Lifestyle

Thu
26
Sep

"Reel Reviews: ‘Downton Abbey’ geared towards fans of the series than newcomers" by: Jessica Shepard

   Last week, the Boys and Girls Club held its annual red carpet fundraiser featuring “Downton Abbey” in its debut weekend.
   I have to admit that I’ve never seen more than a few episodes of the famed TV series during its six-season run that ended in 2015.
   But, not only was it a new release, it was also a fundraiser, so I attended and found myself quickly lost in British humor and a family of characters I had no point of reference for.
   In fact, it’s much better suited to fans of the series or someone more invested in it than I am.
   Still, I had a few good laughs and enjoyed it as an overall historical fiction period piece.
   Downton Abbey is rated PG for thematic elements, some suggestive material, and language and has earned over $72.2 million while taking over box offices worldwide.

Thu
26
Sep

Boys & Girls Club hosts red carpet fundraiser

Sentinel photo/Jessica Shepard
The Boys & Club of Bay City and Matagorda County annual red carpet fundraiser was centered about the newly released movie “Downton Abbey” at SBG Thursday, Sept. 19. Those attending enjoyed hors de ouvres, a roast beef dinner and a chance to win many silent auction items.

Thu
26
Sep

"Museum hosts Gourmet Guys Saturday" by: Jessica Shepard

   The Matagorda County Museum hosts its annual “Gourmet Guys” fundraiser from 7-9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28 at the Bay City Civic Center.
   Happy Hour is from 6-7 p.m. with tasting to follow after.
   Tickets are $40 per person available in advance and at the door.
   This year’s theme is “A Taste Trip through South America.”
   “This year’s theme was chosen because we had never done South American before,” said Matagorda County Museum Director Barbara Smith.
   “The committee will pick next year’s theme and announce it Saturday night.”
   Smith added that this was the 15th year for the annual fundraiser.
   “However, this is the first time we’ve had it at the Civic Center,” she added.

Thu
26
Sep

"BCISD considers upcoming strategy session" by: Jessica Shepard

   Bay City ISD trustees heard a presentation from engage2learn executive facilitator Dr. Stephen Waddell for the district’s new strategic planning during a workshop, Sept. 23.
   “Our program focuses on beliefs first,” said Waddell.
   “We look for shared beliefs and goals in the community and gear our strategy in the same direction of those goals.”
   The first step seeks to “engage students, parents, teachers, administrators and community members in a dialogue session.”
   “This dialogue leads to the creation of strong systems that support the shift from teaching to learning and the strategic abandonment of programs and systems that no longer serve learners,” he said.
   “There are three major areas of this process; education summits, focus groups and surveys.”
   Waddell advised board members to include as many diverse voices for the “design team” phase of the project.

Thu
26
Sep

Bay City rebates up 13%

   Bay City’s September sales tax rebates jumped 13% over the rebate for same month last year.
   That 13% increase came from Bay City’s sales tax allocation of $500,157 in September, compared to the $442,316 rebate from September 2018.
   These allocations are based on sales made in July by businesses that report tax monthly.
   For the year, Bay City has received $4,427,093, a 3.9% increase from $4,257,341 the city got in the same period last year.
   Palacios’ September rebate totaled $64,896, a 16% jump from the $55,625 the city got for the same month last year.
   The city’s year-to-date total of $541,718 is 3.9% lower than $560,610 for the same period in 2018.
   Elsewhere in the area, Lake Jackson September rebate was $816,151 a slight 0.45% from a year ago, while Port Lavaca’s $330,899 September rebate was 27% up from last year.

Thu
26
Sep

Flood damage reports sought

   Matagorda County residents affected by the recent flooding from Tropical Storm Imelda are encouraged to report the damage to send photos of it to Matagorda County Emergency Management Coordinator Amanda Campos.
   Governor Greg Abbott declared Matagorda County and several other southeastern Texas counties as a state of emergency from last week’s ferocious Tropical Storm. 
   “To move forward with the cleanup from this event it is very important to notify Emergency Management and/or the City of Bay City,” Campos said.
   “Help us get the information for possible state and federal funds. Please call us a let us know how much damage you received,” she added.
   The Emergency Management (county) phone number is 979-323-0707, and the City of Bay City is 979-323-1659.
   “We really need citizens to reach out and report any damage that the might have received and any photos they might have,” Campos said. 

Thu
19
Sep

"Lodestar proposes $32M rail terminal" by: Mike Reddell

   Matagorda County began the process to consider a tax abatement request from Houston-based Lodestar Energy that’s proposing a $32 million South Texas Rail Terminal near El Maton at commissioners court meeting Monday, Sept. 16.
   The Lodestar transfer station will transfer Gulf Coast oil and gas products from pipelines to rail cars and from the cars to the pipelines.
   The court approved beginning the review process of Lodestar’s tax abatement application and setting a public hearing on Lodestar’s request for a reinvestment zone for tax abatement purposes at 9:45 a.m. Sept. 30.
   Lodestar seeks an abatement of five years – 85 percent in the first two years, and 75%, 50%, and 25%, respectively over the last three years.
   Steven Manchester, president of Manufacturing Future Economies (MFB), told the court Monday that he is the project’s consultant, adding the operation would employ 10 people.

Thu
19
Sep

"Trustees, Scott unhappy with delays" by: Mike Reddell

   Bay City school trustees said they were unhappy Bay City Junior High, Tenie Holmes Elementary and the new Memorial Stadium all are behind schedule.
   Trustees and Superintendent Dr. Marshall Scott III drove home their dissatisfaction about the school bond projects’ progress at the school board’s regular meeting Monday night, Sept. 16.
   Aside from a “politically correct” answer about Memorial Stadium’s construction, Scott asked, “We won’t playing any games there this year.
   “My concern is every single project is coming in late. Sports are important for people.
   “You could have been more honest,” Scott said to Francis Zordilla, an architect with Claycomb Associates Architects.
   Noting the stadium and Tenie Holmes’ delays, Scott said those were “unacceptable as a superintendent and as a community member. 
   “It really bothers me. You don’t overpromise things you are not going to give them,” Scott said.

Thu
19
Sep

VanVleck homecoming

Sentinel photo/Jessica Shepard
This year's Van Vleck High School Homecoming Queen is Morgan Kennedy, center right, with Homecoming King Joshua De La Rosa, center-left. The pair were announced during Van Vleck's Homecoming Game, Friday, Sept. 13. Joining them are VVHS Principal Chris Townsend left, and VVISD Superintendent John O'Brien, right.

Thu
19
Sep

"Van Vleck board updated on school bond projects " by: Jessica Shepard

   Van Vleck ISD trustees received construction updates and approved campus improvement plans districtwide during their monthly meeting, Sept. 16.
   “We’re about 30% complete on high school construction,” said Sofia Dusek, PBK architect project executive.
   “We’re installing mold-proof drywall right now and roof installation is ongoing. Parking lots and paving are still happening and masonry should start going up within the next six weeks.”
   Dusek updated the board on the ag shop as well.
   “The ag building is on schedule and we’ll be ready to move into classrooms and the office on Oct. 1,” she said.
   “The processing room should be ready at the end of October. They’re working on installing tile in there right now.”
   Dusek also told the board that the auditorium renovations were on schedule but the elementary was behind.
   “We’re only behind because of a few rainy days and they’re making good time now,” she added.

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