Local Businesses Compete in Green Chile Cheeseburger Challenge

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Congratulations to our very own Sadie’s of New Mexico. They were the winner of the 2013 New Mexico State Fair Green Chile Cheeseburger Challenge. Los Ranchos was actually lucky enough to have two of our restaurants competing for the best green chile cheeseburger at the State Fair. As Mayor, it is hard to take sides with your own local businesses pitted against each other; however, deep down there was a part of me that was rooting for the newcomer, Papa Burgers. I say newcomer because of the rich history of Sadie’s. Silver and Adriana, owners of Papa Burgers, represent the ultimate in entrepreneurial spirit. They specialize in traditional hamburgers that are very hard to beat.

However, I do have to admit that the hamburger that has been on Sadie’s menu for more than 50 years distinguished itself among all hamburgers in New Mexico during the State Fair competition.

After the announcement from the State Fair that Sadie’s was crowned the best green chile cheeseburger in New Mexico, I had to personally congratulate the Stafford family and Jim Garcia and reacquaint myself with the world- famous hamburger. Although, the picture I took really does not do the hamburger justice, each one is a masterpiece that is hard to get your hands or your mouth around. Our table ordered four of these beasts and when they were delivered, not only were our eyes popping out of our heads, but also so were the eyes of all the people sitting around us.

The hamburger is nicknamed the "Beast" and for a good reason. It lived up to its reputation of being crowned the best green chile cheeseburger at the State Fair competition.

For our newer residents, Sadie’s, in the early fifties, was located at the corner of Second Street and Osuna Road and seated only nine people. In the seventies, they moved next door to the Lark Bar on Second Street. In 1975, Sadie retired and left her younger sister, Betty Jo and husband Bob Stafford, to carry on Sadie’s passion for excellence. Needing more space, they moved the restaurant to Valley

Bowl, where their two son’s Billy and Brian worked as kids. I can remember how the 120-seat capacity restaurant would overflow nightly, but you would always wait to have their unforgettable red chile.

In 1990, they moved north of the bowling alley to their present location. In the last couple of years, they have expanded to Hotel Circle at Eubank and Lomas, in the Santa Ana Casino and, most recently, their newest location Sadie’s on Academy. We are very lucky to have the Stafford’s and Sadie’s call Los Ranchos their home. I encourage everyone to go by and congratulate the Sadie’s crew and try the “Beast” for yourself.

While you are at it, also give Papa Burgers a try. I promise you will not be disappointed by either of these fine examples of a New Mexico Green Chile Cheeseburger.

Congratulations are also in order for Al Unser and his brother Bobby for being inducted to the United States Auto Club Hall of Fame Class of 2013. Al and Bobby have a total of seven Indianapolis 500 victories between them; and the Unser family, as a whole, has won the Indy 500 a total of nine times. This is an amazing tribute to a family and an accomplishment that may never be duplicated. The Andretti family has a total of 68 starts and only one victory. If you have not visited the Unser Racing Museum in Los Ranchos, it is one of the premier sports car racing museums in the world. Even if you are not a race fan, you will be impressed with the memorabilia and professional presentation. There are few families that have put New Mexico on the map more than the Unsers.

As we continue to develop plans for improvements to the streetscape on 4th Street for our businesses as well as our residents, I encourage all of our residents to patronize our business community. To be successful in this business climate, it will take the synergy of all of our businesses working together to help promote Los Ranchos as a shopping and eating destination. 

- Larry P. Abraham, Mayor

 

Posted on October 2, 2013 .

Green Belt Exemptions, Tax Breaks and More

A Successful Lavender Festival

It’s hard to believe that summer is almost over. Seems like we have seen the driest of the drought season, as well as the rainiest monsoon season all wrapped up in a beautiful Los Ranchos summer. Even with our hot July days, the Lavender Festival provided a welcome relief for thousands of city dwellers, as well as our own residents. Once again, the festival highlighted our Village’s rich agricultural heritage that we all sometimes take for granted. The festival was not only successful but showcased our beautiful community and Agri-Nature open space facility. My thanks go out to the entire Lavender Committee and everyone who worked so hard at making this event a success.

