Page 1

Piney Woods

February, 2014 Volume 3 Issue 12 Complimentary Copy

Pathfinder Of Lake Livingston Inside

Running Wild in O-Town Bulkhead Birding Lake Livingston State Park

Annual Azalea Trail Monthly Guide Serving Lake Livingston and the Surrounding Area

Page 2, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Table of Contents Page 1, Cover Page 2, Table of Contents Page 3, Sydney Brown Murphy Page 4, Running Wild in O-Town Page 5, Spring Luncheon Style Show Page 6, Shelly Bush Sitton Page 7, American Heart Month Page 8, Tax Law Changes Page 9, Piney Woods Fine Arts Page 10, Economy Port Building

Page 11, Lake Livingston State Park Page 12, Azalea Trail Page 13, Timber Theft Page 14, Bulkhead Birding Page 15, Ernie McClendon Page 16, Mike’s Saw and Supply Page 17, Texas Master Naturalist Page 18, Black Ice Page 19, Monthly Meetings Page 20, Patsy Boone

Piney Woods Pathfinder is only possible with the help of the Community.

Please send any information about upcoming events to

Piney Woods


Of Lake Livingston

“Helping you see the forest through the trees” The Piney Woods Pathfinder is published monthly by M&R Publishing and is owned by Ryan and Michael Downhour. Our goal is to furnish readers information regarding businesses and upcoming recreational events in Lake Livingston and the surrounding area. Any comments or suggestions are welcomed. Direct any correspondence to Piney Woods Pathfinder, PO Box 115, Coldspring, Texas, 77331. Phone 936-523-0033, e-mail Visit All rights of publication are reserved by the publisher. Articles and editorials are welcome but cannot be returned unless accompanied by a self-address, stamped envelope. Nothing appearing in Piney Woods Pathfinder can be reprinted in part or in whole without prior written consent. Information concerning any event of interest to our readers should be sent to us by the publication deadlines posted in the paper each month. Opinions and editorials printed in Piney Woods Pathfinder are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher.

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 3

Sydney Brown Murphy for County Judge The voice of reason As Executive Director of the Livingston-Polk County Chamber of Commerce since 2008, I know what it takes to do business in Polk County. As County Judge, I would aggressively promote Polk County at the State and Federal level to secure funding for infrastructure, education, and tourism. I would focus on partnership opportunities with the Deep East Texas Council of Governments, the City and Port of Houston. The safety and welfare of our community is a priority. We need to implement a countywide reverse 911 system similar to what is currently used in the City of Livingston. As a mother, teacher and business woman, I understand the importance of education. The creation of the new Commerce/College Center in

Livingston is one of the accomplishments I am most proud to be associated with. When children don’t get a good education, it directly impacts our community through low wages, poor training, and job performance. Truancy issues should be managed by the school district and precinct where they occur to avoid lost school time and low performance. Imagine if individuals from Polk County that specialized in different areas of business worked with the Economic Development program to help businesses considering locating here? I currently serve on the Board of Escapees CARE, and am active in Rotary and Livingston Art League. I have served on SAAFE House, Child Welfare Board, School Board and the

Hospital Foundation. I am a founding member of the local Boys and Girls Club, the Community Resources Coordinating Group, and Piney Wood Lakes Master Naturalist Chapter. I believe in governing with a

Political ad paid by candidate. Eric Wiggins Treasurer, PO Box 1971, Livingston, Texas 77351

balanced approach, accountability, fairness and diplomacy. Learn more at or Sydney Brown Murphy for County Judge on Facebook.

Page 4, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Running Wild In O-Town First Annual Wildcat ‘Color’ Fun Run On Saturday, March 1st at 8:00 am Onalaska Wildcats Baseball and Softball Teams will be sponsoring the 1st Annual Wildcat ‘Color’ Fun Run. The start/finish will be at Onalaska High School. There will be at least one 'color' station along the run too for some added fun. Register now on-line for discounted registration fee. Paper registration forms are also available at the concession stand during any home basketball game but must be turned in or mailed promptly to be registered.

day. Race day registrations are not guaranteed a t-shirt. School groups, community groups, businesses, etc...get your team-mates together and run as a 'team' for some friendly competition. If interested in sponsoring a portion of this race or making a donation, please contact a Booster Club Officer for information on our sponsorship program. Sponsor/business names will be on back of race t-shirts.

Link to registration: d/877014789? Come out and support our athletes in this fundraising event and have a blast doing it. This year's funds raised will be donated to help build a covered batting cages and storage facility. T-Shirt is included with all entrants or volunteers registered ahead of race

The Polk County Republican Club Fundraiser Slated for February 13 The Polk County Republican Club Fundraiser Slated for February 13 The Polk County Republican Club will be hosting a fundraiser on February 13, 2014 at the Polk County Commerce Center from 5:30 until 7:30 P.M. We will have most of our local candidates visiting and some of

our State candidates as well. Our featured speaker will be Rafael Cruz, father of Senator Ted Cruz. You know that the tickets are $10.00 each for a delicious barbecue plate and we will have an auction as well. The tickets will be available at the door or I have tickets at my office here at Economy Portable Buildings, LLC. You can also purchase tickets from any member of the Polk County Republican Club. Our monthly meetings are at My Place Restaurant each first Tuesday of the month at 7:00 P.M. We have a social time at 6:15 P.M. if you want to purchase a meal for the low price of $10.00. Our next meeting will be April 1, 2014.

