Page 1

HAPPY HOLIDAYS

SHOP SMALL - SHOP LOCAL

S.A. CULINARY CULTURE

PG. 04 SUSAN YERKES

DEC. 5 - JAN. 2, 2016

Nativity scenes inspire memories of Christmas past, present and to come

VOL. 5, ISSUE 6

Olmos Basin has high-water alerts PG.16

CITY WARMING UP TO FOOD TOURS Excursions often include meeting chefs PG.18

PAGE 13

PUBLIC SAFETY

HALT system warns of flooded areas

COMMUNITY NEWS

LOCAL SOCIETY

ALAMO HEIGHTS

KING WILLIAM

on the scene of the latest parties

MONTE VISTA

OLMOS PARK

TERRELL HILLS

SA BOND PROPOSALS INCLUDE NORTH CENTRAL ROADS Improvements to Broadway, connecting Austin Highway to Harry Wurzbach Road on tap — PG. 14

Frances Rosenthal Kallison Olmos Park resident named to National Cowgirl Hall of Fame remembered for works in Jewish community, PG.20 Trailblazer ranching and horsemanship

TERRELL HILLS

Push is on to trim overgrown foliage want to make intersections, roadways safer PG.19 Police

PG.23 EAT LOCAL CHOCOLLAZO New shop on Broadway offers wide range of chocolate treats


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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM

FROM THE EDITOR tedwards@localcommunitynews.com

President Harold J. Lees Assoc. Publisher Rick Upton

Publisher Gregg Rosenfield Dir. of Operations Jaselle Luna

EDITORIAL Executive Editor Thomas Edwards News Staff Collette Orquiz and Bain Serna Contributing Writers Valerie Bustamante, Norma Gonzalez, Carole Miller, Benjamin Olivo, Edmond Ortiz, Arthur Schechter and Susan Yerkes ART Creative Director Florence D. Edwards Contributing Photographer Rudy B. Ornelas ADVERTISING Zone Manager Kelly Jean Garza Controller Gracie Cortinez READER SERVICE Mailing Address 4204 Gardendale St., Ste. 201 SA, TX 78229 Phone Fax (210) 338.8842 (210) 616.9677

Advertising Inquiries kgarza@localcommunitynews.com Recruiting: kgarza@localcommunitynews.com Story Ideas: tips@localcommunitynews.com Website: www.salocallowdown.com LOCAL Community News publications Zone 2/3: Zone 4/5: Zone 6: Zone 7:

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For advertising, customer service or editorial, please call us at 210-338-8842 or write to us at: Local Community News 4204 Gardendale St., Ste. 201 San Antonio, TX 78229 Reproduction in whole or in part without our permission is prohibited, 2016 Helen Publishing LLC and Local Community News LLC, all rights reserved.

Trump victory is a media wake-up call

D

onald Trump’s victory in the presidential race says a lot about the country and how Americans feel about the press. During his run to the White House, Trump castigated the media for biased coverage, while his supporters yelled at reporters to do their jobs. The election should be a wake-up call for the press. Not only did most of the media and the pollsters get it wrong, but mainstream journalists misread the mood of the country. That’s because many national pundits, network talking heads and staffers at the big daily newspapers are not in step with the rest of America. The press is no longer seen as the watchdog of the country, but its enemy. People don’t trust the media. LOCAL Community News doesn’t take sides or endorse politicians, and that helps build trust with our readers. For other media outlets, it’s time to get back to basics, to write impartial and unbiased stories, to step down from ivory towers, to stop acting like an ennobled elite and to cease championing wasteful experiments in social engineering. The press must remember that it serves the public, not rules them. The reporting surrounding the Trump campaign and the reality of what really happened shows a great disconnect in the press. Big media is out of touch with its audience. Way out of touch.

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

LOCAL COMMENTARY

’Tis the season for good memories by SUSAN YERKES

T

he holiday season is upon us, with all kinds of merry and bright attractions and distractions. After the last election cycle, that’s a gift in itself. Maybe that’s why this year I started thinking about gifts earlier than my usual last-minute rush to find the perfect present. However, it wasn’t so much about gifts in the here and now – it was remembrances of Christmas past, Yuletide wishes and offerings longed for and unanticipated.

My first recollections of Christmas are of a solitary nighttime vigil I held in the wee hours in our home, standing mesmerized in my footie pajamas before a little lighted Nativity scene on the table in our front hall. I found something profoundly sweet and comforting about the peaceful family, surrounded by sheep, donkeys, shepherds and angels, and the big star hanging over them all. Here in San Antonio, I discovered a world of crèches in folk-art nacimientos, or Nativity scenes. The late, great Marshall Steves Sr. and his wife Patsy collected (and donated) many from Mexico and South America to form a section of the San Antonio Museum of Art’s old holiday market Bazar Sábado. The late Gloria Cadena was the city’s nacimiento champ. Her 3,000-plus-piece “Nacimiento – A Fantasy Christmas Village” was many years in the making, and eventually included everything from a tiny Alamo to a bullfight scene. There are plenty of living nacimientos around town, too, mostly in front of area churches. My favorite is San

Fernando Cathedral’s annual La Gran Posada, a candlelit procession in the heart of downtown re-enacting the story of Joseph and Mary seeking shelter in Bethlehem. This year’s free event starts 6 p.m. Dec. 18 in Milam Park and treks through the streets to the historic church. December also brings the commemoration of Hanukkah, Judaism’s Festival of Lights. Hanukkah has its own beautiful ceremonies. One of the coolest is Chabad Lubavitch of South Texas’ annual “Chanukah on the River,” this year at 4 p.m. Dec. 28 at Arneson River Theatre and La Villita. From river barges adorned with big menorahs to a concert and traditional festival, it’s a great place to observe a treasured ritual. Even the most commercial aspect of the holidays can evoke marvelous memories. Many folks still remember the 40-foot-tall Santa Claus waving tirelessly atop the old Joske’s downtown, and briefly experiencing a resurrection above Dillard’s. Joske’s also was Christmas-wish central for thousands of kids in the 1950s

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and ’60s, with its spectacular fourthfloor Fantasyland. Long lines snaked through a fantastic, snowy forest full of singing animals on the way to asking for presents from Santa in his “Texas home.” The only gift I ever recall requesting was always the same – a horse. While the real thing never materialized, I did amass dozens of plastic equines and horse books, particularly “The Black Stallion” series. The best substitute was the trail rides from the old stables by Brackenridge Park, and the Sunday polo matches in the fields there. In the ’80s, when I returned to San Antonio after years of being away, the stables still stood and I found a patient trainer, Marty Allen Wernle, and finally learned to ride. I got to know the late Dr. Leo Cuello, and his magnificent Arabian stallion Cass Ole, star of “The Black Stallion” movie. A couple of years later I found a horse of my own – a beautiful Arabian named Potential. That’s the thing about Christmas wishes. You never know when they might come true. syerkes@localcommunitynews.com

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OUR TURN Views and opinions about your community

Fix school finance in 2017

A

ddressing Texas’ broken system of public school finance should be a priority for lawmakers when the 85th legislative session gavels to a start in January.

