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Today's News

  • New Mexico celebrates Arbor Day

     Residents of New Mexico will celebrate Arbor Day 2009 on March 13. While National Arbor Day is held on the last Friday in April, New Mexico, similar to several other states, observes the holiday at a time best suited for tree planting.

    The Arbor Day Foundation encourages everyone to plant a tree to celebrate this special holiday. The Foundation’s Web site (www.arborday.org) offers many helpful tips from how to plant a tree to selecting the right tree for the right place.

  • BREAKING NEWS: Mavs eliminate Cowboys

    Oscar Sigala hit a three-run blast -- his third home run of the game -- in the bottom of the ninth, but the Highlands Cowboys couldn't sustain the rally and lost 15-13 to archrival Mesa State on Friday evening in the NCAA Division II Central Regional tournament.

    The loss, preceded by a defeat to Wayne State (Neb.) on Thursday, eliminates NMHU from the postseason. The Cowboys finished 39-21.

  • BREAKING NEWS: RHS track teams both in top three at state

     

     

     

    For the second straight year, Robertson High's Estevan Vigil stood tall on the awards podium in the aftermath of the state track and field championship meet, having claimed the Class 3A boys' high-point athlete distinction.

    Vigil's 31 points were in fact the second highest total among the six high-point honorees, Classes 3A through 5A. The Cardinal junior reclaimed the state titles in the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash and added a title in the long jump.

  • Mayor tops in his fitness challenge

    It looks like Mayor Tony Marquez won at his own game.

    During last week’s regular City Council meeting, the city’s recreation center announced the winners of the Mayor’s 90-Day Fitness Challenge. And the top finisher was Marquez himself.

    But he declined all prizes associated with the honor, instead having the free annual pass to the recreation center go to the second finisher, Cristina Gonzales. The other winners got free monthly passes.

    The mayor lost 17 pounds and 3 percent body fat, while Gonzales shed 11 pounds and 3.5 percent body fat.

  • Adios to Muchas Cosas

    As most readers probably already know, the Optic is downsizing, going from five to three editions per week.

    The end to the Optic’s long tradition as a daily paper is slated for early March.

    The Muchas Cosas is  also being discontinued. This edition is the last.

  • LETTER: Mil Gracias

    On behalf of the Mora Chamber of Commerce, I would like to thank the many volunteers who assisted on April 25 for the Mora County Clean-up Day.

    The success would not have been possible had it not been for the hard work of those involved. Thank you to the 120-plus individuals who cleaned up the roadways, ditches, yards and arroyos. Special thanks to Russell’s, New Mexico Department of Transportation, Community First Bank, Bank of Mora, Mora County, Daniels Ranch, Herzog Environmental, Allsups and the Buena Vista Volunteer Fire Department.

    Orta Vez, Mil Gracias!

  • Man gets 18 years for sex crimes

    A local man has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for molesting a girl at his home.

    Bobby McKenna, 54, pleaded guilty to criminal sexual penetration of a minor under the age of 13, a first-degree felony, District Attorney Richard Flores said.

    The charge stems from incidents dating back to January 2007. The victim and two younger girls would spend weeks at McKenna’s home, and that’s when McKenna, by his own admission, would have the victim perform oral sex on him, according to the district attorney’s office.

  • Leap to the Literacy Fair

    If you can read this, be thankful. Many in San Miguel County and across the nation can’t read, and many more still cannot read at an adult level.

    Nearly half of New Mexico’s population reads at or below a benchmark standard called Literacy Level 2. Level 2 literacy is that level of reading and comprehension skills expected from children in the fifth through seventh grades. Nearly two-thirds of all jobs require literacy skills above this level, but in San Miguel County, 59 percent of our residents fall at or below Level 2.

  • LETTER: We could be the smart state

    In response to “Proposed wind rules called ‘one sided’”: It is important to note the amendments to the San Miguel Ordinance is designed to protect all citizens of San Miguel County per the San Miguel Comprehensive Plan that states “rural lifestyle, small farms and large ranches, traditional historic villages, cultural heritage and extraordinarily scenic setting of San Miguel County should be celebrated, honored and preserved.”

  • Cop faces drug charges

    A former Las Vegas police officer and his wife were arrested early Thursday afternoon on charges of distributing prescription drugs.

    Robert Ortega and his wife, Judith Ortega, were taken into custody after a lengthy investigation. He faces three counts of trafficking prescription medications, while she faces two counts, Police Chief Gary Gold said.