Thursday, March 21, 2019
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Winter Texans show creativity building floats for citrus parade

Winter Texans often enjoy participating in local celebrations held in various cities all across the Rio Grande Valley. In Mission, Winter Texan residents of several RV resort parks have taken “participation” up a notch or two by building competitive floats to enter the Texas Citrus Fiesta Parade of Oranges competition.

It was obvious at Saturday’s parade our Winter Texans had fun with this year’s Citrus Fiesta theme, Citrus, Cartoons & Comic Book Characters,” as their creativity transformed common, everyday materials into delightful cartoon characters. Making the task of float building more challenging, these float craftsmen earned extra points added to their scores for using citrus and other Valley agricultural products to decorate their floats.

Read more: Winter Texans show creativity building floats for citrus parade

Senior Ambassadors: Diverse group makes beautiful harmony

“Rio Grande Valley” has been the lead song for the Senior Ambassadors in all of the 24 years Esther Hewitt has been accompanying the chorus on the piano. As her favorite song, it leaps to mind every year she comes back to the Valley from Michigan.

She and her husband, George, first came to the Valley in 1989, and just kept coming back. George smiled as he explained, “The kids couldn’t understand why we liked it so well until they came to visit.” The Senior Ambassadors became a large part of their reasons for coming back to the Valley in 1992, when a fellow member of their church choir invited George to join. George said he only began singing after he met his wife. “She was a singer and a musician, and the kids were too, so I had to protect myself. I learned all my singing from my wife.”

Read more: Senior Ambassadors: Diverse group makes beautiful harmony

Golden Age Olympics: Just having fun

"Some of our Winter Texans want to compete and win, but most of our contestants just want to have fun," says Leslie Holland, director of the McAllen Parks and Recreation Department, which holds the Golden Age Olympics each winter. Holland goes on to say "We have more than 30 events taking place over two-and-a half-months, and all are geared towards our northern visitors."

Read more: Golden Age Olympics: Just having fun

RGV Quilt Guild Show moves to SPI this year

Many people think of the Rio Grande Valley Quilt Guild as a group of ladies who get together once a year to display the quilts they have made. But, while they do put on a fabulous annual quilt show, there is so much more to the quilt guild than that. The guild is active all year long. With over 250 members in eight sewing bees across the Valley, many of the ladies (and some men) get together to sew, exchange patterns and ideas and do charitable work throughout the year.

In the winter season, the number of people in each group grows to include quilters from 25 different states and three Canadian provinces. Only 40 percent of the members are full time residents of the Valley and some of them are former Winter Texans who decided to make Texas a permanent home.

Read more: RGV Quilt Guild Show moves to SPI this year

Mission celebrates Winter Texans with two-day Fiesta

The Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce will celebrate and recognize Winter Texans during the Mega Winter Texan Fiesta during a two-day event, Friday, Feb. 12, and Saturday, Feb. 13.

It kicks off Friday at 8 a.m. at the Shary Municipal Golf Course, 2201 N. Mayberry St., with a “Fiesta on the Golf Course.”   The six-person Texas Scramble, for an 18-hole division, is $40, including food and beverage. Payments must be made at the time of sign-up, which begins Monday, Feb. 8. All Shary Golf Course and GoMission Deal card members will receive a discount. For more information about the tournament, call 580-8770.

Read more: Mission celebrates Winter Texans with two-day Fiesta

Valley Star Awards: Vote for ‘Entertainer of the Year’

The fifth annual Valley Star Awards will present awards to the Rio Grande Valley’s top entertainers as selected by Winter Texans casting their votes for their favorite Male Vocalist of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, Family Musical Group of the Year, Musical Group of the Year (not related), Duet Musical Group, Gospel Group, Novelty or Comedy Act of the Year, Rock & Roll Band, Country Western Band, Individual/Small Band/Variety Act, and Entertainer of the Year.

The Valley Star Awards ballot is located HERE. To cast your vote, fill out the paper ballot printed in the Feb. 4 edition of the Winter Texan Times, or submit your vote online at www.wttrgv.com. Ballots must be submitted by the Feb. 16 deadline to be counted in the poll.

