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Top Graduates Announced

The top ten academic graduates were announced last Friday night during the Senior Parade on Main Street. Valedictorian for the Class of 2020 is Lizbeth Rojas. Lizbeth is the daughter of Hilario & Graciela Rojas. She plans to attend San Angelo State University and major in Nursing and minor in Biology. The class Salutatorian is Adaline White. Adaline is the daughter of Bill and Jeri Lynn White. She plans to attend the University of North Texas in Denton and major in Biology. The class Historian is Madyson Vazquez. Madyson is the daughter of Oscar and Patsy Vazquez. She plans to attend college and study Interior design and Anthropology. The remainder of the academic top ten students, in order, are: Nancy Rocha, Andrea Chavez, Carly Drake, Mariah Rivera, Kaelyn Bennett, Ezekiel Garcia, and Briana Beristain.


Friona School Song
Chieftains fight for ole Friona,
for your Alma Mater dear;
Chieftains fight for ole Friona,
for victory is near.
To Friona we'll be loyal,
till the sun drops from the sky.
Remembering until the end,
Chieftains fight never die.

Hospital announces Friona scholarship recipients

Parmer Medical Center is pleased to announce the recipients of the annual Parmer Medical Center Community Scholarships. The purpose of the scholarships is to promote service excellence in health care for Parmer County by assisting capable and qualified students interested in pursing healthcare related professions. There were nine applicants competing for the four scholarships.

The selection committee was comprised of school staff, hospital staff, and the public at large. They selected four deserving students to each receive a $2,500 award. Nancy Rocha attended Friona High School and plans to start her nursing studies at The University of Texas at Arlington. Alysia Albarado a Friona graduate will attend Tarrant County College then UTA to start her nursing career. Another Friona graduate, Mariah Rivera, will also attend The University of Texas at Arlington for her nursing studies. One other deserving senior from one of the other county schools also received a $2500 scholarship. Her name will be released at a later date.

The PMC Board of Directors and staff all wish a hearty congratulations to each of the scholarship recipients. Parmer County can be proud of the young people in our area.

Governor expands Phase II

Governor Greg Abbott issued a proclamation this week expanding additional services and activities that can open under Phase II of the state's plan to safely and strategically open. With this proclamation, water parks, recreational sport programs for adults, driver education programs, and food-court dining areas within shopping malls can begin operations with limited occupancy or regulations to protect the health and safety of Texans.

Beginning Friday, May 29th, water parks can open but must limit their occupancy to 25% of normal operating limits. Components of these water parks that have video arcades must remain closed. Starting Sunday, May 31st, recreational sports programs for adults can resume, but games and similar competitions may not begin until June 15th. Driver education programs can resume operations immediately.

Food-court dining areas within shopping malls can also immediately resume operations, but malls are encouraged to designate one or more individuals who are responsible for ensuring health and safety practices are followed, including: limiting tables to six individuals; maintaining a six-feet distance between individuals sitting at different tables; cleaning and disinfecting tables between uses; and ensuring no condiments or other items are left on tables between customer uses.

Courthouse scheduled to open June 1st

The Parmer County Commissioners Court met in regular session on Tuesday, May 26th at 10:00 a.m. in the County Courtroom of the Parmer County Courthouse in Farwell, Texas. The meeting began with prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag and the Texas Flag.

There were no public comments. Minutes from the May 11th meeting were read and approved. Commissioners approved the payment of the accounts payables as presented by County Treasurer Sharon May. The Treasurer's Report was also approved.

Judge Trey Ellis announced that the Parmer County Courthouse will reopen to the public on Monday, June 1st. All visitors must use the South Entrance and everyone will be screened and have their temperature taken. The reopening plan was approved by the Health Department but will need approval from the Administrative Judge before it can be implemented. Plexiglass barriers have been installed to protect county employees and visitors.

Commissioners approved a bond for Lucy Martinez who is the County Treasurer's Deputy. A postage lease agreement was also approved. The agreement is with a new company that has purchased the company used last year. There will be equipment and software upgrades.

The Court also approved a resolution to apply for CARES ACT and HAVA grants. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act is a law meant to address the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

HAVA grants from the Federal government are for counties to purchase compliant voting systems and for the state to purchase and maintain a compliant electronic voter registration database as well as create a voter education program, VoteTexas.

