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MAY 2014

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MAY

Explore what's inside this issue!

From the Publisher

8

32 Music

10 Calendar

36 Wine

14 Troubadour

40 Spiritual

22 Special Advertisers

44 The Running Man

24 History

46 Old Timer

28 Gardening

EXPLORE magazine is published by Schooley Media Ventures in Boerne, TX. EXPLORE Magazine and Schooley Media Ventures are not responsible for any inaccuracies, erroneous information, or typographical errors contained in this publication submitted by advertisers. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinions of EXPLORE and/or Schooley Media Ventures. Copyright 2012 Schooley Media Ventures, 265 N. Main, Suite C, Boerne, TX 78006

Contributing Writers

Marjorie Hagy (History) MARJORIE is a bibliophile, a history nut and an insomniac, among several other conditions, both diagnosed and otherwise. When she's not working tirelessly to avoid getting a real job, she nurses an obsession with her grandson and is involved in passing legislation restricting the wearing of socks with sandals. She is an aspiring pet hoarder who enjoys vicious games of Scrabble, reading Agatha Christie, and sitting around doing nothing while claiming to be thinking deeply. Marjorie has five grown children, a poodle to whom she is inordinately devoted in spite of his breath, and holds an Explore record for never having submitted an article on time. She's been writing for us for five years now.

Rene Villanueva (Music)

Rene Villanueva is the lead singer/bass player for the band Hacienda. Having toured worldwide, hacienda has also been featured on several late night shows, including Late Show with David Letterman. Rene and his wife Rachel live in Boerne, TX and just welcomed thier first child.

Publisher Benjamin D. Schooley ben@hillcountryexplore.com Creative Director Benjamin N. Weber ben.weber@smvtexas.com ADVERTISING SALES 210-507-5250 sales@hillcountryexplore.com

Kendall D. Aaron (Spiritual)

I’m just a normal guy. I’m not a theology student, I don’t preach in church, and I’ve never written a book. I’m just a normal guy that thinks, and feels, and is on a never-ending journey attempting to be the best person I can be. I fail frequently at this quest, yet each day, the quest continues. I’ve lived in Boerne since the late ‘80s, I’ve got a most beautiful wife, three wonderful children, and just really, really love God. Thanks for going on my spiritual journey with me.

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Old Timer (Ramblings)

The Old Timer tells us he's been a resident of Boerne since about 1965. He enjoys telling people what he doesn't like. When not bust'n punks he can be found feeding the ducks just off Main St. or wandering aimlessly in the newly expanded HEB. Despite his rough and sometimes brash persona, Old Timer is really a wise and thoughtful individual. If you can sort through the BS.

EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


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MAY 2014

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From the Publisher Dearest EXPLORE reader, I asked my grandfather recently, who just turned 87, what it was like to be 87. I thought I would get some wise-crack answer about hearing aids and prune juice, but instead he said, “Are you kidding? When I open my eyes in the morning, I think I’m 18. And then I start moving, and am reminded quickly that I am surely not.” I don’t know why that simple answer resonated so loudly with me, but it did. And it sure got me thinking. We were talking in the office recently about church groups. It was a discussion about whether a certain church would contain “folks my age.” Sure enough, upon visiting that church, I looked around and shook my head because there were all these middle aged couples there, and nobody that was really my age. They were all putting their glasses on to see the video screens, and were running their fingers through their receding hairlines. These are not my people. Except, as the light bulb went on above my head, I realized that all those middle aged people are, in fact, MY AGE GROUP. Ugh. This took me back to my grandfather’s answer, and the wisdom it contained. I went to high school here in Boerne, and graduated in ’94. I have laughed with my wife a few times and have commented that “I saw soand-so at the HEB. Man, they’re getting old. It’s a good thing I’m not as old as they are.” Because I’m not. You see, I’m just like my grandfather. In my head I’m not 18, but I am probably…..26. Yep, that’s my favorite age. I’m smart enough to be done with college, I’ve got a job, a house, and a few kiddos. These are common accomplishments at 26. However, I’m also smart enough to know I don’t know the first damn thing about much of anything, I think I can still ride dirt bikes, and retirement is like a million years away. Right? RIGHT? There’s a guy that jogs through my neighborhood. He’s pretty religious about it, so I see him a lot. The first time I saw him, I was driving down the road, headed in the same direction that he was. He had on

running shorts, a tank-top, a ball cap, and I could see his earphone wires bouncing around . His hair was jet black coming out of his hat, and from the build of his body, I would have guessed…26. Except, as I passed him, I saw the white hair sticking out of the front of his hat, his wrinkled face, and realized that he was probably in his mid-60s. I smiled later when I thought about him, because I’m sure that, unless you reminded him of his age, he is still looking at the road he is jogging on via the eyes of a 26 year old. What age are your eyes? We all live within the confines of our own bodies, and while that body ages, our minds hopefully do not. Yes, we gain wisdom and experiences, but we tend to apply them to a mind that simply…….lives. It does not live with the knowledge that it is slowing down, nor falling apart. It’s OURS; our vestibule where our thoughts and emotions exist and we live within it as it carries us through this rough and tumble adventure known as life. Do me a favor – the next time you talk to someone substantially older than you, remember this little essay. Try to visualize this person as a 26 year old. Even if they’re 56. Or 76. Visualize that person with a full head of hair, smooth skin, bright eyes, and strong muscles. How does their smile appear to you now? How do their hands look now? Their laugh? If you can do this, you’re now seeing the person the very way they see themselves. Yes, they’ll look in a mirror and be reminded of their age, but invariably, every morning, they will open their eyes and address their day the same as they did when they were 26. Yes, they’ll begin moving and be reminded that they are not 26, but dang it, that’s just because this stupid old body can’t keep up with them anymore. Their minds, and their heart, are ready to attack the day and live big. What if we all woke up each day and not only “felt” like we did in our prime, but navigated the day as if we were truly unstoppable? What if you woke up tomorrow and began a new challenge; one that you have told yourself dozens of times that you are too old to tackle? Get a new degree? Start a new venture? A charity? What if you stopped being constrained by your age, dropped those shackles, and lived with all the potential and passion that you had in years gone by? What if? Welcome to May. May you take this month to look around and give thanks for this season of your life. Whether it be the sunrise or the sunset of your life, don’t ever forget that, regardless of your age, you are ALIVE. Honor that life by living it – the same as you did when you were younger and you had the fire to EXPLORE, dream, and conquer. Smiling,

Benjamin D. Schooley

Be on the lookout for this graphic though out the issue. The EXPLORE Exclusives badge indicates an advertiser who is offering a great deal for our readers. Without their support, and all of our advertisers month to month, we wouldn’t be able to bring you this great magazine. Many thanks to them and our readers.

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MAY

Get out and enjoy the great Texas Hill Country! The most comprehensive events calendar. Send submissions to info@hillcountryexplore.com

May 1 - 4 FREDERICKSBURG Hill Country Film Festival

Annual film festival screens the best of independent film from Texas and around the world, hosting four days of features and short films, plus parties and other gatherings. Steve W. Shepherd Theater, 1668 U.S. 87 S. (512) 589-4049, (424) 238-5672, www.hillcountryff.com

May 3 BOERNE Hauptstrasse Quiltfest

Includes hundreds of quilts on display, live music, craft demonstrations and shopping. Hours are 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Downtown and Main Plaza Park, 100 N. Main St. (830) 248-1543, www.boernequilting. com

May 3 - 4 COMFORT Comfort Village Spring Antiques Show Browse booths offering country furniture, textiles and linens, blue willow, majolica, antique tools, stoneware, baskets, early advertising and more. Comfort Park, 403 Texas 27. (830) 995-3670, www. texasantiqueshows.com

May 6 BANDERA Cowboy Capital Opry

Grand Old Opry-style show features Harriet and Gerry Payne and various artists. Begins at 7 p.m. Silver Sage Corral, 803 Buck Creek Drive. (830) 796-4969, www.silversagecorral.org

May 10 BOERNE Moondance Concert Series

Enjoy live music under the stars and oak trees. Cibolo Nature Center, 140 City Park Road. (830) 249-4616, www.cibolo.org

May 10 BOERNE Second Saturday Art and Wine

Enjoy a glass of wine and stroll through the art galleries. Hours are 4-8 p.m. Various venues. www. secondsaturdayartandwine.com

May 10 NEW BRAUNFELS Herb Festival

The New Braunfels Conservation Society and the Comal Master Gardeners sponsor this event with demonstrations and vendors. Hours are 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Conservation Plaza, 1300 Church Hill Drive. www.nbjumpin.com

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May 10 SPRING BRANCH Spring Market Days

May 23 - 25 FREDERICKSBURG Crawfish Festival

May 10 - 11 BOERNE Market Days

May 23 - 25 KERRVILLE Texas Masters of Fine Art and Craft Show

Vendors and artisans offer a variety of items, including jewelry, gifts, decor and food. Texas 46 at Bulverde Crossing. (830) 438-4285

Artists, crafters and vendors share their creative talents and wares to the sounds of homegrown Texas musicians. Main Plaza, 100 N. Main. (210)844-8193, www.boernemarketdays.com

May 17 - 18 DRIPPING SPRINGS Artist Alliance of the Hill Country Studio Tour

Hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Various venues. (512) 6583699, www.artistsalliancehc.com

May 17 - 18 GRUENE Old Gruene Market Days

Nearly 100 vendors offer uniquely crafted items and packaged Texas foods. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Gruene Historic District, 1724 Hunter Road. (830) 832-1721, www.gruenemarketdays.com

May 18 GRUENE KNBT Americana Music Jam

Celebration of Americana music features exceptional artists of the genre. Gruene Hall, 1281 Gruene Road.(830) 629-5077, (830) 606-1601, www. gruenehall.com

