Breaking: Senator John McCain Diagnosed With Brain Cancer

Sen. John McCain has a brain tumor, the Mayo Clinic and the Arizona Republican’s office announced Wednesday night.

“On Friday, July 14, Sen. John McCain underwent a procedure to remove a blood clot from above his left eye at Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix,” reads a statement from the Mayo Clinic, released at the request of McCain. “Subsequent tissue pathology revealed that a primary brain tumor known as a glioblastoma was associated with the blood clot. Scanning done since the procedure (a minimally invasive craniotomy with an eyebrow incision) shows that the tissue of concern was completely resected by imaging criteria.”

The statement continues, “The Senator and his family are reviewing further treatment options with his Mayo Clinic care team. Treatment options may include a combination of chemotherapy and radiation.

More at ABC News

[photo:  RON RAKUN/PACIFIC PRESS/SIPA/AP]

Event Alert: Galveston Cajun Crawfish Festival

CAJUN FESTIVAL SET FOR FATHER’S DAY WEEKEND, JUNE 16-18, ON GALVESTON ISLAND

 

crawfish

The entertainment lineup for the second annual Galveston Cajun Festival, which is set for Father’s Day weekend, June 16-18, will feature some of the best musical entertainment that the Houston-Galveston area has to offer. Along with the musical entertainment, the festival will have succulent crawfish, all sorts of festival foods from a variety of vendors, a crawfish eating contest and more.

Set to kick things off from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, June 16, will be The Pee Wee Bowen Band.

On Saturday, June 17, Big E & The Lowdown and King Baby will perform; and on Sunday, June 18, Madalyn Hernandez, Grupo Fuerte and Monico Cortez, will all be performing as a part of the Grey Goose Lounge, one of the sponsors of this year’s event (check website for exact times).

Admission this year is free and open to the public, so bring the entire family out for all things Cajun — Father’s Day weekend on Galveston Island!

No coolers, outside foods, drinks, alcoholic beverages, radio’s, bicycles, pets and/or weapons will be allowed inside the venue.

For information, visit galvestoncajunfestival.com or call 409-359-3045.

 

COOL OFF THIS SUMMER AT MOODY GARDENS PALM BEACH

Kick off summer with a splash, and keep cool, at Palm Beach. The private beach oasis, complete with white sand, opens daily June 3 and features a 650-foot lazy river, wave pool and two 18-foot tower slides.

Other attractions include beach volleyball on regulation courts and the Aquarium Adventure play area. The splashpad automated aquatic water feature offers interactive dump buckets, spray arches and fountains for a day of fun at the beach.

Palm Beach is open daily June 3-Aug. 20. As the summer season comes to an end, Palm Beach will be open weekends only Aug. 26-Sept. 9, including Labor Day. Admission is $23.95 for adults, $18.95 for children and seniors, or $65 for a season pass. Children age 3 and younger can enter Palm Beach free.

And, don’t miss out on Bands on the Sand, June 9 – Aug. 12. Enjoy this summer concert series Friday and Saturday nights from 6-10 p.m. Each concert features local and regional R&B, rock, country and blues bands. Admission is $15 and children age 3 and younger can enter free. Each show ends with a fireworks display over Offatts Bayou, overlooking the Moody Gardens pyramids.

 

And, don’t miss out on Bands on the Sand, June 9 – Aug. 12. Enjoy this summer concert series Friday and Saturday nights from 6-10 p.m. Each concert features local and regional R&B, rock, country and blues bands. Admission is $15 and children age 3 and younger can enter free. Each show ends with a fireworks display over Offatts Bayou, overlooking the Moody Gardens pyramids.

 

 

 

For more information about Palm Beach and Bands on the Sand, please visit moodygardens.org.

City of Houston Announces “Liftoff Houston” 2017 Start Up Business Plan Competition

Capital One Bank Sponsors Business Plan Competition – Celebrating Fifth Year

The City of Houston and Capital One Bank are pleased to announce the 2017 launch of the “Liftoff Houston” Start Up Business Plan Competition; a program that is helping to launch new businesses today, for a better Houston tomorrow!
 
Mayor Sylvester Turner announced the 2017 program on Wednesday, June 7, 2017. Sponsored by Capital One Bank in partnership with the Houston Public Library (HPL) and the Office of Business Opportunity (OBO), “Liftoff Houston” is a start-up business plan competition that engages and empowers Houstonians seeking to start a new business in Houston by providing them with access to essential information, resources and the support necessary to develop a sound business plan toward realizing their goal.
 
