In Other News: Clark Griswold Christmas Lights Edition

SONY DSCEarlier this month I asked on the Oak Ridge Now Facebook page where the best place were in our area to see Christmas lights. People overwhelmingly pointed to the Prestonwood area by 249 and Willowbrook and the Glen Loch/Tanglebrush neighbohood in The Woodlands. Come on, people! There’s a whole lot of Clark Griswold happening each year in your own backyard. Jimmy Lane in Oak Ridge North should be a staple in everyone’s Chrismastime activities, but there are many more great displays right here in our neck of the woods. If you hurry in the next couple of days, you may still be able to see some terrific examples of Christmas light ingenuity. We have added 46 photos of some of the best decorated houses in our area at the bottom of this page.

But we digress. There’s a whole lot going on in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. Sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

The City of Oak Ridge North handed out it’s annual Christmas decorating awards, once again handing the venerable Jimmy Lane as the best overall street in the city. It’s time some folks got together with some resolve to stop the dominance next year.

This time of year also provides a good deal of sales tax revenue. Oak Ridge North has seen it’s sales tax revenue increase by 4.4% through November of this year, and the Christmas buying season should help hold up or raise that number. Mattress One, the new Sears Home Appliance Showroom were not open this time last year.

Another Oak Ridge-area retailer, M. Fatheree Interiors, was profiled in the Community Impact News this month. They have been in the Woodwind Village Shopping Center for 17 years now. There is definitely some cool stuff there. Most of it is out of my price range, but…

In area politics, we’ve had two more folks beat the filing deadline and register to run in the upcoming March Republican primary. Mark Bosma, director of infrastructure for Montgomery County, is running for Alan Sadler’s soon-to-be-vacated County Judge seat. And Oak Ridge High School graduate Craig McMichael has tossed his hat in the ring to oppose incumbent Congressman Kevin Brady. A War Eagle in the halls of Congress? Sure, it’s a longshot, but that’s better than no shot at all.  It bring’s to mind that classic Lloyd and Mary scene in Dumb and Dumber.

From the free advice department: if you have a warrant out for your arrest, don’t do one of these three things:

Some of of neighbors have not learned these simple lessons, and were given a free ride to the Montgomery County jail this month. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s office is still looking for a suspect in the robbery of one of the three Shell stations at I-45 and Rayford. If you have info about that one, please give Crimestoppers a call at 800.392.STOP.

patchesA couple of the food establishments in our area have been cited for anything by the Montgomery County Health Department this month. Gold stars went to Kroger and Nourishment for the Needy. Those not getting gold stars? Tewbeleaux’s on Rayford with an improper drain disposal at the hand sink (three demerits), and Pallotta’s Italian Grill, which garnered five demerits for food defrosting in the mop sink. [Editor's note: Mmmmm!]

Finally, our shelter animal of the week from the Montgomery County Animal Shelter is Patches, a one-to-two year old Catahoula/Collie mix. She is a quiet 45 pounds, and loves to chew bones and go for walks.She’s available for only $25, as she’s been at the shelter for more than 60 days now. She’s just looking for a good home for the new year.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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In Other News: Christmas Shoes Edition

Photo courtesy of Andrey Bandurenko / fotolia

Photo courtesy of Andrey Bandurenko / fotolia

Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday (is that catching on yet?), and Cyber Monday have passed, and we are now in full-blown Christmas season. Once again there are two full-time Christmas radio stations to listen to, because Christmas Shoes apparently needs to be played twice as often. This can be incredibly dangerous because, as Jon Acuff says, “you cannot unhear this song.”

But we digress. There’s a whole lot going on in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. Sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

Three people have filed to run for locally elected positions in the past month. Montgomery County Precinct 2 Commissioner Craig Doyal has filed to run for County Judge, the position being vacated by Alan B. Sadler, who has kept that seat warm for 20 years. Local Pastor and former car salesman Mark Keough wants a seat in the Texas House of Representatives, as both he and The Woodlands Township Chairman Bruce Tough are running to replace the illustrious Steve Toth, who represents District 15 (including all of South Montgomery County) today.