Read more: Valley Star Awards: Vote for ‘Entertainer of the Year’

Weslaco Museum offers ‘Orphan Train’ presentation

A popular presentation about the Orphan Train Riders will be held at the Weslaco Museum on Tuesday and Thursday, Feb. 2 and 4, at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Author Dorothy Lund Nelson will present the program on “Orphan Train Riders.”

“Many people who missed her program last year have asked us to present it again, and Dorothy has agreed to do the two each day on February 2nd and 4th,” said Wade Marcum, director of the Weslaco Museum.

Read more: Weslaco Museum offers ‘Orphan Train’ presentation

Mission Quilt Show ends soon

The Feb. 3 deadline is fast approaching to visit Mission Historical Museum’s annual Quilt Show to vote for your favorite quilt and determine the Viewer’s Choice award. The quilt show display is in the Mission Historical Museum Annex building, located at 200 E. Tom Landry.

When the Winter Texan Times visited the quilt show, Patty Redlin, a volunteering Winter Texan from Indiana who works at the annex two days a week, gave a tour. A quilt lover, Redlin pointed out several outstanding quilts.

Read more: Mission Quilt Show ends soon

Harlingen Winter Texan Appreciation Day was fun

The Harlingen Winter Texan Appreciation Day was a busy event. With entertainment both at Casa de Amistad and the Harlingen Municipal Auditorium from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Winter Texans had plenty of choices. There were bands and folkloric dancers providing entertainment at Casa De Amistad.

Many Winter Texans gathered around the stage area to watch and children of all elementary ages performed folkloric dances.

“The kids are my favorite. We love to watch the little children perform,” Alan and Marlene Meeker said. It was their favorite part of the festival.

Read more: Harlingen Winter Texan Appreciation Day was fun

Tickets still available for Red Hat Festival of Tables

Jan Bergman still has a few tickets left for the Red Hat Society’s’ popular Festival of Tables, a Valley-wide event to be held Tuesday, Feb. 9 at Nomad Shrine Club, 1044 W. Nolana Loop, in Pharr. This special event includes 40 tables all set with different settings. Some tables may be set with beachware while other might be western, Indian, Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter or a host of other different themes. Each table setting is being hosted by a different Red Hat Society in the Rio Grande Valley.

The ladies who come will be seated at tables with ladies from all over the area so they can learn what types of activities are going on in different Red Hat groups. Since many of the ladies who attend are Winter Texans who come from many different Red Hat Groups in many different states, the ladies who attend can get ideas for their groups from all over the nation.

Read more: Tickets still available for Red Hat Festival of Tables

Kite Fest returns to SPI, Feb. 5-7

B&S Kites on South Padre Island, owned by Bill, Susie and John Doan, will host the 2016 SPI Kite Fest Feb. 5, 6 and 7. Events begin with an indoor kite exhibition on Friday, Feb. 5, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the South Padre Island Convention Center. Skilled flyers from all over the U.S will be showing their kiteflying skills with choreographed performances to music. This is a must see part of the SPI Kite Fest.Admission to the indoor exhibition is $6, with advance tickets required. Seating is limited. Tickets are available only at B&S Kites (956) 761-1248. There will be demonstrations of assembling kits and getting them in the air.

On Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 6-7, there will be a free outdoor kite exhibition. Kites will be flown on the flats north of the SPI Convention Centre from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free. Bring a lawn chair and sit and watch as professional kite flyers put enormous colorful kites in the air. There will be kite stunts, displays and performances during the day. Food concessions will be available.

Read more: Kite Fest returns to SPI, Feb. 5-7

Golden Age Olympics Continues

The 36th annual Golden Age Olympics is ongoing in McAllen through Mar. 11. With long popular events like bowling, horseshoes, shuffleboard, swimming, card games and others there are a lot of events to for “athletes” and “other seniors” to choose from. Newer events such as pickleball, petanque, and others have joined these old favorites to keep everyone happily engaged in fun activities they enjoy.

Read more: Golden Age Olympics Continues

Dave & Daphne return to RGV

For a high-energy, action show with two very talented musicians, the Dave & Daphne Show is a real Winter Texan crowd pleaser. Dave Salver was once lead guitarist for Barbara Mandrell. He has performed at the White House on three different occasions.

