EL PASO ZOO ANIMALS SHOW OFF THEIR ARTISTIC SIDE
Animal enrichment, Arts & Crafts Activities and More!
The El Paso Zoo will be hosting Color Coated Animal Art Gallery & Enrichment Days from March 16- 24 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Visitors will have the opportunity to see art painted by the Zoo’s wildly artistic animals. Works displayed are from a variety of animal residents at the zoo including Ibu the Sumatran Orangutan; Juno and Savannah the Asian Elephants; Pete the Gila Monster; the Meerkat Mob and many more.
“We’re looking forward to sharing these animal paintings with the community. The paintings are quite impressive! You won’t want to miss out on this event,” said Marketing and Public Relations Coordinator Karla Martinez.
Painting is a part of the Zoo’s enrichment program which is designed and specialized to meet each species’ needs which provide daily challenges and experiences similar to those they would encounter in the wild, such as, encountering new scents and novel food items. The painting process is one of many enrichment activities for animals at the zoo.
“Enrichment is a vital part to animal care and we are continually coming up with new ways to keep our animals stimulated. These paintings demonstrate several of our enrichment techniques and can also connect zoo guests to our animals in a very unique way. Hopefully these connections will encourage people to take action in conservation efforts,” said Enrichment Coordinator CarrieTrudeau.
During the event, zoo animals will receive piñatas, flowers (made of tissue paper) and some of their favorite fruits throughout the week for visitors to watch as they enjoy (or devour) their special treats. Hands-on pet enrichment demonstrations will take place twice a day (10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.) for visitors to learn how to make enrichments for their own pets. Arts & crafts will also be available for children.
Entry to the art gallery and activities are included with regular zoo admission.
Other activities for families to enjoy: Hunt Family Desert Spring Splash Pad, African Star Train ($1.50 for kids/members, $2 for adults), Giraffe Encounters (11 a.m. & 2:30 p.m. – require $2 token), free daily animal training presentations and animal encounters.
FREEDOM CROSSING HOSTING ST. PATRICK’S DAY STREET FESTIVAL MARCH 16-17
Freedom Crossing at Fort Bliss is hosting a St. Patrick’s Day Street Festival on Saturday, March 16 and Sunday, March 17, 2013. The Festival is open to the public and will be held on the promenade area outside of Shamrocks Irish Pub at Freedom Crossing. The event will take place over the entire weekend of St. Patrick’s Day with activities beginning at 12:00 p.m. each day and concluding at 12:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 16 and 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 17.
Each day of the weekend-long event will feature live music from local El Paso bands and musicians, DJs, authentic Irish bagpipes, traditional Irish food as well as grilled food, beer and soft drinks. Family activities will be offered from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day and will include face painting, leprechaun characters, and Irish hat and bead necklace giveaways. A complete schedule of daily activities and band performances is available at www.freedomcrossingatfortbliss.com.
St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, also marks the 2-year anniversary of El Paso’s only authentic Irish pub, Shamrocks. The pub will host a countdown to midnight on Saturday, March 16th to celebrate their anniversary and the arrival of St. Patrick’s Day.
This event is open to the public. To enter Fort Bliss and Freedom Crossing, show a U.S. driver’s license or other U.S. Government issued ID at the Robert E. Lee or Cassidy Gates. Freedom Crossing is located 1611 Haan Road, Fort Bliss, TX. For directions and more information, visit www.freedomcrossingatfortbliss.com.
We Have a Pope!
(AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)
Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio from Argentina was elected as pope Wednesday March 13, 2013 and will be known as Francis 1. He became first pope from outside Europe in more than a 1000 years.
EPCC Mourns the Passing of Joe Foster
El Paso Community College (EPCC) is mourning the loss of one of its founding fathers, Joe Foster. Mr. Foster was the first Chair of the EPCC Board of Trustees, serving from 1969-1977.
On June 28, 1969, voters in El Paso County approved the creation of EPCC without the funding. Mr. Foster’s tireless work over the next few years saw the opening of the college in the fall of 1971 with evening classes in high schools around the area. Under his leadership, EPCC leased space at the Logan Heights area of Fort Bliss to house the first campus in 1972, as well as expanding to the Rio Grande campus in 1975.