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 5

SJC Women’s League 2014

Spring Luncheon and Style Show This year’s SJC Women’s League Spring Luncheon and Style Show is scheduled to be held on March 13, 2014, at the Coldspring United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. This annual event includes a luncheon catered by the Church Ladies and served by the League Board, a silent auction featuring items donated by businesses and merchants as well as League members, and a style show of spring styles and fashions provided by Sue’s Boutique on the Lake in Onalaska.

$20.00 (available after February 15).

Women’s League President Arnette Daugherty welcomes guests to the 2013 Annual Spring Style Show and Luncheon.

League member Joan Sikkelee models a party outfit at the 2013 Annual Spring Style Show and Luncheon. This event will begin at 11:30; lunch will be served at noon. Tickets will be

The 2013 Spring Style Show and Luncheon was extremely successful. One hundred forty tickets were sold and $3600.00 was raised to support local high school scholarships and the Coldspring Library. Monies raised by this and other SJC Women’s League fundraisers are used for scholarships and donations to civic and service entities in our community. For more information contact Katy Smith at 653-5556.

To Summit your Monthly Meeting to Piney Woods Pathfinder please email info@PineyWoods This is a free service that is provided to the community.

Page 6, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 7

February is American Heart Month February is American Heart Month, and unfortunately, most of us know someone who has had heart disease or stroke. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke, equal to 2,200 deaths per day. These conditions are also leading causes of disability preventing people from working and enjoying family activities. Cardiovascular disease is also very expensive—together heart disease and stroke hospitalizations in 2010 cost the nation more than $444 billion in health care expenses and lost productivity. To put those numbers on a local perspective consider this: the Texas Department of State Health Services has labeled East Texas as a danger zone for heart disease. In 2009 – 29% of deaths reported in Angelina County were due to preventable chronic diseases such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes. These chronic diseases are the number one contributing factor to heart disease. But the good news is that measures can be taken to prevent heart disease. Studies show that nearly everyone can become more heart healthy by following a few key steps, such as eating a healthy

diet, exercising, quitting smoking, and maintaining a healthy body weight. Still, there are many misconceptions about heart disease, with the biggest misconception being that heart disease only affects the elderly. In fact, according to the American Heart Association, almost 150,000 Americans killed by cardiovascular disease each year are under the age of 65. And one out of every 20 people below the age of 40 has heart disease. And it all comes back to two things: Diet and exercise. With more and more young adults depending on fast food to get them through the day, they are developing heart disease at an earlier age. And with longer work days and additional stress, young adults don’t take the time they need to relax and exercise. They have also become sedentary in their jobs by sitting at a desk all day. There has also been an alarming rise in childhood heart disease. Scientists now say that what a child eats in his youth will largely predict their chances for heart disease in the future. Heart disease may be a leading cause of death, but that doesn't mean you have to accept it as your fate. Although you lack the power to change some risk factors — such as family history, sex or

age — there are some key heart disease prevention steps you can take. Here are five heart disease prevention tips to get you started: * Don’t Smoke or Breathe SecondHand Smoke: Smoking or using tobacco is one of the most significant risk factors for developing heart disease. Chemicals in tobacco can damage your heart and blood vessels, leading to narrowing of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Atherosclerosis can ultimately lead to a heart attack. When it comes to heart disease prevention, no amount of smoking is safe. The good news, though, is that when you quit smoking, your risk of heart disease drops dramatically within just one year. And no matter how long or how much you smoked, you'll start reaping rewards as soon as you quit. * Exercise for at Least 30 Minutes a Day: Getting some regular, daily exercise can reduce your risk of fatal heart disease. And when you combine physical activity with other lifestyle measures, such as maintaining a healthy weight, the payoff is even greater. A simple, relaxing walk after dinner is all you need to start toward a healthy heart. * Eat a Heart-Healthy Diet: This means eating foods that are low in fat, cholesterol and salt. Eat food that are

rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products, which can help protect your heart. Beans, other low-fat sources of protein and certain types of fish also can reduce your risk of heart disease. Avoid red meat and choose lean chicken breasts or turkey instead. * Maintain a Healthy Weight: As you put on weight in adulthood, your weight gain is mostly fat rather than muscle. This excess weight can lead to conditions that increase your chances of heart disease — high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Talk to your doctor and decide a healthy weigh and body mass index to make for your weight loss goal. * Get Regular Health Screening: High blood pressure and high cholesterol can damage your heart and blood vessels. But without testing for them, you probably won't know whether you have these conditions. Regular screening can tell you what your numbers are and whether you need to take action. The information in this article was provided by the Transforming Texas department of the Angelina County & Cities Health District. For more information go to:

Page 8, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Annual Workshop to Highlight Tax Law Changes

St., Lufkin, TX. Registration is $70 and includes a workbook, lunch and refreshments.

LUFKIN, Texas – With tax season around the corner, it is important that forest landowners stay informed on the latest updates to tax laws regarding their timberland properties. The 2014 Texas Timber Tax

Workshop scheduled for next month in East Texas will provide information on special timber tax laws and rules, helping attendees understand recent changes before filing taxes. “That’s why this workshop is

important. Landowners will be up-todate on federal timber tax laws, which often change,” said Omkar Joshi, Forest Economist for Texas A&M Forest Service.

