Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

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Volkonski
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Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#1

Post by Volkonski » Wed Dec 12, 2018 1:40 pm

Houston Chronicle today compares the largest Buc-ee's in Texas. The one in our town is included. Cheap shot about the local scenery. :madguy:
Baytown (4080 East Freeway, Baytown, Texas 77521)

Pros: You can get all the Beaver Nuggets you need for the long journey to Lake Charles to gamble your paycheck away on Friday. They also carry ten flavors of Icees, the preferred road drink of thirsty news reporters.

Cons: The views outside aren’t as picturesque as in Madisonville or Luling. It’s Baytown, get your beef jerky and hit the road.

:snippity:

Patrons probably won't find a wide selection of river tubes at the location in Madisonville, as they would at the New Braunfels location. That river-ready Buc-ee's is the largest travel center in the chain so far according to the company.

The Fort Worth location isn't as Cajun-friendly as the Baytown location. Swap TCU gear for fleur-de-lis decorations. You get the idea.
https://www.chron.com/life/travel/artic ... to-9610408
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#2

Post by jonbeck » Wed Dec 12, 2018 1:50 pm

haha, my old hometown, I get back there every couple of years. Baytown Seafood is good eats

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#3

Post by Volkonski » Thu Dec 13, 2018 2:57 pm

Residents of Galveston and the Bolivar Peninsula starting to realize how the proposed "Ike Dike" might affect them.

https://www.texastribune.org/2018/12/12 ... rmy-corps/
Much of the concern expressed Wednesday appeared to be generated by the many lingering unknowns — where exactly the levees would go, for example, and what they would look like. They could be a mix of sand-covered dunes and berms that may be topped with parks and jogging trails, or they could be vertical concrete seawalls that would inevitably block ocean views, Burks-Copes said.

In a summary of its written comments on the plan sent out Tuesday, a coalition of more than a dozen environmental and conservation groups complained that the accompanying environmental impact assessment “is insufficient to enable thorough and informed comments.” They also cast doubt on the accuracy of the agencies’ ecosystem modeling and said they didn't thoroughly describe impacts to commercial and recreational fisheries and wildlife habitat.

Such specifics will be figured out later, when the Army Corps moves on to the next phase of the largest study it’s ever undertaken in its more than 200-year history.

“There are a lot of details that still need to be worked out,” said Col. Lars N. Zedderstrom, the head of the Army Corps' Galveston office, in his opening remarks.
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Image
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#4

Post by Volkonski » Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:31 am

What with the flood last year and both of our daughters living in north Texas we haven't had a Christmas here in several years. :(

This year the daughters are coming down and Mrs. V's sister is flying in from California. :thumbs:

The den is almost ready-

Image

However, I am getting tired of first thing in the morning Amazon deliveries. ;)
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#5

Post by Tiredretiredlawyer » Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:32 am

🎶It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas....🎶
“A black woman can invent something for the benefit of humankind.” -Bessie Blount-Griffin, physical therapist, inventor of devices for disabled WWII veterans, and forensic scientist.

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#6

Post by Volkonski » Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:34 am

Finally went over to see the new Sam Houston statue. It is big!

Image
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#7

Post by Volkonski » Sun Dec 16, 2018 1:35 pm

The Sears store here has closed and the mall that contained it is being demolished to be replaced by a more up to date more open shopping venue. How the mighty have fallen. :(

Yesterday was the quarterly BBQ lunch for local retirees of my former employer . A bargain. :thumbs: Costs $5 a year to join the retirees club and you get this four times-

Image

Also yesterday we used our dining room for the first time since the Harvey flood. :-D As it happened we entertained friends who helped us a great deal after the flooding.

Image
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#8

Post by Bill_G » Sun Dec 16, 2018 3:46 pm

Both pictures look great!

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#9

Post by Tiredretiredlawyer » Sun Dec 16, 2018 4:39 pm

Bill_G wrote:
Sun Dec 16, 2018 3:46 pm
Both pictures look great!
:thumbs:
“A black woman can invent something for the benefit of humankind.” -Bessie Blount-Griffin, physical therapist, inventor of devices for disabled WWII veterans, and forensic scientist.

