January 2022

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Hoopla January 2022

Inside:

Free

Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

Seniors from • Weatherford • Azle • Fort Worth • Willow Park • Arlington • Crowley

David Holcombe Photography


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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

January 2022

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UNIVERSITY OF NORTH TEXAS LIBRARIES, THE PORTAL TO TEXAS HISTORY, CREDITING WEATHERFORD COLLEGE.

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Hoopla January 2022

Volume 6, Issue 1

© 2022 Hoopla. All rights reserved. Hoopla, published monthly, serves Parker County, Palo Pinto County and Tarrant County. For a complete list of distribution points, go to our website at www.hooplamagazine.com. Home delivery is available for $18 per year. A free e-edition is available at www. hooplamagazine.com. You can contact us at Hoopla, P.O. Box 305, Weatherford, Texas 76086, or at the number below.

817-894-1822

seniors@hooplamagazine.com

Publisher

Cynthia Henry

Contributors

Lara Cook • Rose Jordan • Rick Mauch Mary H. McDow • Dick Wolfsie

Guess Who: Betty White turns 100 in January. She starred in many popular television shows, like The Golden Girls, Hot in Cleveland and The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

Name: _________________________________________________

One of America’s most beloved actresses turns 100 on Jan. 17. To celebrate her special day, 900 theaters will show a film for one day only. This film will highlight her career, which has spanned nearly eight decades and features costars, friends and fans, inPUBLIC DOMAIN cluding Tina Fey, Robert Redford, Clint Eastwood, Morgan Freeman, Jay Leno, Carol Burnett, Craig Ferguson, Jimmy Kimmel, Valerie Bertinelli and James Corden. “Who doesn’t love a party? This one is gonna be great!” said the actress. Unsure which actress will be celebrated on Jan. 17? Her name is revealed below the Hoopla masthead.

P


January 2022

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

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Resolve to have fun... making a difference CINDY PETERS

Taps ‘n Tunes members at a recent Christmas performance are (front row, left to right) Fran Burns, Cecilia Van Donselaar, Director Frances Lea, Dorothy Conway, and Stacey Kirch. Pictured on the back row (left to right) are Debbie Ulrickson, Roberta Womack, Terry Alvarado, and Theresa Vella

Performance groups provide joy, inspiration and memories by Rick Mauch Hoopla Correspondent

dance to is typically from previous decades – songs our audience will relate to,” said Fran Burns, commuIf you’re like many, the pandemic has nications officer for Taps ‘n Tunes. left you sluggish and lonely. Well, it’s “We normally see a lot of smiles time to get those joints back in motion because the music brings back memories and lifts spirits. We stay after and make new friends by joining a performance group in your area. our final bows to greet our audience, Groups like Taps ‘n Tunes include and some tell us of their experiences active seniors who enjoy making new dancing as kids. Because many of us friends, dancing and singing while proare seniors ourselves, we hope this inspires audience members to get up viding a valuable community service. and have fun.” The organization was started in While the group started by Tex 1985 by late vaudeville entertainer (who passed away last July at age 99) Clyde “Tex” Eddleman under the comwas composed mostly of professionpany name of Tex’s Tip Top Tappers. COURTESY als, the current group is all volunA few years later, after Tex retired, Pictured from left, members Marty Koons, Roberta Womack, Debbie Ulrickson, teers, something that began with Annette Marsh took over as director, Cecelia Van Donselaar and Fran Burns have fun wherever they perform. Marsh. changed the name and built the group “Change had to happen. Tex’s Tip Top Tappers intended to preserve muinto a band of singers and dancers with a mission of performing for milisical comedy and dance. Our group, as a nonprofit founded in 1989, protary veterans and personnel, along with entertaining seniors of local comvides what we feel is an important service to the community,” Burns said, munities. adding that there is no charge for their performances. Along with entertaining, the group provides much-needed help for seMarsh retired in 2005, at which point Frances Lea became the artistic niors coping with isolation issues. See DANCE, P. 4 “We perform at senior centers and senior care facilities. The music we


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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

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director, who previously had a successful career on Broadway. With her family having a strong military history, she was excited to join the group’s mission. “I am honored to be working with Taps ‘n Tunes and the Dancing Dames,” Lea said. “My dad fought in WWII and my son in Iraq. Performing for the seniors and veterans is a special privilege.” The current group has 14 dancers and five singers ranging in age from their 40s to 80s. Prior to COVID-19, they performed approximately 15 to 20 times during a typical year. However, Burns said there were several months during 2020 when they didn’t even get to practice. “We began practicing again in summer of 2021 and hit the road again in October of this year. As of the end of December 2021, we will have performed nine times,” she said. The group produced a Veterans Day Show annually pre-pandemic. The most recent show was in 2019, their eighth year for the event. The last few years it was presented at the Hurst Conference Center with two performances during each Veterans Day. Burns described it as a USO-style show with lots of military music meant to honor veterans.

