Page 1

www.salocallowdown.com

Illustration by Jeremiah Teutsch

pg.10 Krier takes over as the new District 9 councilman

What's

INSIDE your community

pg. 03 local commentary SUSAN YERKES pg.03 Rudi Rodriguez: Chronicling the Tejano saga Northwest Side resident dedicated to telling the story of Texas' early settlers Photo by Josh Huskin

Vol. 2, Issue 06

COMMUNITY NEWS

castle hills

shavano park

december 2013

north central

Longtime San Antonio Chamber leader getting up to speed on all of the latest issues

78213 78230 78231 78248 78249

Rawlinson students reach out to help Ugandan kids fight disease

pg.03 The Interact Club raises $2,400 for African care center 8,500 miles away

pg.13 Donated ATV helping Castle Hills officers control crime All-terrain vehicle can reach areas inaccessible to a patrol car

by Miranda koerner

Photo by Joshua Michael

fantastic deals

coupons INSIDE Discover the city through LOCAL deals from restaurants, retailers and services in your community, and save money while you do it! pg. 26

A

Rawlinson Middle School teacher's trip to Uganda not only led to a lifelong passion to help others, but also inspired several students to raise thousands of dollars for children in the African nation suffering from a debilitating disease. Sarah Blomstrom had no idea her zeal would prompt the Interact Club to recently drum up $2,400 for Hope for Humans, a local organization that cares for Ugandan children afflicted with Nodding Syndrome. “They felt empowered they could

Rawlinson continues on pg. 12

Photo by Steven Gilmore

Luxury apartments near Shavano Park driven by rising house prices

pg.11

Renters want to enjoy Shavano Park lifestyle without paying big mortgages


2

december 2013

From the editor

4

December 201

tedwards@salocallowdown.com

Stubborn fat has met its match.

President Harold J. Lees LocaL is where Publisher you are. Gregg Rosenfield

From THe eDITor

Happy holidays to all

tedwards@salocallowdown.co

Assoc. Publisher Rick Upton

TW

he holiday elcome To Your FIrsT Issue oF season president locAl commuNITY NeWs. our LocaL is what Editorial is upon Harold J. Lees philosophy here at the newspaper Executive Editor we do. us,is keeping and that our means readers in touch, informed publisher Thomas EdwardsGregg good will and and aware of what's happening in their Rosenfield neighborhoods blessings to all.street by street, business by News Staff Assoc. publisher business, by venue and even in the No mattervenue what Collette Orquiz andRick Will Wright Upton circles of government and education. tradition you we want to help our advertisers in addition, Contributing Writers eDITorIAl observe — whether and sponsors get the best results possible Rudy Arispe, Olivier executuve editorJ. Bourgoin, Joyce by making LocAL the go-to choice for it's Christmas, Hanukkah, Kawnzaa Thomas Edwards Hotchkiss, Miranda Koerner, Travis E. consumers who want to know where the or something else — the message editor GETTING TO Poling, managing Gianna Rendon, Lucille Sims greatest products and deals can be found. Travis E. Poling KNOW remains the same:WePeace to mankind. know readers have a wide variety of sources to Thomas and Susan Yerkes NOW editorial Assistant This time of year remindsabout us ofthethe get information world around them, but lOOkiNg fOr ART Collette Orquiz here at LocAL we're taking a new approach to an old qualities that bring out the best in both THomAs idea:neighbors: covering our local communities as thoroughly as contributing Writers Creative Director eDWArDs ourselves and our respect, Bowlin, Joyce Hotchkiss possible by featuring stories on the events and news ExECuTivE EdiTor charity RichardSean Fisher Jr. tolerance, and humility. and Kate Hunger that have a direct impact on your life, your family, your It is the seasonneighbors of fellowship, of Production Designer and your friends. • Army brat, grew up in proofreader • Editorial We want to focus on the everyday folks in the Joyce Hotchkiss giving gifts and strengthening bonds. San Antonio Pete Morales • ad dEsign/Editorial community as well as the news-makers; we want to • Has cats, As the days grow shorter and the dogs and ArT Contributing Photographers celebrate what is unique and what brings us together. horses temperature colder, it is not unusual Director but to do this, we also need to hear from you – because Steven creative Gilmore, Josh Huskin, R. Fisher Favoritetomovies: find us warming upatto you are theeach centerother of what we cover. Joshuacontributing Michaels photographers and Mark Sobhani "Planet of the Apes" And while it'sour true we are supported by advertising by opening our hearts and (original), "Star Wars Collette Orquiz, Leland A. Outz emaiL Contributing Illustrator and value the relationships fellow man. we have with our customers, Episodewallets IV: A New to help one's thomas edwards the news and editorial content are independently Jeremiah Teutsch Hope" And most know ADVerTIsING the season is produced by a team of top-flight journalists Advertising Directors old newspaper Advertising not about money presents, but andand photographers. or email Jaselle Luna nickname: "Kid Death" tedwards@salocallowdown.com Advertising Director LocAL mailed directly each month to readers strengthening the ties ofisfriendship Account manager motto: Saving the world living in hill country Village, and community. It also reminds us to hollywood Park and ZiP Jaselle Dawn LunaRadick one sentence at a time. As the San Antonio area codes 78232 and 78216. count our blessings and give thanks. Manager continues to grow, knowing Account reADer serVIce This is not the only edition of LocAL we produce, bu Here attailored LOCAL Community News, mailing Address what’s happening just down the Kelly Jean it is the only edition to your life, your interests, your community, your school Garza and Marc Olson 4204 Gardendale Ste. 201 SA, TX 78229 street is harder to keep up with. asorganizations. we gather with friends and family for and your Fax Local Community News monthly Controller phone even the if youholidays, didn't have this to your home or business, you can we newspaper want to delivered take a moment (210) 957.2799 338.8842 editions have got San Antonio Gerard (210) "Jerry" Sulaica keep up with all the stories we cover by visiting SALocalLowdown.com. to thank our readers and advertisers. covered exploring neighborhood Advertising Inquiries LocAL wants to hear feedback on how we're doing, but also keep us in mind ® READER SERVICE them interesting a happy,orfestive season going on in your rupton@salocallowdown.com issues and trends and letting Send stubborn fat packing with CoolSculpting. anytimeWe you wish see something hear of something Address readers know everything from whatMailing story Ideas filled community youwith think wonderful is newsworthy.memories. We’re proud to be among the first in the area to offer this revolutionarybusiness new body tips@salocallowdown.com is coming in the next For instance, this inaugural edition you will find stories about how technology 4204 Gardendale Ste. 201 SA, TX 78229 Youinhave given us a wonderful block over to how local government Website is helping emergency Medical Services tackle response times, efforts by neighbors contouring treatment. Now you can target and sculpt away those exercisegift: Your support. Fax Phone www.salocallowdown.com decisions will effect their lives. living near the San Antonio international Airport to soundproof their homes and a and diet-resistant love handles and belly fat without surgery or downtime. We listing can only hope during the past (210) 338.8842 (210) 616.9677 comprehensive of news briefsthat in LocAL Lowdown. CoolSculpting is FDA-cleared, safe and effective. See a positive difference in the For advertising, customer service or editorial, please We have an independent editorial year and half since LOCAL began, So think about us a and let LocAL know what's important to you. i am no stranger Advertising Inquiries call us at 210-338-8842 or write to us at: way your clothes fit in as little as one treatment*. staff to report without fear or favor to San Antonio, having grown having worked as a crime reporter, editor we have lived up up tohere thatand support. local community News 4204 Gardendale Ste. 201 to be a trustworthy source of news.rupton@salocallowdown.com and opinion writer off and on for nearly three decades. With each issue we strive to provide San Antonio, TX 78229 i can be reached at tedwards@salocallowdown.com or at tips@salocallowdown.com Contact us today to schedule your consultation. Editors and reporters want to Story Ideas intriguing and insightful stories, as hear from the readers, community Reproduction in whole or in part without Or to learn more, visit www.dermsa.com our permission is prohibited, well as the kind of content that offers leaders and businesses about whattips@salocallowdown.com faCEBook.CoM/sAlocAlcommuNITYNeWs 2012 Helen Publishing, LLC and is important to them. TwiTTEr.CoM/sAlocAlloWDoWN Website information to enrich your lives and Local Community News, LLC, all rights reserved. www.salocallowdown.com tell you more about your community. Our staff has tried to make each LOCAL Community News publications newspaper a kind of gift, brimming Zone 1: 78204, 78205, 78209, 78210, 78212, 78215 with solid news reporting and practical Zone 3: 78216, 78232, 78247 guides such as the calendars and Zone 4: 78109, 78148, 78233, 78239 New updates on restaurants and businesses. 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local commentary

Plastic — it’s in the bag by susan yerkes

T

he holiday season is upon us. It’s the shopping-est time of the year.

