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“If you look the right way you can see the whole world is a garden.” Frances Hodgson Burnett
pring is finally here: that sweet spot in the year
layers of colorful textures to his treasure
when sweater weather is behind us and triple-digit
trove of collected pieces inspired by his
temperatures are still far enough away that we’re not
travels, to the renovation of old furniture and accessories. Well, this masterpiece could
yet dreading the heat.
only be designed by an artist, a true artist. El Paso’s spring weather always brings the breeze…ok, often a
Kudos to you my friend for giving El Paso
very strong breeze that makes us hold onto our dresses, allow
one more amazing place for our visitors to
us to have a bad hair day and blame it on the wind, and remind us
brag about as they visit other cities. Wayne
why dusting the glass table that sits by the window will simply
has created a flower garden in the midst of
be a daily occurrence. Spring is the time that flowers break
what was once just so-so.
through the soil accenting the once brown winter landscape of the desert we love, it’s a time when the birds begin to sing
Breaking glass mirrors, glass tiles, and glass
again, or at least we’re outside enough to hear them.
ceilings. What do they all have in common? Our cover girl Sarah Byrne! She’s doesn’t, and
This time of year, for me, always symbolizes a fresh start, a
I would expect never has, sat on a tailgate
new beginning, a season of renewal. COVID, without question,
scared of the boy’s club. If she wants it, if she
has scarred each of us in different ways, but it shouldn’t
wants it torn down; if she wants it built, she
steal our future. We can’t let it rob of us of what we love
just builds it -- and she teaches her 5-year old daughter to
and look forward to each spring. I look forward to dressing
do the same. Don’t ask her if she has a hard time fitting
in my summer attire, sundresses, open toed wedges, shorts,
in a mostly male-driven industry because she’ll probably
sandals and sitting under an umbrella in my favorite eatery
tell you she didn’t realize it was. You’ll enjoy getting to
enjoying a glass of white wine. Our Managing Editor, Erin,
know Sarah, her laugh, her work ethic, and her pink hard
gives us great inspiration on page 100 as she shows the new
hat. She plants flowers, she plants seeds showing other
spring trends, which focus on feminine floral patterns with a
women building isn’t just for the boys.
fresh twist complimented by the perfect sun hat. I love a quote by Jim Carrey that reads, “Flowers don’t worry Those who know me well know that I can’t wait to see the first
about how they are going to bloom. They just open up and
images as we begin to lay out our next “Spaces” magazine.
turn toward the light and that makes them beautiful”.
I’ve waited for months to share with you my very dear friend Wayne Hilton’s new project. He’s a world traveler who enjoys
Grab a magazine, find your favorite outdoor cushion,
the rich design of other cultures, he’s a visionary and he’s an
and relax…It’s time for us to bloom again!
artist. When you combine those amazing attributes, when he purchases an out-of-date “blah” home and talks of renovation and adding another Airbnb to his list of to-dos, one knows they are in for a treat and he did not disappoint. As you turn the pages of our “Spaces” magazine, you’ll see how he wove meaning into each space. From the rich
“Your voice matters. Let’s hear it. Scan the QR code to send audio advice to the editors."
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WINNE R LD O
2019 2018 2017 2016 2015
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n 1922, T.S. Eliot wrote the most important
I spent time researching and studying history
poem in modern literature -- The Wasteland
and literature (including T.S. Eliot!) in Germany
-- where he warned readers about the
and Poland throughout the course of my second
dangers of April.
master’s degree and fell in love with the Polish cities of Warsaw and Krakow. Today, both
“April is the cruellest month, breeding
cities are at capacity and cannot take any more
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Ukrainian refugees; I find my thoughts drifting to
Memory and desire, stirring
the concept of “home” both in the physical and
Dull roots with spring rain.
abstract sense many times throughout the day.
Winter kept us warm, covering Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
In this issue, you’ll find editorials related to “home”
A little life with dried tubers.”
in a multitude of ways. From a writers’ residency program that’s created a home for unrepresented
In the poem, April is cruel because of the risks
authors and poets, as well as the cultivation of
that come with the promise of Spring: rebirth,
creativity in our community that’s led by artists; to
renewal, and warmth all leading to hope. What
El Paso as the home of the Mighty Mujer triathlon
could be worse than being disappointed?
and the celebration of the El Paso Chihuahuas opening game of the team’s ninth season; to a
At the risk of challenging one of the greatest
mother-daughter duo breaking down barriers in
poets in modern literature, let us reconsider.
the construction industry, and so much more!
There’s nothing crueler than the absence of
Lawyer and activist Veronica Carbajal works
hope, and we remain in a moment that needs it.
tirelessly to ensure local animals and people are properly sheltered. In addition, she’s also
This month’s editorial and advertising themes --
an environmentalist and children’s book
human interest and home building -- are being
author who teaches readers of all ages
published at a time when it’s more important
how to be more mindful of their home
than ever to embrace humanity (ours and others)
environments and planet.
while appreciating (and protecting) the comforts of home. How much did we grow to appreciate
And what about our Spring issue of
our homes during the shutdown days as they
doubled (and sometimes tripled) as offices, gyms, and anything else we needed them to
From Wayne Hilton’s wild and beautiful vision
be? How much did we ache to host backyard
for an Airbnb property to Christine Howard making
barbecues or Sunday meals?
her mark on her hometown, I think you’ll agree that El Paso’s design talent knows how to create the
As I write, news outlets are reporting that
perfect combination of local and luxurious.
millions of Ukrainian children have fled the warzone, which corresponds to one child
The stories in this special double issue are
evacuating their homes per second as they and
emblematic of the sense of home this community
their parents seek survival.
has created, as well as the opportunities to cultivate and express our humanity all while building a more hopeful future.
“Your voice matters. Let’s hear it. Scan the QR code to send audio advice to the editors."
EL PASO RHINOS UPCOMING HOME GAMES NAHL vs Wichita Falls Warriors April 8-9 7 pm Call 915-479-PUCK (7825) or visit elpasorhinos.com for more information. www.thecitymagazineelp.com
APRIL 2022 VOLUME 98
Mighty Mujer Triathlon MAKES ITS MARK
Airbnb Hosts CAPITALIZING ON THE COMFORTS OF HOME
By: CLAUDIA FLORES
By: HEATHER HARMSTON
“Byrne-ing” THE GLASS CEILING IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY By: ERIN COULEHAN
Here and Now
Travel Adventure: Truth or Consequences By: ZACHARY ZUNIGA
Women’s Style: April Flowers Bring Slay Powers By: ERIN COULEHAN
Astrology Forecast By: SABRINA BUSTILLOS
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Mighty Mujer 24
M i g h t y M u j e r T r i at h l o n
| By: CLAUDIA FLORES photos courtesy of: MIGHTY MUJER |
An event for the mighty women of El Paso
fter living out of town for about 15
I ever do one.’ You know, it’s expensive.
After the cycling course, participants are
years, Gabriela Gallegos, president of
It’s a big commitment,” Gallegos said. “If
only a run away from closing the event. The
Race El Paso, felt the need to create a
you don’t know anybody who’s ever done
final portion consists of a 3-mile run before crossing the finish line.
game-changer event that would invite the
it, you may not even think of it. But if you
community to try something new. In 2012
know someone and your cousin just did it,
she created Mighty Mujer Triathlon, an event
and she tells you how great it was, and then
Mighty Mujer offers different events for
that opened a door for sports lovers in El Paso.
shows you ‘Oh, we can go to these classes
those who might want to participate but not
together,’ all of that makes a difference.”
complete the full triathlon. The Super Sprint is a shorter version of the sprint (full triathlon)
Gallegos, who at the age of 29 completed
but still a demanding event.
her first triathlon, soon fell for the endurance
While preparing for a triathlon can be
sport that consists of swimming, cycling,
intimidating, Mighty Mujer offers clinics where
and running various distances.
participants (and people in the community
Participants can also choose between relays,
who are interested in joining the event) can
an aqua bike, or a bike-run race to participate
“I had started doing triathlons a few years
take classes to learn how to change a bike tire,
in the event.
before moving back to El Paso in 2008. I was
the rules of competition, create connections,
very concerned because I didn’t know where
and learn more about the sport.
Like many other events, the Mighty Mujer Triathlon was also visibly affected by the
people biked and I didn’t know if there was a traveling community,” Gallegos said. “I
Today, Mighty Mujer Triathlon hosts the
pandemic since the event couldn’t be hosted
found one that was small, but very strong,
event in different cities, including Miami,
in presential form. However, Gallegos and
but we didn’t have any races, so, people had
Austin, and Tucson. In El Paso, close to 450
her team found a way to create a virtual
to travel for races.”
women joined the event as participants.
race that could reach participants from the community and out of town.
According to Gallegos, a triathlon is a serious
Athletes and participants still follow the
commitment since the athlete must have
original route created in 2012.
“It really challenged us to think about what makes Mighty Mujer, Mighty Mujer, and
the equipment and training to complete the race. In addition, Gallegos wanted to create
The race begins with a 300-yard swim at
what we came up with was that it was a
an event for the community to try the sport
Memorial Pool, followed by an 18-mile bike
real community that is setting and achieving
in their hometown.
ride that takes the participants through a
one goal together,” Gallegos said. “And so,
challenging (but rewarding) course starting
for that virtual race, you had to complete
“Most people are not going to say, ‘I’m going
on Aurora Avenue, then to Alabama Street,
it all on the same day. So, everybody was
to go try that thing in San Diego the first time
Arizona Avenue, and E. Rio Grande Avenue.
doing their race on their own right in their
M i g h t y M u j e r T r i at h l o n
neighborhoods, or on their treadmill or wherever, on their own. But it was all on one day.” According to Gallegos, having an all-women event has been very important to grow the representation of women in the sport. “There might be some hesitation just because you’re a beginner, or there’s additional hesitation if you think that maybe you can’t keep up. Or you think that you might be in the water with men who are not being mindful of who’s around them. Or ‘I feel like it’s not for me.’ There are those kinds of concerns, and everybody’s a little bit different,” Gallegos said. “But having an all-female event is different: to have something ‘open to’ versus ‘this is for you.’ So making something that is for women, I think changes people’s ideas of whether or not they can do it, because, well, this is for you.” Gallegos shared that a great part of the Mighty Mujer experience is having women, who are usually the center of their families, enjoy a day where they’re getting ready to do something remarkable in the
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company and support of their loved ones. “What’s fun is that you see husbands, fathers, cousins, brothers, and kids all there to support them. Another thing that they’ve told me is that it made a very big difference that they were just getting themselves ready and it was their day,” Gallegos said. “It was not trying to get the kids ready because they have a run, or the husband is also going to participate. They are giving themselves that personal accomplishment that is just for them.” What: Mighty Mujer Triathlon Who: Women from ages 12 and up When: April 23, 2022 For more information about the event and registration fees visit mightymujertriathlon.com www.thecitymagazineelp.com
Perception of Our
| By: MARGO LEPE |
The Reflection of Our Perception
Our language is the reflection of ours ves.
