Community Events

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For cheapest gas prices, visit http://www.gasbuddy.com

For Metro Houston’s Park and Ride fares:

https://www.ridemetro.org/Pages/ParkRide.aspx

For things to do and free activities in Houston, http://www.visithoustontexas.com.

Local churches and faith groups will have holiday and Christmas events in December  for the public. Check with your local church or group for times and dates.

Tonight and Saturday, December 15th –“Handel’s Messiah” at Christ Evangelical  Presbyterian Church on 8300 Katy Freeway in Houston, Texas.  Free Admission tickets at 7 p.m. Doors open at 7 p.m. Performances at 8 p.m.

Tonight and Saturday, December 15th  — “Christmas Under the Big Top” at Second Baptist Church, Woodway Campus near Voss Road in Houston, Texas.  It’s at 7 p.m.

December 24th — Christmas Eve Services at local churches. At Houston’s First Baptist Church services are 2 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. at the 610 L00p campus.

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December 15 – 30  —  The  2018 U.S. China International Film Festival in Houston, Texas.  The film festival is at the Asia Society of Texas, 1370 Southmore, Houston, Texas   77004.  Admission is free. 

The film festival kicks off this Saturday, Dec. 15th at 2 p.m. with 2 films.

At 2 p.m., “Dancing Through Life, The Dorothy Toy Story” will be shown.

At 2:30 p.m., the The Great American Follies from the San Francisco Bay Area will perform.

At 3 p.m., the films’ director and Houstonian, Rick Quan and race car driver Al Young will have a discussion.

At 3:30 p.m.,  Quan’s second film, “The Al Young Story” will be shown at the festival.

For more information, contact Zhong Xie at zhong8864@yahoo.com or call 713-304-5636.

December 21 –First Day of Winter

December 25 – Merry Christmas!

December 26 – January 1, 2019 –Happy Kwanza!

January 1, 2019 — Happy New Year!

January 31, 2019  –Property Taxes Due without penalty fees in Texas counties.

Places to visit in Houston, Texas –Space Center Houston, the Galleria Shopping Mall, the Hines Water Wall Park near the Galleria, the Museum District, Downtown Houston, Hermann and Memorial Parks, the San Jacinto Monument in Baytown to name a few.  Galveston beaches are a 45-minute drive from metro Houston.  

Bucee’s is Texas’s favorite place to fuel up your vehicle and yourself. Buc-ees has food, gifts and gas at its Pearland, Katy, Houston area and Texas locations.  The Galleria in Houston offers high-end retail stores, Macys, Nordstroms, restaurants, food court and a cool ice skating rink. Memorial City in west Houston also a popular shopping and restaurant area for families and visitors.  Closer to the Texas Medical Center are Rice University Village and Highland Village for shopping and places to eat. Outside Houston city limits, take I-10 West for Designer Outlets at Katy Mills in Katy, Texas. Take Highway 290 in northwest Houston to the Houston Premium Outlets in Cypress, Texas.

For Texas Barbeque, foodies head to Killen’s in Pearland and Rudy’s in the outer suburbs of metro Houston. Pappas BBQ, Roegel’s on S. Voss, Spring Creek BBQ in Pearland and Katy and Brisket BBQ in Bellaire also are family favorites.

Houston families also dine at Cleburne’s Cafeteria in West University and Luby’s Cafeterias.

For Mexican food, locals and visitors head to Lopez Mexican Restaurant on S. Wilcrest off Highway 59 in southwest Houston.  The original Ninfa’s Mexican Restaurant on Navigation Street in east Houston also is a popular destination. There are many Mexican restaurants and taquerias throughout Houston. Fajita Pete’s café in West University also good for close-to-home takeout or dining.

For Mediterranean food, Nikos Restaurant and Fadi’s Mediterranean Grill offer salads, humus, vegetarian and grilled entrees from gyros to lamb shanks.

