly depends on how quickly the trucks deliver from far flung places. So in my mind we fit the definition of “food desert.” Our CDFM does a great job of providing local, fresh, mostly

organic produce, but the season is short and so are the supplies because we have no market gardens in our area. That creates a big sustainability hole for this community. Community, then, becomes the key word for making potential changes. A few years ago, a dedicated group of gardeners and wannabe gardeners started a small community garden on a privately held lot in the city. In addition to being allowed free use of the land, many people donated their time, effort and expertise, some local businesses donated fencing and tools, and the city provided water. All of the produce was donated to Jonas House, our local food pantry, where the need for fresh food to help supplement the nutritional needs of its clients is great.

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Unfortunately, the use of the private land had to be curtailed and the community garden came to an end. Having examined other community garden models around the country, I have chosen to look at two, in Albuquerque (www.riograndefarm. org) and Detroit, Michigan (www. miufi.org), which seem to meet the needs of their communities in a number of areas. These two communities deal with some of the same weather and water issues that we have here in southeastern New Mexico, and both focus on multiple needs within their communities.


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They have good ideas in a number of areas that would fit Carlsbad’s needs and I have condensed some of their programs into what might work here. A big need nationwide is to provide good-tasting, nutritious food to a growing population that has difficulty paying for it. The SNAP program suffered budget cuts recently, so more and more elderly people and families with young children are relying on local food pantries to make up the difference. A neighborhood garden where food pantry clients could help in the growing process to obtain food for themselves would certainly fit the “give a person a fish and he will eat for a day; teach a person to fish and he will have eat for a lifetime” philosophy. There is also a segment of the population whose circumstances allow no gardening even though the desire to do so may exist. Perhaps they live in an apartment and lack available space for a garden or maybe they live where the local soils are mostly caliche, are somehow contaminated or simply don’t receive adequate sun because of nearby trees or buildings. Gardening can be a wonderful passion for all ages and gaining knowledge often increases the thirst for more. A Master Gardener program is available through the New Mexico State University Extension Service. Master Gardener candidates take an intensive series of courses to learn all aspects of growing in this region and then provide 40 hours of community service to obtain their certification. What a great opportunity to get the

“experts” involved in the planning, advising and execution of a thriving neighborhood community garden project which could potentially expand both programs. The city of Carlsbad would also benefit from the development of a community garden system. The city owns vacant properties that could be developed into beautiful park-like growing spaces that would enhance the various neighborhoods and be mostly self-maintaining. City ownership would prevent the problem encountered in the past. Not only would community gardens provide nutritious food and exercise to help maintain a healthier citizenry, but it could also be an educational experience for children through the school system and other youth organizations. It could provide a hands-on growing experience for children, some of whom know only that food comes from a supermarket and is mostly wrapped in plastic. Studies with school growing programs have shown over and over that children who grow their own vegetables are far more likely to eat and enjoy them, to participate more readily in food preparation and to take great pride in accomplishing something that is life sustaining. The city could also gain a revenue source by renting out growing space to participants, ideally based on their ability to pay. Getting back to the CDFM dilemma of not enough growers, a thriving series of community gardens would increase the number of growers

providing produce for the market. An interested gardener/entrepreneur could potentially have enough space for a small market garden. It could also provide a summer income for high school or college students who enjoy working outside. Obviously, not everyone has a desire to garden nor the time or energy to do so, but many would be happy to pay someone to provide fresh, local food items. A series of community garden spaces would benefit a great number of Carlsbad residents and help us maintain a more sustainable environment. Gardens use a lot of compost, and composting on a large scale at garden sites would help to keep more yard and food waste out of the landfill. Waste building supplies could be the foundations for swale development to collect and redirect what rainwater we receive while keeping building debris out of the landfill. Greening public spaces also helps hold more moisture in the soil and ultimately, by using permaculture methods with mostly native plants, will prevent erosion and further desertification. This vision of a system of neighborhood community gardens would require comprehensive planning, expert funding and involved execution and would be best tackled in small increments. The success of such a system would be a win/win situation for Carlsbad! ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Margaret and her husband, John, both artists, moved to Carlsbad in January, 1999. Margaret is an Eddy County Master Gardner and has been gardening and farming most of her life. She is the Carlsbad MainStreet Farmers’ Market Chair and a CDFM vendor.

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F O C U S on mother nature



Mother Nature Giveth and Taketh Away A REQUIEM FOR A FALLEN TREE


by Abe Van Luik

hen I first moved to this area, I explored the Sitting Bull Falls recreation area and had fallen totally in love with two beautiful Texas Madrone trees dancing, as it were, next to the creek that feeds the falls. In love? Yes, so much so that I entered them into a local newspaper photo competition and it was selected for publication! The summer of 2011, a great fire swept through the recreation area and led to its closure for more than a year. Finally, earlier this summer, I went there again and feared the worst as I walked through an area with nicely recovering grass and bushes but with mostly dead trees, thanks to the fire. When I rounded a bend in this creek, however, I was astonished and profoundly moved to find my favorite two trees still alive and dancing. I was elated, really. Then came the rains and floods of September. Sitting Bull Falls was again damaged, and again closed. But this time I could not wait a year to check on the trees I loved. Without violating the closure signs, I walked down from Queen, keeping well away from the posted closed area. I was devastated at what I saw! The music stopped,

the dance was over. There before me lay, uprooted, the tree that seemed to be doing most of the dancing moves, leaving her partner standing there alone. It was easy to see what caused it to fall and be uprooted: the mass of water-borne debris on its trunk indicates the height of the water in this narrow part of the canyon that feeds the falls just over a mile downstream. It was sad to see this destruction, but as I climbed back to Queen, I saw that where Mother Nature had allowed the flood to destroy life in once place, she had at the same time created and encouraged life elsewhere. As I broke out on the top of the canyon, the greenery and flowers caused me to again feel the love of Mother Nature all around me, fed by the very same waters that carried such destruction far below. Nature is what it is. Nature is as it is. Nature is as it should be.

F O C U S on recreation

Shooters, Archers, Hobbyists Flock to Action Sports Complex KATNISS AND MERIDA AREN’T THE ONLY GIRLS WHO KNOW HOW TO HANDLE A BOW. On a warm Saturday afternoon, a group of local Girl Scouts gathered at the Carlsbad Shooting Range and Action Sports Complex to practice. Archery has long been a part of Scouting, but Girl Scouts Program Manager Gena Ingram agreed that the heroines from movies like The Hunger Games and Brave have inspired additional interest. An instructor from Roswell began with a number of safety tips, such as putting “bows on toes” while listening. PHOTOS: Local girl scouts practice archery at the Carlsbad Shooting

Range and Action Sports Complex. Pictured, in photo at right are, from left to right: back row: Olivia Dodd, Hazel Witt, Taylor White and Renee King. Front row: Jazmin Espenoza, Selena Rivas. The instructor was Rebecca Taylor, Girl Scout Membership Team Manager from Roswell. Funds were donated to the Girl Scouts from the Southern NM Chapter of the Safari Club International to purchase the archery equipment.



The six young ladies present also took a short break so their mothers could try it out. The Girl Scouts were the only group using the archery range at the time, but they were far from being alone.

The archery range, which has recently undergone several renovations, is only a small part of the Carlsbad Shooting Range and Action Sports Complex, a sprawling 645-acre facility located to the west of town off of Highway 524 (North Happy Valley Road). The complex also includes a trap range, small pistol range, long pistol range,

silhouette range, police range, cowboy range, bench range, long rifle range and a runway for radio controlled airplanes. A go-cart track and archery wilderness course are currently out of service. Several groups utilize the recreation area throughout the year, holding monthly matches and providing Youth Hunter Education and Youth Hunter Education Challenge programs and area and regional competitions. City of Carlsbad Sports and Recreation Coordinator John Lowe said most people have either never heard of the complex or it is their favorite spot in town. “I’d say it is the most used but least known about city facility that we have,” observed Lowe. “It’s an awesome facility, and we have a lot of people who care about it. I don’t think you’ll ever find a public facility this nice with this many ranges that is free of charge. It’s not unusual to see this place begin to fill up by 9 a.m. on a Tuesday.”

The complex is kept in good shape due to the efforts of both city workers and local recreation organizations. The Carlsbad Sportsman’s Club is responsible for many of the improvements to the area’s numerous shooting ranges. For example, three new trap machines were added to the trap shooting range last year, which is especially popular on Sunday afternoons. Silhouette stands are also a recent addition to another range. The Carlsbad Police Department’s range recently underwent a facelift as well.

free of debris and weeds.” The entire Carlsbad Shooting Range and Action Sports Complex is free to use, Lowe added, a fact that surprises many people from out of town who call the City of Carlsbad about it. The complex closes on the second Wednesday of every month for maintenance.