And whether we’re buying groceries for festive holiday gatherings, or gifts for friends far and wide, there’s one thing the bulk of our purchases have in common: We’ll carry them out of the store in plastic bags. Americans use more than 100 billion plastic shopping bags a year, most of them the thin, single-use type that come in handy for groceries and sundry shopping. Some folks reuse them – they’re especially good for scooping up cat litter or dog poop – before trashing them. But useful as they may be, they still end up in landfills or blow down the road as urban tumbleweeds, getting stuck in trees or hedges and creating trash-jams in lakes, creeks and rivers. Unlike their free-range namesakes,

these tumbleweeds can take up to 1,000 years to decay. In addition, it requires at least 12 million barrels of oil a year to manufacture all those bags. And it takes a lot of money to clean up the mess. In San Antonio alone, officials estimate the city spends about $1.3 million a year cleaning up and recycling plastic bags. The bags are back in the news these days, ever since District 7 Councilman Cris Medina recently put forward a proposal to ban the bags in most grocery and retail stores. You can expect a lot of discussion in the next couple of months, before the City Council votes on the idea. Medina is not the first to suggest a ban to help curb the plastic bag build-up. In the past decade, as plastic waste kept piling up, legislation aimed at fixing the bag mess was introduced at local, state and national levels. Back in 2010, Washington, D.C., implemented what some folks call a “backdoor bag ban” – a law requiring shoppers to pay 5 cents each time they need a recyclable plastic bag. The action was spurred by a disgraceful plastic pile-up in the Anacostia River — which flows through the nation’s capital. This past spring, veteran Virginia congressman Jim Moran introduced a national bill modeled on the D.C. law. This issue isn’t going to go away. In the past few years, many Texas leaders

have gotten on the bag-ban bandwagon. Back in 2009, when environmentalists were beginning to sound the alarm about the plastic pileup, state Sen. Leticia Van De Putte of San Antonio filed a fairly mild bill in the Texas lege to require businesses that routinely bagged purchases in plastic to at least provide reusable bags. Brownsville passed the first municipal bag ban in the state. South Padre Island passed a ban, as did El Paso. Austin passed a bag ban last year, and Dallas and Houston leaders are currently considering the issue. San Antonio took a step toward at least curtailing bag use in 2011 with a voluntary “Change Is In the Bag” program with H-E-B, Target, Walgreens, JCPenney and Walmart. The stores encouraged recyclable bag use, and set up collection points where single-use bags could be left for recycling. Unfortunately, the program was a bust. As long as plastic bags are free and easy to get, folks keep using them. They sure are convenient, after all. It may take something like a bag ban to get people to actually make a dent in plastic-bag proliferation. There’s been some blowback on the bag bans, too. This spring, state Rep. Drew Springer, riding the Ted Cruz/tea party wave, filed a “Shopping Bag Freedom Act” bill that would have banned cities from banning plastic bags.

Tejano continues from pg. 01

Rawlinson continues from pg. 01

Hispanic Heritage Center of Texas is an ongoing project

More answers needed to combat Nodding Syndrome

by susan yerkes

do something,” said Blomstrom, who spent most of last year living in the northern part of Uganda where she taught 100 orphans along the Nile River. Her Texas students have been "very curious" about her time in Africa. Nodding Syndrome is a progressive neurological disorder that affects the brains and nervous systems of children 5 to 15 years old. Children appear to be growing sleepy or nodding off, but are actually experiencing seizures. The disease eventually leads to complete physical impairment and a need for constant care, but many families in Uganda don't have the resources. A visitor to Rawlinson — Collines Angwech — also helped spur the students' efforts, said Blomstrom, a seventh- and eighth-grade reading and writing teacher. "Collines, a young Ugandan woman, shared how she spent her childhood running from the LRA (Lord's Resistance Army) due to a civil war that lasted over 20 years in

R

udi Rodriguez is a man with a mission: to tell the story of the Tejanos.

Tejano, a term used for a Texan of Mexican descent, was in use when Texas was part of the Spanish empire centuries ago. But it’s only in the last 20 years or so the word has come into popular use again, as historians have rediscovered the often untold stories of these early settlers. Rodriguez’s passion has become a driving force behind the Tejano renaissance, earning the businessman and Northwest Side resident accolades from preservationists, civic organizations and the state. “He realizes the great importance of telling the Tejano story and portraying the numerous contributions of Tejanos in Texas history," said friend and attorney Dan Naranjo. In 2003, Rodriguez’s passion for history led him to found a company he called Texas Tejano.

Rudi Rodriguez, a trained architect and businessman, has been recognized by several organizations for his work to preserve the early history of Texas. Photo by Josh Huskin

“Millions of schoolchildren have seen our exhibits, including one that was featured in the Texas State Capitol for three months. And our website has had several million visits,” Rodriguez said.

Tejano continues on pg. 14

This is Texas, after all. We love the land, but we’ll be damned if we’re going to let somebody else, especially the government, tell us how to take care of it. One of these days, when I’m out on the freeway (or the toll road), I fully expect to see a bumper sticker that reads: “You can have my plastic bag when you pry it out of my cold, dead hands.” In the meantime, happy holidays! Email comments to syerkes@ salocallowdown.com northern Uganda," Blomstrom said. Angwech, now an activist who went to university as part of the Invisible Children Inc. program (which creates awareness about the LRA, an army that included children-soldiers), met Blomstrom in 2012. She spoke at Rawlinson in August. Blomstrom said the students’ reaction was immediate and members of the school's Interact Club launched a fundraising effort. “We’re all blown away by their compassion for people they have never met," she said. "It’s a way for them to look outside themselves and that for me is really exciting.” The money raised by the students now goes to Hope for Humans, and will provide medical care and supportive services for sick children and families. Angwech is director of operations in Uganda for Hope for Humans. The first Care Center is in Odek sub-county in northern Uganda. In addition to medical needs, it also provides special-needs education and nutrition for more than 100 children. At Rawlinson, students sell beads made out of magazine pages fashioned by the mothers of Nodding Syndrome children. It is the women's only source of income, as many of their children

Rawlinson continues on pg. 12


EmErgEncy SErvicES

When it’s more than urgent. Most emergencies happen within a few miles of the home. Luckily, we’re in your neighborhood. CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Emergency Center - Alon offers emergency services 24 hours a day, seven days a week - close to home. Our physicians handle all types of emergencies from chest pain to stroke symptoms and high blood pressure to general children’s emergencies. When it’s more than urgent, quality emergency care is right around the corner.

11503 northwest military Highway, Suite 122 San Antonio, Texas 78230

4

december 2013

local our turn

Views and opinions about your community.

The best gift ever — water

D

on't let all the recent rain fool you. The drought is far from over. And while some cities may relax water restrictions, that's no reason for residents in the greater San Antonio area to take the supply for granted. As the population continues to grow and more developments rise, the demands for water will only increase. Water is the new oil. That is why conservation measures are still important. The Edwards Aquifer — San Antonio's primary source of drinking water — is still very low. That should concern all of us. The historic low came in 1956 when the aquifer hit 612 feet. A historic drought gripped Texas in the 1950s, but in some areas of the state today the dry spell is actually worse. During the last half century, the demand on the aquifer has increased beyond its supply capacity. The same is true for watersheds, lakes and reservoirs across Texas. Government agencies are being forced to take drastic measures, such as curtailing water releases to rice farmers in Southeast Texas. Voters Nov. 5 also approved a constitutional amendment that allows the state to dip into the rainy

day fund to allocate $2 billion to water resources when needed. More money, cutting off water to farmers, desalinization plants, pipelines… All of these may someday have a beneficial effect, but what about here and how? That's where you, the individual, come in. As repetitious as it may sound, continue practicing water conservation. It's the best holiday gift ever — the promise of a needed resource. If some climatologists are to be be believed, this could be the state's worst drought in 500 years, according to studies of tree rings. And it's not going to get any better, at least for a while. Forecasters predict that in spite of additional stormy weather, water levels won't return to normal for some time. Without adequate water, our towns and cities will have trouble attracting businesses and sustaining growth. The good news is there will probably be enough rain over the next few months to help raise levels, but it won't be enough to end the drought. From Alamo Heights to Schertz, residents are struggling to conserve, to plant drought-tolerant vegetation and to continue practices that preserve the fragile balance between keeping adequate water flowing without draining supplies. There is no simple answer. The best strategy to preserve water for ourselves and the generations to come is to simply remember to conserve every chance we get. Don't waste a drop.

