The Manzano Mountain Art Council will once again sponsor the Annual Winter Lecture Series. 

Lectures will be held at the MMAC Center on Broadway in Mountainair starting at 1 p.m. for the four Saturdays in February. 

On Feb. 2, Dixie Boyle and Donna Deiner will kick off the series with their performance Old West Saloon Girls, Madams, & Bordellos. This historical performance will cover the early years of prostitution on America’s frontier when fancy parlor houses, sophisticated madams and their girls provided companionship and entertainment for men on the frontier. 

Boyle and Deiner are both former teachers and guides for the U.S. Park Service, and perform historical reenactments for museums, dinner theaters, historical societies, libraries and local festivals. Boyle won a Heritage Preservation Award for her book A History of Highway 60 and the Railroad Towns on the Belen New Mexico Cutoff in 2017. Her latest book is Old West Saloon Girls, Madams & Bordellos.

Author Robert Julyan will present the lecture Unusual & Odd Places Names of New Mexico Feb. 9. Julyan, an expert on New Mexico’s place names will go into his New Mexico cabinet of curiosities for some weird and wonderful names he’s never discussed before: Jal, Lost Adams Diggings, Molar Rock, Dusty, Dzilth-na-o-dith-hle, Turn and more. 

Julyan is an Albuquerque-based author who specializes in New Mexico history and geography. He is working on a new edition of his popular bookPlace Names of New Mexico.

His only novel, Sweeney,won the 2012 Tony Hillerman Award of the Arizona and New Mexico Book Association. His other books include: Hiking to History andthe Mountains of New Mexico. 

On Feb. 16, author Phil Connors will lecture on A Song for the River. A dozen years into his job keeping watch over the Gila National Forest of New Mexico, Connors bore witness to the blaze he had always feared: a mega-fire that forced him off his mountain lookout by helicopter, and forever changed the forest and watershed he loved along the Gila River. 

Connors was raised on a farm in Minnesota, educated at the University of Montana, and disillusioned by a stint of corporate journalism in New York. In 2002 he became a fire lookout in the Gila National Forest, where he has spent every summer since. He has published Fire Season: Field Notes from a Wilderness Lookout, All the Wrong Placesand his latest book A Song for the River. His first book won the National Outdoor Book Award and the Grand Prize for the Banff Mountain Book Competition. 

The final lecture of the series, Petroglyphs of New Mexico & the Wichita Indians of the Great Plains, will be presented by archaeologist and author Susan Holland and photographer Mike Rooney from Topeka, Kans. on Feb. 23. 

The majority of the lecture will cover the history and significance of the many petroglyphs and pictographs near Mountainair. This information was gathered over a number of years and successive visits to the area. Holland will conclude the lecture with a little history of the Wichita Indians. 

Holland, an archaeologist and writer, has written three books: Symbolism of Petroglyphs and Pictographs near Mountainair, New Mexico, How a Boy Earned His Name, andthe Wichita Indians People of the Grass House. Rooney is a professional photographer responsible for the images in Holland’s books. He won an international photo contest hosted by Kodak and has been published in several Kansas calendars. 

All the lectures are free and refreshments will be served. Authors will be available after the lectures to sign and sell their books. 

The Manzano Mountain Art Council building is located at the junction of Highways 55 and 60 at the only flashing light in Mountainair. 

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