Tag Archives: houston

Houston Symphony to Celebrate Jazz Legend Ella Fitzgerald With Tribute Concert

The Houston Symphony will kick off the 2017-18 BBVA Compass POPS Series with Ella at 100, a celebration of jazz icon Ella Fitzgerald during her 100th birthday year. Led by Principal POPS Conductor Steven Reineke in the first concert of his inaugural season, the program will feature Fitzgerald favorites including “Dream a Little Dream of Me,” “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)” and “Summertime.”

Powerhouse vocalists Montego Glover, Capathia Jenkins, and N’Kenge will join Reineke and the orchestra for all three performances. A 2010 Tony nominee for her starring role as Felicia Farrell in Memphis, Glover and has collaborated with several orchestras including the New York Pops, Philadelphia Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. She will be joined by Jenkins, an American singer/actress best known for her work as a Broadway performer and who was recently seen on The Wiz Live!, a new adaptation of the 1975 Broadway musical that aired on NBC. N’Kenge appeared with the Houston Symphony in February 2017 for R&B Mixtape and originated the role of Mary Wells in Broadway’s smash hit Motown: The Musical.

Fitzgerald rose to fame as the lead singer for bandleader and jazz drummer Chick Webb in the 1930s. She earned the nicknames “First Lady of Song” and “Queen of Jazz” as audiences fell in love with her unique voice and improvisational abilities. She ended her 59-year performing career with her last public performance in 1993 and passed away in 1996.

The concert will take place at Jones Hall for the Performing Arts, 615 Louisiana Street, in Houston’s Theater District. For tickets and information, please call (713) 224-7575 or visit www.houstonsymphony.org. Tickets may also be purchased at the Houston Symphony Patron Services Center in Jones Hall (Monday–Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.). All programs and artists are subject to change.

“Go Astros” Shuttle Improves Game Day Thursday Commute

It’s been an exciting season for the Houston Astros. But all the activity at Minute Maid Park can mean increased traffic downtown during the afternoon rush hour, causing big delays for commuters.

To improve service for our customers, METRO will adjust several bus routes and offer “Go Astros” shuttles from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017. The shuttles will run along Congress between La Branch and Main and offer passengers direct service from their regular bus stops to select local bus and Park & Ride routes.

The shuttles will serve customers using the following routes and connect them to their regular buses at Main and Congress:

  • 151 Westpark Express
  • 236 Maxey Road / Baytown
  • 244 Monroe
  • 246 Bay Area
  • 247 Fuqua
  • 249 Gulf Corridor
  • 261 West Loop
  • 262 Westwood
  • 265 West Bellfort
  • 269 Southwest Corridor

Go Astros” shuttle service will travel along Congress, connecting riders to local and Park & Ride routes at Congress and Main.

In order to ensure timely shuttle service, METRO will temporarily close a bus stop at Congress and Crawford. Additionally, a stop at the northeast corner of Congress and La Branch will be relocated across the street to the northwest corner of the intersection.

Signs at closed and relocated stops will guide riders to “Go Astros” shuttle stops. METRO staff will also be on hand to assist riders. Please allow for extra time to complete trips.

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.
 

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

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.

Third Annual Bayou Greenway Day Outdoor Festival Set For April 29

bayou main

Free family event at MacGregor Park showcases transformational Bayou Greenways 2020 Project

Houston Parks Board announces the third annual Bayou Greenway Day, an outdoor festival and celebration of the Bayou Greenways, which connect Houstonians to parks and greenspaces – and one another. All are invited to participate in this free, day-long community event presented by Noble Energy on Saturday, April 29 along Brays Bayou Greenway at MacGregor Park in southeast Houston, 5225 Calhoun Road.

bayou 2

From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., families will be able to walk, bike, run, stroll and play along Brays Greenway – the star of this year’s event – during the Bayou Greenway Day 2017 celebration. Attendees will enjoy free family activities while exploring the hike-and-bike trails along the bayou. Event programming provided by nonprofits, neighborhood organizations and local businesses will include an obstacle course, face painting, a guided children’s bike ride, music and food trucks, along with kite flying, origami, soccer drills and more.

“Bayou Greenway Day is an ideal way to celebrate this unique collaborative project enhancing access to greenspace and bringing people together all over Houston,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner, honorary chairman of Bayou Greenway Day. “Bayou Greenways 2020 is unlike any other parks project in the country, and I’m so proud to see Houston leading the way with this inspired plan.”

“Houston doesn’t have mountains or beaches, but we do have an incredible natural resource: our bayous,” said Carter Stern, event co-chair and a board member of the Houston Parks Board. “On Bayou Greenway Day, we invite everyone to get to know Houston’s bayous as destinations for recreation and as greenspaces that connect our parks and neighborhoods.”

Bayou Greenway Day is a chance for Houstonians to experience the transformation happening along Houston’s bayous as part of the Bayou Greenways 2020 project, which will create a continuous parks system along Houston’s major waterways within the city limits, transform more than 3,000 acres along the bayous into public greenspace and connect 150 miles of hike and bike trails.

