Katy Texas

The Online Resource Guide for Katy, Texas

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

September 4, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster 

Harris County ESD 48 is accepting applications for enthusiastic, dedicated volunteers to serve their community as firefighters until September 31.

Twice a year, Harris County ESD 48 Fire and EMS hosts a Volunteer Firefighter Academy for men and women in the area who want to give back to their community.

 

The course gives extensive, hands-on training in all aspects of the position, and volunteers from all walks of life are welcome and include executives, teachers, nurses, engineers, and more.

These special, selfless community leaders work alongside career firefighters to protect their neighbors in the event of an emergency.

Here’s a video from a few volunteer firefighters about why they decided to join ESD #48.

WHO THEY’RE LOOKING FOR

Volunteer Firefighters

The Academy for the class of 2018 begins December 4, and applications must be received by September 31, 2018. Print out the application and turn it in at Station 5, at 21201 Morton Rd.

Community Team Volunteers/ Teachers

HCESD #48 Public Information Officer Simon Van Dyk says that volunteer firefighters are always welcome, but there are plenty of volunteer roles in addition to firefighters.

 

“We are specifically looking for people with teaching backgrounds to help with our fire and life safety programs within local schools,” he says.

For more information about how you can get involved and serve the Katy community with ESD #48, contact them here. 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

September 3, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

 

Whether you grew up attending as a child or moved to Katy later in life, most residents have heard of the infamous Katy Rice Harvest Festival. The almost 40-year event and city tradition is set for October 12-14, 2018 and plans are underway to return it to it’s original glory.

 

Last summer Katy residents breathed a sigh of relief with the announcement that the City of Katy would pick up the much-loved Rice Harvest Festival previously managed by the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce.

Katy Mayor Chuck Brawner announced that the event would go on with it’s new name, “City of Katy Rice Festival” back in June as reported by Katy Magazine. “Our goal is to bring the festival back to its original form,” says Mayor Chuck Brawner. “It will be a family-oriented event with only quality arts and craft vendors, live music, excellent food, and drinks and fun for the whole family.” The city is also teaming of up the Rotary Club of Katy.

What to expect

The event was initially created to celebrate Katy’s history and rice. Katy was the “Rice Capital of the World” and the remnants of that history can still be seen from I-10 in the form of the rice silos amongst our great commercial growth and development. The City of Katy Rice Festival will bring people together with great company, music, entertainment, food, crafts and more. The event over time has grown from a few booths and a stage and up to 300 booths and crowds up to 45-50,000.

“While we haven’t been involved in the past, we want the event to continue it’s iconic and long-lasting tradition to the city of Katy,” said Kayce Reina, City of Katy’s Director of Tourism and Marketing. “We are revitalizing it and focusing on our heritage and implementing quality standards to make this event one we can all be proud of. It has been a daunting task to put on this event in such a very short notice and having started from nothing.”

In alignment with the city’s goal they are bringing back some events sure to excite residents like the return of the popular rice cooking competition and student arts competition. They will introduce a new VIP area but all proceeds will be given back to the community in student scholarships and local charities through the Rotary Club of Katy.

The 3-day event starts the second weekend of October with the schedule as follows:

Friday October 12

Where: Avenue B and 3rd Street

When: 6pm-11pm

What: Live music, carnival, food trucks, beer garden and more.

Saturday October 13

Where: 10th Street, Drexel, 5th Street & Avenue C

When: Parade starts a 9am. See the parade map here. 

What: Don’t miss a family favorite! Enjoy creative rice and Katy-themed entries. See who takes home the trophies!

Sunday October 14

Where: Downtown Historic Katy

When: 12pm-6pm

What: The fun continues with food, entertainments and family activities.

Get involved

This year’s event is possible thanks to the generous help of the Rotary Club of Katy and all the many volunteers that it takes to make this event happen. Now is the time to get involved. The official Katy Rice Festival site is currently accepting applications for venders. “We’re selecting arts and crafts made on a selective basis,” says Reina. You can also sign up to volunteer and get involved in the beloved Katy tradition.

“At the end of it all we hope for a wonderful experience for everyone involved- patrons, volunteers, venders and guests. We want people to leave with a smile on their face and talking about coming back next year,” said Reina. “I’m looking forward to showcasing what makes Katy unique and special, while paying tribute to our heritage.”

Are you looking forward to this year’s festival? Share your favorite Rice Festival memories below in the comments.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 31, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Fort Bend Narcotics Task Force seized $140,000 worth of drugs from a Katy home on the 1600 block of Katy Gap Road on Thursday.

Katy’s Jose Alberto Ochoa was arrested and charged Thursday due to this investigation.

A warrant for the address was obtained after months of undercover work where authorities were looking into a “main source of supply of marijuana ,THC extracts and other illicit controlled substances in the Katy area.”

“I am proud of our Narcotics Task Force,” said Sheriff Troy Nehls. “Months of undercover work paid off. We got the bad guy and took a big amount of drugs off the street.”

As a result of the investigation Fort Bend County’s Sheriff’s Office arrested Jose Alberto Ochoa, 35, of Katy on Thursday August 30, 2018 on three First Degree Felony counts of manufacturing and delivery of a controlled substance and a Third Degree Felony Possession of marijuana.

Authorities seized about 17.5 pounds of marijuana, 878 THC vapes, 31.3 grams of THC considerate (WAX), 4.9 pounds of THC edibles, 1 gram of THC crystal, 52 grams MDMA (molly), 25 grams of ecstasy and 45 grams of cocaine totaling a street value of $140,000.

Ochoa is currently in custody with bonds totaling $200,000.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

August 30, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

As the date of Childproof America’s Parent Empowerment Seminar draws closer, local law enforcement agencies are giving the group their cooperation, expertise, and support.

 

 

Tomorrow, August 31, representatives from four local law enforcement agencies will meet local press to answer questions and spread the word about Childproof America’s Back to School Parent Empowerment Seminar on September 8.

 

Present will be Houston Police Department Captain James Dale, Human Trafficking Unit, Vice Division, Constable Wayne Thompson, Fort Bend Pct. 3, Johna M. Stallings, Harris County D.A., and Tyler Dunman, Assistant D.A. Chief of Special Crimes Bureau, Montgomery County.

The briefing will discuss the dangers of domestic child sex trafficking in our area and give information about the prevention seminar. Police are putting the full weight of their support behind organizations like Childproof America to combat child sex trafficking and inform parents of the danger it poses to our community.

 

PARENT EMPOWERMENT SEMINAR

Saturday, September 8, 2018
8:30 – 9:30 a.m.
Wyndham Energy Corridor
14703 Park Row Dr., Houston

Parents and community members are invited a comprehensive overview of an issue recently declared a “public health crisis” by Governor Abbott. Topics include discussions about the definition of sex-trafficking, Six stages of grooming, international vs. domestic trafficking, physiochemical affects of pornography on a developing brain, and more. Guest  speakers include representatives from the Homeland Security Advisory Council, Love People Not Pixels, and more. Register here.

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 KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

August 28, 2018 

Katy Magazine Editors

On August 28, 2018, Katy Magazine received an anonymous letter by U.S. Mail that claims to be from a current Katy ISD teacher.  The letter is an open letter to Sean Dolan, the outspoken Katy ISD critic who launched a social media campaign against Superintendent Lance Hindt, and complains vigilantly at Katy ISD board meetings. The author of the letter expresses fears of retribution by Dolan and his anti-Katy ISD supporters for stating their opinion.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

INTRO LETTER TO KATY MAGAZINE

“Hello,

I am sending the enclosed letter on behalf of many Katy ISD teacher, including myself, who are tired of the negativity being spread by Sean Dolan and his group of followers. I know that many people are following that back and forth that has been going on.

Because of the tactics that Sean Dolan and his group use, I do not feel comfortable commenting on any of his posts of posting my opinion online. Other teachers and staff members that I have talked with feel the same way.

I am sending this letter to a few different Katy news outlets. I thought it might provide some insight into the way that Katy ISD teachers are feeling. If you see fit to publish or post it, great. If not, it was therapeutic to write.

Thank you”

OPEN LETTER TO SEAN DOLAN

Dear Mr. Dolan,

First off, I would like to say that I have been an educator in Katy ISD for the past 12 years and my children attend Katy ISD schools. To be clear and upfront, I am a supporter of Dr. Hindt. I realize that for you and most of your followers the fact that I said that makes anything else I have to say irrelevant, and that you probably already marked me as just another sheep who blindly follows the district, supports bullying, supports plagiarism, and/or any of the other labels that you associate with anyone who disagrees with anything you or your followers have to say, but it is simply not true.

The fact that you and your followers do not see the irony between what you accuse others of doing and the things you are doing is completely mind-blowing.

I cannot believe some of the comments that I read from your followers during the live streaming of Katy ISD board meetings. The name calling, innuendos, and blatant disrespect is reprehensible, especially coming from a group who claims to be trying to bring awareness to bullying. I can only imagine that if the comments that are made about our board members were made about your followers’ own children, they would be on the phone with the school in a heartbeat.

Mr. Dolan, I have heard you claim that teachers are afraid to speak up because they are afraid of backlash from the district. As for me, and a steadily growing number of fellow teachers, I will tell you that the number one reason that we DON’T speak up, is you.

I know that if I were to sign my name to this letter, it would only be a matter of time before my name, salary, direct line, and other personal information would be posted on your page, with your safety net “public information” label.

You are always more than willing to meet anyone for coffee, which is all well and good when there is pure intent behind the invitation, but why in the world would I agree to that? So that our conversation can be recorded and spun into something negative? It is not my district that I am afraid of. Sadly, it’s you.

I hate that I sit here and read some of the comments on your page, KNOWING that they are false, and yet I am too afraid to stand up for something that I believe in. I am afraid to speak my mind or offer my opinion, or many times, clarifying FACTS, because I do not want the backlash from you or any of your followers. It is so sad that you have created such an unsettling atmosphere.

Are there flaws within the district? Absolutely. Are there employees who are unhappy? Absolutely. As I have said, I have worked in the district for 12 years and I also have children who attend Katy ISD schools. Have we had issues? Absolutely, but there is far more good in this district than bad. You have chosen to take the bad, publicly exploit it, and spin it so that you get to look like the hero that is going to single-handedly save the district from itself.

You have created an environment so hostile that anytime there is an issue, no matter the size, it is taken straight to social media as another mark against Katy ISD. It’s apparent, at this point, that you prefer things go wrong. It’s another feather in your election cap. I hesitate to call you an ‘ambulance chaser’ but…

The most recent issue involving transportation was, and still is, a major work in progress. My children were late to and from school every day the first week. I agree that the staggered bell times and shortage of drivers, etc. seems like it was not planned out the best way. While I was irritated and concerned that my children were home late, as a parent, I made sure not to project my agitation onto my children, because I was not going to take away from the excitement of their first day of school.  

I never considered my children “missing” (they were either at school or on a bus) and would have never thought to call the police. I was actually shocked that you would suggest this. I think, in spite of planning issues, a majority of the schools, as well as the transportation offices have done a very good job keeping parents in the loop and I trust that it will get better. As of the second week of school, my children have been picked up and dropped off within 5 minutes of their scheduled times. I saw a post of yours where a mom commented about her children having to walk across a busy intersection and that there were some people that wouldn’t stop so that the children could get safely across. You made a comment about wanting to be “deputized” so that you could write those careless drivers tickets… Why didn’t you offer, with your flexible schedule and big military vehicle, to serve as a volunteer crossing guard so that those kids would be able to cross the street safely?

I’ve heard you question the district’s spending and I saw your “protest” at our teacher convocation. I’m sure that your posters were only meant to stir up emotions, because I would hope that you understand that when it comes to school budgets, money that is designated for salaries cannot be spent on school supplies, just like bond money for a stadium can’t be used to hire teachers or buy more buses.

You question the fact that teachers and staff members have the option to allot a portion of their paychecks to the Katy ISD Education Foundation, and I question why where any part of my paycheck goes is any of your business?  I think it’s amazing that teachers believe so much in what their peers and co-workers are doing that they want to give back to their community. We are, in no way, shape or form, forced to or pressured to give anything. It is a choice that we make because we are proud of the work being done in our district and want to continue to enhance student learning. The Katy ISD Education Foundation is not solely backed by teacher and staff donations, but the fact that teachers and staff members CHOOSE to put a portion of their money into worthwhile projects of their fellow teachers is a GOOD thing.

Whether you want to believe it or not, in the short amount of time he has been here, Dr. Hindt has been an amazing superintendent. I only had the privilege to meet him one time, but I will tell you that many, many teachers were excited about the direction in which our district was going. It was refreshing to have a Superintendent who made himself so available and visited campuses because he wanted to be out and involved, not because it was a photo opportunity. It is truly a shame that he was not given an opportunity to accomplish the things he set out to do for our district.

I write this letter with the support of many teachers and staff members. I do not think anything I have said will change anything that you or your followers are doing.  I tell my students and my children that they do need to speak up if something is wrong and I am an avid supporter of the belief that people should try to be a part of the solution, rather than adding to the problem. As teachers, and most importantly, parents, if we teach our kids to constantly look for the bad and focus on the negative, we are doing them a tremendous disservice, because that is all they will ever find. I don’t think that you are interested in seeing the good, and truthfully, changing board members and Superintendents is not the issue or the solution.

I think you and your followers will find fault with anyone that sits in those seats. the word “legacy” has been thrown around a lot lately, and looking at the list of your followers, there are some recognizable names that have a long legacy of disagreeing with most of what Katy ISD does. Our district, our school board, and our current Superintendent are actually very widely supported.

The sad part is that many of us have allowed ourselves to be bullied into silence because of you. Your initial intent may  have been one thing, but the way you have gone about things is just wrong. I don’t know what you expect to accomplish by tearing down so many different parts of the district. I know that many of your requests and questions could have probably been simply handled without all the publicity but it’s evident that you thoroughly enjoy that part. Our district has so many wonderful qualities. We have devoted teachers. We have amazing students. We have outstanding programs and activities. It’s a shame that none of that seems to matter to you.

A large majority of teachers, staff, parents, community members and students support our district and those leading us, even though their jobs have been made unnecessarily difficult in the last year.

While I am very disappointed in myself for not having the courage to post or comment publicly, I will continue to support the district the best way I can. I will welcome my students eagerly, teach them, support and encourage them, love them and remind them that the most important thing they can be is kind.

It’s important to remember that if you can’t think of something kind to say, you probably aren’t thinking hard enough. “

Mailed to Katy Magazine by a reader claiming to be a Katy ISD teacher and parent who wishes to remain anonymous.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

August 28, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

An ongoing dispute between an iconic Katy grocery store and parents of Katy Junior High students has frustrations running high. Katy Magazine reached out to both sides in hopes of finding a positive resolution.

 

Katy Parents Frustrated
Last week, a Katy Junior High parent Ralph Morales expressed disappointment with Brookshire Brothers Grocery Store after the store manager contacted Katy ISD and asked them to notify KJH parents to stop using their parking lot as an alternate student pick-up area, and invited Katy parents to share their frustration. The notice also stated the police might be involved to rectify the situation which left many parents upset.

The following email was issued to Katy Junior High parents on August 23, 2018.

“Dear Parents/Guardians of Car-Riders,

The district has received a phone call from our neighbor, Brookshire Brothers, and has forwarded it to me. Ms. Fry, the store manager, expressed concern not only for the safety of the students, but the impact her parking lot being used as a pick-up area has had on her business. It has had a negative impact.

I spoke with her this morning, and she has asked that I appeal to you prior to her involving her corporate office and or the Katy Police Department to rectify this challenge. Please refrain from using that area as an off-site parent pick-up area. Thanks in advance for your cooperation.”

Dr. LeBlanc”

According to Tim Tyler with the Katy Police Department, Brookshire Brothers is well within their rights to enforce parking restrictions, and reminds citizens that if they have requested that people do not park there, it could result in a criminal trespass violation. “The parking lot is legally owned by Brookshire Brothers. If they wanted a vehicle to move and called us, than we would ask them to move,” he says.

A Harsh Decision

To Morales and other Katy junior high parents, being banned by Brookshire Brothers feels extreme considering the store that has been heavily supported by the Katy Tiger community for decades.  “The lot helped alleviate additional traffic on the road and allowed for a second secure pickup for the families,” says Morales Ralph Morales who has been a customer of Brookshire Brothers his entire life. “Brookshire Brothers is well within their rights. I just wish they had asked for adjustments before banning car-rider parents from their lot. It was a harsh decision that will affect many families by increasing traffic and wait times,” Morales explains. Other parents concur and feel that there is no harm in parking in an open lot so close to their child’s school, especially since they regularly purchase groceries there.

Student Safety

Several customers posted that they have seen teens pushing each other in carts through the parking lot, running in front of cars, climbing into ice machines, and openly disrespecting patrons and store management. A store employee who wishes to remain anonymous confirmed the students that hang out in the lot and inside the store after school are causing more of a problem than the parents parked and waiting, and the decision was likely more of a safety and liability concern.

“I have been in [Brookshire Brothers] several times when the kids would get out, and one time a kid knocked me down 24 weeks pregnant, and I stood up and he ran off before I could say anything,” says Kylee M., a 2009 graduate of Katy High School and Katy mom.

Another mom, Diane W., feels that both sides have valid points, but that student safety should come first. “As a parent, I believe that it is risky to pick up a kid in a parking lot. I have seen several people pull into Brookshire Brothers at a high rate of speed,” she says.

Statement from Brookshire Brothers Corporate Office

“Thank you for reaching out to Brookshire Brothers for a statement regarding the use of the store’s parking lot in Katy.

The safety of the students, the adults who pick them up, and all of our customers is paramount to us at Brookshire Brothers.

We realize the after-school pick-up practice has been in place for a number of years.  The reason we reached out to the Junior High School principal recently was due to multiple incidents since the start of the school year.

The concerns are three fold:

  •          Motorists using the parking lot as a short cut

  •          Unaccompanied minors without supervision in the parking lot and inside the store

  •          Customer and vendor comments regarding safety for all

When the store leadership reached out to the principal at Katy Junior High, the intent was to come up with a reasonable solution that would safeguard everyone.

It seems that we need to revisit with the Junior High leadership team on this matter and work toward a resolution. “

Trying to Reach a Compromise

Katy Magazine has offered to arrange a meeting between Brookshire Brothers and  parents from both sides to find a mutually beneficial solution for everyone.  Brookshire Brothers PR representative says they will be reaching out to the school to discuss options and alternatives.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS   

August 27, 2018   

Natalie Cook Clark and Katrina Katsarelis    

According to chimney expert, Todd Harkrider, fireplaces that suffered water damage during Harvey or any other flood event, could be at risk for fire or carbon monoxide release.

 

Harkrider wants to warn Katy Area residents that at least two of the larger fireplace manufacturers – Hearth & Home Technologies (HHT) and Innovative Hearth Products (IHP), are recommending homeowners replace their fireplaces if they have been partially or fully exposed to water. The companies have also deemed fireplace warranties invalid if exposed to water.

System Malfunctions and Carbon Monoxide Risks

The fireplace manufacturers have issued statements of concerns related to fire/carbon monoxide risks associated with rusted holes and potential control system malfunctions due to water damage.  One of the statements is below:

 “From a safety standpoint, it is our opinion that the fireplace be replaced if any of the fireplace has been exposed to or under water. Further, we recommend that the replacement be done by a qualified service person or agency. If you have any questions concerning this matter, feel free to contact our technical department at 800-655-2008.” – Technical Support, Innovative Hearth Products

According to fireplace experts, gas log burners/controls present the same issue with the control system being submerged and warn that attempted operation may result in fire or explosion, property damage, personal injury or even loss of life. “If fireplace damage was the result of flooding during Hurricane Harvey, we recommend checking the homeowners insurance policy for any benefits related to flooding,” states Heart & Home Technologies.

Harris County Emergency Services District 48 Response

“We haven’t seen anything (chimney related fires) yet but it would make sense,” explains Simon VanDyk, Lt. Public Information Officer Harris County Emergency Services. “One thing that most people don’t know is that in the unincorporated Katy there are no residential fire codes. Home inspectors focus on building codes.”  This can create a problem when people think that their home is inspected and approved but then it wasn’t inspected for fire threats.

Some inspectors agree. “The houses flooded from Harvey are now coming back online and I’m seeing, for the most part, that they’ve been rebuilt poorly,” says Jim Davis of About the House Inspection Services. “People need to focus on the overall safety of the home and not the look of the granite counter tops.”

Willowfork Fire Department started offering free fire inspections this year. Harris County Emergency Services District 48 was the first organization in Katy to offer home safety surveys in 2016 . Also residents need to take the time to self inspect their smoke alarms and keep in mind that these do expire. This year would also be the best year to install carbon monoxide detectors as an added precaution.

“Not too many people in the south use their chimney’s too much so with the unprecedented flooding we can expect to see issues that have never come up here before and it is a concern,” stressed Harkrider. This will be the first winter that we’ve experienced this potential threat. Most houses that had chimney water damage would not have been lived in and experiencing chimney use last winter. As the cold weather nears and users start up their fireplaces for the first time since the flood, potential damage and safety hazards could occur.

“I do believe that homeowners did and are missing some good info when they started the rebuild process. I think there were a lot of people that did DIY rebuild/renovations and did not document as well as they should have and are now having trouble selling their once flooded homes,” says George Huntoon, a local Katy realtor.

Bottom line people need to listen to common sense. Make sure that your house is properly inspected.

Here are some tips from the experts:

CHECK YOUR GAS STARTER

REPLACE MALFUNCTIONING FIREPLACES

INSTALL/CHECK SMOKE ALARMS TO MAKE SURE THEY’RE WORKING

INSTALL/CHECK CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTORS

GET A FIRE INSPECTION FROM YOUR FIRE DEPARTMENT

GET YOUR CHIMNEY INSPECTED

Special thanks to Todd Harkrider of Harky’s Chimney & Home Services for bringing this story to our attention.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 26, 2018

By Jennifer Lynn Skelton

Saturday, one year to the day that Hurricane Harvey began it’s destruction in Katy, voters said yes to a $2.5 billion bond that will fund more than 200 projects in hopes to curtail future flooding in Harris county.

Roughly 85% of voters said yes to the Harris County flood bond with 6.5% of the registered voters participating. This was the same percentage of support that was seen in early voting. Votes rarely, if ever, pass at a percentage that high. Although the improvements are for Harris county, many other communities outside will reap the benefits.

POTENTIAL IMPROVEMENTS

Potential projects supported by bond funding include:

  • Channel modifications to improve stormwater conveyance

  • Regional stormwater detention basins

  • Major repairs to flood-damaged drainage infrastructure

  • Removing large amounts of sediment and silt from drainage channels

  • Voluntary buyouts of flood-prone properties

  • Wetland mitigation banks

  • Property acquisition for preserving the natural floodplains

  • Drainage improvements made in partnership with other cities, utility districts, or other local government agencies

  • Upgrading the Harris County Flood Warning System

Click here for more information and a map of improvements covered by the bond.

STATEMENT

The Harris County Flood Control District Executive Director Russ Poppe released the following statement about the election results:

“We are very excited that the voters have significantly enhanced the Flood Control District’s ability to address the flooding issues that impact Harris County by approving the issuance of up to $2.5 billion in bonds to help us implement more flood risk reduction projects in a shorter timeframe.

“We intend to make immediate use of this opportunity: Next Tuesday’s Harris County Commissioners Court agenda will include items to advance 14 flood risk reduction projects that are made possible by this new bond funding. There will be more projects in the coming months.

“Harris County residents have put their trust in the Flood Control District and we plan to work extremely hard and efficiently to turn the financial resources made available as a result of this election into the reality of reduced flooding risks across Harris County.”

 

HCFCD will continue to hold community meetings, such as those held to educate the public ahead of the bond, as projects begin.

TIME FRAME

The bonds will be sold in increments over at least 10-15 years, as needed for the multiple phases of each project. The actual timing of individual projects will depend on a variety of factors including environmental permitting and right-of-way acquisition.

Projects will be authorized individually for funding by Commissioners Court, based on recommendations by the Flood Control District.

TAX INCREASE

The Harris County Flood Control District anticipates that bonds will begin to be sold in 2020. Taxpayers will not see an increase until then with property taxes that are due January 31, 2021.

Frank Bruce, Harris County senior director of finance and budget stated that the increase is estimated at 1/3 of a cent per $100 valuation. This number is fluid as market conditions and circumstances change. By 2035, the anticipated tax rate is expected to double the 2.83 cents per $100 valuation.

Homeowners over 65 or that have a disabled exemption with a home valued $200,000 or less will not pay any additional taxes.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

August 24, 2018  

By Jennifer Lynn Skelton    

Nicholas Dagostino, 29, the suspect arrested for a road rage shooting on Mason Rd. that injured a Katy mom in July, was arrested two days after being released on bond, for a second road rage shooting that took place in March.

 

 

 

The Katy community was on edge and rightly worried as Dagostino admitted to at least five previous shootings that had not been reported after being released on bond Tuesday, August 21. The police have been actively investigating the five previous road rage incidents and asked the public for help. The SUV shown below was used in the two incidents that he has been arrested for and possibly other shootings.

On Thursday, August 23, Dagostino was arrested for a second road rage shooting that took place on March 7, 2018. He is accused of shooting a woman in the arm at a gas station on the Katy Freeway from his SUV.

All of Dagostino’s social media pages were taken down on Thursday. He had a Facebook account, Instagram and Twitter pages. Posts on Facebook were filled with hatred towards many groups including women. Prosecutors believe that this hatred of women fueled the shootings.

Dagostino’s next court date is September 6, 2018. He is currently in jail on the new charge with a bail of $250,000.

He is represented by Ken Mingledorff (although court records currently show Judy Mingledorff as the defense attorney). Katy Magazine reached out to Dagostino’s attorney for a comment. Mingledorff stated,

‘Nicholas is very very sorry for mistakingly overreacting to perceived danger.’

Dagostino has updated his address since his first arrest, stating that he now resides in the Nottingham Country neighborhood off Westgreen between Kingsland and Highland Knolls. The Nottingham address is owned by a man and woman with the same last name of Dagostino. His previous address in July was listed in the Cimarron neighborhood off Cimarron and Mason just 1/2 mile from where the shooting took place.

PREVIOUS REPORT OF ARSON ARREST

Earlier in the day on Thursday, August 23, the Harris County court clerk was reporting that Dagostino had been arrested for Arson on Wednesday, August 22. Katy Magazine reported this information as seen in the screenshot below.

After working to investigate the circumstances regarding this arrest and reaching out to Dagostino’s attorney once again, this was proven to be a mistake. Another suspect is in custody charged with this crime…not Dagostino.

Mingledorff stated,

“That was a mistaken filing according to the clerk’s Office when the bondsman checked.”

Katy Magazine will post updates as they become available in this case.

Click here for the original story and here for the follow-up story after his arrest in July.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
August 24, 2018 

Posted by Ashley Lancaster

According to Fort Bend Country Commissioner Andy Meyers, TxDOT has given a completion date for the section of Cane Island Parkway that will open between IH-10 and FM 1463.

 

The road will open to traffic on Friday, August 31st and this new, direct route between FM 1463 and IH-10 will bring much needed relief to the traffic congestion through the Firethorne and Woodcreek Reserve communities.

 

The contractor was on schedule to have this road open well before school started, but FM 1463 is a state-owned road and the intersection tie-in has been controlled by TxDOT’s scheduling decisions.

 

On a related note, Phase 2 of Cane Island Parkway is already well underway, as they design the next expansion of roadway to a total of 4 lanes between FM 1463 and I-10. They are working aggressively to start the bid phase of the project in Spring 2019, and are already going through design comments with TxDOT. More progress on this road will begin in the coming months.

 
The new thoroughfare will make a dramatic improvement for Katy families.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 21, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

One week into school and everyone is trying to adjust to new routines. With a new school year comes the need to stay informed, communicate and organize. Katy ISD gives us easy access to all of those things and sometimes it’s just at our fingertips.

 

While it’s all designed to make your life easier it’s important to know your app and tech options. Technology is engrained in our lives. Smart boards assist teachers of our youngest students. While parents recall their school days of heavy, book-filled backpacks, their children access textbooks through websites or Ipads. It’s part of their school experience. Now parents and students can use district run apps and technology programs to stay informed, communicate and organize their educational experience.

HAC- Home Access Center

Who: Every parent with a child in Katy ISD is given an access code and password to their Home Access Center at enrollment.

Here you can view everything about your students KISD experience from teachers, schedules, grades, attendance, and more.

“It’s a system of record and is designed to be a parent’s one stop shop for all their information needs,” explains Kerry Rampelli, Director of Enterprise Systems. This page follows you throughout your KISD journey.

HAC is also updated in real time where the app is updated nightly. This is important to know as older students (or parents) may be anxious to get test scores.

Katy OnTheGo App

Who: Everyone with access to HAC.

This application is everything from the Home Access Center (and more) at your fingertips. From news, calendars, menus, bus routes, the new Bullying Tip Line and everything you had at HAC this app is a must for your smart phone.

“The app has many pieces and can easily be added to based on our needs such as the addition of the Bullying Tip Line this year,” says Maria DiPetta, Manager, Media Relations and Multimedia.

Learn more about how KISD is using technology to report bullying in their new campaign. 

Canvas

Who: Differs based on grade level and campus. All junior high and high schools are using it to some degree. Elementary schools have access to it but only 3rd-5th use it and at some campuses.

Canvas is a learning management system that is accessed through a website and the canvas app. The link is accessed through your HAC page or your instructure, the Canvas software login.  

This a great tool where teachers can post assignments, set to do lists and so much more.

When grading assignments, teachers can grade and post work but with this they can also record comments in audio and video. Teachers can also share a video of them doing a math problem so that students can easily refer to it at home and so parents can better understand the work too.

“Students like it because it gives them a to-do list,” says Darlene Rankin, Instructional Technology Director.  “Students (and parents) can set push notifications for reminders based on when and how (email, text) they want to be reminded about assignments.”

This makes remembering assignments easy after long rehearsals, practice, etc. It’s never been so easy to not forget your homework!

Naviance: Career and College Planning Tools

Who: 6th grade-12th grade

Naviance is an application that evolves with it’s service based on your grade. It inventories your interests and skills and identifies where those area overlap. With this and more information, it helps students with college prep by finding a school and scholarships.

“This really helps our counselors to comb through a bunch of things and help students find what they are looking for,” said Christy Maeker, Director of Counseling Services. The program is tailored and controled by the student. Parents have access but it’s read-only.

 “It really helps us to empower students to see what their future look like,” says Stacie Zimmerman, Counseling Specialist. Each campus varies in how this is introduced but junior highs cover it in social studies and in high school it is discussed in english.

Another great feature to Naviance is that graduated seniors can still have access to it and refer back to lists and interests to help them continue towards a successful future.

What about…

Now these are all the district run applications and resources. There are a lot or resources out there designed to help education communication. Some teachers or programs may use resources such as SeeSaw. Most of the fine arts programs use an application called Charms that helps students and parents stay informed on the many parts of those programs. We are now at the time of year where parents are having their curriculum nights are schools so when applications or sites are introduced, ask your questions and get ready for this academic year.

My Katy: Single Sign-on Environment

To make our lives even easier, Katy ISD gives us one place to sign on and access all of our district applications and educational resources with My Katy. So this isn’t like our social media headache where we have so many passwords to keep up with. In one login we can access all the tools we need to stay informed, communicate and organize…and with a few clicks we’re on our way to a successful academic year.

Which is your favorite application or site? Let us know in the comments.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

August 22, 2018  

Compiled by Jennifer Lynn Skelton  

As more people continue to move to Katy, the need exists for more businesses to support the diverse community. Additionally, residents from smaller cities such as Brookshire, Sealy and Fulshear flock to Katy for their needs.

 (Urban Air Adventure Park – America Ninja Course)

ENTERTAINMENT

iRace Entertainment  

24984 Katy Ranch Rd.

Now Open

Star Cinema Grill

District West at Parkway Lakes, Richmond

No Open Date Announced

Urban Air Adventure Park

25307 Kingsland Blvd.

Opening Late Summer 2018

Vortex Sports Grill and Entertainment

24757 I-10

Opening End of Year 2018

Xscape Theaters 

26616 FM 1093 Rd., Richmond

Opening September 2018

MEDICAL

Oncology Consultants

23960 Katy Frwy., Suite 325

Now Open

Nighlight Pediatric Urgent Care

22720 Morton Ranch Rd.

Now Open

VibraLife of Katy

1222 Park West Green Dr.

Now Open

Your Total Footcare

23230 Red River Dr.

Now Open

RESTAURANT

85C Bakery

Katy Grand Shopping Center (99 & Grand Pkwy.)

Opening Early 2019

Beard Papa’s

23119 Colonial Pkwy.

Now Open

Blockhouse Coffee & Kitchen

Stableside at Falcon Landing

No Opening Date Announced

Hacienda Real Mexican Restaurant

11605 S. Fry Rd., Fulshear

Now Open

Jax Grill

Falcon Landing

Opening early 2019

Krispy Kreme

1715 S. Mason Rd.

Opening Fall 2018

Mala Sichuan Bistro

23119 Colonial Parkway

Opening Summer to Fall 2018

 (Mala Sichuan Bistro)

Pollo Campero

1818 Fry Rd.

Now Open

Salata

9333 Spring Green Blvd.

Now Open

Subzero Nitrogen Ice Cream

Stableside at Falcon Landing

No Opening Date Announced

The Union Kitchen

Stableside at Falcon Landing

Opening Early 2019

Zoner’s Pizza Wings and Waffles
25810 Westheimer Pkwy.

Opening August 2018

RETAIL/GROCERY

Walmart 

FM 1463 & FM 1093, Fulshear

Opening August 29

OTHER RETAIL

Hallmark

Grand Morton Town Center (Morton Ranch Rd. @ 99)

Opening Early Summer 2019

Hollywood Feed

Stableside at Falcon Landing

No Opening Date Announced

HomeGoods

Grand Morton Town Center (Morton Ranch Rd. @ 99)

Opening Early Summer 2019

Michaels

Grand Morton Town Center (Morton Ranch Rd. @ 99)

Opening Early Summer 2019

Petco

Grand Morton Town Center (Morton Ranch Rd. @ 99)

Opening Early Summer 2019

OTHER

Garages of Texas 

FM 1463 & Spring Green Blvd.

No Opening Date Announced

Regions Bank

Stableside at Falcon Landing

Now Open

VillaSport Athletic Club & Spa

Stableside at Falcon Landing

Opening Late Summer 2019

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 20, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

 

Beckendorff Junior High eighth grader Jasial Kalapatu got the chance to interview Houston Astros’  third baseman/short stop and 2018 All-Star Game MVP, Alex Bregman.

 

In the Spring, Jaisal’s mother saw a post on Twitter from SI Kids inviting students to apply to be “Kid Reporters,” and he decided to go for it. “[To apply], I needed to write a 400-word essay about an athlete or sports team in the community making a difference, and then a 200-word essay about why I wanted to be an SI Kid Reporter, and then pitch two story ideas,” Jaisal says.

GETTING ACCEPTED

Kalapatu’s main essay was about the significant impact that the Houston Astros had on the community following Hurricane Harvey. About a month later, he got the news that he made it.

After being accepted, Kalapatu, a baseball and basketball player himself, specifically requested Alex Bregman as his interviewee. “I generally pitch all the stories that I want to do, and my editor (who works for SI Kids) considers them and if she agrees with the approach, she approves them and connects with the right people at the team for scheduling,” he says. To make sure nerves didn’t get the best of him, Kalapatu says he practiced giving the interview on family members so that he would be prepared.

ALEX BREGMAN, THOUGHTFUL AND THOROUGH

When Jaisal got to Minute Maid and met Alex Bregman, he was prepared with his questions for Bregman, who he says was very agreeable to talk with.  “He was nice and gave thorough and thoughtful answers. He seemed to have a lot of self-confidence, but he didn’t come across as arrogant. He was a really good person to interview. I appreciated him spending time with me despite his busy schedule,” he says. Here’s a snippet of the interview with Bregman:

 

How has being the All-Star Game MVP changed your life? Are you recognized more out in public?

I don’t know if I’m recognized more than before in Houston, but definitely more on a national scale. When we’re out on the road, out in the community, more people know who I am.

Where on the road has it happened?
L.A., Seattle—it’s happened in most of the cities that we’ve been to since the All-Star Game.

You grew up in a baseball family. Your grandfather was the general counsel for the Washington Senators, and your father played at the University of New Mexico. Were you always drawn to the game, or did you play other sports as well?

I’ve always been drawn to baseball. Ever since I was five years old, [when] my dad would bring a baseball card home from work, I just fell in love with the game. I’d play in the cul de sac with my mom and him, and it’s been fun.

For Jaisal’s Full Interview with Alex Bregman, CLICK HERE. 

At Beckendorff, Kalapatu is involved in theatre and choir, plays basketball, baseball, and piano, and represents BDJH on the Destination Imagination team. He says if he could interview any one in history, it would be the MLB legend Jackie Robinson, the first African American to ever play professional baseball.

“I’ve always been fascinated by not only his overall game, but his humble personality and the way he never lost his cool, even when people taunted and harassed him. I think that that would be a perfect interview,” he says.

Jaisal doesn’t know what his next interview will be yet, but he’s full of ideas. Follow him on Twitter @SIKids_Jaisal to stay updated.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

August 16, 2018  

By Jennifer Lynn Skelton  

A man was stabbed to death early Thursday morning after a fight at a home in the Tamarron neighborhood.

 

 

The woman called 911 around 4:45 am stating that her ex-boyfriend had knocked on the door of her home on Daintree Park Drive and argued with her. Before police could arrive, the ex-boyfriend came back and proceeded to argue with the new boyfriend.

The ex-boyfriend stabbed the new boyfriend to death inside the home where the three children witnessed the violence. The suspect is the father of the two youngest, a 2 and 4-year old.

Maj. Chad Norvell with the Fort Bend Sheriff’s said the ex-boyfriend was arrested after a traffic stop on nearby FM Road 1463.

No identities have been released. This is still a very active crime scene in Tamarron and on FM 1463. This part of Tamarron is in Lamar ISD, whom have not begun school, therefore the police presence won’t affect school this morning.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 14, 2018 

 

Last week, Katy ISD sent out an email about the additional safety and security measures that will be implemented across the district. Below is a breakdown of the updated safety measures at your child’s school.

When students return to school in Katy ISD on August 15, 2018, they will be met with reinforced and updated safety and security procedures that include software for reporting bullying, more strict identification requirements for parents and visitors, mandatory student ID’s and more.

PARENTS & VISITORS

Required for entrance to any Katy ISD campus:

– Valid, current, government-issued picture ID outside of the main entrance at all campuses.

– Utilize the new controlled access camera and intercom system to present their ID.

– Present valid ID to the front desk receptionist and be logged into the tracking system.

STUDENT ID BADGES

Secondary students must now wear their ID badges at all times during school hours, while on District property.  Students in grades PK-5 will continue utilizing their badges during lunch and library times.  Fourth and fifth-grade students are requested to wear their badges throughout the school day, when practical.  At the secondary level, failure to follow the ID badge requirement may be considered a violation of the Student Code of Conduct.?

STANDARD UNLOCK TIMES

Controlled access systems will unlock main entrance doors at a set time each morning.

– Elementary Group 1: 7:35 a.m.

– Elementary Group 2: 7:55  a.m.

– Junior High: 8:10 a.m.

– High School: 6: 45 a.m.

CLEAR BAG REGULATION

To ensure visitor safety, along with quick and efficient entry into our event venues, Katy ISD has instituted a Clear Bag Regulation. This will limit the size and type of bag allowed at sporting events, performances and graduations held at Rhodes and Legacy stadiums, as well as the Leonard Merrell Center (LMC), and the Katy ISD Livestock Show and Rodeo at the Agricultural Sciences Center.

While Katy ISD encourages visitors not to bring bags if possible, the following types of bags are permissible:

  • Clear, plastic, vinyl or PVC bags

  • Clear, plastic, one-gallon, re-sealable, Ziploc-style bags

  • Clutch bags approximately the size of a hand (4 ½” X 6 ½”)

  • Medically necessary items

Visitors who bring bags that do not meet the criteria outlined, will not be permitted entrance into the venue.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ACCEPTABLE BAGS

BULLYING

– Procedures for Reporting Allegations of Bullying

– Bullying and Intervention Programs by Campus 

For a full report of Katy ISD’s increased safety and security measures, visit KatyISD.org.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

August 10, 2018  

By Jennifer Lynn Skelton  

The weekend that every parent and student looks forward to is upon us…Back-to-School Tax Free Weekend. August 10 – 12 is the time for parents to save on items such as school supplies and clothing.

 

The sales tax exemption applies only to qualifying items you buy during the sales tax holiday. Items you buy before or after the sales tax holiday do not qualify for exemption, and there is no tax refund available.

Many retail outlets have adjusted their weekend hours to accommodate the increased traffic including the Katy Mills Mall (see below).

Friday, 8/10   9 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Saturday, 8/11   9 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Sunday, 8/12  10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Qualifying Items

Click the links before to scroll the complete lists.

Special Purchases

School Supplies Purchased Using a Business Account – Exemption Certificate Required

If you buy qualifying school supplies under a business account, you must give a properly completed Form 01-339, Texas Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certificate, to the seller.

“Under a business account” means you are:

  • using a business credit card or business check and not a personal credit card or personal check;

  • being billed under a business account maintained by the seller; or

  • using a business membership at a membership-based retailer.

Items that Do Not Qualify

The following items do not qualify for exemption during the sales tax holiday:

  • items sold for $100 or more

  • clothing subscription boxes

  • specially-designed athletic activity or protective-use clothing or footwear

    • For example, golf cleats and football pads are usually worn only when people play golf or football, so they do not qualify for the exemption.

    • Tennis shoes, jogging suits and swimsuits, however, can be worn for other than athletic activity and qualify for the exemption.

  • clothing or footwear rentals, alterations (including embroidery) and cleaning services

  • items used to make or repair clothing, such as fabric, thread, yarn, buttons, snaps, hooks and zippers

  • jewelry, handbags, purses, briefcases, umbrellas, wallets, watches and other accessories

  • computers

  • software

  • textbooks

  • luggage, framed backpacks, computer bags, athletic bags

Visit the Texas Comptroller’s website for complete details of the Texas tax free weekend.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 13, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

With Katy ISD schools starting this week a lot of parents are looking into before and after school care options, especially with the time changes to some of our schools.

The good news is that Katy offers a lot of options and most of these are not just a childcare program but offer curriculum enriched programs with various topics and homework assistance by certified teachers.

