In This Issue
|Newsletter of the Houston Heights Association|
|Volume Thirty-Six, Number Five, May 2010|
|Click here for the print-format PDF version.|
|Click here for back issues.|
|Click here to return to main HHA site.|
Come Run or Walk On The Boulevard
Get your running shoes on! The 25th annual Heights Fun Run is coming up on Saturday, June 5, and you don’t want to miss it. As usual, our Heights business community has stepped up to the plate and donated lots of goodies for this year’s Fun Run. We are lucky to have such a generous community!
The 5K Fun Run starts at 7:30 AM, the 5K Walk starts at 7:35 AM, and the After Race Party festivities begin at 8:00 AM. There is also a fun Kids’ 1K that starts at 8:30 AM.
Registration can be done by mail, at , through the Houston Heights website , or at Marmion Park (Heights Blvd. at 18th) the morning of the race. Adult registration is $25 before May 31 or $30 after May 31. Kids are $15 before May 31 or $20 after May 31.
Race packets may be picked up at Luke’s Locker from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM on Thursday and Friday, June 3 and 4. Final packet pickup will be at Marmion Park just before the race.
The post race event will be a blast, so take a load off and prepare to party after the race! The Al Bettis Band will play tunes to kick the party off right. Breakfast tacos, a Heights Fun Run staple, will be served along with fruit, kolaches, and much more! Come join in the fun!
We want to recognize our Platinum Summer Sponsors, KBR, Republic Services, and San Jacinto Stone, as well as our Bronze Summer Sponsors, Boulevard Realty, Phil’s Texas Barbecue, and Rampart Builders, for their generous support of the Houston Heights Association and for making this event possible.
If you should have any questions regarding pricing or registration, you can email or leave a message on the Houston Heights Fun Run line at 713-861-4002, extension 4. If you have an interest in volunteering on race day, please contact Andrea Sharp at .
Looking forward to seeing all of you in June!
General Meeting: Constable Patrol Program
The May General Meeting will focus on our Constable Patrol Program. Meet and greet the Constable Deputies patrolling our east and west sides, Officers Aaron Muñoz and Brien Le, and Patrol Division Capt. John Kovar.
Deputy Art St. John of Constable Precinct 1 will provide tips on making your home less crime-friendly. We will introduce a “walk through” service performed by the constables to evaluate your home for crime prevention and lower insurance premiums.
Please join us on Monday, May 10, 7:00 PM at the Historic Houston Heights Fire Station and City Hall, Yale and 12th Streets. Also, please see below for March east and west patrol statistics and information about signing up for our proposed north patrol area.
Looking For New Bicycle Rally Chairman
The Heights Bicycle Rally (scheduled for the first Sunday in October) is looking for a new chairman. Paul Carr, who has chaired the event since its inception, would like to find a new chairman or a co-chair this year who would be chairman next year.
If you are interested, call Paul at 713-869-0505 or e-mail him at .
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following 2010 Platinum sponsors:
Spring Home and Garden Tour Wrap-Up
More than 1,300 people came out to visit the 2010 Spring Home and Garden Tour. After a few early morning showers on Saturday, the skies cleared just in time for the six homes to open. The rest of the weekend was all sunny skies and comfortable temperatures ensuring a big success.
Each home featured a piece of the unique character and architecture that make up this eclectic neighborhood. The 1904 cottage owned by Curry Glassell featured stunning contemporary artwork alongside beautiful art deco antiques. Tour guests meandered through Sue and Bob Burleson’s meticulous vegetable garden after visiting their delightful house. At David Morello’s home, people marveled at all the charming details, including his bathroom decoupaged with insects and the riot of color in his garden. Antiques, Murano glass, and a glorious vintage piano were the draw at Anne Rodgers’ 1920s bungalow. The contemporary crispness of Brenda and Mike McIntyre’s abode was refreshing and Zen-like. And Anna and Brad Eastman’s family style and huge screened-in porch delighted everyone.
The homes were beautifully accented by arrangements provided by local florists. Many thanks to Gayle Klaybor and Mary Lou Erbland for their work in securing just the right florists to complement the homes. Jana’s Flowers, Darlene’s Flowers, Central Market, Village Greenery and Flowers, The Empty Vase, and newcomer Sketch by Albert created spectacular floral designs.
