In This Issue
|Newsletter of the Houston Heights Association|
|Volume Thirty-Eight, Number Four, April 2012|
|Click here for the print-format PDF version.|
|Click here for the updated print-format PDF supplement of award presentations.|
|Click here for back issues.|
|Click here to return to main HHA site.|
2012 Houston Heights Home & Garden Tour and Candlelight Dinner & Auction
“Opening Doors - The Key to Our Future is Hinged on Our Past”
It’s nearly time for the 2012 Houston Heights Home & Garden Tour and the Candlelight Dinner & Auction. The Dinner & Auction are on April 13, followed by the Home & Garden Tour on April 14 and 15.
Candlelight Dinner & Auction - Friday, April 13
The 2012 Candlelight Dinner & Auction will be held Friday, April 13, at THE LODGE, 1435 Beall Street in the Heights. The evening begins with a preview of the tour homes from 5:00 to 7:00 PM and continues with a fabulous and fun night of fine dining, open bar, and spectacular live and silent auctions.
The featured artist this year is J. Antonio Farfan, who has created a stunning 5’ x 5’ oil-and-acrylic-on-linen work to be offered to the highest bidder in the Live Auction. His work can be viewed at .
A new feature this year, the After Hours Party, will take the fun into the wee hours with a raffle, a local band and dancing. More information is available online and in a separate article below.
Home & Garden Tour - Saturday and Sunday, April 14 and 15
The Home & Garden Tour takes place Saturday and Sunday, April 14 and 15, from 12:00 noon to 6:00 PM each day. Six outstanding homes and gardens are featured, all within walking distance of the hike and bike trails.
Each of the homes - five historic and one recently constructed - reflects the unique character and architecture of our charming neighborhood. Descriptions and photos of the homes appeared in our March issue and are available on our website.
Luxury bus shuttles to all of the homes, included in the ticket price, will be standing by at the Houston Heights City Hall and Fire Station and at Comerica Bank, where parking is available. See the alternative transportation article below for information on biking to the homes.
Candlelight Dinner & Auction tickets are $125 individually (open seating) and $1250 for a reserved table for ten. Tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis up to 500 guests. Visit the dinner web page to see if any tickets are left.
Houston Heights Home & Garden Tour tickets are available online at our website and at local the following merchant locations: Another Place in Time, Bunchanan’s Native Plants, Davis Hardware, Jubilee, Lovejoy’s Antiques, and Write Now!. Tickets are $20 each when purchased in advance. Tickets purchased on the days of the tour are $25 at the Houston Heights Fire Station (Yale & 12th Streets), at Comerica Bank (414 W. 19th Street), and at each home on tour. Tickets for individual homes are available for $5 at each home. Blocks of 10 tickets will be available online only for $175.
Credit card payments may be made anytime online on our website or on the days of the tour at the Houston Heights Fire Station or Comerica Bank. All other locations (including the tour homes) will only accept cash or checks. Tickets purchased online may be picked up at the Houston Heights Fire Station.
All proceeds from these events are used toward beautification efforts, local educational projects, and property and park maintenance, improvements, and preservation.
Find up-to-date information on these events at the links below or call the Houston Heights Association at 713-861-4002.
Event email contacts are and .
Guest Speaker Ellen Cohen
Ellen Cohen is the newly elected Council Member representing District C, which now includes the entire Houston Heights Association area. Meet Ellen at the April 9 General Meeting as she provides a City Hall and District C update.
Council Member Cohen has lived and worked in the city of Houston for the past 35 years. She served for 10 years as the Executive Director of the American Jewish Committee, and for 18 years as the CEO of the Houston Area Women’s Center, working with survivors of sexual and domestic violence. In 2006, she was elected as the Texas State Representative for District 134. After serving two terms in the Texas State Legislature, she decided to continue her public service career at home. In January 2012 she was sworn in to office as the new Council Member representing District C.
Council Member Cohen is looking forward to hearing about the issues most important to the Heights community at the upcoming meeting. Hope to see you there!