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#10

Post by Azastan » Sun Dec 16, 2018 6:15 pm

Volkonski wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:34 am
Finally went over to see the new Sam Houston statue. It is big!

Image
Poppy (my Azteca mare) looked that bad too before we rode her enough to get her back into shape.

:rotflmao:

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#11

Post by Notorial Dissent » Sun Dec 16, 2018 8:03 pm

Tiredretiredlawyer wrote:
Sun Dec 16, 2018 4:39 pm
Bill_G wrote:
Sun Dec 16, 2018 3:46 pm
Both pictures look great!
:thumbs:
Yeah!
The fact that you sincerely and wholeheartedly believe that the “Law of Gravity” is unconstitutional and a violation of your sovereign rights, does not absolve you of adherence to it.

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#12

Post by Volkonski » Sat Dec 22, 2018 4:59 pm

Today in our Texas city.

Image

Elsewhere low gas prices are a good thing. Here the headline on the front page today is-

Energy recovery would stall if oil prices stay below $50


https://www.houstonchronicle.com/busine ... 483426.php

Houston and Texas could lose thousands of jobs if oil prices remain below $50 a barrel for an extended period, stalling an energy industry recovery that only a few months ago appeared to be gaining momentum, economists said.

The oil sector has found itself in a downward spiral since early October as growing supplies of crude and fears of another global oil glut triggered a 40 percent plunge in prices from a recent high of $76 a barrel down to below $46. Oil settled Thursday at $45.88 a barrel, the lowest since July 2017.

Prices of $60 a barrel are considered healthy for the industry, generating enough profits for companies to spend, grow and hire. At $50 a barrel, growth flattens, energy economists said, and below $50, companies begin to scale back spending and hiring. If prices fall below $40, then another prolonged downturn could take hold.

:snippity:

If crude stays well below $50 a barrel for more than 18 months, Gilmer said, then the Houston area could lose anywhere from 10,000 to 20,000 energy-related jobs. That still pales in comparison to the 75,000 to 90,000 jobs lost in the region from late 2014 to 2017 when prices plummeted from more than $100 a barrel to a low of $26
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#13

Post by Volkonski » Sat Dec 22, 2018 5:01 pm

Mrs. V's sister's plane was delayed after the flight tracker said it had departed. Luckily Mrs. V. called me before I got very far and I returned home. Looks to be a >2 hour delay. :(
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#14

Post by Volkonski » Sun Dec 23, 2018 1:04 pm

:(

Baytown Symphony in deep financial trouble

http://baytownsun.com/news/article_5b07 ... c7585.html
Without community support, the Baytown Symphony Orchestra’s could come to an end after providing culturally enriching music, opportunity and musical education to the greater Baytown community for the last 51 years.

:snippity:

According to Corder, each concert costs between $15,000- $18,000 to produce, plus additional administrative and promotional costs. The orchestra estimates it currently has anywhere from $18,000- $21,000, which is enough to fund just one of the two concerts slated in the spring.

“Over the past few years rising prices, increased costs along with decreases in donations and granting opportunities, ticket sales and certain aspects of fiscal support from Lee College point to a definite shortfall to complete expenditures for the 2018-19 season budget,” Corder said. “An emergency ‘kitty fund’ of $75,000 has been gradually saved up to use only on an emergency basis. And this fund is about to be used up before the end of the season in April 2019.”

Corder added that it would also take more than ticket sales and the annual Gala to keep the Baytown Symphony Orchestra afloat.
I served 2 terms as president of the orchestra's board of directors.

Over the years there has been a slow erosion of several programs that helped support the orchestra. The Music Performance Trust Fund of the American Federation of Musicians which subsidized the hiring of union musicians for nonprofit groups was funded by a royalty on record sales. As sales of records dropped due to the Internet those royalties dropped too.

The local college has scaled back on its performing arts program which has meant fewer student musicians.

Local corporate giving has declined as charitable donation decisions are increasing made by national headquarters people.
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#15

Post by Volkonski » Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:51 am

Behold the Fred Hartman Bridge which runs over the Houston Ship Channel connecting Baytown and La Porte. It is the longest bridge in Texas. :)

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#16

Post by Tiredretiredlawyer » Mon Dec 31, 2018 6:50 pm

Pretty!
“A black woman can invent something for the benefit of humankind.” -Bessie Blount-Griffin, physical therapist, inventor of devices for disabled WWII veterans, and forensic scientist.