May 22 - June 8 KERRVILLE Kerrville Folk Festival

This Texas Hill Country-based international songwriter’s festival features more than 100 songwriters and their bands with concerts, a songwriting competition, seminars and workshops, arts and crafts, food and camping. Quiet Valley Ranch, 9 miles south of Kerrville, 3876 Medina Highway. 830-2573600, www.kerrville-music.com

May 23 - 25 BANDERA Cowboy Capital Rodeo Association Pro Rodeo

Mansfield Park Rodeo Arena. (830) 796-7207, www. banderarodeo.com

Enjoy music and a gumbo cook-off and other great Cajun food. Marktplatz, 100 W. Main St.(830) 4335225, www.fbgcrawfish.com

Features works by Texas’ finest artists and craftspeople. Nearly two dozen artists show a variety of media ranging from paintings and fine jewelry to mesquite furniture and wildlife sculptures. Hours are noon-8 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Y.O. Ranch Resort Hotel, 2033 Sidney Baker St. www.texasmasters.com

May 24 BANDERA Funtier Day Parade

Features rodeo cowboys, trail ride groups, antique cars and decorated floats. Begins at 11 a.m. Main Street. Phone: (800) 364-3833,, www.banderatex. com

May 24 KERRVILLE Texas Hill Country Wine and Brew Festival

Taste offerings from Texas wineries and breweries, enjoy live music and delicious food, and watch the trick-roping skills of Kevin Fitzpatrick. Comanche Trace Lake, 2801 Comanche Trace Drive. (830) 8958505, www.wineandbrewfest.com

May 24 - 25 FREDERICKSBURG Pacific Combat Living History Program

Living history demonstration covers World War II weaponry, clothing, training and tactics of U.S. and Japanese military. Programs begin at 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. National Museum of the Pacific War Combat Zone, 500 E. Austin St.(830) 997-8600 ext. 205, www.pacificwarmuseum.org

May 25 BOERNE Boerne Concert Band Memorial Day Concert Main Plaza. www.boerneconcertband.org

EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


Hill Country living.

It’s not just about the views... Check out these stylish interiors!

Luxurious 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath custom gem in Waterstone. $614,500

5 bedroom, 5.5 bath Mediterranean masterpiece in Coveney Ranch. $1,600,000

Elegant 3 bedroom, 3 bath Fair Oaks Ranch golf course home. $639,000

Stunning 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath Fair Oaks Ranch hillside home. $975,000

Charming 3 bedroom, 3 bath Saddlewood home on over 4.5 acres. $570,000

4 bedroom, 5.5 baths with cabin / quarters in River Mountain Ranch. $469,500

3 bedroom, 2 bath home on almost 6 acres in Mountain Spring Farms. $419,500

3 bedroom, 2.5 bath ranch style stone home in Verde Hills. $289,500 Number One Phyllis Browning Company Realtor® in 2013 with sales production of almost $42 m!

The Graves Group The art of fine residential real estate Stylish 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath Fair Oaks Ranch home. $369,500

Denise Graves, Realtor®, CLMS, CRS, ABR, GRI I Office: 830-331-9898

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EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


Welcome to Boerne

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Bluebonnet Realty HOMES FOR SALE

D L O S

2.) FOR SALE - $675,000 - Cordillera Ranch - approx. 3761 s.f. of living area, 5.31 acres, pool, close to club house, room for horses, club membership not included. This home has an enormous amount of storage and potential for a 5 bedroom and 3.5 bath home. There’s room upstairs to add an additional bath and enlarge a current smaller bedroom/office area. Also, the property can be cross fenced with room for a horse. The master suite has his and her closets, and double vanities in the master bath. Upstairs is a large family room and 3 additional bedrooms. SO MUCH POTENTIAL in this Texas Ranch style home. And look at this price!

3.) FOR SALE - $215000 - Bentwood 4 bed 2 1/2 baths large fenced corner lot.

HOMES & COMMERCIAL FOR LEASE D

SE A E L

4.) FOR LEASE - $3000 - Trails of Herff Ranch, 5 bed, 3 baths, aprox. 3314 s.f. of living area on nice shady lot. Near club house and community pool.

5.) FOR LEASE - $2650 4 bedroom, 3 bath home in Cordillera Ranch on 4.57 Acres with great outdoor kitchen for entertaining.

D

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SE A E L

SE A E L

7.) FOR LEASE - $1475 - 3 Bed, 2 ba with approximately 1646 s.f. of living area, fenced yard, in Boerne Heights. Easy care floors in living area.

6.) FOR LEASE - $1800 - 4 bed, 1.5 baths, approx. 2694 s.f. of living area on large corner lot. Available June, 2014.

8.) FOR LEASE - $1250 - 3 bedroom, 2 bath in Cascade Caverns Park, 2 car garage, large lot fenced with gate.

9.) FOR LEASE - $1900 - 3 bed, 2 bath approximately 2133 s.f. of living area including large family room and rock fireplace on 1/3 ac. in town.

830-816-2288 • www.boernetexashomes.com


Troubadour

LIKE MOST MORNINGS By Rene Villanueva

Like most mornings, my wife had left earlier to start her day with yoga; My fourmonth-old son awake and giggling was telling me to get up and start my day; and I was still pretending to be asleep. But after so long he was just being too sweet and I couldn’t resist any longer. I went to check on him.  He was happily laughing at universal morning jokes of life only spoken to those as brilliant, and universal as himself. We read books, squeaked squeakers, rattled shakers, and sang ridiculous noises. But after a while, my mind went to work. I was two days away from our first SXSW show, which had started the weekend before with it’s overwhelming lists of who’s-who, and must-sees, and as usual, after playtime, I started my work day by obsessively checking and answering emails, tweets and Facebook posts, it took me a moment to look past the usual gossip, and jokes. I was in a surreal moment when my mind struggled to keep up with the words I was reading.  Two dead and Twenty-three more injured in SXSW crash. We now know four people have died from this incident.   This news was followed by a string of posts of my Austin friends asking each other if they were safe. It was more than my brain could take in. What was this person doing? Did they lose control? Was it on purpose? How? What? Why? I immediately read everything about the event. Various reports from news, Twitter comments, friends posting stories, all in-between morning diaper changes, dressing, and chores. I’d like to point out, fortunately, all of my friends were ok. Some had been at the club. Some knew victims. But my friends were safe and that was a relief, though my heart still ached for those involved. It is absolutely horrifying when a senseless and avoidable tragedy strikes. Worse when it strikes close. Words don’t seem like enough. Music doesn’t seem like enough.  I went back to my son’s room to be with him some more.  The festival continued, bands played, we eventually played. As Roland Swenson, the festival’s managing director, said: events would continue “through this tragic time. I think it would probably cause more problems for everyone to show up and be turned away from a show than to just move ahead.” SXSW did continue but it wasn’t the same. Not for me. The shows were clouded with a heaviness, unrest was in the air. A sense of disillusionment, of reality pushing into the strange, escapist world of music. Not that everyone should have packed up, canceled shows and gone back to respective homes all over the world, eliminating years of hard work because of the selfish, thoughtless actions of one man. But tragedy had struck. It was real. Still we tried to make the best out of it. Artists dedicated songs. At our own showcases, and I’m sure at countless others, there were collections taken to help those affected. I wanted to take some time to acknowledge what happened. What the world lost is immeasurable. Lives taken. The things they would’ve accomplished, the people they would have loved, the families they would have, and the memories they would make were all taken away too. Not to mention the lives of their current families and loved ones left behind. To me this was a reminder to appreciate the time we have. How short is our time together... How important are the smallest things?... More than any industry deal, or job... Saying I love you, being with each other, sharing a meal, a song, a dance, a moment. When I read the news, I was struck hardest by thoughts of my friends in Austin, my fellow artists, and also my new son and wife. I don’t know where I’d be without them.  If you want, you can donate to those who were affected at sxswcares.com. Now a moment of silence.

A son of South-Texas, and two of the most beautiful souls I’ll ever know. Writer, dreamer, singer of songs, bass player, and professional observer. Toured the world with my band of “real-blood-tied” brothers, and friends as Hacienda/Fast-five. Recorded three albums, written countless songs, played countless shows, including two national tv late-night extravaganzas, festivals, throwdowns, parties, and hoot-nights. Lover of books, vinyl, dancing, people who laugh loud, walking, vintage craftsmanship, and my home in Boerne.

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EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


MAY 2014

www.hillcountryexplore.com

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Your individual and group health experts in Kendall County.

RON CISNEROS & RICH SENA Your Local Employee Benefits Specialists

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Special Advertising Section

overcoming by Justin Wolff, M.A., LPC-S, LCDC Some anxiety is healthy – without it, we would walk off the end of piers and topple over cliffs. We would let our kids have pet snakes because the rattle sounds cool. Anxiety is necessary for survival, but sometimes it can get out of hand. In social circles I am a part of, I hear people talk about anxiety a lot. Some of them describe taking meds, but many aren’t in therapy. Maybe people don’t know that research shows therapy, in conjunction with meds, is the most effective solution. I wonder if their thought is one of either/or; either I can get therapy or take a pill… I am taking a pill: crisis averted. When folks know that I am a therapist and they talk about meds, it is in one of two ways. Way 1.) Usually delivered with an undertone that indicates a reverence for the seriousness of the matter: “I don’t take it unless I really need it,” they will say. Way 2.) Looser and involves a tongue-in-cheek reference to not getting through some days without it: “I need mamma’s little helper and a glass of wine after the day I had,” they might say. For the record, I am not a fan of either scenario. If the prescribing doctor understands mental health and provides a referral for therapy too, I am all good. When people use meds to take the edge off without therapeutic intervention, it scares me. Help me off the soapbox, and we’ll get going…

Have you ever had a balloon pop scare the ever-lovingstuffing out of you? That nanosecond of chaos is the body’s reaction to a sudden, unexpected stimulus. Our hearts jump into the roof of our mouths and beat double time. Muscles tighten and palms gush sweat. If you’re like me, you probably squeal an obscenity and take a roundhouse swing at the person closest to you as a reflex.”