This annual workshop hosted by Texas A&M Forest Service and Texas Forestry Association, is an all-day event that gives hundreds of foresters, landowners and other professionals the training and education needed for applying new tax rules, which could prove as an advantage in forest management planning. “Tax laws aren’t simple and timber taxation rules can be even more complex,” said Joshi. “We want landowners to be fully aware of the many favorable tax provisions and help them to determine appropriate basis of their property.” The workshop is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 18 from 7:45 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. at the Pitser Garrison Convention Center, 601 North Second

The workshop is designed for forest landowners, consulting foresters, public accountants, loggers, attorneys, and anyone who deals with timber taxes. Participating in this workshop also qualifies for continuing education credits. For more information or to register, to go ertaxworkshop. Or contact Dawn Spencer at 979-458-6630 or ### Texas A&M Forest Service Contacts Omkar Joshi, Forest Economist 979-458-6630,

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 9

Piney Woods Fine Arts Save-The-Date! Crockett, TX— Piney Woods Fine Arts is announcing its Spring Gala 2014!! Save the date for April 26, 2014…this gala event will be held at The Barn at Hickory Creek and will benefit Arts in Education. Please mark your calendars to attend.

You Can Dance”, “American Idol” and “Dancing With The Stars” together on stage for Ballroom With A Twist!

PWFAA has some great shows remaining in the season and tickets are still available!

Apr. 26- PWFAA Spring Gala benefiting Arts in Education at The Barn at Hickory Creek

Feb. 14- a classical music concert with the world-renowned St. Petersburg String Quartet

For tickets or more information visit or call the PWFAA office Monday-Friday from 9:00-1:00 at (936) 544-4276.

Feb. 21- the stars and finalists of the hits TV shows “So You Think

Mar. 22- Country music queens Pam Tillis and Lorrie Morgan together with Grits & Glamour

Life Callings What is your Strategy for Safety? By: Pamela C. Grant, MSOE, Life Coach and Career Counselor In today’s erratic world, we all need extra safety and nurturing. What are you doing for yourself and your family to create safety and nurturing? With talks of War all around us – where do you find your own strength, and peace of mind? How do you get your own sense of power back about your own life? I submit it comes from within – not the outside elements. It’s imperative to keep your spirit alive and safe in this tumultuous time. Some examples: Get Support! Therapy, Coaching, Church etc. Ÿ Meditating Ÿ Prayer Ÿ Family Dinners Ÿ Soothing Music Ÿ Bubble Baths Ÿ Long Walks Ÿ

Talks With Friends Creating Safety Solutions Art Gardening Uplifting Movies Weekend Road Trips Emailing Beautiful Pictures Sending Cards Private moments to connect with yourself. Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ

Be conscientious as to the input of your spirit. Stay away from negative input and choose the positive input. Take a few moments and create your own list. Sit with your family and come up with some items. It’s crucial to create the safety from within when the world doesn’t provide it from without. May you find peace, safety, and nurturing everyday of your life. Blessings, Pamela Grant

Page 10, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Trades of the Trail

Economy Portable Building, LLC Economy Portable Buildings, LLC is a family-owned business that has been serving Polk and surrounding counties since 1982. We enjoy making new friends through our business and community involvement. At Economy Portable Buildings, LLC there is a large inventory of portable buildings for every purpose. We have something to suit almost every need -garages, barns, storage, workshops, offices…you name it. The various sizes, colors, styles, and options are sure to fit every need and every budget. If we don’t have what you need we will be happy to customize to your exact specifications. We offer In-House Financing, RentTo- Own, Cash, or 90 days same as cash and we also take Master Card, Visa, Discover, and American Express. Most of our buildings are ready for quick delivery and we have free delivery and set-up within 60 miles. If a new ‘Home Sweet Home’ is in your future check out our Finished Cabins.

We keep selections here on display so you can see the quality workmanship and beauty that is available for you. You can select a floor plan that best suits your unique style and needs. Carports are today’s answer for protecting your cars, trucks, boats, equipment, travel trailers or R.V.’s. Economy Portable Buildings, LLC works with Carolina Carports to insure you receive the best cover for the best price. We build enclosed barns and garages up to 40’ wide. We are your local neighborhood UHaul Rental location. If you need trucks or trailers to transport your household items, or to tow your vehicles then we are the place to come. You will also find

a good selection of boxes and moving supplies to help with your packing and moving needs. Jennie Kley Beasley and Mickey Kley Stephens are the owners of Economy Portable Buildings LLC. Both are lifetime residents of Polk County who

believe East Texas is a wonderful place to live and raise a family. They are both committed to serving the needs of the people in this area. For more information please call 936967-4034 or stop by 4091 Hwy. 190 west in Livingston.