How to find the best program for your child?

All of these programs have their own unique curriculum and play structure. It’s always best to research to see to find the best fit for your child.

Safety- What is their pick-up procedures? What kind of CPR and training is required of the staff?

Ask about transportation- Most of these program provide transportation to local school. Be sure and see if your child’s school is one that they service. Do they use carseats?

Curriculum- Different programs focus on different curriculum. Do you want something STEM based? Language immersion? Play based? Homework assistance?

Take a tour- All of these programs listed below offer tours. This is the best way to get a feel for the program and ask your questions.

“I chose Tigerland because it’s great reputation, the majority of the staff have been there for years and the pricing is reasonable,” says Vicky Hegemeyer.

With so many choices in Katy, with a little research it should be easy to find the best fit for your child.

 

Local Katy Before/After School Programs:

British Private Prep

28031 S. Firethorne Road, 281-394-5889

25935 Cinco Terrace Drive, 281-394-7737

4025 S. Mason Road, 281-828-2000

Childtime Learning Center

170 N Fry Rd, Katy 77449, 281-646-8330

22022 Highland Knolls Dr, Katy 77450, 281-392-2400

Children’s Lighthouse

23060 Westheimer Pkwy, Katy 77494, 281-395-4466

26051 Kingsland Blvd, Katy 77494, 281-392-2211

19607 Clay Rd, Katy 77449, 281-492-2688

 5740 FM 1463, Katy 77494, 281-394-9696

Children’s Learning Adventure

24224 Cinco Terrace Dr, Katy 77494, 281-612-7648

Foundations Academy

20817 Westheimer Parkway, Katy 77450, 281-599-1200

Ivy Kids Early Learning Center

27270 Cinco Ranch Blvd, Katy 77494, 281-574-0395

2707 Spring Green Blvd, Katy 77494, 346-307-6922

19919 Lakemont Bend Ln, Richmond, TX 77407, 832-595-1900

Katy Knowledge Beginnings

6130 S Fry Rd, Katy 77494, 281-693-77494

Katy’s Early childhood Enrichment Center

1407 W. Grand Pkwy, 281-693-1999

 Kids R ‘Kids

19814 Keith Harrow Boulevard 281-859-7300

21955 Westheimer Pkwy 281-828-2273

24007 Franz Road 281-347-5444

25950 Cinco Ranch Blvd. 281–392-1370

10602 S. Fry Road 281-392-1414

4515 FM 1463 281-347-5437

Kindercare

2650 S. Peek Rd, Katy 77450, 281-392-2650

22129 Kingsland Blvd, Katy 77450, 281-392-6770

2202 Fry Rd, Houston 77084, 281-578-1415

19510 Clay Rd, Katy 77449, 281-550-1610

Learning and Beyond

19600 Clay Rd, Katy 77449, 832-464-7787

20144 Morton Rd, Katy 77449, 832-848-0369

My Place Early Learning Center

24034 Cinco Village Center Blvd, Katy 77494, 281-392-5900

2212 Katy Flewellen Rd, Katy 77494, 281-396-4734

Primrose Schools of Katy

1249 FM 1463, Katy 77494, 281-371-0099 (West Cinco Ranch)

1540 Peek Rd, Katy 77450, 281-693-7711 (Cinco Ranch)

21480 Park Row Blvd, Katy 77449, 281-492-7400 (North Mason Creek)

2402 Westgreen Blvd, Katy TX 77450 281-828-1600 (Kelliwood)

Safari Kids Learning Center

24936 Katy Ranch Rd, Katy 77494, 832-583-9700

Scribbles Academy

940 S. Fry Rd, Katy 77450, 281-578-1505

Spanish School House

2944 S Mason Rd, Katy 77450, 832-437-0570

Tigerland

5315 E 5th St, Katy 77493, 281-391-8750

YMCA

Monty Ballard YMCA at Cinco Ranch 22807 Westheimer Pkwy, 281-392-5055

Mark Chapman YMCA at Katy Main Street 1350 Main Street, 281-665-1213

Do you have a Katy before/after school program that you love? Tell us about it in the comments.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
August 9, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

Short on cash? Not to worry, here’s our top 5 places in Katy to grab a cheap, delicious, quick lunch.

 

1. Taqueria Tex-Taco
2864 Katy Hockley Cut-Off Rd.

This well-hidden taco stand doesn’t look like much from the outside, but it’s a Katy favorite. You can get a gigantic beef fajita torta for $5, or try one of their yummy breakfast tacos for just $1 each.

2. Crown Pizza
6191 Hwy. Blvd.

Historic Katy’s newest pizza spot has happy hour specials every day from 2:30 to 5 p.m. with a cheese or pepperoni pizza for just $5.

3. Uberrito
LaCenterra at Cinco Ranch
23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.

On Mondays, a chicken burrito is just $5.

4. El Pollo Loco
390 S. Mason Rd.

A great drive through option! Get a pressed avocado chicken wrap, side salad, and a drink for $5.

5. Old Chicago Pizza

24515 Katy Fwy.

Readers tell us that their mini pizza is delicious, and only $5. They also have a wide variety of “bar bites” that are under $10.

Do you know of a great lunch under $5? Leave it in the comments!

KATY TEXAS NEWS
August 9, 2018 
Ashley Lancaster

College Nannies & Tutors of Katy, a locally owned agency that provides customized childcare and tutoring, was happy to award Katy High School senior Siarah Mazariegos with their first-ever College Test Prep Scholarship.

Siarah is the oldest of four siblings and plays flute for the Katy High School Band as a section leader, serves as student council president and vice president for the National Honor Society. She hopes to attend UT Austin and major in Business, and College Nannies & Tutors of Katy has brought that dream a little closer with a scholarship that will allow Siarah to achieve the highest possible ACT/SAT scores.

 

The scholarship was created by  Franchise owner Doina Berea and Learning Center Manager Rebecca Baker in order to give back to our local community and help a local high school student to improve on their SAT/ACT score.

College Nannies & Tutors of Katy will provide this scholarship to one outstanding high school senior in Katy ISD every year. To learn more about College Nannies & Tutors of Katy, visit www.collegetutorskatytx.com

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 7, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

Photography by Hello Darlin Photography

A young Katy couple had no idea just how much people would love their photos at Texas’s most popular gas station. Once the album hit social media, true-blue Texans everywhere absolutely flipped!

Local photographer Kristina Ohl-Boyd, owner of Hello Darlin Photography, has worked with Katy couple Brooks Taylor and Trevor Waters before. “They are a really fun, flirty couple to shoot, so I knew that they would be willing to try and out-of-the-box idea like this,” says Ohl-Boyd.

Saturday began with a planned shoot in Galveston when Boyd mentioned the idea of taking some original photos in a gas station. They went to several convenience stores in the area, but were not granted permission to take pictures. “Every gas station we went to turned us down, saying that the shoot would be an insurance liability,” she says. Frustrated but determined to make her idea come to life, Kristina asked the couple if they would be willing to try again on Sunday, this time at the Buc-ee’s station in Katy. Brooks and Trevor both graduated from Katy Taylor High School, Brooks in 2017 and Trevor in 2018, and live in the area, so it was easy to plan.

A CREATIVE TWIST

“When Kristina mentioned Buc-ee’s, Trevor and I were both super excited. Buc-ee’s is a uniquely Texan treasure, so we knew it would be the perfect place to take photos,” says Taylor.

The 5,000 square-foot, immensely popular gas station chain, known for it’s immaculate restrooms, Beaver swag and kitschy apparel, awesome hot food and road trip -ready snacks opened a Katy location last year. As anyone from Texas will tell you, if you are on the road in Texas, you have to stop at Buc-ee’s.

“The setting was perfect because both Brooks and Trevor are Buc-ee’s veterans, and it was a great way to celebrate something that Texans are really proud to call their own,” says Ohl-Boyd.

 

BEAVER BACK UP

When they arrived, they weren’t quite sure what reaction to expect from management, staff, and other patrons when they began taking photos. “When we went in, I told them both that we were just going to start shooting, and wait to see if we got any push back from management,” she says. But the reaction was, in fact, the complete opposite. Buc-ee’s staff immediately jumped in to help make the shoot a success. Trevor, who was a little nervous when he arrived, instantly felt relaxed and comfortable.

“The environment was really fun, and employees were running around making sure everything was clean, keeping other customers out of the frame so we could take photos, and just helping out as much as they could,” he says. The helpfulness of the staff and the positive energy in the store yielded some adorable memories for both Trevor and Brooks. “It was an amazing day to share with someone I love,” he says. The shoot took about 90 minutes and includes photos from all over the store, including the red pick up truck loaded with plush Buc-ee the Beaver dolls.

“They let us jump in that truck and just go crazy getting as many great shots as we could. It was amazing,” says Ohl-Boyd. Even the other patrons joined in on the fun as they passed by, snapping photos for social media and praising the photographer and the couple on the creative idea.

TEXAS PROUD

The full album was posted on Hello Darlin’s Facebook page on August 5 at around 8 p.m., and so far has close to 700 shares. “I told Brooks and Trevor when we were leaving the store that this is the kind of photo shoot that goes viral. Texans love their Buc-ee’s,” she says. To her, the Buc-ee’s shoot represents so much about the heart of Texas culture and the pride that runs deep here. “What these photos really show is that you can have fun and make memories anywhere,” she says.

Indeed they do. Hello Darlin Photography has already received several requests for similar shoots at the Katy location, and Ohl-Boyd is on board, with a few simple conditions. “Buc-ee’s can call me back with a lifetime supply of kolaches and Beaver nuggets and we’ll call it even, ” she jokes.

As for Brooks and Trevor, they can definitely imagine future shoots at Buc-ee’s. They will both attend Lone Star College – Cy-Fair this fall, and Brooks is currently working at Shell Corporation through an internship she landed her senior year in high school. “We would love to come back at different points in our life and make this a tradition,” says Brooks.

BROOKS & TREVOR’S BUC-EE’S SHOOT

By Hello Darlin Photography
By Hello Darlin Photography
By Hello Darlin Photography

By Hello Darlin Photography

4/15

 (Photos by Hello Darlin Photography)

If you’re new to Texas and haven’t experienced Buc-ee’s yet, stop by the Katy location at 27700 Katy Fwy near Cane Island.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 5, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Katy ISD is gearing up to start school August 15 and part of that prep involves planning how to address and prevent bullying.

Anonymously report bullying on your cell

We’ve seen a world-wide increase in bullying and technology is responsible for a lot of that increase so it’s only fitting that we’re using technology to help combat it.

The Bullying Tip Line is a feature part of the Katy OnTheGo app. To access it simply download the free app. If you already have the app then it will automatically update to include the feature when it launches this month.

 

While the focus will be getting students to use it, parents and teachers can also make use of it. All you need is a cell phone with the Katy OnTheGo app, information to submit (the more detail the better) and a few minutes of your time. “The ease and anonymity is key here,” says Maria DiPetta, manager, media relations and multimedia for KISD. “While other methods aim to be anonymous this truly is. Schools even have designated cell phone times so when a student is on their phone no one knows if they are playing a game, checking a social media account or submitting a tip on the app.”

The new Bullying Tip Line app is being introduced to principals and administrators this week and has been in development as part of the districts strategic planning process since spring 2017. It’s release is right on schedule with the district’s goals. “The initial goal for the app is for users to familiarize themselves with it and feel comfortable using it,” says Maria. INSERT QUOTE FROM PRINCIPAL- The initial feedback is that it’s very simple to use, so much so that elementary students could do it.

The app is part Katy ISD’s Bullying Prevention Campaign. The campaign includes educational videos, events and the observation of National Bullying Prevention month. The app is just another way of reporting in addition to the anonymous boxes placed in all schools. The hope is that when students have felt uncomfortable being seen putting information in a drop box they would feel comfortable using the app. “Again it being so anonymous is key. In fact the anonymous button is always turned on and all tips will go to an inbox where the administrator for the school receives them daily,” explains Maria.

Educating students how to help

Education is key to helping the app be a success and the schools will focus on this educational process this year. This app can be most effective in addressing a bullying act when given as much detail as possible. “For example,” Maria explains, “student XYZ (full name) is bullying student ABC (full name) in 2nd period, Mrs. So-and-So’s class and they posted this on Facebook (share screenshot of social media.) From there the user could say that student XYZ follows student ABC to the parking lot and then proper people will have the information to verify, prove and prevent this incident from continuing.”

The app will also better help administrators to categorize the bullying whether it’s emotional, physical, social or technological. Some tips may require police investigation while other may be simply resolved by scheduling a sit down with the students. This will allow administrators the information to make those decisions and make sure the best solution is in play for each case.

This app will only be used for reporting. It is NOT to be used to report a crisis that would still be to call 911 or the Katy Connect Crisis Line 281-234-2326.

 

KISD is dedicated to addressing, preventing bullying

The district plans to track, record and follow the use and trends of the tips reported. In another step to being proactive in the current culture of bullying, KISD recently hired a Coordinator for Bullying Prevention and Student Support. The position is still new and getting settled but further proof at the seriousness that the district put on the topic.

Parents need to be part of the conversation

While the district is doing their part to address and help prevent bullying parents play a key role at home and these conversations need to start their. “Parents should talk to their children about bullying to help prevent them from partaking in it and becoming a possible victim,” says Nelda Wilson Brooks, a Katy family therapist. Parents should also be aware of their children’s social media presence.

Be sure and download the Katy OnTheGo App for many helpful features including the new Bullying Tip Line.

Are you talking to your child about bullying ahead of the school year? What kind of conversations are you having.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 4, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

Parents can now enter their residential address to view the bus schedule for their child’s grade level and neighborhood.

 

On Friday, Katy ISD informed the public that the most updated bus schedules were available for families.

Parents whose children meet the qualifications for transportation can enter their students’ grade level and street name and find out the time and location for bus pick-up/drop-off. CLICK HERE TO CHECK YOUR CHILD’S BUS INFO.

ONE HALF-MILE RADIUS
Katy ISD will provide transportation to Katy ISD students who live outside a 1/2 mile radius from their campus. Parents with questions about schedules, routes, and bus stop locations can contact the Transportation Call Center at 281-396-6008, Monday – Friday, from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. until August 24, 2018.

 

BUS DRIVERS NEEDED

Katy ISD is still actively seeking bus drivers to transport students to and from their campus. The district will provide paid training, health insurance and family assistance, and on-site childcare for children ages 18 months through fifth grade. Wages start at $16.66 per hour.Find out more here. 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 2, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

R.L. “Buddy” Frazier, former beloved Katy Chief of Police passed away from Alzheimers this Wednesday, August 1 on his 77th Birthday. Family and friends are set to honor this Katy legend on Sunday.

 

Photo from Katy Magazine feature story

Service Details

R.L. “Buddy” Frazier, former and beloved Katy Chief of Police passed away Wednesday. Family will receive friends to honor Frazier from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. this Sunday, August 5 at Schmidt Funeral Home Grand Parkway Chapel, in Katy. The funeral will be held at 10:30 a.m. this Monday, August 6, 2018 with Rev. Steve Littlefield officiating.

 A True Texas Gentleman

Called “Buddy” because of how he made people feel when they met him. He greeted people with the same personalized sense of heart and care that he dedicated to his nearly 50 years in law enforcement. Even if you didn’t get to know him, Katy is forever touched by his mark. He worked with local officials to bring Katy Mills Mall and all the development and businesses with it to this city. He worked diligently and with dedication to grow the Katy Police Department to match the city it served during some of the most major growing years Katy experienced.

“I had the honor and pleasure of working with Chief Buddy Frazier for 23 years,” said current Katy Chief of Police Bill Hastings. “He was a good friend and mentor to me. He had a great love for the police department, the employees, and the city of Katy. Chief Frazier was a mentor and a friend to all who worked with him. We will always look back on his friendship and strive to maintain the integrity, ethics and professionalism that he instilled in all of us who served under him. Rest easy Buddy. We will never forget you. The dedication that you had to law enforcement is what we will always remember and cherish.”

 A Lifetime of Service

Service was who Frazier was. He served in the army before turning to law enforcement. Before coming to Katy, Frazier served in law enforcement in Dayton, Harris Country and Village Police Department. He retired from Village in 1983 but his will to serve didn’t take to retired life.

 Frazier began as a patrol officer in the Katy Police Department. He worked hard and progressed up the chain until he was named Chief of Police in February 1996. He served as Katy Chief of Police for 13 years and retired in 2009.

Photo by Katy Magazine

Buddy loved Katy, its people, his family and nature. He loved the outdoors and hunting. He no doubt spent time at Katy Mill’s Outdoor World. He enjoyed his retirement years spending time outdoors and with his family and friends.

Survived By

Buddy is survived by his wife, Roberta “Robbie” Frazier; sons, Loyd E. Frazier and wife Donna, John R. Frazier and wife Denise; sisters, Melinda Smith and husband Russell, Connie Doss, and Carla Stewart and husband Ferrian; grandchildren, Robert, James, Nicholas, Bryan, Eric, and Ryan; as well as other loving family members and friends.

A Substantial Impact

Buddy Frazier made a substantial impact on Katy and its residents and will be dearly missed by family, friends, colleagues and his community.

Katy Magazine ran a feature story on Buddy Frazier in June of 2008 and enjoyed photographing and interviewing him. Our sincere condolences go out to his family and loved ones.

Do you have a fond memory of R.L. “Buddy” Frazier? Share it with us below in a comment.

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KATY MAGAZINE

August 2, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton & Ashley Lancaster 

The largest and most comprehensive renovation project in the school’s history is expected to be complete before August 15.

 (Gymnasium)

 

A NEW HOME FOR THE RAMS 

The Mayde Creek Rams will start the first day of their 2018-2019 school year in an almost unrecognizable campus. The renovations were approved in the 2014 school bond, and have a price tag of just over $51 million. According to Mayde Creek High School Principal Ronnie Edwards, they could not have come at a better time.

“Katy ISD has done an excellent job at strategically planning when a campus is in need of updates or renovations, and we were able to see the benefit of that this year,” he says. After taking a certain degree of water damage during Hurricane Harvey in August of last year, the completed changes will give fresh heart to the student body and staff.

A COMPLETE “MAYDE-OVER”

The new and improved learning areas and open spaces are literally designed to foster a positive school culture. “The design of the open spaces and flex seating in the common areas will facilitate more collaboration, and give students more opportunities to have their voices heard,” he says.

The hallways and campus infrastructure have been streamlined as well, with Mayde Creek’s back hallways being updated to connect and help students get to class faster. Additionally, a skybridge connecting the freshman center to the main campus will cut down on walking time.

The school will also integrate updated safety and security measures that are being implemented at campuses across the district. And while the ninth grade campus was not included in upgrades approved by the 2014 bond, Mayde Creek freshman will benefit from new classroom furniture, flooring, and updated paint.

A new “Genius Bar” in the school library will also be available, giving students increased opportunities for the use of technology.

(Genius Bar in the school library)

Overall, Mr. Edwards and the rest of the Mayde Creek staff are proud of the success of the project. “We have kept track and taken photos of the renovations from start to finish. It’s important for the community to get a good picture of just how much has changed and how it will benefit future Rams.”

DETAILS OF MAYDE CREEK’S MAKEOVER

  • Classroom Renovations to meet current program needs in original section of high school – including Science, Fine Arts, CTE, Administration, Library, Kitchen/Commons

  • Modify access to building – review construction of corridors to connect halls

  • Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing upgrades/replacement

  • Elevator replacement

  • Replacement of finishes – flooring, ceiling, carpet

  • Renovations to Softball field to meet Title IX

  • Installation of Walk In Floral Cooler

  • Relocate Lights above Pool

  • Reconstruct access road around Mayde Creek complex

2017 BOND

Every school bond generally has normal upgrades and maintenance for all school campuses Additional items were approved for Mayde Creek High School on the 2017 bond.

  • Roofing

  • Athletic Turf Replacement

  • Scoreboard Replacement in Gyms

  • Technology Retrofit and Tablets

  • Document Cameras

  • Printer Replacements

PREVIOUS UPDATES 

  • Upgrade Electrical System (1999)

  • Renovations & Additions: Library, Athletics, Administration & Music (1999)

  • 9th Grade Center & Performing Arts Center (PAC) (2002)

  • Exterior Door Replacement (2007)

  • Natatorium (2008)

  • Central Plant (2012)

  • Security Vestibule (2012)

(New flexible seating upstairs)


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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 1, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

As Katy ISD continues to grow, more staff is needed each year to fill open and newly created positions. For the 2018/19 school year 27 administration staff were hired.

 

 High School employees

Kerri Finnesand, Principal, Seven Lakes High

Amy Frey, AP, Mayde Creek High

Karlyn Fuquay, AP, Taylor High

Michael Gilchrist, AP, Paetow High

Diego Linares, Principal, Raines High

Rebecca Marron, Student Support Administrator, Paetow High

Jerimain Matthew, AP, Tompkins High

Kendra Okeefe, AP, Seven Lakes High

Junior High employees

Todd Abbott, AP, Memorial Parkway Junior High

Rafael Brazo, AP, Katy Junior High*

Michelene Etzel, Student Support Administrator, Morton Ranch Junior High

Steve Guzzetta, Principal, McMeans Junior High

Kristin Harper, Principal, Seven Lakes Junior High

*Rafael Brazo was named one of Katy ISD’s campus teacher of the year for 2017/18school year as well as one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 men of 2018.

Elementary employees

Ridget Aleem, AP, Campbell Elementary

Jennifer Cruz, AP, Franz Elementary

Michelle Gaskamp, Principal, Randolph Elementary

Cheryl Glasser, Principal, Rylander Elementary

Kristin Graves, AP, Nottingham Country Elementary

Anna Hinojosa, Principal, Wolfe Elementary

Candace Hopkins, AP, Cimarron  Elementary

Elizabeth Hull, AP, Memorial Parkway Elementary

Marc Kampwerth, AP, Morton Ranch Elementary

Elizabeth Paz, AP, Sundown Elementary

Erika Rodriguez, AP, Campbell Elementary

Richard Turner, AP, McRoberts Elementary

Jillian Wilke, AP, Rhoads Elementary

Latwanda Wilson, AP, Bear Creek Elementary

The staff is a combination of new hires as well as internal transfers and promotions.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
July 31, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

 

On August 1, 2018, the community is invited to attend the Harris County Flood Control Bond Barker Reservoir Community Meeting at Memorial Parkway Junior High.

The meeting will be held at Memorial Parkway Junior High at 21203 Highland Knolls Blvd from 6 – 8 p.m.

 

All attendees are invited to bring questions and ideas to the Barker Reservoir Open House in regards to the 2018 Harris County Flood Control District Bond Program.

The goal is to prepare an effective system to reduce flood damage for the Houston region, and community input is vital. Residents can also learn more about projects proposed for the area by the Harris County Flood Control district, and give feedback.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 30, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Here’s a check-list to ensure that you’re ready for that first day of school.

 

Katy ISD schools start August 15 and with less than a month it’s time to enjoy these last summer days and prepare for a successful academic year. Here’s a check-list to ensure that you’re ready for that first day of school.

 

Registration

This year KISD will welcome around 80,000 students. A fast growing district means evolving to better organize and meet student needs. This year ALL KISD students must register in the new Power Up computer system. New students registration is still going on. Parents of new students will still need to visit their child’s campus to present certain documents like proof or residency and vaccination records. Click here for a schedule of when you can go visit your child’s campus.

On August 1 current students will get an email sent to their parent’s current email on file. This will give parents instruction on how to register and complete annual updates.

And don’t forget to check your school’s website and/or PTA social media to see when your meet the teacher night is scheduled.

Meal Plans
Families who qualify can apply year-round for free and/or reduced meals for their Katy ISD students. Click here to view the FAQ page and fill out an application.

Parents can also open a MyPaymentsPlus Meal account to pre-pay for their students’ lunches.

Immunization Requirements

KISD follows the Texas Department of State Health Services recommendation for immunizations. See which vaccinations are required for your child’s grade level.Students can get vaccinated at their regular pediatricians office or attend one of several vaccination clinics being held around the city. 

Safety and Security

You can view Katy ISD’s safety and security resources here, as well as view a list of anti-bullying programs and initiatives at each campus. As an added safety measure, all Katy ISD students in all grade levels will be required to carry and wear a Student ID badge. Call your campus to find out more.

School Supplies

Some schools make it available to pre-purchase school supplies but that time has passed. Here is a list for all Elementary schools and their supplies requirements for each grade level. For a list of required supplies for secondary schools, Junior High and High School’s, visit their individual websites. 

Tax Free Weekend starts Friday August 10 and ends Sunday August 12, This is a great way to save on supplies and get excited about the new school year.

Kickoff the Fall Sports Season

The start of the school year also marks the start of fall sports. Don’t forget to see the Varsity Football Schedule and mark your calendar to go support your favorite high school.

This year both Rhodes Stadium and Legacy Stadium will only be allowing clear bags into the stadium. Make sure you are in compliance as to prevent any delays in cheering for your team.

Celebrate at Back to School Events

With all the preparation for back to school don’t forget to celebrate the new year with fun and local back to school events. Cane Island is hosting a Back to School event on August 4 12pm-2pm at Cane Island. There will be a book fair, crafts, live music, snow cones and more.

Join the fun at Katy Summer Nights: Back to School Bash hosted by the Mark A. Chapman YMCA and held at No Label Brewery on August 10 6pm-10pm.

Camp West is also hosting a Back to School Bash on August 25 at Lake West at 6pm.

Did we miss a local Back to School event? Include it in the comments below.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
July 10, 2018
Ashley Lancaster

Beginning in August, the Katy Police Department will offer a 10-week training course for residents.

Citizens inside City of Katy limits are invited to take a 10-week course to gain an understanding of the policies and procedures of the Katy Police Department. The classes start on August 16 and will meet every Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m. with a graduation ceremony on October 18, 2018.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS

 – Students must live within City of Katy limits

– Students must be willing to submit to a criminal background investigation

– No firearms permitted in the classroom or secured areas of the police department

– Tobacco products will not be permitted in the classroom

DRESS CODE

 – Collared shirts, slacks or dress pants, and proper footwear

– Jeans are permitted as long as there are no holes or tears

– NO sandals, flip flops, shorts, mini-skirts, T-shirts, tank tops, sleeveless shirts, or any clothing low-cut or that would expose undergarments, or clothing with drug or alcohol-related logos or derogatory pictures or wording.

CLICK HERE to apply.

CLICK HERE for academy disqualifiers.

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KATY MAGAZINE

July 29, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

Eight Katy-area eateries will participate In Houston Restaurant Weeks 2018. Each establishment offers a specific menu for the fundraiser that benefits the Houston Food Bank.

 

Houston Restaurant Weeks is the largest annual fundraiser for America’s largest food bank, the Houston Food Bank.

It’s a month long, August 1 – September 3, dining extravaganza featuring specially priced lunches, brunches and dinners at restaurants from the Houston area.

HRW is planned by volunteers so that participating restaurants can donate 100% of the funds raised to the Houston Food Bank.

Participating restaurants make donations directly to the Houston Food Bank based upon how many brunches, lunches and dinners they sell during the event. The exact dollar amount can be found on the HRW website above the restaurant’s menu. Diners are not solicited for donations.

NOTE FOR DINERS: Please call or visit the web site of your chosen restaurant(s) to verify days of the week for meal service times for brunch, lunch and dinner.

If you are new to Houston Restaurant Weeks, this guide will help you navigate, make reservations if necessary and make sure what you order is included in the event.

Alamo Drafthouse LaCenterra

2707 Commercial Center Blvd.
281-492-6900
*Reservations are not required. This $20 menu will be available at all times, 7 days a week, including weekends. Diners will also receive a free movie ticket to return an other time.

Alicia’s Mexican Grille – Katy
25725 Katy Fwy.
832-437-9671
*Lunch ($20) and dinner ($35) menu. Walk-ins welcome. When making your reservations please let the restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu.

Grazia Italian Kitchen
22764 Westheimer Pkwy.
832-437-9671
*Brunch ($20), lunch ($20) and dinner ($35). When making your reservations please let the restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu. Check with the restaurant directly for participating times and days. Walk ins welcome. Grazia was recently featured in Katy Magazine’s “The Great Katy Restaurant Explosion of 2018”.

Peli Peli – Cinco Ranch La Centerra
23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
281-257-9500
*Dinner menu for $45. Please let restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu when making your reservations. Walk-ins welcome. Peli Peli’s Bacon Wrapped Scallops recently made Katy Magazine’s list of “Top 10 Brilliant Bacon Masterpieces in Katy”.  Peli Peli’s Bobotie was featured in Katy Magazine’s “Katy Magazine’s Top Food Picks for 2018”.

Perry’s Steakhouse and Grille – La Centerra

23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
281-347-3600
*Offering a dinner menu for $45. Reservations are required. When making your reservations please let the restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu.

The Rouxpour – La Centerra
2643 Commercial Center Blvd.
*Dinner menu for $35. Please let restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu when making your reservations. Walk-ins welcome. The Rouxpour was recently featured in Katy Magazine’s “The Great Katy Restaurant Explosion of 2018”.

Texas Mesquite Grille

20095 Katy Fwy.
281-829-0444
*Dinner menu for $35. Please let restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu when making your reservations. Walk-ins welcome.

Tobiou Sushi and Bar
23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
281-394-7156
*Dinner menu for $35. Please let restaurant know that you’d like the HRW menu when making your reservations. Walk-ins welcome.

This is a comprehensive list as of July 29. More restaurants and menus can be added up until July 31. Keep checking back here.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 28, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Opening photo by Troy Burleigh
 

On August 5, the Katy community is invited come out and say “Thank you” and “Good luck” to the brave young men and women who have enlisted in the military.

 

 

Texans Embracing America’s Military (T.E.A.M.) was formed in early 2018 by Ralph Oliver, who noticed that Katy is home to some very brave young men and women that deserve recognition for enlisting in the military. In the final moments before they leave, recruits embrace their loved ones and say tearful goodbyes. “This is why T.E.A.M. was created, to show these kids and their families that someone cares,” says Oliver.

Saying “Thank You” to Katy Recruits

On August 5, T.E.A.M.  will host a send-off event for Katy teens have enlisted in the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps before they head to boot camp.

 

Since their first send-off event in March, T.E.A.M., along with Katy veterans, first responders, families, and local organizations, has given a heartfelt farewell to dozens of recruits. Some of their partners include Harris County Sheriff‘s Office, Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office, Katy Fire Department, Katy Police Department, Willowfork Fire Department, Waller-Harris County ESD 200, and the Department of Public Safety, among others.

On the day of the event, Katy recruits are presented by their recruiting officer on stage, and family members and friends are invited to share kind words of encouragement. Katy veterans of foreign wars come in full military dress as the honor guard proudly posts the colors, followed by a prayer by a local church leader and the National Anthem. As the group’s popularity grows, more and more community leaders and organizations are stepping up to participate.

Nora Hannusch, a T.E.A.M. organizer and representative for Harris County ESD 48, is a military mom herself, and urges the community to show up and support these families.

“We are excited when people attend an event, but it’s more than just coming to one send-off and that’s it. Each and every recruit deserves a proper farewell, so we need the community to come to every send-off,” she says.

Where & When

The public is invited to come out and show their support. The next event will be on Sunday, August 5, 2018 at 6206 George Bush Dr. at the Katy VFW Post at 2 p.m. In addition to their presentation, there will also be patriotically painted cars for photos, guest speakers, and up to 30 young recruits to honor.

To learn more about Texans Embracing America’s Military (T.E.A.M.), visit their Facebook page. 

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KATY MAGAZINE

July 27, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

A Katy homeowner shot a teen burglary suspect, John Mixon, around 1:00 am on Friday morning in the Memorial Parkway subdivision.

Harris County Sheriff’s Office said a woman saw a motion detector light come on outside the home in the 21000 block of Park Valley Drive in the Memorial Parkway subdivision near Westgreen Blvd and Highland Knolls. The elderly homeowner looked out her window and saw Mixon wearing a mask and hooded sweatshirt in her detached garage trying to break into her car.

The husband grabbed a gun and confronted the Mixon, 19, who is also a Memorial Parkway resident. The homeowner attempted to detain him before police arrived butwhen Mixon started towards the elderly homeowner, he fired and Mixon was hit in the head. The homeowners were not injured.

According to Harris County Sheriff  Precinct 5 investigators, Mixon ran to a nearby home and hid behind an air conditioning unit, where a K9 officer found him.

He was flown to Memorial Hermann Hospital. His condition was initially reported as serious but the bullet appears to have only grazed his head.

There has been an increase in car burglaries in neighborhoods on the south side of Katy. Many of these have been caught on video and released to the public for help in identifying the suspect. At this time, police do not know if this suspect is responsible for other burglaries but are looking into this possibility.

The homeowners have a video surveillance system that the suspect was caught on. Below is a still shot from that video.

Mixon will be charged with felony home burglary. Mixon has a criminal history in Harris County for theft and evading arrest and is currently on probation.

Katy Magazine will release more details as they become available.

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 26, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

Here is a breakdown of elementary campuses in Katy ISD by their modified start time, to help you make plans for drop-off/ pick up this year.

 

In order to address rapid growth in the area, increased enrollment, and challenges with bus driver recruitment, Katy ISD released a modified bell schedule for students for the 2018-2019 school year in April. As you prepare to send your kiddos back to school, make sure you know your campus bell schedule.

ELEMENTARY – GROUP 1

Start time: 8 a.m.

Wolfe
5002 Addicks-Howell Rd., Houston

281-237-2250

Katy

5726 George Bush Ave.

281-237-6550

Memorial Parkway

21603 Park Tree Ln.
281-237-5850

Bear Creek

4815 Hickory Downs Dr.
281-237-5600

Cimarron

1100 South Peek Rd.
281-237-8850

Winborn

22555 Prince George Ln.
281-237-6650

Nottingham

20500 Kingsland Blvd.
281-237-5500

Sundown

20100 Saums Rd.
281-237-5400

Hayes

21203 Park Timbers Ln.
281-237-3200

McRoberts

3535 North Fry Rd.
281-237-2000

Alexander

6161 South Fry Rd.
281-237-7100

Williams

3900 South Peek Rd.
281-237-7200

Rylander

24831 Westheimer Pkwy.

281-237-8300

Exley

21800 Westheimer Pkwy.

281-237-8400

Rhoads

19711 Clay Rd.

281-237-8500

Franz

2751 Westgreen Blvd.
281-237-8600

Griffin

7800 South Fry Rd.
281-237-8700

Woodcreek

1155 Wood Creek Bend Ln.
281-234-0100

Stanley

26633 Cinco Terrace Dr.

281-234-1400

Shafer

5150 Ranch Point Dr.
281-234-1900

Randolph

5303 Flewellen Oaks Ln.
281-234-3800

Campbell

3701 Cross Creek Bend Ln.
281-234-4500

ELEMENTARY – GROUP 2

Start time: 8:20 a.m.

West Memorial
22605 Provincial Blvd.
281-237-6600

Hutsell

5360 Franz Rd.
281-237-6500

Mayde Creek

2698 Greenhouse Rd., Houston
281-237-3950

Pattison

19910 Stonelodge Dr.
281-237-5450

Golbow

3535 Lakes of Bridgewater Dr.
281-237-5350

Fielder

2100 Greenway Village Dr.
281-237-6450

Creech

5905 South Mason Rd.
281-237-8850

King

1901 Charlton House Ln.
281-237-6850

Schmalz

18605 Green Land Way
281-237-4500

Kilpatrick

26100 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
281-237-7600

Stephens

2715 Fry Rd.
281-234-0200

Morton Ranch

2502 Mason Rd.

281-234-0300

Holland

23720 Seven Meadows Pkwy.
281-234-0500

Wilson

5200 Falcon Landing
281-234-1600

Wolman

28727 North Firethorne Rd.
281-234-1700

Davidson

26906 Pine Mill Ranch Dr.
281-234-2500

Jenks

27602 Westridge Creek Ln.
281-234-4100

Bethke

4535 E. Ventana Pkwy.
281-234-4200

Bryant

29801 Kingsland Blvd.
281-234-4300

For the district FAQ and list of all grade level start times, click here. 

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE

July 25, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

People continue to move to Katy at an astronomical rate and with that growth comes the need for businesses to serve the community. These establishments have opened recently or will open soon to supply the demand on the south side.

 

ENTERTAINMENT

Alamo Drafthouse LaCenterra

2707 Commercial Center Blvd. Suite K-100

Now Open

iRace Entertainment 

24984 Katy Ranch Rd.

Opening August 2018

Star Cinema Grill

District West at Parkway Lakes, Richmond

Urban Air Adventure Park

25307 Kingsland Blvd.

Opening Late Summer to Early Fall 2018

 (Pictured…Urban Air Adventure Park)

Vortex Sports Grill and Entertainment

24757 I-10

Opening by end of year 2018

Xscape Theaters 

FM 1093 & FM 1463, Fulshear

Opening October 2018

MEDICAL

KarisMed Family Medicine

4011 FM 1463, Suite B

832-930-7799

Now Open

RESTAURANT

Bahama Bucks

S. Fry Rd. & FM 1463

Bonjour Pho

4747 FM 1463, Ste. 800

Burgerim

24811 Katy Fwy., Ste. 500

 

 (Pictured…Party Box at Burgerim)

CiCi’s Pizza

S. Fry Rd. & FM 1463

Hacienda Real Mexican Restaurant

11605 S. Fry Rd., Fulshear

Opening August 2018

Harris County Smokehouse

222 W. Grand Parkway S.

832-913-3112

Now Open

Jax Grill

Falcon Landing

Opening early 2019

Krispy Kreme

1803 S. South Mason Rd.

Panda Express

26810 FM 1093, Richmond

Now Open

Rouxpour Restaurant & Bar

2643 Commercial Center Blvd.

281-394-5013

Now Open

(Pictured…Gumbo at Rouxpour)

Salata

9333 Spring Green Blvd.

Open end of Summer 2018

The Toasted Yolk Café

98 W. Grand Parkway S.

281-968-0883

Now Open

The Union Kitchen

Falcon Landing

Opening early 2019

(Pictured…Stuffed Croissant and Mash Potato at The Union Kitchen)

Ursula’s Restaurant & Pizzeria

11525 S. Fry Rd., Ste. 101, Fulshear

Now Open

Zoner’s Pizza Wings and Waffles
25810 Westheimer Pkwy.

346-351-2922

Opening August 2018

RETAIL/GROCERY

Aldi

S. Fry Rd. & FM 1463

Walmart

FM 1463 & FM 1093, Fulshear

Opening August 2018

OTHER RETAIL

Barcelona Sports 

FM 1093 & FM 1463, Fulshear

Now Open

Hollywood Feed

Stableside at Falcon Landing

OTHER

Garages of Texas

FM 1463 & Spring Green Blvd.

 

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KATY MAGAZINE  

July 23, 2018 

By Ashley Lancaster

Katy Magazine is sad to report that Elizabeth Lugo, the mother who was struck by a car while walking with her child in a stroller has died from her injuries.

On July 20, Katy mom Elizabeth Lugo was hit by a car while walking her baby in a stroller  in Villages of Bear Creek off Fry Rd. in north Katy.

The driver suffered a seizure, which presumably led to him losing control of the vehicle, and struck Lugo, throwing her into the driveway of a nearby home.  The owner of the home was not present at the time of the accident.

She was immediately taken to Cy-Fair Hospital in critical condition, but tragically died just after 1 a.m. on Sunday night. The baby was not badly injured and is expected to be okay. There is no information on the status of the driver.

Check back for updates on funeral and memorial services.

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE  

July 22, 2018    

By Jennifer Skelton

The Seven Lakes Spartans received international recognition and won Overall Outstanding program for their participation in the Best Buddies program.

  

Best Buddies is the world’s largest organization dedicated to ending the social, physical and economic isolation of the 200 million people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. They establish global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development.

In July participants from Seven Lakes High School including President Reagan Kallina and Co-Vice President Tania Swain and their buddies flew to Indiana for the 2018 International Best Buddies Conference, where they received international recognition and won Overall Outstanding Program for their school.

This is not the first year that Seven Lakes has taken home awards for their work in the Best Buddies program. In 2016 and 2017, they were awarded Outstanding High School Chapter in Texas. In 2017, the chapter was also awarded the National Pacesetter Award and was ranked in the top 15 chapters in the nation for fundraising.

All Katy ISD high school’s have Best Buddies programs. Both participants and volunteers benefit from the program, with the participants often choosing college and career paths that specialize in Special Education or a related field.

In order for a student to volunteer with the program, they must meet certain criteria along with go through an interview process. If chosen, the commitment is for one school year.

“Receiving these awards is such a testament to the truly life changing impacts of Best Buddies! It is so humbling to be recognized on such a large scale but more than anything, empowering to be able to see how big of a difference our organization can make in the lives of our peers and our community,” states Anna Celeste Fedewa, former President.

You can request information about Best Buddies at your campus by phone.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

July 20, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Investigators with Harris County Constable Precinct 5 broke up a long-running organized crime ring consisting of three brothers who had been targeting commercial landscaping companies in West Harris County and other suburban areas around Houston.

 

After an investigation covering several months, Marcus Yanez, 34, Felix Yanez-Vallejo, 42, and Jesus Yanez, 50, were picked up on arrest warrants Wednesday. All three are facing felony charges of engaging in organized criminal activity.

The Yanez brothers have been targeting commercial landscaping companies since at least 2017. They would steal expensive riding mowers and other equipment in broad daylight as lawn care workers were tending to their duties in their customers backyards. The suspects would load the equipment in their pickup truck, at times stealing entire trailers, and quickly leave the scene.

In multiple cases, the thefts turned into aggravated robberies and assaults as the Yanez brothers turned violent when confronted by citizens who caught them in the act.
Precinct 5 investigators are in the process of linking several other similar crimes in West Houston to this organized crime ring.

All three brotherS have an extensive criminal history in Harris County that includes Bribery, Burglary, DUI, and Theft among other things. They were released on a $2,500 bond. Each requested a court appointed attorney, which was appointed to them.

 If you have any information which may help with the investigation of these crimes, please let the Harris County Constable 5 Office know through their online crime tips webpage:https://constablepct5.com/index.php/online-crime-tips

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KATY MAGAZINE

July 19, 2018

By Angie Waller

Wednesday morning, in the gated section of Cross Creek Ranch, joggers spotted a 7-foot, non-aggressive alligator. While sunbathing, he became disoriented and ended up a little too close for comfort to people.

