Tuesday, September 27, 2022
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The people at Long Island Village make the difference

20170124 Long Island Village Golf Course Jennie McBrideCheryl Fitzgerald and her husband Scott have been golfing seriously for the past five years. One, or both of them, can be found on the course nearly every day. They, like many residents of the park they live in, not just enjoy golf, but are deeply passionate about it.

It’s that passion that has led golfers to name Long Island Village as the Winter Texan Times Overall Favorite RGV Golf Course. (The course also came in second for the Lower Valley)

Read more: The people at Long Island Village make the difference

Upper Valley golf course receive some TLC

The past couple of years have been difficult for many businesses. While not knowing if they were going to be opened or closed, it gave directors of golf, owners, golf pros and those who make decisions an opportunity to make some tweaks to their courses – minor to major.

We invite you to try out a new course, or two or three, and then let us know about your favorites in our golf course survey. We would also like to solicit additional feedback for our wrap up story. And if you would, attach a short note to your ballot, telling us why you voted the way you did.

Read more: Upper Valley golf course receive some TLC

11th Annual Valley Star Awards was one to remember

20220223 VSA Helen RussellLong-time favorites, soon-to-be favorites and an extremely wide variety of Wintertainers made the 11th annual Valley Star Awards at Mission Bell RV Park one that raised the bar for future events. If you didn’t get the chance to attend and see the entertainment – Johnathan Len, Justin Terry, Mountain Highway, Ron and Jan Easter, Rebecca and Jaime Bagwell, and Curt James – you should make a point to catch them somewhere.

Read more: 11th Annual Valley Star Awards was one to remember

Traffic increasing at all Valley golf courses

20220223 GOLF SPI Golf Course 3 Green from Harbor UnitsFor what seems like an eternity, the COVID-19 pandemic has waged war around the world. For golf courses it was especially difficult. One week they were open, one week they were closed and the not-knowing-what's-happening tomorrow, or later today, wreaked havoc.

However, it also gave directors of golf, owners, golf pros and those who make decisions an opportunity to make some tweaks to their courses – minor to major.

Read more: Traffic increasing at all Valley golf courses

Kenny Ray Horton

Genres: Country, Singer-Songwriter, Folk, Bluegrass, Pop, Rock and Roll
Specialty: Guitar and Vocals
Website: www.KennyRayHorton.com
Tour Dates: https://www.kennyrayhorton.com
Videos: https://www.kennyrayhorton.com
Music: https://www.kennyrayhorton.com
Booking and Press Contact for RGV: Valerie Clark, Print It PR, PRServices@PrintItPR.com, 615-473-1105

Horton PIC WEBKenny Ray is an RIAA Gold Record Award Winner for his composition of “A Soldier’s King” recorded by Kenny Rogers on the Christmas album, “The Gift.” He is also the former lead singer for the US Navy’s Country Current Band retired in December 2021.

Kenny Ray’s music was born and bred in southeast Missouri. Living on a dairy farm outside a small town he was raised on the southern gospel harmonies of Albert E. Brumley (“I’ll Fly Away”) that could be heard through those Ozark mountains of his childhood.

Read more: Kenny Ray Horton

VSA ballots are rolling in

20220126 Valley Star Awards HMiller 41Ballots for the Valley Star Awards are rolling in – make sure your voice is heard and vote for your favorite Wintertainer™. This year’s categories include Male Vocalist of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, Family Vocal Group of the Year, Musical Group of the Year, Duet Musical Group of the Year, Rock n Roll Band of the Year, Country Western Band of the Year, Novelty or Comedy Act of the Year, and Individual/Small Band/Variety Act of the Year. As always, you have a write-in option for your favorite Entertainer or Group of the Year.

Read more: VSA ballots are rolling in

Pier 19: An unforgettable dining experience

20220113 133557I am not keen on seafood, so in seafood restaurants I often have few options. That was not the case at Pier 19 on South Padre Island. While there was plenty of seafood options, there were ample options for me.

My husband and son are seafood lovers, and found it difficult to choose. They started with ceviche and then each had a platter. My son had the Small Grilled Platter while my husband opted for the Large Fried Platter.

20220113 134317My husband said the ceviche was the best he has ever had. The onion, jalapeno tomato and cilantro were fresh and vibrant; shrimp was bursting with flavor; and the creamy avocado provided a perfect finish. Pier 19 makes their own corn chips which were light and crispy yet sturdy and well suited to scooping copious amounts of ceviche.

20220113 134341The boys shared their platters which combined included oysters, scallops, fish, shrimp (3-ways), stuffed crab, fresh steamed veggies, coleslaw and hushpuppies. The coconut shrimp really impressed my husband as he had never had coconut battered shrimp that actually tasted like coconut like at Pier 19. My son said the coleslaw and seafood were the best he has ever had.