The Local Community News editorial board includes Harry Lees, Gregg Rosenfield and Thomas Edwards. Send letters to the editor to tedwards@salocallowdown.com or snail mail them to Local Community News, 4204 Gardendale, Suite 201, San Antonio, TX 78229. We reserve the right to edit for taste, grammar and length.

Scan this code with a smartphone for information that can help you make an informed decision on whether or not to visit the Emergency Room; however, please keep in mind that if you experience any symptoms you believe to be an emergency, seek medical attention immediately.

210.853.1500 • christussantarosa.org/emergencycenter Our m

ission: To Extend the Healing Ministry of Jesus Christ.


5

salocallowdown.com

LOCAL HEALTH

The latest in medical, health care and fitness news for your community. Methodist Hospital and Northeast Methodist Hospital received an “A”

grade for their Hospital Safety Score. The score rates how well hospitals protect patients from accidents, errors, injuries and infections. To view other hospitals' safety scores, visit www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.

As part of a goal to bring 100 pediatric specialists to the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio by December, the hospital

and Baylor College of Medicine have added several physicians, medical specialists and a physician assistant. Dr. Charles Leach is the section head of pediatric infectious disease. The other physicians include Elizabeth Roeder, Donald Currie, Rebecca Huston, Richard Wayne, Martha Morse, Elumalai Appachi, Michelle Dean Bajaraz, John Browning, Jonathan D. Crews, Hilda Rivera-Santiago, Rebecca Schaub, Rachana Srivastava, Cecilia Van Bibber, Patricia Mancuso, Kimberly Terry and Micam Tullous. Meredith DeFrees has been added as a physician assistant.

Families of cornea donors,

transplant recipients and health care professionals participated in a memorial for donors early in November at the Bright Shawl, 819 Augusta St. About 300 yellow balloons were released to remember donors and the lives transformed through the gift of sight. Transplant recipients and families of donors shared their stories, including Army Chief Warrant Officer Mike Gonzales, who was able to serve in Operation Iraqi Freedom thanks to a cornea transplant; and Hope Sepulveda, who donated her 5-yearold daughter’s corneas after the girl died from cancer. To learn more about

being a donor, visit The San Antonio Eye Bank at www.saeyebank.org.

The University of the Incarnate Word selected Dr. Robyn Phillips-Madson as the founding dean of its School of Osteopathic Medicine. Phillips-Madson has been the dean and chief academic officer at the Pacific Northwest University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Yakima, Wash., and was named the Washington Osteopathic Medical Association Physician of the Year in 2007. She is board certified in family practice.

Mike Koroscik is the new chief executive officer of the Institute for Women’s Health, an obstetrics-gynecology practice with locations across San Antonio. Koroscik was recently the CEO at Austin Urology. For more about the institute, visit www.ifwh.org. Cantex Continuing Care Network and Christus Santa Rosa Health System had a groundbreaking for

Sorrento, a transitional care center. The 66,000-square-foot rehabilitation center will be next to Christus Santa RosaMedical Center at 2727 Babcock Road. The one-story building will have 96 private suites and eight semi-private suites. Completion is set for December 2014.

University Health System is

implementing a “germ-zapping” robot to reduce the amount of infections acquired at the hospital. The Xenex room disinfection system was developed and built in San Antonio. It uses ultraviolet rays 25,000 times more powerful than sunlight to disinfect surfaces and kill microorganisms that could harm patients.

Wishing you a Happy Holiday Season Hardy Oak Medical Pavilion 18707 Hardy Oak Blvd., Suite 230 San Antonio, TX 78258 (210) 494-2000 www.ifwh.org


6

december 2013 OUR GUIDE TO YOUR MONTH

Happening LOCAL

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

Dec. 17 and 10 a.m. Dec. 21, both at City Hall, 900 Saddletree Court.

FIRE ECOLOGY This class will look at the effects, good and 19 bad, that forest and grassland fires have on wildlife. Prescribed burns and fire’s role in changing the environment also will be covered. The class, which is geared to youths age 10 to 14, is limited to 20 students. It runs from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the Urban Ecology Center Classroom at Phil Hardberger Park, 8400 N.W. Military Highway. There’s no cost, but donations are accepted. To reserve a spot, call 207-3106. dec

In the photo above left, Rahime Bulut (left) and Aycel Inalhan prepare a dish during a recent Turkish cooking class at the Raindrop Turkish House on the North Side. In the aboveright photo, Inalhan scoops ingredients into a bowl. Photos by Mark Sobhani

dec

weekly

TAP ACADEMY These weekly

classes, put on by the Third Coast Rhythm Project, offer tap-dancing instruction for ages 4 and up; they’re the only tap classes in town for adults. The next adult absolute beginner classes, an introduction to tap-dancing, run 1-2 p.m. for six Saturdays, Jan. 18-Feb. 22, and 6:30-7:30 p.m. on six Wednesdays, Jan. 29-March 5. The cost is $48; classes take place at the Third Coast studio at 8055 West Ave., Suite 111. All other classes are ongoing and can be joined at any time, starting Jan. 7. More information is available at http://www.thirdcoastrhythm. com or by calling 348-8005.

saturdays

RAINDROP TURKISH HOUSE COOKING CLASSES These

classes, for women only, demonstrate how to prepare Turkish dishes, and the menu changes every week. They take place from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Raindrop Turkish House, 4337 Vance Jackson Road; cost is $10 per session. Reservations

are required; email rwasanantonio@ turkishhouse.org or call 979-422-9260.

dec

11

ST. GEORGE EPISCOPAL CHURCH MENTAL HEALTH FAMILY SUPPORT GROUP This

gathering takes place the second Wednesday of the month at 7 p.m. Patients and their family members, friends and providers are all welcome. Participants should park in the large lot on East Castle Lane; after entering the Parish Building, follow the long hall toward the sanctuary but turn left down a short hall next to the glassed-in nursery. The meeting room is at the end of that hall. St. George is at 6904 West Ave.

dec

16

THE SHAVANO PARK CITY COUNCIL meets at 6:30 p.m.

at City Hall, 900 Saddletree Court. It is rescheduled from Dec. 23.

dec

17, 21

TOWN HALL MEETINGS

in Shavano Park are scheduled for 6:30 p.m.

CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT The

San Antonio Audubon Society 22 needs volunteers – from nonbirders to experts – to help with the annual bird count, which focuses on numbers of birds spotted. The 114th national count takes place in 15-mile-wide circles and runs from dawn to dusk; to volunteer and determine when and where you will count, email Steve Hawkins at shawkins4@satx.rr.com.

dec 23 jan 3

CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS

The Northside and North East independent school districts are out for the season, with classes resuming Jan. 6.

Elsewhere in San Antonio SANTA'S RAILROAD december WONDERLAND The Texas weekends

Transportation Museum offers nighttime train rides and hayrides around its decorated grounds from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 14-15, 21-22 and 28. There’s also a historic depot, scale-model train layouts and even Choo Choo Claus. Admission costs $10 for adults and $7 for children

Active minds, healthy bodies, and happy hearts. ®

pick Morning drop off and afternoon ools sch ry enta elem l loca from up hnology Music, Spanish, Computer Tec Surpasses state standards for student-teacher ratios

Educational Child Care for Infants through Private Kindergarten and After School Each Primrose School is privately owned and operated. Primrose Schools and The Leader in Educational Child Care are trademarks of Primrose School Franchising Company. ©2012 Primrose School Franchising Company. All rights reserved.

ha p p ening k ey

ART

TALK

outdoor

Music

FOOD

2-12; those under 2 get in free. Check the website, www.txtransportationmuseum.org, for information on group rates, discounted tickets and online ticket purchases. The museum is at 11731 Wetmore Road.

through dec

"MERRY CHRISTMAS MOUSE"

through jan

HOLIDAY SPARKLE The twinkling

The Magik Theatre every Saturday 21 at 10:30 a.m. through Dec. 21 presents this holiday-themed show for kids at 420 S. Alamo St. Admission is adult and children (2 to 17 years), $10; seniors (60 and older), military and educator with valid ID, $1 off; children under 2 are free. To reserve tickets, go to www.magiktheatre.org. lights – more than a million of them — are on at the University of the Incarnate Word. The campus, at 4301 Broadway, is open for self-guided tours every evening through the Feast of the Epiphany.

