President Obama’s “Challenge of a New Age”

President Obama address Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Listen in to his inspiring message that addresses all whether Democrat or not.

We hope that everyone who can, volunteers today on this Day of Service. No matter how small of an effort, it is always welcome.

B. Dalton Bookstore’s last day :(

The crowds were huge, the talent was varied, cameras were rolling, and the politicians were more ferocious than ever…

Run, little girl, RUN!

Today’s final bookstore day brought out many people to sign the Laredo Reads petition for a new bookstore. It also brought out quite a bit of tears from dedicated bookstore manager, Mary Benavides.

Mary and Mrs. Ochoa

Mrs. Ochoa came to say her final goodbyes after coming to B. Dalton’s weekly for years. Mary would always give her a cashier’s chair so that she could sit while she went to get the books she wanted. After 30 years with B. Dalton’s, it really was an emotional time for Mary. We wish her well in whatever she chooses to do.

Empty B. Dalton's Bookstore

All that is left is the clean-up.

The infamous boot on a rainy day

On a rainy day in Laredo, one of the worst feelings is getting to your vehicle and seeing you got the boot. If tickets had been paid on time…

Glad this is not my SUV.

ANOTHER bomb threat downtown!!!

Three in one week is just TOO much. What moron calls in a bomb threat right before lunch and when it’s raining and wastes so much taxpayer money??

NPR discusses B. Dalton’s closing. Laredo Reads still asks for participation.

National Public Radio featured a bit on the closing of Laredo’s bookstore, B. Dalton’s. Listen to the story or read the transcript online at NPR.

Laredo Reads is also inviting all to stop by on Saturday, January 16 when B Dalton closes for last time. They say “Join us at 9pm. Bring a heavy book or buy one here at the bookstore. We will gather at b Dalton and shut our books, televise and put in YouTube. Please forward this link to all your friends. 5000 signatures please by day’s end tomorrow.”

So if you haven’t signed the petition, do so at http://www.laredoreads.com/ and hope for the best.

Reactions to B. Dalton’s Closing

It is with sadness that I watched videos on the reactions of some Laredoans on the closing of the only bookstore on Patchwork Nation’s blog. This is not the end of reading in Laredo because of the many other places that have new & used books – including the college and university’s bookstores, the United Methodist Church’s monthly book sales, Goodwill, the public libraries, yard sales and other friends who love books and let you mooch.

It does make me sad that after 30 years, the manager of B. Dalton’s, Mary Benavides has to say goodbye to this community. The personal attention she gave customers is not something that you can find in any chain. Unfortunately, Barnes & Noble (B. Dalton’s parent company) will not be relocating her anywhere that will benefit Laredo. Gone will be her service, her interest in culture, and her willingness to cooperate with other entities to raise levels of literacy in Laredo. Follow the link above on Patchworknation’s blog to watch some of the videos that as it states, were created by KLRN:

Laredo Speaks Up!

A team from KLRN recently visited Laredo to talk to people in the community about news, jobs, life and issues. Allow us to introduce the six people who agreed to speak with us.

Their videos, which will be posted later today, give insight into the the issues that plague this town and other border towns, but also give these folks a chance to respond to the latest news of the closing of Laredo’s only bookstore.
Posted by Laredo, Texas admin

Who learned more: Webb County employees or those who sat for 3 hours to “train” them on safety??

Webb County employees milled around and aimlessly collected stamps from the booths. This was billed as “training” on safety issues for everyone from road employees to the clerks office to purchasing. Even Danny Valdez and Wawi Tijerina made the rounds to say “hi, I am here”.

Somehow, I don’t think that many employees gained any real safety information, but they sure did collect a lot of free pens, pencils & great goodie bags paid for with our tax-payer dollars.

San Ygnacio’s history just got a little dirtier, hope it can be fixed

Structure marred by road tar

By Lynn Brezosky
San Antonio Express-News
Published: Thursday, January 14, 2010 6:53 AM CST

BROWNSVILLE — A border fort that has weathered floods and hurricanes for 180 years might have met its match with what preservationists say is a dumbfounding assault by road tar.

Michael Tracy, an artist who has headed up efforts to restore the Treviño Fort in San Ygnacio, said a Zapata County contractor came to apologize Monday about the goo.

Tracy said he wasn’t prepared for the extent of the black streaks coating the building’s outer walls and even its national and state historic markers.

“Perhaps it was just a simple construction mistake,” Tracy said, “but we felt vandalized.”

The contractor, Reim Construction of Mission, did not immediately return calls.

County Judge Rosalva Guerra said she was told it was an accident and that Reim’s insurance company was assessing the damage.

In a string of e-mails, historians responded to photos of the tarred fort with shock, dismay and hopes that it could be remedied without further destruction of underlying stone and stucco.

The fort was built as a frontier outpost for land holdings north of the Rio Grande.

Sections of it date back to 1830, making it one of the oldest structures on the Texas border.

Descendants of the families that settled there still live in the surrounding square.

Tracy and colleague Christopher Rincón took up residence there in 1998 and, in the ensuing decade, worked to acquire the fort for restoration.

They established the River Pierce Foundation to raise awareness and funds.

Both the fort and San Ygnacio have been listed in the National Register of Historic Places, and by 2008, the foundation had raised enough money to stabilize the structure and begin restoration. But the economic recession has slowed fundraising.

Terri Myers, a historian with Austin-based Preservation Central Inc., said San Ygnacio was the largest and most intact collection of Spanish-descendant architecture in the U.S.

“It’s mind-boggling,” Myers said of the damage. “You either laugh about it or you cry about it.”

She said there had been tensions between preservationists and the county over its road-paving project.

“Some people don’t realize what a National Historic Landmark is, but in Texas, it includes the Alamo, the state Capitol,” Myers said.

“Can you imagine a state contractor going and spraying the Alamo with tar?”

Guerra, the county judge, said the road project was needed and had been undertaken with care.

An oldie but a STUPID-ie

I am sure many of you have seen this one before but just in case, meet your future Laredo burger flippers

Another scare downtown this morning

This time a hand grenade was found at Laredo City Hall E. This is the 2nd time this week. I wonder what goes through people’s minds when they call something like this in? I wonder if they realize how much it costs the city and in turn, us, the taxpayers? Que fregados!