September 7, 2001
Dear Subscriber:

The day after Labor Day and the village looks a bit like a
banquet hall after a fraternity party. Merchants, still a
little bleary-eyed as a result of the weekend madness, could
be seen sweeping up paper cups and straw wrappers. It was the
calm after the storm.

It took me back to the days when Peg and I ran The Whistlestop,
a small deli on the Cloudcroft boardwalk. While I wouldn't take
for the experience of those 4 years, I wouldn't go back to them

When Peggy and I opened The Whistlestop, our knowledge of the
hospitality business could be contained within the space
occupied by the period at the end of this sentence. We learned
in a hurry, however.

We learned to get the order out quick without sacrificing
quality. We learned that a smile goes a thousand miles with
the customers and we learned that women with big purses can
stall a check-out line more effectively than a bomb threat.

On busy days, when customer traffic was non-stop, speed in
service was directly related both to the day's revenue and
keeping the customers happy. We were on a pay-as-you-order
system (it worked good enough for McDonald's, so it was good
enough for us). It served our customers well...until Big Purse
stepped up to pay.

Her particular order, as I recall, was for 3 hot dogs, 3 bags
of Ruffles and 3 Pepsi. Pop sat down with the kids while Mom
handled the pay-out.

With my most practiced smile I said "That'll be eleven forty-
eight, Ma'am."

She heaved her big purse onto the counter top. It was the size
of a medium suitcase. Surgery began.

The zipper top was opened and from inside she probed and 
withdrew a second purse. The zipper on the second purse was
opened and out came a billfold.

Groans were audible from behind Big Purse and I watched
helplessly as two prospective customers drifted off in search
of speedier service. If she had heard the groans she didn't let
on. The billfold was opened and there I saw it.

Currency! We were almost to paydirt.

"Eleven forty-eight, did you say?"

Her interrogatory was pleasant and painfully un-rushed.

"Yes, Ma'am," I said, struggling with my smile.

She handed me a 10 and a 1 and then went for the dreaded change

"I'm sure I have 48 cents here somewhere."

More groans. More defectors.

The dime, then the quarter. Another dime then 3 pennies were
methodically searched out, located, extracted and placed one-
at-a-time in my hand.

It was done. My smile was hurting my face.

"Thank you and come back," I lied...but we weren't done with

On what seemed to be the second day, Big Purse zipped the 
change compartment of her billfold, folded it, placed it in the
intermediate purse, which was itself placed in the main purse. 
She slung the entire apparatus over her shoulder, and she was
finally on her way.

Just before officially losing her place at the counter she
turned back and asked:

"How much is your ice cream?"

"For you, Ma'am, no charge." I said.

There was applause. I took a bow.

Don Vanlandingham

September is beginning much as August ended. Cool and wet.

Rain in the afternoons. High temperatures in the upper-60s. 
Lows in the low-40s.
Michael Nivison Library will begin its "winter" hours as of
September 1. They are as follows:

Monday and Saturday -- 10am-3pm
Tuesday -- 12 Noon-5pm
Wednesday -- Closed
Thursday -- 10am-6pm
Friday -- 10am-5pm

For any questions, call the library at (505) 682-1111.

Thanks for posting this.

Joyce Komraus
Library Director
Jal defeated Cloudcroft in football Saturday. Final score 27-0.
Their next game is in Tularosa, September 7, at 7:30 pm.


It has been over 2 years since Cloudcroft had a toy store. Now
there is one again. The Toy Factory opened last month in the
Cloudcroft Hotel Mall.
In the Heart of the Village, this antique-style 3 bedroom, more
than 1,500 sq. ft. cabin is the perfect place to stay during
your family's visit to Cloudcroft. Coyote Cabin has 2 queen
beds, 1 full size, 2 twins (roll away available), and features
a fully-equipped kitchen, fireplace (firewood furnished), cable
TV, VCR, full-size washer and dryer, and deck with charcoal