Joe Foster may be best remembered for leading EPCC during a case before the United States Supreme Court to overturn the decision of a bond election. The overturning of the 1975 election paved the way for the Valle Verde and Transmountain campuses to be funded. The case would change laws nationwide that allowed only landowners to vote for tax and bond elections.
A memorial service will be held for Mr. Foster at 2:00 p.m., Friday, March 15 at the Trinity First United Methodist Church, 801 N. Mesa.
TRAFFIC ADVISORY for El Paso Projects
The following closures will be in place Monday, March 11 through Friday, March 15 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.:
Alternate right and left lane closures on Gateway West and Gateway East between the McCrae (FM 2316) Overpass and the Executive Center Overpass
Expect a westbound right lane closure on César Chávez Border Highway (Loop 375) at Kansas St.
CÉSAR CHÁVEZ BORDER HIGHWAY (Loop 375) PROJECT:
Expect a westbound right lane closure on Loop 375 between the Midway Overpass and the Fonseca Overpass Saturday, March 9 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The westbound Yarbrough Exit and Entrance Ramps are now open to traffic.
The eastbound Yarbrough Exit and Entrance Ramps have been closed and will continue closed through the first week in April.
Project is scheduled to be completed by August 2013.
DYNAMIC MESSAGE SIGN PROJECT:
The following US 54 closures will be in place Monday, March 11 through Friday, March 15 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.:
Right and left lane closures on US 54 between the Hondo Pass and Diana Bridges
Left lane closures on Gateway North and Gateway South between Hondo Pass Ave. and Mesquite Rd.
Right and left lane closures on US 54 north and southbound between the Montana and Trowbridge Overpasses
Left lane closures on Gateway North and Gateway South at the Montana / Trowbridge Intersections
I-10 GATEWAY EAST MILL/ INLAY PROJECT:
Expect alternate right and left lane closures along Gateway East between Santa Fe St. and Zaragoza Rd. (FM 659) Monday, March 11 through Friday, March 15 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
ARTCRAFT (SH 178) TRAFFIC SIGNAL INTERCONNECT PROJECT:
The following closures will be in place Monday, March 11 through Friday, March 15 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.:
Alternate west and eastbound lanes on the Artcraft Frontage Road between Santiago St. and the Doniphan Turnaround- 0.2 miles west of Doniphan
East and westbound shoulder closures on Artcraft between I-10 and the Texas/New Mexico State Line
Alternate east and westbound right lane closures on Artcraft between I-10 and Texas/New Mexico State line
OVERHEAD SIGN BRIDGE PROJECT:
The following evening closures will be in place from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. the following morning:
March 11 (Monday)
Alternate right and left lane closures (east and westbound) on Paisano Dr. (US 62) between Piedras St. and Boone St.
March 12 (Tuesday)
Southbound right lane and shoulder closure on I-110
March 13 (Wednesday)
Southbound left lane and shoulder closure on I-110
Southbound right lane and shoulder closure on US 54 between Trowbridge Overpass and Paisano Exit
TRANSMOUNTAIN (Loop 375) – WEST PROJECT:
North Desert Blvd. and the westbound Transmountain Exit Ramp will be completely closed on Tuesday morning, March 12 through Friday evening, March 22.
The right lane on Northwestern Dr. will be closed from Hoover Ave. to Transmountain Rd. on Thursday, March 14 through Saturday, March 16.
The above closures are for hanging beams.
The eastbound Transmountain Entrance Ramp will be completely closed starting Monday, March 18 and continuing through Saturday, April 6. Construction crews will be placing concrete on ramp.
PLEASE FOLLOW DETOUR IN PLACE.
THE FOLLOWING OPERATIONS CONTINUE IN PLACE UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE:
Turnaround going from North Desert Blvd. to South Desert Blvd. remains OPEN
Left lane on South Desert Blvd. between the Transmountain Entrance Ramp and Isela Rubalcava Ave. remains CLOSED
Left lane on North Desert Blvd. between Artcraft Rd. and Transmountain Dr. remains CLOSED
Left lane on North Desert Blvd. between the Transmountain Exit Ramp and the Transmountain Overpass remains CLOSED
I-10 / AMERICAS INTERCHANGE PROJECT:
The following shoulder closures will be in place beginning Monday, March 11 at 7 a.m. and will remain closed through Saturday, March 16 at approximately 4 p.m.:
Left shoulder on Gateway West between the South to Westbound Ramp and Don Haskins Dr.
