Boquillas crossing at Big Bend National Park

 

Big Bend National Park News Release

BIG BEND NATIONAL PARK SEEKS PUBLIC COMMENT ON PROPOSAL TO CONSTRUCT VISITOR CONTACT STATION,

ESTABLISH PORT OF ENTRY AT BOQUILLAS CROSSING


The National Park Service (NPS) proposes to construct a visitor contact station in Big Bend National Park near the Rio Grande and across from Boquillas, Mexico.  The facility would provide visitors with information and would house the equipment necessary to permit the area to function as a Class B port of entry between the U.S. and Mexico.  The public, organizations, and other agencies are invited to review and comment upon an Environmental Assessment (EA) describing and analyzing the proposal.

 

The purpose of re-establishing the Rio Grande crossing near Boquillas and constructing a visitor contact station is to provide visitor information and to support safe and secure international crossings of the Rio Grande.  This new contact station and re-established border crossing are intended to facilitate opportunities for visitors, scientists and researchers, and park and protected area managers to enter Mexico, as well as permit residents on the Mexican side of the border to enter the United States to purchase goods and services and to visit friends and family living in nearby West Texas towns.  Construction of the visitor contact station is proposed to begin in July 2011.  The port of entry opening is proposed for April 2012.

 

This Environmental Assessment (EA) evaluates two alternatives and the potential environmental impacts of each:  1) Alternative A, the No Action Alternative; 2) Alternative B, Construction and Operation of a Visitor Contact Station.  Alternative A describes the current condition of the project area and the environmental impacts that may occur if there were no changes in the way the park currently manages the area.  Alternative B describes construction and operation of a new visitor contact station and establishment of a Class B (remote, automated) port of entry.  Alternative B is the preferred alternative.

 

The EA has been prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations (40 CFR 1500 et seq), and NPS Director’s Order 12: Conservation Planning, Environmental Impact Analysis, and Decision-making (DO-12).

 

The 30-day review and comment period starts May 4, and continues through June 2, 2011.  To see the Environmental Assessment, visit the National Park Service Planning, Environment and Public Comment (PEPC) website at: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/bibe during the comment period.  Written comments may be submitted on the PEPC website or may be sent to: Superintendent, Attention Boquillas Contact Station, P.O. Box 129, Big Bend National Park, Texas, 79834.

 

Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made public at any time.  While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

 

 

 

–END–

 

 

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Why Texans are Texans, a talk at Lamar University, April 14

“Why Texans are Texans: An Introduction to Texan Identity” presented by Joe Nick Patoski, author of multiple books on Texan identity and Texas music; former staff writer at Texas Monthly
“The Future of Texas” lecture series
Date: 4/14/2011 7:00 PM
Cost: Free
Location: McFaddin-Ward House Museum Visitor Center
1906 Calder Ave.
Beaumont, Texas 77701

The lecture series is sponsorsed by the Texas Academy of Leadership in the Humanities, the McFaddin-Ward House Museum and the Beaumont Public Library. The series features lecturers that discuss Texas historic themes. The lecture is free and open to the public. For information, call Lamar University at 409-839-2993 or the McFaddin-Ward House at 409-832-1906.

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Willie Nelson: An Epic Life

Willie Nelson: An Epic Life | Why I wrote this
book

Read my MVP Q&A
with Mickey Raphael
. You can read a chapter from the book. [
Chapter 1,
2, 3
]

Order Willie
Nelson: An Epic Life
from Amazon here.

Read REVIEWS
here.


Joe Nick PatoskiCelebrate
Willie Nelson’s 75th birthday
with Joe Nick Patoski
WILLIE NELSON: AN EPIC LIFE
In stores April 21st, 2008

The realization Texans are different from everybody else hit me about
an hour after I’d first set foot on Texas soil. I was only two years old
but I distinctly remember my father picking up my mother, my sister and
me at the Greater Fort Worth International Airport and driving us to our
new home in Fort Worth, stopping along the way at the Big Apple Barbecue
on Highway 183. The waitresses talked funny and the smoked beef brisket
covered in barbecue sauce we were served tasted like nothing I’d experienced,
vaguely familiar and strange and exotic all once. Even as the hot spices
set fire to my lips and the inside of my mouth, I immediately wanted more.

I’ve been trying to figure out Texas and Texans ever since. Fifty two
years later, I realized the answer had been right in front of me for most
of my life. There were vague memories of the smiling friendly face flickering
on Channel 11 singing songs live from Panther Hall on the Cowtown Jamboree
and on Ernest Tubb’s show in a voice that could have only come from Texas.
I grew familiar with the songs by listening KCUL, the Country & Western
radio station, although versions of “Hello Walls” and “Crazy” by other
people were Top 40 hits in Fort Worth. The first interview came in 1973
for Zoo World magazine. After thirty five years of writing about him and
many others, I can now safely say no single public person living in the
20th or 21st century defines Texas or Texans better than Willie Hugh Nelson.

Texans by nature are independent, free-thinkers, open, outgoing and friendly.
Iconoclasts, they respect tradition but are not beholden to it. Whether
it’s God or sin, they tend to embrace excess. The good ones have a whole
lot of heart. They are creatures of geography, exuding a sense of place.
They reflect their climate and sometimes are a little crazy from the heat.
They are wanderers and explorers, keen to improvise, curious enough to
discover They are loud and boisterous when they need to be. They seem
to go out of their way to make friends with strangers. They are great
storytellers and some of the most distinctive music makers on earth. You
know Texas music when you hear it, just like you know Willie’s music.

A certain red headed stranger was once said to say, “Don’t let the truth
get in the way of a good story.” I tried my best to ignore that sage advice
once I took on this project. On the back side, all I can say is that getting
all the facts straight while piecing together the history of a culture
considered too low, too sordid, and too wild to be worth documenting in
print was no sure thing. Many characters were too busy living life to
the fullest, sometimes under the influence of alcohol, nicotine, Dexedrine,
Black Mollies, marijuana, boredom, and being caught up in the adage, “If
you can remember the sixties, you weren’t there” to remember the trivial
details of time and place. Then there were those who were inclined to
con for the pure sport of it.

Fortunately, my subject was accommodating and open – exactly the person
I’ve always thought him to be. He’s the story. I’m just the teller.

Copyright © 2008 Joe Nick Patoski

*****

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