Winter Texan Times

Winter Texan TIMES Serving Winter Texans FromMission To South Padre Island Since 1987 Vol. 36, No. 24 © 2023 Wednesday, March 29, 2023 INDEX Parks Calendar p 8 WintertainersTM p 8 Jammin’ in the RGV p 12 On the Road with Jo p 14 On The Lighter Side p 16 Taste of the Valley p 19 Events Calendar p 20 Reunions p 20 Business Guide p 20 Classifieds p 21 Coupon Index p 23 Rina’s Ramblings See RAMBLINGS pg. 13 Thank you for visiting Us here at the Winter Texan Times would like to give you all a big, huge thank you for visiting the Rio Grande Valley. We thank you for making the Valley your home for the winter, whatever the length of time might be. The season is ending, and we hate to see you go. We always enjoy your time with us, and our time with you, and we sure are going to miss it while you are gone. We have been so thankful to get out and about this year. We attended as much as we could, but still wish we had attended more. There was just too much to do in the Valley – at the parks and around town. From the looks of Park Facebook pages, parks had plenty of activities for you while you were here…. And it looks like they were enjoyed by all. We loved seeing how much fun everyone had. We were thrilled to be able to enjoy some of it with you as well. We also enjoyed seeing how much our Wintertainers™ were Each spring, monarch butterflies migrate north during March and April. On Saturday, April 1st, Quinta Mazatlan will be hosting the 7th annual Monarch Fest presented by H-E-B from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in McAllen, with the Mayors Bug Parade at 11 a.m. in the park. Fun family activities include live music, dance, vendors, arts & crafts, migration path, scout/youth projects and more. Participate in one of our community created art installations: add your own splash of color to the monarch mural painting and See MONARCH pg. 24 Quinta Mazatlan hosts annual Monarch Fest Quinta Mazatlan. Photo by Henry Miller By Herb Moering Neither the early weather threat of rain nor cartel concerns seemed to dampen the enthusiasm of Winter Texans for the 47th Tourist Day 2023 in Nuevo Progreso on March 21. An estimated 8,000 people crossed the border for the annual local merchant’s appreciation day. Darris and Judy Hable, from Aladdin VilSee PROGRESO pg. 10 Tourist Day in Nuevo Progreso huge success Entertainment by dancers took main stage for Winter Texans attending Tourist Day 2023 in Nuevo Progreso on March 21. Photo by Herb Moering Thanks for coming to Texas!

MARCH 29, 2023 2 WINTER TEXAN TIMES April programs at Bentsen-RGV State Park Programs at Bentsen-RGV State Park continue through the spring. Feeding is ending for some migratory birds, but there is still more hawk migration. The park is starting their spring and summer programs such as kayaking and Dutch oven cooking. As always, the park offers a variety of family activities and programs. The park holds a Hawk Watch daily from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Hawk Tower. On April 2, at 10 a.m., they will hold their Useful and Edible Plants class. For those that might have family in town, the park will hold their Spring Family Fun Day on Saturday, April 8. Reading with a Ranger will be held at 10:15 a.m. Create a Critter at 11:15 a.m. and Backyard Bass at 12:15 p.m. An Owl Prowl will be held on Friday, April 14 at 7:30 p.m. This program requires reservations. On Sunday, April 16, a Resaca Vieja Trail Hike will be held at 8:30 a.m. The Bentsen Easy Nature Walk will be held at 9 a.m. on Thursday, April 20. Kayaking 101 will be held on Sunday, April 23, at 9:30 a.m. This program requires reservations. Also requiring reservation is the Dutch oven cooking class on Sunday, April 30, at 2 p.m. A Wild Wellness class will be held on Wednesday, April 26 at 8:30 a.m. Enjoy regional Easter traditions at MOSTH The Museum of South Texas History presents ¡Cascarón!, an Easter celebration, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 8. The museum’s annual event features the regional tradition of decorating “cascarones,” or empty eggshells, filled with confetti. Blank and readyto-hide cascarones will be available for purchase, while supplies last. Guests can choose to decorate a dozen empty eggshells for $2 or purchase a dozen pre-decorated eggs for $4. The Easter egg hunt starts at 1 p.m. on the museum’s grassy Gran Paseo. Guests are encouraged to bring their own baskets. Other activities include basket-making and butterfly crafts for children and families. Balloons and Faces Party Rental will provide free facepainting for visitors. Take a photograph at the Easter-inspired photo booth in the Courtyard Gallery where guests can purchase a Polaroid print for $3 or take a selfie for free. Looking for last-minute Easter basket items? The Museum Store carries a variety of notebooks, pecan pralines, coin purses, and stuffed animals such as mammoths, armadillos, and horses, making it a borderland-inspired EasSee MOSTH pg. 15 See BENTSEN pg. 14 Trees in Bloom. Photo by TPWD / Thomas Riddle Courtesy Photo

3 WINTER TEXAN TIMES MARCH 29, 2023 WE TRADES WE PAY CASH FOR RVS DONNA • 956-464-4403 655 Ron Hoover Drive NEW BIGGER STORE LARGEST SELECTION • OVER 12 ACRES OF RVS • OVER 1000 TO CHOOSE FROM Utility And Cargo Trailers No Credit Needed Newly Expanded Body Shop • Mobile Service • 23 Service Bays Rv Parts & Hardware Store The Only McAllen Harlingen Ron Hoover Equipment Ron Hoover RV & Marine Center

