In This Issue
|Newsletter of the Houston Heights Association|
|40th Anniversary 1973-2013|
|Volume Thirty-Nine, Number Twelve, December 2013|
|Click here for the print-format PDF version.|
|Click here for back issues.|
|Click here to return to main HHA site.|
A Note From The Editor
My apologies to you all. Due to technical problems, the HTML edition of the December issue was delayed. I hope you read the print-format PDF edition or your paper copy in time to enjoy the events in the early part of the month. Here is the issue as it should have been posted. —Editor
Heights Holiday Home Tour
“In the New Old-Fashioned Way”
Don’t forget! On December 5, 6, and 7, the Heights celebrates the holiday season “In the New Old-Fashioned Way.”
Tour Headquarters will be at the Houston Heights Fire Station, 107 W. 12th Street at Yale. Explore the Holiday Craft Market, listen to some live music, and enjoy a tasty bite from one of the food trucks. Don’t forget to pick up a $12.00 limited-edition Heights ornament [above/right]! Shuttle buses to the tour homes will be available at Tour Headquarters, and parking will be available close by.
Tickets for Friday, December 6 (6:00-9:00 PM) and Saturday, December 7 (3:00-9:00 PM) are available at the usual locations: Davis Hardware, Jubilee, Another Place in Time, and Buchanan’s Native Plants and at our . No single-home tickets will be offered, and we will not be selling tickets at the individual homes this year!
Don’t miss the Rockin’ Holiday Party!
The neighborhood will be rockin’ around Houston Heights on Thursday, December 5, with a ’50s style party and fundraiser from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM at the newly renovated historic Houston Heights City Hall & Fire Station! We’ll have delicious appetizers from one of our neighborhood’s most popular restaurants (Liberty Kitchen), professional swing dancers (the Hepcats), and a “swellegant” holiday-inspired silent auction.
Holiday Party ticket holders get a private tour of the decorated homes before the party (5:00-7:00 PM)! Tickets are just $75 each, with all proceeds benefiting the Houston Heights Association. Tickets are limited, so don’t miss out! Party tickets are available at our .
Passing of Libby Lee
Our friend Libby Lee (D. Elizabeth Weatherford Lee) passed away on Saturday, November 16. Libby and her late husband Clayton Lee were outstanding citizens of Houston Heights and long-time supporters of the Houston Heights Association. Libby chaired the Centennial Banquet in 1991 and received the Marcella Perry Award in 1992.
The family requested, in lieu of sending flowers, a contribution be made in Libby’s honor to the Heights Rotary Charitable Foundation for the World War II Memorial and Clayton Lee Plaza, P.O. Box 70228 Houston, Texas 77270.
We plan an extended remembrance of Libby in a future issue.
Did You Know?
Did you know you can ask not to receive a paper newsletter? Email and let us know you prefer to read us online only. We can use the savings on printing and postage for other HHA projects, and you’ll have that much less paper to recycle.
HHA Monthly Mixer & Meeting
At the December Holiday Mixer and Meeting, our featured speaker is local Kroger Sommelier James DeLeon. James will offer tastings from the store’s wide variety of specialty wines and beers. Cheesemaster Blanche Kinze is teaming up to offer a selection of cheeses to sample.
We are partnering with the Houston Food Bank to give back during this season of generosity. Meet Carrie Grzelak, Special Events Manager at Houston Food Bank, and learn about this wonderful organization.
You can participate with HHA all day Monday, December 9. Drop your gift of canned or non-perishable food items into the Food Bank container at one of these wonderful Heights businesses: Boulevard Realty at 1545 Heights, C&D Hardware at 314 East 11th, Lolas at 1102 Yale, or The Corridor Shops at 238 West 19th. Items will be accepted on Monday night at the Fire Station, too.
We will have holiday entertainment to complete the festive atmosphere.
So come out to the Fire Station for this special evening. Doors open at 6:30 PM for Mix & Mingle; general meeting commences at 7:00 PM. Everyone is invited!