6

dec

RINGING IN THE HOLIDAYS

dec

FREE WELLNESS SERIES

As part of its handbell concert series, River City Ringers will perform at 7:30 p.m. at Northern Hills United Methodist Church, 3703 N. Loop 1604 East. The concert is free and open to the public. Fourteen advanced-level handbell ringers make up the group, which is under the direction of Deb Mayes.

16

Revolucion Coffee + Juice, 7959 Broadway in The Collection shopping center, offers information on low testosterone in men. The session, which starts at 6 p.m., will be led by Dr. Jacob Torres, a chiropractor certified in functional endocrinology. Complimentary cold-pressed juice and snacks will be offered. Reserve a spot by calling 701-0725.

19

Primrose School of Huebner Village 2410 Huebner Park San Antonio, TX 78248

210.479.9200

PrimroseHuebnerVillage.com


7

salocallowdown.com

dec

HOLIDAY GALA The San

Antonio Chamber of 20 Commerce will hold its annual gala at the J.W. Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa from 6 p.m. to midnight. Cocktails and a silent auction start things off, and will be followed by dinner and the program. Dancing plus final silent-auction bidding will close out the affair, which is semi-formal. Tickets start at $150 a person for members, $200 for nonmembers; there’s a link to reserve a spot at www.sachamber. org/; click on the Events tab. The J.W. Marriott is at 23808 Resort Parkway.

dec

LIGHTS & LITTLE ONES This

event, geared to children 20 age 3 to 12, runs from 6 to 10 p.m. and is for family members too young to join in the San Antonio Chamber Gala going on nearby in the J.W. Marriott. Diversions will include crafts, a movie, all kinds of kid-friendly fare and photo ops with Santa Claus and the Missus. The cost is $30 per child, and reservations are required; call Penny LaMaestra at the chamber, 229-2119.

jan

7

SOLITAIRES' FIRST TUESDAY LUNCHEON The Alamo

Chapter, Military Officers Association of America, invites single officers, whether they are active-duty or retired, as well as the widows or widowers of officers to its monthly luncheon. It takes place at 11 a.m. at the Fort Sam Houston Golf Clubhouse. No registration is required, but attendees must pay their own way. If they are not members, they also must be willing to join the chapter; an application is available at http://www. alamomoaa.org/membership.cfm.

jan

10

LIT 'N LUNCH The Assistance

League of San Antonio will use this literary-oriented event

to raise money for children’s clothing and programs, including its “I’m in Charge” project. Featured speakers include Paulette Jiles-Johnson, the author of “Enemy Women” and other novels. Bexar County Sheriff Susan Pamerleau is mistress of ceremonies. The luncheon begins at 11:30 a.m. at San Antonio Country Club, 4100 N. New Braunfels Ave. Tickets cost $65, and may be purchased individually and in tables of eight and 10; to purchase them, or for more information, call the League at 732-1200. The reservation deadline is Jan. 3.

JAN

TUX 'N TENNIES GALA This

annual fundraiser benefits the youth programs of Silver & Black Give Back, the nonprofit arm of Spurs Sports & Entertainment. Top Spurs players, coaches and executives will be featured, along with dinner, live entertainment and live and silent auctions, all at the AT&T Center. The VIP reception is at 6:30 p.m.; dinner and the auctions start at 7:30. For more information or to reserve a table, call Loretta Kerner at 444-5861 or email lkerner@attcenter. com. The reservation deadline is Jan. 6.

10

RETIRED TEACHERS The North San Antonio Retired 15 Teachers Association will open its January meeting with a “meet and greet” at 9:45 a.m.; the meeting will start at 10:15 a.m. San Antonio Police Chief William McManus will be the guest speaker. The meeting takes place at San Pedro Presbyterian Church, 14900 San Pedro Ave., and members are encouraged to bring a friend.

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december 2013

Address of local business

LOCAL LOWDOWN

Name of local business

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

Open and Opening Soon

and only Burke's Outlet" in San Antonio, a spokeswoman said. It is on the second floor of the mall in the area that once housed the Marketplace at Wonderland of the Americas, which has been relocated close to Burke's Outlet and renamed The Little Shops at Wonderland of the Americas. The mall's hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. For more, call 736-0992 or visit http://www.burkesoutlet.com/.

1. TÖST BISTRO & BAR, 14415 Blanco Road, is under new management and features a Mediterranean-style menu with the emphasis on French and Italian fare. Hours are 4-11 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and brunch 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. For more, call 408-2670 or visit http://www. tostbistro.com/. (See story on page 22)

IN OTHER NEWS THE CITY COUNCIL appointed attorney

2. SALON VALENTINO, 2267 N.W. Military Highway, Suite 111, opened its doors just a few months ago to offer a wide range of hair services. Its stylists are certified and regularly take classes to learn the latest techniques, ranging from classic styles and men's cuts to contemporary looks. Customers can also stop in for a massage or nail-care services. For more, call 259-8249 or visit www.salonvalentino.com. (See story on page 21) 3. DISCOUNT TIRE, 14822 Blanco Road, has the chain's newest San Antonio store; it's near West Bitters Road. Hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, but closed on Sunday. For more, call 451-6828. (See story on page 20) 4. SALATA, 11075 Huebner Road in the

Huebner Oaks shopping center, Suite 310, bills itself as the next-generation salad bar and offers salads, wraps, soups and catering selections, as well as gluten-free products. For more, call 251-2795 or visit http://salata.com. (See story on page 23)

5. THE POOCH PARLOR, 5123 N. Loop 1604

West, Suite 105, recently opened as an indoor-only canine boarding and day care

Joe Krier, the former president and CEO of the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, to serve out the unexpired term of District 9 Councilwoman Elisa Chan, who stepped down to run for the GOP nomination in March for state Senate District 25.

1 3 The staff at Salata (left) slice and dice fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, cheeses, meats and seafood to fill wraps or toss with lettuce for salads. Töst (top and bottom, right) serves up plates of Italian and French dishes with a Mediterrannean flair. Photos by Collette Orquiz

2

facility with a pet salon. It is open seven days a week from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. For more, call 479-1919 or visit www.poochparlorsa. com or www.facebook.com/poochparlorsa.

p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For more, call 525-8028 or visit www.yumwok.com.

6. YUM WOK, 7863 Callaghan Road, Suite

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101, recently debuted to serve up authentic Chinese cuisine from the folks who own Sichuan Cuisine, 2347 N.W. Military Highway. Yum Wok's hours are 11 a.m. to 9

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Krier's term expires in May 2014.

BELLA CURRY, a first-grader at Castle Hills

Elementary School, started "Bella's Blessing Bags" to help the homeless. She fashions bags out of old T-shirts, then fills them with needed items including shampoo, toothbrushes and snacks. Bella is a triplet and her sisters help her, according to a North East Independent School District newsletter. She gives the bags away through programs such as Church Under A Bridge and Dress a Girl Around the World. To help, email candicesnell@yahoo.com.

KEVIN VERONEAU, a Lee High School

social studies teacher, received a $5,000 Student Achievement Grant from the National Education Foundation. He is an 18-year education veteran. He plans to purchase a multiple-choice clicker system providing students with instant feedback on an LCD screen.

RUSSELL GREEN and JAY STRAWN, both parents of students at Eisenhower Middle School, have been lauded for their volunteerism with the campus Watch D.O.G.S., or Dads of Great Students, program. They help monitor students, assist with traffic flow and work on projects around the school.