The Fulshear Police were able to wrangle up the alligator and move it to the “polishing pond” without incident.  Captain Mike McCoy stated “The gator was not aggressive and was simply laying in the sun. However, he was within a gated section of a neighborhood. Therefore, for his safety and the safety of our citizens, we relocated home to a lake outside the gated section.”

This is not the first time alligators have been spotted in Cross Creek Ranch. In 2016, a 10-foot alligator was found in a home garage. That alligator was relocated but did not go quietly or without a fight.

Alligators are not uncommon to the area. With more construction, the alligators become displaced and disoriented to their surroundings. If you happen to come across one, don’t approach it on your own and call the non-emergency police or sheriff office.

Fulshear Police: 281-346-2202

Fort Bend Sheriff: 281-341-4665

Harris County Sheriff: 713-755-6044

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
July 16, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster 

Cinco Ranch defensive star, inside linebacker David Gbenda, heads into his senior year with over 20 college offers on the table.

Elite college football programs are all clamoring to sign Cinco Ranch High School’s dynamic defensive star, and 4-star Texas recruit, David Gbenda (#33).

AN OFFENSIVE NIGHTMARE

Gbenda, who will graduate in 2019, has received offers from no less than 24 national football powerhouses like Notre Dame, Nebraska, Michigan, and Ole Miss.

The 6’0, 212-pound inside linebacker earned his keep among the top college prospects in Texas last year, with 40 independent tackles, 16 assists, 2 sacks, and a total of 8 tackles for loss throughout the season. In their match up against Seven Lakes, Gbenda stymied the Spartan offense with an incredible 10-yard sack. Even Katy’s elite running game had more trouble than usual moving the ball against #33 and the rest of the strong side defense.

Recently, Gbenda narrowed down his myriad of college offers to a Top 10. On the list are University of Texas, Notre Dame, University of Houston, Michigan, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Washington, Ole Miss, Texas Christian University, and Missouri. He is expected to make his final decision in December 2018.

THROWBACK TO THE GOOD OLD DAYS

As anyone knows, talent can only get you so far – you have to have the work ethic and heart to make plays happen in a district as competitive as Katy. According to Cinco’s head coach Don Clayton, Gbenda has all of that and more in spades.

“His energy, leadership of the team, and his constant commitment to improve are a throwback to the good old days of football, when people played as hard as they could, for as long as they could. He is always striving to perform at his absolute best,” says Clayton.

Gbenda himself is taking all of the attention in his stride. “It’s kind of crazy to be honest. As a freshman and sophomore, I saw others in my grade being heavily recruited and I just thought,  ‘I want that and to be heavily recruited by big name programs.’ It’s so unreal, and a blessing to me,” he says. David says that the coaches at Cinco have been crucial in his success. “With the competition we face, the coaching staff (at Cinco) has helped me learn the game,” he says.

2017 HUDL HIGHLIGHTS

Fans can get their first glimpse of Gbenda’s skill at the scrimmage against Stratford on August 24 at Cinco Ranch High School. See the full Katy ISD Varsity Football Schedule here. 

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE  

July 14, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton 

A Katy man, who was stopped on suspicion of drug possession, is now facing felony charges of assaulting a peace officer after he struck a Precinct 5 deputy.

 

John Nettles, who is a Katy High graduate Class of 2012, was pulled over in the 1700 block of South Highway 6 at approximately 5 p.m. on July 11. As Nettles was being questioned, he struck the deputy in the face and tried to run. Another Precinct 5 deputy quickly caught and detained the suspect.

Nettles was found to have multiple warrants out for his arrest. Deputies also found a substance that appears to be crystal meth in his possession.

Nettles was arrested and charged with assaulting a peace officer. The deputy he assaulted was not seriously hurt.

Nettles has a long arrest record in Harris County dating back to 2012 that includes Theft, Possession of Marijuana and Evading Arrest. He is currently being held in jail without bond on three charges, two of which are previous charges due to violation of probation. Nettles has requested a public defender and his next court date is July 16 on the Evading Arrest charge from March of this year.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
July 12, 2018
Ashley Lancaster

Katy parents – look no further for information on fall sports registration information for 2018.

 

BASEBALL

Katy American

713-480-7456

Costs for registration are $135 for one player, $125 for each additional child, and $25 for Challenger and includes an MLB team jersey and cap. Age ranges from 4 – 18.  Now thru August 24, 2018.

 

Katy National

Registration is open until August 24, 2018. Our editors requested information on registration fees and other important details.

Katy PONY

281-371-0887

Costs vary by age and range from $130 to $155 for players ages 4 – 18. Fees include fall season registration, hat, and jersey. Online registration is open and they will have walk up registration on Saturday, August 11 and 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Dick’s Sporting Goods in Katy. Children 6 and over will attend try outs for team placement.

i9 Sports

This league offers several clinics and baseball programs for players of all ages. Games and practices are on Saturdays only, and are played at schools all across Katy. Age ranges are from 3 – 13 years old and costs between $130 – $150. Registration deadlines vary based on age group, clinic, and when the league begins.

CHEERleading

Adrenaline

1420 Katy Flewellen Rd.

281-347-4725

 

Beginner tumbling through competitive cheer and regular camps throughout the year, so athletes of all experience levels have a chance to learn new things. Ages 3 – 18.

Grand Cheer
25440 Beckendorff Rd.

281-371-3775

For tumblers ages 4 and up. Registration is $50, and weekly classes are $60 per month for first-time customers, and $45 per month for each additional class. Beginner through competition.

Katy KIPS

923 S. Mason Rd.

281-578-5477

Classes, workshops, camps, and programs for children ages 18 months – 18 years. Call for pricing an class schedules.

Katy Under the Lights Cheerleading

British International School of Houston

2203 N. Westgreen Blvd.

In association with Katy Under the Lights Flag Football league, kids ages 5 – 15 can sign up for seven weeks of tumbling and cheerleading instruction, sponsored by Under Armour. Registration includes Under Armour shorts and tee shirt.

Katy Youth Football Cheer

In association with the Katy Youth Football league, KYF cheer is a recreational cheerleading program for kids ages 4 – 7th grade. Registration fee includes uniform skirt, top, boyshort briefs, and metallic pom-poms in addition to the Cheer Camp. As of July 1, 2018, registration is $250.

Westwood Gymnastics
23333 Taswell Dr.

281-347-2000

Try a class at no charge at their year-round gymnastics facility. They have everything from Mommy & Me classes and special needs programs to girls and boys advanced tumbling. Costs range from $73 – $205 per month based on experience level, age, and payment method.

 

Woodlands Elite
281-395-9235

24942 Katy Ranch Rd.

Classes start at $60 per month for ages 3 – 18 and they offer specialized training, private lessons, clinics, camps, and competitive cheer/tumbling.

FOOTBALL

CrossPoint Fall Flag
700 Westgreen Blvd.

281-398-6464

Now through July 15, registration is $130. The flag football season begins the first week in September.

i9 Sports

This league offers several clinics and sports programs for players of all ages. Games and practices are on Saturdays only, and are played at schools all across Katy. Age ranges are from 3 – 13 years old and costs between $130 – $150. Registration deadlines vary based on age group, clinic, and when the league begins.

Katy Under the Lights
British International School of Houston

2203 N. Westgreen Blvd.

Partners with Under Armour, Katy under the lights is a 6-on-6 flag football league for kids in kindergarten – 8th grade that runs from September through November with games every Saturday night. Registration is $155 through August 17, and increased to $175, and they offer a $25 discount for siblings.

Katy Youth Football

A competitive football league with programs from pee-wee flag through full-contact tackling. New this year, they are extending their fall flag division through 6th grade that includes a full 9-week schedule with the possibility of playoff games.Check their website for current registration rates.

LACROSSE

Katy Cavaliers Lacrosse

An incredibly popular sport and league, it’s worth mentioning that making a team can be tough due to limited spots and wait-listing. However, for families who want to play, registration is $375 through August 30, and goes up to $425 after that for the 2019 season. The first 16 players signed up for 4U will be placed, and the first 24 for players in older age groups. The rest will be wait-listed.

SOCCER

 

Fun, Fair, Positive Soccer
20150 Westheimer Pkwy., Houston

Youth soccer programs that emphasize fairness, positive reinforcement, and teamwork. No scores are kept and players all receive equal playing time. Registration is a one-time fee of $114 or two payments of $59, 30 days apart.

 

Katy Youth Soccer Club

Youth soccer for ages 5 – 18 years old with 3-on-3, 5-on-5, 7-on-7, 9-on-9, and 11-on-11 formats. Costs increase with age and range from $100 – $130 dollars. Teams are formed by neighborhood and school the child is zoned to. season starts the first week in September.

i9 Sports

This league offers several clinics and sports programs for players of all ages. Games and practices are on Saturdays only, and are played at schools all across Katy. Age ranges are from 3 – 13 years old and costs between $130 – $150. Registration deadlines vary based on age group, clinic, and when the league begins.

SOFTBALL

Katy Girls Softball Association 

Competitive girls’ softball for ages 4 – 18 in Katy. Registration is $160 and includes uniform, umpire fees, and field maintenance. Late registration begins August 26 and cost goes up to $200. Tryouts for 8U and up will determine team placement.

West Houston Girls Softball Association

Registration is $125 per child for 6U through Senior Division. Games played at Bear Creek Park. Opening day is September 9, 2018.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 11, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

Harris County Sheriff’s Office investigators are releasing still photos of a vehicle involved in an aggravated assault on a 39-year-old female that was shot on S. Mason Rd. on Tuesday afternoon.

 

The victim was shot by an unknown suspect around 1:30 pm while driving southbound on South Mason Road.

On Tuesday, July 10, 2018, deputies were dispatched to an in-progress call at Simoniz Car Wash at 910 S. Mason Rd. A female complainant advised she was shot in her arm while driving on Mason Rd. Deputies observed a bullet hole to the driver’s side window of her 4-door SUV. She was transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries where she underwent surgery.

 

Witnesses, employees and customers, at the car-wash business stated they heard a single gunshot and observed the complainant driving into the carwash. The female stated a Ford Explorer SUV driving next to her when she was shot.

The victim told investigators she was not involved in a road-rage incident prior to the shooting.

The victim was transported by EMS to the Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital in good condition.

Anyone with information on the vehicle is urged to call the Harris County Sheriff’s Office at 713-274-9210.

Crime Stoppers will pay up to $5,000 for information leading to the charging and/or arrest of the suspect in this case. Information may be reported by calling 713-222-TIPS (8477) or submitted online at www.crime-stoppers.org. Tips may also be sent via a text message by texting the following: TIP610 plus the information to CRIMES (274637). All tipsters remain anonymous.

Katy Magazine first reported this story on Tuesday afternoon. Click here to read the original story.

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KATY MAGAZINE

July 11, 2018

The Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office is seeking information concerning a rash of Burglary of a Vehicle in the Firethorne area of Fort Bend County.

 

In the early morning of Thursday, July 5, a male suspect burglarized 11 vehicles. He was able to steal gas cards, checkbooks, a knife, a lockbox that included a passport and a Social Security card.

The suspect is described as a white male, approximately 25 years old and about 5-feet, 10-inches tall and thin. He had dark short hair. He was wearing a dark pullover shirt and jeans and dark sneakers. He also was carrying a knapsack in which to store stolen goods.

 “We have a decent photo of this guy so someone should be able to make that call and get some cash for a good tip,” said Sheriff Troy Nehls.

Anyone who has information on this crime or any other crimes is asked to call Fort Bend County Crime Stoppers, Inc.

– Call (281) 342-TIPS (8477)
– Send a Text Message: Text FBCCS plus your tip to CRIMES (274637)
– Submit Online: http://www.fortbend.crimestoppersweb.com/

Information, which leads to the apprehension and filing of charges on the suspect(s) involved, could earn you up to $5,000 CASH REWARD.

All calls to Crime Stoppers are ANONYMOUS.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

July 11, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

The newly formed Barker Reservoir Flood Prevention advocacy group  looks to identify and promote immediate and substantial flood control projects in the Barker Reservoir Area, both upstream and downstream.

 

Marlin Williford and Wendy Duncan formed the new group, who will put on their first event this Thursday, July 12, called “Flood Control for Katy” at Kingsland Baptist Church 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Steve Robinson of Houston Stronger is the presenter for the meeting. Houston Stronger is a coalition of civic groups, business associations and active citizens from throughout the Texas Gulf Coast region dedicated to working with local, state and federal officials to implement a comprehensive regional flood control plan that safeguards our citizens and property.

Future meetings will be added as the Harris County bond election draws closer. The $2.5 billion bond is on the ballot on August 25, 2018.

Co-Founder, Wendy Duncan, said “The purpose of the event on Thursday is to educate the public about flood control solutions for the Katy area and the Harris County Bond Program as well as inform attendees about ways to connect with government leaders to promote flood solutions, and give attendees the opportunity to join the advocacy group.”

Duncan who is the current Willow Fork Drainage District Director, has been very active since Hurricane Harvey in flood control discussions prior to forming Barker Reservoir Flood Prevention. Duncan is a member of Houston Stronger advocating for flood control solutions with government officials with Robinson. Marlin is a member of the Harris County Flood Prevention Advocacy Committee and has been actively involved in Harvey and Post Harvey Flood issues and future preventative measures and solutions.

The group has created a Facebook page to interact with the community and keep them informed.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

July 10, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

A woman was shot Tuesday around 2 pm while driving to a car wash near Cimarron Parkway and South Mason Road in Katy.

 

 

Investigators said the woman was shot in the shoulder.  She is currently in surgery and is expected to survive.

The woman told investigators that she was driving southbound on Mason Road, in a silver SUV, turning into Simoniz car wash/oil change business at 910 South Mason Road when she heard a pop and was struck by a bullet.

It is not clear where the shot was fired from but police believe it was from a passing car. Police are pulling surveillance video from the car wash/oil change business in hopes that the crime was caught on video. No one is in custody at this time.

If you have any information about this crime, please contact the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. As more details are released, we will update you.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 9, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

 Katy grocery stores continue to find ways to cater to our busy lives through the convenience of curbside pick-up and delivery. The days of fighting the crowds at grocery stores or being tempted to shop “off-list” are gone replaced with a new way of shopping. “It keeps me on budget,” says Maegen Benedetti Lane of this new way of shopping.

 

Katy grocery stores continue to find ways to cater to our busy lives through the convenience of curbside pick-up and delivery. The days of fighting the crowds at grocery stores or being tempted to shop “off-list” are gone replaced with a new way of shopping. “It keeps me on budget,” says Maegen Benedetti Lane of this new way of shopping.

 

Here’s a breakdown of some top Katy grocery stores offering a new way of grocery shopping.

KROGER

Kroger offers same day pick-up  with their Clicklist online option, same-day delivery through Instacart with no charge for first-time orders. With Kroger you can use coupons and they offer substitutions that are priced lower than name brand goods. They also give you the lower price for what they substitute and if it’s higher they will give it to you free.

Kroger’s online system also does a great job of saving and suggesting past orders so reordering is always easy. Visit Kroger online.

Some local Katy Kroger locations:

Kroger

22150 Westheimer Pkwy.

Kroger

1550 West Grand Pkwy. S.

Kroger

22150 Westheimer Pkwy.

Kroger Marketplace

1712 Spring Green Blvd.

Kroger

2700 W Grand Pkwy. N.

H.E.B.

H.E.B. also offers same day, curbside pick-up and name-brand substitutions. Be careful though, at times the substituted items may leave you with a higher bill than you expected. Email alerts are sent to customers when substitutions are made, when your order is ready, and for purchase receipts. For a limited time, you can get free delivery or pick-up on your first four orders.

  

They do take coupons and are good about letting you you know when they have some so you can clip. Visit H.E.B. online.

Some local Katy H.E.B. locations:

H.E.B.

25675 Nelson Way

H.E.B.

1621 S Mason Rd.

H.E.B.

6711 S Fry Rd.

H.E.B.

4950 FM 1463

Walmart

Walmart offers free pick-up daily and have great deals every week, so always be sure to check what’s happening. They are currently offering $10 off your first 3 orders for deliveries. They are also more than a grocery store so you can accomplish more shopping. They have an impressive savings catcher that keeps track with how much you’ve saved and that’s fun to see. Visit Walmart online.

Some local Katy Walmart locations:

Walmart

25108 Market Pl Dr.

Walmart

1313 N Fry Rd.

Walmart

6060 N Fry Rd.

Walmart

22850 Morton Ranch Rd.

Randalls

Randalls offers both pick-up and delivery. They are currently offering $20 off your first online order. Visit Randalls online. 

People can also use apps to grocery shop like the popular Instacart and Shipt.

IS IT A GOOD FIT?

Are the meat and produce items of good, safe quality?

A common hesitation to pick-up or delivery is the concern over produce. Will it be fresh? Will it look okay? How big will it be? All pick-up/delivery options offer the chance to return and swap out. However, most readers we asked say they’ve never had an issue.

Does it cost more?

Does pick-up and delivery cost more? Yes it does. You do pay a delivery fee unless you are taking advantage of a free delivery special. Both H.E.B. and Kroger add around $11.95 to the total cost for delivery. The best way to know if it’s worth it is to determine how much extra money you spend in-store on non-essentials on a regular basis.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
July 9, 2018

The British International School of Houston students have achieved strong results in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme for the 2017/18 academic school year.

 

The British International School of Houston’s average score this year is 5.2 base points higher than the IB global average, widening the gap between ourselves and other IB schools around the world.

 

  • One student from The British International School of Houston received full marks — the maximum score of 45 points. This is an incredible achievement for this student is only 1% of students worldwide who received full marks this year on the IBDP.

  • Three students achieved impressive scores of 44 points.

  • BISH students’ average score in the IB Diploma was 35, significantly ahead of the 2017/18 global average of 29.78 points.

  • 22% of students achieved 40 points and above. This is the level of attainment required to gain admission to the world’s elite universities, such as Cambridge, Oxford, Harvard and Stanford.

  • 82% of students achieved a score higher than the IB global average.

“These are truly outstanding results and are a true reflection of our hardworking students, dedicated and nurturing staff, supportive parents and the strength of the IB programme at BISH”, Andrew Derry, Principal of The British International School of Houston said.

Andy Puttock, Education Director of Nord Anglia Education, said, “I am delighted by the outstanding IB diploma results achieved by our students this year. This excellent outcome is not only due to their efforts but also the incredible hard work put in by the school’s teachers throughout the year to ensure our children experience the best in learning.”

The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme, commonly referred to as the IBDP, is a two-year education programme for students age 16-19. The programme is a widely accepted and recognised qualification for entry into higher education and universities worldwide. To learn more about the International Baccalaureate you can visit their website here.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 7, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

 

Deputy Debra Albert and the kittens.

The Bag Was Moving

Harris County Deputies Diego Loucel and  Debra Albert responded to a report of a suspicious cloth bag that was left in the middle of a  median in a West Memorial subdivision in Katy. “The bag is moving,” a Katy resident told the dispatcher for Harris County’s Precinct 5’s office. They arrived to investigate the red cloth bag in the West Memorial neighborhood around 3 a.m. Tuesday morning.

“West Memorial is Loucel’s area but I’ve had experience with these calls and was afraid we’d find an animal,” said Deputy Albert. “As soon as we got out of the car I could hear the meowing.”

“I shined my flashlight into the bag and saw two eyes looking back at me. It was a kitten,” recalls Deputy Loucel. “Then when we looked further we found three little kittens.”

Kittens Brought Back To Substation

Albert and Loucel took the kittens back to a substation where they got food, water and lots of attention. “Once we got some food in the kittens it didn’t take long to see a 180 change in them. They went from just laying around, probably malnourished, to happy and active kittens,” said Loucel.

“We called the SPCA and they came to look at them. The estimated them around 2 months old but couldn’t take the kittens in,” said Albert. “We looked after them and played with them until an Animal Crimes deputy took them to a veterinarian.”

Available for Adoption

The kittens were all very emaciated but expected to be okay. They were taken to the Harris County Animal Shelter at 612 Canino Rd. The kittens are now up for adoption. Anyone interested in adopting the gym bag kittens can visit the shelter or call 281-999-3191.

If You Have Information

Dumping an animal is a crime. It is animal cruelty, which depending on the offense can be a felony. If you have information on who dumped these kittens, please contact the Harris County Animal Cruelty Taskforce. Call 832-927-PAWS or visit their website.

If you see someone dumping an animal call your local precinct but also try and get some information. What does the person look like? What is the license plate number? What does the car look like? Of course, you safety is the priority but if you can safely get information to give the authorities that is helpful.

If you need to re-home an animal there are other alternatives to dumping them. Here are just some rescue/shelters in the Katy area.

Katy City Animal Control

25839 I-10, Katy, TX 77494

281-391-4740

Citizens for Animal Protection

17555 Katy Fwy, Houston, TX 77094

281-497-0591

Special Pals

3830 Greenhouse Rd, Houston, TX 77084

281- 579-7387

“I just couldn’t believe someone had taken the time to put these three little kittens in a gym bag, drive them to a neighborhood and dump them in the middle of the median,” said Loucel. “I wish they would have given them a chance.” I’m going to continue to follow the kittens’ story.”

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
July 6, 2018 
Ashley Lancaster

Clothed By Faith, a local nonprofit organization that provides families in need with gently used clothes in a boutique setting, is urgently requesting donations – specifically men’s jeans, shorts, and t-shirts.

 

“Despite our posts on Twitter and Facebook, the number of requests we are receiving is outweighing what the public is bringing us, and we need to get the word out,” says CBF event coordinator, Rebecca Earnshaw.

 

All donations are welcome, but their most urgent need is for men’s shorts, jeans, track pants, and T-shirts in Medium – Large sizes.

Donations can be dropped off Monday – Friday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at 802 Dominion Dr. in Katy. After hours donations can be left in the donation bin on the side of the building 24 hours a day.

To learn more about Clothed by Faith, visit their Facebook page. 

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 5, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

If you’re searching for a new job, beware of the opening listed online for “Amazon Financial Analyst.” Katy Magazine shares how to tell the difference between a legitimate post and the scam.


 

Katy job-seekers should double check the legitimacy of one particular job opening found online recently for a “Financial Analyst” at Amazon.

 

Amazon is a popular job search in the Katy area because a new fulfillment center is being built and recently announced that they are hiring 400 new staff members for this location, but one listing in particular is absolutely false.

We contacted Amazon’s Corporate headquarters for an update on the situation.

“Amazon is aware of this situation, and while we do have work-from-home opportunities, this is not one of our initiatives. We are doing what we can from our side to pull down these listings,” says Kayla Hansen, Strategic Communications Specialist for Amazon.

What It Looks Like

Below is a copy of the bogus contract, sent by an “Alexander Solomon.” 

What You’ll Get

Applicants who are being targeted by the scammers will receive:

Phone calls from a (509) area code phone number. In this case, (509) 320-4046.

 

An email of congratulations from “Solomon”,  letting them know that they have been hired without any interview process at all, or with minimal phone and/or email correspondence.

Two contracts via email, one for Full-Time employment, and one for Part-Time employment.

“Candidates” are given the option to determine their work schedule, and are asked to fill out and sign the agreement and return via email.

The applicant will be asked to provide a copy of their photo ID, a photo of themselves, street address, and bank account information for “Direct Deposit” purposes.

The job offer includes a work-from-home, 1099-basis, full-time employment contract for $5,800 per month salary with 5% commission, full benefits and retirement. Hint: If it sounds too good to be true, it is.

WARNING: The official procedure for Amazon Inc. new-hires is to obtain bank account information ONLY after an extensive interview process, and usually occurs during an in-person employee orientation. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you email or text message your bank account information to anyone claiming to be a recruiter or Human Resources rep.

One close-call candidate became suspicious of the offer when he was hired on the spot, and without meeting anyone either by Skype or in person. The red flag was when he was asked for his bank account information sent via email.

“Something just didn’t sit right with me, so I called Amazon’s Corporate office and was informed that this was a popular job scam, and not to give out any personal information,” says Ted Lawrence.

After his phone call with Amazon, Lawrence called the “recruiter” and informed him of what he learned. Mr. “Solomon” hung up and refused to answer or return his calls.

Hansen encourages all candidates interested in jobs at the Houston or Katy locations to visit amazondelivers.jobs to apply.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

July 23 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Sean Rouse, actor, comedian and graduate of Katy High School class of 1993, passed away on June 29, 2018.

 

Rouse suffered a stroke followed by a heart attack, which he did not recover from. He is survived by a son, mother, father, brother, friends and the comedy community.

He was discovered at the age of 24 when he made the finals of Houston’s Funniest Person contest in 1999. By those in the industry, Rouse was described as “dark, even though he looks innocent, and likeable even though he’s highly obscene. But most of all, he’s extremely entertaining.”

Rouse was very public about his lifelong struggle with rheumatoid arthritis after being diagnosed as a teenager. Rouse said that he had pain all over but more so in his knees, shoulders and ankles in the early days. Some days he would be able to jump out of bed easily and others every movement was a struggle. No matter the pain, Rouse never complained about his arthritis or used it in his comedy.

1.3 million Americans suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis. At the beginning of his career, without insurance, Rouse was spending half of his annual salary on medications to treat the symptoms. Arthritis is one of the top five most costly conditions for adults over 18 years of age.

For those that knew Rouse growing up, he was always the funny one. He was voted Class Wit/Clown of the Senior class of Katy High 1993. Friends since childhood, Billy McCaffrey was shocked and saddened by the news of Rouse’s death. “Putting a smile on someone’s face is what mattered to him most, the pain he was in didn’t matter at all.”, said McCaffrey.

Fellow comic Dave Attell wrote, “It took me a while to process the loss of Sean Rouse. He was always sick but i am still in shock. Sean was my opener for years and years. But he was a better comic than i ever could be. He was so smart and fearless. Sean could care less if the crowd cheered or walked out. It was beautiful madness..i loved him like a brother and miss him beyond words.”

Rouse’s acolades include

  • Actor in “Cedric the Coach” (2001)

  • Actor in “Men in Black” (2002)

  • Comedian on Dave Attell’s “Insomniac” tour (2005)

  • Comedian in “Down and Dirty” with Jim Norton (2008)

  • Comedian in “The Unbookables” with Doug Stanhope (2012)

Rouse had many standup gigs over the years that can still be watched on YouTube.

Service details have yet to be released.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 2, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Officials from Harris County and the City of Katy share their top must-knows for Katy families before celebrating July 4th.

 

The first step in your fireworks education is to know and understand the laws of your county. Katy is part of Harris, Fort Bend, and Waller counties as well as neighborhoods that are both in the City of Katy proper and unincorporated areas.

For Residents in the City of Katy

Fireworks are strictly forbidden inside the City of Katy limits. Now that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy them. There are a number of Katy area events going on to celebrate the Fourth this year.

“Personally I say leave it to the professionals,” says Katy Fire Chief Warner Preston. “But if you are going to partake in fireworks (considering you do so in a legal area) make sure you are in an open area and leave the lighting of fireworks to the adults.”

Unincorporated areas in Harris and Fort Bend County

In both Harris County and Fort Bend County (outside of Katy proper) fireworks are legal as long as there isn’t a fire ban and as long as the fireworks used are legal and set off in a safe place.

So what is a “legal firework?” Basically most fireworks you can buy from a firework stand are legal. It’s always important to check and make sure that the stand you are purchasing your fireworks from is certified and licensed. They should have that documentation easily visible on the stand. If you don’t see if then ask to. You need to stay clear from venders who are selling fireworks out of a back of a pickup truck or on the side of road that do not have a certified stand. “And please use common sense,” explains Lieutenant Simon VanDyk of Harris County Emergency Services. “If your fireworks have an extra boom from other then something may not be right.”

Firework Safety Tips

1. Open Area and Distance- Make sure you are in an open area. You can be in your street but make sure you are not setting off fireworks up against a house. You cannot light fireworks off within 600 feet of a school (even if it’s not in session,) church, hospital or gas station.

2. Read the instructions- Yes, this may sound simple but it is one of the most important safety tips. “My family loves those ladybug fireworks. They spin and then shoot up in the air,” says VanDyk. “If someone failed to read the instructions they could easily get themselves and others in trouble for being too close when they shoot up.” If you have questions don’t be afraid to ask when buying the fireworks. Most of the employees at the firework stands will know all about what they are selling.

3. Not for children- Fireworks are pretty and festive when celebrating our Nations birthday but they do come with risk. Lighting fireworks should be left to the adults. Of course kids can enjoy and watch but safety should always come first.

4. When drinking- As with most holidays people enjoy an adult beverage. “Lighting fireworks is no different than having a designated driver. Alcohol will slow your reaction time and that time could result in injury when lighting fireworks,” says VanDyk. Be responsible and let those adults not drinking light the fireworks.

5. Water source- ALWAYS have a water source nearby and douse everything before throwing it out. “We will have a number of garage fires on the 5th because people tossed something in the trash,” says VanDyk. “In most cases these are responsible people who truly believed they had put out any fire but it only takes one little simmering ember to ignite a fire. It’s not out until you’ve doused it.” In this area you can’t be too cautious. Don’t be afraid to dump water on it or even soak them in a bucket of water overnight. “A fire can start up to 12 hours after you believe it is out,” cautions VanDyk.

Don’t Forget Your Pets

More pets go missing of the Fourth of July than any other day of the year. The noise and lights that we love about fireworks are stressful and scary to pets. It’s wise to bring outside pets indoors and even put them in an interior room to help minimize the sound and prevent them going through a window. As much as we love our furry babies it’s never smart to have your dog outside with you when lighting fireworks.

Have fun this Fourth of July but most of be safe. If you need to call your local authorities for help. Do keep in mind that while certain Home Owners Associations prohibit fireworks only the HOA can enforce that and not the police or the fire department.

If you are in an area that can light fireworks, which is your favorite Katy stand to purchase them from? Let us know in the comments!

Want to leave the fireworks to the professionals? Are you still looking for a Katy Fourth of July event to attend? Check out these options.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 2, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark & Ashley Lancaster

Minnesota Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter was named the 2018 Breakout Star, and signed an extension with the team for $72 million last Wednesday.

Katy, Texas’ Danielle Hunter proudly represents his hometown by shining in the big leagues with a new $72 million contract extension from the Minnesota Vikings.

Hunter signed with the Vikings in 2015, and his electrifying performance resulted in a 5-year contract extension for $72 million, with a $15 million signing bonus. These contract terms place him in the Top 10 highest paid defensive players in the NFL – impressive, considering that the DE is only 23 years old. On paper, his 2017 season may not look like much, with 25.5 sacks under his belt in his three seasons – but he hasn’t been a starter. The Vikings began to set him loose on the opposing offense and saw his incredible potential.

 

From Maverick to Tiger and now Viking

Hunter was a football and track and field star graduate from Katy ISD’s Morton Ranch High School. After he graduated from Morton Ranch he attended LSU from 2012-2014 where he was a two-year starter and defensive end. According to the NFL Network’s Peter Schrager Hunter is pegged as a “breakout star” for 2018 because of the talent that the Vikings have along their defensive front Hunter is rarely going to see double teams. He should have the ability to terrorize opposing offenses while only having to beat one guy. The other team can’t double team everyone, so the Vikings’ defensive line should have the ability to make a play on almost every snap. In football terms this is huge.

“I was shaking with excitement,” Hunter told the Vikings’ official website. “I was like, is this real.”

Hunter is an American born in Jamaica but spent his formative years in Katy, Texas where he grew to love football. Many can’t wait to see what the season has in store for this 23 year old.

The Vikings have been praised and noted for being strategic in their deals to open a window into the championship season. Could we see a Katy native in a Super Bowl game this year? From the sounds of the stats it could come to be.

The NFL season opener is September 7.  The Vikings have their first preseason game on Saturday August 11 vs. the Denver Broncos. Their first regular season game is slated for Sunday September 9 vs. the San Francisco 49ers.

With the NFL Football season quickly approaching it’s time to prep your Fantasy Football roster. Are you including Katy’s Danielle Hunter in your roster? What do you think of the Vikings’ strategy to go for a championship? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

July 1, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

The much anticipated Spring Green/Katy-Flewellen/Cinco Trace roundabout is scheduled to open July 9 according to the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office.

For this project, parts of Spring Green (north and south), Katy-Flewellwen and Cinco Trace were extended to meet up at the two-lane roundabout. At the time of the opening, Willow Lane at Katy-Flewellen will close and a reopen date has not been set. Crossover Road will remain closed as it’s being completely redone.

The project was originally slated to begin construction in 2016 but had been delayed several times, beginning until January 2018, due to obtaining “rights of way”.

Although not everyone in the community is excited about this project citing safety concerns, traffic statistics consistently demonstrate that roundabouts are safer than typical four-way intersections. Collisions can be reduced by 50 to 90 percent when a typical intersection is converted to a roundabout.

The Fort Bend Sheriff’s Office asks residents to visit a video on YouTube , in order to familiarize yourself on how to drive through a roundabout

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KATY MAGAZINE  

June 29, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton

The Ballard House, which provides temporary housing in our community for individuals and their families who are hospitalized or receiving treatment for a serious medical condition, has just reopened at full capacity since they were flooded during Hurricane Harvey. Due to the additional guests, The Ballard House has an urgent need of donations to stock the entire home.

The items below are urgently needed and can be dropped off at The Ballard House located at 21421 Cinco Park Road.

  • Toilet Paper

  • K-Cups

  • Foil

 

  • Canned Soups (like you would want to eat when you are sick)

  • Peanut Butter

  • Peanut Butter – take along snack crackers

  • Goldfish

  • Wheat Thins, Triscuits, Saltine Crackers

  • Canned Fruit

  • Fruit Cups

  • Pudding Cups (that don’t have to be refrigerated)

  • Cereal – Special K, Raisin Bran, Corn Flakes

  • Success Rice – Brown and White

  • Canned Tuna

  • Bottle Water

  • Any other general snack items that can be taken to the guest’s doctors appt.

In addition to the urgent need above, a complete list of items needed can be found here.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 29, 2018 
Ashley Lancaster

 

Harris County Sheriff’s Office is looking for the man who robbed a Cash Store on Fry Rd. in Katy at gunpoint.

 

On Monday, September 18, 2017 a black male subject entered the Cash Store located at 1456 Fry Road in west Harris County. The male approached the counter and asked the employees a question.

The subject then pulled a pistol from his waistband and jumped over the counter demanding the cash drawer money. He held both employees at gunpoint and told them to hand over their personnel belongings as well.

 

The subject then fled on foot in unknown direction from the store. He is described as a black male, 25 to 30 years old, 6 ‘ in height and weighing about 180 Lbs. He has brown colored hair and dark colored eyes, and a tattoo on his neck. Anyone with information is urged to call the HCSO Robbery division at 713-274-9210.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 26, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Friends and family of Stephen Papp, 33, are mourning after the history teacher and Morton Ranch football coach was tragically killed in a car accident.

 

News and sorrow is quickly spreading this week of the loss of Morton Ranch’s assistant football coach, Stephen Papp. He passed away Saturday night in a car accident. Details have yet to be released. Even though he was currently on staff at Morton Ranch, Papp influenced many young Katy athletes having spent time at Katy ISD’s Mayde Creek and Cinco Ranch High Schools prior to moving to Morton Ranch.

A cancer survivor, Papp was known for being quiet about his battle and giving his all to his students. Papp was also a World History teacher and enjoyed sharing the love of both athletics and history with his students.

“I enjoyed getting to know and work with Stephen over the past 2 years,” said Wendell Ishee, social studies teacher/Morton Ranch football coach and one of Papp’s coworkers. “He was always a willing worker and loved working with our kids and athletes. He had a brilliant football mind and was always willing to talk about schematics and situations. He worked to get the most out of his football players. He taught them toughness and accountability. I also watched him transform many athletes in pole vault during track season. I am very saddened by his death and my prayers go out to his family and friends,” he says.

 

 

Current Paetow junior and former Morton Ranch freshman football player Alex Elko tweeted Monday night: “Rest Easy Coach Papp …  He was always a constant believer in everyone’s ability to obtain success through hard work and dedication … The world definitely lost a great one . I truly believe he is in a much better place. I pray that his family may find peace and understanding. Again , Rest In Peace Coach Papp.”

Stephen Papp’s funeral is scheduled for this Friday, June 29 3 pm at the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in his hometown, Kingwood.

Do you have a fond memory of Coach Papp? Share it with us below in the comments.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 26, 2018

Ashley Lancaster
 

Katy families and businesses affected by Hurricane Harvey will have an opportunity to recover with the approval of the State Action Plan, totaling just over $5 billion dollars.

 Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush announced  on Monday that the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has approved the State Action Plan for a ttotal of $5.024 billions dollars as part of the Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery.

 

Affected areas in Harris County and the City of Houston will receive $2.7 billion in recovery funds, while areas outside Harris County and Houston city limits will get the remainder  of $2.3 to rebuild and restore homes and businesses, and infrastructure. Here is a breakdown in fund distribution and approved programs:

1. Single Family Homeowner Assistance ($1.048 billion)
Provides funding for rehabilitation and reconstruction of owner-occupied single-family homes damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

2. Buyouts and Acquisitions ($275 million)
Eligible homeowners may sell their home to a local government at a pre-storm or post-storm fair market value and move out of harm’s way by relocating outside of a floodplain to a lower-risk area

3. Homeowner Reimbursement ($100 million)

Allows homeowners to be reimbursed for certain out-of-pocket expenses incurred for repairs to their home including reconstruction, rehabilitation or mitigation up to $50,000.

 

4. Affordable Rental ($250 million)
Provides funding for rehabilitation, reconstruction and new construction of affordable multi-family housing projects in areas impacted by Hurricane Harvey.

5. Local Infrastructure ($413 million)
Repairs, enhances and restores infrastructure for local communities impacted by Hurricane Harvey as part of a comprehensive long-term recovery program.

6. Economic Revitalization ($100 million)

Offers interim assistance to small businesses impacted by Hurricane Harvey through deferred forgivable loans and loans in exchange for job creation or retention. Small business within Harris County and the city of Houston will be eligible to apply for this program.

7. Local, Regional and State Planning ($137 million)
The GLO will conduct planning studies focused on disaster mitigation in the impacted areas with the purpose of promoting sound long-term recovery.

Information on Homeowner Recovery Assistance

Source: Texas General Land Office 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
June 21, 2018 
Ashley Lancaster

Available while supplies last, Katy parents can pick up a free Child ID kit on June 30. The kits are a simple, yet effective way to help families maintain vital information about their children.

 

WHERE & WHEN 

Saturday, June 30, 2018
10 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Ashley Furniture
19660 Restaurant Row, Houston

Parents and caregivers can receive an important tool to share with law enforcement authorities when searching for a missing child. No purchase is necessary.

 

DETAILS

Individually packaged in a protective plastic sleeve, each kit contains a non-toxic fingerprinting ink strip, heavy gauge freezer-safe bag for a DNA hair sample or cheek swabs, space to record complete contact, personal, medical, and physical information, space for a 4″ x 6″ photograph, fingerprint chart, dental charts for permanent and baby teeth, and essential educational safety tips.

 In 2017, there were 464,324 entries into the FBI’s National Crime Information Center representing a missing child reported to law enforcement every 67 seconds of every day.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 20, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

The rain couldn’t keep Katy’s Top 100 Men and their guests from having a great time at No Label Brewery.

Good food & good friends 

Honorees  on Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Men of Katy list and their guests  enjoyed draft beer, live music, delicious food, and great conversation at No Label Brewery on Tuesday night.

 

The list is comprised of men ages 18 and up who serve their community with integrity, and includes Katy ISD students and teachers, community leaders, heroes who stepped up during Hurricane Harvey, law enforcement officials, and more.

 

To see photos from the event, visit our Facebook page. 

Honorees who were not able to attend, or attended but did not pick up their official certificate. Please email editor@katymagazine.com and we will mail one to you!

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 20, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

With the opening of two new Katy ISD schools in the 2019/20 school year, a modification of attendance boundaries will be necessary. Three options for elementary and junior high were presented to the board at Monday’s board meeting.

 

Katy ISD Elementary campus #42 located in the northwest quadrant of Katy ISD and Junior High #16 in the southwest quadrant located in the Cross Creek neighborhood will both open in the fall of 2019. Both will relieve overcrowding for many schools in the district.

At last Monday’s school board meeting, three attendance boundary modifications were presented for elementary and junior high.

In the northwest quadrant, the elementary schools with the largest chance of being impacted are Bethke, Hutsell, King and Winborn Elementary schools.  In the southwest quadrant, the addition of Junior High #16 will possibly impact Beck, Cinco Ranch, Seven Lakes, Tays and Woodcreek Junior High. While not all of these schools are currently overcrowded, the modification will re-align many schools to prevent future overcrowding.

Families that could be potentially impacted by proposed attendance boundary modifications will be informed of opportunities to provide input, which will include an electronic survey, email, written correspondence, and by telephone. These communications will begin June 20 and be available until November 20, 2018.

At the September school board meeting, trustees will be given the preliminary results of the survey. In December, the board will receive the final recommendations. Notification to those impacted will begin January 2019.

Katy ISD has created a page to answer questions and provide the community with the possible modifications. Click here for more information. The board was presented aPowerPoint presentation with details.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 19, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

 

If you’re looking for a place to top off the tank in Katy, Texas, check out this list of the top 10 cheapest stations, and the most expensive.

TOP 10 CHEAPEST GAS PRICES:

1. Buc-ee’s
2700 Katy Fwy.

Regular: $2.45

Mid: $2.70

Premium: $3.00

Diesel: $2.74

2. Exxon
1540 Katy Gap Rd.

Regular: $2.45 (Cash)

Mid: $2.99

Premium: $3.49

Diesel: $2.79

3. Murphy USA
25104 Market Place Dr.

Regular: $2.47

Mid: N/A

Premium: N/A

Diesel: $2.76

4. Costco
23645 Katy Fwy.

Regular: $2.48
Mid: N/A
Premium: $2.89
Diesel: N/A

5. Sam’s Club
20424 Katy Fwy. & Price Plaza Dr.

Regular: $2.48
Mid: N/A

Premium: $2.89
Diesel: N/A

6. Exxon
740 Katy Fort Bend Rd.

Regular: $2.48

Mid: $2.83

Premium: $3.18
Diesel: $2.89

 

7. Love’s
612 Pederson Rd. & IH-10 W

Regular: $2.49
Mid: $2.74
Premium: $2.99
Diesel: $3.09

8. Exxon

26150 Katy Fwy. & FM 1463

Regular: $2.49

Mid: $2.84
Premium: $3.19
Diesel: $2.85

9. Tiny’s

24346 Franz Rd. & Porter Rd.

Regular: $2.49 (Cash)
Mid: N/A

Premium: N/A
Diesel: $2.83

10. Exxon

25010 Franz Rd. & Katy Fort Bend Rd.

Regular: $2.49 (Cash)
Mid: N/A
Premium: N/A
Diesel: $2.83

TOP 5 MOST EXPENSIVE:

1. Shell
23255 Kingsland Blvd. & Grand Pkwy.

Regular: $2.94

2. Chevron
23307 Cinco Ranch Blvd. & Grand Pkwy.

Regular: $2.89

3. Chevron
1627 Barker Cypress Rd.

Regular: $2.74

4. New Crossing Katy
1350 Pin Oak Rd.

Regular: 2.76

5. Shell
5815 Ave. D

Regular: $2.69

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 18, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark & Ashley Lancaster 

Katy ISD’s  Seven Lakes high school ranked at number 15 in the Greater Houston Area. Keep reading to see where the rest of Katy ISD’s high schools, junior highs, and elementaries ranked.

