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THINK TANK - BIG IDEAS FOR THE FUTURE

e v i l e w e v o l e w

Brunch on the Bay

A peek at what’s to eat

REAL ESTATE Ag

ent Guid e

p.56

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Contents

APRIL | Special Section: Real Estate Agent Guide pg. 56 Monthly | Departments

Features Features

Around the Bend 14 Currents 16 Conversation 19 Style 20 5 Best 22 Giving Back 25 Celebration

Destinations

24 Quick Trip 26 Local Discovery

Health

70 Fitness 73 Be Well 77 Health Spotlight

40

Home & Garden 80 Open House 84 Spaces 88 Gardening

Brunch on the Bay

Out & About We Love Where We Live - Our Favorite Neighborhoods

46

92 Arts & Culture 94 Date Book 96 Social Hour

Cuisine

102 Farm to Table 105 The Dish 106 The Dining Guide 110 The Drink

34

Column

114 Looking Back

The Think Tank

6 The Bend

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MARKETING DESIGN: Ensemble Group

PUBLISHER: Jordan Regas ART DIRECTOR: Julio Studios PRODUCTION DIRECTOR: Kaley Regas BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT: Chris Knapick

M A S S AG E T H E R A PY & N AT U R A L H E A L I N G

Using Nothing but the Best for you

100% Organic

MANAGING EDITOR: Whitney Noble AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT: Stefanie DeWaters STYLE EDITOR: Candace Reichert

Oxygen Bar - Now Available! Organic Manicures & Pedicures Champagne & Rose Massage Wine Facial Full Body Warm Honey Waxing Organic Makeup Application Reflexology Hot Stone Massage Medical Massage Pregnancy Massage Infrared Color Therapy Sauna

361.737.7813 peaceofmindmassage corpuschristi.com 602 N Lower Broadway St. Corpus Christi, TX 78401

8 The Bend

CONTRIBUTORS: Justin & Kayla Butts Sharla Wilkins Cissy Tabor Jeff King Elizabeth Greenwell Dayna Worchel Sadique Dabale Kateri Reyes Nancy Roberts

LEAD PHOTOGRAPHER: Rachel Durrent PHOTOGRAPHY: Dustin Ashcraft Jason Page (cover) Renée C. Gage August McGrath Kateri Reyes DISTRIBUTION: Produce Couriers Renée C. Gage Kevin Kusenberger SUBMISSIONS: jordan@thebendmag.com ADVERTISING: chris@thebendmag.com THE BEND OFFICE: 309 N. Water Street Corpus Christi, TX 78401 Phone: 361.792.3606 SUBSCRIPTIONS: THEBENDMAG.COM

Copyright © 2016 Gemstone Media, LLC. The Bend: Coastal Life Magazine is published by Gemstone Media, LLC. No portion may be reproduced without express written consent. Editorial or advertising does not constitute advice, but is rather considered informative. Expressed opinions are thos e of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ownership.

THIN

K TA

On the Cover Douden Park on North Padre Island is buzzing with the islanders and the bees, in the flourishing community gardens. Models: Lauren & Baby J Becquet Photo by: Jason Page

- BIG

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got zoe?

April | Meet The Staff

18 Bar Le Doc Dr. - $525,000

3246 Ocean Dr. - $2,990,000

A little about:

Whitney Noble

3622 Denver Ave. - $974,000

Managing Editor Whitney grew up in a small town north of Chicago. After a lifetime of icy roads and soggy boots, she progressively made her way south to North Padre Island. She majored in Magazine Journalism at the University of Missouri, where she worked as a magazine department editor for the campus magazine. Whitney’s background includes stints as a newspaper reporter, television producer and news anchor, and medical textbook editor. Whitney and her husband, Chris, love the small-town, Island feel. When she first moved to The Island, she combined her love for homes with a new career path in real estate. Today, she splits her time between writing about how great it is to live here and selling homes to people who want to live here. Her extensive training in writing, editing, and communications makes her the perfect fit to keep all of the writers and photographers in line and on top of deadlines. It’s safe to say that Whitney is our office Type-A personality. When she is not out shopping for a new pair of gold earrings, she enjoys playing Bunco, Bingo, and wine tasting on her back dock while watching the sun set over the water. Her dog, Duke, keeps her active and her husband is her biggest fan and supporter.

CONNECT WITH US @ thebendmag.com @thebendmag on Instagram and Twitter #CBLife

Zoe Gottlich #1 Top Producer

7 consecutive years (2009-15)

361.813.9460

zoe.gottlich@coldwellbanker.com

www.gotzoe.com

Do you love your neighborhood? Share you favorite neighborhood spots and shots! We want to see why you love where you live. #TBBestNeighborhood [the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

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March | Letter From The Publisher

Values, Passions and Purpose

I

t’s been two years now since the first issue of The Bend Magazine started showing up around the Coastal Bend. I don’t think many people knew what it was or why they received it in their mailbox. I’m not totally sure I knew what it was at the time.

Over the past two years, I have learned more about business, life, and myself than I ever learned in school. I woke up one morning last year with the strange realization that I was a business owner. I knew how to make magazines. But I was clueless about running a business. It scared me to the point of working with a business coach from a company called EMyth. Our first few calls were kind of strange. He didn’t mention anything about organization charts and forecasting. We talked a lot about my passions, values, and purpose in life. It was pretty deep. I’m glad he didn’t live closer or he might have asked me to wax his car. I went on to discover that most businesses are a reflection of the people behind them. The vision, mission, and foundational values of a business derive from the owners. The same is true for any great endeavor, such as a nonprofit, a production, or a blog. It’s an important truth for anyone to understand. If you work for a company, you are essentially working to achieve that company’s vision and mission. I’m not suggesting one try to seek their identity in a job. It’s not about what you do, it’s about why you do it. Personally, I would much rather fail and learn about myself in the process than succeed and loose myself in the process. I feel truly blessed for the many lessons learned, for the encouragement I have received, and especially for all the talented people who make the vision a reality. A lot has changed over the past two years, but our goal to share beautiful and engaging stories in a way that leaves people feeling more connected and with a greater appreciation for their city remains the same. I constantly meet people in town who are using their passions and abilities to shape our culture in a positive way. One feature in this issue highlights just a few of the movers and shakers in our area. Our region could use more people looking for opportunities to live out their purpose. If you know someone like that, we would love to share their story, because it’s our passion and purpose.

Jordan Regas

jordan@thebendmag.com

Favorite Page

I absolutely love this brunch layout styled by Kaley Regas and shot by Jason Page. The whole shoot took place in the middle of our office floor on a makeshift table of reclaimed wood. I think Kaley did an amazing job of capturing the coastal ambiance with the oyster shells and greenery. We are grateful to all the chefs and restaurant owners who went along with it. Some even brought stoves and cooked on top of our conference table. I could get used to that. We hope to see you out at the Art Center for Brunch on the Bay, April 24th at 11am!

10 The Bend

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Around the Bend APRIL 2016

CURRENTS 14 CONVERSATION 16 STYLE 19 5 BEST 20 GIVING BACK 22 CELEBRATION 25

What’s Inside The Youth Odyssey of Corpus Christi uses adventure programming to teach our troubled youth key life skills such as teamwork, which can be applied through activities like hiking.

12 The Bend

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Around the Bend | Currents

Currents New Dolphins at the Aquarium Watch out ladies, there are new lookers in the tank. Two new male dolphins, both 8 years old, have just been introduced to the Aquarium. Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins, Liko and Schooner, came all the way from SeaWorld Orlando. Dolphin Bay’s 400,000 gallon tank can now expect even more onlookers from both above the water and beneath it. The more flippers the better!

2710 N. Shoreline Blvd., Corpus Christi, TX 78402

All Natural Natural Grocers recently opened, taking over the space that used to be Walgreens at Doddridge and Staples. The concept is that everyone should be able to afford a healthy lifestyle. Since 1989, the store has provided natural and organic foods, beverages, vitamins, and supplements. Their standards are high, their products are rigorously screened, and they teach healthy living and even provide recipes! Two events they’re holding in April are the Paleo Fair on Saturday, April 9, and Taste the Natural Grocers Difference on Saturday, April 16.

3750 S Staples St, Corpus Christi, TX 78411 14 The Bend

Hole in One Bishop resident, 11-year-old Taylor Crozier, took part in a fundraiser for Texas Children’s Hospital when he entered a drawing to play a round of golf with Tiger Woods. In his practice shot, the crowd went wild after Crozier got a hole in one! Woods embraced the talented young golfer, who has been playing for about three years but has never hit a hole in one. After the shot, he was given the red pin flag emblazoned with No. 1. He and Woods both signed it. The hole in one was made at the grand opening of Woods’ par-5 course at Bluejack National. The video of Taylor’s hole-in-one posted to YouTube has gone viral on social media. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxAoz2eE_ZM

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YOUR TRUSTED FAMILY ORTHODONTIST

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Ask your agent which photographer they use for their #listingfotos If your agent doesn’t have a good answer, have them call Sell your home, leave the photography to me.

361-589-9050 | JASONDAVIDPAGE.COM 234 Leming Avenue as photographed for The Bend

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Around the Bend | Person of Interest

kitchen, especially when I was a single mother of 3 children for six years. My inspiration for cooking came from my grandparents. They loved cooking and always made meals for large crowds. Who do you cater to, where do you deliver, and what is the most requested dish and side dish? I cater to anyone, even to businesses! Right now, I deliver mostly to people on Padre Island and the South Side of Corpus. The most requested dish is lasagna and the Swiss chicken. The most requested side dish is my southern mashed potatoes. Customers can order from two serving sizes - one will feed 4-6 and the other will feed 6-8.

Conversation Michelle Turner

All Cooked Up! Turner is changing the way families and individuals do lunch and dinner. By: Whitney Noble Photo: Rachel Durrent

When did you come to Corpus and decide to start a home-cooked meal business? I moved here to Corpus Christi in April 2013, from Colorado. I have been wanting to open a cafe for a while. Moving to Corpus, I saw what high percentage of families eat out, and I was astonished. I thought opening up a home-cooked meal business would be helpful in many people’s lives, so there’s no stress of cooking or spending money eating out.

16 The Bend

Families could sit and enjoy a home-cooked meal without the stress. Have you always been creative in the kitchen? What gave you the inspiration? I have always loved cooking. I was always helping my mom in the kitchen. As a little girl, I entered into cooking competitions in 4H. I feel I have always been creative in the

[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

How do you see your business evolving? I see my business evolving into a store front, where people can stop by and pick out a meal(s) and take it home to eat. I want the convenience of having a home-cooked meal for families to enjoy and not have the guilt of eating fast food or the stress of cooking. Why is it so important to get that home-cooked meal, and how do you see yourself changing the way families eat and interact? It is very important to me for my family to have a home-cooked meal, as well as other families. I see it changing a lot of dynamics. It makes for healthier eating, more time for families to interact and spend time together. Who really likes eating out all the time? The cost of eating can be ridiculous. I will cook a delicious meal and deliver it right to your door. With all the stress that comes with our daily lives, sometimes you don’t want to have to decide what to make for dinner! For More Info allcookedup.moonfruit.com (303) 587-0089


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Introduces

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CONSULTATIONS: 361.561.0240 [the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend] 18 Doucetmedspa.com The Bend | 7121 SPID Suite 206 Corpus Christi TX 78412


!

Style

Q&A

Shannon’s Distinctive Fashions By: Candace Reichert Photo: Rachel Durrent

How has moving to the Southside impacted your business? As this area of town continues to grow rapidly, so have we. We’ve continued to grow tremendously and gain new clientele, while our faithful clients come back time and time again. What do you look for as inspiration when buying for each season? Being that we live in south Texas, we don’t have your typical 4 seasons. So that is a key factor in buying for this area. I want to provide transitional pieces made of quality fabrics. That way when shopping here, you can purchase fashion that can be worn year round. What would you say sets Shannon’s apart from all the rest? I’d say our versatility. We don’t cater to one certain type or one age group. We carry such a broad range in styles and price points,

that you are able to bring your teenage daughter or your mother in with you, and everyone is sure to find something they love. Aside from clothing, I also carry a nice selection of jewelry and Jon Hart Luggage and Accessories. What would our readers whohave never been to Shannon’s be able to expect in their first shopping experience? I have grown up in retail and fashion. When I was young my Mother, Cora Waters, had a children’s store. Retail is in my blood - I’d like to think of myself as shoppers’ very own personal stylist. A lot of businesses have staff who run their store, but that’s not the case here. I’m always here to give you that one-on-one personal care to help you to look and feel your best. 6646 S Staples St, Ste 126 Corpus Christi, Texas (361) 993-6608

• Spring 2016 marks Shannon’s 15th year in business • Shannon’s was the first business to move in to The Market shopping center 8 years ago • Popular lines that Shannon’s carries include: Krazy Larry pants, JoyJoy, Jade, Finley Blouses, Jude Conally Dresses and Sportswear, Veronica M

served.

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Around the Bend | 5 Best

5

Taco Bar Street’s Street Nachos

Best

Best Nachos 1

With five different flavor combinations, there’s a nacho for everyone.

By: Sharla Wilkins Photo: Rachel Durrent

Crab, asada, pork, Angus beef or brisket. So many options for fantastic nachos!

20 The Bend

Black Sheep Bistro’s Nacho Ordinary Crab Each tasty bite of these crunchy nachos contains fresh Gulf blue crab. Flavorful but not spicy, they appeal to seafood lovers who do not enjoy a lot of heat. Jalapeños top the nachos, if a bit of a kick is desired. They bring a great mix of ingredients, elevating these to unexpected yet yummy nachos.

2

Taco Bar Street’s Street Nachos These spicy nachos do not disappoint! Colorful and savory layers of queso, spicy mayo and cilantro ranch perfectly complement the tasty asada. Fresh cilantro and tomato are a great counterpart to the spicier ingredients. The jalapeños perfectly augment this highly seasoned dish.

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3

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop’s Spicy Pork Nachos Drowning in queso, these creamy nachos pair cheese sauce poured over tortilla chips with shredded cheese. Seasoned just right, the spicy shredded pork brings a delectable flavor to the nachos. A hint of Feta cheese and garlic sauce adds to the dining experience. Pico de gallo completes the flavor combination.

4

Mole’s Angus Beef Nachos Perfectly spaced, perfectly placed, perfectly layered, these crispy nachos are presented circling a bed of shredded lettuce housing guacamole and pico de gallo. Each taste contains an even amount of refried black beans, seasoned beef and Oaxaca cheese. One jalapeño rests proudly atop each chip.

5

Moondog Seaside Eatery’s Smoked Brisket Nachos Piled high with savory brisket that is smoked in house for sixteen hours, these popular nachos are smothered with pico de gallo. Lettuce, cheese, and sides of sour cream, salsa and jalapeños compose the rest of the ingredients. Make a meal for four out of this large sized nacho serving!

FUN FACTS • November 6th is National Nachos Day. • Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya is credited with creating nachos in the 1940s in a small Mexican town just across the Texas border. • Nachos have been topped with everything from fried chicken to asparagus.


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Around the Bend | Giving Back

Youth Odyssey, Inc. Our youth are our future, and at Youth Odyssey, they’re about prepping for positive adolescent development. By: Becky Meyer Photos: Courtesy of Youth Odyssey

WHO WE ARE AND WHAT WE DO Created in 1997, Youth Odyssey is a 501 (C) (3) nonprofit based in Corpus Christi, Texas driven to address the rising tide of juvenile crime and violence. Youth Odyssey (YO) is on a mission to provide at-risk youth ages 10-17 with positive development through life skills curricula and adventure-challenge programming. The six life skills we focus on are: communication, teamwork, problem-solving, goal-setting, leadership, and trust. We teach and apply these skills through adventure activities that include teambuilding sessions, ropes challenge courses, kayaking, canoeing, rock climbing, bouldering, hiking, backpacking, camping, and more. Since our establishment, Youth Odyssey has provided approximately 9,000 at-risk and disadvantaged youth with life-changing opportunities; 800-900 youth annually. We have longstanding partnerships with many

agencies here in the Coastal Bend including: Corpus Christi Independent School District (CCISD), Corpus Christi Housing Authority, City of Corpus Christi Parks and Recreation, Nueces County Juvenile Justice Bootcamp, and many more. Since our type of programming is unique, (and has been since 1997) there is very high demand for our programs. So much so that we have a waiting list. The impact we have on our youth is outstanding. We exceed our goals each year and continue to grow and reach into the neediest neighborhoods. Last year, YO and CCISD survey results showed that youth who completed our programming have higher STARR scores, better grades, higher attendance rates, and lower disciplinary measures. Those facts, coupled with 2015 YO survey results, reveal that our programs produce results.