Mr. Toth, who earned a Dishonorable Mention for his legislative performance this year from Texas Monthly. is himself running to replace Tommy Williams in his District 4 Texas Senate seat. Mr. Williams is leaving the life of a lawmaker behind to become vice chancellor of Federal and State Relations for the Texas A&M University System. He was named one of the best Texas legislators by Texas Monthly earlier this year, will be a difficult man to replace.

Another one of our elected officials, Precinct 3 County Commissioner James Noack held his third annual Toys for Tots party last week, and is on track to collect more than a thousand toys for kids in need in Montgomery County. “It would be horrible for a child to wake up Christmas morning without a toy,” Noack said.

A mobile home south of SH 242 burned down Friday night after the owner left a small fire in the fireplace unattended. The Needham Road Fire Department arrived too late to save home, but were able to miraculously save a dog hiding in the bedroom. The Montgomery County Police Reporter has the whole story.

In high-end shopping news, save the date: Nordstrom will be opening their new store in The Woodlands Mall on September 5, 2014. My wife is counting down the days.

In local sports news, Ultimate Woodlands last week carried a short profile of Logan Gregory, a Golden Gloves boxer who is currently a junior at Oak Ridge High School. Other War Eagles making the sports page include wrestlers Rachel Bates, Matthew Fleming, and Ethan Silva, who competed at The Woodlands individual wrestling tournament Saturday. Rachel took home third place in the meet, while Fleming and Silva each earned sixth-place finishes. Meanwhile, Lady War Eagle volleyballers Victoria Harris and Jaclyn Ward earned first team and second team honors, respectively, for their play this season.

geddyThe good folks at Lone Star College collected and donated over 20,000 cans of food for the Montgomery County Food Bank as part of their Maverick Give-A-Can project this year. The donation amounted to 16,907 pounds of food and will provide 20,288 meals for during the upcoming holiday season. Eight tons. Nice work.

The Montgomery County was not all that happy with some restaurants in The Ridge in November. The Subway on Riley Fuzzel received three demerits for improperly sanitized (read: dirty) soda nozzles; Compadres Texas Cafe on Hanna Road has a improperly sanitized ice machine (cue Marvin Zindler). Restaurants with a gold star from the health department included Country Time BBQ and Fixings, Omar Liquor, the Time Mart on Riley Fuzzel, and the Valero on Robinson Road.

Our shelter animal of the week from the Montgomery County Animal Shelter is Geddy, a male cat who has been in the shelter for nearly four months. Geddy enjoys baby birds, lizards, and long walks on the beach at sunset. Drop by the shelter on SH 242 and say hello.

if you like good wine and want to help the Animal Shelter financially, check out their benefit wines page. You can get a Chardonnay, Cab, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, or Malbec for $20 a pop, $6 of which goes to help the Montgomery County Animal Society. And they all have cute animal pictures on the bottle.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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In Other News: Grand Parkway Construction Edition

Photo courtesy of the Grand Parkway Association

Photo courtesy of the Grand Parkway Association

Winter has come early to Texas, the kids are out of school for a week, and folks are getting ready for Thanksgiving, or as it will soon be known, Black Thursday. There’s a whole lot going on in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. Sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

Our friends at Community Impact News (the best newspaper we have in this area) bring us a couple of stories this week. The first sheds some light on the continued development of the Shoppes at Oak Ridge North, more commonly referred to as the Food Basket Hodges strip center. I’m not sure why they are called “Shoppes.” Either the Grocer’s Supply folks who own the strip center are trying to lure the upper crust crowd from across the freeway (“Let’s head to Market Street, get a bite at Hubbell and Hudson, maybe an afternoon Chardonnay at Crush, and then over to the Shoppes”) or they are implying that we can’t spell all that well. I’m not sure that it matters, so long as Nielsen’s Bakery is still serving up good stuff.

The second is an interview with David Gornet, the executive director of the Grand Parkway Association. I’m not sure the story sheds much more light on the progress of the Grand Parkway – you can see that for yourself if you sit on I-45 between 2920 and Rayford any weekday afternoon. Oak Ridge Now did a fairly comprehensive Grand Parkway story about 18 moths ago, and the status has’t changed much. None of us is still looking forward to Riley Fuzzel being torn up, but we all can’t wait for the day we can avoid Rayford on the way to the Mall or the high school.