May General Meeting
“Farm-To-Table Living In The Heights”
Experience local beekeeping and the organic gardening movement here in the Heights. Join the Houston Heights Association for the May 14 General Meeting at the Houston Heights Fire Station.
Enjoy presentations on artisanal gardening & beekeeping from Wabash Antiques and Feed Store (serving the Heights for over a century). Hear from authorities John Berry, Evan Hopkins, and Wabash’s own Betty Heckler. Hear the experiences of Houston Heights beekeepers Abigail David and Donald Burger, Vice President of the Houston Beekeepers Association.
Doors open at 6:30 PM, the meeting and program commence at 7:00 PM. Everyone is invited, and refreshments will be served.
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following 2012 Platinum sponsor:
After Hours Party
“Block the Doors Wide Open”
Buzz and the Blue Cats is the featured entertainment at the “Blow the Doors Wide Open” party, a new feature of the 2012 Spring Home & Garden Tour. The party begins at 10:00 PM, Friday, April 13, and ends at 1:00 AM Saturday. It will follow the Candlelight Dinner & Auction, all celebrated at The Lodge, located at 15th and Beall Streets. This after-hours experience includes dancing and an open bar including wine, beer, and signature cocktail The Knocker. Food trucks will also be available.
Tickets are $40 in advance and $50 at the door. The After Hours Party is included with purchase of a Candlelight Dinner ticket.
Home Tour Volunteers Needed!
We can’t pull off a home tour like this without our wonderful volunteers. We have at least 200 openings for docents and ticket sellers - each home requires an average of 40 volunteers over the course of the weekend. The volunteer shifts are only three hours long, and you will receive a complimentary home tour ticket in exchange for your invaluable time. This is a great way to give back to your community, meet new people in the neighborhood, and have a lot of fun in the process.
If you like volunteering as a docent or ticket seller and you have the time, you may want to step it up next year and become a head docent or a committee chair! You may volunteer by e-mailing .
Home & Garden Tour Alternative Transportation
Spring in Houston is such a great time of year to ride your bicycle and enjoy our local trails. Why not take in this year’s home tour on two wheels?
Tour-goers who choose to ride their bicycles from house to house can purchase day-of-tour tickets for just $20. That’s a $5 discount!
A special route has been mapped just for bicyclists. The entire loop is less than five miles long.
Bicycle racks will be available at each home. A “Bicycle Valet” will be on hand to assist with parking and securing your bicycle so you may tour the home knowing your bicycle is safe.
Do the tour at your own pace, taking time to stop at one of our local eateries for refreshments along the way.
Consider taking advantage of the alternate transportation option on this year’s Spring Home Tour - ride your bicycle! Please remember to wear your helmet and bring a bike lock.
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2012 Gold sponsors:
Don’t Miss This Year’s Fun Run!
The 26th Annual Heights Fun Run will take place on Saturday, June 2. We have lots of goodies donated by wonderful businesses both in and out of our Heights community!
More details and registration instructions will follow in next month’s newsletter!
We are looking for volunteers for this fun event!! If you, or someone you know, can volunteer on race day or for tasks leading up to the event, please contact Gini Axton at .
We look forward to seeing you all in June!!
School Leaders Luncheon
The annual PTO/PTA School Leaders Luncheon will be held on Thursday, May 3 from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM at the historic Houston Heights Woman’s Club located at 1846 Harvard. Invitations will be sent to Heights-area schools the first week of April. We are anticipating a great turnout and a lively exchange of ideas for the upcoming 2012-2013 school year.
The Houston Heights Association gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Spring 2012 Silver sponsor:
Awards Dinner Wrap-Up
38th Annual Volunteer Appreciation And Community Improvement Awards Dinner And Celebration “Heart Of The Heights”
A sold-out crowd of volunteers, award nominees, and friends gathered on Sunday, February 26, at the historic Houston Heights City Hall and Fire Station to celebrate another successful year for the Houston Heights Association and the Houston Heights neighborhood.