Famous civil rights activist Cesar Chavez understood the importance of language, particularly when it comes to using our words to express our thoughts and feelings.
id you know, though, up to 93 percent of our communication does not even require a word? Only
about 7 percent of communication is verbal. Many experts
and studies agree the 93/7 rule suggests the majority of
communication transpires through nonverbal behavior and tone. Jared Nieman studied Nonverbal Communication in college. Today, he is an author, motivational speaker, podcaster, and community leader in El Paso, Texas. In his newly released book, The Missing Peace, Nieman mentions the journey towards repairing his way of thinking and behaving, which really consisted of “growing up” mentally and emotionally. A healthy mind is built on disciplined thinking, but he says the work is not easy. It requires self-awareness and flourishing in that awareness constantly. “Emotional intelligence requires having the ability to recognize, understand and manage emotions to understand and influence our own emotions and those of the people around us. We must maintain control of our own emotions and the more we do so, the more positively we influence the relationships in our lives,” he says. Neiman wholeheartedly believes “a soft answer turns away wrath, but emotional maturity and intelligence overcome emotional immaturity and ignorance.” It took him time, however, to learn this and it was not easy. The pain from losing his mother to cancer created an opportunity to push him in the right direction towards emotional maturity and cultivate relationships around him more effectively. It has been nearly 10 years since Rochelle Nieman, his mother, passed away. He attributes her death, along with his mental health struggle and battle with anxiety over the years, with the opportunity to find his true identity. Self-awareness is a contributor to mental and emotional development. In his first book, Nieman articulates what helped him evolve his emotional intelligence, especially when problems in life arise. When we take accountability for our own thoughts and actions, we avoid shifting blame. Attaining a greater level of emotional intelligence consists of focusing solely on what we are doing, thinking about, and what only we can control.
Exceed Your Standards of Beauty
Veronica Guerrero agrees blame is toxic and
The pain was initially too much to bear, yet
creates a negative mental state. Guerrero is
seeking her own healing compelled her to
a mental health advocate and understands
share his story to help others facing similar
deep pain and tremendous loss, as well.
battles. Guerrero now advocates for better
Finding her purpose came at a great cost, too.
mental health around the Sun City, primarily targeting youth and elementary schools. She
No parent should ever have to endure the
also is currently working towards becoming a
pain of losing a child, yet Guerrero knows that
Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).
pain well. In November 2014, the mother of
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three created Lucid Love as a way to honor
Shortly before his death, Sebastian suffered
her oldest son, Johann Sebastian, and raise
a vicious attack at the hands of his bullies.
awareness against bullying. The mission
Despite the tragic incident, Guerrero says he
of the 501c3 non-profit victims advocate
never shifted the blame on anyone, but always
organization consists of “building the core of
pushed himself, regardless of his challenges.
our existence with love and faith.” It took courage to look herself in the mirror Guerrero says because her son suffered so
and be honest with the crippling pain almost
much in his young life from the day he was
a decade ago. Nevertheless, what she
born, advocating for the wellness of everyone’s
found in her despair was the ability to help
mental health greatly matters to her.
teach others how to cope and heal from their own pain. The strength to reflect in
Sebastian’s struggle with mental health,
her anguish birthed the capacity to perceive
Tourette syndrome, and being bullied in
and empathize differently than she ever had.
his teen years really took its toll. Sadly, his
Her reflection of self unveiled a gift she now
life ended on May 3, 2013, after the then
offers to the world around her.
17-year-old turned to chemicals to ease his emotional pain. www.thecitymagazineelp.com
April 2022 Life presents many uncertainties and when a crisis arises, it is normal to experience a flood of strong emotions, negative thinking, and even physical symptoms. Seeking help when
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necessary and developing a strong support
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choose awareness and healing. The suffering we face is ours, yet choosing to share it
bestows the ability to better connect, while bringing forth hope and freedom for others too. Nieman and Guerrero’s stories may seem rare. What is most unique is how they each used their stories of heartache to transform themselves, while becoming an extension of love and compassion towards others. Looking in a mirror presents an outward reflection. Yet, when we take the time to really reflect and expose what is inside, we grant an opportunity to connect with others and them with us. Our outward reflection
might not differ much during the evolvement,
but the perception within certainly can.
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Capitalizing on the
Comforts of Home | Words and photography by: HEATHER HARMSTON Infographic by: MAGGIE BLUM |
hile Covid certainly put a halt on traveling over the last few years, it has also provided an option of sanctuary for
many families and individuals to stay in
locations with little to no interaction with
other travelers in the form of Airbnb stays.
With the era of social distancing, the Airbnb
platform offers people the ability to travel
more comfortably and more affordably than
alternative options. Maybe you’ve frequented an
recognizable companies in the world. In 2020, for
Airbnb as a traveler but there’s an entirely opposite
example, Airbnb had a validation of $86.5 billion at the
side of the platform as an Airbnb Host.
time of its IPO. Today, many people are capitalizing on the success of the company and becoming hosts.
So what’s the buzz with Airbnb? If you haven’t heard of the coined term, Airbnb considers itself an online
As an Airbnb host myself, I have had the privilege
marketplace for travelers of any kind to find lodging,
and pleasure of diving headfirst into the lucrative
vacation rentals, and a slew of tourism activities
business opportunity that Airbnb has the potential
within the traveler’s designated city.
to create for its community members. For years I have been conversing with my investor clients in the
Airbnb has transformed from “Airbed & Breakfast”
real estate space regarding long-term rentals versus
that started in 2007 to one of the most lucrative and
short-term rentals (Airbnb being one of the short33
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term rental options) and the pros and cons
in your home for supplemental income? As
it can offer.
of current, more than 300 options private room options in a shared home are on the
The top pro of becoming an Airbnb host as
local El Paso Airbnb market starting as low
I see it is profit potential. Take for example
as $29 a night, and who couldn’t use an extra
a landlord owning a 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom
$870 a month?
home in the Tierra Del Este subdivision. That one-year lease term may generate
Keep in mind that running an Airbnb is a direct
$1,000 -$1,500 a month depending on size
competition to local hotels that requires the
utmost hospitality. If a host can provide great guest communication, competitive pricing,
Now, let’s take that same property, add
and a clean and comfortable place for guests
some furnishings and household items to
to stay, one can become an Airbnb Superhost
create a fully functional hotel-like stay for a
in no time! What’s the value of being a
traveling family. That same rental property
superhost you may ask?
has the potential to generate close to
Questions? Contact me at:
6006 N. Mesa, Ste. 509 El Paso, Texas 79912
$5,000 a month if renting at $150 per night
Well, I’ll tell you the guests potentially
at full occupancy. That’s more than a double
booking your space have a few factors to
profit potential for the same property.
consider when deciding where they might
Yes, of course, there is a caveat. Airbnbs
stay. The only information future guests
must be treated as a business with guest
have access to prior to booking are photos
communication, in-house cleanings, and
of your space, the pricing and amenities,
“damage control” along the same lines as
and drumroll please…the reviews of past
any hotel would experience.
guests who have stayed in your Airbnb. The higher the reviews, the more likely your
email@example.com 34 elpasonutritionconsultants.com
Maybe you don’t have an extra property you
future guests will book your space over other
can turn into an Airbnb. Why not offer a room
available Airbnb options in the city, which www.thecitymagazineelp.com
April 2022 leads to more profit for the Airbnb host! Jose Valles, a local Airbnb host and dear friend, raves about the Airbnb platform and believes it has given him the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people from around the world traveling to our great Sun City of El Paso, Texas. Currently, there are hundreds of Airbnb options in El Paso for travelers to choose from ranging in size from a room to stay in an occupied home, to a 6+ bedroom home with all the bells and whistles. Nightly stays range from $25 a night all the way up to $500+ a night. Many local investors have hopped on the Airbnb train and it doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon. At the end of the day, Airbnb can be a financially beneficial investment opportunity for just about anyone interested in taking on the task of becoming a host.
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‘Byrne-ing’ the Glass Ceiling in the Construction Industry | By: ERIN COULEHAN photography by: ZAZU PRODUCTIONS |
‘ Byr n e - i ng ’ t h e G l as s Ce i l i ng
ecent data from the United States
of the workforce is women in construction
New England Institute of Technology affirms in a
Bureau of Labor Statistics reports
-- but that figure is rapidly undergoing a
recent analysis of the industry.
that only 10.9 percent of jobs in the
remodel of its own. The U.S. Census Bureau affirms that about 11
construction industry are occupied by women. An analysis by the
The Institute for Women’s Policy Research
Center for American Progress determined
reports that the number of women in
construction grew by 17.6 percent between
construction than any other professional
2017 to 2018, with the overall job growth
industry, which also includes nontrade roles
standing at 3.7 percent across all construction
like project managers and administrative
percent of the construction industry workforce
personnel. Moreover, women hold only 4 percent of construction and extraction jobs,
In 2018, the percentage of women in
the roles that require using tools.
construction was about 9.9 percent and later increased to 10.9 percent in 2020.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the construction industry to add 400,000 new
“These figures highlight that the number
jobs between 2020 to 2030, meaning there
of women in the construction
are opportunities for women to continue to
industry is increasing year over
grow in the sector.
year. Women are also now more open to multiple
While women make up about 47 percent of
roles in the industry,
the workforce in the U.S., only 1.5 percent
ranging from trade jobs to
construction management,” the
‘ Byr n e - i ng ’ t h e G l as s Ce i l i ng
in El Paso are women, but one woman is
To make her dreams come true, Byrne attended
pushed me to pursue my dream of gutting
demolishing the idea that it’s a boys’ club.
Mississippi State University but opted to
one of the homes and bring that love back
major in accounting instead of pursuing a
into something that had been neglected,”
“I grew up living in constant remodels as a
degree in interior design. In 2007 she earned
kid,” says Sarah Alston Byrne of Byrne Flips
a Masters of Business from Christian Brothers
and Design. “I used to walk around with a
University, and later a Masters of Accountancy
Byrne says that part of the beauty of her
tape measure and it’s funny because my little
Taxation at UTEP in 2015.
career is that she can bring her passion for aesthetics into homes that need some
one does that now.” “I chose that because of job stability and I
TLC, while also finding the perfect family to complement the home.
In addition to building and designing homes,
didn’t want to depend on my creativity for
Byrne is the mother of three who is teaching
income,” she says. “I think it’s a good mix
her brood the family trade.
because I keep great cost spreadsheets and
projecting costs comes easy for me, which is
customers navigate through their finish options
a plus for my clients!”
and redesign when it comes to home remodels.
Byrne’s 5-year old daughter, Margaux, often
accompanies her mom to the demolition After 10 years in Corporate America and being
Working women were disproportionately
sites and is learning the ins and outs of the
transferred from Memphis to El Paso, she
impacted by job loss pursuant to the pandemic
industry alongside lessons in her ABCs.
decided to have kids and be a stay-at-home
but Byrne continues to work hard as a busy
mom in 2012, and she’s been keeping busy
professional, mom, wife, and individual.