Ultimate Woodlands, the Houston Chronicle‘s local neighborhood website, brings us a nice story of Oak Ridge High School’s fashion design program that has been making projects for NASA for the past five years. To date, ORHS has delivered over 100 cargo transfer bags for the space program.

zeusThe Woodlands Villager details the request from Montgomery County Sheriff Tommy Gage to establish a special unit to combat crime in our area. County Judge Alan Sadler and County Commissioner James Noack both supported the proposal, however it was eventually withdrawn when it became apparent that the votes were not there to fund the proposal. “We need to do something and we need to do it now,” Noack said. “If not, we’ll become another Greenspoint. We can’t have this kind of inactivity in government.” Hear, hear.

Finally, our shelter animal of the week from the Montgomery County Animal Shelter is Zeus, a five-year old Catahoula mix. He’s fully trained, and will do tricks, and he’s good with kids and other dogs, but he also has a desire to kill small animals. He’s available for only $25, as he’s been at the shelter for more than 60 days now. He just needs a good and loving home, preferably with no gerbils.

 

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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In Other News: Post-Election Edition

Oak Ridge defensive back Germod Williams makes the news for his athletic talents, but it's the As and Bs that he makes in school that will take him far. Photo courtesy of Jim Eastin.

Lots of stuff happens every day in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. And sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

I am positive – absolutely positive – that everyone is happy that election season is behind us. We live in a conservative, Republican-dominated community, and last week nobody running against a GOP candidate received more than 22% of the vote in Montgomery County (congratulations to you, Bryan Cambrice, candidate for County Commissioner Precinct 3, for garnering the most votes, percentage-wise for the Democrats).

School Board elections, however, are non-partisan, and the race for Conroe ISD Trustee Position 7 was a bit closer. Former Oak Ridge High School teacher Jessica Powell prevailed over incumbent Joe Michels, beating him by over 8,000 votes 59% to 41%.

Mrs. Powell currently works as an instructional technology specialist for Huntsville ISD. Mr. Michels, the former mayor of Oak Ridge North, was originally appointed to the seat in July, 2011, following the retirement of Gerald Irons, Sr.

Oak Ridge North is moving forward with it’s sewer and water pipe rehab project. We all anxiously await the day when the construction is complete on Robinson Road.

Living Magazine ran a nice article on the War Eagle Band in preparation for the trip to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Somehow they forgot to mention Oak Ridge High School band director Jack Allen, but hey, anytime we get recognized in a glossy magazine, we shouldn’t complain.

There was a lot to glean from the ORHS Aerial View newspaper this past week. The War Eagle swim and dive team hosted their third annual Breast Stroke for Breast Cancer Swim-a-thon last Friday, in hopes of reaching this year’s goal of raising $7,000 to fight breast cancer. Over the past two years this event has raised $11,000. Wow.

The Aerial View also had features on four standout students:

  • Senior defensive back Germod Williams, who is sorting out offers from various universities, including Rice and Northwestern. That’s what happens when you excel at both football and academics.
  • Freshman QB Braden Letney, who made a huge leap from the freshman team to quarterbacking the varsity team in a competitive 5A district. And did it really well.
  • Junior Nathan England who, as part of an Eagle scout project,  raised $6,000 this summer selling sausage in front of Wal Mart and Home Depot, and used the money to buy the materials to build a gazebo for Bridgewood Farms. He then spent the rest of the summer building the gazebo. Outfreakingstanding.
  • Makenna Spencer, Senior class president, Colonel on the Liberty Belles, National Honor Society member, National Dance Solo champion, Homecoming Queen, and devoted Christian. If you told me she was working on a cure for the common cold and has a plan to solve the European debt crisis, I would believe you.