On a weekly basis, our Growers' Market continues to showcase our Village in a very special way. I urge everyone to visit the market each Saturday and patronize our vendors. It has been a rough growing season and your attendance at the market is very much appreciated.

Bernalillo County Tax Assessor Update

Many of our residents have expressed concern over the recent articles and news stories regarding the property taxes on various properties in the Village, as well as challenges to their green belt exemptions. I took this as an opportunity to discuss and share information with the County Assessor. The following is a statement from the County Assessor’s Office that helps bring clarity to the recent articles and news stories.

“...After being unanimously appointed by the Bernalillo County Commission in January of this year, Assessor Tanya R. Giddings has implemented new policies, procedures and training standards in the Assessor’s Office to uniformly provide the best customer service to the citizens and businesses of Bernalillo County. Assessor Giddings also reinstated critical departments, such as the Quality Control and Agricultural Departments. The reinstated Agricultural Department is currently in the process of updating all of its files with the most up to date information to ensure that property owners are receiving all the tax exemptions they are eligible for, and to make sure that all property owners are being treated fairly and equitably. As the department updates its files and the Assessor’s Office begins its county-wide assessment, appraisers will be out in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque and Northwest Albuquerque neighborhoods doing field checks. If you have any questions about the Special Method of Agricultural Valuation please contact the Assessor’s Office at 222-3818. Please provide your contact and property information along with your questions or concerns and Assessor Giddings will have a certified appraiser return your call promptly. For information about all the property tax exemptions available under New Mexico law please visit www.bernco.gov/assessor-office or call 222-3700...”

The green belt exemption and our agricultural roots are a vitally important part of our Master Plan. As with many things in life, we sometimes become complacent or take our circumstances for granted. The Village will do everything it can to protect these exemptions and tax breaks when they are warrantied and legitimate. In the coming months, we will have several articles in the Village Vision and on our website to help make our residents aware of the agricultural exemptions that are available, how to apply for them and, more importantly, the measures that should be taken to help document and satisfy the statutory requirements.

I would suggest for all of our residents with agricultural property to familiarize themselves with the various requirements for claiming an exemption. First and foremost, make sure you have the proper paperwork filed with the Assessor’s Office.

Additionally, you should keep proper records of all of your expenses such as seed, fertilizer, plants, trees and animals purchased as well as crops and animals sold. You should document the quantity of fruits, vegetables and crops grown, as well as amounts of grass, hay or alfalfa baled.

Public Safety Reminder

I would like to remind everyone again about the proper procedures for handling a non-emergency, as well as emergency situations. In an emergency, always dial 911. For non-emergencies, dial the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Office dispatch at 798-7000. Always identify yourself and your location as being in Los Ranchos. This is especially true if you are calling from a cell phone. If you are unsure about calling, please err on the side of caution and report any and all suspicious activity. I am always amazed when talking to homeowners how many times an event goes unreported. We cannot solve any problems if they are not reported and especially if reported to the wrong agency.

If you have any questions, please call my office staff or me personally. 

- Larry P. Abraham, Mayor

 

Posted on September 16, 2013 .

Los Ojos de la Familia Car Show

In the Albuquerque Journal's "Our Community" photo gallery this week, the featured event was the Los Ojos De La Familia car show. Folks came out to Los Ranchos on Aug. 11 to see Lamborghinis, T-birds and more. The show was to benefit the organization, which provides educational development and quality-of-life assistance.

The view below looks through the hood of a 1940 Willys drag car with a 454-cubic-inch big block engine featured in a car show. The event at Hartnett Park in Los Ranchos was for the benefit the Los Ojos De La Familia organization.  (Jim Thompson/Albuquerque Journal)
 

 

Posted on August 19, 2013 .

September is National Preparedness Month

Putting together a family preparedness plan for disasters or emergencies can serve you well in any circumstance. Whether you are facing a severe weather event, a fire in your home, a hazardous materials incident in the neighborhood, or any other emergency, it’s a good idea to plan in advance.

