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Helotes Gateway to the Texas Hill Country

spring 2018

Hidden Helotes: Soaring Citizens by Bob McCullough

Springtime is Festival Season in Helotes by Beth Gr aham

Hidden History of Helotes The Helotes Gang - 19th Century Criminals by Cynthia Leal Massey

www.HelotesMagazine.com


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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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I

Howdy Helotes

don’t know about you, but this is my favorite time of year. Springtime in Helotes is hard to beat with warm weather upon us bringing early blooming Mountain Laurels and the trees putting on their new leaves. Daylight savings time has given us longer days to enjoy the outdoors with the native and turf grasses turning green and many wildflowers in full bloom. Yes, spring is truly in the air and it looks like summer is getting ready to pound us with it’s usual temperatures, but that’s what living in Helotes is all about. I love it and am always grateful to call Helotes my hometown. This is the first anniversary of our “Helotes, Gateway to the Texas Hill Country” magazine. In this, our fifth issue, you will learn about the history of the “Country Club” in Old Town, Casa Lejana, and the old and now new Shell stations. Cynthia Massey offers an interesting article about the hidden history of Helotes and don’t miss the featured article covering some of our upcoming festivals and community events. Bird enthusiasts should enjoy learning about some nice bird watching opportunities around the City in our “Soaring Citizens” article. Our Helotes Area Community Band will be celebrating its tenth anniversary this year. The band played its first concert with seventeen members at our first Movie Night at the Park on August 22, 2008. Through the years, the band has grown steadily and now averages more than sixty members who perform eleven to twelve concerts each year. Their first concert this year was a joint concert with

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By Mayor Tom Schoolcraft

the Trinity University Symphonic Wind Ensemble at the Ruth Taylor Recital Hall on the campus of Trinity University. In 2015, one of the most prestigious and exciting concerts the band has experienced was when we took them to Austin to perform in the rotunda of the state capital. Their next performance this year will be at their annual spring concert at John Marshall High School at 3:00 p.m. on April 15th. The band helps make us unique and our volunteer musicians are true musical ambassadors for Helotes. You can watch past concerts by visiting our City website at www. helotes-tx.gov, clicking on the Videos tab, and then clicking on the “Special Events” tab, or by searching for the Helotes Area Community Band on YouTube. May 17th will mark the beginning of our eleventh season of Movie Nights at the Park and will be our 52nd movie night event. Movie nights have become one of our most popular and anticipated events each year. Each movie night provides a great evening of free family fun with an outdoor concert by our Helotes Area Community Band, free door prizes, food vendors, exhibits, and, of course, cartoons and the featured movie. Held the third Friday of each month, May through September, the events offer a chance to have a relaxing evening with fellow movie goers, visit with your neighbors, and make new friendships. At every movie night we see folks who have been coming for years as well as those who are there for the first time. Movie goers are encouraged to bring their own chairs and blankets and have the choice to bring their own food and drinks or to purchase items from the food vendors on site.

Come join us in May and experience one of the events that makes Helotes such a special place to live, work, and play. Plan to join us on July 3rd for our annual Independence Day Celebration featuring our Helotes Area Community Band in concert and our exciting fireworks extravaganza. We will have games and food vendors for your enjoyment along with activities for the kids. Free shuttle service will be provided from and to the Helotes WalMart parking lot because the parking at City Hall fills up fast. It would not be an Independence Day celebration without hot dogs, apple pie, and ice cream and it is our tradition to serve all three to the first 1,000 people in line. I don’t recall ever having left overs so be sure to get in line and get yours while supplies last. Look for the ads for the Spring Concert, Movie Nights at the Park, and the Independence Day Celebration toward the back of the magazine. Enjoy your spring and I look forward to visiting with you again in our summer issue.

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


FROM AWARD-WINNING AUTHOR

CYNTHIA LEAL MASSEY

Learn about the history of our unique town in three thoroughly researched and fascinating accounts of a town populated by hardworking pioneers, renegade Indians, elusive bandits, stalwart lawmen, and impassioned citizens. Will Rogers Silver Medallion Award Winner for Western Nonfiction

San Antonio Conservation Society Publication Award Winner

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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


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Table of Contents Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country

Howdy Helotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Hidden Helotes: Soaring Citizens . . . . . . . . 14 Historical Society to Host Author . . . . . . . . 16 Hidden History of Helotes The Helotes Gang - 19th Century Criminals . . 18 Helotes Points of Interest . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 A Taste of Asia Close to Home . . . . . . . . . 22 Fuel and Food: The Shell Station Past and Present . . . . . . 24 Helotes Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Springtime is Festival Season in Helotes . . . 28 The Perfect Casita Getaway: Casa Lejana of Helotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Hidden Cache is Cachet in Helotes . . . . . . 37 Advertiser Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 Advertiser Coupons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39

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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


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these cards, you Magazine Credits If youcould carry get more these cards, you could get more than benefits than benefits Original Medicare. Original Medicare. Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country

Publisher

Louis Doucette | Traveling Blender, LLC louis@travelingblender.com

Editor

Andrea Wazir | editor@helotesmagazine.com

Call today to enroll or get answers to your questions.

Call today to enroll Joni Reyna or Call to210-422-5272 get answers to today to enroll you carry myuhcagent.com/joni.reyna your UHCCommunityPlan.com/TX ese cards, you questions

Advertising Sales Janet Sandbach | janet@travelingblender.com

Contributing Writers

or get answers Rudy Arispe Dan Goddard Beth Graham Cynthia Leal Massey Bob McCullough Rick Schroder Helotes City Staff

to your questions. uld get more enefits than Joni Reyna Contributing Photographers iginal Medicare. 210-422-5272

Plans are insured through UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company or one of its affiliated companies, a Medicare Advantage organization with a Medicare contract and a contract with the State Medicaid Program. Enrollment in the plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare. Thistoplan is available to anyone who has both Medical l today enroll or get answers Assistance from the State and Medicare. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more your questions. information.Joni Limitations, co-payments, and restrictions may Reyna apply. Benefits, premium and/or co-payments/coinsurance may change on January 1 of each year. 210-422-5272 Joni Reyna Y0066_171220_112503 Approved myuhcagent.com/joni.reyna 210-422-5272 CST19719_ H4590-022

Dave Scepanski Jack Smith Tony Wazir

UHCCommunityPlan.com/TX CCommunityPlan.com/TX

Helotes City Council

Editorial Committee Members myuhcagent.com/joni.reyna Ken Dempsey Louis Doucette Glenn Goolsby Cynthia Leal Massey Janet Sandbach Tom Schoolcraft Rick Schroder Andrea Wazir

UHCCommunityPlan.com/TX

myuhcagent.com/joni.reyna

Mayor Tom Schoolcraft Mayor Pro Tem Bert Buys Councilmember Alex Blue Councilmember Paul Friedrichs Councilmember Cynthia Leal Massey Councilmember Ed Villanueva

Plans are insured through UnitedHealthcare Insuranc Company or one of its affiliated companies, a Medicar Advantage organization with a Medicare contract and contract with the State Medicaid Program. Enrollment in th plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare This plan is available to anyone who has both Medica Assistance from the State and Medicare. This information is no a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for mor 12 information. Limitations, co-payments, and restrictions ma

e insured Insurance Plansthrough are insuredUnitedHealthcare through UnitedHealthcare Insurance one of its companies, affiliated companies, a Medicare or oneCompany of its or affiliated a Medicare Advantagewith organization with a Medicare contract e organization a Medicare contract andanda a contract with the State Medicaid Program. Enrollment with the State Medicaid Program. Enrollment in the in the plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with ends on Medicare. the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare. This plan is available to anyone who has both n is available anyonefromwho has and both Medical Medical to Assistance the State Medicare. This information is not a complete description of benefits. e from the State and Medicare. This information is not Contactofthe plan for more information. Limitations, cote description benefits. Contact the plan for more payments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits, premium on. Limitations, co-payments, and may restrictions and/or co-payments/coinsurance change onmay nefits, premium and/or co-payments/coinsurance January 1 of each year. Y0066_171220_112503 Approved ge on January 1 of each year. CST19719_ H4590-022 71220_112503 Approved 19_ H4590-022

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country magazine is published by Traveling Blender, LLC (Publisher) on behalf of the City of Helotes. Reproduction in any manner, in whole or in part, is prohibited without the express written consent of the City of Helotes. Editorial and advertising material contained herein does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the City of Helotes, elected and appointed officials, or its staff. Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country magazine, the Publisher, and the City of Helotes reserve the right to edit all material for clarity and space and assume no responsibility for accuracy, errors, or omissions. Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country magazine does not knowingly accept false or misleading advertisements or editorial, nor does the Publisher or the City of Helotes assume responsibility should such advertising or editorial appear in the magazine. Articles and photos are welcome and may be submitted to our office to be used in the magazine, subject to the discretion and review of the Publisher, Editor, or the City of Helotes. All submissions become the property of Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country magazine and the City of Helotes, and the submitter confirms that all submissions, including photography, is either the submitter’s own work or the writer / photographer has provided permission to the submitter to use the content within the magazine. All Real Estate advertising is subject to the Federal Fair Housing Act of 1968, which makes it illegal to advertise “any preference limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin, or an intention to make such a preference limitation or discrimination.”

