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Alamo Heights Community News AUGUST/ SEPTEMBER 2013

AHISD Welcomes New Staff

Alamo Heights ISD welcomed 79 new staff members during the annual New Employee Orientation the week of August 12-16. These new team members spent the week getting to know AHISD policies and procedures, immersing themselves in the study and development of the engaged classroom, visiting campuses and learning about AHISD’s traditions of excellence. INSIDE THIS ISSUE: What is Siclovia?

What's Cookin' In Alamo Heights

National Night Out

Save the Dates

Meet Your Neighbors

Neighborhood Resource Center

Breaking the Silence

Taste of the Heights

Awards Luncheon

Published Monthly by Neighborhood News, Inc.

April 2013

City Government Contact Information

Published and distributed by:

Neighborhood News, Inc. 3740 Colony Drive Suite 120 San Antonio, TX 78230 (210) 558-3160 * (210) 558-3163 fax For advertising sales and information please call or send an email to Thank you to the following organizations and/or people for their contributions to this issue:

Jane Cooper Pam Morsi Bill Kiel Patti Pawlik-Peralis; AHISD Jill Souter Alamo Heights Chamber

Louis Cooper – Mayor 210 882-1511 Bobby Hasslocher Council Member Place 1 210 882-1512 Bobby Rosenthal Council Member Place 2 210 882-1513

Articles that appear in the Alamo Heights newsletter do not necessarily reflect the official position of Neighborhood News, Inc. and their publication does not constitute an endorsement therein. The appearance of any advertisement in Alamo Heights newsletter does not constitute an endorsement by Neighborhood News, Inc. of the goods or services advertised. Neighborhood News, Inc. is not responsible for errors beyond the cost of the actual ad space. Any publication of Neighborhood News, Inc., whether draft or final is the sole property of Neighborhood News, Inc. and cannot be reproduced or distributed in any way, whether in print or electronically, without the express written consent of Neighborhood News, Inc. ©Neighborhood News, Inc.

Fred Prassel Council Member Place 3 210 882-1514 Dr. Elliot Weser Council Member Place 4 210 882-1515 John Savage Council Member Place 5 210 882-1516

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April 2013

Don’t Miss Síclovía Sunday, September 29 10am – 3pm

What is Síclovía? Síclovía is a free event that turns major city streets in to a safe place for people to exercise and play.The streets become temporarily carfree for about 6 hours on Sundays for families to run, ride bikes, take exercise classes and enjoy their city streets. The modern day Ciclovía originated in Bogotá, Colombia 30 years ago. Bogotá began their program with 8 miles of open streets. Ciclovía was so popular, today, they open over 70 miles of car-free streets to their citizens and connect city parks to provide green spaces for Reclovías.

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April 2013

Save the Dates National Family Day - A Homework Free Evening September 23, 2013 Howdy Parade October 30, 2013 4:00 pm Howdy Night October 30, 2013 5:00 - 7:00 pm AHHS Homecoming November 1, 2013

Back to School Nights Howard, September 9, 2013 4:00 – 5:00 pm – Pre-K & Headstart 6:00 – 7:00 pm – KG Cambridge September 12, 2013 5:30 – 7:00 pm – Grades 1-2 September 5, 2013 5:30 – 7:00 pm – Grades 3-5 Woodridge September 11, 2013 6:00 – 7:00 pm – Grades 1-2 September 12, 2013 6:00 – 7:00 pm – Grades 3-5


Alamo Heights Junior School September 3, 2013 6:00 - 8:00 pm - 6th Grade September 10, 2013 6:00 - 8:00 pm - 7th & 8th Grades Alamo Heights High School September 11, 2013 7:00 pm - 9-12th Grades





SILENCE The District Wellness Program is made possible through the generous support of the AH School Foundation, with additional support from the John and Florence Newman Foundation, Goldsbury Foundation, Mays Family Foundation, and the Kim and Rod Lewis Family Foundation for Hope and Charity, and in partnership with the Board of Trustees. The program consists of comprehensive, coordinated K-12 education programs that include a variety of age-appropriate interventions designed to eliminate drug and alcohol use among students. Embodied in our school’s strategic plan is the assertion that we will aggressively confront the social and emotional issues of our community. In support of this effort we have undertaken a project called Breaking the Silence. On the first Monday of every month parents, students, staff and community members come together to learn and generate dialog around common, and sometimes controversial, issues such as addiction, mental illness and high-risk behavior. The first presentation in the monthly Breaking the Silence series will focus on Drug Trends Among Teenagers. Mandy Tyler, M.Ed., RD/LD is an Education Specialist for Coordinated School Health at the Region 20 Education Service Center. Tyler will ask parents and community, “Do you really know the “up & up” about drugs?” This session is designed to increase drug and alcohol awareness for all members of the school community. Attendees will learn the latest teen alcohol and drug trends and will be amazed to see the different ways teens are hiding drugs for use. We guarantee you’ll learn something new! AHISD staff and parents are encouraged to attend.  A similar session will be hosted later in the semester designed for students but this session is strictly reserved for adults.  The presentation is open to anyone in the greater San Antonio area who might benefit from this education.   Date:  Monday, September 9, 2013 Time:  5:30pm to 6:30pm Location: Alamo Heights HS, 6900 Broadway, San Antonio, 78209 RSVP to Michelli Ramon,  or 210-8242483.   The Wellness Program is generously funded by the Alamo Heights School Foundation. Special thanks to AHHS for hosting this event.