“This year’s Bayou Greenway Day will be a wonderful day for Houstonians to visit MacGregor Park and enjoy how the park now connects with Brays Bayou” said Lisa Johnson, Interim Director Houston Parks and Recreation Department. “We look forward to welcoming the public and the many sponsors and non-profits who will be part of this year’s festivities.”

Attendees are encouraged to bicycle or walk to Bayou Greenway Day along the Brays Bayou Greenway Trail in keeping with the spirit of the event. Public transportation to Bayou Greenway Day is available via METRO bus routes 28 (OST / Wayside), 29 (Cullen / Hirsch) and 80 (MLK Lockwood) and the METRORail Purple Line. Plan your trip now at RideMetro.org

Parking will be limited. Carpooling is encouraged if car travel is necessary.

To learn more about Bayou Greenway Day 2017, visit www.bayougreenwayday.org or Bayou Greenway Day on Facebook

Harris County Department of Education Awarded Head Start Grant

Funding Will Serve More than 1,200 Houston Children Daily

Congressman Gene Green announced that the Harris County Department of Education would receive a $6 million Head Start continuation grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

“Children and families that participate in Head Start receive countless benefits that appear quickly and are long lasting,” said Rep. Gene Green. “This grant will ensure that Head Start keeps changing the lives of children and parents in our community through education. I applaud the award and will continue to fight for education initiatives and programs that open opportunities regardless of where you start.”

Head Start provides early, continuous, intensive, and comprehensive child development and family support services to low-income infants, toddlers, pre-school children and their families, and pregnant women and their families. Head Start children have a higher likelihood of graduating high school, attending college, and receiving a post-secondary degree, license, or certification (Bauer and Schanzenbach, 2016). 

  • View Head Start fact sheets to learn more about demographics, state allocations, program statistics, and general information on Head Start enrollment history.
  • View Harris County Department of Education’s Head Start FAQ page.

 

Ghostbusters Day at the Children’s Museum of Houston

Who you gonna call? The Children’s Museum of Houston is calling on the Ghostbusters! Help the Ghostbusters gang investigate and capture pesky ghouls and save the Museum from ectoplasmic chaos during Halloween Monster Mayhem. Don’t forget to bring your camera! I ain’t afraid of no ghost!

 

Ghostbusters Day, Oct. 22, 2016                

*Activities, events and times subject to change.

SPECIAL EVENTS:

Ghostbusters Character Appearances: Meet some of your favorite characters from the Ghostbusters!

Event Time:   10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Brown Auditorium.

Houston Area Ghostbusters: Your friendly neighborhood Ghostbusters will be on alert and onsite.

Event Time: Throughout the day inside Museum.

ON-GOING ACTIVITIES:

  • Ghost Doll: Design a spooky ghost doll that will follow you home at Junktion.
  • Slimer Mask: Become everyone’s favorite pizza eating ghost at Junktion.
  • Ecto Goggles: Fashion your own pair of Ecto goggles to perceive the unknown at Junktion.
  • Monster Slime: Ooze with ickiness with a gooey concoction of monster slime at Science Station.

HOURS/COST:

  • MUSEUM HOURS: Tues. – Sat.: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sun: Noon – 6 p.m.
  • General Museum admission: $12 per person and $11 for seniors 65+ and for active duty military personnel. Children under one and Museum Members receive free admission.
  • For more information, visit www.cmhouston.org or call (713) 522-1138.

East End Street Fest to Launch an Educational Program for Low-Income Students

The Navigation Esplanade will once again host the East End Street Fest to be held October 15th, 2016 from Noon to 10:00pm. This year’s highlight will be the implementation of an educational program for local students interested in the entertainment and arts industries.

Houston’s East End is known for its colorful art expressions and rich Latino history. The average household income in the area is $47,000 and only 9.5% of those living in the neighborhood hold a college degree or higher. Most students cannot afford more than $2,000.00 to travel and attend national entertainment conferences and festivals such as South By Southwest in Austin, Texas. To address this issue, the East End Street Fest committee will introduce an educational program for high school and college students interested in careers in Entertainment, Media, and Arts.

The educational program will be held at Talento Bilingue de Houston on October 15 between 10:00am and 2:00pm. The goal is to nurture the next generation of creative minds in the East End community and also work with local universities and community colleges to allow participating students to receive academic credit.

East End Street Fest committee members hope that this initiative will make the East End a national destination to discover emerging Latino talent and to cultivate the next generation of entertainment and media professionals.

The East End Street Festival 2016 will open its doors to the public at noon with a music lineup that includes national, regional and local music artists such as the psychedelic music band from California, Chicano Batman and the Texas Latino rising star, AJ Castillo. Other rock, Tejano, cumbia, electronic and indie music artists include La Diferenzia and their legendary Tejano style, El Dusty with his revolutionary cumbia-electronic music and Atlanta’s Xavier BLK with his high energy underground party music and many other local music artists.