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


We Offer a Wide Variety of Firearms, Optics, Ammo and Accessories. License to Carry (LTC) classes are held monthly on Saturdays. Gun Shack is a family owned business located at 15241 Bandera Rd. in Helotes, TX, next to El Chaparral. We are open Monday-Saturday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.

210-858-6882 | gunshack.com Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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Hidden Helotes: Soaring Citizens

Heart of Texas East Wildlife Trail Cibolo Loop

By Bob McCullough

T

housands of Helotes “citizens” freely flit about, most of them going unnoticed by their human neighbors. But their presence adds to the highly desirable, semi-rural ambiance of the City and northwestern Bexar County. The Helotes-area abounds with birds, large and small, colorful and monochrome, chatty and less vocal. They inhabit the City and its environs for many reasons, not the least of which is Helotes’ location on the busy north-south flyway between Canada and Central America. In addition, Helotes’ neighbor just to the west – 12,082-acre Government Canyon State Natural Area – constitutes a mighty magnet for bird life. Helotes governmental officials and residents also have worked to welcome feathered friends. Mayor Tom Schoolcraft, a Helotes resident for almost four decades, recalls that he and other members of the Municipal Complex Grounds Improvements Committee worked to establish the 8-acre municipal complex into a City park and playground in the early 2000s that was both bird- and butterfly-friendly. This effort led to Helotes’ inclusion on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Heart of Texas East Wildlife Trail – Cibolo Loop. It’s one of nine driving trails known for “the best spots to see wildlife” in Texas, according to tpwd. texas.gov. Helotes City Park “includes scattered oak and mesquite trees. Look in the oak trees by City Hall for Bewick’s wren and ladder-backed, golden- fronted, and downy woodpeckers. The open areas are good places to look for wintering sparrows and for butterflies during summer. You may also see house finch, lesser goldfinch, Inca dove, and western

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HELOTES kingbird. This is also a good place to see migrant flycatchers, vireos, and warblers.” The Cibolo Loop also includes Government Canyon at 12861 Galm Road, which opened in 2005 and which makes available its 40 miles of hiking trails for modest fees Friday through Monday. Visit the state website tpwd.texas.gov/ state-parks/government-canyon for more details. “Government Canyon is a great place to go birding because of its diversity,” says resource specialist Casey Cowan. “It sits between three ecological regions: the Edwards Plateau, Southern Texas Plains, and Texas Blackland Prairie. These three ecoregions give rise to different vegetation communities, topography, geology, and soils. Having these different habitat types provides an array of niches for birds to fill, ranging from the grassland northern bobwhite to the forest understory-foraging long-billed thrasher.” Cowan notes that 174 bird species have been recorded on Government Canyon’s field checklist. Visitors can pick up a free copy of the “Birds of Government Canyon State Natural Area and Vicinity” at the visitor center. “Believe it or not, around the visitor center is actually a wonderful place to bird,” Cowan says. “During spring, the area is littered with diversity from painted buntings and summer tanagers to the ever-chatty yellow-breasted chat. I would also suggest folks take the Savanah Loop or Lytle Loop trails through the portion of the front country that is being restored to grassland. This open area is favored by various raptors, northern bobwhite, a handful of sparrow species, and many more.” Another park – the Helotes Natural Area and Disc Golf Course at 10483 Parrigin Road – provides open space for families “to enjoy, commune with nature and exercise,” Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


according to the City of Helotes. It, too, beckons to birds, thanks to recent installations of bird houses by Eagle Scout candidate Dwight Morgan and Boy Scout Troop 484. “Camping is a common occurrence among Boy Scouts,” says Morgan. “During campouts, I became fascinated by the beauty and uniqueness of the different bird species I would see while hiking or fishing. This fascination eventually led me to develop an Eagle Scout project that would give back to the birds I so greatly admired.” Under Morgan’s supervision, Troop 484 members built and placed bird houses in the Park this past October, and because it was “an enjoyable and educational experience, I’d say there will probably be more bird houses to come,” Morgan says. Helotes-area residents interested in birds and birding can consult a valuable resource on the outskirts of the City – the Wild Birds Unlimited store at 9910 W. Loop 1604 on the corner of Braun Road and Loop 1604 (westsanantonio.wbu.com). “I spent almost 30 years as a financial adviser,” says store owner Kim Keller, “but I always wanted to do something more for the environment. Our motto is, “We bring people and nature together, and we do it with excellence’.” Keller loves helping both beginner, as well as advanced birders. She does in-store talks on a variety of birding topics, and she’s also available to visit with garden clubs and other neighborhood organizations. In addition, she does bird walks with customers several times a year, as well as directs interested individuals to walks conducted by the San Antonio Audubon Society (saaudubon.org).

Boy Scout Troop 484 constructs bird houses for a special project at the Helotes Natural Area.

Mayor Schoolcraft appreciates and encourages the efforts taking place in and around Helotes to benefit the City’s soaring “citizens” and predicts more to come. After all, residents and nature-lovers like to migrate to the area for enjoyable encounters with Mother Nature and her fascinating fliers.

Boy Scouts from Troop 484 help install bird houses. Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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Historical Society To Host Award-Winning Texas Author By Cynthia Leal Massey

A

fifth generation Texan, author Irene Sandell knows something about the history of Texas. In fact, she knows a lot about our State’s history. A Texas history teacher for more than 30 years, and now retired from the teaching profession, she uses her expert knowledge in her award-winning novels and in documentaries for the Texas History classroom. In all, she has filmed, written, and produced 20 documentaries and has also written several textbooks that are used in classrooms across the State. The videos encompass pre-history to modern times. For information, visit texasvis.com.

Sandell is also the author of four award-winning novels set in Texas: In a Fevered Land, River of the Arms of God, House on Swiss Avenue, and Beloved Over All, winner of the 2017 WILLA Literary Award for Original Softcover Fiction and a 2017 winner of the Will Rogers Silver Medallion Award for Western Fiction.

Irene Sandell

Sandell’s novels combine her love of Texas history with her passion for writing. She enjoys collecting the “side bits of history” (history’s impact on individual lives) that fuel her tales. Her books tell the heartfelt stories of people woven into true places and events in the Lone Star State. Visit irenesandell.com for more information about her books. A resident of Plano, Sandell will be the special guest speaker at the Historical Society of Helotes General Meeting, Tuesday, May 1, at the Gardens at Old Town Helotes, 15060 Antonio Drive. Sandell’s presentation is titled “Early Texas and the Fort System.” She will autograph and sell copies of her books after the presentation. This meeting, which starts at noon, is open to the public. Admission is $10 for members and $15 for nonmembers and includes a boxed lunch and beverage from Jason’s Deli. RSVP is required by April 29. Email info@historicalsocietyofhelotes.org or call 210-695-5328 and leave your name and a message.