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Alamo Heights Area

churches Alamo Heights Baptist Church 6501 Broadway (210) 824-9539

First Church of Christ Scientist 5927 Broadway St. (210) 822-8870

St. Peter Prince of the Apostles Catholic Church 111 Barilla Place (210) 822-3367

Alamo Heights Christian Church 6435 N New Braunfels Ave. (210) 828-5728

Mount Calvary Lutheran Church 308 Mt. Calvary Drive (210) 824-8748

Alamo Heights Presbyterian Church 6201 Broadway (210) 824-0271

Northwood Presbyterian Church 518 Pike Place (210) 824-7238

Alamo Heights United Methodist Church 825 E. Basse Road (210) 826-3215 Christ Lutheran Church 6720 Broadway (210) 822-3394

Sunset Ridge Church of Christ 95 Brees Boulevard (210) 824-4568 St. Luke’s Episcopal Church 11 Saint Luke’s Lane (210) 828.6425

St. Anthony De Padua Catholic Church 102 Lorenz (210) 824-1743

St. Pius X Catholic Church 3303 Urban Crest Dr. (210) 824-0139

St. David’s Episcopal Church 1300 Wilshire Ave. (210) 824-2481

Unity Church of SA 1723 Lawndale (210) 824-7351

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April 2013

What's Cookin' In Alamo Heights! Cheese Straws Recipe by Jane Cooper Ingredients


1 Lb sharp cheddar cheese

Salt-- Not necessary

Cream the butter and then add cheese and cream together. Add cayenne and then add flour Roll out with rolling pin on well floured rolling mat. Use as much flour as necessary. Cut into squares or use a small liqueur glass to cut rounds.

1/4 to 1/2 cayenne pepper--can put more

Bake 350 for 15 to 20 minutes.

1 Stick butter 2 cups flour

10 Simple Kitchen Tips

Last Minute Pumpkin Mousse Dip


1 – 3.4 ounce package instant vanilla pudding mix 1 cup milk 1/2 cup pumpkin puree 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ginger 1 cup lite whipped topping Combine the pudding mix, milk, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, and ginger in a large mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until well combined and slightly thickened. Refrigerate until ready to serve (this can be made the night before). Just before serving, fold in the whipped topping and serve with ginger snaps and vanilla wafers.


Use tongs to cooking pretty much everything. Spatulas are awesome for anything that needs to be flipped or scraped, like eggs and pancakes. For everything else, tongs are the way to go. 2. Store everything in tupperware. Because it is reusable, it is also more eco-friendly. 3. If you own a knife, don’t use a garlic press. To use a clove of garlic, set it on a cutting board and smash it with the flat side of a big knife (any chef ’s knife will do). 4. Keep a separate cutting board for things you don’t want flavored with garlic and onion. Get a separate board for cutting fruit, cheeses and other things that you’d prefer didn’t absorb the odors of previous meals. 5. Herbs that are supposed to be green should be purchased fresh, not dry. With the possible exception of dried oregano (great in Mexican, Greek & Italian foods), herbs are always better fresh. 6. Don’t bother with pre-filled spice racks. If you want spices to serve their purpose (making food taste better), purchase fresh spices that you use frequently. 7. Overcooking is probably the biggest kitchen mistake. Overcooked vegetables are mushy and flavorless, overcooked meat is tough and chalky, overcooked grains are soggy and fall apart. In other words, overcooked food is bad food. 8. If it tastes OK but not great, it probably needs salt—and maybe some vinegar or olive oil. The small amount you use when cooking at home won’t compare to what you’d get at a restaurant or in a packaged meal. 9. Don’t buy regular big onions, use shallots or leeks. For most everyday cooking, milder onions will enhance your dish and give it more nuance. 10. Fruit (other than berries) shouldn’t be stored in the fridge. Most fruits including apples, oranges, pears and bananas don’t belong in the refrigerator unless you’re not planning on eating them soon.