See the Katy ISD schools that made the top 100 in elementary, junior high, and high school in the Greater Houston Area for 2018.

HIGH SCHOOL

Top 100 (Out of 191)

Seven Lakes – #15

Cinco Ranch – #25

Taylor – #37

Katy – #51

Mayde Creek – #65

Morton Ranch – #90

JUNIOR HIGH

Top 100 (Out of 335)

Beckendorff – #12

Tays – #18

Seven Lakes – #19

Beck – #29

McMeans – #35

Woodcreek – #37

Cinco Ranch – #58

Memorial Parkway – #61

Mayde Creek – # 89

ELEMENTARY

Top 100 (Out of 902)

Pattison – #29

Stanley – #31

Wilson – #37

Griffin – #48

Kilpatrick – #51

Davidson – #56

Woodcreek – #63

Jenks – #68

Holland – #72

Wolman – #73

Exley – #83

McRoberts – #90

Katy – #93

Rylander – #98

Williams Elementary came close at #101

Katy ISD has a total of 8 high schools and many often find themselves on prestigious ranking lists such as this one.

This list evaluates student performance on STAAR Reading and Math tests and campus overall performance as compared to other campuses with similar levels of poverty. It also considers performance through growth, graduation rates, and other college readiness factors.

For 13 years Children at Risk has ranked Texas area schools in hope of promoting dialogue amongst educators, communities and parents. Learn more about how they rank and see how other area schools faired in the 2018 Texas School Guide.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 17, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Susie Garza, Assistant Principal at West Memorial Junior High in Katy ISD, passed away on Thursday, June 14, 2018 in New Mexico during her return from a family vacation.

(Photo from West Memorial Junior High in November 2017)

On Thursday morning, June 14, while on the way back to Houston, the family’s car was rear-ended at a high rate of speed in New Mexico. Ms. Garza did not survive the accident. Her daughter, Andrea, who was with her at the time, was air-lifted to the hospital and is expected to survive. Garza’s other daughter, Analicia “Ana”, is by her sister’s side as she recovers.

The family had been on a road trip vacation that began June 2, 2018. Garza and her family visited national parks and other landmarks in Colorado, Idaho, Washington, Canada and California.

Words From The Family

Part of the official statement from her daughters, Ana and Andrea reads:

“Susie had such a passion for people. She loved her work in education, which she began at the age of 21. She would often tell her family that she would do whatever it took to help her students succeed. It was that kind of determination and dedication that she carried with her throughout her entire career.

She had an infectious sense of humor and positivity. Her desire to help others was the guiding force in her life. Her dedication to her students allowed her to change and impact so many lives.

She was such a loving and generous person, a trait she instilled in her children. Susie also instilled in them the desire to serve their community. She always pushed us to achieve our highest potential and encouraged us at every turn.

She was the very best mother and she is and will be remembered for her unwavering love. She loved each of her friends and family fiercely. She always saw the best in people.

It is our hope, as her children, that each of us remember her for her love and try to see the best in others, as she did.”

(Photo from the Garza vacation in Seven Falls, Colorado)

A Longtime Katy Educator

Garza began her career in Katy ISD in 1996 as an ESL teacher at Mayde Creek High School. In 1997, she was promoted to Assistant Principal and has worked at Katy High, Cardiff Junior High and West Memorial Junior High, where she currently worked at the time of her passing.

A Heartbroken Community

As word broke of her passing, tributes began pouring in on social media.

Sharice Wasson-Irons wrote, “My heart is completely broken! What a huge huge loss. Our WMJH family will miss her dearly!!!”

Samantha Decker Ridenhour wrote, “Susie was an amazing AP and an even better person. Praying for comfort for the family.”

Heather Jones wrote, “Mrs. Garza was an amazing AP, she helped my son navigate Jr. High. She genuinely cared about her students. She was an asset to Katy, and West Memorial. She will be deeply missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to her family.”

Katy ISD and West Memorial Junior High have truly lost a loving educator and leader.

Service information will be updated here at a later date.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 15, 2018
Ashley Lancaster

One Katy family had to taste a bitter reality when their son Rhett was diagnosed with high-risk leukemia. Find out how their idea to start a lemonade stand gave them all strength and hope.

Rhett Wilkins, a 7-year-old cancer survivor, and his family opened a lemonade stand to raise money for cancer research, and were named one of the Top 10 Best Lemonade Stands in the United States by NextDoor.

The Wilkins’ were a Katy family just like any other until the day their son Rhett, now 7, was diagnosed with high-risk Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). While he was being treated for cancer at Texas Children’s Hospital, his compromised immune system left him vulnerable to a rare fungal infection which, in combination with the cancer diagnosis, have him a 1% chance to live.

“Even the doctors were blown away by how Rhett survived when the infection, called mucormycosis, took over his body. There was no medical protocol or documented history of a child surviving this kind of fungal infection as long as Rhett did. When he pulled out of the coma, the doctors started documenting his progress and since then, several children have been saved with the protocol that save Rhett,” says his father, Chris Wilkins.

A FRESH IDEA
Rhett had overcome the odds like a true warrior, but there was still a long, long way to go.  The standard course of treatment for a child with ALL is between 2.5 – 3.5 years from beginning to end depending on the treatment plan, and it’s intensity during the first year leaves children exhausted and often feeling sick. The physical, emotional, and financial toll can place a huge strain on the patients and their family.

Life had handed Rhett and his family lemons….so they decided to make lemonade.

“Rhett’s mom and my wife Lauren (pictured) came up with the idea. Lauren asked if I could build the stand, and I said I could if she would make it pretty,” says Wilkins. The entire family, including all four of Rhett’s siblings and his cousin Sydney jumped on board.

Sydney (cousin, 11), Siddalee (10), Riley (10), Peyton (7), and JJ (6) knew that they wanted to help Rhett, as well as other kids and families who were suffering in the same way. At first, their goal was to raise $1,000 every time they hosted a stand to donate to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Foundation. Rhett’s lemonade was requested at swim meets, gymnastics events, crawfish boils and other family events in Katy to spread the word.

SWEET & SOUR

To the family, the stand is more than just a fun activity. While in treatment at Texas Children’s Hospital for 42 months, little Rhett tragically lost eight of his friends to childhood cancer. “We want to raise money, not just for the children that have survived, but also so that every child has a chance to survive. The government doesn’t give enough to children’s cancer so we are doing it for them,” says Wilkins.

According to the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation, only 4% of government funding is allocated towards childhood cancer research… a number that is simply not good enough for most parents.

MORE SURPRISING FACTS ABOUT CHILDHOOD CANCER

That’s why little lemonade stands like Rhett’s are such a light in the vast darkness of cancer. To date, they have raised $5,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation, and plan to continue hosting stands in Katy.

Their goal now is to raise $25,000.

They will host a stand tonight from 6 – 8 p.m. at Pine Mill Ranch Park & Splash Pad. MAP

STRENGTH THAT INSPIRES

Rhett, like so many others who have gone through similar battles, shows a resilience that is truly amazing. There really aren’t any words that can make a parent, who is watching their child suffer, feel encouraged. It’s something no one ever prepares themselves for. There is a resiliency in children that adults lost at some point in life,” says his dad.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 15, 2018  

By Katrina Katsarelis 

Katy Independent School District Superintendent Lance Hindt appointed Steve Guzzetta as the new principal of McMeans Junior High (MMJH).

 

“I am very excited to continue the success and traditions that have been established at McMeans Junior High,” said Guzzetta.  “I opened the school as a teacher and coach before becoming an administrator there so I already have a deep connection with the community and a passion for the success of the students,” added Guzzetta.

Longtime Katy Educator

Mr. Guzzetta has an extensive level of experience that includes 24 years with Katy ISD.  He began his career in 1994 as a history teacher and a coach at Katy Junior High (KJH).  In 1995, he moved to Katy High School (KHS) and taught geography and coached for five years.  In 2000, he transferred to MMJH where he taught for two years prior to be promoted to assistant principal.  Four years later he was named the curriculum principal at MMJH and he served in that capacity until 2007.  At this time, he was named assistant principal at Taylor High School (THS).  In 2015, he was promoted to associate principal and has remained in that position for the past three years.  Mr. Guzzetta holds a Bachelor of Science from Texas A&M University and a Masters of Education in Educational Administration from Prairie View A&M.

Mr. Guzzetta joins MMJH on June 18. He will be replacing Dr. Susan Rice who will be retiring.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 15. 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

An alert neighbor in Memorial Parkway called Harris County Sheriff Constable Precinct 5 when she noticed a little boy walking alone on Thursday evening past dark.

 

Precinct 5 Deputy Kimberly Burkett, responding to the call, made sure the five-year-old was not hurt. She then walked with him down the street, in the general direction of his home, until they found his worried mother looking for him.

There were some tears along the way, but we are happy to say the little boy is safe and sound back home tonight.

Incidents like this are not uncommon, especially in the summer with kids out of school. Below are several tips for parents and caregivers to help with wandering children.

1. Secure your home with locks/latches located at the top of doors, that children can’t easily access. Always have latches secure while indoors. The latches are available at any home store such as Home Depot.

2. Outdoor fences should have a secure gate that can be locked to avoid children getting out or unwanted people getting in a backyard.

3. Keep car doors locked so that if a child does wander, they don’t get stuck in a car. Cars are exciting and enticing places for children to get in.

4. Know your neighbors and exchange contact information. If your child has a history of wandering, inform neighbors so they can keep an eye out and contact you immediately if they see suspicious activity.

5. When your child is outside, check on them periodically. Children can very easily get lost and turned around…even children as old as 10-12 years old have been known to become lost.

6. If your child is missing, call 9-1-1 immediately. Police can help look for a child more efficiently than a parent who is emotionally upset and they have broader resources.

The citizens of Katy can always count on the Harris County Constable’s Office to be there and help when called!

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 14, 2018
Ashley Lancaster

City of Katy officials have confirmed  that they will host a “revitalized” newly named event that’s not affiliated with the Katy Area Chamber’s Rice Harvest Festival.

 
In response to Katy Magazine inquiries, Kayce Reina, the City of Katy’s Director of Marketing and Tourism has confirmed that they will host a festival for residents in the wake of the cancellation of the Katy Area Chamber’s Rice Harvest Festival.

Katy Mayor Chuck Brawner has announced that it will host the newly named “City of Katy Rice Festival” in Downtown Historic Katy the second weekend of October. According to Brawner this will be a revitalized festival that residents, businesses, and visitors would be proud of.

“Our goal is to bring the festival back to its original form,” says Mayor Chuck Brawner. “It will be a family-oriented event with only quality arts and craft vendors, live music, excellent food, and drinks and fun for the whole family.”

Restoring the Festival’s Former Glory

In past years, the event was put on by the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce. This will be the first year that they will not host the festival.

In his official statement, Mayor Brawner expresses the city’s plan to revitalize the festival and bring back the original small-town charm that it has always been known for.

Sponsorship & Volunteering

More information on the festival will be released as the details are formalized in the coming weeks. The City of Katy hopes the community will support their dedication to this iconic festival. Please mark your calendars and plan to be part of the 2018 City of Katy Rice Festival.

If you are interested in getting involved via sponsorship, volunteering or for questions or comments, please contact Kayce Reina, the City of Katy’s Director of Tourism & Marketing, directly via email at kreina@cityofkaty.com or by phone at 281-391-8653.

No comment was received from the Katy Chamber of Commerce.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 14, 2018

Congratulations are in order for nineteen local Chick-fil-A Team Members selected to receive a $2,500 Chick-fil-A Leadership Scholarship this fall.

 

Each recipient not only demonstrated professional leadership, teamwork, and positive influence on the job, but also a commitment to volunteer work in our local community for the past twelve months.  In addition, a personal letter of recommendation from the Owner/Operator, Rusty Wylie, was submitted for each of the outstanding award winners.

Mr. Wylie commented, “It’s a tremendous blessing to be able to recruit so many of our communities best and brightest young people.  One of the most fulfilling aspects of owning three locations is the opportunity to provide leadership training at an early age, giving our young people an edge on success that translates to any future career. I’m so proud of each and every one of them.”  The award winners from Chick-fil-A Mason Road, Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch and Chick-fil-A Katy Green are:

Chick-fil-A Mason Road

Alexis (Lexie) Borowski, Lone Star, Undecided

Sophia Bui, University of Houston, Business/Finance

Nicholas Burnside, University of Houston, Restaurant and Hotel Management

Kandace Dobbs, University of Houston, Communications

Avery Fontenot, University of Arkansas, Business

Brooke Richardson, University of Houston, Communications

Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch

Jane Akwitti, University of Texas- Austin, Pre Med Track

Savannah Alphin-McPhink, Ashford University, Applied Behavioral Sciences

Avery Connor, Steven F. Austin University, Music Ed

Ellie Farlow, Samford University, Nursing

Aylin (Selena) Morales, Lone Star, History

Fay Walkabout, University of Texas-Dallas, Neuro-Science

 Chick-fil-A Katy Green

Fazeeah Agoro, Texas Tech, Kinesiology /Physical Therapy

David Balderas, Lone Star, Bachelor in Science

Sonya Cadena, Texas State, Physicians Assistant

Destiny Logan, Lone Star, Nursing

Madison Morel, Abilene Christian University, Nursing

Daniel Veillon, Houston Community College & Sam Houston, Criminal Justice

Jake Winegar, Houston Baptist University, Liberal Arts- Political Science

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 13, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Pedro Gamboa, of Harris County, alleged that he suffered serious injury after slipping and falling on a wet surface at the water park in Katy, Texas.

 

In the complaint, the plaintiff claims that he slipped and fell on a surface that was smooth and slippery while he was exiting a water slide on August 7, 2016. Gamboa claims that he suffered pain and suffering, mental anguish, medical expenses, and lost wages.

WP Ventures, LLC, acting as Typhoon Texas, is accused of negligently failing to maintain the property and provide warning signs of the condition of the floor.

The plaintiff has requested a trial by jury and seeks between $200,000 and $1M in monetary relief.  He is represented by Loren G. Klitsas and Jared W. Capps of Klitsas & Vercher PC in Houston.

Katy Magazine reached out to Typhoon Texas for comment at 12:00 on June 13. Updates will be posted as we receive them.

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KATY MAGAZINE   

June 13, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Amy Aguilar, Stephens Elementary 5th grader, passed away suddenly on Friday, June 8, 2018 from an asthma attack.

(Amy and her parents celebrating her last day of 4th grade on May 25, 2018)

Amy was known as a happy, loving child who would have been 10 years old on June 23. She was enjoying the summer before her final year at Stephens Elementary. On Friday, June 8, Amy passed away suddenly from a severe asthma attack.

A Loving Daughter and Sister

Amy’s parents Ivan and Yatchzel Aguilar are devastated by the loss and say Amy was a wonderful sister to her brother Ivan and sister Mia. Amy enjoyed a close bond with her entire family and enjoyed doing “girly” things were Mia and teaching her brother how to read. Amy also loved playing with her dog Luna and her favorite color was purple.

Stephens Elementary Support

Amy enjoyed going to school at Stephens Elementary so much that she wanted to go even when she was sick, according to her parents. One of her favorite teachers was Ms. Monica Melchiorre, who has been visiting with the family daily since Amy passed away. The parents say they are very grateful for her love and care of their daughter and their family. Family, friends and faith are helping the family during this very difficult time.

Children with Asthma

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 in 13 people have asthma, or 25 million Americans, and it is more common in children than adults. Each day 10 Americans die from asthma with adults being more likely to die from the disease than children. It is said to be the number one reason children miss school.

Services on Wednesday

Amy will be laid to rest today, Wednesday, June 13, at 3 p.m. at Klein Memorial Parklocated at 14711 Cypress North Houston, Cypress, Texas 77429.

Please Wear Purple

The burial is open to Amy’s friends and family. The parents request that everyone wear purple in honor of Amy, as this was her favorite color. “Absolutely NO BLACK!”

How to help

GoFundMe account was set up by a family member to help the immediate family with expenses.

KATY MAGAZINE

June 12, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

A Katy man is facing felony drug charges after Precinct 5 deputies discovered nearly 2,000 grams of illegal peyote at his home.

 

Alex Noorian, 31, was arrested on Monday after a reported disturbance at his home in the 2600 block of Planters House Lane in Williamsburg Colony.

Deputies obtained a search warrant for the home and found 6 pots of peyote cactus along with two jars of the drug. Peyote, an endangered species, is a Class One Hallucinogen on the same level as LSD and PCP. It is a psychedelic drug and is illegal to use, grow or sell.

In addition to 1,900 grams of peyote, deputies found and confiscated illegal mushrooms, THC wax, and 35 marijuana plants inside the house.

Noorian was arrested on felony charges of manufacturing and delivering a controlled substance and possession of marijuana. Noorian is no stranger to police as his arrest record dates back to 2005. In the past, he has been arrested for unlawful carrying of a weapon, assault on family members and other unrelated individuals, but this is his first drug arrest.

Noorian is currently in jail awaiting his next court date on Wednesday, June 13. He has requested a public defender.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 12, 2018 

Good luck to all the young men representing Katy at the Texas Boys State Convention in Austin, Texas!

Thirty-one boys from Katy-area high schools are attending the weeklong Texas Boys State 2018 convention that began June 10 in Austin.

  

The Katy boys are among more than 1,100 from all parts of Texas.  They are learning about various forms of government and are divided into 24 cities, eight counties, and four districts.  The boys are assigned to parties known as The Federalists and The Nationalists and are campaigning for various offices.

Two boys will be selected to represent Texas at The American Legion’s Boys Nation convention in July in Washington.

Members of Jonathan D. Rozier Post 164 of The American Legion in Katy selected the 31 boys after interviews that followed nominations by teachers and school counselors.   The post’s Boys State committee is led by Monte Ikner, with support from Bobby Steph, Ray Downs, Fred Kana, and Henry Thomas.

The boys are seniors-to-be and are listed by high school:

Seven Lakes:
Brody Ameen, Justin Ardis, Jacob DeGeurin, Alejandro Mantilla, Robert Myers, Joshua Shimbashi

Cinco Ranch:
Luke Austria, Nicholas Betts, Joshua Jung, Nicholas Pappas, Matthew Pharis

Katy:
Parker Egan, Dylan Koch, Mark Nicholson, Chandler Scott, Christopher Tucker

Faith West:

Lucas Campbell, Andrew Carrico, Joshua Romero

Mayde Creek:
Steven Garza, Joshua Brian Soriano, Alexis Zepeda

Tompkins:

Vincent Bruce, Michael Han, Sean Koo

Morton Ranch:
Terrell Gray, Alberto Hernandez, Thomas Walters

Taylor:

Michael Arellano, Jared Morris

St. John XXIII:
Thomas Reboli

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 11, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Precinct 5 deputies are currently investigating a home burglary in the Creekstone subdivision on S. Mason Rd.

At approximately 1 a.m. on June 9, the resident returned home to find that his back door had been broken and his personal belongings had been gone through. Several pieces of personal electronics and cash were missing.

Harris County officials are asking anyone with information to report it using the online crime tips page here: https://constablepct5.com/index.php/online-crime-tips.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 11, 2018
Ashley Lancaster

Check out these summer fun activities, suggested reading lists, and great special offers from the Katy ISD Elementary Curriculum and Instruction department that keep kids engaged throughout the summer.

These are just a few of the outstanding summer programs available for kids in Katy ISD.

 

READING

1st – 5th Grade Suggested Summer Reading List

Katy ISD Super Summer Reader Program
Katy ISD students in kindergarten through entering 4th grade can participate in an interactive summer reading group. Enroll here.

Summer Reading BINGO
Kids ages kindergarten – 5th grade can print a reading BINGO card for free and keep track of all the books they finish before the end of the summer.

SCIENCE

Lemon Lime Adventures
Must try science activities for pre-K – 5th grade.

  

Modern Parents, Messy Kids
Fun kitchen experiments for kids in pre-K – 5th grade.

PBS Summer Science Projects
Grow, build, explore and think outside the box.

Mission Animal Rescue
Learn about endangered species and how to protect them.

MATH

Grocery Store BINGO

Turn grocery shopping into an opportunity to learn and have fun. Kindergarten – 5th grade.

Calculation Nation
Fun math challenges for kids of all ages.

 

Funbrain

Math arcade games for all ages.

MORE SUMMER FUN 

Virtual Summer Camp

Computer coding to outdoor activities.

Boredom Busters
Creative, crafty ideas to download at home.

For the full list of summer activities, click here. 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 10, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Two new Katy companies have opened recently that cater to the special needs community. Inclusive Educational Services focuses on life skills and tutoring for younger children, while Angels Life Skills works with adolescents and adults.

INCLUSIVE EDUCATIONAL SERVICES

Iris Guzman, a long time special education teacher has opened Inclusion Educational services to help children with Austism, Aspergers, Dyslexia, or others struggling with emotional or learning disability. Catering to preschool and school age children, the company offers academic tutoring, life skills and social skills coaching, parents’ rights consultations, guidance and support for special needs families, and other services and programs for special needs families.

Prior to opening IES, Guzman worked in Katy ISD, Spring ISD, and Alief ISD as a special needs teacher. Guzman has over 15 years of experience teaching special needs children and is also the mother of a special needs child. Her 25-year old daughter,  Noriann, is a graduate of Houston Community College’s V.A.S.T. program. The Inclusive Educational Services office is currently located in LaCenterra Cinco Ranch, but the company is building a classroom center at a future location in the Falcon Ranch area. IES offers a free needs assessment. Visit inclusionkaty.com 

SERVING ADOLESCENTS AND ADULTS

Angels Life Skills Center opened in March to provide services for ages 13 to adult.

The center offers Day Habilitation, a person-centered program in which they give participants more choices over their daily activities, also, giving the opportunity to develop interpersonal and communication skills. Life skills training teaches daily activities such as how to do laundry, cooking, gardening, eating healthy, using proper hygiene, balancing finances, how to tell time, the date, and/or the seasons.

Day care, before/after school care and summer care are available Monday through Friday 6am – 6pm. Angels Life Skills is located at 20829 Kingsland Blvd Suite D. They accept volunteers from the community that want to work with special needs individuals. To find out more information, you can contact them at 281-717-4870.

These two organization join others in Katy servicing the special needs community such asWe Rock The Spectrum. Katy ISD has the highest percentage of special needs students (9.9% totaling 7,805 students in the 2017/18 year school year) in the Houston area surpassing Houston ISD, Fort Bend ISD and Cy-Fair ISD due to the exceptional education.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 9, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

The popular sporting event has been held at Firethorne in past years. In 2018, the master-planned community Cane Island will host the swim, bike, and run, and introduce new events for athletes to compete.

 

Cane Island, a 1,100-acre master-planned community on the north side of IH-10 knowing for their exceptionally creative amenities and easy access to Katy Freeway via Cane Island Parkway, will now be home to the 25th annual Katy Triathlon.

 

The Rotary Club of Katy will present this beginner friendly event that includes a 500-meter swim, 14.8-mile bike race, and 3-mile run. New this year are the duathlon and aquabike events.

The race will be held on Sunday, September 23, 2018 from 6-11 AM. For more information, visit the event Facebook page.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 8, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Meet the Katy family behind the heartwarming story of simple, fatherly affection that has gone viral on social media.

 

Jim Porterfield (left) with his children and son-in-law

 “As some know my dad is mentally and physically handicapped and so especially now that he’s older he’s unable to work or earn an income but he’s been saving his pocket change for the past month for some reason and I thought nothing of it until I came home and found this today,” tweeted his daughter Morgan, a graduate of Taylor High School and former THS Expressions member.

 

This sweet, simple act of kindness and fatherly affection has gone viral on social media, being picked up by news outlets across the country. The tweet has gotten over 50K retweets and has been shared by People, DailyMail, and more.  We got in touch with Morgan to find out more about her father and their family.

The Accident

In 1981, railroad worker and Katy father of four children, Jim Porterfield, was in a head-one collision with a drunk driver that almost killed him.

Porterfield spent 6 weeks in a coma and underwent a total of 13 surgeries to treat severe head and bodily injuries that included a subdural hematoma, multiple lacerations, and shattered bones. Skin grafts, pins, and bolts were necessary to keep him alive and repair some of the damage – but nevertheless, Jim was left with severe physical and mental disabilities.

 

 

“He is unable to brush his hair, teeth, or eat with his dominant hand,” says his daughter, Krista on the family’s GoFundMe page, which they started to raise money to help pay for medical expenses.

Defying the Odds

Doctors said that it was unlikely that Mr. Porterfield would live, let alone walk again, but he defied the odds and not only survived, but lovingly raised and cared for his four children, despite his limitations. He worked in a file room at an oil and gas company in Houston for over 30 years, paying the bills, and providing for his kids the way a good father does.

He was laid of from his job in 2017, and the medical bills have become overwhelming for the family to handle. Not yet eligible for medical care, his children are scraping by to make ends meet. It’s been tough, but even during hardship, Jim is finding little ways to show his children how much he cares.

“My dad has always told me how blessed he is, and tried to teach me to help others and do everything for the glory of God…he’s my hero and the most kindhearted and loving man you’ll ever meet,” says Morgan.

 

Morgan will start school at Sam Houston State University in the fall, and her younger brother, Evan attends Memorial Parkway Junior High.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

June 8, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Katy Fire Department Chief Richard Payne retired Thursday from the department after 20+ years of service.

 

Chief Richard Payne was hired by City of Katy after volunteering, 20+ years ago.

The “final call” is a tradition among first responders such as firefighters, police and EMS when they retire. Payne was presented with a helmet. Watch the full video of City of Katy Fire Chief Richard Payne’s final call, at 13:10 on Thursday, June 7, 2018, here.

Congratulations on your retirement and thank you for your service to the Katy community!

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 7, 2018

Out of its 67 campuses, Katy Independent School District is proud to announce that this year, 21 were named a Texas Honor Roll School by the Educational Results Partnership (ERP) and the Institute for Productivity in Education (IPE).

 

 

“What a great way to end the school year by receiving this prestigious recognition. This distinction speaks volumes of the great things happening in our schools. It takes a village to educate a child and our superstar staff and students should be proud of the work they have accomplished,” said Christine Caskey, Ed.D., Chief Academic Officer.

The 2017-18 Texas Honor Roll includes…

ELEMENTARY

Alexander Elementary, Davidson Elementary, Griffin Elementary, Holland Elementary, Jenks Elementary, Kilpatrick Elementary, McRoberts Elementary, Pattison Elementary, Shafer Elementary, Williams Elementary, Wilson Elementary, WoodCreek Elementary

JUNIOR HIGH

Beck Junior High, Beckendorff Junior High, Cinco Ranch Junior High, McMeans Junior High, Seven Lakes Junior High, Tays Junior High, WoodCreek Junior High

HIGH SCHOOL

Cinco Ranch High School, Seven Lakes High School

After an extensive analysis of student data, these Katy ISD schools were clear leaders in getting students to grade level and beyond.

 The 2017-18 Texas Honor Roll recognizes public elementary, middle and high schools that consistently demonstrate high levels of student academic achievement, improvement in student outcomes over time and a closing of the achievement gaps. For high schools, Texas Honor Roll recognition includes college readiness.

This year, the program recognized 729 higher performing schools across the state. These schools become an accepted example to other school districts seeking to learn and replicate the best practices employed at these campuses. The Katy ISD schools will be provided with a banner to display at their campus.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 6, 2018 

Amy Lookabaugh & Katrina Katsarelis 

We’ve compiled a list of the top 10 most luxurious homes for sale right now in Katy, Texas. 

 

Take a look at these sprawling, beautifully-decorated resorts style homes that are practically in your own back yard. And all of them are for sales as of June 1, 2018.  Click the links in the titles to see the amazing photos for yourself!

1. The Silverhorn Spectacular

2715 Silverhorn Dr. (Above)

Price: $2,300,000

Very rarely does an estate property of this type come available in Katy. Spectacular home sitting on over 1 acre of grounds complete with a tennis court, putting greens, refreshing pool with elevated hot tub, pool house with entertaining spaces, expansive yard and planting areas, circular drive with gate and motor court area with a 4 car garage! You will find the most luxurious amenities including an owner’s retreat with sitting area and fireplace along with its own workout room. Generous bath with glass block shower, spa tub and enormous dressing closet spaces. Additional features include wine room, downstairs secondary bedroom with full bath & craft room. Upstairs is a formal study, children’s study nook, dry sauna, children’s game room, and formal game room with wet bar adjacent to the home theatre room. The exterior breezeway provides access to the enormous guest suite with private bath, living area, and additional storage. VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

2. The Castle on Sparrows Ridge
Address: 1727 Sparrows Ridge

Price: $1,975,000

This opulent corner, cul-de-sac home with stunning lake views to two sides, a circle driveway, large fountain and an INFINITY pool is situated on a rolling 1/2 acre lot. The large covered back patio and outdoor kitchen lends itself to perfect outdoor venues. Inside find a soaring tower, winding staircase, two master retreats and a high end epicurean kitchen with Thermador & Bosch appliances. Guest quarters, media room, and flex room. The pad for this new construction home did not flood during hurricane Harvey. VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

3. Parklake Village Palace
Address: 19807 Almond Park

Price: $1,880,000

Brand NEW, never lived in architectural masterpiece in one of Katy’s prestigious gated communities! Panoramic water view from everywhere in the home. Dramatically high ceilings and open concept living. Marble and hard wood floors, glass railing, exotic granite, Viking appliance package, custom cabinets, wood accents, and onyx: only the highest quality materials. Gorgeous curved INFINITE edge pool, outdoor living room with accordion doors, outdoor kitchen, and so much more. The epitome of modern luxury! VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

4. Lakeforest Paradise

Address: 2406 Ivy Run Ct.

Price: $1,875,000

Exquisite Mediterranean resort style home in the exclusive Lakeforest of Kelliwood!!!! Safe and secure with a 24/7 manned guard gate. This luxurious lakefront home sits on a 3/4-acre lot and boasts 5 spacious bedrooms each with its own en-suite bathroom. The elegant master suite features a sitting area, carved-stone fireplace, and a stunning master bath retreat. The magnificent gourmet kitchen has an extra-large island perfect for entertaining and is equipped with top-line professional appliances: Wolf range and double oven, Subzero refrigerator and freezer, Bosch built-in cappuccino machine, and two Bosch dishwashers. All living areas offer expansive views of the lake. The backyard oasis includes a summer kitchen and fireplace, an extensive covered patio area, and a 20-person cocktail spa with waterfall. The 4-car garage has built-in cabinets and a staircase to attic. Exceptional residence with timeless design and elegant sophistication throughout. VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

5. Cane Island Retreat

Address: 7338 Palmetto Springs Trail

Price: $1,779,000

This grand Mediterranean style 7,052 square foot custom home includes 6 bedroom, 5.5 bath and is absolutely breathtaking! Located in newly developed community of The Estates at Cane Island. Enter to a double wrought iron staircase & large paned windows boasting gorgeous views of a heavily forested, custom lit rear yard. The gourmet kitchen has Viking appliances and a large center island which is open to the family room. An additional staircase leads up to the second-floor game room, theater room and secondary oversized bedrooms (each appointed with walk in closets of course!). Other amenities include: smart pantry for stress free deliveries, large utility room, 3 car garage, pool bath and a 23,036 square ft homesite. VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

 

6. Morganfair Masterpiece

Address: 2610 Morganfair Ln.

Price: $1,700,000

Amazing outdoor living space and lakeview! Outdoor kitchen has travertine, gas stove, grill, fridge, dishwasher, bath with sink, toilette and shower, 4 outdoor fire pits, heated pool and spa, custom lighted basketball court. Large balcony off of the game room overlooks this beautiful outdoor oasis. The home features french drains, two french doors, two built in desk, two indoor fire places, granite, marble, tile, and laminate flooring. Two iron staircases and a rod iron front door, front marble staircase, all stainless steel appliances, sub zero fridge, intercom, alarm system, satellite, utility room with lakeview, circular extra wide driveway, custom cabinets in the garage, custom shelving in attic, separated dedicated circuits, amazing landscape lighting, fruit trees, and even more space to build or renovate. One bedroom is made into a gym with wall to wall mirrors. Two master bedrooms on the first floor! VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

7. Summertime Estate

Address: 143 August Lakes Dr.

Price: $1,649,900

Magnificent property built by SSH Custom Homes. Situated on 1+ acre in the desirable August Lakes gated water sports community. This breathtaking residence features panoramic lakefront views and boasts extraordinary living spaces both indoors and out. Premium interior finishes include custom iron entry door, natural stone, decorative wood beams, climate controlled wine bar, three car detached garage, backyard oasis, and much more. Boat dock and neighborhood boat membership included. VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

8. Magic on Meadow Lane

Address: 26603 Meadow Ln.

Price: $1,290,800

Breathtaking Custom Home on 1.633 acres that is truly a one-of-a-kind piece of property in Katy!  The home has 27 foot high Cathedral ceiling in the living room with a gorgeous view of the expansive backyard. The outdoor living area is a must see and has a beautiful pool and hot tub, 2/1 guest house, outdoor kitchen, fire pits, surround sound, and more. The home also has commercial grade security camera system, electronic gates, and lights along the back of the property with 220 voltage x3 in the backyard. And the best part? No homeowner’s association!  VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

 (Photo by Sabrina Casas, Sabrina Casas Photography Studios, LLC)

9. The Jewel of Emerald Court
7511 Emerald Meadow Ct.

Price: $1,199,000

Welcome to this IMMACULATE 5 bedroom, 4 full and 2 half bath custom Mediterranean beauty in the gated community of Avalon at Seven Meadows! Step inside the double door entry to a magnificent foyer with stunning chandeliers, travertine flooring and lake views! Formal dining off entry offers exquisite chandelier, travertine flooring, wood shutters and wrought iron entry to wine grotto. Gourmet kitchen with Wolf appliance package, subzero refrigerator, and 6 burner gas cooktop. Kitchen also offers oversized island with lovely leather finish granite countertop! Family room features sparkling chandelier, cultured stone fireplace and beautiful columns. Spacious master suite offers gas log fireplace, wood floors, relaxing sitting area, beamed ceiling, and access to covered patio! In-law/Guest suite also on the first floor. Enjoy movie nights in the upstairs media room with theater style seating! Relax on the covered patio that features an outdoor kitchen while enjoying breathtaking lake views!  VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

10. A Beautiful Horizon 
27318 Horizon Bay Ln.

Price: $1,284,900

Gorgeous stone and stucco 2-story Partners in Building Model Home on a large 14,747 sf lot in Cinco Ranch Northwest. Backyard oasis with pool, spa and large covered patio. Grand double glass entry doors that opens to the two story entrance. Gourmet island kitchen features stainless appliances, double ovens, custom cabinetry, high end granite, tile backsplash, and walk in pantry. Custom lighting all throughout! You don’t want to miss an opportunity to view this gorgeous home or even design your own floor plan and build a custom home in the last section of Cinco Ranch. VIEW MORE PHOTOS OF THIS HOME

Thank you to Amy Lookabaugh of Cinco Ranch Realty Group for participating in this story! 

Editor’s Note: All of these homes were for sale as of June 1, 2018.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
June 2018 

After taking hundreds of nominations over the past several weeks, we are excited to present the 2018 list of Katy’s most prominent, influential, inspirational, successful, and charitable men who are leading the way in Katy. (Consider yourselves all #1 because these are in ALPHABETICAL ORDER.)

 

TOP 100 KATY MEN’S MIXER TUES. JUNE 19, 6-8 PM

Top 100 men and their guests are invited to attend a fun, casual mixer event held at NO LABEL BREWERY.  Free entrance and beer for Top 100 Men. Their invited guests are also welcome but will be charged $10 for entrance (covers up to 3 beers). This is an exclusive event for Top 100 Men and their invited friends/guests. Visit KATY MAGAZINE’S Facebook page event to RSVP or email editor@katymagazine.com for questions or additional details.

1. Monty Ballard, philanthropist and YMCA namesake

2. Tim Barker, pastor of Katy Community Fellowship

3. Justin Beckendorff, Waller County Commissioner

4. Frank Bielec, cast member on TLC’s Trading Spaces

5. Nic Black, good samaritan and Harvey hero

6. Jay Bobo, teacher of the year, Miller Career and Technology Center

7. Tom Bolin, First Baptist Church former pastor and longtime Katy icon

8. Jeffrey Brashear, Municipal court judge, US Naval veteran, Katy native

9. Sgt. Brian Brawner, Harvey hero, Harris County District 4, Blue Light Letters

10. Chuck Brawner, City of Katy Mayor

11. Rafael Brazo, teacher of the year, Seven Lakes High School

 12. Bob Bryant, former fine arts director of Katy ISD and school namesake

13. Doyle Callender, former City of Katy Mayor

14. Bill Callegari, former State Representative

15. Don Clayton, head athletic director, football coach at Cinco Ranch High School

16. Lee Crews, Katy ISD chief operations officer

17. James Cross, principal of Cinco Ranch High School

18. John Curley, teacher of the year, Seven Lakes High School, father of cancer survivor

19. Andrew Derry, principal of British International School of Houston

20. Brett Donaldson, owner of Grand Vision and philanthropist

21. Ryann Donaldson, owner of Grand Vision and philanthropist

22. Duran Dowdle, Mayor pro tem, City of Katy

23. Jerry Edmonson, senior pastor of The Fellowship

24. Don Elder, former City of Katy Mayor, Board of Directors for Metro

25. Keith Garvin, KPRC reporter

26. Andrew Gaston, teacher, LaCrosse coach at Taylor High School

27. Glen Ginter, longtime Katy dentist and community volunteer

28. Stan Goss, executive coach, Visions events leader, and community volunteer

29. Austin Hansen, author, philanthropist, and volunteer

30. Chris Harris, City of Katy council member

 

31. Bill Hastings, City of Katy police chief

32. John “Hawk” Hawkins, 268th District County Associate Judge and former Asst. DA Fort Bend County.

33. Constable Ted Heap, Harris County Precinct 5

34. Lance Hindt, Katy ISD superintendent

35. Dr. Zachary Hodges, President Northwest College, HCC

36. Fabol Hughes, former City of Katy Mayor

37. Ken Janda, founding member and volunteer, Katy ISD Education Foundation

38. Mo Jeloudarzedeh, charitable giver, owner of Mo’s Place

39. Gary Joseph, head athletic coordinator, football coach at Katy High School

40. Sam Jow, teacher of the year, McMeans Junior High

41. Andy Kahan, victims’ rights advocate

42. Bobby Katsabas, owner of Snappy’s and community icon

43. John Micah Kerber, teacher of the year McDonald Junior High

44. Lance LaCour, Katy Area EDC president and CEO

45. Bill Lacy, Katy ISD board of Trustees

46. Jim Leggett, senior pastor of Grace Fellowship UMC

47. David Loesch, Katy Rotary and president of WWBF

48. Kevin Luce, Harvey hero and charitable giver

49. Don Massey, Community volunteer and Harvey hero

50. Don McCoy, Fulshear Chamber of Commerce President

51. Mike McGown, pastor of Parkway Fellowship

52. Andy Meyers, Fort Bend County Commissioner

53. Jose Morrillo, business owner and philanthropist

54. Dan Naef, president of Cane Island

55. Johnny Nelson (posthumously), longtime Katy Icon and namesake of Katy Heritage Museum

56. Sage Northcutt, famous UFC Fighter, outspoken Christian, Katy native

57. Ralph Oliver, Harvey hero, founder of Texans Embracing America’s Military

58. Twaski Parker, teacher of the year, Mayde Creek Junior High

59. Richard (Dick) Phillips, University of Houston

60. Steve Pierson, former City of Katy council member and avid volunteer

61. Richard Piwonka, Teacher of the year, Morton Ranch High School

62. Robert Powell, Harvey hero, Grand Lakes rescue and rebuilder 

63. Zachary Randolph, Katy teen fired for paying for police officer’s dessert

64. Rory Robertson, passionate school, sports, and community volunteer

65. Jay Rodriguez, Morning Show Co-Host, SUNNY 99.1

66. Brian Royo, owner of No Label Brewery

67. James Ross, GM of Katy Mills

68. Ryan Rush, Senior Pastor Kingsland Baptist Church

69. Heath Rushing, Memorial Hermann Hospital CEO

70. Bobby Sanders, OTHS teen leadership teacher and head basketball coach

71. Luis Santiago, Katy ISD police officer and Teddy Cops program coordinator

72. Hank Schmidt, former City of Katy mayor and community icon

73. Mike Schofield, State Representative

74. George Scott, Katy ISD Board of Trustees

75. Matt Schomburg, avid community volunteer and business owner

76. Fred Shafer, lifelong educator and Katy ISD school namesake

77. Dr. Jim Siebert, Chief Meteorologist for Fox 26 News

78. Roman Soto, MCHS grad, professional concert cellist

79. Ernest Stevenson, Teacher of the year, Opportunity Awareness Center

80. Nolan Stillwell, Culinary artist, Owner of Sweet Heat Jam Co.

 

81. James McCoy Taylor, Katy native, musician, contestant on The Bachelorette

82. Cyril Thomas, Entrepreneur and philanthropist

83. Jeff Thompson, Katy rotary

84. Constable Wayne Thompson, Fort Bend County Constable

85. Obra Tompkins, career educator and Katy ISD school namesake

86. Alex Tsounakas , Owner Snappy’s and community icon

87. Lt. Simon VanDyk, PIO, Harris County Emergency Services District #48 Fire Department

88. Downy Vickery, Prosperity Bank and community philanthropist

89. Ted Vierling, assistant superintendent of operations, Katy ISD

90. Hendrik Volschenk, Harvey hero, Texas Game Warden

91. Evan Vourazeris, Katy actor on Netflix’s hit series, Ozark

92. Russell Wilson, Katy Fire Chief and named Texas Fire Chief of the Year

93. Lewis White, Attorney and community philanthropist

94. Robert Willeby, Community advocate and volunteer

95. Tom Wilson, career educator and Katy ISD school namesake

96. Ray Wolman, career educator and Katy ISD school namesake

97. Mark Wiley, President of Hope Impacts

98. Rusty Wylie, CFA franchisee and philanthropist

99. Dr. Ed Young, Second Baptist Church senior pastor

100. Dr. John Zerwas, State Representative and MD

TOP 100 KATY MEN’S MIXER TUES. JUNE 19, 6-8 PM

Top 100 men and their guests are invited to attend a fun, casual mixer event held at NO LABEL BREWERY.  Free entrance and beer for Top 100 Men. Their invited guests are also welcome but will be charged $10 for entrance (covers up to 3 beers). This is an exclusive event for Top 100 Men and their invited friends/guests. Visit KATY MAGAZINE’S Facebook page event to RSVP or email editor@katymagazine.com for questions or additional details.