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 11

Lake Livingston State Park Fishing, Hiking, Crafts and More Lake Livingston State Park will be offering the following guided activities during on Saturdays in February: 2/1/14: Discovery Walk, Piney Woods Boardwalk Nature Trail, 3:00 PM 2/1/14: Star Stories, 7:30 PM 2/8/14: Discovery Walk, Oak Flats Nature Trail, 12:00 PM 2/8/14: Introduction to Geocaching, 4:00 PM 2/15/14: Discovery Walk, Piney Woods Boardwalk Nature Trail, 11:00 AM

PM 3/1/14: Star Stories, 7:30 PM Regular park admission fees of $5 per adult ages 13 and up apply, no additional charge for any programs. For more details on each activity, visit All activities are also available byreservation for groups and can be tailored to the group’s interests. For availability and additional information, contact Ranger Beth Tragus at 936-365-2201 x302. Program Descriptions:

2/15/14: Make and Take Crafts, 1:00-2:30 PM

Discovery Walk, Piney Woods Boardwalk Nature Trail

2/22/14: Discovery Walk, Oak Flats Nature Trail, 11:00 AM

Join a Park Ranger to learn about the plants and wildlife of Lake Livingston State Park. This walk is conducted on the Piney Woods Boardwalk Nature Trail and can be completed in 45 minutes to 1 hour. The boardwalk is wheelchair and

2/22/14: Fishing with a Ranger, 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM 3/1/14: Discovery Walk, Piney Woods Boardwalk Nature Trail, 3:00

stroller accessible. Discovery Walk, Oak Flats Nature Trail Join a Park Ranger to learn about the plants and wildlife of Lake Livingston State Park. This walk is conducted on the Oak Flats Nature Trail. This short, 3/10 mile trail is great for younger children. Walks begin from the Headquarters parking lot, are low intensity, and can be completed in less than 30 minutes. Fishing with a Ranger Join park rangers for an afternoon of fishing! Rangers will be on hand at the Marina to help bait hooks, rig tackle, and teach the basics of fishing. Bait and tackle is provided, and limited quantities of loaner fishing poles will be available. Introduction to Geocaching Learn all about the growing outdoor challenge called geocaching: modern day treasure hunting! This program meets at the Amphitheatre below the Activity Center to cover all the basics on how to get set up to play, the gear you need, the rules, and tips and tricks to start finding

geocaches, then will go on a hunt to put our Geocaching skills to the test! Reservations are requested for this activity due to limited amounts of equipment and can be made by calling Park Ranger Beth at 936365-2201 x302. This activity is recommended for families and adventurers ages 8 and up. Make and Take Crafts Create your own all-natural bird feeder using pine cones, peanut butter or honey, and bird seed. Participants may also create a fishprint, a piece of colorful art using washable paints or create a pressedleaf window hanging. Rangers will be stationed by the marina for this walkup activity. Star Stories Take a tour of the night sky to learn about the stars. Rangers will show you some of the most popular constellations and tell the stories behind them. There may be an opportunity to view any visible planets or nebulae through a telescope. Star Stores will take place on the peninsula below the Activity Center.

Page 12, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Annual Azalea Trail Schedule of Events Spring 2014-Winter 2015 Guided Tours of the Ruby M. Mize Azalea Garden: March 1, 8, 15, 22 & 29: Free guided tours of the garden are offered every Saturday in March 1-4 p.m. For group tours of the garden or the Azalea Trail, please contact the Nacogdoches Convention and Visitors Bureau at 936-564-7351 or 1-888OLDEST-TOWN. Nacogdoches Azalea Trail Photography Show: March 18, 2014: Tues-Sun 12:30 p.m.- 5 p.m., Location: Cole Art Center, 329 E. Main. A juried photography exhibition from local photographers displaying Nacogdoches County Azaleas. Exhibition is scheduled March 18 -29. Main Street Shop and Stroll: March 22, 2014:11 a.m.- 3 p.m., Downtown. Stroll the red brick streets of downtown and see what fabulous wares our unique merchants have to offer, including specials, sales and door prizes. Be sure to play Main Street Bingo to win a prize. For more information, please call 936-559-2507.

Little Princess Garden Party March 22, 2014: 10:00 a.m. & 12:30 p.m.; Ruby M. Mize Azalea Garden at SFA. Introduce your favorite little girl to the beauty and joy of the garden at this special party. Enjoy refreshments, party favors, and entertainment planned to delight you and spark her imagination. Bring your camera to capture this day. Dress: Let her wear her favorite princess, fairy or garden party costume. Very limited seating. Tickets are $25 each, adults and children. 2nd Annual Tour of Home Gardens: March 22, 2014: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; Various locations. The Second Annual Tour of Home Gardens offers a rare opportunity to view some of Nacogdoches’ finest private residential gardens. Tickets are $15 and available for purchase February 1st at the Visitor Center, 200 E. Main. A Bloomin' Good Volkswagen Show: March 22, 2014: 8 a.m.- 2 p.m., Festival Plaza. See up to 100 vintage Volkswagens- from mild to wild. Admission is free; donations are welcome. Sponsored by the East Texas VEE-DUB Chapter of the Vintage VW Club of America. Nacogdoches Farmer's Market Spring Fling Saturday:March 22, 2014:8 a.m. 12 p.m., Nacogdoches Farmer's Market. Kick off spring in Texas' Oldest Town with live entertainment, children's activities, vendors galore and so much more. For more information, please call 936-559-2507. Nacogdoches Azalea Trail Symposium: “Heat-Tolerant Maples for the South” March 22, 2014: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Ina Brundrett Conservation Building, SFA Pineywoods Native Plant Center, 2900 Raguet St. Maples, especially Japanese maples, are wonderful ornamental trees to complement your azalea gardens. This year, Matt and Tim Nichols, of Nichols Nursery in North Carolina and, will dig into their extensive experience with propagating and growing more than 1,000 kinds of Japanese maples. With more than 35 years of experience, they will inspire us to plant more maples in our gardens, sharing maples that can take our Southern climate, demonstrate how maples are grafted. Lunch is provided, followed by a guided tour, assisted by Barbara Stump, of more than 200 maple varieties in the SFA Ruby M. Mize Azalea Garden.Fee $35 for SFA Gardens members; $40 for non-members. To register, contact 936-