Bathrooms at the complex were also renovated several years ago, and the complex now has classroom space and multiple storage units for the different organizations who hold shoots there, such as the Seven Rivers Regulators single action shooting group.

The complex’s go-cart track is currently not in use. Lowe remarked that a local family held a contract to maintain the track for years but lost interest, and the City of Carlsbad is presently looking for a new person or business interested in the contract. “We’ve had a couple of people talk with city administrators about the possibility, but nothing has come to fruition.”

Lowe admitted he also enjoys going out to the complex to watch Carlsbad’s radio control plane enthusiasts at work. “People are very passionate about it. We try to keep the runway

Several facilities within the complex have also benefitted from scouting civic projects. Nick Harrison added shade canopies to the archery range as his Eagle Scout project, noting that he

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worked on the project on weekends with his grandfather, Jim Stokum. “It took me roughly three months to finish it. All of the other ranges except that one had shade,” Harrison explained. “I’m an archer, and members of my family are archers.” He acknowledged that he obtained a plan similar to the one used for the shade structures built for the firearms ranges. He has not yet obtained his Eagle Scout rank, however, as he has another merit badge to complete.

OTHER UPDATES There’s also a lot going on at the Bob Forrest Youth Sports Complex, Lowe revealed, noting that plans are in the works for a synthetic baseball field and more Little League and Pee Wee fields. “I think it is going to be a huge upgrade to the complex. We need more baseball fields out there to meet the needs of our community.” He revealed that vendor services are also expanding. “We’re adding a little miniature restaurant.”

Carlsbad’s Frisbee golf course has also recently expanded to 18 holes, offering both recreational and advanced tees in a course that meanders through Martin Luther King Jr. Park and the Lower Tansill Dam area.

Nick Harrison’s Eagle Scout project, which involved adding shade to the archery range. (Photo courtesy of Nick Harrison)


It’s probably safe to say that meeting the diverse parks and recreation needs of Carlsbad’s citizens is always the real target.



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F O C U S on mainstreet


Our Board has added new members and volunteers who are excited for MainStreet and its mission, “To strengthen the MainStreet District as the center of our community through concentrated efforts in organization, promotion, design and economic restructuring.”


Executive Director


Carlsbad MainStreet is recognized as one of Carlsbad’s three development organizations and has a specific focus on downtown revitalization. One aspect of revitalization is to establish a downtown district as, “A lively, vibrant place where people can shop, eat and find entertainment on weekdays, weekends and evenings.” This is the vision as stated by the Downtown Carlsbad Master Plan Planning Committee, when it began its work planning for projects to improve economic conditions in Downtown Carlsbad. The design of a district has impact on its vibrancy. Within the district are buildings, parks, streets, alleys, and sidewalks that hold a place of remembrance and belonging. Even now as I look through old pictures spanning 100 years, I am captivated by the traditions that continue like downtown parades and cars being parked along the street for weekday shopping. I am amazed to see well maintained building facades that hold stories from a time now faded. Included in their design is the memory of the individuals and the families that developed and established what is now the heart of Carlsbad. Shopkeepers and professionals are captured in pictures and historical documents to provide understanding of where we have been, where we are today, and what we may expect in the future. Among this history are many characters and buildings that deserve

mention - for now, there is space for only a few. Captain Mann was one of the original engineers for the Pecos Irrigation and Improvement Project. He built a home in 1890 on Canyon Street east of the current Eddy County Courthouse. Today, you will recognize it as the foyer of McCormick, Caraway and Tabor Law Firm. Two buildings within Carlsbad MainStreet’s District are listed on the National Register of Historical Places. One, the historic First National Bank Building, is located on the corner of Canal and Fox and was placed on the registry in 1965. Over time it has housed a bank, the Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Geological Survey, the town’s first newspaper and the Carlsbad Irrigation District. Today, that building is known as the Trinity Hotel. The Eddy County Courthouse which stands on the same spot as the original courthouse has a lawn with a story of its own. The lawn is best known as the center of community festivities. Carrie Nation, the militant prohibition crusader of the late 1800s and early 1900s, spoke at the courthouse in 1906. Sunday afternoons featured summer concerts where people could relax and enjoy the sounds of brass. You can still take part in the tradition of courthouse festivities by attending the Carlsbad Downtown Farmers’ Market, the Fall Festival and many other events throughout the year.

remembrance and observation. It is where many can assemble and two can share in conversation.

As MainStreet board member, Sharon Williams, finely stated, “Every city has its myth.” I encourage you to investigate the myth behind our town’s creation and the stories of downtown. What is it that draws people to Carlsbad, keeps them in place, loses them to another location just to have them return? Or, what was Pat Garrett’s interest in Carlsbad? Recently, I heard a story about a remodel that took place within the district many years ago. Apparently, blind fish were discovered during an underground excavation? How did they get there? As you consider your warm weather recreation activities, do remember to explore downtown, partake in its vibrance and enrich yourself in it’s history and myth. In 2014, MainStreet plans to provide more events and information in recognition of our district’s rich history. As a start during Women’s History Month in March, Carlsbad MainStreet in collaboration with the Carlsbad Museum will be hosting an event to recognize historical women in Carlsbad and Eddy County. I hope to see you there! For more information, contact Carlsbad MainStreet at (575)628-3768 or carlsbadmainstreet@gmail.com. Visit their Facebook pages Facebook.com/ CarlsbadMainStreet and Facebook.com/ CarlsbadDowntownFarmersMarket.

Carlsbad’s Downtown District holds a history and provides a place of SPRING 2014 | A COMMUNITY MAGAZINE


Registration Deadline

March 19, 2014

Register online at www.newmexicosportsonline.com Or contact Steve Kouba at

velookie@hotmail.com or (575) 302-3242

For more info, visit: carlsbadvelocyclingclub.org



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TAKE PRIDE IN CARLSBAD! Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event 2014

The Great American Clean-Up at the Beach Parking Lot (next to Port Jefferson)

Saturday | April 26th, 2014 | 8 am – 2 pm {Open to all RESIDENTS of Eddy County} Acceptable Waste

Batteries, dry cells, oils, petroleum products, antifreeze, small capacitors, ballasts, light bulbs, fluorescent light bulbs, small rectifiers, tires, gasoline, degreasers, solvents, paints, thinners, strippers, adhesive, acids, bases, pesticides, herbicides, reactives, aerosols, oxidizers, pool chemicals, educational chemistry sets, e-waste (computers, electronics), BBQ propane tanks, flammable liquids, heavy metals (mercury thermometers, lead, thermostats, lead soldered items, heavy metal based paints, etc).

Unacceptable Waste

Industrial-size containers (30-gal, 55-gal, cylinders), business generated wastes, explosive, radioactive, bio-medical waste, compressed gas cylinders. According to state and federal law, this event is open fore RESIDENTIAL SERVICE ONLY. All hazardous waste generated by entities other than residences will be rejected. For more information, call Richard Aguilar, Environmental Services Manager at 887-1191.

Carlsbad Community Anti Drug/Gang Coalition

Rx Take Back

Carlsbad Police & Fire Department will be taking old and unused prescriptions. The City Solid Waste Management Department will also have recycling bins and a used tire drop-off area onsite.

F O C U S on film




t’s not often that a town the size of Carlsbad plays host to a pre-release screening of a major motion picture, but that’s exactly what will happen on March 3. Emmy award winning filmmaker Jan Thompson has accepted the invitation to screen her documentary Never the Same— the Prisoner of War Experience at the Carlsbad Mall Cinema. Accompanying Thompson will be the film’s narrator, Loretta Swit, an Emmyaward winning actress best known for her portrayal of Margaret “Hot Lips” Hoolihan on the long-running television series M*A*S*H. The two will talk about the making of the film, answer questions and give lectures and special classes as part of the event. Thompson wrote, directed, edited and composed the music for the film. She has devoted over twenty years making the documentary because her own father had been a prisoner‐ of‐war. “This has been built frame by frame with my hands and my heart.” Thompson last year released another documentary, The Tragedy of Bataan, as well as a five‐piece radio series narrated by Alec Baldwin that chronicled the Bataan Death March. She is a professor in the RadioTelevision‐Digital Media Department at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. Following the afternoon screening at the Mall Cinema, there will be an open reception for Thompson and Swit at the Pecos River Village Conference Center. The public is invited to come meet and welcome these two talented ladies.