Houston’s Chinatown, Vietnamese Town, Asian Town and in Katy, Texas have Asian food and shops. Many are on Bellaire Boulevard in southwest Houston.  There’s Fung’s Kitchen, Ocean Palace, Confucius, East Wall, Fu-Fu’s Café, Golden Dim Sum, Tan-Tan Westheimer, Seoul (Korean) in Spring Branch and Fadi’s (Mediterranean).

There’s also Kim Bo Chinese Restaurant in Sugarland, Texas which has an “A” in city health department restaurant inspections. 

Large Asian grocery stores like Ranch 99, Viet Hoa, Hong Kong Market, Welcome, Super H Market also offer box lunches and some have food courts. For Boba Tea, visit Star Snow Ice, Tapioca House in the Welcome shopping Center on Bellaire Boulevard and Tea House locations in Chinatown.  Tapioca House also serves combo bento box meals with Boba Tea for $7-$8.  Tapioca House has locations in Austin and Dallas.  For Thai food, Thai Gourmet Restaurant at 6324 Richmond Avenue west of the Galleria area.

Visit national, state, local parks, beaches and indoor attractions. Visit http://www.nps.gov or http://www.tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks

Yosemite National Park                   Galveston, Texas

Mondays through Saturdays – Harris County Community Centers in the Houston area offer free classes with volunteer teachers.  Learn Spanish, English, French, Mandarin Chinese, yoga, exercise, self defense, knitting, CPR and other things that interest you. Students may be required to pay for materials in the free classes.  For monthly class schedules at Trini Mendenhall Community Center, 1414 Wirt Road, call 713- 956-0881 or at the county community center near you, visit http://www.pct3.com

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Posted in Asian Community Houston, Community Events, Harris County News, Health News, Houston News, Houston Restaurants, Houston Texas Dining, Texas Tourism, Things to Do, Travel and Recreation | Tagged , , , , , ,

Houston Weather and Travel

National Weather Service forecasts windy, cold weather in the Houston-Galveston area.   For Friday, the NWS forecasts daytime temperature to reach 54 degrees F, breezy and a 30% chance of rain.  Tonight, cloudy , breezy  and 43 degrees F.

On Saturday, the sunshine returns with a  NWS forecast of sunny weather, daytime temperature of 60 degrees F and increasing clouds Saturday night. Evening low temperature to be 43 degrees F.

The NWS forecasts strong west to northwest winds on the back side of the low system that will move into Southeast Texas  Friday morning.

The NWS Houston Galveston extended the wind advisory through 5 p.m. today.

Wintery weather and snow flakes forecast to be farther north of the Houston area in Texas as system pushes east.

Traveling today?

Check with your airline on flight departures and arrivals.

https://flightaware.com/

Click on links below for a look at local weather and around the country.

https://www.weather.gov/hgx/

https://www.weather.gov

For updates, tune in to local broadcast television stations, National Weather Service social media.

 

Posted in Houston Weather | Tagged ,

Houston Crime News

A West University woman reported this Meyerland purse snatching on Nextdoor.com on December 8, 2018.

” I know crime is everywhere nowadays but I just wanted to remind everyone to please be alert. My mom & I witnessed a robbery in the small parking area between Cafe Express & Talbots in Meyerland on Wednesday at 2:30 pm in broad daylight. As we walked to our car the guy walked right passed us. A black older model Tahoe pulled up next to him, they exchanged words and then they backed the SUV into the last parking spot on the corner. We watched as the guy on foot zigzagged between cars until he approached a lady from behind and lifted her crossbody purse right over her head. There were several people outside and it all happened so fast…not sure anything could have been done to actually stop it but i laid on my horn anyway just to make a commotion. He jumped in the SUV and in half a second they were on the feeder of 610 and on their way. Not sure if it’s the same group that has been hitting that parking lot as I’ve heard it’s become a regular occurrence there lately. Just felt the need to share.

Be safe!