In its fifth year, Liftoff Houston has helped to educate thousands of individuals seeking information on how to start and sustain their business, supported the launch of new businesses, and provided over $120,000 in cash awards and incentives to those businesses. This year’s program will build on past successes to include more opportunities to showcase previous winners and finalists, encourage program participation and completion and engage the general public. Added program activities such as a Winners Panel and mixer featuring past competition winners, additional business plan and pitch coaching, cash incentives for business plan completion and fan favorite selections, and live streaming of key events are just some ways this will be accomplished.
 
Houston was recently named “Best City in America” for minority business owners by the Expert Market Group and the Liftoff Houston Start Up Business Plan Competition is an excellent example of how the City of Houston and key stakeholders such as Capital One Bank are working collaboratively to foster an environment that helps all Houstonians achieve their goal of business ownership.
 
“Houston is a city of economic opportunity. Liftoff Houston! is an opportunity for all Houstonians who are considering starting a business but may need that extra push to get started. I am grateful to our partners and Capital One Bank for continuing to invest in our small business community and I am inviting all interested Houstonians to participate.” stated Mayor Sylvester Turner.
 
To be eligible, applicants must have a for profit business that is less than a year old, has earned less than $10,000 in revenue, is operated and have owners who live within the Houston city limits. The top three finalists will receive much needed capital to invest in their business. Capital One Bank is providing cash prizes totaling $30,000 to the top three winning business plan submissions in the categories of Product, Service and Innovation.  Prizes of $10,000 will be awarded for each category.
 
Entering the “Liftoff Houston” 2017 Business Plan Competition is easy and free. Application submissions open Wednesday, June 7, 2017, at 11 AM. All interested parties are required to complete and submit the application no later than 2 PM, Friday, July 5, 2017. To learn about the competition or to apply, visit www.Liftoffhouston.com or call 832-393-0954.
 
The competition is five months long and is divided into four stages that include: orientation, workshops, mentoring, and business pitching. The workshops will be offered at various Houston Public Library locations and other local entities citywide, with special emphasis on locations targeted in the Mayor’s Complete Communities neighborhoods.
 
“Capital One Bank is proud to once again sponsor the Liftoff Houston Competition,” said Jim Nicholas, Houston Market President for Capital One Bank. “Small business owners want solutions that make it easier for them to grow and manage their businesses. Through our product and services, and through our support of programs including Liftoff Houston, Capital One develops innovative solutions to help them succeed.”
 
Startup businesses contribute significantly to the economic viability of our City and the Houston Public Library is proud to play an important role in helping to support their development through Liftoff Houston”, stated Dr. Rhea Brown Lawson, Director, Houston Public Library.
 
“The Liftoff Houston Business Plan Competition is an excellent forum for aspiring entrepreneurs to gain invaluable knowledge and get insights on how to successfully manage and grow their startup businesses.  The Office of Business Opportunity is proud to support these businesses in their development.,” said Carlecia D. Wright, Director, Office of Business Opportunity.
 

The Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center Showcases Local, National, and International Leading Latino and Native American Artists This Summer

guadalupe (2)

The Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center brings local, national and international artists to San Antonio’s westside with its summer series of public events.  As one of the largest multi-disciplinary community-based organizations in the US, the Guadalupe seeks to cultivate, promote and preserve traditional and contemporary Chicano, Latino and Native American arts and culture. The cultures represented in this summer’s line-up highlight the diversity found within the community and include Colombian roots music, Spanish flamenco dance, Panamanian street art, Native American theater, and San Antonio contemporary culture.
Under the direction of new Executive Director, Cristina Ballí, the Guadalupe continues its long tradition of serving the San Antonio arts community. “The arts are a vital component to the city’s landscape and is what makes us unique from other cities across the country,” said Ballí. “I hope to continue the Guadalupe’s legacy of celebrating community and showcasing captivating contemporary artists at our westside campus.”

All performances take place in the historic Guadalupe Theater which is celebrating its 75th Anniversary in July. The Guadalupe Theater is located at 1301 Guadalupe Street, San Antonio, TX 78207. The Gallery Talk and Art Exhibitions are held in the Guadalupe Galería located at 723 S. Brazos, San Antonio, TX 78207. Hours: Monday-Friday, 9:00am-5:00pm | Free Admission
For tours and group visits, call 210.271.3151 or email info@guadalupeculturalarts.org

Summer Series

Cumbia Roots Festival
Sunday, June 18 at 3:00 pm
$15 – $25 | Guadalupe Theater

Musician Kiko Villamizar will host performances and workshops by Elders direct from Colombia for an afternoon celebration of the roots of Cumbia music. Paito y los Gaiteros de Punta Brava and national cumbiamba champions Trapiche de Colomboy will bring the richness and variety of Colombian rhythms such as porro, puya, gaita, merengue, chalupa, bullerengue, tambora, cumbia and vallenato to the Guadalupe stage while sharing stories and the beauty of this seldom heard music.