On Tuesday, March 4, students at NMSU-C will have the opportunity to learn from Thompson as she teaches a history class and critiques work done by the Digital Film Production class. Swit will be conducting a master acting class for theatre students at the college. The evening will again be open to the public when Thompson presents a lecture about the film and

Bataan in the lecture hall at NMSU-C. The story of Bataan has great significance to Carlsbad, Eddy County and New Mexico. Joe Epstein, Chairman of the Carlsbad Veterans Memorial Park, explains, “We had 135 Eddy County veterans on Bataan. New Mexico had the highest number of people per capita on Bataan of any

state in the United States. Very significant.” That significance is behind the decision to bring the screening, along with Thompson and Swit, to Carlsbad. There are still many family and friends of Japanese POWs in town. The film reveals the ordeal they went through as prisoners. Special guests for the event are all World War II veterans, especially Bataan survivors and any other prisoners-of-war. They are asked to contact Joe Epstein to express their desire to attend (see contact information below). This is a rare opportunity for Carlsbad residents, and there is considerable expense involved. Anyone wishing to donate to this event should contact Joe Epstein at 1312 West Riverside Drive, Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220, 575-361-5325. From the film’s press release: “Celebrated actors from Hollywood to New York lend their accomplished voices to celebrating and commemorating courageous men who used ingenuity, creativity and humor to survive one of the most notorious times in history…[An all-star cast] came together to lend their vast talents to dramatize the diaries, the moving yet often hilarious poems and to narrate forbidden drawings and cartoons. “In this intimate and moving portrait, American prisoners of Imperial Japan during World War II reveal their indomitable will to survive. Starved, beaten, sick and brutalized, but always keeping a wry sense of humor, these amazing soldiers used gallows humor to beat the odds. Some of the men were artists, some wrote poetry and songs, and many collected recipes. “But for American POWs, almost one in two died. 45% of American POWs of the Japanese perished while captive.

“The program does not shy away from the daily trials of prison camp life; it unflinchingly paints a grim portrait of the ways that the men were forced to survive three and half years of captivity. It includes compelling interviews with twenty‐five former POWs and never‐before-seen in the West Japanese propaganda films where the POWs are used as the actors. The film also tells the story of one of the most infamous Hell Ship journeys where the men were packed in the holds in conditions similar to the African slave trade. The Hell Ships are often remembered by the men as one of the worst ordeals during their captivity. “The film is packed with diary entries, poems, over 140 original drawings and cartoons (many have been animated), songs and, surprisingly, recipes. The constant driving force was about food: fighting starvation, stealing, trading, dreaming and fantasizing. These men fought through the tedium and terror of imprisonment, and rose above with the American dark sense of humor. It is a recurring theme whether heard in an interview with the ‘official arm breaker’ of the camp or how they described themselves, starved, as just ‘knees and eyeballs’. “Never the Same gives a voice to a group of veterans whose story is rarely taught even in American history classes today. No other documentary has the depth and breadth of research and access to materials as Never the Same. And, at this point in our history, the topic of the treatment of Prisoners of War is a timely one. Never the Same comes at a time when Americans need to be reminded of what happens when men have unchecked power over others and the rules of civilization disappear. And, it comes when those who lived through it all are disappearing from this earth.”


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F O C U S on memorials

Exploring the New Additions to

Carlsbad Veterans Memorial Park by Margaret Sage Bemis


along Carlsbad’s Riverwalk, perhaps the crown jewel is the Carlsbad Veterans Memorial Park. The newest of Carlsbad’s parks has exhibits specific to every war Carlsbadians have participated in, along with sponsored commemorative bricks to honor any veteran who has honorably served. The park was featured in the Winter 2012 Focus, but several new exhibits have been added since then. Chairman Joe Epstein and his Veterans Memorial Park Committee work tirelessly to improve the park, making it one of the most comprehensive and beautiful veterans’ parks in the state. There are many flags at the Veterans Memorial Park. The first to be seen is one in Cavemen blue identifying the park. At the base of that flagpole are stones that were originally at the base of the large 75-foot flagpole at the Carlsbad Army Air Field, active

during World War II. Incorporated into the base is a stone carved “CAAF, 13 July 1942,” and including the Army Air Corps logo. That stone was made for a reunion several years ago of servicemen and women who were stationed at the Carlsbad Army Air Field. Also from the Carlsbad Army Air Field is a building used to house the Norden bombsight. The mission of the air field was to train bombardiers in using this top secret, highly accurate bombsight. Moving the vault was a monumental task, but it now stands at the Veterans Park, protected from vandalism, bulldozers, and the destructive march of time. The doors are generally kept locked, but can be opened for special events to reveal historic graffiti—the names of servicemen written on the walls. Plans are underway to have historic photo exhibits included when the doors are open.

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The newest acquisition at the park is the “Duster,” an M42 40-mm SelfPropelled Anti-Aircraft Gun. Its placement makes it the most prominent feature in the park, reflecting its importance to Carlsbad veterans. About 200 Carlsbad Army National Guard members were trained and served on the Duster. It stands on a four-foot pedestal to keep it out of the floodplain, protect it from vandalism, and to reduce the liability from people climbing on it. The Duster is on loan to the park from the Military History Center in Santa Fe and was delivered by the Santa Fe National Guard. Soon to be added is a plaque describing the

The war monuments that were moved from the courthouse lawn are a central focus of the Veterans Memorial Park.



The graceful arch formed by the monuments has now been accented by the addition of the five flags, one for each of the armed services.

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equipment and how it was used, along with the number of Carlsbad Army National Guard who trained on it. During World War II, Eddy County had 135 servicemen in the Philippines when the islands were attacked by the Japanese just hours after Pearl Harbor. All but 14 were members of the New Mexico National Guard 200th/515th Coast Artillery Regiment. The men fought on Bataan Peninsula and Corregidor Island, and most were part of the infamous Bataan Death March. They were subjected to cruel punishment on the march and later in the Japanese transport ships, called “hell ships,” and in the prisoner of war camps. A third of the men died overseas, giving New Mexico the highest per capita death rate in World War II. The Bataan area of the Veterans Park begins with an upright monument with a map of the Bataan Peninsula and a laser etching of a statue in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Newly added is the Bataan Stone. The names of all 135 Eddy County servicemen on Bataan are etched in the stone according to their residence. The source for the names is a comprehensive listing of New Mexico involvement in Bataan found in the book It Tolled for New Mexico by Eva Jane Mattson.

Governor Miles of New Mexico had the original marker moved to Santa Fe where it became a shrine where mothers came to pray for their boys overseas and to bring offerings of flowers. The replica will be placed alongside the Bataan Monument and Bataan Stone to create a stunning display to commemorate the sacrifices made by so many Eddy County servicemen and their families. When plans were made for the Veterans Memorial Park back in 2009, a request was made to move the antiaircraft gun from the courthouse lawn. At that time the request was denied, and the war monuments were moved instead. Since then the Veterans Memorial Park has been developed to the point that many people believe

Soon to be added is a 4’ x 4’ replica of a concrete marker made by the members of the 200th Coast Artillery while they were training at Fort Bliss, Texas, before being deployed to the Philippines in 1941. After they were taken captive by the Japanese,

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it is the best place to locate the gun, representative of the ones the 200th and 515th boys used in the Philippines. Perhaps sometime in the not-too-distant future that impressive piece of artillery will also grace the grounds of this holy place. If you haven’t yet visited the Carlsbad Veterans Memorial Park, take a ride over there. It is located at the south end of James Street, just across from the Bataan Dam. Rest on one of the benches to enjoy the view of the lower Pecos River. Stroll along the walkway to read the names on the commemorative bricks. Above all, reflect upon the service and sacrifices made by Eddy County men and women to keep America free and maybe offer up a word of thanks. To learn more about the Carlsbad Veterans Memorial Park, visit http:// www.cityofcarlsbadnm.com/veterans. cfm. There you can learn about all of the exhibits at the park and download an order form for a commemorative brick. Historic 200th Coast Artillery Marker Photo Courtesy of Bataan-Corregidor Memorial Foundation

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Getting Hitched in the

F O C U S on weddings

great outdoors by Staci Guy

you ask three different people why they chose to have an outdoor wedding, chances are you’d get three very different answers.

As is true with most of life’s big decisions, there are pros and cons to saying “I do” in the great outdoors. Let’s take a look at some of both. In June 2002, my husband and I were living in Lubbock, Texas but the majority of our family resided in New Mexico. We were engaged and looking for a place to have our wedding that would be easy for our family in New Mexico to attend and at the same time, not too much of a burden for our friends in Texas to attend.