April 2013

Meet Your Neighbor Pamela Morsi

Imagine waking up one day and looking at the past 20 years or so and realizing you’ve written, published, and sold over 25 books! And thinking, so many years ago, that something like this could never happen. . .

had a wonderful time and lived abroad for many years. But, we finally felt the need to come back to the United States,” she says. They settled in Charleston, South Carolina and Pam was working as a librarian for the medical school. She was going through some difficult times, a mid-life crisis of sorts. She could not shake the feeling that somehow life was passing her by. She knew she wanted to be a writer but how exactly does one do that? Overwhelmed with daily life, frustration on how to start, and feeling she had missed out on her dream caused her to do some real soul searching.

This story is about a well-published Alamo Heights neighbor who grew up in the very small town of Oilton, Oklahoma. Pam Morsi, the youngest of three girls, the baby, the tomboy, is our Neighbor of the Month. Oilton was a town so small that her graduating class consisted of about 25 people. Her mother was born next door to the house her mother had lived in her whole life. The kind of place where there was no chance that any news of teenage mischief in which one might partake wouldn’t get back to her parents.

Pam remembers the day when she reached her limit. “I was laying on my bed in the fetal position and just broke down and cried. I told my husband, I could have been a writer. If life hadn’t gotten in the way, I could have been a real writer!” He went right out and bought her a computer and told her that she could not quit her job, but to get started writing. So she did. And boy did she… The start was a bit rocky. She remembers taking a writing course and given the advice that “writing is misery”. That basically good writing comes from pain and heartache. “I had a sunny disposition. I was happy. I had no misery from which to pull. I thought that meant that I could not make it as a writer. That set me back awhile.” Eventually Pam proved them wrong. Her creativity and passion carried her into the world of working writers and eventually kept some very good company along with other best-selling authors.

Fortunately for Pam, her parents had bigger plans for her. They wanted her to get out of that small town and experience a little bit of the world. She attended Oklahoma State University and spent many years working in the environment she had come to love and which allowed her to indulge her love of reading, the public library. Here she learned the true purpose of public libraries. “Public libraries are truly the last democratic institutions. They are a place where people who don’t have the privileges that many of us enjoy can still find good books to read and be exposed to great authors and ideas. Many people live vicariously through the books they read and are able to experience the world they may never otherwise have the opportunity to visit.” For Pam this is a very important community resource.

Pam started working on her first book, Heaven Sent. “No one was more surprised than me when I wrote the words, The End.” she smiled. But that was just the beginning. “I wasn’t even thinking about getting it published. I just wanted to write it. I went to a conference in Charleston where a lot of publishers, editors, and writers attended to find new works. I hoped to meet a publisher and almost did.” Unfortunately this conference happened to take place the same time as Hurricane Hugo hit. “I had a meeting set up with a publisher but because of schedul-

Eventually Pam married and had a baby girl, Leila. Her husband, who had a five year old already, was well traveled and showed Pam many parts of the world that she might not have otherwise seen. “We 8

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April 2013  continued from page 8

Pam’s first husband passed away soon after they moved to Alamo Heights. Pam was left with a child to raise and a career to continue. She picked herself up by her boot straps and carried on. She later met Bill Kiel in 1994. At the time Bill was actively dating and had a detailed plan to find the right one.

ing issues I did not have the chance to meet with her. But, I did barely manage to get her a copy of my book. I remember going home and I was so sad and worried about my book but the rest of the people were worried about getting out of the path of the hurricane. I never expected to hear from her again.” Nevertheless, the publisher did call her. She had read her book and suggested some edits and an editor to make them. “You need to cut this book down by about 100 pages.” She was told. Pam was not sure how this could be done. “That is the story. That is how long it takes to tell it.”

“Bill worked as a geophysicist. He worked the numbers. He was a very methodical dater. He had a plan and he worked it. I shut that right down.” She laughed. Pam and Bill have been very involved in the Alamo Heights community. Bill has served two terms on the Alamo Heights city council. His service reminds her of her father who served as Mayor of their small town for 27 years.

Pam called the editor who requested a hundred dollars to look at the book and determine what the editing needs would be. That year Pam was given a very unusual hundred dollar bonus at work and saw this as sign. “I took that hundred dollars to the editor and the rest is history.”

