In This Issue

General Meeting: Memorial Hermann Education Center

Area Art Students Receive HHA Education Awards

First Annual Heights Campout A Success

Doing The Right Thing...

New Members

Donations

Living In Tandem With Trees

Heights Urban Forestry Meetings

Restoration/ Historical Meeting - 921 Heights Blvd.

Heights Fun Run Needs Volunteers, Prizes

Hey Kids! The Fun Run Is For You, Too!

Heights Library To Continue Lecture Series

Heights Woman's Club To Hold Appreciation Luncheon

Heights Woman's Club Needs (Lady) Bridge Players

Holiday Tour Homes Sought

Calendars

Staff and Contributors

Copyright

logo for The Heights
Newsletter of the Houston Heights Association
Volume Thirty-Four, Number Five, May 2008
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Area Art Students Receive HHA Education Awards

The Education Committee’s third annual Youth Art Show during the Spring Home Tour was a huge success. Many happy young artists left the reception with ribbons and prizes. Area artists Keith Crane, Liz Conces Spencer and Mitch Cohen spent several hours the night before the well attended reception, choosing the winners from participating schools Reagan, Travis Elementary, Harvard, Helms, Hogg and The New School. A total of eighteen students won awards with Best of Show, Elementary (Pre-K-Grade 5), Middle School (Grade 6-8), and High School (Grade 9-12). Gift certificates from Texas Art Supply were awarded to the top three winners in each category and gift bags of paints and brushes went to the two Honorable Mention winners in each of the grade level categories.

The first and second place best of show winners by coincidence are siblings, Andy Givens of Travis Elementary took first place Best of Show for his water color cityscape, and Turner Givens also of Travis got second place. Their teacher, Naomi Smulian must be proud, congratulations! Bianca Soraiz of Reagan took third place best of show.

Sheila Tybor and Karen Derr want to thank the planning and setup committee volunteers - Stephanie Babb, Kim Martinez, Anna Pi, Jesse Gonzales, Irene Nava, Ruth Davis, Emily Cole and Ken Martinez. Thank you! And special thanks to Keith Crane for loaning the fabulous art display walls and Paul Babb, Zach Buchanan and James Kearley for setting up and breaking down the panels.

And the winners are ...

Elementary: 1st Rachel Blackstone (Harvard), 2nd Bayang Lualhati (Harvard) 3rd Alyssa Gonzales (Helms). Honorable Mentions-  Evan Ramos and Tristan Zvolensky both of Helms.

Middle School: 1st place Brian Escobeda (Hamilton) 2nd - Nichole Owens (Hogg) and 3rd Cathy Sanchez (Hogg) Honorable Mentions - Rozari Carr and Tanya Castillo both of Hogg.

High School (Reagan) 1st: Erica Gomez, 2nd: Belinda Nava and 3rd: Lauren Olvera-Garcia. Honorable mentions went to Rogelio Rodriguez and Lauren Olvera.

Congratulations to all the students for entering some wonderful artwork!

First Annual Heights Campout a Success

By Paul Carr

About 100 members of HHA spent the evening of Saturday, April 19th socializing around the camp fire and listening to live music in Marmion Park.

The children were entertained by two members of the Houston Story Tellers Guild. Adults were entertained with classical music provided by the Gitana Trio, a group made up of Heights residents.

There were eleven tents with about two dozen campers that spent the night. Berryhill’s served breakfast to the campers Sunday morning.

General Meeting

Memorial Hermann NW introduces Education Center

The speakers for the General Meeting will be from Memorial Hermann Northwest Hospital, a neighborhood healthcare facility. They will be introducing their new Education Center.

“MHNW is excited about a new project that will serve you. Education and information are the key to a healthy existence. In the spirit of this fact, our hospital is creating, through generous community support, an education center that patients and their families, as well as the community, can come to get vital information on living a healthier lifestyle. The Flora Williams Education Center, in honor of a great visionary for our heart services, will have information about various health issues facing each of us. If you are having a procedure done at our facility, you or a family member can look up inportant information about that procedure, thus helping to calm any apprehensions in a time of stress. There will also be a waiting area and computers for those waiting on a loved one in surgery. Publications, such as nutrition and diabetes information, will help members of the community stay out of our hospital by helping to prevent health incidents head on, and ahead of time.”