“I want her to see Mama independent and
ever since. She and her husband Pat worked
making her own path and teach her to follow
together to flip three of their own properties
“Balance for me comes easy,” she laughs,
her dreams -- do what makes her tick,”
and later earned enough capital and credit
“I’m a yogi!”
for Sarah to pursue her passion in 2016.“He
“With three children under ten, my life is always in constant motion -- so balancing work life with home life comes naturally. My work life is a release for me because we are so busy with kids, school, homework, and activities. It allows my creativity to flow and decompress from everyday stressors,” she adds. Today, Byrne works hard to build a career and lifestyle that her daughter can aspire to. “I want her to know that she can change directions and experience a new or different path no matter what stage of life you land in,” she says. “I also want her to know that you can have it all: family, tradition, career, and success. Life is not black and white -there are a lot of grays.”
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The Treasure of Truth or Consequences | By: ZACHARY ZUNIGA photography by: ZAZU PRODUCTIONS |
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ess than a hundred miles north of Las
Our first stop into the town at a local gas
Cruces, and a two-hour drive from El
station found us to be the only vehicle with
Paso, rests a town many of us have
four wheels. The rest were towing campers,
driven through and certainly heard of
driving RVs, or on a motorcycle.
if not only due to its unique name. Truth or Consequences, New Mexico, “T or C” for
The few people we spoke to at the station
short, is small by most standards but well-
ranged from short-term regional travelers like
traveled because of its proximity to both
ourselves to vagabonds from numerous areas
Elephant Butte and Caballero Lakes.
whose terminus was unknown. It seemed the lore and seclusion of this place brought
Not exactly a fisherman’s paradise but
an interesting and eclectic group of travelers.
certainly a beautiful oasis in the vast desert
But not your yuppy travelers opting for more
that surrounds us.
upscale or trendy options (see my Marfa article in the March magazine). No, these
My wife and I (as some avid readers may
were a different breed of traveler altogether,
have gathered by now) love to explore the
yet all here for the same purpose: to relax
beautiful and special towns, parks, nooks,
in the tranquility, serenity, and solitude this
and crannies of our special little corner of
desert bastion provides.
the Southwest. This may come as a shock to some but we are avid visitors to T or C as
Since this was a simple day trip, we had
we love the charm of the town, the people,
only a few key events planned. I think this
and the utter relaxation and reprieve it offers.
is preferable to attempting to cram too many
20 Time President’s Award Winner
Gear up. Head out.
events in and ruining the purpose of the The town rests in this Recreational Vehicle
owners and motorcyclist paradise flanked by the Gila Mountains to the West and White
To start, as always, we walked the quaint main
Sands Missile Range beyond the lakes and
drag in T or C, Broadway Street. Reminiscent
tributaries that surround the eastern portion.
of many small towns that have captivated
Call the experts, we’re here to help. 915-248-4558 5815 Montana Ave, El Paso, TX 7992543
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an outsider audience, the street is filled
From locals to travelers, T or C Brewing Co.
with a mix of newer boutiques, bookstores,
brings together people from all walks of life
art exhibits, and quaint restaurants. Though
to imbibe on its numerous delicious craft
this commercial district isn’t that large, there
brews. (Though make sure to eat ahead of
are plenty of great knickknacks, special and
time because the only food options available
unique gifts, and home goods in this small
are some salty snacks and a small restaurant
area. For a day trip. It’s all you need.
window that seemed to be open only on the weekend.)
After a brief hour of wandering the shops, we made a stop at our favorite local watering
My wife opted for a flight of their craft brews
hole, one we discovered the joy of many trips
while I stuck with a root beer to quench
ago. The Truth or Consequences Brewing
my thirst and prepare us for what we really
Company, located on the same strip of road
came for: the numerous amazing hot springs
as the shops (oh the joy of small towns) is
scattered throughout the town.
a staple in the city now and a place where we always seem to find a new friend with a
First off, as a disclaimer let me just say that
we’ve tried most of the hot springs in the T or C area and they all offer something unique
One of the more popular destinations in the
town it seems, even on this quiet Tuesday afternoon we found it bustling with the usual
But, for us at least, and I know many others
varied mix of characters.
too, Riverbend Hot Springs is without a doubt the rustic yet luxurious experience
F I N D A
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of private pools. No matter which spring
tag. All the pools vary in size, temperature,
you decide on, opting for at least an hour
and distance to the river but are all absolutely
reservation in a private pool is an absolute
lovely and relaxing. There’s also a sauna for
necessity. It helps to really highlight the
those in the community space to enjoy. After several hours of soaking in the private and
solitude and silence of the town when all you
then community pools, the sun began to set
can hear is the gentle flow of spring water.
and we began our short adventure back home.
of the Rio Grande, the soaking pools are
At Riverbend, we opted for the ‘Cielo’ room
For us, it was the array of hot springs and
situated with a view of the river and beautiful
but there were numerous private pools to
beautiful desert scenery that made our tour
mountain and desert-scapes beyond.
choose from, each with its own flavor and
trip the most memorable. The silence that
flare -- not to mention stunning views of the
enveloped us, even during mid-day, added
Rio Grande. Each private pool was $35 for a
to the serenity and ambiance of the springs
50-minute session. We opted for two back-
and even the town itself. Not quite a ghost
town and not quite a hipster’s paradise, T
you are looking for. Nestled right on the bank
But don’t feel limited to this one choice. Austin St. in T or C has an array of options and price ranges for different hot spring soaking experiences.
or C provided an array of options to keep us
The community pools offer the same fine
entertained and was well worth the short
Hot Springs directly down the street from
views and vibe with a more affordable price
drive from El Paso.
Riverbend for its very cool vibe and range 46
F I N D A
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Casa Octavia I Creating a Culture of Care for Underrepresented Writers
n Hermosillo, Sonora, México, Sylvia Aguilar-Zéleny grew up surrounded by stories. When her mother tucked her in at night, it wasn’t to tales of
“Snow White” or “The Little Prince.” Instead, she told her daughter stories unique to her, whether of personal experiences or something from within her imagination. This would be just one of many ways Sylvia would be drawn to storytelling. Today, Aguilar-Zéleny is a highly-praised local writer who also works as a guest writer for UTEP’s online Creative Writing programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Aguilar-Zéleny’s passion for writing is evident in the care she has taken to cultivate a community of underrepresented writers in the region. During her undergraduate
studies at the University of Sonora, AguilarZéleny was given the opportunity to pick up her pen and write regularly. As a student, she noticed the limited nature of her course syllabi, which lacked female writers’ representation. In taking an independent
| By: AMBER LANAHAN photos courtesy of: SYLVIA AGUILAR-ZÉLENY |
study, she was allowed to experience the works of female Mexican writers and find a community of voices that resonated with her in a way their male counterparts were unable. Interning for a local paper, Aguilar-Zéleny submitted personal short stories to her editor between articles on female-written books and films. Over two years, she’d submit these stories until one day, the paper’s small press came to her asking if she’d like to publish the stories as a collection. Unbeknownst to Aguilar-Zéleny herself, this moment would serve as the first step in her journey as a published author. It was reading English and Spanish writers that helped Aguilar-Zéleny refine her use of language. “Language is related to emotions and situations,” Aguilar-Zéleny shared.
April 2022 “When I put the word ‘Mija’ in a sentence,
advises taking one to two hours a day to
I’m aware of the influence that word choice
focus on the project.
has on the rest of the text.” “This doesn’t even have to be writing. It could This rings especially true in her experience
be reading, watching tv, or even listening to
as a translator. When translating her award-
the music of one of the characters.” Expanding
winning Todo Eso Yo (The Everything I Have
further, Aguilar-Zéleny reveals she tries to take
Lost), it took a reread of her work for Aguilar-
at least five days out of the week to focus on
Zéleny to realize that a literal translation of
the project and that two out of those five days
the original text wasn’t what the English-
are spent writing the story itself.
speaking audience needed. Subtle nuances exclusive to Spanish-speaking audiences
For Aguilar-Zéleny, writing raises the issues
were foreign to English speakers. Through an
on subjects she wishes to bring attention
adjustment to the language of the work, she
to, like domestic and gender violence. In her
would discover a way to convey the missing
case, the discussion of these topics holds
emotions of the speaker.
a tremendous amount of weight as they have greatly affected Aguilar-Zéleny and the female
individuals around her. From a culture where
representation and language diversity in the
such issues are kept close to the chest,
industry has only evolved over the years as
Aguilar-Zéleny questioned why this was the
Aguilar-Zéleny has taken a step outside of her
case. Through deep reflection and her own
written works in creating Casa Octavia. This
coming out, she concluded that she would
writer’s residence was created in 2016 and
become a voice for the silenced over being
grants female Spanish writers an opportunity
one of the silent.
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to travel to the States to focus on writing their piece during a two to three-week period.
As a writer and translator, Aguilar-Zéleny has
Aguilar-Zéleny aids these writers as they
accumulated her fair share of accolades.
create a partnership with a publisher who pays
From the 2015 Tamaulipas National Book
the plane fee and a small living stipend. When
award for her novel Todo Eso es Yo (The
these writers develop their pieces, Aguilar-
Everything I Have Lost) to her most recent
Zéleny provides advice and editing guidance.
NEA 2021 Fellowship in Literary Translation
In the future, she plans to expand this
grant for novel Basura (Garbage). However,
project further to include multiple publishing
while these awards hold significance, it’s
companies and even more female writers.
the interactions with her readers that hold a special place in her heart. She recalled a
When asked about her creative process,
memory of a high schooler who’d requested
Aguilar-Zéleny shared that “researching and
she make the book out to the Abuela with
reading the content I wish to write about
whom he’d read the story. This moment
(typically from female authors) plays the
of connection between family members
separated by generations is one that AguilarZéleny looks back on fondly.
In studying her subject matter, she collects the tools and materials needed to build the
For those with reservations about writing,
foundation of her piece. This attention to research
Sylvia says, “Write. If it matters to you it
is one she’s implemented in her lectures.
matters to someone else. You don’t have to write for the sake of being published.
With students who tend to have a multitude
Write about what it is you want to talk about,
of classes on their plate, Professor Zéleny
whether it be a story, blog, or diary. Write.”
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© 2022 Stewart. All rights reserved. | 861023013
Meet El Paso’s Leaders in
Real Estate and Homebuilding Home is where the heart is, and the hearts of the
This month, we’re showcasing some of the city’s
local real estate and homebuilding communities are
leading movers and shakers in the real estate
in providing excellent service, attention to detail, and
and homebuilding industries who transform lives
compassion to help buy or sell homes in El Paso.
while also building the community.
52 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Victoria Olivia Duron For Victoria Olivia Duron, home is where the heart is and she believes
life can be. She recognizes the stress that can come with the home
that a house becomes a home by living a good life and manifesting
buying or selling process.
positive energy. She specializes in buying and selling homes using a unique style that incorporates manifesting the client’s goals in real
“Buying or selling a home can be incredibly stressful at times, and my
estate and beyond.
job is to be stressed for my clients,” she says.
Victoria says she’s most passionate about her work when it comes
Victoria loves El Paso and strives to make the community a better
to helping people achieve the American Dream of becoming a
place for her two daughters and four grandsons, as well as future
homeowner. She was born in Casper, Wyoming but has made El Paso
generations of Borderland residents.
her home. Victoria says she values being deeply connected to the community while also welcoming new members.
