La Cienega Valley Association

Protecting and preserving our acequia culture and agricultural traditions…

LCVA News – October 21, 2015

Second Annual La Cienega Photo Contest

Time to vote for your favorite photo. You have already seen how voting takes place on our website. Therefore, either you stay on our website and vote here, or go to the website of our photo contest sponsor writing services at web and choose your favorite.

Community choice award voting has begun and will end at 11:59:59pm on Thursday, November 5, 2015. Voting will be at and can be done once per day. We encourage you to share that link with others who may want to participate in voting.

The Community Choice winner receives $50 and a family membership to El Rancho de las Golondrinas.

Please note that controls are in place to limit voting to once per day per browser. In the event more than one person in a household is voting, that can be done via a different browser or different computer/phone/tablet. We will be monitoring the voting process related to IP address, equipment, browser and other means and if we determine anyone is attempting to spam/hack the voting process, a photo’s votes may be reduced or the photo may be disqualified.

Water Monitoring Program

For those of you interested in hearing the story of how our community water monitoring program came to be, The LCVA encourages you to attend the following presentation.

Water: A Precious Resource
Tue, Oct 27, 2015
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Los Alamos Nature Center
2600 Canyon Road
Admission: Free

How do we protect our aquifers? The La Cienega region is already seeing diminishing flow from their local springs. Fortunately, they noticed, and they are taking action. Kyle Harwood, water attorney and La Cienega resident, will share the challenges facing his community along with their efforts to protect their aquifers.
The community of La Cienega recently launched a fundraising campaign to finance comprehensive research into what impacts climate change and drought are having on the aquifers that feed the springs, ponds, wells and acequias in the area. The goal is to gather scientific data that will provide insight to La Cienega and communities across the arid Southwest about the effects of pumping, drought, groundwater recharge, climate variability and land use changes. This unusual privately funded research and proactive effort is crucial to protect aquifers that feed the water supplies. Without it, the water sources and farms dating back to the 1600s will disappear in the next 20 to 30 years. The following is the web site for more complete information on Kyle’s presentation:

Community Party at The Downs

It was best described as a small but appreciative crowd and it was fun.

The young and rhythmic Hoop Dancers from the Pueblo of Pojoaque began the afternoon followed by a series of musical acts. Michael Sheppard, Executive Director, Big Sky Learning served as the master of ceremonies and added his blend of folk and soft rock to the event. One of the real highlights was the La Cienega teenage group, the “Salt and Pepper Shakers” whose renditions of Johnny Cash -Buddy Holly-Zach Brown and La Bomba were right on. Anyone wanting a fun band for a party should contact them.

Another highlight was making ice cream in baggies. The trick is to put the ice cream ingredients in one plastic bag and seal it. That plastic bag and ice are placed in a larger bag and start tossing and shaking and after about 15 minutes you have soft ice cream. Ice cream makers included kids and adults.

The location was wonderful and we are already talking about what we can do next year to encourage a better attendance.

A sincere thanks to Michael Sheppard for all that he did including providing the sound system and we owe a special thanks to Vincent Marchi who brought his food truck and provided free drinks.

Carl Dickens offers a personal and community thank you to resident Bonnie McGahee our master event planner. She was amazing, she has the ability to anticipate and solve problems before they happen. A correction on Bonnie’s background, she ran the founding festival, the Telluride Bluegrass (not jazz) Festival. It was the largest bluegrass festival in the world for 8 years.

Sufi Community Meeting

The Sufi group who purchased the Pierson home met with a group of residents in September. The meeting was led by planner Jim Siebert and was simply an introduction and an opportunity to meet the local leaders of the group. Mr. Siebert informed the attendees that after the first of the year when the County’s new code and zoning map is in place the group will come forward with a formal master plan for the property. The plan will include a request for a zoning change and will address issues regarding parking for their religious gatherings.

La Cieneguilla Open Space Meeting

The facilitated meeting was an interesting exchange about how the County’s La Cieneguilla Open Space might be planned. There were a variety ideas and feelings that were shared and documented by the facilitators who did an excellent job of recording the wide-range of opinions and feelings. The information will be put together and brought back to the community for further discussion and comment. This will likely take place after the first of the year.

Don’t forget the La Cienega/Cieneguilla Halloween Carnival

Saturday, October 31
1-4 P.M.
El Rancho de las Golondrinas

The annual Halloween Carnival will be held, Saturday, October 31. Games, cake walk, costume parade, story-telling, fire truck, face painting, frito pies and more, all FREE!

We need volunteers to help with set-up/decorating on the 31st at 10AM for an hour or two. Also need volunteers to serve frito pies (1 hour shift) and with help in cleaning up at 4 (1 hour max). Prior to the event, we need help spreading the word!

We will accept cash donations before and during the event to help pay for food and as seed money for next year’s event. Make checks payable to LCVA and send to Paul Murray (LCVA treasurer) at 137 Las Estrellas Rd. Santa Fe, NM 87507 Donation boxes will be on site at the event as well.

Please contact Kathleen McCloud if you would like to help with the event – [email protected]