GRADUATION CEREMONIES for Clark High School will be held at 3 p.m. June 9 at the Alamodome, according to an early schedule released by Northside Independent School District. A rehearsal is the same day at 8:30 a.m.

ANY GRADUATE from a Northside Independent School District high school is eligible to be nominated as a 2014 NISD Pillar of Character, an annual recognition. A committee of NISD and Northside Education Foundation representatives select the six Pillars. The honorees are

celebrated at NEF’s annual fundraising gala. The nomination form and a list of past and present Pillars, along with photos and biographical information, can be found at www.nisd.net/pillars. Anyone can nominate a graduate and the nomination remains active for up to five years. New information can be provided at any time. The deadline for submissions is May 1, 2014. For more, contact the Partnerships Office at 397-8599.

THE SHAVANO PARK CITY COUNCIL

has approved using i-INFO to replace the current communication system to provide community news, tips and emergency alerts by text, email or telephone. To register for the free service, residents can go online at http://r.i-info. com/rc/arc, which leads to the Alamo Regional Communications Registry.

THE SIXTH ANNUAL LAS CASAS PERFORMING ARTS SCHOLARSHIP COMPETITION is accepting applications

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Tuesday is the New Friday!

december 2013

Council continues from pg. 01

Krier dives in

1st Tuesday Networking mixer with live music at Bohanan’s December 3rd, 6 – 9 pm $10 admission with business card Mayor Castro’s Light Up Downtown Beautiful Holiday lights all over Downtown Vote for your favorite display November 29th – January 4th Downtown Holiday Lights Tour Guided Tour of Downtown Holiday Lights December 10th, 6 pm $15 per person (includes T-shirt) Visit our website for details: www.downtowntuesday.com Call (210) 207-3677

by Rudy Arispe

S

ince being appointed as the District 9 councilman last month, Joe Krier has been staying up late doing his homework, reading plenty of official briefs and then getting up to speed on municipal affairs at his City Hall office.

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“I’ve been meeting with department heads on issues....such as the (San Antonio Water System) rate increase, the central car-rental facility and economic development projects to bring more jobs to the city,” said the newest City Council member. Then, chuckling, he confessed, “Just don’t ask me how to work the phone system. I’m still trying to figure it out.” Krier, 67, who for some 20 years helped bring economic growth to the Alamo City when he was president and CEO of the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, was appointed by the council Nov. 7 to replace the outgoing Elisa Chan. Chan resigned in October to run in the state Senate District 25 Republican primary. Krier’s fellow council members saw to it he wasted no time getting busy with official duties. Immediately after being appointed, Krier found himself sitting on the dais. “It’s almost a startling experience to go from being a member of the public talking (to the council) from the audience and then sitting right next to them, voting on an issue or something,” he said. Krier was among 14 North Side residents who submitted applications for

the District 9 slot after Chan announced her intention to leave. He then made the cut as one of three finalists. District 9 encompasses a vast chunk of North-Central San Antonio and extends well beyond Loop 1604. Krier said when Chan decided to vacate her post, friends urged him to throw his hat into the ring —though he initially had no interest. “I was involved with this community for 20 years and I’m a longtime resident of District 9, so after giving it some more thought I saw it as an opportunity to be of service to the residents and the city for a while,” Krier said.

New DIstrict 9 Councilman Joe Krier shares some remarks after his appointment. Photo by Steven Gilmore

Mayor Julián Castro said Krier will make a great councilman for his constituents and for the city. “Joe is going to do an excellent job for District 9,” Castro said. “He understands the importance of economic development, and has spent most of his professional career working on the big

Council continues on pg. 18

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HAVANO PARK — Through the years, the city has become synonymous with big houses, quiet streets and protecting property values, but as home prices rise more high-end apartment developments are popping up near the area. Real-estate industry observers say those rental prices and amenities are attractive to the upwardly mobile who want the Shavano Park lifestyle, but aren’t ready to pay the increasing prices for houses in the market. “As property prices go up, more people are looking to rent,” said David Marne of Half-Price Real Estate and also the fifth-term mayor of Shavano Park. Developers of the new apartments near the north and south ends of Shavano Park are optimistic the proximity to the city will help them market those luxury units. The newest apartment development to open is the Platinum Shavano Oaks at Huebner Road and Northwest Military Highway, built on the San Antonio side of the Shavano Park city limits. Filled with amenities including granite countertops, stainless-steel appliances, a 24-hour fitness center and a resortstyle pool with cabanas, rents range from $899 for a one-bedroom unit to nearly $1,600 for a three-bedroom floor plan. As nearby house prices rise, apartments will continue to attract renters, officials predict. Houses in Shavano Park are now selling for up to $3 million and even the smaller, older homes keep many seekers out of the market, officials said. “Four hundred thousand dollars is the new poor,” Marne said. Even garden homes on

small lots are going for $500,000, he added. Marne expects that trend to drive more people to multi-family developments in the surrounding area, including those near De Zavala Road and Northwest Military. Apartment complexes also are in development along Vance Jackson Road to west of Shavano Park. The Presidio at Landmark recently opened, boasting amenities found in custom homes. Rick Shumake, a principal at Masterworks Real Estate Services, said San Antonio is experiencing a proliferation of applications for permits to build singleand multi-family properties in the area. “They (renters) want an upwardly mobile lifestyle that comes with a home,” including garages and custom kitchens, Shumake said. Since 2012, there has been a 12 percent increase in the valuation of existing homes in the Shavano Park area and about 7 percent more on newer houses, Shumake said. The average home price is $774,000 and the median weighs in at $699,000, he added. The higher luxury-house prices combined with today's restrictive mortgage market means more people in San Antonio are looking at paying a luxury apartment rent while building their credit, Shumake said. New high-end apartment rentals around Shavano Park and stretching north to the area around The Rim on Interstate 10 are going for an average of $1.50 per square foot. Shumake said some 600-square-foot units in new complexes can cost $1,000 a month. Meanwhile, the housing market in Shavano Park itself is looking at the next stage of evolution. Because of the limited amount of undeveloped lots in Shavano Park, Shumake predicts some older houses will be torn down and replaced with much larger custom homes. Marne said he would like to see some of Shavano Park’s scarce commercially zoned property developed with a nice retail mix.

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San anTOniO academy Rawlinson continues from pg. 03

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require full-time care and the mothers can’t work outside the home. Hope for Humans is run by Dr. Suzanne Gazda, a neurologist, and Sally Baynton, who holds a doctorate in education and organizational leadership. Blomstrom began working with the women after meeting them through Angwech. Baynton had previously been operating her own organization, Gulu Hope, focused on vocational training for Ugandans, when she met Gazda. After learning about the young patients with Nodding Syndrome in Odek, both women came together to create Hope for Humans.

“Our research has shown that it is likely due to some environmental toxin that the kids were exposed to during the Kony War, where more than 2 million people in the north were forced to lived in squalid conditions,” Gazda said. She added, "The answers to Nodding Syndrome may give us clues to other diseases around the globe.” Blomstrom said that even with the videos and pictures they show the students from the Hope for Humans website, it still doesn't paint a full picture of what the young Ugandans go through.

Rawlinson continues on pg. 18


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Officers continues from pg. 01

Mayor appreciates ATV donation by Lucille Sims Thomas

C

ASTLE HILLS — It’s attractive, it grabs your attention and it looks kind of like a beach buggy.

But no matter what it resembles, the officers of the Police Department are just happy to have the new all-terrain vehicle as part of their crime-fighting strategy. The department recently obtained the ATV under a loan-lease program with the Yamaha Fun Center of Boerne. Police say it enhances their ability to patrol the city's hard-to-reach areas An all-terrain vehicle on a lend-lease program to the Castle Hills Police Department, seen here with Capt. Johnny Siemens (left) and Officer Jose Regalado, will allow law officers to patrol hard-to-reach areas and parking lots in the city. Photo by Joshua Michael

while keeping residents safe. Capt. Johnny Siemens, who has been with the department for about six months but brings 11 years of experience from Boerne, was instrumental in getting the ATV for the city. “What that (the loan-lease program) does is it allows us to obtain the vehicle free of charge for a year, at which time we can turn it back in and get another (free) one," Siemens said. "It also allows us to get into areas that we otherwise could not get into.” Those areas include the city’s 8.4 miles of alleyways, as well as some heavily wooded sections. Nearly every street in town has an alleyway behind it, according to Siemens. And since residents’ backyards easily are reached through the alleyways, burglars often use them to sneak onto properties and break into homes. “This gives us this ability to get in there and surprise any of those folks back there,” Siemens said. The buggy, as Siemens calls it, can quickly get through the alleyways, which are in varying conditions with some too beat up for patrol cars to drive without risking heavy damage. It can also be used to reach greenbelts and the 140-acre McGimsey Scout Park. The vehicle has high and low four-wheel drive and can do zero to

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What should I do if I am involved in an accident? No matter how minor, it is wise to report every accident to the police. Then, contact the collision repair shop and/or towing company of your choice. Any Paint & Body shop can assist you with the processing of your claim, answer your questions, and advise you to ensure safe and proper repairs are made to your vehicle.

