October 13 Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor, 

On behalf of the Friends of the Marfa Public Library, I want to thank everyone who attended our (Book) Sale of the Century. It was a wonderful thing to see these books disperse to our community, and it could not have happened without the help of so many. 

First and foremost, thank you to the Lannan Foundation, which donated the books, but also gave so much to our library and town over the years. We are indebted to their kindness and generosity. Additionally, many thanks to Douglas Humble and Tim Johnson for their dedication, graciousness and support. 

We are grateful to the City of Marfa and the library’s board of directors –– Ariele Gentiles, Joni Marginot, Gary Oliver, Ester Sanchez, Bob Schwab and Natalia Williams –– for their endless assistance, not to mention the many others who pitched in: Abby Boyd, Michael Camacho, Ross Cashiola, Harry Crofton, David Gouge, Vance Knowles, Seth Mankoski, Kelly Perez and Calletana Vargas. 

Lastly, thanks to Marfa Public Library’s incredible staff –– Jasmin Pineda, Kim Soto and Luann Williamson –– and our volunteers –– JD DiFabbio, Joni Marginot, Annette Mendoza, Gary Oliver, Ron Parrish, Bob Schwab and Cary Wilson –– without whom we could not have pulled this off. 

Leftover books will slowly make their way to our Book Barn, so if you are curious, please stop by (and if you do so on a Friday morning, when we offer free Coffee in the Courtyard, all the better!). 


Nicki Ittner

Director, Marfa Public Library


Querido Editor, 

De parte de Friends of the Marfa Public Library, quiero darle las gracias a todos los que atendieron nuestra Venta de Libros Del Siglo. Era una maravilla ver los libros dispensados a nuestra comunidad, no hubiera sido posible sin la ayuda de todos. Los procedimientos directamente benefician a los programas de la librería.  

Primeramente, gracias a la fundación Lannan, que nos donó los libros, pero también ha dado mucho a nuestra librería y a nuestro pueblo. Estamos endeudados por su generosidad y amabilidad. Además, muchas gracias a Douglas Humble y Tim Johnson por su dedicación, apoyo y bondad.  

Estamos agradecidos a la cuidad the Marfa y a los miembros de la junta directiva de la librería –– Ariele Gentiles, Joni Marginot, Gary Oliver, Ester Sanchez, Bob Schwab y Natalia Williams –– por su asistencia infinita. También queremos mencionar a otros que contribuyeron: Abby Boyd, Michael Camacho, Ross Cashiola, Harry Crofton, David Gouge, Vance Knowles, Seth Mankoski, Kelly Perez y Calletana Vargas. 

Por último, gracias al personal increíble de la librería –– Jasmin Pineda, Kim Soto y Luann Williamson –– y a todos nuestros voluntarios –– JD DiFabbio, Joni Marginot, Annette Mendoza, Gary Oliver, Ron Parrish, Bob Schwab y Cary Wilson –– sin ellos no hubiéramos podido hacer este evento.  

Los libros que quedaron van a ser transferidos al Book Barn, si te gana la curiosidad te invitamos a dar una vuelta (¡especialmente los viernes por la mañana, cuando ofrecemos café gratis en nuestro patio!) 


Nicki Ittner,

Directora, Librería Pública de Marfa



The Presidio Public Library and volunteer Mrs. Haydee Hernandez hosted the 20th Annual Presidio Volunteer Fire Department reception on Monday, October 10 — the start of Fire Prevention Week. This week the Presidio Volunteer Fire Department will be hosting a number of programs for local youth, including a tour of the fire department and a demonstration of the volunteers in action.

Ramon Rodriguez helped put together the ceremony, and the Presidio Public Library honored him as a student volunteer during our reception for his volunteer work in the community. He was presented a Citizenship Volunteer Award for his many contributions to Presidio through Project Homeleaf — in addition to the downtown planter project, he  was responsible for the Recycling Containers installed downtown and also keeping up with the Presidio Recycling Center. His contributions to the community of Presidio are many.


Carmen Elguezabal



I volunteer with Big Bend Pets, an organization that works to humanely and effectively reduce the number of community (free roaming, stray or feral) cats living on our streets. Through Big Bend Pets, we humanely trap such cats, transport them to local vets for spay/neuter surgery and vaccinations, and return them to their home area. Spaying or neutering prevents unwanted litters of kittens, improves the health of outdoor cats, and decreases the number of cats euthanized in shelters. Big Bend Pets not only improves the lives of the outdoor cats, but also their caretakers, neighbors and neighborhood. While I provide the volunteer labor to trap and transport the community cats, DONATIONS provide the money to pay the veterinarians.