Joe Gonzalez did a fantastic job working with our room sponsors again this year. Pottery Barn, Kuhl Linscomb, Krispen, and Regina of Twins Design created elegant tablescapes and vignettes in some of the homes, adding the perfect finishing touches.
Our beautiful marketing materials this year were conceptualized by Katy Bomar. Local artist Kevin Peterson created an acrylic-on-canvas painting of Pamela and Steve Kunkemoeller’s classic 1967 Impala in front of the iconic Heights Theater. This painting inspired the old movie vibe of the entire weekend event. Thanks to Michael Stencel for his help with the photographs and the collateral.
The home tour received lots of attention in the media, with articles in the Houston Chronicle and Texas Monthly among others. With all that attention, we had lots of visitors to our neighborhood throughout the weekend. Thanks to the hard work of volunteer coordinator Janet Buchheit, the flow through the busy tour homes went smoothly and lines were kept to a minimum. Head docents Diane Easley, Katy Bomar, Bill Baldwin, Hillary Parr Cobb, Joy Stapp, Kathy Butler, Barb Waugh, and Jan Cottage performed the delicate balancing act of ensuring that tour-goers and homeowners alike are happy and well cared for. And, of course, Paul and Mary Carr were once again instrumental in making it all happen.
A new feature of our tour this year was the addition of a raffle. A Madsen bike was raffled off at the April 12 Houston Heights Association General Meeting. Please see the related article on page 6. Beth Martin did an incredible job of organizing this exciting new event for us. Thanks, Beth!
We would like to wish the very best to the 2011 Spring Home and Garden Tour co-chairs, Denise Martin, Chris Silkwood, and Kelly Simmons. With all that talent and experience, next year’s event is sure to be a huge success!
[Thank you, Linda, for making it all come together! Ed.]
Reviewing… The Candlelight Dinner and Auction
The 2010 “Now Showing… The Candlelight Dinner and Auction” premiered at Master Car Care on Yale, and the event was a blockbuster! Byron Rusk and Ruben Martinez transformed their facility, and it was absolutely sparkling by the time we took it over for the party. Right out in front of the event was the now famous Impala and, inside, guests were awed by the vintage cars up on the lifts. Special kudos to Paul Carr for finding the venue for our party; with a sell-out crowd of 500, we needed an extraordinary place!
Candlelight Dinner chairs Donna Bennett and Kristi Synek turned the space into a scene from a James Dean movie premier with the help of Angela DeWree and her team from Design and Inspiration. The paparazzi photographed guests as they walked the red carpet to enter the event, and then - once they were past the velvet drapes - racing flags, black and white checked banners, and glitz were everywhere!
Partygoers sipped on Side Cars provided by Heights Liquor as they soaked up all the excitement. The gourmet dinner provided by Massoud’s Catering was fit for a celebrity with plenty of delicious Chicken Marbella and tasty stuffed bread for everyone. And if that weren’t enough, everyone took home a beautiful gift generously provided by Eclectic Home.
The auction room was bustling with people bidding on all the fantastic items collected by chairs Pam Kunkemoeller and Kit Davis and their committee. There was so much to choose from - dinners, accessories, packages, and more! There was an incredible grouping of art on display for guests to vie for as well as some truly gorgeous jewelry to covet. Please support all of the donors who so generously gave to our event and without whom the party could not have been such a success. Our donors have been listed separately in this newsletter.
This year, the auction featured “Barkitecture,” seven superb custom created doghouses by local architects and builders. Each structure was unique and beautifully crafted to suit someone’s pampered pooch. The bidding excitement was fueled by the slide show put together by Damian Ogier. It featured images of all the doghouses and live auction items set to exciting music that played throughout the night.
And what a live auction it was! Danae Stephenson and Linda Eyles introduced Master of Ceremonies extraordinaire John Blass, and the bidding took off. First on the block was a beautiful print by Sharon Kopriva that got the crowd excited. Keith Crane’s fun and funky fan light created from found objects sold next. The competition became fierce over a weeklong winter holiday in Telluride at a private home along with airfare provided by Continental Airlines. The incredible totem pole collaboration created by John Palmer and Chris Silkwood was snapped up by a collector. The final item in the auction was the iconic Heights Theater painting created by Winter Street artist Kevin Peterson, which will have pride of place in a business along Heights Boulevard.