Children welcome, walk to shopping, dining, and parks. For
rates and availability, email lisadawn@zianet.com or call toll
free 1-866-588-2583.
The Cloudcroft Art Society has a new gallery featuring 
paintings and crafts by local artists. The gallery is located
in the Burro Street exchange. Open weekends.
Q - I am interested in information about skiing and snowmobiles
in Cloudcroft.
--Jimmy Langston

A - As we reported last month, the leasing agreement on Ski
Cloudcroft is in litigation. It does not look promising that
the ski area will be open this winter even if the weather is

There are several places that offer snowmobile rentals and
guided tours. Call the Cloudcroft Chamber of Commerce for a
September 7 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Tularosa (football) (away).

September 8 -- Mile High Grand Prix. Ski Cloudcroft.
Proceeds benefit Special Olympics.
For information call (806) 794-0624.

September 9 -- 42nd Mile High Enduro. Starts at Triple M
Snowplay Area. Route is environmentally correct.
For information call (806) 794-0624.

September 13 -- Demonstration by Jim Folan on Batik.
Cloudcroft Art Society 1-3pm.
For information call (505) 682-2494.

September 15 -- Enchanted Jazz Festival.
Alamogordo, New Mexico.
For more information, call (505) 434-0559.

September 15 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Hatch (football) (home).

September 15 -- Dinner with Governor Johnson.
The Lodge, 6-7pm social hour, 7pm dinner, $30 per person.
Tickets at Copper Butterfly or by sending a check to SMSA,
PO Box 1213, Cloudcroft, NM 88317.

September 16 -- Governor's 10k Run/Walk.
40k Time Trial Bike Race.
For more information, call (505) 687-2133.

September 15-16 -- Hot Air Balloon Invitational.
White Sand National Monument.
For more information, call (505) 682-3785.

September 21 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Ft. Sumner (football)

September 21-23 -- Healing Hearts 2001. For more information,
call (915) 550-3302 or visit http://www.GatheringOfCircles.com.

September 22 -- Oktoberfest. Holloman AFB.

September 28 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Lordsburg (football)

September 29-30 Aspencade Tours.

October 6 -- Cloudcroft vs Faith Christian (football) (home).

October 6, 7 -- Art in the Aspens. Juried art show. Zenith

October 6, 7 -- Aspencade Tours.

October 12 -- Cloudcroft vs Capitan (football) (away).

October 19 -- Cloudcroft vs Animas (football) (away).

October 20, 21 -- Apple Festival. High Rolls.

Cloudcroft Art Society meets the second Thursday of each month
in the Old Red Brick School House. Call (505) 682-2494 for
more information. Beginning in October, the monthly meetings
change to the first Sunday of each month, 2-4pm.

Senior Van from Timberon to Alamogordo leaves the Timberon
Lodge promptly at 8:30 every Tuesday morning.

If you have news of public events in the Cloudcroft area, email

For an online calendar of area events, click the Events Calendar
link in the left column of our home page:


Dear Newsletter:

Thanks Dan, I too have 4 dogs... or they have me... and not a
single one has a paper to its name... only one was paid for...
my poor Daughter paid for Bowser. He is a Schnoodle. The rest
are rejects from bad homes that no longer cared for them.

Daisy is blind and deaf with age: and 2 years ago, the pound
picked her up and called the number on her tags, the people--I
use this term loosely--said that the pound could just keep her,
because she was getting to be a lot of trouble since she was so

I'll admit, she is some trouble, and she does have a lot of
accidents in the house, but she can't help it if I am too busy
and forget to put her out; I know that this is vindictive, but
I hope that when those folks get old and A LOT OF TROUBLE, that
whoever is in charge of them, leaves them on the side of the
road. I'm just glad that I happened in there on the day that I

So, keep the stories coming, and I hope to be in Cloudcroft in
October. We discovered Cloudcroft nearly 40 years ago when we
lived in Hobbs.