564-7351 or Contact with questions. SFA Garden Gala Day and Plant Sale: April 05, 2014: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., SFA Pineywoods Native Plant Center, 2900 Raguet St. A wide variety of hard-to-find, "Texas tough" plants will be available, including new introductions, Texas natives, heirlooms, perennials and exclusive SFA introductions. Plants are extensively trailed in the gardens before being offered to the public. Benefits the SFA Gardens and its educational programs, which reach more than 15,000 students of all ages each year. The public is encouraged to arrive early and bring a wagon. For more information, call (936) 468-4404, or visit and click on "upcoming events." Read more by visiting

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 13

Timber theft is on the rise in Texas Timber theft is on the rise in Texas COLLEGE STATION, Texas Over the past four month, more than 20 timber theft cases have been reported in East Texas from Newton to Bowie Counties. Approximately one-third of the more than 200,000 family forest landowners in East Texas are absentee forest landowners. This, plus the rising price of timber makes property vulnerable and easily accessible to timber thieves. Timber theft is a crime and it affects everyone. Timber owners suffer monetary loss, but everyone stands to lose as the natural resource is taken without reforestation methods in place to ensure a new forest for the future. In Texas, many timber theft cases involve absentee landowners who are susceptible because they aren’t around to protect their property. In these cases, the thief is often long gone by the time the crime is discovered. “We are discovering that in more cases than not, the thieves are promising higher than market timber trend prices,” said Les Rogers, Texas

A&M Forest Service Chief Law Enforcement Officer. “In a few instances thieves also claimed to be affiliated with certain reputable organizations to gain the trust of unsuspecting landowners.” Landowners are advised to demand a bill of sale as Texas law requires that one is obtained from the seller. The bill of sale must include information such as the name of the landowner, seller and purchaser. It should also include a description or survey of the land and trees, and a warranty and signature from the seller. To help property owners avoid timber theft tactics, the Texas A&M Forest Service advises: * Have someone you know and trust report any cutting on your land immediately. * Never sign a contract without checking several references of the buyer. * For the best price insist on getting bids for your timber. * Mark all property lines to assure cutting on adjacent property does not encroach on yours. * If the landowner does not know the timber business, find someone to

help determine volumes, current prices and potential bidders. For detailed information visit download/get/file/1102418437760421/Timber+theft+is+a+crime.pdf. To report suspected timber theft activity call the Timber Theft Hotline 1-

800-364-3470 or contact Texas A&M Forest Service at (936) 639-8100. Contact: Les Rogers, Chief Law Enforcement Officer 979-458-7353,

Page 14, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Bulkhead Birding Winter Birds on Lake Livingston Bulkhead Birding Series by Bronwyn Clear Lake Livingston has amazing bird activity in the winter from December through March. Grab a pair of binoculars, a camera and find a good spot on the bulkhead. Winter birding is full of surprises. Most people only see a few individual water birds in the summer from their jet skis or from their boats as they cruise by. However, in the winter the birds that migrate in, and their wonderful behaviors, are a delight to watch. Since there are fewer human lake activities to disturb them but still lots of fish to eat, these birds revel in the large inland sea that is Lake Livingston. “Birds of a feather flock together”. That is how the saying goes, but this is not always the case in winter. One of the finest spectacles on the lake is a giant flotilla of different kinds of birds, hundreds to thousands swimming together in a tight flock. This can be seen in our wide southern portion of the lake almost every winter day when the weather is calm. The flotilla is made up mostly of Double-Crested Cormorants, elegant large American White Pelicans, Ring-Billed Gulls and occasionally a few Forster’s Terns. These tightly clustered flocks work together as one to herd fish for a meal, and together they get the job done! They find the subtle widespread ripples on the water that indicate where the fish balls are swarming. Larger fish below put pressure on smaller fish which forces them toward the surface. Then the bird round-up starts and the feast begins! The fish balls are constantly moving and the bird flotilla zigs and zags with them. They are all paddling one way one moment, then all turning and paddling the other way the next in a cooperative effort to trap and catch fish. Unfortunately, summer bird watchers on Lake Livingston almost never get the chance to see our magnificent flocks of American White Pelicans. White pelicans are migratory, and they fly down from the north around December but leave our area by the end of April. With a wing