We are very happy to announce that the live and silent auctions this year made more than $85,000, which will support the many wonderful projects of our neighborhood and the Houston Heights Association. Thanks to all the volunteers who made it happen!
Photographs of the event can be viewed at . Click on “clients,” create a profile, and you can purchase photos online.
2010 Home Tour Bike Raffle Has a Winner!
We have a winner in this year’s 2010 Spring Home Tour Raffle! Isaac Tapia, a Heights resident, won the blue Madsen Kg 271 Bucket Bike. The happy winner and family are pictured below as they set off to meet their builder, who is building their new Heights home!
Surely, you will see the Tapia family on the new Heights Hike and Bike Trail or driving our beautiful neighborhood streets. So, if you see them, say hello and maybe they will give you a ride.
With a capacity for hauling 600 lbs, this family, which includes their 15-month-old son, has room to spare. You can’t miss the bike, and you will enjoy meeting this wonderful family. Madsen, a company out of Utah, doesn’t distribute in Texas, and that makes this a pretty unique ride.
Congratulations to our winner and thanks to the nearly 650 people who purchased tickets. Proceeds from the raffle will go towards the Houston Heights Association’s charitable efforts.
Heights Youth Art Show Results
The judges for the Heights Youth Art Show, held in conjunction with the Spring Home & Garden Tour, recognized the following local students for their excellent work.
Best of Show
First Place: Andrew Cantu, Reagan HS
Second Place: Eduardo Barrera, Love Elementary
Third Place: Armando Olvera, Hamilton MS
First Place: Eduardo Barrera, Love
Second Place: Lela Delorme, Helms
Third Place: Victoria Ortega, Love
Honorable Mention: Miguel Sirdayan, Love
Honorable Mention: Kathy Simon, Love
Middle School Division
First Place: Armando Olvera, Hamilton
Second Place: Jacquelin Aquilar, Hamilton
Third Place: Darla Marie Loyala, Hamilton
Honorable Mention: Jessica Romero, Hamilton
Honorable Mention: Nelly LY, Hamilton
High School Division
First Place: Andrew Cantu, Reagan
Second Place: Victoria Sanders, Reagan
Third Place: Tomas Montelongo, Reagan
Honorable Mention: Monica Zavelo, Reagan
Honorable Mention: Mario Martinez, Reagan
Our thanks to the following friends, neighbors, businesses, and organizations that donated to the Candlelight Dinner and Auction.
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2010 Silver Sponsors:
The next Houston Heights Association Restoration/Historical Committee meeting will be held at 226 W 19th St. on Thursday, June 10, from 7:30 to 9:30 PM.
Moving to the Heights with a newborn and a plan to buy a garage or garage apartment to convert it into a recording studio took some time to make changes and implement for a young couple. Starting from scratch, this couple, who were experienced with commercial and real estate development, bought the land in June of 2008 and built their own home on a parking lot on W 19th Street in the Houston Heights. They designed the entire home without the assistance of an architect using a Google design program and implemented the design to fit on the 138x32 foot lot maximizing natural light with privacy. Two enormous 26-foot windows facing south were included for light. The recording studio was designed with the help of John Sayers, a professional recording studio designer from Australia.
A friend used a Computer Assisted Design (CAD) program to get all the details needed for City of Houston permits including standard dimensions and fixtures. Engineers designed the piers, foundation plan, sidewalks, and drainage plans so they would pass codes.
Permitting was a brutal experience and took until February 2009. Moving from commercial to residential permitting took extra time, but it was required since it was a home, and the studio isn’t open to the public nor is it a walk-in type of business. Then the biggest struggle with permitting was the alley. The City insisted with new construction that the entire alley be repaved. That issue was finally rectified without spending additional budgeted funds and permits were finalized for construction.
Building construction was completed in a little over a week, but additional hazards with homeless transients were not expected. A family company in the Woodlands did the construction, and other family members were the general contractors.
