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March 2020

Pecan Grove monthly

Find out what’s new with

Annabelle’s Amazing Graces


Lace up your sneaks for Keepin' it Renal

A publication of the





plus numerous specialty locations

The caring and concern shown to me by the staff was superb and timely. Highly recommend OakBend for those in the community who want to choose a hospital they can trust. I do, with my life.


Contents and Staff March 2020

Pecan Grove


GENERAL MANAGER Lee Hartman leehart@fbherald.com


ASSISTANT MANAGING EDITOR Marquita Griffin mgriffin@fbherald.com

The Fort Bend County Women's Center will

ADVERTISING John Oliver joliver@fbherald.com

celebrate 40 years in the community with


"A Journey of Hope."

Stefanie Bartlett sbartlett@fbherald.com Ruby Polichino ruby@fbherald.com


GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Melinda Maya mmaya@fbherald.com

This local nonprofit continues to raise funds

Rachel Cavazos rcavazos@fbherald.com

for GNAO1 mutation research through its

WRITERS & CONTRIBUTORS Averil Gleason Scott Reese Willey

annual benefit..


14 TALK OF THE TOWN Hope for Three introduces a new autism driving program to the community.



TO ADVERTISE If you are interested in advertising in the Pecan Grove Monthly, please call 281-342-4474 for rates, information and deadlines. PHOTO & ARTICLE SUBMISSIONS We are looking for fresh story ideas and enjoy publishing your articles in the Pecan Grove Monthly. If you have an story idea or photo to publish please send your information to mgriffin@fbherald.com with “Pecan Grove Monthly” in the subject line. © 2019 Pecan Grove Monthly. All Rights Reserved. Pecan Grove Monthly has 30,000 print circulation and is a sister publication of Fulshear Living Monthly, Greatwood Monthly, West Fort Bend Living and is a Publication of the Fort Bend Herald. Our publishing headquarters is 1902 S. Fourth Street, Rosenberg Texas 77471

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'Keepin' It Renal.' Tell us how we’re doing! Email: mgriffin@fbherald.com

Growing our team of experts in

OBSTETRICS AND GYNECOLOGY Houston Methodist Welcomes Dr. Elizabeth Mosier Elizabeth Mosier, MD, joins Rosalyn Miller, DO, at Houston Methodist Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates in Sugar Land. Together, these board-certified OB-GYNs provide the full range of care, including: • Adolescent and adult gynecology • Low- and high-risk obstetric care • Minimally invasive gynecologic surgery • Well-woman exams Backed by the advanced technology of Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, both doctors are committed to providing comprehensive care to women of all ages so they can live full and healthy lives.













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Feature Story

A Journey of Hope Fort Bend Women’s Center celebrates 40 years of service

By MARQUITA GRIFFIN | mgriffin@fbherald.com


he Fort Bend Wo m e n ’ s Center is switching it up this year, replacing its expected Boogie and Giggle fundraising events with something special — an event dubbed “A Journey of Hope,” a jamboree highlighting the center’s four decades of service in the community. “We are so excited for this year’s 40th anniversary celebration,” said Fort Bend Women’s Center CEO Vita Goodell. To date, the nonprofit has helped more than 50,000 sur vivors of domestic violence and assault. This long “journey of hope,” said Eva Rushing, the center’s communications and marketing manager, “has led to an amazing evolution of programs and services to help provide survivors and their children freedom from abuse and a path toward independence.” Some such programs and services include a 24- hour emergency shelter, a crisis hotline and free, longterm Excited about “A Journey of Hope” are, from left, Jim Smith, Lizzie Harbin, Bryan Sparks and Marc DuPont with support services such as counseling, PCCA, the presenting sponsor for The Fort Bend Women’s Center’s celebratory fundraiser. “The journey back case management, legal advocacy, to freedom, self-sufficiency and independence is a hard one for many of the survivors we serve – Fort Bend

40 Years of Commitment & Support at a Glance

The Fort Bend Women's Center

Women’s Center is working hard to give them the very best opportunity to succeed,” Eva Rushing said.








Pat Altman, a Rosenberg attorney, Ti m o t h y S l o a n e , assistant district attorney, and Paulette Greene, a Rosenberg business professional, recognized the need for domestic violence services in the community and initiated the development of Fort Bend Women’s Center.

Increased concern for the health and safety of abused women and children led to the acquisition of a shelter, which was a rented home in Stafford, Texas.

A sexual assault component was added and expanded to include a part-time staff person. The Personal Accompaniment Volunteer program was added. A George Foundation grant made the permanent acquisition of a shelter facility possible and increased the shelter’s capacity from 21 to 30 residents.

The center opened its first resale store to provide funding for survivor programs. The Fort Bend Women’s Center PennyWise Resale store grew to four locations in R i c h m o n d , K a t y, Stafford and Mission Bend.

The hotline expanded to a 24-hour service. Increased networking with Polly Ryan Memorial Hospital (now known as Oak Bend Medical Center).

A 3,000 square foot home, donated by Mr. and Mrs. John Lipinski, was renovated by the Knights of Columbus and converted into a facility for mothers with teenage boys.

The center introduced transitional housing assistance. This program reduced the rate of clients returning to their abusers from 65 percent to 10 percent.

6 • Pecan Grove Monthly

Left photo: Fort Bend Women’s Center former emergency shelter. The new shelter was built in 2001; right photo: Volunteers at work at the Emergency Shelter during BHP Petroleum “Day of Caring.”

children’s services, rape crisis services, rental assistance and transportation — all of which are accessible to survivors from Fort Bend County, Harris County and surrounding areas. “In 1980, we could not have imagined that we would be given the opportunity to help so many victims in need. From a kitchen telephone helping callers in Rosenberg to now serving as the primary provider of free services for survivors in Fort Bend County, we have truly come a long way and have helped thousands of families get on the path to living an independent life, free of violence and fear,” Goodell said. “I’d say that’s something worth celebrating.” “A Journey Of Hope,” presented by PCCA, will be held at Anson Aviation in Sugar Land on March 21 from 6 to 11 p.m., in a unique airplane hangar on the runway. This event will include food stations, open beer and wine bars, private plane display, flight simulator experience, high-end auction items, live music by Mango Punch and more. Ticket prices are $150 for an individual and sponsorships start

at $1,000. For more information about the event, to purchase tickets or become a sponsor contact Patty Holt, the center’s events manager, at pholt@fbwc.org or 281-344-5761. For more information about the center visit fbwc.org. “We are so grateful for all of our supporters along the way,” Goodell said. “And [we] are continuing to work hard at assisting survivors in their journey of hope and the fight against violence.”









Life skills training was added. Phase I of shelter renovation was completed. The Resale Center moved to larger quarters at 416 Highway 90A.