Carol Mehaffey
Rowlett, Texas

Dear Newsletter:

Read your thing about dogs. Great. How can anyone not like
dogs? Cats are a different story with me. I don't dislike them,
they are just kind of neutral, which is in and of itself a 
negative thing I suppose. Just never got close to a cat. On the
other hand, don't think I ever met a dog in that category. You
either love them or hate (fear) them. Sorta like politicians I

Al Cornelius

Dear Newsletter:

Joy and I enjoy the Cloudcroft.com which we receive from our
cousin Doug who lives in Mayhill. 

We enjoy all of the stories and the good life y'all have in
New Mexico. But the story of Luna brings to mind the dozen or
so "kids" that Joy and I have had throughout the 42 years we
have spent together.

We started with Yukio, a runt of a boxer who was 35 lbs soaking
wet. Joy's dog "Buck" before we met and "Yukio" after we married
were arch-enemies when they met, and after a good half hour of
seeing who was boss, it came to a draw. After that, they owned
the neighbor hood.

But the one that really made the most lasting mark was our
little Chinese Pug named "Ming Sue, The Twenty Third" known as
"Su Su". She was human and she knew it. She had us wrapped
around her little paw, and as the old saying goes, "you haven't
been owned till you've been owned by a "Pug". She lived to be 14
years and 10 months of age. And we are still in love with her.

We've have had a "Boston", "Dalmatian", "Curr", "Irish Setter",
"Cocker Spaniel", "Boxer" and a "Beagle". But none can compare
to the "Pug".

While driving the Suburban she would sit on the steering wheel
and face me to get a bite of my "tootsie pop" or what ever I
had in my mouth. And don't say "McDonald's," or you had better
stop and get her a kids meal. She ate everything I did, and if
it was good for her, you had better spell it out and not say
it, or she would not eat. She ruled the house and would love
and give you kisses for just saying hi. We were her humans and
we knew it and loved it to death. Just like the kids, our real
ones, she will always be in our hearts as will as "Brandy Ann"
our little part peak, part you name it, that we have now.

Everyone should be owned by one of the most loyal, most loving,
most caring, most devoted creatures on this earth. A "PET" be
it a cat, dog, of which I am partial to, or any other "Pet" you
like. They know no bounds to the love and affection to their

Don thanks for the soap box and keep up the good work. Joy and
I are just two of the many who read and enjoy the good life you
talk about and live. 

Hope to see you on our next trip to Mayhill. 'Till then, may God
bless and keep you and yours.

Sincerely yours,
Joy and Ken Hevelone

Dear Newsletter:

Is this a record?

The first accident of the winter due to an icy road has
happened -- on August 28th! One of the semi-trailer dump trucks
hauling rocks for the Timberon road construction went off the
Sunspot Highway (NM 6563) at mile 12.5 on the bend at the turn
off for Cathey Canyon Vista, ending up at the foot of the steep
embankment. As far as I heard, nobody was hurt too bad, I'm
relieved to report.

It seems the road for about 100 yards had been iced over by 2
inches of hail from a thunderstorm during the afternoon. There
was still a good quantity of slush at the side of the road when
I arrived at the highway patrol's road block a couple of hours
later while the tow crew were trying to retrieve the truck.

The moral: beware thunderstorms at 9400 feet, and remember,
it's NEVER too early to pack those tire chains!

Best regards,
Pete Newman
Apache Point Observatory
Sunspot, NM

Dear Newsletter:

Reader Becky asked:

Is there anyway to get to Guadalupe Mountain National Park from
Cloudcroft without going around through Carlsbad?

If you can fly, you're in luck. Otherwise, you cannot get there
from here. Conceivably you could get to the upper park boundary
by back roads, but you can't get to McKittrick canyon except
from the US 180 entrance.

J. Schuller

Dear Newsletter:

To Becky Virtue--Yes, there is a back road from Pinyon
southward. We took it in the opposite direction, driving from
Dell City north across the state line.

HOWEVER--the roads are not well marked! A compass and a good
map, such as the recreational map of New Mexico, are needed.