Description of person involved – Hair: Black, Top: Black Sweatshirts, Bottom: Jeans, Shoes: Black sneakers, Age: upper 20’s – maybe 30’s, Build: Short and medium build, Race: African American, Sex: Male, Other details: There were 3 men. All dressed in black sweatshirts and black sunglasses.

Description of vehicle involved – Color: Black, Make: Chevrolet, Model: Tahoe, Year: Older Model, Type: SUV, License plate: No license plates on front or back.”

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Houston Police report the following as the most stolen trucks in November 2018.

1. Chevrolet Trucks 217
2. Ford Trucks 159
3. Dodge Trucks 49
GMC Trucks 49
4. Ford Cars 39
5 Chevrolet Cars 37
6. Honda Cars 36
Nissan Cars 36
7. Toyota Cars 32
8 Dodge Cars 25
9. Toyota Trucks 21
10. Honda Trucks 15
Nissan Trucks 15

 

Posted in Asian Community Houston, Crime News, Uncategorized | Tagged , ,

Christmas and Holiday Cheer

Houston Police Department collected a record breaking $76,00 in food and money donations during the HPD’s 33rd annual Comida/Food Drive. The donations were collected earlier this month at Houston area Fiesta Marts.  This year’s donations will help police officers provide more than 3,500 boxes of food to Houston families this holiday season.

This Saturday, December 15, the donated food boxes will be taken to churches that pre-registered to participate in the program.  Each holiday food box feeds a family of four.

Houston Police say the Comida/Food Drive began 33 years ago in December 1985. It started with an officer’s concern for the less fortunate people of Houston. During its first year, around 600 families received a box of non-perishable food with Fiesta and Pepsi as partner sponsors.

The Houston Police Department also thank its annual food drive sponsors–Fiesta Mart, the Pepsi Bottling Group, the Houston Citizens’ Police Academy Alumni Association, the Police and Clergy Alliance and the Houston Police Foundation.

Posted in Celebrating Holidays, Houston News, Houston Police News

Houston’s First Baptist Church Letter on Embezzlement

The following is Houston’s First Baptist Church’s statement in response to the Jerrell G. Altic indictment and alleged embezzlement of more than $800,000 from the church.  This letter was sent out to all church members  Tuesday.

December 11, 2018

Dear Houston’s First Family,

We want to share with you some difficult information involving a former employee of our church. In November 2017, we discovered a limited set of suspicious financial activity related to Jerrell Altic. When we approached him about the matter, he immediately tendered his resignation. We reported our initial findings to law enforcement and our insurance provider, in keeping with our legal and fiduciary responsibilities, and began a thorough investigation conducted by staff leadership, relevant church committees and deacons, as well as independent forensic accounting and legal experts.

This investigation, internally and by law enforcement, brought us to yesterday, December 10, when a Harris County grand jury indicted him for first degree felony theft of more than $800,000 of the church’s finances between 2011 and 2017, while he was employed here.

We have learned through the investigation process that, acting alone, he engaged in multiple deceptive and difficult-to-detect techniques to carry out this theft. That said, though his fraudulent activities involved missions funds, all of Houston’s First ministry partners received their designated monies, as his actions did not prevent our church from providing resources to local ministries, church plants or other strategic partners. Nevertheless, we have already enacted additional policies to help ensure all donations and expenses are protected and handled properly moving forward. The outside expertise we sought helped us not only to determine the extent of this serious violation of trust, but also provided recommendations on how our financial controls might be improved or strengthened.

We understand this is challenging news to process. Unfortunately, due to the sensitive nature of the legal and investigative procedures triggered by this matter, we have not been able to provide these details until now. While we were unable to inform the church body because of the ongoing investigation, we informed and kept updated the related church committees, including personnel, finance, and missions committees, along with key staff and the deacon body, throughout this process. These past months have been challenging and painful for us as the extent of Jerrell’s actions came to light and as we wrestled with the tension of wanting to inform you, while also carefully following law enforcement’s lead in the investigation, balancing legal constraints with church procedures.