% of Youth Improvement

% Youth Satisfaction

87%

80%

Learned Communication Skills

Program Organization

90%

Learned Leadership Skills

91%

Felt Staff Gave Clear Instructions

90%

Learned Problem Solving Skills

89%

Food Selection on Trips

92%

Gained Self Confidence

100%

Felt Safe While Participating

92%

Learned Team Working Skills

100%

Felt Staff Listened to Concern/Questions

91%

Learned to Trust

100%

Felt Staff Treated Them with Respect

22 The Bend

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engaged, didn’t have to be asked to help, and was freely giving his own opinion. The transformation that occurred was spectacular. From an insecure young man into an active member of the team, he was inspired and finding other ways to express himself. James joined our program midway through 6th grade. He joined because he was getting suspended for absences and behavior. He admitted he had an anger problem but did not see a solution. He met staff that invested time in him and talked to him about his behavior and how to control himself. James made a complete 180. He almost never missed a program, and when he entered into high school he asked to come back and help mentor middle school students. He shared his experiences and encouraged

students to keep striving to be better. We were so impressed with him that we gave him more responsibility. We trained him on our Ropes Course and during camping trips. The changes we saw in James were night and day. From an angry juvenile full of mischief to a young man who gained the trust of adults and peers. Last month, we received a letter from him. He is now serving his country as a Marine in Japan. Even more touching, he climbed Mt. Fuji and took a picture at the summit with his “treasured” Youth Odyssey t-shirt. PO Box 331394 Corpus Christi, TX 78463 (361) 946-6016 youthodyssey1@yahoo.com

OPPORTUNITY FOR THE COMMUNITY TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE THIS SUMMER Our “Send a Kid to Camp” campaign is in full swing. We are raising money for all of our summer programming so every youth who wants to go to camp has that opportunity. An opportunity that their families are not able to provide. In addition to summer camps, this campaign is covering all of our regular recreation center programs in addition to five new pilot programs. Every dollar helps, and we hope the community will respond from the outpouring of their hearts for the disadvantaged youth of our community. The donations go directly to our programs, but the investment is longterm.

TESTIMONIES This past summer, we had a camper with very low self confidence. So low that he would never share an opinion or help when asked. Instead, he would act out to make others like him. One night while processing the day, a staff member picked up a dried leaf and started poking holes into it. She held it up to the sky and asked, “What do you see?” He replied, “Nothing.” She said, “I see a dog and a tree.” “I see nothing,” he replied again. Another camper leaned over and said “I see a worm.” Then as if jolted with electricity, he asked if he could hold the leaf. He held it up to the bright pink sky and said, “I see a house.” The next morning, he asked the staff member to show him how to punch holes in a leaf. For the rest of the camp, he was

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Around the Bend | Celebrations

The Wedding of

Elizabeth McCampbell + WilliamAlexander

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Around the Bend | Celebrations

The Big Day! Bride: Elizabeth Jane McCampbell Groom: William Clifton Alexander Date: May 15th, 2015

What’s your story? On a quiet Saturday morning, I was proposed to. We were making homemade Whataburger bobs (hence the Whataburger cameo at the wedding) for brunch, and I had become increasingly curious about a potential proposal in the recent weeks. So Cliff had to change proposal plans to the least expecting/average morning/time. It was perfect. He was so nervous he didn’t get down on one knee, or technically even ask me. He also had all of my college girlfriends come down and surprise me to celebrate with us after I said “yes”!

What were the most inspiring elements? Two things that were so important to me were getting married in the church I grew up in and incorporating my family history into the wedding. There is not much that needs to be done at our church, it

26 The Bend

is gorgeous in its simplicity. However, I used the McCampbell House to lay the foundation for a soft Irish-inspired wedding. I was lucky to have everyone throughout the planning process (from my mom, to Tiffany, to my husband) encourage my vision and turn that vision into a reality. I tried to include some Irish elements. I walked into our church with bag pipe/organ collaboration that was incredible. Lots of bells of Ireland accented in the floral and I had a lavender toss send off. Neutrals, grays and greens were my color base.

What was your absolute favorite part of your special day? Our band, Empire 6, was so fun. Everyone was on the dance floor the entire night.

Do you have any advice for future brides? At a certain point you just have to let go and live in the moment. The most fun we had was once we stopped worrying - and then even potentially catastrophic mishaps (getaway car not starting, reception shoes getting stolen, high winds causing total decor disaster, etc.) were happening all around us...we couldn’t have cared less. It was the best day ever.

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Rental * Design * Décor For all your life Celebrations! Ceremony: The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd - Corpus Christi, Texas Reception: The Ward - McCampbell House at Heritage Park Caterer: Catering by WaterStreet Photographer: Edgar De La Garza DLG Photography Florist: Blossom Shop/Self Decor: Butler Signature Events Wedding Planner: Tiffany Batchelor

Boutique Showroom! 5826 Wooldridge Rd.

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28 The Bend

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Destinations APRIL 2016

Rat snakes are a common reptile found here in our region.

QUICK TRIP 24 DISCOVER 26

What’s Inside Nature walks can be a great way to soothe your mind, body, and taste for adventure. Be sure to take your time, find a good pace, and appreciate the nature and tranquility around us. The Oso Bay Wetlands Preserve is a great place to start!

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Destinations | Quick Trip

Where to Learn:

Crossing Through Victoria By: Whitney Noble Photos: Courtesy Explore Victoria Texas

Victoria is often referred to as The Crossroads because of its location within a two-hour drive of Corpus Christi, Houston, San Antonio, and Austin. Where to Stay:

Where to Drink:

Victoria has a variety of overnight accommodations for your weekend getaway from new hotels to historic bed & breakfasts and guest houses. One great option is The Inn on Main in the heart of downtown Victoria. It is easily accessible to dining and nightlife and right in the middle of Old Victoria and the Historic Driving Tour. ExploreVictoriaTexas.com/hotels

Have drinks at the The Sendera’s Tequila Bar as you enjoy the view of the city! They have the best selection of tequila around with more than 100 to choose from. Excellent eats, also! Moonshine Drinkery is located in historic downtown Victoria. With a kicked up southern feel, great drinks, live music, hand crafted cocktails and Moonshine, it’s the perfect spot for happy hour or after dinner drinks. thesendera.com moonshinedrinkery.com

Where to Eat:

What to Explore:

Victoria has more than 50 locally owned eateries, bakeries and coffee shops. A great “Don’t Miss” spot is The Pump House Riverside Restaurant & Bar, open for lunch and dinner. It is located in a restored pump house on the banks of the Guadalupe River. Dine on the patio and enjoy live music and romance, or bring the kids! They’ll love the fried mac-n-cheese. The Sunday brunch is a must do – complete with bottomless Bloody Marys and Mimosas. The atmosphere is as good as the food. victoriapumphouse.com

Explore Old Victoria! Take the Old Victoria Driving Tour featuring more than 80 Historic Homes and Buildings, many of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Learn about some of Victoria’s earliest citizens and see the architecture of their homes. The tour includes the 1892 Courthouse and Fossati’s Delicatessen, the oldest deli in Texas. Show up April 2nd and 3rd, and you can take a peek inside some of them at Victoria’s annual Historic Homes Tour. explorevictoriatexas.com

Learn about Texas History at the Museum of the Coastal Bend. The museum explores the last 13,000 years of history on the Texas coast including the stories of the earliest indigenous residents, the ill-fated French colony of Fort St. Louis, the Spanish missions, and the ranchers that started the Texas cattle industry. Kids of all ages can even learn to throw an ancient spear with an atlatl. Through December 17, 2016, come see the temporary exhibit Flights of Fancy: Birds & Birding in South Texas. Using photographs, historic artifacts and ornithological specimens, integrated with the wildlife art of American modernist Charley Harper, Flights of Fancy shares fascinating information about the birds of the Texas Coastal Bend. hmuseumofthecoastalbend.org Where to Play: Play outdoors! Take a trip down the Guadalupe River. You can rent kayaks, paddle boards, or tubes from Gerry’s Kayaks right in the center of the park. They’ll even drop you off at the load in spot! For the land lovers who are more interested in exploring the trails, bike rentals are also available. explorevictoriatexas.co

A Little History

Native American tribe who

explorer Robert Cavelier de

Garcitas River, a few miles

allow him and 41 families to

lived by the “River of Nuts.”

La Salle. His intentions were

east of the present city of

create a town on the lower

Rumor has it in 1530, the

de Vaca returned home to

to colonize the Mississippi

Victoria. But it wasn’t until

Guadalupe called Nuestra

first European to find Victo-

Spain to write of his experi-

for France, but his party fell

1824 that Victoria would

Señora de Guadalupe de

ria was Cabeza de Vaca. As

ence in what’s now Victoria.

ill and even shipwrecked.

truly colonize. Don Martin de

Jesus Victoria. His petition

the story goes, he and three

150 years later, more Eu-

After these misfortunes, they

Leon, a rancher from Tam-

was granted.

others were shipwrecked

ropeans came to Victoria

found themselves far off

aulipas, Mexico, petitioned

and met up with a friendly

as part of an expedition by

course and settled on the

the Texas government to

30 The Bend

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Helping you turn resolutions into reality

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The Better Weigh Center welcomes our newest member, Dr. Jegan Gopal. A recent graduate of the prestigious Duke University Bariatric Surgery Fellowship, Dr. Gopal is excited to bring his passion for bariatric surgery to the Coastal Bend. New patient appointments are now being scheduled.

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Destinations | Discover

Quick Facts • Some of the birds that flock to the preserve include Roseatte spoonbills, night herons, avocets, ospreys, blue herons, black-necked stilts, indigo buntings, sandhill cranes, shrikes, hummingbirds, Harris’ hawks, and American kestrels. • In addition to Texas toads, there are also bright green tree frogs that frequent the wetlands. • Two of the many duck species that can be seen include blue winged teals and black bellied whistling ducks. • The boardwalk that runs through the preserve is made of recycled materials.

Learning Outside

• There are many specialized plants that grow in the wetlands. Some of these are rattlebush, swamp smartweed, coastal spikerush, sea ox-eye daisy, and duck potato.

By: Elizabeth Greenwell Photos: Rachel Durrent

Oso Bay Wetlands Preserve and Learning Center

“Come and be amazed” they say. We say so, too!

H

ave you been longing to reconnect with nature? Are you curious about the wide variety of plants and animal species native to the Coastal Bend? Are you in search of a guided hike through a pristine swath of nature, where birds fly about and wildlife thrives? Are your children intrigued by the world around them, constantly collecting bits of flora, fauna or rocks? The Oso Bay Wetlands Preserve and Learning Center has something to offer nature lovers of all ages and from all walks of life. Every Friday morning, you can experience the bountiful, buzzing wetlands ecosystem by participating in one of the center’s guided nature hikes. If you are lucky, you may see an owl, a bobcat, turtles, or perhaps even a rare, brilliantly colored spoonbill, or a migratory bird. There is an abundance of wildlife in this unique habitat not only limited to birds, but reptiles, amphibians, and small mammals. The knowledgeable and passionate staff will guide visitors down winding trails and elucidate little known facts about the special nature of South Texas’ plant and animal life. 32 The Bend

If you enjoy listening to lectures on our ecosystems, there is a speaker series where “Eco Experts” share a bit of their expertise on certain subjects; historians, biologists, conservationists, and even guest speakers from the hatchery will be on deck to share their knowledge with those who wish to learn more about the Coastal Bend’s fragile and intricate ecosystem. In April, the long-awaited Exhibit Hall will open its doors to the curious, and visitors will be greeted by a crew of Animal Ambassadors, including an indigo snake, a milk snake, a box turtle, and some friendly gulf coast toads. For young visitors, there is a large freshwater aquarium showcasing finned residents of the wetlands, as well as an innovative interactive watershed. This fantastic exhibit allows visitors to move sand about and visualize how movement of sediment topographically affects the watershed. For young naturalists who love to collect shells, stones, cicada casings, and bones, there is a Nature Trading Post. The children can turn in their discoveries from backyard or beach-comb-

• If you’re lucky, you may see a caracara, sometimes called a Mexican eagle.

ing excavations for points or other items found in nature. A collection of acorns could be traded in for something larger and more exciting, like a javelina skull or an intricate shell. This system encourages children to spend time outdoors as well as to appreciate the natural world that surrounds them. This is crucial in times where the soft blue light of machines draws us in like hapless moths to a bug-zapper. The Oso Bay Wetlands Preserve hopes to inspire a new generation of naturalists. “The ultimate goal of the center is to encourage children to get outside, into nature, and get them excited about our environment,” says Manuel Cantu, Program Manager. Adhering to the mission of educating the Coastal Bend on nature, there is copious informational signage throughout the center. For the art connoisseur, there are exceptional sculptures that embody the wild spirit of our distinct ecosystem. In addition to offering fantastic, unique glimpses into our wonderful wetlands, there are many volunteer opportunities available as well. One way or another, get involved!

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• One of the many paths you can take is called the Hawk Walk.


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The Think Meet some of the movers and shakers of the Coastal Bend By: Kateri Reyes Photos: Kateri Reyes

34 The Bend

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Photo Courtesy: Tolga Yaman

Tank


Aquaponics O

n the back lot of the Corpus Christi Food Bank, you will notice an unusual new plastic dome. A greenhouse has appeared, and in it something genius is taking place. Casey Williams and Lawrence Pilareiro are avid growers - we cannot call them “gardeners” because they do not use the average soil, water, and sun methods. Instead, they have turned nature on its head and created an entire new ecosystem perfectly interwoven with symbiotic symmetry to establish a new way a life. They call it “Aquaponics.” Aquaponics is in of itself a nuance- a combination of Aquaculture—the raising of fish and Hydroponics—growing plants without soil. Their goals are simple: create a clean, organic method for growing high yield crops in small spaces with the least amount of pest control issues…and then tell the world how they did it. Education is the driving passion at the forefront of their efforts. Stepping into the greenhouse, there is an immediate clean, lush green aroma, layered with the acoustic lullaby of running water. Channels of water run the length of the greenhouse and are buffered by an equal-sized channel of crumbled shale rock. Floating atop the water are dozens of foam platforms

dotted by petite shoots of lettuce reaching toward the warm sun. The rock beds are a lush array of various vegetables from broccoli to cilantro and kohlrabi. The real workers are out of sight. Under the foam trays of vegetables, swimming among their roots are hundreds of tilapia, who have the important job of creating waste that makes for viable plant food, while the plants maintain water purity, creating an oxygen-rich environment that the fish can thrive in. There is a third party in this triangle that is a little more ambiguous. They are naturally occurring organisms attracted to this environment - microbes and worms add to the nutrient density of the shale mixed media beds as they process vegetation through their bodies. All told, it’s an intricately woven society engineered to be fully self-supporting. The sheer passion that Williams and Pilareiro possess for this method is contagious. They grew up together on neighboring farms in Riviera, TX. With combined backgrounds in commercial farming and biology, these lifelong friends came together to approach the Food Bank with their concept of creating an urban garden with a focus on teaching people how to become more self-sustaining and

Williams and Pilareiro are using Aquaponics. This method combines Aquaculture (raising of fish) and Hydroponics (growing plants without soil).

to learn to appreciate their own health by connecting to the process of producing their own food source. It was Williams who already worked at the Food Bank who first approached them about the empty field on their property that was just begging to be used! Together, they formed Corpus Christi Aquaponics (CCAP) on land operated by the Food Bank, and have built it with almost 100% recycled material. They broke ground in May of 2015 and are entering their first full season of production. They hope that beyond the local tables through farmer’s markets they can eventually partner with local restaurants in a community pride partnership for locallygrown produce. In addition to the educational partnership with the Food Bank, they also donate their excess produce. Innovation and education are what motivate Williams and Pilareiro to push nature’s envelope and continually overcome and engineer this truly new method of growing produce and achieving a more sustainable lifestyle. They are hoping to streamline their system so that it can be easily duplicated in schools, urban gardens, and serve as an educational tool to all who encounter it!

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“We spent a lot of time on it, but one thing we thought was cool was that our neighborhood kept thanking us for bringing people together; they even brought out lawn chairs and stayed around to chat.”

Gonzales Sisters Lemonade Stand

N

ationally recognized and locally sponsored by Kleberg Bank and the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce, “Lemonade Day” is fast approaching, set for May 14th, 2016. Its purpose is to elevate children of all ages to dabble for a day in entrepreneurship and small business. Flour Bluff sisters Danielle (11) and Makayla (9) Gonzales are putting the finishing touches on their chalkboard menu and calculating how many sweet treats to bake. For these spunky sisters, a lemonade stand at the foot of their driveway is big business. The quirky and talkative duo know how to sell lemonade. Gearing up for their second year participating in Lemonade Day, Danielle is all business, and Makayla is the one whose wit and humor will break your wallet! These two have an extensive plan laid out, taking what they learned last year and expounding upon that this year. They know that success is all in the planning. Dad Simon Gonzales crafted a dreamy lemonade stand out of upcycled pallets and a wood shingle roof. The girls carefully decorated it with colorful accents. They then hit the kitchen with mom, Brandy, baking a host of sweet treats ranging from orange chocolate dipped pretzels to lavender cookies, peppermint brownies and lemon squares. “All made with essential oils” the girls proudly boast. They are already learning that capitalizing on trends and standing out from the crowd is an important key to success. They have evaluated last year’s sales and decided to re-work the menu a tad, taking off the pretzels that were time consuming and the least purchased item, while increasing the cookies and bars that sold the greatest. As for the lemonade, they offer both traditional and pink. But for those who want to live a little, Makayla has created her own cocktail she calls “the mix”- combining the two.

