Residents celebrate Labor Day

CNJ staff photo: Sharna Johnson Emily Justus, 7, swings a catfish she caught out into the water Monday morning. Justus said she caught two other fish but let them go because they were too small.

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer

In 1882 the “workingmen’s holiday” was first celebrated in the U.S. and now, 126 years later, many Clovis residents are joining workers nationwide in, well, not working for the day.

Monday morning, the banks of the lake at Greene Acres Park were peppered with a dozen or more families. Some were fishing, others just hanging out.

Michelle Torres and her 6-year-old son Aliyas were doing a little bit of both.

With a fishing rod stretched over the water, Torres relaxed in a folding canvas lawn chair while Aliyas sat beside her, stripping the bark from a stick.

“This is it, (this is all we’re doing today),” she said.

“Just relaxing.

An X-ray technician in Clovis, the Muleshoe resident said she was glad to have a day off and when her son asked to go fishing, they headed to Clovis for the day.

A couple hundred yards away, Rick Justus watched his 7-year-old daughter pull her prize catch, a catfish, from the water and examine it.

They actually caught three fish, but two were too small so they put them back, Emily Justus said.

“Got the day off, no labor today… We’re just relaxing,” he said. “And she’s been begging to go fishing so we came here.”

Area residents woke to a mild morning, muggy from weekend rains with the threat of scattered afternoon showers looming.

“We are (forecasting rain) for a little bit, but it’s really going to dry out after (Tuesday or Wednesday),” Meteorologist Jonathan Suk with the National Weather Service in Albuquerque said Monday afternoon.

The National Weather Service out of Albuquerque has forecast thunderstorms throughout the state, bringing with them a threat of flooding for the Highplains and southern regions through Tuesday.

The region should not experience any after-affects of Hurricane Gustov, which will predominantly stick to southern areas in and east of Texas, Suk said.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Gustav hit land around 9:30 a.m. (EST) in a low-lying community in Louisiana’s Cajun country 72 miles southwest of New Orleans, as a Category 2 storm on a scale of 1 to 5.

The storm weakened to a Category 1 later in the afternoon. Forecasters feared the storm would arrive as a devastating Category 4.