Saturday, May 29, 2010

Fort Ringgold Public Pool Open June 2

Rio Grande City CISD's swimming pool at Fort Ringgold will open to the public June 2, 2010. 

Schedule:  Tuesday - Sunday
                 8:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M.
                 1:00 P.M. - 8:00 P.M.

Students:   $1:00
Adults:      $2.00

Lifeguards will be present at all times.

Friday, May 28, 2010

RGC Man Among Recent Cartel Arrests


Valley Media reports a Rio Grande City man is one of three suspected Gulf Cartel members arrested in Miguel Aleman. (Read Full Article)

RGC Mayor, IBC Bank Encourage Residents To Support The Troops (Video)


On Friday morning, May 28, Rio Grande City Mayor Ruben Villarreal, along with IBC Bank and H-E-B, encouraged the public to participate in Operation Care Drop, a community-wide initiative supporting our service men and women overseas. The Event was held at the IBC Bank located inside the RGC H-E-B. Bank representatives were on hand to share information about the program and guests can enjoy refreshments while they are doing their shopping.

Through this care package donation drive, our nation’s troops are receiving support from the Zapata and Rio Grande City communities and more than 225 IBC branches and more than 65 H-E-Bs in Texas are serving as drop-off stations for much needed care package supplies.

To help pack and ship the goods overseas to servicemen and women, IBC and H-E-B are working with Operation Interdependence®, the premier Civilian-to-Military Delivery System® in the U.S.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

RSE Students Enjoy Outdoor Classroom Session


The Mobile Dairy Classroom Program visited General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary this past Thursday.  This traveling milking parlor featured a live cow and an oral presentation. The presenter demonstrated how to milk a cow, described how milk goes from the farm to the consumer, and then answered our student’s questions. This innovative program brought the dairy experience directly to our students. It provided our students a great experience which included math, science, health (nutrition), and agriculture, all presented in an outdoor classroom format.  Pictured above is Mr. Randy Miller, Lucy (dairy cow), and General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary Students (Submitted by A. B. Villarreal).

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Media Reports Troops Headed for Border

(File Photo)

Valley Media reports that President Barack Obama plans to deploy 1,200 National Guard troops to help secure the U.S./Mexico border. (Read Full Article)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

STC Starr County Campus celebrates DEMSA grads

2010 STC Starr County DEMSA graduates receive recognition at a special end of year event
at the STC campus. From left front are Christopher Patino, Jose Luis Garcia, Pedro Lozano, 
Briseida Maldonado, Nallely Garcia and Jessica Garza. From left back are Yahaira Fernandez, Jacquelin 
Cuellar, Melissa Trevino, Gloria Gonzalez, Alyssa Ramos, Arianna Vazquez, Kimberly Alaniz, 
Yvonne Garza, Danyka Garza, Stacey Garcia and Brittany Gonzalez.

South Texas College’s Starr County Campus Dual Enrollment Medical Science Academy (DEMSA) students were recognized for their efforts recently at the 11TH Annual STC Starr County Campus Recognition Celebration. The celebration recognized the hard work of 18 high school seniors from Roma and Rio Grande City school districts. Out of the 18 graduates, 13 were awarded scholarships to help further their educations.          

“I am very proud of myself for winning more than $20,000 in scholarships because the money is going to play a crucial role in helping me earn my physical therapy assistant degree,” said DEMSA Graduate Kim Alaniz, who is a student at Roma High School.

The students earned associate of science degrees in biology weeks before earning their high school diplomas.

“It feels great knowing that I am finishing high school one big step closer to later earning my bachelor’s degree,” said Arianna Vazquez, a graduating DEMSA student.

Any high school student attending classes in Rio Grande City or Roma high schools is eligible for the program, but must be ready to take on rigorous academic work, in addition to continuing extracurricular activities and home life responsibilities. And juggling all these endeavors can be quite challenging.

“It can be very difficult at times, but I try not to think of the present; I think about the future and what all the hard work will bring,” said Jose Luis Garcia, program graduate. 

