Thursday, November 23, 2017
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Pine To Palm's Bissillions among top shuffleboarders

20171116 Shuffleboard Bissillions him 3008

Brian Bissillion, of Pine to Palm Resort, takes a shot on one of the new 20 shuffleboard courts at the resort in Welsaco. Brian and his wife Gina are among the top shuffleboarders in South Texas.

Gina and Brian Bissillion haven’t had a chance to find their favorite shuffleboard court at Pine to Palm Resort in Weslaco. Chances are, they won’t.

“We’re more likely to have an unfavorite than a favorite,” joked Gina. “We’re glad though about the new courts here. They’re really nice.”

Pine to Palm Resort renovated its activity area for residents. The park completely removed the 24 shuffleboard courts that had been in place for 40 years and built 20 new shuffleboard courts and two pickleball courts, complete with new lighting, over the summer. Park Manager Gretchen Hovda kept residents informed on the progress through regular emailed newsletters.

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Season of concerts arrives for RGV music groups

20171116 Men of A chord MOERINGMen of A Chord

Bob Lemkuil directs a number during a rehearsal last week of the Magic Valley Men of A-Chord men's chorus at St. Mark United Methodist Church in McAllen. The chorus is made of 40 plus barbershop singers.

The hills are alive with the sounds of music, or in the case of the Rio Grande Valley, it is the South Texas plains that are more alive now with music than at any time of the year as a season of concerts begins.

The musical organizations, ranging from barbershop choruses to symphony orchestras, are populated with lots of Winter Texans along with most of those attending the performances.

Among those preparing for a season of music now is the Magic Valley Chorus (MVC) of the Sweet Adelines International, directed by Sandy Seitz, a full-time Victoria Palms Park resident in Donna, who came to the Valley in 1999 after being part of a chorus for many years in Racine, Wisc. Seitz, who is also an accomplished accordionist since learning at age 9, adds to the educational process by throwing in a little bit of technical music theory during rehearsals.

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Coachman Rally makes Victoria Palms a Destination Rally

20171109 Victoria Palms Halloween contest Coachmen

Approximately 25 Coachman owners participated in a week-long Destination Rally to Victoria Palms to learn more about the things the Rio Grande Valley has to offer. The event was planned by Judi McClellan and her husband, Jack, who have been coachman owners for 45 years.

Judi McClellan, general manager of the Victoria Palms Inn and Suites, and her husband, Jack, have been owners of a Coachman home on wheels for 45 years. Together they have attended more than 200 local, state, national and international Coachman Rallies.

This year, Judi decided to organize a destination rally to Victoria Palms for other Coachman owners who might not know about the Rio Grande Valley. Judi explained that a destination rally is a rally where participants go to one location and try to visit as many of the sights in the area as possible. In the spring Judy planned the rally to Victoria Palms and about 25 residents from other areas of the country decided to participate. They represented Arizona, Illinois, Kansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Connecticut, Ohio and Texas.

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Vet recalls close calls in Vietnam

20171109 DAVE COLEDave Cole, a resident of Texas Trails RV Resort in Pharr, spent four years in Vietnam in the Army's Security Agency. He has lived in the Valley for 16 years.

Dave Cole is a Vietnam War vet who has seen a lot of things to say the least. His story is one of a man who was looking for something – and it wasn't to be an accountant.

Cole is from Grand Island, Neb. In 1966 he had just finished his first year in college and didn't want to go back – the accounting life wasn't something he could see in his future. And he couldn't imagine what he might see in that near future, but a phone call started him on a different path.

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Texas Independence celebrated in San Benito

20170323 Texas Independence Day San Benito MOERING DSC 0819Three high school junior students (from left) Jessica Morales, of San Benito; Gabriela Hernandez, of Harlingen, and Shenika Rosas, of San Benito, had a re-enactment roles as the Texans “weeping women” at the Alamo battle and talked with Victor Rosas, of San Benito, who had charge of the vendors.

History buffs on the field and in the bleachers enjoyed the re-enactment of Texas’ fight for independence during the day-long 10th annual celebration in San Benito on Saturday, March 18.

About 300 spectators, the majority of them Winter Texans, watched three different battles—that of Gonzales, the Alamo and San Jacinto—take place on the field at the Cameron County Fairgrounds.

Chuck and Connie Hall, from Ohio, who are staying at Trophy Gardens in Alamo, had to come twice to finally see the re-enactment. The couple, who are in their second year in the Rio Grande Valley, had come a week earlier only to find it had been cancelled due to heavy rain just prior to the event.