Questions for the ages: a.) Are anxious folks predestined to be so genetically? b.) Has anxiety been learned in the environment? I have a pretty strong opinion on this, but who cares. Taming the anxiety is the point, not identifying the duck that sat on it until it hatched. Be warned: I am about to rip off the band-aid. For some of you this might be our first date. I am going to flash you my trust me smile and lean in close. I’m using my best Ron Burgundy voice; I hope you trust me with this until we know each other a little better. Here goes: anxiety is not a disease, an affliction or predestined condition. It is a bad mental habit. There, I said it. I feel better… how do you feel?

You may be irritated with me now. “You don’t understand!” you might be screaming inside, “My panic attacks come out of the blue and derail me. How could that be a habit?!” Don’t dismiss me as a kook just yet, please keep reading. I think there are a couple of things that make anxiety feel like a monster. 1. It seems as if it isn’t directly correlated to anything specific. If you stub your toe, it hurts and you know why. In many cases, anxiety seems to come on suddenly and unprovoked. 2. It can be inexplicably present, at a low level, that comes in and out of our awareness. It’s like a squeaky ceiling fan. The noise is always there, but we only notice it intermittently. When we do notice it we can’t seem to un-notice it. In low grade anxiety, we might have a sense of dread that can’t be overridden. On the other end of the spectrum, panic attacks sneak up with the subtly of a sledge hammer. Whatever the flavor; without tricks, gimmicks or smoke and mirrors, anxiety can be controlled. Anxiety is annoying, uncomfortable and in some cases, terrifying. I have seen a parent trying to unclench their kid’s white-knuckled-grip from the car door because they were too anxious to go to school. I have had clients go to the emergency room multiple times fearing a heart attack during panic attacks. One of them was 18 years old; he had to go to the ER twice. I have created treatment plans for clients in which the primary goal of counseling was to get the client to go outside their house one time a week. I am not immune myself from time to time. I know anxiety. I really do. It is very real, but also very misunderstood. I have been a life long Oakland Raider fan. They have been so terrible for the last decade and a half that my friends and I coined the term Raidering. Raidering encompasses all manner of activity in which an individual or entity shoots themselves in the foot. Raidering is the innate skill to consistently go from bad to worse. It is the act of grabbing defeat from the jaws of victory. If life gives you lemons, Raidering gives you paper cuts on your hands. Anxiety is your mind, Raidering itself.

Have you ever had a balloon pop scare the ever-loving-stuffing out of you? That nanosecond of chaos is the body’s reaction to a sudden, unexpected stimulus. Our hearts jump into the roof of our mouths and beat double time. Muscles tighten and palms gush sweat. If you’re like me, you probably squeal an obscenity and take a roundhouse swing at the person closest to you as a reflex. If you remember middle school science, this reaction is called the fight or flight response. I think we are all familiar with fight or flight; our bodies adapting in an instant to defend or retreat. Adrenaline is the chemical agent in charge of the process. It surges and gets us ready for action. Whether we are dealing with an army of ninjas back-flipping towards us off of the Ikea ottoman or with a loud balloon pop, once the crisis is over, everything settles back down. Now a story, if you will indulge me... If you were to hear the click, click, click sound of a mountain lion behind you on your laminate flooring, how do you think you would react? Poorly, I am sure. You would likely go all Scooby-Do and blast a hole in your wall shaped like your silhouette. Once you were a comfortable distance, and your adrenaline loaded body allowed you to unpucker, you would call animal control. It would probably take a while, but you would eventually settle back down. Imagine as the animal control guy was leaving with your snarling puma in a cage on his truck and he remarked how strange this all was. You might agree and remark that you will never leave the back door open again. “That’s not what’s strange,” he would say, “It’s strange because the one in the truck is a juvenile and juveniles never go too far from their mothers.” “What’s that…?” “Probably nothing to worry about,” he might whisper through the small slit in his barely rolled down window as he screeched out of your driveway. “Well, hellfire, what do I do now, you would say to yourself.” I will tell you what you would do; you would start to worry about what might happen. Thoughts like, the momma lion might pounce from a tree and ride me like I am an untamed stallion wearing a pork chop necklace, for instance. Your mind would replay an endless loop of what-if’s. There are no good what-if’s in relation to a mad momma mountain lion. The rumination on the possibilities will take a physical toll on the body. The brain doesn’t fully distinguish the difference between real and imagined threat. The same reaction to a real mountain lion or that loud and unexpected balloon pop is happening internally, without the mountain lion or balloon pop. Anxiety is fear internalized. You are having a fight or flight reaction, but you aren’t fighting and you aren’t flighting. The mountain lion description is a ridiculous example, but that’s okay, I am a ridiculous man. I think it illustrates my point(s) however. 1. Anxiety is based on fear of what might happen, 2. Anxiety is rooted in negative possibilities and imagined outcomes, 3. Anxiety is a product of how we are conditioned to think, 4. Anxiety isn’t usually tied to a tangible, immediate threat. Uber-anxious folks have a symphony of worries playing counter melodies on top of each other. It is like an assembly of spinning plates, each one a bigger imagined disaster than the previous one. It takes great mental effort to keep them all going. What thoughts race for you at night making it hard to fall asleep? Fill in the blank for yourself; what are your what if’s? What if: 1… 2… 3… Do you need a list that goes higher than three? Twenty? Fifty? If this is ringing true, you probably do. I don’t want tall tales of mountain lions minimize the horrible relationship that some people have with anxiety and the scariness of the symptoms. I don’t want the reader to think that I can’t appreciate the level of difficulty it provides in one’s life. I know that it may be easy to buy into what I am saying intellectually, but not so easy when in the middle of a surprise panic attack. I do want the reader to know that however severe their issue might be, it can be dealt with. It can be attacked on its home court – your mind. I am a therapist serving children, adolescents, individuals and families in the Boerne, Fair Oaks and San Antonio areas. If you are struggling with obstacles stopping you from living the life you would like to have, I would love to help you. I work with a full range of mental health diagnoses, if you want to know a little bit more about me and my services, please check out my website. I also have a blog where I occasionally offer little nuggets of therapisty stuff. www.wolfftherapy.com • jwolffblog.wordpress.com

Justin Wolff, M.A., LPC-S, LCDC Therapy for Children, Adolescents, Individuals and Families (210) 475-2848 • justin@wolfftherapy.com


arely does a luxury property become available that you can develop exactly as you wish—without having to start from the ground up. Such is the case for 533 U.S. Highway 87, a ranch near Boerne, Texas. With five dwellings—a main house, a lodge, a guesthouse, a cabin, and a lake house—located on more than 255 acres, this ranch can become whatever you want it to be.

R

indoor basketball court, three outdoor grass tennis courts, indoor and outdoor volleyball courts, two indoor fitness centers, a batting and pitching cage, a putting green, an archery range, and a diving pool. For avid outdoors enthusiasts, 213 acres are high-fenced for exotic game, while a seven-acre lake, fed by active springs, is stocked with bass, catfish and hybrid perch.

“533 U.S. Highway 87 is everything you could imagine,” says Debra Janes of KW Luxury International. The diversity of use is incredible. It could so easily work as a family compound, a corporate or religious retreat, an exclusive high-end hunting lease, a sports camp, or an equestrian property.

Multiple water wells, with elaborate water conservation and catchment systems, are notable features of the property. “Having this much land with this much live water is a big deal,” Debra says, noting that water development is critical for a property of this scale.

For anyone who enjoys a vacation getaway, there – enough space to create landing strips for airplanes. For the athlete, it’s an absolute dreamland. On the property you’ll find an indoor sports complex, indoor clay and hard surface tennis courts, an

And if you find yourself wanting a different atmosphere after enjoying the ranch, San Antonio is only 45 minutes away. Offered at $6.9 million.

Debra Janes Luxury Realtor®

Professionalism… Above All | Integrity… In Everything | Client Services… My Priority

Debra@debrajanes.com 210.573.4040 DebraJanes.com


black&white ...a trend that never fades.

iconic women your

During the month of May, Lillians is paying tribute to

Who are the iconic women in

life?

This month, recognize the special women in your life by bringing them into Lillians and posing for a picture! Tell us why they are iconic to you and we’ll post the picture on our Facebook page and/or Trend Board!

DON’T MISS SATURDAY, MAY 3RD Sisterhood Saturday! Lillians of Boerne

FREE

SUNGLASSE w/ purc

107 E San Antonio Ave • Boerne, TX • 830.446.2182 Wed - Sat (10am-6pm) & Sun (12-5pm) www.lillians.com/boerne www.facebook.com/lilliansofboerne

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SPECIAL OFFER 20

Mention this ad for $50 off a purchase of $250 or more

EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.

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hase of $ 25 or m Valid M ore! ay 3rd, 2014 only.


WHEN Saturday,

May 31st 2014 6pm – 11pm

WHERE Kendall County Fairgrounds

Celebrate the beginning of summer and show your support for Boerne community organizations.

Bring the family and enjoy: - Authentic Hawaiian cuisine - Beer and wine coolers - Live luau entertainment with hula, fire dancers and more! - Kids crafts, games and activities

Admission is FREE! Food and beverage tickets can be purchased in advance through AlohaSummerLuau.com and at the gate

Participating organizations: • Boerne Community Theatre • Boerne Family YMCA • Thunder Soccer Club • Charger Athletic Booster Club

• Greyhound Athletic Booster Club • Shared Beat • Stelos Alliance ...and many more!

If you would like your non-profit or community organization to participate for FREE, visit the Partner page at AlohaSummerLuau.com. All are welcome!