MARCH 29, 2023 4 WINTER TEXAN TIMES Serving Valleywide for 35 years Sales • Parts • Rentals • Service 2508 W. Interstate Hwy 2 Mission, TX 78572 Before You Leave Come By & See The New 2023 Yamaha Drive 2 PTV EFI 4 Year Factory Warranty Easy Ride Golf Cars 956-580-3370 Dealer We Appreciate You! Safe Travels - See You Next Fall A Lifetime Becoming a Rosie Winter Texan earns unique honors Alamo Palms’ 98-year-old Louise Unkrich didn’t have white hair when she did the work that would bring her national recognition. Actually, she was a dark-haired teenager. Typical of other young women whose lives changed course in the early 1940’s, Louise left her Swedesburg, Iowa hometown at 19 to find meaningful work about 250 miles away. Her job would be to assemble parts for B-26’s and B-29’s at the Glenn L. Martin bomber plant south of Omaha, near Bellevue, Nebraska. “The war was on,” she said. “My boyfriend was in the Navy, and I wanted to help.” A Focus on the Job When Louise first arrived, she joined four other women who were “grateful” to sleep on cots set up on a local family’s enclosed porch. They were driven to work by the homeowner, who also worked at the new 17,000,000 sq. ft. plant at Fort Crook, now Offutt Airforce Base. It would be a few months until Louise would move into a room in another family’s home. To earn the 70¢-an-hour starting union wage with no benefits, she stood for eight hours a day assembling ailerons. (She described this airplane part as a 10-foot aluminum flap on the wing’s back edge toward its tip. Ailerons move up and down to allow the pilot to control the plane’s horizontal movement, as well as its speed.) Each aileron consisted of three parts with approximately 1,000 predrilled holes. Once its aluminum “skins” or pieces were overlapped and their holes lined up, the aileron’s parts were fastened by a riveter on one side and a bucker on the other until the elongated, tuna-shaped flap took shape. On her four-person team (two women and two men), Louise worked as the “bucker.” That meant she held a 4x2x2-inch steel bar against the back of each pre-drilled hole. When a large aluminum rivet was air-gunned through the hole, it squashed against her bar. Louise said that if she didn’t hold the bar perfectly flat, the back of the rivet wouldn’t be flattened evenly, and the rivet would need to be drilled out and re-driven. Workers were well aware that mistakes slowed the war effort. She said her hands were often very sore from holding the bar during the repetitive work. But she said, “I had a job to do, and I did it.” What Louise liked best about that job was “working with the team and making something worthwhile.” Wartime Recognition Employing over 14,500 workers at peak production, the Martin plant would earn much recognition. She said there was a lot to be proud of at her workplace. On a personal level, Louise’s four-person team assembled an aileron in one eight-hour shift, setting a plant record. The bomber-building plant itself earned “White Star” awards from the military for on-time production. Because of the plant’s reputation for quality work, Lt. Col. Paul Tibbets, Jr. visited the Martin assembly line to choose the B-29 Superfortress he would pilot over Japan. From that plane, his crew dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima. In his autobiography, he said, “I looked upon this airplane as one of the best B-29’s ever produced.” (He named that aircraft “Enola Gay” after his mother.) Louise said she can understand why he complimented the quality of work at the Glenn L. Martin plant. “We all tried to do our very best when I was there,” she explained about the expected work ethic. “If something needed to be done, you See ROSIE pg. 18 At left, Louise Unkrich answers her daughter Trish’s questions about her life during World War II and how she became a “Rosie” decades later. Photo by Dennis Zanetti Well before her Rosie presentation to an Alamo Palms’ audience, Louise Unkrich shares a photo book of her recent trip to Hawaii, where she was honored as one of five original Rosies. Photo by Dennis Zanetti


MARCH 29, 2023 6 WINTER TEXAN TIMES Palm Resaca Park 100 Tangerine Blvd, Brownsville Ph (956) 546-7423 | Fax (956) 504-5745 Thank you for making Palm Resaca Park Your Winter Home! We look forward to seeing you and your friends again next year. Local Texas Master Naturalists talk about native plants Local Texas Master Naturalist experts will be featured speakers during the 32nd Annual Rio Grande Valley Home and Garden Show at the McAllen Convention Center March 31 through April 2. South Texas Border Chapter Texas Master Naturalist members will present informative talks about environmental lighting and the beneficial use of native plants in home landscapes. The scheduled talks during the three-day event are as follows: Friday, March 31 2:45 p.m., Friendly Outdoor Lighting, presented by Thomas Butler. Outdoor lighting can save money and be environmentally friendly. Designs that are attractive and effective while minimizing negative effects on the environment will be described and illustrated. 4:30 p.m., The Passion Vine Diaries, presented by Bill Rich. Adventures with growing passion vines in his garden in McAllen is an entertaining tale of pink flowers, orange butterflies, giant bees, spikey caterpillars, the ant police, and a killer stink bug. Saturday, April 1 10:45 a.m., Don’t Kill It ‘Til You Know What It Is, presented by Anita Westervelt. Many random and annoying plants seem to infiltrate lawns and gardens. This presentation is meant to pique curiosity and encourage people to consider the benefits of these volunteer native plants and their importance to native wildlife. 