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November 11, 2018 - Wild by Nature

20181107 Wild Column orange bird LEG9567The last two weeks I featured the top birding hot spots in Hidalgo and Cameron Counties here. This week I will be featuring other Hidalgo County birding hot spots that in many ways are just as good as the big three I wrote about previously but are not as well known.

Edinburg Scenic Wetlands ranks fourth in Hidalgo County with 196 bird species reported to eBird this year, making it one of the top birding hot spots. ESW is situated on 40 acres within a city park, near the heart of the City of Edinburg. Built on reclaimed farm fields and next to the city's effluent and floodwater ponds, the center is a showcase for wildlife and a native habitat site set amidst an urban setting. Since this nature center is a wetlands, it attracts a wide variety of bird species including wading birds, ducks, kingfishers, hawks, warblers, hummingbirds and many others.

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San Juan Gardens keeps residents active

2018401 Shorts San Juan Gardens Ladies LuncheonSan Juan Gardens had many activities to celebrate the Winter Texan season, including a new event called Tape Measure Racing where races are held in double-elimination heats, and everyone is eligible to participate. The park also holds 30-minute low-impact exercise time every weekday for all ages, including a 90-year-old who gets just a little help from her walker. There's also a Ladies Luncheon each month from December to March and so much more.

2018401 Shorts San Juan Gardens Tape Measure Racing

 

20180401 Shorts San Juan Gardens Exercise

Paradise Resort Estates raises money for charities

20180401 Shorts Paradise Estates1Paradise Resort Estates in Pharr, held its annual Spaghetti Supper and Charity Auction on Friday, Feb. 16th.

The resort’s Community Outreach Committee sponsored the event and proceeds are donated to local charities. This year’s proceeds totaled $7,000. Some of the items for auction included wood carvings and a three-layer coconut cake.

20180401 Shorts Pharr Resort2This year's recipients, Manos Extendidas and Mujeres Unidas., each collected a check for $3,500

Split Rail Party

20180401 Shorts Split Rail Party1At the end of each season, the Split Rail Association at Split Rail RV Park in Mission throws a thank you party for its residents, filled with good food and entertainment. In mid-March, residents enjoyed a delicious catered lunch of grilled chicken, potato salad, baked beans, coleslaw and all the fixins and dessert. Following lunch, Country Roland fired up his entertainment and the party was in full gear. The crowd was clapping, singing, dancing and just having a great time.

Southern Comfort RV Park hosts Bocce tournaments

20180401 Shorts Southern Comfort Bocce JPGSouthern Comfort RV Park, located at 1501 S Airport Dr. in Weslaco has been running bocce ball tournaments for the past couple of years. What started as one bocce tournament in the park is now up to three and signs are that the growth is going to continue.

“Participation and excitement from Winter Texans is overwhelming,” Terry Hause wrote in an email. “It has become one of the most popular past times for the Winter Texans.”

Canadian residents Ugo and Linda Cesario have worked continuously around the bocce courts, maintaining and upgrading the park's four courts. There is open bocce every Friday for Southern Comfort residents from November until the beginning of March. Ugo also has his “famous” hotdogs and beverages available.

Winter Texans volunteer at Lutheran church

20180322 El Buen Pastor IMG 5095For nearly a decade, Stan Kirschbaum and Bill White of Hidden Valley Ranch, and Ralph Freudenberg of Mission West RV Park have spearheaded projects at El Buen Pastor Lutheran Church.

The congregation from Westminster Lutheran Fellowship at Pleasant Valley Ranch have collected money and, most recently, built and put up a new cross on the front of the church. It's three-toned blue hues have replaced the denomination's old purple theme and the cross has replaced the old, run down one that stood on the front of the church for about 12 years.

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La Floresta holds tournament championship golf event

20180315 LaFloresta Golf GAIL CATRON MENS CHAMPIONGail Catron, Men’s Champion

La Floresta Park and Golf Course held its version of the PGA Championship March 5-8 with 32 men and 24 ladies competing in the annual event. La Floresta is located at 4140 La Floresta Road in Mercedes.

Gail Catron won the men's tournament championship while Kim Huminski captured the women's tournament title.