MAY 2014

www.hillcountryexplore.com

Cheryl Sahm Independent Presenter (830) 249-8574

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This special issue of EXPLORE is devoted to exclusive offers from some of our favorite businesses around town. Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy exceptional savings at any one of the local businesses below. Catrina’s Ranch Interiors 10th Anniversary Sale 20%-50% OFF

p. 2

GENT Haircut & Straight Razor Shave $44

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Little Gretel Happy Hour Specials $3 House Wine & $2 Pilsner Urquell

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Performance Cruisers & Speed Shop 20% OFF Hot Rod Service & 20% OFF Light Bar Installation

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Lillian’s FREE Sunglasses with purchase of $25 or more

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Casa Decor $50 OFF Purchase of $250 or more

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Burlap Trading Co. 15% Off your order

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Mama’s Free 1/2 order of mushrooms with entrée

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An Empty Vase $5 Off $35 flower arrangement or $10 Off $50 flower arrangement

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Allstate Call for a free quote and receive a $10 gift card

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From Scratch Farm Free Lip Balm with purchase of sampler pack

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Hill Country Sitters One Hour FREE on your first booking

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Boot Jack Bar May Specials

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Chet Hawkins, DDS FREE Teeth Whitening with new patient exam

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p. 47

EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


HISTORY

THE

GOLDEN AGE OF BOERNE BUSINESSES By Marjorie Hagy

If a guy who shuffled off this mortal coil (kicked the bucket) say, fifty years ago, landed on Main Street in Boerne today, right now, I imagine a scene something like this: Guy: What the hell? Another guy who appears and can somehow see & speak to the dead guy (I haven’t worked out all the logistics): Isn’t it great?! (This second guy is kind of a buffoon.) Dead Guy: Who are all these people? Buffoon: Why they’re tourists! Dead Guy: Why the hell would tourists come to Boerne? Buffoon: They come to all the quaint little shops & the boutiques! Dead Guy: Yeah I meant to ask you about that- where’s all the stores? Where’s the drugstores? Where’s the newspaper? Where’s the bank and the barber shop and the houses where people live for Pete’s sake? I think you made a mistake, pal, this ain’t Boerne at all. I’m going back to Heaven where they got Beef & Brew. Good point, pal. But if our dead friend had stuck around for a while and taken a closer look, he would certainly have found plenty of businesses he recognized, because a lot of them are still around, even in this new and improved...in this new Boerne. This month is, of course, the Explore’s business issue, and we over here in the History Department are honoring Boerne’s oldest businesses. One of the oldest, surely, is the Kendall Inn on the Plaza. Erastus and Sarah Reed, transplanted to Boerne from Georgia, bought the land for two hundred dollars back in 1859 and built the original, center section of the hotel for their home. In those days there were no inns for travelers in town and the custom was for the villagers to accommodate visitors, either freely or for a fee, and the Reeds opened their own home to boarders and the place became known as the Reed House. The inn changed hands again and again, becoming the King place under the proprietorship of State Senator Colonel Henry C. King and his wife Jean and then the Boerne Hotel during Boerne’s famous Resort Era beginning in the late 1860s. In 1884 it was purchased by a James T. Clarke, agent for the state coach line that came through Boerne, and the Boerne Hotel became a stagecoach inn. It was during the boom years that the new wings were added, and finally in 1909 owner Dr. H. J. Barnitz dubbed the hotel Ye Kendall Inn, and it’s still in business today. There’s Herbst Veterinary Hospital on Main Street south of Bandera Road. Dr Kenneth Herbst opened up on River Road and Plant Street in 1968 in the old Boerne Ice Plant building (the plant of Plant Street). His first secretary and med tech was his mother Roma who was a calm, cool lady who kept the one-man show organized. In the early 1970s Dr John Focke came into partnership with Doc Herbst, and it was a two doctor shop for nearly twenty years, with a regular flow of young interns straight out of vet school learning practical doctoring in the busy clinic. They put out food- dog food- for the ducks across the street, and for at least fifteen years kept an office cat who had free range of the clinic, slept in the waiting room, ‘and taunted every single dog who came through by staring at them blankly and daring...no ... triple dog daring them into a duel. Which usually ended with one swift paw knock-out punch to the dog’s face,’ according to Doc Herbst’s son.    HW Schwope and Sons is still in business after sixty-eight years, and still in the same family. Hugo Schwope founding his well drilling and service business back in 1946 on South Main Street, and today his sons John, Larry and Jimmy still run the place, which moved in 1970 to its present home on Johns Road. Plaza Package Store on Main Street is the oldest liquor store in the Hill Country, its license taken out in the name of one Katie Janensch in 1939- seventy-five years ago now. In 1975 Mrs Janensch’s daughter bought the liquor store from her mother, and ten years later sold it to her cousin, nephew of the original licensee, one Mr Doug Dugosh, who has run the place for the last twenty-nine years. Doug is a wonderful guy, a friend of mine & a fellow who knows everything there is to know about Boerne & its history. He told me a story once about how, during a fire at the bowling alley, he and a friend fearlessly ran into the burning building in order to rescue the club member’s bowling balls, shoes and other equipment, and later took them around town returning them to the grateful owners. What a guy!

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EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


The Boerne Star press, 1906

MAY 2014

www.hillcountryexplore.com

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owner Denise Mazal Resnerova began teaching knitting and selling yarn and supplies, And speaking of the bowling alley, the Boerne Turn Verein has been around a while and later added a stock of old world toys. Now Ewe & Eye offers items from Russian itself. First a note about the name: the Turn part comes from the German word turnen nesting dolls to Czech crystal, music boxes and nutcrackers to furniture and children’s for gymnastics, while verein is a German word for a social organization. Societies such clothes- thousands of items, each with its own story. And more recently, Mrs Resneroas the Gesang (singing) and Turn Vereins were the main social clubs in towns populated va opened a restaurant next door, Little Gretel, at which you will frequently find the by German-Americans, and the Boerne Turn Verein was organized in 1878 with Capt. editor of this very magazine. Adolph Zoeller as the first president. The first meetings were held in the old Dienger Josie’s Cut & Curl has been around forever too- Josie, my own former mother-in-law, hall and then later moved to the Phillip House further down on South Main Street. The began cutting hair at the old Babe’s House of Beauty in 1964 and opened her own club didn’t prove as popular as Boerne’s Gesang Verein, but it picked up when it was shop, the Cut & Curl, in the now-vanished Phillip Center in 1972. She was joined in the reorganized in 1890 and in 1906 a charter was issued for a term of 50 years. In 1903 the shop by her daughter JoAnn in 1980, and by members purJoAnn’s daughter, Josie’s granddaughter Secret chased the propin 2005. When Phillip Center was torn down in erty on Theissen 2006, the family beauty shop moved to a new Street and built a location and are now right on Main Street and small clubhouse, Johns Road, across Main from the entrance to and in 1908 the new Heath Library. they built on Boerne Pest Control, too, has been around and added two since 1972. It’s still owned and operated by lanes for bowlfounders David and Ivy D’Spain, and is Kendall ing. Membership County’s oldest pest control company. shot up from Bergmann Lumber is one of our oldest places. 1939 to 1947, Edgar and Ruby Bergmann first bought Amfrom seventy-five mann Lumber in 1957 and changed the name members to over to Bergmann’s. In those days the lumber yard three hundred. was located across the street from it’s present They were allocation, in what’s now Old Towne where the ready planning to old Ebensberger lumber yard was once located. add on when the They moved the business across the street to original building the 1902 HO Adler building in 1967 or 68, and was destroyed by it still rules Main Street today. Edgar and Ruby’s that fire in 1948 son Randy owns the place these days, and walkin which Mr Doug ing into Bergmann’s is kind of like walking back Dugosh proved into time. It’s one of my favorite places. his mettle. The And Ebensberger’s lumber yard you ask? present eightEbensberger Funeral Home with an historic horse-drawn hearse. Well, a Carl Oscar Ebensberger brought his famlane bowling ily to Boerne in 1882 and established the lumber yard and hardware store along with a alley building was built on the same site and opened in 1949, and nowadays the club has an open membership policy. The Turn Verein is not only one of the longest-standing partner, Wendler, in the back part of Old Towne. As was pretty common in Boerne back then, Carl and his wife, Julia Schwope Ebensberger, lived with their children in quarters businesses in Boerne, but one of only twenty-eight such clubs left in the Hill Country. above the business. CO, as a cabinet maker, also built caskets, learned embalming, and The Boerne Star was born the same year as the charter was signed for the Turn soon opened his mortuary two doors down from the lumber yard, still in Old Towne. Verein, in 1906. Founded by Gammon Davis Sr, ownership of the paper was passed In 1907 son Edmund Walter Ebensberger, having been licensed as an embalmer and down the Davis family for many years until Sonny Davis finally sold the venture. In the funeral director, took over the mortuary side of the business. In those days, and up until beginning the front page was reserved for advertising local items and services- one about the time of WWI, embalming was done in the home of the deceased, with the could rent a room, buy a horse or a couple of chickens, get your wagon fixed or hire body then placed in the casket while family, neighbors and friends sat up with the body an extra hand from the front page of the Star. For many years it was a weekly paper all night (a wake, as they stayed awake watching over the body). Funerals were usuand when, sometime in the 90s, they started putting out two papers a week, we all ally held in the home of the deceased, sometimes in the church, but as those customs laughed and wondered how they could possibly fill a second issue. When local boy changed undertakers began to build funeral homes as a place to hold services. In Sidney Levyson, son of a Boerne pharmacist, contracted leprosy and went to live in 1937, Ed Ebensberger purchased the old Becker Hotel at 111 Rosewood and had the the famous leper colony, Marine Hospital #66 in Carville, Louisiana, he named the place razed, and built the present-day funeral home building using wood from the old newspaper he founded there the Sixty-Six Star after the Boerne Star for which he had hotel. Ed’s wife, Ella Ammann Ebensberger, also got her funeral director’s license so written during his youth in Boerne.       that she could help with the business when Ed was away. From Ed the business passed Over at 342 North Main Street, the Klein Smokehaus has been in the same location for many years, though you might know it better by its old name, Farmer’s Meat Market, to George Ebensberger, Sr, and from George to his son George, Jr- Sonny- who finally sold it to the Fisher family about five years ago. Ebensberger-Fisher is the oldest family and real old-timers may still call it Larry’s. That’s what it was called when the Waldeck owned and operated business in Boerne, and the oldest continuous business in town. family opened Ebensberger Funeral Home received the 2005-Boerne Area Historical Preservation the doors of Society Building/Business Award as the oldest continuous business in Boerne, and was their new grorecognized by cery store back Lamar Smith as the on the 4th of oldest continuously July, 1950. running funeral Mr Waldeck home in Texas. used to get There are others up early in the that have stood morning to the test of time: drive his round Bumdoodler’s, of of the local course, the best farmers who little sandwich shop provided the in Texas at 929 store with it’s North Main Street, stock of fresh first set up shop eggs, milk, Carstanjen Building, 1906 in 1982, my senior and produce, year at Boerne beef and pork grown and harvested from Kendall County farms. As long as they were High; Sala’s Shoe butchering beef and pork, it wasn’t a stretch when hunters began to bring in their deer Repair right next for processing, and a flourishing side business was born. In 1976, facing competition in door to Bum’s, the grocery store business, the Waldecks decided to concentrate on turning out fresh just now closing sausage and smoked meats, and Larry’s became Farmer’s Meat Market, and not only a his doors after meat market but a gathering place for the locals. Gavin Waldeck was, for many years, twenty-two years the man behind the counter at Farmer’s, and one of the most popular guys in town. In of service; West2006 Farmer’s was purchased by Barret and Claire Klein, and under the name of Klein ern Auto, now WA Smokehaus still carries on the tradition begun by Larry’s and Farmer’s. Automotive, and Almost next door to the Kleins is another old-timer, Johnny’s Feed & Supply at 305 the Longbranch SaNorth Main. Originally opened by one Fritz Weber nearly sixty years ago, Johnny loon. Riverside first Pfeiffer owned it next for twenty-seven years before Roy Gombert, the present owner, opened its doors began his fifteen year- and counting- reign. Boerne Hotel, now Ye Kendall Inn as a small grocery Mitchell’s Cleaners, Dry Cleaning, is also still going strong. Founded by George and store in the 40s, was wiped out in the Flood of 1964 and rebuilt, building up a hill for Bedelia Mitchell way back in 1955, Mitchell’s was first housed in a little Art Deco style themselves first so they wouldn’t be washed out again, and these days Riverside still building originally built right after WWII as a VFW meeting hall. The Mitchells and their serves up some of the best bbq in town. family lived directly across the street in the old Luckenbach home on James Street right And then there are the long-time businesses that have closed their doors but which off Main. After twenty five years they moved shop to the strip center at 177 South Plant, we old-timers remember fondly, the places that shaped our lives, growing up here just behind the Boerne Community Theater, and they’re still there today, nearly sixty in small-town, undiscovered Boerne. I don’t suppose there was a boy growing up in years later. Boerne from the 40s to the 70s that didn’t at some point have a run-in with either Curly The Flower Shop is another Boerne institution. Opened in 1948 by Freddie May and or Orval in their Main Street barbershops and have to show up at school the next day Slim Uecker, Mrs Shirley Wilson acquired the business in 1978 and under her proprietorwith their poor, tender scalps brutally exposed to the elements and to the torment of ship the place has grown out of all recognition. During the 80s the Flower Shop moved fellow sufferers. J & R Auto was another. James Witten moved with his family to Boerne from its original location into the old Hamby’s (Dairy Queen), and has expanded to in 1959, and ten years later went into the auto repair business for himself. The following include a gift and antique store as well as the most popular flower shop in town. year his son-in-law Rick Weaver came into the business and it became J & R, a full body Ewe & Eye Toy Shop and Needlework is a beautifully housed business on River Road, shop and 24 hour towing service. Together they built the shop that’s still there on North having started life some thirty years ago in a smaller shop which has grown through Main Street, and ran it until closing in 1986. And then there’s Ebner’s. In 1942, Ruby & two remodels into a much bigger place. Birthplace of the Friday Night Knitting Club,