We are encouraged that our church’s insurance coverage paid $500,000, which reimbursed a significant part of the loss, while our church leadership approved using unallocated contingency funds to replace the balance.

As challenging as this discovery has been for everyone involved, we have also been encouraged by the continued generosity and passion for missions work from our congregation—including through generous, unsolicited financial gifts from those who have come to know of his wrongdoing.

Please pray for God’s work to continue to be done at Houston’s First, and for Jerrell and his family. Houston’s First remains committed to the advancement of the Gospel in our city, our nation and around the world (Acts 1:8). We understand and take seriously our responsibility to properly steward the resources God gives us through the generosity of our church family.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Executive Pastor David Self or Finance Committee Chair Kevin Jordan. We are committed to sharing as much information as we are able and are certainly open to receiving your questions.

Thank you for your partnership, patience and understanding in this season.

In Him,

Gregg Matte, Senior Pastor

Craig Bloodworth, Deacon Chairman

Posted in Asian Community Houston, Church News, Harris County News, Houston News | Tagged

Former Houston Baptist Church Minister Embezzlement

Photo courtesy:  KPRC-TV

Updated Dec. 12, 2018

A former Houston First Baptist Church minister is accused of embezzling more than $800,00 from the church.  The money was allegedly stolen over a 6-year period.

According to the Harris County District Attorney’s office, 40-year-old Jerrell G. Altic allegedly spent the money on overseas trips with his family, groceries and to pay for his doctorate in divinity from Lancaster Bible College.

Houston’s First Baptist Church confronted Altic and he resigned immediately in November 2017.

Altic reportedly is cooperating with the investigation and surrendered to authorities around 9 a.m. Tuesday. He reportedly is sorry and plans to pay back the church, which has insurance to cover part of the criminal monetary losses.

A Harris County Grand Jury indicted Altic on Monday.  He reportedly surrendered to authorities around 9 a.m. Tuesday.

Altic was a Houston realtor. According to Twitter, his wife and 2 sons attended the church during his employment.

Houston’s First Baptist Church published a letter on this matter on the church website.  http://www.houstonsfirst.org

(Information compiled from The Houston Chronicle, KHOU-TV, KPRC-TV, KTRK-TV)

Carol Lim is a member of Houston’s First Baptist Church.

Posted in Asian Community Houston, Church News, Harris County News, Houston Crime News

Houston Weekend Flash Floods

The overnight torrential, flooding rain has moved out of the Houston area and is headed east.  The Houston Fire Department reported high water rescues all over the Houston area last night.  Tune  into local broadcast stations and National Weather Service social media for updates this weekend.

Flooding at 1 a.m. on Saturday,  Dec. 8, 2018 from White Oak Bayou down Houston Avenue and Studemont.  Drivers rescued from their cars stalled in the high water in this area, KHOU-TV and KTRK-TV report.

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Photos Courtesy: Transtar, Jeff Lindner, KHOU-TV, KTRK-TV Twitter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Asian Community Alert, Galveston Weather, Harris County News, Houston News, Houston Weather, Hurricane Season, Weather | Tagged , , , , ,

President George H. W. Bush Farewells

Tributes to President George H.W. Bush

Photo Courtesy: Paul Morse Twitter

Today the journey home for President George H.W. Bush. After an invitation-only funeral today in Houston, the Bush family and President George H.W. Bush’s casket boarded a Union Pacific train to lay him to rest in College Station. The train ride started in Spring, Texas and ended in College Station.  Many Americans in the Texas towns along the train route came out to say good bye, express their love, respect, some waving American flags as the Union Pacific 4141 train passed by. President Bush will be buried next to his beloved wife, Barbara and young daughter, Robin, on the grounds of the Bush Presidential Library at Texas A & M University.