  • Talk to your family members about preparedness and how to respond calmly to emergencies.
  • Discuss what you would need to do to shelter in place, leave your home or evacuate your city.
  • Identify two meeting places, one near your home and one away from the neighborhood in the event family members cannot return to the house.
  • Post emergency phone numbers beside the telephone.
  • Teach children how to call 911.
  • Choose a friend or relative out-of-state whom all family members will telephone to check in. The out-of-state contact can relay messages.
  • When evacuating, notify relatives and friends about your plans. Be familiar with designated evacuation routes leading out of town.
  • Draw a home floor plan and choose at least two escape routes. Make sure you know how to shut off the water, gas and electricity.
  • Keep an emergency supply kit, including water, non-perishable food, important documents, radio and flashlight with extra batteries, extra eyeglasses, medications and special needs products for babies and the elderly.
  • Make plans for family members or neighbors with special needs
  • Make plans for care of pets.

Preparing in advance for all types of emergencies and disasters the Ready Campaign's websites (ready.gov and listo.gov) and toll-free numbers (1-800-BE-READY and 1-888-SE-LISTO) provide free emergency preparedness information and resources available in English and Spanish.

BE INFORMED – MAKE A PLAN – BUILD A KIT

Join the Los Ranchos Citizen Corps at the inaugural Community Preparedness event on Saturday, September 7, 2013 from 8am-noon at the Growers' Market where we'll more fully explore these concepts and more.

Posted on August 16, 2013 .

Lavender, Wine and Everything Fine

COURTESY ALBUQUERQUE JOURNAL - RIO WEST, JULY 13, 2013
By Rosalie Rayburn

Lavender picking, wine tasting and a varied menu of live entertainment are all part of the mix for the annual Lavender in the Village Festival, which will keep multiple locations in the village of Los Ranchos bustling today and Sunday.

The event gives local growers and artisans an opportunity to show off lavender products as well as an array of art, food, pottery, jewelry and textiles.  Musical entertainment will include a sing-along for children, bluegrass and western music, along with Spanish and Latin classics.  Vendors and activities will be at the Agri-Nature Center, 4920 Rio Grande NW; Casa Rondeña Winery, 733 Chavez NW; and Kelly Jo Designs & Design by Wine, 6829 Fourth NW.  Festival activities will also be part of the Growers Market at 6718 Rio Grande NW from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. today.  Local experts will be giving talks and presentations on lavender specialties, such as a presentation on growing and distilling lavender by Armin Rembe of Los Poblanos Inn & Organic Farm and a demonstration on cooking with lavender by chef Mia Maes.  Lavender-themed artwork by students in the Los Ranchos district and surrounding areas will be on display at the Agri-Nature Center.  Festival visitors can enjoy local wines produced at the Casa Rondeña Winery or in the beer and wine garden at the Agri-Nature Center.  Aspiring beekeepers will have a chance to learn how to get started handling and working with honey bees.  The series of talks by Los Ranchos Beekeepers will also focus on the service bees provide to the environment and what to do when you encounter a swarm.

Mule and donkey fans can visit with the Rio Grande Mule & Donkey Association, which will be bringing along several of its four-footed friends. Association members will give out information about getting together for trail rides and other activities.

  •  WHEN: Saturday and Sunday
  •  WHAT: Lavender picking, wine-tasting, arts and crafts, live music, children’s activities
  • WHERE: Agri-Nature Center, 4920 Rio Grande NW; Casa Rondeña Winery, 733 Chavez NW.; Kelly Jo Designs & Design by Wine, 6829 Fourth NW.   The festival will also include the Grower’s Market beside the Village Hall, 6718 Rio Grande NW, today only. And at 8 a.m. Sunday, a fun run/walk will start at Alvarado Elementary School, 1100 Solar NW
  •   ADMISSION: $5 adults, children $2, kids under 10 years old free. Free parkand-ride to event locations from: Growers Market (Village Green/Hall), Los Ranchos Elementary School, Taft Middle School, Alvarado Elementary School. No public parking at the Agri-Nature Center.  

Full schedule available online at: www.lavenderinthevillage.com 

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MARLA BROSE/JOURNAL - On Friday, Jacqlyn Johns of Los Ranchos Lavender prepares bunches of lavender at her booth, which will be part of the annual Lavender in the Village Festival that is happening at several locations in Los Ranchos today and Sunday.

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Posted on July 16, 2013 .