Right shoulder on the South to Westbound Direct Connector near the westbound I-10Entrance Ramp
WOODROW BEAN / TRANSMOUNTAIN (Loop 375) EXTENSION PROJECT:
Woodrow Bean/Transmountain will be closed eastbound between Kenworthy Dr. and Rushing Blvd. Monday,
March 11at 7 p.m. through the following morning.
Woodrow Bean/Transmountain will be closed westbound between Rushing Blvd. and Kenworthy Dr. Tuesday,
March 12 at 7 p.m. through the following morning.
The following closures will be in place Monday, March 11 through Saturday, March 16 along
Woodrow Bean/Transmountain (Loop 375) between Dyer St. (BU54) and 1 mile West of US 54 from
7 a.m. to 4 p.m.:
East and westbound center median
East and westbound alternate lane closures and shoulders on the frontage roads
Alternate north and southbound lanes at the Kenworthy Dr., Rushing Blvd. and Alcan St. Intersections with Transmountain/Woodrow Bean.
I-10 ANTHONY RAMP RELOCATION PROJECT:
Alternate right and left lane closures at North Desert Blvd. between the new Anthony exit ramp and Antonio St
(FM 1905) will continue through Saturday, March 16.
The westbound right shoulder on I-10 between MM 1.0 and 0.0 is closed until further notice.
ALAMEDA (SH 20) PROJECT:
The eastbound lanes are closed on Alameda Ave. from Concepcion St. to Boone St. and will continue closed through April 2013.
The westbound lanes now have one eastbound and one westbound lane in place for traffic flow
The following side streets will have no access to Alameda:
(It will be necessary to work on Saturdays.)
PLEASE OBEY CONSTRUCTION SIGNS and FOLLOW THE DETOUR SIGNS
Sierra Providence East Medical Center Designated as a Level IV Trauma Facility
Sierra Providence East Medical Center has been designated a Level IV Trauma Facility by the Texas Department of State Health Services. Level IV designation indicates that Sierra Providence East Medical Center is staffed by physicians and health care professionals with advanced trauma training. Level IV Trauma centers provide care for patients who have experienced injuries resulting from automobile accidents and patients who have significant cardiac, medical or surgical emergencies.
“This designation reflects our commitment of caring for our community and providing the services necessary to help save lives in an emergency situation,” explains Sally Deitch, CEO of the Sierra Providence East Medical Center. “This designation, coupled with our recent Primary Stroke Center Certification, illustrates how Sierra Providence East is continuing to grow the level of care necessary to enhance the quality of life in our community.”
Trauma is any life-threatening occurrence, either accidental or intentional, that results in injuries. The leading causes of trauma are motor vehicle accidents, falls and assaults. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, trauma is the leading cause of death among Americans under 44 years of age.
“It takes a special group of professionals to meet the demands of a busy emergency department,” states Omar Mendoza, MD, Medical Director of the Emergency Department at Sierra Providence East Medical Center. “It is the extraordinary dedication and teamwork of our emergency department physicians and staff that helped secure this designation of a Level IV trauma facility.
MDA OF EL PASO ANNOUNCES ANNUAL MUSCLE WALK EVENT
More than 600 people are registered to support the Muscular Dystrophy Association during the Sunland Park Mall Muscle Walk to help pay tribute to — and raise funds for — children and adults served by MDA in the west Texas and southern New Mexico area.
“We want to create awareness about MDA and our clients who need hope to continue their very personal journey.” The MDA Muscle Walk allows $$ to be directed to disease specific research. This is the chance for families to FIGHT BACK” said MDA Executive Director Kathleen Born. “By supporting the MDA Muscle Walk event on March 9th, people can make an immediate difference, continue hope and help raise awareness for research and vital services benefiting families served by the Association.”