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Canyon Lake Winter Texans help the poor in Nuevo Progreso

20170323 Mabels Building Mission Canyon Lake 001--  Up goes the roof! The final stage of building a house is to put the roof on the newly installed walls of a home for a needy family in Nuevo Progreso, Mexico.

Mabel’s Building Mission, a group of men from Canyon Lake RV Resort in Mission, have now completed their 498th home for poor families living in Nuevo Progreso, Mexico since the program started in 1992. According to Bill Kunzman, a total of 20 houses were built this year. The unusually good weather this year allowed the builders to finish by the third week of February.

The project began in 1992 but it was a direct off-shoot of the work done by Mabel Clare Proudly, who began trying to help the people of Mexico after the disastrous Hurricane Beulah in 1967. Many people were left homeless and many children were orphaned by the storm. Mabel worked to find homes for these children.

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Top News

  • Winter Texans bring Christmas joy to children

    20171123 OPERATION CHRISTMASChristmastime is a time many of us think of others and seek ways to help those in need – those who are less fortunate. So many children go without proper food, shelter and essential medical care every day along the border.

    Read More +

  • Residents enjoy Country Jam at El Valle de la Luna/Del Sol

    20171123 COUNTRY JAM ElValleDelLuna Miller IMG 4232Jim Brommel took a step back from the mic during a musical interlude and cleared his voice. “That's really high,” he said before stepping back up and finishing the song “Old Rugged Cross” to the applause of those in attendance.

    Read More +

  • Swing Street Big Band set for 18th season

    20171122 Swing Street 4514Band leader Bob Comeau plays the alto sax during practice for the Swing Street Big Band. The band performs it's first show of the season from 3 to 5:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 3 at the Texas Theater Ballroom, located at 115 E Newcombe Ave. in… Read More +

  • RGV welcomes return of Ralph Kuster's variety musical performances

    20171123 Ralph Kuster PhotoRalph Kuster's vocal range is only surpassed by the beautiful tone of his voice and the vast number of songs he knows.

    Since 2012 Kuster, has performed in the Rio Grande Valley. A Canadian in the summer months, Kuster used to be… Read More +

  • Pine To Palm's Bissillions among top shuffleboarders

    20171116 Shuffleboard Bissillions him 3008

    Brian Bissillion, of Pine to Palm Resort, takes a shot on one of the new 20 shuffleboard courts at the resort in Welsaco. Brian and his wife Gina are among the top shuffleboarders in South Texas.

    Gina and Brian Bissillion haven’t had a chance to find their… Read More +

  • Season of concerts arrives for RGV music groups

    20171116 Men of A chord MOERINGMen of A Chord

    Bob Lemkuil directs a number during a rehearsal last week of the Magic Valley Men of A-Chord men's chorus at St. Mark United Methodist Church in McAllen. The chorus is made of 40 plus barbershop singers.

    Read More +

  • Bit-O-Heaven holds craft sale

    20171116 Bit O Heaven CraftFair GREGu IMG 4801

    New wardrobes for American Girl dolls

    Rosie Armstrong displayed new wardrobe items designed to fit the popular American Girl dolls many Winter Texan’s granddaughters have.

    Christmas is coming soon and craft sales are often a great source for people seeking gifts… Read More +

  • Many parks with new or improved ‘toys’ for Winter Texans

    20171116 Pine to Palm Pickleball HM IMG 2955

    Pine to Palm resident Dave Gemmell enjoys playing on one of the two new pickle ball courts at the resort, which also built 20 new shuffleboard courts for residents.

    There are new “toys” to welcome Winter Texans back at… Read More +

  • Camille Playhouse presents ‘End of the Rainbow’

    The Camille Playhouse, located at 1 Dean Porter Park (across from the Gladys Porter Zoo) in Brownsville, will present the musical drama of Judy Garland's “comeback” during Christmastime in 1968. Entitled “End of the Rainbow,” the show will be performed at 8 p.m., Friday and Saturday, Nov. 17 and 18, and Sunday, Nov. 19 at 2:30 p.m.

    Read More +

  • Halloween bash starts social season at Victoria Palms

    20171109 Victoria Palms Halloween contest 2

    Winter Texans at Victoria Palms Resort went all out with their costumes for the Halloween Bash and dance.

    Halloween marks the start of the social season at many of the larger parks in the Rio Grande Valley and Victoria Palms is no exception. Early arriving Winter Texans… Read More +

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