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EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


EE Ebner first bought an established drugstore in the Carstanjen Building, on the southwest corner of Main Plaza. There had been drugstores in this location for years, and Dr Nooe kept his office in the back room when the Ebners bought the place (Dr Nooe was also instrumental in bringing telephone service to Boerne, and at that time the telephone exchange was located upstairs in the same building, above the drugstore). The store was open seven days a week, only closing for an hour on Sunday mornings for church. EE Ebner became known as ‘Doc’, since many of his customers came to him to cure them, and he would prescribe Coca-Cola syrup from the fountain for sick stomachs, lineament for athlete’s foot and opium (quite legal at the time) for diarrhea. When his son took over the store years later, he found a big bottle of opium in a safe which he opted to pour out instead of passing on to his own customers. The drugstore had a soda fountain, and was the happenin’ place to be in town at that time. John Ebner, who later took over the store and later still worked at HEB, used to work chipping ice for the fountain. After graduating from UT Pharmacy School, John came back and worked in partnership with his father in the store before buying EE out, and even after that Doc stayed on to help. In 1967, the roof collapsed on the old Opera House across Main Street from the old drugstore, and the Ebners bought the property to build a new, modern store on the site. It was the first new building built on Boerne’s Main Street since 1920. When it came time to move the old safe in which John had discovered the opium, they had to close Main while ten of John’s biggest friends were roped in to haul the thing to the new place. The soda fountain in the new drugstore was eventually replaced by Mrs Doris Ebner’s Hallmark gift shop, and later they added a one-hour photo developing service- the first place in town to do so. But in 1989, Ebner’s finally closed its doors, unable to compete with the loathsome Walmart, and Mr Ebner went to work for HEB, and passed on in 2005. ebner’s Drugstore was an institution in town, and it and its owners are sorely missed around here. And then there was this little hamburger joint across Main Street from St Peter’s Catholic Church, right on the corner of Veteran’s Park. Perhaps the true test as to whether one is ‘old Boerne’ or new is the Beef & Brew test: if you hear those three words and instantly begin to salivate ala Pavlov’s famous dogs, then you may count yourself an old timer. It was a grave, gray day in 1997 when Beef & Brew closed forever, and thousands of people were left with a yearning for a #3 and onion rings that’s never gone away. You know, when you choose to shop at one of these places, these business that have stood the test of time for a hundred years or more, thirty, forty, fifty, sixty years- when you buy from them, you’re spending your money with people you know, with people who have lived in this town and poured their hearts and souls and lives into it for all their lives, and many times their mothers and fathers before them. Your money doesn’t disappear into the maws of giant corporations, but goes instead to pay the taxes on a family legacy, it goes to gymnastics lessons and soccer uniforms and into the church collection plate on Sundays. There’s a reason these places have been around so long- it’s because they’re good, they’re family and friends- they are us. Remember- shop Boerne first, and spend your money on the things that are important.

Adler Building mid construction, 1911

Adler Building, now housing Bergmann Lumber Company. The oldest operational hardware store in the country.

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27


GARDENING

By Keith Amelung • Have Spade, Will Travel www.havespade.com

Has it rained at your place? Unfortunately, not so much where I sit; I can’t remember

I take regular tours of gardens and nurseries, pausing often with my eyes

the last one-inch–plus “gully washer,” can you? Let me offer three little words of wis-

closed, letting my sense of smell guide me. Many know that smell is the sense

dom here folks: Mulch, Mulch & Mulch. Get a thick three to four inch insulation layer

most directly linked to memory. As you walk the paths of your favorite flower

over all of your flower and shrub beds as soon as you can to help trap and hold any

shop, stop every now and again and just smell, let your nose guide you. Jasmines

rain we may get before the dreaded whispers of “Stage 5” doom.

abound throughout summer. Gingers are ridiculous in the fall. I even grow a

I wish you could close your eyes and read this article… maybe have someone

variety of Honeysuckle that was blooming the first week of January… Now if I can

read it to you, so you can focus in completely on Fragrance. Many years ago when

only find a flower that smells like a medium-well NY strip steak!

I first settled here in Boerne I went to work for Ken Frobese down at Hill Country

We should also take a moment to chat about Live Oaks and their leaves…

African Violets. That is where it all started, in the ‘Herb House’ with pineapple

Mother Nature in her infinite wisdom means it to work like this: The trees’ roots

sage to be specific… I still don’t understand why any plant should smell like a

go deep in the ground breaking down vitamins, minerals and nutrients; the tree

pineapple… but I love it!!!! Every day I would walk past Greenhouse #2 (where the

works really hard to turn these in to new branches and, yes, leaves. With live oaks

orchids use to be housed) and open the door, stick my head in and breath a huge

the older leaves are pushed off to make room for a new batch each spring…

snoot full of the fine fragrance of the cattleya orchids at the far end of the bench…

the older, tougher leaves fall gently to cover the root zone and provide natural

forty feet away and their fragrance was intoxicating! I was hooked.