There were several factors we had to consider when locating a venue for our ceremony, one of which was our religious upbringing. The fact that my husband and I were raised in different churches led us to quickly eliminate a church setting. While we were at it, we also eliminated most of the local indoor venues as well, due to either a lack of space or simple aesthetics. We knew the laid-back feel we were shooting for and we weren’t finding anything local that fit the bill. It was time to head to the great outdoors!

Another factor we had to consider was the fact that we wanted a summer wedding to ease travel burdens for our guests and to accommodate school schedules. But let’s be honest: Outdoors + New Mexico heat + summer = brutal!

So by process of elimination, we knew where our June wedding in the Land of Enchantment had to take place – in the mountains! Countless other natives of Southeastern New Mexico have made similar decisions in opting for outdoor weddings, including Katlin Goodgion and her husband, Landon. “My husband is an outdoorsy guy, so we knew we didn’t want an indoor wedding from the get-go,” she shared. “We narrowed it down to Black River Village and Washington Ranch.”

After visiting both locations, the couple decided on Washington Ranch, just south of Carlsbad. “The setting was beautiful when we visited it in September of 2012, so we figured it would be perfect for our wedding in

Katlin and Landon Goodgion were married in September at Washington Ranch, just south of town. Photos by Lisa Hackbarth of Camera Cove Photography.




September 2013.” One of the advantages of having an outdoor wedding, as Katlin will attest, is the fact that not many decorations are needed, as the environment itself does the job. “The pond at Washington Ranch was perfect for a backdrop,” she said. “It was so beautiful.” The same can be said about a wedding in the mountains – flower arrangements can’t compete with the natural beauty the mountains have to offer. Another reason Katlin and others like her tend to opt for an outdoor wedding has to do with space restrictions and requirements. Typically, outdoor venues offer ample space with plenty of room for guests to mingle, dance and dine without being crowded. “I had about 220 people at my wedding in September, so we needed somewhere that our guests would be comfortable and not too stuffy,” she explained. “By having it outdoors, we weren’t really limited on space and we could invite everyone we wanted to invite.” But as many pros as there are to having an outdoor wedding, there are also some cons to consider as well. First and foremost is – you guessed it – the weather; and in Southeast New Mexico, that can tend to change, almost on an hourly basis! In Katlin’s case it was a drying pond; in my case, it was a dry mountain and a large forest fire. “When we looked at the location in September of 2012 the pond was

beautiful and full,” she noted. “But since I planned my wedding a year in advance, we went back and visited the location a couple of times in between then and my wedding day and the pond was nearly empty. It didn’t look good at all, which was bad because the pond is what made the location pretty.” Fortunately for Katlin, a good rainfall in early fall ensured a full pond in time for her wedding. In my case, the forest fire stopped a couple of miles from our venue and it still left a beautiful backdrop for our ceremony. Weather is still weather though, and it’s unpredictable to say the least. Another thing to consider is lighting limitations. A pretty ceremony spot doesn’t automatically equate into a picture-perfect affair. Depending on the time of day, shadows and overhanging trees and brush could make it a challenge for the photographer and videographer to get good pictures. Experts suggest taking vendors on a walk-thru beforehand, just to make sure they are properly educated and equipped. Overall, planning an outdoor wedding will vary slightly from an indoor affair. Make sure to consider such things as electrical options for speakers and lights, catering options, permitting requirements and always have a backup plan in case of inclement weather. Locally, there plenty of locations for hosting an outdoor wedding, including Guadalupe National Park, Washington Ranch, the outdoor amphitheater at Carlsbad Caverns and Black River Village.

Outdoor Locations to Consider CARLSBAD CAVERNS

Weddings are not allowed inside the cave at Carlsbad Caverns National Park, however, they are allowed in the outdoor amphitheater (at the mouth of the cave where you can watch the bats fly out in the summertime). Wedding participants must apply for a special permit and pay a fee to be able to get married inside the park. According to Valerie Gohlke, public affairs specialist for the National Park Service, there is one wedding per year on average at the Caverns. Visit www.nps.gov/cave/ for more information.


According to their website, the 1,200-acre Black River Recreation Area is managed to provide low-impact recreation and environmental education opportunities while maintaining a healthy river system and riparian habitat. It also makes a great location for an outdoor wedding ceremony with beautiful scenery and plenty of space. There are restroom and picnic tables on site and guests might also be fortunate to observe green-backed herons, orchard orioles, yellow-billed cuckoos and roadrunners. Lush desert vegetation and clear pools of water provide excellent opportunities for viewing wildlife. For more information on hosting a wedding ceremony or any other event at Black River, contact the Carlsbad Field Office at 575.234.5972.


Camp Washington Ranch is an oasis in the desert of southeastern New Mexico. With more than 4,000 acres, it offer several opportunities for whatever your needs may be. The atrium and grounds are beautiful backdrops for weddings. There is also a kitchen and conference center, dorms and a commercial kitchen. The facilities can accommodate a variety of different groups from large gatherings to small intimate weddings. Camp Washington Ranch can easily accommodate as many as 100 overnight guests. The price as indicated on their website is $1,500 and includes three-day use of the lawn, atrium, conference center, restrooms, bridal suite and motel rooms A & B. An optional fee of $1,000 is also available for staff set up and clean up. Weekends tend to fill up rather quickly so booking well in advance is recommended. Visit campwashingtonranch.org for more information.

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F O C U S on history

Governor & New Mom Natalie Smith Buck

A CARLSBAD NATIVE MADE HISTORY IN 1958 BY GIVING BIRTH WHILE IN OFFICE. Natalie Leontine Smith Buck, New Mexico Secretary of State for two terms, gave birth to her daughter while serving as the state’s acting governor. Born to former mayor and state senator Milton R. Smith and his wife, Rose Binford, on Jan. 10, 1923, Buck grew up in the La Caverna Hotel near her father’s corner drugstore, according to an article in the Santa Fe New Mexican. A 2-acre neighborhood park consisting of playground equipment, named after her father, is located at North Mesa and West Church Streets. Buck attended an all-girls boarding school in Texas and the College of William and Mary in Virginia. She received a business administration

degree from the University of Colorado and later took graduate classes at the University of Texas. According to the New Mexican, she met and married Christian Brevoort Zabriski Buck, a pilot and mining engineer whom she first spotted talking on the phone. She worked for two years as chief clerk to the New Mexico Senate, and then went home to give birth to Warren Zabriski Buck. She was first elected New Mexico Secretary of State in 1954. She served one two-year term under fellow Democrat Governor John Simms and one under Republican Governor Edwin Mechem. The Carlsbad native made history in 1958. On March 30, she gave birth to her daughter, Barbara, via a cesarean section. She was acting governor at the time because Governor Mechem had arranged to be out of state and the lieutenant governor had recently been elected to Congress. Headlines proclaimed Buck to be the first governor to give birth while in office. After her term as secretary of state,




Buck spent 14 years as head of personnel for the New Mexico Department of Health and Social Services. Former state representative John Heaton recalls Buck as his landlord. “I knew her originally because Rose Smith was a good friend of my mother,” Heaton said. “Her family owned property in town, including where the corner drug store was down to where Gossett’s is. She was a tough businesswoman, but fair.” Heaton said Buck would often attend the first day of each year’s legislative session. Buck’s husband passed away in 1996. Buck began to travel, and she visited spots around the world, sometimes with her children and sometimes by herself. She even took a trip to Antarctica. She had residences in Santa Fe, Lake Tahoe and Del Mar, Calif. Buck spent most of the final year of her life in Santa Fe, first at La Posada and then at the Hotel Santa Fe. She died peacefully at the hospital on February 18, 2009, surrounded by her family. A memorial service was held the next month – 51 years after she gave birth as acting governor.

1954 picture was taken during Natalie Buck’s tenure as Secretary of State. and her father, Milton Smith, present a respiratory therapy machine to Memorial Hospital Administrator Raymond Wilcox. Photos courtesy of the Carlsbad Historical Society/Nearlovingsbend.net


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F O C U S on the road

the Photographer in the Dell



and the lightning crashes, that means it is time for Blake Rakes to get to work. Rakes is the owner of Thunder Light Photography, a studio that focuses on capturing unique outdoor moments. His residence in Dell City, Texas, means he’s perfectly positioned to capture the dramatic, remote skies of West Texas. A long-time resident of

Dell City, Rakes grew up in the small town of about 500 taking photographs alongside his father, the town’s Baptist preacher. The Guadalupe Mountains to the east were a popular backdrop for dad, but Blake said he was always looking for ways to think outside of the box. He joined the military and lived in Silver City for some time before he and his wife moved back to Dell City, where she works for the local telephone company. “I’d been doing photography off and on since 2000, but when I got back to town, I really got into it,” he said, taking photos regularly for the town’s weekly newspaper and winning a number of regional contests. He’s also set up a Facebook page and web page to sell his artwork. Although he has had to overcome a few recent technical difficulties, business has been picking up significantly.