The Resale Center moved and expanded. The Director of Sexual Assault was made a full-time position, enabling further expansion of the Sexual Assault Program.

Phase II of the shelter renovations and installation of a tworoom building for the children’s program was completed.

A capital campaign was launched that successfully raised over $2 million to build a new shelter.

The agency’s new state-of-the-art shelter was opened. The new facility was built to house 60-65 women and children, a 50 percent increase over the previous shelter. It allowed the Center to add features like an onsite clinic, a learning resource center and improved recreational facilities for residents’ children.

The center opened a new, specially designed building in Richmond. As well as providing the original PennyWise store with much larger premises, the building is also home to the Center’s management offices. PennyWise’s Stafford store relocated to larger premises.

The center celebrated its 35th anniversary with a special evening featuring Ashley Judd and 200 guests.

PennyWise opened its second Dona tion Center in Katy.

To advertise, call 281-342-4474


In The Spotlight

Annabelle’s Amazing Graces The van Deursens continue to raise awareness about a rare disorder by MARQUITA GRIFFIN | mgriffin@fbherald.com

Photo by Light Shines Photography | The van Deursen family of Fulshear. Shelley and David and their children (from left) James, Matthew and Annabelle.


ittle vivacious four-year-old Annabelle van Deursen is learning to drive herself around these days, and in the process is grabbing hold of the independence her disorder would seemingly prevent her from achieving. The wheelchair she now has, not only offers increased mobility, but also provides Annabelle the means to interact with peers at eye level, a welcomed progression for a child who spent the majority of her prior days crawling everywhere. “She loves it and so do we,” said Annabelle’s mother, Shelley van Deursen, adding that Annabelle also has an augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device — an adaptation communication tool for people with disabilities. The device, which can replace or supplement speech and writing for those with impairments, was “such a game changer for her and our family,” Shelley said. “We are absolutely thrilled with her progress and her ability to use it. “It is one of our biggest joys for her be able to ‘talk’ to us.”

GNAO1, A TRICKY DISORDER By traditional expectations, Annabelle should be walking, talking and moving through life like any other four-year-old kid. But she isn’t. Following a year fogged with questions, tests, concerns, re-tests and frustrations, Shelley and her husband Daniel were told Annabelle was diagnosed with a GNAO1 mutation — a rare neurological disorder that can cause, among other symptoms, developmental delays,

8 • Pecan Grove Monthly

abnormal movements, early infantile seizures, irregular muscle contractions, involuntary movements of the face and tongue and poor muscle tone. In a prior interview, Shelley said GNAO1 is “a little trickier than just simple diagnosis,” explaining that within the diagnosis there are different variants, and each child is affected differently, even if they have the same variant. For Annabelle, the mutation caused her to have developmental delays and a movement disorder, resulting in her inability to walk or talk.Annabelle is, however, completely cognitively appropriate for her age. “She is loving the public school PPCD program.We all are,” Shelley shared excitedly. “She continues with therapy weekly and is really learning how to ‘drive’ her wheelchair and work her ACC device to talk to us. I know Annabelle has so much to tell us, and as a 4 year old, it was becoming increasingly more frustrating for her to not be able to.We were just guessing what she wanted, now she can actually tell us. It’s amazing for us all.” Among “loving all things princess, coloring, painting, reading books and getting her nails painted,” Annabelle is also happy being a big sister to her brothers James and Matthew. “Annabelle excels at being a big sister,” her mother said, adding that watching her children bond is a blessing. “She loves to help me with her baby brother Matthew,” Shelley gushed.“She loves to hold him, give him a pacifier, push him in the swing and read to him. She is also loving to her little brother James.

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They have such a fun and loving relationship and they play so well together. “James is already such a great little brother to Annabelle as well,” Shelley added.“He really loves her and helps her when she needs it.”

NO FEARS, STRONG FOUNDATION The truth is Annabelle, and other children diagnosed with the GNAO1 mutation, do need help. According to The Bow Foundation, around 150 children around the world are known to be impacted by a GNAO1 genetic disorder. To date there is no cure. Although Annabelle has made progress over the past year, her parents can tell the mutation is progressing, too. “Her body seems to be getting a little more stiff and there have been a handful of times we have seen that she has trouble controlling her body and the way it moves. “This is very scary for her and us.” Yet fears don’t steer the van Deursen household, which Shelley said is built upon a strong Catholic foundation. “We know God is the ultimate healer and He can do anything,” she stressed.“I love when I know people are praying for our Annabelle, it brings me such peace.” Despite the many challenges the van Deursens must battle in regard to their daughter’s disorder, there is an abundance of joy in their household.Their days, Shelley said, are filled with laughter and all the cute idiosyncratic things children do. “We can’t get enough of it,” she said, adding that they are also grateful for the support swelling from the community . Daniel and Shelley notably praised Katy ISD for their daughter’s school, teacher, therapists, aides and school bus drivers. “It brings us such great joy that she loves school and she has made so much progress.“It is prayers answered for us.” PHOTOS TOP TO BOTTOM: Photo by Light Shines Photography | Annabelle van Deursen loves being a big sister to her brothers James, 2, and Matthew 3 months. “We are doing really well, we are all so happy with the addition of Matthew and how much love Annabelle and James have for him,” said Shelley. Photo by Light Shines Photography | Annabelle van Deursen loves being a big sister to her brothers James, 2, and Matthew 3 months. “We are doing really well, we are all so happy with the addition of Matthew and how much love Annabelle and James have for him,” said Shelley. “Annabelle excels at being a big sister to both of her brothers,” said her mother Shelley.

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From left Rick and Connie Rogge (Annabelle’s grandparents); James van Deursen, Daniel van Deursen, Shelley van Deursen, Annabelle van Deursen, Christine Seligman, Ella Seligman, Jordan Seligman and Cassie Rogge at a prior Annabelle’s Benefit.

ANNABELLE’S BENEFIT As they adapt to and meet the challenges of their daughter’s disorder, the van Deursens also continue their work with the 501c3 nonprofit they founded called Annabelle’s Amazing Graces. The goal of their nonprofit is to raise funds to donate for GNAO1 mutation research through its annual fundraiser called Annabelle’s Benefit. Proceeds from the benefit are donated to The Bow Foundation, an organization started by two families, who, like the van Deursens, want a cure for their children who were also diagnosed with the GNAO1 mutation. In January The Bow Foundation granted $50,000 to Dr. Brian Muntean, a researcher in the Martemyanov lab at The Scripps Research Institute, and $100,000 to the University of California, San Francisco. Both grants will be used to study GNAO1-related neurodevelopmental disorders. Such grants, Shelley said, is exactly why Annabelle’s Benefit


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donates 100 percent of its proceeds to The Bow Foundation. Last year the benefit raised $51,020 for the foundation. The 2020 Annabelle’s Benefit — a 5K run/1-mile walk event — will be held April 4 at No Label Brewery in Katy. The race begins at 8:30 a.m. Ticket prices are $40 for adults and $25 for anyone 21 years old and younger. The event will feature a silent auction, raffle, live music by Chris Boise, No Label Beer, bounce houses, Snooze breakfast tacos, face painting, a balloon artist and even a wine pull. “Our goal is to cure the GNAO1 mutation through providing money needed for research and through prayer,” Shelley said. “And we can’t make Annabelle’s Benefit possible without our sponsors and donors.” Anyone interested in becoming a sponsor or donor can email Shelley at shelley@annabellesamazinggraces.org.