36 The Bend

Last year, the girls raised over $300 for their favorite charities - The Wounded Warrior Project and Little Miss Kickball. This year they have elected to earn for the Gulf Coast Humane Society and CASA. Their plan is profoundly detailed, complete with a marketing campaign that, like last year, will start a week before they open with a social media campaign, and then the day before the sale their wooden signs that will go up throughout the neighborhood. “It was hard work” says Makayla, who says she had to take a few Union breaks last time. Big sister Danielle rolls her eyes but chimes in “We spent a lot of time on it, but one thing we thought was cool was that our neighborhood kept thanking us for bringing people together; they even brought out lawn chairs and stayed around to chat.” At that she reminds her parents that they need to plan to set up a special seating area this year to invite patrons to linger. Their favorite customer was their school principal, Dr. Nikole Youngburg. But this year, the sisters are really hoping the Mayor stops by to taste their lemonade! “Last year they learned so much about running a business and interacting with customers,” says Brandy. “This year I want to emphasize for them the process of calculating profit after expenses, so together we will keep track of what we spend as we prepare.” The girls giggle and toast as they make one of Makayla’s cocktails. I ask if they plan to go into business together when they grow up. Danielle thinks about it, but Makayla immediately pipes up “Yes, we will have a massage place, but Danielle will probably have to give me massages…during my Union breaks.”

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VISIT Corpuschristi.lemonadeday.org to learn how you can inspire the youth in your life to take initiative and start their own first business!

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Gabriel Guerra

President of Kleberg Bank

A

rising tide raises all ships, and for Gabriel Guerra, President of Kleberg Bank, leading that tide of local success in Corpus means being equally invested in the success of others. Born and raised in this city, his pride for the inner workings of commerce has pushed him to champion business rights and resources by serving in leadership roles within our Chamber of Commerce - most notably in his present role as Chairman.

Corpus Christi has a long and rich history of small business and thriving entrepreneurial spirit, largely supported by our two local chambers: the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce and the Corpus Christi Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Both have held tremendous cultural and historical significance in shaping local commerce and advocating for business in the Coastal Bend. In 1916, the Corpus Christi Commercial Club was founded by local businessmen, and over time, evolved into the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce. This year, the establishment celebrates 100 years in serving our community and influencing the most key developments in local commerce, and it has played a significant role in the success of major economic centers such as the Port of Corpus Christi, the creation of the Harbor Bridge, CCAD, The Texas State Aquarium, and so much more. The Hispanic Chamber has 78 years of promoting a member-supported base for advocacy for local Hispanic businesses. Originally named the Corpus Christi Mexican-American Chamber of Commerce, they were largely started as a disenfranchised collective, yet have evolved into a generous support celebrating cultural heritage and providing resources for economic growth throughout our city. Throughout the years, there have been talks of a merger between the two, but as talk often goes, it never had a leader willing to spearhead the effort and fully explore the concept. The impetus to resume the conversation came last year when CC Chamber CEO Foster Edwards announced his retirement. With impending new leadership on the horizon, it seemed like the perfect time to make the transition to fully join the two Chambers. Knowing the time was ripe, Guerra led the charge in facilitating a merger to actualization. He kept the discussion on track and in constant motion. Even at times when it all seemed destined to crumble, he didn’t allow it. For members on both sides, the issue of multiple chambers has long been one of duplication and overlap. But this new joint venture will promote a true voice of unity within our sparkling city’s business community. In fact, Guerra predicts that this will create an uptake in new membership across the board. The tremendous potential for what true unity could create was all the more reason that Guerra persevered in seeing this through. Equal representation from both sides served in the capacity of implementing the intricacies of the merger. Professional Facilitator, Toby Futrell, was brought in to serve both Chambers in this process and represent the ten key components; the primary of which detailed this is to be a true merger, not an acquisition. This will become a new entity with a new name that will be unveiled later this year through a great celebration. Throughout the process an open dialogue with membership was maintained, which helped reinforce the sense of unity within. What is the significance of this merger? “I feel our community was hungry for this in a big way. This is a signal that our city has moved forward and is unified as one voice, not as a community that is split. Corpus Christi is a community that recognizes culture, appreciates diversity, but appreciates the individual for what they bring to the table in terms of business. We can now see a community that is unified in attracting new business to our community” says Guerra. “We recognize the historical context of where we come from, but moving forward, Corpus Christi will be viewed as a model of unity.”

38 The Bend

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“We recognize the historical context of where we come from, but moving forward, Corpus Christi will be viewed as a model of unity.”

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g Like a runny egg spreadin h c n u r B , te la p r u o y ss o r c a is making its way around the bend.

40 The Bend

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“We tried to put a little bit of a Texas spin on some items, but our most popular items and the staple of our brunch menu are our Eggs Benedict dishes,” - Richard Lomax

expanding it to Saturdays as well. It really has been popular with people letting out of church downtown on Sundays. It’s become a tradition for many to enjoy Water Street’s Texas Gulf Coast spin on the New Orleans inspired dishes. “One very popular item for us is our blueberry muffins that we make every Sunday,” says Lomax. Today, brunch is booming in the Coastal Bend. The walls that once divided breakfast and lunch are crumbling faster than a biscotti. Emerging from the dust is a plethora of brunch items available nearly any day of the week. Since the arrival of Hester’s and The Post to the Lamar Park shopping center, nearby residents can brunch all weekend long. At 4am on Sunday morning, an hour or so after the doors are locked on Saturday night, Chef Robert Flores of The Post at Lamar Park begins the process of making everything from scratch for their Sunday brunch. “We are totally flipping the kitchen. We are going from a six-day menu, to a one day, five-hour menu. And that’s it,” said Flores. “When we were developing the concept for The Post, it was never an option to not do brunch,” says owner Susan Gonzales. “Brunch is not just a meal, it’s an idea and a mindset. It’s a destination for friends and a family gathering. Brunch defines people’s Sundays. It’s a time to gather and both end the week and begin the week on the right foot. With good

S

Sunday brunch is exploding in cities across America. Brunch is much more than a meal. For many, it’s a destination. A gathering that is as much about community as it is about cuisine. The week moves by so fast, there is hardly time for breakfast, let alone quality time with friends and loved ones. We need time to recharge and reconnect. It’s possible that brunch has taken on a new meaning today. But no matter your take on that vague middle ground between breakfast and lunch, you can’t bash brunch until you try it for yourself. Thankfully, more and more local restaurants are cooking up some Saturday and Sunday brunches that are delicious and unique to the Coastal Bend. Brad Lomax, owner of Water Street Oyster Bar, is one of the original pioneers of brunch in the Coastal Bend. In 1983, when Lomax first opened the doors to his new seafood restaurant, he wanted to replicate the Gulf Coast seafood feel of New Orleans. Sunday brunch is a stable of the New Orleans dining scene. By the late 1980s, Water Street Oyster Bar was running a regular brunch downtown. Brunch was new to Corpus Christi at the time and not as popular as it is today. Some of the items on that first menu didn’t make the cut, such as a blackened red fish and egg dish, and another classic New Orleans dish called the Hang Town Fry – a combination of fried oysters and eggs. “We tried to put a little bit of Texas spin on some items, but our most popular items and the staple of our brunch menu are our Eggs Benedict dishes,” said Richard Lomax, Director of Operations at Water Street Restaurants. “Some are just old fashioned, some mix in blue crab or fish.” They have traditionally only offered Sunday brunch but are considering

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42 The Bend

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food, Bloody Mary’s and Mimosas.” On some Sundays, the line outside The Post is already wrapped around the building before the doors even open. According to Gonzales, brunch is not a time for restaurant staff to take it easy. “It takes 110% from the whole staff. Brunch has its own rhythm, different from any other day of the week,” said Gonzales. Corpus Christi isn’t the only place brunch is making its mark. Karey Butterworth, owner and chef of Glow Restaurant in Rockport, puts as much effort (if not more) into her Sunday brunch menu. People gather together to celebrate and rekindle bonds with friends and family. “The food we serve for brunch is in the Glow tradition of fresh and local, using Gulf Coast seafood and honoring some of the local traditions, naming dishes after historic figures or streets in Rockport and Fulton,” said Butterworth. The recent porch addition offers guests the perfect place to sip on the King Ranch bubbly, which is Glow’s take on the traditional mimosa with lavender syrup. Most of the time, people are celebrating special occasions and taking pictures by the water. “People are celebrating life, and you want food that will live up to those moments and meet customer’s expectations,” says Butterworth. Food brings family, friends, and the community together. But there’s something different about a solid Sunday brunch. It’s unrushed, it’s a time to reflect on the week, look forward to the week to come. It’s laughing with your loved ones over a perfectly poached egg and bubbling mimosa. On April 24, The Bend is hosting Brunch on the Bay, an event that will bring together six of the top restaurants to serve the ultimate brunch experience. This family-oriented event will show off the quality and uniqueness that our dining scene has to offer. Sample some of the best dishes around right along the Corpus Christi Bay. Music, drinks, competitions, and activities will delight the entire family with fun times and full tummies

Event Details:

When: April 24, 2016 11-2 pm Where: The Art Center of Corpus Christi Attendance: 250 Admission: See thebendmag.com to purchase your ticket 44 The Bend

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e v i l e w

e v o l wehere w

s d o o h r o b h g i e N Our Favorite rrent Photos: Rachel Du By: Dayna Worchell

their reasons for loving y an m ve ha s nt side like being on Coastal Bend re the water say it’s on e liv ho w e os Th they work, neighborhoods. oximity to where pr e th e lik e m unding nd. So and nature surro es vacation year-rou tre e th of ty live the beau s love where they nt and others enjoy de si re e es th est reason there a long them. But the bigg ther they’ve lived he W . ity un m m riched is the sense of co , their lives are en le hi w t or sh or le whi hips. by these relations

46 The Bend

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rockport

Key Allegro Living in Key Allegro has been a family tradition for Dave Foster for most of his life. It started back in 1974 when he came to the Rockport community during the summer with his parents as a youth, and has continued into his adult life, with his own wife and daughter. Foster, who is the incoming president of the homeowner’s association there, lives in Dallas most of the year, but the house in Key Allegro serves as a second home for him and his family. “I love the relaxed atmosphere and we have some amazing friends,” said Foster, who commutes to the area from Dallas during the summer. Carl C. Krueger Jr. purchased the island in 1962, along with some investors, for $65,000, according to the Key Allegro Canal and Property Owners website. The popular development grew steadily, and what started as a resort area with weekend homes grew into an affluent community. Extensive construction continued throughout the 1970s, and by the mid-1980s, Key Allegro reported an estimated population of 600. Foster said his parents helped build the area in the 1960s, and there are not many lots left on which to build.

Testimonial: “Each home is unique. It’s not a cookie-cutter approach. All of the homes are on Aransas Bay, which has the best fishing on the Texas Coast. There is also a full-service marina centrally located on the island. It’s a very unique island. There’s nothing else like it in Texas.” -Dave Foster

o key allegr • Homes with beautiful views on the water • Friendly neighbors • Excellent fishing


the island

Point Tesoro In 1965, a master-planned, water-oriented recreational community began development on North Padre Island, according to the Padre Isles Property Owners Association. Back then, 8,950 commercial and residential sites were planned. Today, there are over 5,400 lots completed, with 3,080 single-family lots and 2,000 plus multi-family units. Subdivisions included in property owners association include Point Tesoro with Douden Park. Stan Hulse, Vice President of the Padre Isles Property Owners Association, said there are 20 subdivisions included in all. “We are the largest property owner association in Texas with 32 linear miles in waterfront,” he said. Hulse, who lives in the Point Tesoro subdivision, said he loves the proximity to the water. “I always have the feeling that my home is truly a sanctuary. When I cross the bridge, I have that feeling that I am going away on vacation,” he said, referring to the bridge over the Intracoastal Waterway. He and his family enjoy the camaraderie there among the neighbors, and he said it’s hard to tell where one subdivision ends and the next one begins. “There is a mixture of people. Some are professionals,

48 The Bend

some are blue collar workers, and some are first-time homebuyers,” Hulse said, adding that there are plenty of retirees on the Island. The property owners association watches out for the homeowners without being too punitive, Hulse said. Another homeowner, J.R. Miller, lives near Douden Park on the Island, and said he and his family have lived in six different subdivisions there. One special amenity of Douden Park is its community garden, started in 2011. It was the first community garden in Corpus Christi using park land. Residents come together to garden on their own reserved 10-by-15-foot plot. The garden brings the community members together and offers a beautiful and fruitful place to walk, chat, and grow. Hulse said the whole island is enjoying a building boom, and that empty lots throughout are expected to be developed. “Last year, about 60 home permits were issued each month,” Hulse said.

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Testimonial: “I’ve enjoyed the other Island locations we have lived in, but we find our current home the most enjoyable. It seems like its own little slice of heaven … there’s a more laid back sense here.” - JR Miller

point tesoro • Close to the water • Relaxed atmosphere • Year-round feeling of being on vacation

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Lamar Park The neighborhood was first created and subdivided in 1947 by the late Corpus Christi architect Frank T. Peerman and W.R. Reid, according to newspaper reports. Almost 70 years later, it endures as a well-kept subdivision full of three-and four-bedroom homes with gently curving streets and wide canopies of trees. In fact, many of the adults who grew up there as children in the 1950s and 1960s have returned there as adults to live and raise their own families, said Mary Crain, who has lived in her home on Dolphin Place since 1992. The house, built in 1954, was a good location for her three children, who attended the nearby St. Patrick School, and for her husband, who worked downtown, she said. She and her husband raised their children there and still love the neighborhood. “Now that the kids are gone, the house is still a

good size for the two of us,” she said. She says Lamar Park has a close community feel and that she knows most of her neighbors. The neighborhood is roughly bordered by Alameda, Santa Fe, Doddridge, and Carmel Parkway, and it is a convenient location for someone who works downtown. Lamar Park, a park owned by the city, is a great place for young children to play, she said. And the 1950s-era shopping center of the same name has been renovated with plenty of upscale shops. Santa Fe Swimming Club, a private club which opened in 1958, has many members from other neighborhoods, but a large number of Lamar Park residents belong. The neighborhood has become a mixture of old and new.

Testimonial: “And there are a lot of trees, and the homes are on big lots. I’m from Center, in East Texas, and I missed my trees. The homes have really held their value, and now, younger people with small children are coming in. There has been some new development around and some fun and different retail stores.” – Mary Crain

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lamar park • Proximity to downtown and schools • Mature trees • Close to parks and swimming pools

50 The Bend

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southside

the lakes • Man-made lakes for kayaking and paddle boating • Plenty of walking trails • Well-kept and spacious homes

The Lakes Testimonial: “I like being close to the water. We carry our kayaks across and my dogs like to swim there. There are lots of bike paths, and people feel safe walking, running and jogging on Yorktown. I love nature and catching glimpses of the occasional coyote or javelina that comes around the Oso Parkway area, around the corner from my home.” – Scott Lisk

52 The Bend

The first homes in The Lakes subdivision, on Corpus Christi’s southside, were built in the 1980s, said Mikki Spruce, who has managed both homeowners’ associations there for 16 years. There are over 600 homes in the community, which is roughly bounded by the southern parts of Everhart and Weber Roads, and a portion of Yorktown Boulevard to the south. Many of the homes are built on a series of man-made lakes within the subdivision, where residents can enjoy kayaking and paddle boating if they wish. And there are walking paths and green space that surround the lakes, along with a pool and tennis courts for residents. “What most people really like about The Lakes is that it is a restricted covenant community,” she said. That means homeowners must keep their property maintained, and an architectural committee must approve any changes to the appearance of the homes, Spruce explained. “In

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this way, we are able to maintain property values better,” she added. Scott Lisk is the Vice President of one homeowner’s association for The Lakes, and he and his family have lived on Grand Lake Drive for 10 years. His home was built in 1986, he said. He lives across the street from one of the lakes and uses it often for kayaking. Lisk also says that homeowners take good care of their property and rarely have to be asked to do so. What the future holds for the area is anyone’s guess. Weber Road has now been widened into a four-lane road, extending south, past Yorktown Boulevard. Texas Department of Transportation Spokesman Rickey Dailey said the extension of the Crosstown Expressway, which will intersect with Weber Road, will be complete in about two and a half years.


54 The Bend

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The Dunes It’s called “The Dunes” by the locals in Portland, but the official name for the community is the East Cliff neighborhood. The people who live there call it a close community and a fun place to live. The East Cliff neighborhood is bordered by Highway 181, Sunset Lake, Corpus Christi Bay and San Saba Drive with East Cliff Elementary within easy walking distance for kids and parents alike. Mary Ann Dorminy, who taught at the school from 1972 to 1992, has lived there on Sabine Drive since 1971. She and her husband, Jerry, moved in shortly after Hurricane Celia hit the area in 1970, and haven’t looked back since. Although Portland was established in 1890, the East Cliff neighborhood formed in the 1950s and 1960s, according to newspaper reports.

Dorminy raised four children there with her husband. She lives close enough to East Cliff Elementary School, where she taught third and fifth grade social studies, to have walked. The community has grown a great deal since she moved there, she said. The city of about 15,000 people has indeed enjoyed a building and economic boom during the last few years, with about a dozen industrial plants around the Port of Corpus Christi set to be complete within the next three years. About half of those are set to be functional in the next few years. And Portland recently annexed about 1,826 acres north of the city, possibly for more housing.

Testimonial: “When our children were young, they would meet their friends at the dunes to climb, play, and go mud-sliding when it rained. Families are still drawn to this beautiful park. Our city has grown in recent years, but it’s nice to see that some things never change.”

portland

- Mary Ann Dorminy

Tthe dunes • • •

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Easy access to the water and beach Neighborhood camaraderie Close to parks and fishing

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Coastal Bend Map Key Use the following key to find a realtor that specializes in your favorite community or neighborhood!

Corpus Christi

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Padre Island

Port Aransas

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Rockport

Portland


Special Promotion

Real Estate

Agent Guide

Looking for the perfect Real Estate Agent to help you sell or buy a home? Let us introduce you to some of the top agents around the Coastal Bend. Discover what drives them and hear about their unique specializations. Learn what they love most about their neighborhoods and communities and why they are the best agent for you.