HISTORICAL SOCIETY of

HELOTES 16

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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Hidden History of Helotes The Helotes Gang - –19th Century– Criminals By Cynthia Leal Massey

T

he sheriff’s deputies lowered the man down the dark hole in the side of the mountain in early summer 1886. They saw the light from his lantern bouncing back and forth as he descended nearly 20 feet. A lusty scream startled them and they pulled the man back up. Terrified, the explorer told the deputies “an unseen ghost had caught him by the arm and attempted to pull him down deeper into the bowels of the earth.” He also told them that the skeleton of the man they were looking for was at the bottom of the cave and that they would have to get it themselves. He scrambled down the hill, leaving the deputies the unpleasant task of gathering the remains of the dead man, purportedly Frank Harris, an ex-convict who had not shown up two years before to testify in an Austin trial against father and son, Tom “T. J.” and Frank Scott, in the Smithwick Post Office robbery case. The Helotes Gang had struck again. Jim Pitts, Charley Yeager, brothers Carroll, Dick, and Joe Brannon, Frank Harris, Jim Ditson, and Tom and Frank Scott lived “in a settlement near Leon Springs, close to each other, and in the vicinity of some caves... one of them known as the Robbers’ Cavern.” Also purported to be part of the gang was Elizabeth Drown, also called “Grandmother Drowns,” Pitt’s grandmother, whose home was a hideout for the gang.

Although the gang preferred to hold up stages along the Fredericksburg through Leon Springs route, they were also under suspicion for jumping a stage going to Helotes, killing all of the passengers and making away with $60,000 in cash. They were stage robbers, train wreckers and robbers, horse thieves and murderers, according to their defense attorney Mack G. Anderson, who told a San Antonio Daily Express reporter “he had defended some of the members for nearly every crime under the sun.” One of many crimes attributed to the gang was the heinous 1885 murder of Deputy U.S. Marshal Hal Gosling, who was shot and killed while escorting Pitts and Yeager by rail from Austin

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to a San Antonio jail after their conviction for robbery. Pitts, who’d shot Gosling, was killed during his escape attempt. A year after the Gosling murder and a week before Harris’ body was discovered, Joe Brannon was killed by a deputy U.S. Marshal while resisting arrest. According to a June 12, 1886 San Antonio Daily Express newspaper account, “All would have been smooth sailing had not the band fallen out among themselves, which caused Frank Scott to give Joe Brannon away, and when Joe was killed [his brother] Carroll concluded to give the Scotts away [for Harris’s murder].” The Harris murder attracted a great deal of attention because of the many articles the newspaper published about the case in the summer of 1886, and again in the spring of 1887, including lurid descriptions of the corpse, “a grim, ghastly spectacle”; a depiction of a romantic triangle between Harris, Pitts, and Jennie Scott, “Harris courted Scott’s youngest daughter Jennie, with whom he was desperately in love... the Scotts kicked up a fuss and broke off the match peremptorily... Harris swore he would have the girl, or he would give every member of the gang away and have them hung by telling their bloody secrets to the officers”; and an account of the various crimes perpetrated by the gang, including one in which “the Helotes school house... was sacked and pillaged.” William Boerner, who as justice of the peace for the precinct in which the crime was committed, was in charge of the inquest, took Gabriel Marnoch and David Hunter (Gabriel’s cousin) with him to retrieve missing bone fragments. Also on this excursion were Boerner’s wife Emma, one of their daughters, and Mary Marnoch (Gabriel’s sister). According to Justice Boerner’s account of the trip, the women stayed at the mouth of the cave, while the three men formed the exploration party, descending down. After gathering several missing fragments of Harris’s skeleton, along Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


with pieces of clothing and a quirt, the men placed them in a sack, which the women hoisted up. The men then explored the cave, which had several corridors and chambers: “Returning to the spot where the skeleton lay, we ascended about 8 feet where we entered a narrow passage which led a few feet into an immense cavern, capable of containing several regiments of troops. Here, although our lights were dim, the spectacle was a grand one. The stalactites and stalagmites were of the most fantastic shapes. Several of them looked like huge spectres, and when closely examined were extremely beautiful. They appeared like petrified persons who stood in statuesque and graceful attitude... “In the center of the chamber was a deep pool of very cold water. Mr. Hunter who drank there from pronounced it delicious. The temperature of this The Helotes Gang, who operated out of the Helotes Settlement in the 1880s, were cavern was so cool that I got very stage robbers, train wreckers and robbers, horse thieves and murderers. 1911 photo, titled “Stage coach robbery: Collecting toll.” Library of Congress Prints & chilly, and had to return to the surface Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. where the ladies were and left Messrs. Marnoch and Hunter to pursue the exploration. They remained On February 16, 1887, Scott was found guilty of murder in the there an hour or so longer, and gave a vivid description of the first degree. A week later, he was sentenced to life in prison. The many beauties and grandeur of the cave, which resembled an case against his father was dismissed a few years later. ancient temple...” The June 16, 1886 San Antonio Daily Express article On June 15, 1886, the coroner’s verdict indicated “strong summarized the fate of the Helotes gang: “There is no doubt circumstantial evidence warranting the belief that the deceased that Harris was a bad man, with blood on his hands, as bad as [Frank Harris] came to his death at the hands of T. J. and Frank any of the others, but his murder was nonetheless a foul crime Scott, while in their charge on or about September 15, 1884.” that may end in wiping out the last member of this gang who have been a holy terror to the neighborhood for so many years. Although father and son were charged jointly for the murder, Pitts, Harris, Joe Brannon and [James] McDaniel are dead; the state tried the son first. The case against Frank Scott, who Yeager, [Lewis] Potter and Dick Brannon are in the penitentiary pleaded not guilty, went to trial eight months later. At the first for life.” (McDaniel and Potter were notorious stage robbers hearing, the defendants’ lawyer, Mack Anderson, asked for a who’d been captured in the summer of 1884.) change in venue. “The Scotts, father and son, are now in jail to stand trial for According to a February 2, 1887 newspaper account, “Mr. the murder of Harris, and Ditson, the leader of the gang, is out Mack Anderson made his usual little speech against the ‘bad of the state in Missouri. If there are any of them left, it will be newspapers’, which publish the news of the day and hour. He made so hot that they will have to hunt their holes and remain referred to all the local papers, placing The Express at the head there. The law must be vindicated even if the notorious Robbers’ of the list, as having published columns and columns of the Cave becomes tenantless and haunted only by the pale ghosts Robbers’ case horror, and charged that by those publications, of the many unsuspecting victims who have stained its walls the minds of the readers were poisoned... Therefore, he thought with their blood.” the court should grant the motion for a change of venue... Judge Noonan could not see it exactly in that light. The motion, Cynthia Leal Massey is the author of several books on the history therefore, took the regular course, and was overruled.” of Helotes. Visit her website: www.cynthialealmassey.com.

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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B-Daddy BBQ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14436 Old Bandera Rd. Babe’s Old Fashioned Food. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12415 Bandera Rd. Bad Dogz Beer & Bites. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12952 Bandera Rd. Bandera Road Cafe. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12540 Bandera Rd. Bill Miller BBQ. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12705 Bandera Rd. Bobby J’s. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13247 Bandera Rd. Dagoberto’s Mexican Food . . . . . . . . . 9708 Business Pkwy #128 Dairy Queen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12902 Bandera Rd. El Chaparral. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15103 Bandera Rd. Grand Patron. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12932 Bandera Rd. Golden Chick . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12550 Bandera Rd. Helotes Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14687 Old Bandera Rd. Helotes Creek Winery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14359 Old Bandera Rd. John T. Floore’s Country Store. . . . . . . . . 14492 Old Bandera Rd. Little Caesars Pizza. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12800 Bandera Rd.