11:45 a.m., The Passion Vine DiaArt Lounge on SPI to host exhibit South Padre Island has a new art gallery, The Art Lounge, and it will be hosting an exhibition called Bloom. The exhibit will take place on April 8, from 3 to 5:30 p.m. The high-end art gallery is turning one-year-old and they are giving the community flowers to celebrate. They are turning the gallery into a garden party for the art opening. Just in time to be held the Saturday before Easter. This is a free event with fine art, live classical cello music, libations, finger sandwiches and pastries. Organizers are encouraging attendees to dress in their best florals for the show. They also plan to have a floral installation on the ceiling to look like flowers raining down and a floral selfie wall. Owners say the gallery is quite Gladys Porter Zoo implements new pricing The Gladys Porter Zoo has implemented a new dynamic pricing model. Zoo admission prices will now vary through July, depending upon the day of the week. This dynamic model is currently used nationwide at various attractions and is intended to encourage visitorship from Monday through Thursday when the attraction is generally less crowded. At the same time, the slightly higher cost to attend the Zoo provides an inflation-based increase in income at the front gate. Since 90 percent of the Zoo’s operating income is derived from admission sales, this adjustment is needed to maintain a world-class facility, purchase nutritious food for the Zoo’s 1,600 inhabitants, and retain topnotch experts by paying competitive wages. In addition to the need for increased income to cover daily operating expenses, dynamic pricing will also benefit Zoo guests in the future. In October of 2022, a $30 million master plan was adopted that will revitalize the park, add new, exciting exhibits and visitor amenities, as well as provide larger, more naturalistic exhibits for lions, mandrills, gorillas, and many other animals. The Zoo’s first project is a zip line that will take guests over the waterways and treetops to a height of 150 feet, returning them to ground level at nearly 30 mph. The cost of installation for this attraction has more than doubled in cost since the concept was first approved over a year ago, but it will more than pay for itself after two years in operation. This investment will pay off in terms of attracting more visitors to the area and will provide a unique outdoor experience for children, teenagers, and adults from near and far. The Gladys Porter Zoo has always been committed to providing an enjoyable, educational, and affordable experience to the community of South Texas, and this commitment will never change. Through July, adult prices will now range from $14 to $19, child prices will range from $8 to $13, and senior prices will range from $12 to $17. Children under the age of two will still be free. To avoid confusion at the time of your visit, the new dynamic pricing calendar can be found at www.gpz. org, and on all of the Zoo’s social media platforms. See NATURALIST pg. 15 See EXHIBIT pg. 16

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REMOTE Sign Up for the 2023 Adopt-A-Beach Recently, the Texas General Land Office (GLO) Commissioner Dawn Buckingham, M.D. reminded all interested volunteers to sign up for the 2023 Texas Adopt-A-Beach (AAB) Coastwide Spring Cleanup on Saturday, April 22nd at 23 locations across the Texas coast, from Port Arthur to Boca Chica Beach. “The stewardship of Texas beaches and our coastal communities is a responsibility I cherish and a duty many Texans feel called to fulfill,” said Commissioner Buckingham. “The success of the Texas General Land Office’s Adopt-A-Beach Program is made possible by the hard work of hundreds of thousands of volunteers and the generosity of our state sponsors. This spring coastwide cleanup is our next opportunity to show our appreciation and respect for Texas’ coast and all it has to offer.” Volunteers interested in participating can find information about registration and cleanup locations at the AAB website or show up on-site the day of to enjoy a morning filled with fun and service to the Texas coast. Volunteers are encouraged to wear closed-toe shoes and to bring sunscreen, a hat, and plenty of drinking water. Volunteers may also want to download the Clean Swell app to track their efforts. Data submitted to the app is instantly uploaded to the Ocean Conservancy’s global ocean trash database. 2023 Adopt-A-Beach Coastwide Spring Cleanup will be held on Saturday, April 22 with check in time at 8:30 a.m. Clean up time is scheduled for 9 a.m. to noon. For more information, call 1(877) TX-COAST. The Adopt-A-Beach program began in the fall of 1986, when 2,800 volunteers picked up 124 tons of trash. Since then, more than 563,000 Texas Adopt-A-Beach volunteers have picked up nearly 10,000 tons of trash from Texas beaches. Texans who are not able to attend the cleanup can help keep our beaches clean by making a tax-deductible donation online at Adopt-A-Beach website. There are also several AdoptA-Beach sponsorship levels ranging from $30 to $25,000, allowing both individuals and corporations to contribute to this major cleanup effort. To learn more about the Adopt-ABeach program, visit and followAAB on Facebook or Twitter. Updated pas port processing times The U.S. Department of State has extended the processing times for U.S. passports again. Now, the routine processing of a passport application is now 10 to 13 weeks, up from eight to 10 weeks. The expeditated processing – for the additional $60 fee – is now seven to nine weeks, up from five to seven weeks. The processing times begin the day the U.S. Department of State receives the application at the passport agency or center, not the day the customer applies for a passport at an acceptance facility. Additionally, the U.S. Department of State i no longer using door-to-door timeframes to calculate the estimate routine and expedited service times, as mail times vary across the country. The City of McAllen Passport Facility is located at 221 S. 15th St. Walk-ins are accepted on a first come, first-serve basis Monday through Friday between the hours of 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. If a appointment is preferred, please call ahead to (956) 681-1450. For more information, please visit or call the City of McAllen Passport Facility.