People from Houston, Webster, Galveston and dignitaries came together at Second Baptist Church overnight to board Metro busses for a few personal moments with President George H.W. Bush in repose at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church overnight.  The 12-hour public viewing ends at 6 a.m. today.  Early Wednesday night, the Houston Police said Second Baptist Church was filled to capacity and people waited 3 hours in line.  As the night went on, it became a 1 hour wait at Second Baptist to board shuttle busses and go through federal security screening. People kept coming and Metro busses filled with passengers made the 5 minute trip to St. Martin’s Episcopal Church during the night.  Those who came to pay their respects came from all walks of life, including those knew the Bushes personally.  Bush family spokesman Jim McGrath tweeted 11,657 paid their respects to 41st during the public viewing at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston.

From the crew of the USS George H.W. Bush at sea Tuesday night.  Photo courtesy: Bush ship’s crew and Jim McGrath 

 

 

Today, December 5th is the National Day of Mourning, Gratitude and Celebration of President George H.W. Bush’s life. After a national church service in Washington, DC, the casket of President Bush returns to Houston late this afternoon. The President Bush hearst and procession  likely will follow the same route from Ellington Field to 610 west to 610 north to the public viewing at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church, 717 Sage Road in Houston. It is from 6 p.m. tonight into the overnight and ends at 6 a.m. Thursday. All visitors will go through security screening and will take shuttle busses from Second Baptist Church, 6400 Woodway Drive for the 12-hour public viewing.  No large bags, backpacks, cameras allowed.  SBC parking lot opens at 4 p.m. Shuttles at Second Baptist  run from 5:30 p.m Wednesday – 5:30 a.m. Thursday to St. Martin’s Episcopal Church.  Expect road closures.  Metro also has free rides for citizens with disabilities to and from St. Martin’s Church.

On Thursday morning, December 6th– an invitation-only funeral at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church.  After the Houston funeral, President Bush’s casket will travel by a special 41st train from Spring Texas to College Station, Texas. President Bush will be laid to rest by his dear wife, Barbara Bush on the grounds of the Bush Presidential Library at Texas A & M University.

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Posted Earlier:

Photos Courtesy: Jim McGrath

Air Force One at Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base waits to take President George H.W. Bush for a final trip to Washington, DC on Monday morning.  Sully, President Bush’s dog waits with him.

The Bush family and viewing of President George Herbert Walker Bush in repose in the Capitol rotunda in Washington, DC.  Photos Courtesy: Jim McGrath

The City of Houston  celebrated President Bush’s life at City Hall at 7 p.m. Monday. City Hall is lit in red, white and blue.  It was broadcast on local television stations.  The Gatlin Brothers, Houston Symphony, Houston officials, dignitaries, clergy and celebrities participated in the celebration.

For President Bush’s funeral, the St. Martin’s Episcopal Church campus in Houston will be closed Tuesday, December 4 beginning at 12:30 p.m. and will reopen Friday, December 7 at 8 a.m.  The church website says all activities originally scheduled for those days will not be held. Before they passed away, President Bush and First Lady Barbara Pierce Bush worshipped there for more than 50 years.

The Bush family had many friends from all walks of life, including Fuzzi’s Pizza owners, Lamis and Jamil Hajjar.  The Hajjars cooked and made pizza for President Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush.  Their photos are displayed at their Houston area pizza restaurants.

On Wednesday night, December 5th,  a public viewing of President George H.W. Bush in repose at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas.  The church is located at 717 Sage Road.  Prepare for traffic delays and road closures.

“All members of the public wishing to pay their respects to President Bush may attend the repose at St. Martin’s beginning Wednesday, December 5 at 6 p.m. through Thursday, December 6 at 6 a.m. Everyone must first go to Second Baptist Church at 6400 Woodway Drive to park and go through security. Metro is providing complimentary shuttles to transport citizens, including those with disabilities, to and from St. Martin’s. The parking lot will open at 4 p.m. and shuttles will start running at 5:30 p.m. No one may drive or walk up to St. Martin’s. Large, over-size purses and bags are not permitted.

