Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Eyes on H-E-B: Salute to Our Veterans features USO show, military exhibits

The Taps ‘n Tunes veterans show in 2014.
The Taps ‘n Tunes veterans show in 2014.

If the nostalgia surrounding the World War II years is something that attracts you, do not miss the fantastic Salute to Our Veterans event at the Hurst Conference Center on Nov. 11. Special activities and entertainment will happen from noon until 8 p.m.

View a gallery exhibit of wonderful military displays and visit with distinguished combat veterans from the World War II era along with veterans from the wars in Korea, Vietnam and more recent military conflicts. The gallery will be open from noon until 1:30 p.m.

The veterans will have tables set up in the lobby where they can share their remarkable and memorable stories with guests at the event. The Military Museum of Fort Worth is providing the authentic military displays.

Opening ceremonies at 1:30 p.m. will be followed by a patriotic musical-variety USO-style show featuring the Dancing Dames and other performers from the local performing group Taps ‘n Tunes Productions.

The Taps ‘n Tunes dance troupe, directed by Annette Marsh, is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. The group performs many shows throughout the area, and this is the fifth year for its Veterans Day show.

“Our event provides an opportunity to personally meet and honor some combat veterans who participated in past and current conflicts … and to ask questions,” said group spokeswoman Patti Bertwell. “There is a special common bond that exists between the generations of these veterans that can be felt as they talk and share their stories and feelings. And music of the past stirs many memories.”

Marsh said the pilot program for this event began Nov. 11, 2011, with the hope that more events would begin to emerge to honor both living and dead military veterans. “We should honor and thank those who have sacrificed for our freedom,” Marsh said.

Bertwell said one of the highlights of this year’s shows will feature a narrator with his three grandchildren. “During the course of the hourlong program, he will be going through a large trunk, pulling out memorabilia and explaining about Armistice Day, World War II and events right up to the Fifties,” Bertwell said.

“To go along with this talk there will be performances of song and dance from all those years. These performances are bound to delight all ages.”

Bertwell has been a member of the dance troupe for 15 years and says the military shows are her favorite. The all-volunteer group is composed of dancers and vocalists ranging in age from 50 to 70.

“We are all at an age that many of us had parents that served in World War II. My father, for instance, was one of only 300 survivors on the USS Indianapolis. One of our dancers has a daughter who is currently in the Navy, and Annette Marsh’s husband, Barry Marsh, was a Marine in Vietnam. And there are many other stories within our group. So you can see why these Veterans Day shows are so important to us,” Bertwell said.

Guests at the event can enjoy more live music from 6 to 7 p.m. from popular Fort Worth band Panther Jazz. Complimentary appetizers will be served, and a cash bar will pour your favorite beverage. The second USO show begins at 7:15 p.m.

Admission and convenient parking is free, and the public is invited to attend. Call 817-268-0388 or visit to learn more.

E3 smmit at Heart of North Texas Business Conference Nov. 13

E3 — entrepreneurship, education and the economy — will hallmark the 19th annual Heart of North Texas Business Conference where conference attendees will consider how best to map these three resources to build a strong community. Hosted by the Northeast Leadership Forum, the event is set for Nov. 13 from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Tarrant County College Northeast Campus in Hurst.

“Our theme this year is ‘What a Small World,’ which highlights a dynamic that our world seems smaller as a result of international travel and technological advances,” writes Allen Goben, president of TCC Southeast Campus and conference chair.

“The conference will provide great opportunities to learn about the impact of international travel, politics, commerce, and education on global and local economies.”

Conference attendees will open the day when Rick Smyre, president of the Center for Communities of the Future, talks about “Preparing for a World That Doesn’t Exist.”

After several breakout sessions throughout the morning, Mark Milliron, co-founder of Civitas Learning, will bring the keynote address during lunch.

Attendees can choose to attend an entrepreneur panel discussion with David Husbands (Rental Stop), Herb Austin ( U.S. Small Business Administration) and Kari Crowe (MELT Ice Creams).

The education panel will feature Linda Anderson (career tech at Birdville school district), Robin Ryan (superintendent of Grapevine-Colleyville schools) and Sally Proffit (business department chair at TCC Northeast).

Nathan Roach (Mass Venture), Steve Sinunu (EnvironX) and Kori Tolfa (The Maker Spot) will lead the economy panel discussion.

The cost is $50 per person and includes a light breakfast and luncheon. The proceeds from the conference help fund the Texas Scholars Program for the Northeast Leadership Forum. Register by calling 817-515-6502.

ChoralFest on Tuesday stars TCU Frog Corps

Fabulous choirs from six local high schools performing their best numbers would be reason enough to come to the Choral Fest set for 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at First United Methodist Church of Hurst. But there’s more — the all-male purple-coated choir and spirit group from TCU will also be on the bill.

“A Celebration of Singing,” brought to you by the Apex Arts League, will feature students from L.D. Bell, Carroll, Central, Colleyville, Lewisville and Richland high schools along with the TCU Frog Corps under the direction of Brad White.

“This noncompetitive showcase of the very best of high school performing choirs will highlight the unique artistry and broad scope of literature taught under the direction of some of the foremost leaders in Texas’ choral music education,” said Terri Messing, chairman of Apex.

Suggested donations of $10 for adults and $5 for Apex members, seniors and students are appreciated. The church is at 521 W Pipeline Road. To inquire, contact Messing at 817-307-2224 or visit

Helping Hands food drive through Nov. 13

Euless-based charity SNAP (Special Needs Assistance Partners) is again hosting a food drive through Nov. 13 to help fill the Village Pantry shelves at Mission Central, a nonprofit serving needy people in the Hurst, Euless and Bedford area.

“Every fall, North Texas SNAP’s Men’s Club and Girls’ Night Out groups joins forces and pays it forward, helping others in their community with the annual Helping Hands food drive,” said Brandy Schimmel, executive director of SNAP.

Items needed are peanut butter; shelf-stable milk; canned tuna, chicken and soup; and jellies. Personal hygiene items needed are toilet paper, toothbrushes, toothpaste and bar soap.

The Mission Central pantry serves more than 400 families a month. To find out drop-off locations, contact Schimmel at 817-545-9456 or email

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