Finally, Impactnews takes a look at Compadres Texas Cafe, in the same building as Simon’s Barber Shop on Hanna Road, and its menu of vintage Tex-Mex selections. We recommend the chicken-fried anything.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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In Other News: Kirkland’s Is Here Edition

Photo courtesy of kirklands.com

Lots of stuff happens every day in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. And sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

It looks like the most important thing to happen in our area over the past week or so, at least in my wife’s estimation, is that Kirkland’s has finally opened in Wood Ridge Plaza on I-45. It is where the Lone Star Scrapbook store (whose mention is customarily followed by a moment of silence in my house) used to be. They opened just in time for the holiday decorating and holiday shopping seasons. My guess is that some stuff is already on sale, so be sure to go get your Kirkland’s on.

This pales in comparison to the big Kirkland’s news, but I have also heard we’re having a pretty big election next Tuesday. The Villager reports that nearly 472,000 residents are registered to vote in Montgomery County. The article also lists all the forms of ID permissible to bring to your polling place (the voter ID measures passed by the Texas Legislature are currently under review by federal courts) if you don’t have your driver’s license or voter registration card. Yes, a copy of your utility bill will do just fine. On a side note – 472,000! – how many of you remember when Conroe and The Woodlands, the two largest population centers in the county at the time,  each contained less than 30,000 residents?

Of those 472,000, over 122,00 folks have already cast their ballots in early voting, which closed yesterday. If you have yet to vote, be sure to exercise that right this coming Tuesday. No matter if we are not a swing state. No matter if the Senate race is projected to be a landslide. No matter if many folks are running unopposed. The right to vote has been denied to so many people in so many places over the years, and so many people have died fighting for us to have that right today. Vote.

A man was electrocuted and killed last week while allegedly trying to steal copper wire from an electrical substation on I-45 just north of Rayford. There are a number of pithy things that could be said here, but the man was somebody’s son, and possibly somebody’s brother, father, or friend. Our prayers go out to his family.

The dedication ceremony for Irons Jr. High School took place last week. The school’s namesake, Gerald D. Irons, Sr., was on hand to take part in the festivities. Irons served on the Conroe ISD School Board for 21 years. He credited his parents for instilling a strong work ethic in his youth and stressing the importance of education. “If you work hard and you study hard, you can accomplish your dreams,” Irons said. “You always win when you never quit.”

Commuting from our area to Houston has never been easy. I-45 has been under construction somewhere for the better part of the last 30 years. The Houston-Galveston Area Council, the Texas Department of Transportation, and Federeal Highway Administration are looking into possible long-term solutions to alleviate traffic congestion along I-45. Short-term, the existing HOV lane will be extended from 1960 to Conroe, and the Grand Parkway may possibly take some traffic. Long term possibilities include high-speed passenger rail (we’ve all heard that off and on for 30 years), making a section of the freeway elevated (double-decker style) and building a tunnel under I-45. Because, you know, flooding is never an issue.

Photo courtesy of Betty Lynne

The Oak Ridge High school Air Force Junior ROTC Booster Club is conducting its annual poinsettia sale. You can purchase one four different colors of poinsettias for $12.00 apiece (order form at the bottom). Proceeds from the sale go to fund scholarships for graduating seniors. Hurry and get yours, because the deadline is next Tuesday, November 6.

Finally, this week’s restaurant report showed Pizza Hut on I-45 and Babin’s pass their inspections with flying colors. Popeye’s on I-45 north of 242, not so much – three demerits for inaccessible hand wash facilities. Yes, we all love that chicken at Popeye’s. We’d love it more if the employees are able to wash their hands there once in a while.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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In Other News: Flyover Edition

Oak Ridge's Makenna Spencer is featured on Channel 39's Newsfix program as a Class Act.

Lots of stuff happens every day in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. And sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

We’ve had a surprisingly crime-free couple of weeks in our area. Oh, I am sure there were some crimes committed – they just were not major enough to make any of the police blotters. We did have some governmental feather ruffling, however, and the associated resolutions and carefully worded statements to the press.

The big topic the last couple of weeks has been the proposed “flyover” – an overpass exit from I-45 to Research Forest Drive intended to alleviate congestion at the current intersection of the I-45 feeder road and Research Forest. If you’ve spent any time at 6:00 pm at that intersection on a hot summer day with a broken air conditioner, you can well understand why a better traffic solution here is desired.

