A cumulonimbus cloud towers over Marfa. (Ross Cashiola / West Texas Cloud Appreciation Society)

West Texas Cloud Appreciation: How Do Clouds Form, And What Are Some Identification Tips?

By Sally Beauvais As we approach the end of monsoon season in West Texas, now’s a good time to step outside and take a moment to appreciate the dramatic summer storm clouds that bring the majority of our region’s annual … Continue reading

Hundreds mourn for the victims and their family outside the El Paso Walmart where a mass murderer killed 22 people. (Nick Oza/USA Today Network via REUTERS)

State Leaders Are Looking For Solutions After El Paso. Texas Latinos Say They Can Start By Changing The Words They Use.

By Alexa Ura, Texas Tribune

Barbara Canales’ family history is in some ways shaped by a deeply rooted understanding of bigotry and racism.

Her mother attended high school in Corpus Christi where the Mexican American students were segregated from their white peers; they were assigned separate gym lockers and even required to attend separate senior proms.


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Presidio City Council members learned last week that border authorities may soon be changing their processing policies at the local port of entry. (Sally Beauvais / Marfa Public Radio)

Asylum-Seeking Detainees Could Soon Be Released In Presidio, Rather Than Transported To El Paso

By Sally Beauvais

Officials in the small border city of Presidio are preparing for the possibility of having to care for asylum-seekers in the near future.

That’s because authorities are considering releasing some detained migrants locally, instead of sending them 250 miles west to El Paso — which remains the official procedure at this time.

Presidio officials are still gathering information from the local Customs and Border Protection office about how many asylum-seekers could be released into the city under such a plan. At a recent city council meeting, City Administrator Joe Portillo theorized that the numbers could “quickly become overwhelming.”


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Both Midland and Odessa saw a boom to their population numbers in 2018, according to new data released from the U.S. Census. ( flickr.com/photos/pkmonaghan / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The Candidate Pool For Midland City Election Is Set After Filing Deadline Passes

By Mitch Borden

What issues and which candidates will appear on ballots this November in Midland is officially set. Two city council seats are up for grabs and three candidates will duke it out to see who will be Midland’s mayor in the coming years.


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Big Bend National Park To Consider Increasing Fees And Changing Camping Reservations

By Carlos Morales

Big Bend National Park officials have put forward a proposal that would significantly change the park’s camping reservation system and increase camping fees.

When it comes to reservations, the changes would make a larger number of campings sites available and would extend how far out in advance visitors are able to make those reservations.


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(Sally Beauvais / Marfa Public Radio)

Jeff Davis County Officials Table Decision on Second Amendment Resolution

By Carlos Morales

Jeff Davis County Commissioners have sidelined a decision on becoming a “Second Amendment Sanctuary” — a designation two other West Texas counties have taken up this year.

The resolution was brought before county officials during a special meeting Monday, but it was soon tabled to give commissioners more time to learn about what the resolution would mean for local governance. It’s unclear right now if the resolution will appear on the agenda for the next commissioners court, which is scheduled for Sept. 9.


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Ruth Ruggero Hughs Image via the Texas Workforce Commission

Gov. Greg Abbott Names New Secretary Of State Months After Botched Voter Roll Review

By Alexa Ura, Texas Tribune

After losing his last chief election officer over a botched review of the state’s voter rolls, Gov. Greg Abbott on Monday appointed a new secretary of state: Ruth Ruggero Hughs.

Ruggero Hughs is moving from the Texas Workforce Commission, which she has chaired since August 2018. She joins the secretary of state’s office nearly three months after Democratic senators blocked the confirmation of her predecessor, David Whitley, who questioned the voter registration of thousands of naturalized citizens.


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Wed. Aug 21 Interview: The Permian Basin Prepares for the Future; Luchador Cassandro el Exótico

(Mitch Borden / Marfa Public Radio)

Mitch Borden

Diana Nguyen speaks to Marfa Public Radio reporter Mitch Borden about how the Permian Basin is trying to change how people view the nation’s largest oil patch. Leaders say the oil industry has stabilized and now hope stakeholders will start investing in the infrastructure of its booming cities.

As more growth is expected, leaders are figuring out how to tackle some of the region’s biggest challenges — affordability, education, housing and infrastructure.



Cassandro el exótico (Rowdy Dugan / Courtesy Ballroom Marfa)

Cassandro el Exótico

Later on the show, Nguyen talks to luchador Saúl Armendáriz, better known as Cassandro el exótico.

The El Paso-based luchador has been wrestling for over thirty years, learning to fight across the border in Ciudad Juarez as a teennager. He blazed trails as one of lucha libre’s first openly gay wrestlers, collecting multiple championship titles throughout his career.

Armendariz is the subject of Marie Losier’s 2018 documentary, Cassandro, the Exotico! and was recently in Far West Texas when Ballroom Marfa presented a screening of the film.

West Texas Talk is broadcast each Thursday at 6:00 PM and each Friday at 9:00 PM.
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MISD Board Of Trustees Approves Bringing a $569 Million Bond Election To Midland Voters In November

By Mitch Borden

Over the last decade, as Midland has grown tremendously, the West Texas city has increasingly seen its schools struggle to deal with the number of students enrolling in its largest school district, Midland Independent School District. To relieve campuses that are currently bursting at the seams and to prepare for even more growth in years to come the districts school board is bringing a bond election to Midland voters.

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El Paso Shooting: Hundreds Of Strangers Come To Mourn With Widower At Wife’s Funeral

By Amy Held and Mallory Falk, KERA

Earlier this month, Margie Reckard, 63, was gunned down along with 21 others in the El Paso, Texas, masacre that authorities believe was driven by racial hatred. Two weeks later, strangers amassed by the hundreds to honor Reckard and surround her widower, Antonio Basco.

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Midland And Odessa See A Huge Increase In The Number Of Public Schools Failing To Meet State Standards

By Mitch Borden

The Texas Education Agency issued letter grades for its annual accountability ratings to detail how schools and districts performed last year. Similar to how teachers grade homework, the state assessed schools on their performance and gave out A’s and B’s to schools that are excelling and D’s and F’s to those struggling.

In the Permian Basin, the report showed that Midland and Odessa had a big jump in the amount of schools receiving failing marks during the 2018-2019 school year.

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At El Paso Memorial, Community Honors Lives Lost And Takes First Steps To Heal

By Mallory Falk, KERA

Wednesday night, thousands of El Pasoans streamed into Southwest University Park, for a community memorial to honor the 22 victims of the mass shooting that took place just over a week ago, on Aug. 3.

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