“I love helping people not just with the purchase or sale of their home, but I also love coaching people on how to live a better and
“El Paso people are kind, generous, and full of life. I love El Paso, and
more fulfilled life full of peace, joy, love, and abundance.”
this is where my family is from. I also love meeting new people and making them feel special by giving them the red carpet treatment,”
Her success is not exclusive to real estate, either.
she says. Victoria is also a motivational speaker and fierce advocate for women’s Victoria has been in the real estate industry for more than 20 years,
empowerment. Her work to encourage and inspire fellow women
where she focuses on the client’s experience.
comes at a time when many need support more than ever, and it’s comforting to know someone cares.
When working with her, clients can rest assured that Victoria will do everything in her power to make sure the home buying or selling
“I love helping people believe in themselves,” she says, “There is
process is as smooth as possible. Victoria is not only a professional,
so much negativity and drama, and I’m here to help change that one
but also a family woman, wife, and friend who understands how busy
person at a time,” she says.
Victoria Olivia Duron 5437 North Mesa El Paso, Texas 79912 (915) 777-0269
Photographed by: BENJAMIN ONTIVEROS
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 53
54 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Eric Smith El Paso’s growing and maturing economy is exciting to see and be
Paso. Having proprietary access to homes with special features has
a part of. From the medical and dental school expansion to the PCS
become the leading outlet for buyers who are fed up with not finding
movement of Ft. Bliss soldiers, and the onboarding of private enterprise
what they are looking for when searching the standard inventory.
operations, there has been an increase in families considering their next home in El Paso. Additionally, the natural demand from home-
So far this year, half of my business has been conducted with
buyers to pay the premium for a property that includes a larger variety
homeowners and buyers in the off-market setting; usually, it’s less
of at-home amenities is more obvious than ever.
than 20 percent.
The traditional suspects that buyers are paying the most for, to no
Rumblings of increasing interest rates for buyers will likely have
surprise, are heated pools, private-office or study space, and multiple
a cooling effect later in the year: so my advice is to jump into this
common rooms that are all on a comfortable lot and setting. Local real
“perfect storm” as a seller by taking advantage of record-high price
estate agents have been tasked with new challenges to increase the
points, and for buyers who have been on the fence to commit this
inventory of quality homes to these in and out-of-town movers.
year to purchase before their purchase-power decreases into long term rising interest rates and as inflation pushes home prices higher.
It’s not surprising to think that the Great Pause of 2020 created a slow down of homeowners who would have naturally sold during these past 2 years. Homeowners who are now open to considering selling are realizing that this 2022 home-selling season is in a golden hour to gain the very most for their property -- with less risk than in years past.
Eric Smith 7181 Westwind Dr. El Paso, Texas 79912
Therefore, one of the “new” offerings to buyers is the increase of “Off-
market” or “Pocket Listings” in the most popular neighborhoods in El
Photographed by: ZAZU PRODUCTIONS
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 55
Desert View Homes Locally Owned. Nationally Recognized.
Thoughtful Homes is a culmination of more than three decades of
Some thirty years ago, right in the heart of El Paso, Texas, Desert
building experience, trusted strategic national partnerships, the
View Homes entered the scene with an unwavering mission: to fulfill
purchasing power of building over 1,500 homes a year, and countless
the dream of homeownership by centering on quality, value, and
hours of neuroscience research – all backed by Desert View Home’s
affordability for its growing community. This dream became a reality
commitment to its core mission. The program provides buyers with
for thousands of homeowners in El Paso, leading to an expansion
genuinely “thoughtful” home features that raise the bar in innovation,
of more new home communities throughout the country, including
all while maintaining highly competitive pricing.
Colorado, Texas, New Mexico, and South Dakota. Today, Desert View Homes continues to focus on homebuyers’ top priorities – a core
A “THOUGHTFUL” DEBUT AT THE VIEW AT DESERT SPRINGS
value since day one – no matter where they build.
Homebuyers can take in all the exciting features of the Thoughtful Homes Series at The View at Desert Springs. The five debuting
THOUGHTFUL HOMES by DESERT VIEW HOMES
floorplans – each designed around homebuyers’ most desired lifestyle
A new chapter has begun: the Thoughtful Homes Series by Desert
priorities – will include pet rooms, pocket offices, garage options,
View Homes. It’s no surprise that years of dreaming, months
Amazon drop areas, antimicrobial countertops and door handles, pre-
of planning (and a whole lot of fine-tuning) have rendered this
wiring for increased internet connectivity, premier “Whole House”
groundbreaking project one of a kind.
connectivity, and much more.
56 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Our Thoughtful Home series has started construction in front of the
Desert View Homes
westside gated community, Encore at Desert Springs, located by the
7910 Gateway Blvd E Ste. 102
intersection of North Resler Drive and Enchanted Springs Road, on the
El Paso, Texas 79934
north side of Woodrow Bean Transmountain and Bluff Creek Street.
JOIN THE INTEREST LIST Future Customers can stay in the know – and get invited to Thoughtful Homes’ upcoming VIP grand opening event – by texting their name and email address to 915-900-5660.
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 57
Gerardo Lopez Gerardo Lopez prides himself on providing clients with professional services driven by results, whether it be a first-time homebuyer or a family upgrading from their previous home. For Gerardo, being available for his clients at all times is paramount. “Customer frustration stems from a discontinuity between the expectation of customer service interaction and what’s actually delivered,” says Gerardo. “I make sure to listen to my client’s concerns and follow through by finding them a property that is tailored to their needs. Clients expect -- and deserve -- to be understood and have their needs and expectations met.” Gerardo is a native El Pasoan who’s also served the United States as a federal agent for more than 20 years in El Paso where he learned about unique populations within the Borderland community. “El
enforcement and military community,” he says. Our Borderland allows for vast diversity, which means so much to me because I’m able to help local families find the special place that they can call home.” Gerardo says he’s passionate about his work in his desire to help others, which also allows him to cultivate his love of homes. “As we evolve, our homes should too. I always recommend that my buyers visualize every area of the property with their own personal touch. I love taking an idea that a person has and turning it into a home for them,” he adds.
Gerardo Lopez Home Pros Real Estate Group (915) 216-7980
58 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Photographed by: BENJAMIN ONTIVEROS
Jennifer Cullers Jennifer Cullers did not start her career in real estate but created her own niche in the industry using her skills and experience as a former restaurant owner and marketing representative. Today, Jennifer is a multi-million dollar producer with a proven track record of excellence. For example, Jennifer was voted 2nd Best Realtor in “Best of the Best” in 2020 and 2021. “It’s all about relationships,” Jennifer says. “I’ve been able to grow my business through the relationships I’ve created.” Cultivating meaningful relationships adds to the mutual joy once a client becomes a homeowner. “The best part of my job is when I get to see my clients in their houses. It’s not even after closing and handing them their keys. It’s after they’ve moved in, and I come by with a gift and get to see them in the house,” she says. “It’s just so rewarding to see that I not only helped them purchase a house but now have a home where they get to create memories,” Jennifer adds. Through her experience, Jennifer has enjoyed watching families grow while also deepening her knowledge of the industry. “This business has made me multi-faceted,” she says. “I have not only done real estate. I’ve created relationships, I’ve learned the ins and outs of staging homes, design, and new home construction and can now pass this on to my clients.” Jennifer Cullers 780 N. Resler El Paso, Texas 79912 (915) 471-0542 Photographed by: JOHN HORTA
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 59
Zehra solutions 1OOO, Diesel Dr Suite D. El Paso, Texas 79907 (915) 873-8714
Zehra solutions Zehra Solutions is a locally-owned and operated home improvement
The projects that Zehra Solutions takes on serve the community in
company that is committed to serving the El Paso community with
a multitude of ways such as creating employment opportunities,
respect, transparency, and expertise. When working with Zehra
bolstering the local economy, improving access to energy resources,
Solutions, clients can expect honesty, integrity, and attention to detail
and helping conserve the environment.
that is environmentally-minded. Zehra Solutions says it’s committed to leaving a legacy that’s best The goal at Zehra Solutions is to help turn the Sun City green. Zehra
known for creating progress through the development of local skills
offers services to help homeowners transform their homes to
for sustained economic opportunities.
be energy efficient at affordable pricing that leaves a lasting -- and positive -- impact in the community and on the environment.
“Our passion really comes from our family,” the company says. “We go out every day and treat our community like our family. In reality,
Home improvements services offered by Zehra Solutions include
our community is our family. We work with all our community like
solar panels, water treatment, HVAC, and more.
we would be working with our own family. That means we give our community the best every single time.”
60 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Photographed by: LUNA ISABEL
Missy Pena I received my Texas Real Estate license over 10 years ago and
have never looked back. I am also a proud mother of four beautiful
ERA Sellers and Buyers Real Estate
daughters and have had the privilege to serve in their academic groups and functions.
780 N. Resler El Paso, Texas 79912 (915) 887-1807
As a Realtor at ERA Sellers and Buyers Real Estate, I get to make dreams come true. I have a passion for real estate, whether it is listing and marketing your home, matching you with the perfect home, or doing what it takes to make the deal work, I love it. I have had the privilege to have helped many happy customers over the years and love getting involved in my industry and community. I am familiar with the southwest areas of El Paso and surrounding New Mexico counties, Santa Teresa, Sunland, and Las Cruces. I believe it’s important to know the areas I serve to give you the best help. I’m an active member of the El Paso Association of Realtors, Texas Association of Realtors, and the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals. Staying involved and informed allows me to keep you informed. I am never too busy to provide the best possible service.
Photographed by: LUNA ISABEL
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 61
Jesus Castorena Realtor Jesus Castorena pursued a career in the real estate industry not to sell every home or help every interested buyer or seller, but rather to help people. “I don’t just do this to make a sale like a typical salesperson,” he says. “I work to satisfy others with the excellent service that I provide, and I’m never satisfied until that goal is accomplished with each interaction. I let my heart lead the way in everything I do.” Jesus says he enjoys serving El Paso because the community is full of wonderful people who deserve an honest person working for them. “I don’t know how many times I get people telling me that they were rushed into purchasing a home that wasn’t for them, or selling for a price that wasn’t good for them,” he says. Jesus says that clients will note his unique style in that he does not pressure anyone to make a purchase that is not a good fit. “I’m patient because I understand this is one of -- if not the biggest -- investment one will make in a lifetime,” he adds. Jesus’ passion for his work comes from the motivation to help others. “God has given me the ability and opportunity not only to assist the wonderful people from El Paso but also those coming to make El Paso home,” he says. “And I am grateful for this every single day.”