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Special Promotion

JACQUELINE CALLAHAN REALTOR, ACCREDITED BUYER’S REPRESENTATIVE When it comes to Real Estate in Corpus Christi, Jaqueline Callahan is more than a pretty sign. As a former competitive beach volleyball player with her degree in psychology, Jacqueline offers the perfect combination of passion and professionalism. Understanding here buyers needs and building a relationship with them is a major part of her philosophy. She still believes in the hands on approach, maintaining personal interaction with every client and helping them feel comfortable while maintaining a prompt and professional demeanor. Before the Navy transferred her husband to Corpus Christi in 2009, Jacqueline was licensed as a realtor in 2001 while stationed in Hawaii. Her friends, Mike & Donna Stott, invited her to work for them as a “buyer’s agent” at their brokerage, “The Stott Team”. Mike and Donna, as well as Mike’s parents, George & Mary Lou Stott were the brokers. For two years, Jacqueline was extensively trained and mentored to work with buyers during weekly coaching sessions with the brokers. Jacqueline went on to acquire her brokers license in 2005. She spent three years getting to know the Corpus Christi area as a home buyer before activating her license. Within 18 months of activating her license in Corpus Christi, Jaqueline was ranked in the top 5% of all realtors in sales volume. Being honest and giving her very best for each client has raked her among the best agents in Corpus Christi in a short period of time. She enjoys people and helping them sell or buy property. It is important that a realtor is interested in their client’s best interest above their own. Jaqueline is highly competitive and knows all the scripts, but it is ultimately her client’s satisfaction that she seeks. Beyond her passion for serving clients, she loves her new permanent home in Corpus Christi. She has a strong faith in God and is a member of Corpus Christi Christian Fellowship. Jaqueline has a heart for adoption and is a proud mother of four.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT CORPUS CHRISTI? So many improvements are happening in Corpus Christi, like new shopping centers, updated parks, and a more family friendly Bayfront. Beach volleyball is my favorite outdoor activity, but also enjoy the Artwork, Downtown Farmers market and food trucks.  As a family we like going to the beach, movies, or Schlitterbahn where the kids have a safe environment to play and swim. (361) 947-8003 | JC@JCORPUSCHRISTIRE.COM

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Special Promotion

BEN LISKA + BRENDA MARSHALL WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND? Brenda Marshall combines over 30 years in the legal field with over a decade of real estate & hundreds of different types of properties sold, being a Multi-Million Dollar Producer since 2006. Ben Liska spent 38 years founding, marketing & developing Benjamin’s, putting together contracts/leases with some of the largest retail & lifestyle developers in the world.

WHY DO YOU LIKE REAL ESTATE? Town or country, we work with the newest and oldest of what God and man have created. We’re building long-term relationships on the path to “dreams fulfilled”, selling residential, commercial, farm & ranch properties.

KAREN FREGIA & CORAL DWORACZYK WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE? Karen: My background is

in Commercial Construction, so I have a solid understanding of what it takes to achieve quality and satisfaction. My clients find that I am responsible, energetic, knowledgeable, and above all else, dependable.

WHY DO YOU LOVE REAL ESTATE? Coral: I love to be

able to use my skills and talents to serve others and to help people find a home that they can be proud of! I also work with a group of investors that appreciate my experience and honesty, and I find it very rewarding when their projects are successful.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT THE COASTAL BEND? Coral: I love that we have such a melting pot of cultures and individuals in our community. And I am really excited about all the new community-driven events that are developing around town!

BEN LISKA | (361) 813-3130 | BLISKA.REALTOR@GMAIL.COM BRENDA MARSHALL | (361) 765-5286 | BRENDAJMARSHALL@GMAIL.COM 4518 EVERHART RD., SUITE B, CORPUS CHRISTI

KAREN: 361.215.0814 | KARENFREGIA@BRADFIELDPROPERTIES.COM CORAL: 979.229.2836 | CORALD@BRADFIELDPROPERTIES.COM

Corpus Christi

KERN EGGER AND TEAM

Team Work from the Team that Works WHY DO YOU LOVE REAL ESTATE? It is my passion, I feel that I am in the blessing business. A home purchase, or a sale, is the most expensive investment anyone may perhaps make. I love helping people buy or sell homes, especially when their circumstances are necessary. My clients personal stories inspire me to work harder and is both challenging and rewarding. Once the home has sold or the client has found just the right home to purchase I know I have accomplished my clients goals.

ZOE GOTTLICH #1 Top Producer for 7 Consecutive Years (2009-2015)

WHAT’S YOUR BACKGROUND?

I hold a BS degree in Economics and am a member of the International President’s Circle with Coldwell Banker, which is the top 6% of all agents worldwide. My husband Mark and I are third generation Corpus Christians and live in my childhood home, which my parents built in 1947. We have two children in their mid-20’s, Grier and Cecile.

WHAT IS THE KEY TO YOUR SUCCESS?

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE? I would have to say it is my understanding of finance and marketing with over 30 years of experience. However, it is the personal touch that counts the most when dealing with my clients. It is a delicate balance between becoming too involved in the transaction and helping to facilitate the sale from contract to closing. It is important to remain calm and be assertive when necessary. The key is to get along with all parties but not to take part in the decision process. I am always up for the challenge and that is what makes me unique! KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY | 361.947.5376 | 4518 EVERHART, SUITE 101 KERN@KERNEGGER.COM | WWW.KERNEGGER.COM

The greatest compliment I can receive is referral business from previous clients. The gratitude from buyers and sellers speaks volumes to the level of service I provide for them. Market knowledge, skilled negotiation, problem solving, creative marketing, and listening to client needs combined with a trustworthy, honest, and enthusiastic attitude are the key ingredients to my ongoing success. 361.813.9460 | GOTZOE.COM ZOE.GOTTLICH@COLDWELLBANKER.COM

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Special Promotion

BETHENY BELL WHY DO YOU LOVE REAL ESTATE?

Real estate is my passion, and I feel like I am in the blessing business. A home purchase or sale is one of the most expensive investments anyone can make. I love helping people in and out of homes, especially when there is the need to sell or buy. Personal stories make my work challenging and effective once the desired results are attained.

We are your specialists for the Corpus Christi, Padre Island and Coastal Bend Real Estate Marketplace. 361.949.0101 | 14717 S. PADRE ISLAND DRIVE, CORPUS

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE?

My understanding of finances and marketing makes me unique, however, it is the personal touch that counts the most. There’s a delicate balance between becoming too personally involved in the transaction and helping to facilitate the transaction. It’s important to remain calm but be assertive. The key is to help all parties feel they are making the right decision.

CHRISTI, TEXAS 78418 | COASTLINE-PROPERTIES.COM

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 361.658.1092 | BBELL@STX.RR.COM

CHERI SPERLING WHY DO YOU LOVE REAL ESTATE?

For twenty years, Coastline Properties has welcomed buyers and sellers into the homey and neighborly family that CEO/President, Owner Cheri Sperling has fostered. Geographically and economically, a lot has changed over the past two decades, but Coastline Properties has a commitment to service that has always been the top priority. All members of the team will go above and beyond to make each and every client as comfortable and as informed as possible. Cheri has become Padre Island’s “Go To” agent and is a consistent leader with a reputation for tenaciously protecting her clients’ interests. Savvy negotiations and marketing strategies join with her uncompromising integrity to her service. For a smooth experience from start to finish, Coastline Properties will be your power source, your advocate, your eyes and your ears. “I’m not number one, YOU are!”

MARY SCRUTON WHY DO CLIENTS WORK WITH YOU?

I have lived in the Corpus Christi/Flour Bluff area most of my life. This has been a valuable asset in my real estate career. I am responsive to my clients’ needs and take a personal interest in their wants. My goal is to make every real estate transaction smooth and easy for my clients who all soon become my friends!

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE?

I bring an assuring calm to the complete process. I truly love this area and take great pride in my knowledge of the Sparkling City by the Sea

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 361.949.0101 |

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 361.658.8182 |

SPERLING@COASTLINE-PROPERTIES.COM

MARYSCRUTON@YMAIL.COM

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Special Promotion

MICHAEL LAMBERT

STACEY OLIVER

WHAT DRIVES YOU?

WHY DO CLIENTS WORK WITH YOU?

WHY THE COASTAL BEND?

WHAT MOTIVATES YOU?

I’m passionate for my professional work. I have a strong sense of purpose about what I do and am very mindful of it. I strive to serve my clients needs and define thier concerns. Area research and market statistics studies are my enjoyment vices. I truly believe in working on what you enjoy.

I’ve been vacationing with family in the Coastal Bend area since the mid80s. With so many great memories, the allure of the coastal lifestyle began to take a hold, and I made the decision to bite the lure. I am here to also help you find your piece of paradise. Whether your dream is to walk out your door into green foliage of tropical fruit in your backyard or to look out on direct water access, together we will make that dream a reality.

I believe it’s my outstanding work ethic, my constant high-spirited nature, and the drive and passion for life I have to make dreams come true. I work hard to be relatable, reachable, and encouraging. That’s the way I live and work.

My main motivation is being the best I can possibly be. My children and husband give me courage and strength, and my work gives me enjoyment and dedication to helping other families find their happy place. I give the utmost respect and honor to all of my clients, and all persons involved in the transaction.

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 361.510.4635 |

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 325.423.1324 |

NPADREBREAL@GMAIL.COM

STACEY@COASTLINE-PROPERTIES.COM

TARA GALLASPY

WHITNEY NOBLE

WHY DO YOU LOVE REAL ESTATE?

WHY DO CLIENTS WORK WITH YOU?

WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND?

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE?

I love working with people, getting to know them and helping them find the perfect home for their needs and wants. I take pride in my follow through, true confidentiality, and ability to make my clients feel at ease. My favorite part is showing property!

I was born and raised in the Hill Country. After marrying my Coast Guard husband, we always lived by the beach in Florida or Texas. We moved to the Island 7.5 years ago, and I have loved it most of all! I like to stay active in my community and thrive off my social connections. The island life is definitely for me!

I listen with purpose to all client needs. I have high energy, a fervent work ethic, problem solving prowess, and unwavering client loyalty. My clients find they can depend on me for knowledge of the purchase process. Complete confidentiality and professional integrity always come first.

I have my Bachelors in Journalism, which has trained me to be detail oriented and have the unmatched communication skills necessary for successful negotiations and transactions. Impeccable area familiarity of Padre Island, where I live and work, allows me to sell with truthful expertise.

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 361.652.1950 |

COASTLINE PROPERTIES | 847.830.2087 |

TARAGALLASPY@GMAIL.COM

COMECOASTAWHILE@GMAIL.COM

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Special Promotion

CARLA RINCHE

ROBIN MARTIN

WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND?

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE?

I moved to Rockport from San Antonio in 1961, when I was six years old, with my parents and younger sister. My father, Carl C. Krueger, was in the early stages of developing Key Allegro Island Estates on what was then known as Frandolig Island.

I am the local affiliate for the Homes for Heroes program in the Coastal Bend. I am currently the only agent providing this service in the region.

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE? I joined my father’s Key Allegro Real Estate Co. 25 years ago, but my knowledge of Rockport’s history and my strong desire to share his vision makes me unique among Rockport Realtors. KEY ALLEGRO REAL ESTATE | 361.463.9285 | CRINCHE@KEYALLEGRO.COM | KEYALLEGRO.COM

REBECCA BAGBY

WHAT MAKES YOU STAND OUT? I work with buyers and sellers, offering exceptional professional service and I am consistently a top producer. KEY ALLEGRO REAL ESTATE | 361.463.1079 | ROBIN@KEYALLEGRO.COM | KEYALLEGRO.COM

SUSIE SAWYER

WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE?

WHY DO CLIENTS WORK WITH YOU?

I have my Resort and Second Home certification from the National Association of Realtors. I was Key Allegro Development and Sales rental department manager for 10 years and so understand the condo and second home market very well.  Also, I was recruited by Carl Krueger (developer of Key Allegro Isle and owner of Key Allegro Development and Sales) to be the president of his company until its sale in 2005.  That’s given me a unique perspective of our area and a glimpse into the history of the real estate development in the area.  As a former consumer reporter, I have an empathy with people making life-defining decisions regarding where they’re going to live. 

Clients choose to work with me because they immediately see my professionalism and high energy. With me as their Realtor, my clients experience quick responsiveness and proactive processes resulting in quick, positive, seamless results.

KEY ALLEGRO REAL ESTATE | (361.463.9026 | REBECCA@KEYALLEGRO.COM | KEYALLEGRO.COM

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WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND? My background is sales management. This enables me to get my clients the results they expect when selling their home, getting them the most money in the shortest amount of time.

KEY ALLEGRO REAL ESTATE | 361.463.9329 | DROPURANCHOR@GMAIL.COM | KEYALLEGRO.COM


Special Promotion

WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND?

I am a graduate of Texas Tech University. In addition to being a real estate agent, I have a background in the oil & gas industry as a Certified Professional Landman. That experience has helped me build great relationships with area farmers and ranchers over the years. I have a vast knowledge of farm & ranch real estate, including the oil and gas aspect.

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE THINGS TO DO?

I love to hunt, fish and simply enjoy the outdoors. Most of all, I enjoy spending time with my family and nurturing my two sons’ love for the outdoors.

JERRY D. MOREN

let’s do

BUSBEE RANCH SALES | 361.290.0970 | 3765 S. ALAMEDA, SUITE 300 JERRYDMOREN@GMAIL.COM | WWW.BUSBEERANCHES.COM

At NavyArmy, our home loan experts take the fear out of the loan process. If you're looking to buy, build or remodel, it's easier at NavyArmy... because we think a loan is better together.

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Special Promotion

ASK AMY & JEFF WILLIS Q: What is the current state of Real Estate in the Coastal Bend? A:The real estate market is driven in part by industry. As

companies invest in our local economy the health of the real estate market improves. Conversely when companies relocate out of an area it has a negative impact on the market. In 2009 Whataburger announced its plans to move their corporate offices to San Antonio. The net effect for Corpus Christi was a large number of homes all hitting the market simultaneously. This caused home prices to stall until balance was regained between supply and demand. Our city has been blessed by the Eagle Ford Shale and all of the companies that support production, transport and refining of oil and gas. We are continuing to see significant investments from industry that are fueling our local economy. Developers and builders have responded to this growth by opening new subdivisions and speculatory building. The most significant hurdle for construction today is not finding buyers its finding laborers to complete the work. New construction pricing has a direct effect on the value of existing homes. As the cost of new construction increases, the value of existing homes increase. As demand for new construction decreases and builders are forced to reduce their

prices to move inventory this also causes the prices of preowned homes to decrease. There is an ebb and flow. For the past several years we have continued to see a shortage in inventory in all price ranges. In 2015, we began to see an increase in inventory for homes in the luxury market; however, we are continuing to see a shortage in inventory in the below $250,000 range. The greatest shortage is in the $175,000 range. Homes in this price range are going under contract many times within a week of listing. While we are still seeing strong sales in the luxury market, the hottest market is currently in the below $200,000 range. As new industry further develops, more executives will start moving in, creating a higher demand for homes in the $250,000 - $500,000 range. There will be a good flow of buyers and the new demand will again cause a shortage in the market.

ABOUT AMY & JEFF Amy and Jeff are both long time Corpus Christi residents. Amy received her undergraduate degree from Texas A&M Corpus Christi and a master’s degree from Sam Houston State University. Amy’s clients find that her experience, fun loving personality and positive attitude are contagious and the perfect match for her Real Estate career. Jeff graduated from a local high school and attended college locally. He has a background in construction and

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remodeling, which began when he and Amy built a custom home together in 1996. The experience led to a business of flipping dilapidated properties for a profit. Clients greatly benefit from Jeff’s business experience and his knowledge of home construction. The couples combined experiences led them to their real estate partnership, a true team effort that provides their clients with two realtors and one-of-akind results.

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Amy Willis and Associates 7602 S Staples Corpus Christi Texas 78413 Office     361-993-7653 Toll Free 877-515-0009 Cell        361-947-9635 Fax        361-993-9633


ᰠ ㌀㘀㄀ⴀ㠀㔀㐀ⴀ㘀㔀㔀㄀ 眀眀眀⸀愀氀戀愀椀渀猀甀爀愀渀挀攀⸀挀漀洀

䌀愀爀氀 䠀攀氀氀甀洀猀

吀䄀匀䄀䐀伀刀 䄀倀倀刀䄀䤀匀䄀䰀匀

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Located in Portland’s Exclusive Northshore Community...

倀愀洀 䴀漀爀椀渀   ⼀⼀  ㌀㘀㄀ⴀ㠀 㠀ⴀ㜀㐀    ⼀⼀  䈀甀搀最攀琀䈀氀椀渀搀猀⸀挀漀洀

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Health APRIL 2016

Watercress ranks as the No. 1 most nutritious vegetable. It has a nutrient density score of 100! It’s also peppery and tasty.

FITNESS 70 BE WELL 73 HEALTH SPOTLIGHTS 77

What’s Inside Green smoothies provide a rich source of minerals thanks to the dark, leafy greens. Most of the bone-building nutrients are plentiful in these ingredients such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. Why eat your veggies when you could drink them!