Do I have to take my vehicle to a shop or facility specified by Insurance or get multiple appraisals? No. If you request it, your insurer must inspect the damage to your vehicle at your chosen Paint & Body shop rather than at their drive-in claims center – or many times a large Paint & Body shop that provides offices to the Insurance Company as part of direct repair contract.

What if I don’t have Insurance? If you do not have full coverage or any insurance and cost is an issue you definitely wish to find an independent shop as they can give you choices on cost and repair methods for your specific requests and provide alternatives on low cost parts or budget refinishing solutions such as economical complete paint jobs.

Do I have to use a specific collision repair facility? No. In Texas, you have the absolute right to select the collision repair shop of your choice. When your insurer gives you a list of repair shops, they indicate those shops which have entered into a contract with them. The contract determines how your vehicle will be repaired and essentially provides offices for insurance adjusters on site the designated repair shops, the whole repair process is negotiated between the adjuster and collision estimator without customer involvement.

What is “steering”? Steering, as defined by the Texas’ Auto Damage Appraisers Licensing Board, is the act of directing a claimant to or away from any specific repair shop or requiring that repairs be made by a specific repair shop Steering is illegal in Texas. If you do not allow the Insurance and or towing companies to steer you it is possible to get discounts at other shops to help save on repair costs or perform a repair better tailored for your needs.

Officers continues on pg. 14

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Who guarantees the workmanship for the repairs? The repair facility is responsible for the workmanship. Insurance companies do not repair or guarantee automobile repairs. If there is a concern, even with a facility selected by the insurance company, the facility itself is responsible. Every collision repair shop registered as a Motor Vehicle Repair Shop with the Texas Division of Standards is required to be bonded and is responsible for safe and proper repairs. If your insurance company claims “they will not guarantee the repairs,” the shop will. The repair facility must guarantee them, as required by law.

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52 mph in about 5½ seconds. “It allows us to participate in another capacity in emergency operations, Webster University, the only tier 1, private, nonprofit training — things of that nature. It’s been university with campus locations around the world, a pretty good asset,” Siemens said. opened its newest campus in San Antonio on Loop 410 The open carriage of the ATV near Blanco Rd. The campus offers business-oriented adult may also make it easier for people to degree programs in the evenings, along with a Saturday MBA approach officers, whereas some folks program. Classes are now forming for the Spring term which may find a patrol car intimidating. begins Jan. 4. To learn more about Webster visit with an “Although they (patrol cars) have an advisor. Call or click today. approachability factor, this adds a new level because you’re already exposed; you’re out in the open,” Siemens said. Mayor Bruce Smiley-Kaliff said city officials appreciate the use of the vechicle. “I think it’s wonderful," he said. "Any time the Police Department has an extra piece of equipment to keep the citizens unity, Webster University is ebster University, a tier 1, private, nonprofit University with metropolitan, of Castle y and corporate campuses around the world, is comingfor tothe San Antonio. education entire area. Hills safer — I think it’s great. ebster’s newest location is on Loop 410 at Blanco. Business-oriented adult degree programsBut are offered the fact that it was donated by the r complete information, dealership in Boerne for our Police . Department, so it didn’t have a capital • Master of Business Administration (MBA) expense involved with it — I’m thrilled.” • Master of Arts Indeed, many people don’t realize Business and Organizational Security Management the town’s northwestern border runs Counseling Procurement and Acquisitions Management along railroad tracks back behind a

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floodplain, which makes accessibility difficult for squad cars, officials said. “Now with the ATV they can get back in the area and patrol that perimeter much more effectively,” Smiley-Kaliff said. During the city’s National Night Out events in early October, the buggy ferried the mayor and Police Chief Wayne Davis to various events while giving neighbors a chance to get a good look at it. The ATV is not equipped with radar, a camera, a gun rack or any of the specialized items found in patrol units. But it does have LED lights and a loudspeaker. Siemens said those come in handy on big shopping days, such as Black Friday. “We can put an officer on patrol on it in the parking lots and help deter vehicle burglars,” Siemens said. All officers will get to use the ATV after a brief training course. “It’s been a pretty neat item to bring on board — plus it gives the officers another avenue of patrolling. Instead of just in the vehicle, now you’ve got the buggy out there, which allows them to get out and perform slightly different roles of policing and engaging in the community,” Siemens said.

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Tejano continues from pg. 03 In the past decade he has traveled thousands of miles, spent countless volunteer hours and invested about $250,000 to accomplish that mission. And if anything, he’s working harder than ever on it these days, as the nonprofit Hispanic Heritage Center of Texas, which he founded four years ago, takes shape. Rodriguez also is the CEO and principal stockholder of EPIElectrical Enclosures Inc., a thriving manufacturing business established by his late father, Ted Rodriguez. Rudi Rodriguez originally planned

to be an architect, and after attending Central Catholic High School and the University of Texas at Austin, he started his own architectural firm in San Antonio. But when the market crashed in the 1970s, he took advantage of his father’s offer of free office space in exchange for devoting his spare time to EPI. The business, he said, soon became his full-time job. Still, he always found time for charitable and civic causes, and for the love of history that has grown into at least another full-time job. Rodriguez’s interest in Tejano


15

salocallowdown.com history and architecture started early, during summers spent on his family’s historic ranch in Medina County. “As kids, we played cowboys and Indians in those old ranch buildings,” he said. “There was always this call of knowing one’s family and culture.” Today he is the fourth-generation owner of the ranch. He has also channeled its charm —and a generous helping of history — in Casa de los Arboles, his spacious home and grounds in San Antonio’s Old Farm Homestead area. “I began collecting artifacts and books about Texas history early on, and I always loved going to see restored architecture,” he said. “I was planning to write a book about the early Euro-colonists who came to Texas and Mexico. Then I went to a family reunion and began hearing stories about Tejano rangers, surveyors, army scouts — stories I had never seen anywhere," he added. That only whetted his interest, Rodriguez added. "That led me on a research odyssey that I’m still on today. And while I thought my research on the development of early Texas would make a great book, I put my

for his historic preservation work. But Rodriguez is not resting on his laurels. Four years ago, convinced that still more needed to be done to advocate for preservation of Tejano history, he founded the Hispanic Heritage Center of Texas. And thanks to a half-milliondollar grant from the state, his dream of a space devoted to permanently showcasing the growing collection and archives is now becoming reality, with plans under way for a downtown site near Alamo Plaza. He’s been working for several years for a permanent building site in the redevelopment plan for HemisFair Park. In recent months, the center has announced partnerships with state and federal entities including the National Park Service, the Texas Historical Commission and Texas State Historical Association to preserve historic Tejano sites in San Antonio, including a portion of the old La Bahia Road within the HemisFair Park grounds. Another major center project, Legacy South, is a collaboration with Texas A&M University-San Antonio, Palo Alto College and several regional historic associations to tell the story of Tejano

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Known far and wide for his collection of artifacts related to the early settlement of Texas by Euro-colonists, Rudi Rodriguez is also the founder of the Hispanic Heritage Center of Texas. Photo by Josh Huskin

businessman’s hat on, and I said to myself: ‘How can I make the most impact, and tell the story of not only my own family, but our common Tejano heritage?’ And that led me to start Texas Tejano,” he said. Today, Texas Tejano includes a widely used website, several traveling educational exhibits, documentary films, dozens of publications and more. In 2011, the Texas Historical Commission recognized Rodriguez’s work with their Award of Excellence in Preserving History, and last year the national Daughters of the American Revolution followed suit with their prestigious Medal of Honor

families who settled in southern Bexar County along the Medina River. Ramiro Cavazos, president and CEO of the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, agreed. “Rudi is one of my best friends,” Cavazos said. “He’s a huge historian, a very proud Texan and Tejano, and he has shared so much knowledge about how our past can make us stronger as we move forward together to make San Antonio a great city. Rudi is a dreamer, and he’s also a doer, and that’s a very rare combination. I look forward to working with him for years to come.”