“We really enjoy Alamo Heights. It reminds me of my small town roots in Oklahoma. The people here really know each other and look out for each other. I can’t imagine living anywhere else.” Pam’s latest book, Love Overdue, a story about a “devotedly unsexy librarian” who after a spring fling wonder’s what it might be like to “loosen her bun and reveal her inner vixen” is on sale now on Amazon and major bookstores.

Bantam Publishing published her first book in November of 1990. And soon Pam learned that she was expected to put out a book a year. Soon after, The Whiskey Man came along. Pam’s books originally fell into the historical romance category. She was quickly successful in her writing endeavors and within a few years was she was able to quit her job and dedicate her time to writing. Pam has now had 27 books published. Her books have evolved over time and after historical romances took a downturn in the market Pam moved into women’s writing. Pam considers her books “a bit off the beaten track” and has developed a good following. She likes to write about everyday life and simply takes inspiration from the world around her. I liken her writing to a wood carver who has a huge piece of wood and whittles it down until it becomes what it is meant to be. “The story just unfolds itself. It doesn’t have that much to do with me,” she insists. She starts out with an idea and a few characters and does not know how the story is going to end. “I can remember one story where the father, who I did not like, kept popping up. I tried to put him away but he refused. I finally agreed to allow him into the book, but refused to give him much space!” she laughed.

On a side note, I personally want to thank Pam for helping out with the Alamo Heights Community News. Both Pam and Bill have been a wonderful resource. These two are always willing to help out, have a cup of joe, brainstorm and sometimes just sit and talk and laugh. Thank you to Pam for being our Neighbor of the Month and more!

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April 2013 Where:

The Witte Museum 3801 Broadway San Antonio, TX 78209


Friday, September 13th, 2013 7pm to 11:00 pm Rain or shine.

Benefiting: Witte Museum & San Antonio Food Bank

SAN ANTONIO AWAITS 20TH ANNUAL TASTE OF THE HEIGHTS Located on the beautiful grounds of the Witte Museum…the Alamo Heights Chamber of Commerce has designated the San Antonio Food Bank as this year’s recipient of the anticipated annual culinary event scheduled for Friday, September 13th 2013! The “Taste” is set for Friday, September 13, 2013 at The Witte Museum beginning at 7:00 pm and ending at 11:00 pm. FREE Valet parking sponsored by Mercedes Benz of San Antonio! The Taste of the Heights will feature restaurants from the San Antonio area, a silent auction, and live music performances on four stages. The restaurants include some of the finest culinary dining in San Antonio, each willing to share samples from their menus for the 1,000+ attendees. Tickets $50 per person and may be purchased on-line at: Wine tasting...Silent Auction....great entertainment...truly something for everyone! S ND A H IN N O TI MO


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Jake Gonzales - age 14 (210) 857-5509 Lawn care The Alamo Heights Teen Services Directory is a free service for teenage residents of Alamo Heights ages 13–19. Ages are updated automatically and names are removed at age 20. To add, remove, or update your information in the directory, please send an email to and include the following information: Subject: Alamo Heights Teen Services, First and Last Names, Age with Birthday MM/ YY (birthday is for maintenance only and will not be published), Services (babysitting/lawn care/pet walking & sitting/house & plant care), Phone #, Other Services or Information (optional). Directory updates cannot be taken over the phone.


Monday, October 21, 2013 6 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. Held on the beautiful grounds of the Witte Museum Game Dinner Chairs - Dick and Kristin Tips Honorary Chair -Scott Petty, Jr. Announcing entertainment by Reckless Kelly! Tables are selling quickly! Call today to make individual reservations or to purchase your table before we sell out! All funds raised at the Witte Game Dinner provide valuable support for the programs and exhibits of San Antonio’s most widely visited museum. Sponsorship opportunities are available. Call (210) 357.1905 or email




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April 2013

National Night Out TUESDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2013

National Night Out (NNO), sponsored by the National Association of Town Watch, is a neighborhood crime and drug prevention event that is celebrated in every city, town and village in America each year on the first Tuesday in August. However, in Texas, because of the very hot weather in August, the Texas NNO is in October. In addition to increasing awareness of crime and drug prevention programs, NNO also strengthens neighborhood spirit and community-police partnerships, while sending a message to criminals that "neighborhoods are organized and fighting back against crime!"

crime and drug prevention programs nationwide. NATW's network has grown to include over 6,000 crime, drug and violence prevention organizations.

A History of America's Night Out Against Crime

That first year, 400 communities in 23 states participated in National Night Out. Nationwide, 2.5 million Americans took part in 1984. The seed had been planted. In subsequent years, participation has grown steadily. The 19th Annual National Night Out on August 6, 2002 involved 33 million people in 9,700 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide. National Night Out 2003 culminated on August 5th.