Jesus Castorena Think of Realty (915) 208-9411
62 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Photographed by: RICHARD GONZALEZ
Eddie Flores III Purchasing a home can be an overwhelming experience for most and this is where Eddie Flores comes in. Eddie, a born and raised El Pasoan is always proud to help his community and is experienced in all facets of real estate. A passion for helping people find their dream home while getting the best mortgage possible is a must. Advising is not the only thing that you will experience. Eddie guides you every step of the way by making sure you are well informed on the process, answers every question that may be asked, and helps you into your dream home. Whether
prequalification process or signing the title for your home the focus is always on you and the mission is to exceed all expectations. Being successful in the home loan industry means staying consistent, transparent, and honest which is something you can expect. So, if this is your first mortgage, your fifth, or even looking to refinance the commitment will always be the same. We are more than happy to provide a free consultation and get you started on your purchase or refinance application. Call now to set up an appointment with The Home Loan Agent and get the home you deserve!
Eddie Flores III Change Home Mortgage 11331 James Watt Dr. Ste F-100 Cell: (915) 346-1905
Photographed by: JOHN HORTA
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 63
Abraham Herndon Real estate agent Abraham Hendon at Mario Ayala Real Estate Group
Abraham experienced an unpleasant home buying purchase that
is committed to personalizing the experience of each client whether
motivates him to use as an example of what not to do.
buying or selling a home. During the initial stages of the process, Abraham familiarizes himself with the client to learn as much as he can.
“My goal is to be the complete opposite of what I went through,” he says.
“My overall objective is to ask as many questions as possible during our initial meeting to fully understand my client’s needs, therefore allowing me to cater to them during the home hunting process,” he says.
He strives to treat clients as though he were in their shoes and provides information, insight, and expertise based on truthful market trends and full transparency regarding home buying expectations.
Abraham says clients can rest assured when working with him because the goal is never to settle for a house the
“I am honest from the beginning and expect them
client simply likes, but rather to find a home that they love.
to reciprocate the commitment,” he says. “This is a team effort, and my fiduciary duty is always my client’s
“Usually we know with no words,” he explains. “But a huge smile as soon as they walk in.”
best interest.” Abraham Herndon Mario Ayala Real Estate Group 11351 James Watt Stc. C-500 El Paso, Texas 79936 (915) 231-0463
64 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Photographed by: BENJAMIN ONTIVEROS
Alejandro Meza www.mezarealtygroup.com (915) 929-6392
Alejandro Meza Alejandro Meza is a native El
“My Jules keeps me wealthy,”
Pasoan whose calling to real
estate came after serving in the United States Air Force and later working
Alejandro says his career as a Realtor allows
in the finance industry. The veteran says
him the flexibility to pursue his passion
it’s his mission to build and create long-
while also spending time with Julian in the
lasting relationships with his clients.
community he calls home.
“I like to create an experience, not a
“Real estate allows me to interact with a diverse
transaction,” Alejandro says. “I’m a great
community and after being in the military and
listener and my 15 years of real estate
serving my country, serving people brings me
experience and knowledge are exactly what
a great sense of fulfillment,” he says. “I love
the client is looking for. It brings me great
to bring value and positivity into the lives of the
satisfaction when I help a client either buying or
people I meet, but everything and everyone I
selling their home achieve their desired results.”
have been blessed with has been through God’s grace, mercy and favor and for that, I will always
Alejandro is the proud father of his 9-year old
live with a grateful and humble heart.”
son, Julian, whom he credits as his source of joy.
Photographed by: BENJAMIN ONTIVEROS
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 65
Cullers Homes LLC 7170 Westwind Dr. Suite 301 El Paso, TX 79912 (915) 200-5530 www.cullershomes.com
Cullers Homes LLC Jason Cullers is the proud
Cullers Homes’ is committed to constructing
owner of Cullers Homes. He
breathtaking homes that meet the ever-
started the company in 2013 and has more
evolving needs of the community.
than a decade of experience in the construction industry. The homes can be found throughout
“I love watching our customer’s joy and
the El Paso area in more than 13 communities.
excitement when receiving the keys to their new home, this makes me so happy knowing
The company is known and celebrated for
their family will be making many great
providing excellence in El Paso. Cullers
memories for years to come,” he says.
Homes was voted #1 Best Home Builder in 2020 and 2021.
Serving the El Paso community by constructing homes and apartments is rewarding for Jason.
Jason is a native of El Paso who loves his city. His passion extends not only to building homes
“I just love to drive around the city and see
for families but also to leading a company that
families living in their homes; this truly warms
builds and develops multi-family apartment
my heart,” he adds.
complexes. He says he is always looking for opportunities to grow and give back to the community. 66 | SPECIAL ADVERTISING
Photographed by: JOHN HORTA
Grace Martinez Grace Martinez at Mario Ayala Real Estate is committed to making
She regained her real estate license in 2017 and says it was the best
her mark on the El Paso community and believes that everyone can
decision she could make.
become a homeowner. “Coming back into the industry 28 years later, everything is completely “I’m blessed with the opportunity to change people’s lives and assist
different,” Grace says. “Now I’m in the minority as one of the older
them with their dream of homeownership,” she says. “Real Estate is
realtors. But I think I’m doing really well. I have been third in sales
challenging, hard work, and constantly changing.”
production with my brokerage for the past two years.”
Grace worked as a young real estate
When working with clients, Grace always requests a list of wants and
agent from 1993 to 1997 and later
needs in order to provide the optimal service that leads to a smooth
took a break to pursue a full-
transaction. Additionally, she assists with buyers and sellers and is
time opportunity at the State
also a builder’s representative for Pointe Homes.
of Health and Human
Grace says that at the end of the day, real estate is most rewarding for her.
Services, but says she “Buying or selling a home is such an emotional process and I want my
missed real estate.
clients to feel that they can depend on me for anything,” she says.
Grace Martinez Mario Ayala Real Estate Group 11351 James Watt Drive, C-500 El Paso, Texas 79936 (915) 787-9803
Photographed by: LUNA ISABEL
SPECIAL ADVERTISING | 67
Anim Welf e
Amid Veterinarian Shortage | By: ARTIE MONTENEGRO |
s a pet owner myself, I understand
For example, the City of El Paso Animal Services
the importance of getting an
reported 510 adoptions in March of 2020, but
only 136 adoptions in April of the same year. In
special doctor who doesn’t
2021, El Paso Animal Services saw between
200 and 395 adoptions per month.
anxious, and the community is fortunate to have many great veterinarians across the
Policy changes are also contributing to
city. Many pet parents have faced this same
positive outcomes regarding animal welfare.
struggle, and the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic didn’t help.
The Safe Outdoor Dogs Act went into effect in January and bans the use of chains for
But pet welfare, overall, is improving even as
tethering outside dogs. The act also stipulates
challenges like the pandemic and veterinarian
that dog owners must protect their pets
shortages persist at the local and national levels.
from inclement weather like extreme heat / cold, heavy winds, and precipitation
The El Paso Veterinary Medical Association
by providing shelter. Violations of the act are
(EPVMA) reports a large increase in rabies
a Class C misdemeanor that can result in a
tag registrations since the onset of the
citation and a $500 fine.
pandemic, translating to more pets being taken to their veterinarian on a regular basis. While pet adoptions did not necessarily rise amid the pandemic, the care pet parents gave their fur babies did increase. www.thecitymagazineelp.com
Local advocates are emphasizing the need
Despite the need for more veterinarians,
for greater education and resources to meet
tens of thousands of animals are served in El
The shortage is not limited to the Borderland,
the needs of the animal community.
Paso on a regular basis.
either; only 31 schools of veterinary medicine
The EPVMA is a non-profit organization
At the time of publication, there are 26 open
school seats between 60 to 120 students per
and regional leader in animal health and
positions for veterinarians in El Paso. The
graduating class, meaning that about 2,000
promoting the bond between humans and
shortage of veterinarians requires greater
new veterinarians graduate each year in the
animals that was founded in 1956. The
empathy and patience for veterinarians and
vision of the EPVMA is to advance animal
their clinic’s staff as many pets and their
well-being through advocacy, education, and
humans face longer wait times for services
Factor in the number of veterinarians who
promoting the veterinary profession.
such as vaccines, a more difficult time
venture into a field that is not companion
scheduling surgical procedures, and increased
distance to travel for emergency care.
veterinarians shrinks even more.
are in operation in the United States. Each
April 2022 The EPVMA reports that most veterinarians in El Paso work about fifty hours per week, and while the pay rate is comparable to that of larger cities, many locally-owned clinics are challenged to compete with the signing bonuses corporate clinics can offer. In addition to more crowded clinics, at the onset of the pandemic veterinarians had to pivot to continue providing care. From curbside services to canceling elective procedures to preserve PPE, the veterinary community did not shut down when many other industries did -- a shortage of providers or not. In response to being asked how the clinics maintain their quality of care with limited doctors and staff, EPVMA Executive Director Eric
Boehm says, “ultimately it is a good thing that more pet owners are taking their animals in for care and most veterinarians do not mind
working more to serve the pets of El Paso. This is a great city to live in, especially with a pet. With any luck, more veterinarians will agree
Sunday - Wednesday 11:00am - 8:00pm Thursday - Saturday 11:00am - 9:00pm
and give practice in the Borderland a shot.”
All this to say that the quality of life for El Paso pets has improved since the pandemic forced most of us to turn to our pets for
8690 Edge of Texas St. El Paso (915) 822-3343
companionship, and our local veterinarians showed their continued
commitment to caring for our companions.
Where Art Meets M
Injectables Laser Services Intimate Health Dermatologic Tailored Aesthetics
Karen Herman, MD 915.745.5888 7470 Cimmaron Plaza Building 13, Suite 100 El Paso, Texas 79911 RejuveneMD.com
‘Toma, Toma, Toma’ Teaches Readers to be the Authors of Their Own Stories
he comforts of home and the importance of storytelling are not to be taken for granted as we continue to navigate the world as we’ve never seen it before. Veronica Carbajal, a local
attorney, activist, and children’s book author is applying her skills and creativity to help bolster a more hospitable environment for humans and animals in the Borderland. Carbajal is the author of Toma Toma Toma, a bilingual children’s book on the responsibility people have to the environment and to the animals we take into our homes, and has led the efforts to rescue and rehome the stray dogs of Duranguito. Experiences from her childhood shaped her as a person, author, and animal advocate in adulthood. “The book went through all kinds of versions. But the one that I finally landed on was one that talked about my grandmother and talked about love from the
| By: ERIN COULEHAN photography by: JORDAN LICON |
perspective of a dog,” says Carbajal. www.thecitymagazineelp.com
April 2022 Carbajal’s
“Veronica’s book is special because it bridges
Youth Services Coordinator for El Paso
childhood in Ciudad Juarez with her mom
the gap between two cultures. It joins
Public Libraries. “Readers are able to see
and grandparents, who she says instilled
both sides of the Frontera by presenting
themselves in these stories and know that
the values of compassion, social awareness,
an important personal story in both of the
our stories here on the border are important
and civic responsibility in her at a young age
languages spoken here in El Paso,” says Jud
and showcase our experiences. It’s also
through their own example.
Burgess of Brave Books, a local book store on
really inspiring to people of all ages to see
Arizona Avenue that carries Carbajal’s book.
that a local person is published, and know
that their dream of writing is within reach.”