Lavender in the Village is a Special Time of Year

July is a special time of year in which our Village has the opportunity to showcase our rich agricultural heritage through our Lavender in the Village Festival.   Although lavender is grown sparingly in the Village, it represents the beauty and intrigue of living in the North Valley.  

The Lavender in the Village Festival showcases our Village and the special qualities of our community that we are all fighting so hard to protect. The Festival represents a peaceful, serene lifestyle in a rural agricultural setting. This is a lifestyle for which most city dwellers can only dream and, on occasion, visit.

I have often said that lavender represents romance and intrigue, much like the name Los Ranchos de Albuquerque. This year’s Lavender in the Village Festival will once again be held at our Agri-Nature Center. Village residents can get in free by stopping by Village Hall before the end of the day on July 12th and picking up an admittance wristband.

The festival will start with a dance on Friday night and festivities all day Saturday and Sunday.

Many of us often take for granted the beauty of the Los Ranchos.  All you need to do is observe visitors to our festival and watch the sparkle in their eyes when they walk around the Agri-Nature Center. If you have not had the opportunity to visit our Agri-Nature Center, the festival is an opportune time to see one of the premier municipally owned properties in the state. We have just recently completed several trails throughout the property.  One walking trail along the southern border of the property allows our residents to gain access from Rio Grande Boulevard to the 140-acre Los Poblanos Open Space that is jointly owned by Los Ranchos, Bernalillo County and the City of Albuquerque. We are also in the process of adding several benches so you may sit and enjoy the beautiful setting.

While strolling the grounds of the Agri-Nature Center and the Los Poblanos Open Space you cannot help but reinforce your beliefs of why we all live here.  It gives of us all a renewed sense of appreciation and pride in our community. 

Additionally, on Saturday morning you will be able to stroll through the Los Ranchos Growers’ Market and Arts and Crafts Market at Hartnett Park. This enables visitors to see why it is one of the premier growers’ markets in the state of New Mexico. The weather this year has been rough on our market. The early severe cold weather followed by extreme heat and drought conditions have made for a slow start but the produce is starting to roll in.  The market still offers one of the best places to take a Saturday morning stroll, visit with your neighbors as well as meet new friends.  The market provides an unparalleled opportunity to purchase fresh fruits, herbs and vegetables, fresh blended organic juices, as well as fresh cut flowers.  

The unique pets that accompany their owners always intrigue me and provide an added bonus to the social atmosphere.

My heartfelt thanks goes out to all the volunteers and sponsors that have helped make this festival a success. You make all of us look good.

In other news: Congratulations goes out to Cliff and Jennifer at Simpatico Cycling Shop at 7103 Fourth Street. On Sunday July 13th they will host a “Happy 6th Birthday Celebration” along with Women Riding Well.

I continue to work on plans that will make Fourth Street a much friendlier place to walk and ride.

The Village has redesigned our website and we continue to make changes in order to make it very user friendly, including reading this very magazine digitally and in its entirety online.  Our official website is www.losranchosnm.gov. Additionally, we have consolidated our Facebook pages.  To follow us on Facebook, please go to our official page at Los Ranchos de Albuquerque.

Lastly, please be especially vigilant in these times of drought and high fire danger. Our Village and the Bosque is a tinderbox right now and we have instituted the maximum restrictions we can regarding open flames.

Please be safe, enjoy Lavender in the Village and have a great summer.

- Larry P. Abraham, Mayor

Posted on July 1, 2013 .

Fourth Street Improvement Funding

Fourth Street Improvement Funding:  I am extremely happy to report Los Ranchos will be receiving $681,000.00 of capital outlay money from the state of New Mexico. This money will be used specifically for design and construction of our Fourth Street Improvement Project.

I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of Los Ranchos to thank Senator Ryan, Senator O’Neil, Representative Sandoval, and Representative Kane. I also would like to thank Governor Martinez for approving the capital outlay bill. In the coming months you will be hearing more details about proposed improvements to Fourth Street.

Grower’s Market:  Our Grower’s Market has begun its summer selling season. This is a great opportunity to enjoy your Los Ranchos community and meet your neighbors, walk your pet while purchasing fresh fruit and vegetables fresh off the vine.