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by Les Hollon, PhD Senior Pastor Trinity Baptist Church

Our eyes and ears play important roles in helping us open God’s Christmas Gifts. With faith-eyes we see the meaning of what our physical eyes are recording. With ears of love, we hear the meaning of what our physical ears are absorbing. One reason we love Christmas music is because we sing it passionately. The message is true. We want to share the joy. See and hear God’s message for your life this Christmas season Then live it by trusting the message of the Angel from the manger. “Hark” (listen to), and then become a “herald” (an official messagener) of the “tidings” (good news) for the first Noel (Christmas). Words make sense and become real when we truly know what they mean.

Elected officials need to follow the lead of the state Supreme Court, which this past May issued a ruling calling on the Legislature to repair school funding. The court indicated the process remains inadequately subsidized while the tax burden on residents is unfairly weighted. Especially hard hit are the Chapter 41 school districts classified as property wealthy. Superintendents there are nearly uniform 7/15/2016 1:18:11 PM

Let Christ be real for you. Trust him with your eyes & ears, and then live by what you know to be true. God is approachable. God is knowable. Hear God say, “I love you.” Look at Jesus to know what heaven is like. God created the first Christmas in a way that all future Christmases would carry the same blessing. That blessing is the power of Christ to transform lives. How do you see this blessing happening for you this Christmas season?

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016 in condemning the procedure they say bleeds too much money in the form of local tax dollars slated for their schools, which are in turn collected by the state and then redistributed to property-poor districts. No small wonder this share-thewealth measure is more commonly known as the Robin Hood plan. Fiscally supporting the state’s public school system benefits all students, but the process also should be fair. For decades, Texas has struggled to get it right and continually fails. In addition, according to some accounts of recent hearings, portions of the taxes collected for school finance are instead being redirected to other programs. How is this fair to pupils, their teachers and the taxpayers? If you care about equitable school funding, let your elected representative know. It’s time to go back to the blackboard and draw up a more evenhanded plan. -The Local Community News editorial board includes Harry Lees, Gregg Rosenfield and Thomas Edwards.


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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM

HAPPENING LOCAL

Plan your month with our calendar of upcoming events in the community.

OUR GUIDE TO YOUR MONTH

HAPPENING KEY

FITNESS

ART

EVENT

OUTDOOR

MUSIC

FOOD

FORD HOLIDAY BOAT CAROLING From 6:15-8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 6:15-9:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday, several boats each night float down the San Antonio River carrying groups performing live Christmas carols. Come to the River Walk and experience the spectacle. For more including best viewing locales, visit www.thesanantonioriverwalk.com/events.

ALAMO HEIGHTS CHAMBER OF COMMERCE The Chamber 7 holds luncheons the first Wednesday of each month in a private room at Paesanos Lincoln Heights, 555 E. Basse Road. Arrive by 11:30 a.m. for a meet and greet; a guest speaker follows at noon. Cost is $20 for members, $25 for nonmembers. For more, call 822-7027 or visit http://alamoheightschamber.org/.

SAISD BOARD SESSION Antonio Independent 5, 13 San School District trustees will meet at 5:30 p.m. in the Burnet Center, 406 Barrera St. For more and to see each meeting’s agenda, visit www.saisd.net.

MUSIC IN KING WILLIAM Visitors to Villa Finale: 8 Museum & Gardens, 401 King William St., will experience a memorable

NOV. 30 - DEC. 18

DEC.

10

G $

DEC.

DEC.

HAPPENING continues on pg. 08

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

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HAPPENING continues from pg. 07 tour. While sipping champagne, see and hear demonstrations of unique music boxes, antique turntables, plus holiday songs. Space is limited. For details including cost and time, call 223-9800 or visit www.VillaFinale.org. FORD FIESTA DE LAS LUMINARIAS Visit the San Antonio River Walk at dusk and stroll along its banks illuminated for Christmas. You’ll be guided by more than 6,000 luminarias, a traditional Mexican Christmas lantern. For more, visit www. thesanantonioriverwalk.com/events.

DEC. 9-11, 15-18

GO BACK IN TIME Visit the Witte Museum, 3801 Broadway, 10 from noon to 4 p.m. and experience 19th century South Texas during Christmas. Create homemade holiday gifts such as candles, ornaments, mulled cider spice bags and more. For details, visit www.wittemuseum.org.

DEC.

SOMETHING SMELLS GOOD Improve your holiday 10, 14 cooking with classes from The Culinary Institute of America, 312 Pearl Parkway, Building 3. For exact times and cost, visit www.ciachef.edu.

DEC.

OFF AND RUNNING Eagle Harriers 5K Run/Walk 10 sets out at 8:30 a.m. from Brackenridge High School, 400 Eagleland Drive. For more including registration costs, visit www.athleteguild.com.

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SEASONS GREETINGS FROM IRELAND The Tobin Center 10 for the Performing Arts and Arts SA presents “An Irish Christmas” at 7:30 p.m., when the country’s holiday music, song, dance and storytelling comes to 100 Auditorium Circle. Tickets cost $29.50, $44.50 and $56.50. For more and to make purchases, visit the center’s box office or go online to www. tobincenter.org or call 223-8624.

DEC.

BEGINNERS’ BIRD WALK Led by Georgina Schwartz, the 10 San Antonio Audubon Society outing begins at 8 a.m. on the Judson Nature Trails start point, 246 Viesca St. in Alamo Heights. Nonmembers are

DEC.

welcome; binoculars can be provided. The free walk is held the second Saturday of each month. For more, visit saaudubon. org or www.facebook.com/saaudubon/. TAMALE WORKSHOP La Tamalada at the Witte 10 Museum, 3801 Broadway, is a delicious San Antonio holiday tradition. This 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. seminar lets visitors make and flavor their own tamales. For more, visit www.wittemuseum.org.

DEC.

HELPING THE NEEDY Come to Park North 11 shopping center, 842 N.W. Loop 410, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to make contributions to the 20th annual Gotcha Covered Collection Drive. Donations will benefit the San Antonio Food Bank, Haven for Hope and the Battered Women & Children’s Shelter. Requested items include new and used clothing, canned food and baby products. For a longer list, visit gotchacovered. org. To volunteer and assist with unloading materials, call Howie at 286-3439. 

DEC.