There were three items concerning the Law Enforcement Center. A software agreement was tabled until a later date. Commissioners approved the purchase of a generator for $36,450.00 from Phillips Generator of Amarillo. A grant from PRPC for $25,000 will be used for the purchase. The current generator is 20 years old. The generator is backup power for the 911 call center and must meet jail standards. Approval was given for a $5,078.00 contract agreement with Johnson Controls for the fire suppression system. Johnson Controls are the new owners of the company used last year.

Judge Ellis would also like to encourage everyone to wash your hands often, wear a mask, stay 6' away, and stay safe!!!

All meetings are open to the public. The Commissioners Court reserves the right to go into Executive session at any time. Go to parmercounty.org to find meeting agendas. Information in this article is only a summary. Any questions concerning specific actions should be directed to the court.


Town Talk

Thanks to band director Chris Rackley and Chieftain band members for putting out the crosses and flags at the cemetery for Memorial Day. The cemetery is in good shape and has come a long way since it was destroyed by the 1995 tornado. New projects at the cemetery are in the planning stages and details will be released soon.


Speaking of the tornado, June 2nd will mark the 25th anniversary of the 1995 tornado that wreaked havoc on Friona. The Friona Star will highlight the events of that day in next week's edition.


The first, and possibly last, Senior Parade was held Friday evening. Members of the Class of 2020 rode in vehicles driven by family members down the traditional parade route south down Main Street. Drivers stopped at the park so high school principal Erika Montana could announce the awards and scholarships that the student had earned. Around 71 of the 89 Seniors participated in the parade. The weather cooperated and there was a large "socially distanced" crowd. Go to photos.frionaonline.com to view photos of the event.


Construction at the various locations in the city is moving along briskly. The new bus barn has been completed. The new roof for the community center is finished and well as new heating/air conditioning units. Framing has begun on the quadplex and work is well underway on the triplex at the new housing project at 5th and Ashland. New insulation was installed at the EMS building and work is being done on the interior walls this week. New window frames are being installed this week at the Junior High Building.


The Chamber of Commerce announced that the Cheeseburger Festival has been rescheduled to coincide with Maize Days on Saturday, September 19th.


Some of the restaurants around town have opened back up with reduced capacity.


The return of sports. Students athletes can begin restricted workouts on Monday, June 8th. Also, there is a possibility that Friona could be in the line-up for some baseball action this summer. The only sport I have been involved with lately is pushing the mower from one end of the yard to the other. Closer to the agony of de-feet instead of the thrill of victory. I am already on a restricted workout regimen. Only one glass of tea and an ice cream sandwich per session. Brutal.


National Days

May 28 — Hamburger Day

May 29 — Paperclip Day

May 30 — Water a Flower Day

May 31 — Smile Day

June 1 — Go Barefoot Day

June 2 — Friona Tornado 25th Anniversary

June 3 — Repeat Day Repeat Day


COVID-19 News

as of May 27, 2020

Texas Panhandle:
4072 cases, 68 deaths
1,369 recoveries
Armstrong County: 2
Briscoe County: 1
Carson County: 6
Castro County: 32
Childress County: 2
Collingsworth County: 4
Cottle County: 4
Dallam County: 27
Deaf Smith County: 157
Donley County: 27
Gray County: 96
Hansford County: 19
Hartley County: 12
Hemphill County: 1
Hutchinson County: 31
Lipscomb: 2
Moore County: 583
Motley: 1
Ochiltree County: 46
Oldham County: 3
Parmer County: 53
Potter County: 2,251
Randall County: 652
Roberts County: 2
Sherman County: 24
Swisher County: 17
Wheeler County: 15

Eastern New Mexico:
93 cases, 1 death
Curry County:49
Quay County: 5
Roosevelt County: 36
Union: 3

Oklahoma Panhandle:
918 cases, 5 deaths
Beaver County: 24
Cimarron: 1
Texas County:893

56,560 cases
1,536 deaths
36,375 recoveries

United States:
1,716,638 cases
100,240 deaths

5,566,524 cases 351,740 deaths

COVID-19 Resources:

Health Protocols for Voters and Elections (English)

County Disaster Declaration (English)

March 16 FISD Letter (English) (Spanish)

March 31 FISD Letter (English) (Spanish)

Letter from City Manager (English) (Spanish)

Friona Community Helpline (English)

2-1-1 Texas Social Services Hotline (English)

Share The Facts about COVID-19 (English) (Spanish)

What You Need To Know (English) (Spanish)

What To Do If You Are Sick (English) (Spanish)

County Clerk PSA (English)

Chamber of Commerce Letter to Businesses (English)

FISD Emergency Resolution (English)