For a complete list


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Marco’s Pizza. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9708 Business Pkwy. Oolong Chinese Restaurant . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12411 Bandera Rd. 55 Pete’s Place Spirits & More. . . . . . . . . . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. #9 85 Pinot’s Palette. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9708 Business Pkwy. 21 PHO AN. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12916 Bandera Rd. 17 Pizza Hut. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12730 Bandera Rd. 4 Rome’s Pizza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12411 Bandera Rd. 12 Slim Chickens. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12530 Bandera Rd. 2 Sonic Drive-In. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12405 Bandera Rd. 8 Starbucks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12577 Bandera Rd. 26 Subway. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12952 Bandera Rd. 10 Taco Bell. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9708 Business Pkwy. 52 The Cracked Mug. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. #1 51 Wine 101. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. 84 Yogi’s Frozen Yogurt. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12411 Bandera Rd. 22 Advance Auto Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12929 Bandera Rd. 16 AutoZone . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12733 Bandera Rd. 5 Bricks and Minifigs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12415 Bandera Rd. #212 80 Cheetahlish . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14837 Old Bandera Rd. 36 Country Elegance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14391 Old Bandera Rd. 28 CVS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12980 Bandera Rd. 23 Dollar Tree. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12928 Bandera Rd. 54 E’s Bees and Creations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. 47 Elf Hardware . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14546 Old Bandera Rd. 25 Finck’s Cigar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12950 Bandera Rd. 42 GG’s House . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14433 Old Bandera Rd. 86 Gun Shack . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15241 Bandera Rd. 41 Harvest Cottage. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14398 Old Bandera Rd. 45 Helotes Bicycle Shop. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14436 Old Bandera Rd. 95 Helotes Pits and Trailers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18593 Bandera Rd. 48 Helotes Tactical Firearms. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14398 Old Bandera Rd. 32 Jupe Mills. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14096 Bandera Rd. 44 Melanie’s Rusted Nail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14436 Old Bandera Rd. 56 MimiDae Market. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. 39 Old Town Depot Antiques. . . . . . . . . . . . . 14392 Old Bandera Rd. 20 One Vapor Place . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12908 Bandera Rd. 1 Pipe’s Dreams. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12340 Bandera Rd. 53 Simply Raw Nutrition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. 34 Simply Yours Gifts & More . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14357 Riggs Rd. 35 Rhonda’s Coffee House & Helotes Creek Bed & Breakfast. . . . . . . 14359 Old Bandera Rd. 38 Three Sisters Home. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14391 Old Bandera Rd. 11 Tractor Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11946 Leslie Rd. 3

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Walmart & Subway . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12550 Bandera Rd. Wild Bird Unlimited. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9910 W. Loop 1604 N 49 Wilson Landscape Nursery & Florist. . 14650 Old Bandera Rd. 33 City Public Parking Lot. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14399 Riggs Rd. 40 City Public Parking Lot. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14392 Bandera Rd. 57 City Public Parking Lot. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14889 Old Bandera Rd. 29 Disc Golf Course / Fitness Park . . . . . . . . . . . 10483 Parrigin Rd. 59 Helotes City Park & Playground . . . . . . . . . . . 12951 Bandera Rd. 98 AHNEW Physical Therapy. . . . . . . 14418 Old Bandera Rd. #210 71 Alamo Karate Academy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12540 Bandera Rd. #210 68 Amor Nails. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12415 Bandera Rd. #214 73 Ann’s Nails. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9708 Business Pkwy. #108 90 Apple Pest Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17317 Bandera Rd. 102 Casa Helotes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12415 Bandera Rd.#108 99 Carlos Miranda – St. Farm Ins. Agent. . 12415 Bandera Rd.#108 66 Cindy’s Nail Spa. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12411 Bandera Rd. #101 91 College Nannies and Tutors. . . . 9110 North Loop 1604 W #110 62 Curves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12274 Bandera Rd. #101 67 D’Anthony Salon & Spa. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12415 Bandera Rd. #104 100 Dermatology San Antonio. . . . . . . . . . . . 12415 Bandera Rd. #114 74 Ella’s Barber & Beauty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12914 Bandera Rd. 64 Evolution Hair Studio . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12340 Bandera Rd. #106 92 Frost Bank. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11555 Bandera Rd. 70 Gals Nails. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12540 Bandera Rd. 79 Gardens at Old Town Helotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15060 Antonio Dr. 72 Great Clips. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9708 Business Pkwy. #106 63 Helotes Barber Shop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12274 Bandera Rd. 93 Helotes Collission Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11634 Rainbow Ridge 60 Helotes Crossfit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12266 Bandera Rd. #301 94 Helotes Hill Country Ziplines . . . . . . . . . 18026 Frank Madla Rd. 65 Helotes Nails. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12340 Bandera Rd. # 107 105 Hunter Electrical Services. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11844 Bandera Rd. 77 J Gibson Salon. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14359 Old Bandera Rd. #2 83 Josabi’s Event Center. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17200 Bandera Rd. 97 Kathleen Cassidy Goodman, PLLC . . . 12274 Bandera Rd. #222 96 Kinard Family Dental. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12740 Bandera Rd. 75 Maid Affordable. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12274 Bandera Rd. 75 Marr’s Traditional Tae Kwon-Do Academy. 12918 Bandera Rd. 89 Momentum Physical Therapy . . . . . . . . 12952 Bandera Rd. #107 88 NSSA – National Sporting Clays Association . . . 5931 Roft Rd. 111 Pool Concepts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13318 Western Oak Dr. 87 Pope Cleaners. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12682 FM Rd. 1560 #104 82 Robin Jansky Photography. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17200 Bandera Rd. 78 Rosie’s Hill Country Beauty & Barber. . 14743 Old Bandera Rd. 69 Southtown Yoga Loft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12540 Bandera Rd. 61 UNI Tae Kwon-Do Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12266 Bandera Rd. #302 76 Your Destination Fit. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12682 FM Rd. 1560 #204 31

of businesses in Helotes, visit www.shophelotes.com.

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A Taste of Asia Close to Home By Dan R. Goddard

Enjoy the cuisines of China, Thailand, and Vietnam without leaving Helotes. Oolong Chinese Bistro Oolong Chinese Bistro on Bandera Road serves traditional Cantonesestyle cooking in a casually elegant environment. Large paintings by local artists depicting a Chinese village, a koi pond, and dragons decorate the modernlooking restaurant with tables and booths for about 100 diners. Most people are familiar with the tea, but “Oolong” translates as “Black Dragon.” Co-owner Mya Clarkson said the secret to Oolong’s success is giving diners a meal that satisfies their taste buds, friendly service, and a clean establishment. “We opened the restaurant in 2010. In September we will turn eight!” Clarkson said. “Our family has been in the restaurant business since 1989. My brother and I started Oolong to follow in our parents’ footsteps. I’ve been a Helotes resident since 2004, and my love for the City prompted me to start the business in Helotes. We are obviously locally-owned. My partners -- mom and brother -- live within a five-mile distance from Oolong.”

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Her family had two other restaurants before opening Oolong, which gave them the opportunity to fine-tune their menu to satisfy local tastes. With black-clad waiters, Oolong’s staff numbers about 20 including about seven cooks. Clarkson manages the front, while her mother, Peggy, and brother, David, run the kitchen. “I would describe our menu as traditional Chinese,” Clarkson said. “The recipes are originally from my father, who specializes in Cantonese cooking, and have been handed down for generations. We have several specialties that we take pride in that sets us apart from our competitors. We make a delicious egg foo young dish that many other Chinese restaurants shy away from even putting on their menu.” Egg foo young features three egg patties filled with meat – choice of chicken, pork, beef, or shrimp -- and finely-chopped vegetables pan fried to perfection and topped with homemade gravy. “My children love it,” Clarkson said. Originating from the Guangdong province in China, Canton-style cuisine

is characterized by gentle spices, fresh ingredients, and slow, careful preparation. Since the ingredients are fresh, heavy spices aren’t required, though much of the flavor comes from hoisin sauce made from soy, garlic, and chili peppers. Cantonese cooking is generally associated with ChineseAmerican cooking, and Oolong’s dishes are calibrated to satisfy a Western palate. “Our hot and sour soup and egg rolls are a must-try too,” Clarkson said. “Our most popular dish is sesame chicken hands down. It’s offered during lunch, as well as dinner. Since most of our entrees are made to order, we can omit ingredients to cater to gluten-free diets and vegetarians. We offer a generous lunch menu that runs till 3:30 p.m. daily. The lunch specials are competitively priced with numerous entrees to choose from.” Traditional Chinese favorites, such as lemon chicken, sweet and sour pork, kung pao shrimp, and spicy shredded beef, are among the lunch specials. House specialties include the sesame chicken, hunan shrimp, and dynasty scallops.