“We are very proud of our DEMSA graduates in Starr County because many of them didn’t think this kind of achievement was possible,” said Lupe Chavez, director of high school programs for STC. “Starr County students helped STC launch its dual enrollment academies and the courage and dedication all participants and their families have shown is tremendous. They paved the way for others across the Valley and showed them what real hard work looks like. I congratulate all our academy graduates.”

The 18 students are all bound to continue their educations at colleges across the state including The University of Texas-Pan American, Texas State University, and Texas A&M International University.

For more information about STC’s DEMSA, or other high school programs available through the college, contact Lucia Salinas at 956-447-1274 or at

RGC Officers Participate in Career Day


Career Cluster Day was a half-day event that was organized by the second grade teachers from General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary. This event provided their second grade students the opportunity to explore various careers by meeting several local officers.  Career Cluster Day differs from a traditional Career Fair by offering information through a single grade level.  Through small group presentations, more student-presenter interaction was made possible.  Presenters discussed the skills they regularly used (on the job) and also provided examples of their typical work day through video presentations. Pictured above are local officers, General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary second grade teachers, and students (Submitted by A.B. Villarreal).

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Community honors local Starr County college graduates

Families and community members were serenaded by mariachis at the event. 
Family and community members gathered recently at South Texas College’s Starr County Campus Amphitheatre to celebrate the hard work of their loved ones. The 11th Annual Starr County Campus Recognition Celebration started at 7:30 p.m., right when the sun was going down, to give the estimated 500 member audience a comfortable setting to congratulate their loved ones for earning a college education.

“The amphitheatre hasn’t seated this many people since the campus opened,” said Ruben Saenz, STC campus coordinator. “It’s a blessing to know how many lives we have touched through education.” 

The theatre was full for good reason. The college’s Starr County Campus broke a new record in having its most graduates ever. An estimated 1,100 students attended the campus during the spring semester and 275 of those students graduated from the college with a certificate, associate’s or bachelor’s degree.

“We have never had this many people graduating in a single semester and it shows the need and the thirst in the community for higher education,” added Saenz. “I speak on behalf of the administration when I say thank you to the families of these graduates and the community that supported them. Without each of you, this accomplishment would not be possible.”
STC Starr County alum Michelle Salinas, who provided words of encouragement to the graduates, with Campus Coordinator Ruben Saenz.


STC Starr County alum Michelle Salinas, who serves as the assistant director of the Rio Grande City Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, provided words of encouragement to the graduates.

“As all of you know, completing your classes on time for graduation is not always an easy task,” she explained. “And for me, adding the responsibility of being a mother made college life more challenging, especially in the LVN Program. Experiencing late nights without my family was the hardest for me and tough on them too. In many instance, I felt I had to choose between school and family, but I knew the sacrifice would pay off in the end, and it did. The road to success if often a difficult one, full of obstacles and road blocks, but if one has the determination and a tenacious will, they will overcome these difficulties and achieve their desired goals.”

During the celebration, State Rep. Ryan Guillen, Rose Benavidez, who represents the constituents of Starr County on the college’s Board of Trustees, and STC President Shirley A. Reed all congratulated graduates on their accomplishments and encouraged them to continue their education.

“We consider STC to be a world class, premier college with some of the greatest students anywhere,” said Dr. Reed during her speech. “I am so proud of each one of you and hope that this is just the first step in your educational journeys. You each have the potential to continue on to earn a bachelor’s, master’s and even doctorate degree. I hope you come back one day and help us continue educating the youth of tomorrow. Good luck and remember that learning is a lifelong process.”

The campus also took the opportunity to honor 18 graduates from the Starr County Campus Dual Enrollment Medical Science Academy and three graduates from the college’s Bachelor of Applied Technology Program. 

“I feel like I have had a huge weight lifted off my shoulders,” said Elizabeth Salinas, who earned a bachelor’s in technology management from STC. “Not only do I have a bachelor’s degree now, I can now also market myself better in the job market thanks to STC’s BAT Program.”

Elizabeth Salinas, who earned a bachelor’s in technology management from STC, celebrates her graduation at the college’s 11th Annual Starr County Campus Recognition Celebration.
The event was concluded with mariachis and a dinner for the families of the graduates.