The funeral is by invitation only.”

——The St. Martin’s Episcopal Church website

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Saturday, December 1, 2018

Americans and Houstonians are saddened that former President George H. W. Bush passed away Friday, November 30th in Houston, Texas.  Tributes are pouring in loving memory of the 41st President of the United States.

Overnight, the Bush family spokesman, Jim McGrath released this statement:

Posted in America Remembers, Asian Community Houston, Community Events, Houston News, National News, Texas News | Tagged , , , ,

Hurricane Season Ends and Harvey Funding in Houston Wraps Up

Today, November 30th, is the official end of hurricane season. Hurricane Florence, a category 1 storm with 137 mph sustained winds, made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina in September and brought flooding rain to the Carolinas. Hurricane Michael, a category 4 storm with 155 mph sustained winds, destroyed and flooded coastal towns near Panama City, Florida in October.

As this year’s hurricane season winds down, the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund is distributing its final grants for aid and services to local flood victims.  Since it began, the relief fund has brought in and passed out $113.6 million of donations through 17 non-profits.  Houston officials say the charitable donations have been used to help around 190,000 households through 124 experienced and carefully selected non-profit organizations.

The fifth and last round of $3 million will go to 17 non-profits groups to provide furniture, cash, other basic needs and case management to qualified victims.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Harris County Judge Ed Emmett set up the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund in 2017 for disaster relief. The Greater Houston Community Foundation administers the Fund.

“The effects of Harvey will be felt for years to come,” County Judge Ed Emmett said in a news release this week. “These local nonprofit grantees have strong track records of supporting our communities. We’re confident that they can make a real difference in the longer term.”

“It’s been over a year since Harvey, but there is still work that needs to be done to help people get back on their feet,” Mayor Turner said. “This last round of funding strengthens our communities and supports recovery across the city.”

Before disbursing this last round of grants, fund officials looked at organizations located in the hardest hit communities to decide what their needs were.

“It was also important to review the progress of Round 3 and Round 4 grantees to identify challenges in service delivery and determine the support needed for Round 5 grant recommendations,” said Renee Wizig-Barrios, senior vice president and chief philanthropy officer at Greater Houston Community Foundation.

During Round 5 funding, Angel By Nature and West Street Recovery will be included. Grants also will be distributed to the Home Preservation Fund to be administered by Avenue CDC.  Avenue CDC helps homeowners  unable to pay their mortgage payments on time so they can repair their homes after Hurricane Harvey.

To find out more on the $113 million in grants, click here. 

For updates,  www.ghcf.org.

Source:  City of Houston News Release

Posted in Asian Community Houston, Harris County News, Houston News | Tagged ,

Houston Police Comida Food Drive

Tis the season for giving back and helping others.  Starting today through Sunday (December 2), Houston police officers will  be collecting food and money donations at 14 Fiesta Mart stores in the city as part of the annual HPD Comida/Food Drive.  The HPD says the food drive will help thousands of those in need this holiday season.

Houston Police officers will accept your food or money donations rom noon to 8 p.m. today; Friday (November 29-30) and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday (December 1-2).

You can bring your donations to the following Fiesta Mart locations:
•    1175 Edgebrook Drive
•    800 South Wayside Drive
•    4711 Airline Drive
•    10401 Jensen Drive
•    1728 W. Mount Houston
•    9419 Mesa Road
•    8320 FM 1960
•    2323 Wirt Road
•    7510 Bellfort Street
•    5600 Mykawa Road
•    6200 Bellaire Blvd.
•    8130 Kirby Drive
•    12355 Main Street
•    8710 Bellaire Blvd.

The Houston Police Department says online donations can be made on the Houston Police Foundation website through Sunday, December 2, at http://bit.ly/2fpmuXN

Posted in Asian Community Houston, Community Events, Houston News, Houston Police News, Uncategorized | Tagged