Just a week earlier, glue guns, scissors, felt, and buttons flew - along with pomegranate martinis (the lure) - when Julie Pettit assembled her finest team of crafts-persons (many of whom had never handled a glue gun) consisting of Jan Cottage, Anne Culotta, Nancy Nalence, Chris Silkwood, Kelly Simmons, and Bill Baldwin (who was just there for moral support and of course, the pomegranate martinis).
The following Sunday, on the afternoon of the event, the set-up crew of Bill Baldwin, Donna Bennett, Paul and Mary Carr, Katy Bomar, Anne Culotta, Diane Easley, Byron Pettit (literally standing in for Julie), Danae Stephenson, and Kelly Simmons assembled at the Houston Heights Fire Station, which was then transformed with handmade red, black, and white hearts, elegant floral centerpieces created by Julie, and lively red, black and white table cloths.
When the beautiful, newly-installed fire station doors were opened for guests, WindSync provided a lively repertoire of instrumental music while the excitement built over the upcoming announcements for the previous year’s most outstanding volunteers and very best of residential and commercial improvement projects.
Famed locavore virtuosa Jamie Zelko of Zelko Bistro produced a delectable spread, which included her own Heights-hive-harvested honey served alongside local fruits and fresh artisan breads. Pie in the Sky donated a heaping platter of divine dark and milk chocolate cake balls, which were quickly devoured. Needless to say, the hungry crowd was pleased.
The evening’s presentation was led by 2011 HHA President Bill Baldwin, with Anne Culotta announcing the Community Improvement Awards segment of the program. 2012 President Lindsey Lee presented Bill Baldwin with the traditional President’s crystal memento (yep, that’s about all you get for giving up an entire year of your life). Paul Carr presented the Marcella Perry Award to the Rotary Club of Houston Heights; Bill Baldwin gave the President’s Award to Kelly Simmons; Janet Buchheit surprised Kit Davis with the Rising Star Award; Linda and Simon Eyles, Martin Piké, and Danae Stephenson presented the Corporate Citizen of the Year Award to Laura Finkeldey and Angie Hasara of Bungalow Fitness; and best actor… errrr… we mean the 2011 Citizen of the Year Award was presented to Bill Baldwin by Anne Culotta.
Detailed accounts of these awards and presentations appeared with photos in our previous issue; click the links above to reread them. Text for one award was not available last month and appears below.
We hope you will join us in February 2013 when we celebrate and honor the 2012 volunteers and community improvements at the 39th Annual Volunteer Appreciation and Community Improvement Awards Dinner.
President’s Award: Kelly Simmons
Serving as President of the Houston Heights Association for 2011 gave me the opportunity to see first-hand the commitment and dedication of numerous individuals who give tirelessly of their time and talents to our association. Selecting one individual for the President’s Award was a difficult task, because so many people worked beyond measure to help make last year an overwhelming success.
My selection for the 2011 President’s Award is the truly remarkable Kelly Simmons. Kelly’s knowledge, dedication, and far-reaching influence on most every aspect of our organization are unsurpassed. She kept me grounded as President as well as focused. She was a calming and consoling advisor to me throughout the year and without her sound advice, saving grace, and support I am not sure I could have made it through the year as I did.
Kelly Simmons is one of the greatest assets of our neighborhood, and I cannot thank her enough for all she did in 2011 to make our neighborhood the amazing place it is to live, work, and play.
Heights Boulevard Trails Are Readied For Spring By HHA Volunteers
In a flurry of shovels and rakes, crushed granite, and a man wielding a front-end loader, the trails on Heights Boulevard are being freshened up just in time for Spring.
We can thank Paul Carr, the man behind the wheel of the tractor, Jim Bennett, the ringleader, and the energetic crew of Matt Bedingfield, Jim Boyd, Don Chevalier, Wanda Cohen, Paul Cottage, Bill Davis, Martha and Jerry Gallagher, Rob Hellyer, Joseph Keefe, Kent Marsh, Bob Mahlstedt, John Pavlicek, Cort Peavy, Martin Piké, Gail Sabanosh, Dave Steitz, and Heather and Colby Whitfield.