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REFUSING TO GIVE IN Shelley offers advice to parents who may be experiencing life similar to her own: Never give up on something you want for your child, she encouraged. “It can be a struggle and a constant fight, but it will be worth it in the end,” she said.“Never set limits on your child, you never know when they will up and do something they weren’t ‘supposed to.’” “I have also learned to let go of what I imagined for Annabelle’s life, and now I live off of her happiness and her smiles — they are the best.” “If she’s happy, I’m happy.”

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Talk of the Town

Fort Bend County Master Gardeners Understanding the deep implications of home lawn fertilization by BOONE HOLLADAY | Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Horticulturist


mericans are passionate about lawns. Whether you love lawns or hate them, we have developed an expectation of lawns that teeters on unsustainable. While people may argue back and forth about the value of lawns, it’s a fact that poorly managed lawn inputs impact our environment, mainly in areas of surface and groundwater quality. By “inputs,” I am referring here to fertilization, irrigation and pesticide applications. Many states, including Florida, Wisconsin and Maryland, have developed restrictions on lawn inputs due to direct impacts on local water systems and associated ecosystems. As a gardener, horticulturist and general supporter of our landscape industries, I agree lawns have many important values and serve many roles in the modern landscape, but we must address the unintended consequences of our management practices. In this article, I’ll focus on an overview of lawn fertilization timing. Living along the Gulf Coast, our cool season tends to be a roller coaster of extremes. Because of this, our lawns tend to look green even though they are technically dormant. All of our residential lawns, mostly St. Augustine and Bermuda, are warm-season lawn species.This defines them as plants that actively

14 • Pecan Grove Monthly

grow during the warmer months and go through some period of winter dormancy. This dormancy period affects when we should fertilize. WE CAN ADDRESS THIS IN TWO WAYS: Let’s talk first about what we can see — the foliage. During mild winters our lawn looks green, but while it may be going through some amount of photosynthesis, it’s not actively putting on new growth. By encouraging growth with fertilizer when it’s dormant, we put the lawn in jeopardy of frost damage during our random cold blasts.This cold damage stresses the plant, making it use up stored energy resources, which in turn makes it more susceptible to pest, disease and environmental stressors down the road. Now, let’s dig into what we can’t see — the roots. We know the top part of the plant goes dormant because we can see it.What we can’t see, the dormant root system, decreases its overall root system by as much as 75 percent! In this process, the plant saves the thicker roots closer to the surface that store energy and sloughs off most of its extensive fibrous root system. It’s these fibrous roots, or “feeder roots,” that absorb water and nutrients from the soil.Without active feeder roots, much of your winter inputs literally go down the drain. While our lawns tend to green up by February, active spring growth doesn’t begin until around April 1 when we’re typically past our last frost date and the plant starts growing back its feeder roots. This suggests the time for spring application is early to mid-April. Now for the fall, our lawns begin the dormancy process in October, slowing leaf growth and sloughing its root system.Assuming that the release period of your fertilizer is around six weeks, your last fertilization of the year would be applied in late August or early September. Applications after this time only expose your lawn to cold stress and disease, and feed the multitude of cool-season lawn weeds. DIG DOWN FURTHER into the topic on The Texas A&M Turfgrass website aggieturf.tamu.edu which houses a wealth of online resources. Books out there expanding on the topic include “The Texas Lawn Guide” by Steve Dobbs and “The Complete Guide to Texas Gardening” by Neil Sperry. For answers to your specific lawn questions contact the Fort Bend Master Gardener Hotline at fbmg.org/contact.

Get your caladium bulbs from the Garden Club of Richmond by ROBERTA TERRELL


he Garden Club of Richmond is holding its annual Caladium Sale. Bulbs can be pre-ordered and will be available for pick-up from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.April, 1, 2 and 10 a.m. to noon April 3 at Joseph’s Coffee Shop, 202 Morton Street in Richmond. The bulbs are No 1 “fancy-leafed” caladium bulbs and are available in the following colors: red (Red Flash), pink (Carolyn Whorton), white (Candidum) and variegated (Tapestry), our popular newest offering. We can sell the bulbs only in batches of 25 of a single color. For example, you may order 25 pink and 50 red, but you cannot order 37 pink and 38 red. Prices are: $30 for 25 bulbs; $55 for 50 bulbs; and $100 for 100 bulbs. To order, please contact Nancie Rain at 281-341-0588 or nrain@ comcast.net, or Roberta Terrell at 281-343-9932 or robertaterrell@ gmail.com. The last day to place an order is March 22 and all orders must be paid for in advance. We appreciate your purchases as they make our community service projects possible. Caladiums have big heart shaped leaves that display amazing color combinations of white, pink, red and green. The plants love hot, humid weather and are native to the banks of the Amazon River in South America.These tropical plants are grown from a tuberous root often called bulbs. Easy to plant, they add a lush, exotic touch to summer gardens in our area, and, while most caladiums are at home in shade or partial shade, the varieties recommended by the Garden Club of Richmond — Red Flash, Carolyn Whorton and Tapestry — tolerate full sun. Candidums thrive in shade or filtered sunlight and mix beautifully with ferns and impatiens. Caladiums are a wonderful way to enhance shady areas, provide a focal point for a sunny garden,or show off in stunning patio containers.