span of 8-9 feet they are one of the largest birds in North America! They are snowy white with jet black wing edges, orange bills, and they are simply gorgeous! In winter the white pelicans majestically paddle up and down Lake Livingston alongside cormorants and gulls, all cooperating to catch fish. When they are hungry, they drop their long necks down, dip their heads underwater, open their beaks and wait for fish to swim in! They don’t dive and don’t swim under water, but can hold up to 3 gallons of water in their enormous expandable beaks and throat pouches. At times it seems like they should be drowning because they can hold their heads underwater for such a long time! By early evening you can often see the down below the damn, roosting for the night, snug and out of the cold lake wind. Another bird that summer birders will miss is the Ring-Billed Gull which is found over and around the fringes of these large wintering bird herds. Their habitats are bodies of fresh water, and Lake Livingston is perfect for them. They migrate into Texas in the fall, but most leave in the spring to nest in other regions. RingBilled Gulls are white with gray wings, dark tail markings, and a strong black stripe on their bills. These birds are the noise makers - squawking , crying and warbling! They swim and fly and squawk around the flotilla of birds, hoping to distract, steal and scavenge bits of fish that the other birds catch. After the fishing is done and the evening comes, the gulls usually settle down into the open water to roost. From time to time there are a few Forster’s terns that join in the fishing events as well. Common in winter and summer, their coloring is very similar to a gull - white, gray and black accents. To catch fish these terns smash into the water so hard it seems like their wings will break off! This is known as plunge-diving. They have very hollow bones and many air sacs which allow for compression. This

Birds of many feathers flock together. Photo by Bronwyn Clear makes it possible for the terns to survive dive-bombing into the water. Terns spend a great deal of time over the water and diving into the water, but rarely float, swim or roost on the water. This is one of the best ways to tell a tern from a gull. Finally, we have our DoubleCrested Cormorants flocking by the hundreds to thousands in winter! They migrate too, but many stay for summer. They are large, fierce and ungainly with brown to black coloring, floppy black paddle feet and a hooked bill. Sometimes loved and sometimes hated, the cormorant is also known locally as a “Water Turkey”, possibly because it pumps its head back and forth while swimming. They tend to fly low and flap hard. To catch fish the Cormorants sit on the water, then do delightful surface dives, arching their long necks and curving into the water. They stay down generally about 10-15 seconds, darting underwater, actively chasing their prey. In the summer at Lake Livingston we don’t see them in these enormous flocks because many migrate from the area. Some stay for summer and we spot them as individuals swimming low in the lake around the docks, or sometime we see a few up Indian Creek sitting on the branches of drowned tree to roost at night or with wings spread out to dry in the daytime. In any case they are the very best of fishing birds, and some fishermen hate them because

they can rapidly clean out a stock pond or small lake. In China the lake fishermen use domesticated Cormorants to fish for them! They tie loose nooses around their necks, and push them off their small boats to fetch fish! The birds pop back up to the surface with fish, but the noose prevents them from swallowing. The birds hop onto perches the fishermen hold out for them and are brought back into the boats where they are coaxed to give up their catch. Then the cormorants are sent back into the lake to do it all over again and again. The fishing baskets fill up very fast! No poles. No lines. No hooks. Just Cormorants and savvy fisherman! All the different bird species have slightly different fishing techniques, but in winter these birds sometimes come together and cooperate to get meals. It is a joy to watch! Like people, they pull together when it is beneficial. Like people, they have different talents they bring to the table. Like people, there are more active groups and more passive groups. Like people, there are tricksters and squawkers. If you have not seen our winter lake birds, come to Lake Livingston on a calm day for some wonderful bird watching opportunities! To contact Bronwyn with comments or questions please email m

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 15

Ernie McClendon for District Judge, 258th Judicial District To The Voters of Polk, San Jacinto and Trinity Counties, As a longtime resident of Polk County, I am proud to announce my Candidacy for District Judge of the 258th Judicial District serving Polk, San Jacinto and Trinity Counties. My wife and I feel this is a great opportunity to serve our community. Polk County has been my home since 1971. Prior to moving to Polk County, I attended school in Odessa, Texas. After graduation, I attended Baylor University, receiving a Juris Doctorate Degree from Baylor Law School in 1967. In October of the same year, I volunteered to serve in the United States Navy. I attended Officer Candidate School and was a Line Officer for four years. I was honorably discharged as a Lieutenant. While in the Navy I was deployed to both Vietnam and the Mediterranean. In 1971, after my time in The United States Navy, I moved to Livingston and served as County Attorney for Polk County, for 12 years. As County

Attorney, I tried many cases involving criminal and juvenile law. Since that time, I have been in private practice serving the Counties of Polk, San Jacinto and Trinity, as well as other surrounding areas; practicing family law, real estate law, probate, estate planning, and wills and trusts. I also owned and managed Polk County Title Company for 21 years. I have been on both sides of the courtroom and have the legal and life experiences to serve you fairly, efficiently and with compassion. My wife, Ruth and I have five children: Mary is a school teacher in Lewisville; Marc is a mortgage broker in Dallas; Tish is a nurse for Memorial Medical Center in Livingston; Roman is employed by Sam Houston Electric Cooperative; and Lauren, the youngest, is a student at Big Sandy. We have also been blessed with 9 wonderful grandchildren. Serving my community has always given me great satisfaction. As a member of The Rotary Club, I am proud of our Rotary Standard of “Service

Above Self” and the Rotary campaign “Don’t Meth with Me”, which educates 5th graders on the harmful effects of drugs. I have also been involved in many other activities throughout the community, including Livingston Youth Baseball, Livingston Softball, Little Dribblers Basketball, The Youth Soccer Association, The Boys and Girls Club of Livingston, Boy Scouts of East Texas, the Trinity Neches Livestock Show and Rodeo, CASA, mentorship programs with Livingston Independent School District and many other organizations. In my leisure time, I enjoy spending time with my family, playing golf and following collegiate sports. Given the opportunity to serve you as the 258th District Judge, I will bring the fairness, respect, honor and impartiality to this office that our district deserves. As District Judge I will strive to bring dignity, patience and courtesy to the litigants, jurors, witnesses, lawyers and all others who enter the courtroom. I will conduct the duties of District Judge without bias or prejudice.