Remember, the next time you are admiring or using the beautiful Heights Boulevard trails, we owe it all to these wonderful HHA volunteers.
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 2012 Bronze Sponsors:
Heights Woman’s Club Spring Tea
“Hats off! 100 Years and Counting.”
In celebration of their clubhouse centennial, the Houston Heights Woman’s Club (HHWC) is excited to introduce a Spring Tea. The event, scheduled Saturday and Sunday, April 21 and 22, will be held at the Clubhouse, 1846 Harvard Street. Preview 2:30-3:00 PM, Tea 3:00-5:00 PM.
The Club’s Teas have become the HHWC’s signature events, known for fun and high energy. A favorite part of the excitement is the 30-minute “sightseeing tour” that precedes the Tea, when guests circulate to see all of the beautiful tables! Each Table Hostess is free to use her imagination when designing her tablescape. From centerpieces to the tiniest teacup, every table is as unique as the personality of its Hostess. Anyone who loves tea knows that fine details of brewing are important, and the HHWC “tea master” is famous for her recipe. Yummies will include three courses of twelve varieties of cakes, cookies, and tea sandwiches - time-tested recipes by our Club members, handmade by Club members!
Proceeds from the Spring Tea will fund the repainting of the Heights Woman’s Club Clubhouse, and response to this fundraiser has been outstanding! To accommodate the high demand, the Tea is expanded into a two-day affair, with orders coming so quickly the Sunday seating was nearly sold out almost immediately. Tickets to the Saturday, April 21 seating are on sale now! Since this event is expected to sell out fast, don’t wait! Get your order in now by mailing your check for $35 per ticket to: Houston Heights Woman’s Club, c/o Debbie Cranford, 650 Westcross #94, Houston, TX 77018. Ladies only, please. Call 713-753-6727 for more information.
“New Roots” Art Show to Benefit Heights Boulevard Beautification Project
Houston Heights artists Virginia Baker, Sharon Bartlett, and Kay Kemp join together with members of the Heights community to present “New Roots.” 20% of the art sales and all donations will benefit the Boulevard Beautification project to repopulate the trees.
This show is inspired by Jean Shinoda Bolen, author of Like a Tree: How Trees, Women, and Tree People Can Save the Planet. Like Dr. Bolen, the artists are committed to saving, replanting, and celebrating trees. Due to the loss of millions of trees throughout Texas, including the Boulevard, this is a timely theme and cause.
Artist Virginia Baker is an abstract impressionist who is inspired by images emanating from the universe; she studies with Arthur Turner at the Glassell Art School. Heights artist Sharon Grace Bartlett creates extraordinary contemporary assemblage reflecting the feminine spirit. Artist and creativity coach Kay Kemp of Wild Heart Art in the Heights creates mixed media collage and painting to touch the heart and stir the soul.
New Roots will be presented on Saturday, May 5, 2012, at HHA Business Member Premier Remodeling and Construction, 901 Harvard from 5:00 to 8:30 PM. Mark your calendar and join your neighbors in celebrating beautification of the Boulevard.
Please note that this is not an HHA-sponsored event.
Helpful Hints from Solid Waste
The Houston Solid Waste Management Department offers these helpful hints about curbside pickup:
Let’s Talk Cardboard
Please flatten your cardboard boxes before placing in your 96-gallon recycling carts or under your bin. Unflattened cardboard takes up too much room and keeps you from being able to fit other items in your cart. So please flatten the cardboard. By doing so, this will make room for the rest of your recyclables.
How About That Cooking Oil?