A proposed project to build the flyover was submitted to the Houston Galveston Area Council, who has about $400M available for area transportation projects. The project was one of three, totaling an estimated $15M, submitted by The Woodlands Road Utility District No. 1.

Robert Heineman, vice president of planning for The Woodlands Development Company, claimed there was no time to consult with the City of Oak Ridge North or the City of Shenandoah before submitting the projects.

That apparently means that the ten minutes for a couple of phone calls was just going to be too much, and would delay getting the proposal delivered in the required time frame. Perhaps they learned about the proposal the morning of the deadline, wrote up something on the back of a napkin (or built a small model constructed of straws, toothpicks and sugar packets), and got it submitted just in time.

My favorite quote from the article was, “the flyover would not have a negative effect on the shopping areas in Oak Ridge North along Interstate 45. In fact, he said it could help by freeing up the access roads allowing shoppers easier access to the businesses.” Because, you know, nobody ever goes to Baker Street or Salt Grass any more because of the traffic.

After resolutions by the the city councils in Oak Ridge North and Shenandoah to oppose the project as submitted, members of The Woodlands Township Board of Directors amended their previous resolution supporting the flyover to indicate support for a mutually-agreed upon traffic solution (but not necessarily a flyover).

So what other solutions are really viable? I mean, a flyover would take passing traffic away from Red Robin and Lupe Tortilla and the other places along I-45 that people might pass up going home from Houston to The Woodlands. I’m not sure a flyover alone would put those places out of business, but it could surely affect their bottom lines. But what else could they do? You’d have to wipe out Home Depot’s parking lot to put in place a 270 degree circle exit like they have at Lake Woodlands going to the mall. You could employ traffic cops during peak traffic times at that intersection, but is that really feasible? And how much would it ultimately speed things up? What other solutions could there be?

Also note that while the Woodlands Township BoD approved a resolution to find an acceptable solution, nobody has rescinded the original proposal from the HGAC. Maybe they’ll amend it, but I suspect they’ll run out of time. In the end we’ll either have a flyover or the HGAC will look at the objections and simply fund a project somewhere else. And sitting at that intersection on a hot afternoon will still be no fun.

In other government silliness, James Noack, the Republican nominee for Precinct 3 commissioner, surely made a fine impression upon the folks he wants to work with in the future. He asked that the county commissioners limit current Precinct 3 commissioner Ed Chance’s spending to 25% of his annual budget, and require commissioner’s court approval for anything above that amount.

Precinct 1 County Commissioner Mike Meador responded, “[Ed Chance has] been there 25 years. To me, it’s an insult. He’s professional and dedicated. I could see it if he was a longtime incumbent and got beat and was pissed off. He’s a tremendous commissioner and an asset to Montgomery County. That was pointed at Commissioner Chance. I wouldn’t vote that.”

Mr. Noack apparently will learn that governing is not as easy as getting elected. You have to actually work with other people, and compromise when necessary. Good luck getting your own pet projects approved by the people you’ve pissed off before even getting elected, Mr. Noack.

Luckily, the City of Oak Ridge North seems to take a little more care in making difficult decisions. They announced they’d have to increase the rates for water and sewage services due to the replacement of outdated infrastructure, but they also were able to hold the line on monthly garbage pickup fees. They considered all the possibilities, and came up with an innovative solution, keeping in mind the needs of their residents. That’s the way local government is supposed to work.

We’ve been covering Oak Ridge High School sports fairly closely this fall, but it’s always good to take a look what other folks are saying about our War Eagles. Glenn Sattell of Woodlands Online, who has been covering South County sports for over 20 years now, has a nice article and pictures on the War Eagles’ win over College Park. The Villager also has a story and a few pics from the big game. Earlier the ORHS Aerial View ran story on how difficult it is to fight through a losing season.

Woodlands Online ran a story and photos of the Lady Ware Eagles’ loss to the Cavaliers last Friday. That loss notwithstanding, the Aerial View chimes in with some reasons why the ORHS volleyball team is really having a good season. Finally in sports, the Aerial View gives us a pre-season preview of the Oak Ridge High School swim team, whose first meet comes this week.

