Friday, October 30, 2009

Newmanistas Prepare for Halloween

Ghosts haunt the Milazzo's home on Altura

Newman Park Neighborhood Association Vice-President, Becky Friesenhahn, is getting ready to pick-up 80 pumpkins for tomorrow afternoon's pumpkin carving at Newman Park from 3 to 5 p.m. Board member, Rebecca Ayala, is gathering paint brushes. All kids 17 and under will be able to carve or paint funny or scary faces.

A mysterious creature awaits trick-or-treaters at 2830 Aurora

For the fourth year in a row, surreal sculptor, Ho Baron, plans to have a living statue (a stationary mime) to greet trick-or-treaters tomorrow night from 7 to 9 p.m. Mr. Baron's tribal and surreal, cosmic and baroque sculptures at 2830 Aurora are always evocative of the magic of Halloween. Each Halloween, Ho's home attracts over 500 kids.

A ghastly scene is sure to scare visitors to 2814 Frankfort

Spooky castle at 2535 Savannah

Monday, October 26, 2009

Annual Pumpkin Carving on Saturday

Be sure to come to Newman Park for the pumpkin carving at 3 pm. First come, first served. And wear your costume, if you like. We'd love to see what everyone is wearing.

The El Paso Police Department would also like everyone to have a very happy and safe Halloween. To ensure this, they are reminding El Pasoans of some very important safety information. On Halloween, there will be many young children in and around the roadways. Dark costumes, dark streets, and motorists pose the greatest risk to trick-or-treaters. The following are some tips that can help ensure a safe and enjoyable Halloween for everyone.

1. Parents should accompany their children at all times. Do not leave your children unattended or unsupervised, especially younger children.

2. Children should wear costumes that are visible in the dark. Light colored costumes are preferable but if the costume is dark, some kind of reflective material or tape should be used.

3. Carry some form of light, preferably a flashlight.

4. Check your children’s candy before they eat it. Watch out for candy that appears to have been tampered with and be aware of any home made or unpacked treats.

5. Watch for traffic. Do not let your children run in and out of the street, keep them on the sidewalks.

6. If you're driving, watch out for children darting into traffic. Slow down especially in residential areas. Drive with extreme caution, because dark costumes may be very hard to see.

7. Respect those who do not wish to participate. If the front porch light is off, chances are they are not giving out candy.

8. Have children stay within the neighborhood, only visiting homes you know.

Parents should also remember that there are many other safe alternatives such as organized Halloween parties and Haunted Houses, many of which are sponsored by local schools, churches, businesses or other organizations. Find out about these activities and keep them in mind as a better and safer alternative.

Have a great Halloween and see you at Newman Park at 3 pm!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Our Own Lisa D Takes Over Marketing for EP Opera

Lisa with son, Louie

Newmanista Lisa Degliantoni was recently hired by the El Paso Opera as their new Marketing Director. A press release from LARGetc gives her duties and background:

"She will oversee daily advertising, marketing and publicity duties for the opera company while pursuing new initiatives in the arts and education in order to further the opera's connection with the community . . .

"Degliantoni joins the opera after serving as Editor-in-Chief of El Paso Media Group, where she helped guide the editorial and marketing team in the formation of the media group. With a background in media and publishing, her resume includes titles such as Vogue, New York Magazine, Psychology Today and local companies KTSM and Stanton Street Technology Group."

Lisa is an active member of the Board of the Newman Park Neighborhood Association, and lends her editorial talents and organizational skills to help make our neighborhood a great place to live. On many afternoons, she can be seen walking up to the park with her two boys, Miles and Louie.

Congratulations on your new job, Lisa D!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Great Southwest Book Fair

As if Halloween wasn't exciting enough—what with pumpkin carving in the afternoon at Newman Park and trick or treating that night in the 'hood—there's the Great Southwest Book Fair at the Main Library downtown. Among the great writers and storytellers assembled, you'll find three published by El Paso's own Cinco Puntos Press: Claudia Martinez (The Smell of Old Lady Perfume), Xavier Garza (Charro Claus & The Tejas Kid; Lucha Libre: The Man in the Silver Mask), and Joe Hayes (La Llorona, El Cucuy and many more). Start your Halloween out with great books, great writers and great ghost-y stories!

Sweet, Lost Male Dog

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The Cooks report that they are keeping a very sweet, white, male dog at their home at 2420 Louisville. The dog is lost and has no tags. Gregory tells us that "he is shy and scared." If you know to whom this precious little animal belongs, please call 630-2665.

Let's find his home!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

McKee House Gets Historic Protection

Yesterday City Council approved an ordinance placing an historic overlay on the McKee House, located at 2630 Richmond Avenue on the corner of Richmond and Louisiana just across the street from Newman Park.

Newman Park Neighborhood Association President Lynn Coyle was overjoyed:
"We are thrilled that historic protection for the McKee home has been finalized. Without the leadership of Representative Byrd's office and the support of board members, neighbors and key city personnel, this would not have happened. What a great partnership! With historic protection we know that, no matter who ultimately becomes the owner of the McKee home, its historical integrity will be protected."
The historic overlay process was lengthy. It included prior approval by the Development Coordinating Committee, the Historic Landmark Commission and the City Plan Commission.

District 2 Representative Susie Byrd said: "It's a big step in preserving one of our neighborhood's most important treasures."