“It was a great evening of celebration and joy,” concluded Saenz. “It’s an honor to be able to serve the citizens of Starr County at STC and events like our recognition ceremony make all the hard work of our college and campus community very worthwhile.”

Attempted Robbery Ends with Fatal Shooting


An unidentified robbery suspect was shot and killed by Rio Grande City Police in the RGC Downtown area on on late Tuesday afternoon, May 18, 2010 (Read Full Article)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Google Tool Offers Perspective on Gulf Oil Spill

Google Earth, Google's mapping software, has created a tool that measures the current size of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and allows you to compare it to the size of your hometown. (You can compare it to your own city by clicking here.) The above image shows the size of the oil spill, about 25000 square miles, as of May 13, 2010.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

RGC Citizens Protest Mexico Violence, Promote Peace

On Sunday afternoon, May 16, 2010, a group of concerned citizens marched along U.S. Highway 83 in Rio Grande City, Texas, protesting against the ongoing violence along the U.S./Mexico border, and promoting a message of peace.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Mexican Military Helicopter Spotted Over Roma

(File Photo)

The Rio Grande Valley's KRGV Channel 5 News organization, reports Mexican military helicopter crossing into US airspace over Roma. (Read Full Article)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Valley Media Reports Possible Terrorist Crossings

 The Rio Grande Valley's KRGV Channel 5 News organization, reports that local law enforcement agencies fear the possible crossing of terrorists into the U.S. (Read Full Article)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Local Group Plans First RGC Bike Club

 -Special to

Los Caminos del Río, Colonias Unidas, Community Action Council of South Texas-Youth Plex, and Workforce Solutions-Rio Grande City have partnered-up to hold Bike Repair Clinics and begin the ‘first’ Bicycling Club in Starr County.  The community, local organizations, and businesses are invited to donate any bikes that are unusable, clunkers, or they want to get rid of. This will help people in the community repair bikes for kids that may not have a bike.

This effort is to promote a healthier lifestyle in the area and have kids and their parents enjoy the outdoors and local history.  Memorial Week-end is the last day for dropping off bikes at Colonias Unidas, 8019 Embassy Rd., Rio Grande City--(Priscilla Martinez, Director @ 956.487.0964) or YouthPlex Pavilion, 1409 W. Canales, Rio Grande City    (Toni Botello,Planner/Trainer @ 956.487.2585) or Los Caminos del Río (Norma Viola Cantú, AmeriCorps, VISTA @ 956.227.2372)  for more information.

Los Caminos del Río (LCDR), is a non-profit organization chartered in 1991 to "preserve and promote the environment, history and cultural heritage of the Lower Rio Grande Valley."  We work on both sides of the border from Laredo and Nuevo Laredo to the Gulf of Mexico.  Our objective is to secure National Heritage Area status for the U.S. side of the corridor, something which requires an act of Congress, and which triggers up to $1,000,000 per year in federal money for up to 15 years to expand programs, address regional challenges and prepare the Valley to become a world-class tourist destination.  Los Caminos del Río-Frontera Chica is housed out of First National Bank on East Highway 83 in Rio Grande City.

Texas A&M Students Help Paint Community Mural


In this Photo:
Students of Arch 406 Spring 2010 Semester Design Studio (Texas A&M University), parents and childen of "Juega y Aprende"after-school program (Colonias Unidas), CEO Program Youth Participants (Workforce Solutions) Bottom Row (seated): 2nd from left: Priscilla Martinez, Director (Colonias Unidas), John Nichols, Department of Construction Science (Texas A&M University), Blanca Juarez, Advisor (Colonias Unidas), Last on Right Peter Lang, Department of Architecture (Texas A&M University)
Click Here for more photos/info.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

RGCHS Class of '81 In Search of Classmates

The Rio Grande City High School, class of 1981 is in search of it’s classmates for their 30th class reunion, scheduled for October 21-24, 2010.  If you have ANY information as to the whereabouts of the following missing alumni, please send information to:  Sonya Hinojosa at: or on Facebook (search: Sonya Hinojosa) Click Here to Download the Full List of names here.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

RGC Native Physician to Receive Award

Austin, TX- Dr. Javier D. “Jake” Margo, Jr., a family medicine physician, will be recognized by the Texas Exes, The University of Texas’ Alumni Association, at the 2010 Outstanding Young Texas Ex award ceremony on May 22. The award, inaugurated in 1980 by the Texas Exes, annually recognizes four young alumni who are distinguished in their fields and have demonstrated a continuing interest in The University of Texas at Austin and the Texas Exes.