The people of our District deserve judges that conduct themselves according to the Code of Judicial Conduct while maintaining professional competence and acting promptly, which I will do Because Justice Demands The Highest Level of Standards. Thank you for your support and please vote for me in the March 4th 2014 Republican Primary Election. Early Voting is February 18th February 28th . Very Respectfully, E.L. “Ernie” McClendon, Jr. Candidate for District Judge of the 258th Judicial District Pol adv. Paid by Ernie McClendon Campaign, Treasurer Ruth McClendon 913 N. Washington, Livingston, TX 77351

Page 16, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 17

Piney Wood Lakes Chapter offering Spring 2014 Basic Training for Texas Master Naturalist program Texas Master Naturalists not only get their feet wet and their hands dirty, but while doing so they spend much outdoor time learning about a variety of nature-related topics including different plant, insect, and animal species; wetland, aquatic and forest ecologies and maybe even find something new. They assist scientists in gathering data for current field studies or research as well as educate the public on relevant natural resource related topics such as the importance of native TX bees and the approach of non-native Zebra Mussel and Raspberry Crazy ant. The Texas Master Naturalists program has existed for fifteen year, and was the first such program in the nation. The program’s mission is “to train volunteers to assist partnering agencies and community organizations to provide education, outreach and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within the communities of Texas.” To date Texas Master Naturalist chapters exists in over 70% of the Texas counties. The local Piney Wood Lakes Master Naturalist Chapter formed in 2010 and serves the communities within Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity and Tyler Counties. The TMN program is sponsored by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension agency and Texas Parks & Wildlife. Persons interested in becoming a certified Master Naturalist are welcome to join the Spring 2014 Basic Training classes to meet the required minimum

forty hours of training, mostly classroom instruction with some outdoor field trips. Trainees are then required to volunteer for a minimum of forty hours of service projects that are offered in group settings as well as individual projects. The chapter partners to assist personnel within the local natural resource related organizations such as Texas Forestry Service, Texas Parks & Wildlife, and Natural Resources Conservation Service. Spring classes will be offered minimum of twice monthly, February to June on some Thursday afternoons but mostly on Saturdays. Interested persons please contact Susan Tullos to attain copies of the Registration and background check forms and pay a fee of $150, of which $30 will be reimbursed upon successful completion of training. Her number is 936-9330013 or

Page 18, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Weather Whys: Black Ice Q: You often hear the term "black ice." What is it? A: It's not really black, but it is ice that is extremely dangerous, says Brent McRoberts of Texas A&M University. Black ice is ice that appears to be very dark or even black because it is transparent – it is reflecting the color of the asphalt on the road. "Black ice is a thin layer of ice on the road and it often looks wet, not especially icy. So it can be hard to notice from a distance, and for this reason it is dangerous to drive or walk on," McRoberts explains. Q: Is it more dangerous than regular ice? A: It is almost always more dangerous, McRoberts reports. "Black ice often forms at night and early in the morning, when temperatures are low but traffic is high," he adds. "Sunlight can often melt it because it is such a

thin layer of ice, but black ice can last longer on roads that are protected by shade. One study in Sweden a few years ago showed that there are five times more accidents on roads that have black ice than on dry roads and twice as many accidents as on roads that had packed snow. That's why sanding crews are always important when an ice storm is about to hit."

Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014, Page 19

Monthly Meetings American Association of University Women (AAUW) Polk County Branch Meets the fourth Monday of each month, September thru April except December, at the First National Bank, W Hwy 190, Livingston, TX, 6:45 pm. For more information call 936-967-2531 or 936967-5065. American Legion Post 629 - Meets in Camilla Texas across from Browder’s Marina, we have our regular meeting every 2nd Saturday of each month at 10:00 AM for the legionnaire's. Our physical address is 1348 FM 3278 our post phone number is: 936-653-4708 for other info. Care Share Mission, Inc. of San Jacinto County - is a food pantry open from 10am until 2pm, weekly Monday and Thursday. We serve qualifying residents of San Jacinto County. We are located at 21 Butler St., Coldspring, Texas. You may call for more information during our working hours at 936-653-5543. CASA – Court Appointed Special Advocates – For information to become a volunteer donating time for children of Polk County, call Joanis Robertson at 936523-0519. Coldspring's Area Business and Merchants - Meets the second Thursday of the month at 8 a.m. Coldspring Cafe. Call 936-653-2332 Coldspring / San Jacinto County Chamber of Commerce - Meets 3rd Tuesday, every other month. Dates are 5/14, 7/16/, 9/17, 11/19. Meeting are at noon for member luncheon at the Coldspring Community Center. Please RSVP to or call 936-653-2184. Board Meeting is the first Thursday of each month at 8 a.m. at the Chamber office. Coldspring's Trade Days – 4th Saturday monthly , March – November Families and Individuals thanking heroes – Meets the second Thursday of each month from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the Livingston Physical Therapy office. For information, call Andrea at 936-327-4084. Friends of Myrphy Memorial Library- Friends are active workers in library projects and raise funds for library projects. Meetings are held the third Wednesday of each month at 11:00 a.m. at the library, 601 W. Church Street. Friends of the Onalaska LibraryFriends of the Onalaska Library support a wide variety of library projects. For details, contact the Onalaska City Hall between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. weekdays and Saturdays. You may also call librarian Jenny Quintin, at 936-646- Book (2665). Future Farmers of America - FFA members learn leadership skills, public speaking and occupational skills. Call Candis Carraway at 936-328-2257 for information about FFA programs.