Please call 575-489-5932, visit our website bigbendpets.org, or email [email protected] to learn more about Big Bend Pets service or to donate.

Joni Marginot



Marfa voters BEWARE of the information being put out by the administration. The reason a bond is even being considered is because LITTLE to NO maintenance has been performed to correct existing problems. All you have to do is look at the school grounds’ lack of maintenance to get an idea of what the interior looks like.

The students themselves have voiced concerns about plumbing that doesn’t work, leaky ceilings in some classrooms and the biggest leak occurring in the library. 

Why would you put carpet in the auditorium when you have a perfectly wonderful tile floor? With the EXTREMELY large amounts of goat-heads (puncture vine) and grass-burs on the school grounds, who will be responsible for cleaning them out of the carpet????

It’s being said that with a new building student population will increase. Why are you building for a current population of 240-270 students when you are expecting more to move into the district? Will that be another bond issue to address? The previous two bonds have not been paid-off yet.

It’s also being said your taxes won’t increase that much. With the market value of homes in Marfa going out-of-sight, your taxes will increase as well as your home insurance (which many of you have already experienced not only because of property values but also due to house fires in the community) and this creates a burden on ALL property owners.

The school board is also pushing for new construction. They are going to have to answer the voters for their actions and non-actions. They apparently have closed eyes on the current problems.

Of course this is just my opinion based on what I have observed, seen, discussed with students and other taxpayers. You have to decide what you want to shoulder for the next 30 years.

Bernie Kelly

A concerned Marfa tax payer


To the Editor:

On behalf of all of us at the Chinati Foundation, I want to extend a sincere thank you to everyone who supported and participated in Chinati Weekend 2022. It was with great pleasure that Chinati welcomed friends, neighbors, members and benefactors to join us in celebrating the 35th Annual Open House Weekend. Public participation is at the heart of this tradition of hospitality inaugurated by Donald Judd. This year we would especially like to thank the many businesses who hosted “Made in Marfa” events, and extend our gratitude to Judd Foundation for joining us once again by hosting an open house at the Art Studio.

Our deepest gratitude to all who made the musical performances and exhibitions such a special part of the weekend: For Her Hair Grew Wild: vocalist Carmina Escobar, with Natalia Pérez Turner. Artist Sarah Crowner, who created a new commission for Chinati, “Platform (Blue Green Terracotta for JC),” 2022, being shown alongside a new exhibition of works by John Chamberlain from the permanent collection. Additional thanks for the skillful fabrication of the materials and installation of the special exhibitions by Cerámica Suro, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico; Ramos Tile Service, El Paso, Texas; and SILLA, Marfa, Texas; Ben and Stephen Esquivel of 360 Art Services, Houston, Texas; Eric Delanoy of Delanoy Construction, Alpine, Texas .

Thank you to Chinati’s Artist in Residence Jesus Benavente for opening his studio. Thank you to Sarah Crowner for Saturday’s public conversation with curator Ingrid Schaffner. Our thanks to Abby Boyd and the Marfa Visitors Center, Tim Crowley and Rob Crowley.

Chinati Weekend programming was made possible in part with a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Chinati Weekend 2022 was generously supported by Bob Ackerley, Ben E. Keith Foundation, Gabe Catone, Lee and Michael Cohn LLC, Shawn M. Cowdin Construction, Carter Dickson, Joseph DiCristina, David Droese, Electrocute Productions, Exhibitions 2d Marfa, Mack and Cece Fowler, Sarah Harte and John Gutzler, Hauser + Wirth, Hill Art Foundation, Robert Holleyman and Bill Keller, Natasha Kamrani, Raoul and Martha Kennedy, The Kraus Family Foundation, Lannan Foundation, Kathleen Irvin Loughlin and Christopher Loughlin, Lawrence Luhring and Roland Augustine, Martin and Martin Design, Galerie Max Hetzler, Henry S. McNeil, Jr., Nancy A. Nasher and David J. Haemisegger Collection, The Nasher Sculpture Center, Galerie Nordenhake, Christian and Rebecca Patry, Nancy and Rod Sanders, Annabelle Selldorf, and Neil and Carla Subin.