January 2022

They also performed the show in front of a hanger at the Vintage Flying Museum in Fort Worth one year. Among their biggest highlights throughout the years, the group has appeared on the local ABC TV affiliate WFAA Channel 8, along with performing at the Scott Theater, Will Rogers Theater, onstage at Klyde Warren Park, and countless senior centers, assisted living facilities and at community events. “For me personally, this group has been an incredible part of my life. I have gotten to know a wonderful group of ladies and have been inspired by the very people we perform for,” said group member Cindy Peters, who is also on the board of directors. “I only started my dance journey COURTESY at the age of 44. Some of our dancers The Klassy Kloggers are offering free classes to beginners interested in clogging. have been dancing since they were children. I love to volunteer my time “I feel very privileged to be part of KLASSY KLOGGERS and am grateful for all the amazthis group of entertainers who have Another performance group, the ing experiences I’ve had with this become dear friends. Not only does Klassy Kloggers out of Parker Coungroup/organization.” Along with entertaining veterans, practicing and performing keep me off ty, also entertains at community the couch, dancing is an enjoyable functions and senior facilities. Even the group holds a flag ceremony way to offer community service.” if you’ve never danced before, inwith a presentation of flags in time Joining the group is a special structor Shirley Anderson will teach with the anthems of each branch of you the steps to become a member service. Audience members stand as privilege. Dancers are typically invited to join or are referred. Howof the performance group. Beginner their service anthem is played. ever, those interested should attend clogging lessons start Monday, Jan. “Some cheer, while others tear a practice any Sunday from 2:30 to 3 at 5:45 p.m. at the Harberger Hill up. It’s very moving for us and for 4 p.m. at Frances Lea Dance Center Community Center, located at 701 them,” Burns said. “I think it’s safe Narrow Street in Weatherford. For to say that we get as much as our au- in Crowley. For more information, contact Burns 817-715-7066. more information, contact Anderdiences out of what we do. It keeps son at 254-246-1972. us moving and inspired.

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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

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n Live Theatre Picks

THE ODD COUPLE

Granbury Opera House 133 E. Pearl Street, Granbury Ticket Info: 817-579-0952 Tentative Dates: Jan. 28 - Feb. 13 Synopsis: This classic comedy by Neil Simon opens as a group of the guys assemble for cards in the apartment of divorced Oscar Madison. And if the mess is any indication, it’s no wonder that his wife left him. Late to arrive is Felix Unger, who has just been separated from his wife. Fastidious, depressed, and none too tense, Felix seems suicidal, but as the action unfolds, Oscar becomes the one with murder on his mind when the clean freak and the slob ultimately decide to room together with hilarious results as The Odd Couple is born.

DYLAN ON DYLAN

Casa Manana 3101 W Lancaster Ave., Fort Worth Ticket Info: 817-332-2272 Tentative Dates: Feb. 15-19 Synopsis: Jared Weiss takes you on a musical journey through Dylan’s early Greenwich Village days to his seminal mid-70’s Rolling Thunder Revue Tour. Join us in the Reid Cabaret Theatre as Jared takes us through a mix of the classics such as Mr. Tambourine Man, The Times They Are a Changin’, Like a Rolling Stone and deep cuts from one of the greatest songwriters of all time.

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

Crossword ACROSS 1 Support piece 6 Seafood choice 10 Surgery souvenir 14 Baseball's Hank 15 Place to wait 16 Drug bust qty. 17 Burn unit procedures 19 Look ___ (study) 20 Whiplash preventer 21 Two-seater 23 Klutz's cry 24 School notebooks 25 Thinly spread 28 It's tossed after a wedding 29 Alley prowler 30 "It pains me to say...." 32 Unsavory 35 Voting "no" 37 ____ and true 39 Court action 40 Taqueria side 42 Elba of "The Suicide Squad" 44 Barrister's field 45 Get some air 47 Shock big-time 49 Investment choice 51 Train for a bout 52 Mourn 53 TV series "____ Horror Story" 57 Kind of mitt 58 Flashbulb effect 60 Ranch worker 61 In the 50s, say

January 2022

by Margie E. Burke

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Copyright 2022 by The Puzzle Syndicate

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Emphatic refusal Quartet member Set aside Miser's motivation

DOWN 1 Quite a party 2 Yard tool 3 Opera feature 4 Vulture cousin 5 Captivate 6 Graduating group 7 Falling out 8 Crumb carrier 9 "Tribes" anagram; rouse