“mulch”; protecting the tender surface roots from drying out during the gruel-

Now every consultation I go on my brain churns trying to find the perfect spot

ing summers heat. Left to their own devices it only takes about six months for a

for a Sweet Olive hedge; a wall, fence or vacant trellis that can support Confeder-

layer of oak leaves to decompose… just in time for the fall rainy season. But yet

ate Jasmine, Rangoon Creeper or Passion Vine. Fragrance is the key to my design

we “talking monkeys” feel we know better and insist on raking up bag after bag

profile. Sure you start with where we need shade and then evergreen structure…

of the best mulch Mother Nature provides and sending it off of your property…

but why can’t these plants also feed our other senses? As I write my Pittisporum

I know I shouldn’t use words like ‘idiots’, ‘morons’ or ‘Yankees’ so I’ll refrain…

are in full bloom out back, they were victim of a late frost last year so no flow-

simply just don’t “throw away” oak leaves… they are far too valuable. Grind

ers, but they are making up for it this year; so much that my poor Banana Shrub

them down with your lawn mower and distribute them amongst your flowers

Magnolia can’t compete… I will have to move her so she can be the standout she

and shrubs. Add a few handfuls of dry molasses and you have one of the best

deserves. As the Pittisporum fade, the Almond Verbena will take over for the sum-

(and cheapest) mulches you can find anywhere. Just don’t let them leave your

mer. Despite the several twenty degree nights this past winter my A.V. is situated

property, the trees want and actually need them as a fuel source. Remember

well enough that it is re-sprouting at almost six feet up the main stems! Almond

that the majority of a tree’s roots are just beyond the “drip line’ and this is

Verbena is true summers’ stand out for this area – especially being deer resis-

where we must concentrate our efforts of watering and fertilizing. A soaker

tant!!! And I would be totally remiss if I didn’t mention (most) everyone’s favorite

hose or temporary drip-irrigation line laid out at this point and left to run for

flower, the rose. I love roses, and you should too. The ‘Antique’ or better stated

several hours once a month June-Sept is the best way… but that is a LOT of

‘Own Root’ roses thrive here in the hill country. My definition of realistic watering,

water… for each big tree on ones property – choose your battles wisely. Keep

one deep drink every two weeks, is more than enough for an established O.R.

your trees as healthy as possible… I was recently told that back in the drought

rose. Heck, if you have three years to grow out a large shrub, you can even have

of the fifties that many of the Live Oaks didn’t re-leaf, scaring the heck out of

roses where you have deer – Just ask me how! Basically a rose is just a shrub that

many. Of course the healthy trees all set leaves in the fall; our many, many old

blooms… and what fragrant blooms they can have! I even have an Iris that smells

growth oaks that still survive are the proof!

like chocolate – I kid you not! A fine accompaniment to ‘Chocolate Mint’ which smells like a York peppermint patty… Ummm, very tasty in hot cocoa!

28

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EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


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MUSIC

s c i s s a l C w e N The By Shannon Gonzenbach

32

EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


We all have certain songs that bring out memories of the “good old days;” songs that when we hear them, we can’t help but smile and sing a line or two. Every time I hear Toto’s “Rosanna” I go back to being 13, when my dad would crank up the radio in our old Suburban and attempt with every ounce of his being to hit those high notes. Bon Jovi’s line, “Whooah, we’re halfway there/ Livin’ on a prayer” brings back memories of being an undergraduate at University of Michigan and realizing that Michigan football was, and still is, “Livin’ on a prayer.” To us, these are classics. They have something more than just a great beat or cool costumes and stage effects. These are the songs of our past, and in some sense, a soundtrack to our lives. What about the songs that are currently making us stop and listen? What music will bring back a moment ten years from now? Rebecca Darling is one musician who is set on being remembered. Being an artist behind those memories and special moments for her audience, is what music is all about for this young singer and songwriter. She is the upcoming generation and the beginning of new classics. “I’ve fallen overboard, know I will make it, just never been here before” (Overboard, co-written by Rebecca Darling and Mark Evitts) Rebecca is a senior at Samuel V. Champion High School in Boerne and is still young in her music goals. While she may have grown up with music in her family, Rebecca didn’t start playing guitar until her freshman year in high school. She has cousins and aunts who are country singers and piano teachers, and her brother is currently in Austin, Texas playing music with his band Groove Think. Rebecca grew up singing in church and loving music through the passion shared with her family, but after watching Young Artist’s night at the old Tin Roof restaurant, and wanting to perform herself, Rebecca realized, “I better learn to guitar to accompany myself.” From there, she began taking lessons and started performing at multiple local venues and restaurants. “It just feels good. It’s therapeutic to me.” Despite being relatively new to performing, Rebecca is already confident and assured when it comes to her music and what she wants her songs to represent. For her, “the words come first.” “Catchy songs don’t have a lot of meaning.” Her main musical influences, Nora Jones and Ingrid Michelson, are both artists Rebecca respects for their lyrics. “Their lyrics are really honest and they just have really pure voices. I think that they stay true to themselves and they don’t’ try to fit the market.” Rebecca doesn’t want her music and styleto be “swayed” to conform just because she is young. “My age is geared towards the pop market, but that’s not really what I write to. Taylor Swift writes songs that definitely fit my age. But I don’t feel that I have ever written a song that was like ‘Oh that girl is definitely in high school’.” People of all ages can connect to the stories you can find in Rebecca’s music; she is crossing genre and age gaps with her moving lyrics. “I feel like everyone has something to say and I want to share what I have to say.” “Nothing we can’t be, nothing we can’t do, just want to spend some time with you.” (Limitless, written by Rebecca Darling) During one acoustic performance at Boerne’s Dodging Duck Brewhaus, Rebecca had a crowd reaction that is what she hopes for: “I played Limitless and a couple kissed during my song, an adult couple. I thought that was really sweet, because that was how I felt during that song.” Limitless is an original song, written two years ago about her relationships at the time. She shared her story about being in a relationship and feeling “unstoppable,” and had an audience find those emotions behind her words. “Performing original songs is very different to performing cover songs. An original song is like reading your diary out loud on stage. It’s personal and how you felt at that moment.” She hopes others can relate to the feeling of being in love and “how good it is when it’s good.” Rebecca knows she is young and is still a developing artist, “I still have a lot of time. Everyone tries to tell you that you have to do it now; but I’m not ready to do it now. I’ve grown so much in the past year, with taking lessons, and I just think it is going to get even better.” She spoke about a current artist who is up-and-coming in the

MAY 2014

country genre, Kacey Musgraves, who performed music even when younger, but waited to make her big career move. “The older she got, the better her songs got because she had more time and more experiences. The experiences that she had made her more passionate as an artist.” Rebecca is taking a similar approach to her life and musical future, “The older I get, the more equipped I’ll be.” With more experiences and lessons, Rebecca hopes her songs also will grow and have deeper meanings. Rebecca doesn’t want to be a mainstream pop artist, “It’s catchy and it’s stuck in my head, but it doesn’t mean anything. I want my songs to mean something and to connect with people.” Just like Toto and Bon Jovi will always have a special place in my music library, Rebecca hopes to create classics for today’s audiences that will mean something for years to come. Music is a constant part of our lives. We find ourselves with the radio on in the car, our favorite playlist pushing us through our workouts, or soundtracks making a movie’s dramatic scene even more epic. With music continually in our lives, sometimes it is easy to let it go unnoticed. It isn’t until a song comes on that puts words to exactly how we are feeling, or reminds us of someone or some moment, that we truly listen. Rebecca Darling is an artist who strives to create those special songs that make us take notice; the songs that one day will be a “classic” to those of us who have listened. “It brings me a lot of peace and a lot of joy. I want to be able to share it with other people and have them feel good when they hear my songs.”

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EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


Wine

ante’s D By Tom Geohegan TGeohegan@boernewineco.com

P E A K Part Deux volcanoes helped to { How make really unique wine. }

36

EXPLORE it! LIVE IT! The REAL Kendall County.


The wine industry is a funny business. You’re constantly meeting new

people. It is extremely hard for small producers like these to break-thru the

people and tasting new wines. The business never gets old as a result,

clutter and reach the target consumer who appreciates wine with “soul”.

and it certainly keeps you humble, as you learn something new every day.

Let’s try and help those folks that really need our help…those producing a

As I’ve said before…what a great way to make a living. Last week Kathy

true boutique product. Texas wines are reaching that important threshold

and I had the chance to meet a new friend, Tim Hogan, who represents a

of being able to consistently over deliver. The folks at Pilot Knob and Lava

neat little winery from El Dorado County in northeastern California named

Cap demonstrate that commitment to quality, and small batch production,

Lava Cap. As we tasted his wines, he told me the story behind the wines,

lovingly crafted because it’s what they do. It’s their passion, not page 352

and their unique geologic background. As he was relating their history, it

on an earnings statement.

reminded me of another winery that had the same geologic tie-in…also a

And at the other end of the America’s is the Lava Cap winery (www.

neat little Texas winery by the name of Pilot Knob. I thought it might be

lavacap.com; 530-621-0175). And as in the Texas Hill country, the Sierra

a fun competition to compare and contrast California versus Texas wines

Nevada Mountains in northeastern California reverberated with the same

sharing similar growing conditions. So with a nod to one of Kathy’s favorite

type of volcanic activity. Centuries later, a family of esteemed geologists

movies (Dante’s Peak), here’s my comparison of the two.

headed by David and Jeanne Jones searching the area for the perfect site

I wrote a little bit about this winery back in the July issue of Explore

for their family vineyard, discovered a unique formation, rich with volca-

last summer. Located outside of Austin, near Bertram, Pilot Knob (www.

nic sediment, perfect for grape growing. Dr. Jones had searched for the

pilotknobvineyard.com; 512-489-2999) is one of the newest wineries in the

perfect site for several years, using the academic skills he acquired at Yale,

state. Craig Pinkley is the visionary who was inspired by a trip to the Napa

Stanford, and UC Berkeley. The specific area is in the El Dorado AVA just

wine country in California. He had the pleasure of visiting the “old” Ster-

outside of the town of Placerville, a smaller (2000 acres) sub appellation of

ling vineyards in 2006, and doing a comprehensive tasting of their reserve

the Sierra Foothills AVA, established in 1983 and one of California’s largest

tier. Located at the north end of Napa, the winery is perched high above

growing areas (2.6 million acres), growing over 50+ different varietals. This

the valley floor…on a clear day you can see all the way to San Francisco.