Brazos Bend State Park guide retires after 3 decades sharing passion of nature Story & Photos by AVERIL GLEASON | agleason@fbherald.com


fter more than 1,000 guided hikes across 30 years, Brazos Bend State Park naturalist David Heinicke led his last guided hike in January as an employee before retiring from the park.And he said he couldn’t help but be proud of the work he did and the knowledge he shared over the course of three decades. “I initially came to volunteer here 30 years ago because I wanted to return something to the park that I enjoyed and got so much out of,” Heinicke said.“After about five years of volunteering, I realized that this would be a great way to make a living.” Heinicke said he took a significant pay cut from working as a landscape designer to come to the state park, but no amount of money lost could dampen his happiness. “I haven’t regretted my choices for one day,” Heinicke said with a smile. As Heinicke led dozens of hikers on his last First Day Hike, he shared that this event was one of his favorites. “These First Day Hikes are pretty special to me,” he revealed.“You get a lot of people out here that normally wouldn’t come to the park. Over the years, I’ve met people who told me they haven’t been out here since their kids were little. Or they hadn’t been out here in 15 years or so. Special occasions like this hike tend to really bring people

Brazos Bend State Park naturalist David Heinicke spent his last day guiding the First Day Hike.

back out. “That’s pretty special.” “Other times, you’ll run into people that are middle-aged that come here and tell me,‘You led me in a hike when I was on a fifth-grade field trip.’ To advertise, call 281-342-4474

• 15

“These First Day Hikes bring out people with all different interests. This will open their eyes to the beauty of the park or bring up feelings of nostalgia.” Heinicke said he was happy to end his time at the park teaching adults and children alike about local plants and animals. “My real passion is showing people the outdoors and getting kids interested in nature,” Heinicke explained.“The only way we’re going to preserve this in the future is if we interest kids in it today.That’s the

kind of passion that drove me to do this.” Although Heinicke is retiring from the park, he said he will still volunteer. “It’s time to pursue other interests as well,” the 57-year-old said.“I’d like to volunteer at a few other places and share my time and knowledge with as many people as possible.” Brazos Bend State Park is located at 21901 FM 762 south of Richmond.

Hope For Three introduces bridge-building autism driver training program by MARQUITA GRIFFIN | mgriffin@fbherald.com


ope For Three has long been a powerful voice advocating for autism awareness in the Fort Bend community, and earlier this year, it continued its efforts with a new training program aimed at creating safe and productive interactions between law enforcement and drivers with autism. While it is not a state-regulated driver education course, Hope For Three’s new program — Police Traffic Stops & Positive Driver Outcomes — is a training session focused on drivers and traffic stop interactions. “The program is needed in the autism community as our children on the spectrum become teens and adults who have worked very hard to attain independence,” said Darla Farmer, founder and CEO of Hope For Three, explaining that one in three adolescents with autism, but without an intellectual disability, are licensed by age 21. The program, she emphasized, is beneficial for the drivers as well as law enforcement.

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“Many with autism do not understand rules or boundaries of social behavior,” she continued.“Some respond impulsively to their feelings without regard to certain social mores. Others react inappropriately as a result of sensory regulation problems. Individuals can also become overstimulated and have an unprovoked ‘meltdown.’ “It is possible for individuals to find themselves in trouble with the law without awareness of having done something wrong or without understanding what they did to get into trouble.” And this, Farmer stressed, is why the Police Traffic Stops & Positive Driver Outcome program is vital.The driver program is a component to the nonprofit’s Crisis Intervention Training (CIT) program.Through CIT, law enforcement is trained on the characteristics of autism, engagement strategies, understanding and acceptance to assist those in the autism community. “As teens transition to adulthood, being able to get around on their own is a big step toward independence, enabling opportunities for

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Officers of the Missouri City Police Department with participants of the inaugural Hope For Three Police Traffic Stops and Positive Driver Outcomes program. From left are Officer Lex Paxton, Officer Ellis Williams, Marisol Amezaga, Jacob Martin and Justin Moehn. Back Row: Conor Garczynski, Christian Courtney, Matthew Cuddus , Marshall Jones and Officer Warren Simon. Kneeling: Officer Cinttia Argueta.

To advertise, call 281-342-4474

• 17

social activities, post-secondary education and work,” Farmer said. “Our goal is to have the autism driving program implemented in all law enforcement agencies in Fort Bend County and the surrounding areas.” AN INCREDIBLE START Police Traffic Stops & Positive Driver Outcomes, which debuted in Fort Bend with the Missouri City Police Department on Jan. 8 and was sponsored by Union Pacific, initially caught Farmer’s attention while at a CIT session. In Hope For Three’s pilot session, eight teenagers and young adults, ranging from 14 years old to 37 years old, participated in hands-on activities that covered safe driving, obeying traffic laws, what to do the case of an accident and role-playing certain situations like traffic stops. Officers sat in, and stood outside of, the cars with the participants and advised them on the steps to take during a variety of scenarios. “It was incredible,” Farmer said.“The officers were very receptive and did a great job with the presentation.” As more police departments join the program, the training sessions will increase and run between one to two hours. The classes are limited to 10 drivers so that participants can receive focused one-onone instruction. Registration for the sessions can be made by calling Hope For Three at 281-245-0640 or visiting its website at www.hopeforthree.org. The next session with Missouri City is scheduled for April. “We are working diligently to get other departments interested,” Farmer said, noting the nonprofit’s plans to contact Rosenberg Police Department and Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office. “Our goal is to have at least six departments on board with the program within in the year.” BUILDING BRIDGES As a community resource and patrol officer with the Missouri City Police Department, Ellis Williams praised Hope For Three’s new driver program as a chance to“bridge the gap between the police department

and the community.” Williams, who helped organize the program for the department and led the presentation during the pilot session, said the hands-on approach is beneficial for the drivers as well as the officers. He noted that as officers were training drivers about the rules of the road, they simultaneously learned about the behaviors of people on the spectrum — like auditory sensitivity, difficulty with eye contact and fidgeting. “With people on the autism spectrum as part of the driving community, it is important for officers to understand their behaviors, because behaviors can be misinterpreted,” said Williams, who is also a CIT officer.“One of the benefits of having this program is it will help avoid mistakes and stress in certain situations.” He takes a moment to consider his next point. “All officers are trained,” he stressed heavily.“But not all of them have the life experience.” Williams, who has been with the department for 15 years has had a variety of experiences that serve him well when engaging with the community, said the Police Traffic Stops & Positive Driver Outcomes program is a chance for officers to gain experiences that will serve them just as well. “It is a good program,” he said.“It’s an opportunity for everyone — families, officers and kids on the spectrum — to become educated.” UNDERSTANDING & TEACHING What is most important to know is that children on the autism spectrum want the same things as every other person.They want to drive.They want jobs.They want to be involved in their community, too. “And they are very capable of accomplishing those things,especially if others have empathy and are understanding of people who live with autism,”Farmer said.“Learning to drive is a huge deal for them, for their independence, so it is important for us to teach them what is expected.”

Advertise with us! If you are interested in advertising in the Pecan Grove Monthly, please call the Fort Bend Herald at 281-342-4474 for rates, information and deadlines.