ALAMO HEIGHTS City Council meets at 5:30 12, 26 p.m. in the municipal complex, 6116 Broadway, on the second and fourth Monday of the month, except holidays. For more, visit http://www.alamoheightstx.gov/.

DEC.

TERRELL HILLS City Council meets at 5 p.m. at City Hall, 12 5100 N. New Braunfels Ave., on the second Monday of each month. Sessions are open to the public. For more, visit www.terrell-hills.com.

DEC.

PRESERVING HISTORY The Monte Vista Historical 13 Association board meets the second Tuesday of each month from 6:30-8 p.m. in Landa Branch Library’s annex, 233 Bushnell Ave. For more, call 737-8212 or visit http://www.montevista-sa.org/.

DEC.

COOL-WEATHER GARDENING The San Antonio Herb Society 13 meets on the second Thursday of the month featuring interesting speakers and programs at the San Antonio Garden Center, 3310 N. New Braunfels

DEC.

HAPPENING continues on pg. 09


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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM HAPPENING continues from pg. 08 Ave. Refreshments and social time is 6:30 p.m.; program starts 7 p.m. For more, visit www.sanantonioherbs.org. ELVIS LEFT THE BUILDING, BUT NOT PRISCILLA 15 Priscilla Presley, the widow of Elvis Presley, will speak at The Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle, at 7:30 p.m. Ticket costs range from $35 to $94.50. For more and to make purchases, visit the center’s box office or go online to www. tobincenter.org or call 223-8624.

DEC.

AHISD BOARD SESSION DEC. Alamo Heights Independent 15 School District trustees meet at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of the month at the Central Office, 7101 Broadway. For more and to confirm dates, visit ahisd.net. OLMOS PARK On the third Thursday of each month, 15 the City Council meets at 6 p.m. in City Hall, 120 W. El Prado Drive. For more, visit olmospark.org.

DEC.

PHOTO DISPLAY Briscoe Western Art Museum, 210 DEC. 15 W. Market St., presents an exhibit by a leader in American western photography from 19311976. “Ansel Adams: Distance and Detail” can be viewed at no extra cost with regular admission prices. For more including museum hours, visit briscoemueum.org or call 299-4499.

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OPEN-AIR MOVIE Southtown Cinema presents the classic 17 movie “It’s a Wonderful Life” in Yanaguana Garden at Hemisfair Park, 434 S. Alamo St. Bring lawn chairs and blankets for the screening beginning at 8:30 p.m. Enjoy music and food, too. For more, visit www.slabcinema.com.

DEC.

YULETIDE COMPETITION Ivy Taylor once again DEC. 20 Mayor invites downtown businesses to embrace the season. This year, her annual Light Up Downtown Holiday Contest has a new component. Take a selfie with the decorations, and post to www.facebook.com/LightUpDowntown using the hashtag #SAMayorLUDT. The

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public will select favorite light displays in four different categories. Winners announced Dec. 21. To see which buildings are participating and to vote, visit http://lightupdowntownsa.com/. MOVIE AND MUSIC COMBO The San Antonio Symphony 22-23 continues its series of live accompaniment to cinema with “Home Alone,” 7:30 p.m. at the Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St. Admission to the musically enhanced comedic holiday film is $25. To purchase tickets, visit www. ticketmaster.com or call 800-745-3000.

DEC.

DANCING FOR A CAUSE Trilogy Dance Center, 1242 30 Austin Highway, conducts a program 6:30-7:30 p.m. combining dancing and social awareness. The last Friday of each month, adults can take a free dance class, enjoy a cocktail and hear about, and possibly contribute to, a nonprofit organization. For updates, call 479-1551 or visit www.trilogydancecenter.com.

DEC.

RING IN 2017 Enjoy New Year’s Eve with 31 spectacular fireworks, live music on multiple stages, food booths, family activities and more. The free festivities of Celebrate San Antonio take place 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. from various downtown locations including Hemisfair Park, 434 S. Alamo St. For details, visit www. saparksfoundation.org/celebrate_sa.html.

DEC.

SCHOOL’S OUT – HO, HO, HO! DEC./JAN. Alamo Heights and North East independent school district campuses will be closed for Christmas and the new year Dec. 22-Jan. 4; San Antonio Independent School District gives pupils time off for the holidays Dec. 19-Jan. 2. For more, visit www.ahisd. net, www.neisd.net or www. saisd.net. HOLIDAYS IN BLOOM in DEC. 31 Experience nature holiday splendor at the San Antonio Botanical Garden, 555 Funston Place. Take family photographs in picturesque backgrounds. Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily (except Christmas Day). For more, visit www.sabot.org.  

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SUBMITTING EVENTS: Email information to tips@localcommunitynews.com.


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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

LOCAL LOWDOWN Take a quick look at what’s new in the community from opening and closings to news tidbits.

Open and Opening Soon 1. THE SPICE & TEA EXCHANGE, 849 E. Commerce St., Suite 121 in Rivercenter Mall, is a retail store offering an extensive and international selection of spices, salts, sugars and teas along with gifts and accessories. Hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. For more, call 943-5525 or visit www.spiceandtea. com/sanantonio or facebook.com/ spiceandtea. (See story on page 22)

2. CHOCOLLAZO, 4013 Broadway, has gone from a chocolate-centric food truck to a brick-and-mortar location in Alamo Heights that serves varieties of chocolates, desserts, ice cream and more. Hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday

Address of local business Name of local business

through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. For more, call 776-3963 or visit www.chocollazo.com or facebook.com/ chocollazo. (See story on page 23)

IN OTHER NEWS DURING A SPECIAL ELECTION NOV. 8 IN ALAMO HEIGHTS, voters reauthorized a one-fourth of 1 percent sales tax to continue funding the upkeep of the city’s streets. According to the city’s website, the proposal overwhelmingly passed. VOTERS IN THE SAN ANTONIO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT approved a $450 million bond issue and an increase in the maintenance and operations tax rate during the Nov. 8