Discharging into Ditch is Illegal:  Recently we had a situation whereby a new resident was cited by MCGCD for illegally discharging chemically treated water from their ornamental pond into an irrigation ditch. Needless to say these waterways and water shed are protected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. MRGCD, in turn, filed a police report and the Village issued a notice of EPA Violation to the homeowner.

High Fire Danger:  Once again we are facing some very dry conditions. Burning cotton is extremely dangerous as is any open flame. We can expect fire restrictions through the summer if the drought conditions continue.

Air Conditioners and Evaporative Coolers:  Not only is the cotton from the Cottonwood and Willow trees extremely flammable, cotton can be your cooling equipment’s worst enemy. If you see cotton flying in the air, chances are your cooling equipment is drawing the cotton fibers into its intake. Whether you have an evaporative cooler or refrigerated cooling, you need to make sure your filters and/or intake screens are not clogged. To maximize the cooling in your homes, you should check your filters every couple of weeks. 

Neighborhood Watch and Police Reports:  We are fortunate that Los Ranchos is one of the safest communities in New Mexico. This is in part to a very strong community in which neighbors are watching out for one another. I would like to encourage everyone to keep a close eye out for suspicious activity, be vigilant, write down license plate numbers or vehicle descriptions suspicious of suspicious vehicles but most importantly report to Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office any and all incidences. It is extremely important if you are a victim of any crime, no matter how small, you must call 798-7000 and file a report. In my tenure as Mayor, I can’t tell you how many times I have been to a neighborhood association meeting and invariably will hear about an incident and yet no one had notified BCSO.

Los Ranchos Rope n’ Roadrunners:  We want to congratulate the Los Ranchos Elementary School jump rope team for their tremendous success at two regional tournaments. You can read all about their accomplishments in this month’s issue. Also we want to wish them good luck at USA National Championship in Long Beach California on June 19, and at the US Junior Olympics in Detroit MI, July 25th.

Los Poblanos:  Los Poblanos Inn and Cultural Center has recently been named #6 Best Food Lovers Hotel in America by Bon Appétit Magazine and received mention in a USA Today titled Time to revisit underappreciated Albuquerque.

Lavender In the Village Coming Soon:  The Lavender in the Village Festival is just around the corner. Thank you to all the dedicated volunteers and to the Board of the Lavender Committee for all their hard work. Come out and support the event and join the fun by volunteering on the committee. For more information, see the Lavender Festival page in this months issue or go to their website at www.lavenderinthevillage.com

- Larry P. Abraham, Mayor

Posted on June 6, 2013 .

Rio Grande Community Farm Summer Camp

Check out this story by New Mexico Style and Kasa.com.  Nikki and Kristen are joined by Julie Hirshfield to talk about how you can give your little city dwellers a rural experience this summer, thanks to The Rio Grande Community Farm.  

The summer camp will hold four one-week camps at the Los Ranchos Agri-Nature Center throughout the month of June.  The camps will begin on Monday, June 3, from 9am-3pm each weekday.  You may call Rio Grande Community Farms at 505-345-4580 or visit their website at www.riograndefarm.org for more information.

Posted on May 16, 2013 .

Have You Registered for Reverse 911 Yet?

Did you know that you can register for the Reverse 911 System for free?  Whether you have a landline or a cell phone number you would like to register, it's easy and quick to do.

The Bernalillo County Emergency Notification System can be used to send important messages to residents and businesses within the unincorporated areas of the county with the capability of sending thousands of messages in a very short time, based on the geographic location of an incident.  Examples of emergency notifications may include: Evacuation notices due to emergency situations, such as fire, flood or other environmental hazard; Notifications of dangerous situations in your area, such as an environmental hazard, law enforcement investigation or other instance where you may be instructed to remain in your home. Notifications are not automatic and are sent at the direction of an incident commander or other managing authority of a situation.  Click here then select the opt-in link at the top of the page to register your phone number.

Another free subscription based notification service that the Village uses is Nixle.  Sign up at by clicking here and be sure to follow the Los Ranchos de Albuquerque NM Emergency Management feed.  You can also search for other feeds from other organizations that you may want to follow such as the Bernalillo County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management feed.

Knowledge is power.  Stay safe and informed.

Posted on April 30, 2013 .