10 Superficial, as beauty 11 Fairy-tale ball attendee 12 Do a tailor's job 13 Hotelier's offerings 18 Echo 22 Kitchen pests 24 Aspirin brand 25 Wound remnant 26 Glazier's unit 27 Something achieved 28 Move smoothly 31 Sarcastically (var.) 33 Bargain

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Small boat Insinuation Nursery need Tibia locale Not wasteful Lash out at Painter's prep Kapolei greeting Part of U.S.N.A. Troutlike fish Resting on Bat's home "The African Queen" screenwriter 56 Social misfit 59 Enemy


January 2022

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better 7

Medicare recipients urged to get COVID-19 vaccine booster shot As part of the Biden-Harris adminceive a letter encouraging them to get istration’s ongoing efforts to ensure their COVID-19 vaccine booster as that Americans are vaccinated against soon as possible. COVID-19 and to reduce stress across • Conducting campaigns and paid the nation’s health care system, the advertising. Centers for Medicare • Including 1-800 & Medicaid Services MEDICARE reminders: Approximately (CMS) is encouraging two million people those with Medicare call 1-800-MEDICARE who are fully vacciTaraLynn Hickman nated to get a booster Benefits Specialist each month. They will dose of the COVID-19 hear a reminder to get vaccine. Data shows that a COVID-19 their COVID-19 boosters at the beginvaccine booster does increase immune ning of their call. • Including a message in Medicare response, which improves protection Summary Notices: For people with against COVID-19. original Medicare, CMS will include CMS is doing the following to encourage those with Medicare to get a COVID-19 booster message in their fully vaccinated and get their booster Medicare Summary Notice (the explanation of benefits people receive when dose: a claim is filed) over the next several • Sending a letter to people with months. Medicare: All of the 63 million people • Sending email reminders: CMS who currently have Medicare will re-

Medicare Spotlight

will send COVID-19 vaccine booster reminder emails to the more than 14 million people that receive Medicare emails. • Delivering consistent communication via social media: The @MedicareGov Twitter handle will continue to tweet about the importance of COVID-19 vaccine boosters. • Engaging local and national partners: CMS is contacting more than 500 organizations, with a potential reach of more than five million members, and supplying them resources from Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The agency is also offering webinars to allow partners to interact with experts on encouraging COVID-19 vaccination. • Conducting outreach to health plans: CMS and CDC are continuing their outreach to health plans to help

them understand best practices for encouraging COVID-19 vaccinations and parameters for coverage of COVID-19 vaccines and boosters. • Conducting outreach to nursing homes. • Conducting media outreach: CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure and other CMS leaders are encouraging COVID-19 boosters as part of their Medicare open enrollment outreach. People with Medicare pay nothing when they get the booster and there is no applicable copayment, coinsurance, or deductible. In addition, thanks to the American Rescue Plan (ARP), nearly all Medicaid and CHIP beneficiaries must receive coverage of COVID-19 vaccines and boosters without cost-sharing. People can visit vaccines.gov (English) or vacunas.gov (Spanish) to search for vaccines nearby.

GET ANSWERS TO YOUR MEDICARE QUESTIONS Call TaraLynn Hickman 972-741-0442

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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

January 2022

COURTESY

Kriss Meeker (pictured below) led this group of Azle students in a Garver Engineering Challenge against 100 schools in Texas. They won by building a Rube Goldberg machine that shot off a bottle rocket in the end.

Full STEAM ahead Azle ISD’s Meeker finds her niche in education

by Rick Mauch Hoopla Correspondent

COURTESY

There is a difference between a career and a calling. Kriss Meeker was in a career for many years. She answered her call-

to be all along – with the rest of her children. “I love teaching because I love kids. I love when they have their ‘I Get It’ moments, and I love building relationships with kids in order to hopefully make a difference in their

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lives,” said Meeker, who teaches fundamentals of computer science and principals of art, audio/video technology communications at Azle Junior High. “I am a people person, and in this career, I build relationships in my class, but it continues far beyond these four walls. I remain in contact with many of my students. I am seeing them begin careers, get married, and have their own children. It is so much fun watching them grow up.” This is her ninth year teaching in Azle. She previously spent six years in the Castleberry ISD and started her teaching career in Poolville. “I have a great experience in education, and have been lucky to see kids from a lot of perspectives,” she said. Her career has included, of course, time in the classroom, teaching core subjects, she is now elective classes to eighth-graders in which they will receive high school credit, she has headed science departments, and she’s even driven a bus route. She retired from coaching four years ago, but returned this year as the coordinator of the junior high girls’ athletic program. “One of my passions is to develop new, young leaders. I think a strong leader brings up hardworking, resilient leaders under them. That has always been my goal,” she said. Originally from North Richland Hills, Meeker worked in the music business as a publicist, in television, and she wrote and produced radio commercials before going into education. “There are times I do miss the entertainment industry. I miss attending some of the events I got to participate in. I miss the writing part of my job,” she reminisced. “I am not one to sit still, and there was always something going on in radio, TV, and even in the music industry. I miss the excitement. I don’t miss the hours I put in most days.” The highlight of her previous career, she said, was working on a live TV show.