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election. “We are grateful to the voters and thank the community for taking the time to understand the needs of our students and schools,” Superintendent Pedro Martinez said in a statement. “We will continue to partner with all of our stakeholders as we work to transform SAISD into a model urban school district.” According to a release, “The $450 million bond will fund major renovations for 13 schools, replacing infrastructure systems that in most cases are more than 40 years old, upgrading science labs and expanding other classroom spaces to meet recommended state guidelines.” In addition, the tax-ratification election to increase the maintenance and operations tax rate by 13 cents will result in an estimated $32.1 million in additional annual operating revenue, $15.6 million from local taxes and an estimated $16.5 million from the state. According to the release, “The additional revenue will support increased academic offerings for students, technology for the classrooms and upgrades to the learning environment.” Bond proponents said passage of the

propositions means an increase of $8.75 a month in 2017 for an average homeowner. That amount would incrementally increase up to $14.59 a month by 2020. IN BEXAR COUNTY ELECTIONS, JAVIER SALAZAR WILL BECOME THE NEW SHERIFF, after the Democrat and San Antonio Police Department sergeant narrowly upset Republican incumbent Susan Pamerleau in one of the few contested local races decided by area voters Nov. 8. Incumbent Republican Precinct 3 Commissioner Kevin Wolff toppled Democratic challenger Brandon Johnson; Precinct 3 GOP Constable Mark Vojvodich retained his seat against Democrat Ed Coleman and Libertarian Rudy Glover. Democrat Albert Uresti bested Republican Michael Berlanga to remain tax assessor-collector. In other races, Republican U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith retained his District 21 seat over Democrat Tom Wakely. District 122 State Rep. Lyle Larson and District 121 representative

LOWDOWN continues on pg. 11

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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM LOWDOWN continues from pg. 10 and Texas House Speaker Joe Straus of Alamo Heights, both Republicans, were unopposed in re-election bids. A BENEFIT CONCERT TO HONOR DAVID MOLAK, the Alamo Heights teen who took his life in January after being bullied, was held Oct. 10, which would have been Molak’s 17th birthday. The event featured a concert by musicians with the San Antonio Symphony and took place at Christ Episcopal Church in the Monte Vista Historic District. The event also featured refreshments, an “instrument petting zoo” for children and a raffle in the church’s carriage house with proceeds going to David’s Legacy Foundation. Alamo Heights High School senior Abigail Dickson came up with the idea for the benefit. ALAMO HEIGHTS JUNIOR SCHOOL STUDENTS RECEIVED HONORS as part of the Duke University Talent Identification Program, a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving academically gifted and talented youth. The 2016 AHJS honorees are: Grand Recognition — Sophia Carroll and Daniel Halff; State Recognition — Keats Baggett, Charles Bell, Paul Bessler, Laura Beuhler, Sophia Carroll, Bella Chase, Brooken Cole, Ethan Coleman, Blake Danner, Jennifer Drawert, Zachery Foster, Halff, Naomi Heath, Abigail Jones, Sofia Lloyd, Cristian Lopez, Timothy McAllen, Isabella Negrete, Claudia Olson, Robert Richardson, Samantha Rosart-Brodnitz, Colin Troy, Edward Villa, Benjamin Wolle, Emily Worthen and Theodore Yun. ALAMO HEIGHTS HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS HAVE BEEN NAMED BY the National Merit Scholarship Program, an academic competition for recognition. The honorees include National Merit Semifinalists — Samuel Berryman, Avery Myers, Ellery Parish and James Taylor; National Merit Commended — Grant Anderson, Samuel Becvar, Drew Benedikt, Jack Callahan, Benita Lee, Caitland Love, Joseph McGrath, Cooper Noble, Cole Pringle, Sterling Rios, Sine Scribbick, Zoe Seay and Sophie Tippit; and National Hispanic Scholars — Elisabeth Medina, Rios, Seay, Martha Vazquez and Cameron Young.

ALAMO HEIGHTS FIREFIGHTERS RESCUED A DRIVER after a car jumped a curb and hit a tree during a high-speed pursuit Oct. 20. According to reports, the chase began about 9:30 p.m. near Wildrose Avenue and Buttercup Drive in Alamo Heights when Bexar County deputies attempted to stop a vehicle reported as stolen. After the crash, a male who jumped out of the passenger side ran away but was detained later near Rittiman Road and Austin Highway. The female driver was rescued and rushed to University Hospital with non-lifethreatening injuries. The case remains under investigation, officials said. THE LION & ROSE BRITISH RESTAURANT & PUB in Alamo Heights has ended daily dining and beverage services and transformed the site, 5148 Broadway in The Stewart Center, into a locale for private parties and other special events, according to a release. “Catering has always been a part of our business, and we have always wanted to further expand that service,” said Chris Royter, area director. “So we decided to provide the Alamo Heights location as a specialevents venue as part of our plans to grow our catering service. We also want to thank all of our customers who visited us here since we opened in Alamo Heights in 2004.” The business, which seats 130 people, will provide all food and beverages, as well as full bar service, for any event. For a reservation, call 8780034 or email catering@thelionandrose. com. For more about Lion & Rose locations, visit www.thelionandrose.com. NEW ARCHAEOLOGICAL DISCOVERIES UNVEILED AT the Currents in Texas Archaeology Symposium, held at the Witte Museum Oct. 21, included finds related to the siege of the Alamo, or Mission San Antonio de Valero. Some of the relics could also help indicate the probable location of an earlier Mission San Antonio de Valero. THE CITY RECENTLY CELEBRATED THE COMPLETION of improvements to San Pedro Springs Park and the McFarlin Tennis Center, according to a release. District 1 Councilman Roberto Treviño and other officials were on hand for the

LOWDOWN continues on pg. 12

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

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Oct. 27 event. According to a release, “The city of San Antonio’s budget for this project was $1,977,322, with $1,075,000 funded by the city’s 201217 Bond Program, $700,000 from a Community Development Block Grant, $187,000 from Parks and Recreation’s operating budget and $20,322 from the city’s Office of Sustainability.” The San Antonio Tennis Association and McFarlin Tennis Foundation contributed additional improvements to the center. FIFTEEN STUDENTS AT ST. LUKE’S EPISCOPAL SCHOOL HELPED ANNOUNCE the 2017-18 Texas Bluebonnet Award nominees at the Texas Book Festival on Nov. 5 in Austin. According to school officials, St. Luke’s has had the most “super readers” at the book festival in the last two years. Nominees for the Texas Bluebonnet Award are chosen by a 10-member selection committee; school librarian Mary Milligan is a member.

ST. LUKE’S EPISCOPAL SCHOOL HELD A CAMPUSWIDE effort to honor members of the armed forces on Veterans Day. Activities included a special chapel service, a lunch held at Good Samaritan Community Services, students writing cards and notes of thanks to be delivered to veterans with treat bags, and also a fundraiser with proceeds benefitting Operation Homefront. THE SAN ANTONIO ANGEL NETWORK HAS ANNOUNCED the hiring of Chris Burney as executive director. The organization launched this summer as a local network of investors, according to officials. San Antonio had been the largest city in Texas without an Angel Network, which helps foster investments and high-growth loan portfolios. Burney is a San Antonio native and has an extensive background in money management, having previously served as finance manager and analyst at Rackspace, along with other professional experience.

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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM

LOCAL SOCIETY

From philanthropic inspirations to kaleidoscopic celebrations during holidays by CAROLE MILLER

C

olorfully themed events celebrating life and the power of passion dominated the holiday social season.