MORE KATY MAGAZINE STORIES 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 5, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

 

Katy families who are struggling financially and have children in the district ages Pre-K through 12th can register to receive free school supplies for the 2018 – 2019 school year.

The first day is school is stressful for all children. For disadvantaged children and families, that stress is magnified when they have to go without essential items like binders, pencils, and backpacks.

Katy Christian Ministries is now taking registration information for Katy ISD students ages Pre-K through 12th grade to receive school supplies for the upcoming school year.

FAMILIES MUST:

– Be active clientele of Katy Christian Ministries

– Live within Katy ISD limits

– Students must be actively enrolled in a Katy ISD school

Call 281-391-9623, Monday – Thursday from 1 to 5 p.m. to register and get more information.

 

SPECIAL INVITATION:

In addition to the Red Apple donation drive, students at Bear Creek, Sundown, Stephens, Mayde Creek, Hutsell, Rhodes, Franz, and Schmalz elementary will receive an invitation to the “Operation Backpack” event at the end of the summer.

DONATE:
For those who  wish to donate to Katy families in need, CLICK HERE. 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 30, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

 

On Tuesday, May 29 the Katy ISD Board of Trustees held their monthly regular board meeting. Many changes and additions were approved. All agenda items below were approved 6-0, as George Scott was not in attendance.

 

2018-19 Teacher Salary Increase 

School Board Trustees approved a $1,230 pay increase for all teachers, which is an average of 2%.

Non-teacher personnel will receive a 2% increase of the midpoint of the 2017-18 non-teacher pay ranges.

New Assistant Superintendent of Operations & SLHS Principal

Ted Vierling was announced as the new Assistant Superintendent of Operations. Mr. Vierling has 20 years of experience in Katy ISD. His service includes four years of teaching and two years serving as an assistant principal at Mayde Creek High School and two years as an assistant principal followed by five years as the principal at Beckendorff Junior High. For the past seven years, he has served as the principal at Seven Lakes High School.

Mr. Vierling is a graduate of Katy High School.  He holds a Bachelor of Science from Texas A&M University and a Master of Education Leadership from the University of Houston.  Mr. Vierling’s will begin his new position on July 1, 2018.

For those who have not had the pleasure of working with Mr. Vierling, his name might sound familiar as his speech entitled, “Why not? ” , at this year’s Seven Lakes High school graduation ceremony was highly praised across social media.

On Wednesday, Superintendent Lance Hindt appointed Kerri Finnesand as the new principal of Seven Lakes High School (SLHS). Ms. Finnesand has 22 years of experience in education. Her service includes five years of teaching, three years as an assistant principal, two years as an intermediate principal and 13 years as a principal at all three levels. Ms. Finnesand holds a Bachelor of Science from Penn State University and a Master of Education from the University of Houston.

Finnesand will join the Spartan family on May 31.

New Position – Coordinator for Bullying Prevention & Student Support
The Board of Trustees approved a request to create 35 new positions for the 2018-19 school year including a Coordinator for Bullying Prevention & Student Support. This position will be under Ken Gregorski, Deputy Superintendent.

The district has been researching to create this position for the past few months. In looking at Katy ISD needs, HR looked at the entire nation in creating the duties and requirements. Once again, Katy ISD is innovative in this area as not many districts in the United States have this -type of person on-staff. The position open now for applications. Gregorski stated that they are casting a wide-net in order to get the best fit, including but not limited to educators, counselors, and law enforcement.

New Position – Staff Attorney

A staff attorney position was added to work under general counsel. The position will help provide better access to counsel from the campuses, especially for KISD’s special education population.

Families move to Katy ISD for their special education program. Over other area top school districts (Houston ISD, Fort Bend ISD and Cypress Fairbanks ISD), Katy has a higher percentage of special education students, 9.9% that totals 7,805 students in the 2017/18 year school year.

The entire meeting agenda, minutes and video can be found here. The next work study meeting will be on Monday, June 18, 2018 and regular school board meeting will be Monday, June 25, 2018.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  
June 4, 2018  

 

State Representative Mike Schofield is currently accepting applications for the Texas Armed Services Scholarship Program (TASSP) for the 2018-2019 academic year.

ABOUT TASSP 

TASSP is a scholarship for students entering college in the Fall of 2018, providing scholarship funding toward undergraduate education at any Texas university with an active ROTC program. The Texas Legislature created the TASSP to encourage students to become commissioned officers in any branch of the armed services of the United States or members of Texas Army National Guard, Texas Air National Guard, Texas State Guard, the United States Coast Guard, or the United States Merchant Marines. “I am honored to play a role in finding a young leader who wants to serve our country, and helping that dream become a reality” said Schofield.

ONE STUDENT CHOSEN FROM EACH STATE
Each year, each state senator and state representative may nominate one student to receive an initial conditional scholarship. Following nomination, the Higher Education Coordinating Board determines the award amount based on available funding. These annual awards may make a difference in the life of a high achieving student. Who can apply? To be eligible, applicants must enroll in a Texas public or private accredited institution of higher education, commit to four years of training through the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) program, and plan to enter the Armed Services upon graduation.

Nominees must meet two of the following four academic criteria:

• Be on track to graduate or graduated high school with the Distinguished Achievement Program (DAP) or the International Baccalaureate Program (IB)

• Have a high school GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale

• Achieve a college readiness score on the SAT (1070) or ACT (23)

• Be ranked in the top one-third of the prospective high school graduating class

Non-freshman students can apply for the scholarship if they:

• Maintain satisfactory academic progress as determined by the institution of in which the student is enrolled;
• Continue to be a member of a ROTC program; and

• Have not earned a baccalaureate degree or a cumulative total of 150 credit hours, including transferred hours.

CONTACT

Eligible students are encouraged to contact Rep. Schofield’s office at (281) 578-8484 or at Sharon.Slover@house.texas.gov to receive an application. Applications will be accepted through June 29, 2018. More information about the Texas Armed Services Scholarship Program can be found at www.hhloans.com.

Mike Schofield is the State Representative for Texas House District 132 in Katy and Cy-Fair. Mike was named “Freshman of the Year” in the Texas House for his work in the 84th legislative session.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 1, 2018

A total of $64,800 was raised for the ministry to perform critical, life transforming work in the Katy/West Houston community.

Katy Christian Ministries serves 12 local zip codes, providing emergency assistance to families and individuals who find themselves in crisis or financial difficulty.

These services include Flood Relief assistance, rental and utility assistance, a long list of critical services for victims of domestic and sexual violence, and a Food Pantry for those needing supplemental food and personal care items. Seasonal programs like Red Apple School Supplies, and Santa’s Sleigh help families provide extra school materials and Christmas gifts to their children when the money just isn’t there.

“KCM relies on the community to provide the resources that allow us to serve those in need.  The annual Golf Tournament is a major source of income for our organization, and we are very pleased with the continued support we receive, both in volunteers and in contributors.  Through 19 years of this tournament we continue to increase the overall donations and revenue (this year was one of the best!)  Thanks to all that have supported and contributed to this effort.” – Kent Black, KCM Board President.

 

Commissioner Andy Meyers was the title sponsor for this year’s event, and Parkway Fellowship claimed the Platinum Sponsorship. “It is truly an honor and a blessing to be able to work in partnership with Katy Christian Ministries. I will continue to be a strong advocate and promoter of the organization. Thank you for all the effort and ministries that your staff accomplishes to make Katy a better home for our citizens.” – Commissioner Andy Meyers, Ft. Bend County, Pct. 3.

122 Golfers turned out to support KCM and enjoy a beautiful day of golf and fellowship for a great cause. This was our first year at the beautiful Weston Lakes Golf Course, and golfers enjoyed grilled burgers, Silent Auctions, a Raffle for a 65” Smart TV, a steak dinner, and awards for the tournament winners.

“I am deeply humbled by the outpouring of love and support by everyone involved. I’m thankful for the opportunities to come together with a purpose, in a unified mission of transforming lives right here in our own community,” says Deysi Crespo, Executive Director of KCM.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 30, 2018
Source: CrimeStoppers of Houston
Posted by Ashley Lancaster 

A $5000 reward is being offered for information on two males involved in aggravated robbery at a convenience store near Sundown on Fry and Saums Rd.

During the morning of Monday, May 7, 2018, two suspects robbed the victim in the 2200 block of Fry Road in Harris County, Texas. During this incident, the suspects entered the convenience store. One of the suspects, a white male with his face partially covered with a light red cloth, wielded a gun at the store employee and demanded money and cigarettes. The other suspect, a black male, placed the stolen money and items into a bag. The suspects exited the store with the money and fled the scene.

 

Suspect #1: White male, wearing a light red cloth partially over his face, a black jacket, and tan pants. This suspect was armed with a handgun. (Pictured above)

Suspect #2: Black male, wearing a black beanie, and a white sweater.

 

Video surveillance cameras captured images of the suspects during the robbery.

 

Crime Stoppers will pay up to $5,000 for information leading to the charging and/or arrest of the suspect(s) in this case. Information may be reported by calling 713-222-TIPS (8477), submitted online at www.crime-stoppers.org or through the Crime Stoppers mobile app. All tipsters remain anonymous.

Reference: HCSO #18-72019

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 30, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

 

Katy Unites celebrates Katy ISD by using social media avenues to tell positive, encouraging stories.

(Teachers at Kilpatrick show support for Katy Unites)

 

POSITIVE VIBES ONLY 

Katy Unites began as a conversation between community members in mid-May, when people felt that an anti-Katy ISD movement created controversy and attracted  negative, national media attention.” People felt it was time stop the cycle of untenable, counter-productive, and aggressive conversations. The group  felt that, the use of anger and personal attacks to address bullying only increased the bullying exponentially .

“The cycle just had to stop, so we decided to try something different”, says community member and group co-organizer, Melissa Nixon.

 

 

A CLEAR VISION 

In order to be successful, Nixon and other co-founders knew it was important to have a clear vision and goal for the group. Some of their goals include:

  • Celebrate the people and programs in Katy ISD that are making a positive difference.

  • Inspiring others

  • Create an environment that encourages creative, productive talks to address the challenges in Katy ISD.

HOW TO JOIN 

There is not an “official” membership to join. Interested persons only need to follow the group on one of their social media avenues…FacebookInstagramTwitter and awebsite (still under development). The group has periodic face-to-face meetings to organize the direction of the group and plan for the future. Meeting information can be found on Facebook. Katy Unites states “We welcome anyone in our community who wants to help celebrate our successes to join Katy Unites.”

Katy Unites plans to be a consistent and permanent movement celebrating  and sharing moments in Katy ISD and the love many community members have for the #1 district in the Houston area.

“The focus is to put more energy and power in our successes because we believe a positive focus encourages positive results,” says Nixon.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 29, 2018 

Students who are interested in researching what colleges in the area have to offer can attend a college fair at Cinco Ranch Library.

Students who would like to have more information on area colleges are invited to attend a special “College Fair – PLUS!” at Fort Bend County Libraries’ Cinco Ranch Branch Library on Monday, June 25.

 

Representatives from colleges and universities will be on hand to share information about their programs with current high school students and their parents or guardians. Students will have the opportunity to learn about educational opportunities available at the colleges, as well as admission requirements, financial aid, student housing, and more.

TEXAS

Stephen F. Austin State University

The Art Institute of Houston

Texas Women’s University

University of Houston – Clear Lake

University of Houston – Downtown

University of Texas – Dallas

University of Texas – Tyler

OUT – OF – STATE

Auburn Universtiy

University of Denver

University of Louisiana at Lafayatte

University of South Alabama

University of Missouri

University of Tampa

University of Tennessee

PRESENTATIONS

Finding Your College Fit, 1 – 1:40 p.m.

Admissions 101: How to Apply, 1:40 – 2:20 p.m.

Financing Your Education, 2:20 – 3:30 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public. Call 281-395-1311 for more information.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 29, 2018  

Jennifer Skelton & Ashley Lancaster  

Opening photo by Christy Murphy Photography   

Friends and family of Peggy Brown Buffa share memories and messages of love in the wake of her passing on May 24, 2018. Read on for tributes and service information.

 

A Beloved Mother & Friend

She held many titles in her lifetime – caring daughter, faithful follower of Christ, and loyal friend. She took great joy in each of their cheerleading competitions, supported them in every endeavor and became known by many as the best team mom.

Above all, Peggy was most proud to be a mother to her two beautiful daughters, Kelly and Kaitlyn. Kelly is a teacher at West Memorial Junior High in Katy ISD and Kaitlyn graduated this past weekend from Cinco Ranch High School.

Peggy was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in both lungs in October 2017 but anyone who knew Peggy knew that this diagnosis didn’t stop her fight. She fought hard through several forms of chemotherapy before passing away on Thursday, May 24.

TRIBUTES

Kate Ober wrote “Peggy Brown Buffa the most beautiful and loving soul went to heaven yesterday… She was a mom to me when my mom could not be, she encouraged me when i needed it the most, she loved on me always, she was truly a remarkable woman! Thanks to Kaitlyn Buffa being on my team so many years at Prodigy, Peggy was the team mom… and let me tell y’all she was THE BEST cheer mom anyone could ask for! She had the best corny mom jokes, she encouraged the team like no one else, she took care of us when we got hurt, she always helped the nerves go away back stage at competitions, she TRULY believed in each and every one of us!! Peggy Buffa, thank you for everything you’ve done for me… words will never be enough for your beautiful soul! My heart breaks knowing i will never get to hear you speak again or hug you again but i know you’re dancing with Jesus right now and you’re pain free! This is not our forever home, I will see you again! I love you forever and always!”

Douglas Brown wrote “I lost my sister today. She was an incredible mother who loved her daughter’s dearly. Rest in Heaven, you will be missed.”

Charlotte Elliot wrote “Peggy you are an amazing mother and now a angel watching over us. We are truly blessed having you and your family in our lives, you are a role model a strong beautiful mom a teacher showing us anyone can do anything. You have filled so many hearts with laughter, tear,s joy and happiness. Dear lord please give the girls, family and friends the peace and comfort during this time and need. We love you Peggy Brown Buffa”

SERVICE INFORMATION

Friends are invited to a visitation with the family at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, June 1, followed by a service at 11 a.m. in the Memorial Church of Christ chapel, 900 Echo Lane, Houston, Texas 77024. After the celebration of Peggy’s life, a burial will be held at Woodlawn Cemetery at 1101 Antoine, Houston, Texas 77055. Those in attendance are encouraged to wear navy and maroon in honor of Peggy’s favorite colors.

IN LIEU OF FLOWERS

Due to mounting medical expenses and to help with the loss of income, Peggy’s friend Jessica Wright, set up a GoFundMe account on May 16, 2018. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Peggy’s honor may be made to the GoFundMe Account in support of Kelly and Kaitlyn and to alleviate medical expenses from Peggy’s brave battle with cancer.

Condolences may also be left on the Woodlawn Page  or Peggy’s Facebook page.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 24, 2018

Katy ISD is proud to announce the top two students from each high school who are ranked highest academically in their respective graduating classes.

 

These students have worked extremely hard from the very first day of their ninth grade year until the last day of their senior year.  Many of them are now moving on to prestigious colleges and universities throughout the nation.  The 2017-2018 valedictorians and salutatorians are:

CINCO RANCH HIGH SCHOOL

Shreya Budhiraja – Valedictorian

 

Subhiksha Srinivasan– Salutatorian

KATY HIGH SCHOOL

Marie-Anne Barron – Valedictorian

Piper Mackenzie Harris – Salutatorian

MAYDE CREEK HIGH SCHOOL

Arman Thomas Yazdian– Valedictorian

David Liu – Salutatorian

MORTON RANCH HIGH SCHOOL

Penelope Nicole Meranio Gadia – Valedictorian

Kelly Tseng – Salutatorian

SEVEN LAKES HIGH SCHOOL

Anusri Dharmendra Shah – Valedictorian

Dennis Liu – Salutatorian

TAYLOR HIGH SCHOOL

Sachi Khemka – Valedictorian

Hachem Bey El-Murhbi – Salutatorian

TOMPKINS HIGH SCHOOL

Viraaj Singh Punia – Valedictorian

Rohit Ramesh Kamath – Salutatorian

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 22, 2018

In order to address growth in the healthcare industry in Katy, University of Houston Katy campus plans to provide more nursing programs in the near future.

 

In the Katy area, the healthcare industry continues to be one of the fastest growing industry sectors with thousands of jobs added over the past several years.

Filling an Industry Need

To help meet the needs of the growing industry, the University of Houston is doing its part to ensure qualified nursing candidates are prepared to staff open positions.  Dr. Kathryn Tart shared information about the UH College of Nursing programs and its strong commitment to offering nursing education in the Katy area.  In the coming years, the nursing program in the Katy area is expected to grow with degree programs offered by the UH College of Nursing following the completion of the new UH-Katy campus at I-10 and Grand Parkway.

“The healthcare industry is projected to add over 5,000 jobs in our labor area and we are thrilled to see UH College of Nursing growing its nursing education programs in our area to meet industry needs.,” said Katy Area EDC President/CEO Lance LaCour.

New Members of the Katy EDC

Several new members were introduced at the meeting including Associate members Experis – Manpower Group, Liberty Mutual, Smart Financial, Martinez Nestor Marinacci, Johnson Controls and Texas Operations and Professional Services – Tops Water.  May membership renewals recognized included Board of Governors members Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union, British International School of Houston and CenterPoint Energy. Strategic Partners Costello, Inc., Cross Creek Ranch, Community Impact and Wood Creek, LLC. along with Associate members Beraht Envelope Systems, GEICO, Goya Foods, Integrity Bank, Kingham, Dalton, Wilson, LTD., Powers Brown Architecture, Rooms to Go and Steadfast Development Company were recognized as well.

Texas Children’s Hospital West served as the breakfast sponsor for this month’s meeting.  Kara Abrameit, Director, and Matt Timmons Campus Director shared information on Texas Children’s which is a worldwide leader in pediatric healthcare.  You can find more information on Texas Children’s here. For more information on Katy Area EDC, please visit katyedc.org.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 23, 2018

Katy residents in Harris County whose homes were damaged by Hurricane Harvey, there will be an open house to determine allocation of funds for everything from individual home repair to community infrastructure improvements.

 

The Harris County Community Services Department invites residents who live within the borders of Harris County, but outside Houston City limits to one of a series of open houses.

 

The Harris County Community Services Department invites residents who live within the borders of Harris County, but outside Houston City limits to one of a series of open houses. Various locations and dates have been selected in unincorporated Harris County and small cities in Harvey affected areas. Residents will have the opportunity to view kiosks showing types of services the County could potentially offer.

“While the funding has not yet arrived, public feedback is critical as we develop and prioritize our plans. We want to identify the issues that may be unique to your corner of the community,” said Daphne Lemelle, Director of Housing and Community Services, Harris County Community Services Department.

Possible services range from individual home repair to community infrastructure improvements. Residential feedback is crucial as plans are targeted to best meet the needs of individual communities within unincorporated Harris County.

For Katy Residents:

Wednesday, June 6, 2018 4:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Weekley Community Center

8440 Greenhouse Rd.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 23, 2018

The Lutheran Education Association of Houston (LEAH Schools) is proud to announce Mr. Tim Wainright as the next Head of School at Westlake Preparatory Lutheran Academy beginning July 1, 2018.  He replaces Mrs. Judy Gerber who will be retiring at the end of June.

 

Mr. Wainright has served at Second Baptist School (SBS) in Houston since 2014, most recently as the Head of Secondary Education (middle school and high school). Prior to SBS, Mr. Wainright served as a teacher and administrator in Houston area public schools. He and his wife Angela have two daughters.

 

Committed to Christian Education

Mr. Wainright shared, “During my career, I have developed collaborative frameworks inside of six very different school communities. My educational philosophy is deeply rooted in an unwavering belief that the quality of any school is determined most by the quality of the teachers in the classrooms as well as the quality of the teacher / student relationship. Additionally, I believe that independent Christian education represents one of the most valuable opportunities to not only provide students access to the salvation of Jesus Christ, but I believe students who are educated in independent Christian schools represent the restorative leaders who will protect the future of the United States.”

 

Westlake Preparatory Lutheran School
23300 Bellaire Blvd, Richmond, TX

Lower School: (281) 341-9910

Upper School: (832) 586-9130

Westlake is a member of the Lutheran Education Association of Houston (LEAH Schools) along with Lutheran South Academy, and Lutheran North High School.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE WESTLAKE WILDCATS HERE.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 23, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

On Tuesday during rush hour evening traffic, a Katy driver hit another car and drove off.

 

A woman, who was the driver of the pictured white mustang, hit a small, black car as she was entering Grand Parkway from Westheimer Parkway on Tuesday at 5:15pm.

The cars were traveling northbound on Grand Parkway. After she hit the car, the mustang took off. A good Samaritan called 911 and followed the Mustang providing information to the police. The good Samaritan caught up to the Mustang and honked to get her attention thinking she might not have known that she hit someone. The woman refused to pull over and got aggressive. As she got aggressive, the 911 operator asked her to cease following the hit-and-run driver.

 If you have any information about the incident, the driver of the small, black car that was hit, or the driver of the mustang, please contact the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 20, 2018

Katy ISD Superintendent Lance Hindt addresses the school shooting in Santa Fe and what the district does on an ongoing basis to protect our schools.

Dear Katy ISD Parents, Staff and Community,

Today, all of us at Katy ISD are saddened at the senseless loss of lives after the tragic events at Santa Fe High School. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Santa Fe community.

 

As a parent and Katy ISD superintendent, I want to reiterate to our Katy ISD community that we stand in solidarity with the community of Santa Fe ISD.  We also take this opportunity to reiterate to our parents and community that Katy ISD has a robust emergency protocol. Regularly, the Katy ISD Police Department, along with officials from every campus address emergency situations and conduct the appropriate emergency preparedness drills. While classes and activities will proceed regularly, there will be an increased presence of Katy ISD police officers at our schools.

What occurred in Santa Fe is a reminder to parents and teachers of the crucial importance of maintaining an open line of communication with students. We know that the number one deterrent to any threat is an open dialogue between parents, students and staff as they have first-hand knowledge when it comes to keeping our schools safe.

Also, we understand that the students may want to talk. Please know that personnel at our campuses will be available to speak to students who may need to be supported in the wake of the recent events.  Additional information concerning our district-wide safety and security resources can be found here.

Thank you for support,

Lance Hindt, Ed.D.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 19, 2018

Partners in Building has joined the Katy master-planned community of Cane Island where the custom homebuilder will offer one-of-a-kind luxury homes on 100-foot homesites.

 

A four-time Builder of the Year winner and six-time Best Custom Home award winner as presented by the Texas Association of Realtors, Partners In Building presents Cane Island homebuyers with the opportunity to design a luxury, custom home based on their unique needs and lifestyles.

“Our approach is based on ‘thought’ per square foot rather than price per square foot,” explains Paul Womack, vice president – marketing for Partners in Building.  “We design a home the way a homebuyer wants it.”

Partners in Building has been active in the Katy area for quite some time, according to Womack, who adds Cane Island’s resort-style feel and direct accessibility from Interstate 10 give it a major leg up for buyers seeking a luxury custom home.

“The community offers perhaps the best location and amenities for the custom homes we build,” he says.

Partners In Building is expected to complete a showcase home in Cane Island by the end of the year when it will open daily for public tour.

The 2016 Greater Houston Builders Association Community of the Year, Cane Island offers first-time homebuyers, move-up buyers and active empty nesters new homes starting in the mid-$200’s by CalAtlantic Homes, Coventry Homes, David Weekley Homes, Highland Homes, Perry Homes, Shea Homes, Toll Brothers, Taylor Morrison and Trendmaker Homes. Eleven fully furnished models homes are open daily.

 

The community also offers The Estates at Cane Island, an exclusive gated section of luxury custom homes on half-acre homesites.

Residents enjoy unlimited access to the Cane Island Amenity Village and its 24-hour, two-story fitness center, yoga studio with 200+ on-demand videos, lap pool, family pool with poolside cabanas and water play area, café, loft with comfortable seating and outdoor fireplace and glass-enclosed Conservatory, ideal for private events.

An award-winning arrival experience features a three-acre lake with seven, 30-foot fountains and the impressive Living Arches, custom-made steel sculptures with thousands of individually controlled, programmable LED lights in glass leaves that change colors and patterns for the seasons.

 

To reach Cane Island, take the Cane Island Parkway exit off Interstate 10 minutes west of the Grand Parkway.  Head north on Cane Island Parkway and take the roadway directly into the community.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 17, 2018

Kaitlyn Sheroke, a senior at Katy Independent School District Seven Lakes High School (SLHS), has been awarded the prestigious Gold Medal Scholastic Writing Award for her short story titled Sirenia.

 

Kaitlyn will be traveling to New York City to be recognized during the annual Carnegie Hall ceremony on June 7.

 
“We are over-the-moon proud of our young scholar who has been a student in Katy ISD since her elementary school days,” said SLHS English Department Chair Pam Cannon.  “Kaitlyn’s writing is more than just an assignment, she pours out her heart into each and every one of her pieces.  The SLHS Spartans are proud to see her work receiving the national attention it deserves,” added Cannon.

 

To receive this award, students must first go through regional judging in order to advance to national review.  This year, Kaitlyn along with nine other Katy ISD students became regional Gold Key participants.  The history of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards is known for its rich notable alumni, like Sylvia Plath and Joyce Carol Oates, who have gone on to write a variety of contemporary works of literature which are read around the world.

After graduation, Kaitlyn will be attending Baylor University.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 17, 2018

The sporting and outdoor recreation stores, headquartered in Katy, Texas, announced their new CEO yesterday.

Hicks has been appointed Chairman and CEO. Departing CEO J.K. Symancyk is leaving the company to pursue another opportunity.

 

“I grew up in Houston with Academy, and I know this company is special because of our mission, values, and people. Our philosophy of making sports and outdoors accessible for all for less is differentiated in today’s retail market, and our focus on our customers will continue to drive our success,” said Hicks. “The Board and I are extremely grateful for J.K.’s leadership, the senior team he’s built, and how he’s helped position the company for future growth.”

“Academy Sports + Outdoors has one of the best teams in retail, and it’s been an honor to serve alongside this team for the past several years,” said Symancyk. “I know I leave Academy in good hands and am confident that the company will continue to put the customer first as we’ve always done.”

 

Hicks has been a member of the Academy Board of Managers and brings over three decades of senior merchandising, marketing and operational experience in the retail industry. During his six-year tenure as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Foot Locker, he helped develop and deliver on a plan that reversed three years of negative same store sales, generating significant financial return and shareholder value.

Prior to Foot Locker, Hicks served in leadership positions at several major retail companies, including J.C. Penney, Payless ShoeSource, Home Shopping Network and May Department Stores. Ken graduated from the United States Military Academy located in West Point, NY and served in the U.S. Army. He also earned a Masters of Business Administration with highest distinction from Harvard Business School. Hicks, a long-time Academy customer, grew up in Houston and has deep roots in Academy’s hometown region.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 16, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

The Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a Katy woman who allegedly stole more than $200,000 from a youth hockey league.

While budgeting for the league, the president of the Interscholastic Hockey League for teens 13-18 years of age noticed discrepancies. He told deputies that he confronted Michele Bernier, the treasurer. He also said the suspect admitted withdrawing money from the league’s bank account since she became treasurer in 2013.

Michele Bernier said she took the funds because of her family’s financial hardship. League officials determined that since Bernier became the league treasurer she had stolen $223,327.

The club’s president told Sheriff’s Office Detectives that Bernier, who had hired an attorney, offered $45,000 in restitution, but the league rejected the offer.

The loss won’t affect the league because insurance will take care of the missing money.

Michele Bernier, 51, made her first court appearance Wednesday morning and is being held in the Fort Bend County jail on a $224,000 bond. She is charged with a felony that carries a punishment of up to 99 years.

Bernier is a Canadian citizen so she must also surrender her passport. She has lived in Katy at least since 2010 when she bought a house in the Seven Meadows.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 16, 2018
Ashley Lancaster  

On Tuesday afternoon, a man on a motorcycle allegedly struck the driver’s side mirror of a green sedan on Katy Freeway before speeding off.

 

A Good Samaritan in Katy who witnessed the man on the motorcycle smash a motorist’s driver’s side mirror near IH-10 and Westgreen posted the above photo to Facebook.

 

“To the person in the bright green sedan who had their driver’s side mirror smashed on I-10 near Westgreen by the p***** off motorcyclists, I tracked him down for you. He had no reason to smash your mirror like that. I hope you track him down and that he broke his hand when he punched your mirror.”

The hit and run incident is still under investigation.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 15, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

On Monday, Mayor Brawner and the City of Katy passed a resolution for Katy’s Heritage Museum to be named after former Katy mayor and city administrator, Johnny Nelson.

Nelson passed away surrounded by loved ones in January 2018. He served as mayor from 1983 – 1987. 

 

After retiring from his role as city administrator (1994-2014), Nelson became the curator for the Katy Heritage Museum.

The honor, therefore, of having the museum re-named in his honor, is another way that his friends and loved ones keep his legacy alive.

His wife of 51 years, Paulette, was at City Hall to see the resolution pass.

There will be a re-dedication ceremony on Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 10:30 a.m.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 15, 2018 
Ashley Lancaster

According to Constable Ted Heap’s office, a man was charged with evading arrest after jumping in a lake to avoid a warrant.

Deputies from Precinct 5 were dispatched to Driver Green Lane in Lakecrest  to serve Brian Thomas, 51, with an arrest warrant for child support. When they arrived, Thomas ran out of the back door.

He was pursued to a lake behind his home, where he jumped in and swam whole deputies persuaded him to come out. Twenty minutes later, Thomas gave in and was arrested and transported to Harris County jail.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 14, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Katy High softball and Tompkins baseball both won their matchups over the weekend and advance in their bids for a state title.

 

As the #1 ranked team in the Texas as well as #8 in the nation, the Katy High School softball team is headed towards another state playoff game for the second time in 4 years. After winning the match up with Ridge Point on Friday in the 6A regional quarter-finals double header,  the Tigers (36-1) will face Kingwood (33-9) in the semi-finals this week.

Game one against Kingwood will be on Thursday, May 17 at 6:00 pm at Katy. Game two is at Kingwood on Friday, May 18 at 6:00 pm. If a third game is needed to break a tie, it will be held immediately following game two on Friday.

No. 7 state-ranked Tompkins (25-8) baseball team, had some ups and downs over the weekend but came out on top over Westside. This is the first time the falcons have advanced to the regional quarterfinals. They will face Cy Ranch (26-6-2), whom they fell to last year.

  

The games will be played on Saturday, March 19 at Tompkins.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 13, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

 

In an effort to improve the process of reporting abuse and save innocent animals from cruelty, Crime Stoppers of Houston and Community Partners collaborated and created a city-wide animal cruelty task-force and reporting hotline in Harris County.

 

“With over 50 law enforcement agencies in Harris County, citizens often do not know where this type of abuse can be reported.” says Harris County Precinct 5 Constable Ted Heap. “The council’s goal was to make it easy for citizens to report animal cruelty and neglect to the correct agency, thereby helping animals in need as quickly as possible. This also would free up resources that were incorrectly getting the calls.”

 

This taskforce offers two ways citizens can make an animal cruelty report –

  • By calling the reporting hotline 832-927-PAWS. This new hotline will speed up response times and minimize duplication of efforts across the county. The Harris County Animal Shelter call center has committed staff resources to field calls to this number.

  • By submitting an online intake form online at www.927PAWS.org. The taskforce secured a partnership with drumBEAT Marketing and their website, www.Best4Pets.org. drumBEAT Marketing donated the time and service necessary to create this one-stop website where citizens can report animal cruelty through an online intake form and acquire information on all issues pertaining to animal welfare.

The following things can be reported to the taskforce:

  • Neglect

  • Abuse

  • Hoarding

  • Torture

  • Dog Fighting

Through education, awareness and continued collaboration, the Harris County Animal Cruelty Taskforce is dedicated to not only protecting the animals, but also making our city a safer environment for all.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 12, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

 

Do you know the answer? From a powerful love spell to a touching tribute, Katyites are guessing the meaning of the roses, wine, and beautiful gifts mysteriously left on a country road north of Katy.

 

 

 

A Mother’s Day Weekend mystery has come to light after drivers spotted a display of long-stemmed red roses, champagne, and perfume on a golden platter in the middle of Neuman/Stalknecht Road near Morton Road.

 

 

Theories on what it could mean are swirling on social media that include remembrances, witchcraft, and more , but the question still stands – what are they for?

Check out some of the theories and let us know if you can solve this Katy Mystery!

 

Tribute to a Lost Loved One

Many people believe it’s a tribute to a mother or wife lost in car accident ahead of Mother’s Day.

“A couple of old google map photos shows a cross in the field just behind the double arrow street sign. I’m curious to hear this story as well,” B. H.

To me it looks like s memorial to a beloved partner who passed away. Likely a wife or bride to be. 2 glasses of Champaign, roses and other gifts of red….touches my heart and makes me sad for the one left grieving,” C.S.

 

Witchcraft

“I manage spirituality and it seems like an ‘amarre’, it’s a kind of witchcraft, for the beyond, not in this life. It is not good that, don’t touch it!!!!!! No reason to touch it!!!. I recommend not to go through that street. If someone destroy that, with the car or in any way, is very bad.” S. O.

“It’s not a memorial for a mother or a son, definitely it’s witchcraft. The red candles, the apple, the ribbons over the candle, everything are witchcraft things,” S. O.

“As heartfelt as I think I’d like to believe my gut tells me this is witchcraft. I am waiting for someone to chime in. The ribbon around the apple is concerning,” M.C.

A Spiritual Offering

“Looks like an offering to La Santa Muerte,” T. D.

Do you know what it means? Email us! 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 12, 2018

Katy’s Alexis Preston and Jay Patel win dream Disney wedding After Hurricane Harvey devastates home and car.

In honor of the upcoming royal nuptials of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings and ABC’s Good Morning America teamed up on a national search for a couple worthy of a wedding with all the royal accouterments.

About the Couple

Alexis and Jay were engaged at Cinderella’s Royal Table two years ago and dreamed of getting married in the Magic Kingdom, but never thought it would happen. The couple had lost their home and car during hurricane Harvey, and without flood insurance, there would be no money to pay for a wedding. Alexis meet Jay at Morton Ramch High School in 2007 and they started off as friends. “I sat behind him so we kind of formed a friendship,” says Alexis. They met up again during college and have been inseparable since. Ironically, Alexis is currently a teacher at Morton Ranch High School.

The Royal Treatment

Alexis wore an elaborately beaded wedding gown from Kleinfeld , and arrived princess-style in Cinderella’s Glass Coach, pulled by six white ponies. Royal trumpeters, joined by Major Domo (from Cinderella), flower girls and page boys, heralded her arrival. Some women accessorized with fascinators – fancy headwear commonly worn by the English on festive occasions.

See the video below courtesy of ABC News.

 The Wedding Day

According to Disney,  was the first time a wedding was filmed live in front of Cinderella’s Castle. The couple were surrounded by 50 friends and family members as they said I do. That night, the couple was treated to a wedding night stay in the opulent Cinderella Castle Suite in the Magic Kingdom. From there, the newlyweds were sent off on an unforgettable honeymoon in England and France, courtesy of Adventures by Disney.

 “It’s been a hard year,” Alexis told GMA. “So it’s such a blessing to get married at my favorite place in the world.”

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 12, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

At around 4:30 p.m., a gray sedan flipped onto its side on Katy Mills Blvd. & Katy Fort Bend Rd.   

 

The vehicle appeared to be a gray sedan. Three young men around 17 years old were

sitting on the curb without any obvious injuries, while sheriffs and firefighters attempted to pull a fourth out of the car. More updates as this story develops.  

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 11, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton and Katrina Katsarelis

Superintendent announces retirement and board votes yes to pursuing litigation at last night’s meeting.

Proceeding with Lawsuit

At last night’s meeting, the board of trustees voted unanimously to hire outside counsel to pursue litigation for defamation against the superintendent, board members and other employees of Katy ISD that have been harassed in the last few months.

The school board is going forward with a lawsuit to protect the district’s reputation. Several board members stated that the bullying accusations were debilitating for students, faculty and Hindt even affecting hiring of candidates.

An attorney for the district said it’s for that reason they feel it’s necessary to spend what they need to pay for outside counsel. Attorneys would file defamation lawsuits on behalf of the district.

Hindt Announces Retirement Amid Heckling

Dr. Lance Hindt became emotional as he announced his plans to retire as of January 1, 2019. As he announced his plans to retire, a small group of hecklers began cheering and heckling loudly. One of the hecklers yelled “Merry Christmas!”

While some heckled, there were many supporters in the room appearing dismayed and some even began crying.  Hindt stated that his highest professional honor was to come back to the place he was raised and become superintendent, but he has to put his family first now.

Click to watch video

“In light of an organized and relentless and dishonest smear campaign against me, I cannot remain as superintendent of Katy ISD. My family is now my number one priority. They are innocent bystanders. This malicious campaign against me is hurting them severely and I cannot allow it any further,” Hindt said. “I love Katy. But there is a vicious ugliness in the ruthless attacks that I and others have endured. My prayer is this community, the silent majority, comes together and never allows something like this to happen again.”

“My wife and my children, they need me,” Hindt said. “In light of an organized, relentless and dishonest smear campaign against me, I cannot remain superintendent of Katy ISD while fulfilling those duties and still fulfill my sacred duty as a husband and father.”

See the Katy ISD video recording here.

Each board member addressed Dr. Hindt after his resignation expressing love and respect for Dr. Hindt. Many apologized that these attacks on him and his family have led him to resign but understood his decision. As each address was read in the board meeting, those who support Dr. Hindt were shocked and moved to tears. Those in the community that don’t support him, continued yelling out from the audience and heckling during the entire meeting.

Vendetta Against Hindt

The campaign against Lance Hindt was initiated by a Katy ISD dad and internet marketing professional named  Sean Dolan. Dolan started a social media page called, “A Better Legacy” under the guise to stop bullying but many noticed right away it seemed more like a Lance Hindt hate page. Prior to his accusations against Lance Hindt, Dolan surreptitiously recorded meetings with Katy ISD teachers. One of the recordings that Dolan openly posted on social media involved girls in his son’s class pouring Fruit Loops cereal in Dolan’s son’s backpack. When Dolan didn’t like the outcome of his son’s “bullying” situation, many Katy ISD supporters believe that Dolan, who some has been referred to as a  “media pimp” used his internet and social media marketing background to cyberbully the superintendent to quit. Dolan was in attendance at last night’s meeting

Others in Fear of Cyberbullying

The board members told the story of how people in the community (the board did not give any names) have been scared into silence. Most people in the community support the superintendent and Katy ISD but after seeing how Dr. Hindt and his supporters were relentlessly attacked, they have been scared to come forward with their support.

Supporters of Dolan feel that he is bringing things to light in the district that need to address and the group plans to make as much noise as is needed to have their concerns addressed. Many of Dolan’s social media followers don’t live in Katy ISD but heard about the bullying controversy on social media and on news stations.

One of the overall sentiments stated by the board members was “Enough is Enough” of the attacks and cyber bullying that has cast a negative light on our community. It’s time to take a stand against all forms of bullying.

In anticipation of the lawsuit, Dolan has started a gofundme page in an attempt to raise legal fees.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 10, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Say “Thank You” to mom by taking her to one of these events in Katy on Mother’s Day Weekend.

 

Saturday, May 12

  

Mother’s Day Card Paw Drawings
Patsy’s Pet Market
11 a.m.

Fur-children can paint a special picture for their human mommas on an 8.5 x 11 canvas and create a lifelong memory.

Mother’s Day Social

Olive Garden
12 p.m.

Celebrate mom and socialize with other ladies with delicious Italian food and drinks.

Mother’s Day Zumba Party

Be Fit Studio
10 a.m.

Get fit and have fun on Mother’s Day with a 90-minute Zumba session. Non-members can attend for $5.

Sunday, May 13

Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet
Drix Restaurant and Lounge

10:30 a.m.

Treat mom to a special day of food and fun for all she does at Drix. Brunch is only $21 and includes their regular buffet items PLUS baked ham, deviled eggs, shrimp cocktail, and more. Call 281-371-2749 for reservations.

Mother’s Day Brunch
Salt & Pepper Restaurant
9 a.m.

Enjoy special menu items and live music from Katy’s Savannah Adams. Reservations not required.

Mother’s Day Mimosa Bar

11 a.m.

Midway BBQ

All moms deserve mimosas! Head over to Midway BBQ for great food and refreshing drinks starting at 11 a.m.

Mother’s Day Celebration
Pane e Vino Trattoria and Pizzeria
11 a.m.

Shower mom with love at Pane e Vino with an exclusive menu created by the chef.

Single Mom’s Lunch

Second Baptist Church – West Campus

12:15 p.m.

Single moms deserve to be celebrated. After the service, bring the kids out to the playground while the SBC family treats mama to lunch.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 9, 2018  

By Ashley Lancaster  

This week, Harris County law enforcement conducted a “clean out” of the bridge near Rudy’s BBQ near Mason Road and IH-10. Local organizations are currently seeking alternatives to displacement and jail for Katy’s homeless.

 (Opening photo is of an underpass in the Houston metro area)

 

This morning, Katy residents noticed Harris County police clearing out a homeless encampment underneath a bridge near Mason Road, filling huge dumpsters to the brim with trash, clothing, bicycles, and other items left there after homeless men and women in Katy were removed.