“I didn’t grow up in poverty, but I was aware of it. I was aware of the systems that led
“We call ourselves ‘Brave Books’ because we
to poverty, and also the impact my own
strive to encourage people to become avid
Carbajal was instrumental in rescuing litters of
decisions had on it. You have to pay attention.
readers, grow personally, develop creatively,
stray puppies and their parents from Duranguito
And you have to pay attention not only to
and get civically involved,” Burgess adds.
and says she hopes the book helps inspire the community to be mindful of stray animals as
human suffering but also the suffering of other sentient beings in the world, including
In addition to Brave Books, Toma Toma Toma
dogs and cats. Especially because they are
can be found at branches of the El Paso
domesticated and because we have chosen
she works on future literary projects. “I’m hoping it shows people that when they see a stray dog, it’s not just a dog. It’s
to do that to them,” she explains. “We want to see our local talent flourish here
not just, you know, a dog that’s capable of
In a world overwhelmed by a constant stream
in our own city and not have to leave in order
surviving, but that we, in fact, have a duty to
of narratives, books have a tremendous impact
to succeed. Many local authors like Veronica
make sure they’re okay.”
on shaping the minds of readers. Children’s
include biographical and local content in
literature is particularly important in that picture
their stories that people living in our region
books are often an individual’s first exposure to
can identify with,” says Lisa Martinez,
written stories in their native languages. “I think that it’s important for us to have stories from the border: to have bilingual stories, to have stories of people of color, or Mexican Americans, that we protect that and make sure are told the way that we want to tell it,” says Carbajal. Jonathan
Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human, asserts that “the human mind was shaped for story so that the human mind could by shaped by stories.” The power of storytelling, therefore, can be used to bridge gaps across strata of the human experience that include ethnicity, gender, and language. The
Language Acquisition reports that “Students who speak languages other than English are the fastest growing population in schools today,” which makes linguistic freedom a relevant
A Woman of Many T alents
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issue for children as they develop literacy and their identities -- especially in the Borderland.
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moon ring a full u d rk a P l ationa Arches N
e the best m o lc e w e rs r spring, w tographe o h p s we ente o tr s a n! e year for ay seaso W time of th y k il eak gazers: M ire the p m and star d a to time and beautiful e moon, a th f is o is s h e T phas . ilky Way, M e ths ahead th n f o o m m r the wa nebulas in
e r e H s i e m i t Prime
s by: ED hy and word p ra og ot h p os Obscura
S ta r G a z i n g P r i m e t i m e i s H e r e
Milky Way season in the southwest of the United States happens between late February to mid-November, but the best view times are April to September. Important things to know for night gazing and astrophotography: • Find an app you like that tells you when the subject you want will
• You will have to be up early, sleep late, or not at all! The Milky Way breaches the horizon at around 2 am, and you will be battling
be visible. I use SkyView Light. • Keep an eye on the moon phases. To see the Milky Way fully, you will want to adventure on or around a New Moon. Those days
the astronomical twilight and dawn (about 2 hours after sunset and before sunrise). • To get the best views, you’ll need to get as far away from light
during this Milky Way season are: • March 31, 2022
• July 28, 2022
• April 30, 2022
• Aug 27, 2022
• May 30, 2022
• Sept 25, 2022
• Jun 28, 2022
• Oct 25, 2022
pollution as possible. • To stargaze, but not see the Milky Way, you can get the best views after sunset but before moonrise! • Remember to Leave No Trace when out in nature.
• To see these stellar views, you’ll have to decide how far you want to go and what times you want to be awake. El Paso’s Transmountain offers beautiful views of stars and constellations!
Transmountain during a full moon with the Big Dipper 78
S ta r G a z i n g P r i m e t i m e i s H e r e
You could also venture to White Sands National Park or Lincoln National Forest to spot the stars, nebulas, moon, and Milky Way.
White Sands National Park during a full moon
Messier 92, Lincoln National Forest
Grand Canyon National Park during a new moon
Crescent Moon, Lincoln National Forest
S ta r G a z i n g P r i m e t i m e i s H e r e
Happy ng! i z a g r sta
Utah Desert, during a new moon
by Seirios Obscura Photography by Eden Klein. All rights reserved.
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Culture Cult Studios F
| Words and Photography by: ALEXANDRIA VIESCAS |
or local artists Ivan Calderon, Cindy Gutierrez-
Rather than simply put on an art show or two,
Krapp, and Jess Tolbert, creating a space for
Calderon, Gutierrez-Krapp and Tolbert created
fellow creatives to work and be inspired is
something better; they created Cult Studios.
just as important to them as creating art itself.
Cult Studios is not only a space where each
“What has inspired me is elevating the art
of them can practice their expertise; it is a
scene. How do you do that in a city that’s
selfless sanctuary for fellow artists, as well
low-income or just above the median income
as the community. The studio offers pottery
level?” asks Calderon. “1. Make more artists
classes, bead weaving classes, and invites
or 2. Get people to appreciate art so when
other artists to teach knitting, polymer
they see art, they’ll understand the process
clay, and other workshops. The studio also
of what goes into it. They’ll appreciate it
supports other artists in their home-like
more, purchase something, and, from word-
storefront, including Haydee Alonso of AYAY
of-mouth, educate people.”
Jewelry, muralist Christin Apodaca’s prints,
work from author Gris Muñoz, prints from
“When I met Cindy, she had this beautiful
Lxs Dos, glass from glassblower Juan Pablo
booth with the most amazing hats … and
Hernandez, and more.
she also looked really interesting,” says Tolbert, who is currently working at the
Tolbert and Gutierrez- Krapp, who owns
studio creating intricately placed staples into
Aghaa’ Hat Co., and Tolbert, an assistant
detailed jewelry pieces. “And we instantly
professor of Metals at the University of Texas
started talking about who we are and what
at El Paso, met each other at Las Artistas Art
we make, but specifically, we talked about
& Fine Crafts Show, where Gutierrez- Krapp
how there aren’t really spaces in El Paso for
was selling her sought-after high-quality
artists. We instantly started talking about
handmade hats, and Tolbert was overseeing
getting a space.”
her students at the show. After talking, both women realized that they were working out
For Calderon, an educator at the El Paso
of their homes. Because of their growing
Museum of Art, being a co-owner of Cult
recognition and booming businesses, they
Studios is an opportunity that he wanted for
saw a need to create something bigger and
quite some time. After graduating from UTEP
invited Calderon to join their collective.
with a double major in Painting and Drawing, he was waitlisted from other prestigious art
Dates - April 7th State Line - June 3rd Davenport - October 6th Mesa Street schools. Calderon used that challenge as a
out of my house, just like Jess,” says
driving force to continue his path to being an
Gutierrez-Krapp, who studied textile arts in
artist and never looked back.
New York. At the time, she was uncertain of what she was going to do, but like Calderon
“I knew I always wanted to stay here in El
and Tolbert, she always knew it would be
Paso, and I’ve always seen potential in it and
related to the arts. “In this space, I feel like
always had a vision for what the possibilities
I have been embraced here too, with people
could be,” says Calderon on a busy winter
wanting to order hats – and having repeat
day at his open studio for ceramics.
customers. Most of my business is El Paso, and that’s very amazing.”
Before the pandemic, the trio was looking at their current space at 615 Montana Avenue
Beyond being able to do something they
in Central El Paso, but COVID-19 spread
are passionate about for a living, opening
and put their plan on halt until 2021 came
Cult Studios has created a place that’s
along. They realized they were as certain in
nurturing other El Paso artists and creating a
creating a space as much as their certainty
community that can enhance the fabric of El
in being artists.
Paso. “Tolbert says she was surprised to find “not only the sense of community with Ivan
“I am a hat maker, and this is what I do for a
and Cindy but also the sense of community
living, and that’s how it all started. Working
with the arts community.”
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Party with us! contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org 85
Earth Ways to Show Your Love for Month
Environment | By: AINA MARZIA |
It’s here! April is the month of National World Rat Day (yes, that’s a thing) but also the month of Earth Day!
ut first, let’s talk about our increasingly
Succulents don’t require constant watch and
Workers and laborers for fast fashion
changing earth, climate change, a
only need to be watered once a week. The
companies are also exploited, working almost
very real and serious issue that might
Marble Queen Pothos is a fast-growing plant
15 hours a day for less than minimum wage.
be the reasoning behind El Paso’s
that is low maintenance. Pick a leafy friend
All for what? For 13 million tons of clothing to
this month and help the environment!
occupy our landfills? A lot of us don’t know
unpredictable weather. The earth has gotten around 1.2 degrees Fahrenheit to 1.4 degrees
this and buy from these companies regularly.
Fahrenheit warmer in the last century and the
Do your part in reducing waste by buying
main reason is human activity. You, me, and
long-lasting products, not overconsuming,
us. This April let’s say thank you to our planet
donating clothes to homeless or refugee
by doing these seven things to help reduce
shelters instead of thrift shops, and supporting
pollution, waste, and climate harm.
small clothing shops across the city.
Walk, Ride your bike, or Carpool
Eat Real Food
El Paso is said to be the 4th most air-polluted
It can be hard to cook after a long day at
mid-size metro within the United States. Help
work and eating out sounds like an easier
freshen up the air by driving less, walking, or
option. But it isn’t always the healthiest or
riding your bike to nearby places. Carpool
the most sustainable one. Drive-thru lines
with family or friends to work and events to
burn fuel that goes into our air and restaurant
reduce air pollution.
packaging wastes plastic and paper that sometimes crowds the city’s streets and
Invest in Upcycled Items What happens to items when we throw them away? Well, they end up in landfills
parks. Prepare home-cooked meals that don’t
have to be extensive or hard, grab family and friends and share the meal together. Or take
generating greenhouse gases and toxins.
One of the biggest things you can do is make
an extra step by buying from organic farms
Upcycled Items minimize waste and reduce
a habit to recycle. El Paso recycling locations
across the city like Desert Spoon Food Hub,
the costs and harms that come from
are scattered throughout the city and are
La Semilla Farm Fresh, Fossil Face farms,
producing manufactured items. Instead,
easy to use. El Paso’s recycling program
and many others.
buy from upcycled and sustainable brands
accepts paper, cardboard, plastic, aluminum,
like Fanfare, Visible clothing, and Upcircle. If
and tin. Curbside recycling bins are picked
you can’t afford these brands that’s ok, try
up every other week by the program. You
See the Mexican Gold Poppies on the Franklin Mountains
reusing household items or create your own
can also educate and help reduce recycling
It’s poppy season! The Franklin Mountain
upcycled items by using items you would
contamination by joining the Recycling
poppies are usually in full bloom at the end of
normally throw away.
Challenge program. Let’s all do our part to
March and should last this month. Appreciate
save the Earth and the beautiful Sun City.
the beauty El Paso has to offer and visit the
Plant or Buy Indoor Plants Greenery is everything, and plants are a big
Stray Away from Fast Fashion
slopes of the mountain covered in glittering yellow flowers. Who knows, maybe you’ll get an insta-worthy post too!
part of this; not only do they provide oxygen
Brands like Shein, ASOS, and Fashion
for us to breathe but they are also the perfect
Nova can be hard to resist. They provide
gift or decoration item. Indoor plants are
inexpensive and trendy clothing but cause
That’s a wrap! Don’t forget that every day is
the perfect way to keep your space feeling
serious damage to the environment. Fast
Earth day so make sure to include some of
natural, but also help boost mood and
fashion brands force us to over-consume and
these sustainable practices even after April.
creativity. Plants are not hard to manage
throw away clothes. (Only 10 percent of thrift
once you know which ones are best for you.
items get sold, so that’s not a solution either.)