MARCH 29, 2023 8 WINTER TEXAN TIMES 214 E. Chimney Rd • Mission, TX (956) 581-1033 Come Try Our TEXAS Size Pork Tenderloin Tues 11am-8pm Wed 11am-8pm Thurs 11am-8pm Fri 11am-8pm Sat 11am-8pm Sun 11am-8pm OPEN • • • • • • Seniors - $12 • Adults - $14 Child - $10 Cash Only, Price Incl. Tax Covered Cushion Seating Enclosed Windows & Heating RIVERSIDE DREAMER River Tours Call (956) 581-4477 ReserveNowForCurrentWeekOnly Additional Tours Added As Needed Private Tours Available Every Sunday 1:30-5:30pm Live Music All Summer Come Join Us! 1 Hour Tours (Down River To Dam) Tues 1:00pm Wed 1:00pm Thurs 1:00pm Fri 1:00pm Sat 1:00pm • • • • • 2 Hour Tours (Up River Only) Tues • 10:30am Seniors - $22 • Adults - $26 Child - $18 Inside/Outside Seating Beautiful Patio!! Safe Travels & Thank You For A Great Season! - Johnny & Jennifer Hart Ask About Our Summer Hours! - Closed Easter Sunday - Steven May & The Southern Knights Performing All Summer Long! Let’s Take A Boat Ride This Summer! For more information call: 956-580-7800 email: Make sure your events are like... THIS!! HOW? Advertise in the Valley’s #1 Winter Texan Paper BIT O HEAVEN RV & MOBILE HOME RESORT 1051W Bus Hwy 83 • Donna,TX 78537 SUSANTHOMAS, ACTIVITY DIRECTOR 603-396-2786 FRIDAYS • DANCES • 7-10PM Mar 31 • Rewind • $8 Apr 7 • Night Ryders • $8 Apr 14 • The Howlers • $8 Soda, water, popcorn, and snacks for sale, free ice/cups, 50/50 door prizes. TUESDAYS • HAPPYHOUR • 3-5PM PASS THE HAT April 4 • Jerryco April 11 • CanAm April 18 • Denim & Lace April 25 • Carlos Canas Soda, water, popcorn, and snacks for sale, free ice/cups, BYOB, 50/50 door prizes. BYOB, snacks SUNDAYS • KARAOKE • 5PM THURSDAYS • DANCES • 7-10PM April 13 • Simply Gold Duo • $8 April 20 • Curt James • $8 April 27 • Ron Moshier • $8 Soda, water, popcorn, and snacks for sale, free ice/cups, 50/50 door prizes. EDITOR’S NOTE: Items for the Parks Calendar must be open to the public activities in the parks only and must be submitted by park owners, managers or activity directors. Listings must come from the park and are to be submitted on the Winter Texan Times Parks Calendar Submission Form. Request this form from the Winter Texan Times office. Multiple activities may be submitted on the park’s letterhead, provided the same information is provided in the format of the Submission Form. We do not accept listings for reviews, workshops, lessons or dance classes. Submission deadline is Friday noon, the week prior to the publication date. Send to: Winter Texan Times, 1217 N. Conway Ave., Mission, Texas 78572 or email to or fax to 956-580-7898. Wednesday, March 29 Breakfast - Eldorado Acres RV Park, Palmview, 6:30-8:30am. Breakfast - Bentsen Grove Resort, Palmview, 7:30-9am. Lunch/Dinner - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 11:30am-7pm, Menu available at Cafe Grande, meal price varies. Burger Fry - Chimney Park, Mission, 11:30am, $6pp. Open Jam follows at 1:00 pm, all jammers and audience are welcome! 4224 S. Conway Ave. Country Music Jam - Heritage Square, Mission, 1-3:30pm, Free admission. Food served before the Jam from 11 - 12:30 and after 4 - 5:30. Join us to play an instrument or sing or just to enjoy the music every Wednesday throughout the year. Happy Hour - Sleepy Valley Ranch Resort, Mission, 4-6pm, Rotating schedule of live entertainment, pass the hat. Handmade pizza available from 5-7. Various food items available from 5-6. BS Bar Open - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 4-9pm, Serving beer, wine, soft drinks. Karaoke &Music - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 5-7pm, With Blanca, pass the hat. BS Bar. Dance - Tip O’ Texas RV Resort, Pharr, 7-10pm, Steven May & Southern Knights, $7pp. Entertainment - McAllen Mobile Park, 7pm, The Players Studio, free will offering. Shakespeare in the park. Thursday, March 30 Breakfast - Eldorado Acres RV Park, Palmview, 6:30-8:30am. Pickleball Mixer - Casa del Valle Resort Park, Alamo, 9am-Noon, $2. Country Jam - El Valle Del Sol, Mission, 10am-Noon, Free coffee. Lunch - Bentsen Grove Resort, Palmview, 11am-12:30pm. Lunch/Dinner - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 11:30am-7pm, Menu available at Cafe Grande, meal price varies. BS Bar Open - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 4-9pm, Serving beer, wine, soft drinks. Loteria (Mexican Bingo) - Sleepy Valley Ranch Resort, Mission, 6-8pm. Acoustic Jam - Palm Gardens, Harlingen, 6-8pm, Fiesta Hall, free admission. 50/50 drawing and refreshments by donation. 3401 W. Bus. 83. Karaoke - Paradise Resort Estates, Pharr, 6:30-9pm, Soda and water available. Complimentary popcorn. Over 40,000 different songs available to sing. Jam Session - Victoria Palms Resort, Donna, 7-9pm, Free and open to the public for listening. Friday, March 31 Breakfast - Eldorado Acres RV Park, Palmview, 6:30-8:30am. Blood Drive - Greengate Grove, Palmview, 8:30-11:30am, Make your day great, save a life! 2135 S. Bentsen Palm Dr. Contact to schedule an appointment. Lunch/Dinner - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 11:30am-7pm, Menu available at Cafe Grande, meal price varies. Country Jam - Tropic Winds MH & RV Resort, Harlingen, 12:30-2:30pm. R/C Car Races - Kenwood RV Park, La Feria, 1:30pm. Happy Hour - Ranchero Village, Weslaco, 3-5pm, Diego, pass the hat. Concession open, BYOB. BS Bar Open - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, 4-9pm, Serving beer, wine, soft drinks. Happy Hour - Llano Grande Lake Park Resort and Country Club, Mercedes, For more information, photos and tour schedules visit Wintertainers TM at tainers Winter TM CALENDAR PARKS