The individuals living there were given warning that the clean up was going to happen there, in addition to other inhabited areas of Katy. The problem though, is that these men and women often have nowhere to go, and so end up migrating to similar places in the area for shelter. Sometimes Katy’s homeless are placed in jail for lack of a better alternative.

 Tina Hatcher, founder and director of Hope Impacts, which provides hope to homeless, helpless, and under-resourced people in Katy, is passionately advocating for a long-term solution to the problem, believing that simply moving the homeless, or placing them in jail, only perpetuates a vicious cycle.

“What good does it do to identify a problem without a solution? They have no place to go where they are not at risk to be evicted again. There are not enough shelters to hold all the homeless,” she says.

According to Hatcher, who knows many of these men and women on a first name basis, not all are addicts or criminals. Some have been the victim of circumstances outside of their control, and most are on housing lists, just waiting for a chance to get a job and get off the streets.

“Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect as human beings,” she says.

Hope Impacts has helped 60 homeless men and women re-build their lives and get to work in the last three years, but Hatcher knows that a more permanent solution is needed.

“My vision is to have some property where we can offer affordable housing, job opportunities, community, and real help. Community First in Austin is a good model of real solutions of how to help the chronically homeless. Its a model I would love to see implemented here near Katy. Offering real solutions to a bigger problem than just one small group of people that are affected by homelessness. Lets be part of a solution to social injustice instead of just pointing out the problems created by it,” she says.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 8, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster 

 

Frank Bielec, the wise-cracking, fan favorite cast member who starred in all eight seasons of the original series (200 – 2008), is returning to TLC’s Trading Spaces for the reboot – and with a completely different goal.

 

In a 2018 reboot, many members of the original cast are returning, including Katy’s very own Frank Bielec. Frank was a hit with fans of Trading Spaces because of his uncanny comedic timing, talent, and work ethic.

“It was very easy going back to the show. It was as if we left the room and came back in a moment later,” says Bielec.

 

Returning members from the original TS cast include Gen, Hildi, Ty, Carter, Vern, Doug, Laurie, Amy Wynn, and show host, Paige. In addition to the veteran cast, there are three new designers, and two new painters joining in the fun.

As far as design goes, Bielec says he is no longer concerned with creating “pretty” rooms. “I am focusing on… how to make a home functional and safe. Editing your space. Most importantly, getting rid of things you don’t need. Never seen a U-Haul behind a hearse,” he says.

 

Creating functional, practical spaces is Frank’s main priority. “I have never seen a U-Haul behind a hearse, where we are going, the Lord will provide, so I don’t stress over paint color,” he says.

When he’s not working with the TS crew, Frank and his wife run a business called Mosey n Me, a site where they sell handmade quilting patterns.

Check out Trading Spaces on TLC Saturdays at 7 p.m. CST.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 7, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

This week, local businesses are showing their love and appreciation for the teachers and nurses that sacrifice so much time to caring for others with free and discounted products and services. Check out where to get them in Katy.

 

NURSES

Chick-fil-A

Today, May 7, nurses can get a free sandwich at the Mason Road, Cinco Ranch, and Katy Green locations when they present their badge or ID. Here’s some more great freebies and discounts this week:

 

 

-Tuesday: Teachers (11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

– Wednesday: Military and Veterans (11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

– Thursday: Police & First Responders ( 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

PDQ Cinco Ranch 

Nurses can get half off their total check on Tuesday, May 8 with their ID.

Cinnabon (Katy Mills Mall)

Now through May 12, get one free classic roll, Minibon Roll, or four-count Bon Bites with a badge.

Chipotle

On June 5, nurses can present a valid work ID and get BOGO bowls, salads, tacos or burritos.

TEACHERS

Chick-fil-A

On Tuesday, May 8, 2018, teachers can present their ID at the Mason Road, Cinco Ranch, or Katy Green locations and redeem a free sandwich from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. But that’s not all! They have a special treat for nearly everyone this week:

– Monday: Nurses & EMT’s (11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

-Tuesday: Teachers (11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

– Wednesday: Military and Veterans (11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

– Thursday: Police & First Responders ( 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)

Michael’s

Teachers can get 15% their entire in-store purchase

PDQ Cinco Ranch 

Teachers can get half off their total check on Tuesday, May 8 with their teacher ID.

 

Drix Restaurant & Lounge

Teachers get an additional $1 Happy Hour prices every Tuesday.

Chipotle
Teachers and faculty get a buy-one-get-one deal on Tuesday, May 8, from 3 p.m. to close with a valid ID.

Texas Roadhouse

Teachers can get 10% off their meal every Tuesday with a valid school ID.

Barnes & Noble

Teachers get a 20% discount on qualifying purchases when they are a part of the B&N Educator Program.

Cicis Pizza

Teachers get a free adult buffet at the pizza chain Tuesday with a valid school ID.

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria (LaCenterra at Cinco Ranch)

Teachers can present their school ID and get 15% off a dine-in purchase and take out orders Monday, May 7 – Friday, May 12.

Raisin’ Cane’s

Bring your ID inside on Tuesday, May 8, from 3-8 p.m. for a free box combo.

Did we miss a great deal? Email us! 

The murder of Belinda Temple is a crime that has been looming over Katy for more than 19 years. May 3, David Temple was back in court to ask the judge for a speedy trial.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

May 6, 2018

Jennifer Skelton

 

In a case that has seen more twists and turns than a Texas roller coaster, State District Judge Kelli Johnson granted a continuance on the murder trial of David Temple but also scheduled the trial, should it occur, for either Nov. 2 or February 2019.

Defense attorney, Stanley Schneider, who is demanding a speedy trial and is refusing to agree to continuances. “We’re disappointed that the trial court granted the state’s motion for continuance,” Schneider said after the brief hearing. “We want to go trial. David is innocent.” A motion was filed to dismiss the case because David is not receiving a speedy trial, which he is guaranteed.

WHO IS BELINDA TEMPLE?

Belinda Temple was a beloved Katy High School special education teacher, mom to a 3-year old little boy, and wife of David Temple. At the time of her murder on January 11, 1999, she was pregnant with the couple’s second child…at little girl to be named Erin.

She grew up in Nacogdoches. After graduation, she attended Sam Houston State University where she met David Temple. The two dated throughout college. After, they were married in 1992 and she moved to Katy, Texas (David’s hometown).

Belinda was a devoted mother and teacher.

WHO IS DAVID TEMPLE?

David Temple was a star athlete on the Katy High football team. He went on to play football at Sam Houston State University where he met Belinda Temple.

David was a coach and teacher at Alief Hastings High School. From the outside, things appeared happy in his marriage and family life but after his wife was murdered, authorities learned that David was carrying on an affair with a co-worker, Heather Scott.

Although, David and Heather told authorties that their affair was new and didn’t mean anything, they went on to wed a few years after the murder.

CONVICTION

David was arrested in 2004 for the murder of Belinda. There was never a piece of forensic evidence connecting him to the murder. The case was a circumstantial one. The district attorney, Kelly Siegler, hoped that all the circumstantial evidence would add up to murder in the jury’s mind.

The trial began three years later in 2007. To the delight of the prosecution and many who had followed this case for eight years, David Temple was convicted of the murder of Belinda Temple and sentenced to life in prison.

CONVICTION OVERTURNED

David Temple appealed his conviction to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. After losing two appeals, Temple was granted a new hearing to find out if he should have a new trial. Judge Larry Gist found that Temple’s constitutional rights were violated because of the misconduct of prosecutor Kelly Siegler. To this day, Siegler defends her decisions in the Temple case.

Temple’s attorneys argued that county prosecutors violated the law by withholding significant evidence about an alternative suspect and other information that could have cast doubt on his guilt…36 facts that the prosecutors should have turned over or turned over too late for the defense to successfully be able to analyze and use it.

Judge Gist’s findings were only a recommendation and David would have to wait longer for the decision of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. In a split decision in November 2016, they agreed with Judge Gist. David’s conviction was overturned and he was granted a new trial. David was released on bond in December of 2016.

WHAT’S NEXT?

Prosecutors have not decided if they will move forward with a re-trial. The special prosecutors were appointed after the Harris County District Attorney’s Office recused the office, saying there were too many conflicts of interest with the district attorney Kim Ogg.

Evan Temple was raised by David’s second wife, Heather. He maintained a close relationship with his father. They have led a private life but by all reports, Evan was able to have a normal, happy childhood the best he could due to the circumstances.

Belinda Temple’s family still believes that David Temple is guilty of the murder of their daughter and her unborn daughter, Erin. David Temple’s family supports him and believes in his innocence…they have gone bankrupt fighting for his freedom for 13 years.

The case is considered closed, but many think justice was not served and that the killer is still out there.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 5, 2018  

Katy Magazine Editors

Katy ISD has announced the results for the 2018 school board election for position 6 and 7.

 

Congratulations to Dawn Champagne and Susan Gesoff for being elected to represent Katy ISD on the Board of Trustees.

 

About Susan Gesoff (Position 6)

Susan won the position with 3,324 votes versus 2,182 for Scott Martin.

Susan Gesoff is married to husband Glen and they have lived in Katy for 13 years. The couple has three daughters Katie 24, Carly 21, and Kelly 18, who all graduated from Seven Lakes High. Susan is a former Katy ISD teacher (2006-2012) who has also volunteered in her children’s schools and with the theatre and choir booster clubs at Beckendorff Junior High and Seven Lakes High. She also volunteers with the National Charity League. She currently works as an Engineer at BP.

About Dawn Champagne (Position 7)

Dawn Champagne won the position with 3,025 votes versus 2,629 for Don Massey.

Dawn, her husband, Brett, and three children have lived in Katy for 17 years, currently residing in Kelliwood. Their three children attend and/or graduated from Taylor High School. Dawn has volunteered in Katy ISD  for over a decade at the school and district level. She also volunteers at her church, St. Peter’s UMC, and other organizations. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Houston with a Consumer Science Degree and also holds a Masters of Business Administration from University of Houston.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS    
May 5, 2018  

By Katy Magazine Editors 

 

City of Katy council has announced the results for the 2018 council elections for Ward A, Ward B and At-Large positions.

 

Congratulations to Janet Corte, Councilman Durran Dowdle, and Chris Harris for being elected to represent the City of Katy.

About Janet Corte (Ward A)

Janet and her husband have lived in Katy for 29 years and love this town!  They have raised four children that attended KISD schools. Janet is an active member of First United Methodist Church, providing support to the young group, Sunday school and confirmation classes. She has been a working mother while her children were growing up, working as an IT Consultant. In her career, Corte has been responsible for projects from inception through closure including project estimating, scheduling and planning, adherence to schedules and project scope, and client communication. She has volunteered in our community for many years as her children’s Girl Scout troop leader and volunteered in the children’s school including President of Project Graduation for the Katy High graduating class of 2004.

About Councilman Durran Dowdle (Ward B)

Councilman Dowdle has 30 years experience in the Construction, Operations & Maintenance industry and has been employed by KBR for over 20 years, currently as a Project Manager. He and his wife, Terri, have been married for 34 years. They have two daughters who graduated from Katy High School, and two grandchildren. Councilman Dowdle served on the Zoning Board of Adjustment before being appointed to the Convention & Tourism Bureau prior to being elected to City Council. He has been in construction and maintenance for 35 years, managing people, projects and budgets. Councilman Dowdle has a history of service in this city, volunteering as a coach, at church, at public events, and at KISD. Councilman Dowdle is finishing up his second term on the City of Katy council and if elected, the third term would be his last due to term limits.

About Chris Harris (At Large)

Chris and his wife Danielle have lived in Katy for 12 years, although Danielle, who teaches 7th grade Math for Katy ISD, grew up in Katy. Their three kids are third-generation Katy residents. Chris Harris played an instrumental role in organizing Hurricane Harvey relief. Not only did he organize matching student and adult volunteers with individuals in need of  “mucking” out their homes, but Chris drove around delivering food to the homes of whomever needed it. Harris also helped set up temporary relief center for Katy Christian Ministries, after KCM was damaged during the hurricane. As a member of the Katy Development Board, a historical marker was placed at Katy Elementary.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 5, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Third through fifth grade members of the Kindness Crew are on a mission to spread joy and friendship to every student at Bryant Elementary through easy, fun, and uplifting weekly challenges.

Once a month, students from third, fourth, and fifth grade meet with the school counselor at Bryant Elementary to talk about what is happening in the lives of Bengals, including setbacks and successes.

  

Each member of the Kindness Crew has input in creating weekly challenges. The entire campus competes, and students can nominate each other to be recognized for showing acts of extreme kindness.

Every Monday, the Kindness Crew greets students showing up for the day with a high-five and a “Good Morning!”

“They line the entry way to the school, getting kids motivated to start their week off right,” says Assistant Principal Lindsay O’Leary.

This month, they created motivational posters for students that will be taking the STAAR test.

“To have the Kindness Crew be models for our younger Bengals has gotten my 2nd grade class excited about completing kindness challenges. When they see those older students are motivated each week to do something kind for others, they want to follow along, which brings our whole school together,” says second grade teacher, Christi Elrod.

One of the favorite challenges so far has been the “Talk to Someone New” Challenge, where kids are encouraged to say hello to a student they have never met.

Bryant Elementary staff hopes that the Bengals’ example will inspire other Katy ISD campuses to join in. “The culture of kindness we have here at Bryant has really been in large part to the intentional importance our counselor and administrators have placed on being kind to others. There is not just a “beginning of the year push” to have students exhibit kindness, but a purposeful, sustained effort to keep kindness on the hearts and minds of our students and faculty,” says Elrod.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 4, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

With over 8,000 special education students currently enrolled at Katy Independent School District, a familiar face will now be the new Director of Compliance for Special Education.

Gwen Coffey’s new role was formally announced to the public by the Katy ISD Board of Trustees during the monthly board meeting.

 

Coffey is currently the principal at Roberta Rylander Elementary. As part of her new endeavors, she will direct the district’s special education program to ensure the provision comprehensive services for students with disabilities. She will also work to individualize educational plans that meet the needs of all students with disabilities and ensure compliance with state, federal and local requirements.

 

“My belief is that our students are our most valuable resource.  Increased student learning and achievement are my passion,” said Coffey.  “I am honored to have the opportunity to work collaboratively with our Katy community to help increase achievement for all students.”

Ms. Coffey’s educational experience extends to several professions within school campuses.  She began her career in 1997 as a teacher in Corpus Christi, Texas.  Two years later she joined the Katy ISD family as a teacher at Golbow Elementary where she taught both general education and special education for six years.  Her next endeavor was as a counselor at Huggins Elementary at Lamar Consolidated Independent School District.  Following that, she was a middle school counselor for one year at Bammel Middle School in Spring ISD, which lead to her taking the assistant principal position at that school.  However, Ms. Coffey knew that Katy ISD was her home and decided to come back as an Assistant Principal at Cimarron Elementary.

 

Ms. Coffey holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, a Master of Science in Elementary Curriculum and Instruction, a Masters of Education in Counseling, and she is currently in obtaining her Doctoral Degree in Educational Leadership from Texas Tech University.  Coffey will begin her new endeavor in June 2018.

Here is the list of prominent, influential, inspirational, strong, and charitable women who are leading the way in Katy. (Consider yourselves all #1 because these are in ALPHABETICAL ORDER.)

 

KATY MAGAZINE  l  MAY 2018

By Katy Magazine Editors

 

1. BEVERLY ALLEN

 Development Manager of Christ Clinic

2. DIANE ALLEN

Anti-Sex Trafficking Champion

3. KATHY ALT
Executive Director of Ballard House

4. YVONNE ARCENEAUX

Parks Director for Willow Fork Drainage District

5. ERIN BALLARD

Philanthropist and Volunteer; Namesake of Ballard House   

6. GIGI BETHKE

Katy Educator and School Namesake

7. REBECCA BLACKMON

VP of Prosperity Bank and First Woman in the Katy Rotary

8. JOY LEE BOLIN

Longtime Katy Resident and Volunteer

9. MARTHA BROWN

Katy ISD KEYS Mentor and Katy ISD Partners in Education

10. FELICE BRYANT

Katy Educator and School Namesake

11. MISSY BUNCH

City Secretary, City of Katy 

 

12. KAY CALLENDER

Keep Katy Beautiful

13. AMY CAMPBELL

 Special Needs Advocate and Katy ISD Namesake

14. Dr. CHRISTINE CASKEY

Chief Academic Officer, Katy ISD

15. KRISTEN COWAN

Founder of Smilin’ Rylen Foundation

16. CHRISTA CLIFTON

Memorial Hermann Executive and Community Volunteer

17. DEYSI CRESPO

Executive Director of Katy Christian Ministries

18. CHRIS CROCKETT

Education Advocate and Community Volunteer

19. CARRA DANIELS

Principal of Beck Junior High

20. KEIKO DAVIDSON

Katy Educator and School Namesake 

21. GINGER DEWBERRY

Katy Search and Rescue Champion in Hurricane Harvey

22. MINDY DICKERSON

Paetow High School Principal

23. PEGGY DIMMICK

Director of Katy’s Fussell Senior Center

24. MARIA DIPETTA

Katy ISD Media Relations and Multimedia Manager

25, FATIMA DONALDSON

Artist, photographer, and arts philanthropist

26. TAMARA DORE

Owner of Katy Budget Books

27. LORI DOUCET ALEXANDER

Nottingham/Kelliwood Fry Road Tree Activist

28. WENDY DUNCAN

President of Willow Fork Drainage Ditch 

29. COURTNEY DOYLE

Katy ISD Board of Trustees

30. DANA DUSEK

Baby Gowns for Eternity

31. DIANA ELDER

Katy FFA champion and volunteer

32. REBECCA FOX

Katy ISD Board of Trustees

33. ANNIE GERHARDT

President of Cinco Ranch Ladies Club

34. KAYE GOOLSBY

Political activist and national grassroots chair for Ted Cruz, and others.

35. SHARON GRAF

Social Media Liaison for Harris County ESD 48 and Search and Rescue at TEXSAR

36. DR. LISA GRAHAM-GARZA

Local dentist and founder of Autism Rescue Angels

37. REBEKAH GREGORY

Boston Marathon bombing survivor, amputee, writer, and speaker

38. DR. ANDREA GROOMS

Katy ISD Chief Communications Officer

39. SALLY GUPTON

Assistant Principal of Creech Elementary

40. ELIZABETH HANSON

Past president of the RWCK and Cinco Ranch Ladies Club

41. SUSAN DENISE HASTINGS

Katy Christian Ministries Crisis Center Director

42.TINA HATCHER

Founder of Hope Impacts

43. PATTY HENSON

Director of the Katy High Bengal Brigade for 34 years

44. KATHRYN HINDT

Teacher and First Lady of Katy ISD

45. LORA HODGES

ELA Instructional Coach at Exley Elementary

46. BONNIE HOLLAND

Associate Superintendent, Administration, Governance and Legal Affairs, School Namesake

47. SAMANTHA HOLSOMBACK 

Entrepreneur and avid volunteer

48. NICOLE ISTRE

Owner and founder of Katy’s Early Childhood Enrichment Center, and early childhood education trainer and consultant

49. LESLYN JACKS

District Wide Elementary Teacher of the Year and Katy Elementary Music Teacher

50. KAREN JAGGERS

Autism advocate and owner of Stokan Jaggers & Associates

51. EFFIE KATSABAS

Co-owner of Snappy’s Restaurant

52. TYLER KAY

Mural Artist

53. MICHELLE LACOUR

First Lady of the Katy Area EDC

54. PATTI LACY

VP of the Board for Katy Christian Ministries

55. GAIL LAND

Retired music educator and avid volunteer

56. KELLY LITVAK

Anti-Sex Trafficking Champion, founder of Childproof America

57. CARRIE LOWERY

Principal at Bethke Elementary

58. EUBERTA LUCAS

Principal of Creech Elementary

59. ANITA MANCINI

Director of Katy Cowgirls

60. ANNIE MEEKS

District wide Rookie Teacher of the Year

61. LISA MARIE

Golf Celebrity

62. DR. DOREEN MARTINEZ

Principal of Memorial Parkway Elementary

63. KERRI MCCURDY

Established Moms to the Rescue during Hurricane Harvey

64. STEPHANIE MCDANIEL

Founder of Graeme’s Superheroes

65. DR. IMELDA MEDRANO

Principal at Seven Lakes JH

66. LINDA MERRELL

Retired educator, avid volunteer, on the board of Katy Cares

67. KRISTIN MILLER

Arts Advocate and Volunteer

68. KATHRYN MILLS

Educator and Hurricane Harvey Book Club Founder

69. ABI MORTON

Founder of Clothed By Faith

70. DAWN MORTUS

Founder of Keep Kids Connected 

71. CHELSEA MUESSE

Widow of Jordan Muesse

72. JOAN MURRAY

Author, missionary, speaker, pastor.

73. ANNE MURRAY-REARDON

Cancer survivor and volunteer

74. SHARI NIGHTINGALE

Founder of Lindsay’s Light, speaker, and relationship violence educator

75. ERICA NOWELL

Cancer survivor and now a Cancer Nurse Practitioner

76. JENNIFER PIERCE

Chick-fil-A Marketing Director and Community Volunteer

77. LARISSA PLUNTO

Community Relations Director for Congressman Michael McCaul

78. KAYCE REINA

Tourism and Marketing Director for the City of Katy

79. LILY ROGERS

Social Services Director, Katy Christian Ministries

80. DR. SUSAN RICE

McMeans Junior High Principal

81. JENNIFER ROYO

Co-Owner of No Label Brewery and Philanthropist

82. CHERYL SAGE

Entrepreneur and Early Childhood Education Expert

83. MANDY SANDLIN

District Wide Teacher of the Year and OTHS Teacher

84. SANDY SCHMIDT

Keep Katy Beautiful

85. ABBIE SCHOMBURG

Special Needs Advocate, Katy Wolfpack coach

86. PATTI SHAFER

Katy Educator and School Namesake

87. SUSAN SMITH

Business owner, philanthropist, and community volunteer

88. MARSHA SMITH

Vice President of KARE (Katy Association of Retired Teachers) and avid community volunteer.

89. PATSY STANLEY

Katy Educator and School Namesake

90. DR. MELINDA STONE

Principal at WoodCreek JH

91. MELANIE SUKOLICS

Business owner, avid volunteer, Harvey hero

92. JANET THEIS

Katy ISD Partners in Education and Katy ISD Education Foundation

93. ASHLEY VANN

President of Katy ISD Board of Trustees

94. RHONDA WARD

Assistant Superintendent, Student Support Services

95. CHAKILA WHITE

VP of DaVita Healthcare and Volunteer

96. TARA WILSON

President of the Board of Directors, Katy ISD Education Foundation

97. CINDY WINGO

President of RWCK

98. JAMIE WOLMAN

Former Katy ISD educator, Keep Katy Beautiful board member, and school namesake

99. DR LORENA ZERTUCHE

Bear Creek Elementary Principal

100. SYLVIA ZERWAS

Wife of Rep. John Zerwas

We solicited nominations from community leaders and readers on social media venues and through email to compile these 100 Top Katy Women of 2018!

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 3, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Rain or shine the Katy Wild West Brewfest has become a yearly tradition in Katy. This event will feature 150+ Specialty Craft Brewers from various locations all around the country while featuring over 600 individualized craft brews!

BeerYeit.com has awarded the WWBF the “#1 event in the Country” two years in a row for both 2016 and 2017. What makes this event special and unique is that 100% of the profits are donated to local charities.

 

NOT JUST FOR BEER ENTHUSIASTS

This event is not just for the beer drinker. In addition to the multiple beer gardens, there are also game zones, food and music throughout the event.Many levels of tickets are available including the “Designated Driver” and VIP – No Beer” for those choosing not to drink. For those that do want to enjoy one of the many beer options, tickets begin at $35 for “General Admission”.

WWBF features 6 covered zones that includes bands, DJ’s, tables and chairs, and great beer all day!

The bands/singers that are set to perform are Kaos, Nervous Rex Band, Horizon, Nathan Quick Band, Cooper Wade & Unchained Freight, Cowboy Diplomacy, Jelly Ellington and The Powell Brothers.

HELPING OTHERS

The Wild West Brewfest is proudly hosted by the Katy Rotary Club of Texas. In the past, this event has given back to many local organizations.

  • Camp Hope

  • West Side Homeless

  • Taylor High School

  • Katy Christian Ministries

  • Armor of Hope

In addition, after Hurricane Harvey, an additional $10,000 in funds was allocated to help the organizations helping those affected.

WHEN AND WHERE

Launch Party – Friday, May 4th 2018 7:00pm to 10:00 pm

Come out Friday night to the Katy Mills Mall (on the east side at the H&M entrance) to have some great food, great music and hand-selected beers from the “Purveyor of Intoxicating Liquids!” The focus is on local breweries. Grab your hotel room quickly for this one, and stay the night Friday and party all day Saturday at the WWBF with us!

Get your tickets for the Launch Party here.

Original Wild West Brewfest – Saturday, May 5th 3:00 pm to 9:00 pm

With over 80 Brewers each bringing a minimum of 4 taps/brands come find out why we are the most sought after to visit Brewfest in the country. Children welcome.

Get your advance tickets here.

 

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 3, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

The parcel of land left vacant for so long at the northeast corner of Pin Oak Road and IH-10 will become The Villages at Katy.

 

Eighty-four acres of land just north of IH-10 will soon become the mixed-use development, The Villages at Katy.

 

It’s proximity to the energy corridor, multiple master planned communities like Cane Island, and countless area amenities make it the ideal spot for new businesses looking to expand in West Houston. The master plan includes retail, residential, hotel, office and civic space.

More Businesses Coming to Katy

During a memorable gathering at the Leonard E. Merrell Center, Katy Independent School District Superintendent Lance Hindt, along with Board of Trustees, honored the “Of the Year” employees.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 2, 2018

 

Among those recognized were:  District-wide Campus Teacher of the Year, District-wide Rookie Teacher of the Year, Principals of the Year, Nurse of the Year and Counselors of the Year.

District-wide Elementary Campus Teacher of the Year

Leslyn Jacks is the Music Specialist and Director of the Choir program at Katy Elementary (KE).  Since joining KE her choirs have doubled in enrollment and she has directed more than 30 performances leading to a record number of her students continuing their music courses at the junior high level. This year, her and her students performed just six weeks after Hurricane Harvey spreading joy through music and demonstrating the resilience of the Katy Community. Jacks is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018.

District-wide Secondary Campus Teacher of the Year

Amanda Sandlin is a psychology teacher at Tompkins High School (OTHS).  Through her lessons, Sandlin seeks to bring the content alive for her students.  Her greatest goal is for them to gain skills to succeed outside the classroom.  She utilizes the study of positive psychology to help her students lead meaningful and fulfilling lives. Sandlin is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018.

District-wide Elementary Rookie Teacher of the Year

Annie Meeks is an English Language Arts (ELA) and social studies teacher at Stephens Elementary (USE).  She may have just begun her teaching career this year but she has made an impression with her tenacity and ability to build relationships.  She believes that in a world full of technology and distractions, it is important to find ways to better maintain students’ focus. Meeks is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018.

 

District-wide Secondary Rookie Teacher of the Year

Rebecca Calfee from Mayde Creek Junior High (MCJH) began her career this year as an eighth grade social studies teacher.  Calfee is a product of Katy ISD and she sets her students up for success through detailed lesson planning.  Her preparation and skillset set her apart from others as she gives the impression of a seasonal veteran, rather than a first-year teacher.  She spends her extra time tutoring her students and makes a point of attending student activities outside of her classroom to show support.

District-wide Nurse of the Year

Kim Cromie, from Bonnie Holland Elementary (BHE), moved from California to Maryland and was involved in a Head Start program as the Health and Safety Administrator.  This opportunity ignited her love of working with children and families. That is when she went into nursing school. When she and her husband moved to Katy she was given the opportunity to be the campus nurse at BHE.  She knew she had finally found her calling.  Besides keeping students healthy, Nurse Cromie also mentors other nurses in Katy ISD.

District-wide Elementary Counselor of the Year

Susan Coventon has spent the last 21 years in education at Katy ISD.  Even though she started out as a teacher, she realized her calling was in counseling.  She is currently the school counselor at Nottingham Country Elementary (NCE) where she dedicates her time to guide students in their journey toward healing and success.  Coventon’s experience is widespread and includes training of trainers in crisis prevention & preparedness as well as mental health. You will find her volunteering at Bo’s Place, offering grief-counseling support for children and their families.

District-wide Junior High Counselor of the Year

Jodi Darcey has been a counselor at Katy ISD for six years and a district lead counselor for the past three.  She is currently at WoodCreek Junior High where she uses her skills, coupled with the desire to help others to connect with students and staff.  Through guidance, character building, individual and group counseling coupled with parent education and counselor collaboration, Darcey knows everyone can succeed.

 

District-wide High School Counselor of the Year

Glynn Guynes from Katy High School began his career in Katy ISD in 2007 as a counselor at Katy High School (KHS).  In 2012, Guynes started serving in the roll of KHS Lead Counselor and as District Lead Counselor.  That year he was also named the KHS Support Staff Member of the Year. He serves as a mentor to new counselors and coordinates the new counselor orientation.

 

District-wide Elementary Principal of the Year

Stephens Elementary Principal Stephanie Vaughan has demonstrated great leadership not just at her current campus but also at Sundown Elementary and Franz Elementary where she previously excelled in her passion for education.  In March 2007, Vaughan opened the newly named Ursula Stephen Elementary (USE) as their principal and she has been there for the past 11 years.  Her commitment to educational excellence and student achievement can be seen in the numerous recognitions the campus has received.

 

District-wide Secondary Principal of the Year

Mindy Dickerson currently serves as the principal of Patricia E. Paetow High School.  Her passion is teaching the whole child.  She believes very strongly in both adult and student learning through choice, as well as basing decisions on what is best for learners.  Her career in Katy ISD began as an elementary school teacher. During her tenure as principal at Beckendorff Junior High (BDJH), the campus received the Texas and National Schools to Watch distinction for teaching the whole child and providing a great learning experience tailored to middle school students. Dickerson is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018. Read about her here.

Congratulations to all Katy ISD “Of the Year” employees!

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

April 27, 2018 

 

 

The Katy ISD Police Department in partnership with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public an opportunity to safely dispose of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription medications.

According to the DEA, pharmaceutical drugs can be just as dangerous as street drugs when taken without a prescription or a doctor’s supervision.  Needles or sharp objects will not be accepted and any liquids must be in prescribed containers.  The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

“The majority of teenagers who are abusing prescription drugs usually get these medications from family and friends or simply by taking them from a family medicine cabinet,” says Chief of Police Robert Jinks.  “Through take-back programs people have a better option to dispose of old drugs,” adds Jinks.

Date/Time

Saturday, April 28, 2018
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Drop Off Location

Mark L. Hopkins Law Enforcement Center
20370 Franz Rd.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

April 29, 2018  

by Jennifer Skelton  

 

The groundbreaking ceremony for High School #9 and Junior High #16, located in Cross Creek Ranch, will take place on Monday, April 30 at 11:00 a.m.

 

The new junior high and high school are located a few blocks away from Amy Campbell Elementary opening August 2018. Click here to read about Amy.

Junior high #16 is scheduled to open August of 2019 at a cost of $54,920,468 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond.

High school #9 is scheduled to open July 2020 at a cost of $206,074,464 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond. This high school will have the district’s competition natatorium.

The Groundbreaking ceremony is located at 27500 Fulshear Bend Dr, Fulshear, TX 77441. Click here for map.

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KATY MAGAZINE ONLINE  

April 30, 2018

by Jennifer Skelton

 

John Paul’s Landing Park, named for Pope John Paul II, is now open in the northwest quadrant of Katy ISD on West Road between Grand Parkway and Katy Hockley Road.

 

With more than 850 acres, John Paul’s Landing is one of Harris County Sheriff Precinct 5’s biggest parks. Currently, the park surrounded by fields of grass and trees but not for long.  In the next 5 to 10 years, this area will be filled with houses and families. In 2019, Katy ISD elementary school #42 will open, servicing this area, which will include the subdivisions of Elyson and Morton Creek.

 

Located on West Road, between Katy Hockley Road and Grand Parkway, the park features three separate entrances accessible off West Road. The three areas are only accessible by a walking trail within the park.

At 24202 West Road and 24502 West Road, both areas offer the same option although not identical. Families can enjoy a nice day on the playgrounds, 2.6 miles of walking trails or by throwing a party in reservable picnic pavilions. To make reservations call (281) 531-1592 or email pct3parks@pct3.com.

The third area, located at 24002 West Road, includes a 150-acre, stocked lake. A walking trail weaves around the lake. Fishing is permitted following the freshwater fishing rules of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. According to the signs at the lake, it is stocked with Bass, Catfish, Crappie and Sunfish. In addition to providing an opportunity for sport fishermen, the lake at John Paul’s Landing Park will be linked to Langham Creek and help mitigate downstream flooding.

Hours of operation are 7:00 am – 10:00 pm.

John Paul’s Landing Park, named for Pope John Paul II, is now open in the northwest quadrant of Katy ISD on West Road between Grand Parkway and Katy Hockley Road.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 30, 2018

by Jennifer Skelton

 

With more than 850 acres, John Paul’s Landing is one of Harris County Sheriff Precinct 5’s biggest parks. Currently, the park surrounded by fields of grass and trees but not for long.  In the next 5 to 10 years, this area will be filled with houses and families. In 2019, Katy ISD elementary school #42 will open, servicing this area, which will include the subdivisions of Elyson and Morton Creek.

 

Located on West Road, between Katy Hockley Road and Grand Parkway, the park features three separate entrances accessible off West Road. The three areas are only accessible by a walking trail within the park.

At 24202 West Road and 24502 West Road, both areas offer the same option although not identical. Families can enjoy a nice day on the playgrounds, 2.6 miles of walking trails or by throwing a party in reservable picnic pavilions. To make reservations call (281) 531-1592 or email pct3parks@pct3.com.

The third area, located at 24002 West Road, includes a 150-acre, stocked lake. A walking trail weaves around the lake. Fishing is permitted following the freshwater fishing rules of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. According to the signs at the lake, it is stocked with Bass, Catfish, Crappie and Sunfish. In addition to providing an opportunity for sport fishermen, the lake at John Paul’s Landing Park will be linked to Langham Creek and help mitigate downstream flooding.

Hours of operation are 7:00 am – 10:00 pm.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

April 29, 2018  

by Jennifer Skelton  

The groundbreaking ceremony for High School #9 and Junior High #16, located in Cross Creek Ranch, will take place on Monday, April 30 at 11:00 a.m.

 

The new junior high and high school are located a few blocks away from Amy Campbell Elementary opening August 2018. Click here to read about Amy.

Junior high #16 is scheduled to open August of 2019 at a cost of $54,920,468 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond.

High school #9 is scheduled to open July 2020 at a cost of $206,074,464 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond. This high school will have the district’s competition natatorium.

The Groundbreaking ceremony is located at 27500 Fulshear Bend Dr, Fulshear, TX 77441. Click here for map.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 18, 2018 

With just weeks to go before elections for Katy City Council, the Katy master-planned community of Cane Island will host a candidate forum on Thursday, April 19 starting at 6:30 p.m.

 

Moderated by State Representative Mike Schofield, the City of Katy Council Candidate Forum will take place in Cane Island’s Amenity Village multi-purpose room, 2100 Cane Island Parkway.   The event is open to the public.

 

Each participating candidate will present a two-minute opening statement followed by a 20-minute question-and-answer session and a two-minute closing statement.

The at-large candidates will participate from 6:30 – 7 p.m., Ward A candidates from 7 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. and Ward B candidates from 7:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

 

To reach Cane Island, take the Cane Island Parkway exit off Interstate 10 minutes west of the Grand Parkway.  Head north on Cane Island Parkway and take the roadway directly into the community.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 18, 2018

Katrina Katsarelis

 The Katy ISD police is warning parents and students about a recent stranger danger incident.

Police are cautioning parents after a Taylor High School female student was approached by a man on her way to school. The student said the man insisted on giving her a ride.The student says she was walking along Kingsland Boulevard Tuesday morning when an older Hispanic man in a tan truck asked if she needed a ride.

 The student said she told him “no,” but that he wouldn’t give up. The man drove off, then came back around and asked her if she needed a ride again. She called her mother and stayed on the phone with her until she made it to the school safely.

The student said he was driving an older model tan Chevy pickup truck and described the man as hispanic, in his 40s or 50s with slicked black hair, gray facial hair and wearing a black T-shirt and navy blue pants.

If you have information about this case, please contact the Katy ISD Police Department.

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April 19, 2018  

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

Jennifer Skelton  

 

We asked position 7 Board of Trustees candidates Dawn Champagne and Don Massey some questions to help voters learn more about these Board of Trustee candidates.

 ABOUT DAWN CHAMPAGNE

Dawn, her husband, Brett, and three children have lived in Katy for 17 years, currently residing in Kelliwood. Their three children attend and/or graduated from Taylor High School. Dawn has volunteered in Katy ISD  for over a decade at the school and district level. She also volunteers at her church, St. Peter’s UMC, and other organizations. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Houston with a Consumer Science Degree and also holds a Masters of Business Administration from University of Houston.

 

Why did you choose to run?

I feel that this is the next step for me. I am ready to be a voice for our community of students, parents and teachers.  I have spent a vast amount of my time during the last 16 years as a full time volunteer with not only Katy ISD, but also with Scouts, my church, and National Charity League. I am there, nearly on a daily basis, with the people most important to the district: the children and teachers.

What qualifies you for this position?

I have a vast amount of experience working with parents, teachers and children and a broad understanding of our district because of my involvement not only with my kids’ schools but also with numerous community organizations. I would speculate that about 80% of my time is spent working with parents, teachers, administrators or children.  I know these people (parents, teachers and children), and these are the people that the decisions made by the school board affect the most.  I am with the people who are directly involved in the day to day occurrences at our schools. I understand what the people of our district need, because I am with them on a daily basis.

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

The Safety and Security of our children is #1. I don’t want our kids being scared to go to school!  I want to help build a stronger relationship with the community at large. The school district is the center of the community, and therefore all community members should be heard.  I want to make sure that all kids are given equal opportunity. I want to make sure that we maintain great communication between parents, teachers and staff. Good communication is key to all problem solving.

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent?

 I think that I am more qualified because I have lived in Katy for 17 years and have volunteered, on a continuous basis, with the schools in Katy ISD, and many other community organizations.  I understand the daily struggles of teachers, parents and students. I know what it’s like to run a carnival, to decorate for 8th grade dances, to raise $60,000 for project prom, to find volunteers for every single event there could ever be at every level of schools, to work with kids in every capacity you could imagine, and much more! And, I know what it’s like working with administration of every level.  I have gotten along with the principals and assistant principals at every level. I am not only experienced, I am passionate, I am knowledgeable, I have a history of leadership within the district, and I have been very active in our community at large for 16 years.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

-Taylor HS: president of the PTO, 2016-present; VP of Project Grad 2017/2018; Counselors’ volunteer coordinator 2014-2016; Project Grad 2014/2015 committee; Choir chaperone to nearly every event since 2011.

-Keys Mentoring 2014-present.

-Katy ISD Bond Committee 2017.

-Secretary Katy ISD Council of PTAs 2016/2017 (5) McMeans JH: PTA Board 2012-2016 (Fundraising VP, Volunteers in Public Schools (VIPS) VP, band director’s aide, choir teacher’s aide, 8th Grade Dance Coordinator; Volunteer of the year 2015/2016.

-Exley Elementary: PTA Board 2008-2013 (President, 1st VP of Programs, VIPS VP)

-PTA Officer Training: 2008, 2014 and 2015.

-Leadership Katy 2010/2011 and 2016/2017.

Any final comments?

I am a Texas native. I graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Houston with a Consumer Science Degree and I have a Masters of Business Administration from University of Houston as well. When I am on the Katy ISD School Board, I will be an advocate for you.  This is not a stepping stone for me to go on to something else later.  Being on the Katy ISD school board is what I want to do. I will not just go along with the flow.  I will vote and stand up for what the community wants. I am ready to listen to all parents and teachers and am willing to work on behalf of everyone in our community to grow excellence. Please visit me on my FB page at Dawn Champagne for Katy ISD Board of Trustees.

For more information about Dawn Champagne, visit https://www.facebook.com/groups/160538218075918/

ABOUT DON MASSEY

Don and his wife Carrie, married for 12 years, have three children that attend Katy ISD schools.  Don has a Masters degree in Criminal Justice, and was previously a law enforcement officer before becoming General Manager at Kay Mills and now COO at Rothchild Commercial. Don Massey was named one of Katy Magazine’s 2017 People of the Year for his efforts implementing Katy Mills as an emergency station for Hurricane Harvey rescue efforts, pet rescue , and FEMA.

Why did you choose to run?

My family and I have been super blessed by Katy and Katy ISD and we love to serve our community. I have a heart to serve the community and since the position of School Board is a volunteer position, it is a perfect match for my experience and allows me to Serve the entire Community. My goal is to help Katy ISD continue to be the best School District in Houston and Texas.

What qualifies you for this position?

My unique experience as a Law Enforcement Officer and Business Leader gives me the skills needed to address the real issues facing our schools today. Safety and Security along with Financial Accountability are the highest levels of priority for our district. As a former police officer and as the GM at Katy Mills, I have the real life experiences to address today’s issues. As an Officer, I have worn the badge, I have arrested bad guys and I have saved lives. As a COO and GM, I have managed multi-million dollar budgets and built collaborative relationships with many community stake holders. I think this combination will be a great addition to the skills that are already on the School Board.  

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

My main focus is on Safety and Security for our Students, Teachers, and Staff. I would address this by challenging the way we use CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) for our schools.  Some of the items that we can explore are:  3M Safety Film, Bollards and Advanced Door Locks. The 3M film will slow down an active shooter offering our emergency responders precious time to save lives.  Using bollards at entrances and raising the fences throughout the district will also slow down active shooters. All of these are items need to be implemented or explored quickly to deter an active shooter in our schools. I also would hold our administration accountable for the policies that are in place. Oversight and governance are the responsibility of the board and I will take that responsibility seriously.

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent?

I have a great deal of respect for my opponent for her volunteer service, but I believe that my community relationships, business strengths, and law enforcement leadership make me the best candidate. With all of the school shootings and violence in schools, my law enforcement background and expertise is a much needed asset to helping the board implement new and innovative programs to protect our children. The world is changing and I want Katy ISD to be forward thinking and proactive. I also have a reputation for “action” and “innovation” and for successfully and quickly implementing programs that make Katy a better place. An example of this is Katy ISD’s Simon Youth Academy, which is a smaller more hands-on learning center at Katy Mills that is helping at-risk Katy teens get their diplomas and graduate. Not every child in Katy ISD learns the same way and we have to meet children where they are so we can help them succeed.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

I spearheaded bringing the Simon Youth Foundation to Katy ISD to help at-risk students graduate from high school and reduce drop out rates. This was only possible by bringing multiple organizations together including Katy ISD, Katy Mills, Simon Property Group, and the Simon Youth Foundation.