Justice for the
Teenagers, of the Teenagers, and by the Teenagers | By: LAJWARD ZAHRA |
Justice for the Teenagers
he City of El Paso Municipal Teen
Judge Michelle Morales, the supervisor and
program. When Judge Morales was elected,
Court is a program founded about
mentor, founder, and judge of Teen Court,
she began working with Flores.
four years ago for teenagers with
(adults are not entirely absent) recount an
two goals. One, to promote an
instance during the first year of the program.
“We found we worked really well together, and we really enjoyed what we were doing
interest in teenagers interested in law, and two, to offer low-level juvenile offenders who have
A group of teenagers had all been cited for
so after a time we just said ‘Why isn’t there
pled guilty an alternative to regular sentencing
driving with detectable alcohol under 21 (the
a team court program housed within the city
and improve their lives through positive peer
juvenile version of driving while intoxicated).
Municipal Court?’” says Judge Morales.
influence. Instead of fines and violations on
On the day of their trial, it was pointed out that
their permanent record, the teen defendants
only one of the defendants should have been
After pitching the idea, and several meetings
are given community service after being tried
cited with driving with detectable alcohol, as
with others, they managed to get it approved.
by either a conventional trial or a master jury.
only one of them was actually driving. Upon
In a conventional trial, teen volunteers
realizing that, Judge Morales announced to
“It is something that sort of just happens
them that their citations had been dismissed.
when two people like-minded people work well together. It was wonderful, it was a
are assigned roles in the case as either prosecution, representing the state, or as
“The smiles on those faces were something
lovely experience because neither one of us
the defense attorney. They prep opening
I’ll never forget. What it did that day, is made
knew where it was going, we just took the
statements as well as direct and cross-
these kiddos understand that justice does
ball and ran with it,” Judge Morales adds.
examine the witnesses who are usually the
work, and it can be fair to them. Maybe there
parents and the defendant.
are 10 other times where justice doesn’t
Fortunately, success for the incredibly young
work for them or a family but witnessing the
program is defined in various ways.
A teen jury watches the case play out and
one time it did work, might influence these
after deliberation, they decide on the amount
kids to grow up with a belief in their justice
Teen Court, first and foremost, is looking to
of community service hours.
system and how we do it here in the United
foster positive experiences with the criminal
States and that it can work for them, and it
justice system for defendants. However,
can be fair,” she says.
when it comes to the volunteers who are
In a mastery jury, there are no attorneys.
present day in and day out serving their
Instead, a group of teen court volunteers asks a defendant and their parent questions
The teen volunteers have their own success
community and serving others, success
regarding the incident, the character of
stories as well. Amaris Espinoza, a veteran teen
looks like becoming more knowledgeable
the defendant, and their circumstances.
court volunteer, attributes a significant amount
about the criminal justice system and
A sentence is reached after deliberation
of character growth to the opportunities and
meeting new people.
considering all the facts shared by the parent
encounters fostered by the program. The current goal of Teen Court is to arrive at
and the defendant. “You come away from this experience more
a point where they can offer a scholarship
When discussing recent shifts in the legal
knowledgeable, more sure of yourself in
to one of their volunteers a year. “For me,
scape of El Paso, adolescents are rarely
public speaking, and also have met people
that’s like the pinnacle of success,” laughs
with whom you don’t share experiences. It
really helps with perspective and it makes Even when they are, it is to discuss curfew
you a better person,” she emphasizes. “I am
“Even if we were the first teen court in Texas
and how to curb teen drinking. But in three
so glad that a program like this exists.”
to go virtual during the pandemic.”
Overland Street in downtown El Paso,
For teen court volunteer Aina Marzia, the
teenagers meet once a month at 8 am sharp
feeling when she tells me about the start
feeling of building up this border community
as litigators, court clerks, and jurors for real
of this program.
is enough. “We want to come back for more
courtrooms in a nondescript building on Morales
because, it’s just you go home, and you feel
cases of teenage offenders. What’s more -- it’s been working.
When Judge Morales was elected in 2017,
good about yourself, you feel good about
the Juvenile Case Manager for the municipal
your community, you feel good about the
court at the time was Lori Flores, who had
people in your community.”
been wanting to establish a teen court www.thecitymagazineelp.com
Isaac’s Disney World Wish | Photos courtesy of: BELMONTE FAMILY |
M a k e - A - W i s h E l PA S O
saac can be shy, but once he gets to know
The team at Make-A-Wish got to work on
someone new, he is silly, funny, and sweet.
planning Isaac’s Disney adventure while he
He loves playing video games, going on walks, and looking out for his older sister. Life with kidney disease hasn’t been easy for Isaac, but he’s done his best to show courage and keep a positive mindset
through his diagnosis and treatments. “Isaac is always wanting to make things better. He is the first to hug you when you are sad, ask if you are ok when you get hurt, and loves to make you smile,” Isaac’s mom Isabel shared. Isabel referred Isaac to Make-A-Wish a few months after his diagnosis. She was by his side through every step of his medical journey, and she was hopeful that a wish would encourage him to rediscover the joy and optimism he had before his illness. When he found out he was getting a wish, Isaac was eager to share his ideas with his wish-granting volunteers. One idea stuck out to him above them all—a trip to Walt Disney World with his family!
Everyone s rely nice and treed him le a ck star. He lked aund with his Make-AWish lanyard just as pud as could be. He saw th the world is filled with kind and good people.
eagerly awaited the day his wish would come true. When it was finally time to pack his bags and board the plane, Isaac couldn’t believe it! Isaac and his family spent several days going on rides until they were dizzy, snacking on delicious food, meeting lots of Disney characters, and having countless laughs along the way. “Everyone was really nice and treated him like a rock star. He walked around with his Make-A-Wish lanyard just as proud as could be,” Isabel said. “He saw that the world is filled with kind and good people.” Throughout the trip, he was able to take the focus off his illness and just be a kid for a few days, and it gave him so much hope for the future. He’ll look back on this day with a smile on his face for years to come. Wish Night El Paso is sold out, but keep an eye out for the online auction starting April 4 to help make even more wishes come true! Learn more at one.bidpal.net/wishnightep.
‘The Blessings of Mystery’ makes its way to El Paso | By: ITZEL GIRON photos courtesy of: THE STANLEE AND GERALD RUBIN CENTER FOR THE ARTS |
he art scene in El Paso is fruitful,
According to Kerry Doyle, Director of the
whether it be the street art of
Rubin Center, this exhibition is rooted in
West Texas and its indigenous roots.
pieces seen on Airway, art fills the community in so many ways.
“It is an exhibition of contemporary art that
Stepping onto the second floor of the Stanlee
looks at the moment in Texas history where
and Gerald Rubin Center for the Arts at the
land became privatized and monetized,”
University of Texas at El Paso, the art continues.
said Doyle. “(Artists Carolina Caycedo and David de Rozas) are contrasting that with an
As rulers, survey flags, and construction
ingenious collective concept of land that is
vests dangle from the roof, audience
something to be shared by everyone.”
members are led into the exhibition of “The Blessings of Mystery.” The exhibition is a
Carolina Caycedo and David de Rozas, artists
revolving collection of installations and film
of “The Blessings of Mystery” have done
pieces making its way throughout West
extensive research on three key locations:
Texas, including the University of Texas at
the McDonald Observatory in Fort Davis, the
Austin, UTEP, and its final stop at Ballroom
Amistad Dam on the Rio Grande, and the
Marfa, a non-profit museum in Marfa, Texas.
Permian Basin oil fields, which help create every part of this exhibition. Both Caycedo
and De Rozas have created pieces that
One of those specific pieces is the atrium
said. “You’ll see natural landmarks, you’ll see
complement ‘The Teachings of the Hands’ the
that dangles through the Rubin Center,
symbols that refer to harmony in there, you’ll
film showcased in this exhibit, further depicting
the tools used to mark the historic path of
see the people of these lands and the ways
the region’s complex histories of colonization,
the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo, and the way it
in which the earth provided for people and
migration, and ecological precarity.
divides both Mexico and Texas. The piece,
along with every other piece curated for the Like the three locations featured in the exhibit,
exhibit, invites the audience to think about
The Rubin Center, open Monday through
the artists researched the three locations
the regional history of West Texas and how
Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. will have
the exhibit will travel to. Each location was
connected it is to indigenous culture.
‘Somi Se’k‘ and the entire “The Blessings of Mystery” exhibition available for viewing
chosen because it has an impact on how the story is told and why certain pieces pertain to
When asked about what other pieces could
until April 13, rather than the initial end date
have a bigger impact on audience members,
of April 15 according to Doyle.
Doyle spoke about ‘Somi Se’k ‘or ‘Land of “The exhibition, even though the artist
the Sun,’ the name given to the West Texas
The community is invited to immerse
themselves are from Columbia, is very closely
region by the Carrizo/Comecrudo Tribe.
themselves in not only the art and film but history from different viewpoints including
related to the place that we live in,” said Doyle. “The way the exhibition was conceived
“It’s a central piece, very colorful in which
in each of the three sites that it is going to in
Carolina draws a map of ‘Somi Se’k‘, of this
West Texas; there are one or two sites specific
region from an indigenous viewpoint,” Doyle
pieces that were created just for the site.”
Men in the Moment | By: DANIEL HERNANDEZ |
pringtime in El Paso is beautiful with the longer days full of sunshine and desert
I discovered that the men’s skincare market is booming.
flowers blooming, but it can also be harsh with the winds and dryness.
In 2021, the men’s skincare products market in
After living away for so many years,
the U.S. was estimated at $3.4 billion. Although
I forgot how intense the desert
sales were expected to slow during the
weather can get -- especially now that
pandemic, it gave men the opportunity to shop
I’m no spring chicken this spring.
discreetly online and keep the skincare market growing. Actually, because of the pandemic,
I must admit that I never did skincare upkeep
there was also the growth of the Lumbersexual:
and didn’t give it much thought until I started
a male hipster who appropriates a rugged,
developing sunspots on my face and noticing
outdoorsy look, complete with a full beard.
the impending crow’s feet around my eyes
Instigated by the fact that no one went out or
a few years ago. I discovered that I have
cut their hair for a while. This brawny appearance
melasma, a skin condition characterized
is a cultivated style by a younger generation
by brown patches or spots, more common
raised with sunscreen and skincare awareness.
among darker skin tones.
Knowing the harshness of a beard, skincare is needed to maintain the face underneath, hence
Although it’s prevalent in women, it still
another element in the growth of men’s skincare.
affects some men, and sun exposure is
the main source of provocation. I’ve tried
I thought it was important to talk to guys
a few different skin lightening creams to
about what guys want and need for their
erase them and discovered some brands did
skin. Guys don’t want to use a bunch of
nothing and some burned my skin. Not good.
products. We like simplicity, i.e. the all-in-
My interest in fashion and style never really
one: body wash, shampoo, and conditioner --
extended to skincare but I’ve been working
brilliant. I contacted a couple of my friends in
on it since I noticed my aging and luckily, I’m
the business of looking good to get answers
not too late.
for men’s skin needs.