9 WINTER TEXAN TIMES MARCH 29, 2023 THANK YOU FOR A GREAT SEASON! Looking forward to next season with even more activities: •Murder Mystery Dinner •Car Show •Cook Offs •Dog Show •Day Trips & More A bonus to our already busy schedules. If You’re Looking For A Great & Friendly Park We Welcome You To Come Check Us Out! Safe Travels & Have A Great Summer! 956-585-0703 1645 S Bentsen Palm Drive • Palmview Paula McSpadden Activity Director ALL EVENTS OPEN TO THE PUBLIC Last One March 31 Friday • 1:30pm R/C Car Races Thank you! See you next season. 1201 N. Main Street La Feria, TX 956-797-1851 Cynthia Cavazos - Activity Director Kenwood Rv Resort . Enjoy Life. Enjoy it here. 1048 N. Alamo Rd. • Alamo, TX 78516 • Office: 956-783-5008 DANCES Last Dance of the Season - April 15 Sat. Apr. 1, 8, & 15, 7-10 pm • Texas Wheels • $8 PICKLEBALL MIXER Thursdays • 9 am - Noon • $2 Thank you all for making this a great season! , r , y m e , e , , . , e , For more information, photos and tour schedules visit Wintertainers TM at tainers Winter TM 5-7pm, Mike Ptak, pass the hat. Event Center. Country Music Jam - Hidden Valley Ranch RV & MH Park, Mission, 5:30pm, All welcome. Jean Closson, 717-8778375. Friday Night Dance - Fun N Sun Resort, San Benito, 7pm, Texas Wheels, $8pp door. Dance - Casa del Sol, Donna, 7-10pm, Steven May & Southern Knights, $8pp. Dance - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 7-10pm, Rewind, rock n roll, $8pp. Soda, water, popcorn, snacks for sale, free ice/cups, 50/50 door prizes. Dance - Texas Trails RV Resort, Pharr, 7-10pm, Route 66, $7pp. Dance - Tropic Star RV Resort, Pharr, 7-9pm, Ron Moshier, $7pp. Doors open 6:30pm. Concessions available. 1401 S. Cage Blvd., 956-787-5773. Country & Big Band Jam - Palm Shadows RV/MH Park, Donna, 7-9pm, Pizza & dogs available from 4:30-6:30. No outside beverages permitted. Musicians by invitation only. Dance - Enchanted Valley Ranch, Mission, 7-10pm, The Howlers, $7pp. Saturday, April 1 Breakfast - Eldorado Acres RV Park, Palmview, 7-9am. Dance - Casa del Valle Resort Park, Alamo, 7-10pm, Texas Wheels, $8pp. Sunday, April 2 Church Services - Hidden Valley Ranch RV & MH Park, Mission, 8:30am, Fellowship: 8:30am. Service: 9am. Church Services - Quiet Village II, Donna, 9:30am, Non-denominational service. Coffee served at 9am. Pastor Mary Chamberlin presiding. Communion, last Sunday of the month. All welcome. Church Services - Paradise Resort Estates, Pharr, 10-11am, Non-denominational services. Church Services - Eastgate RV & MH Park, Harlingen, 10am, Pastor Donald and Cindy Ballew. Non-denominational. 817-475-4283. Communion first Sunday of each month. Everyone welcome. 2801 E. Harrison Ave. Karaoke - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 5pm, BYOB, snacks. Tuesday, April 4 TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) - Enchanted Valley Ranch, Mission, 8:3010am, West side of clubhouse. Jam - Lakewood RV Resort, Harlingen, 1pm, Everyone welcome: Play, sing, or listen. Refreshment served. Happy Hour - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 3-5pm, Jerryco, pass the hat. Soda, water, popcorn, snacks for sale, free ice/cups, 50/50 door prizes, BYOB. Wednesday, April 5 Country Music Jam - Heritage Square, Mission, 1-3:30pm, Free admission. Food served before the Jam from 11 - 12:30 and after 4 - 5:30. Join us to play an instrument or sing or just to enjoy the music every Wednesday throughout the year. Thursday, April 6 Pickleball Mixer - Casa del Valle Resort Park, Alamo, 9am-Noon, $2. Friday, April 7 Dance - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 7-10pm, Night Ryders, variety, $8pp. Soda, water, popcorn, snacks for sale, free ice/cups, 50/50 door prizes. Saturday, April 8 Dance - Casa del Valle Resort Park, Alamo, 7-10pm, Texas Wheels, $8pp. Sunday, April 9 Church Services - Hidden Valley Ranch RV & MH Park, Mission, 8:30am, Fellowship: 8:30am. Service: 9am. Church Services - Quiet Village II, Donna, 9:30am, Non-denominational service. Coffee served at 9am. Pastor Mary Chamberlin presiding. Communion, last Sunday of the month. All welcome. Church Services - Paradise Resort Estates, Pharr, 10-11am, Non-denominational services. Church Services - Eastgate RV & MH Park, Harlingen, 10am, Pastor Donald and Cindy Ballew. Non-denominational. 817-475-4283. Communion first Sunday of each month. Everyone welcome. 2801 E. Harrison Ave. Karaoke - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 5pm, BYOB, snacks. Tuesday, April 11 TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) - Enchanted Valley Ranch, Mission, 8:3010am, West side of clubhouse. Happy Hour - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 3-5pm, CanAm, pass the hat. Soda, water, popcorn, snacks for sale, free ice/cups, 50/50 door prizes, BYOB. Wednesday, April 12 Country Music Jam - Heritage Square, Mission, 1-3:30pm, Free admission. Food served before the Jam from 11 - 12:30 and after 4 - 5:30. Join us to play an instrument or sing or just to enjoy the music every Wednesday throughout the year. Thursday, April 13 Karaoke/Happy Hour - Heritage Square, Mission, 6-9pm, 300 S. Bryan Rd. Free admission. Come for a fun evening of singing and dancing. BYOB, refreshments will also be available to purchase. Pass the hat. Dance - Bit-O-Heaven RV Park, Donna, 7-10pm, Simply Gold Duo, $8pp.