Roy Clark declared Dave to be “one of the most fabulous guitarists on the planet!”

Barbara Mandrell simply said, “Dave is the best guitarist I ever had.”

Read more: Dave & Daphne return to RGV

David Church performs Hank Williams tribute

“I cain’t help it if I’m still in love with you,” were the words of the immortal country singer, Hank Williams, one of the most popular classic country singers ever. Fans everywhere mourned his untimely death.

No tribute artist sounds more like Hank Williams than David Church. When he sings Hanks Song, if the listener closes his or her eyes, they will think Hank is singing. Church’s physical build is a bit like Hank’s so he resembles Hank when he wears the suit and hat like Hank’s. He is widely recognized as number one tribute artist to Hank Williams.

Church was born in Lancaster, Ohio, the youngest of 14 children into a musical family that enjoyed bluegrass and classic country music. Church’s ability to sound like Hank has made him the most requested performer on RFD TV, where he and his wife, Terri Lisa had performed for over 10 years. RFD TV has over 65 million viewers throughout the United States. This is true in spite of the fact he has never had a hit song of his own. He attributes his success to the fact people are tired of the music they hear today on the radio and prefer the class country sound instead.

Read more: David Church performs Hank Williams tribute

Shazam! The Gomer and Patsy Show is back in RGV

Gary and Patsy Crain perform comedy and music in one great show.  The show was voted 2015 Novelty or Comedy Act of the Year for the Valley Star Awards by Winter Texans in the Rio Grande Valley.  

Hear Gary perform realistic impersonations and jokes in the voices of Gomer, Barney Fife, Bill Clinton, and Mr. Haney from Green Acres, among others.  Also hear his impersonation of Walter Brennan's song, "Old Rivers."

Read more: Shazam! The Gomer and Patsy Show is back in RGV

Texas Citrus Fiesta festivities continue this weekend

The 79th annual Texas Citrus Fiesta is underway and starting tonight there are a number of activities Winter Texans might enjoy. The theme for this year’s festivities is “Citrus, Cartoons, and Comic Book Characters.”

While most people think of the big Parade of Oranges when they think of the Texas Citrus Fiesta, but there is so much more to the Citrus Fiesta than just the parade, as grand as it is. On Thursday, Jan. 28, the Royal Coronation of King Citrus, Queen Citrianna and the rest of their Royal Court will be presented. The duchesses who come from communities all over the Rio Grande Valley will be vying to be selected as the 2017 Queen Citrianna. The coronation will take place at Neuhaus Gym on the campus of Mission High School, 1802 W. Cleo Dawson Drive (18th Street). The event starts at 7 p.m. and tickets are $10 for reserved seats and $5 for general admission.

Read more: Texas Citrus Fiesta festivities continue this weekend

Ladies love being part of Magic Valley Chorus

The Magic Valley Chorus is a singular chapter of Sweet Adelines International, created from an international group of ladies who gather in McAllen, Texas. The chorus is made up of Winter Texan ladies from Canada, Ireland, Switzerland, Texas, and all over the Midwest who come together every year to sing in a barbershop style all-female chorus.

One of those Midwesterners is Sandy Scitz, of Wisconsin, who just took over as director of the chorus last November. Sandy says her qualifications as a director grew out of the five years she spent as a part of the Racine, Wis. chorus, from 1969 to1975. She was a part of the gold medal winners in the historic year of 1973, when Sweet Adelines International held their first National Chorus Competition. She said, “You learn so much, you can’t possibly forget.” Sandy has been a part of Sweet Adelines International for 23 years, with the last 18 years as a member of the Magic Valley Chorus and one of its quartets.

Read more: Ladies love being part of Magic Valley Chorus

RGV Wood Carver’s Show planned Jan. 22-23

The annual Rio Grande Valley Woodcarver’s Show will be held Friday and Saturday, Jan. 22-23, at the Cielo Banquet Hall, 1101 E. FM 495, San Juan. The show will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. The show features exhibits by carvers, carving instructors, tool vendors and wood vendors. A donation of $3 per person or $5 for two people is requested.