is where California struck gold for the second time. After the initial gold

Tasting thru the portfolio, he became a believer… the wines and the view

rush (1848) excitement at Sutter’s Mill at the American river died down,

inspired him to return to Texas, and become part of the modern Texas

many of the fortune hunters turned to farming, and by 1870 it was one of

wine industry. But as Craig put it…”I had more passion than knowledge

the largest wine producing areas in the state. The advent of Prohibition

at that point”. He embarked on a carefully planned path to increase his

killed wine production until the mid 70s. The Jones family established the

knowledge by bringing in vineyard consultants, Ag specialists, etc. while

2nd winery in the area, which now boasts over 50 wineries. The divergent

he concentrated on the perfect location. Just outside of Bertram, he found

topography, coupled with the higher elevations and nutrient rich soils

the perfect parcel���112 acres perched on a ridge overlooking the rolling

enabled them to develop over 13 different varietals when they started

terrain of the Hill country, with panoramic views for miles. As he looked to

planting back in 1981, harvesting their first vintage in 1986. Almost all of

the southeast, he saw the unique geologic formation called a Pilot Knob

their wines are estate grown, produced, and bottled, an increasing rarity in

just 6 miles away, and knew he had the name for his new winery. Over 70

the wine country as the mega corporations take over more and more land.

million years ago, most of central Texas was part of a vast marine shelf

Their son Charlie has taken over the reins, and in conjunction with wine-

(Gulf of Mexico). Volcanic activity during this period created the unique

maker Joe Norman (who worked at a little winery by the name of Heitz Cel-

mixtures of nutrient-rich soil that exists today, providing rich mineral

lars before this new home), continues to produce varietally true wines, sus-

content, and excellent drainage. There are approximately 75 of these sites

tainably grown using integrated vineyard management practices. In tasting

scattered throughout the central part of the state, with the one outside of

through the portfolio, 4 wines in particular stood out. The interesting part

Bertram being one of the best known. The master plan is to plant 92 acres

of doing a portfolio tasting is that there are always wines you want to re-

to grape production, with up to 6 varietals. First planting was Cabernet in

visit...simply because they’re that good. I guess it surprised me that Kathy

2008, with Tempranillo following in 2009. Part of their mission statement

and I could narrow it down to just these four...this entire portfolio is lov-

is to use 100% Texas fruit, either their own or from surrounding growers.

ingly crafted. The American River Red was a beautiful blend of Syrah, Cab

Kathy and I had the opportunity to taste two of their newest releases,

Franc, Merlot, and Zin. The Petite Sirah was blended with small amounts

their Viognier, and the PK Cuvee. Viognier is rapidly becoming the signa-

of Grenache, Merlot, and Barbera, from their Granite Hill vineyard. Their

ture white grape for Texas, and this one doesn’t disappoint. The winery is

Zinfandel Reserve was a big hit…powerful, bold, and perfect with BBQ.

experimenting with Acacia barrels instead of the traditional oak. This adds

Lastly their Chardonnay showed great attention to detail. Handpicked and

a special creaminess. The perfect descriptor for this varietal is its per-

sorted lots are vinified separately, then blended for an enhanced Burgun-

fumey and floral characteristics. Your nose intimates that this will be light,

dian style aging regimen, including battonage (stirring of the yeast lees),

soft, and possibly sweet, but your taste buds will be pleasantly surprised

and extended barrel fermentation in French oak. A great little portfolio,

by this rich, medium bodied alternative to the classic Chardonnay grape…

with interesting variety of types and style, and best of all reasonably priced

excellent with chicken fajitas, or almost any seafood from the Gulf. The

for what’s in the bottle….these also over-deliver.

PK Cuvee is a unique blend of Muscat, Viognier, Chenin, and Pinot Blanc.

And at the end of the day, I’m just glad neither one of these wineries was

A perfect “P” wine for the porch, pool, or patio…served icy cold; this is

named Dante’s Peak. But then again, the last volcanic eruptions for either

clean, crisp, and refreshing. Their Cabernet is now estate grown, and they

of these two sites was over 83 million years ago. So feel safe sitting down

have a Tempranillo/Merlot blend called Franco-Rojo, in addition to these

to enjoy these wines without any worries about ash making its way into

two whites. We’ve discussed in the past how the big guy wineries are

your glass…just remember to use your TBWC wine tapas.

dominating the wine market, especially in Texas. My research indicates that

Some of these wines are already in the shop, or can be special ordered

the top 30 wineries in the U.S. control almost 90% of wine sales. Even if

for you…Thank you for your ongoing support as we move to year five of

we shrink it down to the top 4, they still control 50% of sales. These folks

serving Boerne, and the surrounding Hill country markets.

still produce some very nice wines that are technically correct, and cover a

Lastly, special thanks to Frank for putting me in touch with these two

broad range of price point, but for me…where’s the soul, the history, the

great wineries…I really appreciate your effort.

MAY 2014

www.hillcountryexplore.com

37


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Mary Mellard, DDS

Randy Mellard, DDS, MS

• American Dental Association

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• Texas Dental Association

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DENTISTRY for the WHOLE FAMILY

The minute you walk through the doors at Mellard Dentistry, you will know you’ve come to the right place. Dr. Mary Mellard and Dr. Randy Mellard, a well-regarded husband-and-wife dental team, will help make you and your family more comfortable than you ever thought possible. Both doctors received their degrees from the University of Texas at Houston, and each year they continue to study advanced, postgraduate dentistry with some of the best-known clinicians in the country, In addition, Dr. Randy Mellard is a specialist in periodontology (gum therapy), and has advanced training in implant dentistry. But despite their clinical accolades, Dr. Mellard and Dr. Mellard do something all too rare in today’s rushed world... they listen, and get to know each patient one-on-one. So whether you’re looking for advanced cosmetic and restorative dentistry or simply a dentist to help maintain your family’s dental health, join us. We’ll give you something to smile about! Dr. Mary Mellard and Dr. Randy Mellard have been married more than twenty years, and have four children. They are native Texans, and enjoy being active in our local community.

Important Awards: Fellow, Academy of General Dentistry - Dr. Mary & Dr. Randy Mellard Master, Academy of General Dentistry - Dr. Mary Mellard Lifelong Learning and Service Recognition Award - Dr. Mary Mellard (one of 10 dentists in the state)

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SPIRITUAL SPIRITUAL

By Kendall D. Aaron :: kendall@hillcountryexplore.com

Recently, I was in a friend’s “library”. What amounted to his home office, it doubled as a library of sorts, and I perused the book titles while waiting for him. Floor to ceiling shelves adorned one entire wall, and every square inch of those shelves were filled with books. Hundreds and hundreds of books. I’ve been in home libraries that are used as a sort of “exhibit”. They are assembled with the core purpose of showing how smart a person is. These shelves are full of carefully selected books with titles designed to highlight a person’s intelligence and breadth of knowledge. Military history, biographies, and technical journals abound. Not one of them has illustrations nor bright eye-grabbing covers. Instead, they are all heavy, thick bound books with titles such as “Military History: 1607 to 2012” or “The Autobiography of a Face.” Dry, intense books that deliver some serious knowledge, but probably not much true enjoyment. That’s not the point – you are impressed as to how “smart” this person must be, and because of this, the library has served its purpose. My friend’s library I was in recently was different, but just as telling. His library was full of every self-help book you can imagine. “Healing your Emotional Self” was 3 inches thick and was next to “Self-Coaching: How to Beat Anxiety”. “The Willpower Instinct” was shelved a few books down from “The Definitive Guide to Meditation.” Stacks and stacks of these types of books stretched out on each shelf. One after another; all the way to the ceiling. I’m a fan of self-help books. I really am. I think that the exercise of looking internally is one that can only help a person in their walk. No matter the focus or the reason for the introspection, taking the time to address yourself (as opposed to others) is a universally positive experience. In fact, in years past, I would have had a library that much resembled my friend’s. My library was a painting of a man seeking answers, and looking inside the covers of every book imaginable for those answers. I wanted direction, and purpose, and forward momentum, and resolution. I wanted to understand the challenges in my life, why they afflicted me, and how I solve them. I was smart enough to understand that the majority of my issues were born from within my own heart, and I wanted to understand the roots. I wanted to fix it all, to be quite honest. And I figured that with enough knowledge, enough “self-help”, and enough sheer willpower, I could beat most anything that dogged me. Of course, I discovered how wrong I was. In our stubbornness to seek answers, we invariably look to that which is earthly. We journal our emotions as a way to better understand what we’re feeling. We watch videos online pertaining to our struggle produced by leading researchers at a particular university. We read interviews in our pop culture magazine about a movie star that has overcome something, and we seek ways to mimic them. And then we start to get serious and we fill a library with self-help books designed to free us via our own determination from the ties that bind. We seek and seek and seek the wisdom we want that will invariably make our lives more fulfilling and more rewarding. We look everywhere for the one that we can’t really name, but the one thing that truly, greatly, and unequivocally completes us: we seek FREEDOM. As I mentioned, I’ve done the same. I’ve sought my freedom under every rock and in the pages of every book I could find. Like a man wandering the desert, I stumbled and bumbled my way from theory to theory on how best to free myself from the snares that had enslaved me. Sure enough, each one proved a dead end, further exhausting me in search for what I would qualify as “the truth”. Then, a most miraculous thing happened: I found The Truth. If you’re a stubborn soul, as I am, I think that God likes it when you bumble about while trying to fix things on your own. I think that He knows that you must first exhaust your own man-made escapes from your prison, until you are eventually left so wiped out, so broken, and so very, very lost that you will finally soften your heart to the unimaginable fact that you do not know everything there is to know. Not only that, but man as a whole does not have the wisdom capable to repair you and assist you in finding your own freedom. Instead, man creates his own wisdom, and while virtuous in intention, it is a miserable failure when compared to the wisdom and FREEDOM that Christ Jesus can supply. My friend, I get it. You’re tired. You’re sad. You’re broken. You’ve tried it all, and yet, it only gets worse. Guess what that means? You are now in the perfect position to receive the FREEDOM you have been seeking. Instead of burying your eyes in a book, turn them to the sky. Cry out for help, and you will find it. Instantly. I promise. I’m walking proof.