The park also held a handicapped tournament in February. A handicapped tournament is one where players of different abilities play against each other on somewhat equal terms. For example, if your handicap is 5 and par is 72, that means on average you are shooting around 77. It is more complicated than that, taking into account courses slope/rating and other variables, but that is the basic definition.

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The Power of One

20180308 Palm Resaca Single Ladiesbest2The vitality of any Winter Texan Park is the result of the positive efforts and friendly interactions of its residents. A small core of single women in Palm Resaca Park have made a tremendous effect on helping to make the park run smoothly.

Single women account for more than 10 percent of park residents. These women have involved themselves in leadership roles and behind the scenes actions to help create an enjoyable park atmosphere. They have acted as office managers, board presidents, board and committee members and performed a whole host of other duties that have allowed our residents to enjoy many wonderful activities .

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Mexican Whistling Ducks enjoy Palm Resaca Park

20180301 Whistling Ducks mexicanducks2Marching single file, seemingly with purpose. They are not soldiers mustering on the parade grounds or cows heading home at feeding time. They are black-bellied whistling ducks.

As a Winter Texan from Canada, I find the birds of Southern Texas fascinating. Dozens of Whistlers dwell along the Resaca de la Guerra that flows past our mobile home at Palm Resaca Park in Brownsville, Texas. Resacas are former channels of the meandering Rio Grande River formed after flooding. The city now maintains these canal-type waterways for flood control, irrigation, and natural habitat.

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Canada Day celebrated at Riverside Club

20180306 CanadaDay Riverside GU 1889Hundreds of Canadians showed up at the Riverside Club in Mission on Tuesday, March 6 to join in the fun of the annual Canada Day celebration. Everyone seemed to be enjoying the music provided by the Riverside Club Band led by Randy Dupuis and enjoying drinks and food. They were a number of couples on the floor at all times and when the line dances started, two lines of dancers filled the room from one end to the other.

A group of ladies from Ontario were enjoying a Perita, a 32-ounce margarita with two Peronas dumped upside down in the glass. Each had a straw and were drinking their share. Others were enjoying nachos, barbecue sandwiches and other items from the club’s menu.

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UTRGV WT Survey prize winners announced

As promised, two lucky Winter Texans who participated in this year’s Winter Texan Survey conducted by the Business and Tourism Research Center at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley have been selected as the prize winners for this year’s drawing.

The winner of the Kindle Fire, provided courtesy of UTRGV, is Helen Willis of Tip-O-Texas RV Resort in Pharr. Dennis Bloomingdale, of Illinois, who winters at Tropic Winds Resort in Harlingen, is the winner of the $150 cash prize provided by the Winter Texan Times.

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Southern Comfort RV Park hosts Bocce tournaments

20180315 Southern Comfort Bocce JPGWESLACO—The sport of bocce ball isn't going away anytime soon. In fact, the trend that's happening at the Encore RV resorts across the Rio Grande Valley might lay claim to the opposite.

Southern Comfort RV Park, located at 1501 S Airport Dr. in Weslaco, has been running bocce ball tournaments for the past couple of years. What started as one bocce tournament in the park is now up to three and signs are that the growth is going to continue.

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Nature photos displayed at Port Isabel Library

Laguna Art League member Pat McGrath Avery will be displaying her photography at the Port Isabel Library throughout the month of March.

Avery, an author and photographer, focuses on nature photography, especially the beautiful birds that live in or visit the Rio Grande Valley. In the 1970s, she brought her parents down for the winter and fell in love with the Texas coast.

Now she is living her dream and spending her days with her fingers on her keyboard or with her camera in hand.

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Monarch Festival is March 17 at Quinta Mazatlan

20180308 Butterfly Costume Quinta Mazatlan 1McAllen, TX – It’s time to celebrate and educate once again. Quinta Mazatlan will host the second annual McAllen Monarch Festival on Saturday, March 17, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The festival will focus on educating the public about monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) through family friendly activities such as arts and crafts, music and dancing, face painting, garden walks, informative speakers and scout activities. The festival will also have food and native plant vendors. Children and adults will learn about the life cycle of these amazing and iconic insects.