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Health | Fitness

Fresh meets Fitness By: Sadique Dabale Photos: Renée C. Gage

Train with the professionals, and get a true fighter workout! Passion and commitment meet on 6330 Saratoga Blvd as Fresh Gym and Full Contact Fight Academy are on a joint mission to teach Corpus Christi Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) and the art of healthful eating. The grit and demanding nature of MMA, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Self Defense, and Kickboxing is eased by the rejuvenating essence of, next door, Fresh Gyms “Healthy Alternative” selections of soups, salads, sandwiches and smoothies. Jeff IIsengs, a career petroleum engineer who “always had an eye for business and finding new avenues to invest,” owns both businesses. IIsengs has partnered with Hector “H-Train” Munoz to bring Fresh Gym and Full Contact Fight Academy to life. Hector, a second degree black belt, is also the manager and coach 68 The Bend

of the Academy. Housed under the same roof there is a stark, but deliberate, dichotomy between both businesses. “We operate as two separate businesses” which is understandable, as no one is obligated to engage in any of the goods from either organization. Upon entering Fresh Gym, you are welcomed by bright and warm colors of orange, skyblue, yellow, and lime green that are cheerful and smiley. Here, you are greeted by an ever so gracious host, Ashlee Munoz. There is a plethora of healthful choices as Ashlee offers up nutritious facts on all the ingredients that make up each meal. From the aesthetics of the store to its all healthful, succulent, and delicate ingredients that go into each meal and drink, every aspect was meticulously thought out and chosen. It’s a true representation of what a “Healthy Alternative” looks like. Next door is Full Contact Fight Academy. Sitting on top of the entrance is a logo of a pit bull with a straight and fierce gaze as if to suggest the seriousness of the task that one is about to engage in. Inspirational bible verses adorn the grey and red walls. “We try

[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

to teach our students respect.” Hector consistently commits to the practice of those ideologies of respect and humility that he reveres greatly. He has won several titles, however, one would not know this as no pictures nor title belts are flashing the walls. “We want to treat everyone equal and stay humble,” Hector explains. He coaches Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, who is a professional MMA fighter. “As a fighter, I always wanted to get an edge so I trained hard but I also ate clean,” Hector says. These principles have shaped both businesses. It is a family affair as both businesses are managed by Ashlee (Fresh Gym) and Hector Munoz (Full Contact Fight Academy). The family aspect is embedded into the fabric of both. “We want this to be a place where families can come hangout and enjoy the company of each other. We train kids from 4 years old to adults. The fight/practice arenas are designed with parents in mind. “We designed the seating section for parents who want to watch their children train.” So, fight right, and eat clean!


Annual Graduation Sales Event! Shop it. Stamp it. Show it off. Same Day.

Proud to be the only store in South Texas with a Hot Stamp Machine!

Special Pricing on Select Items + Free Monogramming

March 25th- April 25th

705 Highway 35 N. Rockport, TX | 361.790.8340 Facebook.com/TheBayWindowRockport Instagram.com/BayWindow_

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Health | Be Well

A Vision: A Life Saved April is National Donate Life Month. By: Whitney Noble Portrait by: August McGrath

Connected by a kidney, Belinda Damerow and Buddy Stevens followed their guide. One spiritual vision was literally lifesaving.

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BRING YOUR LIVING ROOM

OUTDOORS! More Outdoor Living Options with Your New Home CONTACT US TODAY! Angela Long angela@hoganhomestexas.com 361-443-0440

find yours.

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E

nergy and positivity form a shield around Belinda Damerow. Her spirit lights up the room, her laugh is infectious and she lives life to its fullest. Little could she have imagined that her biggest calling would be right around the corner with little advanced notice to her left kidney. Belinda Damerow was a member of Bay Area Fellowship Church in 2013. She received an email through the church one afternoon in March of that year that a Pastor there, Buddy Stevens, needed a kidney donor. Damerow read the email, said a prayer, and continued on with her busy day-to-day life. Later the next month, on Easter Sunday, Damerow had a vision that changed her life forever. She saw Jesus, there on her left side, in full body. He took her left hand in his, and pressed down firmly in her palm. He spoke to her. “Belinda, I need you to help me help these people. Do not be afraid for I am with you. There is no greater gift.” Still in the dream, she was suddenly with Suzie, Buddy’s wife, at the church. Then, all three of them,

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exited the church, bound for San Antonio. As suddenly as the vision began, it was over. Damerow tried to tell herself it was just a dream, that parts of it didn’t make sense. But she knew she had strongly felt His touch, heard His voice; this was different; this was real. Jesus told her to help “these” people, and she knew exactly who He spoke of. Divinely told, she was Buddy’s donor. On a Tuesday night not soon after, she introduced herself to him and said she would be giving him a kidney. This was a peculiar statement, as the odds of Damerow being a match were highly unlikely. However, Damerow insisted. As it turns out, Buddy’s case was at Methodist Transplant Hospital in San Antonio. Damerow understood now why, in her dream, they were heading to San Antonio. After many tests and weeks of waiting, her test results came back. Not only was she in fantastic health for her age, but she was indeed a 100% perfect donor match. The odds of that happening to complete strangers is inconceivable. It was nearly impossible to believe this unlike-

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FACTS: • To date, more than 123,000 people in the U.S. are waiting for an organ. • One person is added to the national waiting list every 12 minutes. • 50 lives can be saved by one donor. • More than 6,000 transplants from living donors are performed each year. • There is no cost to the donor’s family or estate for organ and tissue donation. • An open-casket funeral is possible for organ and tissue donors. • They never actually remove a nonfunctional kidney, so many kidney recipients can have over 3 kidneys in them!


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2016 READER’S CHOICE POLL:

ly scenario, but Damerow wasn’t surprised by the results. Rather, she was relieved to have the confirmation she already knew. If the message and reality behind the vision weren’t now validating enough, Damerow was educated that donors only give their left kidneys, the right one doesn’t have a long enough stem. “I know now why Jesus pressed on my left hand.” “Over the course of time, I kept receiving confirmation after confirmation that God was fully directing this, and what Buddy and I were getting involved in, was nothing short of God choosing me for this job. It’s amazing how He had it all planned out and weaved it all together so perfectly and beautifully,” says Damerow. That’s not coincidence, that’s a miracle. “I just gave God my yes.”

WE WANT TO KNOW WHAT THE LOCAL’S OF THE COASTAL BEND LOVE! VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITES TODAY: Food Drink Nightlife Art & Culture Shopping Health Beauty Family & Amusement

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For Buddy Stevens, it all started with a torn rotator cuff. He was given an anti-inflammatory medicine that inadvertently shocked his kidneys. Over the course of 15 years, their filtration rate slowly declined and became too low - they were dangerously close to failing. Stevens either had to live on dialysis or receive a transplant. Stevens, refusing dialysis, was placed on a transplant list. But given his age (71 at the time) and the 6-8 year average wait time on the list, it might have seemed unlikely that Stevens would get the kidney he needed, but there was always faith and hope. And then, his fight and prayers were answered. “Pastor Buddy didn’t know who I was Easter Sunday 2013. I just knew he was a Pastor at our large church who was going to die if he didn’t find a kidney,” Damerow recalls. By the time they met, Stevens’ kidneys were functioning at only 9%. Two weeks before the surgery, they were at 1%. The surgery was performed on June 21, 2013, and the master plan was executed. Today, two and a half years later, Stevens’ transplant is functioning fantastically. So well that his heart functions have increased and cholesterol readings have decreased. Doctors have even lowered his dosage of anti-rejection medication, telling him this is simply unheard of. He’s working 10-12 hour days, 7 days a week, as the counseling pastor at Church Unlimited. “To this day I still visit with my surgeon once a year, and my kidney specialist every 4-6 months,” Stevens admits. Buddy, his wife Suzie, and Belinda and her husband Paul, keep in close touch. Their connection goes far beyond the church – it’s internal. Life is unexpected, magical, sometimes catastrophic, yet always divine. Stevens laughs, “It was all God’s plan, I was just a pawn on a gurney.”

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Organ Donor Dash In June of 2010, 12-year-old Katie Marsh of Corpus Christi passed away unexpectedly from a brain aneurysm. Only weeks earlier, Marsh had decided to become an organ donor. The tragic loss was overwhelming for her family and friends, but, many of her organs were donated, and lives were saved. A classmate of Marsh’s, Adriana Weddle, in 7th grade at the time, was in the midst of a project for Destination Imagination, which is a nonprofit organization that provides project-based educational programs to foster creativity and innovation in students. Upon the devastating death of her friend, Weddle, along with 3 other students, decided to do a race as their project. They were a group looking for a cause, and Marsh was their inspiration. So the group got to work on budgets, logos, advertising, everything. It was 100% children led. Tracy Weddle, Adriana’s dad, says that adults only pitched in when a checking account needed to be opened or a contract needed to be signed. This race for awareness for organ donation brought the team to show their project at the Texas State Tournament, as well as the Destination Imagination Global Finals. After 3 successful years, the race was cancelled due to the workload of the (then) High School students. But Weddle has discussed trying to take the race to college and compete at the collegiate level in Destination Imagination. Their special group, Organ Donor Dash (ODD) is a nonprofit Organization that spreads awareness about organ, tissue, and marrow donation through their yearly race. Six years ago, at the very first race, the girls were anxiously looking for advertisers and fundraisers. A woman by the name of Belinda Damerow approached the girls and handed them their first donation check, on behalf of Docs Seafood and Steaks Restaurant. Little did Damerow know, three years later she, herself, would be a living donor.


Distinctive Landscapes Start Here... Wondering where to start is where we love to start!

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We offer professional landscape design services to help you plan before you plant. Nothing is more important than the design itself. Call us today for a free consultation.

     

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Landscape Design & Installation, Stonework & Hardscapes, Outdoor Kitchens, Poolscapes & Patios, Sprinkler Systems & Drainage Systems, Nursery, Stone & Boulder Yard

(361) 438-8281

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Expert

stone m as on staf ons Call fo f ra free es timate

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| 160 U.S. Highway 181 West Taft, TX 78390 | www.mcnameelandscapesandnursery.com Revision #:

Scale:

Landscape Plan: 1

Landscape Design by: Donna Mazzola

Date: 3/24/2015

1" = 10'

Schade

McNamee Landscapes

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Special Promotion

Sports and Summer:

Staying Active & Healthy This Season As the weather heats up in the Coastal Bend, it’s a great time to get out and enjoy the many outdoor activities South Texas has to offer.

Whether it’s playing a round of golf on the links, or practicing your serve on the tennis court, there’s plenty to do this summer. But it’s good to keep in mind that the increase in activity can also mean an increased risk for joint pain and related injuries. Among those whom orthopedic surgeons see each year, sports-related injuries are most common, with shoulders, hands and joints being the most frequently operated on, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. If you think you might have an injury, it’s time to see a doctor if you experience chronic or intense pain, unusual swelling or numbness, said Dr. Stephanie Baker, an Orthopedic Surgeon at CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi-Shoreline.

“We have orthopedic surgeons on call 24/7 and a great team of occupational and physical therapists that can help get you back to feeling better,” Dr. Baker said. If it’s just a minor injury, simple steps like applying an ice-pack, or elevating the injured limb and adding compression may ease the pain and swelling. The best course of action is to remember to ease back into your favorite sport and know your limitations, Dr. Baker added.

your body’s risk for repeat injuries. Exercising at least 30 minutes a day can reduce the risk of bone and joint injury significantly. There are over 206 bones in the human body, each with a unique purpose. If you think one might be a little out place after a day spent outside, don’t hesitate to seek the help of a professional. Helping patients get back to their normal activities is why Orthopedic Surgeons do what they do, said Dr. William Tucker, an Orthopedic Surgeon at CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi-Shoreline. “I really enjoy orthopedic surgery and taking care of my patients,” Dr. Tucker said. “It’s fun to see people get better and become more mobile and more active.” For more information about Orthopedic Services at CHRISTUS Spohn, visit: christusspohn.org/ortho-page

Don’t forget to take time for a good stretch before any activity to make sure your joints are limber and warmed up. “Reducing your risk for many of these injuries may be as simple as stretching before you begin your workout and resting when you need to,” Baker said. And the most you exercise, the more you lower

CHRISTUS Spohn Health System is the region’s largest charity care provider and not-for-profit health care system consisting of six hospital campuses - CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi (Shoreline, Memorial and South), CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Alice, CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Beeville and CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Kleberg (Kingsville). The health system is consistently ranked as a leading health system in the area and has received national recognition for several pioneering programs, including trauma, cardiac care, clinical excellence and oncology. For more than 100 years, CHRISTUS Spohn has been distinguished by its high caliber staff and affiliated physicians, its comprehensive and innovative services, and its long history of responding to the needs of the community it serves. For additional information, visit our website at www.christusspohn.org

76 The Bend

[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]


Health | Health Spotlight

April Health Editor’s Pick

! g n i l i a s o g Let’s

• • • •

Tour de Cure

BayBay Cruises Cruises - 2 to - 28tohours 8 hours • Sunset Sunset Cruise Cruise • Cruise & Dinner Package Cruise & Dinner Package • Intro Intro to Sailing to Sailing Course Course •

Engagements Engagements Charter Charter to Port to Port Aransas Aransas Family Family Outing Outing Guys Guys / Girls / Girls DayDay OutOut

April 9th @ 8:00am Texas State Aquarium diabetes.org/coastalbendtour Since 1991, Tour de Cure riders have raised over $250,000,000 to help advance their mission and move us closer toward the ultimate goal to Stop Diabetes!

For Charter Reservations Call 361.881.8503 ext. 2

Tour de Cure - Coastal Bend is more than just a cycling event. It’s a day packed with excitement and energy where riders of all levels join forces in the fight to Stop Diabetes® and raise critical funds for diabetes research, education and advocacy in support of the American Diabetes Association. Tour de Cure - Coastal Bend is a ride, not a race, with routes designed for everyone: occasional riders, families, children, and experienced cyclists. Route distances range from a Miracle Mile for children, 10, 22, 40, 57 and 80 mile options. All routes will begin and end at Texas State Aquarium. Regardless of the distance you ride, everyone comes back to the same finish line festival complete with music, catered lunch, beverages, massages and more!

The Island Run 5k & 1K

Portland Kiwanis 5k & 10k

Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi

Portland City Hall

April 9th @ 8:00am

vfitproductions.com

Relay for Life

Flour Bluff Junior High Stadium: April 15th – 16th @ 6:00pm

Borchard Fairgrounds: April 22nd @ 7:00pm Cole Park: April 29th @ 6:00pm

main.acsevents.org

April 16th @ 8:00am vfitproductions.com

Autism Walk

April 16th @ 10:00am

Autism Spectrum Resource Center

ents v E l s a Specis Reunionies Clasate Part rties Priv stmas Pa tings Chri ness Meenners Busi arsal Di tering Rehe ption Ca arties Recerement Pciation Reti t Appre Clien

asrc-cc.org

CASA Super hero 5k Run & Walk April 30th @ 8:00am Heritage Park

vfitproductions.com

Open for Lunch Mon - Fri (11a-3p)

After Hours & Weekends available for Private Parties & Events

Home of 9 All-You-Care to Eat Sides & Homemade Cobbler (while it lasts)

(361)884-4BBQ or hoegemeyers.com [the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

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Special Promotion

Park View at the Preserve One of the things that makes the quality of life here in the Coastal Bend so spectacular is the ease of access to all of the beauty that nature has to offer. We have abundant beaches, some of the best hunting and fishing in the country, and a beautiful marina with water sports galore. The best part is that all of this is in our backyard- you can commute from anywhere in our city (such as your island home on the water, or your Estate home in London, to downtown) in 15 minutes. Our newest neighborhood, ParkView at the Preserve, capitalizes on this gorgeous coastal lifestyle, in a unique and exciting way. The latest community in the Braselton neighborhood family offers outdoor enthusiasts direct access to the new Oso Bay Wetlands Preserve. This 160 acre nature preserve has so much to offer to families: hiking, biking, fishing, and kayaking as well as daily activities like Guided Nature Walks, workshops, and much more. And, for the kids, The Learning Center in the Preserve has Toddler Story Time, a playground, walking trails, and special wildlife viewing areas. All of this is right in the heart of the city’s Southside, between Holly and Wooldridge…a location that provides a fast ,and hassle free commute, to anywhere in town. ParkView is walking distance to CCISD’s newest Middle School, Adkins, and is in the Barnes Elementary School and the new Veterans Memorial High School district. ParkView is also minutes away from the Oso Baseball Fields And best of all, these homes are affordably priced ,starting in the $160’s. The ParkView neighborhood is a great example of the Braselton Homes’ commitment to all aspects of Green Living. Homeowners in ParkView, which has streets

78 The Bend

named after the Preserve’s best locations and unique wildlife, will be able to enjoy the many healthy benefits of life in this area - access to the hiking, biking, and water sports in the park, as well as to the bike trails that are part of the city’s future Mobility Plan. Braselton homes in this neighborhood will employ the latest and greatest in Green Building Technology, which means that the Homes’ environmental impact will be low ,but its energy savings will be high. From just the electricity savings you will get from your Braselton Homes’ energy efficient appliances and building practices , you could save the equivalent of your monthly car payment! We at Braselton Homes are so proud of the neighborhood concepts we’ve brought to our hometown. We have all travelled to neighboring cities, and wondered when we would be able to live in a community with so much to offer. For three generations, Braselton Homes has transformed the Coastal Bend one neighborhood at a time. It’s been an honor and a privilege. We are proud to give our friends and neighbors the opportunity to buy a well-built, affordable, energy efficient and family friendly home, right here in Corpus Christi. Come out and see what we have to offer. Our model homes are open every day and staffed with friendly folks ready to give you a tour of any of our neighborhoods from Portland to Rancho Vista, and everywhere in between. Visit braseltonhomes.com to see ParkView and our other award winning neighborhoods. See you in the neighborhood! Bart Braselton

[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

BART BRASELTON Bart Braselton is the Executive Vice President of Braselton Homes, the Coastal Bend’s oldest and largest Homebuilder and Neighborhood Developer. Born and raised in Corpus Christi, Bart is the third generation of The Braselton family building in the Bay Area. Returning to Corpus Christi after earning a BBA in Finance, as well as a second degree in Real Estate, from the University of Texas, at Austin, Braselton began working in the family business as a construction superintendent. Since then, Braselton Homes has won numerous local, state, and national awards, including the Energy Star Leadership in Housing Award, as well as the Environments for Living Diamond Award for Energy Efficiency. And, the company has grown into one of the Nation’s Largest Homebuilders, earning consistent rankings in the annual lists compiled by both Professional Builder, as well as Builder Magazine. Bart, a graduate of Leadership Corpus Christi Class 18, has served on numerous local community and business boards, including the Coastal Bend GreenBuilt Initiative, Bay Area Smart Growth, and the Police Foundation. Presently, he serves on the Board of Directors for the Community Development Corporation, the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce, the Builders Association and the Corpus Christi Business and Job Development Corporation. Braselton and his wife, Michelle have 2 young children at home, and are active, with Braselton Homes, in community and church organizations throughout the city, including the American Heart Association, the Food Bank, and CASA of the Coastal Bend.