18 • Pecan Grove Monthly

Photos by SCOTT REESE WILLEY | swilley@fbherald.com

1 2







Taking a moment to pose for the photographer are, from left, Natalie Curtis, Debbie Scheider, Kiki Budzinski, Jennifer Cox and David Budzinski. Ray and Dolores Rosales of Richmond, owners of Ray Rosales’ AllState insurance agency, enjoy samples of food from restaurants across Fort Bend County during Lunches of Love’s annual Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser. The Rosales were among several dozen sponsors who purchased tables. From left, Bill Mahler, Stephanie Mahler and Jorden Mahler flash smiles during the annual Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser.


On the Fort Bend Scene

Taste of Fort Bend benefit draws hundreds of generous donors


Lunches of Love board Chairman Tracy Gallimore, at left, and guests enjoy the tasty food and treats served at the nonprofit organization’s annual Taste of Fort Bend. Clockwise from Gallimore’s left are Carol Glasser, Jeannette Mathews, Loyce Anderson, Linda Hughes and Elizabeth Fairfield. Sarah Nethery bids on a purse during the silent auction. Nethery said she also bid on Astros tickets. Her husband is assistant Rosenberg Police Chief Jarret Nethery. From left, Lorenda Finnegan, Gary Finnegan, Adriane Gray, and Michael and Michelle Curley were among those who purchased tables at Lunches of Love’s annual Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser.

5 6

To advertise, call 281-342-4474

• 19




4 Your Community Healthcare Leader

Salman Aly, MD



Sharon Schilling meets up with daughter Jennifer Cox, who was helping to sell bottles of wine during the Lunches of Love’s annual

Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser.


Ron and Claire Brandani, owners of Brandani’s Restaurant & Wine Bar, were among the businesses that helped sponsor Lunches of Love’s

annual Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser.


Brandy Winner, Adriane Gray and Marina Roberts welcomed guests to Lunches of Loves annual Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser. Since its

founding, Lunches of Love has provided millions of healthy sack lunches to school children.



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20 • Pecan Grove Monthly


Kari Sezonov, left, and Wendi Sanchez show off the scrumptious cake treats served at the annual Taste of Fort Bend fundraiser.


Art & Entertainment


and cultures of the people of the Pacific nspiration Stage is excited to announce its production of Islands, Moana was developed in Disney’s Moana JR., at the Sugar Land Auditorium with collaboration with an Oceanic Trust – eight shows over two weekends, starting March 27. a group of anthropologists, cultural Disney’s Moana JR. is an adaptation of the 2016 practitioners, historians, linguists, and Disney animated film, bringing the adventures of choreographers from the Pacific Moana and her village of Motunui to life onstage.The Islands. production features all the beloved songs from the film, Alexandria Gomez, 13, of the written by Tony®, GRAMMY, Emmy, and Pulitzer PrizeAlexandria Fieldstone community is excited to be winning composer Lin-Manuel Miranda, Opetaia Foa’i, and Gomez in the ensemble for this show, which is her Mark Mancina, including“How Far I’ll Go,”“Shiny,” and“You’re 13th Inspiration Stage production. Welcome.” This junior adaptation of Moana was recently made “I am excited to be in this show because I love available for theatres to license for production. “It’s such an honor to be one of the first theatre companies in the the music and the story. It has a strong female greater Houston area to produce this touching and beloved show,” character who is brave and courageous . I hope it said Mandy Seymore-Sensat, Inspiration Stage’s artistic director and will inspire everyone like it inspires me, with its the director/choreographer for Moana JR. “It promises to be a show great message and a wonderful story line,” Gomez full of spectacle and heart, with amazing music and stunning displays said. Moana JR., which will show at the historic Sugar of beauty. It will be a new favorite for audiences young and old.” This thrilling and heartwarming coming-of-age story follows the Land Auditorium at 226 Lakeview Drive, offers eight strong-willed Moana as she sets sail across the Pacific to save her performances: March 27 at 7:30 p.m.; March 28 at 3:30 village and discover the truth about her heritage. Moana and the p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; March 29 at 3:30 p.m.;April 3 at 7:30 p.m.;April 4 legendary demigod Maui embark on an epic journey of self-discovery at 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.; and April 5 at 3:30 p.m. For ticket prices visit inspirationstage.com. and camaraderie as both learn to harness the power that lies within. “The cast and crew work so hard to bring you a fantastic show With empowering messages of bravery and selflessness, Moana JR. with beautiful music and amazing story telling,”Gomez added.“You is sure to bring out the hero within each of us. Celebrating the rich history of Oceania and based on the beliefs do not want to miss this one — just come see how far we’ll go.”

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nspiration Stage introduced Matilda JR for the first time to the attendees of the annual Junior Theatre Festival in Atlanta on Jan. 18. iStage was honored to be selected to perform three Matilda JR numbers on the festival’s main stage in the New Works Showcase for the festival’s almost 7,000 attendees. “When Inspiration Stage was asked to pilot the brand-new junior version of Matilda at the Sugar Land Auditorium in October 2018, we were thrilled,” said Mandy Seymore-Sensat.“Performing some of our favorite numbers on the main stage for the entire festival was a huge honor.We are humbled by the confidence the iTheatrics and JTF leadership has in our theatre to perform such an exhilarating introduction of this exciting new junior adaptation.” After the introduction of Matilda JR. at JTF, the new Matilda JR. adaptation will become available for all theatres to license in the future. The iStage troupe performed three numbers from the musical in the closing performance of the New Works Showcase. The opening, “School Song,” thrilled the audience with its fast-paced choreography and creative staging, followed by “When I Grown Up,” which brought the audience to tears with its touching Evan Blackwell won the Freddie Music director Sarah Patterson. presentation. The finale, “Revolting Children” brought the entire G Inspiration Award at the Junior 7,000-member audience to its feet, dancing and clapping along Theatre Festival in Atlanta. with the performance. “Ending with such a powerful and thrilling song [ ...] was an amazing way to end the always-exciting New Works Showcase,” said Seymore-Sensat. Inspiration Stage was one of only six companies selected to present in the New Works showcase, out of a total 127 attending companies. The festival also hosts adjudications for all attending theatre companies from around the world. Inspiration Stage’s pod of performers included seven other theatre companies, each performing its Madison Willett (playing Mary Poppins) own 15-minute cut of a different musical and Evan Blackwell (playing George The cast of Matilda JR performing one of the songs. for industry professionals. Banks) This year, Inspiration Stage took a cut of Mary Poppins, JR., winning an Excellence in Music award for touched and so honored to be recognized this year in this way at their cut. my last JTF ever,” he said. “Senior year is a time of uncertainty, of “Our company had to balance the demands of performing wondering where you’re going to go, whether you’ll be happy from two stylistically contrasting musical scores,” said music and be doing what you want to do. Receiving this award was, to director Sarah Patterson. “Our adjudication piece, Mary Poppins me, a sign that yes, I can do it, and yes, things will be okay. This JR —for which we were awarded Excellence in Music — with honor felt like the perfect end to this magical weekend, and I its Sherman Brothers score and Golden Age sounds, is vastly could not imagine a better way to end my five years as a JTF different from Tim Minchin’s quirky and pop-rocky Matilda JR. alumni.” Our talented young performers embraced the challenge and Blackwell and Madison Willett (playing Mary Poppins) were delivered beautiful harmonies, powerful dynamics, and soaring also selected as the Inspiration Stage company All-Stars by the vocals—all with British accents! Being recognized for our adjudicators. musicality was a wonderful reward for the difficulty of tackling Six Inspiration Stage youth also received Golden Tickets — two fantastically complex pieces.” special invitations to audition for the opportunity to appear in Evan Blackwell (playing George Banks) was honored with an iTheatrics’ instructional guide choreography DVDs distributed exclusive award — one that was bestowed on just three with its Broadway Jr. series of shows. Two iStagers received recipients at this year’s festival. The adjudicators recognized callbacks for the third, ultra-competitive round of auditions — Blackwell with the Freddie G Inspiration Award, an award given Jaxon Daniel and Gentry Claire Lumpkin. Final winners will be to performers who touched the hearts of the adjudicators in a contacted in March if they are invited to film in New York City. very special way. In February, Inspiration Stage took a different company to JTF Blackwell,17,was thrilled with the recognition. “I was so West in Sacramento to perform Into the Woods JR for adjudicators.