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


Also, vegetarians have a choice of four vegetable and tofu dishes. ”Helotes customers are extremely loyal and supportive,” Clarkson said. “They understand the importance of supporting local businesses in the community. Although the City has grown tremendously over the years, the residents still value and cherish the small town feel. The best part of opening Oolong in Helotes is meeting and developing friendships with our loyal customers. The relationships we’ve made with our patrons are priceless. To many families, we have become a part of their weekly routine.” Oolong Chinese Bistro, 12411 Bandera Road, #103, is located in the strip center next to the Sonic Drive-In at Cedar Trail and Bandera Road. Oolong offers takeout delivery through Doordash and Grubhub, or you can get carry out by calling the restaurant at 210-695-9755. For more information, visit oolongbistro.com.

Yum Thai III Helotes’ favorite Thai restaurant can be found in the shopping center at the northeast corner of Loop 1604 and Bandera Road, behind Taco Cabana and next to the Stout House. With an outdoor patio, Yum Thai III has a tropical interior with blue brick walls and a polished concrete floor. A large mural shows traditional Thai boats on an exotic beach. The menu spans a wide variety of Thai favorites and some unusual dishes. Extensive appetizer choices include peek gai tod, Thai chicken wings, chicken satay, a marinated chicken breast charbroiled on a skewer, fried calamari with a Thai twist, som tum, spicy papaya salad, and shumai, steamed dumplings. Pad Thai, stir-fried noodles, is a mainstay of the main menu, but, also, there’s pad kee maow, “drunken noodle,” and pad wun sen, transparent noodles. Soups, salads, and red and green curries round out the menu, which also features Thai bubble drinks and sticky rice desserts.

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

Yum Thai III, 11851 Bandera Road, Suite 123, is open daily and offers online ordering and delivery. For more information, call 210 362-1726 or visit yumthaisanantonio.com. Pho An For Vietnamese banhm mi sandwiches, rice vermicelli dishes, and spring rolls, Pho An is located in Helotes Plaza on Bandera Road. Banh mi choices include ham, Vietnamese bologna, grilled pork, tuna, and meatball. The Vietnamese version of chicken wings is fried with fish sauce, garlic, and red onion. Mi Xao Don has crispy deep-fried egg noodles served with shrimp, beef, chicken, broccoli, onion, carrot, cabbage, and bok choy. The extensive to-go menu includes tempura shrimp, crab soup, chicken curry, and blended smoothies. Pho An, 12916 Bandera Road, is open daily except for Sundays. For more information, call the restaurant at 210-966-0446.

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Fuel and Food: The Shell Station Past and Present By Rudy Arispe

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elotes residents will soon have a new Shell Station with an adjoining Burger King where they can fill up with gas, shop in the convenience store, or enjoy a juicy burger and fries. The station is slated to open on April 13th and is located at 13041 Bandera Road. “It’s going to be a nicer convenience store than before,” said Kurt Anderson, co-owner of Tri-Properties, a commercial real estate company that owns the 8,600-square-foot building. “I built the original store in 1988 that used to be there. It was a small convenience store with two restrooms, which became obsolete. Now we’ll have a beautiful building with Hill Country-style architecture and wellkept public restrooms.”

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Helotes: Helotes: Gateway Gateway to to the the Texas Texas Hill Hill Country Country –– Spring Spring 2018 2018


The Shell Station, Anderson added, will employ about eight to 10 people. “We’ll be contributing to the Helotes economy and greatly contributing to the sales tax revenue and real estate tax,” he said. Meanwhile, the new Burger King store will be operated by franchisee owner Robes St. Juste, who has nine Burger Kings throughout San Antonio. “I signed the original lease with Burger King 10 years ago,” Anderson said. “It’s taken this long to bring it to fruition. There was a chain reaction of things that went on and on. Robes is a very patient man.” Incidentally, the Anderson family has a long history of development in Helotes. Kurt’s uncle, Fred C. Anderson, developed the Helotes Park Estates Subdivision in the early 1960s. “I was just a kid back then, but everyone thought he was crazy because (Helotes) was considered way out there back then,” Anderson said. “He built the original shopping center with the Mr. M’s Food Store and Cactus Shack Steakhouse. He managed it until we sold it 20 years ago.” Anderson was 15 years old when his father died, so his uncle took him under his wings, taught him about real estate, and encouraged him to get his broker’s license as a young man. He then began working alongside his uncle, Fred, until Kurt started his own business. Anderson is happy to have such a long, personal connection to Helotes. “We love this community,” he said, “and the Mayor and the City of Helotes have worked hard to help us get this project through.” For Robes St. Juste, his venture into Helotes marks the 10th Burger King he owns and operates. The fast-food store’s presence into the community will bring more than just great burgers, fries, and shakes to the area. The Bandera Road Burger King will employ about 60-70 people.

“That’s a lot of jobs,” he said. “We hope to hire students to provide employment for them. It’s a great way to develop a sense of teamwork and responsibility.” Burger King will also provide $1,000 scholarships to high school students.

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

The franchisee owner said his decision to expand into Helotes is based on the City’s growth and economic vitality. “It’s a growing community, and they have been doing a lot of good things out here, so the timing is perfect.”

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By Dan R. Goddard

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elotes Country Club. Big golf course, tennis courts, swimming pool, fancy dress, fine dining, cocktails, and business deals. You could not be more wrong. Instead, look for the boot-wearing Texas longhorn and giant bear standing on its hind legs in Old Town Helotes just a hop, skip, and a jump north of John T. Floore’s Country Store. At 14687 Old Bandera Road, you’ll find a white-painted, three-room bar surrounded by an ample, gravel-strewn parking lot. An internet jukebox, single pool table, dart games, virtual golf, and bowling are inside. One wall is covered with license plates from every state. A couple of TVs are tuned to the game of the moment. Cheap drinks are offered and there is absolutely no sign of a “No Smoking” sign. Picnic tables are out front if you need fresh air. About a dozen chickens roam the place. As the sign behind the bar explains: “There’s no place just like this place anywhere near this place so this must be the place.” Founded June 1, 1978 – when original owner Lester Charles Krueger got his beer and wine license – one of Helotes’ best-kept

open secrets plans to celebrate 40 years of continuous business this coming June with a big wingding. The name may confuse newcomers, but most regulars still call it “Lester’s.” Current owner Tammy Pointon, Lester’s daughter, said the Helotes Country Club is a proud survivor of a dying breed – an authentic Texas icehouse. There’s a plaque on the wall from the Ice House Hall of Fame. Originally, the intention was to be private, with dues and such, but that didn’t happen even though the name stuck. “We still get people calling up asking when tee time is,” Pointon said. “Or if we have wedding venue. Of course we do. You can get married here if you want to. During the week, about 80 percent of our clientele are regulars, and they would never let me change a thing. But I did clean it up some when I took over the bar, and we are getting a little younger crowd on weekends. However, my intention is to keep the same feel it had when my dad was alive.” Tammy said her father died in 2012 at age 82. The bar went to her brother, Lester Charles Krueger Jr., best known as Chuck. Sadly, her brother died less than two years later at age 55. Tammy said she’s been running the Helotes Country Club for about three and a half years, in addition to working full time for Alamo Heights Pediatrics. She spent 23 years working for Chili’s, but, other than a year she spent bartending at the Country Club after high school, she has no experience managing a bar. “Thank God for the regulars,” Tammy said. “They keep the place running and won’t let anything bad happen. I don’t have to micromanage. The Country Club is a hometown bar where everybody knows everybody. There’s always someone to talk, play pool, and video games. You can walk-in and make yourself at home.” She’s made the Country Club a family affair. Her son, Tanner, lives next door and helps out when he isn’t working full time for a local electric company. Her daughter, Morgan, the reigning Miss

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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


