Here is a quick update for the end of
2004. The Board also takes this opportunity to wish you all a happy
holiday season and a GOOD New Year. For those of you who haven't been
to Bandelier lately, the big event this summer was paving the
entrance road. It was quite an undertaking. First, crews had to
stabilize and protect all the historic Civilian Conservation Corps
structures along the road. Then they had to take up the old pavement
and install new asphalt. Although it is the only vehicular access
into the park, the road had to be closed to all traffic every
afternoon to get the work done. Repaving work did stop during the
Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, Bandelier's busiest week of the year!
We check in with Bandelier at the end
of every season to how our grant projects fared. Here is the 2004
for Park Flight Program, $800. Wildlife specialist ranger
Stephen Fettig hosted Ruby Zambrano Munoz from Panama to do research
investigating autumn bird migrations through the Jemez Mountains.
Ruby's educational programs were a great hit in Los Alamos. A parade
of school classes and miscellaneous visitors traveled up into
Bandelier's mountains to view her mist nets and help collect data.
She also gave presentations at the schools. Our $800 matching grant
supplemented other funds supporting Ruby's six-week stay at the park.
Demonstration Dancers, $800. As part of the Cultural
Demonstration Program, Bandelier hosted three programs by dancers
from local pueblos. The Oak Canyon Dancers from Jemez Pueblo
performed on Memorial Day, the Tewa Dancers from San Juan Pueblo on
Fourth-of-July weekend, and the Herrera Dancers from Cochiti Pueblo
on Labor Day Sunday. Our funds paid the honoraria for two of the
groups. In addition to providing a memorable experience for visitors,
the rangers hope the programs will strengthen ties between the
Pueblos and Bandelier.
Commemoration, $437. This year marked the 40th anniversary
of the Wilderness Act of 1964. With over 28,000 acres of wilderness,
Bandelier had cause to celebrate. Ecologist Craig Allen,
Archaeologist Rory Gauthier, and I gave a tour that wandered around
in the wilds looking at small ruins and some of the eagle trapping
pits. It was a sparkling day and the customers, mostly from Santa Fe,
seemed to enjoy it. Craig also hosted an evening program, where he
showed protection ranger Dale Coker's beautiful slides of the
wilderness. Our money paid rental of facilities for the presentation
and for commemorative auto stickers. Be sure to pick up a sticker
when next you visit the park.
of bone flute, $750. Bettina Raphael of Santa Fe did a
wonderful job restoring the bone flute that a visitor had found
partly buried in Frijoles Canyon. An article and photos appear in the
winter edition of the Tuff Times. Board members expected to see the
flute at our end-of-year meeting, but the meeting was snowed out.
Fountain and Jug Filler Faucet, $3,000. We've provided the
money for a new frost-proof fountain and jug filler faucet to be
installed near the Visitor Center. Chief of Maintenance, Vito
Spinale, bought the parts, but, because winter came early and cold,
he can't install the fountain until weather permits.
Work was disrupted by the road repairs
this summer. Not all our grant money was spent. The money stays in
our account, available for 2005. The projects on hold are: (1)
replacement of obsolete and non standard signs and removal of
inappropriate fencing, (2) replacement lighting to protect the night
sky, and (3) assembling a traveling show for developing partners for
With payment of all our 2004 bills, we
topped $207,700 in grants to Bandelier. In 17 years, that isn't much
per year, but it does show what dogged persistence can accomplish.
This autumn, we granted $5,000 to help
fund a School of American Research book based on archaeological
research and surveys at Bandelier. The book's title is The Peopling
of Bandelier: New Approaches to the Archaeology of the Pajarito
Plateau. Bob Powers is chief editor; he was project leader for the
archaeological survey at Bandelier in 1988-1992. Bob reports that he
expects the book to be out in time for the March 31 Society for
American Archaeology meeting in Salt Lake City. He expects it to
appear in bookstores in April and is scheduling book tours now. Like
many another true scientist, Bob may not be the best judge of the
popular appeal of a book on his specialty. But, by happenstance, I
met the text editor. She is delighted with the text and assured me
that the book is quite readable and tells a fascinating story.
Throughout our 17 years, we have been
so proud of our low operating costs, mostly just postage, paper, and
website hosting. Alas, those days are over. We operate under a
Memorandum of Agreement with the National Park Service. In our latest
5-year renewal, NPS demanded that we get liability insurance to
protect the US government in case we are sued. NPS is not
discriminating against the Friends of Bandelier; this is now a
standard clause in all MOAs. NPS usually demands coverage for $2
million, but Superintendent Darlene Koontz and Contracts
Administrator Barbara Romero convinced their solicitor that $500,000
ought to be adequate for the Friends since we have no paid employees
and no real property, only a bank account containing funds that we
try to disperse to the park quickly. There is a small, but finite,
possibility we could be sued were something to go wrong on a tour or
other event we occasionally sponsor. We hope that our membership
understands and will stick with us. At least you will know that your
government is safe from the Friends.
Best wishes for the holidays and thanks
again to you, dear Friends, for your continued faithful support.
Dorothy Hoard, President, Board of
THANK YOU Los Alamos National Bank and
First State Bank for your continuing generous support.