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better 9

“We had to stay on our toes, and we were able to rotate jobs, which was a great experience,” she said. Now, it is the teaching experience that gives her the biggest thrills – except for one. Well, seven, to be exact. When she’s not teaching, she can usually be found with at least one of her seven grandkids playing or just hanging out. “Grandkids have changed my life. I absolutely love them. I get down on the floor and play with them. We build forts, play superheroes, Barbies, monster trucks, Hot Wheels, fire trucks, and pull-back cars. My heart skips a beat every time I get to spend time with any of my grandkids,” she said. “I have a very diverse group, too. I have one multi-racial granddaughter, one black granddaughter (adopted), two granddaughters, and I have only one boy. I also have a pair of twin girls.I am loving watching them grow and develop.” You might also find her in her front or back yard tending to her flowers, something she started doing when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. “It has been very relaxing and challenging for me. It has been a way of escaping the stress of the everyday world. And, an outdoor project my grandkids love to help me with,” she said. As for how long Meeker plans to continue to teach, she does have a timeline. It is not soon, however. After all, why leave something she loves so much? “I am planning on continuing to coach and teach until my oldest granddaughter starts middle school. She is in 1st grade this year,” Meeker said. “I want to be able to go watch her play sports, and that means I will have to give up coaching. So, my plan is to spend five more years teaching/ coaching.” But even then… “I will immediately get on sub lists in schools around the Weatherford area. I want to stay in education as long as I can,” she said.


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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

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January 2022

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January 2022

Hoopla: News and Entertainment for Parker County Adults 55+

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SUDOKU nDifficulty: Sudoku (Puzzle solution is on P. 19) Easy

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6 PUBLIC DOMAIN

VIP guests Amon Carter screws a dedication plate onto the nose of a B-24 plane in 1942 at Lockheed Martin. Standing behind him is Ben E. Keith. Keith was the first salesman for Harkrider-Morrison Company, which originally made beer deliveries by horse and buggy. Orders were taken on Big Chief tablets. Keith became junior partner and steered the company from its humble beginnings into one of the largest food and beverage distributors in the country. Carter was created and publisher of The Fort Worth Star Telegram.

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Bob White, Daughter Anita White & Grandson Zack Bellenger

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Funeral Home

Our family serving Solution to Sudoku: your since 4 family 7 8 2 3 1 6 1908 5 9 5 1 9 8 7 6 3 4 2 2 6 3• Full-service 5 9 4 7 Funeral 8 1 Home 6 2 4• Pre-need 1 8 7 Plans 9 3 5 3 8 7• Cremation 6 5 9 2Services 1 4 Azle • Springtown Wells 9 5 1 4• Weatherford 2 3 8 7• Mineral 6 1817-596-4811 4 2 3• www.whitesfuneral.com 6 8 5 9 7 8 9 6 7 1 5 4 2 3

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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

January 2022

My sitting habits have finally come to roost Mary Ellen and I have a standing ticed. After we left, she said she was argument — literally, a standing argu- worried. ment. She claims that the first thing “When I saw you do that, I thought, I do when I enter a room is sit down. ‘oh, dear, frail and 100 years old.’” “That makes you seem old,” she said, “Well, that’s pretty mean, Mary Ellen.” “and I know you are concerned about “No, Dick. Not you. not portraying that The chair was a hunimage.” Which surprised me, because I dred years old. We always thought it was were in an antique by Dick Wolfsie my wrinkly skin and store.” Humorist balding pate that led The irony of all this to that assessment. is that sometimes I “For example,” she said, “when we stand when I should sit. I never sit went to Bob and Cathy’s for Thankswhen I eat lunch; I stand over the giving, you sat down as soon as we kitchen sink and snarf down a sandwich. Who has time to walk all the walked in the house, while everyone way to the table? Sometimes I don’t else was chatting in the front hall.” even make it to the counter; I just nib“I wasn’t feeling well and I don’t ble my way from shelf to shelf in the think it’s fair to count the bathroom.” fridge. I only do this when Mary Ellen Recently, we were shopping, and is away from home, but when she gets as soon as we walked in a quaint little back it’s hard to explain mustard and boutique, I sat down. Mary Ellen no-