Platinum Sponsors

The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following 2008-2009 Platinum sponsors:

Allied Waste San Jacinto Stone

Doing the right thing.....

By Janice Evans

Residents and some area builders are beginning to catch on to the goals and benefits of the new Houston Heights Historic Districts. Four construction projects received stamps of approval from the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission in February. The owners of 1332 Tulane Street are planning a 277 square foot addition to their historic house, as well as a brand new garage with quarters. The work will be done by Adam Wells of Clerestory Homes.

ADP Design has drawn up architecturally compatible plans for a second-story rear addition at 1301 Arlington. The plans originally presented for this property would have harmed the structure’s historic significance. After meeting with the city’s historic preservation officer, Mark Van Doran of APD tweaked the plans a little bit. Van Doran told the historic commission that the tax incentives offered under the Houston Historic Preservation Ordinance was a big factor in his client’s decision to make changes to the plans.

At 1543 Arlington the new owners are removing the existing second story addition to construct a new addition in the same location. Scott and Amy Stevens received approval to build a new garage with apartment for their property at 1510 Heights Boulevard. Harvard Heights Construction will do the work. Finally, the owners of 1128 Ashland have won historic district approval to construct a new, one-story detached game room and carport.

The City of Houston offers tax incentives for improvements to historic structures that receive approval of the historic commission. Even owners who made improvements in the five years prior to establishment of the historic districts are eligible to apply for these tax breaks.

The goal of the historic districts is to deter demolition of historic structures and encourage architecturally compatible new construction that occurs only on non-historic sites. According to the historic commission records, some builders are continuing to pursue demolition or relocation of historic properties.

Allegro Builders was the first to demolish in the new historic districts, tearing down 1232 Rutland for new construction. Another historic property at 1420 Harvard will either be demolished or relocated by Allegro. Whitestone Builders plans to demolish or relocate 1424 Harvard and 1635 Arlington. The 90-day waiting period has expired for all of these properties, allowing the builders to proceed with their plans.

Four other historic properties within the new historic districts are facing demolition or relocation. They are 1228 Arlington, 1816 Arlington, 1322 Ashland and 301 E 16th St. Relocation has the same impact as demolition because the properties are removed from the neighborhood and therefore no longer have any impact on the historical or architectural significance of the districts.

The Houston Heights Historic District West encompasses the area between 11th, Ashland, Allston and 16th Street. The boundaries for the Houston Heights Historic District East Phase One roughly includes 11th, Heights Blvd, 20th and Oxford streets.

For more information on the Houston Historic Preservation Ordinance please visit http://www.houstontx.gov/planning/historic_pres/hist_pres.htm.

New Members

Marcella Colbert

Anne Fant

Karla Oppermann

Gary & Ann Sitton

Alan & Leslie Wong

Donations

Dean & Laura Bernshausen — Graffiti Abatement

Bob & Sue Burleson

Wesley & Joanne Johnson — Parks, Boulevard, Flower Gardens

Libby Lee — Boulevard

ServEntity, Inc. — Boulevard & Parks, in honor of volunteers Paul & Mary Carr, Cynthia Corn Parker, Jim Bennett, & Catherine Wiejaczka

Suez Energy North America, Inc., Matching Gift of Keith Crane — Education

Elizabeth & Edward York — Boulevard

Diamond Sponsor

The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2008 Diamond Sponsor:

LIVING IN TANDEM WITH TREES

Each nomination this month was provided by the homeowners featured below. Nominate your favorite home or great tree — it can be yours, or a favorite in the neighborhood.

Columbia neighbors: New Construction + Heights Bungalow Renovation

When he proposed, she accepted on the condition that the magnificent oak tree at 1035 Columbia remain. So their new New Orleans style home was designed & built in 2001 around this magnificent live oak.

When the neighbor to their north updated their 1920s bungalow, the addition accommodated the extraordinary limbs of this very same live oak that graces their yard at 1033 Columbia. The tree is immense and provides habitat & joy to its residents above and below!

Original Heights Home

622 East 14th — Huge old Live Oak provides shade year-round. That, combined with the giant pecan in the back of the house, offer a wonderful canopy during the hottest months of the year.