Detective work is needed at forks in the road. The roads are
rough, so that you would want a truck or SUV with decent tires.
There are people living on ranches back there, but they are few
and far between, as the countryside is somewhat barren.

From Dell City you would head south to US 80, and drive a few
miles east to the park. Dell City is a neat little town in the
middle of nowhere. Guadalupe Pass has been disfigured with wind
generators, but you can view the salt flats from there. Take

There is also a northern entrance to Guadalupe NP, but it does
not go through.

Good luck!
Peter Chase
Alpine, TX

Dear Newsletter:

In response to the inquiry from Becky Virtue regarding a dirt
road to the Guadalupes versus the long way around thru Carlsbad:

Yes, one can reach the Guadalupes by driving south out of
Pinion, then bear left a few 100 yards after leaving Pinion,
but if you are taking this route to save time, I wouldn't
recommend it.

Before I retired from Westinghouse at the WIPP site, I took
this route on occasions on my weekly return to the mountains,
but one could get lost in there if they aren't very careful--
look for the signs that mention El Paso gap--be sure to take
a picnic lunch, lots of water, and spare tires; also, don't
venture too far away from your vehicle without the proper
sized stick for timber rattler repellent.

Joe Hart
High Rolls, NM

Dear Newsletter:

I love your newsletter. We live in Roswell, but have a place
in Twin Forks. We are very close friends with Paul and Rita,
and when you mentioned Delta, I just had to write you.

We don't get to make it up to Cloudcroft as often as we would
like, so your newsletter, keeps me close even though I can't be

Even though I don't know you personally, I feel like I do from
your wonderful stories. Keep them coming!


Dear Newsletter:

Thank you so much for the newsletter. I really enjoyed reading
it. We love to come to Cloudcroft to visit. We're coming there
September 15 to play golf. We're looking forward to our visit.

Thank you again,

Dear Newsletter:

Really, really, enjoy your newsletter. Don't always get to
read it cause my stupid computer seems to go on the blink so
often; but we've bought a new one so I hope to enjoy it much
more now.

Been wanting to write and let you know, thanks & keep it up.

If we can't get there as often as we'd like, at least we can
read what's happening there.

Thanks again,
Tim Ryan
Cibolo, Texas

Dear Newsletter:

Greetings from Ft. Worth. We spent a week in Cloudcroft last
summer and thoroughly enjoyed Daisy's Lodge. Now we look forward
to your newsletter every Thursday. We really enjoy your opening
remarks and wish you wrote a column for the Ft. Worth Star

Thanks for keeping the art of story telling alive! 

Bill and Chris Anderson

Dear Newsletter:

This is the first time I have ever written to a newsletter, but
I felt I had to join the throng of people that have visited
Cloudcroft and found it delightful.

My daughter and her family moved to Cloudcroft a year ago last
June, and my husband and I were very concerned about them just
pulling up stakes and moving to a place they had only visited
once or twice and knew very little about. We could hardly wait
to visit them last August, to see just what they had gotten
themselves into.

We were not there very long until we decided we didn't need to
worry about them, because they were so very happy with
everything and everybody and the grandchildren loved the
mountains with all the wild animals. (Grandmother is not too
excited about the bears that come to visit.) We returned this
year for a week in August, not only to visit them, but to also
enjoy your fine town and the cool summer weather. I am looking
forward to many more visits in the summers to come.

Sally W.
Missouri City, TX

Dear Newsletter:

In 1958, my husband and I were working in El Paso, helping to
conduct the first El Paso United Fund Campaign. It was hot and
dusty and we were 500 miles away from our home in San Antonio.
The hours were long and we didn't see much daylight. When the
weekends came, we were ready to find something to do besides
work. One weekend, one of our friends suggested we all drive
up to Cloudcroft. We'd never heard of it, but we all piled
into the car and headed out. 

The terrain between El Paso and Alamogordo is not the most
spectacular I'd ever seen, but once we started up the mountain,
it was a whole new world.