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following 2013–2014 Platinum sponsor:
Spread Some Cheer: Help With Holiday Food Baskets
The Heights Rotary Club and the Houston Heights Association annually underwrite, prepare, and distribute food baskets to local families in need. These families are chosen by area charities. You can help assemble and distribute the goodies on December 10 and 11. One hundred baskets (actually sets of six bags) will be assembled on the first floor of the Fire Station on the evening of Tuesday, December 10, starting at 5:00 PM. Volunteers will be sorting bulk groceries among the baskets for about two hours; come by whenever you can. This is a great opportunity for the entire family to give back to the community.
Delivery starts after lunch (approximately 11:45 AM) on Wednesday, December 11. Come by the Fire Station to pick up a set of bags and the name and address of a family to receive them; if you have a large car or van, pick up several! Delivery should be completed that afternoon. If you are interested in lunch, BBQ plates are available for $10 (cash only) beginning at 11:00 AM. Typically, delivering three baskets takes 60-90 minutes.
This is a great way for the whole family to volunteer some time to a very worthy cause. Previous participants can assure you, the smile and sometimes joyous tears on the recipients’ faces makes the true meaning of this holiday season truly memorable.
Please help us make the holidays brighter for local families in need. If you are interested in volunteering a couple of hours of time or would like to learn more about this project, contact Scott Lester, President of Allegiance Bank Texas - Heights, at 281-894-3270 or email him at .
Call For Community Improvement Award Nominations
Take a Bow, Heightsites! You have probably heard that Houston recently took the No. 1 spot on Forbes’ list of America’s Coolest Cities To Live. Did you also know that Houston Heights was named one of the best big-city neighborhoods in the country in CNN Money’s Best Places to Live rankings?! Yessireebob, our very own “Home Sweet Home” is in the spotlight now! And we didn’t get here without a lot of hard work and good ideas.
Once again, it is time to look around the neighborhood and see who has been improving it. The nomination form for the 2013 Community Improvement Awards with the rule sheet on the reverse is included in the print edition of this issue and on the new HHA website. (Click .) Nominees and winners will be announced at the annual Volunteer Appreciation and Awards Dinner on Sunday, February 23.
The 2013 Community Improvement Awards is a wonderful opportunity to recognize the positive changes and additions to our neighborhood that make us so danged cool. Next time you pass that renovation, restoration, or new construction that you just love, whether residential or commercial, consider giving credit where credit is due. Nominate the project for a CIA!
Submissions must be received by January 10, 2014.
Director Election Results
At the November 11 General Meeting, Acting Election Chair Bill Davis announced the results of the election of Directors to serve terms starting in 2014. Janet Buchheit, Stacey Courville, Bill Pellerin, Mark Williamson, and Robert Woods were elected to serve full three-year terms. Mike Yeary was elected to serve a two-year term.
The entire 2014 Board of Directors is listed below. The 2014 Board will elect the 2014 officers and set 2014 meeting dates at its Organizing Meeting on Monday, December 16.
The Houston Heights Association thanks the following departing Directors for their service: Donna Bennett, Keith Crane, Mike Easley, and Becky Standridge.
2014 HHA Directors
(Number in parentheses is last year of term.)
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Winter 2013–2014 Gold Sponsors:
2013 Boulevard Update
Your friends, neighbors, and local businesses have been busy this year keeping the Heights Boulevard esplanade alive and looking good. The City of Houston Parks and Recreation Department mows the esplanade, empties trash, and takes care of dead and dangerous trees. HHA maintains the flower beds, mulch beds, sprinkler systems, jogging trail, and seating areas as well as planting new trees. (The exception is the 1000 block, which has been “adopted” by the Heights Rotary.)
This year’s HHA activities beyond standard maintenance included the following:
• Volunteers spread 518 cubic yards of mulch from I-10 to 20th Street in a series of 17 work sessions over several months.
• Planted 49 new trees with irrigation to each tree.
• Removed 9 dead trees with volunteer labor.
• Ground out 18 tree stumps with a mix of volunteer labor and contractors.