Further steps will require a conversation with the bank's lawyer to approve a sale. It will also be helpful for the bank to divulge to Byrd's office and the neighborhood association what its plans are. "There are willing buyers," Byrd explained. "What is needed is a buyer who will buy and fix up the property."

Wear a Costume and Run for Keep El Paso Beautiful

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Dress up in your favorite Halloween costume and join the Clean and Scary Run this Sunday, October 25 at 5 p.m. Run begins at 3233 N. Mesa (Rudolph Plaza). The event is sponsored by Keep El Paso Beautiful.

Executive Director Katherine Palafox encourages all fun loving El Pasoans to participate: "Don't miss this!" she told me. "The clean and scary run has become an El Paso Halloween tradition."

Register and find more information online.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Newmanistas Participate in Great American Clean-up

Rueben Friesenhahn carefully checks painting by his parents, Becky and Michael

Newmanistas took advantage of the Great American Clean-up on Saturday to get rid of junk around their homes and to spruce up Newman Park.

As always the roll-off at the Park was well utilized by many in the neighborhood. Some pitched in to sweep sand off walkways, rake the wood chips in the new swing area, and remove graffiti. Board members Becky Friesenhahn and Jim Tolbert with help from Becky's family repainted two of the chess boards on the recently installed tables.

The Newman Park efforts fit prominently in an El Paso Times story in which both Becky and Jim were quoted.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Our Beloved Chihuahuas: Azucar's Pups

OMG! Chihuahuas breed! But the pups are adorable. Pictured above are Azucar's pups. Azucar it the beloved Chihuahua of Newmanista Sergio Guerrero, a teacher at Eastwood High School.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Houston Elementary To Have Dual Language Program

Below is District 2 Representative Susie Byrd has passed on some exciting happenings at Houston Elementary. The emphases are mine. Note the important meetings regarding Dual Language, the request for more Partners in Education and the solicitation for Price's Dairy product caps:

I wanted to check in with you re: the Save Houston efforts. There is lots of momentum and lots of activity with the goal being to increase enrollment at the school in order to justify keeping it open. Anything you can do to help in getting out the word would be much appreciated.

Dual Language. The most important news is that the District has agreed to invest in a dual language program at Houston. Dual language is a great attraction for parents who are interested in making sure that their kids are fully fluent and able to read and write in both Spanish and English, regardless of their first language. I think this will be a great magnet for Houston and is just what we need to really get folks interested in sending their children to Houston. In order to promote this and to let the parents know more about dual language and its benefits for their children, Houston is hosting two important meetings:
1. Wednesday, October 21st at 6 PM at Houston Elementary School,
presentation to parents about the benefits of Dual Language Education. The district is sending out a blast throughout the district to let parents know about this.
2. Saturday, November 7 at 8:30 AM at Houston Elementary. This will be an open house. The district is targeting parents who have transferred out for this meeting but we invite other parents who might be interested. Is there anyone who might be able to help with coffee and fruit or donuts?

Partners in Education. The committee working on this agreed to help find more
Partners in Education to support the school. If you know of any businesses in the area that want to help out, we are looking for support. Please email me any ideas or contacts you might have. We are focused on: trying to fund more programming in arts and culture (artists or art organizations who can enhance programming) and improving the campus (landscaping, playground equipment, etc).

Give Em Five Price's program. The school is going to ramp up their Give Em Five program where students bring in caps from Price's products and Price's rebates an amount per cap to the school. Could you let your respective constituents know that they can donate their caps to the school also and it is an easy way to help

City Council Representative, District 2

Every time that I drive by Houston Elementary, it is obvious to me what a valuable property it is to the school district and the neighborhood. It would be a pity to shut down the buildings and the playing fields. Parents, stakeholders and neighbors are so enthusiastic to save this school.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Wyler Tramway: One of Newman Park's Gateways to the Franklins

The Newman Park neighborhood has a number of ways close by to access the Franklin Mountains. Certainly Scenic Drive's availability especially on Scenic Sundays (7 to Noon) is a great way to enjoy the scenery and geology that the south Franklins have to offer. McKelligon Canyon just north of our neighborhood gives easy access to the beauty of our mountains and a quick way to gain access to the ridge itself and one of the best hikes in the mountains along the Ron Coleman Trail.

Another favorite is the Wyler Tramway. Those who want to enjoy just the scenery can use the tramway to reach Ranger Peak. There is a gate at the peak that allows access to other trails along the ridge and over the mountain. Rangers are available to give directions.

Simply put, getting outdoors and into the mountains is easy for Newmanistas.

Check out the following hikes at Celebration of Our Mountains: There will be two Ron Coleman hikes - the first on October 10 and another on November 1. There is a difficult trail from the parking lot at the Wyler Tramway to the ridge. It is called the Directissimo. On October 18, there will a hike to the top of the ridge and back. On October 29, there will be a hike up the Directissimo which connects with the Ridge and Tram Trails. Hikers will end up at the station and take the tram back down. Finally, on October 20, there will be a nice guided hike in McKelligon Canyon.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Joe Hayes at the Bookery on Sunday

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One of America's premier storytellers, Joe Hayes is published by our friends at Cinco Puntos Press. From their emailed newsletter we learned:
At 2:30, Joe will start telling those wonderful stories he's been famous for all these years. Before and after, you can get him to sign your books. A wonderful chance to bring your kids and grandkids and give them the opportunity to hear one of the world's greatest storytellers."
Go here for directions to the Bookery.