Sin Fronteras/Without Borders
A New Flamenco Dance Production by the Guadalupe Dance Company
June 23-25 | Friday & Saturday at 8:00 pm | Sunday at 3:00 pm
$15 – $50 | Guadalupe Theater

This Flamenco production is a celebration of life with all its trials and tribulations and the meaning of family and community. With theatrical elements, live music and the powerful choreography of Flamenco master Miguel Vargas, the Guadalupe Dance Company will take audiences on an emotional journey of life through the art form that is Flamenco.

75th Anniversary Celebration of the Historic Guadalupe Theater
Friday, July 7 at 7:00 pm
$5 | Guadalupe Theater
Take a trip back to the 1940s with us as we celebrate 75 years of the Guadalupe Theater with a classic Variedades featuring film shorts, teatro, dance, and music. Audiences will have a chance to share their memories as well at this once in a lifetime event.

Nuevo Teatro: A Festival of New Works
July 15 – Aug 19 | $5 – $20 | Guadalupe Theater
Nuevo Teatro is San Antonio’s newest summer theatre festival featuring original performance work by contemporary theatre artists. From emerging voices to established artists, this festival will showcase the cultural and artistic diversity of the Latin@, Chican@, Native American and South Texas experience. With over 15 performances, dozens of artists, and offerings for youth, families and adults, Nuevo Teatro: A Festival of New Works will have something for everyone.
July 15 -16: 100% NDN (Naturally Designed Natives) written by Isaac Alvarez Cardenas (Apache/Comanche)
-July 28:  Gaytino written and performed by Dan Guerrero (Los Angeles, CA)
-July 21: Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name written and performed by Irma Herrera (South Texas/Bay Area)
-August 4-6: Ruby Reds, Big Birds and Burras written and directed by Marisela Barrera (Rio Grande Valley, TX) and performances by Grupo Animo the Guadalupe’s resident youth theatre company.

Artist Talk by Victoria Suescum
Saturday, July 29 at 2:00 pm | Free
Exhibit closes Friday, August 4 | Free
Join us Saturday afternoon as artist Victoria Suescum shares her artistic process behind her solo exhibition Mi Museo está en la calle: An abbreviated Retrospective. A Panamanian native, Suescum’s exhibit draws inspiration from motifs lifted from the streets of Panama and the United States — including motifs one may find on the Westside of San Antonio. This event is for all ages and light refreshments will be provided.

Ana Fernandez: New Portraits works by Ana Fernandez
Narratives Invented works by Ruth Buentello
Opening Reception | Friday, September 1 | FREE
6:00 – 9:00 pm | Galería Guadalupe
Ana Fernandez (Corpus Christi, TX), and Ruth Buentello (San Antonio, TX), exhibit side by side and present all new works this summer in the Galería Guadalupe. Skilled painter Fernandez explores portraiture via city location and Buentello creates narratives that focus on the complexity and emotion of relationships. Included in the exhibition will also be works from Elizabeth Rodriguez-Trevino, Junye Butler, Marcy McChesney and Rosa Fernandez.

[Photos Courtesy of:  GuadalupeCulturalArts.Org]

Galveston Moody Gardens: Aquarium Grand Reveal Celebration

moody 2

Moody Gardens is offering guests their first glimpse inside the Aquarium Pyramid Saturday with a Grand Reveal celebration. The aquarium has been closed off and on for the past two years while new exhibits were added and existing exhibits were enhanced. New additions include a two-story, 30,000-gallon Gulf of Mexico Rig Exhibit, Humboldt penguins, Jellyfish Gallery, Mangrove Lagoon and Caribbean touch tanks and a shipwreck replica based loosely on Galveston pirate Jean Lafitte’s ship, The Pride.

There will be live music and face painting 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.  Houston Rockets legend Allen Leavell will make an appearance from 11 a.m.-noon on Saturday.

For more information, visit www.moodygardens.com.

Photo Credit:  Moody Gardens

Trump’s Order To Withhold Sanctuary City Money Blocked By California Judge

A federal judge in San Francisco has blocked a Trump administration order to withhold funding from communities that limit cooperation with U.S. immigration authorities.

U.S. District Judge William Orrick issued the temporary ruling Tuesday in a lawsuit over the executive order targeting so-called sanctuary cities. The decision will stay in place while the lawsuit moves through court.

Read more at Statesman.com

[Photo credit: EPA/TRACIE VAN AUKEN]

#StillMyPresident- He’s Back! Obama Speaks at University of Chicago

Obama-Speech

He’s back! And honestly, there aren’t enough words, emojis, etc. to express how I feel on hearing what a real President sounds like; one that speaks TO the audience and not AT them.