MARCH 29, 2023 10 WINTER TEXAN TIMES FINANCING AVAILABLE SENIOR DISCOUNT Mobile Home Roofover Systems Since 1983 Steel Mobile Home Roofing Leaks? High energy bill? Roof rumble? 800-633-8969 PROGRESO From pg. 1 las Subdivision in Mission, reigned as king and queen over Tourist Day. The couple, who spend part of their summers in Minnesota in addition to traveling, had breakfast in the Bridge Authority building before joining the American delegation on a walk to meet a delegation of Mexican officials at the center of the Progreso bridge. Joining them were Mr. Tourist 2023 USA, Weslaco Mayor David Suarez, and Mr. Tourist 2023 Mexico, the musical group Nortenos De Rio Bravo. It was Rio Bravo, Mexico officials who chose those to be honored as they joined other Mexican officials on the main stage following the brief ceremony and stroll on the bridge. Once the dignitaries left the stage, the entertainment took over with groups of young and adults, featuring the Mexican flavor. A high school band with flag and baton twirlers also put on a show. Up and down the main street there was more entertainment and merchants had small gifts to give visitors. The Hables were invited to be this year’s king and queen partly for their volunteer work of several years at Mabel’s Children’s Refuge, which raises funds to provide scholarships for needy students in Nuevo Progreso so they can continue their education at the middle school and on up to the university graduate level. The organization also donates school supplies and computers, plus food, clothes, household items and toys. In addition, the Mabel’s helpers from various places in the U.S. sponsor medical and dental care in Progreso. After coming to the Valley in 2004, the Hables had been active as entertainment directors in a couple of RV parks, first for five years at Paradise Park in Pharr and then for four years at their present park, Aladdin Villas. For 10 years they were Entertainers Showcase volunteers, which brings show people together with RV park activity directors for entertainment bookings. Near the bridge walkway to Progreso a quartet of Pharr Nomad Shrine Club members were seeking donations for hospital care for children. The Shriners included Rey Campos, from Elsa, Randy Gathje, from Mercedes, and Fred Cano and Jim Fox, both from McAllen. Before crossing, a number of Winter Texans stopped to have their photo taken in the “picture frame.” Three couples who took the time for a photo were Jim and Betty Christensen and John and Vicki Serna, all, from Minnesota, and Wayne and Donna Goodwin from Wisconsin. The Goodwins, who stay at Fig Tree RV Resort in Harlingen, have been coming to the Valley for 19 years, while the Sernas, who stay in the same park, have been here 15 years. Their friends, the Christensens, have been at Ranchero Village in Weslaco for 10 years. They were all looking forward to enjoying Tourist Day. And they are in agreement that what makes the Valley attractive to come to is the weather, the activities, and the people they meet. Many heading for the border took time to visit the new tourist shop that is located in the Bridge Authority’s newly remodeled building on the west side of the walkway, where Tourist Day T-shirts were among the popular items for sale. The shop is part of the upgrading to the international structure, which Framed in going to Tourist Day were Winter Texans (from left) Vicki and John Serna, Jim and Betty Christensen and Donna and Wayne Goodwin. Photo by Herb Moering Among the dignitaries were (from left) Darris and Judy Hable, king and queen for Tourist Day and Weslaco Mayor David Suarez, named Mr. Tourist 2023 USA. Photo by Herb Moering

11 WINTER TEXAN TIMES MARCH 29, 2023 • 12 Colors Vinyl Siding • Complete Building Supplies • Patio Covers & Carports • Window Awning Parts • Exterior Vinyl Shutters • Phifer Solar Sun Screens • Custom Aluminum Fabrication • MH & RV Accessories The SIDING SOURCE “Lets Build a Deck”....Composite Decking/Vinyl Deck Railing DUTCH LAP VINYL SIDING (12 COLORS IN STOCK) MOBILE HOME SKIRTING (6 COLORS IN STOCK) CLASSIC RIB METAL ROOFING THE SIDING SOURCE 705 BUS. 83 • ALAMO, TX • (800)-567-3311 90 YEARS OF TRUSTED SERVICE Planning a Project? We Give Expert Advice on all Products and Projects Check us out at FREE ESTIMATES VALLEYWIDE DELIVERY Lic# TACLB00114391E 10 Year Parts and Labor Warranty Mobile Home Installations 2022 Winter Promotion A/C Replacement 2 Ton - $3,500 3 Ton - $3,800 4 Ton - $4,500 5 Ton - $4,700 Free Installation Rio Grande Valley Call 830-399-0177 Text 956-304-8110 is one of only three privately-owned bridges in the U.S. The other two are in Rio Grande City and Detroit, MI. The bridge along with the buildings rented by the federal government’s U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency to process visitors, is owned by Samuel Robert Sparks Jr. and his two sisters, Elizabeth Johnson and Karen Gunter. The siblings inherited it eight years ago when their father died. He had bought what was a somewhat rickety old two-lane bridge in 1980. The bridge has been improved to its present four-lane concrete bridge size along with an additional truck lane. In 2022 a total of 1,092,749 pedestrians came across the bridge to see dentists and doctors, shop for curios, buy medicine, and enjoy the foods, according to Marga Lopez, bridge authority director. Another 505,815 automobiles with an average of two people crossed over last year, which would mean another million visitors, or a total of over two million, a large share of them Winter Texans. In addition, commercial truck traffic accounted for 55,000 crossings as one of the main routes for Valley exports of corn, grain, and rice into Mexico. But for Winter Texans they get to enjoy the imports from down south of oranges, grapefruit, other citrus, avocados, dates, figs, pineapples, strawberries, and a variety of vegetables. The delegation and attendees meeting at the center of the bridge for a ceremony. Photo by Herb Moering A local high school band and baton and flag twirlers entertained on the main street. Photo by Herb Moering