Helotes and recently, a contestant at the Pageant, bartends nights and deserves credit for the younger faces coming in on the weekends. The other bartenders are Loretta Sales, Ryan McKay, Lindsey Simon, and Renee Vanderwater. Doors open at 7:30 a.m. daily and coffee is served in the morning. “That’s for the retired crowd, gives them a place to go,” Tammy said. “During the weekdays, it really is a club house for these guys. The Country Club is a great place to rest easy.” Closing time is 2 a.m. Perhaps the most radical change Tammy made since Lester’s time is now the Country Club takes credit cards. Lester only took cash. Domestic beer is $2.50 a bottle and imports are $3, as is a glass of wine. No spirits. Soda pop, chips, and snacks round out the menu. Bartender Renee Vandewater said the best-sellers are Coors Light, Bud Light, and Miller Light. No, they don’t stock any of that hipster, herb-infused, God-knows-what-kind-of-beer with silly names. And you won’t find anything on tap. “We can say we have the coldest and cheapest beer in town,” Vandewater said. “This is the kind of place where you expect someone to holler out ‘Hey, Norm’ when you walk-in. Lester was the kind of guy who would lend you the shirt off his back and usually did. And he never made a big deal out of it. He was just the nicest guy you were ever likely to meet.” On nights when Floore’s Store has a concert, people can sit out front of the Country Club at the picnic tables and listen to the music like they had front row seats. “I tell people we don’t get the overflow from Floore’s; they get the overflow from us,” Vandewater said. “People who are going to a show at Floore’s come here before and after.” On Sundays, the Country Club has free pool from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and “Cajun Red Beans.” Pool tournaments are held Tuesdays. Darts are played Wednesday and Thursday nights (“They’re always looking for new players”). The card game Pitch is played Friday mornings. Proceeds from the club’s Fiesta Medal are donated to the Helotes Humane Society. You can follow the Helotes Country Club on Facebook. “Our regulars like to mess with us using the internet jukebox,” Vandewater said. “They can pick songs using their smartphone when they drive by and there’s no telling what they’ll play.” Tammy says one of the most popular signs decorating the Helotes Country Club is “Free Beer Tomorrow.” “Takes some people awhile to realize what happens when they come back tomorrow,” Tammy said. “But there was actually a ‘tomorrow’ and it was the day of my dad’s funeral. He always said that the day he was buried was ‘tomorrow’ and the beer was going to be free all day after his funeral – and it was. The funeral was held at the Helotes Fairgrounds because of the size and the celebration of life we wanted for him. What an amazing, bittersweet day!” Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

Helotes Country Club owner, Tammy Pointon, and her children, Morgan and Tanner.

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Springtime is Festival Season in Helotes

By Beth Gr aham

Helotes welcomes springtime with warm weather, wildflowers, and fun! Throughout April and May there will be an event happening just about every weekend. Make plans now so that you don’t miss a thing.

Helotes Art Walk Talking to Helotes Art Walk founder Pedro Ramos is like trying to sip from a fire hose – that’s how enthusiastic he is about this event that is, for him, community involvement, hobby, artistic outlet, and therapy all in one. After returning from deployment in Iraq and being discharged from the Army, Pedro was diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder after being hit by improvised explosive devices or IEDs at least three times. He found that painting and drawing helped him deal with the aftermath of 15 months in combat, and, then, at the urging of friends and family, began to look for an outlet for his work. While living in California, he discovered an organization

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called Keeping the Culture Alive (KTCA) whose goal is to provide opportunities for artists of all backgrounds to display and sell their work. When he and his wife moved to Helotes to be closer to her family, he brought the concept with him. He approached the City of Helotes about starting an art walk and received a wholehearted welcome. The Shops at Old Town Helotes was suggested as a potential location, and the rest, as they say, is history. The first show took place in April 2016 with about 10 artists. Now, almost 2 years old, the Helotes Art Walk sees an average of 15 to 20 vendors each month. “What I want is to make it easy for the artists, and to support them and their work,”

says Pedro. “Art gave me so much that I want to make a contribution too.” There is room for at least 100 vendors, and it’s Pedro’s goal to grow the walk to its full potential. All forms of arts and crafts are accepted, as long as the vendor is the creator. The family-friendly event also has opportunities for musicians to perform; they cannot be paid, but can sell their merchandise. Refreshments are available from local merchants during the event. The Helotes Art Walk takes place every third Saturday of the month from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Old Town Helotes located at 14743 Old Bandera Road. This community event is free to attend and public parking is available. For more information or to become a vendor, visit helotesartwalk.com.


San Antonio Highland Games & Celtic Music Festival This celebration of Scottish heritage annually welcomes representatives of more than 30 clans during the first weekend of April. Participants can enjoy music, refreshments, arts and crafts, living history exhibits, and competitions. Scottish-inspired competitions include Highland dance, the caber, hammer, and sheaf toss, stone put, and sheepherding. To honor San Antonio’s 300th anniversary, the theme of the 2018 Highland Games is Viva La Tartan! The 2018 event will feature cultural seminars, historical exhibits, Vikings (including a real Viking battle), four stages of live music and Celtic dance, and refreshments from traditional Scottish treats to carnival food favorites. “You’ll find a funnel cake booth next to haggis or sausage on a stick with a Scottish meat pie,” says Games President Jenni May-Dennis. “The food could be the best part of the festival!” The Highland Games Association is especially excited that the 2018 musical headliner will be Celtica Pipes Rock!, a fan-favorite band whose performances combine bagpipes, classic rock, and a fire show. Celtica Pipes Rock! has appeared at festivals around the U.S. and Europe. Founded in 1998, the San Antonio Highland Games Association presented the first festival in 1999 on the grounds of the Retama Polo Center. They soon outgrew that venue and found a new home at the Helotes Fairgrounds (12210 Leslie Road). This year is their 19th anniversary. Make plans to join the fun April 7 & 8, 2018. For more information, visit sahga.org.

NEF 5K Run/Walk This year’s NEF (Northside Education Foundation) 5K Run/ Walk is an official San Antonio Tricentennial event, and, to celebrate, they have found new partners and are moving to a new location. The run is partnering with the Cornyval Parade, Cornyval festival, and the City of Helotes, and it will follow the Cornyval Parade route. According to NEF spokesperson Cassandra Miranda, “We were looking for a new location for the run and went to talk to the City of Helotes just to research how to close streets, etc. It turned out that there used to be a run associated with the Cornyval Parade, and the City was happy to have that opportunity again. Helotes is just about the geographical center of the Northside Independent School District (NISD), so this is a great match, and we hope the beginning of a long relationship.” Although free public parking will be available, organizers are strongly recommending that runners carpool. The NEF Run is the primary fundraiser for the NEF Foundation, which supports innovative classroom programs in the NISD. In its 10th year, the run attracts around 4,000 participants and raises approximately $50,000 for the Foundation. The NEF 5K Run/Walk will commence Saturday, May 5 at 8 a.m. beginning at O’Connor High School, 12221 Leslie Road. All event participants receive discounted tickets to the Helotes Cornyval Festival. Register your team today at runsignup.com/ Race/TX/Helotes/NEF2015. Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

29


Jazz a’Round Old Town Helotes Now in its sixth year, Jazz a’Round Old Town Helotes presents an evening of jazz under the stars. Founded to offer both locals and tourists an opportunity to enjoy music in the Texas Hill Country, Jazz a’Round features prominent jazz artists, food and beverages, and community camaraderie. In 2018, the festival will present Henry Brun and the Latin Playerz as headliners, with the Adrian Ruiz Quintet, DVJazz Band, and the O’Connor High School Jazz Ensemble appearing before Brun. Attendees are highly encouraged to bring lawn

chairs and umbrellas. No outside refreshments are allowed, but drink booths and gourmet food trucks will be stationed throughout the festival. You won’t want to miss this night of live jazz, presented by the City of Helotes and media sponsor KRTU-FM. Join us Saturday, April 21 from 7 p.m. to midnight in Old Town Helotes located at 14391 Riggs Road. Admission is free and public parking is available. For additional festival details, including the lineup schedule, visit helotes-tx.gov/events/jazz-around-old-town-helotes.

