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November 2021

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Courtesy Photo Volunteers hard at work in the Questa Visitor Center garden beds.

First Questa Community Cleanup Day of 2021

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By Martha Shepp

Tammie Arvila and Larry Sanchez were tired of seeing trash and untrimmed weeds in our village. One day they decided together, “Let’s do something about it!” And so, on Saturday, May 1, about 20 volunteers joined them to tidy up key areas of our community commons. These areas included Molycorp Field & Park, along the Questa History Trail, the corner Veterans Memorial Park garden area, the Questa Visitor Center area, along the Highway 522 corridor near the Questa Supermarket and further out, at the shopping center with Questa Lumber, Family Dollar, and BestCare Pharmacy. The volunteers came from Questa, Taos, Sunshine Valley, El Rito, and Cerro.

Photo by Martha Shepp A pile of weeds pulled from the corner lot of Highways 522 and 38.
Courtesy Photo Event co-leader Tammie Arvila hard at work in the Questa Visitor Center.

Mayor Mark Gallegos was there, too, offering helping hands and hosting lunch for the volunteer workers at El Monte Carlo, paid for by Gabriel Cisneros.

The day began at 9 am at the Questa Visitor Center, with boxes of pastries from Frank’s Sweets & Eats and delicious homemade muffins by Tammie, and work packets courtesy of Lynn Skall and the QEDF—small plastic bags with gloves, a “Shop Questa” decal, a trash bag, and instructions. Tammie and Larry outlined the plan, and off the workers went!
Want to help pick up trash and beautify? More days like May 1 are scheduled for the remainder of the summer every month. Contact Lynn Skall: or leave a message at (575) 586-2149 for more information. (See related story about Community Connection Days on this page 22.)


  • Questa Creative Council Board member and artist: I paint the Southwest because I love the land! Being raised in the country, I have a strong tie to it. It’s a sense of deep emotions, of memory, and of history. While I am painting, I try to capture the feeling of the place, what is all around me: the smells, what I hear, and what I see – a complete picture. My abstracts represent “My Other Side.” I play with emotions through color, shapes, and energy to make playful compositions.

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