The annual Sunland Park Mall Muscle Walk is scheduled for 8:00 am to 10 am on March 9th at the Sunland Park Mall Food Court. For registration information, visit www.musclewalkmda.org/sunlandpark, or call the local MDA office at 915-584-6355.
Expected at the walk are Boeing, the UTEP College of Health Sciences, the El Paso Roller Derby, the El Paso Diablos, Kwik Kopy, Ace Cash Express, United Seating and Mobility, Arcelor Mittal, Border Concrete, Safelite Auto Glass, VFW 8550, United Access, Wheelchair and Walker Rental, Inc., Sonic, Lucchese Boots, Chick-Fil-A, the Franklin High School band and cheerleaders, Epic Health Services, Kohl’s Cares for Kids, Sageland elementary school volunteers and cheerleaders and so many more we cannot list all.
Last year, MDA Muscle Walks nationwide raised more than $6.2 million nationwide, and more than $10 million has been raised since the program started in 2011.
“Like” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/mdaelpaso
Sign up for our Muscle Walk today at www.musclewalkmda.org/sunlandpark
Texans Create Cleaner, Greener Communities through the Great American Cleanup
Keep America Beautiful’s Great American Cleanup (GAC) is the nation’s largest community improvement program, taking place annually from March 1 through May 31. Keep Texas Beautiful (KTB) is a state affiliate of Keep America Beautiful, and administers the Great American Cleanup program for Texas.
Great American Cleanup activities can include beautifying parks and recreation areas, planting trees, removing graffiti, picking up litter, cleaning waterways, handling recycling collections and conducting education programs. The GAC is open to all Texas communities, and events can involve volunteers from all walks of life, such as school groups, garden clubs, Scouts, business leaders and community groups.
Online registration is now available through Keep Texas Beautiful at www.ktb.org. Local organizations can schedule events in their communities and gain access to valuable resources to plan, promote and host an event. Participants can receive trash bags, volunteer giveaways, promotional items, and more to assist in facilitating their cleanup event. Participants may also elect to post their event information on the KTB event calendar. Individuals and community groups who wish to volunteer may view the KTB calendar to find an opportunity in their area.
In 2012, 3,274 Great American Cleanup events were held in Texas, with 113,357 volunteers contributing 552,033 hours. More than 18 million pounds of waste was collected and recycling events collected more than 2.6 million pounds of electronics, 17,161 pounds of batteries, and 150,427 tires. Over 2 million pounds of paper, 717,233 pounds of plastic and 1 million pounds of metal were also collected. Additionally, awareness events and workshops were held, graffiti was abated, buildings were painted and repaired or removed, community gardens, flowers and trees planted and illegal dump sites were cleaned.
“KTB’s goal for 2013 is to surpass our results from last year for waste collected, community greening efforts and items recycled. With our outreach efforts, we hope to engage even more communities from across Texas in this important program,” said Julio Reyes, KTB President.
Line Dance Extravaganza Workshop
The City of El Paso Parks and Recreation Department will host a Line Dancing Workshop at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 23, 2013 at the Father Martinez Senior Center, 9311 Alameda Ave. The registration fee is $8 per person for the event featuring beginner classes and over 20 exciting walk-throughs, open dance floor, and much more. Guest instructors will be Kay Needham from Artesia, New Mexico and Tony and Lana Wilson from Tucson, Arizona. These instructors are well known dancers and choreographers in the line dance world.
Who El Paso Parks and Recreation Department
What: Line Dance Extravaganza Workshop
When: Saturday, March 23, 2013 (9am – 1pm)
Where: Father Martinez Senior Center, 9311 Alameda Ave.
Fort Bliss’ economic impact on El Paso
The Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce will host a press conference Friday, March 8, at 11:00 a.m. at the chamber headquarters, 10 Civic Center Plaza. The chamber will release a report on Fort Bliss’ economic impact on El Paso published by the UTEP Institute for Policy and Economic Development.
The report finds that Fort Bliss contributes $5.998 billion in business volume to El Paso and provides 61,957 jobs annually with $4.168 billion in compensation to area households.
Attendees include El Paso Mayor John Cook; Rick Glancey, armed forces chair, Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce; A.F. “Tom” Thomas, civilian aid to the Secretary of the Army for west Texas; and Major Joe Buccino, Fort Bliss spokesman.
