Saturday, March 24, 2018
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Bentsen Grove smashes donation record

It was a pie in the face for Channel Five Chief Meteorologist Tim Smith. Smith, who organizes an annual Tim's Coats Drive for the needy in the Rio Grande Valley, promised residents of Bentsen Grove Trailer Park in Mission that if they topped the record number of 1,232 coats collected in 2008 this year, he would take a pie in the face.

Residents rose to the challenge and collected 1,365 coats in 2009. Smith kept his word Wednesday, Dec. 2, at Bentsen Grove when Activities Director Bonnie Newbole put a pie in his face during a park meeting.

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Christmas photo contest planned

Many Winter Texans get in the spirit and decorate their homes or parks for the Christmas season. To help share photos of some of the Valley's colorfully-decorated RV and mobile home parks, the Winter Texan Times will hold a Christmas decoration photo contest.

The Winter Texan Christmas Decoration Photo Contest is open to all Winter Texans living in the Rio Grande Valley. The photo subject must be Christmas decorations of an RV park, mobile home park or a residence in one of these parks located in the Rio Grande Valley.

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Rio Grande Valley celebrates Christmas

As December gets underway, the Rio Grande Valley abounds with many Christmas celebrations that Winter Texans can enjoy. Following is a list of festivities coming your way soon.


The first annual Green Christmas will be celebrated Dec. 12 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Resaca de la Palma State Park World Birding Center, 1000 New Carmen Blvd. Events include the lighting of a native tree, Christmas carolers, tram rides, a talent show with prizes, and kids' crafts and activities. Admission is $4 for adults. For information call (956) 350-2920.

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Christmas shoe drive to help needy children

A Love Thy Neighbor Shoe Drive began in the Rio Grande Valley on Dec. 7 and will continue through Dec. 18. The project is an outgrowth of Shoes for Orphan Souls, a Buckner Ministry, which has provided 1.8 million pairs of new shoes and socks to children in 68 countries since its beginning in 1999.

According to Monica Skrzypinski of Buckner Ministries, the Valley receives approximately 10,000 pairs of shoes from this ministry each year. The shoes are distributed through Buckner's Colonia Program in the Valley.

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Hidalgo Festival of Lights begins

The 2009 Festival of Lights in Hidalgo kicked off Nov. 30 with an illuminated parade to begin the festive holiday season. The Valley's most famous light festival will continue through the month of December with the heart of the show taking place right in front of the Hidalgo City Hall, located at 704 E. Texano.

Perhaps the most relaxing and enjoyable way to partake of the festivities in Hidalgo is to buy the dinner and entertainment package. The dinners will began this week with serving times at 5:15 p.m. and 6:15 p.m., giving those who purchase dinner tickets an opportunity to enjoy the entertainment on the outdoor stage in front of the Hidalgo City Hall. Tickets are $8 and may be purchased only at the Dodge Arena Ticket Box Office. The ticket includes a dinner, seating for the entertainment, and a trolley ride.

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Glenna Rothweiler is Angel of San Juan Food Pantry

At the San Juan Food Pantry they call her their "angel." Glenna Rothweiler started her program of sharing here in San Juan in the fall of 1995. It started with an idea from her granddaughter who was in the eighth grade at the time. Her granddaughter told her teacher, "We can't just keep asking our parents for money all the time, but if we asked them to save all their pennies for one month, it wouldn't seem like that much." Family members and friends gave more than pennies making their project a big success.

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Chicken House Opry Begins Third Season

The Chicken House Opry begins its third exciting season Saturday, Dec. 5., with two shows at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. It will return each Saturday through March 20. Many new acts are to be featured throughout the season including Cajun fiddling sensation Wade Bentsen Landry, world champion harmony yodelers, Ron and Peggy Taylor; Jim Reeves' nephew, John Rex Reeves: Johnny Cash by Jackson Cash, Mountain View's popular Ernie Rice, Branson's Glenn Robertson, Missouri bluegrass group, Seed Tick Ridge and world champion fiddler Canadian, Keith Ross.

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Christmas Festivities planned throughout Valley

While there may not be snow or cold weather, the Christmas season in the Rio Grande Valley usually means a pleasant temperatures, making many other activities enjoyable. And December in the Rio Grande Valley usually means many outdoor activities to celebrate the Christmas season.


The Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville will host their annual Zoo Nights and Lights on Dec. 4-6 from 6-9 p.m. The event will include live music performances, 135-lighted displays and 800 luminary bags lighting the pathways. Admission is $2.50 or a toy for the Toys for Tots campaign.

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Winter Texan Quilt Show registration starts Monday

Quilters, it is time to show off those beautiful creations you have been working on all year. Registration for the fourth annual Winter Texan Times Quilt Show begins Monday, Dec. 7 and continues through Dec. 18. The Quilt Show will be held Dec. 30 through Feb. 5 at the Mission Historical Museum.

Quilts will be judged in three categories: all hand-made, machine pieced and hand quilted, and machine pieced and machine quilted. Ribbons will be awarded to the top three entrees in each category. Viewer's Choice will be selected by the people who attend the exhibition. A reception to announce winners is planned for Jan. 21.

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Robert E. Lee Museum in RGC open for tours

While most of the cities in the Rio Grande Valley are celebrating their centennials this year or did so last year, Rio Grande City, just 40 miles west of Mission has already celebrated 160 years.

Fort Ringgold was formed at the time of the Mexican-American War and the city grew up around it. It remained an important cavalry fort until World War I because of the continued problems that took place along the border. Many important military personnel served along the border, including Robert E. Lee, who, as a Union army officer before the Civil War, was assigned to the fort twice.