Rakes takes quite a few agriculture and astronomy photos but he’s also been experimenting with fire photography at night and looking at expanding into portrait and wedding photography. “But my main focus is on the outdoors,” he was quick to add. “I’m always itching for that good storm to roll in. If a storm comes rolling in anywhere close, I’m chasing it.” Rakes said he might take 1,000 photos of the big West Texas sky on a given night and then select ten pictures that he likes. “You can’t tell a landscape to pose,” he noted. “You’ve got to get in that perfect spot and everything has to come together.” He stated his style is to use Photoshop as seldom as possible to modify a picture; his goal is to capture the natural shot. An upcoming project for the week might involve tracking down 3,000 sandhill cranes living in the Dell City valley or heading up to Dog Canyon to

PHOTO LEFT: Photographer Blake Rakes stands in front of the Spanish Angel’s Café, a gathering hub PHOTOS BELOW: A few of Blake Rakes’ landscape for the residents of Dell City (population 411). photographs courtesy of Thunder Light Photography.



look for some unique shots among the dwindling snow drifts. Some projects are by customer request. For example, local farm offices have wanted pictures of tractors with specific backdrops or close-ups of crops for commercial use. “But mostly, it is individuals who want to hang a photograph up in their living room,” he acknowledged. He’ll put a watermark on his online samples or post photos in low resolution to try to deter people from simply using his work for free, but preventing online theft is an issue. Dell City is actually one of Carlsbad’s closest neighbors, as the crow flies, but you have to go around a mountain range to get there. Heading south from Carlsbad, it’s a right turn off of Highway 62-180, either on Texas State Road 1576 or Texas State Road 1437, and another 20 miles or so north and west from there. Vast fields of alfalfa and rows of hay bales stretch up to the foothills of the Guadalupe Mountains, lined up to the east in a mirror-image of the view from south of Carlsbad. The West Texas town of El Paso is about an hour drive in the other direction. The Dell Valley

ABOVE: Photos of the trip out to Dell City, a few miles off the beaten path from the drive between Carlsbad and El Paso.

is one of the most fertile regions in West Texas, and the sharp contrast between the precise rows of sprinklers and crop lines in the foreground and the jagged desert mountains in the background make it easy to understand why the area is a landscape photographer’s paradise. You’ll know you’ve come to the right place when everyone you pass on the road waves at you. The town has two churches (a third, a Methodist church, closed a few years ago). There are a few small markets and gas stations, and there’s the Spanish Angel’s Café, which seems to be the town’s gathering spot. The Sheepherder’s Bar across the street opens at 4:00 p.m. six nights a week and closes when the owner decides to close. “We like small town living,” Rakes admitted. “When we lived in Silver City, it was just too big.” Dell City had a heyday when cotton was big in the area. Several thousand people lived in the valley, and there were as many as 13 bars downtown. These days, residents mostly grow alfalfa and

chili peppers. “There’s some beautiful scenery around here,” Rakes noted. “We’ve got the sand dunes and a lot of neat stuff to go out and see.” The town’s name comes from the “Farmer in the Dell” nursery rhyme, at least according to Wikipedia, which also notes that the town is the birthplace of former Dixie Chicks member Laura Lynch and is near a planned community set up by supporters of politician Ron Paul. A road trip to Angel’s Café and the Sheepherder’s Bar may not be for everyone, but if the feel of Western authenticity is what you are seeking, Dell City’s the right place. And if you are looking for a local boy’s view on the dramatic Dell Valley skies, check out Blake Rakes’ web page at www. thunderlight. smugmug.com or give him a call at 432-207-0110.



F O C U S on a community leader

Park Naming Will Honor Hispanic Leader THIS YEAR’S 16TH OF SEPTEMBER CELEBRATION WILL TAKE PLACE AT RAY ANAYA PARK. The City of Carlsbad has approved the renaming of San Jose Plaza and San Jose Park in honor of community leader and philanthropist Ramon Monje “Ray” Anaya, who died in 2013. Anaya was known and loved for living a life of kindness and compassion and treating everyone with dignity. He was Eddy County’s first Hispanic sheriff and, according to his obituary, worked throughout his career as a juvenile probation officer to make a difference in the lives of countless young people. He offered counsel and shelter whenever it was needed. Anaya and his wife, Eva, were cofounders of Christmas Anonymous, and they worked tirelessly for 50 years to give disadvantaged children a merry Christmas. He also led the annual “El Grito,” celebrating the 16th of September, his voice echoing across the plaza even in his final years.

having a lit silhouette of a Christmas tree in an area of the plaza that used to be a water fountain, in honor of Anaya’s Christmas Anonymous. “We will put it out during the winter months each year,” Alonzo said. “Once Christmas Anonymous starts, we can do a presentation. I think that would be pretty neat.” Alonzo sees Anaya as an inspiration for his own community efforts. He hosts Carlsbad’s largest National Night Out event each year and other block parties. Under the label G Money Entertainment, he also deejays at a number of community events. He said Anaya’s children have told him that their father really respected the volunteer work he does in the community. Anaya was born February 25, 1934,

the sixth of ten children. He worked at Harvey Grocery Store, the Loving Café and the State Line Bar and Grill in his youth. He worked for West Funeral Home for many years and served in the Army in the 1950s before joining the Eddy County Sheriff ’s Department. He served as a juvenile probation officer for 22 years. According to his obituary, Christmas Anonymous was inspired partly due to Anaya’s own childhood memories of seeing other children with new toys when he and his siblings had none. Anaya’s diverse interests included hosting a Spanish news program, serving as coach and announcer for many years, playing in several musical groups and volunteering on too many boards to name. “You see, Ray loved people…all people,” his obituary concluded. “He treated people with dignity and respect. If you needed a hand, Ray was there to offer it.”

Anthony Alonzo, president of Carlsbad’s LULAC council, said the renaming of the park has already been approved and a sign is in place. A large monument, including a picture of Anaya and message about his contributions, will be presented to the family at the plaza on February 8. “The Mayor (Dale Janway) talked to me and wanted my ideas,” Alonzo said. “I thought it would be nice to do a huge monument.” Alonzo also came up with the idea of







Dedicated February 8, 2014 In Loving Memory of RAMON MONJE “RAY” ANAYA (1934 - 2013)

In honor of a man who lived a life of kindness and compassion and treated everyone with dignity. As Eddy County’s first Hispanic sheriff, and as a juvenile probation officer, he believed that rehabilitation should be sought whenever possible. He made a difference in the lives of countless young people, offering them counsel and shelter whenever it was needed. As a co-founder of Christmas Anonymous, Ray and his wife Eva worked tirelessly for children and families in this community for 50 years in hopes of giving disadvantaged children a Merry Christmas. He served this community for many years as a veteran, radio broadcaster, coach, announcer, musician and volunteer. He made this community a better place through his compassion and love. It is on this spot that, for many years, Ray led the annual “EI Grito”, celebrating the 16th of September. This park and plaza are lovingly dedicated to his memory. We will never forget all of the love you showed us and all of the new opportunities you provided. “All of us are born for a reason, though many will never know why. Success isn’t measured by what you gain or accomplish for yourself, but what you do for others.”

Annual Events Main Event Car Show & Cruise Last Weekend in March

Gus Macker 3-on-3 Basketball 1st Weekend in June

Smokin’ On the Pecos BBQ Championship Last Weekend in June

Fourth of July Celebration Clays Crusher Fun Shoot 3rd Weekend in September

Balloons & Bluegrass Festival First Weekend in November



F O C U S on sports

The Secret of

John Tigert’s Success! by Don Eskins


to be a head coach at Carlsbad High School some day. But when that opportunity rolled around he was taken aback by the fact that it was going to be in girls athletics as the head coach for the Cavegirl softball team. “When our athletic director, Joe Willis, offered me the job I wasn’t real sure what I should do,” said the former CHS coach. “My background was in baseball, with boys. What did I know about coaching a bunch of girls? But I did want to be a head coach, so after giving it some thought, I took the job.” Tigert’s decision to accept the Carlsbad High School softball position, made in 1980, would take him and the Cavegirls on a journey that would elapse twenty-four years, lead to 496 victories and eleven New Mexico state championships. Willis’ choice to head the Cavegirl program proved to be the right one. It was the perfect fit for both the players and the coach. But it didn’t start out that way.