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#17

Post by Volkonski » Wed Jan 02, 2019 12:05 pm

One Texas county just swore in 17 black female judges

https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/01/us/harri ... index.html
The group of women, who were part of a local democratic campaign called "Black Girl Magic Texas," first made history -- and headlines -- when they won their respective midterm elections in November. Together, they make up what is believed to be the largest group of black female judges to be elected at the same time in Harris County history.

The Harris County Democratic Party posted photos of the swearing-in ceremony, which took place on Tuesday morning.

"Today we usher in a new era of representative government and progressive leadership in Harris County," the group wrote.

:snippity:

Harris County, which includes Houston, is the largest county in the state. According to the most recent census data, 43% of people in Harris County are Hispanic, and nearly 20% of the county's residents identify as African-American.
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#18

Post by Volkonski » Wed Jan 02, 2019 1:35 pm

:(

Mrs.V. just got an email from the conductor of the Baytown Community Concert Band.

After many years the Baytown Community Concert Band is no more. :crying: Problem is a lack of community musicians who want to play in the band.

The BCCB served as a performance opportunity for the local Jr. college's music program. They don't yet know what they will do.

Looks like we will lose both our orchestra and our band this year.
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#19

Post by Notorial Dissent » Wed Jan 02, 2019 2:38 pm

That is sad to hear.
The fact that you sincerely and wholeheartedly believe that the “Law of Gravity” is unconstitutional and a violation of your sovereign rights, does not absolve you of adherence to it.

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#20

Post by Volkonski » Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:59 pm

Not a headline I wanted to see today-

Raw sewage overflowing in Baytown after storms cross Houston

https://www.chron.com/news/houston-texa ... =sftwitter
The city of Baytown reports that 144,350 gallons of raw sewage overflew out of six manholes throughout the city.

The overflow does not impact the city's fresh water supply, authorities said.

Anyone who purchases water from the city of Baytown should contact the city to determine if their water is safe for personal use.

The public is urged to avoid contact with any waste, soil or water in the areas affected by the spill.
Uh, "overflew"?
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#21

Post by Volkonski » Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:31 pm

The Houston Ship Channel is not big enough for an expected increase in the use of large (>1100 feet long) Container ships.

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/busine ... 468040.php
Energy companies are worried new, especially large container ships will cause traffic jams on the Houston Ship Channel and ultimately hinder the shale boom.

Enterprise Products, Targa Resources Corp., Kinder Morgan and others have formed the Coalition for a Fair and Open Port, which wants to cap the number of 1,100-foot-plus container ships that come to Houston.

Houston Pilots, tasked with guiding vessels in and out of the Houston Ship Channel, have enacted safety measures that only allow moving these vessels during the day. The ship channel’s typical two-way traffic is also reduced to just one-way traffic when moving the larger container ships.

So far, only four of these vessels have called on Houston, and one more is expected before 2019. But the coalition is concerned about impending traffic jams.
On Dec 24th the 1105' ship Pusan C entered the Ship Channel.

Image

Because that ship is so large the Ship Channel pilots will only move it during daylight hours. Also, when a ship of that size is in the Channel the normal two way traffic is restricted to one way only. The Pusan C prevented an oil tanker (which also can only move during daylight) from entering the Channel for almost a whole day.

This could become a big problem going forward as more very large container ships are built. The Port of Houston has established a working group to address this problem.
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#22

Post by Danraft » Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:53 pm

I'm kinda from that area. Collections of odd memories...
1. The Washburn Tunnel that went under the ship channel came up in Sugar Land with the drive in movie theater right there. The Red Bluff?? They showed adult flicks, so I heard, my parents would joke about people having accidents there trying to catch sight of the screen.