Brun and the Latin Playerz DVJazz Band Adrian Ruiz Quintet And the O’Connor High School Jazz Ensemble 30

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


Cornyval and Cornyval Parade Now celebrating its 52nd anniversary, the Cornyval Festival consists of four days of music, rodeo, dance, food, midway rides, and games hosted by the Helotes Festival Association! The celebration is a fundraiser for other nonprofit organizations, such as Helotes Lions and Lioness chapters, area churches, the Helotes 4-H Club, the Masons, Order of the Eastern Star, Casa Helotes Senior Citizens Center, Helotes and Grey Forest Volunteer Fire Departments, the Helotes Optimist Club, O’Connor High School Drama, FFA, booster clubs, and the Helotes Historical Society. The Cornyval Festival kicks off May 3, 2018 and lasts throughout the weekend. The festival takes place at the Helotes Fairgrounds located at 12210 Leslie Road. For information about admission or to see the complete event schedule, visit cornyval.org. On Saturday, May 5, the City of Helotes will host the Cornyval Parade. The 2018 Parade theme is “Deep in the Heart of Helotes,” spotlighting local pride and all the opportunities available in the City. With nearly 100 entries, this free event is fun for the whole family. It is recommended that attendees bring lawn chairs and umbrellas. The Parade begins at 10 a.m. It starts at Leslie Road and travels along Bandera Road to Old Bandera, and disbands at Antonio Drive in Old Town Helotes. Applications for Parade entries are being accepted now! For details, visit helotes-tx.gov/events/2018-cornyvalparade.

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

31


The Perfect Casita Getaway: Casa Lejana of Helotes

I

By Dan R. Goddard

nspired by the Spanish mission revival architecture of the 1930s, Casa Lejana has served as a ranch headquarters, the set of a 1940s Western movie, the Helotes public swimming pool, and a restaurant before being abandoned in the 1980s. Since acquiring the once-dilapidated property on Dent Lane five years ago, Brett and Jenna Bishop have transformed the haciendalike dwelling and a row of small casitas behind it into a unique bed-andbreakfast. A sun-filled, grassy courtyard featuring a flowing, Spanish-style fountain divides the white-painted stone house from the line of casitas, also painted white with blue doors. Once guest houses, each casita has a Santa Fe-style fireplace. The Bishops book three of the casitas through Vacation Rentals by Owner (VRBO) and Airbnb.

32

“We think the primary quality that attracts people online must be the uniqueness of the look,” Brett said. “There are so many other choices of places to stay in San Antonio and even out this way, but very few, if any, offer your own Spanish-style courtyard and casita. Once you are here, you will see the peaceful environment the space naturally offers, taking you back to another era.

Built by F. G. Antonio in the 1930s, Casa Lejana or “far-away home,” was originally the headquarters for a large ranch, and one of the casitas may have started out as stables. Aviator Christy Mathewson, son of the National Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher, acquired the property in the late 1940s and built the 50-foot-long swimming pool once open to Helotes residents.

The Bishops moved into the main house in August 2013 and had their first guest by November. “We’ve always enjoyed being hospitable wherever we live and believe sharing a property like this is well worth the effort,” Brett said. “Meeting people from all over the world - seriously, letting our oldest daughter help out with the set up, and her personal favorite, welcoming guests, making sure they feel taken care of and comfortable – there’s a lot of value here.”

“We don’t know much about when it was used as a public pool, but I have had some people of that generation perk up at local restaurants or other places when I tell them where we live and they’ll reply with, ‘We used to swim there all the time as children…’,” Brett said. “One lady even told me she remembers paying a nickel to swim. When it rains you can see the remnants of an old sign by the entrance of the pool that says, ‘No food or drink in the pool area.’ ”

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


A rock wall in Casa Lejana’s courtyard is inscribed “Christy and Lola (Peggy) Mathewson 10/10/46.” Embedded in the wall are pieces of colored glass Mathewson brought back from Europe after serving in World War II, perhaps shattered stained glass from a bombedout London church. Red River Dave and his Texas Tophands starred in “Echo Ranch,” filmed on the property in 1948. A precursor of today’s music videos, the black-and-white Western movie short had Dave and the Tophands saving a friend’s ranch by staging a rodeo benefit and performing hits, such as “Red River Valley,” “Echo Ranch” and “I’m a Rovin’ Cowboy.” The Bishops have some old posters and memorabilia from the movie that they’ve used to decorate the casitas where guests stay. Christopher Goldsbury Sr., father of Pearl developer Christopher “Kit” Goldsbury, is thought to have operated it as a restaurant and inn in the 1970s. “But through the 1980s and 1990s, it was virtually untouched and suffered major dilapidation,” Brett said. To the rescue came Glen and Denise Vernon, a visionary couple from Oklahoma, who enjoyed restoring old houses. They bought the property in 2004 and spent eight years fixing up the place. He used recycled wood to provide paneling, ceilings, and floors and made almost all the windows and doors in the home. Wiring, plumbing, and roofs were replaced and central heat and air conditioning were added. Saltillo tile was installed in the den, large breakfast area, and kitchen.

deal, partly out of concern for how much maintenance would be required. “We found it on Zillow and spent a lot of time driving by and scouting out the property,” Jenna said. “Another couple beat us to it, but the place kept tugging at us, and we let them know if they ever decided to sell to let us know first. They told us they loved it and didn’t expect to move, but, when a job offer came along he couldn’t refuse, they gave us a call and we moved in.” Despite all the work the Vernons and Bishops have done, Brett admits the place still needs improvements, including restoring one casita that burned in the 1980s, now used as storage. However, guests will find a fully-equipped weight room in the casita pool house, laundry facilities, and, of course, Wi-Fi. “We’ve added new plumbing in the casitas, a new driveway, and rebuilt the shallow end of the pool,” Brett said. “We recently installed an asphalt basketball court and parking lot. It’s a work in progress, but I think our customers appreciate our uniqueness, customer care, low cost, and having a detached space for privacy.” For more information, look for “Casa Lejana of Helotes” on Vacation Rentals by Owner (VRBO) or Airbnb.

“They actually made the place livable again,” Brett said. “We’ve stayed in contact with Glen, who did most of the heavy lifting when it came to restoring the place. The Vernons are incredibly gifted and deserve all the credit for how it looks.” The Bishops had the opportunity to buy Casa Lejana from the Vernons in 2012, but they weren’t able to complete the Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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Recurring Events

Mon. – Fri. | 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Casa Helotes Senior Citizens Center Congregate Meals & Activities 12070 Leslie Rd. | casahelotes.com Every Monday | 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com 1st Monday | 7 p.m. Helotes Festival Association General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. cornyval.org 3rd Monday | 7 p.m. Helotes Ag Booster Club General Meeting | 12132 Leslie Rd. helotes4h.org

1st Saturday | 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. MarketPlace @ Old Town Helotes Arts & Crafts Fair | 14391 Riggs Rd. helotesmarketplace.com

April 12, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

3rd Saturday | 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Art Walk Comm. Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd. helotesartwalk.com

April 13, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Shop Helotes Fiesta Medal Giveaway Community Event | TBA shophelotes.com

1st Sunday | 2 p.m. Helotes Lions Club Bingo | 14690 Bandera Rd.

April 14, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Family Game Night Community Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd.

April Events

April 15, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Concert Community Event | 8000 Lobo Lane helotesareacommunityband.com

4th Tuesday | 7 p.m. Helotes Humane Society Board Meeting | 10672 Shaenfield Rd. hhsanimals.org 1st Wednesday | 7 p.m. Knights of Columbus General Meeting | 13715 Riggs Rd. kofcknights.org

April 4, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Shop Helotes Fiesta Medal Giveaway Community Event | 12540 Bandera #303 shophelotes.com

2nd Wednesday | 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Ladies Night Out in Old Town Helotes The Bluffs at OTH | 14391 Riggs Rd

April 4, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Knights of Columbus General Meeting | 13715 Riggs Rd. kofcknights.org

1st Tuesday (Feb., May, Sept. & Nov.) | 7 p.m. Historical Society of Helotes General Meeting | TBA historicalsocietyofhelotes.org 1st Tuesday | 7 p.m. Helotes Lions Club General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. lionsclubs.org

3rd Wednesday | 7 p.m. Helotes Economic Development Corp. Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. helotesedc.com 2nd & 4th Thursday | 7 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com 3rd Thursday | 7 p.m. Helotes Masonic Lodge General Meeting | 11740 F.M. 1560 helotesmasonicfamily.org 3rd Friday | 6 p.m. Casa Helotes Senior Center Food Truck Friday | 12070 Leslie Rd. casahelotes.com 3rd Friday (May-Sept) | 6 p.m. Movie Night @ the Park Community Event | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

April 11, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Ladies Night Out in Old Town Helotes Community Event | 14391 Riggs Rd.