Tigert accepted the CHS job just a few short years after the implementation of Title IX, a law passed in 1972 mandating schools using public funds to provide equal opportunities in their athletic programs for both boys and girls. Title IX, in those days, was not widely accepted by athletic departments around the country. It seemed to happen almost overnight and created havoc for schools that wondered



how they were going to be able to financially support both boys and girls athletic programs. And then there was the question of how girls would respond to coaching and competition. How much could a coach really expect from girls? After all, they weren’t as tough as boys, were they? “In those days, it seemed to me that a lot of schools felt like girls athletic programs should just be a glorified version of the old ‘GAA,’ or Girls Athletic Association,” remembered Tigert. “Before Title IX, with the GAA, girls practiced and then participated in a few play days throughout the year. Compared to what the girls are doing today, it wasn’t much.”

JOHN TIGERT’S COACHING RESUME • Cavegirl head coach for 24 years. • Record: 496 Wins - 84 Losses • Seventeen state final appearances. • Eleven state championships. • New Mexico Coaches Hall of Fame. • National High School Coaches Hall of Fame. • National High School Softball Coach of the Year. • National High School Softball Chairman. • Founder ‘NMHS All-Star Softball’ Game. • Three Cavegirl appearances on ESPN. • Cavegirls featured in ‘Seventeen Magazine’. • City names softball field in his honor.

PHOTO LEFT: John Tigert during the early years of his 24 years at the helm of the Cavegirl softball program. (File Photo) PHOTO BELOW LEFT: John Tigert, former coach of the Carlsbad High School Cavegirl softball team, addresses the crowd at the ‘BFYSC’ last year as they honored him for the work he has done with Carlsbad’s kids. Looking on is mayor Dale Janway. (File Photo) PHOTO BELOW RIGHT: Coach Tigert throws out the first pitch of the ‘2013 Youth Softball’ season while being honored by the ‘BFYSC’ last year. (File Photo)

But while Title IX did begin to give young girls an opportunity to compete, just like the boys, the idea of equal was defined quite differently when it came to schedules, facilities, equipment and salaries for girls’ programs around the nation.


Tigert was a head coach now but many of his troops carried purses and brushed on makeup—not quite the same prototype athlete he was used to coaching with the boys. “I knew we had a lot of work ahead of us as a team, as a program, as athletes and coaches if we were going to be able to earn the girls the same amount of respect, on a statewide basis, that the boys enjoyed,” admitted Tigert. “How to get them there was the question.” But there were other issues for the rookie girls head coach. “I often wondered just how much I could expect from our girls and how hard I could work them in order to get them where we wanted to be? After all I was coaching girls now, not boys, and they were both physically and emotionally different, or so I’d been told.” Boys had been participating in New Mexico high school athletics for years, and Carlsbad High had established itself as having one of the most successful athletic programs in the state under the leadership of legendary Cavemen coach Ralph Bowyer.

chose to build a successful program at Carlsbad High? And what could he do to help elevate his team, and other girls athletic programs, to the same level of equality as the boys?

TIGERT’S SECRET TO SUCCESS “I realized that if our girls were going to be recognized on the same plateau in New Mexico high school athletics as the boys, we were going to have to be successful,” affirmed Tigert. “Very successful. That meant that we were going to have to work harder and longer than anybody else to get there, including the boys.”

But again, how much could he realistically expect from his group of young ladies in an effort to achieve great success on the New Mexico prep sports playing field? That was the new coach’s dilemma. “Having never worked with girls before I had a lot of questions about how I should coach them,” chuckled the former Cavegirl skipper. “So while trying to figure out just how to do that I got a lot of advice from other coaches, friends, parents and people from around the community. Sometimes people gave me advice whether I wanted it or not.”

At CHS, when it came to measuring the success of its athletic programs in either boys or girls sports, the bar had been set very high.

“People gave me advice about practice,” Tigert went on to say as he continued to reflect back on his first year at the helm of the Cavegirl program. “And they gave me advice at what positions I should be playing the kids. I started out spring practice, in my first year as the Cavegirl head coach, using a lot of the advice I had received.”

So what path would John Tigert

But all was not well at those practices,


Sports Complex Puts Names on its Fields In the popular movie Field of Dreams, actor Kevin Costner heard a voice. The voice kept telling him that if he would build it, people would come. What he wound up building was a baseball field in the middle of a corn field in Iowa. And yes, after he put the finishing touches on the field, the people did come. The city of Carlsbad also heard a voice and built its own Field of Dreams when it constructed the Bob Forrest Youth Sports Complex located at 3001 West Lea Street. The complex, constructed in the middle of what used to be an alfalfa field, is comprised of seventeen sports fields. Of those seventeen, six are baseball fields, five soccer and six softball. And oh yes, after the city put the finishing touches on the complex in 2005, the people did come. Constructed primarily as a place for Carlsbad’s children to play sports, the complex has also become a site for the city to honor local citizens who have played major roles in their development by naming its sports fields after them. “Carlsbad has always been a big sports town. Especially in the area of youth sports,” boasted Carlsbad City Sports Superintendent John Lowe. “Our community has been fortunate to have had, and continues to have, citizens who have taken time out of their busy schedules to work with our kids as coaches, sponsors, officials, etc.” “Naming our fields after them at the Bob Forrest Youth Sports Complex is a great way for our city to honor them,” Lowe went on to say. “Through their efforts our kids have been allowed to continue participating in competitive sports like Little League, Little Girls Softball and Youth Soccer. They’ve also played key roles in helping them to grow up to be responsible citizens.” Currently eight of the 17 fields at the BFYSC have been given names. One of the more recent honorees was former CHS Cavegirl softball coach John Tigert. “John Tigert accomplished a great deal on the high school level, both here in Carlsbad and around the state, in girl’s athletics,” Lowe pointed out. “But he also did a lot with the youth programs in our city. He always recognized the importance of having a strong feeder system at the lower levels. He and his Cavegirls spent a lot of time with our kids, encouraging them to work hard, to get better and one day be a Cavegirl.” Selecting and approving those nominated to have a field named in their honor for their service to Carlsbad’s youth is a task performed by the BFYSC Advisory Board. For consideration of a field to be named in honor of an individual, requests should be submitted in writing to the BFYSC Advisory Board or mayor Dale Janway. The number of fields unnamed will soon dwindle to eight. “The advisory board has approved another name to be placed on one of our fields this spring when the softball and baseball seasons open play,” Lowe revealed. “It’s a great choice but right now it’s a secret. People will have to come out and join in on all the festivities later on this spring to find out.” The Bob Forrest Youth Sports Complex is currently in the design stage for three additional baseball fields at the park.



which began to take a toll on the young, first-year Cavegirl coach. “We just didn’t seem to be going anywhere. I knew we could be a lot better. We just weren’t getting there,” confessed Tigert. “Working with girls was difficult for me. I knew how to motivate boys, how to work them hard to make them improve and play better, but with girls I was struggling I wasn’t sure what to do.” “I was actually going home nauseous over the way things had gone at practice,” the coach recalled. “My inability to figure out how to motivate them the way I did the boys frustrated me. I was unhappy with the way the girls were playing and I wasn’t happy with the way I was coaching them.” For Tigert to survive his first year as the head coach of the Cavegirl softball program, something was going to have to change. And it did. “I realized that while my expectations for the team were very high, I was accepting a lot less from them than I would have the boys simply because they were girls, and it was eating at me,” remarked Tigert. They were already good when I got them, but I knew they could be much better. I just didn’t feel like I was challenging the girls enough, as their coach, to elevate their level of play.” After some thought, the new coach decided to give the Cavegirl softball team a facelift. “I decided that I was going to have to quit coaching them like girls and start coaching them like athletes,” reasoned the former coach. “I needed to work them hard and not lower my expectations of what I felt they should be able to accomplish just because they were girls. They were athletes, just like the boys, and that’s how I needed to coach them.” It would be a formula that would propel his team to the forefront of girls, and boys, New Mexico athletics. A formula that would gain his Cavegirls recognition, not only in the Land of Enchantment, but also on the national softball prep scene as well. It was also a formula that worked well for Tigert. Coaching athletes, setting expectations high and then working hard to achieve them, sounded a lot better to him than just coaching girls. It was now time for his charges to



circle the wagons. Cavegirl practice was about to have a new look.