Original Heights Home

729 Rutland — 100+ year old oak trees border the front of the home & gardens of 729 Rutland. The gardens are beautiful. The trees shade the street while providing beauty for the residents as well as habitat for abundant birds & wildlife. The owners remark that the Trees are a treasure.

The Heights Urban Forestry Committee meets the first Tuesday of the month at 6:30pm. On May 6th, join us at the gardens of Jeff Law of Ka-Bloom, 605 Columbia

HEIGHTS URBAN FORESTRY MEETINGS

Speaker Series / Great Garden Tours

Tuesday, May 6, 6:30pm, Indian Summer Lodge, 605 Columbia
Jeff Law from “Ka-Bloom” speaks “Plant Whisperer”
Tour Gardens

Tuesday, June 3, 6:30pm, Fire Station
Plan Saturday October 4th Event: “Urban Forestry Day”

Saturday, June 7, 9am to 9:45am, Inside Outside
Joshua speaks about Native Plants
Tour Green Houston

More to Come!

Everyone is Invited!!

Silver Sponsors

The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2008 Silver Sponsors:

Heights Association Restoration/Historical Meeting

The May Houston Heights Association Restoration/Historical Committee meeting will be held at 921 Heights Blvd. on Thursday, May 22nd from 7:30 to 9:30 PM. This transition Queen Anne Victorian style home, listed as the “J. L. Durham Home” on the National Register of Historic Properties, was built in 1903. Built by J. L. Durham as a direct result of his family’s experience with the Galveston “Great Storm” in 1900, this beautiful historic property was restored in 1985 as the first bed and breakfast in the Houston Heights and placed on the National Register a few years later. It was also on the Houston Heights Home Tour during that period. Today, it is one of three original Queen Ann Victorian homes remaining in the Houston Heights on Heights Blvd.

Current owners, Linda and Neal Cannon, are in the process of remodeling to preserve the integrity and architecture of the original home as much as possible, while making it more compatible with modern living and entertaining needs. Their plan is to use the entire downstairs as entertaining area/kitchen/library, and, since they do not have children, they plan to use the entire upstairs as a “master suite” to include a “Victorian closet/dressing room.” The heart-of-pine hardwood floors are original to the home, however some floor areas from later additions required replacement of all floors to be consistent. Future plans include, keeping all of bathrooms with claw foot tubs, including the unusual elevated tank and pull chain commodes. Much of the wallpaper throughout the house will be removed and the walls painted.

Other remodeling plans include dividing the living room/dining room into two distinct rooms, a small Victorian parlor in the front with the remaining space and potential room extension as the dining room. In the 1930’s two additional rooms and a bath were added to what was originally the back porch and used as a private apartment. The two rooms are currently the library, and in remodeling will become one large room. While a bed and breakfast, the rear deck was enclosed to conduct murder mystery dinner parties and weddings. Under restoration this area will become additional kitchen and breakfast area with room to create an open concept of kitchen/breakfast room/butler’s pantry/wet bar/den, overlooking the backyard pool area.

This meeting will be valuable, as one including historic Houston Heights history from days past with discussion of the updates for current living. Overall the original beauty and character of this historic property will be kept intact. For those interested in history or how a historic property can be tastefully modified, this meeting will be a must. Also, for those wanting to meet some neighbors and have an enjoyable evening, do attend.

The Houston Heights Restoration/Historical Committee meetings are open to the public quarterly to learn about history and restoration in keeping with the appreciation of the historic nature of the Houston Heights. Please let Committee Chairman, Dean Swanson, know if you have a restoration project, historical structure under restoration or historical information or photos pertaining to the Heights to share at future meetings. Contact Dean at restoration@houstonheights.org or telephone him at (713) 880-2832.

HEIGHTS FUN RUN

Calling All Volunteers!

This is a “fun” Saturday morning volunteer opportunity, being held this year on June 7. The Heights Fun Run attracts more than 1,000 runners from all over the state, and we need your help with this important HHA fundraiser.

Sign up to help with:

  • Brochure Distribution
  • Set Up
  • Registration
  • Food & Refreshment Service
  • Finish Line Monitors
  • And…My All-Time Favorite — After Race Clean Up!!!