Thank you to our board of trustees and all our members who support Chinati throughout the year.

Chinati is grateful for the in-kind sponsorship of Aesop, Ben E. Keith, Casa Dragones, Cactus Liquors, Gruet, Rambler Sparkling Water, RG|NY, and Stone Brewing Co. 

With thanks for food, drink, music, flowers, and support: Teal Étoile Black, Elvira Hinojos, Bertha González Nieves, Maria Rivero, Todd Touron, and Dave Mead; Angela Reece and her terrific team at Walter Burke Catering; Faith Gay, Joey Benton, and Cactus Liquors; Molly Rodriguez and Mariachi Santa Cruz; Lizzie Wetzel; and The Big Bend Sentinel. For his photography, thank you Alex Marks.

Thank you to the following for their many contributions toward making the weekend a stellar success: John Aguero, J.B. Aguirre, Valerie Arber, Arturo Alferez Jr., Evalice Arguello, Juan and Gabriela Bustillos, Sterry Butcher, Leah Caldwell, Shea Carley, Mark Cash, Kathie Compton, Angela Cordero, Elizabeth L. Davis, Eric Delanoy, Belinda Dominguez, Melissa Firmin, Virginia Flores, Nancy Francis, Bianca Gonzalez, David Harding, Alyanna Hernandez, Jackie Hernandez, Levi Hinojos, Kathryn Hinojos, Griselda Hinojos, Tenessa Hinojos, Alex Kamelhair, Alex Leos, Minerva Leos, Ian Lewis, Jim Martinez, Ruben Martinez, Kat McKenna, Alfredo Mediano, Debbie Melendez, Annette Mendoza, Linda Ojeda, Dillon Orr, Rico Roman, Rory Parks, Ignacio Parras, Sara Pittman, Curtis Pittman, Victoria Rios, Randy Sanchez, Sam Schonzeit, Matt Scobey, Ben Shurley, Anthony Serrano, Mario Serrano, PJ Serrano, Anthony Serrano, Mario Serrano, Peter Stanley, James Tuttle, Fern Udave, Maria Ureste, Amy White, City of Marfa, and Marfa Hardware.

Last but never least, our most heartfelt thank you to the extraordinary staff at Chinati who make the weekend possible: Tobin Becker, Molly Bondy, Julie Carey, Marella Consolini, Malinda Galindo, Sandra Hinojos, Robert Lara, Miguel Leyva, Hannah Marshall, Stephen Martin, Eliseo Martinez, Michael Roch, Jerram Rojo, Shelby Rogers, Jen Rowles, Karina Salcido, Ingrid Schaffner, Luis Sigala, Shelley Smith, Edsel Vana, and our interns, Ariel Anais and Celina Villanueva.

Thank you all!

The Chinati Foundation



Response to Jake’s opinion letter from last week. 

I would like to begin by applauding Jake for his passion and participation in the democratic process. As a community and a country, we need involved young men and women who care.

I am saddened by the confrontational styles demonstrated by contemporary media, state and national politicians from both Democrats and Republicans are setting the examples for young activists in our community elections. Unfortunately, we should not be surprised that these role models inspire our young potential leaders to use spin, accusation and divisiveness in a way that is not healthy for our community or the democratic process in general. 

Integrity is important! We should call out our candidates if they are not being truthful about issues that are relevant to the position which they seek. However, it is disappointing that we are debating the definition of the word “politician” rather than discussing the values, experience and qualifications of the candidates. 

For the record, Merriam-Webster Dictionary (www.merriam-webster.com) defines these words as follows:

  • Politician

1: a person experienced in the art or science of government

2: a: a person engaged in party politics as a profession 

b: a person primarily interested in political office for selfish or other narrow usually short-sighted reasons

  • public servant: a government official or employee
  • servant: one that serves others

I can assure you that I do not meet the definitions for a “politician” in the context offered in my letter or by Merriam-Webster. And I also can assure you that I genuinely aspire to live the definition of “servant” to my neighbors who I respect and this community that I love. 

So, I stand by this important value distinction: “I am not a ‘politician,’ but I aspire to be a public ‘servant’”! If this distinction is important to you, I hope that you will consider a vote for me on November 8th

May God bless you and may God bless Presidio County,

Garey Willbanks

The most qualified candidate for Presidio County Commissioner Precinct 4