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PETs help crippled gain mobility

PETs1Over 20 million people across the world suffer from illnesses or injuries that have left them incapable of using their limbs. And in underdeveloped areas like Asia, South America and Mexico, these people can't afford to purchase the tools to help them move around. But personal energy transportation devices, also known as PETs, can provide the tools necessary to become mobile.

Although PETs cannot be used here because they do not meet Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, in underdeveloped countries they can sometimes mean the difference in survival; they give a person mobility that might not otherwise have any.

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Edinburg has new Motorcycle Museum

Museum1The Rio Grande Valley has a new, very popular museum. This is no ordinary museum. This is the Motorcycle Museum of Edinburg.

The Motorcycle Museum, which opened in October, came into being after a motorcycle exhibit at the International Museum of Art and Science (IMAS) in McAllen became one of the most popular exhibits ever held there.

Located on the northeast corner of Richardson Road (east of S.H. 281) and Cesar Chavez Road, the museum, which is run by volunteers, is open from noon to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and noon to 4 p.m. on Sundays.

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Winter Texan Quilt Show

Quilters, get your best work out and ready to display. The fourth annual Winter Texan Times Quilt Show will be held Dec. 30 through Feb. 5 at the Mission Historical Museum. Registration starts Monday, Dec. 7 and runs through Dec. 18.

A reception where winners of the show will be announced is slated for Jan. 21.

Quilts will be judged in three categories: all hand-made, machine quilted and hand quilted, and machine pieced and machine quilted. Ribbons will be awarded to the top three entries in each category, and a Viewers' Choice ribbon will be awarded.

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Art, Folk Music in the Park at Quinta Mazatlan July 23

Family and friends are invited to create a one-of-a-kind painted palm frond made from actual trees Thursday, July 23rd 6 p.m. at Quinta Mazatlan. Your design will be unique and a wonderful decorating idea or gift. While creating outdoors, visitors will enjoy live music at the park.

The husband and wife team of Joe and Rosa Canales Perez chronicle their cultural experiences of growing up in South Texas through storytelling, poetry and music. The musical style can be described as folk, blues and traditional Mexican or Ranchera.

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Top News

  • Winter Texans join in Monarch Butterfly Festival

    Pamela Drew handed 6-year-old Sienna Randall at spray bottle and explained to her what to do with the paper butterfly she had just designed.

    “Go ahead and spray it sweetie,” she said at the Butterfly Craft Station. “Then we can get another color.”

    Drew was one of dozens of volunteers helping out at the annual McAllen… Read More +

  • Texas Onion Fest features top entertainment

    20180322 Texas Onion Festival Preview MILLER DPP 0013

    Dancing horses will be part of the full-day’s lineup of entertainment at this year’s Onion Fest celebration in Weslaco. The festival will be held Saturday, March 24, at Mayor Pablo City Park. Gates open at 9:30 a.m. and entertainment begins at 10 a.m.

    Read More +

  • Share the fun!

    Wow has time flown by this Winter Texan season!

    Now that it is coming to a close, we here at the Winter Texans Times would love for you to share with us – and all our readers – what this season was like for you in the Rio Grande Valley.

    What was your favorite event? Did… Read More +

  • Thanks for coming!

    FromthepublisherAs we near the end of another winter season, it’s time to say farewell to many of you who will be leaving the Rio Grande Valley and heading north in the next week or two.

    We want to take a moment to just say, “Thank you” for choosing the Rio Grande Valley as your… Read More +

  • Yum! Take the Mozna Chocolate Factory tour

    20180312 Chocolate Factory Tour Red hats GU 2878

    Red Hat Queens sample finished chocolate flavors
    After the presentation, members of the Red Hat Queen’s Council got to sample the different flavors of chocolate made from the beans that come from Mexico, Venezuela, Vietnam and Tanzania.

    Read More +

  • Southern Comfort RV Park hosts Bocce tournaments

    20180315 Southern Comfort Bocce JPGWESLACO—The sport of bocce ball isn't going away anytime soon. In fact, the trend that's happening at the Encore RV resorts across the Rio Grande Valley might lay claim to the opposite.

    Southern Comfort RV Park, located at 1501 S Airport Dr. in Weslaco, has been running… Read More +

  • Nature photos displayed at Port Isabel Library

    Laguna Art League member Pat McGrath Avery will be displaying her photography at the Port Isabel Library throughout the month of March.

    Avery, an author and photographer, focuses on nature photography, especially the beautiful birds that live in or visit the Rio Grande Valley. In the 1970s, she brought her parents down for the winter and fell in love with the Texas… Read More +

  • Winter Texan Ambassadors Wanted

    FromthepublisherThis edition of the Winter Texan Times is our “Take Home Edition.” We invite all our Winter Texan readers to take extra copies of this edition with you when you head north so you can share them with your friends and family.

    Getting out and doing all the fun and interesting things… Read More +

  • Nature lovers from across the U.S. flock to the Rio Grande

    20180315 Estero Llano Grande Casey Balvert MOERING 0362One of the major attractions drawing visitors to the Rio Grande Valley is its varieties of birds and butterflies. The migration path of many of the flyers runs right through the Valley and that draws people not just from the U.S. but from many other countries in the world.

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  • Swing Street Band delights Winter Texans

    20180315 Swing Street Big Band Dance MILLER IMG 4525Karen and Trevor Tripp moved in perfect harmony, seemingly without stress or strain as the Swing Street Band played “In the Mood.”

    The couple waltzed away as Robert Comeau and his orchestra played an evening of music that covered several decades at Aladdin… Read More +

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