Margo is a native of Rio Grande City and was one of nine recipients of the Texas Excellence Award for Scholarship and Leadership in 1993.  At the time, he had to make a choice between The University of Texas at Austin and Harvard. He chose to attend The University of Texas and majored in Biology. From there, he received his medical degree from Texas A&M University Systems Health Science Center - College of Medicine and then went on to do his residency at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth where he specialized in family medicine. After his medical studies, Margo returned to his hometown to practice full scope of service family medicine which includes a combination of outpatient clinics, inpatient hospital care, obstetrics including C-Section deliveries, and Emergency Room coverage.  He is also currently the Medical Director of Rio Grande City Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and Co- Medical Director of the Starr County Memorial Hospital Emergency Department.

There will be three Outstanding Young Texas Exes honored at the event in addition to Margo, including: Sarah Aubrey, a television and film producer who lives in Santa Monica, CA; Robert Hamilton, a former attorney and public affairs officer for the U.S. Army in Iraq who currently lives in Austin, TX; and Sanya Richards-Ross, a World Champion 400-meter track and field runner living in Round Rock, TX.

The Texas Exes was founded in 1885. The mission of the Texas Exes is to unite, inform and involve alumni and friends for the purpose of promoting, protecting and preserving The University of Texas. Today there are around 90,000 members whom the association strives to connect to each other and to the past, present, and future of the university through career counseling, travel, reunions, continuing education, fellowship, legislative advocacy in support of higher education, and The Alcalde magazine. For more information on Texas Exes or to become a member, please visit

Monday, May 10, 2010

Download PC Wallpaper

You can show your hometown pride, and support our new format by downloading 
and displaying these PC wallpapers on your computer screen. 

Click here to download Standard Version

Click here to download Wide Screen Version. 

Friday, May 7, 2010

Immaculate Conception School Walkathon Deemed a Success

The Immaculate Conception School community, we would like to thank everyone for their support of our annual Walkathon. We had a great event this year integrating an Olympic theme. Each class chose their country for the Olympics, and they learned in depth the different facts about their country. Each day, the student body traveled around the world visiting these countries through bulletin board displays and presentations at morning assembly. Thanks go out to Mr. Hughes and the Walkathon Committee members, S. Armada, V. Santos, and C. Ivester for the success of the Walkathon, both as a public display of Catholic school pride and as a fundraiser for the Diocese of Brownsville and our school. A special thanks to Mrs. Silva for the beautiful banner for our All-star float. The two top pledge earners from each class were honored as All-Stars and allowed to ride the float during the Walkathon. The banner was also used to disclose the pledge totals at the Grotto at the end of the walk. This year’s Catholic Schools Week theme, “Dividends for Life,” draws attention to the many beneficial aspects of a Catholic education. In these tight economic times, the theme also reminds parents that these dividends – faith, knowledge, morals and discipline – truly are payable for life. There’s no better way to invest in a child’s future. I.C.S. currently has open registration for interested families who want to give their children the gift of Catholic education. Please come by the office or call 487-2558. To learn more about I.C.S., visit us online at

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Home-Grown Talent Composes "Ethics" Documentary


Short Documentary Created by:
Nery Solano
Iza Martinez
Julianna DeLeon

Sheriff Rene Fuentes is proud to announce that the Starr County Detention Center passes inspection.


The Texas Commission of Jail Standards holds annual inspections of all detention facilities to ensure that proper measures are taken to promote safety and sanitation.

  The Starr County Detention Center inspection was held recently  and was certified to be in compliance. Starr County Sheriff Rene Fuentes is extremely proud of the detention officers for their hard work and dedication.

  "It is individuals like these that make up a hard working team resulting in an organization that is focused on protecting its citizens," said Sheriff Fuentes. This certified rating is a testament to the professionalism and pride demonstrated by the detention officers in their daily assignments. 

