News from the Round Table at Pouland's

Written by Sandra Pouland
Published by The Diboll Free Press

February 27, 2017

 

72 years ago on February 23rd 1945 a young 17-year-old boy from Diboll, John Richard Powers, never thought he’d live to this day to tell his story of seeing the US flag being raised on the island of Iwo Jima. John’s Marine Division was ordered to capture Mount Suribachi from the Japanese after two days of bombardment. Capturing this small island was a primary objective of America’s military plans to bring the Pacific campaign to a successful conclusion. On the morning of the 23d at about 10:30 AM men all over the island were thrilled by the sight of a small American flag flying from atop Mount Suribachi. The victory claimed the lives of almost 6,200 Marines and Navy personnel and casualties of more than 24,000.

This past Sunday February 19, 2017 aboard the Battleship Texas, the 72nd Anniversary Battle of Iwo Jima was commemorated.  John Powers was there along with three other Marines, one Sailor and a Corpsman from Minnesota who served in the same division with John. During the solemn ceremony these six Iwo Jima survivors were each presented a United States flag that has flown at the US Marine Corp War Memorial in Arlington, VA. This is where the life size bronze statue of the iconic flag raising is located. May our nation be forever thankful and indebted to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice and to those who served and continue to serve around the world to keep our precious Freedoms.

Two of John Powers’ daughters attended this special event with him; Johnica Edgerley and Belinda Stanley. Those that attended the ceremony were treated to a dinner at the Monument Inn at 4PM where Johnica sang the fourth verse of the Star Spangle Banner with her talented voice that can easily reach the high notes in our national anthem. One more interesting note about John’s service in the marines. His division was scheduled to come home in December of 1945 but it was February of 1946 before he made it back to Diboll. He was welcomed home by family and one special young lady who had been waiting for him, Mable Nivens. They were married March 16, 1946 and will soon celebrate their 71st anniversary. Congratulations to this wonderful couple!!

On Sunday, February 26th, the H. G. Temple Alumni Association sponsored the Annual City Wide Black History Program which was held in the Even Start Family Literacy Cafeteria. Donna James served as the MC.  Ternisha Cortines moved the crowd with an interpretive dance number and The Church of the Living God Choir sang from their souls. All in attendance enjoyed a terrific lunch of chicken & dressing with all the trimmings.  During the program Mayor John McClain read a proclamation proclaiming the month of February as Black History Month and urged all citizens to join together in making this a time of rededication to the principles of justice and equality for all people.  The mayor then recognized two community leaders that received plaques, Sam Coleman and Clara Mitchell.

Diboll High School Alumnus Katrina Hines was the guest speaker.  She is a college graduate from Texas A&M and Prairie View A&M and was presented a certificate of recognition for her accomplishments. Elliott Gordon, Mable Johnson, Earline Vinson and Joyce Bray also received plaques of recognition from the H. G. Temple Alumni Association. The Community Service Award was presented to representatives of OCDC and Team Sexy. These are two different groups of men and women who promote and organize an annual Mother’s Day Dinner. Throughout the year and at Christmas they also organize activities for the youth.

David Harold Curbow stopped by to buy fig preserves. I agreed with him when he said a lot of folks mistake him for his pastor, Ronnie Frankins. David was on his way to the Old Paper Mill club pasture in Polk County. Several guys who worked together enjoy gathering there including Larry Mills and son, Burt and Moody Smith, Jr. Clay Platt who has a cabin nearby and known as the “king of squirrel hunters” usually joins them  although he works for DEMCO in Diboll.

Glenda Tobias came in for chick starter for her nine new baby chicks. She and I discussed how neat it is to have backyard chickens and fresh eggs. I usually share with customers how I spoil my hens with Happy Hen Treats that we sell. Dwayne Sanford shared he received the best birthday gift from his kids for his February 10th birthday. Dwayne enjoys cooking outdoors and they gave him a stainless steel folding cook table. Dwayne and Stephanie have four grandbabies and one on the way.

I truly hate I missed seeing Billy Stanford when he came in for zipper cream pea seeds. He’s now retired from Brookshire Brothers after working there for 44 years. Lots of folks are getting seeds in hopes of being able to plant soon including Robert Hooks and E. W. Scarborough who plants enough Top Pick Purple Hulls to sell to the public. Clara and Ron Lemons from Livingston came in for green bean seeds. They canned 80 quarts of green beans in jars last year. Mr. Lemons bought a yellow 3-knife gift set, Old Timer Limited Edition 2016 and came back the next day and bought a brown set. The set includes:  Schrade “Pal”, “Dog Leg Jack” and “Slim”.

One of our customers from Zavalla, Rodney Lott and his mom are the new owners of the Eagles’ Nest café on the main street through town. He said the shrimp and “all-you-can-eat catfish” served on Friday nights will be worth the drive. They open early for breakfast and have a steam table at lunch and open late.

Don’t forget this Sunday afternoon, March 5th at 3PM, will be a free concert by our own East Texas Wind Symphony at the Diboll ISD Family Education Center, 299 S. Neil Pickett Dr.