In addition, the Heights Garden Club became part of the HHA Boulevard Committee, which resulted in the beautiful flowers at both the I-10 entrance sign and at the 20th Street Rose Garden. The Garden Club has started holding monthly meetings on the second Saturday of the month that include tours of fabulous gardens in the area. If you are interested in gardening, see their article on page 6.
Please thank the following local businesses that have donated services on the Boulevard this year:
• Lucas Craftsmanship renovated and painted the gazebo on the 1000 block which should keep it looking good for years.
• Gilbert’s Tree Service once again volunteered to trim the palms at the I-10 entrance sign (which they have done for us each year since the palms were planted!). They also helped us out with some much needed tree trimming on the 700 block.
• Ravenscourt Landscaping and Design has donated irrigation repair services multiple times on the Boulevard to help keep everything green.
• Leyendecker Landscaping donated soil and labor for flower beds.
• Yale Stone, The Heights Pages, and New Nurseries all donated materials to make the entrance sign flower bed sparkle, while New Roots Landscaping donated labor to get the beds ready for planting.
If you’d like to become involved with the activities on Heights Boulevard esplanade, drop a note to .
Please welcome the following new members to the Houston Heights Association.
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Winter 2013–2014 Silver Sponsors:
Heights Garden Club
The Heights Garden Club has been busy. If you would like to tour beautiful gardens, help us with projects, and learn more about gardening, please join us. Like us on Facebook and visit our website, .
We have a garden tour or meeting the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 AM. Please join us in future projects. The following is our line-up for our upcoming tours and meetings:
Dec. 14, 2013: Victoria Harrison’s garden at 729 Rutland
Once the site of Sam Blackman’s family home and blacksmith shop in the 1900s. Victoria Harrison and Jay Wehnert, along with Portia Leyendecker, have helped rebuild the soil and design the garden for increased sustainable production. You will find prolific rosemary, mint, thyme, and oregano throughout the yard. The carpet of arugula grows year-round in the shade of the pecan. Victoria harvests the seeds to replant and give to family and friends. The vegetable garden is home to citrus trees, greens, beets, lettuces, and many more favorites for the table.
Jan. 11, 2014: 741 E. 11th St. just off Studewood (indoor meeting)
The company occupying this beautiful building is Berkshire Hathaway. It’s an interesting building - a former grocery store, built in the 1930s that was renovated about 10 years ago. Joe Keefe with Bartlett Tree Experts will be our guest speaker. The winter is the perfect time for trimming and planting, so please join us for this very informative talk. We will also have sign-up sheets for you to receive emails for upcoming garden tours and work parties. We will have door prizes and refreshments. Come introduce yourself and learn more about the garden club.
Feb. 8, 2014: Rose Garden Tour
The Rose Garden located at 20th St. and Heights Blvd. will be our meeting place for our February meeting. February is the perfect time for trimming your roses, so this February meeting will be a great time to learn from a local rosarian on how to trim and care for your roses.
Our thanks to the following donors for their generous support of the programs of the Houston Heights Association.
Ashley & Jeff Day - Parks, Boulevard
Karl Ittman & Lori White - Donovan Playground, Flower Gardens
April & Randy Johnson - Fire Station Restoration
Rita Johnson & Jennifer Smart - Boulevard
Weezie & Peter Johnston - Boulevard
Sheryl Kolasinski - Parks, Boulevard, Flower Gardens, Fire Station Restoration
Matt Menger & Sam Steph - Boulevard
Tom & Yvonne Miller - Boulevard, Flower Gardens
Todd & Bea Moseley - Boulevard, Flower Gardens
Adam & Katie Pearson - Parks
John & Carolyn Redfield - Boulevard
Sandy & Dave Steitz - Parks, Boulevard, Flower Gardens, Fire Station Restoration
Heather & Patrick Wall - Boulevard
Dorothy Yannuzzi - Parks
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Winter 2013–2014 Bronze Sponsors:
More Recycling Changes - Center Street Closing
Green recycling carts started arriving in the latest Heights service areas (between 11th and 20th from Studewood to Yale and between 7th and 11th from Nicholson to Shepherd) in mid-November. Automated recycling pickup in these areas is expected to begin in early December on the same schedule as with the small green bins.