2. When it rained a lot one time, dad, who was a systems analyst for a division of Texaco, told all the programmers that it had rained so much the tunnel was under water. He had to remind them, when they complained the next day that it wasn't closed, that he never said it was closed... Only that it was under water (/it was always under water as it went under the ship channel.
3. There was a great Greek restaurant we used to go to that had belly dancers and the richest food ever.
4. Moms favorite Mexican Restaurant was the Jalopeno Tree and she would bring back their jalopeno lollipops.
5. One of the bigger restaurant openings I did was for the old Dons Seafood Company conversion to Lagniappe. The financial backers were a couple that owned The Monument Inn at the San Jacinto Monument (sinking into the mud) and a crazy man that owned Post Oak Ranch, a country dance hall that served the most alcohol of any establishment in Texas.
6. I accepted a chef gig for Players Casino at Lake Charles to create their Cajun cuisine when it was only 9 barges linked together.
7. That part of Texas used to have women with "big hair" hair spray extravaganzas like no where else.
The Mercury Project

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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#23

Post by Volkonski » Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:12 pm

This past saturday we took down the Xmas decorations. Putting up the decorations is fun. Taking them down is just a chore. ;)

On Sunday we went to the Houston Symphony concert. Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G, Timo Andres' “Paraphrase on Themes of Brian Eno" (the composer was in the audience), Darius Milhaud’s “La création du monde” and Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" using the original 1924 jazz band orchestration.

Double threat pianist and conductor Jeffrey Kahane conducted and also played the piano in the Ravel and Gershwin. Just playing the piano in the Ravel is no mean feat. That piece is challenging.

Image

Kahane looks so serious in this photo. In real life he is smiling, animated and enthusiastic. It was easy to tell that the orchestra really enjoyed working with him. (It probably helped that with the Milhaud and the Gershwin on the 2nd half about 2/3rds of the orchestra got to go home after the 1st half. ;)) For an encore he played a solo version of "America the Beautiful". About that the Chronicle wrote-
“America the Beautiful” is so embedded in the nation’s grade-school consciousness it’s seldom thought of as concert-hall material, Fourth of July notwithstanding. Even accomplished musicians who attempt another version risk simply making listeners anxious to dial up the Ray Charles standard.

:snippity:

By slowing the tempo, his solo encore of “America” poignantly captured the song’s underlying theme of sacrifice; his melodic embellishments deviated from the tune in a way that was irreverent but not at all disrespectful.
https://www.houstonchronicle.com/entert ... 515399.php

Our seats this season are in the 4th row almost all the way to the left which gives an unusual view of the stage.

Image
Image“If everyone fought for their own convictions there would be no war.”
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#24

Post by Volkonski » Tue Jan 15, 2019 5:59 pm

The local newspaper had an interesting article today about the once infamous red light district in our city.

http://baytownsun.com/opinion/columns/a ... a041f.html
After World War II, the Baytown Humble Refinery was one of the largest and busiest in the world. Each year thousands of men from around the globe would go into town to resupply the ships that were unloading their crude oil cargo. They were also looking for a good time (as were many local men). One of the local businesses they frequented was called the “Main Bar.” It was located at 1208 Old Main St. in old Baytown. It was a club in front and also an infamous house of ill repute in the eight little rooms upstairs.

Gambling was also a daily occurrence. I have a Baytown Sun article from 1954 that tells of the name change from Old Main Street to Harbor Street. It was renamed solely because of all the vice-related activity that went on there.

Some called it “Baytown’s little Bourbon Street.” The Houston Post was reporting all the unsavory stories from that area including alleged police corruption, gambling, prostitution and eventually murder. The city didn’t want out of town folks to get North Main Street, South Main Street and West Main Street confused with “Old Main St.”

Two other businesses that offered the same services were called Roxie’s (which would be located at the exact same address as the “Main Bar” at 1208 Harbor St.) and the Bayshore Lounge at 3201 Minnesota St.
ScreenHunter_117 Jan. 15 16.37.jpg
That street is now mostly empty lots. Two of the 3 surviving buildings appear to be abandoned. The entire other side of the street (not shown in the photo) is taken up by a parking lot for ExxonMobil contract workers.

The building that was Roxie's as it is now-

https://www.google.com/maps/@29.7323361 ... authuser=0
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Re: Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast......

#25

Post by Sugar Magnolia » Tue Jan 15, 2019 6:03 pm

Amelia "Airhart"?

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