It really is a great way to get involved, help your community, and meet your neighbors.

To volunteer or for more information, please call our hotline and leave a message @ 713.861.4002, option 4, or e-mail us at funrun@houstonheights.org. We are looking forward to hearing from you!

Looking for a Few Good…Door Prizes!

The Fun Run Committee is asking for donations to serve as “Door Prizes” at the event on Saturday, June 7. The prizes are very popular and help keep our registrants coming back, year after year, to this important neighborhood fundraiser.

Please consider donating an item either personally or from your business, or from a business or two that you patronize on a regular basis. We are interested in gift certificates of every kind and in garden and home decor, jewelry, sports equipment, and antiques, etc.

Please call our Door Prize coordinator, Mary Ellis, at 713-880-4466 to arrange pick up or delivery of your donation. The HHA is a 501(c)(3) organization, and you will receive a tax receipt for your gift.

Bronze Sponsors

The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2008 Bronze Sponsors:

Heights Library to Continue Lecture Series

The Heights Library has begun a Houston Heights Lecture Series. The subject of the lectures will be the History of the Heights & Historic Home Renovation.

The Lecture Series began Saturday, April 26th and continues on May 3rd, covering “Getting started with Renovations, presented by Don Broman.

May 10th “Researching the History of Your Home” by Randy Pace. Also, the subject of historic preservation will be presented by the Greater Houson Preservation Alliance.

At the May 17th meeting, Bill Baldwin will present the before and after pictures of their grand home.

The programs will be held in the meeting room from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This series should be helpful for many Heights residents, and look forward to seeing you attend this interesting and timely series!

The speaker on Saturday, April 26th was Margaret Culbertson. She spoke about the history of the Heights. She has presented this talk at Rice University’s Continuing Education program as well. Her talk also included a slide presentation.

We hope that you will be able to go and enjoy this Historic Heights and Homes series!

Heights Woman’s Club To Hold Appreciation Luncheon

The Houston Heights Woman’s Club is proud to announce the Second Annual Hortense Ward Appreciation Luncheon Saturday May 24th 2008 at 11:00 at the Clubhouse. Here’s some history on the award:

Hortense Ward, a Houston Heights resident and an early Houston attorney obtained the club’s charter in 1912. She spoke at the first meeting in the new clubhouse, championing the Married Womans’ Property Act which she had co-authored and worked to ensure the passage of by the Texas Legislature in 1913. Upon signing the bill, the Governor presented Ms. Ward with the pen he used.

The club is located at 1846 Harvard Street, Historic Houston Heights, Houston, Texas 77008.

The luncheon will honor An Outstanding Female Graduate of South Texas School of Law with special guest speaker Trustee Yolanda Navarro Flores the Houston Community College Board Chair. Seating is limited and reservations are required.

Tickets are $25.00. Please make checks payable to HHWC Night Group and mail to P.O. Box 7782, Houston, Texas 77270. For more information, please contact Laura Virgadamo at 713-826-8105 or laura@harmonyelectric.com.

Hey Kids! The Fun Run is For You Too!

Put June 7th on your calendar and plan to come do what kids love to do - RUN! The 23nd Annual Heights Fun Run is scheduled for Saturday, June 7, 2008 and kids even get their own start time at 8:30 AM. Join other Heights children for this special 1K event which begins at Heights Blvd. @ 18th Street.

Stopping point for all participants is Marmion Park where you will enjoy a great family friendly party celebrating fun and fitness. There will be food, juice and music while awards are announced and door prizes are given! This event promotes several of the 40 Developmental Assets determined necessary for youth to succeed in a community including:

  • Planning and decision making by giving the youth the opportunity to plan ahead and make decisions.
  • Constructive use of time in sports, clubs and community organizations.
  • Empowerment by showing that our community values youth.

Entry fee for kids is only $10 before June 1 or $15 thereafter.

To register online go to www.signmeupsports.com or send checks payable to Houston Heights Association along with an Entry Form to:
Heights Fun Run
P.O. Box 70735
Houston, TX 77270

Credit cards accepted at packet pick-up and registration. No refunds will be made.

For more about the 40 Developmental Assets, go to www.search-institute.org/assets.