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december 2013

Council continues from pg. 10 issues that impact San Antonio.” The councilman also believes he brings a wealth of city and government experience to the table. “I bring a lot of knowledge in the area of major economic growth opportunities since I was involved with much of that (as Chamber president),” he said. “I helped grow the biomedical, tourism, aerospace and cyber-security industries in San Antonio. I think this will help me contribute to the community in building a better economy in the time I’m here.” His council term only lasts until May, when a special election.

Joe (Krier) is going to do an excellent job for district 9 julián castro San antonio mayor

Krier said he will not run. “When the time comes, voters can choose from the (District 9) candidates who will be out raising money and campaigning for office,” he said. Such a short timeline doesn’t allow Krier to adopt a vision for the district, he said, but he wants residents to know they have someone who will speak for them. “They’re not shy about telling you how they think our city is doing, and I want to hear what they have to say,” he said. Bill McCalister, vice president of the Lorence Creek Homeowners Association, said members are pleased to have Krier as their councilman. “We would ask him to continue to bring a good business approach to major decisions,” McCalister said. “We only have one major concern, which involves the growing deer population in our neighborhood and adjacent neighborhoods.” A self-described “constructive conservative,” Krier said he realizes that only by working with others can the best solutions be found. “You have to be prepared to compromise and get something less than you might have wanted,” he added.

Rawlinson continues from pg. 12 A child with Nodding Syndrome recently died and the Rawlinson students, as well as the members of Hope for Humans, all mourned. “I’ve traveled all over the world, and even I was shocked,” Blomstrom said. “It’s horrifying the conditions they live in, go to school in.” Kelli Potter, a seventh-grade English teacher and sponsor of the Interact Club, said the students have written letters to the children in Odek and are hoping to have a pen-pal exchange. In addition, they’re having a toy drive in December for Northside Independent School District children who might not have a good Christmas, and members will hold a book drive in February. “They get overlooked because they’re teenagers, but they’re great kids,” Potter said. “They care so much about others.” The effort to help schoolchildren on the other side of the planet is commendable, officials with Hope for Humans said. “I was at the ceremony when the children gave us the check” Baynton said. “I had a chance to speak to the group. I thanked them for caring and I cried in

front of them. I just do not think those kids really understand that their efforts are going to helping children, like themselves, live." According to Baynton, "It is a huge burden to go to Africa and see the poverty, malnutrition and the sociological devastation. These kids at Rawlinson are making life better for hundreds of children who have a terrible disease. The Rawlinson kids are the ones giving the Odek children hope. It is overwhelming.” For information about donating, visit www.hopeforhumans.org.

Students at Rawlinson Middle School's Interact Club want to have a pen-pal exchange with children in Odek sub-county in northern Uganda, a region where the struggling economy has led many to work basic jobs. Courtesy photo

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“The Happy Handyman is back!” Everytime I write a book I say to myself ...well this is probably the last one I am going to write. I said that about 5 books ago and I laughed at myself when I wrote this one. Clearly there are things to write about and I love sharing that with you. Right away you are going to see a difference in this book because it has a spiral binding on it that makes it easier to flip through and the print is a bit larger. I don’t whether that was for you ...or for me! And I added “Note Pages” in the back incase you need to write some ideas down. There are new products because I have been to 12 shows since the last book. Good products! Then there are products that big companys just drop so we searched for products that even work better than the originals. We have included a new driveway and concrete cleaner. It works fast, and it’s safer for those who do not want to use a acid. Then there is the #1 award winning idea at The International Hardware Show and we included it in the book. It will let you maximize your living space while organizing the clutter and personal items. It will attach to the hinges of virtually any door in minutes and can be removed when you move. It’s on the inside cover of the book. The book is a labor of love for those of you who read and enjoy. The only thing that did not change was the price, it’s still $9.95. Now to the email.... Question: I want to spruce up my cedar closet. The fragrance of cedar is just about gone. I know they say that you can sand it and that will bring back the cedar smell but I really don’t want to do that. Is there something else that I can do, that is not so strenous? answer: This is so simple. Get a small bottle of cedar oil, and add it to boiled linseed oil. (it comes that way, you don’t boil it!) Then just use a cheap foam brush and brush it on the closet. Let it dry and then you can put back in the clothes. Question: I expecting company, and the garbage disposal stinks! I have tried everything, but nothing works. I know I can’t use just anything, so any ideas? answer: Yes, Instant Power Disposal and Drain Cleaner. Quick Tips About October a lot of gardeners come into the store and buy winterizer. But if your grass is a Zoysia, or a St. Augustine, then there is no reason to winterize. They turn brown because it’s not the growing time for them. So save your money, and just fertilize in spring and summer.

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BUY LOCAL

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

New Discount Tire wants to keep customers on track by gianna rendon

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iscount Tire, a nationwide chain that sells wheels and tires, recently opened a new location at 14822 Blanco Road. The store offers tire brands including Goodyear, Michelin, Bridgestone, Yokohama, Kumho, BFGoodrich, Pirelli, Hankook and Falken, along with exclusive brands such as Fisk and GT Radial. Discount Tire also offers wheels from Enkei, Konig, Liquidmetal, TSW, Akuza and exclusive brands including MB Wheels and G-games. “So as far as any other tire store, we are kind of unique because that is all we specialize in,” manager Rick Rodriguez said. Discount Tires also offers free tire rotations, flat repairs and air checks for

customers even if they don’t buy their tires from the store, Rodriguez said. Years ago, the Scottsdale, Ariz., chain started fixing flats for free, and

the tradition continues, officials said. “Our experience for the customer is our highest priority,” Rodriguez said. “It all starts with hiring the right people to deliver the right experience for our customers.” Discount Tire offers holiday deals such as in-house financing through Dec. 29 and rebates including a $50 prepaid card with the purchase of Goodyear tires. “So everything as far as when the customer pulls in is all designed to be an inviting, easy and safe experience,” Rodriguez said. The Blanco Road store is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, but closed on Sunday. A new Discount Tire store at 14822 Blanco Road offers a variety of tires and also provides free tire rotations, flat repairs and air checks for customers. Photos by Collette Orquiz

Discount Tire 14822 Blanco Road For more, call 451-6828

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offers their expertise to customers on what styles look the best and which ones may not work. “I’ve gone through my share of bad haircuts myself,” Garza said. “The most important thing I tell my clients is, ‘What you have in your mind has to also be in my mind, because if it’s not, you’re not going to be happy.’” The salon also offers massages from a licensed massage therapist, who has more than 15 years of experience. Manicures and pedicures are also available. The salon's hours vary day to day, but appointments can be scheduled with a specific stylist as early as 6:30 a.m. and as late as 8 p.m. daily.