I'll never forget opening the car door when we stopped in the
village and discovered it was cooler outside than it had been
in our air conditioned car. Dressed in shorts and a halter, I
nearly froze. 

But Paul and I fell in love with Cloudcroft in the first 5
minutes we were there. As long as we were in El Paso, we
returned on the weekends, sometimes alone, sometimes with other
couples. We always stayed at Spruce Cabins, but during the
winter, we'd go up to The Lodge to ski on the golf course. 

Over the course of these many years, I've returned dozens of
times. When I remarried, I introduced my second husband to the
joys of Cloudcroft. We spent our first Christmas together there.
We've crunched through the snow on just about every road in the
village, watched the bears at the garbage dump, seen a buck
with a beautiful rack standing motionless in the snow at the 
fringe of the trees in the forest, taught a child to ski at Ski
Cloudcroft, tubed down the slope with toddlers and hauled them
up again, watched a succession of our dogs experience snow for
the first time. 

The lure of Cloudcroft remains strong. My husband is gone now,
but my daughter and I have been talking about spending Christmas
there again this year -- we haven't been back since she was
10 and she's 30 now. So it's time. I know it will have changed
and grown. I hope not too much. 

If the newsletter is any indication, it's still a fine place! 

Sandy Woods 
Austin, Tx

Dear Newsletter:

What other things do you write? Those Cloudcroft newsletters
have captivated my imagination and keep me in groused with a
strong desire to read back issues.

My husband found your newsletter by researching Cloudcroft
weather information and topical maps. He has bragged on its
beauty and cool climate for the 2-1/2 years we have been

We have a 3-year plan to finish up what we started here and
move to the area. Certainly not Alamogordo! We live in hot,
northeast Texas where the humidity is year round and the
central Texas trade winds bring in all the bunk to keep the
area in Chronic Allergic Rhinitis. 

Dave, my husband, will be a Certified Dietary Manager at a
local nursing home. He may continue on to be a Registered
Dietician as we go this last 3 years.

My plan is yet to be put into action, but I plan to be a LVN
and continue onto RN as it goes. I have a 15-year old son to
put lots of my attention into at this time of our lives.

We are about 20-25 years away from retirement age, but we would
like to be an active part of your community once we get there.
I will look for art classes, private or public, a good library,
and will want to fly in some of those hot air balloons too.
If it is all you say it is and we find the people by husband
knows from there (Sam, Rae Lana, and Amy Jackson), it will be

My special area of nursing will be Palliative care. My husband
and I love the Lord Jesus Christ and serve him and his people
daily. What better time to meet the Lord before you take that
last breath, or what better time to rejoice for knowing him
already? I want to be there to help the sick and hurting in
their last days just before they meet God our creator face-to-

We are also both musicians, Dave plays the guitar and I play
piano/keyboard. We both dabble in drums and bongos. My son
Eric, plays alto sax and bass guitar. We write songs so far for
our own worship at the churches we visit, but none have been
published. As you can tell we have a full plate.

Eric will be graduated high school and plans to continue his
education at Christ For The Nations Institute in Dallas, Texas.
His heart is to be a full time missionary to the Hispanic
people either in Mexico or on the border. He and I are
bilingual and Dave knows some Spanish. Guess where our money
will be going?

Just wanted to touch base and let you know your newsletters
reach down deep where we all need to be touched.

Thanks and keep them cranking out!
Dorothy Kenworthy

Dear Newsletter:

Are there any snowfall predictions made for this winter?

I am planning on going snowboarding this winter break and was
wondering if there was going to be enough snow. I used to go
there when I was a child, and I would like to go there again.

It's such a beautiful town. Is there any way you can tell me
the prediction or somewhere that I can find out this

Thank you for your time.

Candace Anderson

[For information on Cloudcroft's annual rainfall and snowfall,
see the Monthly Average Precipitation link on our General Info


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Copyright © 2001 Cloudcroft Online
The Travel and Visitor's Guide to Cloudcroft, New Mexico.
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