Home & Garden APRIL 2016

OPEN HOUSE 80 SPACES 84 GARDENING 88

What’s Inside Homes up and down Ocean Drive are a fantastic eclectic mix of old, new, traditional, modern, old world, and coastal. No matter the style, it’s waterfront living at its finest.

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Ocean Drive Modern Living The Hammer’s backyard is the bay, and a perfect spot for a cup of coffee in the morning or a glass of wine in the evening. Paradise found. By: Nancy Roberts Photos: Jason Page

W

hen Matt and Kim Hammer moved from their traditional home on Santa Barbara Street where they raised their daughter, Caitlin, they were ready for a new lifestyle and a home to match. The home would have to be great for entertaining and large family gatherings but also a space that would be enjoyable for just the two of them. The Mid-Century Modern Ocean Drive home was purchased in 2010, and the renovation took over a year, with Kim there at every turn. The original home had three bedrooms and was a 2,000 square foot single story. “There wasn’t a view of the water except from the living room and master bedroom,” said Kim. Previously, in the entry, there was an atrium in the floor and walls divided the living space blocking the bay view through the dramatic floor-to-ceiling windows. Walls were taken down, the atrium was removed, and a second story was added under the direction and design of local architect, John Wright. Wright facilitated the transformation of the home and added 1,400 square feet. Now when you enter the front door, you have an unobstructed view of water and sky.

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Kim’s father, Bill Soltis, was “green” before his time and purchased land in Costa Rica and donated land and a building to create the Texas A&M Soltis Center in a rain forest in San Isidro. So to follow Soltis’ footsteps, another important priority was creating a green home. The Hammers selected green materials; commercial porcelain tile, decking made out of recycled tires, and fixtures using LED blubs. They also selected mesquite, a regional wood, when possible, for elements such as the boards for the stairway and the second-story flooring.

Kitchen and Dining The galley kitchen is designed for entertaining and a welcome haven for Kim’s passion for cooking. Kim had a catering business years ago, and her culinary skills are well known in Corpus Christi. A chef’s dream kitchen that boasts a gas range, long counters, a walk-in panty, and at Matt’s request, an ice-maker (it’s the “good” ice like Sonic Drive-in’s). Aris Designs made all the cabinetry in the home including the sleek, low-profile cabinets in the kitchen. The modern style is accented by Caesar stone counter tops and stainless steel appliances.


The space for dining holds a wood table crafted by Mark Love, a furniture designer in Wimberley. The table can seat up to 14 and is made from only three boards. Mark also created the table behind the couch in the den and two aqua chairs in the master bedroom.

Outside Outside they resurfaced the pool and added decks. The covered areas extended from the living space and stairs lead to the pool and beach, just incase you want to kayak. There are three different levels overlooking the water. If you are friends with Matt and Kim on Facebook, you see that they relish the spectacular sunrises on the bay with their morning coffee on the deck. Daily, Matt posts pictures of the water and the sky that are breathtaking; each day is different. “I like to be out early when the first light is coming up. The bay is calmer then and you can still see stars. From then it is a constantly changing canvas of sun and clouds,” shares Matt. “Pictures are nice, but it so much better in person!”

Events Not only do Matt and Kim welcome friends for an annual New Year’s Eve party and many other family holiday events, they open their home for charities. They hosted the Children’s Eternal Rain Forest fundraiser with 150 plus guests to support the charities’ efforts in Costa

Fun and fanciful art bring pops of color to the neutral and clean walls.


Rica. The Hammers held a party for the Presidents Club of TAMUCC. They have hosted the Art Museum of South Texas Collector’s Club, Literary Reading Series author’s party, and several events for the Texas State Aquarium as well as numerous gatherings for their church, Parkway Presbyterian. Because of their love for singer-songwriters, Matt and Kim enjoy hosting house concerts. Recently, up-and-coming local, Jake Ward, performed for Matt’s birthday. The next house concert will be in May with Austin based singer-songwriter, Darden Smith, performing. Welcome home on the bay.

Situating the pool next to the water makes for endless water views.


The savings you want, the coverage you deserve. Choose the coverage that’s right for you at a price that fits your budget. Making an informed decision when selecting coverage for you, your family, and your home is important. Call me today to loearn how much you can save by combining auto, home, and life.

YOUR LOCAL FARMERS AGENT CURRENTLY OFFERS SAVINGS FOR:

“Iʼm your local Farmers agent.”

JACK ALSPAUGH

• AUTO • HOME • LIFE • COLLECTABLE AUTO

• BUSINESS • RENTER • BOAT • PERSONAL WATERCRAFT

• MOTORCYCLE • CONDO • MOBILE HOMES • RECREATIONAL VEHICLE

361.232.4717 5922 YORKTOWN BLVD, BLDG 2 • CORPUS CHRISTI, TX 78414

jalspaugh@farmersagent.com

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Home and Garden | Spaces

If you, too, are afraid of permanent wallpaper and stencils, keep it simple by adding removable wall decals. They come in all shapes and sizes to match your style, and the best part of it is, you can peel them right off when you want to change things up a bit. Scour your local thrift store for different sized picture frames, touch them up with a little paint, and create a beautiful gallery wall of precious memories.

Whimsical & Sweet a Nursery Retreat By: Candace Reichert Photos: Rachel Durrent

A nursery design that both mom and baby are sure to love. ake a peek into the sweet space where Ms. Greenlee Grace and I spend most of our days and nights. Using a soft, neutral color palate and by creating a fun, yet relaxing environment, you and baby can enjoy the space for years to come. My husband and I had decided we did not want to share the gender of our little bun in the oven right away, so when I started to design his/her nursery, I knew I wanted a fresh white palate to start with. I slowly started incorporating some soft greys and neutral elements for some texture, giving the room that “cozy” factor. The trick was in making sure there were not any gender specific colors that would give our surprise away. If you begin with a solid white palate, you can then add pops of color through artwork and décor, giving you endless options and versatility. What inspired me to create the space this way was I wanted to bring our baby home to an environment that would not

84 The Bend

[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

only be stimulating and peaceful for a baby, but transitional and functional as he/she grew. Although undeniably a nursery, the room has a certain elegance and sophistication that I really love. After all, most moms could agree, the nursery is where we end up spending the majority of our time, so it is important that the both of you are able to find peace and solace in the space. I am a big fan of DIY projects and budget saving tips, and this nursery included quite a bit of them. I wanted to use transitional furniture pieces like my rocking chair and dresser/changing table, yet also add my own special touch to the room with some handmade décor. By adding some yarn pompom garland, a pink paper flowers mobile, hand drawn wall arrows, and leather strap shelves, I not only saved money by doing it myself, but it also serves as a daily reminder of the unconditional love that went into this design. I will cherish all the memories made in this room.


Every Viking has an epic story of sacrifice, passion, and triumph.

In my search for inexpensive shelves, I realized my options were limited, so I challenged my carpentry skills and decided to make my own. I wanted some earthy elements through out the room, so I chose to use leather straps and unfinished wood for a whimsical woodlands look. If your style is more coastal charm, easily swap out the leather for some nautical rope.

Would you share with us how Del Mar College changed your life?

Industrial chic? Pick up some galvanized pipe or some metal wire and bolts from your local hardware store, anchor them in and you’re all set!

Clutter can build up quickly with a newborn in the house. These DIY closet dividers are not only cute and serve a great purpose, you can make them with supplies you already have on hand. Grab any cardboard box, a small bowl and trace your pattern. Once circles are cut, cover them with some fun washi tape or construction paper, label by sizes, and ta da!

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Our Certified Stucco Home Inspectors are trained to see what other home inspectors don’t.

Our home inspector “saw“the potential problem during the home inspection (most inspectors would have missed it) & advised the buyer to have a certified stucco inspection.

The certified inspection confirmed there was a problem behind the stucco allowing the buyer to negotiate needed construction repairs into the sales contract.

Stucco and EIFS are very popular exterior finishes for homes in the coastal bend area. Unfortunately, Stucco and EIFS. (Exterior Insulated Finish System) are very good at hiding problems. The type of problems that can turn the home you’re planning to buy into a frightening money pit.

Every standard new home inspection from Signature includes the use of our Zip Level-Site Elevation Measurement System to verify the integrity of the homes foundation (the same tool used by foundation engineers) AND the use of our Infrared camera system to spot hidden moisture issues from plumbing or roofing problems. Don’t roll the dice when buying a house with stucco or EIFS siding. Have your home inspection done by the stucco/EIFS experts at Signature Inspection Services.

At Signature Inspection Services, we offer the most complete home inspection service packages available using the most advanced equipment. Our inspectors are fully trained in the pitfalls of stucco/EIFS and can offer complete, Certified Stucco/EIFS inspections.

Signature Inspection Services– The most complete home inspection service in the Coastal Bend.

INSPECTION SErvICES TREC License # 10330 Call Anytime 361-230-2312 www.signaturehomeinspectors.com


Special Promotion

DESIGNS AS UNIQUE AS YOU From contemporary to coastal, Astons’ experienced team can create just about any look from their vast selection of exclusive tile, granite, and engineered stone. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed while designing or remodeling your home or business. Educating yourself on product lines can take hours out of your day and concerns over warrantees and installation might cause fear. The whole process can quickly become daunting. But remodeling shouldn’t feel this way. Aston’s is committed to providing a delightful remodeling experience. 35 years ago, Paul and Michele Aston opened a small storefront along Airline that specialized in tile. At the time, granite countertops had yet to gain popularity, and no one was manufacturing granite in Corpus Christi. Thanks to winning the bid on the beautiful miradors along the Corpus Christi Bayfront, Aston’s was the first to fabricate granite locally. Since then, Paul and Michele have maintained a quality relationship with many of their tile vendors, allowing them to carry exclusive lines of high-end tile. These select textures and dimensions are what really make a kitchen or Corpus Christi: bathroom stand out. Their team attends an international 3625 SOUTH PORT AVE CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS 78415 tile show every year to keep up with new trends and the latest tile lines. Astons’ installers are extremely 361-853-3300 knowledgeable on all installation materials and offer full warrantees. Port Aransas: FOR MORE INFORMATION: astondesigns.com

1726 TX-361 # C, Port Aransas, TX 78373 361-749-4005

Rockport: 3002 HWY 35 NORTH SUITE D ROCKPORT, TEXAS 78382 361-727-2167

Along with their incredible tile selection, Aston’s carries a wide variety of engineered stone and granite countertops. Flooring services include carpet, hardwood, tile and wood look tile and vinyl. Showrooms are located in Port Aransas, Rockport and Corpus Christi. Each location offers products unique to the flavor and design preferences of each city.

glass tile is still popular; however, classic ceramic tile has made a big push in the last couple years. Crown molding offers an unparalleled segue, adding to the timeless cottage-style look. Contemporary is probably the hottest new look right now. It’s fairly popular in the Rockport market, along with the Mediterranean style. Design services have always been an essential part of the customer service offered at Aston’s. “You can go in Home Depot and be overwhelmed trying to pick your bathroom out, or you can come in here and have someone help you completely design it and put it together. I help people even go as far as picking out paint and light fixtures,” said Michele Aston, who offers thirty-five years of decorating experience to her clients. Most people don’t realize what they are about to take on with a remodeling project. There is a lot more to it than picking out tile. Design services are offered free-of-charge. It’s a part of their philosophy to always go the extra mile for their customers, providing knowledge and direction from concept to completion. Aston’s is still a family run business. Today, Paul and Michele’s son and daughter-in-law, Reid and Vanessa Aston, run much of the daily operations. Vanessa Aston heads up marketing and a lot of systems management behind the scenes, while Reid manages the fabrication operations. Michele still actively helps clients alongside six other experienced decorators.

The popular cottage-style homes in Port Aransas are designed with shiplap paneling along the walls. Light, airy

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Home and Garden | Gardening

Landscaping with Flavor Beautiful, aromatic, AND edible gardens! By: Justin and Kayla Butts Photos: Rachel Durrent

Herodotus, the renowned historian of antiquity, wrote about the lovely landscaped gardens of ancient Egypt. He told how Egyptian women casually plucked herbs and edible flowers from their doorsteps to season meals and cure maladies.

L

andscapes throughout history were designed to be more edible than ornamental. In early America, most wives, especially in the countryside, cultivated their landscapes for food and medicine, as well as beauty. Seasonings for the kitchen were planted among the blossoms of the flower beds. In modern times, we have lost much of the art of edible landscaping. However, many plants to season your landscape are available at your local nursery: nasturtiums, herbs, kale, and other beautiful edibles.

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Nasturtiums, the Best of Edible Flowers Nasturtiums are a rare delicacy. Both the leaves and flowers are edible. The leaves offer a huge taste for their diminutive size. The flowers are sweet and delicious. A single nasturtium will deliver dozens of leaves and flowers in cascading colors of orange, red, and yellow. The more you clip the flowers and leaves to eat, the faster and bigger the plant grows.

How to Grow

Herbal Bouquets: Dill, Cilantro, & Basil

Plant herbs and edible flowers as companions to your current ornamentals. Plant them in rich, welldrained soil with plenty of compost. Make sure they get at least eight hours of sun per day. Give each plant roughly 12� of space to fill out and mature.

Dill, cilantro (also known as coriander), and basil are essential herbs in any edible landscape. Each of these herbs, once mature, presents a gorgeous display of flowers. You can eat the flowers, leave them to the bees, or cut them for bouquets. These edible herb bouquets make

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wonderful gifts for friends and family. Dill and cilantro grow best in winter. In April, dill tends to bolt and produce dazzling starbursts of yellow flowers. Cilantro can grow up to five feet tall with dozens of lovely soft white flowers. Each cilantro can drop hundreds of seeds for your spice rack. Basil thrives in the hot weather of summer and can grow into lush low bushes. Bees particularly love the blue, purple, or white flowers of basil. Other herbs for your edible landscape include purslane, oregano, thyme, parsley, sage, rosemary, and all types of mint. Mint is especially good as an edible ground cover.

Edible Kale Flowering (inedible) kale is commonly sold in nurseries. However, edible kale is equal to its ornamental counterpart in every way, but as a bonus it is wholesome and tasty! Try Scarlet Bor, Scotch Curly Leaf, Dinosaur, or Siberian varieties. Your kale can be made into a low hedge or border. As you harvest leaves from your kale it will become bigger, bushier, and more beautiful. There are many other edible plants to choose from. To easily convert your flower beds and planter boxes to an edible landscape, simply plant one edible next to every ornamental. Soon, you will enjoy a landscape that is colorful, fragrant, and also delicious!

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Out & About APRIL 2016

ARTS & CULTURE 60 DATE BOOK 62 SOCIAL HOUR 64

What’s Inside Wednesday evenings at the Farmers’ Market is a wonderful way to get your family together, hit the town, introduce the kids to new foods and projects, and take some fresh grub home to use in your own kitchen!

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Out and About | Arts & Culture

Farmers’ Market Corpus Christi Downtown Farmers’ Market is open every Wednesday 5-8 pm By: Sharla Wilkins Photos: Rachel Durrent

“It’s all about locally grown and produced food.”

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T

he Downtown Farmers’ Market, housed weekly in the courtyard of the Art Center, strives to embolden a sense of community in the Coastal Bend. Providing the opportunity to purchase fresh produce and other edibles directly from growers, and embracing artisans, the farmers’ market wishes to support locals. “It’s all about locally grown and produced food,” explains Debbie Noble, co-chair of the board of the Farmers’ Market, a part of GROW Local South Texas.

ering, contributes artistic vendors to the mix. Art exhibits are held the same night, and the Studio C Gallery is open. A cash bar is located nearby. Local musicians entertain within view of the Bayfront, volunteering their talents at no charge. Inside the courtyard, set up near the vendors, the family-friendly market always has a free child-centric activity available. The activity varies weekly, with such supporters as The Texas State Aquarium and Communities in Schools presenting the project.