Meeting attendees will see first hand the results of new construction of this 3-bedroom, 3.5-bath home. Decorating was completed by the couple for simplicity, without intricate baseboards, moldings, or elaborate woodwork or trim. Making everything look sleek and simple, they used their eclectic furniture and art to warm the feeling of the home. All the space is used without the typical family areas but with an open great room with spacious 26-foot ceilings and exposed insulation to give it a loft feel. They embraced the plain, ridged aluminum exterior without color. Cabinets were simple, and dark and simple tile was used throughout the house with clean, white ceramic subway tile in all of the bathrooms accented with light green glass and travertine. The floors throughout the first floor are dyed concrete in a dark green. Online shopping for construction items will be discussed in detail.
The recording studio uses the same “big, metal box” concept with gates and locks so studio visitors do not have access to the home, but the dog does. Recording rooms consist of a “live room,” a control room, an isolation room, a “vocal booth,” reception area, kitchenette, and bathroom. The full-service studio is the husband’s dream since college and it can be viewed at website www.226recordings.com.
This meeting will highlight a most unusual example of a one-of-a-kind home in the Houston Heights. Overall, meeting attendees will see what new ideas bring to the Heights historic neighborhood using modern construction techniques.
This meeting will be enjoyed by all as this energetic and lively Heights couple tell us its meaning for them including how exciting it is to live on a commercial street in the heart of the Houston Heights and how quickly you get to know your neighbors. They say they “have the greatest neighbors of anywhere they ever lived!” And they love getting to know their business neighbors on 19th Street.
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. Dean can be contacted at E-mail or telephone 713-880-2832.
Living In Tandem With Trees:
Auction Donors Continued
Our thanks to the following friends, neighbors, businesses, and organizations for their donations to the Candlelight Dinner and Auction.
Please welcome the following new members to the Houston Heights Association.
Our thanks to the following donors for their generous support of the programs of the Houston Heights Association.
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2010 Bronze Sponsors:
Relay For Life Greater Heights
Community members invited to attend annual fundraiser
The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that every year brings together more than 3.5 million people nationwide to celebrate the lives who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and empower individuals and communities to fight back against a disease that takes so much. Members of the community are encouraged to attend the event to take part in this community-based effort. Relay For Life of Greater Heights will start at 6:00 PM on May 14 and end at 6:00 AM on May 15 at the Delmar Stadium Complex. Attendees are encouraged to bring cash to make purchases from booths set up by the teams, purchase raffle tickets, and to participate in other fundraising efforts going on throughout the night.
The first lap around the track is completed by the survivors in attendance. This is an emotional time that sets the stage of the importance of each participant’s contribution. A festive atmosphere develops around the track. As walkers make new friends and spend time with old ones, the Relay heats up and the camp-out begins. An atmosphere of camaraderie is created with team members entertaining each other: eating, playing games and, of course, walking for a great cause.
Highlighting the evening is the Luminaria ceremony taking place after dark. Luminaria are bags with lights inside them purchased in honor, support, or memory of individuals who have had cancer. They line the track and are left burning throughout the night to remind participants of the importance of their efforts.
“Relay For Life is as much about raising awareness of the progress against cancer as it is a fundraiser,” said Barbara Dickens, event chair. “Many of the participants will be people who have dealt with cancer themselves. Their involvement is proof of the progress that has been made in improving cancer survival rates and the quality of life following cancer treatment.” If you have ever been told the words “You have cancer,” then you are a survivor. Cancer survivors are encouraged to register at or to send an email to to be honored at the event to show that not only are they encouraged to fight back, but that members of their community are here to support them too.
The event is already at 45 teams and growing! It’s still not too late to get involved. For more information about the relay, and how to get involved, contact: , visit the website , or contact Barbara Dickens at 281-630-5120.
Even though it is still two years away, the Houston Heights Woman’s Club is already forming a Centennial Committee to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the historic clubhouse at 1846 Harvard. A much-needed landscaping project has already begun.
The Hortense Ward Founder’s Day reception will be Thursday, May 13. The club will present a scholarship to a South Texas College of Law student. The following Tuesday, May 18, is the next general meeting. Both events begin at 7:00 PM at the clubhouse.
The Evening Group now has a membership of 99. It is still not too late to join. If you are interested please contact President Anne Sloan at or phone her at 713-869-8281.
Support Local Business
Please support our local business community. Shopping local saves time and gas, and it keeps your money within the neighborhood.