Carry On

ketchup droppings in the vegetable bin. I became very obsessive about this standing/sitting thing. I didn’t want Mary Ellen to see me as the “older” man she married, so I checked with her everywhere we went. “Can I sit here?” I asked one evening. “Yes, Dick, you can sit there. We’re in a restaurant.” That weekend I was still on alert. Maybe overly so. “Are you going to stand all evening?” Mary Ellen asked me. “I don’t want you to think I look elderly if I sit down too soon.” “Dick, no one will recognize you. It’s dark in this theater.” To make me even more paranoid, I was constantly reminded that my Apple Watch tracks my movements. And I was not doing very well. Every once

in a while, the dial lights up to report how much time I’ve spent standing versus sitting. Apparently, to pass Apple standards, you need to “stand and move at least one minute 12 different hours in the day for a week.” I had to read that directive several times to understand it. Like when my pill jar says: Take two tablets three times a day with or without food. Huh? What? By the way, you can find all kinds of advice online about how to cheat the watch. Yes, people actually do this. One guy admitted flapping his arms like a bird before he went to bed because he discovered it fools the watch when it registers your standing time. I tried that one night so I could show Mary Ellen on my watch that I had made some improvement. She caught me flapping. Now she no longer tells me not to sit: she tells me not to roost.

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January 2022

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

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Should inflation affect your investment moves? As you know, inflation heated up in them at any time.) 2021, following years of pretty stable – Apart from stocks, how can inflaand low – numbers. And now, early in tion affect other types of investments? 2022, we’re still seeing elevated prices. As Think about bonds. When you invest in a consumer, you may need to adjust your a bond, you receive regular interest payactivities somewhat, but as an investor, ments until the bond matures. But these how should you respond to inflation? payments stay the same, so, over time, First, it helps to know the causes of rising inflation can eat into your bond’s this recent inflationary spike. Essenfuture income, which may also cause the tially, it’s a case of price of your bond basic economics to drop – a concern – strong demand if you decide to sell for goods meeting the bond before it inadequate supply, matures. The impact caused by material by Mary H. McDow of inflation is espeand labor shortages, Edward Jones Adviser cially sharp on the along with shipping price of longer-term and delivery logjams. In other words, bonds because of the cumulative loss of too many dollars chasing too few goods. purchasing power. Once the supply chain issues begin to However, Treasury Inflation-Protectease and consumer spending moves ed Securities (TIPS) can provide some from goods to services as the COVID-19 protection against inflation. The face pandemic wanes, it’s likely that inflation will moderate, but it may still stay above value, or principal amount, of each TIPS is $1,000, but this principal is adjusted pre-pandemic levels throughout 2022. based on changes in the U.S. Consumer Given this outlook, you may want to Price Index. So, during periods of inflareview your investment portfolio. First, tion, your principal will increase, also inconsider stocks. Generally speaking, creasing your interest payments. When stocks can do well in inflationary periinflation drops, though, your principal ods because companies’ revenues and and interest payments will decrease, but earnings may increase along with inflayou’ll never receive less than the original tion. But some sectors of the stock marprincipal value when the TIPS mature. ket typically do better than others durTalk to your financial advisor to detering inflationary times. Companies that mine if TIPS may be appropriate for you. can pass along higher costs to consumUltimately, inflation may indeed be ers due to strong demand for their goods something to consider when manag– such as firms that produce building ing your investments. But other factors materials or supply steel or other com– especially your risk tolerance, time modities to other businesses – can do horizon and long-term goals – should well. Conversely, companies that sell still be the driving force behind your innonessential goods and services, such as appliances, athletic apparel and envestment decisions. A solid investment tertainment, may struggle more when strategy can serve you well, regardless of prices are rising. whether prices move up or down. Of course, it’s still a good idea to own a variety of stocks from various industries because it can help reduce the impact of market volatility on any one sector. And to help counteract the effects of rising prices, you might also consider investing in companies that have a long track This article was written by Edward record of paying and raising stock diviJones for use by your local Edward dends. (Keep in mind, though, that these Jones Financial Adviser, Mary H. companies are not obligated to pay divi- McDow, 102 Houston Ave., Suite 203, dends and can reduce or discontinue 817-598-0882. Member SPIC