Channel 39′s Newsfix ran a nice interview with Oak Ridge High School’s Makenna Spencer for its weekly Class Act segment. We agree with them that Makenna’s a class act, and will have our own feature story on her in the coming weeks.

Milstead Automotive will be hosting a Fall Classic Car Show on October 20th, with all proceeds going to Montgomery County Youth Services. Meanwhile, Benders Landing Estates hosted its inaugural Live Well Give Well Project land sales event on Sept. 22, and was able to raise $8,000 for the Montgomery County Women’s Center. Also, throughout the month of October, Lone Star College-Montgomery is partnering with the Conroe Noon Lions Club to collect old or used eyeglasses, lens, frames, and even cell phones in buckets placed on campus As part of the “Lions Recycle for Sight” initiative, the Lions Club will take the donations to recycle or distribute to needy people locally and overseas at no charge. Nice work on all accounts, folks.

Speaking of Lone Star College, tomorrow night they will be presenting a jazz concert featuring unforgettable love songs. No word yet on whether or not The Partridge Family’s “I Think I Love You” will be included. If jazz is not your thing, maybe the Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival is. The annual festival goes on this weekend, Friday the 12th through Sunday the 14th. Good entertainment, food, fun, carnival rides, and of course, catfish will highlight the festivities. Note that you’ll probably want to go Friday night (no football game) or Sunday (after church) so you can save Saturday for Oak Ridge’s own Nest Fest.

Finally this week, The Villager has a story about Gooses Acre, a nice little pub in Waterway Square. You should check it out. I personally recommend the fish and chips or the Monte Cristo. Make sure you ask for Kiel to be your waiter. And tip him well — our family could use the extra money.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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Brighton Helping To Fight Breast Cancer Throughout October

The Breast Cancer Charities of America (BCCA) has been selected as The Woodlands Brighton Collectibles Power of Pink charity for this year.  BCCA’s Help Now Fund that provides housing and utility monies for patients undergoing treatment will receive $10 from each Power of Pink bracelet sold in The Woodlands Mall Brighton Collectibles store during the month of October.

Also, 10% of sales of additional products purchased along with a Power of Pink bracelet during the launch days this Friday and Saturday will be donated to the charity.  Brighton’s founder, Jerry Kohl has donated more than $4.5 million to breast cancer charities in the past decade.  This is Brighton’s 10th year of creating a limited edition Power of Pink bracelet to raise charitable funds.

The Unmasking Breast Cancer Masquerade Gala, which is BCCA’s largest annual fundraiser, will be Friday, Oct. 26 at The Marriott Woodlands Waterway.  Guests are encouraged to wear hot pink and a mask. For more information or to purchase tickets for the gala, visit www.UnmaskingBreastCancer.com.

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In Other News: Bomb Threat Edition

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto

Lots of stuff happens every day in our community, and we don’t have the staff to cover everything. And sometimes we don’t even hear about it here at Oak Ridge Now until we read it somewhere else. But you might not have heard about it either, so we once again bring you another edition of In Other News.

The biggest news in our community this week: there was a bomb threat Wednesday morning at Oak Ridge High School. This comes on the heels of similar threats at the University of Texas and LSU. The school was evacuated and students cooled their heels in the parking lot until administrators, CISD police and other authorities could sweep the school for explosive devices. As in the other bomb threats, no bombs were found. In this particular case, however, the two students who phoned in the bomb threat were indeed found, and are now facing felony charges.

Of course, our school leaders have to treat every threat seriously, in order to ensure the safety of our kids. It’s difficult to be too cautious when students’ and teachers’ lives are potentially at risk.

There was plenty of other criminal activity happening in our little corner of the world this past week. Early this morning a man was killed at the ironically named Good Fortune Club on I-45 just south of Sawdust. The accused murderer was apprehended at one of the Shell stations on I-45 and Sawdust at about 10:30 am.

Office Depot on I-45 in South County was robbed Friday. The suspects got away in a blue Mustang they have borrowed from a Ford dealer for a test drive. They made it all the way to Loop 336 south of Conroe before County Constables, CISD police and Oak Ridge North Police caught up with them. We suspect they were able to avoid the whole, “Let me talk to my sales manager” price haggling on the Mustang.