Admission to the East End Street Fest is FREE for kids 12 and under. Adults can purchase their tickets for $10.00 online ($12 at the gate). The location is the East End Esplanade at 2600 Navigation. The time is 12:00 pm to 10:00 pm. For volunteer, vendor or sponsorship opportunities visit www.eastendstreetfest.com or call, 713.926.3305. Some of the event proceeds will benefit the Houston Firefighters Association.

Houston Texans at Dallas Cowboys Postgame Notes

TEXANS TEAM NOTES

THE TEXANS…
· Finished 4-0 in the preseason for the first time in franchise history
· Scored 28 points, which is the team’s second-highest single-game total of the preseason
· Recorded 374 net yards of total offense (232 passing, 142 rushing), 25 first downs and 39:39 time of possession, while converting 9-of-16 (56%) third downs
· Held the Cowboys to 161 net yards of offense (83 passing, 78 rushing), 12 first downs, 20:21 time of possession and 2-of-10 (20%) on third down
· Forced (ILB Max Bullough) and recovered (CB Charles James) a fumble in their fourth straight game, giving them 11 total takeaways in the preseason
· Recorded a pick-six (S Antonio Allen) in their second straight game of the preseason
· Led at halftime for the third straight week of the preseason
· Scored touchdowns on three consecutive possessions over the second and third quarters

SCORING PLAYS
· 2nd Quarter – RB Akeem Hunt scored his first rushing touchdown of the preseason on a 3-yard run in the second quarter, tying the game at 7-7 after K Nick Novak made the extra point
· 2nd Quarter – WR Keith Mumphery caught a 64-yard touchdown pass from QB Brandon Weeden in the second quarter, which marked both players’ first touchdown and the Texans’ longest offensive play of the preseason
· 3rd Quarter – RB Akeem Hunt scored on a 10-yard pass from QB Tom Savage in the third quarter, giving the Texans a 21-10 lead
· 4th Quarter – S Antonio Allen scored on a 9-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter to give Houston a 28-17 lead

MISCELLANEOUS NOTES
· The following Texans player was a captain for the game: P Shane Lechler
· Dallas won the toss and elected receive the ball to start the game. Houston received the ball to start the second half

 

TEXANS INDIVIDUAL NOTES

 

S ANTONIO ALLEN

  • Intercepted Cowboys QB Jameill Showers in the fourth quarter and returned the ball nine yards for a touchdown, which was his first pick of the preseason
  • The interception also marked the team’s second game in a row with a pick-six

 

ILB MAX BULLOUGH

  • Forced a fumble on Cowboys QB Jameill Showers in the second quarter, which was recovered by CB Charles James

 

DE JOEL HEATH

  • Tied for the team lead with four tackles (two solo), including his first sack of the preseason, and added a single-game high three quarterback hits

 

RB KENNY HILLIARD

  • Led the team with preseason single-game high 86 rushing yards on 29 carries

 

RB AKEEM HUNT

  • Became the first Texans player with a rushing and receiving touchdown this preseason
  • Scored his first rushing touchdown of the preseason on a 3-yard run in the second quarter, tying the game at 7-7
  • Recorded his first receiving touchdown on a 10-yard pass from QB Tom Savage in the third quarter, giving the Texans a 21-10 lead
  • Totaled 44 rushing yards on 12 attempts and tied for the team lead with four receptions for 27 yards. Also returned two kickoffs for 46 yards

 

CB CHARLES JAMES

  • Recovered a fumble in the second quarter, which was forced by ILBMax Bullough on Cowboys QB Jameill Showers
  • Led the team with two special teams tackles and had three tackles on defense

 

P SHANE LECHLER

  • Punted three times for 109 yards with a long of 48 yards and pinned two inside the 20-yard line

 

WR KEITH MUMPHERY

  • Caught a 64-yard touchdown pass from QB Brandon Weeden, which was his first receiving touchdown and the team’s longest offensive play of the preseason
  • Recorded three catches for 83 yards, which marks a preseason single-game high for the Texans

 

CB ROBERT NELSON

  • Tied for the team lead with four tackles (three solo) and led the team with two passes defensed

 

K NICK NOVAK

  • Made four PATS, giving him a total of 26 points scored for the preseason

 

ILB SHAKEEL RASHAD

  • Finished with two tackles and his first sack of the preseason

 

QB TOM SAVAGE

  • Started his first game of the preseason and completed 12-of-18 passes (66.7%) for 119 yards, one touchdown, no interceptions and a 103.7 passer rating
  • Threw his team-leading fourth touchdown pass of the preseason to RB Akeem Hunt in the third quarter

 

WR CECIL SHORTS III

  • Tied for the team lead with four receptions for 27 yards

 

QB BRANDON WEEDEN

  • Threw a 64-yard touchdown pass to WRKeith Mumphery, which was his first passing touchdown and the team’s longest offensive play of the preseason
  • Completed 9-of-13 passes (69.2%) for 116 yards, one touchdown, one interception and a 90.5 passer rating