Center Street facility closing
The Center Street Neighborhood Recycling Drop-Off Location is scheduled to close on December 31, according to signs posted at the site. Those signs suggest that citizens without access to curbside or automated recycling pickup use the North Neighborhood Depository and Recycling Center at 9003 N. Main or the Southwest Consumer Recycling Center at 5900 Westpark for general recycling.
Where do I recycle my electronics now?
The Westpark facility also accepts electronic equipment for recycling, as does the main location of CompuCycle at 7700 Kempwood Drive in the Spring Branch area. This is the company that has been picking up monthly at Center Street, but their main location is open daily (Mon-Fri 8:30-4:30, Sat 9:00-3:00).
Click for more information from the City about recycling electronics.
For electronics recycling closer to home, check out the “GREENspot” program (), mostly located at storage facilities. The closest location appears to be North Loop Storage at 1440 North Loop, between Airline and I-45 (Mon-Sat 9:00-6:00, Sun 9:00-1:00).
Calendar of Events for December 2013 and January 2014
HHA headquarters: The Fire Station is on the corner of Yale and 12th Streets.
Every Saturday, 8:00 AM, Heights Running Club meets on the Heights Boulevard jogging trail at 7th Street. Contact Meghan.firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the weekly distribution list.
December 6-15, UpStage Theatre and Santa Claus present a Fairy Tale Twist to a Classic “Carol” by Flip Kobler and Cindy Marcus. For more information, visit www.upstagetheatre.org or call 713-838-7191.
December 7, 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM, Women Artists of the Heights Winter Holiday Art Show featuring twelve local artists at 1711 Rutland. For more information, visit womenartistsoftheheights.com.
December 7, 1:00-4:00 PM, Helms Elementary PTA presents their Winter Festival “Winter Wonderland in Texas” at the school, 503 W 21st. Food, games, and activities. For more information, email email@example.com.
December 14, 5:00-8:00 PM, Heights Christian Church presents Dickens on the Boulevard. Christmas music, refreshments, costumed actors from Upstage Theatre. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
December 17, 7:00-8:30 PM, Houston Storytellers Guild meets at St. Andrew’s House, 1811 Heights Boulevard, for a holiday gathering with a short talk by storyteller Jay Stailey about family stories and how to collect them from your family. For more information, www.houstonstorytellers.org or 713-643-8478.
At The Properties
Heights Tai Chi Association meets Saturdays at 9:00 AM and Wednesdays at 7:00 PM in Marmion Park, Heights at 18th.
Photos with Santa presented by John Daugherty, Realtors and the Houston Heights Association on Saturday, December 7, from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM in Donovan Park. Families are invited to visit with Santa and have their photo taken for free. What a fun and friendly way to celebrate the holidays!
February 23, Awards Dinner
April 4-6, Spring Home Tour [tentative dates]
June 7, Heights Fun Run [tentative date]
October 6, Bicycle Rally & Scavenger Hunt [tentative date]
December 5-6, Holiday Home Tour [tentative dates]
December 9-10, Holiday Food Baskets [tentative dates]
Heavy Trash Notes
December is a “Junk Waste” month; January is a “Tree Waste Only” month. Remember that the heavy trash pickup date is now the third Wednesday for most of the Houston Heights area. For dates in your immediate area, visit the City Solid Waste site.
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 © 2013, the Houston Heights Association and/or the authors unless otherwise noted.
Newsletter inquiries, suggestions, or submissions should be directed to:
Editor, The Heights, 107 W. 12th Street, Houston, TX 77008-6907;
email ; or leave a message on 713-861-4002.
Staff and Contributors
VP Communications: Julie Pettit
Editor: Mark R. Williamson
Assistant Editor: Kathleen S. Williamson
Donna Bennett, Jim Bennett, Anne Culotta, Angela DeWree, Dee Melancon, Lauriel Hindman, Lanna von Baden.