Portales takes a break

By Eric Norwood Jr.

PNT staff writer

enorwood@pntonline.com

Monday was a quiet and sleepy Labor Day in Portales as residents enjoyed their free day from work and school by relaxing with friends and family, cooking up something good on the grill, or by simply hanging out at home.

Eric Norwood Jr.: Portales News-Tribune Frank Viera roasts some chiles on Monday. Viera barbecued on Monday not just for Labor Day, but because it was his son Francisco’s 12th birthday as well.

Eric Norwood Jr.: Portales News-Tribune
Frank Viera roasts some chiles on Monday. Viera barbecued on Monday not just for Labor Day, but because it was his son Francisco’s 12th birthday as well.

The local parks were a popular place on Monday, as people of all ages went to work out, hang out, or just to get out.

“We live right down the street,” said Brandon Floyd, 27, an airman who lives in Portales. Floyd was at Rotary Park, spending time with his two sons Destin, 4, and Atlas, 1.

“We decided to give mom a break, so we went for a walk and got some ice cream. Then I brought them over to the park and let them play for a while,” said Floyd, who moved to Portales a year ago from Japan. Floyd works on base as an aircraft mechanic, and said since he was off today, he was probably going to grill something.

Playing next to Destin and Atlas Floyd was Elijah Alamideen, 3. He pushed his toy cars up the slide to Destin Floyd, who waited at the top of the slide to retrieve them and send them back. Alamideen’s parents watched from a nearby bench.

“We just came out to watch our son play,” said Devon Cosby, Elijah’s father. Cosby is an airman from San Diego living in Portales.

“It feels great to be off work. It seems like I work all of the holidays but it’s cool to be able to hang out with my family on Labor Day,” said Cosby.

Caitlin Higgins, 16, and Samantha Pastrana, 21, hung out at Morrison Park and drank milkshakes.

“It was just a beautiful day so we wanted to swing,” said Higgins.

Kristy Tivis and the rest of her adult co-ed softball team also were at Morrison Park, practicing for their upcoming season.

“This is our first practice as a team. Since we all have little experience, we decided to meet up and practice together,” said Tivis.

Eastern New Mexico University had no classes like the rest of the county schools, so roommates Amy Waltner, 18 of Rio Rancho, and Danna Wallace, 18 of Colorado Springs, Colo., took the day to explore Portales.

“We’re heading to lunch,” said Wallace.

“We don’t know where yet but we’re gonna keep driving until we find something that looks good,” said Waltner. Wallace and Waltner are both freshmen who live in Guadalupe Hall on the campus of ENMU.

Their resident assistant, Sara Hutto, 20 of Los Alamos, was in town keeping an eye on things at the dormitory.

Eric Norwood Jr.: Portales News-Tribune Elijah Alamideen, 3, plays with his toy cars as Atlas Floyd, 1, watches. Floyd and Alamideen came to Rotary Park on Monday with their respective families to play since it was Labor Day and neither of their parents had to work.

Eric Norwood Jr.: Portales News-Tribune
Elijah Alamideen, 3, plays with his toy cars as Atlas Floyd, 1, watches. Floyd and Alamideen came to Rotary Park on Monday with their respective families to play since it was Labor Day and neither of their parents had to work.

“I’m off duty but I stayed here this weekend in case anyone needs help,” said Hutto. Hutto said that if she was back home in Los Alamos today, she would probably be having a movie day with her family.

Frank Viera had his whole block smelling good, as he roasted up some chilies on the grill.

“I roast them all at once and freeze them for later,” said Viera. He was also preparing a meal for his son, Francisco who turned 12 on Monday.

“I’ve had a good day just playing with my friends and hanging out with family,” said Francisco Viera. “It feels good to have my birthday and school off on the same day.”

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