Residents invited to decorate tree donation
Aledo residents are invited to give to those less fortunate for the holidays by participating in a community tree decoration, given as a donation to a local charity.
On Dec. 7, residents can make a small donation of any amount at the Christmas Tyme in Aledo festival, earning them a small bell to be placed anywhere on a Christmas tree to be donated to the Center of Hope.
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The organization helps families who are in need or experiencing crises to cope and get back on their feet.
At the end of the event, the decorated tree, alongside a container of donated funds, will be delivered to the center’s lobby.
The event is from 5 to 9 p.m. and is open to all.
— Taylor Prater
Starpoint students meet reading goals
Marilyn Tolbert, director of Laboratory Schools at Texas Christian University, made good on her promise to wear purple hair to assembly at Starpoint School if all 65 students reached their reading goal for the month.
The event Friday morning was followed by a last trip to the Barnes & Noble store in University Park Village which has given books to the children who reach their goal each month since it opened a decade ago. With the closing of this store, ongoing incentives for the program are up in the air, according to Tolbert.
“In the 47-year history of Starpoint School, while our children have surpassed many reading goals, we have never had a clean sweep, meaning that every child reached their goal and earned an honors assembly,” Tolbert said. “We challenged them to do that for this last bookstore trip, and they did.”
— Shirley Jinkins
Help for residents facing gas, electricity disconnection
City of Fort Worth, Community Action Partners is hosting a community intake on Dec. 4 for residents of Tarrant County who are in danger of having their gas or electricity service disconnected.
To qualify, residents must have received a termination notice from their electric or gas provider.
The federally funded Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) provides help for low-income families to pay their home energy bills. To qualify, the resident’s income must be no more than 125 percent of federal poverty guidelines. For example, a single person would have a maximum gross income (before taxes) of $14,363 a year; a family of four, $29,438.
Call 817-392-5790 to set up an appointment. Those who qualify will be told what documentation is required in order to receive assistance, where the event will be held and the time of their appointment.
— Shirley Jinkins
Church to hold special holiday performance for those with special needs
Southcliff Baptist Church will hold an exclusive musical and theatrical performance for those with special needs during their Dec. 8 Singing Christmas Tree event.
The performance is Dec. 8 at 4:30 p.m. Other performances are open to all: Dec. 11 at 7 p.m., Dec. 14 at 4:30 p.m. and Dec. 15 at 4:30 and 7 p.m.
The performance will feature choirs, orchestra, drama, dance and multimedia with both contemporary and traditional music. The Singing Christmas Tree is 20 feet tall with 8,000 computerized lights, holding 100 singers.
Tickets are free but are required for entry. They may be picked up in the church office from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
AARP meeting to feature holiday music, potluck
The Dec. 11 AARP meeting of Fort Worth will feature a little holiday fun.
The Crowley High School Combined Chamber Choir will perform a selection of seasonal music. Guests can also enjoy a potluck luncheon following the program, and are invited to bring their favorite holiday dish.
The meeting starts at 10 a.m. with coffee, with the programs beginning at 10:30 a.m. at Genesis United Methodist Church, 7635 South Hulen St.
For more information, call 817-921-6717.
Firefighters to travel with Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus for toy collection
Haslet firefighters will be joined by Mr. and Mrs. Kris Kringle themselves to collect food and toys donated throughout the city Dec. 7.
The tour is part of the Annual Holiday Tour in the City of Haslet, beginning at 10 a.m.
Residents are invited to donate cans of food and new or gently used toys, which can be dropped off at the fire department.
A tree lighting will follow that same day at 6 p.m. at the fire department, 1701 Hwy 156 South.
Families can get their photos taken with Mr. and Mrs. Claus and enjoy a performance from the Encore School of Dance at 6:30 p.m.
For more information, visit www.hasletfire.org.
Arts-related grants available
Arts-related programs by schools, nonprofits, municipalities and residents of the 16 cities served by the Arts Council Northeast are eligible for grants through the council and Texas Commission on the Arts.
Bedford, Colleyville, Euless, Grapevine, Haltom City, Haslet, Hurst, Keller, North Richland Hills, Richland Hills, Roanoke, Saginaw, Southlake, Trophy Club, Watauga and Westlake are within the eligibility area.
Organizations outside that area that provide arts-based programs benefiting residents within the area may submit introductory letters to ascertain eligibility prior to submitting applications.
Applications must be submitted by Dec. 2 for grants awarded in the first quarter of 2014. Go to artscouncilnortheast.org/grants.aspx. for applications.
Arts Council Northeast financially supports arts-related programs in north Tarrant and southern Denton counties and since 1997 has partnered with the Texas Commission on the Arts in generating more than $1.4 million for grants.
Projects and programs benefiting from grants include Young People’s Concerts in Hurst-Euless-Bedford schools, Special Weekend for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing at Imagination Celebration (Birdville ISD), and Keller Oral History Project, Trinity Arts Guild, Regal Opera Company and the Northeast Orchestra.
Call 817-283-3406, ext. 301, for information.
— Terry Evans
Parker County pays homage with Courthouse candles
The public is invited to participate in the Parker County Courthouse Christmas Lighting Ceremony set for 7 p.m. Saturday.
The event will be highlighted by the lighting of the 30-foot-tall Christmas tree that has been set up on the east lawn of the courthouse and the singing of Christmas carols by the Crockett Elementary Choir and O Holy Night by Sophie Clark.