On what would have been David Molak’s 17th birthday, guests gathered to honor his memory with a birthday celebration and benefit concert featuring the musicians of the San Antonio Symphony. The concert had a combination of songs the teen loved, including music

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from “Star Wars,� a song performed by the USAF Band of the West and a few renditions of “Happy Birthday.� In the wake of the Alamo Heights youth’s suicide in January, his family continues to spread awareness about cyberbullying through the David’s Legacy Foundation. During Nuit Blanche—A Night of Parisian Revelry, the Landa Branch Library Gardens were transformed into posh picnicking grounds with delicacies provided by San Antonio’s finest restaurants for nearly 200 guests, all to benefit the San Antonio Public

Jacklyn Welsh, Caroline Vassar and Raquel Jimenez-Cedilllo

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Library Foundation. Nuit Blanche is the Foundation’s version of the fabulous Parisian “Diner en Blanc,� where thousands of Paris’ residents gather in the city’s most picturesque locations for an epicurean feast. The glamour continued at the Red and White Ball with “A Night in Old Hollywood.� Co-chaired by Kyra and Carl Bush and Cindy and

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

SA BOND continues from pg. 01

Revamp of Fire Station No. 24 on wish list by EDMOND ORTIZ

S

everal residents are already expressing backing for major North Central road improvements that likely will be part of San Antonio’s biggest bond issue yet.

One proposal is a $43 million enhancement of Broadway between Houston Street and Hildebrand Avenue; another includes lanes connecting Austin Highway and Harry Wurzbach Road. City officials are expected to call for a May ballot spot for the $850 million proposed 2017-22 bond, which will fund

Rush-hour traffic heads north on Harry Wurzbach Road past Austin Highway. San Antonio’s planned 2017-22 bond proposes a direct connection between the two roads. Photo by Edmond Ortiz

upgrades and new construction in streets, bridges, sidewalks, facilities, parks and recreation, drainage and flood control, and neighborhood redevelopment. Residents from around the city have been appointed by Mayor Ivy Taylor and City Council to five 30-member committees to review projects the city staff has recommended for the bond. Ben Brewer told the streets, bridges and sidewalks committee in October

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that public improvement projects that have an impact on downtown streets, the River Walk and San Pedro Creek result in more private investments, “which expands our tax base.” District 1 City Councilman Roberto Treviño said some of these significant projects have the potential to be catalysts for an economic and cultural transformation in San Antonio’s center. “We feel investment in the urban

core impacts the entire city,” he added. Under the proposal, Broadway would be given a “complete street” treatment, meaning it would be accessible to a wider variety of vehicular users, pedestrians, cyclists and public mass transit. A part of Broadway would also see aboveground utilities go underground. Although Broadway passes through Alamo Heights, any San Antonio improvements would not have a direct impact on that municipality. However, officials there have been considering their own upgrades to enhance the traffic conduit, with suggestions for a linear parkway someday. San Antonio city staff also recommends: a combined $20 million in reconstruction, improvements and amenities for Commerce Street between Frio and St. Mary’s streets; $5 million for more reconstruction of internal roads in the new Hemisfair Civic Park area; and $9 million in rebuilding and improvements on Alamo Street between Market

SA BOND continues on pg. 15

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SA BOND continues from pg. 14 Street and Cesar Chavez Boulevard. Months ago, local nonprofit Centro San Antonio convened a volunteer group to review the viability of downtownarea projects for the 2017 bond. The group concluded that all of the major projects — Broadway, Hemisfair, Alamo Street and Commerce — would help support ongoing economic revitalization and mixed-use redevelopment around downtown. Several other notable bond proposals for central San Antonio include: • Haskin Park upgrades ($300,000) • District 1 pedestrian improvements ($10 million) • Improve Lone Star neighborhood streets ($5 million) • Central police substation/park police headquarters ($20.5 million) • Roosevelt Avenue improvements from Interstate 10 to the St. Mary’s Street railroad crossing ($7 million) • Eisenhauer Road/Northwood/ Devonshire area drainage upgrades ($8 million) • Improve Columbus, Maverick, Milam and Travis parks ($1.5 million total) • Fire Station No. 24 replacement in the Austin Highway area ($10 million) • Connecting Harry Wurzbach and Austin Highway via ramps that converge at one traffic signal ($3 million). This would involve widening the Austin Highway bridge to include sidewalks and bike lanes. “That’s one of the most tied-up intersections in the area,” District 10 Councilman Mike Gallagher said, supporting the proposed Austin Highway/Harry Wurzbach connection. “We’ve heard many complaints from constituents about (the intersection).” The city also plans to revamp the existing Eisenhauer Road/Harry Wurzbach intersection, which many motorists use to reach Austin Highway. Lauren Sides, a District 10 representative on the facilities bond committee, said the city has many needs to address. She spoke highly of the proposed Fire Station No. 24 replacement, which would remain in its current location

SA BOND continues on pg. 16


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HALT continues from pg. 01

Don’t become a statistic, chief says by BAIN SERNA

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n automated system that alerts motorists to rising floodwaters has been activated in the Olmos Basin near Alamo Heights and Olmos Park, part of a countywide safety network to protect lives.

HALT — or Highwater Alert Lifesaving Technology — can include signs, flashing lights and even crossing arms near flood-prone areas to warn drivers of dangers at water crossings during heavy and even moderate rains. The HALT systems around the Olmos Basin are now fully functional, which means emergency-service leaders are stressing the importance of heeding flood warnings. “All warning signal stations have been installed,” said Alamo Heights Police Chief Rick Pruitt. “All are functional and worked perfectly during the last flooding event (in late September).” In addition, installations are in

SA BOND continues from pg. 15 because of its proximity to neighborhoods with a high number of service calls. “The top priority for District 10 is to ensure we have an adequate facility for our first responders,” she said. “Currently, Fire Station 24 serves Districts 2 and 10. However, the facility does not house the necessary amenities needed to reduce response times.” Additionally, the neighborhood improvement package proposes $20 million in bond funds to redevelop targeted underused/distressed properties for affordable housing. This would include 350 acres of properties near the University of Texas at San Antonio-Downtown campus, VIA Centro Plaza just west of downtown, and areas north of downtown. Treviño said it’s important for all of the residential bond committees to study city staff ’s recommendations, hear about

DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016 place at creeks, dips in the road and other locales across Bexar County. “The Olmos Basin floods very much and the floodwater can come very quickly and rise very quickly,” said Monica Ramos, a spokeswoman for Bexar County. “We want to do everything we can to keep people from going into the area whenever high water is over roads. That’s why it was very important for Bexar County to partner with Alamo Heights and the Olmos Park areas to make sure we do everything to let motorists know to not go through them.” According to a county website, “HALT uses a sensor to detect rising water. Once the water reaches a certain depth, the system will warn drivers to turn around with either flashing lights or a combination of flashing lights and gates.” Officials said Bexar County has invested more than $10.3 million in the HALT program since 2008. Funding was provided by the Bexar County Flood Control Program, a 10-year, $500 million capital-improvement program “that addresses flooding challenges across Bexar County,” according to a release. Olmos Basin is a designated floodplain behind Olmos Dam, which captures and retains floodwaters from Olmos Creek, as well as upstream storm drainage

HALT continues on pg. 17 proposals that did not make the final cut and reach a consensus on priorities. “Let’s prioritize projects that make the most impact in a timely manner,” he added. Cynthia Spielman, Beacon Hill Area Neighborhood Association president, told the streets committee in October that it’s vital to also emphasize the proposals affecting neighborhoods bordering downtown. She supports an $8 million proposal to improve streets in the West Woodlawn Avenue area. There’s also a $3 million proposal to rebuild and reconfigure the Five Points intersection of Flores Street and Fredericksburg Road. “What’s also important to a great city are great neighborhoods,” she added. The council could decide on a final bond package for voters in January. Visit www.sanantonio.gov/2017Bond. aspx for more information.


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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM HALT continues from pg. 16 systems in San Antonio, Olmos Park and Alamo Heights, according to officials. The county has been working with suburban cities as well as San Antonio and the San Antonio River Authority to create the HALT system across the county, including in or near several municipalities. “Water knows no boundaries,” Ramos said. “We want to make sure we have flashing lights and proper signage, and in the appropriate areas we have the arms (similar to railroad crossings) that come down to keep people away from going across dangerous floodwaters.” She added, “HALT is a sensitive system that’s all connected. With this system, we’re able to immediately know when and approximately how much water is on the road and which warning signals have gone off, so drivers can be informed not to try to cross certain danger areas.” The system is also connected to the website www.bexarflood.org, which shows in real time which roads and areas are closed due to the dangers

A sign for HALT -- or Highwater Alert Lifesaving Technology — in the Olmos Basin near an Alamo Heights ballpark is part of a countywide system to warn of rising floodwaters. Photo by Rudy B. Ornelas

of rising water as well as specific information about flooding locations. “The Alamo Heights and Olmos Park police departments close gates across the roadways leading into the Olmos Basin when flooding conditions are occurring or imminent,” Pruitt said. “It is important for motorists to acknowledge the warning lights and not drive into the Olmos Basin area even if the gates are not closed.”

First responders may not always be able to quickly reach someone trapped in high water, he added. “There are occasions when the police officers are busy with other emergencies and are delayed in shutting the gates,” Pruitt said. There are two HALT systems in Alamo Heights — the green space between the north and southbound legs of Alamo Heights Boulevard and the southbound leg of the boulevard just south of Corona Street and La Jara Boulevard, according to officials. Other warning signs are located along roadways that cross Olmos Basin from San Antonio and Olmos Park, such as the Devine Road and Ironwood Drive intersection, Basse Road east and west of Jones Maltsberger Road, and the intersection of Dick Friedrich Road and Contour Road. Though no HALT systems are directly in Olmos Park, the system still benefits residents, according to Olmos Park Fire Chief Linc Surber. “HALT signals would help our citizens that go through the Olmos Basin areas,” Surber said. “We have a direct connect to the Olmos Basin and into Alamo

Heights and many people commute that way, so anything that gives them advance warning of high water or possible flooding situations is a great help for us.” The system only works if motorists heed the warning, Pruitt said. “Unfortunately, the HALT warning system is only good for the motorist heeding the warning and seeking an alternate route,” the chief said. “Disregarding the warning lights pose the same danger to a motorist as driving around barricades, only to be stranded in high water.” Not paying attention to the warning puts rescuers in danger, too. “This in turn unnecessarily places fire department personnel in danger when they are called upon to rescue a stranded motorist,” the chief said. “Hopefully, motorists will heed the warning lights as an active high-water threat and think twice before proceeding or risk becoming a statistic.” The city of Olmos Park also sends its own email notices when Olmos Basin gates are opened or closed.

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

FOOD TOURS continues from pg. 01

Third time could be charm for dining organizer by BENJAMIN OLIVO

I

t seems every month more restaurants open downtown or in the nearby culinary hubs of Southtown and the Pearl district. A small group of entrepreneurs are hoping the interest in food tours, where food enthusiasts visit multiple hotspots in a single outing, grows along with it.

Compared to other cities, such as Austin, food tours are still a relatively foreign concept in San Antonio. But the interest seems to be growing among locals and tourists.

Downtown food tours take visitors to pits and pitmasters who toil tirelessly to bring bark and bite to the city’s barbecue scene. Courtesy photo

“People now do understand what a food tour is,” said Julia Celeste Rosenfeld, a longtime food writer in San Antonio who launched Food Chick Tours a little more than a year ago. “In the very beginning, I heard, ‘What do you mean, “A progressive dinner”?’ We have a bite at each place, and you’ve gotten to meet the chef, and you’ve seen real San Antonio. Now, they understand what a progressive dinner is, for the most part.” Search the internet for “San Antonio Food Tours,” and you’ll find a dearth of results. Fork in the River will come up, but it’s been on hiatus for months.

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Owner Gary Pepe said he plans to revive the tour — which included Biga on the Banks and Restaurant Gwendolyn — in the next few months. Taste This is based in San Antonio, and offers tours of the King William Historic District and a road-trip tour of Austin breweries. These can range from $50 to as much as $250. Even chef Johnny Hernandez, whose local restaurant empire includes La Gloria at the Pearl, The Fruteria and El Machito, told KENS 5 recently he plans to map out San Antonio’s Taco Trail, a sort of tour of musteat tacos in the Alamo City. Hernandez said he envisions food enthusiasts traveling to the Alamo City just for the Taco Trail. One culinary-excursion service that’s just getting started is SA Food Tours, which began operating in early November. Before launching it, the co-founders of SA Food Tours gave trial tours to friends, family and local influencers on social media. “We’ve given tours to close to 150 people already,” said Jordan Gonzales, co-owner of SA Food Tours. “I’d say all but about 10 to 15 were locals. There is that demand here . . . What we’re working on is how to keep it relative and interesting to locals, as well (as tourists).” The demographics of San Antonio are changing, Rosenfeld said. But food tours are also gaining popularity because of a cultural shift, thanks to the growing popularity of the Food Network and a continuing interest and awareness of what people put in their bodies. In San Antonio, specifically, it’s also about the food scene expanding in an organic way, said Rosenfeld, who has been writing about food in San Antonio since 1977. Fifteen months ago, she started Food Chick Tours because people kept asking her for restaurant suggestions. Now, she wants to highlight chefs’ stories, so abundant in the city.