Did you know that you could recycle your cooking oil? Yes, Solid Waste takes used cooking oil, but only at the Environmental Service Centers (ESCs). They do not pick up cooking oil at the curb. So please: fry that crispy chicken, those fantastic french fries and fabulous fish, but please Don’t Pour It Down The Drain, as grease clogs up the City’s drainage system. Instead, after the oil cools, re-containerize and recycle it. Remember, Don’t Throw It Away, Recycle It at one of their ESCs (locations and times listed below).
E.S.C. Southwest Houston, 11500 South Post Oak, open on Tuesday and Wednesday 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM and the 2nd Saturday of each month 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. E.S.C. Northeast Houston, 5614 Neches, Bldg C, open only on the 2nd Thursday of the month from 9:00 to 3:00 PM.
Did you know that Garbage Carts, Yard Waste, and Recycling Carts should have 3 feet of distance between them? By keeping a distance of at least 3 feet apart, this will help the trucks collect the material efficiently and in a timely manner, allow the drivers to carefully place the carts back on the ground, and lessen the chance of them falling over. Your efforts will be greatly appreciated.
Oxygen Tanks and Propane Cylinders (canisters) are NOT recyclable but are actually considered Hazardous Waste! When Oxygen Tanks and Propane Cylinders are placed in your trash and collected by Solid Waste trucks, these items could possibly explode. Don’t be fooled by the size; both large and small tanks/cylinders are potentially hazardous and equally dangerous!
Calendar of Events for April-May 2012
HHA headquarters: The Fire Station is on the corner of Yale and 12th Streets.
April 5-7, 12-14, HITS Theatre presents Ragtime at Miller Outdoor Theater. For more information, visit .
April 12-26, Obsidian Art Center at 3522 White Oak will host the Classical Theater Company’s presentation of The Tempest by William Shakespeare. For more information visit .
April 21, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School will hold a Gala with a “Homecoming” theme at Treebeard’s downtown. Silent and Live auction, dinner, and music. All are welcome to attend. For tickets or to donate or underwrite, contact the school at or 713-861-2954.
April 21 - May 6, UpStage Theatre presents Cinderella at Lambert Hall, 1703 Heights Blvd. For more information, visit
May 18 - June 2, UpStage Theatre presents Twelve Angry Men, Twelve Angry Women, and Twelve Angry Jurors (one version per weekend) at Lambert Hall, 1703 Heights Blvd. For more information, visit
Heights Neighborhood Library Calendar of Events - April 2012
Heights Library Readers Group:
Book discussion preceded by a light buffet dinner. Monday, April 2 - 6:15 PM to 7:45 PM
S.M.A.S.H Book Club for Tweens (Ages: Kids 9-12).
Monday, April 9 - 4:00 PM
Mystery on the Boulevard
Monthly mystery book discussion selected by members at the previous meeting. Saturday, April 21 - 2:00 PM
Join the interactive retirement workshop with John Kern from Active Retirement Planning, and learn about the rarely discussed, non-financial areas of retirement, such as productivity, identity, emotional and cognitive health, lifestyle, and intergenerational relationships. You are encouraged to bring your questions and experiences to share. Thursday, April 26 - 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
June 2, Heights Fun Run
October 7, Bicycle Rally
November 30 and December 1, Holiday Home Tour
December, Holiday Food Baskets [dates uncertain]
February 24, Awards Dinner
April 5-7, Spring Home Tour
Heavy Trash Notes
April is a “Junk Waste” month; May is a “Tree Waste Only” month. For dates in your area, visit the City Solid Waste site.
At The Properties
Heights Tai Chi Association meets Saturdays 9:00 AM and Wednesdays at 7:00 PM in Marmion Park, Heights at 18th.
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 © 2012, 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
Editor: Mark R. Williamson
Assistant Editor: Kathleen S. Williamson
Gini Axton, Bill Baldwin, Paul Carr, Hilary Parr Cobb, Lauriel Hindman, Lindsey Lee, Lina Fairchild, Lizz Martin, Gilbert Joseph Perez, Kelly Simmons, Lanna von Baden, Maureen Weyel.