National Night Out, 'America's Night Out Against Crime,' was introduced by the Association in 1983. The program was the brainchild of NATW Executive Director Matt A. Peskin. In an effort to heighten awareness and strengthen participation in local anticrime efforts, Peskin felt that a high-profile, high-impact type of crime prevention event was needed nationally. At that time, he noted that in a typical 'crime watch community', only 5 to 7% of the residents were participating actively. Due to the growth and success of these programs, he felt this percentage was too low. Subsequently, he proposed a national program that would be coordinated by local San Antonio has always had strong, enthusiastic crime prevention agencies and organizations - but that support and participation in NNO, and has won would involve entire communities at one time. The first national NNO Awards in 1998, 2003, 2006, 2008, National Night Out was introduced early in 1983 - with the event culminating on the first Tuesday in August. 2009, and 2010.

The National Association of Town Watch (NATW) is a nonprofit, crime prevention organization that works in cooperation with thousands of crime watch groups and law enforcement agencies throughout the country. Since 1981, NATW has been dedicated to the development, growth and maintenance of organized

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April 2013  continued from page 12

While the traditional 'lights on' and front porch vigils remain a part of NNO, activities have expanded considerably over the years to include block parties, cookouts, parades, visits from police, festivals, neighborhood walks, safety fairs, contests, rallies and meetings. Peskin said, "It's a wonderful opportunity for communities nationwide to promote police-community partnerships, crime prevention, and neighborhood camaraderie. While the one night is certainly not an answer to crime, drugs and violence, National Night Out does represent the kind of spirit, energy and determination that is helping to make many neighborhoods safer places throughout the year. It [NNO] is a night to celebrate crime prevention successes - and to expand and strengthen programs for the next 364 days.

National Night Out History In 1983, the National Association for Town Watch, sponsor of National Night Out, was first subsidized by the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance. The goal was to encourage interest in the formation of Neighborhood Watch groups that would involve citizens at the national, state, and local levels. The program began slowly, but in the late ‘80s, reports were developed to summarize the events before, on, and after each National Night Out. Through these reports, the National Night Out Against Crime and Drug Abuse documented the success of this interaction between citizens and law enforcement officials. The

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National Association for Town Watch gives awards to states, cities, counties, and neighborhoods based on these reports. Several categories are established using population brackets as the differentiating factor. Since 1995, Texas has won every year. Connecticut won the first state award in 1990. Then Connecticut won the next two awards before Michigan claimed the ‘93 title. Colorado won in ‘94.

History in Texas

Tyler held the first National Night Out in the State of Texas in 1982. Corpus Christi has been an award winner since 1983. The Woodlands, San Antonio, and Houston/Harris County have all been ranked number one in their respective population categories at least once since 1994. The following Texas communities have ranked in the top 10 in their categories since 1994: The Woodlands (7), San Antonio (2008 2nd place, 2007 3rd place, 2006 1st place, 2005 3rd place, 2004 2nd place, 2003 1st place, 2002 5th place, 2001 3rd place, and 2000 6th place), Houston/Harris County (6), Richardson (5), Arlington (2), Central Texas (2), Travis County (2), and Coppell (1). The Texas National Night Out trophies are on display in the trophy room of the Sheriffs' Association, 1601 S. IH 35, Austin. The Texas sheriffs invite everyone to stop in to see what neighbors and law enforcement professionals working together have earned. To learn more about the national program, check the Web site at or write NATW, P.O. Box 303, Wynnewood PA 19096 or call (610) 649-7055.

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September 2013



Labor Day





P&Z Meeting 8

Grandparents Day




Rosh Hashanah









Patriot Day


Autumnal equinox










BOA Meeting

BOA Meeting 12



Yom Kippur















P&Z Meeting 17






ARB Meeting 22



City Council Meeting 15

October 2013




Columbus Day

City Council Meeting 25




ARB Meeting






United Nations Day







City Council Meeting 30

City Council Meeting August 2013 S M T W Th F 1 2 4 5 6 7 8 9 11 12 13 14 15 16 18 19 20 21 22 23 25 26 27 28 29 30

Sa 3 10 17 24 31

October S M T W 1 2 6 7 8 9 13 14 15 16 20 21 22 23 27 28 29 30

2013 Th F 3 4 10 11 17 18 24 25 31

Notes: Sa 5 12 19 26

September 2013 S M T W Th F Sa 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30

November 2013 S M T W Th F Sa 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30


Alamo Heights Aug/Sept 2013  

Community News

Alamo Heights Aug/Sept 2013  

Community News