I started with some fried mushrooms, then enjoyed the Hawaiian Burger. The mushrooms were well battered and crispy outside while firm, plump and juicy inside.

20220113 134415The Hawaiian Burger was topped with a tangy-sweet barbecue sauce, bacon, cheese, and pineapple. Who would have thought to add pineapple to a burger? It was a nice combination of tart and sweet. I added a side of onion rings. These were hearty slices and, like all the other fried fare, coated in a light batter that complimented and never smothered the food.

It was a dining experience I will not soon forget, and one we plan to repeat regularly when we are on South Padre Island.

Pier 19 is open 7 days from 8 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. and located at 1 Padre Blvd on South Padre Island. You can contact them at (956) 761-PIER (7437) or at www.Pier19.us

Ranch House Burgers: Come Hungry

20211229 ranch house pic 08 webI arrived at Ranch House Burgers in Mission recently extremely hungry.

This was the right place at the right time.

The host and my server both highly recommended the fajita fries so that easily became a no-brainer. Ordering a burger wasn’t so easy. The choices are plentiful, and the creative options and descriptions not only can make your mouth water but can make you forget you already ordered a large appetizer.

I chose the 420 burger – chorizo, bacon, fried egg, Swiss cheese, refried beans and avocado – sounded like a perfect combination to remove the extremeness from my hunger. The specialty burgers are fun just to read from the menu – the John Wayne, the Pancho Villa, the Fire in the Hole – are just some of the names for these mega-size burgers.

I dug into a deep bowl of fries smothered with tiny, tender pieces of fajita mixed in with pico de gallo, melted cheese, guacamole and sour cream. It was a flavor-filled journey. The fries were fresh, seasoned to perfection and it wasn’t served with all the toppings just sitting on top. They were all spread throughout the dish, so every bite had a smorgasbord of tantalizing tongue and taste appeal.

The burger was everything I expected. The creamy flavors of the avocado, melted cheese and egg combined with the crispy bacon, and beef patty complemented one another and it wasn’t long before I knew I had a challenge as my extreme hunger dissipated and the fear of not finishing displaced it.

I continued to look over the quite large menu and realized that while this establishment is known for its amazing burgers, it also has a tantalizing mix of other foods from BBQ to Tex-Mex, sandwiches, chicken fried steak and seafood. There’s also a kid’s menu, and a separate list of sides. (It has salads as well, but for some reason my vision goes bad whenever I get to salads on a menu).

Don’t let the lunch crowd scare you away. The kitchen operation must run as smooth as melted butter. I arrived at noon, placed my order, ate and then ordered to go for my daughter, and I was still out before the typical one-hour work lunch was over.

I walked in extremely hungry, left extremely happy and then took an extreme nap when I got home, thinking about what burger I would get when I visit the Weslaco location.

It’s not just any omelet

20211217 VictoriaPalmsRest HMiller 01 webThe great ones are known by just one name.

There’s Tiger, Ali, Kobe, Brady and.... Dave?

Well, it’s more like Omelet Dave after making more than 100,000 omelets during his first 13 years at the Victoria Palms restaurant in Donna. So, maybe he doesn’t have the worldwide appeal as Woods or Jordan, but he’s known among Winter Texans, and travelers who stop in for one of his fantastic creations - whether it’s an omelet or a tantalizing waffle masterpiece

Dave’s gift for gab is as great as his cooking. There’s no charge for a good conversation with Dave. In fact, it's highly encouraged.

This morning, I had an omelet with the works - bacon, ham, sausage, green peppers, jalapenos, onions and, of course, mushrooms – but no spinach (don't want anyone to think I'm super healthy). As usual, it was a perfect way to start the morning. It came with hash browns, sourdough toast and salsa (and a cup of coffee). Not sure why, but I can make an omelet with the exact same ingredients, put a chef’s hat on - probably even Dave’s hat, and cook it all in the same spot Dave cooks it and it just won’t be as good. Why is that?20211217 VictoriaPalmsRest HMiller 04 tov

I also had a round two. A waffle that doubled as dessert - that’s how I justify it. This tasty morsel was put in front of me to the chorus of angels. It had to be the fluffiest and tastiest waffle I’ve had in recent memory. The waffle was as smooth as the mound of strawberries and whipped cream on top. Chewing is just an option.

It was a perfect complement to go with the working man’s omelet.

Dave said he figured that he would be 84 years old about the time he reaches 200,000 omelets and said he would probably still be doing it if he is still able.

“I like it. It’s not hard and I can talk to people,” he said.

That’s great news for Victoria Palms. It’s also terrific for all those who go by the RV Park, hotel, and restaurant, which is open to the public.

The food is definitely worth the trip. Being part of the great Omelet Dave experience is just an added bonus - at no additional cost.

Taste of the Valley
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Valley Star Awards
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