Two motorcyclist attempted to flee police early Friday morning, but it didn’t end well for them. One was stopped in Oak Ridge North, and the other was launched from his motorcycle at Richards and Rayford. He was not wearing a helmet. Earlier in the week, on Wednesday around lunch time a man attempted to flee police during a traffic stop on I-45 south of 242. He ran across the freeway, into the woods, and was found a couple of hours later.

In items not involving any perpetrators, a couple of new businesses opened in our area recently.The French Courtyard Consignment House on Robinson Road features high quality antiques and new furniture. The aptly-named Cupcake Shack (literally a little blue shack under a big Milstead sign on Rayford Road) also opened, serving, you guess it, cupcakes, along with coffee, sticky buns, breakfast tacos and other items. I have heard rave reviews about this place. Be sure to stop by both of these places, and continue to support our local businesses.

The Thyme Square strip center at the corner of Riley Fuzzel and Birnham Woods also recently opened, featuring a mailbox/shipping place, a little grocery store, and Southern Maid Donuts. Rumor also has it that panini place will be opening up next to the Cupcake Shack in a few weeks.

Rico’s Mexican Grill is having a fish fry this afternoon at Tamina Park, with all the proceeds benefiting Children’s Books on Wheels. Always nice to see local businesses giving back to the community. I doubt that I have to do much convince most of you to frequent Rico’s of our way of saying thank you.

Woodlands Online ran a story and some nice photos of the ORHS volleyball team’s 5-game victory over Conroe.

Finally, not much to report in this week’s Restaurant Report. It is good to see, though, that both Tom Cox Intermediate and York Junior High made it through their inspections with flying colors.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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Repairs On and Along Robinson Road Underway

Driving Robinson Road in the next couple of months? Be prepared for delays and detours, as some much-needed repairs are underway.

Lane closures and detours along the stretch of Robinson Road just west of Hanna Road in the City of Oak Ridge North are expected to accommodate repairs to the road surface and utilities. Officials from the Oak Ridge North are working closely with engineers and contractors to minimize the impact to residents, businesses and travelers along this thoroughfare.

Phase One of the project include repairs to the road surface immediately in front of Oak Ridge North City Hall at 27424 Robinson Road. Work began on Tuesday and through Monday, September 17, 2012, the westbound lane of Robinson Road is closed from city hall to Hanna Road. The eastbound lane remain open with intermittent delays between the hours of 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The detour route for westbound traffic is: north on Hanna Road to Woodson Road, west on Woodson Road to Blueberry Hill Drive, south on Blueberry Hill Drive back to Robinson Road. This closure will not impact the driveways of any businesses as they are all west of the planned closure.

Phase Two of the project will be repairs to water and sewer lines along Robinson Road east of Maplewood Drive. This portion of the project will run from September 17, 2012 – November 5, 2012. There will be intermittent delays throughout the construction zone during this time with periodic lane closures. The construction zone will include all of Robinson Road between Maplewood Drive and Hanna Road. The potential for additional detours exists.

Updates on construction and lane closures may be found at www.oakridgenorth.com and www.facebook.com/oakridgenorth. Again, all businesses remain open during this construction. The city requests your cooperation as you use caution traveling through this area to safeguard workers in the construction zone.

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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Hot August Night Turns Out Pretty Cool

The annual Bender’s Landing Car Show took place Saturday night outside the Clubhouse in Bender’s Landing Estates. This year’s theme was a “Hot August Night”, an homage to the iconic 1972 Neil Diamond live album of the same name. The rains and clouds had other ideas, however, mercifully cooling the evening down before the show got underway.

Bender’s Landing residents enjoyed hot dogs, hamburgers and bratwurst while checking out nearly 30 vehicles in the Clubhouse parking lot and listening to Chuck Sheldon’s car-song playlist. The event was generously sponsored by Milstead Automative, Christian Brothers Automotive, and Red Tub Car Wash.

Pictured below are some of the vehicles featured in the show. 

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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