  The Detention Center is under the direction of Captain Romeo Ramirez and Chief Deputy Guillermo "Willie" Pena.  Sheriff Rene Fuentes and his staff would like the citizens of Starr County to know that the patrol officers as well as the detention officers are working diligently to serve and protect.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Rio Grande City CISD Employees Build Chuck Wagon

Rio Grande City CISD Maintenance Department Personnel directed by Mr. Arcadio Salinas, Jr, built a Mobile Barbecue Trailer in the form of a Chuck Wagon.  The trailer is equipped as a mobile kitchen and will be utilized in school functions such as faculty breakfasts.  The trailer was designed as a modern replica of the Wild West Chuck Wagons used by cowboys.  The design research was made by Mr. Gilberto E. Garcia-Assistant Superintendent who also supervised the project.  Pictured: (RGCCISD Photo)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Los Nuestros Educational Scholarship Foundation awards 59 scholarships

The Los Nuestros Educational Scholarship Foundation was founded and established with the generous contributions made by our educators and staff. The intent of the scholarship is to provide an incentive for all qualifying students enrolled in Rio Grande City High School in their pursuit to advance to a post secondary education institution. Throughout the course of the year, employees can contribute through payroll dedication or make a one time donation. These funds are then collected and given to the students in form of a scholarship to be used for university fees, housing, or personal expenses acquired while attending an educational institution of their choice. The scholarship guidelines and criteria are geared towards rewarding the hard work of a well rounded student that has kept a grade point average of 80 or better and at the same time have participated and volunteered in civic and community organizations as well as extra-curricular activities. All students who meet the criteria can apply and do not have to be of any relation to a school district employee.

The foundation has awarded over $260,000.00 to very special and worthy individuals. Scholarships are awarded equally among recipients.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Upward Bound students rock regional academic bowl

STC’s Upward Bound Program students from Roma and Rio Grande City
enjoyed time at regional academic bowl.

By: Delicia Ramirez, STC Upward Bound Program Coordinator
On Saturday, April 10, 2010, 41 students from STC’s Upward Bound Program competed at the 33rd Annual South Texas Upward Bound Academic Bowl. The event was held at Coastal Bend College, in Beeville, Texas. STC participants competed with approximately 250 students from Laredo Community College, Texas A&M Corpus Christi and Coastal Bend College.
The STC students, who live in Roma and Rio Grande City took part in competitions to gauge their skills in science, math, writing, persuasive speaking, and art, among others. Students practiced diligently during their Saturday classes and held review sessions on their own to prepare for the contests. Participants also formed two teams and competed in co-ed volleyball and basketball, bringing home the first place trophy for volleyball.
Following is a list of the top STC winners:

Science I
First place - Iliana Cantu
Second place - Viviana Vidal
Third place - Erick T. Guerra

Science II
First place - Alexis I. Garcia
Second place - Jose Bermea

Math I
Fourth place - Valentina Flores

Ready Writing
Fifth place - Karina Segovia

Persuasive Speaking
Third place - Abiel Cantu

Artistic Expression
First place in “Best Instrumental” - Mariel Guerra
Third place overall - Mariel Guerra

Sunday, May 2, 2010



The District Attorney’s Office and the Texas Rangers are continuing to probe allegations of irregularities involving mail-in ballots in the March 2, 2010 county primary elections, and have begun a new investigation concerning complaints about mail-in ballots in the upcoming May 2010 Roma ISD trustee elections.

District Attorney Heriberto Silva indicated on Monday afternoon, April 19, “The investigation of the March 2010 election is ongoing. The 229th District Court grand jury requested an extension of its term and it was granted.”

Silva declared, “New allegations have been made concerning the Roma ISD election. That is a separate investigation. The allegations involving the Roma election also involve mail-in ballots. The Rangers are involved in that investigation also.”

The prosecutor stated, “The complaints about the Roma election first arose in the middle to latter part of last week.”

Silva added, “For the March election, we impounded 112 ballots, but investigated 56 ballots. We don’t know yet how many ballots are being investigated in the Roma (ISD) matter.”