Money Matters


14

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

January 2022

Football is in the West family’s blood

When it comes to football, Syntha West of Willow Park is the matriach of a Texas football dynasty. “If there’s football on, we’re watching it,” said the 83 year old, referring to her family, who is rooting for the Kansas City Chiefs because of a past family relationship with quarterback Patrick Mahomes. As daughter of a superintendent, Syntha began marching with a shiny new baton with Gladewater High School Band at the age 4 and twirled for the next seven decades. Syntha, who is now a member of the Baylor Golden Wave Band and Majorettes “Golden Girls” Alumni Band, met Royce West in 1957 after he had completed his freshman football season at Baylor University in Waco. He approached her at an open house at her dormitory. “Here he walked in the door, he had a black cowboy hat and blue jeans, and oh my goodness, he was handsome,” said Syntha. “I knew within an hour, this was the boy I was going to marry.” Nearly four years to the day, the two tied the knot. Royce West was all-state football and played in back-to-back state championships with a 35-game winning streak under the legendary late Coach Gordon Wood. After high school graduation, he was invited to participate in the Greenbelt Bowl and was awarded the Outstanding Lineman Trophy. While furthering his education at Baylor, he played football all four years. The team traveled to the Gator Bowl his senior year and Syntha, the head twirler in the Baylor Golden Wave Band, marched on the field. Upon receiving his degree, Royce was drafted by the American Football League to the Denver Broncos professional football team, where he played one year. He and Syntha married following the 1960 season and returned to

Texas, where he coached high school football and two years at the East Texas State University in Commerce – they won the Lone Star Conference. He coached a total of 36 years. Just before his death in 2019, the town of Kerens honored him for 50 years of coaching. “Royce knew from the moment he began football that he wanted to emulate his high school coach, Gordon Wood,” said Syntha. “He watched Coach Wood mold boys into men with integrity and character.” Royce and Syntha had two sons, Rock and Royal, who continued the family’s winning traditions, both receiving all-district and all-state honors in their chosen sports at Winona High School, where Royce coached and Syntha was the school counselor. Both sons went on to play football for Texas Christian University. “I knew being a high school counselor how important names were. Rock and Royal were definitely planned. We waited 8 years on purpose. They came exactly when we’d hoped. The greatest joys I experience now are being with my sons, my dear daughters-in-law April and Thelma, and my six grandsons that I call ‘The Precious Ones.’ The hugs and verbal affirmations they give Mimi make life mountaintop experiences.” Syntha’s 14-year-old grandson, Xander, participates in football and track at Aledo Middle School. Rock recently coached his 10-yearold son, Jett, and teammates to winning the Fourth Grade Aledo 7-on-7 Football Championship. Her grandson Colton has played quarterback on the Eaton High School Junior Varsity Football Teams his sophomore and junior years and anticipates playing his senior year. The family gathered on Christmas to celebrate and watch tapes of the late Royce West’s 1955 and 1956 championship games.

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Syntha West with her sons Rock (left) and Royal (right).

Thank you, Parker County! Honored As

Business of the Year by East Parker County Chamber of Commerce

8

$

Pork Sandwich

50 + Tax

plus Chips and 16 oz. drink (Regularly over $10)

When it comes to BBQ, there’s a new legend in town! 1921 South Main Street Weatherford

Valid thru Feb. 28, 2022 at Baker’s Ribs Weatherford, Texas

817-599-3907 www.bakersribs.com

Make your next party a success!


January 2022

Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better 15

n Artist Profile

‘Antiquing,’ watercolor by Bill Dale

Dale’s adventures in art started early on Bill Dale of Arlington, 78, began his art training as a kid with his mother, a fashion illustrator in the 1950s and 1960s. From her, he received valuable support, training and criticism. After graduating from the University of Kansas with a degree in Industrial Design, he spent most of his career specializing in exterior and interior styling, color, graphics, and illustration of aircraft and other transportation products. But for the last couple of years, Bill has worked to improve his watercolor skills. “Watercolor is spontaneous and alive,” he said. “It does a lot of the work for you,” said Bill. “The paint has a mind of its own as it moves, granulates and diffuses before drying. Very difficult to get the results you want but when it happens it’s amazing.” Bill often paints landscape/ cityscape subjects but has recently

moved into more figurative work and portraits. He’s had some recent success in local competitions and has been accepted into several Bill Dale shows. For those considering the a new hobby, Bill says, “It’s never too late to begin any form of art. It doesn’t matter if you are not very good. The more you do the better you will get. Watercolor painting is an especially good activity as there is a lot of teaching and support available with the many watercolor societies in the DFW and neighboring areas. These groups offer monthly live meetings with demos by accomplished artists. Don’t be shy. Most of the folks that attend are just beginning like you.”


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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

January 2022

Carrying the ball for God

COURTESY

Curtis Jeffersons’ faith in Christ led him to start New Hope Baptist Church in 1987. His entire family helps in leading the congregation.