Habitat for Humanity of Polk County Applicant Meeting - Meetings are held the last Wednesday of every month at First National Bank Westside. Applicants must be residents of Polk County. Meeting begins at 1:00 and generally lasts about an hour, depending on number of applicants in attendance. Please call our office at 936-328-8529 or e-mail our office manager at for more information. Hook 'Needle Charities Club – Meets the second Wednesday of each month from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at Memorial Medical Center – Livingston dinning room. The club crochets, knits and sews items for needy individuals. For information, call Joan Reeves at 936-3271989. The Livingston Art League - meets on the 4th Monday of the months Sept., Oct, Jan., Feb., April, and May, also the 1st Monday of Dec. at St. Luke's Episcopal Church at 836 Jones St., Livingston, TX 77351. Our time is 9:00am to 12:00 for our paint-in (everyone welcome to come and paint on whatever you chose) and 12:00 to 3:00pm for our meeting. We have refreshments and demonstrators who show all mediums. For more info. call Celeste Williamson, 936 967-2161 or email: Livingston Lion’s Club - Meets every Wednesday at 12 noon at Camp Cho-Yeh, For more information on meetings or joining contact Casey Evans 936-3284888 or Henry Ager 936-327-0936 Livingston Rotary Club – Every Thursday from noon to 1 p.m. at Cho Yeh, For information , call Ray Gearing at 936327-2752. Piecemakers Quilt Guild – Meets the second Monday of each month at 9:30 a.m. at the First Baptist Church, 106 Colt Rd (59 the Hospital area). "Bees" are held at various times throughout the month. Call Kay Hardy at 936-329-3660 for more information. Come expand your quilting experience. Piney Wood Lakes Chapter of Texas Master Naturalist - Meets the first Thursday of each month at the Polk County Chamber of Commerce located on Hwy 59 North of Livingston. Our meeting time is 2 PM. Polk County Republican Club Meets every first Tuesday of the month at La Casita Mexican Restaurant on old Highway 59 (Washington Street) starting at 6:00PM for those wanting to eat and visit. The program begins at 6:30. Everyone is cordially invited to attend. For more information contact Penny Uselton at 713-553-0962 Polk County Social Club – Meets every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the VFW hall. For more information, call Mary at 936-327-9015.

Polk County SPCA - Meets the first Thursday at 6:00 p.m. at our new location, 802 S. Houston (Hwy 146). Use the Mary Street entrance. 936-327-7722 San Jacinto County Chamber of Commerce - Meets first Thursday of the month at 8 a.m. in at the Chamber's Office. Shepard Chamber of Commerce – Meets the fourth Monday of every month at 6:00 pm at the EDC Building on the corner of Rt 150 and McKellar St, in Shepherd. Call 936-628-3890. SJC Women's League - The Women's League of San Jacinto County meets on the second Thursday of each month, September through May, at the Coldspring Community Center. The monthly meetings begin at noon and include lunch and a program. For more information, call Katy Smith at 936-653-5556. Square Dancing - More fun than you can imagine! Great Exercised! Fun, nice people having fun. No experience necessary, casual dress. Monday evenings at 7 pm at the Escapees Clubhouse 6 miles South of Livingston on 146, turn right on Providence, left on Escapees Drive. Call Jim & Betsy at 936-327-6410 for more information. Stroke Support Group “The Preventers” – The 2nd & 4th Thursday of the month, 1 pm at Guardian Health Care in Northridge Plaza, next to the hospital on the Hwy 59 feeder raod, Suite 400. A hands – on community forum for preventing stroke and helping those

affected by stroke. TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) Livingston Chapter - Meets Thursday evening at Livingston Memorial Hospital lunch room. Weigh in starts at 4:30 pm. Meeting starts at 5:30 pm. For more information call Alice at 936-967-8811 or Teresa at 936-328-4170. TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) Onalaska Chapter - meets Thursday morning at Pine Forest Baptist Church on Hwy. 190 W. Weigh-in 9:00A.M. Meeting starts 9:30A.M. For more information call Betty Willis at 936-967-3913 or Doris Daniels at 936-967-8850. United Daughters of the Confederacy – Meets the second Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at the Livingston Heritage House. The genealogical society welcomes the public. Veteran’s of Foreign Wars - Meets the 3rd Monday of the month at the Post Home, located at 3916 US Highway 59 North in Livingston (3 miles north of Livingston). Covered dish menu at 6:30 pm and the meeting starts at 7:30 pm. For more info 936-327-9119, Youth Movie Night - 2nd Friday of each month @ 7pm at Indian Ministries for Jesus, 195 Owl Hoot Trail, Livingston, Texas in Indian Springs Subdivision. Everyone is invited. Popcorn & Refreshments served. Pastor Lolo Garza. Please call Kim for directions or more info: 936-435-4203

Page 20, Piney Woods Pathfinder, February, 2014

Piney Woods Pathfinder  
Piney Woods Pathfinder  

February 2014