Residents from throughout the county sponsored battery operated candles that will adorn the windows of the courthouse in honor or memory of loved ones.
“We had an overwhelming response to the call for candle sponsorships,” Parker County Judge Mark Riley said. “Each candle sponsor, along with the name of the person the candle is dedicated to, will be listed in the program for the Lighting Ceremony and the names will be read aloud at the ceremony.”
In addition, all names will be placed in the Commissioners Court Minutes for permanent record.
Riley appointed a citizens committee to bring back the historic Christmas look of the Parker County Courthouse that was once a common theme for the building during the Christmas holiday season.
“Throughout Texas and especially here in Parker County our courthouses are a direct window into our heritage,” Riley said. “I encourage the public to participate; this is going to be a great moment as we celebrate our past and our future.”
The citizens committee is led by Donna Tillman and includes Bob and Carolyn Glenn, Jonelle Bartoli, Britton Schweitzer and Lori Bennett.
Donation jars are available at many locations in Weatherford for those wishing to assist in the funding of the Courthouse Christmas Lighting.
Those who would like to purchase a print of the courthouse, with proceeds going to the Christmas Lighting Committee, can do so by contacting Lori Bennett at 817-594-6020.
Residents interested in viewing old photos of the courthouse as well as posting memories and stories about the courthouse can join the Facebook page “Parker County Historic Courthouse.”
— Lance Winter
Quanah Parker descendant to speak on Comanche history
Lance Tahmahkera, the great-great-grandson of Comanche Chief Quanah Parker, will give a public presentation on the history of the Comanche people and the Americanization process on Monday in Arlington.
The event, open to the public, is set from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Room C1-2 at the McRae Fitness Center at Texas Health Arlington Memorial Hospital, 800 W. Randol Mill Road.
Visitors are invited to bring a lunch and hear Tahmahkera, who is the Texas Health Burleson radiology manager, speak about Comanche history. Cookies and refreshments will be served.
— Susan Schrock
Texas Tree Trails program
A regional forester will explain the benefits of identifying historical trees at River Legacy’s riparian forest.
Courtney Blevins will teach attendees about the structure, function and value of trees and the Texas Tree Trails program at 2 p.m. Nov. 30.
The Texas Tree Trails program was created to educate the public on trees that are threatened by unchecked urbanization.
The free event is for ages 10 and up at River Legacy Living Science Center at 703 NW Green Oaks Blvd.
Reserve a spot by calling 817-860-6752.
— Monica S. Nagy
Avoid frying faux-pas on Turkey Day
Deep-fried turkey is delicious but potentially destructive and deadly. Tarrant-area State Farm Insurance agents have been distributing the company’s slew of safety tips to help backyard cooks avoid the bad parts.
• First, read the manufacturer’s instructions, particularly on how much oil to use. If there’s too much oil, it will spill out when you put in the turkey.
• Get a fryer with temperature controls and pay attention to the oil temperature.
• Set up the fryer on a level spot outside, in the open, away from decks, buildings, trees and anything else that you wouldn’t want catching fire.
• Keep propane tanks at least two feet away from the burner.
• Wear goggles to shield eyes, use oven mitts to protect hands and arms and keep a grease-rated fire extinguisher close by.
• Once you start using the fryer, don’t try to move it until you’re done and it’s cooled off.
• If the oil starts smoking, turn off the fryer. Oil that’s smoking can catch fire.
• Never leave fryers unattended.
• Keep children and pets away from the fryer at all times.
• Choose a smaller turkey (8 to 10 pounds) for frying.
• Make sure the turkey is thawed and dry before cooking. Ice and water can create explosive results with hot oil.
• Don’t fry in rain or snow (see above).
• Skip the stuffing when frying turkey, and avoid water-based marinades (see above again).
• Turn off the burner before lowering the turkey into the oil. Once the turkey is submerged, turn the burner on.
• Once finished, carefully remove the pot from the burner, place it on a level surface and cover to let the oil cool overnight before disposing.
• You could cook your turkey in an infrared heat fryer that doesn’t use oil.
Check out William Shatner’s “Eat, Fry, Love” video at learningcenter.statefarm.com/safety-2/family-1/actor-william-shatner-state-farm-on-improper-turkey-frying .
— Terry Evans
Haiyan victim relief concert
A Typhoon Haiyan victim relief concert will take place from 5 p.m. to midnight Saturday at Hong Kong marketplace in Grand Prairie.
Since typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines Nov. 8, more than 5,200 have died as a result of the deadliest typhoon on record. Many survivors are displaced with more than a million homes damaged.
More than a thousand people, including special guests and officials from the Philippine government will be present. The event is a joint effort between the Vietnamese and Filipino communities.
Donation checks should be made payable to American Red Cross/Haiyan. Send direct donations to Dallas Vietnamese Radio, 2202 New York Ave. Suite 902-904, Arlington, Texas, 76010.
Contact Peter Dao at 817-903-7414 for more information.
— Monica S. Nagy
‘Pete the Cat’ author spins a holiday tale
Get ready to sing, dance, laugh and fall in love with books at the Groovy Show by Pete the Cat author Eric Litwin.
The 10:30 a.m. Dec. 14 concert at Euless Library, 201 N. Ector Dr., is an interactive performance in which the audience will help Pete the Cat save Christmas. Litwin sings, plays guitar and harmonica, shares musical stories and brings books to life.
Groove with library staffers after the show and make Christmas tree ornaments in the youth department. Call 817-685-1480 for information.
— Terry Evans