“We just want to Cooking demonstrations are held occawith the chefs using, “produce make our sionally, from the growers,” explains Noble. PaDel Sol has cooked their paella at healthy ella the market, using fresh shrimp. Patrons community can watch the demonstration and then buy a portion of the meal produced. grow.”

Visit the Downtown Farmers’ Market, and you will find local farmers explaining the difference in types of kale or radishes. Home-baked goodies, some gluten-free, are for sale, as well as a variety of freshly harvested veggies. Locally made beauty products can be purchased. Jams, jellies, local honey, eggs and homemade simple syrups are also available. “You get to meet the people who grew your food,” shares Noble. Approximately twenty vendors sell their wares each week, and, “We’re always looking for more growers,” says Noble. Sellers apply, are vetted and given a trial period prior to becoming an established vendor. The farmers’ market focuses on eatables, and most of the farmers, who come from within a 200 mile radius, abstain from using pesticides.

Food trucks serving healthful chow park outside and offer freshly cooked fare. “We want it [the food truck] to fit in with the whole healthy community,” explains Noble about which food trucks are selected to participate in the market. In keeping with the healthful atmosphere, a yoga class is held each week.

“I like the whole sense of community,” says Noble, warmly, emphasizing the importance of the farmers’ market location to the city. “You have to have a vibrant and exciting downtown, and part of that is having a farmers’ market,” stresses Noble. “It adds more to the community. We just want to make our healthy community grow.”

That sense of community valued by those who oversee the farmers’ market extends to local restaurants who shop at the market for the ingredients for their cuisine. “They’re local and they’re small, and they want to have really good fresh food,” says Noble. Locals supporting locals. “It’s a very open community. We want to be very welcoming to everybody,” smiles Noble.

Farmers’ Market History

It goes way back Over 5000 years ago, Egyptians shopped at the first farmers’ markets set up along the Nile River. There is dispute as to the origin of the first farmers’ market in the US, but they appear to have begun in New England in the 1600s or 1700s. The Corpus Christi Downtown Farmers’ Market offers a Market Share Program, whereby a share of that weeks produce can be pre-purchased and selected by a GROW Local representative on your behalf. You don’t have to be present to shop!

100 N Shoreline Blvd. Corpus Christi, TX 78401 361-884-6406

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Out & About | Date Book

April

Mark Your Calendar

FESTIVAL Buc Days Festival & Parades Apr. 21st – May 1st Held on the Corpus Christi bayfront, this culturally diverse event grabs the attention of 51% of Corpus Christi, over 258,000 people. This springtime event has something for everyone, including a ProRodeo, a Carnival, a Rodeo BBQ Tailgate Party, and our largest event, the Buc Days Illuminated Night Parade. Over 160,000 attendees line the streets each year awaiting the Buc Days Pirate Queens and Buc Days King scholarship contestants on our Buc Days float. Corpus Christi Bayfront, (361) 882-3242, bucdays.com

resident reptile shows, parrot talks, kids ‘touch & learn’ projects and inflatables, lady bug releases, nature trail walk-and-talks, wetlands boardwalk birding scopes, and the outdoor iguana house. The new 1800 square-foot Orchid Conservatory, Tropical Garden, and all other floral exhibits and nature ar­eas are open. South Texas Botanical Gardens & Nature Center, (361) 692-0607, stxbot.org

COMMUNITY

COMMUNITY

ArtWalk

Annual Tour of Homes

Apr. 7th

Apr. 9th – 10th

On the first Friday of every month you’ll find artists, musicians and all things creative converge in the Marina Arts District. It’s where Downtown comes alive with bands on every block, food trucks serving up South Texas fare, and art galleries featuring local and national artists. Marina Arts District, (361) 882-2363, marinaarts.com

Visit fabulous custom homes of Aransas County! Rockport Center for the Arts, (361) 729-5519, rockportartcenter.com

Pops in the Park

BENEFIT Bernie’s Crawfish Boil Apr. 7th The premier event for the Del Mar College Foundation and primary purpose of the Crawfish Boil is to raise funds for student scholarships. Del Mar College, (361) 698-1033, delmar.edu

FESTIVAL

Big Bloom!

Apr. 9th

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Apr. 16th

MUSIC

Earth Day Bay Day

This annual mega Plant Sale, Garden Festival, and Dollar Day, will be 9 am to 5 pm on Gardens & Nature Center grounds, 8545 Staples Shop and tour the Botanical Gardens for just $1 per person. Nueces Master Gardeners, Corpus Christi Rose Society and Plumeria Society of South Texas members will be on hand for selection and horticulture help. Exhibits and activities include butterfly releases,

Rockport Market Days Held monthly, come on out and enjoy “A Day By The Bay” shopping, listening to great music, and eating at the delicious food court. You’ll find over 100 booths filled with quality merchandise, arts and crafts, plants and produce, jams, jellies, salsa and other canned products, national distributors, handmade clothing, woodworkers, yard art, all types of jewelry, pottery, and more. Rockport Festival Grounds, (361) 557-7575, rockportmarketdays.com

FAMILY Apr. 2nd

COMMUNITY

Educational exhibits and fun activities like the catch and release fishing tank and Youth Odyssey rock climbing wall. With numerous nonprofit, and government exhibitors providing information and free items to the public to promote environmental awareness and conservation. Heritage Park, (361) 882-3439, baysfoundation.com

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Apr. 16th Enjoy a family evening of lively, familiar music presented by the full orchestra of the Corpus Christi Symphony. In addition, guests will enjoy a Harbor Bridge light show and a spectacular fireworks finale. Whataburger Field, (361) 883-6683, ccsymphony.org


editor’s pick COMMUNITY Wings Over South Texas Apr. 9th – 10th This year’s air show celebrates the 102nd anniversary of Kleberg County and the 74th anniversary of the commissioning of NAS Kingsville on July 4, 1942. The goal of “Wings Over South Texas” 2016 is to provide something for every member of the family. From the thrill of aerial performances by the Navy’s Blue Angels and our other aviation acts, to static display aircraft and first responder vehicles, a Kids Zone for children, interactive video games by our military recruiting commands, food and souvenir booths, and more!

Naval Air Station Kingsville, wostairshow@gmail.com, wingsoversouthtexas.com

COMMUNITY Brunch on the Bay Apr. 24th The Bend is serving up a one-of-a-kind family oriented brunch experience for the Coastal Bend, while showing off the quality and uniqueness of our local dining scene. Sample the best brunch from all around the Coastal Bend in a fun, family friendly way along the beautiful Corpus Christi Bay. Enjoy live music, drinks, bloody mary mix-off, and fun activities for the kids. Art Center of Corpus Christi, (361) 792-3606, thebendmag.com

who spends her daylight hours as a swan, and a curse that can only be broken by true love. Add to this mix, another maiden and a case of mistaken identity and the product is a dramatic love story for the ages. American Bank Center, (361) 882-4588, corpuschristiballet.com

FESTIVAL Texas Sandfest Apr. 29th – May 1st In its 20th year, this popular family event offers attendees a weekend of fun on the beach, while viewing magnificent works of sand art. You’ll find unique “island-style” jewelry, art, crafts, food and music. Sand Castle Dr & Beach Access Road 1A, info@texassandfest.com, texassandfest.org

ARTS Swan Lake Apr. 23rd – 24th Corpus Christi Ballet is sure to enchant its audiences with its production of the timeless classic, Swan Lake. The age-old fable is one of a handsome prince, an evil sorcerer, a beautiful woman [the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

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Out & About | Social Hour

Plains Capital Bank Ribbon Cutting

1.

2.

Photos by: Rachel Durrent

1) Kathy Botelho & Lindsay Walker 2) Robert & Kaylynn Norman 3) Mary Prosperi, Diana LaRue, Marcy Rodriguez, John LaRue & Erin Wilder 4) Brent Johnston, Chris Rambeau & Steve Hambrick 5) Dr. Mary Jane Garza, Michael Womack, Todd Hunter & Shelby O’Brien

4.

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S E R E N D I P I T Y M O NO G R A M B OU T I QU E

1302 Wildcat Dr, Portland

SerendipityMonogramBoutique.com

643-2333 ArtisticFlowers.net 643-6311

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Out & About | Social Hour

2.

1. Casino Night Benefiting Halo Flight Photos by: Rachel Durrent

1. Patti Young, Kelley & Jack Cortese 2. John & Samantha Luna 3. Ryan Cain & Jessica Salinas 4. Sammie Ramon & Sarah Whetstone

3.

5. Kenneth & Lisa Mills

1.

4.

6. Bill & BaileyWilson & Tom Hunt 7. Chris & Diane Grote

5.

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Happy Kids Happy Parents

Pediatric Dentistry

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shop. dine. unwind. More than 130 of the finest names in style, services and cuisine including: Dillard’s • Macy’s • JCPenney ULTA • Michael Kors • White House | Black Market MAC Cosmetics • francesca’s • Aldo • Pandora • PINK Coach • Oakley • Grimaldi's Pizzeria • Buckle LongHorn Steakhouse • Tilly’s • Chipotle Mexican Grill Papaya • Corner Bakery Café • Forever 21 • Express Victoria’s Secret • Soma Intimates • T.J. Maxx HomeGoods • OshKosh B’gosh • Grub Burger Bar DSW • Build-A-Bear Workshop • Dick’s Sporting Goods

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Cuisine APRIL 2016

FARM TO TABLE 102 THE DISH 105 DINING GUIDE 106 THE DRINK 110

What’s Inside Root vegetables are plant roots used as vegetables. Because root vegetables grow underground, they absorb a great amount of nutrients from the soil, making them particularly healthy. Most have thick skin and long stems with sprouting leaves.

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Cuisine | Farm to Table

Pork Chops: Pan-Fried Pastured Pork Chops with Radish Leaf Pesto, Roasted Radishes, and Nasturtium Salad with Dill Vinaigrette By: Justin & Kayla Butts Photos: Rachel Durrent

A dish is only as good as the quality of its ingredients. This seems obvious, but how often do we start a meal with mediocre ingredients, then spend hours in the kitchen trying to make something extraordinary? Mediocre ingredients make mediocre meals, and the best recipes in the world can’t save them. You can make the most of your time in the kitchen by seeking out the best ingredients to begin your meals. Excellent ingredients need only a simple preparation to bring out the flavors of the dish. These recipes are a celebration of simplicity. We began this meal with thin-cut pastured pork chops. The Iberian pork of Spain is renowned for its quality—the best chefs in the world demand it. On our farm, we follow nearly to the letter the Iberian technique by raising our heritage breed porkers on lush pasture, or on gardens planted with beans and turnips, then fattening the porkers on acorns in the shade of our oak trees. Iberian farmers call the oak forests that feed their hogs dehesas. The chops from these pastured porkers are intensely flavorful. We sautéed these beauties in a pan over medium heat with nothing but sea salt and crushed black pepper. The fat in the chop helps develop a nice sear. Five minutes on each side, and they are ready. This is as simple (and as delicious) as it gets. We topped the chops with Radish Leaf Pesto. The season for radishes ends in April, and the leaves grow bushy, green, and zesty. This pesto takes only minutes to make, but brings an incredible freshness and flavor to the chops, like ten green salads to every spoonful. We roasted a variety of the heirloom radishes, just 20 minutes in the oven, and each radish offers its own unique and earthy flavor. For the salad, we featured nasturtium leaves and flowers. Nasturtiums are a particular delicacy—the leaves have a bold flavor, and the flowers taste of fruit. We layered the salad with freshly picked beet greens, spinach, bibb lettuce, and topped the dish with nasturtium flowers. The homemade dressing features freshly-picked green onions and dill. These recipes are simple: the entire meal took roughly twenty minutes to prepare. If you take the time to search out the best artisan shops, farms, and fishmongers in The Bend, you will serve the best meals at your table. If you are going to spend a little time in the kitchen, make it count. You are extraordinary. Eat food that is extraordinary. You are worth it. 102 The Bend

Pan-Fried Pastured Pork Chop with Radish Leaf Pesto Serves: 4 Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 15 minutes Inactive Prep time: 5 minutes Ingredients: 2 tbsp olive oil 4 pastured thin-cut pork chops (½ inch thick) Salt and pepper to taste Pesto: 4 cups Radish leaves, washed and stemmed 1 cup whole almonds, roasted 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano 3 cloves garlic, peeled 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil Sea salt to taste

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Directions: Preheat pan on medium heat. Pat pork chops dry with a paper towel. Season chops with salt and pepper. Add pork chops to pan and cook for five minutes on each side. Let chops rest for five minutes. While your chops are cooking, combine the pesto ingredients into a food processor or blender. Pulse until ingredients are fully combined and hold together when pressed between two fingers. Serve chop with a large tablespoon of pesto spread on top, or on the side.


Roasted Heirloom Radishes Serves: 4 Prep Time: 2 minutes Ingredients: 1 lb assorted heirloom radishes, tops clipped, rinsed 2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil Sea salt to taste Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place radishes on baking sheet, slightly spaced apart, drizzle with EVOO and sea salt. Bake for 20 minutes.

Nasturtium Salad with Dill Vinaigrette

Serves: 6 side salads Prep time: 7 minutes Ingredients: 6 cups salad greens (try Bibb or Blackseed Simpson lettuce, Bloomsdale spinach, and Detroit Dark Red beet greens) Leaves and flowers of 3 nasturtium plants Vinaigrette: 1/4 cup fresh dill 4 green onions, chopped 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 1/3 cup red wine vinegar 1 tsp local honey Sea salt and pepper, to taste Directions: On each salad plate, arrange one cup mixed salad greens and several nasturtium leaves and blooms. In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients for the vinaigrette and whisk vigorously. Drizzle dressing on greens with some freshly cracked peppercorns and enjoy immediately.

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Cuisine | The Dish

Tannins Wine Bar & Tapas By: Whitney Noble Photos: Rachel Durrent

From three friends, a love for food and wine, and a hip vision - Tannin’s was born. Owners Jerry Davila, Mario Fimbres, and Mike Mata want YOU to wine down at the coolest place in town. At Tannins Wine Bar and Tapas, sip on a sophisticated glass of vino at any hour of the day! Davila, Fimbres, and Mata got together to synergize their separate unique tastes and take on what a wine and tapas bar should be. Their shared inspiration was brought to fruition and presents as one of Corpus Christi’s new hippest social hot spot. The large bar, exposed brick, warm lighting, lush draperies, and wood tables create the perfect rustic, old-world Tuscan ambiance. Sit outside on the patio, or inside under the sparkling lights. The fare and drinkables are attracting the young urban professionals, the seasoned executive, the lunching ladies, the date night couple, or the solo who is ready to meet and mingle with the rest!

Why the name? Tannin is a naturally occurring polyphenol found in plants, seeds, bark, wood, leaves and fruit skins. In wine, tannin is a textural element that gives it that “dry” taste. As a characteristic of wine, tannin adds both bitterness, astringency, and complexity.

Aside from the extensive wine selection (some of which are even on tap!), the menu accommodates some original and delectable dishes that can be split or savored by one. Their Italian Board, which includes the finest in Italian cured meats, fanciful cheeses, nuts and fruit is the perfect charcuterie to share. Or try one of their crispy and delicious hot panini sandwiches, such as The Southerner or The Italian. For that hit of freshness, dig into the Spinach and Texas Pecan Salad, topped with crispy proscuitto! The small menu has been perfectly honed, each dish is more enjoyable than the next, and all use the finest and some unusual and special ingredients. Great food, great wine, and great prices. There’s nothing sweeter (aside from their Moscato) than the sound of light laughter and a cork popping.

3855 S. Alameda St. Corpus Christi, TX 78411 (361) 334-3893

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Dining Guide Corpus Christi Padre Island Port Aransas Rockport Outdoor dining Live music

$ = Under $10 $$ = Mostly $10 - $20 $$$ = $20 and up The Bend Magazine Dining Guide is a select list of restaurants around the Coastal Bend. Implicitly, the magazine’s editors recommend all of these restaurants and they are not advertisements. Listings are updated monthly and appear based on space availability. Reviews and articles are written by our editors as a service to readers.