2012 Texas Top Ten Most Stolen Vehicles
Pickups are not only popular among Texas drivers, they are also top targets for Texas vehicle thieves! The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) has released its final MVT19 report on the top vehicles reported stolen in Texas during 2012. The MVT19 report is compiled monthly by DPS and represents vehicle theft data entered into the Texas Crime Information Center (TCIC) by all Texas law enforcement agencies. An error margin of plus or minus five percent is assumed for incorrect entries by agencies. Based on the reports, as has been the case for many years, pickup trucks top the list of thieves’ most common targets for the year. Coming in at No. 1 was the Ford Pickup followed closely by the Chevrolet Pickup at No. 2. In the No. 3 position, the Dodge Pickup also remains a popular target for Texas thieves. The Honda Civic and the Chevrolet Tahoe round out the top five stolen vehicles.
The complete top ten list of most stolen passenger vehicles includes:
2012 TEXAS TOP 10 STOLEN VEHICLES
1) Ford Pickup
2) Chevrolet Pickup
3) Dodge Pickup
4) Honda Civic
5) Chevrolet Tahoe
6) Honda Accord
7) GMC Pickup
8) Chevrolet Impala
9) Toyota Camry
10) Ford Taurus
Vehicles are stolen for a variety of reasons, and contrary to popular belief, the most stolen vehicles are several years old. Some are stolen and stripped for parts. Others are stolen and resold by thieves to unsuspecting buyers. Many vehicles are stolen for joyriding, for use in committing other crimes, to perpetrate insurance fraud, to burglarize personal items and documentation, or for any number of other illegitimate purposes. And vehicle theft directly costs Texans more than any other single crime – over $621 million in 2011.
Personnel from the Texas Auto Burglary and Theft Prevention Authority (ABTPA) and the agency’s associated vehicle crime task forces remind Texas drivers that vehicle thieves are always looking for opportunities to steal. Vehicle owners should be aware that thieves can be lurking anywhere, and drivers should practice prevention techniques such as hiding contents that may be desirable to a thief, locking vehicle doors, and taking keys.
The Texas ABTPA, an office of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, has funded law enforcement programs specializing in vehicle crime investigation, recovery, prevention and prosecution since 1991. Since then, Texas has seen a 61 percent reduction in the vehicle theft total. Currently, ABTPA funds 29 task force grant programs statewide, allowing over 150 law enforcement officers throughout Texas to focus exclusively on the resolution of vehicle crime cases.
“Bliss in Bloom” shopping bazaar
The Fort Bliss Officer & Civilian Spouses’ Association hosts its annual
spring “Bliss in Bloom” shopping bazaar Friday, March 8 to Sunday, March 10
at the Trading Post-Building 1717 Marshall Rd. on Ft. Bliss.
Featuring a variety of vendors including jewelry, pottery, local crafts,
military artwork, woodwork, toys, and many more-the bazaar is a great place
to buy gifts, home décor, and even souvenirs!
Open Friday afternoon 4-8pm, Saturday 10am-5pm, and Sunday noon-5pm.
Shopping is open to the public and a pass is not needed to enter Ft. Bliss.
Both the Cassidy and Robert E Lee are accessible without a military ID card.
Simply show your government issued identification.
Admission is $2 for adults and children 12 years and younger are free.
Profits benefit the Ft. Bliss Officer & Civilian Spouses’ Association
Community Giving and Scholarship funds.
Veterans Recreation Center Activities – Zumba and Boxing
The City of El Paso Parks and Recreation Department will host an Urban Boxing Class (combination of boxing, cardio Kickboxing, and self-defense) on Mondays and Wednesdays from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Saturdays 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. starting March 5, 2013 at Veterans Recreation Center, 5301 Salem. The class is for ages 10 and over with a fee of $20 per session and youth scholarships are available.
The second sign-up opportunity at the Center is a Zumba Class on Mondays and Wednesdays from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. starting March 5, 2013 at Veterans Recreation Center, and 5301 Salem for a cost of $18 per session. Each class session is four weeks and individuals 60 years of age or older are eligible to receive a 50% senior discount.
Registration is available in person at the center or online at www.elpasotexas.gov/parks.