“One chef will have a really great team in the kitchen, and one of those chefs will go out and start her own restaurant,” said Rosenfeld, who offers tours centered around Tex-Mex, barbecue and one called “Anything But Tex-Mex.” She added, “So as strong chefs get taught by strong chefs, it’s that rate of return that increases.” The timing of her new business correlates with the booming restaurant scene, especially the maturation of the Pearl and Southtown, and to a lesser degree the North St. Mary’s Street Strip, she said. The same could be said for SA Food Tours. Alamo City native Gonzales teamed up with his co-worker Michael Ehl, who recently moved here from San Diego, to start the business. They work together at a medical device company. The peripatetic nature of SA Food Tours is what pleased Anthony Willett, who attended a recent tour, and whose popular Instagram account SAFood.e has attracted nearly 6,000 followers. “I got to experience multiple restaurants as opposed to several (dishes) in one sitting,” Willett said. SA Food Tours is a downtown walking tour of restaurants that includes Ocho at Hotel Havana, Lüke and Zinc. In between stops, the tour will pause for a San Antonio history lesson on the Majestic Theatre, or other landmarks, or for an update on what the city is doing to revitalize downtown. “We want to share that story,” Gonzales said. “Most people come to San Antonio and stay on the River Walk. And it has its place and we love that. But we want to show them what else is going on.” Gonzales tried to launch SA Food Tours twice before, the last time in 2013, but the timing wasn’t right, he said. “Maybe it really is true that three time’s a charm,” Gonzales said.

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SALOCALLOWDOWN.COM TERRELL HILLS continues from pg. 01

Terrell Hills officials are asking property owners to help keep streets and intersections clear of brush. Courtesy photo

Response to notices has been positive, officers say by BAIN SERNA

T

ERRELL HILLS – Police are conducting checks to make sure roadways and intersections are clear of overgrown foliage that limits views and could cause vehicle, pedestrian or bicycle accidents. Owners of residential properties where shrubs and tree limbs extend into streets and sidewalks could be violating the city’s visual-obstruction hazard ordinance, officials said. An initial violation results in a courtesy notice, but fines can range from $35 to $200, according to the city’s code of ordinances. “With all the rain we had this year, it really caused a lot of foliage to grow a lot more than what people may realize,” said City Manager Columbus Stutes.

“We just want to make sure that certain areas are clear so that traffic can get along without accidents. It will really help prevent accidents and improve sight clearance, especially with all our cyclists and walkers. It’s very important that traffic can see what’s in the streets.” Police Chief Greg Whitlock said the city is putting safety first. “With all the rain we’ve had this year, some of the shrubs and branches have overgrown into intersections, so we are just doing a bit of a push to contact the residents,” Whitlock said. “There were several intersections that we identified that needed the bushes trimmed.” Officers are continually doing visual checks of the roads to see if there are any hazards, according to Whitlock. “It’s not just one general area; it’s all over the city,” Whitlock said about the effort. “As officers are patrolling, they’re also looking to see which intersections need to be trimmed. It’s important to clear brush to see stop signs and such. If you come to a stop sign and it needs to be trimmed, that is a safety issue and it needs to be trimmed right away.” Once police see overgrowth that needs to be cut back, an officer will leave a courtesy notice on the door informing the resident the foliage must be trimmed to stay in compliance with city laws. As of press time, police reported no accidents directly tied to brush grown wild. Officers want to keep it that way, Whitlock said. Response from the notices has been positive, and those receiving one have quickly trimmed the overgrowth, the chief added.

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

KALLISON continues from pg. 01

Cowgirl inductee opposed poll tax, discrimination by BAIN SERNA

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LMOS PARK — The late Frances Rosenthal Kallison — rancher, horsewoman, author, philanthropist and an advocate for minorities and the poor — has earned her spurs, in a manner of speaking. The longtime Olmos Park resident was posthumously inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame in Fort Worth during a ceremony Oct. 27. “I wanted to see a Jewish woman in the Cowgirl Hall of Fame,” said Hollace

FRANCES ROSENTHAL KALLISON Photo courtesy of the Jewish Museum of the American West

Ava Weiner, who nominated Kallison. Weiner is a former reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and is an author of books on Jewish thought and history. “She’s the very first Jewish member. They

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have a Catholic nun; they have Hispanic, African American, Native American, but no Jewish members. That was one of the reasons I nominated her.” Many see Kallison as an inspiration; they say she tirelessly worked to help those in need. Born Frances Elaine Rosenthal in 1908 in Fort Worth, she married Perry Kallison in 1931. The couple rented a home in Olmos Park in 1935, had three children and eventually built a residence on Stanford Drive. They moved in during 1941, and the home still stands. She died there in 2004 at the age of 96. The Kallisons also owned a 2,700acre ranch in northwest Bexar County at the far end of Culebra Road. It became a place where soldiers in training would visit and enjoy the hospitality. Later, a portion of the ranch became part of Government Canyon State Natural Area. “She was an excellent horse rider,” Weiner said. “She … prepared barbecues and chocolate cake for (the soldiers) and encouraged them to ride horses. She was a very qualified as a

ranch woman and horsewoman.” Kallison was a founding member of the Ladies’ Auxiliary to the Bexar County Sheriff ’s Mounted Posse, a precision horseriding team that showcased their equine skills and performed public exhibitions. Kallison was a researcher and the creative force for the Jewish exhibit at the Institute of Texan Cultures; it became a permanent fixture in 1968. She also was a co-founder of the Texas Historical Society and a member of the Bexar County Historical Commission. As part of the National Council of Jewish Women, she fought for the rights of the poor by successfully lobbying local leaders to open a prenatal clinic and other medical facilities. Kallison also opposed discriminatory poll taxes that kept minorities in Texas from voting. She also promoted educational opportunities for the disabled, particularly blind children. “In terms of social services, she did a lot for women and children’s health care in the city,” Weiner said. “She did a lot

KALLISON continues on pg. 21

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Getting fresh at D’lish

D'Lish Café and Bakery (left) features items including a Reuben sandwich with strawberry salad (far left, top), a traditional Cobb salad (far left, bottom) and carrot cake (above). Photos by Gaby Galindo and Collette Orquiz

by NORMA GONZALEZ

D

’lish Café and Bakery wants to be known for fresh pastries made “that morning for that afternoon’s lunch,” said business partner Tate Akin.