I have also volunteered in the following capacities:

– Katy ISD Strategic Design Committee.
– Superintendent’s Round Table.

– Career and Technical Education Advisory Board.

– Miller Career Center Mentor and Internship Host.

– Katy Elementary Advisory Board and PTO.

– Leadership Katy 2014.

– The 2014 Bond Committee.

Any final comments?

I will take my position very seriously and plan to do all I can to take care of our students, teachers and staff and ensure they have the resources and support needed to help prepare our children for the future. I will also be proactive in helping to implement safety and security measures to keep our schools safe from violence; whether it’s violence from outside intruders or other students. It would be my honor to serve the Katy community as a Katy ISD Board of Trustee.  Please Vote Don Massey for Position 7.

For more information about Don Massey, visit https://www.facebook.com/Massey4Katy/

 EDITOR’S NOTE: We ran a similar Meet the Candidates story for Susan Gesoff and Scott Martin, position 6 on Tuesday, April 17. CLICK TO READ 

HOW TO VOTE

EARLY VOTING IS APRIL 23 – MAY 1: INFORMATION HERE CLICK

ELECTION DAY IS MAY 5 – VOTING INFO HERE CLICK

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Katy Magazine News  
April 15, 2018  

Ashley Lancaster  

Starting April 20, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will travel the state restocking thousands of catfish at their “Neighborhood Fishin'” destinations. Find out where you can fish in Katy!

 

Throughout the season, each of the lakes designated as a TPWD “Neighborhood Fishin'” spot will be repeatedly re-stocked with channel catfish. There will be a break during the month of August due to the heat, but the re-stocking will continue through early November.

FISH IN KATY

Mary Jo Peckham Park
5597 Gardenia Ln.
7 a.m. – 10 p.m.
281-496-2177

 

FISHING RULES

– Anglers may keep up to 5 fish per day without a minimum length limit.

– Children under 17 can fish for free.

– A fishing license is required for all adults.

 

PURCHASE A LICENSE

– Academy Sports & Outdoors
23155 Katy Fwy.

–  Bass Pro Shops Katy
5000 Katy Mills Cir.

– Dick’s Sporting Goods
24600 Katy Fwy.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 16, 2018

Katrina Katsarelis 

 Katy ISD has compiled a great list of camps for Katy ISD students entering 7th to 12th grades. We’ve divided it up by local band camps, University  band camps, and instrument specific band camps.

KATY band CAMPS

Katy ISD Junior High Band Camp – Tompkins High School – July 16-20 

For all Katy ISD band students entering grades 7-9.

The cost of the camp is $130 and will include a T-shirt if registered by June 5.
Email kisdbandcamp2018@gmail.com or click for registration form. 

The Bocal Majority and Operation Oboe – Tays Junior High – June 18-21, 2018 

Full day commuter camp for oboe and bassoon students entering grades 7-12.

 

UNIVERSITY Band Camps

Sam Houston State University Junior High Band Camps—June 10-14, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-9.

Texas State University Summer Band Camp —June 10-15, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-12.

Stephen F. Austin Middle School Band Camp —June 10-15, 2018

Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-8.?

 ?

Baylor Summer Middle School Band and Orchestra Camp—June 24-30, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-9.

University of Houston Cougar Band Camp—July 8-12, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-12.

Texas Tech Band and Orchestra Camp—July 8-14, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-12.

Instrument Camps
?As we learn of other instrument-specific camps, we will post information here

Brass Only Band Camp? – June 7-9, 2018

Full day commuter camp for brass students entering grades 7-12.

The Bocal Majority and Operation Oboe—June 18-21, 2018 @ Tays JH

Full day commuter camp for oboe and bassoon students entering grades 7-12.

Floot Fire?—June 25-29, 2018 (Memorial) or July 16-20, 2018 (The Woodlands)
Full day commuter camp for flute students entering grades 7-12.

Tomball Trombone Institute — July 16-20, 2018

Full day commuter camp for trombone students entering grades 7-9.

April 17, 2018  

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

Jennifer Skelton  

 

We asked position 6 Board of Trustees candidates Susan Gesoff and Scott Martin some questions to help voters learn more about these Board of Trustee candidates.  We will be running a separate piece featuring the candidates for Position 7 (Dawn Champagne and Don Massey) later this week.

 

ABOUT SUSAN GESOFF

Susan Gesoff is married to husband Glen and they have lived in Katy for 13 years. The couple has three daughters Katie 24, Carly 21, and Kelly 18, who all graduated from Seven Lakes High. Susan is a former Katy ISD teacher (2006-2012) who has also volunteered in her children’s schools and with the theatre and choir booster clubs at Beckendorff Junior High and Seven Lakes High. She also volunteers with the National Charity League. She currently works as an Engineer at BP.

Why did you choose to run?

I am passionate about public education and children.  Katy is a wonderful place to raise a family, live and retire and I want to serve the community by applying my skills and experience for the benefit of Katy ISD students. I was inspired to run this year in particular, because we became empty nesters which left me with more free time in the evenings and weekends that could be dedicated to a worthy pursuit such as this. 

What qualifies you for this position?

I have over five years of ‘front line’ teaching experience in Katy ISD, so I truly understand what it is like inside the 21st century classroom for students and teachers. I have a 30 year employment history in technical industries where I have developed skills related to safety and compliance, budget management, policy development, and planning and performance. On a personal level, I have successfully raised three high-achieving children who were educated by Katy ISD.

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

Katy ISD is a premiere district with a stellar record of achievement, however, safety is a challenge for all districts in America, and I will encourage reasonable and effective solutions to further protect our students and staff from random acts of violence. I am focused on academics and will support continuous improvement around STEM and Career and Technical Education, as well as further differentiation for Gifted and Talented learning. Finally, I will strongly encourage the district’s efforts to address the unfair state finance system and student assessment schemes with a goal to keep more of our tax dollars here in Katy and reduce the testing burden on our students and teachers.” 

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent? 

Respectfully, while each of us brings professional skills and knowledge, I have vastly more hands-on, practical experience in Katy ISD, having been a professional educator and having raised my children through every grade right here. I see the role of board member as one of service to the community, not a stepping stone to a future political career.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

I was a member of the parent/teacher organization at Alexander Elementary, Beckendorff JH, and SLHS for many years.  I volunteered with the theatre and choir booster clubs at Beckendorff and SLHS from 2005 – 2017.  In addition, I volunteered for numerous school events over the many years our girls were in Katy ISD.

For more information about Susan Gesoff, visit https://www.facebook.com/susanmgesoff4KISD/

ABOUT SCOTT MARTIN

 

Scott Martin is a Texan by birth, moving to Katy in 2014. Since that time, he has jumped into the community volunteering his time as a Sunday school teacher in his neighborhood of Nottingham at St. Peter’s UMC. Scott’s wife, Samantha, grew up in Katy in the Bear Creek area attending Bear Creek Elementary and Mayde Creek Junior High and Mayde Creek High schools. The couple has 5-year old twins that will be attending Pattison Elementary in the fall. Scott graduated from University of Michigan Law School and serves as an Assistant Federal Public Defender in the Southern District of Texas.

Why did you choose to run?

I decided to run for the school board because I know we can do better.  I am passionate about our community and focused on the future of KISD.

What qualifies you for this position?

I am a product of a Texas public school.  I am also a proud parent.  In my career as a public defender, I have found great satisfaction in helping others.  I believe that these experiences qualify me to serve the Katy ISD community as a trustee.   

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

My priorities include: (1) ensuring more choice, and greater transparency, in any bond election; (2) ensuring that everyone has a neighbor on the Board, through the creation of single-member trustee districts; (3) finding common-sense solutions to our bullying problem; and (4) finding a “two-way immersion” program for bilingual education that is cost-effective and can be made available at campuses across the district.

Voters can learn more about my ideas for KISD on my website (www.scottmartin4kisd.com).

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent? 

My opponent lives in an area that is already represented on the Board by two trustees, and has stated that she opposes the creation of single-member trustee districts. I support the creation of single-member trustee districts because I fully appreciate that many areas of our district are underrepresented on the Board, and that this has to change.

I am also concerned that my opponent has not publicly disagreed with anything the Board as said or done. This tells me that she is not the independent voice that the voters are looking for. I am that independent voice.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

I am a children’s Sunday School teacher at St. Peter’s United Methodist Church.  Recently, I volunteered as a t-ball coach at the Monty Ballard YMCA

Any final comments?

I am grateful to the voters for their many thoughtful questions concerning the issues I have raised during this race. We all want what is best for our children, and for KISD. Together we can make it happen!

For more information about Scott Martin, visit http://www.scottmartin4kisd.com 

 EDITOR’S NOTE: We will be running a similar Meet the Candidates story for position 7 later this week. 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

 

April 10, 2018 

 

Score some great deals at Cane Island’s annual community-wide garage sale on Saturday, April 14, 2018.

Cane Island will host one of the area’s biggest community-wide garage sales of the spring when driveway after driveway in the Katy master-planned community of new homes presents bargains on electronics, toys and games, sports equipment, household items and more on Saturday, April 14 from 8 a.m. – noon.

With many of the community’s residents expected to participate, Cane Island’s Community Garage Sale promises to be a great opportunity to pick up deals on unique finds and everyday items.  Shoppers can park their cars and walk from house to house or they can park conveniently in front of each driveway.

All sales are final with prices for items made at the sole discretion of each garage sale participant.  The event is rain or shine.

For a complete list of participating homes, go to www.CaneIslandLife.com.

To reach Cane Island, take the Cane Island Parkway exit off Interstate 10. Head north on Cane Island Parkway and take the roadway directly into the community of new homes.

The 2016 GHBA Community of the Year, Cane Island features traditional homes and lifestyle patio homes from the mid $200s, including those available for immediate move in, by CalAtlantic Homes, Coventry Homes, David Weekley Homes, Highland Homes, Perry Homes, Shea Homes, Taylor Morrison and Toll Brothers.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

April 11, 2018  

Jennifer Skelton  

 

Many Katy residents noticed and were concerned about the huge police presence in the Grand Parkway/99 and Franz Rd area this past Saturday. They took to social media to attempt to find out what was going on. The answer was tied to an earlier mystery from March, that played out on social media, as well, and local news stations, when white domes were moved to an open area of land off Grand Parkway. The mystery to both questions has been solved.

Photo: HRH Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia with Secretary of Energy and former Governor Rick Perry at the SABIC event in Katy

Saudi Basic Industries Corp., the Middle East’s largest petrochemicals maker, said on Saturday that it plans to build a Katy headquarters for its operations in the Western Hemisphere, a project that would boost its Houston-area headcount from 400 to 1,000. The company plans to complete the expansion within two or three years.

On Saturday, Mohammad bin Salman, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia spent the day in Katy and Houston. First stop was meeting with former Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush and former Secretary of State Jim Baker.

Next up, was a visit to a Habitat for Humanity neighborhood of Harold Park, where 176 homes where destroyed by Hurricane Harvey’s flooding. Aramco, a Saudi owned gas company that is headquartered in Houston, donated $3.7 million to Habitat for Humanity for Harvey relief.

Last stop was to Katy to meet guests at the event under the big white domes that now are placed off Grand Parkway and Franz Rd.

SABIC’s future location is on the land located Franz Road and Grand Parkway.

At the beginning of March, after the mysterious domes caused many a debate on social media, the company released this statement.

“The Houston area is home to SABIC’s Americas Region Head Office as well as research and innovation centers, including land we own on Franz Road. Site preparation is underway for a SABIC business event to take place in mid- to late March on the land. In recent months, we have taken steps to clear debris from the site and increase security. We have recently erected some temporary dome-like structures to create a venue for the upcoming event, and expect to keep them up for about a month.”

KATY MAGAZINE  

April 11, 2018  

A technical issue, shortly after the STAAR test began on Tuesday, kicked out many students across the state including Katy ISD.

The delay in service persisted for about 20 minutes, the TEA said.

“We believe no student information was lost during this time. We are still collecting data on the issue – there were about 1,000 school systems statewide that had a least one student who experienced the disruption,” said DeEtta Culbertson, with the Texas Education Agency.

More than 1,200 school systems were testing at the time, she said.

Katy ISD released the following statement Wednesday afternoon.

Dear Katy ISD Parents/Guardians,

As you may be aware, STAAR testing began yesterday across the state of Texas including at all our Katy ISD campuses.  Unfortunately, soon after the test administration began, the Educational Testing Services (ETS), which is the state’s vendor for the STAAR exams, reported that a state-wide disruption to its server had caused multiple outages to its online system.  These outages impacted students taking grades 5 and 8 reading, grades 4 and 7 writing, and English I.  As a result, many students were inadvertently kicked out of the testing session and/or were unable to log back into the ETS system.

In addition, some students experienced the assessment “freezing” and had to temporarily log off and log back into the system. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) and ETS were immediately notified of these disruptions. Students impacted by the outages were allowed to have missed time added back to their time limit.

Katy ISD is not currently aware of any students losing their responses.  However, we are working with the TEA and ETS and will be reviewing any testing trends once results are released to the district.

Thank you for your support and patience as we continue to monitor this situation which has impacted districts across the state.  We will update our parents with any additional information that comes to our attention.

Katy ISD

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

April 12, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Katy area citizens over the age of 18 are invited to join Crime Stoppers of Houston for a free presentation that will shed light on the victims of human trafficking, profile traffickers, and explain how to report and prevent abuse.

 

According to DoSomething.Org, the average age of children who enter the sex trade are between 12 and 14 years old.

“Human trafficking is a reality that many people come face to face with every day, in fact there are an estimated 313,000 human trafficking victims in Texas alone. Education and awareness are paramount to protecting yourself and your families. We hope many parents across the city will join us on April 25 as we shine a light on the second largest criminal industry that is strategically targeting young people. Exploiters can be anyone and they have various methods of recruitment and control tactics,” says Crime Stoppers of Houston Marketing Director, Tania Cruz.

The free presentation is 45-minutes long and will bring human trafficking out of the shadows, educate the public, and prevent children and families from being victimized in the future.

WHEN:

Wednesday, April 25 from 7 – 8 p.m.

WHERE:

Legacy Stadium

1830 Katyland Dr., Katy, TX 77493

To learn more, visit crime-stoppers.org.

Katy ISD’s Teddy Cop program needs our help to finish out the year with every special needs child having their own Teddy Cop.

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 6, 2018

by Jennifer Skelton

Officer Luis Santiago founded the Teddy Cop program in Katy ISD in 2016 and runs the program. The bears (buddies) are purchased from Build-a-Bear with their unique outfit matching our local Katy ISD Police’s uniform. Katy ISD has 36 elementary schools with a special needs program totaling over 1,000 students.

The Teddy Bears, along with the interaction between the officer and the child, builds a trusting relationship as well as building rapport with the parents. Officer Santiago selflessly gives of his time fundraising and interacting with the children but as you can see by the smile on his face, these children give much more to his heart than he could ever give to them. He has a love for people and the children that have helped this program grow and succeed. 

Less than 150 bears (at 4 elementary schools) are left to reach the goal of every elementary special needs child in Katy ISD having their own Teddy Cop.

Donations come from many different businesses, Katy ISD school PTA’s and individual contributors. Teddy Cops is so close to its goal this school year. Click here to make a donation for Teddy Cops to reach each special needs child this year. Donations can also be made to any Katy elementary school as well as Build A Bear at Katy Mills Mall.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

April 6, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

 

In response to Katy Magazine’s article published on March 31, 2018 in regards to mail loss, customer complaints, and unsatisfactory service at the Katy Pin Oak Mail Annex, Postmaster Terri Taylor responded with a letter detailing their plan to improve service and efficiency at this location.

The following is the response we received from Terri Taylor, Postmaster, Katy Main Post Office:

 

April 06, 2018

Katy Magazine News Editor

605 A Park Grove Dr. Katy, TX 77450

“Dear Editor,

This letter responds to a recent article, regarding reports of unsatisfactory customer service and other issues at the Katy Annex Post Office. We value our customers and appreciate the opportunity to provide some additional information.

The Postal Service strives to provide excellent service. We are disappointed whenever we discover we’ve fallen short of that goal, and it appears that has happened in Katy, TX. I sincerely apologize for any inconvenience  experienced by our customers. Whenever the Postal Service becomes aware of unsatisfactory service or issues, we take steps to resolve them as quickly as possible. (CONTINUED)

 

Local management is committed to addressing the specific issues brought to our attention in the editorial and we continue to work with our customers to resolve their concerns. Some specific actions we are taking immediately in Katy include: ensuring phone calls to the Katy Annex are answered promptly; deploying additional resources to ensure all mailbox keys needed by customers are provided as soon as possible; and working to make improvements in our national 1-800-ASK-USPS  number and handling of concerns directed by phone or online at usps.com.

In addition, proactive steps are being taken now to reinforce the importance of providing prompt, professional, and courteous interactions with all customers.  Refresher training is being given to managers, supervisors, and all employees at the Katy Annex, to ensure customers who visit this location – or with whom we communicate via phone – are served in a professional manner.  We contine to monitor the growth in the city, and in the mail volume, to ensure all deliveries are current, accurate and timely.

 

The Postal Service continually develops innovative ways to improve our service. One offering that may be of interest to your readers is Informed Delivery.  This free and optional notification service gives residential consumers the ability to digitally preview their letter-sized mailpieces and manage their packages scheduled to arrive soon. Sign-up is easy at: https://informeddelivery.usps.com.

 

The core mission of the Postal Service is to provide prompt, reliable, and efficient service to all communities we serve.  We appreciate being made aware of issues and will work as hard as we can to make improvements.  Thank you again for the opportunity to share this information with your readers.

Sincerely,

Terri Taylor

Postmaster, Katy Main Post Office

Email:  Terri.T.Taylor@usps.gov”

READ THE ORIGINAL STORY HERE 

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Preparations for the Katy ISD 2018 Teacher Fair are underway. Administrators from all Katy ISD campuses will be available to talk to educators who aspire to become part of this growing school district.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 8, 2018

“Some of the best teachers from across the country can be found at Katy ISD,” says Human Resources Coordinator Katye Shields.  “Providing quality education to students begins with valuing the role of an educator.  Our district is looking for teachers who not only inspire students in a classroom, they mold them into future legacies.”

Each year, Katy ISD enrolls close to 2,000 additional students and it’s expected to open up several schools in the coming years.  No pre-registration or fee is required.  Participants must show proof of certification and it is recommended that participants complete an application on the Katy ISD website in advance. Click here.

What:           Katy ISD invites new interested individuals as well as current district employees                       to attend the 2018 Teacher Fair.

Where:        Leonard E. Merrell Center

                    6301 South Stadium Lane

                    Katy, TX  77494

When:         Saturday, April 21, 2018

                    Elementary Campuses:  8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

                    Junior High & High School Campuses:  1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Job Fair is only open to teachers. If you would like to apply for current openings at Katy ISD, visit their website to apply now. Current openings include bus driver, food service, maintenance, Asst. Principal, Aides, and Clerical. For current openings, click here.

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Wolman Elementary namesake, retired Katy ISD educator, and dedicated member of Keep Katy Beautiful (KKB), was given the Keep Texas Beautiful 2018 Leadership Award.
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Opening photo by Katy Magazine
Inset photo courtesy of City of Katy
Wolman is the worthy recipient of the 2018 Keep Texas Beautiful Leadership Award. She serves as secretary on the board of directors for KKB, which partners with other groups in Katy to promote a clean, litter free community, educate citizens about recycling, landscaping, tree planting and maintenance, as well as waste reduction.
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This is, “A once-in-a-lifetime distinction award for a person who provides leadership in the areas of improving and enhancing the Texas environment,” according to the Keep Texas Beautiful website.
“Jamie has been instrumental in countless projects for KKB, where she has served for 23 years, she has also served on the board of directors for Keep Texas Beautiful for over 20 years. She is proactive in enhancing the quality of life for all members of the Katy community, and her heart for volunteerism goes above and beyond. Jamie embodies all that KKB and KTB stand for, ” says Jess Marshburn, tourism and marketing assistant for the City of Katy.
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Along with the rest of the volunteers and staff at KKB, she attended a special presentation to the City Council last week, which celebrated KKB’s Governor’s Community Achievement Award for Keep Texas Beautiful.
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The group took home first place in their category for communities with a population between 15,001 and 25,000 residents, and was awarded 180,000.

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
 

March 31, 2018  
 

Katy Magazine Editors
 

After multiple reports of unsatisfactory service and mail delivery at the Katy Pin Oak Mail Annex for USPS, Katy Magazine reached out for answers and basically got nowhere. What can Katy postal customers do?

 

The Katy Pin Oak Annex, located at 1331 Pin Oak Road, has received numerous community complaints from residents in reviews and all over social media. The majority of complaints are lost, undelivered, incorrectly delivered, difficulty of getting mailbox keys, extremely delayed mail, hang ups or no answers at the facility, and a lack of customer service primarily at the Katy Annex location.

 We noticed an extensive amount of posts and complaints on social media describing numerous unpleasant encounters, bad customer service, and lost/delayed mail reports from Katy residents and decided to make some calls, and the results were…frustrating.

REVIEWS AND COMPLAINTS

On Google Reviews, the Katy Annex has a rating of 1.3 with approximately 130 one-star reviews out of 142 total reviews.  Katy Magazine also received all negative complaints when we posed the question on social media.

Just tried to pick up a mailbox key for a new house. First time I was there, they said the key is not ready and ask me to come back again in 2-3 weeks. I called a week later to check on the status, the staff answered the phone not even familiar to the name community. After I clarified the name of the community, she told me the key is not available without even ask my address!…” R. C.

Keep losing our packages, or they are delivered to the wrong mailbox in our subdivision. My mailman only delivers every few days at this point. S. V.

Worst customer service I have ever experienced in my life. I called this post office today to get a few details to resolve a situation with my mail. The “supervisor” I was dealing with on the phone said his name was “Paul”, although I highly doubt that is his real name. When the conversation turned south between “Paul” and I, I asked him to speak to his boss. He told me it was not necessary and refused to give me any phone number or email address to anyone that is his superior. He then proceeded to hang up in my face, and then ignore the next two calls I tried to make! . J. J.

Worst Customer service i have ever received, While waiting, i witnessed a lady ask to speak to the supervisor, Mrs. Twitty, Not sure of spelling because she had previously ignored her calls and hung up on her. The supervisor decided it was a good idea to IGNORE the lady who requested to speak with her and she didnt not even leave her office to come address the situation. Extremely terrible way to handle a customer service issue. If this was a Private owned business she would be fired immediately. R. F.

KATY MAGAZINE ATTEMPTS TO REACH A REPRESENTATIVE FOR COMMENT

On Monday, Katy Magazine editors took some time exploring options on the best way to contact the Postmaster General to file a complaint or ask for assistance.

By Location Phone

When we called the number provided on their site, the phone rang 20+ and was disconnected with no option to leave a voicemail. Couldn’t even get them to pick up the phone.

By Hotline/Customer Service Line

We called 1-800-ASK-USPS, and there is no option available to file a complaint or speak to customer service. When we looked online, complaints on mail delivery are routed back to the customer service page (below).

Via Email

Next, we sent a message  through the USPS “Email Us” option – requesting a call back from the postmaster/manager to offer feedback on possible causes and creative solutions to the problem.

UNPROFESSIONAL RESPONSE RECEIVED ON TUESDAY
On Tuesday, we finally received a call from a representative claiming to be from the Katy Annex. The caller ID said USPS.  When questioned about the various complaints and difficulty reaching anyone, the representative declined to comment further and refused to give her name. The representative also refused to give us another name or contact info for the Postmaster or any other supervisor.

REACHED OUT TO HOUSTON CONSUMER AFFAIRS

After more research, we dug up the name of a Houston Consumer Affairs representative and left  a message on Thursday, March 29.

PHONE CALL WITH USPS MEDIA COMMUNICATIONS SPECIALIST, NIKKI JOHNSON

On Friday, March 30, 2018, an editor poke to the Strategic Communications Specialist Gulf Atlantic/Houston Districts, Nikki Johnson.

Ms. Johnson informed Katy Magazine on March 30 at 12:30 p.m. that a response would be issued as soon as possible addressing the concerns of residents who use the Katy Pin Oak Annex as their primary postal location. In the phone interview, we were also told that the District Manager for Houston would be notified.

UPDATED 3/31 at 8:56 AM:

STATEMENT FROM USPS REPRESENTATIVE NIKKI JOHNSON RECEIVED

“The Postal Service strives to always provide the best possible service to our valued customers. We apologize for any unsatisfactory service that may have been experienced by customers served by the Katy Annex PO. In this specific case, local management is committed to making improvements in service, including improving communications, and ensuring that all customer interactions are positive and professional. We will continue to work with customers to ensure every effort is being made to meet or exceed their expectations. We appreciate our customers’ patience as we continue to successfully resolve their concerns. Customers are reminded that, if they need assistance, they can also contact our national Customer Care Center by calling 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) or they can visit our website at www.usps.com/help”  Nikki Johnson, Strategic Communications Specialist Gulf Atlantic/Houston Districts

Katy residents can also contact the Postmaster General by mail. Here are a few tips on how to effectively send a letter to the Postmaster General at the U.S. Postal Service Consumer Advocate Office, Megan J. Brennan:

CONTACTING THE POSTMASTER GENERAL

Address:

United States Postal Service

Office of the Consumer Advocate

475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, D.C. 20260-2200

Salutation/Correspondence:

The proper way to begin the letter is:

“To The Honorable Megan J. Brennan,

Dear Madam Postmaster General,”

Body Text:

The more detailed the description of the problem, the better. Mailing/delivery complaints are less likely to reach the office of the Postmaster General themselves.

MORE IDEAS FOR SPEEDING UP MAIL DELIVERY

 Informed Delivery:

“I discovered Informed Delivery by USPS from other Army families….I get an email every morning with scanned pictures of what mail is expected to be delivered that day. It might help with at least figuring out where the hold-ups are in the process,” Katy resident, N. H.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

 

April 2, 2018 

 

The Katy Independent School District was well represented during the Texas School Public Relations Association (TSPRA) 56th Annual Conference. The Communications Department took home 14 star awards for their outstanding work in communication, branding and school public relations.  Katy ISD competed against 1,331 other entries from several school districts in the region and won five gold, five silver and four bronze recognitions.

 

“Our Communications Department does an outstanding job keeping our parents and community informed and up to date on District initiatives, activities and programs,” said Dr. Lance Hindt, superintendent of schools.  “They represent the needs and voice of our school community in this day of instant communication.  Their collaborative efforts with campuses, departments and administration ensures that the information most important to our community is being shared and discussed across multiple platforms,” added Hindt.

 

“Every day, the experience, passion and enormous creativity of our team ensures there are opportunities for our community to learn about student and staff accomplishments, as well as engage in decision-making processes impacting our students,” said Dr. Andrea Grooms, Chief Communications Officer.  “These recognitions affirm our commitment to ongoing and transparent communication with Katy ISD stakeholders,” added Grooms.

The recognitions include:

Gold Star:

  1. 2017 Student Excellence Event Program

  2. Stockdick Junior High Branding

  3. Bryant Elementary Logo

  4. Welcome Home Dr. Hindt Convocation Video

  5. Katy ISD Update – January 2017

Silver Star:

  1. 2017 of the Year Program

  2. Bethke Elementary Dedication Program

  3. Cast Away Video Script

  4. Heigh Ho Video Script

  5. State of the District Prezi

 

Bronze Star:

  1. Superintendent Keynote Speech at Katy Chamber of Commerce, Teacher of the Year Celebration

  2. Jenks Dedication Program

  3. K9 Officers Marcel and Juno Video

  4. Superintendent’s Message – April 2017

Every day the Katy ISD Communications Department works to disseminate information to over 77,000+ students, their parents, community members and other stakeholders across the Katy community.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

 

April 2, 2018

According to one Katy-area teen, a man approached her at a bus stop near Memorial Parkway Elementary on Thursday at around 6:40 in the morning.

 

The Memorial Parkway Junior High student was standing at the 21300 block of Park Brook when she said that a man in a dark-colored pick up truck rolled down his window and said, “Hey, it’s chilly outside. I have a jacket inside the truck if you want to get in.” At that point, she ran away.

No other details were provided about the man or the truck.

Katy Magazine reached out to the district communications department as well as the Katy ISD Police department for an update on Tuesday, April 3, 2018.

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Looking for the purrfect date night? Drop off your elementary age children (6 years+) for a night of animal themed fun & games!

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

March 30, 2018  

 

 

The CAP staff and volunteers provide activities and entertainment on March 30 from 6:30pm – 9:30pm, while you enjoy a three hour well deserved night off!

The cost is a $15 donation per child. We’ve even got dinner covered with donation by Papa John’s!    No reservation required.

Citizens for Animal Protection, CAP, strives to encourage the curiosity, optimism and exuberance of children — traits often found in our furry pups and kittens! Help your child discover the joy and wonder of befriending animal companions while in the company of other kids that share their natural love of pets. All proceeds raised benefit the many homeless pets cared for at the CAP Animal Shelter & Pet Adoption Center.

 

FEATURED ANIMAL ABOVE

Animal ID: 38089896

Breed: Retriever, Labrador/Cur, Black-Mouth

Age: 6 months 12 days

Gender: Female

Size: Medium

Color: Tan/White

Location: Doggie Domain

Free prom dress event for all Katy ISD girls on Thursday, March 29th at Cinco Rach High School from 2:30 pm – 6:00 pm.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

March 28, 2018  

Prom season is upon up and with seven high schools, Katy has hundreds of girls out shopping for the perfect dress.  Prom can be an expensive event and one Katy group is hoping to help parents and teenagers by giving away FREE Prom dresses.

Kim Noska and Jennifer Skelton each began receiving donated formal dresses after Hurricane Harvey devastated much of Katy. Their goal was to make sure that no girl had to miss her homecoming due to finances. During this process, Noska and Skelton joined forces eventually receiving over 1,500 dresses, plus shoes and accessories, as well as some men’s wear.

 In the fall, over 500 Katy ISD girls wore dresses to Homecoming from this effort. The group received over 300 dresses that would be more suited for Prom so the women decided to save the dresses and offer them in the spring.

All of the dresses are in excellent condition and in fact, many have never been worn and still have the tags attached.

This one time event, on Thursday, March 29th from 2:30 pm to 6:00 pm at Cinco Ranch High School is open to ALL Katy ISD students.

If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Skelton.

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A memorial benefit to honor Jordan Muesse is being held this Saturday, 3/31/18, 11am-4pm, at Seven Lakes High School.

 KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

March 30, 2018  

by Jennifer Skelton  

Jordan Muesse, was tragically killed in a work-related accident on January 30, 2018. He was a 25-year old, graduate of Seven Lakes High School and was a life-long resident of Katy.

Jordan was general manager and co-owner of Premier Offroad and Performance in Katy Texas, where he used his artistic ability which surfaced early in life and applied it to designing trucks/car modifications/customizations, for which he won several awards.

His childhood sweetheart and wife, Chelsea Muesse, discovered shortly after Jordan’s death that she was pregnant. She is expecting identical twins (due October 2018; arriving September 2018). “He truly was (an amazing man) and it’s amazing at how many lives he has touched through our story”, says Chelsea.

A memorial benefit held in Jordan’s honor/memory this Saturday, 3/31/18, 11am-4pm, at Seven Lakes High School (their alma mater; Class of 2011). This has been organized by the custom truck/car community in the greater Houston area.

Benefit will include…

*a truck/car show, which is open to all participants

*food, drinks

*bounce house for kids

*raffle

*Memorial t-shirts and decals will be sold

*music

Click here for benefit details ; please take note of the specific designated use of the parking areas at SLHS.

A GoFundMe has been set up to help Chelsea and her twins. Click here.

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Chidi Onunkwo, 17, led police on a high speed chase Saturday morning, ending when he struck a Nissan driven by Adorn Strambler, 60.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

March 25, 2018

Jennifer Skelton 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

March 25, 2018

by Jennifer Skelton

Police in Rosenburg attempted to stop the 2012 red Ford mustang around 6:00 am for a traffic violation. Chidi Onunkwo, sped off and led police on a high-speed chase. The mustang had been reported stolen earlier Saturday morning after a carjacking in Houston.

After running several red lights and reaching speeds of 83mph, the mustang hit a Nissan driven at the intersection of Shiller and State Highway 6. Onunkwo fled the scene but was caught by police and taken to the hospital for his injuries.

 Adorn Strambler, who was driving the Nissan, was killed. She was a 26-year employee of the City of Houston in the paralegal department.

Chidi Onunkwo was formally charged with murder on Sunday where his bond was set at $250,0000. His next court appearance is Tuesday, March 27th.

Onunkwo lists his address at the Waterstone Apartments in Cinco Ranch. Although he is of school age, we are unsure if he is a current Katy ISD student.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

March 22, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

A list of Easter services, family events, and more in Katy, Texas.

Easter Services

Kingsland Baptist Church 
Saturday, March 31, 2018
Central Campus
20555 Kingsland Blvd.

3, 5, & 7 p.m., 6:30 Spanish Service

Sunday, April 1, 2018
Central Campus
20555 Kingsland Blvd.

8, 9, & 11 a.m.

North Katy Campus
4535 E. Ventana Pkwy.
9:30 a.m.

Bear Creek Baptist Church
5901 N. Fry Rd.
Saturday, March 31, 2018
6 p.m.

Sunday, April 1, 2018
8:15, 9:30, & 11:00 a.m.

BridgePoint Bible Church 

2700 W. Sam Houston Pkwy. N., Houston

Friday, March 30, 2018, Good Friday Service @ 7 p.m.

Sunday, April 1, 2018 , 9 & 10:45 a.m.

Central Baptist Church 
2855 Greenhouse Rd., Houston

Friday, March 30, 2018, Good Friday service @ 7 p.m.
Saturday, March 31, 2018 , 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Sunday, April 1, 2018 , 9 & 11 a.m.

Easter program and service.

Crosspoint Community Church
700 Westgreen Blvd.

Friday, March 30, 2018, Good Friday service @ 6 – 7 p.m.

Saturday, March 31, 2018 , 6 – 6:30 p.m.

Sunday, April 1, 2018 , @ 9:30 & 11 a.m.

Current Christian Church
26600 Westheimer Pkwy.

Friday, March 30, 2018, 4 – 6 p.m.

Saturday, March 31, 2018 , 4 p.m.

Sunday, April 1, 2018 , 9:30 & 11 a.m. & 12:30 p.m.

The Fellowship

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Cinco Ranch Campus

22765 Westheimer Pkwy.
8, 9:15, & 10:45 a.m.

Katy Main Street Campus
Sunday, April 1, 2018
1350 Main St.

9:20 & 10:45 a.m.

Katy’s First Baptist Church 
Sunday, April 1, 2018
600 Pin Oak Rd.

9:30 & 10:45 a.m.

First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Sunday, April 1, 2018
22101 Morton Ranch Rd.
10:30 a.m.

Grace Fellowship United Methodist Church
Sunday, April 1, 2018
Original Campus
2655 S. Mason Rd.

7 a.m. Sunrise Service, 8:45 & 10:45 a.m. traditional service.

Sunday, April 1, 2018
North Campus
19407 Park Row, Ste. 180, Houston
9 & 10:45 a.m.

Holy Covenant United Methodist Church
Sunday, April 1, 2018
22111 Morton Ranch Rd.
7 a.m. Sunrise service, 8:30 a.m. & 11 a.m. traditional service

 

Parkway Fellowship

Westpark Campus
27043 FM 1093 Rd.

Saturday, March 31 @ 4:30 & 5:45 p.m.
Sunday, April 1 @ 7:45, 9, 10:15, and 11:30 a.m.

North Campus
Raines High School at Rhodes Stadium

Sunday, April 1, 2018 9, 10:15, and 11:30 a.m.


Second Baptist Church  

West Campus

19449 Katy Fwy., Houston

Friday, March 30 @ 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 31 @ 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, April  @ 9:30 & 11 a.m.

Easter Bunny Pictures

Cane Island
2100 Cane Island Pkwy.

Saturday, March 31, 2018 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Hop in for a picture and crafts with the Easter Bunny in the conservatory! The easter bunny will also hand out easter eggs to the children.  This event is for Cane Island Residents only.

Katy Mills Mall
5000 Katy Mills Cir.

Neighborhood 6 in front of American Eagle

Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sunday, April 1, 2018, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Easter Weekend Fun & Events

Easter Egg-stravaganza
Blessington Farms

510 Chisolm Trail, Simonton

Saturday – Sunday, March 24 – 25, 2018

Saturday – Sunday, March 30 – 31, 2018
10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

A continuous egg hunt throughout the day, photos with the Easter Bunny, Easter game and strawberry picking.

Chick-fil-A Preschool Playhouse: Easter Party

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch

23860 Westheimer Pkwy.

9:30 – 11:00 a.m.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Chick-fil-A Mason Road

369 S. Mason Rd.

9:30 – 11:00 a.m.

Celebrate Easter with us by decorating a salt dough Easter ornament. Enjoy sparkle dough, singing, dancing, Easter stories and more.

Chick-fil-A Family Night : Easter Fun

Tuesday, March 27, 2018
Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch
23860 Cinco Ranch Blvd.

5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018
Chick-fil-A Mason Road
369 S. Mason Rd.

5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Join them in celebrating Easter by making a colorful paper egg and sampling our New Seasonal Frosted Sunrise. Plus, complimentary balloon animals and face painting by Sweet Honey the Clown.

Easter Egg-Stravaganza at St. Peter’s UMC

Wednesday, March 28, 2018
20775 Kingsland Blvd.

5 – 7 p.m.

They will have food trucks, face painting, and Stations of the Cross coloring posters throughout the entirety of the event. At 6 p.m. we will gather in the Sanctuary to hear the Easter story and have a brief time of worship. At 6:20 p.m. they will break into age groups for Easter Egg hunts. We will also have beeping eggs for visually impaired children.

Community Easter Egg Hunt

Saturday, March 24, 2018
Diane Winborn Elementary
9 a.m.

Join Holy Covenant UMC for an Easter party and egg hunt with games, pictures with the Easter Bunny, and more.

Family Easter Egg Hunt
Saturday, March 24, 2018

Mark A. Chapman YMCA at Katy Main Street
1350 Main St.

There will be Easter bag decorating, popcorn and even a visit from the Easter Bunny! Registration for the event begins at 9:30 am, with the first Easter egg hunt starting at 10:30 am. This event is open to all members of the community.

Journey to the Cross Family Walk-Through & Lord’s Supper
Friday, March 30, 2018

Kingsland Baptist Church
20555 Kingsland Blvd.

5 – 8 p.m.

This brief, hands-on journey is for Preschool and Children’s families to gain a better understanding of the events that led up to Jesus’ultimate sacrifice. Interactive stations will encourage discussion and participation for the entire family. The Lord’s Supper is a come-and-go,powerful way to remember the sacrifice that Jesus offered for us on the cross. Personal Lord’s Supper guides will be provided to walk you through this intimate time of reflection personally or with your family.

Baskets & Bunnies
Katy City Park
5720 Franz Rd.

 

Bring your families out to celebrate Easter during Baskets and Bunnies at Katy City Park! Kids can enjoy bounce houses, animals at the petting zoo and crafts while they wait to visit and have their picture taken with the Easter Bunny!

Easter Egg Hunt

Nelson Water Gardens
1502 Katy Fort Bend Rd.

Saturday, March 31, 2018

9 -11 a.m.

Open for kids of all ages. Bring a basket and hunt for eggs and prizes. Lots of chances to win shopping sprees at Nelson’s and other stuff.

Journey Across Asia
Central Green Park

23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.

Saturday, March 31, 2018
1 – 3 p.m.

An amazing cultural experience as Dance of Asian America  takes you on a Journey across Asia exploring various countries through dance and movement.  Don’t miss this fun event for the whole family!  Picnic and lawn chairs welcome.

Sunday Brunch Buffet
Drix Restaurant & Lounge
1850 S. Mason Rd.

10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Reserve your table now for our famous Easter Sunday Brunch Buffet.  In addition to regular buffet items, we will be adding holiday favorites like baked ham, deviled eggs, shrimp cocktail and more. The price per adult is $16 and don’t forget to ask about our mimosa specials. Kids 4 and under eat free.

Free Kids Meal
PDQ Cinco Ranch
23703 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
Sunday, April 1, 2018
10:30 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Hop to it and get a free kids mean with the purchase of any meals, bowl, or salad on Easter Sunday.

?Easter Service &  Free Community Party
Crosspoint Community Church
700 Westgreen Blvd.
Sunday, April 1, 2018
12:30 – 3:30 p.m.

Revel in the moment in history when hope was fulfilled and every heart offered the comfort of knowing Jesus was, in fact, exactly who he said he was. We will celebrate after second service with a free family carnival that will include bounce houses, music, food, balloon artist, face painters and more.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

March 21, 2018

Harris County Constables Office Precinct 5 Public information Officer

As part of the new Harris County Animal Cruelty Taskforce, deputies in Precinct 5 rescued seven pet cats and launched a criminal investigation into the remains of three others discovered inside an abandoned Bear Creek home.

Precinct 5 deputies were called on Monday by a neighbor who saw one of the carcasses through a window and noticed a foul odor coming from the home in the 15600 block of Fern Basin.

Sgt. Charles Jantzen, who heads up Precinct 5’s Animal Crimes Unit and the new Harris County Animal Cruelty Taskforce, coordinated the safe removal of seven severely malnourished cats. The home’s interior was covered in urine, feces and, in one room, the skeletal remains of another cat.

The results of Sgt. Jantzen’s investigation will be turned over to the Harris County District Attorney’s office to determine whether criminal charges will be filed.The surviving cats are being evaluated by a veterinarian. The Houston Humane Society will take over the recovery process while awaiting a court hearing on their legal custody.

Precinct 5 encourages anyone who suspects animal cruelty to report it to the new Harris County Animal Cruelty Taskforce at 927paws.org or 832-927-PAWS.

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 KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

 March 21, 2018

The new elementary will be located in the Cross Creek Ranch subdivision and is scheduled to open in the fall of 2018.

The Katy ISD School Naming Selection Committee presented their recommendation for the naming of Elementary #41 at the Board of Trustees Work Study Meeting this week.