2nd Saturday | 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Family Game Night Comm. Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd.

April 2 | City Offices Closed Easter Break April 2, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com April 2, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Festival Association General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. cornyval.org April 3, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Lions Club General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. lionsclubs.org April 3, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Planning & Zoning Commission Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

1st Tuesday | 7 p.m. Helotes Planning & Zoning Comm. Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

34

Events

April 6, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Shop Helotes Fiesta Medal Giveaway Community Event | TBA shophelotes.com April 7, a.m. to 5 p.m. The MarketPlace @ OTH Arts & Crafts Fair | 14391 Riggs Rd. helotesmarketplace.com April 7-8, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. San Antonio Highland Games & Celtic Music Festival Community Event | 12210 Leslie Rd. sahga.org

April 16, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Ag Booster Club General Meeting | 12132 Leslie Rd. helotes4h.org April 16, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com April 17, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Chamber of Commerce TopGolf Fundraiser | 5539 N. Loop 1604 W. heloteschamber.com April 18, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Economic Development Corporation Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. helotesedc.com April 19, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Masonic Lodge General Meeting | 11740 F.M. 1560 helotesmasonicfamily.org April 20, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Casa Helotes Food Truck Friday Community Event | 12070 Leslie Rd. casahelotes.com April 21, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Art Walk Community Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd. helotesartwalk.com April 21, 7 p.m. to midnight Jazz a’Round Old Town Helotes Music Festival | 14391 Riggs Rd. visithelotes.com April 23, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com

April 9, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com

April 24, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Humane Society Board Meeting | 10672 Shaenfield Rd. hhsanimals.org

April 11, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Shop Helotes Fiesta Medal Giveaway Community Event | 14391 Riggs Rd. shophelotes.com

April 26, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


April 27 | City Offices Closed Battle of Flowers Break

May 5, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Cornyval Parade Parade | Bandera & Old Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

May 17, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Masonic Lodge General Meeting | 11740 F.M. 1560 helotesmasonicfamily.org

May 5, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The MarketPlace @ OTH Arts & Crafts Fair | 14391 Riggs Rd. helotesmarketplace.com

May 18, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Movie Night @ the Park – Cars 3 Community Event | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

May 1, Noon to 2 p.m. Historical Society of Helotes General Meeting | 15060 Antonio Dr. historicalsocietyofhelotes.org

May 7, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com

May 18, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Casa Helotes Food Truck Friday Community Event | 12070 Leslie Rd. casahelotes.com

May 1, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Lions Club General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. lionsclubs.org

May 7, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Festival Association General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. cornyval.org

May 19, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Art Walk Community Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd. helotesartwalk.com

May 1, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Planning & Zoning Commission Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

May 9, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Ladies Night Out in Old Town Helotes Community Event | 14391 Riggs Rd.

May 21, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Ag Booster Club General Meeting | 12132 Leslie Rd. helotes4h.org

April 30, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com

May Events

May 2, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Knights of Columbus General Meeting | 13715 Riggs Rd. kofcknights.org May 3-6, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. (times vary) Cornyval Festival Community Festival | 12210 Leslie Rd. cornyval.org May 5, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. NEF 5K Run/Walk & Family Wellness Fair Run/Walk | 12221 Leslie Rd. nisd.net/nef/5k

May 10, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com May 12, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Family Game Night Community Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd. May 14, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com May 16, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Economic Development Corporation Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. helotesedc.com

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

May 21, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com May 21 – 25, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Comm. Emerg. Response Team (CERT) Hosted by the Helotes Dispatch Center Community Education | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com May 22, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Helotes Area Chamber of Commerce Power Lunch | TBA heloteschamber.com

35


VOTING INFORMATION

May (continued)

May 22, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Humane Society Board Meeting | 10672 Shaenfield Rd. hhsanimals.org May 24, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com May 28 | City Offices Closed Memorial Day Break May 28, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Memorial Day Car Show Community Event | 12132 Leslie Rd. operationcomfort.org

June Events

June 2, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The MarketPlace @ OTH Arts & Crafts Fair | 14391 Riggs Rd. helotesmarketplace.com June 4, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Festival Association General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. cornyval.org June 4, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com June 5, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Lions Club General Meeting | 14690 Bandera Rd. lionsclubs.org

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June 5, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Planning & Zoning Commission Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

June 16, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Art Walk Community Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd. helotesartwalk.com

June 6, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Knights of Columbus General Meeting | 13715 Riggs Rd. kofcknights.org

June 18, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Ag Booster Club General Meeting | 12132 Leslie Rd. helotes4h.org

June 9, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Family Game Night Community Event | 14743 Old Bandera Rd.

June 18, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com

June 11, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com June 13, 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Ladies Night Out in Old Town Helotes Community Event | 14391 Riggs Rd. June 14, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com June 15, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Movie Night @ the Park – Despicable Me 3 Community Event | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com June 15, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Casa Helotes Food Truck Friday Community Event | 12070 Leslie Rd. casahelotes.com

June 20, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Economic Development Corporation Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. helotesedc.com June 21, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Masonic Lodge General Meeting | 11740 F.M. 1560 helotesmasonicfamily.org June 25, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Helotes Area Community Band Rehearsal | 14889 Old Bandera Rd. helotesareacommunityband.com June 26, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes Humane Society Board Meeting | 10672 Shaenfield Rd. hhsanimals.org June 28, 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Helotes City Council Regular Meeting | 12951 Bandera Rd. visithelotes.com

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


Hidden Cache is Cachet in Helotes

H

By Rick Schroder

ave you ever seen a llama donning the coordinates of a hidden treasure? What about a tree growing around a rusty old bicycle? Or a parking meter in the middle of the woods? These types of interesting “treasures” await your pursuit in and around Helotes! Geocaching is the new “hide and go seek” for tech-savvy explorers eager to escape the house and find geocache (or cache for short) hidden in all sorts of thought-provoking places. Geocaching. com describes the activity, which started in early 2000, as “a real-world, outdoor treasure hunting game using GPSenabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache hidden at that location.” Think Pokémon Go® with a twist... To date, Helotes and the surrounding areas are home to over 2,000 caches, and worldwide, it is estimated that many

millions of cache in over 190 countries exist in both rural and urban areas. In Helotes, there are two geocaches at the Disc Golf Course & Fitness Park, at least five in Old Town Helotes, and a

great number of caches along F.M. 1560, Bandera, and Hausman Roads. Almost all area neighborhoods house (or hide) one or more caches too. Geocache consist of varied shapes and sizes, and some are harder to find and

Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

open than others. Some are located in veiled boxes, some are Davinci-esque puzzles requiring a great deal of thought to “crack the code,” and EarthCache takes you to interesting geologic spots around the world. In all, there are over 17 different types of cache, and you can find many of them in Helotes. Once found, geocache typically have two things in common: a log book and, if you’re lucky, swag. Geocachers sign the log book attesting to their sleuth skills and trade one goodie for another. Remember: If you take something, leave something, and make sure the swag is of comparable or greater value. Current Helotes swag offers corn on the cob spears, gift cards, and DVDs. You might even find cache cash! Be safe out there, enjoy the hunt, and, always remember, BYOP (bring your own pen)! Many log books come sans writing utensils.

37


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Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018


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Free Community Training Event May 21-25, 2018 | 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. | 12951 Bandera Rd.

The City of Helotes Dispatch Center is hosting a Community Response Team (CERT) program the week of May 21. Upon completion, graduates will receive FEMA and CERT certificates. The program educates community volunteers about disaster preparedness and trains them in basic disaster response skills. The classes are free and open to the public. CERT applications are being accepted now! Visit the City of Helotes website to download the application or contact us at (210) 695-5916 for details. helotes-tx.gov/events Helotes: Gateway to the Texas Hill Country – Spring 2018

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NEW LOCATION

13318 Western Oak Drive, Helotes, TX 78023 | 210-695-5111 | www.pool-concepts.com

Helotes Spring 2018  
Helotes Spring 2018