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Chili cookoff a hot event at Llano Grande Resort

20180308 Llano Grande Chili Cookoff MILLER IMG 4557What determines a great-tasting chili? Heat, flavor, color or a combination of some, all or none of these?

“You have to have hatch chiles,” Linda Sanders said.

“I like meat in my chili,” Kim Hawkins said. “If it's beans, then it's a soup.”

“Loaded with flavor and creamy, gooey, yummy with just about anything,” added Paula Lake. “And with fresh green chile peppers on top.”

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Top News

  • November 14, 2018 - Wild by Nature

    Of the 400-plus species of birds that have been reported to Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s eBird across the Rio Grande Valley, most are year-round residents. Others are either winter or summer residents, some are migratory visitors and a few are vagrant, or accidental, species. While the birds that fall into the first three categories make up the vast majority of bird species you’ll see here in the Valley,… Read More +

  • Weslaco Museum showcases history and culture of city

    20181114 WeslacoMuseum 7987According to Sara Walker, executive director of the Weslaco Museum, located at 500 S. Texas Blvd., the museum is dedicated to showcasing the history and culture of Weslaco. Divided into two sections, one half is dedicated to the history of the city while the other showcases the culture.

    The… Read More +

  • Veterans Honored at Veterans War Memorial of Texas

    While the cold drizzle and windy conditions on Saturday, Nov. 10, led to moving McAllen’s Veteran’s Day program inside for the first time, featured speaker State Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa would not have minded being at the memorial site, recalling the often-wet climate of Vietnam, where he served and where he lost three buddies. The annual Veterans Day remembrance is normally held at the Veterans War Memorial of… Read More +

  • MOSTHistory unveils new Then and Now exhibit Saturday

    20181114 MOSTH Southern Pacific ThenEDINBURG, Texas – As the Museum of South Texas History’s 1910 Jail renovations come to an end, the new Hidalgo County Courthouse will begin construction. It’s a sign of life’s progress. But, how much has changed in the city of Edinburg? You can find out by visiting at the new temporary exhibit, “Edinburg:… Read More +

  • Sweetwater brings sweet music, dancing to WT resorts

    20181110 Sweetwater band at Trophy Gardens Miller 2272It didn’t take long for the dancing to kick into high gear. In fact, the dance floor was a popular place as soon as long-time band Sweetwater played its first song on Saturday at Trophy Gardens RV Resort in Alamo.

    The dancing really didn’t… Read More +

  • Kicking off the season with a jam

    20181114 Country Jam Bit O Heaven HM 1823Mick Warborg distinctly remembers his wife being out and about, garage/yard sale hopping. She came home one day with “a bunch of stuff,” he said. “All kinds of things in boxes.”

    What’s that saying? One person’s junk is another person’s treasure? In this case, it… Read More +

  • Bridge of Hope Children’s Choir to perform

    20181114 BOHAM DSC 0373The Bridge of Hope Africa Ministries Children’s Choir will perform in concert at Restful Valley Ranch at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 14, reports Restful Valley Activities Director Karla McNelly.

    The Bridge of Hope Choir is an ambassador outreach to spread the word about the work of Bridge of… Read More +

  • Texas Wheels: Popular band in the Winter Texan park scene

    20181107 Texas Wheels 02Mike and Irma Wimsett started making their way to their seats, ready to take a break after dancing to a couple songs by one of their favorite bands, Texas Wheels. It was a Saturday night at Mission Bell and just like every Saturday, Texas Wheels is a regular, performing from 7 to 10 p.m.

    Read More +

  • Chris Carney: Veteran, helicopter pilot, Canyon Lake resident

    20181107 Helicopter Pilot Chris Carney ChopperChris Carney looked out and around the local coffee shop, his eyes seemingly never reaching a destination as his face showed he was contemplating what to say.

    A glaze – maybe a little bit of a mist – seemed to cover those eyes, even ever so… Read More +

  • Caring & Sharing

    FromthepublisherAs we approach the holiday season, our hearts are drawn to those less fortunate – especially the children who, without the generosity of others, would have a very sad and bleak Christmas. Winter Texans have a remarkable reputation for their generous hearts and are known to plan food and clothing drives, make quilts and gather toy donations for many needy… Read More +

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