Suddenly it is springtime in the Rockies again. And after such a long, cold and windy winter, I wondered if any plant, tree, weed would survive our weather onslaughts.
I am happy to report that our grass is green again, there are buds on our various trees and the lilacs may bloom soon. The early plum blossoms are frozen, but that happens every year here. My calendar has all sorts of dates penciled in.
A very big event just happened, and I was invited to be part of the program: the Purple Tie Highlands University President’s Gala event at Wilson Complex. I know there were at least 500 folk there, milling around among some fabulous art and silent auction items before the big program and dinner.
Sharon Caballero put together a program that kept everyone there entertained and busy. She said from the beginning of the planning for this event (which was a roast and a thank you for five years of great leadership by HU’s President Jim Fries) that the entertainment had to be lively and fun. That meant the music had to be live, not canned, the media presentation had to be high definition screen ready and the roasters had to poke fun at the president in a fun way.
Yes, I was a roaster, and what fun it was to be front and center talking once again about my favorite university.
Yes, we had to write, rewrite, and rehearse and listen to each other as we pulled the roast together. Can you imagine being restricted to just 10 minutes to poke fun at our president, no less?
That was the hardest part for all of us, because we all had lots to say. Our saving grace was the noted actor, Steven Michael Quezada, who was the emcee. If there was a flub, or delay, or even something just plain funny, he was quick with a fill-in or a response. We marveled at his ease in front of the microphone and his great sense of humor.
A highlight for me was being able to visit with several of my contemporaries, my classmates, who returned for this great event. And finally my son Carl and his wife, Lisa, got to meet some of these classmates and friends they’ve heard me talk about, often I might add.
Carl, the Ruidoso banker noted on the way home from that big party that it was one of the best they had attended, and they go to many fundraising events as bankers do.
Probably the highlight (there were many) was noting that the catering, the publicity, the special effects, even the decorations were local. It took an army of people to pull this together, and because I was fortunate enough to sit in on some of the planning sessions, I was pleasantly surprised at how well it all came together.
I have been on committees like this in the past, and coordination is the keyword, but that can also be a stumbling block if people don’t work together well.
And now the question is: Should another one be planned for next year? Probably not, because Las Vegas is such a small community. The pool of financial contributors is relatively small here, and because this was such a success, I’m confident some other organization will soon pick it up. Now there are golf tournaments, big silent auctions, and varied events going on here almost every weekend.
Yes, this poor area is very supportive, no matter what comes along, and I can only say “Thank you, Las Vegas and all of northern New Mexico for supporting so many causes, with both your dollars and your presence at these events.
“Yes, that is the neighborly thing to do, and my parents pounded that into my head a long time ago. I do agree!”
Editha Bartley lives in Gascon in Mora County. She may be reached at 454-0563.