22 • Pecan Grove Monthly



oys who love music and singing are encouraged to enroll in the Fort Bend Boys Choir of Texas’ Music Magic class, an eight-week music enrichment program for 6 and 7-yearold boys. This special class which bring music alive through movement, musical games, singing and other activities. Boys learn about rhythm awareness and pitch matching in addition to developing large muscle coordination, better musicianship and increase focus. The best part is that there are no auditions for this class. Mr. William R. Adams, the organization’s founder and artistic director, is returning as the director for this class — how cool! For this 23rd season of the Music Magic program, the class will meet on Tuesday evenings from 6:30 p.m. – 7:15 p.m., beginning March 17 and ending May 5 at the First United Methodist Church Missouri City, 3900 Lexington Blvd. in Missouri City. Music Magic will then sing at the Fort Bend Boys Choir’s Spring Concert on Saturday, May 9. The cost for this course is $100 and boys will receive a free Music Magic T-shirt once classes start. Classes are limited in size, so call the choir office at 281-240-3800 to pre-register or visit its website at www.fbbctx.org.

Photo by Terri Cannon | Ryan Foley singing in the Spring 2019 concert.


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• 23



eleased in 2014, the film Iris pairs the late documentarian Albert Maysles (Grey Gardens, Gimme Shelter), then 87, with Iris Apfel, the quickwitted, flamboyantly dressed 93-year-old style maven who has had an outsized presence on the New York fashion scene for decades. More than a fashion film, the documentary is a story about creativity and how a soaring free spirit continues to inspire. The film will be shown at the University Branch Library on March 13 from 1:30 - 3 p.m. in Meeting Room 1. Iris portrays a singular woman whose enthusiasm for fashion, art,

and people are her sustenance.She reminds us that dressing – and indeed, life – is nothing but a grand experiment. “If you’re lucky enough to do something you love, everything else follows.” The documentary will be followed by a discussion at approximately 2:50 p.m.The discussion will explore topics such as creativity, aging, fashion, art, individualism, and work ethic. This documentary is rated PG-13. This event is a collaboration with POV, the award-winning independent nonfiction film series on PBS (www.pbs.org/pov).



hen Inspiration Stage was asked to debut a world premier pilot production of a brand new musical in September 2019, they knew they were onto something big. “As the premiere pilot of a new junior show, the actors and artistic team have the opportunity to create original characters, create the scenic design and create the choreography,” said the show’s director/ choreographer Mandy Seymore-Sensat last fall. “This pilot and world premiere is a huge honor and we are all jazzed to be a part of it. This is an amazing opportunity for our production staff and cast.” The investment paid off, with The Big One-Oh! JR being awarded the 2019 Broadway World Houston Award for Best New Play or Musical. Local actors featured in the production include:Alexandria Deanne Gomez, a Fieldstone resident; Campbell Baldon, a Greatwood resident; and Addison “Addie” Doss, a Brazos Lakes resident. Inspiration Stage’s win comes after a record number of nominations and votes for the 2019 BroadwayWorld Houston Awards, which were sponsored by TodayTix. Regional productions, touring shows, and more were all included, honoring productions which opened between Oct. 1, 2018 through Sept. 30, 2019. Inspiration Stage produced The Big One-Oh! JR in cooperation with and at the special invitation of iTheatrics and Music Theatre

International (MTI). iTheatrics adapts main stage Broadway musicals so they can be performed by kids in school and after-school settings. It creates these adaptations for a distinguished list of clients, including MTI, one of the world’s leading theatrical licensing agencies. Through the pilot process, Inspiration Stage’s creation of this brandnew musical will eventually be available for all theatres to license in the future.

Photo by Erika Waldorf | Jaxon Daniel (playing lead character Charley Maplewood), center, with fellow The Big One-Oh! JR. actors.

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24 • Pecan Grove Monthly

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Scholastic Spotlight

TSTC diesel program powers students’ success by AMANDA SOTELO


he construction and transportation industry in the Houston area and statewide is rapidly growing, meaning that a skilled workforce is very much in demand. Texas State Technical College is helping to fill that need with its technical programs like Diesel Equipment Technology. TSTC Diesel Equipment Technology instructor Brandon Foster said that program faculty receive numerous calls from employers who have attended Employer Spotlights on campus and want to recruit TSTC graduates. “Our graduates are in high demand. Skilled diesel technicians are in high demand,” he said. “And we’re working diligently to ensure TSTC Diesel Equipment that our graduates are job-ready.” Technology students in To accomplish that, the program Rosenberg work on truck repair and maintenance focuses on hands-on training to during class. teach the appropriate skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the industry. Students have access to a large shop that is equipped with industrystandard technology, such as training aids for hydraulic, brake and electrical systems, to learn skills in diagnosing, troubleshooting, repair and maintenance. The shop is also complete with heavy-duty diesel trucks, bulldozers and front-end loaders. “All of our equipment allows for a real-world experience,” said Foster.“And the skills they learn can be applied immediately to tasks they will find in the workforce.” In addition to technical skills, soft skills such as resume building, interviewing, writing, leadership and communication are also a focus for the program. “Soft skills are just as important as technical skills,” said Foster.“They have to be effective writers and communicators; all jobs require you to be.” After completing one of three pathways — certificate one, certificate two or an associate degree — a student can work as a diesel mechanic technician, maintenance technician, construction equipment technician, engine specialist or heavy-duty equipment mechanic. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of diesel service technicians and mechanics is projected to grow five percent through 2028, faster than all other occupations, with a median pay of $22 per hour. Companies who have hired TSTC Diesel Equipment Technology graduates include Chevron, Freightliner, Halliburton, Holt Equipment, John Deere and Peterbilt. Diesel Equipment Technology is also offered at TSTC’s Marshall, North Texas, Sweetwater and Waco campuses. Fo r m o re i n fo r m a t i o n , v i s i t t s t c . e d u / p ro gra m s / DieselEquipmentTechnology.

