CHARITY: Mission Capital, formerly Greenlights, steps up. The group that added social venturing to its counseling for nonprofits is now playing in the big time. It raised something like $200,000 during a packed Party for Good at the Hyatt Regency Austin. Meanwhile, captains of charity gave out impressive (heavy) awards to various leaders — even the finalists were top shelf. The Nonprofit Executive Award of the Year went to Karen LaShelle of Creative Action, Excellence in Impact to Foundation Communities, Excellence in Innovation to Sustainable Food Center and Excellence in Collaboration to Children in Nature Collaborative of Austin. The special Libby Malone Community Leader of the Year honors were conferred on Jeff and Deanna Serra. If you don’t know about these people and groups, you should. They are changing your city for the better.
NATURE: Touring Austin’s planted environment. Taken from my story in the American-Statesman: “The first Austin acreage designated as parkland was Pease Park along Shoal Creek in 1875. Yet from the very beginning, the city cultivated cultural landscapes, sometimes in fits and starts. More than two dozen of them — from the Elisabet Ney Museum and Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to the Capitol grounds and Zilker Botanical Gardens — are now part of a national registry put together by the Cultural Landscape Foundation. This Saturday and Sunday, experts will guide folks through these landscapes during What’s Out There Weekend. The tours are free, but you must register in advance at tclf.org/wotw. To prepare, we asked astute landscape architect Eleanor McKinney to explain why our planned green spaces deserve such close attention.”
FOOD: Addie Broyles stirs up history in Salado. Taken from her story in the American-Statesman. “Mary Hodge has lived on the same road in Salado since 1946. At nearly 90 years old, she’s raised children in the small town north of Georgetown, written books on the history of the area and made the same Thanksgiving dressing for nearly 50 years. She’s a matriarch of the community who knows the history of just about every block in both Salado and Jarrell, her hometown. She can tell you about the mermaid sculpture downtown (someone keeps stealing the fish) or the age of the tree in the backyard (about 300 years) and the origin of every single one of the hundreds of tools, taxidermy, trinkets and artifacts that fill a bunkhouse behind her home.”
SPORTS: History of a rivalry. Taken from John Maher’s story in the American-Statesman: “History, including that of Texas football, has a way of repeating itself. Except, of course, when it doesn’t. Remember when Texas and Texas A&M broke off their storied football rivalry after the 2011 season? Well, the same thing happened a century before that, in 1911. So far, the main difference is that 100 years ago Thursday, the teams renewed their rivalry. On Nov. 19, 1915, elated, convivial fans from both schools sang “Auld Lang Syne” before kickoff and led cheers for the other school. A&M’s cadets honored UT by forming a T on the field. Finally, when the game was completed, players from both schools were carried off the field in a spirit of exhilaration.”