The school is proposed to be named after retired educator Amy Campbell. This campus, located at 3701 Cross Creek Bend Lane in Fulshear, TX.

The public forum will take place today, Wednesday, March 21 at 6 p.m. in the Katy ISD Board Room, located at 6301 S. Stadium Lane. Community members are invited to participate in this forum and provide input regarding the proposed names.

After the forum, the Katy ISD School Naming Committee will reconvene to review input and provide their final recommendation to the Katy ISD Board of Trustees at their regular meeting on Monday, March 26.

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Caleb “Dees” Lane, a freshman at Tompkins High student, was killed while on Spring Break in Provo, Utah.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

March 22, 2018  

by Jennifer Skelton  

 

Caleb and his family moved to Katy in 2016. They were originally from Utah.

Caleb was home visiting family during Spring Break, when he was hit by a car on Friday, March 16th. After the doctors determined that Caleb no longer had brainstem activity, the family made the selfless decision to donate various organs to save others. Caleb was able to  gift his liver, a kidney and pancreas, and a single kidney to three strangers. He gave his corneas and the gift of sight to two individuals. He also gave tissue to research studies.

According to the beautiful tribute page created to honor Caleb, he loved math, physics and engineering. He loved it so much that the last three summers he attended UVU prep, where he was able to study the subjects further.

 Caleb was a kind and giving soul. In his short time in Katy, he made an impact on those that knew him. So much so that on Wednesday, March 21st, students wore blue to school in his honor.

Caleb leaves behind a sister, Hannah, and parents Kim and Jason, all of Katy.

Caleb’s memorial service will be held Friday, March 23, 2018 at 4 PM at the Provo Rec Center in Provo, Utah.

To read more about Caleb’s life, visit the page created in his honor. (Click here)

Friends and family started a GoFund Me to help the family with expenses. Click here.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

March 16, 2018  

 

A massive recall is in effect for pacifier and teether holders because national safety experts say the product pose choking hazards.

The recall was issued Thursday night. The name of the product is called Dr. Brown’s Lovey pacifier & teether holders.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, a snap can detach from the pacifier’s ribbon, posing a choking hazard for young children.

RECALL DETAILS

This recall involves Dr. Brown’s Lovey pacifier & teether holders. The holders were sold in eight styles:

Giraffe

Zebra

Turtle

Reindeer (Special Holiday Edition)

Frog (Special Holiday Edition)

Spring Bunny (Special Holiday Edition)

Deer

Bunny

Only holders with the following lot codes are included in this recall: RICH0615; RICH0715; RICH0815; RICH1215; RICH0516; RICH0616; RICH0716; RICH1116; RICH1016; RICH0916; RICH1216; RICH0317; RICH0417; RICH0517; RICH0617; RICH0717; RICH0817; RICH0917. The lot codes are printed on the tag attached to the holder.

Consumers can confirm lot codes included in the recall at www.drbrownsbaby.com/recall-lovey.

 

WHAT TO DO

Consumers should immediately take the recalled holders away from young children and contact Handi-Craft for further instructions to receive a replacement product or comparable merchandise of equal or lesser value.

INCIDENTS/INJURIES

The firm has received a total of 67 reports of the ribbon fraying and the snap detaching. No injuries have reported.

 SOLD AT

Bed Bath & Beyond

H-E-B Grocery

K-Mart

Target

Toys ‘R Us/Babies ‘R Us

Wal-Mart

Various stores nationwide and online at Amazon.com from August 2015 to March 2018 for about $10

CONSUMERS MAY CONTACT

Handi-Craft toll-free at 833-224-7674 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or online at http://www.drbrownsbaby.com/ and click on Recall Information for more information.

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The Online Psychology Degrees national website recently recognized one of the University of Houston-Victoria’s graduate special education programs as among the best in the nation.

 

Katy Magazine News  

March 18, 2018  

The UHV School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development’s Master of Education in Special Education with an applied behavior analysis concentration was ranked 17th nationally in the website’s 2018 Top 30 Master’s in Behavioral Analysis Online list. The applied behavior analysis concentration is one of three options UHV students pursuing a master’s in special education can study.

When choosing programs for the ranking, the website considered programs in applied behavior analysis, human behavior, special education and criminal justice as well as general psychology programs that offer a specialization in behavioral analysis. From there, the website considered accreditation, accessibility, job training and coursework.

The coursework for the program has been vetted by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board, which means students are taking courses that will prepare them for the national certification exam to become board-certified behavior analysts.

In addition, the online accessibility offers an advantage because most of the students are professionals already working in clinics or the classroom. That means many of the students already are in a position where they can get their supervision hours at their current place of employment.

University of Houston Victoria Katy campus, located at 2002 W. Grand Pkwy, offers face-to-face programs as well as many online classes for Bachelor’s and Master’s programs.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

March 19, 2018

Katrina Katsarelis 

 

Katy ISD high schools received 12 nominations in everything from Best Leading Actress to Best Orchestra. The winners will be announced at a ceremony on April 17.

Following are the Katy ISD schools that received nominations:

Best Leading Actress nominee:
Caylie Howard from Obra D. Tompkins High School as Fiona from Shrek The Musical

Best Supporting Actor nominee:
Ryan Kearton from Obra D. Tompkins High School as Donkey from Shrek The Musical

Best Supporting Actress nominee :
Glendaliris Torres-Greaux from Mayde Creek High School as Daniela from In The Heights

Best Featured Performer nominee:
Nick Januhowski from Obra D. Tompkins High School as Pinocchio from Shrek The Musical

Best Orchestra nominees:
Cinco Ranch High School for The Music Man

Obra D. Tompkins High School for Shrek The Musical

Best Scenic Design nominee:
Mayde Creek High School for In The Heights

Best Costume Design nominee:
Cinco Ranch High School for The Music Man

Best Lighting Design nominee:
Mayde Creek High School for In The Heights

Best Musical Direction nominees:

Mayde Creek High School for In The Heights
Obra D. Tompkins High School for Shrek The Musical

James E. Taylor High School’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was the only Katy ISD participant in the awards that did not receive any nominations. The awards are limited 45 high Houston Area high schools not all Katy ISD high schools participate.

The Tommy Tune Awards Program celebrates the educational value, artistry, and community of high school musical theatre in the Greater Houston area.

Judges are an approved panel of qualified performing arts professionals that is assembled to adjudicate the 45 high schools participating in the TTA. They have  extensive backgrounds in professional theatre and performance in the capacity of directing, choreography, acting, musical directing, design, dramaturgy, arts administration, technical theatre, arts education, theatre production, etc.

For more information on the nominees end up coming awards presentation, visit www.tuts.com.

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In light of the recent violence in Austin, Texas involving bombs placed inside unsolicited packages, Harris County Sheriff’s Office is urging citizens to be extra cautious when accepting and opening mail. At this time, there is no evidence or indication of danger of this kind in the Katy community.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
March 14, 2018 

Posted by Ashley Lancaster

A Statement from HCSO

“As a matter of normal operations, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office is always monitoring local, state and national affairs when it concerns the safety of our citizens. Our department along with other local agencies, are staying vigilant with the current situation in Austin, TX as they relate to suspicious packages.

As of this time there is no indication or evidence to suggest any danger from these types of incidents is imminent within our community. If any suspicious and unsolicited packages arrive to your home, please inquire with all of your family members and ensure no one is expecting the delivery. Business owners should also check with employees for any boxes or freight that may be delivered unexpectedly.

If you encounter any suspicious packages and believe that you are in danger, STOP immediately. Do not open or move it; leave the package and call 911 immediately. The Harris County Sheriff’s Office encourages everyone: if you “see something, say something!”

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Spring is in the air – and by that we mean tree, grass, and ragweed pollen is coating every surface with a fine yellow dust. Here’s a look at pollen counts for the week in Katy, Texas so you can prepare. 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
March 12, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Pollen Levels:

High – between 9.7 and 12, strongly affects people who suffer from allergies to the pollen types of each season. Symptoms will be more severe.

 

Medium – between 4.9 and 9.6, will cause symptoms for people who suffer from allergies to the pollen types of the season.

Low – between 0 and 4.9, will effect very few individuals who suffer from allergies.

Monday – 10.4

Tree Pollen – High

Grass Pollen – High

Ragweed Pollen – Low

Tuesday – 9.7

Tree Pollen – High

Grass Pollen – High

Ragweed Pollen – Low/ None

Wednesday – 9.0

Tree Pollen – High

Grass Pollen – High

Ragweed Pollen – Low/ None

Thursday – 8.6

Tree Pollen – High

Grass Pollen – High

Ragweed Pollen – Low/ None

Friday – 9.2

Tree Pollen – High

Grass Pollen – High

Ragweed Pollen – Low/ None

Turning 40 is a benchmark birthday for many women in the United States. While a pessimist might view it as a signal that their glory days are over, more and more women are optimistic about the milestone, seeing it as a kickoff into the best years of their lives. But one thing is true for all women – health needs and preventative wellness routines should begin to change at age 40.

Katy Magazine News

March 7, 2018

“For some women, they have health history or specific reasons to begin mammography before age 40.  But for the average woman who has never had a breast screening, we recommend she begin a routine annual wellness mammogram, starting at age 40,” said Dr. Stephen Rose, chief medical officer, Solis Mammography. “Simply put, women in their 40s have the most to gain from being proactive about early detection. Major studies have shown time and again that in addition to saving lives, early detection offers greater quality of life as treatment at earlier stages is less invasive and less costly.”

Home of the “Peace of Mind” Mammogram

 CLICK to Schedule An Appointment 

Solis Mammography is expected to complete nearly 1 million procedures in 2018. Making them the nation’s largest independent provider of breast screening services. With this, Solis Mammography has some of the nation’s most comprehensive research data supporting its claim that women should begin annual mammography starting at age 40. This is in contrast to some confusing and conflicting advice from various media and non-physician-led organizations.

“While it’s true that breast cancer treatment has come a long way in recent years, this should in no way deter a woman from participating in the benefits of annual mammography,” said Solis Mammography CEO James Polfreman. “The fact is that cell growth replicates at a faster rate in younger tissue.  So, the younger you are, the more important it is to find any anomaly earlier. Research and technological advances in mammography have led to an all-time high in survival rates from breast cancer diagnosis.  This tells us we’re on the right path, and annual mammography is a key part of that success story.”

Four compelling reasons to begin annual mammograms at 40

1. The numbers. According to the American Cancer Society, 20 percent of all breast cancers are found in women under 50. If the cancer is found early, in what is known as stage zero or stage one, the five-year survival rate is nearly 100 percent. Simply stated, early detection is the closest thing to a cure, and mastectomies are no longer the first line of defense.

2. Women in their 40s have the most to gain. “Today’s high-quality screenings benefit 40-year-old women the most,” explained Dr. Rose, a radiologist with more than 25 years in the field of breast screening specialization, involved in several published national studies. “Advancements like 3-D mammography (digital breast tomosynthesis), and breast specialization have a significant impact on the quality of the mammography result. Today, we know one mammogram isn’t the same as another. It’s important to know what to look for in your provider to ensure the most accurate results.”

3. A chance for women to take charge of their health. Conflicting recommendations from some non-physician led organizations have suggested a “reasonable trade-off” to the “fear, anxiety and stress” of a “false positive” (otherwise known as a recall for additional images) is to delay annual screenings for five to 10 critical years. This advice encourages a foolhardy “Russian Roulette” approach to monitoring breast health.  It suggests no alternative to mammography; instead suggesting screenings be ignored entirely.  The studies and clinical evidence are clear.  Early detection provides women with the greatest opportunity for long-term survival and quality of life through the least invasive treatment when caught at the earliest possible stage.

4. Treatment is an option; knowledge is not. Instead of focusing on overdiagnosis as the problem, the real question at hand is overtreatment. With the advancement of medicine and less invasive treatments, women have more options for success. And in some cases, patients may opt not to treat at all, rather to monitor changes over time. These are discussions a woman can and should have with her doctor AFTER getting all the facts. Avoiding the facts is not a solution.

Pea versus walnut: Why mammograms help with early detection

Dr. Rose suggests thinking of a pea versus a walnut, when considering why early detection is so important. The average size of a lump found in a woman who gets regular annual mammograms is the size of a pea. The size of a lump found by a woman who does only occasional self-exams is the size of a walnut.

“Imagine the difference in treating the pea versus the walnut.  It’s the pea that gives us our best options for treatment,” Dr. Rose advised. “Put simply, the larger the lump, the more invasive and costly the treatment options become, and the more risk that is associated with long-term outcomes.”

Weekly updates on violent crime in Katy, Texas.


KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

March 13, 2018

compiled by Jennifer Skelton

Assault with Deadly Weapon

20700 Block FAIR WALNUT WAY

Mar 9, 2018 around 9 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Assault

37XX S MASON RD, KATY, TX 77450

Mar 9, 2018 at 8:25 pm

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

 

Assault

19600 Block BUCKLAND PARK DR

Mar 9, 2018 around 4 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Theft from Person (including Purse Snatch)

32XX LAUREMONT LN, KATY, TX 77494

Mar 9, 2018 at 1:30 pm

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Assault Family Violence

65XX EMERALD CANYON, KATY, TX 77450

Mar 9, 2018 at 12:40 pm

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Assault

19500 Block RIVER BOTTOM RD

Mar 9, 2018 around 8 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

03/09/2018 02:03 AM

23000 Block BENBURY DR, Katy, TX 77450

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Marijuana

03/09/2018 12:49 AM

22700 Block HOCKADAY DR, Katy, TX

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Marijuana

03/08/2018 08:00 PM

500 Block S FRY RD

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Child Neglect, Abandon, Non-Support

03/08/2018 03:56 PM

2600 Block LEOPARD CT, Katy, TX 77449

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

03/08/2018 02:41 PM

19300 Block GAGELAKE LN

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Synthetic Narcotic

03/08/2018 01:30 PM

23100 Block KATY FWY

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Marijuana

03/08/2018 12:53 PM

1700 Block BROOK GROVE DR

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Missing Person

25XX KITTANSETT, KATY, TX 77450

Mar 8, 2018 at 5:30 am

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Robbery of a Individual

03/08/2018 04:40 AM

2000 Block WESTBOROUGH DR

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Driving Under the Influence

03/07/2018 09:46 PM

1100 Block KATY GAP RD

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Aggravated Assault

03/07/2018 02:15 PM

23900 Block KATY FWY

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

BURGLARY

107XX SPRING GREEN, KATY, TX 77494

Mar 7, 2018 at 2:00 pm

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Marijuana

24400 Block FRANZ RD

Mar 7, 2018 02:00 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Sexual Assault Other (Child)

100 Block ASHEBORO DR
Mar 7, 2018 12:00 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Cocaine or Opium

20900 Block KATY FWY

Mar 7, 2018 10:27 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

2000 Block S MASON RD
Mar 7, 2018 10:00 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Sexual Assault Other (Child)

3600 Block LAKES OF BRIDGEWATER DR

Mar 7, 2018 10:00 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

19600 Block HUNT LAKE LN
Mar 7, 2017 7:00 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Aggravated Assault

1300 Block FRY RD
Mar 7, 2018 12:43 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

21600 Block PARK DOWNE LN
Mar 6, 2018 9:54 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

21100 Block KINGSLAND BL
Mar 6, 2018 5:59 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

19400 Block MONTCLAIR MEADOW LN

Mar 6, 2018 4:00 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Aggravated Assault

261XX PORTFIELD CT, KATY, TX 77494

Mar 6, 2018 at 2:30 pm

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Terroristic Threat

Mar 6, 2018 9:00 AM

24700 Block GRAND HARBOR DR

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

24400 Block KESTREL VW

Mar 6, 2018 6:00 AM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Assault
5700 Block GREENHOUSE RD

Mar 5, 2018 10:00 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

700 Block WILD HORSE VALLEY RD

Mar 5, 2018 9:48 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

300 Block COBIA DR

Mar 4, 2018 9:25 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Assault Family Violence

41XX LUONG FIELD CT, KATY, TX 77450

Mar 4, 2018 at 9:00 pm

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Aggravated Assault-Family

20000 Block N NAVAHO TL

Mar 4, 2018 8:47 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

100 Block BAKER RD

Mar 4, 2018 7:00 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Possession of Synthetic Narcotic

19300 Block CYPRESS ARBOR DR

Mar 4, 2018 around 4 PM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

19300 Block LONG LAKE DR

Mar 4, 2018 2:34 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Assault Family Violence

33XX S FRY RD, KATY, TX 77450

Mar 4, 2018 at 12:00 PM

(Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

22000 Block KATY FWY

Mar 4, 2018 11:15 AM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Driving Under the Influence

22500 Block CLAY RD

Mar 4, 2018  4:00 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Driving Under the Influence

6500 Block GREENHOUSE RD

Mar 4, 2018 2:00 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Terroristic Threat

24000 Block FRANZ RD

Mar 3, 2018 11:20 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Driving Under the Influence

100 Block W GRAND PARKWAY S

Mar 3, 2018 06:53 PM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Driving Under the Influence

KIETH HARROW BL & OLD GREENHOUSE RD

Mar 3, 2018 2:00 AM

(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

Simple Assault (Family)

22200 Block CIMARRON PW

Mar 3, 2018 02:00 AM
(Harris County Sheriff’s Office)

*This report consists of three reporting agencies so the reader will notice some differences between the City of Katy, Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office and Harris County Sheriff’s Office. (Parenthesis refers to the reporting agency.)

**City of Katy does not report location of event.

Editor’s Note: This report does not include crimes such as theft, auto theft or criminal mischief.

Katy Area Economic Development Council President/CEO Lance LaCour has been named to the Texas Economic Development Council Board of Directors.  LaCour replaces Paul Davis, former Pasadena Economic Development Council Director.  

 

 

Katy Magazine News
March 9, 2018

LaCour will serve the remainder of the board term vacated by Davis with the appointment ending in October 2018.

About Mr. LaCour

Since 2005, LaCour has led Katy Area EDC.  Under his leadership, Katy Area EDC has received several awards from Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC) including Economic Excellence recognition (2016) and the Community Economic Development Award (2014) for communities over 250,001 in population. The EDC was also recognized by Site Selection Magazine for being part of Top 20 Deals in North America.

About TEDC

TEDC is an Austin-based, statewide, non-profit professional association dedicated to the development of economic and employment opportunities in Texas. TEDC is a one-stop shop for ideas, information, and influence and is the largest state association of economic development professionals, volunteers, and elected officials in Texas.  The goal of the organization is to bring new investment and jobs to Texas.

For more information on Katy Area EDC, please visit katyedc.org.

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Applications are now being accepted for The Arc of Katy’s 2018 Summer Day Program that will provide a fun, memorable summer for individuals age 16 and above with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Katy Magazine News

March 6, 2018 

 

The Arc of Katy, a non-profit organization that provides programs for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, ages 16 and above, offers three summer sessions, each with excursions, crafts, life skills, games… and much more. The cost is only $35 per day and each participant receives an Arc t-shirt. Visit The Arc of Katy website at thearcofkaty.org for more information and registration.

Day Programs
The Arc of Katy, located at 5819 Tenth Street, Suite C in the downtown Katy area offers a Day Program from September through May for individuals transitioning out of high school and a Summer Day Program for those 16 and above. The Arc of Katy Day Programs stand out for its highly trained, experienced staff, the majority having transitioned from public school settings with experience in providing services to students with disabilities. All participants of the Day Programs must be members of The Arc of Katy which also includes opportunities to participate in monthly socials. One of the goals of The Arc of Katy is to provide opportunities for its participants to be socially engaged with their peers and members of the community. The Arc of Katy participants not only enjoy life but are part of life as well.

Summer Fun
Participants in The Arc of Katy Day and Summer Programs have the opportunity to participate in the Be Strong Swim and Exercise Program. The program began with the desire from parents and staff to keep participants “moving” and as active as possible. For those who do not get a great amount of physical activity at home or have problems with muscle strength, participating in the Be Strong Swim and Exercise Program can help keep their weight in check and improve balance and muscle strength.

Water Aerobics or Water Therapy is available as well as use of exercise equipment such as stationary bikes, treadmills, weights and various muscle strengthening equipment. Participants in the Be Strong Program are always accompanied by staff when using the exercise equipment or participating in the swim program.

Visit The Arc of Katy website at thearcofkaty.org or call 832-754-9802 for program information.

Katy mothers and daughters who share a uniquely close bond can audition together for a new documentary. 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
March 6, 2018
Katy Chamber Announcement
Bodega Pictures, in conjunction with a major television network is producing a groundbreaking documentary series that profiles fun, fabulous, over-the-top and extremely close moms and daughters. They will showcase their one of a kind relationship and livelihood in a fun and feel good new series that celebrates the special mother daughter bond. This is the opportunity to take part in an brand-new and fun show with your mom/daughter, “bestie”, GET PAID, and star in your own TV episode!
?
Casting directors are seeking nationwide for:
Moms and daughters who are extremely close:
 – Is your mom/daughter your best friend in the whole world?
 – Do you and your mom/daughter travel, live or work together?
– Has anyone ever thought that your relationship is “extreme” or “unusual?”
– To say that you two are, “close” is a major understatement?
– Do you have the exact same tastes, interests, and hobbies as your mother or your daughter?
– Do you two literally do EVERYTHING together?
– Are you closer with your mom/daughter than friends/family members and sometimes even spouses/significant others?
– Do you tell each other everything and hate it when you have to spend time a part?
– Are you at the center of one another’s worlds?
If you answer “Yes”
Email: momdaughtertvcasting@gmail.com with a brief bio, full contact information, names & ages of mom & daughter and several recent photos and a casting team member will be in touch.
NOTE: Daughters must be at least 18 years old or older.
February 20, 2018
Katrina Katsarelis 
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Two prominent Katy Area citizens were recognized today by the Katy Area Economic Development Council as winners of the Stan C. Stanley Leadership Awards.
Pictured: Left: Stan Goss (2016 Winner) Bill Callegari (2017 Winner) Sylvia Zerwas (Winner John Zerwas’s wife), Constable Wayne Thompson (Finalist), Patsy Stanley (Stan Stanley’s widow) Rick Lawlor (Finalist) Karen and Paul Kurt (Presenters) and Lance LaCour (Katy Area EDC President)
Senator John Zerwas and retired state representative Bill Callegari were honored at the KAEDC General Assembly Breakfast as the 2017 recipients of the Stan C. Stanley Leadership Award. The award recognizes volunteers (non-paid) who have made contributions to the Katy area in leadership and economic development.
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The award committee chooses recipients based on years of service, leadership skills, special achievements, and qualities Stan so greatly exhibited such as being faithful, conscientious, unselfish and committed to the Katy area community.
Sylvia Zerwas, accepted the award on behalf of her husband Senator John Zerwas, who was at a hearing for Hurricane Harvey.
 
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Stan C. Stanley (below) was the founder of the Katy Area Economic Development Council and spent many years volunteering on the board and mentoring hundreds of students, scouts, and local business leaders.
Stanley was a beloved community leader known and Katy ISD school namesake who died unexpectedly in March 2016 from an undiagnosed heart defect.

 

Katy Area EDC names 2018 Executive Committee and Officers and welcomes new Board of Governor’s members.
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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
March 5, 2018
Photo caption: From left to right: Paul Kurt, Dan Boggio, Woody Mann, Lance LaCour, Kent Rosenberger
Back row: Yvonne Kershner, Chad Carson, Richard Phillips, Bob Chalker, Rick Lawler, and Katrina Katsarelis
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The Katy Area Economic Development Council Board of Governors appointed Executive Committee members and officers for 2018.
Executive Board Members
The 2018 Executive Committee includes Rick Lawler, Bob Chalker, Katrina Katsarelis, Dick Phillips, Yvonne Kershner, Stan Goss and Chad Carson, and officers Woody Mann, Jr., who will continue to serve as Chairman, Vice Chairman Dan Boggio, Treasurer Paul Kurt and Secretary Kent Rosenberger. Longtime committee member David Woodham stepped off the committee for 2018 and Katy Area EDC would like to thank him for his service from 2014-2017.

Executive Committee members and officers will provide guidance and leadership to the organization and help shape its direction for 2018. Terms for each committee member and appointed officer will last through 2018 with new appointments taking place in 2019.

New Board of Governor’s Members
Katy Area EDC also welcomed several new Board of Governors members to begin the year as well. Caroline Champion of Houston Methodist West Hospital is new to the board this year. Champion serves as the Director of Business Development and Services Lines at Houston Methodist West. Marc Deer, President of Capital Real Estate, will represent the organization. Capital Real Estate focuses on Industrial real estate services and Deer has been working in the area for 12 years.
Sara Montenegro joins the board representing Texas Children’s Hospital. Montenegro is the Assistant Vice President for Texas Children’s West Campus, a world leader in pediatric healthcare, and has been with the organization for 9 years. James Ross joins the board representing Katy Mills Mall. Ross recently moved to the area to take over the role of Katy Mills General Manager. The final new board member is Flint Risien, Director of Property Management Services/Community Services for Caldwell Companies. Caldwell Companies focuses on land brokerage and property management. Risien has been working in the community for roughly 10 years.
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“We are extremely fortunate to have great leaders on our Executive Committee and board, and I would like to thank them for their service to our organization and the Katy area,” said Katy Area EDC President/CEO Lance LaCour. “We look forward to a successful 2018.”
For information on becoming a member of the Katy Area Economic Development Council, please visit www.katyedc.com

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

January 22, 2018

Katy ISD announces Jaime Shipley as the new principal for Elementary School #41, which is set to open in Fall 2018 in the Cross Creek Ranch subdivision.

 

 


Ms. Shipley has 19 years experience in education including nine years as a building principal. Her administrative experience began as an instructional facilitator at Carrollton-Farmers Branch in 2006. Shipley became an elementary assistant principal at Goose Creek CISD (GCCISD) in 2008. The following year, she was promoted to building principal in GCCISD and remained there for four years. In 2013, Shipley became the principal of Schmalz Elementary in Katy ISD and has led the campus for the past five years.

She obtained her Bachelor of Science in Education, Elementary and Early Childhood as well as her Master of Science in Education, Curriculum and Instruction from Baylor University.
“I am excited about leading the way for a new school and a new legacy. We, as a staff and community, will build the foundation together so students have unparalleled learning experiences,” says Principal Shipley.

On Saturday, January 20, American Legion 164 invites citizens with well-loved American flags to drop them off at sites all over town to be disposed of with dignity. 

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

January 9, 2018

According to the United States flag code title 4, chapter 1, section 8, “(k)The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.”

 

Retire flags with dignity

Citizens who own an American flag that is no longer fit for display can drop them off at four locations on Saturday, January 20 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Snappy’s Cafe & Grill
5803 Hwy. Blvd.

Katy Hardware
559 Pin Oak Rd.

Lowe’s
19935 Katy Fwy.

Katy Elks Lodge
1050 Katy Fort Bend Rd.

American Legion Post 164 will dispose of the collected flags during a special ceremony later in the year.

<<< KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

Two of the nation’s top-selling homebuilders are coming home to Cane Island.

Taylor Morrison and Highland Homes have announced plans to join the award-winning west Houston master planned community where both will add new family homes in Cane Island’s second phase.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

January 9, 2018

Cane Island 

 

Homesites from 60 – 80 feet

 

 

Taylor Morrison, ranked number seven among the nation’s 100 top-selling homebuilders, will add new family homes on 60-foot Cane Island homesites while Highland Homes, number 21 in the 2017 rankings, will build new family homes on 55- and 80-foot homesites.  New model homes by Taylor Morrison and Highland Homes, both fully furnished and expertly decorated, are expected to open in the spring.

Cane Island’s other phase two homebuilders will be announced in the coming weeks.  The second phase of the community of new homes spans just over 100 acres with more than 250 homesites.

Community has easy access to Interstate 10

The addition of Taylor Morrison and Highland Homes comes just after Cane Island celebrated its new direct accessibility to Interstate 10 via the extended Cane Island Parkway.  Since the opening of Cane Island Parkway at Highway 90 in late October, new home sales in Cane Island are up 20 percent from the previous year.

 “No question the opening of the parkway into Cane Island was a game-changer for the community,” notes Dan Naef, president of Cane Island developer Rise Communities, the GHBA’s 2017 Developer of the Year  “The addition of Taylor Morrison and Highland Homes certainly enhances our momentum heading in the 2018.”

Cane Island Parkway ultimately will be extended through the community’s second phase north of Franz Road.

The carefully planned, 1,200-acre community officially opened in the spring of 2015 offering convenient I-10 access minutes west of the Grand Parkway, proximity to major west Houston employers and Katy ISD schools, including the all-new Bryant Elementary.

Since then, the 2016 Greater Houston Builders Association Community of the Year has attracted first-time homebuyers, move-up buyers and active empty nesters with new homes starting in the mid-$200’s by CalAtlantic Homes, Coventry Homes, David Weekley Homes, Perry Homes, Shea Homes, Toll Brothers and Trendmaker Homes. Eleven fully furnished models homes are open daily.   The community also offers The Estates at Cane Island, an exclusive gated section of luxury custom homes on half-acre homesites.

World-class amenities 

Residents enjoy unlimited access to the Cane Island Amenity Village and its 24-hour, two-story fitness center, yoga studio with 200+ on-demand videos, lap pool, family pool with poolside cabanas and water play area, café, tree house, loft with comfortable seating and outdoor fireplace, event center with commercial kitchen, and glass-enclosed Conservatory, ideal for private events, with a seasonal wall of fresh flowers.

 

More impressive features

The community’s award-winning arrival experience features a three-acre lake with seven, 30-foot fountains and its impressive Living Arches, custom-made steel sculptures with thousands of individually controlled, programmable LED lights in glass leaves that change colors and patterns for the seasons.

For more information on Cane Island, go to CaneIsland.com or call (281) 725-6555.  Also follow Cane Island at www.Facebook.com/CaneIslandKatyTX and on Twitter and Instagram @CaneIslandKaty.

 

 

 Canyon Gate couple will also spend seven months in jail for human trafficking and falsifying government documents

A Cinco Ranch couple who forced a Nigerian woman to work nearly 20 hours a day taking care of their home and five children without pay for two years was ordered Friday to pay her more than $121,000 in restitution. Chudy Nsobundu, 57, and his wife Sandra Nsobundu, 49, also were sentenced by U.S. District Judge Nancy Atlas to seven months in jail and seven months of home confinement, plus three years’ probation.

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

January 6, 2018

by Katrina Katsarelis

Harsh working conditions without pay

According to court documents, the nanny was expected to work every day from 5:30 a.m. to 1 a.m., and was not permitted to take breaks. She claimed she was only allowed to eat leftovers and was only allowed to drink milk that was leftover from the children’s cereal bowls. She was not allowed to take hot showers or leave the residence except to walk the children around the block a maximum of twice a day. Court documents also state the couple consistently yelled at, scolded and berated the victim for moving too slowly or failing to care for the children in the manner they wanted. The Nsobundus regularly threatened to send the nanny back to Nigeria if she did not comply with their labor demands. The couple prevented the nanny from leaving their home by taking away her passport and threatening her with physical and mental harm.

The Nsolodus, who are naturalized U.S. citizens originally from Nigeria, recruited the woman there with the promise of a $100 monthly wage which was never paid during the time she worked for them in their Canyon Gate home from September 2013 to October 2015. “The defendants knowingly caused a false visa application for the victim to be submitted to the Department of State with numerous pieces of false information, said the statement from federal prosecutors.

Falsifying legal documents and misrepresentations

To help get the nanny into the country, the Nsobundu’s also made false claims on government documents. The false claims included the woman’s incorrect date of birth, (identifying her as 20 years older than she was), and that she was married when in fact she was not. The documents also stated the nanny was traveling to the US to attend her niece’s graduation and a written letter falsely stating that Chudy Nsobundu was her brother.

Chudy Nsobundu  was convicted of knowingly making multiple material misrepresentations under oath on the visa application to increase the chances of the nanny’s visa being accepted and to hide the fact that she would be working for the Nsobundu family as a housemaid and nanny under conditions not in compliance with U.S. labor laws. Prosecutors said he submitted the application under oath, knowing the application contained these material misrepresentations.

In September 2013, Sandra Nsobundu took the woman to the U.S. Embassy in Lagos, Nigeria, to obtain her visa. Sandra Nsobundu gave her a letter to provide to the consular officials which indicated she did not speak English well and that she would be traveling to the U.S. for her niece’s graduation. Sandra Nsobundu gave the woman a picture of Chudy Nsobundu and the family and told her to tell the officials that he was her brother. The nanny is not a relative of Chudy Nsobundu and is not married. The spouse listed on her visa application is the Nsobundus’ driver in Nigeria.

The nanny reached out for help and was rescued following a tip to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center. Her name has not been released.

MORE KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

Allan McNeill, a former cafeteria worker at a Seven Lakes High School, was sentenced yesterday after pleading guilty to possession of child pornography. 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

January 5, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

 

McNeill, now 53, was charged and arrested in October 2016 after the FBI seized electronic evidence from his home, including a laptop with approximately 200 explicit images of child pornography.

A four-year district employee

 

Although McNeill had been an employee of the district since 2012, there is no evidence that any students were involved in his crimes. The FBI was alerted to the presence of child porn through an email account associated with McNeill. His employment with Katy ISD was terminated shortly after his arrest in 2016.

A guilty plea and sentencing

On January 4, 2018, McNeill plead guilty to felony charges of Possession of Child Pornography and Receipt of Child Pornography, and will serve just over eight years in prison.

<<< MORE KATY NEWS 

Simon Property Group is pleased to announce that James Ross was recently appointed General Manager of Katy Mills.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

January 5, 2018

By Ashley Lancaster

 

In his new role, James will oversee the financial, marketing and operational performance of the largest outlet and value retail shopping destination in South Texas.

A history with Simon Malls across the U.S.

No stranger to Simon, James has previously managed Liberty Village Premium Outlets in New Jersey and Gaffney Premium Outlets in South Carolina. Most recently, he served as General Manager of Philadelphia Mills. Before his career at Simon, he was a Merchant Analyst at Best Buy’s Minneapolis headquarters.

 

Optimistic about continued growth in Katy

“Through James’ experience, dedication and leadership, Katy Mills is positioned for continued growth as a premier shopping destination,” said Gregg Goodman, President of The Mills. “He is a proven performer and we are looking forward to having his fresh perspective on the Katy Mills team.”

James is a graduate of the University of Minnesota and the Carlson School of Management. He lives in Katy with his wife, son and two dogs.

<<< MORE KATY NEWS 

 

Since its inception in 2002, this initiative has raised almost $193,000, helping nearly 4,100 families have a happier holiday. 
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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
December 18, 2017
Grocery Gift Cards for Katy Students
 
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Katy ISD’s Partners in Education is delighted to announce that Food for Families raised $35,000 during its recent campaign.  Supported by both the community and Katy ISD employees, this initiative provides grocery gift cards to students and families in need during the holiday season.  Food for Families is an annual campaign that provides grocery gift cards to Katy ISD students and their families. This year, Food for Families also supported families who were impacted by Harvey.
Blessing Families Since 2002
Katy ISD campuses identify students in need of assistance, and gift cards are given to those students before winter break.  Last year, Food for Families blessed 433 families.
   
Food for Families, a Katy ISD Partners in Education yearly initiative, unites our Katy ISD staff and community in holiday support for select students and their families.  To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at ww

The Katy high school graduate and OU running back will not be charged with sexual assault according to Cleveland County District Attorney, Greg Mashburn. 

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX

December 14, 2017

Ashley Lancaster

Anderson, 21, who graduated from Katy High School in 2015, was accused of raping a woman in her apartment. She filed for a protective order after alleging the leading rusher forced her to have intercourse with him on November 16, and that she feared for her safety.

 

Mr. Anderson’s attorney has called the accusations, “patently false.” And today he was exonerated, after having cooperated with Cleveland County and the Norman Police Department. Late last week, Anderson submitted to and passed a three-hour lie-detector test, administered by former FBI polygraph examiner, Bill Brown.

“We want to make sure that sexual assault victims feel comfortable coming forward,” said Mashburn.

Republican Mike Schofield has served two terms at the Texas Capitol representing District 132 (Katy and Cy-Fair), and announced over the weekend that he has been endorsed by Governor Greg Abbott for reelection.
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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
December 11, 2017
Ashley Lancaster
 
Below is an excerpt from his letter to Katy and Cypress residents:
 
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“During my two terms in office, I have passed bills to mandate that lawsuits affecting the school finance system are heard by a three-judge panel rather that by one liberal judge in Austin (to ensure that views of the rest of Texas are heard), protect the integrity of our elections by allowing the attorney general to go after organizations that conspire to commit election fraud, increase funding for non-profit groups providing counseling for alternatives to abortion, and I successfully sponsored an amendment to the state constitution to ensure that your vote counts and that laws enacted by the representatives you elected are not thrown out in court without the attorney general having a chance to defend them.
Most recently, I have been instrumental in the drive to ensure that the Republican caucus nominates a candidate for speaker, to prevent the minority party from conspiring with a few breakaway Republicans to pick a speaker beholden to the party the voters did not choose to give control of the House.
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Recognizing the work that I have done to fight for conservative Texas values, Governor Greg Abbott announced yesterday that he is endorsing me for reelection so I can continue to work with him to enact a meaningful cap on state spending, reform the property tax system to provide relief to homeowners and business owners, protect property owners from wrongful annexation by cities they don’t want to live in, and continue to make Texas the best state in the nation in which to live and do business.
If you haven’t seen the video of Governor Abbott’s endorsement, you can find it here:
I intend to continue to keep you informed on what your legislature is working on so you can weigh in before the legislature takes action, when your views can affect how your government is run. And I intend to continue to work hard to ensure that your voice is heard in Austin.
I hope I can continue to earn your support.”

Quote from Texas Governor Greg Abbott:
“Mike Schofield is a conservative through and through, having demonstrated his commitment to education reform and lowering taxes as a member of the Texas House,” said Governor Abbott. “The constituents of House District 132 have been well represented by Mike over the last few years, and they can be assured that this trend will continue upon his re-election. That is why I am proud to endorse Mike for another term in the Texas House of Representatives.”

 

The Katy Tigers gave us the details on what Katy coaches talked about with Jimbo Fisher, Texas A&M’s new head coach on Tuesday afternoon. 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

December 6, 2017 

By Ashley Lancaster

 

Aggies in Tiger Land

According to Jon Joseph, new head coach of the Texas A&M Aggies, Jimbo Fisher (formerly Florida State University), stopped by the Tigers’ field house with two staff members at 2:30 p.m.

“They came to say hello to see committed player Seth Small and were able to meet and watch Deondrick Glass,” says Joseph. Glass, now a junior, was offered by Florida State during his freshman year.

Giving Kudos to the Katy Program
While there, the Aggies staff also met all the Katy coaches, but Coach Fisher has visited Katy High in the past. “He says not much has changed, and he commented on how well the Katy program is run and how successful it is, and the plan is to get the Aggies to the championship every year like Katy,” says Joseph.

Talking X’s and O’s

There was a brief meeting between Gary and Jimbo, and a 30-minute conversation with coaches Fisher (A&M), Banks, Price, and Joseph (KHS),” he says. The Tigers say Fisher was incredibly nice and the visit went well. After the meetings, they all went out and watched the Tigers practice for their upcoming playoff matchup against the North Shore Mustangs this Saturday at 2 p.m. at NRG.

Fisher and staff ended the day meeting teachers, people, and coaches at KHS, “He told the coaching staff to come up to A&M to visit, watch practice and talk X’s and O’s whenever they want.”

The Memorial Parkway Elementary (MPE) Choir officially kicked off the dedication ceremony of their new SPARK Park, which is now available for public use during non-school hours and on weekends.

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, Texas 

December 4, 2017 

 

Collaboration between the district, city,  parents, and staff
This park is a collaborative effort between Katy ISD, MPE parents, students, staff, the PTA, as well as local entities, who together contributed to the SPARK grant in the amount of $129,331.  The park includes a concrete trail, sensory play panels, modular playground equipment, an amphitheater and other amenities.  When visitors walk through the main entrance of the park, they will notice the school mascot, a panther, as well as 26 new trees from Trees for Houston.

 

“Our area was considered a park desert because there are no local parks where children could go to play,” said Assistant Principal Sharlu Melville, who led the effort to create the park.

Benefiting everyone, not just students
“With this park, we are benefiting not only the school and its students, but also strengthening this community and its families,” added Ashley Vann, Board of Trustee President.

SPARK, an organization created in 1983 to increase park and recreational spaces in the Greater Houston area, has helped to turn underutilized school playgrounds into neighborhood parks at more than 200 locations.  This is the third SPARK Park at a Katy ISD school.

 

Katy People of the Year Announced in Katy Magazine’s December Issue Launched today at www.katymagazineonline.com 
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KATY TEXAS NEWS  
December 1, 2017  
Katy Magazine’s announced it’s Katy People of the Year for 2017 in the current issue launched today. This year’s honorees will be celebrated at the Katy Area Economic Development Council’s General Assembly Meeting on December 12. The eight Katy honorees include Superintendent Lance Hindt, Don Massey, Katy Police Chief Bill Hastings, and more. VIEW THE ISSUE 

 

Lisa Forney, assistant principal for the Cardiff Colts, has received the title of “Life-Changer of the Year” ” for going above and beyond for her students and community.
Katy Independent School District is proud to announce that Cardiff Junior High (CJH) Assistant Principal Lisa Forney has been nominated by a local business partner as a “Life Changer of the Year” for going above and beyond for her students and community.
 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
 
November 30, 2017
 
 
Meeting the needs of struggling faculty and staff
After Hurricane Harvey, Ms. Forney put pen to paper and outlined a comprehensive plan to meet the immediate needs of the Cardiff faculty and staff who were hardest hit by the storm.  Thus was born the “CJH Boots on the Ground Initiative” which consisted of a group of volunteers who cleaned out flooded homes, delivered food to work crews and collected donated items.  She went even further by reaching out to non-profit organizations to sponsor families and support them as they worked to get back on their feet. Because of Ms. Forney’s detailed planning, communication skills and her dedication to the community, many families received the help they needed after the storm.
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Providing a stress-free Thanksgiving to Katy ISD families
However, her work didn’t end when the flood waters receded.  With the help of many staff members, she organized an essential needs pantry that efficiently served over 200 Cardiff families and community members.  Also, as the Thanksgiving season approached, Ms. Forney along with help from Tays Junior High volunteers, many local community partners and non-profit organizations led the coordination of the CJH Thanksgiving Pop-Up Market which provided turkeys and packaged food to over 100 families.  Her goal was to provide a stress-free Thanksgiving!