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• 25

Health News

Keepin’ It Renal announces Mardi Gras theme this year by MARQUITA GRIFFIN | mgriffin@fbherald.com


hris “CJ” Johnson Foundation, Inc. is heightening the fun at its 7th annual Keepin’ It Renal Fun Run/ Walk benefit with a Mardi Gras theme this time around. While the benefit has a new theme this year, the foundation’s president and founder, Ritchie Johnson, said the mission remains the same: to increase local awareness and funds for research for renal medullary carcinoma, a rare kidney cancer. While it hosts fundraisers and awareness events in Fort Bend throughout the year, the foundation’s prize event is its Annual Keepin’ It Renal Run/ Walk, which is set for March 28 at Sugar Land Memorial Park, 15300 University Blvd. in Sugar Land.

Medals will be given to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners in overall adult men and women as well as male and female youth. “Let’s join forces as we heighten RMC awareness and raise funds for research,”Johnson said in a social media post promoting the fundraiser. The participation fee is $30 for anyone 10 years and older and includes Mardi Gras beads and mask. Registration is available online at chrisjohnsonfoundation.org GET INSPIRED In addition to sharing the word about the upcoming Keepin’ It Renal benefit, the foundation also announced it has launched a new online support community with Team Inspire and Kidney Cancer Association.Visit www.inspire.com/groups/rmc to join.

The Chris “CJ” Johnson Foundation, Inc. The Chris “CJ” Johnson Foundation Inc., established in 2013, is a 501 (c)3 non-profit charity organization based in Sugar Land, Texas. Its mission is to find a cure for Renal Medullary Carcinoma (RMC) worldwide through awareness, education and research. Its primary focus is on individuals with sickle hemoglobinopathies such as sickle cell trait (SCT), who may be at risk for this rare and aggressive form of kidney cancer. In addition, the foundation offers emotional, spiritual and financial support to individuals diagnosed with RMC, and donate funds annually to The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to advance RMC research. For more information visit chrisjohnsonfoundation.org or follow the foundation on Facebook at @ chrisjohnsonfoundation PICTURED ON THE RIGHT: Ritchie Johnson and her son, the late Chris “CJ” Johnson, who passed away in 2012 from kidney cancer. His mother started a foundation in his name to raise money for research on renal medullary carcinoma and to keep her son’s memory alive.

The George Foundation Funds HGI Counseling


he George Foundation has again assisted in making it possible for HGI Counseling to continue offering counseling services to area residents through a recent grant funding of $165,000 over three years. “We cannot begin to thank the George Foundation for their generous support, for it will allow us to continue our mission more successfully,” said Sue Levin, executive director, HGI Counseling From left, Sue Levin, executive director, HGI Counseling with Quynh-Anh T. McMahan, MSW, Senior Program Officer, The George Foundation.

26 • Pecan Grove Monthly

Center. Although counseling services aren’t in everyone’s budget — leaving them to believe they have no place to turn when a problem or challenge overwhelms them — HGI’s doors are open to everyone, Levin explained. “HGI has a sliding scale and often offers pro-bono (or no-fee) counseling services. No one is turned away,” she said.“We also have a Walk-In Counseling Program, where no appointment is needed for those in crisis, or for those who do not want to wait for an appointment.” In 2019, HGI provided counseling services to 1,925 clients in Fort Bend, which includes individuals, families, couples and students. HGI has been providing counseling, training, workshops, research, disaster and crisis response, and so much more for over 40-years, and have been serving Fort Bend residents for the past four and a half years. “Fort Bend has welcomed us with open arms, and we are thrilled to be part of this wonderful community,” Levin said. “The generous support from the George Foundation has helped make it possible for us to see so many clients without having to charge fees that are unaffordable. We cannot begin to thank The George Foundation for this support.” For more information about HGI and its services, visit www.talkhgi. org or call the Fort Bend Office at 832-471-6538.


Neighborhood Business Directory “Good People doing the right thing!” Russ Braun REALTOR® 281-948-6034 Russ@RussBraunProperties.com HAR.COM/RussellBraun 14090 Southwest Fwy. #102 Sugar Land, TX 77478 Each Office is Independently Owned and Operated.



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Neighborhood Business Directory

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Dr. McCrea has been creating healthy, beautiful smiles in Richmond/Rosenberg since 1994. Dr. McCrea and Dr. Vo are both graduates of and current Professors at the Herman Hospital based General Practice Residency Program for UTDS Houston. Their goal is to work with each patient to produce the best possible outcome based on that patient’s individual needs and desires.

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Income-Tax-Preparation Assistance in Richmond Representatives from the AARP will provide free income-taxpreparation assistance for lowincome taxpayers, Saturdays, March 2 through April 15 at the George Memorial Library from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. in Room 2C. This service is free and open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis. Call 281-342-445 for details.


Financial Fitness A representative from the Foundation for Financial Education (F3E) will provide helpful tips for managing one’s personal finances at the University Branch Library from 7 - 8 p.m. in Meeting Room 1.


preparation assistance for lowincome taxpayers, Saturdays, March 7 through April 11 at the University Branch Library from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. in Conference Room 1. This service is free and open to the public on a first-come, firstserved basis. Call 281-633-5100 for details.


Connections: Coffee & Conversation Meet new people and make new friends at this casual, come-and-go social hour at the George Memorial Library at 7 p.m. March 3 10 a.m. on March 19 in Room 2A . This activity is suitable for adults aged 18 and up.

Craft Squad: Paper Quilling People who enjoy crafts are invited to join the Craft Squad at the University Branch Library from 1:30 - 3:30 p.m. in Meeting Room 1. In March, earn the “Paper Quilling” badge. This activity is suitable for adults and older teens ONLY. Registration is required. The Craft Squad weekly meet-ups will take place on Fridays, Mar 13, 20, and 27. Registration is not required for the meet-ups. Visit www.fortbend. lib.tx.us for details.

Resumé Workshop Learn the basics of putting together a resumé at the George Memorial Library at 2 p.m. in the Computer Lab. Those attending this informal program will receive one-oneone help formatting a resumé. For assistance on a pre-existing resumé, please have a digital copy available on a usb flashdrive, saved to the cloud, or have access to it via email. Registration required.