Jeffersons have skills on the field and purpose in Weatherford by Rick Mauch Hoopla Correspondent For Curtis Jefferson and his son, Doug, reaching the end zone was only the start of achieving their true purpose in life. As young men both had the opportunity to pursue a career in professional football as running backs, and both were given a real chance to live that dream. However, a higher calling led them to where they are now, Curtis as lead pastor and Doug as the music minister at New Hope Baptist Church, which Curtis started in 1987. “I tried out for the Washington Redskins, but was released. I was asked to go and try out for the Chica-

go Bears, but I decided to come back home because my youngest son, Patrick, was about to be born,” Curtis recalled. “So, I retired the thought of playing football, and several years later I received the call from God to begin preaching the gospel. “It was a fun and exciting time – a dream come true for a young man,” Curtis reminiscing about his short pro career. “I was able to experience something that few people get to experience. I saw famous athletes and had a chance to travel. Having people watch you practice was exciting as well.” Curtis ministered even as he worked for Gulf (now Chevron). He’s long since retired from that business, but his preaching has continued on for many years.

Son Doug played briefly with the San Diego Chargers in 1985, seeing action in three preseason games against the Los Angeles Rams, Cleveland Browns and the locally beloved Dallas Cowboys. Though exciting, like his dad, it just wasn’t the life for him. “The experience was amazing. It gave me the opportunity to experience California and to see how experiences and money can change, define, and conform you if you allow them to,” he said. “This experience along with college, family, but more importantly my faith in Christ have guided me to make decisions that have been true blessings. “The Lord is amazing because He has never once failed me. I was told by a Christian lady that, ‘God allowed me to experience playing football for a little


January 2022

Hoopla: News and Entertainment for Parker County Adults 55+

bit, but He had a higher calling for me, and that was to be a witness and use my talents to be a light for Him.’ These words helped me look at being released from the team in a totally new perspective.” So Doug returned to Stephen F. Austin University, finished his studies, and, like his dad, got involved in New Hope. He is also the associate dean of student development for Weatherford College. For years he was music director at New Hope, and in 2004 he was ordained as minister of music. Along with being a great athlete, Doug is also a self-taught piano player. No surprise, it is connected to his love of church and growing up in that environment. “I used to play on tables, heaters, and anything pretending that they were a piano. My parents bought a piano for me around 12 years old. I really did not begin playing until I was 14 years old,” he reflected. “I took enough lessons just to learn notes, etc. My mom also showed me a few things, but the majority of playing has been directly from God and listening to others play. “It is nice to be able to hear a song and then play it. At this time, my relaxation strategies are playing the keyboard and family time, especially my new little great-niece, Olivia. Spending time with her is good medicine for me on stressful days.” Doug loves to boast of his father, and there is plenty to brag about. Before he got a shot in the NFL, Curtis was making history in the college ranks at Navarro. Doug said that was inspiring to both him. “He not only tried out for the Washington Redskins ( former name), he was a good basketball player. He was probably the first black athlete to play basketball at Navarro Junior College. He received a basketball scholarship,” Doug said. “He also played on a semi-pro team in Dallas. “His tenacity and faith in God has been very encouraging to my siblings and me. Even though he and my mother (Sarah Jefferson) attended college and did not complete a college degree, they pushed

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New Hope Baptist Church

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COURTESY

Patrick, Curtis and Doug Jefferson of New Hope Baptist Church in Weatherford. all four of their children to complete a college degree, and by the grace of God, we did. Pastor Jefferson is grateful to have his family serve with him at the church. We are grateful to be a part of this wonderful church family and ministry in which the Lord ordained.” But, alas, Curtis’ real mission in life was starting New Hope. Any time he tells the story of its beginnings, he beams with pride knowing he is a part of something that has been changing lives for over three decades. “One of our dearly beloved members, Cassie Chavers, had a vision about a new church in town. She, other invested people, and I met and the vision became a reality as I became the first and founding pastor of the New Hope Baptist Church of Weatherford, Texas,” he said. Now, the Jeffersons have made New Hope a family thing. Doug’s brother Patrick is also an ordained minister and gifted musician/singer. “Working alongside my dad and brother in the ministry has been a great experience. We have a great chemistry and understanding of each other. Most of all, we each understand that our goal and mission is to do the work of the Lord,” Patrick said. Patrick played football until his freshman year of high school, but focused more on basketball. He played that sport at Weatherford College. But, like his dad and brother, his true calling was at New Hope. “This longevity of the church is credited to Pastor (Curtis) Jefferson being a humble man and following the will of God. while caring for each member of the congregation,” he said. Patrick plays multiple instruments, including keyboard, drums, and bass guitar. He taught himself how to play all of these instruments, with a little help from Doug on the keyboard. Also, Sarah, their daughters Paula and Darla, grandchildren Nicole (and her husband Zach) and Anna and great granddaughter Oliva were or are current members of the NHBC choir.

