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We're currently experiencing technical problems with our KOJP signal, which serves the Presidio area. We regret the inconvenience and hope to be back on the air soon.

Desert Dispatch Vol. 7

PHOTO OF THE WEEK: Presidio County by Steve Goff. Each week, we'll feature a different image from a listener or staff member. Send your snapshot to photos@marfapublicradio.org.
Steve Goff
PHOTO OF THE WEEK: Presidio County by Steve Goff. Each week, we'll feature a different image from a listener or staff member. Send your snapshot to photos@marfapublicradio.org.

Hi there,

Zoe's passing the Desert Dispatch torch to me for the week so I can share some exciting news:

Over the last few weeks, the station has been in pledge drive mode, so we’ve been thinking hard about what we do and why we do it. As a station, we are committed to creating content that is not only relevant to our community, but speaks to the original mission of public media: “to enrich the human spirit.”

Last year, with this mission in mind, we launched three podcasts and collaborated with community members while continuing to produce lifeline news, investigative reporting, and engagement programming that connects our disparate desert communities.

This week, we were recognized for that deep commitment. Marfa Public Radio swept the Regional Edward R. Murrow awards, winning an award for every category that was awarded in the small market radio category for Region 6, which covers Texas and Oklahoma.

This is no small thing. Especially for a small team. These awards represent the spirit and range of the station.

Marfa Public Radio received awards for the following:

These eight regional Murrow Awards are now moving on to RTDNA’s national round, where they will compete against other regional winners. Those results are expected to be announced in August.

Elise Pepple

Now back to our regular Dispatch programming:


Marfita– We’re going to feature a very local term in Caló for this episode, marfita. It means somebody from Marfa. It’s an honorific, a label, for people who are connected in a meaningful way to Marfa.

Caló is a borderland dialect. You can find more episodeshere.

Other recent programming:

Mitch Borden is back on the lizard beat with an update on the rare dunes sagebrush lizard. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is declaring the lizard an endangered species, a process that will provide the tiny creature with protections under the Endangered Species Act. More on that here.

The dunes sagebrush lizard lives in the deserts of New Mexico and West Texas.
Courtesy of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
The dunes sagebrush lizard lives in the deserts of New Mexico and West Texas.

Last week, Jeff Davis County officials voted to fire the county’s EMS Director Peggy Fonseca, citing concerns about her leadership, volunteer shortages and a strained EMS budget. Travis Bubenik gets into that story here.

In case you missed it, last week’s mystery hour was a special one: DJ Doctor Love responded to listener calls and emails with sage advice for their romantic queries and dedications along with a soundtrack of dynamite love songs. Listen here.

High Five

Each dispatch, we'll send out five song recommendations from a DJ. Here are five songs for lovers from DJ Dr. Love:

  1. L.O.V.E. - Bert Kaempfert
  2. My Stove’s on Fire - Robert Lester Folsom
  3. Cold Heart (PNAU Remix) - Elton John, Dua Lipa
  4. I Wanna Dance with Somebody - Whitney Houston
  5. Cowboy Take Me Away - The Chicks

You can find the Dear Dr. Love Show and all of our music shows on our Mixcloud.


Gear up for a fun-filled Mario Kart tournament fundraiser benefiting the 2024 Marfa Lights Festival. Race your way to victory on May 28th at 7:30 pm outside Bitter Sugar in The Lumberyard, located at 201 East Dallas Street.

Show off your skills and win awesome prizes, all while supporting the Marfa Chamber of Commerce and the Marfa Lights Festival. For more information, contact Bitter Sugar Marfa.

If you have PSAs you want on the air or in this newsletter, head to www.marfapublicradio.org/psa.

Merch in the Wild

Here's Ellis sporting a vintage Marfa Public Radio hat on the soccer field.

Do you use your Marfa Public Radio tote bag to carry around your soccer gear? Do you wear your Marfa Public Radio socks with cleats?

If you wear, use or spot Marfa Public Radio merch out and about, send us a photo to photos@marfapublicradio.org with the subject line "Merch in the Wild.”

And you can get your own MPR merch here!

Zoe Kurland is a senior producer at Marfa Public Radio.