MARCH 29, 2023 12 WINTER TEXAN TIMES 2407 E. Griffin Pkwy. – Mission, TX GENERAL DENTISTRY EXCEPTIONAL CARE SINCE 1982 Now Accepting Allwell from Superior Healthplan New Patient Exams only $159 • Includes all necessary x-rays • Oral Cancer Screening • Intra-oral Photos • Comprehensive Exam • Periodontal Screening No Dental Insurance? NO PROBLEM! 956-581-2773 For dental care you can trust and have confidence in Come See Us At Sharyland Dental Care Gospel music is a traditional genre of Christian music with its definition varying according to culture and social context. It’s a style of ‘church’ music which emerged from hymns with songs easier to grasp and more singable than traditional church hymns. Gospel music can be traced to the early 1600’s with the first published use of the term ‘gospel song’ appearing in 1874. Black and Southern gospel music are largely responsible for gospel’s presence in today’s contemporary Christian music. The hosts for the Lamplighter jam were Carole and Leon Hampton. The stage band featured Sandra Arvold on fiddle, Dave Evans on lead guitar, Lernie Fulk on bass guitar, Leon Hampton on rhythm/lead guitar, and Frank Rinchiuso on rhythm guitar. Two musicians will be featured at Lamplighter with the first being Dave Evans from Minnesota, who started his music venture at age 10 playing for his high school band and choir. He not only performs with his guitar but with an accordion, banjo, bass guitar, and keyboard including playing 2nd violin with the Winter Texan Orchestra. He has performed at the Corn Palace in South Dakota, with Rusty Rierson, and at numerous RGV jams. Frank Rinchiuso from Iowa started his musical journey at age eight with his uncle helping him to learn the guitar. He now performs throughout the RGV playing gospel and bluegrass music with his guitar, dobro, and banjo. The 26 jammers at Lamplighter included Delbert Allen, Don Ausland, Erven Bertrand, Steve Burrow, Karyl Davis, Dan Davis, Verna Funk, Ray Glenn, Jessica Greene, Renie Halverson, Dennis Hilligoss, Bonnie Hanson, Pat Kent, John Mosqueda, Mary Lou Perkins, Don Perkins, Dixie Rinchiuso, Ed Rydell, Betty Rydell, Karen Rayborn, Al Schulz, Dennis Salo, Bob Wiebe, Lily Wiebe, Anna Wiens on harp, Leah Wuestenberg, and Mark Wuestenberg. At Valley View Estates in Mission, the hosts were Dick and Wilma WynGospel or ‘good news’ music is sung throughout the RGV including the two jams that I attended at Lamplighter Park in Palmview on February 26th and at Valley View Estates in Mission on March 12th. Other gospel jams take place at Bluebonnet RV Park in Mission, Leisure World in Weslaco, and Paradise Park RV Resort in Harlingen. Inspirational ‘Good News’ music abounds in the RGV Jammin’ in the RGV with Tony Ozark Pictured left to right are Sandra Arvold, Fiddle; Leon Hampton, Rhythm and Lead Guitar; Frank Rinchiuso, Rhythm Guitar; Dave Evans, Lead Guitar; and Lernie Fulk, Bass Guitar. Photo by Tony Ozark Pictured left to right, back row, are Ken Griffith, Lead Guitar, Irene Griffith, Keyboard, Dennis Wiese, Bass Guitar, Richard Rohrbach, Pedal Steel Guitar, and Mike Botello, Lap Cajun Drum. Front row, left to right, are Wilma Wynne, Vocalist Jammer and Dick Wynne, Rhythm Guitar. Photo by Tony Ozark Jammers. Photo by Tony Ozark

13 WINTER TEXAN TIMES MARCH 29, 2023 27146 McLelland Road., Harlingen, TX 78552 (956) 423-1446 Lower Valley / 956-664-1446 Upper Valley Visit us at for complete itineraries The Painted Churches (2 Days) Sept. 2, 2023 ���������������������������������������������$309pp (Prices are per person, double occupancy) San Miguel De Allende (6 Days) July 1, 2023 �������������������������������������$785pp San Miguel De Allende (6 Days) Nov. 21, 2023 �������������������������������������� $TBA Monterrey Tres (3 Days) July 14, 2023 �����������������������������������������������������$325pp Monterrey Tres (3 Days) Sept. 2; Nov. 24; Dec. 30, 2023 ����������������������������$TBA Real de Catorce (3 Days) July 7, 2023 �����������������������������������������������������$369pp (Prices are per person, double occupancy) U.S. TOURS ONE DAY BUS TOURS MEXICO BUS TOURS Go...With Jo! Tours & Travel We Take Care of You! King Ranch (1 Day) Apr. 13, 2023 �����������������������������������������������������������������$110pp (Prices are per person) South Texas Ecotourism Center EXPLORE, PROTECT, EDUCATE 501 W. STATE HIGHWAY 100, LAGUNA VISTA, TX 78578 FREE ADMISSION OPEN DAILY 8AM-5PM 956-772-0212 WWW.STEC-LV.ORG WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/STECLV • LIVING EXHIBITS • VIEWING TOWER • DISPLAYS W/QR CODES • AMPITHEATER • SPACE RENTALS able to really get out there and enjoy themselves this year. I have never seen them gather and spend so much time together as they did this year. It was exciting seeing them entertain with each other and all of the camaraderie they have. We are so very blessed to have great entertainment that visits the Valley each year. And it’s all because of you. The activity directors have a hard job trying to fill in their calendars. Make sure you tell them who you want to see at your park. We also saw how much you helped the communities you live in and communities in Mexico. Your dedication, caring hearts, and your love for others is truly overwhelming and a great thing to see. We wish to extend a special thank you to all of the Winter Texans that perform community service. These organizations struggle a bit when you leave, and your generosity and caring spirit are greatly appreciated. I know they are always happy to see you return – as we are too. We also know that you continue your efforts while you are up north. We have heard how many of you continue to make quilts, raise money, and more for the organizations you help during your time in the Valley. The Valley is blessed to have you as part of the community. We are blessed to be able to share just a bit of what you do for our community. We are thankful for all that you do and bring to the Valley. Without you, we would not be here. You bring such good things to the Valley, and we would not be the same without you. As always, thank you for coming and we look forward to your return in the fall. Have a wonderful summer with your family and friends. Until we meet again … RAMBLINGS From pg. 1 ne. The stage