The D.A. pointed out, “The (Texas) Attorney General’s Office has been here to help in the investigation of the March election.”

Silva indicated that one person has been charged with a misdemeanor in connection with the probe of the March election mail-in ballots. Silva indicated that this person “was charged with picking up ballots without properly signing them.” This individual’s case has been referred to the County Attorney’s Office.

On Monday, April 12, a visiting state district judge rejected the petition of District Clerk challenger Dave “Chachi” Jones asking that a new election be called. After a recount was conducted earlier, incumbent District Clerk Eloy Garcia’s margin of victory remained at 88 votes.

In early March, Silva stated, “The allegation is that the mail-in ballots, a total of 112, were delivered without the ballots being signed on the outside. If it’s not your ballot and you deliver it, you have to sign the outside of the ballot.”

Celebrating 40 Years of Earth Day

In observance of Earth Day, the fourth grade students at General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary have been focusing on reducing, reusing, and recycling. Many of the students have become more conscious of their daily actions and the effect they have on our environment. This new understanding has caused the students to establish more Earth-friendly habits. They have included their parents in conservation efforts by encouraging them to use reusable grocery bags, limiting the use of disposable items, and pledging their part to conserve water by fixing water leaks at home. At school, the students have become more aware of the effects of overusing paper, made sure classroom lights are off when not in use, and have been committed to keeping the school grounds clean. Earth Day is a time we remind ourselves that the Earth is precious and we need to take care of it. On April 22, 2010, the student body joined in the national celebration by wearing green shirts, dedicating time for Earth Day awareness activities, and watching “Earth,” a film depicting the beauty of our grand world. Pictured above are General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary fourth grade teachers and students (Submitted by A.B. Villarreal).

1st Annual Spring Decorating Contest Winners

In an effort to help provide a more festive spring atmosphere (instead of the conventional institutional stainless steel service), the Rio Grande City C.I.S.D. Food Service Dept. held its First Annual Spring Decorating Contest. All district cafeterias were encouraged to decorate their serving line with a spring motif. The categories judged were: creativity, originality, spontaneity, and ambiance. General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary would like to thank their Pre-Kinder teachers for all their creative ideas, their time, and their efforts. Not only did they decorate the entire serving center and the surrounding areas, but also implemented their students’ work and added a Hawaiian Twist. Pictured are General Ricardo Sanchez Elementary Pre-Kinder Teachers and Cafeteria Staff (Submitted by A.B. Villarreal).

Rio Grande City CISD Hosts ACT Seminar

The RGCCISD Guidance Department headed by Mrs. Adelina Villarreal hosted an ACT Seminar to promote higher academic achievement and college success. The seminar was held at Rio Grande City High School Library and middle school and high school students were in attendance. Parents were also invited to attend in order to gain insight in the importance of this test and help them understand some of the prerequisites for college registration. The presentation was made by Mrs. Maureen Swade of Test Prep Seminars based out of Wisconsin . The seminar gave students a perspective on what to expect when taking the actual ACT test. ACT test scores are a tool that colleges and universities utilize in order to evaluate and accept students to enroll in their campuses. Mrs. Roxanne Garza-College and Career Advisor and the high school counseling staff continuously provide the students with pertinent information to help them make informed educational decisions and prepare them for the transition into college. For additional information on college readiness and financial aid you may contact Mrs. Roxanne Garza at (956) 488-6000. RGCCISD Photo.

Alto Bonito Elementary 5th Grade Class Goes To San Antonio

The Alto Bonito Elementary 5th grade class traveled to San Antonio to visit the Witte Museum and the San Antonio Zoo to Learn About Science. With the Science TAKS test creeping up on them the teachers decided to give the students a different experience other than the traditional way of learning. They attended college like classes to learn about the water cycle, systems, ecology, states of matter and they even portrayed archeologists as they searched for dinosaur bones. The trip was fun and exciting as well as educational. Pictured above are: The 5th the Grade class of 2010, along with their teachers, Ms. Linda Pena, Mrs. Jessica Tamez, Miss Jennifer Pena, Mr. Jose Hernandez and Mr. Demetrio Rodriguez.