Restaurant owners: If you have news about your restaurant or a correction to our listing, we’re all ears! Send an email to editor@thebendmag.com or call (361) 792-3606

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Cuisine | Dining Guide

American 8te $ A shabby chic interior feel with classic comfort dishes that have a simple twist. They have it all breakfast, lunch, and dinner! 1220 Airline #250, (361) 723-0261, Facebook.com/8tecctx Andy’s Country Kitchen $ You will feel right at home just like eat’n in mom’s kitchen. Great southern comfort food that gets back to the basics! 5802 S Staples St, (361) 993-0251, Andyskitchen.com Atomic Omelette& Grill $ Omelettes are just the beginning here! Comfortable atmosphere, with a flavor for casual dining and handmade family recipes. 6313 Wooldridge Rd #10, (361) 334-3942, Atomicomelette.com Citrus Bayfront Bistro $ Enjoy everything homemade, even down to the pie crusts with a gorgeous view of the marina. 100 N Shoreline Blvd, (361) 882-2047, Citrusbistro.com The Groove $$ A little something for every discriminating craving with an eclectic dining experience. Nothing is ever frozen or put in a fryer! 2001 N Hwy 35, (361) 729-3663, Thegrooverockport.com Irie’s Island Food $ With bold purpose and flavor craving taste buds, they set forth a new twist on local fare and many culinary delights from islands around the globe. 503 N Alister St, (361) 749-2310, Iriesislandfood.com The Grille $ Ensures you’ll always have the variety that is the spice of life! With ingredients sourced from Texas, Burger patties and soups are all made from scratch. 3063 Main St, (361) 775-1000, Facebook.com/thegrillingleside The Post $$ Enjoy this pub in a communal setting with dishes that are meant to be shared, all alongside a cocktail or beer of course! 3850 S Alameda, (361)452-0907, Facebook.com/postcc Town & Country Café $ Down-to-earth this diner next door serves the best in homestyle American comfort food for breakfast and lunch. 4228 S Alameda St, (361) 992-0360, Facebook.com/town-country-cafe

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Asian Aka Sushi $$ Creative and daring rolls that work well together. The authentic Asian cuisine made with the Chef’s homemade recipe will be sure to surprise you. 415 N Water St, (361) 882-8885 Sang’s Imperial Café $$ Culturally dynamic décor brings an international ambiance to the atmosphere. Their commitment to the healthiest and freshest food shows through from the dishes to the sushi bar. 4650 Corona Dr, (361) 8088881, Facebook.com/imperialcafe TakeNiwa $$$ Sit in Hibachi and watch their talented chefs prepare your dinner. Or dine yourself to juicy steak and full sushi bar, your choice! 5216 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 356-6888, takeniwa.com

Café BonnA-Petit $ Chef Sophie will always make you feel warmly welcomed, just as her gourmet dishes do. And don’t forget to grab a to-go dinner! 4301 S Alameda St, (361) 334-2579, Bonna-petit.com Daily Grind $ A coffee bar with personality, they offer the finest in gourmet, rustic, or straight-up coffee favorites. Hungry? Stick around for their daily quiche specials, scones, and sandwiches. 302 S Austin St, (361) 790-8745, Rockportdailygrind.com Hester’s Café and Coffee Bar $ Looking for a true family experience where love is the number one ingredient, along with the simple but important concept of quality and the healing powers of good food 1902 N. Shoreline Blvd, (361) 885-0151, 1714 S Alameda St, (361) 885-0558, 3812 S Alameda St, (361) 855-1892, Hesterscafe.com

Barbeque Hoegemeyer’s BBQ $$ Smoked freshbarbecue on a strong German heritage background and a satisfaction for something unique. South Texas barbecue that comes from the heart. 711 Concrete St, (361) 884-4227, Hoegemeyers.com


YOU C A N ’T REALLY

K NOW A PLACE U NT IL YOU

ACTUALLY TASTE IT.

Every destination has a soul worth discovering. Experience the extraordinary cuisine at the famous Republic of Texas Bar & Grill. Dine with us to taste exquisite steaks, fresh seafood dishes and premium wine choices, all while taking in the panoramic views of the Corpus Christi Bay from the 20th floor. Let us make the most of your chance to wander.

O M N I H O TE L S . C O M / C O R P U S C H R I S T I 361-886-3515

REPUBLIC OF TEXAS BAR & GRILL • OMNI CORPUS CHRISTI HOTEL • CORPUS CHRISTI, TX


Cuisine | Dining Guide

French Bleu Bistro $$$ True playful twists to classic French bistro dishes. The chef’s commitment to the use of fresh, local, peak of the season products is evident in the quality of each dish. 500 N Water St, (361) 887-2121, Bleubistrocc.com Dragonfly $$$ A fine multitude of international backgrounds to the cuisine prepared entirely from scratch daily by the owner and culinary artist. The menu is full of unforgettable flavor profiles to satisfy any craving. 14701 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 949-2224, Facebook.com/dragonfly-restaurant Grill

Bar & Grill Brewster Street Ice House $$ Who says that you can’t have 4-Star food in a casual environment? Not the Brewster Street Grill! Bring your kids or stay for concert, they have it all. 1724 N Tancahua, (361) 884-2739, Brewsterstreet.net

Executive Surf Club $$ The perfect casual family dining spot. All the while supplying the most beer on tap in the city. 309 N Water St, (361) 884-7873, Waterstreetmarketcc. com/executive-surf-club Stingray’s Taphouse and Grill $$ Anindustrial-chic elite sports bar that provides you ‘raving fans’ a unique dining and entertaining experience, right around the corner from the beach! 401 Beach St, (361)749-2287, Stingraystaphouse.com

Italian Authentic New York Pizza $$ True, authentic New York Pizza right in your hands in Corpus Christi, complete with red-checkered tablecloths. 5838 S Staples St, (361) 986-1151, Eatmorepizza.cc Bellino’s $$ Comfortable and welcoming with a trattoria style authentic cuisine. You won’t find these dishes anywhere else in Corpus Christi! 3815 S Alameda St, (361) 814-8998, 523 S. Fulton Beach Rd, (361) 729-9003, Bellinotexas.com

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Brooklyn Pie Co. $ Enjoy a slice or indulge a whole “pie” of their delicious secret pizza tradition. 15326 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 949-1100, Brooklynpie.com Grimaldi’s Pizzeria $$ Distinctive and authentic pizza baked to perfection in a signature coal burning oven you can see right from your seat, offers a unique crisp flavor. 5488 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 980-8600, Grimaldispizzeria.com House of Rock $ Great pizza and appetizers, cold beer, and live entertainment! Does it get any better? $$ 511 Starr St, (361) 882-7625, Texashouseofrock.ticketfly.com Mamma Mia’s $$$ Warm and cozy mom and pop Italian experience will make you feel like family. Entrees are delicious Italian culture on a plate. 128 N Mesquite St, (361) 8833773, Facebook.com/mamma-mias Mesquite St. Pizza and Pasta Co. $$ Their 60 year old pizza oven brought in straight from Brooklyn New York, makes for the perfect pizza, as well asall the crusts and sauces are made in house. 617 Mesquite St, (361) 882-7499, Eatpizzadowntown.com Panjo’s Pizza & Pasta $ Ditch the pomp and circumstance, and eat the way your Italian Grandma intended. Fuss free and real, classic, and a true local secret! 2744 Highway 35 N, (361) 729-1411 Russo’s Coal Fired Italian Kitchen $$ Brick-oven-fired Italian entrees and New York style pizza down south. The simplicity of a causal Pizzeria with the freshness of a fine Italian restaurant. 6418 S Staples St, (361) 986-0620, Nypizzeria.com Venetian Hot Plate $$$ Quality cuisine and a quaint, yet energetic atmosphere, giving a real touch of Italy. 232 Beach St, (361) 749-7617, Venetianhotplate.com Bella Luna Downtown $$ Authentic gourmet Italian cuisine always made fresh to order in the heart of The Marina Arts District. 429 Schatzell St, (361) 887-4777, Bellalunadowntown.com

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Port “A” Pizzeria $$ Bring the kids, as this family-friendly pizzeria offers an all-day buffet, video games and draft beer. Or, order straight off the menu! 407 E Avenue G, (361) 749-5226, Portapizzeria.com,

Mediterranean Ginger Café and Grill $$ Eastern hospitality and authentic Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine, there’s so much to love about these Persian, Turkish, Lebanese, and IndoPakistani specialties. 7009 S Staples, 103, (361) 946-9834, Gingercafecc.com

Mexican Molé $$ The vision lies in freshness, tradition and distinction; Mole’ is where true Central Mexican Cuisine can be enjoyed. 6042 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 334-6081, Molerestaurant.com

Per uvian Costa Sur Wok & Ceviche Bar $$ This cevicheria is a true Peruvian party on your palette. The dishes are fresh takes on traditional originals from Peru. 15113 S Padre Island Dr #101, (361) 945-8303, Costasurcc.com

Seafood Black Marlin Bar & Grill $$$ Sit indoors, sit outdoors, see the Gulf Coast from any seat in the house while diving into top-quality coastal cuisine, live music and the best views around. 258 Snapdragon, (361) 749-4653, Blackmarlinbarandgrill.com Black Sheep Bistro $$ A unique, trendy atmosphere that transcends age and style with a menu full of foods rich, colorful, and full of flavor. 15201 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 9494819, Blacksheepbistro.net Doc’s Seafood and Steaks $$ Lively and enjoyable selection for surf ‘n’ turf in an open-air setting overlooking the water, plus live music. 13309 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 949-6744, Docseafoodandsteaks.com


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㈀ ㌀  唀匀 䠀圀夀 ㄀㠀㄀ 匀琀攀 䄀 倀漀爀琀氀愀渀搀 吀堀 ㌀㘀㄀⸀㘀㐀㌀⸀ 㔀  

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Cuisine | The Drink

Rebel Toad Brewery Troublemaker Pale Ale By: Whitney Noble Photos: Rachel Durrent

O

wners Hector and Nathali Cavazos welcome you to Corpus Christi’s newest brewery, Rebel Toad Brewery Co.! Hector started home brewing nearly five years ago and found a passion for the process. Rebel Toad was Hector’s childhood nickname growing up in Falurrias, Texas, and, it stuck! Visit their taproom for some great variety. Their best seller is the Rebel Blonde, which is light, earthy, and refreshing. Its essence is delicate, a malt with hints of honey and caramel. The Cavazos’ personal favorite is the Troublemaker Pale Ale, as it is piney and crisp with a balanced dry malt to hop finish.

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Grab a pint, do a sampling or fill your growler! They’re licensed to offer growler fills, which are the legal vessel in which someone can come and fill at the brewpub and take home for consumption. Listen to the live music, enjoy your cold brew, and maybe even shop for a shirt or koozie. Food trucks are often on site so patrons can munch while sipping their craft beer! With fun glassware, fun guests, and fun food trucks, you’re sure to have some...well, fun! Future plans are to distribute flagship beers. So, drink local my friends.

[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

425 William St. Corpus Christi, TX 78401 512-221-1267


Glow $$ From a renovated boathouse, offers a simply cooked bistro fare using the best local seafood and produce. Bright, relaxed atmosphere with white-washes ship lap wood walls and a full bar. 1815 Broadway St, (361) 727-2644, Glowrockport.com Harrison’s Landing $$ Tavern on the Bay at Harrison’s Landing is Corpus Christi’s newest outdoor restaurant & bar located in the heart of the city’s marina, and is the only place in town with a floating bar! 108 Peoples St, (361) 8818503, Harrisonslanding.net Island Time Sushi Bar and Seafood Grill $$ Stop in for fresh and inventive sushi, seafood, appetizers and desserts! Check out the weekday specials! 14225 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 9493046, Facebook.com/islandtimesushi Latitude 28˚02’ $$$ Contemporary dining experience specializing in tasty fresh, local seafood. Eye-catching walls that serve as a gallery space, holding colorful works by local artists. 105 N Austin St, (361) 727-9009, Latituderockport.com Lisabella’s Bistro $$$ Casually coastal elegance yet, family-friendly setting. Remarkable gourmet twist to the lunch fare, a poolside eatery, and a full bar that goes beyond just ordinary. 5009 Hwy 361, (361) 749-4222, Cinnamonshore.com Rock & Rolls Sushi Lounge $$

At Rock & Roll, they’re dishing out the most delectable and delicate fish from islands all over the world. Delight in a “sound check” or cold appetizer, an “opening act” or hot appetizer, then “plug in” for some rolls and sashimi! 15121 S Padre Island Dr #101, (361) 949-1110, Rockandrollssushi.com Roosevelt’s at the Tarpon Inn $$$ Gourmet dining at its finest in a beautiful Louisiana style home that sets the perfect tone for a taste of luxury. Historic background gives a unique sense of its famous visitors. 200 E Cotter Ave, (361)749-1540, Rooseveltsatthetarponinn. com Saltwater Grill $$ Unique family atmosphere with fresh and tasty seafood that will leave you coming back for more. 2401 Cimarron Blvd, (361) 993-7258, Saltwatergrillcc.com Scuttlebutt’s Bar & Grill $$ Extensive menu, makes sure to have something for everyone. Foods made from scratch from the dressings to the burger patties14254 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 949-6769, Scuttlebuttsbarandgrill.com Seafood & Spaghetti Works $$ A unique dining experience, you’ll find the very best in seafood, steak, Italian dishes, pizza, soups, and desserts all made from scratch. 901 S Alister St, (361) 749-5666, Seafoodandspaghetti.com

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Cuisine | Dining Guide

2016 READER’S CHOICE POLL:

Shells $$ Warm, inviting neighborhood restaurant offers a creative and far ranging menu that reflects a variety of world cuisines. Shakes off the old and tired and gets down to real good food. 522 E Avenue G, (361) 749-7621, Eatatshells.com Shempy’s Grill $$ Laid back setting with a variety of delightfully cooked fish will turn anyone into a seafood lover. 3913 Highway 35 S, (361) 727-0019, Facebook.com/Shempys

WE WANT TO KNOW WHAT THE LOCAL’S OF THE COASTAL BEND LOVE! VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITES TODAY: Food Drink Nightlife Art & Culture Shopping Health Beauty Family & Amusement

VOTING IS EASY! REGISTER AND SUBMIT AT

Snoopy’s Pier $$ Outdoor dining experience and Local harvested quality with an on-site fish house and shrimp breading facility that enables the freshness. 13313 S Padre Island Dr, (361) 949-8815, Snoopyspier.com The Boiling Pot $$ Roll up your sleeves and take manners to a new level for a great Cajun experience. 201 S Fulton Beach Rd, (361) 729-6972 The Pheonix $$ This international bistro/nouveau American fine-quality cuisine is prepared daily using many ingredients from the Corpus Christi Farmer’s Market creating a constantly eclectic seasonal menu, where guests can choose to sit indoor and outdoor. 337 N Alister St, (361) 749-9277, Facebook.com/The-Phoenix-Restaurant-and-Bar

Trout Street Bar & Grill $$$ Cajun-inspired seafood in an airy environs is a wondrous way to enjoy food and cocktails inside the nautical themed restaurant or on the outdoor deck offering marina views. 104 West Cotter, (361) 749-7800, Tsbag.com Water Street Oyster Bar $$ Long-standing, well-known Corpus Christi landmark operation serving oysters, sushi rolls & Gulf seafood in a historic, brick-walled space. 309 N Water St, (361) 881-9448, Waterstreetmarketcc.com Water Street Seafood Company $$$ Locally owned and operated and voted “Best of the Best” seafood. Fish is fresh never frozen, while sauces and dressings are all made in house from scratch. 309 N Water St, (361) 882-8683, Waterstreetmarketcc.com

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[the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

Yardarm $$$ Savory seafood dishes with great bay view seating. Family owned gives off a special ambiance in the atmosphere as well as the entrees. 4310 Ocean Dr, (361) 855-8157

Steakhouse Katz 21 $$$ Sets the standard for premier fine dining experience. Prime steakhouse specializes in dry-aged prime beef and fresh gulf coast seafood. 5702 Spohn Dr, (361) 884-1221, Katz21.com

Niko’s Steakhouse $$$ Committed to the motto “Great food, Great times, Great experience.” Casual and elegant atmosphere that will exceed any steak lover’s expectations. 5409 Saratoga Blvd, (361) 992-2333, Nikossteakhouse.com Republic of Texas $$$$ One of the top dining destinations. A multi-level steakhouse offers diners beautiful panoramic views of the CC Bay. All the ingredients for the perfect experience! 900 N Shoreline Blvd, (361) 887-1600, Omnihotels.com

Thai Thai Cottage $$ Unique and refreshing, Thai curries meet teriyaki and Chinese dishes in a cozy red cottage. 5830 McArdle Rd, (361) 993-0777, Thai-cottage.com

Vietnamese Vietnam Restaurant $$$ Local fine dining with an extensive menu and eye catching Vietnamese culture spread throughout the dining area. 701 N Water St, (361) 853-2682, Vietnam-restaurant.com


Style Show & Luncheon Benefitting The Humane Society & Adoption Center of Rockport-Fulton

Saturday, April 30th, 2016 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Rockport Country Club

For Reservations Contact: (361) 729-0051

Spring Collections Presented by Nancy’s Boutique Designer Fashions, Jewelry & Accessories Located on Austin Street in Historic Downtown Rockport [the lifestyle magazine of the coastal bend]

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Out & About | Looking Back

Nueces County Courthouse By: Jeff King Photo: Corpus Christi Public Libraries

The 1914 Nueces County Courthouse, is here pictured in the 1920s, just a few years after it was completed. “Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how.” - Edward T. McMahon, Urban Land Institute

114 The Bend

C

orpus Christi leaped into the 1900s with continued growth that had already taken the county through two courthouses; the first in 1856, and a second built adjacent to the first in 1875. Progress continued again when the administration of county Judge Walter F. Timon led the charge for building a landmark county courthouse in Corpus Christi. The two previous courthouses were demolished to make room for the grandiose structure seen today at the Interstate 37 and Highway 181 interchange.

county as the courthouse drew its own visitors who made a trek down the coast to lay eyes on Page’s latest masterpiece. Six stories of stone and brick veneer housed the county offices and county jail in a single facility, which was one of the first to do so in modern times.

In 1914, Nueces County completed construction of its third courthouse building, designed by Washington, D.C. architect Harvey L. Page. This new Neoclassical building was a treasured sight for the

away with every passing year. Now, surrounded by a chain-link fence, the 6-story building just blocks from the seawall is a distant memory as the standing symbol of justice here in our Coastal Bend.

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Unfortunately for this treasured building, that same wave of progress that led to its construction pushed the county into a new courthouse in 1977. The 1914 Nueces County Courthouse now sits abandoned,its turn-of-the-century architecture crumbling


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April 2016  
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