This year’s show will feature 21 different categories of woodcarving with 70 tables of exhibits.

Read more: RGV Wood Carver’s Show planned Jan. 22-23

National Bullriders Competition coming Jan. 30-31

Winter Texans, it is time to grab a cowboy hat and a pair of boots and look like a real Texan as KTEX 100.3 presents the “The Hottest 8 Seconds of 2016” in Mercedes. It’s back and it’s bigger and better than ever!  

The National Professional Bull Riders (NPBR) bring some of the nation’s top bull riders to town for a two-day event on Jan. 30-31 at the RGV Livestock Show Complex, Mercedes. Thirty-five top cowboys will compete for an average of $14,000 in money and prizes. This includes a chance to win one of three $600 Monsoon Silver Champion Trophy Buckles and a sack full of money. The NPBR not only attracts bull riders from Texas and the surrounding states but also from Mexico, Brazil and Australia.

Read more: National Bullriders Competition coming Jan. 30-31

George Burns & Friends to perform

Remember the days when the comedy greats were first heard on the radio and later appeared on TV? Winter Texans can once again enjoy the Golden Age of Comedy right here in the Rio Grande Valley. George Burns and Friends will be appearing at Llano Grande Lake Park Resort on Friday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. Doors will open at 6 p.m.

Pete Salzer does an amazing tribute to George Burns. When he appeared at Victoria Palms in 2011, there was a collective “gasp” as he walked on stage. He was the very image of George Burns. And when he spoke, members of the audience thought they were listening to George Burns himself! Salzer captures the look, voice and style of this loveable actor and comedian. He has paid tribute to George Burns at the Tropicana Showroom in Atlantic City, on the stage of the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and for a variety of groups and organizations.

Read more: George Burns & Friends to perform

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Top News

  • Museum exhibit features Mexican dresses

    20190320 MHM Sister City Chinelos Costume courtesySpecial to Winter Texan Times

    A new exhibit opens this week at Mission Historical Museum. The special exhibit, “The Traditions and Culture of Mexican Textiles & Designs,” incorporates seven beautiful Mexican dresses, each representing a different region in Mexico. The dresses are part of a cultural exchange… Read More +

  • Paradise Park Quilters honor veterans

    20190320 Veterans Quilts Paradise Park DSC02286In honor of the veterans of Paradise Park in McAllen, the Paradise Quilters hosted a veterans’ quilt presentation on January 26. Fifteen quilts were presented to veterans in the park during a program that included a dedication thank you poem by Barb and Greg Foster, singing of “God Bless America” by Ginger Engels accompanied… Read More +

  • Harlingen Flower Show marks 50th anniversary

    HARLINGEN–The Harlingen Flower Show has been showcasing beauty for 50 years with an annual show open to the public.
    March 23 and 24 is the weekend for this year’s show which will be at the Harlingen Cultural Arts Center, 576 ’76 Drive, next to the Harlingen Public Library.

    Exceptional horticulture specimens will be judged and… Read More +

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    Intermediate and advanced dancers took to the floor at 9 a.m. under the direction of their instructor, Mary Lou Lane. They were quickly joined by beginning… Read More +

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    Not only did it shine, but it seemed to shine even a little brighter around Ed Martens.… Read More +

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    The McAllen Wind Ensemble’s season finale, “A Gatsby Gala,” will be a celebration of music from the Roaring ‘20s. Under the baton of director Roger Olivarez, the band will perform the music of Gershwin, Holst, Grainger, Cole Porter, and more. This concert will… Read More +

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    20190320 Spittin Image IMG 4566Ron Kriesel had no clue what was about to happen.

    Sitting in the back row against the wall in McAllen Mobile Park's dance hall, Kriesel was picked out by identical twins Blain and Brian Swabb, known as “Spittin' Image,” and brought on stage along with two other “volunteers” to… Read More +

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    20190320 Monarch IMG 4693Carmen and Tim Connaughty had been driving past Quinta Mazatlan, located at 600 Sunset Dr. in McAllen, but never knew what it was.

    “We would drive to the market or to the mall and see it. I mean, we knew it was there – you can’t miss it,” Tim said.… Read More +

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