There have been many challenges along the pathway as Curtis and New Hope have grown. He lost his daughter Darla to cancer, his wife to a stroke, and Curtis himself fought back from a bout with cancer – with God’s help, he is quick to point out. “After the passing of my daughter and then my wife, and being healed from cancer, I was strengthened by the grace of God’s power. His spirit gave me the strength to eulogize both of them and continue this life by trusting in Jesus,” Curtis said. “Job, in the Old Testament, had trials and God saw him through, and I know that He (the Lord) will do the same for me and those who put their trust in Jesus. His grace is sufficient.” Doug called Curtis a “walking miracle.” “As with all other families, we have had some trying times, which have given us opportunities to show our love, faith, and commitment to God and love for our family. Yes, this was a scary time, but watching him and his faith in God has been amazing,” Doug said. Both Doug and Curtis agree their time in professional sports, though short, helped prepare them for the life they now lead. “The experience definitely helped build my character. It also assisted with the knowledge to know that God and family are very important to me,” Curtis said. To which Doug added, “Playing sports opened my eyes to the importance of social and individual responsibilities. It also taught me how to be a team player and work responsibly with a team and with colleagues. People are watching you all the time. Whether you want to accept it or not, you become a role model – whether good or not so good. “It also taught me how and when to lead and how and when to follow. The Lord has blessed me to serve in the ministry at New Hope for 34 and a half years and also to serve at Weatherford College for 30 years. Endurance and faith are so important. These two wonderful ministries have provided growth and endurance for me.”


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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

Life in Grace

by Lara Cook North Side Baptist Church

A bright light on a dirt road In the Bible, Saul of Tarsus was a horrible man. He hated God and Christians, and made it his life purpose to persecute and kill Christians. His reputation preceded him and everyone knew who he was and what he stood for. Once he was on his way to Damascus to find believers so he could arrest them and bring them to Jerusalem. As he traveled down that dirt road to Damascus, he, and the men travelling with him, were suddenly blinded by a bright light. It knocked Saul right to the ground, as he heard a voice saying… “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And He said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.” Acts 9:4-5 Then the voice told Saul to get up and go into the city where he would be told what to do next. Saul got up, still blinded, and his friends led him into Damascus. For the next three days, he was blind and didn’t eat or drink. When his eyes were opened, he was a changed man. He became a zealous witness for the Lord. When God wants to get our attention, He takes whatever measures necessary! If the amazing love and mercy of God can forgive and look past the horrible sins of a man who murdered and persecuted His servants, I know He can look past our sins and make us new. Sometimes it takes the blinding light of the Savior to get us focused only on Him. Even though we know better, sometimes we get so covered up with wrong that we cannot turn ourselves in his direction, just like Saul. God knows this about us and will give us

the opportunity to do it ourselves, but when He needs to, He will rescue us. For Saul, it took a blinding experience that knocked him to his knees and kept him down for three days. When God changed Saul, He changed his name to Paul. Many Bible scholars say that God changed his name when he changed his heart. A name change is a sign that something is different, that something new has happened or will happen. God calls us to not only confess our sin, but to

turn away from it. God changing Saul’s name to Paul is a perfect example of how we also are a whole new creation in Christ when we are saved. Unfortunately, sin also changes our name. It changes our name to things like liar, cheater, addict, thief, murderer, adulterer, etc. Unfortunately, Satan still whispers these in our ear, even after God changes us. Sin makes us into something we don’t want to be and takes us across lines to compromise values that we never thought we would

January 2022

waver on. It takes us deep into the thick, miry clay. But even there, God can reach us and pull us out completely, and blind us with His great conviction laced with mercy and love. This is the character of our God: He redeems, He rebuilds, He renames. As He disciplines, He also restores. Praise God no one is ever too far gone for the reach of His restoration! Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2 Corinthians 5:17


January 2022

Hoopla: News and Entertainment for Parker County Adults 55+

19

Find the frog, SUDOKU win a prize

Difficulty: Easy

2

1 6

Frances Ribble of Weatherford found him. Did you? Last month, the frog was hiding in the Knight Propane ad on P. 12. Enter this month’s contest by submitting your name, mailing address, email address (if possible), phone number, and a brief description of where you find the hidden frog (not the frog below) to Hoopla, P.O. Box 305, Weatherford, Texas 76086 or e-mail seniors@hooplamagazine.com. Contestants will receive a free e-subscription to Hoopla and will be entered into a drawing for a $20 gift card to Baker’s Ribs in Weatherford. Make sure you pick up next month’s issue to see if you’ve won! Winners must contact Hoopla within 90 days to claim their prize.

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Solution to Crossword:

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Solution to Sudoku:

4 5 2 6 3 9 1 8 7 www.nowmagazines.com

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WeatherfordNOW July 2021

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Hoopla: Spotlighting North Texans 50 And Better

January 2022


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