Heights Women’s Club Needs (Lady) Bridge Players

The Houston Heights Women’s Club is sponsoring a new bridge program, including lessons and play. This program is for any interested women who would like to learn, play and make new friends. Members, as well as those who might like to come, play and become Club members are welcome.

They meet on the first Tuesday of each month at 7pm at the HHWC clubhouse on Harvard and 18th Street. Future meetings will be on May 6th, June 3rd, and on, so please come join them or contact for details. For further information, call Diana Van Duzer (713)426-3320 or e-mail at dvanduzer@sbcglobal.net.

Holiday Tour Homes Sought

The Heights Holiday Home Tour Committee is still looking for beautiful homes dressed for the holidays to include in the tour, which is scheduled for the first weekend in December. If you are interested in volunteering your home for this fundraiser or if you know your neighbor is (but is simply too shy!), please contact Trudy at 713-802-0773 or email holidaytour@houstonheights.org.

Calendar of Events for May-June 2008

Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

 

 

 

1

2

3

Heights 1st Sat

4

5 recycling

Cinco de Mayo

Land Use Meeting, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

6

HHA Urban Forestry Group, 6:30 PM, Kabloom, 605 Columbia

7

8

9

10

11

Mother’s Day

12

HHA General Meeting, Topic: Memorial Hermann NW Education Center, 7:00 PM, Fire Station

13

14

15

Deadline for next newsletter

16

17

Armed Forces Day (thank a service member)

18

19

HHA Board Meeting, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

20

21

22

Restoration/Historical, 7:30 PM, 921 Heights Blvd.

23

24

25

26 recycling

Memorial Day

Education Comm Meeting, 1545 Heights Blvd. 7:00 PM

27

Crime and Security Meeting, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

28

PIP Meeting, 7:00 pm, 1600 State Street

29

30

31

June 1

2

Land Use Meeting, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

3

HHA Urban Forestry Group, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

4

5

6

7

Heights 1st Sat

Heights Fun Run

8

9 recycling

HHA General Meeting, Topic TBA, 7:00 PM, Fire Station

10

11

12

13

14

Flag Day

HHA Urban Forestry Meeting, 9:00 AM, 502 W. 18th

15

Father’s Day

16

HHA Board Meeting, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

17

Deadline for next newsletter

18

19

20

Summer Begins

21

22

23 recycling

Education Comm Mtg, 1545 Heights Blvd. 7:00 PM.

24

Crime and Security Meeting, 6:30 PM, Fire Station

25

PIP Meeting, 7:00 pm, 1600 State Street

26

27

28

29

30

27

28

29

30

31

HHA headquarters: The Fire Station is on the corner of Yale and 12th Streets.

Community Calendar

Events planned by other community organizations.

Every Wednesday and Saturday, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Historic Houston’s salvage warehouse is open. Call 713-522-0542 or visit their web site www.historichouston.org.

May 9 - 24, UpStage Theatre Evening Series presents Rumors, a comedy/farce by Neil Simon. Friday and Saturday evenings, 8:00 PM, Lambert Hall, 1703 Heights Blvd. For more information or to buy tickets, visit www.upstagetheatre.org or call 713-838-7191.

Future History

October 5, Bicycle Rally

December 5-7, Holiday Home Tour

February 22, 2009, Awards Dinner

April 3-5, 2009, Spring Home Tour

The Heights is published monthly by the Houston Heights Association. Its purpose is to acknowledge achievements and to inform HHA members of events.

Copyright 2008, the Houston Heights Association and/or the authors unless otherwise noted.

Newsletter inquiries, suggestions, or submissions should be directed to:

Editor, The Heights, P.O. Box 70735, Houston, TX 77270-0735;

email editor@houstonheights.org; or leave a message on 713-861-4002.

Staff and Contributors

Editor: Gerald Melancon

Editor Emeritus: Mark R. Williamson

June contributors: Paul Carr, Hilary Parr Cobb, Karen Derr, Angela DeWree, Mary Ellis, Janice Evans, Lauriel Hindman, Trudy Nelson, Christine Spin, Dean Swanson, Kelly Simmons, Laura Thorp, Mark Williamson, Diana VanDuzer