band consisted of Mike Botelho on lap Cajun drum, Irene Griffith on keyboard, Ken Griffith on lead guitar, Rich Rohrbach on pedal steel guitar, Dennis Wiese on bass guitar, and Dick Wynne on rhythm guitar. The 19 inspirational jammers were Don Ausland, Bonnie Ausland, Erven Bertrand, Don Blanke, Elaine Botelho, Sharon Eckleberry, Verna Funk, Dave Harston, Charles Josephes, Pat Kent, Lyle Krecklan, Bev Moore, Emmett Moore, Wanita Patterson, Shirley Slone, Dave Swanson, Anna Wiens, Iris Wiese, and Wilma Wynne. The featured musician from this jam is Rich Rohrbach from Illinois who performs with the pedal steel guitar, guitar, bass guitar, accordion, piano, mountain dulcimer, and also sings. His musical adventures started at age seven with piano lessons followed by two years of piano accordion lessons. He started at age 16 with the guitar playing with rock and roll bands throughout his life and played trombone in a high school band and Big Band jams in Texas. At age 18, he taught others to play the guitar. Nine years ago, he purchased the steel guitar and started playing in country music bands including The Dixons, Country Roland Jr., Jealous Heart, George and the Texas Outlaws, Rusty Rierson, Dave Perryman, and Robert Lynch. He also performs at numerous jams throughout the RGV. Both gospel jams provided a peaceful and welcoming atmosphere where musicians were encouraged to provide inspirational Christian music to the audiences. Jammers. Photo by Tony Ozark

MARCH 29, 2023 14 WINTER TEXAN TIMES We Love Our Winter Texans! Thank you for making us your home away from home! • Nightly, 7 Day Plus Rates Available • Fully Equipped Kitchens • Free Wi-Fi • Outdoor Pool • Small Pet Welcome (with fee) • Guest Laundry Service Walking Distance to the La PlazaMall and several restaurants. For Reservations 956-668-7829 700 Savannah Ave. McAllen, TX Lock In Your Rates For Next Winter Winter Texan 7 Day Plus Special! $327.67 Queen Bed • $375.97 2 Full Size Beds PLEASE MENTION AD FOR SPECIAL! SPECIAL! 7 Day Plus I know many of our Winter Texans have already started home. Those who have not already left are probably thinking of packing up and closing down their winter homes. We are going to miss you and look forward to welcoming you back again in the fall. Have a wonderful summer wherever you may be. But now as you think about the drive home, will you stop along the way? Yes, you are anxious to be home but why not stop and enjoy a little bit more of Texas as you head home? One of your first stops could easily be at Schulenburg - located some five hours straight up North Highway 77. Schulenburg is the home of the Painted Churches and well worth a stop as you head North. Truly, Texas has been blessed to have so many different nationalities and cultures to settle in our state. Remnants of a European culture still exist in Schulenburg where the original settlers were from Germany, Poland and Czechoslovakia. It was in 1848, when the German speaking countries were in revolution that so many who were seeking a democratic form of government over a monarchy decided to leave their homeland. Even so, to leave everything behind and start life anew must have been very difficult. It is no wonder that these immigrants missed the architecture of their homeland and the beautiful churches they had left behind. Farmland abounded around Schulenburg but art and materials to copy the beautiful artwork and marble found in their homeland was sadly Stop and smell the roses on your way lacking. Nothing could stop these homesick Europeans as they thought of ways to build beautiful structures for their community churches. We might say where there is a will there is a way. Stencils were prepared to reproduce religious symbols on the ceiling and walls of their churches. Turkey feathers used as paint brushes turned pillars of wood into what appears to be marble. Today we are blessed and marvel at their ingenuity as we visit the five Painted Churches of Schulenburg. The Schulenburg Chamber of Commerce conducts tours of the churches. Call them and see if you can arrange to visit some of these churches. One of my most popular tours is to the Polka Mass held annually on Labor Day Weekend in Schulenburg. All five churches are visited on this two-day tour with a special Flag Salute prior to the Polka Mass held at High Hill Church. After the Mass and a wonderful fried chicken lunch, the polka music continues with many observers and a lot of people dancing to the lively polka music. There is something for everyone from homemade pickles, potted plants, 200 homemade cakes featured in the cake walk and ice-cold beer or soft drinks to quench your thirst. Fortunately, most of us have never been forced to flee our homeland due to political unrest or physical threats. It must be heart wrenching - and downright frightening - when for whatever reason you have to leave the known for the unknown. No wonder it was so important for these immigrants to duplicate as closely as possible the places of worship they had left behind. What a legacy they left for their children and great, great grandchildren - and all of us to enjoy. Stop along the road as you head to your summer home. Take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to enjoy history and art along the way. If you are a Converted Texan, or just stay longer, then why not join the group on the Labor Day Weekend to the Polka Mass in Schulenburg. If you elect to strike out on your own, then remember that LaGrange, the Barbeque Capital of Texas is just down the road from Schulenburg and not too much further is San Antonio, Texas’ number one destination. Enjoy and take care. Just take some time to smell the roses! All programs are free with park admission. Programs meet at the tram turnaround at park headquarters unless otherwise noted. Call ahead to confirm the program schedule and details at (956) 5849156. The Park is located at 2800 S. Bentsen Palm Drive in Mission. Park grounds are open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tram transportation service is done from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily and leaves from headquarters on the hour. BENTSEN From pg. 2 Painted Church