Salon Valentino emphasizes one-on-one service by Collette orquiz

A

t the height of the 1950s, hair salons were a place to chat, take a breather and get a new hairdo. While times have changed, Salon Valentino wants to be a blast from the past, with one stylist catering to one client at a time. Regina Garza, Salon Valentino's owner, has been cutting and styling hair for years. She opened the salon this summer at 2577 N.W. Military Highway, Suite 111. Salon Valentino stays away from the assembly line of one employee shampooing a customer, a different one cutting the hair and a third doing the styling. “It’s a personal touch," Garza said. "You see one stylist. She (or he) does everything, and that’s what motivated me to provide that service to the community.” Garza hopes that everyone who walks in the door feels at home,

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regardless of age or taste. She wants clients to feel like extended family. Whether patrons are looking for a modern or a classic look, color, highlights or a Brazilian blowout, Garza said they will leave happy. Her staff, which has more than 45 years of combined experience,

One stylist, one client is the mantra of the staff at Salon Valentino. Customer Betty Jackson (sitting in the bottom photo, far left) gets her hair done by Pat Jacobs (standing), who adds that personal touch. Photos by Collette Orquiz

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

Owners hope third time is charm for Töst Bistro & Lounge by Olivier J. Bourgoin

T

It has been said "three times is a charm," and perhaps that will prove true for Töst Bistro & Bar, which is under new ownership for the third time in almost as many months. Raymond and Carmen Dadi not only have ambitious plans for their new acquisition, they even want to expand the Töst concept to other cities. Töst is at 14415 Blanco Road. "I fell in love with this place and it made me sad to see what was happening to it, so I decided to rescue it," said Raymond Dadi, a certified horticulturist with extensive experience in the restaurant business. He managed a Los Tios Mexican restaurant franchise in the Houston area for several years. Töst was once known as Café Europa under French chef Guy Collinet, and then the corner spot became Café Soleil

and finally Töst under French-born entrepreneur Jean-François Poujol, the original owner of the trade name. "My master plan includes the opening of another Töst on the River Walk within the next year or two and then I would like to go to Austin, Dallas and Houston with the same concept," Dadi said. The new owners are changing "the menu to go back to a more Mediterranean flair with France and Italy as a focus," Dadi said. "We are also still working on creating a great wine selection." Nothing is frozen — "Not the ribeye, not the fish, nothing," Dadi said. "Everything is fresh." The restaurant uses only organic vegetables and buys farm-fresh eggs and chickens. While the restaurateur said everything

Introducing

on the menu is good, he cited salmon, steak and barbacoa on the weekend. "We are still serving the best eggs Benedict in town during our weekend brunches and we've also added a Tostmosa (a frozen mimosa)," Dadi said. The 6,500-square-foot space offers seating for 140 in the dining room, 25 more in the gazebo-style patio and about 50 in the bar-lounge area. "I am of Persian descent and I learned to cook with my mother and my sister." Dadi said. "I'm a big believer about organic foods and at home, I grow my own." Hours are 4-11 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and brunch 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The new management at Töst Bistro & Bar is offering a Mediterranean-influenced menu infused with both French and Italian flavors including the shrimp and grits (far left, top) and the pan-roasted chicken breast (far left, bottom). Photos by Collette Orquiz

Töst Bistro & Bar 14415 Blanco Road For more, call 408-2670 or visit http://www.tostbistro.com

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including the dressings and marinades for meat and seafood, and the restaurant is vegan and vegetarian friendly. Hanlon said they fill a niche for people who want to eat healthy, but if you dump a bunch of ranch dressing on your salad, they will not judge you. “I think we’re the healthiest option, if not one of the healthiest options, in San Antonio right now,” Kasey Hanlon said. Ordering online is available for those on the go. Hanlon said Salata's website — www.salata.com — simulates the salad bar, making online payment easy. The items will be waiting at the register for pickup. Catering with delivery is also available. Salata is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and closed on Sunday.

Mixing it up healthy at Salata by Collette Orquiz

E

ndless salad-andwrap combinations await those looking for a healthier option for lunch and dinner at Salata, “The Next Generation Salad Bar,” according to its staff. Customers can choose each ingredient from lettuce and cheese to the dressing in the tossed-to-order salads and wraps. “Everything is specialized to how you want it, whereas other places have pre-set salads ... Our whole concept is that you customize it to what you like,” said Kasey Hanlon, vice president of operations. Franchise owners Tom McCarthy and Pat Hanlon oversee the company in Austin, and recently opened Salata at Huebner Oaks Shopping Center, 11075 Interstate 10 West, Suite 310. They are also debuting another one in Stone Oak at East Sonterra Boulevard and Sigma Road later this month. Ordering is simple at Salata, and it starts with a base of spinach, spring mix, romaine lettuce or the Salata Mix, which is spring mix, romaine

lettuce, spinach and cabbage. From there, customers can select a variety of vegetables, fruits, nuts and cheeses. Salad and wrap lovers can stack as many toppings as they like for a set price, and add chicken, turkey or seafood for an extra cost. Salads can be drizzled with 10 dressings, ranging from the classic buttermilk ranch to the customerfavorite fresh-herb vinaigrette. Salata offers gluten-free items

At Salata, Vice President of Operations Kasey Hanlon (far left, bottom) prepares one of her favorite salads filled with corn, black beans, pumpkin seeds, pineapple, strawberries, chicken and more, topped with a fresh herb vinaigrette. Photos by Collette Orquiz

Salata 11075 Interstate 10 West, Suite 310 For more, call 251-2795 or visit the website, www.salata.com

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december 2013

Live LOCAL From real estate trends and neighborhood listings to home improvement, we’ve got you covered.

SA housing prices recovered fastest in TX Median prices show modest gains in October in communities to on the North Side

Recent

PROPERTY LISTINGS zip code guide

by Travis e. poling

T

he housing market in the San Antonio-New Braunfels metro area has recovered faster than anywhere else in the state and October statistics showed houses selling for more money and faster than last year.

The number of homes sold in the San Antonio area in October was up 11 percent to 1,839 compared to the same month last year and a 33 percent leap from October two years ago. The houses sold this October spent an average of 69 days on the market, according to an analysis of Multiple Listing Service data by the San Antonio Board of Realtors. “All year we have seen prices and sales of homes show year-over-year increases, demonstrating San Antonio’s economic strength,” said SABOR Chairman Steven Gragg. “Jobs are being added, interest rates remain low and both buyers and sellers

Both buyers and sellers are able to find success in this market SABOR Chairman Steven Gragg

are able to find success in this market.” Available inventory hit a low of 4.4 months of housing supply for sale. That tightening helped drive prices up and the average home price in October rose 6 percent to $205,680, according to SABOR. The median price also was up 6 percent to $168,800. A statewide analysis from Homes.com found that the San Antonio-New Braunfels metro area was the first in the state to fully recover price declines incurred during the recession. In the 78213 ZIP code, the median sales price was up 10 percent to $126,000 while the number of closed sales remained flat at 30 for October, compared to the same month last year, according to data from the Texas Market Trends Report. The median sold price in the 78230 area was up 11 percent to $191,000 for the month, and the number of closed sales rose by five to 34 for the month. Months’ supply of inventory dipped as the market tightened to 3.9 months from six months last October. Median sales price for the 78231 area was up by 4.2 percent to $215,500, but closed sales dropped by nearly half to six for the month. In the 78248 ZIP code, the median sales price was up 4.8 percent to $279,975. Closed sales were almost flat at 19 and the houses spent an average of 68 days on the market before selling, up from 61 for sales in October last year. The median price in 78249 rose 3 percent to $170,000 and closed sales for the period climbed to 55 from 37 last year. That cut the supply of inventory in half to 2.7 months.

78213, 78230, 78231, 78248, 78249

Street Address

List Price

SQ. FT.

Built

BR

FB

ZIP

211 Bentley Mnr

$875,500

4,136

2001

4

4

78249

351 Burwood Ln

$109,500

1,252

1951

3

1

78213

203 Marchmont Ln

$119,500

1,882

1952

4

2

78213

17406 Canyon Breeze Dr

$379,000

3,113

1993

4

3

78248

208 Castle Gardens Dr

$463,500

3,117

1985

3

3

78213

1410 Grey Oak Dr

$335,000

2,922

1971

3

3

78213

125 W Castle ln

$347,000

7,257

1963

5

3

78213

102 Moss Dr

$247,000

2,334

1950

3

2

78213

Real Estate LOCAL Trends ZIP Code Median sold price

New listings

Average days on market

Closed sales

Under contract

Months supply of inventory

78213

78230

78231

78248

78249

oct-12

$114,500

$172,000

$206,900

$272,500

$165,000

oct-13

$126,000

$191,000

$215,500

$279,975

$170,000

oct-12

30

53

5

28

48

oct-13

36

38

13

24

68

oct-12

134

130

72

61

131

oct-13

119

60

89

68

81

oct-12

30

29

11

20

37

oct-13

30

34

6

19

55

oct-12

21

28

7

22

42

oct-13

21

37

7

12

46

oct-12

3.7

6

4.9

4.2

5.4

oct-13

3.1

3.9

7.2

4.4

2.7

Source: San Antonio Board of Realtors: Texas Market Trends report The properties are new listings put on the market from Nov. 8-26. The properties may no longer be on the market by publication date or prices may have changed. Local Community News assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions.

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