Puppetpalooza Families with children of all ages will enjoy some of the staff’s favorite puppet shows, complete with jokes, stories, rhymes, and more at the George Memorial Library from 2 - 3 p.m. in the Puppet Theater.


Income-Tax-Preparation Assistance in Fulshear Representatives from the AARP will provide free income-taxpreparation assistance for lowincome taxpayers, Saturdays, March 4 through April 15 at the Bob Lutts Fulshear/Simonton Branch Library from 1 - 4 p.m. in the Meeting Room. This service is free and open to the public on a firstcome, first-served basis. Call 281633-4675 for details. Let’s Learn Origami! Learn how to make an elegant decoration or gift from a simple piece of paper at the George Memorial Library from 5:30 - 7 p.m. in Room 2A. This program is suitable for all ages, but those aged 13 and below must be accompanied by an adult.

20/20, Girl What’s Your Vision? The Butterfly Project, Inc will hold its 5th and 6th grade empowerment conference at 9 a.m. Those interested in attending can register at https://forms. gle/3Rnf8FyEkfDZh3d78. The conference is free. Breakfast, lunch and snacks will be included. The conference is also accepting volunteers and sponsors. Email thebflyprojectinc@gmail.com. Volunteer Orientation Reining Strength Therapeutic Horsemanship will host a volunteer orientation from 9 - 11 a.m. Visit www.reiningstrength.org/getinvolved. Income-Tax-Preparation Assistance in Sugar Land Representatives from the AARP will provide free income-tax-



Young Adult Advisory Council Teens in grades 9-12 who are interested in an exciting new leadership opportunity and volunteer-service hours are invited to attend at the University Branch Library at 5 p.m. in Conference Room 1. Members will have a chance to share ideas about library programs, to help out at events, to give suggestions for teen services, books, and movies, and to meet new people.

Community Calendar


Creative Connection: Connect-4 Tournament Youth in grades 4-8 will have an opportunity to test their Connect-4 skills in this tournament-style game day at the University Branch Library at 2:30 p.m. in Meeting Room 1.


Game Day Families with children of all ages are invited to play video games, board games, and card games in the Game Room in the Middle Grades department at the George Memorial Library from 2 - 4 p.m.


The Fab 5 at Scotty’s Saloon Scotty’s Saloon at OTP will feature The Fab 5, known for its 60s and 70s hits. The fun runs from 8 midnight at Scotty’s Saloon visit scottyssaloon.com. YA Game Day Teens in grades 9-12 will enjoy classic board games and card games at the University Branch Library at 2 p.m. in Meeting Room 2. Texas Talks: Avenger Field & the WASPs of WWII Learn about Avenger Field – a WWII Army Airfield near Sweetwater – and the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) who trained there in the 1940s at the George Memorial Library from 1 - 3:30 p.m. in the Meeting Room. Hear about some of the unsung female pilots who volunteered to contribute their skills to the war effort by delivering airplanes, testing and repairing aircraft, and towing targets for antiaircraft gunnery practice.

To advertise, call 281-342-4474

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Fulshear & Texas History Claire Rogers from the Fort Bend Historical Society will share fascinating stories about the history of Fort Bend County since the time of Stephen F. Austin, with particular focus on the Fulshear area at the Bob Lutts Fulshear/Simonton Branch Library at 6:30 p.m. in the Meeting Room. LEGO® Club Families with kids of all ages will have an opportunity to get creative with LEGO building blocks at the University Branch Library from 4:15 - 5 p.m. in Meeting Room 1. Different-sized LEGO pieces will be available for the varying ages in attendance.


Culinary Book Club The University Branch Library’s culinary book club will meet at 1:30 p.m. in Meeting Room 1. This month’s theme is “Street Food.” Cooking enthusiasts of all ages and

experience levels, from beginners to advanced, are invited to join.


Story Spinners Writing Club This month’s topic at the George Memorial Library from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. in Room 2C will be “Character Development.” From beginning blogger to published novelist, writers of all genres and experience levels are welcome to write, share, learn, support, network, and critique each other’s work. This program is recommended for adults and teens aged 14 and up. Easter Egg Hunt The annual Pecan Grove Easter Egg Hunt starts at 11 a.m. at Pitts Road Park. Fun is planned for all the youngsters up to 10 years old (ages will be divided). Other activities include face and hair painting and a bouncy house.


The Truth About Senior-Living Options Liz McNeel, a senior real-estate specialist and certified senior-

housing professional, will discuss the benefits offered by seniorliving communities, costs and associated services, and the differences between independent living, assisted living, memorycare facilities, and long-term care options at the University Branch Library at 10:30 a.m. in Meeting Room 1.


“Create & Take” Enchanted Gardens in Richmond will host its “Create & Take” session from 2 -3 p.m., this time teaching attendees how to create a hanging basket they get to take home. For more information or to make reservations call 281-341-1206.


Butterfly Gardening for Beginners Erin Mills, the current Director of the Cockrell Butterfly Center, speak at Enchanted Gardens in Richmond in a seminar from 2 - 3 p.m. Erin,

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a board certified Entomologist, will share her favorite host and nectar plants, and how you can use them to enjoy beautiful butterflies yearround right in your own backyard. Bullet-Journaling Basics Discover how a Bullet Journal can be used to keep ideas and tasks organized at the University Branch Library at 1 p.m. in Meeting Room 2. This customizable system can be used as a to-do list, calendar, sketchbook, tracker, diary, or any combination of these tasks. Learn about layouts, stencils, and handlettering that can be used to add a creative, personalized touch. Registration is required.

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Tee-Off for Tourette Golf Tourette Association - Texas Chapter will host its 25th annual Tee-Off for Tourette Golf charity event from noon - 7 p.m. at the Black Hawk Country Club in Richmond. Contact TouretteTexas@aol.com for details.




by Arredo











STRUGGLING WITH BACK OR NECK PAIN? Living with back or neck pain can be difficult. Whether you’ve experienced pain for a few days or a number of years, you want answers and effective treatment, and you want them now. The Houston Methodist Neuroscience & Spine Center offers access to world-class specialists and subspecialists, including: • Neurologists • Neurosurgeons • Orthopedic spine surgeons • Pain management specialists • Physical and occupational therapists • Primary care sports medicine specialists Our team of board-certified physicians and rehabilitation therapists will work together to provide the comprehensive, personalized care you need to help you return to a productive life. Expedited appointments and second opinions are available.

STOP ENDURING PAIN. Request an appointment online at houstonmethodist.org/neuro-sl or call 281.274.7979.

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Pecan Grove - March 2020  

Pecan Grove - March 2020  

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