Carlos Morales
Border Reporter

Communities along the Rio Grande are often talked about as sister-cities, places that have more in common than geographic and—in certain stretches—physical barriers

Border reporting centers on immigration—including experiences of detention, family separation and tightening policies for asylum-seekers. But, it also includes stories of cross-cultural ties, identity and life in our region.

Remote West Texas is home to Latinx and Hispanic populations made of recent arrivals and longtime residents, who come face-to-face with challenges unique to the area everyday. Our stories are more than dividing lines and tell us about the realities of calling this place home.

Sally Beauvais
Rural Life Reporter

In Far West Texas, our communities are separated by miles of immense country, like islands—each unique, but shaped by similar forces.

And embedded in the minutiae of our daily routines—inside small businesses and homes, out on acres of rangeland, in doctors’ offices, classrooms, and county courthouses—there are stories unfolding that matter.

At a time when the dominant narrative surrounding rural America is that of economic decline, I strive to do two things with my reporting: bring relevant information to our communities, and ask—why are we important?

Mitch Borden
Permian Basin Reporter

The Permian Basin is shaped by the oil and gas industry. Every day it touches hundreds of thousands of lives in Midland and Odessa. And at the same time, the industry’s web spreads across West Texas and the wider world.

I cover energy and the environment, along with everything else in America’s largest oil patch. Like the characters who make this place unique, the challenges facing the oil industry, and the realities of living in a boom/bust economy—like the housing crisis and struggling schools. My goal is to find the human stories that will illuminate this place for you and the rest of Marfa Public Radio's listeners.

We know your curiosity about West Texas isn't limited to our focus areas. What other sorts of odds and ends do you wonder about?

Maybe you want to know more about a local celebrity, an architectural oddity, or a mysterious phenomenon.

Silly or serious, big or small, nothing's off limits! Ask away.

Your Questions, Answered:

Why Do Texans Put Saguaro Cacti On Everything When They Don’t Grow Here?

By Sally Beauvais You may know the iconic species of cactus by its towering physical stature — its crooked arms, many ribs, and spiny flesh. Or, you may be more intimately familiar with its cartoonish likeness, appearing on countless postcards, … Continue reading

What’s The Deal With All The “In Tow” Junk Cars On The Interstate In Texas?

If you do much highway driving in Texas, it’s a familiar sight: old, rusted trucks packed to the gills with toys, motor oil, textiles, and building materials traveling down the interstate. Sometimes, they’re hauling an additional truck — “IN TOW” … Continue reading

Front Doors, Bighorn Sheep, Buried Treasure And The Toe Nail Trail With The Rambling Boy

The Rambling Boy teams up with Marfa Public Radio’s Sally Beauvais in an attempt to answer some of the tough history questions that have been submitted to West Texas Wonders.

The Odessa Meteor Crater: A Subtle Feature Tells a Cosmic Story

Listener Josh Knight asked West Texas Wonders whether the meteor crater in Odessa was actually produced by a crash, and, if so, what ecological impact that collision might have had. Marfa Public Radio looked to Nature Notes for the answer. … Continue reading

“How Screwed Are You” If You Don’t Work In Oil In The Permian Basin? It Depends.

By Mitch Borden It doesn’t take much to see the Permian Basin’s economy is doing pretty well right now. Just look at Midland and Odessa, the two cities’ unemployment rate is around two percent, wages are high and property values … Continue reading

The Burro Lady, Rainfall and Marriage, Old Roads And Gas Stations With The Rambling Boy

Rachel Maxwell of Alpine wants to know what the highest level of education the Burro Lady achieved was. Harry Hudson of Dallas wants to know how Mrs. Kerr of Fort Stockton’s marriage proposal related to rainfall. Gretchen Coles of Marfa wonders … Continue reading