So in case you need a fix of #StillMyPresident, here’s video of him speaking today at he Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago. (those lucky students!)

(photo credit: AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

DAT DOG – CREATIVE SAUSAGE AND HOT DOG PURVEYOR TO OPEN IN HOUSTON

The New Orleans-based cult favorite will be first in Texas and first wave of franchisees.

dat dog

Foodie favorite Dat Dog, a New Orleans-based hot dog and sausage restaurant, will open 25 restaurants in Houston through franchisee group B&G Food Enterprises, LLC. The first restaurant is scheduled to open in 2018 and will be the first Dat Dog in Texas. There are no set locations at this time.

Dat Dog uses recipes developed by its Executive Chef, Alex Ventura, as well as craft cocktails developed by its Beverage Director, Alexa Ballard. The restaurant is known for its unique, quirky combinations, with sausages made from crawfish, alligator, duck, in addition to the traditional beef wiener. Dat Dog features more than 30 toppings, including unconventional options like blackberry sauce, guacamole, and crawfish etouffee. The restaurant also offers vegetarian and vegan sausage options, in addition to the “Greenie Weenie”—a dog wrapped in lettuce instead of a toasted sourdough bun. To keep putting a smile on the faces of its guests, Dat Dog regularly features art markets, trivia nights, fundraisers, special events and more.

Led by restauranteur Greg Hamer Sr., B&G Foods operates over 100 Yum brand locations across Texas and Louisiana. Hamer is an Emeritus Director of the National Restaurant Association and a trustee of the NRA Education Foundation. His long tenure with the Louisiana Restaurant Association has seen him honored as President in 2000, a member of the LRA Hall of Fame, Active Member of the Year and Chapter President of the Year.

During his due diligence of the restaurant, Hamer admits he and his son ate “just about everything on the menu”—landing on the Duck Sausage as his favorite.

“Dat Dog’s different. It’s a fresh concept, and we’re very excited to bring a little bit of offbeat New Orleans to Houston,” Hamer said. “We couldn’t be more excited to be opening in Texas,” said Bill DiPaola, President & COO of Dat Dog Enterprises and a Certified Franchise Executive. “I know Houstonians will love our quirky, Hawaiian-shirt wearing culture— along with our crazy delicious dogs.”

Dat Dog’s popularity can be seen in its critical acclaim and awards: The restaurant has been touted by The New York Times, Gayot, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, and The Food Network. The restaurant has also been awarded honors such as, “Top 10 Hot Dogs in the U.S.” (USA Today College), “Best Hot Dogs in America”(Thrillist & The Daily Meal), and the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Neighbor Award for Louisiana.

Philanthropic giving and social good are built into Dat Dog’s DNA. The company regularly hosts fundraising events on- and off-site for causes of all kinds, especially those related to animal welfare, at-risk youth, and education. Dat Dog’s Houston locations will regularly host charitable events and fundraisers, in addition to responding directly to people in need.

For franchisees, Dat Dog will offer flexible concepts for restaurants, including indoor/outdoor dining, areas for live music, biergartens or art markets, endcaps, free-standing buildings, universities, or other retail environments. Dat Dog is looking to further expand in the Gulf South region, focusing on Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and the Florida panhandle, in addition to already planned locations in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, La.

VIOLA DAVIS AND LEMUEL PLUMMER TO PRODUCE TRUE CRIME AND JUSTICE SERIES FOR TV ONE

LPlummer-Blue WristCrop
Viola_press

From the production companies of Viola Davis and Julius Tennon of JuVee Productions and Lemuel Plummer of L. Plummer Media comes the landmark limited series, Two Sides of the Truth, which will focus on four high profile cases that have been watershed moments for law enforcement and the Black community.
Produced for the TV One network by L. Plummer Media in partnership with JuVee Productions, ‘Two Sides’ will dissect and present both points of view of these highly charged cases so the audience can draw their own conclusions after hearing both sides of the story. Davis also narrates the limited series.
“Every other week we hear about these horrific incidences and many of them go unsolved and unresolved. We hope that this show can take those headlines and humanize them,” said Davis.  “We want to give an unbiased approach to digging into what really happened on those fateful days and in doing so, hopefully shed some light and bring some awareness to such an important issue,” said Tennon.
Two Sides of the Truth is executive produced by Davis, Tennon and Andrew T. Wang of JuVee Productions, Plummer and Jason L. Tolbert of L. Plummer Media (LPM) with LPM overseeing production.
“A project of this magnitude calls for partners like JuVee Productions and TV One who understand the issues at-stake and the importance of good, accurate, storytelling. We look forward to working with JuVee and TV One to explore all the facets of each case and hopefully shed new light on the story.”