Located at 2611 Wagon Wheel St., the cafe opened its doors to customers a few months ago offering a variety of baked goods, salads and lunch options. Akin and her business partners have certain expectations when serving food. “We want everything done from scratch,” she said. Fresh fruits, vegetables and other ingredients are used to

KALLISON continues from pg. 20 of research about the Jews in Texas and the Jews of San Antonio. Her master’s thesis from Trinity University was about the history of the Jews of San Antonio.” Kallison was a prolific writer with many published works, and she held numerous leadership positions and received awards for her service and expertise in various fields. “She could’ve just been her husband’s sidekick, but when they got married she immediately made her presence known and carved out a place for her in the community,” said Bobbi Ravicz, the youngest child and daughter of Perry and Frances Kallison. “She was so respected and revered. When she saw a need anywhere, she would jump in to help.” Perry Kallison helped found the San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo, and the couple hosted the event at their ranch in the early days, according to an online history. The Kallisons also owned a saddle and harness store called Kallison’s Big Country Store, located at 124 S. Flores St.

The store eventually expanded to include other farming and ranching equipment, as well as additional merchandise. Nathan Kallison, Frances Kallison’s father-in-law, founded the store in the 1899. Ravicz recalled her mother as being “half-Victorian and half-Western.” “She was a rider and a writer,” she said. “She was truly a Renaissance woman. She covered so many areas. She was a mentor to younger women. She was very progressive. She wasn’t an activist in terms of picketing or sit-ins, but she was in the forefront and way ahead of her time.” Ravicz said that she is honored by her mother’s nomination. “It’s good that it’s posthumous because I don’t think she would’ve wanted all the attention,” Ravicz said. “Having a spotlight on her like that, she wouldn’t have wanted it. She was very selfless and humble. She saw nothing unique in what she was doing, when in fact she was a real trailblazer. She just did her thing and went forward with it. She didn’t look back. She just blazed ahead.”

During the past few months, D’lish has seen its business grow “strictly by word of mouth” thanks to a diverse clientele, she said. Hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and closed Sunday.

make each meal and dessert. D’lish offers a standard menu and a hotspecials menu, which varies from day to day. Popular items include Mom’s Meatloaf made with lean ground beef, King Ranch chicken, chicken pot pie, and strawberry and spinach salad. “We try to serve every palate,” Akin said. Prices are kept reasonably low, she added. The linen tablecloths and napkins, handmade cabinets and the stainedconcrete floors resemble a loft you might find in New York City, Akin said.

D’LISH CAFÉ AND BAKERY 2611 Wagon Wheel St. For more, call 290-8722 or visit www.thedlishbakery.com or facebook.com/Dlish

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DEC. 5 - JAN. 2 , 2016

BUY LOCAL Learn more about newest purveyors of goods and services in your area

This might be your cup of tea at Rivercenter Mall by COLLETTE ORQUIZ

L

ooking to spice things up? The owners of The Spice & Tea Exchange want to add flavor to customers’ lives with seasonings, sugars, salts and tea.

“We cook a lot of spice, we know a lot of spice, we were raised like that,” said owner Mohammed Siddiqui. Located on the river level of Rivercenter Mall at 849 E. Commerce St., Suite 121, The Spice & Tea Exchange held a grand opening Oct. 14. Natives of Pakistan as well as former

Houston residents, Siddiqui and his wife, Neelofer, fell in love with The Spice & Tea Exchange franchise and moved to San Antonio to open the “unique concept.” Children Nabeel and Hibah Siddiqui also help out at the shop, which is designed in an 18th-century style. Offering more than 140 spices, 85 hand-mixed seasoning blends, 17 naturally flavored sugars, 25 salts from around the globe and 35 exotic teas, Siddiqui said there is something for everyone at the store. “They can choose and pick, and go home and cook for themselves, or go home and learn how to cook,” he said. Concerned with quality, not quantity, the family backs up each purchase with a guarantee that customers will love it, Siddiqui said. “Turnover time is not more than six months, so that’s why they’re more fresh than what you expect at the grocery store and other places,” he added. The store also offers recipes; accessories including spice grinders, tea diffusers and pitchers; and numerous gift sets (just in time for the

Employee Arlene Fuentes prepares a mixture at The Spice & Tea Exchange (far left), where customers can find a variety of salts, tea, sugars and bottled seasonings (above). Photos by Collette Orquiz

holidays), family members said. Neelofor Siddiqui designed several of the gifts. Hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.

THE SPICE & TEA EXCHANGE 849 E. Commerce St., Suite 121 For more, call 943-5525 or visit spiceandtea.com or facebook.com/spiceandteasanantonio

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EAT LOCAL Learn about the newest neighborhood places for breakfast, lunch, dinner or drinks

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Broadway shop caters to lovers of chocolate, sweets by VALERIE BUSTAMANTE

A

LAMO HEIGHTS — After leaving the corporate world in 2013 to become a professional chocolatier, Mary Collazo dedicated herself to expanding a family business featuring all things sweet. On Aug. 9, she opened her second Chocollazo shop, which she coowns with husband Frank Collazo, at 4013 Broadway. The store’s title is a play on the family surname. “My goal even when I was in chocolatier school was to open a chocolate shop in Alamo Heights. I think this area is really wonderful and a richly cultured area,” Mary Collazo said. “People here are adventurous eaters.” The Collazos started Chocollazo in 2013 as a chocolate trolley and a year later opened a small shop at Lackland Air Force Base. At the new Broadway shop, customers can purchase pastries, chocolate truffles made daily and an assortment of candies. Customer favorites include the Potato Chip Chocolate Bar, the Éclair Trifle and the Chipotle English Toffee. “I think Chocollazo offers a really

unique experience you cannot get anywhere in San Antonio. You can go to an ice cream parlor or a candy shop, but there is no dessert restaurant,” Collazo said. “We’re very small and nimble in what we do. I think we offer a really unique experience that you can’t find somewhere else.” Customers can request special orders or even have Chocollazo cater their events. The owners hope to start a small brunch service on Saturdays. They did a test run Oct. 29 in partnership with Quantum Coffee Roasters and served crepes. Collazo described the event as a success. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Sunday and closed Mondays. Created by trained chocolatier Mary Collazo, Chocollazo in Alamo Heights (above, left) offers a range of all things sweet, including this eclair trifle. Photos by Valerie Bustamante and Collette Orquiz

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LOCAL: Alamo Heights, Monte Vista, Olmos Park, Downtown, King William, Terrell Hills, December 2016  

This month in Zone 1: SA Bond Proposals include North Central Roads, improvements to Broadway, and connecting Austin Highway to Harry Wurzba...

LOCAL: Alamo Heights, Monte Vista, Olmos Park, Downtown, King William, Terrell Hills, December 2016  

This month in Zone 1: SA Bond Proposals include North Central Roads, improvements to Broadway, and connecting Austin Highway to Harry Wurzba...

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