Tigert put his new formula to work right away, with mixed reactions at first, but soon his girls bought into the idea of tougher workouts and higher expectations. In his inaugural season the Cavegirls won a New Mexico state championship, the first of eleven. They would go on to make seventeen appearances in the state final, in his twenty-four years as the Cavegirl head coach, and win 496 games. “We had some great kids that first year,” bragged Tigert. “Kids like Carol Tabor, Andy Bryant and Valerie Bloss. They played some great softball for CHS at the state tournament and validated our program. They justified the way we were getting things done.” The Cavegirls, who went 29-5 and placed second at the state tournament in his final year at the helm of the Carlsbad program in 2009, played only fourteen games in his initial season finishing the year at 9-5. “When we came back to Carlsbad, after that first state championship, Joe Willis asked me what the athletic department could do to help the program. I asked him for new uniforms,” chuckled Tigert. “Our girls actually won a state championship

wearing softball pants and basketball jerseys.” “Joe got them for us,” Tigert went on to say. “We were really fortunate to have him as an athletic director. He did a lot to put girls athletics on equal footing with the boys at CHS and statewide. That’s one of the things he was recognized for when he was inducted into the New Mexico Coaches Hall of Fame.”


On a sunny spring afternoon in 2013, the city of Carlsbad took time out to name one of its softball fields at the Bob Forrest Youth Sports Complex in honor of the former Cavegirl coach. “It was a very humbling experience for me that day,” confessed Tigert. “It’s hard to explain, but knowing that the city took the time to do something to honor me was very special.” Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway summed up the day’s activities the best though on that afternoon in May. “I was really amazed when looking over John Tigert’s resume. From coaching high school softball, to the New Mexico and National Coaches Halls of Fame, it was very impressive. Our community can be very proud of, and share in, the success he acquired as the head softball coach for the Carlsbad Cavegirls.”

F O C U S on the arts park


improvements to the Halagueno Arts Project when another phase of construction begins later this year.

Julia Heaton, chairwoman of the Mayor’s Fine Arts Vetting and Acquisition Committee, which has the charge of the development of the park, said the project’s next phase is now ready for construction. “This phase will include two Gilberto Romero monoliths, a main entry fountain, a new sign, a path system and four Sandi Clark sculptures of children,” Heaton said. The Halagueno Arts Project is on the grounds of the Carlsbad Public Library and Carlsbad Museum and Art Center. The new complex sign will be placed at the corner of Halagueno and Fox Streets and will include a water feature and welcome visitors to the arts park, museum and library, Heaton revealed. The Romero monoliths will feature bronze birds and will complement the water fountain stone sculpture put in place during an earlier phase of the project. Adding the paths will involve removing some dying trees and planting some new ones and building some berms to the area south of the library entrance, which is the Phase 2A development area. The Sandi Clark sculptures were funded through contributions by John and Julia Heaton, an Xcel Energy grant through Carlsbad MainStreet, the Carter/ Houston family and the Carlsbad Foundation. Phase 1 of the park was completed in 2010 and included an irrigation system, electrical infrastructure, widening of the entrance walkway to the library and building the patio area east of the annex portal, called “the

Plaza,” which houses redbud trees for shade and outdoor tables for casual picnics. The Halagueno Arts Park committee was formed in 2005 when library trustees noticed the growing arts collection in the park, including the Glenna Goodacre sculptures, the Stroud Reader sculpture and the Noel Marquez mural and saw the potential for developing an arts park.

This diagram shows future plans for the Halagueno Arts Park.

The first action of the committee was to remove dying and diseased cottonwood trees. The next bit of capital outlay funding was used to hire a landscape architecture firm to develop plans for construction of the park. Development is done in standalone phases as funds are found. The city agreed and Halagueno Arts Park was born. The committee acquired legislative capital outlay funds for the development of the park. Projects, all adding features to the arts park, are funded through a combination of corporate and private donations, grants, lodger’s tax money and legislative funding. Focus on Carlsbad will cover future developments to the Halagueno Arts Park as they are unveiled. SPRING 2014 | A COMMUNITY MAGAZINE



Located in the 1300 block of Alvarado/Ortega Streets, this neighborhood park is 4 acres with playground equipment and a basketball court.


Located on both sides of the Pecos River from the Upper Dam to the Lower Tansil Dam, this area is included in the Lake Carlsbad Recreation Area and has shades, boat docks and during “ball” season is utilised by many ball teams for practice areas.


This neighborhood park is located at the corner of North Maple/West McKay/West Hagerman Streets. This 3 acre park is the home of the National Little League with 3 playing fields, playground equipment and a basketball court.


Located west of the National Parks Highway at the intersection of Hidalgo Road and South Boyd Drive, this 21 acre park has 4 lighted fields, restroom facilities, a small playground area and off-street parking.


Located at Kuykendahl and Russell Streets in the Sunnyview Addition, this neighborhood park consists of 1.9 acres and has a basketball court and playground equipment.


Home of the Teen Girls Softball League, this 5 acre park is located along the irrigation canal on Northeast First Street. There are two playing fields and one practice field.


Located in the 500 block of Pompa Street at Chavez Street, this 3 acre neighborhood park consists of playground equipment and a basketball court.


Located in the 200 block of Kircher Street at Davis Street, this 9 acre neighborhood park hosts playground equipment.


This elementary school park is located in the 2400 block of Carver Street and is considered a joint city/school playground area.


With approximately 1.5 acres, including parking area, this neighborhood park with playground equipment is located on North Street between Primrose and Wildrose Streets south of Puckett School.


Located on Callaway Drive on the south side of the Pecos River, this historical park contains the first homestead built in the County of Eddy, The Eddy House. There is a covered picnic shelter where an annual event is held honoring the pioneer families of Carlsbad and surrounding areas.


With 125.6 acres, this park winds along the Pecos River from the railroad bridge south to the upper Tansil Dam. This area contains playground equipment, barbecue grills, tables, restrooms, boat docks, swimming area and the Beach Band-shell.


soccer fields, and one football field, two junior/senior baseball fields and four little league baseball fields. These fields are utilized year round for youth recreation league play, tournaments, and other special events. Each area is equipped with large concession facilities including large restrooms and playground equipment at the softball fields. The complex has a central parking area to accommodate multiple events simultaneously.


Located on San Jose Boulevard and bordering the CID irrigation canal, this 6 acre neighborhood park has a basketball court, tennis court and playground equipment.




Located at 1612 Desert Willow Drive, this 1.6 acre neighborhood park hosts various pieces of playground equipment.


Located on the east side of the Pecos River off of Muscatel Avenue, this recreation area hosts the Pecos River Village Conference Center, Riverwalk Recreation Center and Playground on the Pecos.


This 1 acre neighborhood park is located on the east side of Puckett School in Hall Addition. Belonging to the Carlsbad Municipal School System, this park provides limited playground equipment.


Located at San Jose Boulevard/Plaza Street/DeBaca Street this 7.5 acre park area contains a band stand, covered gazebo, small playground and is host to the annual 16th of September Celebration along with other community-wide celebrations.


This 1 acre neighborhood park with various playground equipment is located at the intersection of Bryan Circle and Park Street within the County Club Addition.


Located on the north side of Lake Carlsbad between the railroad tracks and the Par 3 Municipal Golf Course, this 7.21 acre park provides 3 large covered picnic shelters with tables and restroom facilities.


This 2 acre neighborhood park consists of playground equipment and is located at North Mesa and West Church Streets.


These parks consist of approximately 13 acres of land with lighted baseball and softball fields. A joint City/School agreement developed this complex which is located west of North 8th Street and east of the Carlsbad Senior High School Football stadium.


Located in the 500 block of S. 8th Street at Florida Street, this .87 acre neighborhood park provides playground equipment and a lighted basketball court.


Located across from the south end of the Lake Carlsbad Recreation area near the Tansil Dam, this 11.36 acre recreation area houses the Lake Carlsbad Tennis Complex, Rio Pecos Tennis Shop, 3 racquetball courts, 3 soccer practice fields, and restroom facilities.






With an 18 hole course and a 9 hole Par 3 course which runs along the Pecos River, this 146 acre recreation area is located at Muscatel Avenue. The Lake Carlsbad Municipal Golf Course Pro Shop is located at 905 Muscatel.

Located along the west side of Lamont Street between Church Street and the Northgate Shopping Center on Pierce Street, this 4.9 acre park offers a paved path for walkers, joggers, bicyclists and others enjoying a portion of the Bike/Walk/Jogging Trail which parallels this park area. Located at 3001 W. Lea St. A new quality built complex home to six full size youth softball fields, four full size youth

canal at Blodgett and Solana Streets. Home of the Shorthorn Little League, this park provides 4 playing fields, playground equipment and a lighted basketball court.

Located at the northwest end of Lake Carlsbad on the south side of the Pecos River, this 27 acre natural park area extends west from the springs and adjoins US Highway 285. Located at 1802 W. Blodgett. Consisting of approximately 5 acres, this park area is located along the CID irrigation


This 4 acre neighborhood park is located in the 600 block of N. 5th Street and consists of tennis courts, basketball courts, a volleyball court and playground equipment.