A good starting point would be to consider our business members and sponsors. Our current sponsors are featured in every newsletter and on our web site. Our business members are also listed on our web site through the “Area Businesses” tab or directly and in our semi-annual printed Business Directory.
Thank you for supporting Heights businesses.
Seen On The Boulevard
City Directories Online
Those of you wanting to research the history of your homes but without time to hang around the Texas Room downtown will be glad to know that the Houston Public Library Digital Archive now includes a number of historic Houston city directories from several publishers. At the time this was written, 34 directories ranging from 1866 to 1922 are online, about half of them between the founding of Houston Heights and annexation and a few later. A few interesting examples from the 1918 directory are reproduced below.
City directories of a century ago were the forerunners of modern telephone directories. Printed by private companies, they listed residents, businesses, government offices, churches and other organizations, generally organized by street address, by name, and by category. The content changed from year to year and from publisher to publisher, but often gave residents’ occupations or employers, businesses’ specialties, and the like. As phones came into use, the numbers were usually listed.
You can get a list of the current city directory holdings of the Archive . While there, you might want to try the pull-down “Browsing item(s) in” menu or the search function to see what else is in the Archive, including oral histories, maps, and other images.
Warning: These directories are tens or hundreds of megabytes each. Don’t plan to download one via a dial-up connection. Driving downtown would be faster.
Thanks to J. R. Gonzales of chron.com’s Bayou City History blog and to moderator “sevfiv” of HAIF’s Historic Houston forum and of arch-ive.org for pointing out this resource.
Calendar of Events for May-June 2010
HHA headquarters: The Fire Station is on the corner of Yale and 12th Streets.
Every Wednesday to Saturday, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Historic Houston’s salvage warehouse is open. See .
Every Monday, 7:30 to 10:00 PM, Houston International Folk Dancers introductory lessons at Oddfellows Hall, 115 E. 14th.
May 1, 6:30 PM, St. Andrew’s in the Heights presents a spring piano concert by Thomas Sicard at the church, 1819 Heights Blvd. Featuring works from the Romantic Period, the performance will showcase works by Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Chopin, and many others. Tickets and more information at .
May 5, 6:00 to 9:00 PM, first session of eight-week Heights CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) training class at Holy Trinity Reformed Episcopal Church, 211 Byrne. For information, email or call 713-409-4240.
May 7, 6:00 to 10:00 PM, Spring Fling on 19th. This year, businesses on 19th street are partnering with various charities, which will benefit from sales made during the evening at various 19th Street businesses, services, and restaurants.
May 8, 1:00 to 3:00 PM, Art Car Parade on Allen Parkway. For more information, visit .
May 14, 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM, Relay For Life Greater Heights fundraiser for American Cancer Society at the Delmar-Dwyer Sports Complex. See article above. For more information, visit or send email to .
May 14, 6:00 to 9:00 PM, St. Andrew’s in the Heights will host an exhibit of works by the students of the Hernandez School of Art at the church’s Parish Hall at 1819 Heights Blvd. The art may be previewed at .
May 15, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Spring Bazaar in the parking lot of St, Andrew’s in the Heights. Admission is free. The event will feature food, homebaked goodies, special musical performances, and a variety of artists and vendors offering jewelry, specialty foods, decorative items, and more.
October 3, Bicycle Rally
December 3-4, Holiday Home Tour
February 27, 2011, Awards Dinner
April 1-3, 2011, Spring Home Tour
June 4, 2011, Heights Fun Run
At The Fire Station
Every second Monday, 5:00 to 7:00 PM, and every fourth Monday, 8:00 AM to noon, the City Council District H Satellite Office is open at the east door.
Copyright and Submissions
The Heights is published monthly by the Houston Heights Association. Its purpose is to acknowledge achievements and to inform HHA members of events.
Copyright 2010, 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 ; or leave a message on 713-861-4002.
Staff and Contributors
Editor: Mark R. Williamson
Assistant Editor: Kathleen S. Williamson
Stephanie Babb, Sharon Balke, Vanessa Carmean, Paul Carr, Kit Davis, Angela DeWree, Linda Eyles, Barbara Guerra-Grainey, Lauriel Hindman, Matthew Jefferson, Beth Martin, Elizabeth Poirrier, Andrea Sharp, Kelly Simmons, Dean Swanson, Lanna von Baden.