I checked in with Scott Poteat, Director of
products. It’s a moisturizer. It contains a
Sales for Perricone MD. Poteat is a former
blend of anti-oxidants that address signs of
El Pasoan who frequently comes back to
aging, peptides to create collagen and help
visit and is knowledgeable about our climate
eliminate wrinkles, hyaluronic acid to hydrate
and its toll on the skin. When I asked him
skin and keep it plump, and vitamin C to
what he thinks would work for guys in the
brighten the skin and help with sun damage.
El Paso weather and why, he had the perfect
Perricone MD product, the Cold Plasma Plus.
I also contacted an old co-worker from my
It comes in sleek, masculine, black packaging
glam-squad days in Los Angeles, celebrity
that would fit well in any man’s bathroom. He
makeup artist and groomer, Rod “Tuddy”
tells me that this is a lightweight, fragrance-
Rinks, who works with numerous male
free cream that does the work of multiple
clientele in Hollywood. Tuddy swears by The
Good by Caldera Lab. He discovered it while
in the skin and with dark spots is apparent
shooting a movie with his client Mario Lopez,
within 14 days. The Good is a 100 percent
in the Nevada desert. The hot days and cold
plant-based organic product.
nights of the desert can take a toll on your skin and when your client is the star of the
In the past, I confess, that I would use
movie, you must keep him looking good, and
whatever old products my mom had or if I
this product did the job. The Good serum
got something in a swag bag; I didn’t care.
comes in sophisticated black slate packaging
Now that I’m in El Paso without the aid of
that has a very contemporary style. This
the California ocean air to help my skin,
multifunctional serum moisturizes, smoothss
I really have to make an effort to keep my
and tightens the skin, reduces fine lines, and
skin healthy. The sun and wind are beautiful
improves the appearance of dark spots and
things in nature, but not on my skin.
skin tone. He said a noticeable difference
Zak Davis Personable | Knowledgeable | Compassionate
I’ll take care of
like I take care of
El Paso is my home, let me help you find yours:
y a l S s r e w Po April Flowers Bring
| By: ERIN COULEHAN |
A p r i l F l o w e r s B r i n g S l ay P o w e r s
pring fashions are in bloom, and
fashion statements: the floral prints were seen
this season we’re honoring feminine
as status symbols.
florals while also accessorizing with a modern Italy participated in frequent trade with the Ottoman
edge curated for our desert city.
Empire, with lush velvet florals in vogue as some
Floral patterns and fabrics have spanned different
of the most coveted designs in Italian cities.
cultures throughout the ages but are often emblematic of the fairer sex, with “the language of
Textile manufacturing grew exponentially in
flowers” motif found in diverse designs to this day.
the United States in the wake of the Industrial Revolution, which made the once time-consuming
Fashion florals originated in Asia -- Japan,
textiles capable of mass production, and therefore,
China, and India -- created using surface design
more accessible to American consumers.
techniques such as katazome rice paste printing and e-gasuri dyeing that were later woven into
Today, florals remain in style from Hawaiian
bright brocades or rendered in embroidery.
hibiscus prints to Chinese lotus flowers to posh peonies that can be accessorized in a multitude
of ways to slay.
paramount in that contemporary floral textiles literally grew out of the relationship between
Eye-catching eyelet florals can be dressed up
east and west sartorial appetites.
or down depending on your mood. Pair a pastel eyelet dress with a pair of nude pumps or wedges
Florals were disseminated through global trade
for a brunch look. Toughen up the eyelet look by
between the 15th and 16th centuries when
accessorizing with a leather motorcycle jacket or
European traders began purchasing ornate
studded jewelry to add some grace and “grrr.”
textiles that quickly turned into more than www.thecitymagazineelp.com
A p r i l F l o w e r s B r i n g S l ay P o w e r s
Every detail. Every Project. Every Time.
helping our community
with intergrity and transparency (915) 873-8714
1000 Diesel Dr. Suite D. El Paso, TX. 79907
zehrasolutions.com email@example.com 100
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Speaking of leather, rock and rule your look with contrast. Faux or real leather pants/
WINNE R LD O
leggings instantly punk up your petals with attitude. Pair a floral blouse with leather-
B E S T I TA L I
looking leggings or a high-waisted pencil skirt
for a look that is as fierce as it is floral. You can also integrate leather into your spring fashion rotation with different styles of boots ranging from punk rock combat to open-toed spike-heeled booties. Hats serve as excellent complements to florals that can take the look into different directions. A straw hat with sneakers and a denim jacket create a laid-back effect that can be worn to brunch, a picnic, or lunch date. Large brimmed felt hats deliver an earthy/ indie vibe that can take your look from day to night depending on the tone of the hat. Pair with a funky belt and layered accessories for a boho look.
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EL PASO - CORONADO, TX HOURS
6801 N. Mesa St. Suite B-8
Mon - Fri: 5 AM - 7 PM Sat - Sun: 7 AM - 12 PM
The City Magazine’s March launch party
Guests gathered in the (finally!) warm weather at Hotel Indigo to celebrate the unveiling of our March cover, featuring artist and lawyer Patrick Gabaldon. The spirited event featured live music and even livelier conversation as members of the community enjoyed the atmosphere while anticipating more warmer days to come.
| Photos by: SEIRIOS OBSCURA |
Get to Know Your Houses 1st House Y | By: SABRINA BUSTILLOS |
our birth chart, also known as your natal
chart, is a blueprint of the sky taken at
the time of your birth. While most people
know their sun sign, it is only one piece
of a puzzle that details your personality and
greater purpose. When you were born, the
planets aligned in a one-of-a-kind way across constellations and the 12 houses of the zodiac. Each of the 12 houses represents something significant about your life path.
Home to first impressions, outward appearance, and our visibility towards the world, the first house holds our sense of self. Are you interested in exploring the best way to make a lasting impression? Look no further than your first astrological house, otherwise known as your rising sign! Ruled by Aries and Mars, this house encourages us to move forward as our most authentic selves. While your sun sign holds your central purpose, your rising sign offers a direction for getting there. Think of it as the compass that guides you towards the best version of yourself.
Understanding the 12 houses and their functions is the first step to navigating your life path and karmic duties on earth. While your sun sign can indicate your persona and conscious mind, your complete birth chart can highlight everything from your taste in clothes to your views on marriage. Astrology is a tool, and while it can’t predict every outcome, it can inspire us to be the best versions of ourselves possible. To discover your whole birth chart, visit Astro-
2nd House Ruler of finances, wealth and material possessions, our second house dominates value of all types. Whether you are seeking long-term financial guidance or hoping to learn where in your life to find the most financial luck, your second house is the place to look. In addition to finances, the second house can teach us about possessions worth protecting. Ruled by Taurus and Venus, this house wants us to enjoy pleasure to the highest degree -- but only after taking steps to work for it.
ast rolo gy For ecast
Glossophobics, beware! The third house in
Located at the bottom of the birth chart,
Ruled by Leo and The Sun, the fifth house is
astrology relates to communication, including
the fourth house relates to our roots and
home to the fire within us that just wants to
public speaking! Here, we find our strengths
foundation. Where do we come from? What
feel good. Here, we discover what makes us
and weaknesses in communicating our
makes us feel most at home? How do we
truly feel satisfied. Our personal passions roam
thoughts and feelings. Ruled by Gemini and
navigate relationships with our caretakers?
free, including those we’ve long forgotten.
Mercury, this house can teach us how to
Ruled by Cancer and The Moon, the fourth
What dreams did you possess in childhood?
effectively translate messages from our inner
house strives to find a sense of home,
Your inner child’s desires and talents live
world to the outside world. From texting and
whatever it may look like. For some, home is
here, waiting to be awakened. While other
writing, to how you feel about gossip, the
a place. For others, it can be a person or group
houses may emphasize long-term planning and
third house highlights your relationship to
of people. Here, we find guidance for building
structure, your fifth house can highlight aspects
messages and how you may be comfortable
a site of emotional security for ourselves.
of your life that should be more carefree,
including dating, flirting, and artistry of all kinds.
Ruler of health, wellness, and routines, the sixth house is home to your best habits. Here, we learn the best ways to take care of ourselves and our physical bodies. Guided
by Virgo and the planet Mercury, the sixth
bodies respond to stress? How do we meet
our body’s needs? We only get one body, and
house is here to ensure we are equipped for self-maintenance. How do our physical
the sixth house is here to remind us that it’s
our job to take care of it.
Natural light Candid Authentic
7th House This house is all about our relationships and commitments to others. While the 5th house can offer insight into what we may prefer in terms of dating, the seventh house can highlight our long-term relationship strengths and weaknesses. Ruled by Libra and Venus, here we find guidance with marriage, divorce, business partnerships, and life-long friendships. What kind of spouse will you be? What types of long-term partners do you thrive alongside? Your seventh house holds the answers to all things commitment.
8th House Home to all things taboo, the eighth house offers insight into sex, addictions, and death. This energy is ruled by Scorpio and Pluto, two intense forces. While the first house represents the self we share with the world, the eighth house represents our darker side. Who are we when we’re alone? Here, we learn how to transform ourselves on a deeper level. Death in the eighth house doesn’t just relate to the end of our lives; it relates to how 106
we reinvent ourselves and lay past versions of ourselves to rest.
ast rolo gy For ecast
Home to culture, language, travel, and
Guided by Capricorn, the 10th house is home
Regarded as the home to humanitarianism,
learning, the ninth house holds our sense of
to our ambitions, career path, reputation,
philanthropy, and community, the 11th house
exploration. Dominated by Sagittarius and
and social status. For many unsure of their
embodies all things Aquarius. Naturally
Jupiter, adventure finds itself at home here.
next career move, identifying this house
inclined to prioritize the greater good, your
This house manifests in our relationships
placement can be essential to figuring out
11th house placement can highlight causes
with travel, religion, and school in the
where you may have the best long-term
you keep dear to your heart. What forms
physical world. Internally, this house allows
success. It may also be a good indicator
of service make you feel the happiest?
us to seek wisdom and take risks. Identifying
of your work ethic and your role in the
Volunteerism thrives here and may indicate
your ninth house placement can help you
workplace. It can even highlight the social
the type of future you believe in. Additionally,
indicate where you can invite adventure into
circles you may run in! All things work, and
your political ideologies and social awareness
your life and expand your cultural knowledge.
social reside in the 10th house.
can form and evolve here.
With similar energy to the eighth house, the 12th house represents our subconscious and karma. Here, we discover things that may be unknown to our conscious self. What generational curses were you brought here to break? What lessons are you supposed to leave this life learning? This house completes the zodiac cycle and alludes to extraordinary endings. What do you need to discover about yourself before transitioning into the afterlife? More important existential questions manifest here. It’s our responsibility to seek the answers without fear.
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