Located on the corner of Canyon Street and Plaza Street and part of the Bataan Recreation Area, this park contains playground equipment and a covered picnic shelter.


Consisting of approximately 645 acres, this complex is located approximately 2.5 miles north of Happy Valley on the east side of the truck by-pass leading to the Artesia Highway (US 285). The area provides 4 trap ranges, pistol range, small bore rifle range, large bore rifle range, silhouette rifle range, silhouette pistol range, muzzle loaders range, black powder range, archery range, crosswind runways for radio controlled model airplanes, a competition go-cart track, restroom facilities and picnic areas.


Located in front of the Riverwalk Recreation Center and adjacent to Playground on the Pecos, this park area honors Carlsbad native and WWII Veteran Alejandro Ruiz for his receipt of the Congressional Medal of Honor.


Located south of the Riverwalk Recreation Center, this park houses a TruPac container containing packages from area families and organizations to be opened in the year 2101. These articles were sealed in the container on November 11, 2001. This park and TruPac Time Capsule was sponsored by the Carlsbad Assistance League.


Rising on the banks of the Pecos River north of the Riverwalk Recreation Center, this community-built playground consists of 15,000 square feet of towers, swings, slides, and hiding places. Designed with the help of Carlsbad’s school children, the playground incorporates Carlsbad features such as caves, rock climbing areas and the flumes. Utilizing volunteers, construction began on September 5, 2002 and was completed on September 15, 2002.


This 6.4 mile, 5-foot wide asphalt recreational trail is for use by bicyclists, joggers, and walkers. It is located along the Carlsbad Irrigation District Canal and runs the entire length of the city. At the users preference, the trail may be accessed at either points located at the National Parks Highway, San Jose Boulevard, Boyd Drive, Lea Street, Texas Street, Church Street, Pierce Street, and/or Westridge.


The Ocotillo Hills Nature Trail courses along the hillside between Skyline Drive and New Mexico State UniversityCarlsbad. The trail is 0.9 miles in length and provides a scenic hike that highlights many of the native plants and, at times, the wildlife. A scenic overlook parking area is located at the top of the trail providing a spectacular view of the entire city, particularly at night. Information from www.cityofcarlsbadnm.com. Some information may not be up-to-date.


There’s always something to do in Carlsbad!

Nature surrounds us, from parks and backyards to streets and alleyways. Next time you go out for a walk, tread gently and remember that we are both inhabitants and stewards of nature in our neighborhoods. - D a v i d S u z u k i

Discover over 1500 acres of parks and recreational areas, indoor rec centers, library, museum and transportation systems! - All brought to you by the City of Carlsbad CULTURE, RECREATION AND COMMUNITY SERVICES DEPARTMENT Proudly serving 50,000 people per month through our department. Paid for by the Carlsbad Lodgers Tax

F O C U S on the chamber our area. Along the river you will find Lake Carlsbad Recreation Area; Lake Carlsbad Municipal Golf Course; Pecos River Village Recreation Area; and Riverview Park.

RETIREES FIND ACTIVE LIFESTYLE IN CARLSBAD With the world famous Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains National Parks nearby, Carlsbad is an ideal location for retirees to continue their active lifestyle. There are seven National or State Parks within a close proximity to Carlsbad. In addition to those parks, the City of Carlsbad has an abundance of public parks and open spaces. The various parks include softball and baseball fields, soccer fields, tennis courts, racquetball courts, basketball courts, a 9-hole par three golf course, and a shooting range . A disc golf course has just been developed. Another recent addition to the park system is the new Dog Park along the river. The park is fenced and offers a safe space for pets and their companions to play and relax under shade trees and canopies. It has a fenced area for large dogs as well as a separate area for small dogs. Lake Carlsbad, formed by the Pecos River, is a special treat for the citizens as well as visitors to



Carlsbad has a total of 44 parks totaling nearly 1300 acres of land that are maintained by the City Parks Department. There are numerous neighborhood parks with playground equipment. The Parks and Recreation Committee developed a five year plan which was approved by the City Council. The plan implements a replacement schedule for playground equipment and the City actively replaces old playground equipment and upgrades annually. If you enjoy the outdoors, then Carlsbad is the place for you! You will find parks and outdoor activities for everyone’s taste. Janell Whitlock, Director of Retirement, can be reached at 575 887-6516.


UPCOMING EVENTS! • The 13th Annual Taste of Carlsbad will be on Thursday, March 20 at the Pecos River Village Conference Center • The 2014 Class of Carlsbad 40 Under 40 will be announced and honored at a banquet at the Pecos River Village Conference Center on Thursday, April 24 • Our first Microbrewery Festival will be held on Saturday, May 10 on the grounds of the Pecos River Village – there will be beer samples, music, and food!

F O C U S on the chamber

YOUR CHAMBER STAFF ROBERT DEFER, Chief Executive Officer director@carlsbadchamber.com

DONNA CASS, Senior Admin. Assistant carlsbadnm@carlsbadchamber.com

BRENDA WHITEAKER, Director of Operations operations@carlsbadchamber.com

JELENA DUARTE, Admin. Assist./BPA Intern temp@carlsbadchamber.com

LISA BOEKE, Director of Marketing & Tourism tourism@carlsbadchamber.com

RANDY BAKER, Director of Facility Maintenance facility@carlsbadchamber.com

JANELL WHITLOCK, Director of Retirement retirement@carlsbadchamber.com

JESUS TORRES, Facility Maintenance JOE MARTINEZ, Facility Maintenance

WELCOME NEW CHAMBER MEMBERS! Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce is proud to welcome the following businesses as new members.




Located at 209 Bonbright, phone 885-0271



Located at 2330 W Pierce, phone 234-1125


For more information or to join the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce call 575-887-6516 or visit carlsbadchamber.com.


Located at 1000 S Canyon, phone 628-0190


Located at 512 N Canyon, phone 628-1466



F O C U S business directory are from the He C e art mom th H Care fCraorH e frometh e e e Haer e m a


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Tony's Music Center OPEN 10-5 MON-FRI & 10-4 SATURDAY

320 W Mermod | 575.885.9199 | Toll Free 866.545.0371 320 W Mermod | 575.885.9199

320 W Mermod | 575.885.9199 | Toll Free 866.545.0371

Give her Goosebumps!

575-885-7863 | Toll Free 866.545.0371

Mon-Fri 10am-7pm • Sat 10am-6pm

605 W. Mermod

Carlsbad, N. M. 88220

SuperHero marketing adventure! Join us for a

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GOOSEBUMP REACTION with a diamond from Gossett's Jewelry.

Carlsbad's Engagement Headquarters Since 1941.

Ad Venture Marketing is a full-service agency offering comprehensive marketing services, including print and web design, advertising, social media, promotional products, and event planning. We will help you develop and implement a strategic plan tailored for the needs of your company. We focus on building relationships with our clients. Our success as an agency depends on your success!

1.866.207.0821 • Ad-VentureMarketing.com

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Buy with confidence and own with pride.


SINCE 1941


CALL LILLY ANAYA AT 575.302.0815 or email: lilly@ad-venturemarketing.com 46


"Success in life has nothing to do with what you gain in life or accomplish for yourself. It's what you do for others."

- Danny Thomas

We Carry a Complete Line of Lumber & Plywood! We Guarantee The Best Price in Town!


2101-B SOUTH CANAL • CARLSBAD • 575.628.1440

HOURS: MON-FRI: 7am-7pm, SAT: 7am-6pm, SUN: 9am-5pm

Focused Our focus at Navajo is to remain a vital economic provider. We do this through our commitment to preserving the environment and our continued goal of safety.

ARTESIA 501 E. Main Street 575-748-3311

LOVINGTON 3521 South Main 575-396-5821 www.hollyfrontier.com

Personalized care for your health and well-being.

Khadija Mamsa, M.D. Internal Medicine

Jawairia Shakil, M.D. Internal Medicine

Khadija Mamsa, M.D., and Jawairia Shakil, M.D., are committed to helping their patients live healthier lives. They provide preventive care, offer checkups, treat illnesses, and work closely with adult patients to manage chronic health conditions. They also take the time to answer your questions, and get to know your health history and unique healthcare needs. Dr. Mamsa and Dr. Shakil are both welcoming new patients, and sameand next-day appointments are often available. Call 234-9692, or visit PecosValleyDocs.com.

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Focus on Carlsbad Spring 2014  

Focus on Carlsbad Spring 2014  

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