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By Krystal Mathis


Feeling every jolt as his feet pound the pavement like a jackhammer, he runs along what seems like endless streets on a stormy weekend in April. He knows he’s being followed closely, and he needs to keep ahead of the pack as well as in stark control of his own psyche. It’s been twenty miles, and he still has six to go. Though he’s in a strange city, he scans the crowd for a familiar face or two to renew his determination. He knows they’re out there. They always are. At this point, he’s not sure if it’s sweat or raindrops threatening to blur his vision, and he doesn’t care. He’s focused on his goal. Another goal set in a string of perhaps thousands, perhaps millions, all leading him to propel his aching body across yet another finish line. This is a moment in the life of Boerne’s own “Marathon Man.” The man is 69-year old Mr. Don Ruggles, and this latest spring marathon in Dallas was his 99th. But wait, it gets so much more impressive. Don hasn’t been running marathons his whole life; he only started when he was 46 years old. Sometimes it was completing regular 26-mile marathons that led him to his most recent race, sometimes it was ultra marathons, which can be up to 100 strenuous miles. These statistics also don’t include what Don terms “small races” which range from about a 5k run to almost a full marathon. There have been over 200 of those, for those who are counting the smaller ones. But Don isn’t, at least not right now. His goal is to complete 100 marathons before he turns 70 years old. That 100th marathon will occur in May in San Antonio. That is, if he can do it. And after meeting Don, I join the other folks in Don’s corner who have no doubt he will meet this goal. It’s just who he is. It’s a combination of his personal essence, his confidence, and his belief in the community of runners who support each other as they complete their own goals. Perhaps some of those runner’s goals are not as lofty as Don’s 100th, but that doesn’t make them less important. Least of all to Don, who loves helping others cross both literal and metaphorical finish lines. That may mean that a runner finally ran a whole mile without stopping, or entered their first 5k. According to Don, each small step is a big deal if it means completing a goal. For Don, it’s all about goals. He says that’s what allows him to complete such feats. “The cardinal rule of training,” according to Don, “is to set a training plan, and once you have that goal, you keep it. You can’t start negotiating with yourself.” And what if you’re experiencing some sore muscles? Don says you can take care of that by “Running ‘til you’re numb. Then nothing hurts anymore!” Don has been a goal-setter all his life, and has used his goal setting skills to help him get, among other things, the Valedictorian honor from his high school, a degree in engineering from the University of Texas, and a beautiful and supportive wife, Sue Ellen. Running is just an extension of that philosophy. “If I can do it in running, why can’t I do it in my relationships? Why can’t I do it as a parent? Transferring the confidence gained from completing a goal is the ultimate reward. And then, you can transfer it into a lifestyle.” While working in the engineering field and raising a family of 3 boys and 1 girl, Don’s focus was not on his own health. His main activity was serving as a coach for all of his kids’ sports. The result was high cholesterol and, as most of us experience at one point or another, weight gain. As the kids left the nest, Don realized it was time to do something. He had always enjoyed running, so he asked Sue Ellen if it would be okay if he ran one marathon. Just one: just to see if he could do it. Sue Ellen said yes, and Don was off to the races. “Initially I did it for health, and then I‘m competitive. I started working to see how much faster I could go. Then it was to see how far I can go. I started thinking maybe I can run longer than a marathon.” The ultra marathons proved to be a bit of a stretch for Don at first. The first two times he had to “wimp out” – Don’s words – at a mere 70 miles. These over 30-hour ultra marathons are tough to complete, but Don finally made it through to 100 miles with a little help from his friends. “You can have a pacer (a friend who helps a race competitor run, but isn’t competing in the race themselves) starting at 40 miles. Miles 60-80 are to get through the night, and it’s extremely difficult due to sleep deprivation. I actually fell asleep on my feet.“ He ran while partially sleeping on the shoulder of his friend for a few miles, until the sun came up. “Then I sat down for a 10-minute power nap, came back from the dead, and ran the rest of the way.” As he neared the finish line, this macho man who runs through pain without flinching responded by crying. “Like a baby,” an unabashed Don admits. Because that’s just how much it means to complete such an extraordinary goal. In his regular life, Don is a High School teacher. “I worked for 33 years as an engineer, and then I followed my dad into teaching. At first it was because they opened up an engineering academy in the school district down the street where I lived in Houston. I’ve always had a love of teaching, so I took the opportunity. Today I work with tech students at Brandeis High School.”

MAY 2014

His students are also Don’s fans, demanding to see medals he’s won after completing races. They get a chance to see firsthand how completing goals leads to something greater. Sometimes, it also can lead someone to be greater. Don says that “It’s the process that matters. Too often kids just focus on the results – which can be achieved by cheating, copying, cramming, whatever. But it’s the process that leads to greater things.” Looking much younger than his 69 years, Don has a vibrancy that may come from running…but it more likely comes from being actively engaged in life. He runs, but he isn’t only a runner. He has the lifestyle of a runner, but the spirit of a champion in everything he does. I asked Don what he will do once he’s completed his 100th marathon. Will it, finally, be time to retire from running? Don says he wouldn’t dream of it, not while his body allows him to. Sue Ellen pipes in that without running Don would be “like a caged tiger.” Sue Ellen is the Director of Operations for a non-profit, Child Safe. As part of their program of helping abused and neglected kids, they operate activity days, directed by counselors, so that the kids and their families can take their minds off of the turmoil they experience and participate in something fun. Don thinks he might like to help with that “to show kids the joy of running. And then, the most important thing, to take that accomplished goal and gain the confidence to do other things in their lives as well.” Don also wants to continue to help mentor other runners. “One of the ways I learned how to do things right is by doing things wrong first. I also subscribe to several running magazines, and I have a library of dozens and dozens of running books. So I am a voracious reader. I do my own training plans, but it’s a sum total of all the books that I read and the people I’ve talked to.” So if Don can help other people avoid some of his early pitfalls, he considers that a victory. His friends are his running buddies, and he loves the group support of clubs such as the Boerne Running Club. “People in Boerne have been so supportive of this goal of mine. They come out and pace me. They just show up and help me run. I might have 20 people come out and help. I started informally mentoring some of them, because it’s fun to give back.” Don says that they “all like to hurt together.” Regardless of what Don’s next goal will be, he knows he will figure it out before he completes the 100th marathon. “Each transition [to a new goal] took a while, but changing the goals before I accomplished them never left me asking ‘now what?’ You’ve got to keep moving that carrot.” His advice for anyone who might want to get started but has never laced up a pair of running shoes is to make your goals manageable at first. “Start with something small, like walking 8 minutes and running two.” I asked him if he thought some people were just born runners while others weren’t, my personal favorite excuse for not being a runner myself, and he said no. “Anyone can develop a love of running. Some people who never thought they would be a runner have turned out to love it! But you’ll never know if you don’t try.” “Now,” Don said with an expectant grin, “When are we going running?”

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Old

Timer

Old Timer is our resident cranky old guy. We all know one or love one, and we’ve become quite fond of Old Timer, and enjoy letting him spout off about stuff that he sees happening around town.

The bare earth and construction vehicles means they’re finished.

All of them have mastered the single finger salute.

THE BRIDGE Well, the bridge is finished. Scratch that – it’s kinda sorta finished, as they’re still putting in the lights, paint, and marking the road. But sure enough, we have a fully functional bridge. It carries the exact same number of cars across the bridge, has the same number of lanes, and does little else. Oh wait – we have a wider sidewalk. A wider sidewalk that takes you to the wrong side of Main Street if you want to continue shopping on Main Street. In a stroke of complete brilliance, the bridge is designed to take the pedestrian across the river, and then forces them to play Frogger as they try to get across Main Street without getting killed to visit the art gallery and retail shops on the WEST side of Main. There’s nothing on the east side but a dentist office. Are you pleased with the bridge? Elated as to its final construction? Of course not – that’s because you know there was nothing wrong with the old bridge.

BICYCLISTS Look guys, I get that the Hill Country is pretty. I also get that it’s probably really fun to zoom along a road in the Hill Country on your bike. I get it. If I had to pick where I’d like to ride my bike (if I owned one) I’d pick the Hill Country also. But here’s the deal: you’re going to get your ass flattened. I’m not making light of the consequences, but I’m stating a fact: you are engaging in an extremely dangerous activity in an area ill-equipped to handle you and 11 of your cycling buddies who are taking up an entire lane on a windy country road. STOP IT. Stop riding 4 abreast on Ammann Road and then acting all pissed off when somebody has to slam on their brakes behind you, honk, and then blast the accelerator to get around you. It’s annoying for you, and it’s terrifying for the driver. We aren’t interested in killing 7 people today, but we also don’t need a heart attack when we come over a hill and see your mob of pedalists.

Actually, male ducks abandon the female right after fertilization or right after the eggs hatch. I was just trying to get the hell outta there then BAMM!!

There’s some empty space down in front. More houses or a McDonald’s? 5000 NEW HOMES IN BOERNE Were you aware there are approximately 5000 houses planned for Boerne this year? Oh, you missed that tiny detail from City Council notes? That’s right, Mr. Small Town Citizen – get ready to say hello to your 15,000 new Boerne citizens and friends this year (assuming 3 people her home). Doesn’t that just warm your heart? Don’t you just smile knowing that’s exactly why you moved to Boerne in the first place – to enjoy clogged roadways, vistas of rooftops, and an even more stressed water system? Yeah, me too. What are we going to do? Move to Junction, Texas. That’s what we’re going to do.

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THE DUCK STATUE at the RIVER Were you aware that beneath the idiotic duck statue, there is a poem that commemorates this duck’s great valor? The valor he demonstrated in waddling across the street and getting mowed down by a truck? If someone ever hooks a chain around dear “Father Gander”, and with the help of a pickup truck, drags that damned statue into the river, don’t come looking for me. I don’t own a truck.

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EXPLORE May 2014