Check out our website at Poulands.com and come see us…’round the table.

February 20, 2017

 

Mark your calendar for 3PM Sunday afternoon March 5th to attend a free concert of our own East Texas Wind Symphony at the theater located at the Diboll ISD Family Education Center. According to Michael Parrish, Director of Operations and founder of this group of thirty “more serious amateur musicians” have been practicing here in Diboll under the direction of David Smith. They will perform a military medley recognizing veterans from each division of the armed services and will also perform one of the 130 marches written by John Phillip Sousa. I learned that Red Skelton was not only a comedian but also a composer and the group will perform two of his marches; one will be the Kadiddlehopper March written for one of his comic characters. The musicians come from Cleveland, San Augustine and all in between including Evelyn (Carr) Walker who grew up in Diboll. You can contact Michael at 936-676-3095 for more information.

It was a pleasure talking with Colton Moreno, a senior at DHS, who recently earned his Eagle Scout award through Troup 136. Colton designed and built a 3×3 square metal box for people to deposit worn or damaged US flags for proper retirement. The bright red box is sitting on the grounds of the National Guard Amory on Tulane Street in Lufkin. This is the highest honor for a Boy Scout and only 4% earn this prestigious honor. A scout is required to have earned at least 21 badges but Colton had 36! His proud parents are Josh and Amanda (Williams) Moreno. Josh has been a customer of ours since he was raising show animals for the youth fair. Colton plans to attend Tulsa Welding School in Houston after graduating in May. Congratulations!!

Enjoyed visiting with James Bray affectionately known as “Spot” to his DHS classmates who graduated in 1980. James is quite proud of his daughter Chenice “CiCi” who also graduated from DHS and Prairie View A&M. CiCi completed the RN Nursing program and passed her state exam in December. She is presently working in a Houston hospital. Her younger sister, Keundra, is in her sophomore year at Prairie View A&M and although she doesn’t know exactly which career path she plans to take, she knows it won’t be nursing. These girls’ sweet grandmother, Joyce Bray, is also very proud of them. James is presently working for Casey Industrial in Corrigan who is installing the equipment for the new Roy O. Martin plant.

Also enjoyed visiting with Harold Gasaway who grew up in Brookland and later married Zenova Scott who graduated from DHS in 1969. Her parents were longtime Dibollians, O.C. and Zeola Scott. Harold and Zenova both graduated from Prairie View A&M; Zenova with a teaching degree and Harold with a degree in mechanical engineering. Zenova taught 2nd grade her entire career which included some time in Diboll ISD where she taught our son, Roho (Hileory Powell). Harold got a job working in Kansas City, MO where they spent most of their adult life raising two sons, Bryon and Brandon. They now have five grandchildren and continue to spend time in Diboll. They were in for the funeral of Zenova’s sister-in-law, Yvonne Scott, the widow of Bennie Scott.

Early Tuesday morning coffee drinkers usually include Thomas Anderson and Ed Domingue. During the conversation, Valentine’s Day was brought up. Although Dr. Domingue said he rarely shops “online” he responded to an ad to order roses and chocolates that could be delivered on the 14th. He requested the order to arrive at his home between 2 and 4PM knowing his wife Annette would be working in the gift shop at Woodlands Heights and he could be home to accept the package. 2-3-4PM came and no flowers; Annette arrived home and the couple went out to celebrate a special evening without the surprise gift of flowers. But when they returned home there was a package on top of the car that had arrived at 6:30PM. They both were pleasantly surprised that the long stem roses were fresh and came with a vase to put them in along with a very small box of chocolates!

It was good to visit with former DISD Ag teacher Larry Poe and his wife Judy when they stopped by on their way to The Woodlands to watch their grandson Grant compete in Lacrosse. They were quite proud of the fact that Grant has signed to attend Syracuse Orange. Larry had a good visit with a former student, Jerry Cobb who was in with his 9-year-old son, Easton.

Bo Smith from Corrigan came in with his wife Cathy who was carrying their 1-1/2 year old French bulldog “Harley”. It seems when Cathy first asked if she could get a French bulldog, Bo said, “Only if I get a Harley Davison motorcycle”. Cathy settled that by getting the dog and naming him “Harley” who has captured Bo’s heart and made him forget all about the motorcycle.

Kevin Clayton from Nacogdoches was the winner of the Savage .270 rifle given away at the Boys and Girls Club Black Tie Bingo last Saturday. Kevin has worked for the Boys & Girls Club for 18 years and was recently promoted to Area Director. He has fond memories of knowing and working with Sam Coleman through the Boys and Girls Club and now works with his son Ronnie Coleman who is chairman of the B&G board in Diboll. The bingo in Diboll this year was fantastic! The civic club was converted into a colorful circus tent with decorated tables and lots of balloons. An Illusionist, Ben Jackson, kept the crowd entertained with disappearing tea glasses and money that reappeared in the most unusual places. A large “thank you” to everyone that made the evening extra special! It gets better every year.

A couple of customers came in bragging: Raymond Lenderman brought in a 6-1/2# purple top turnip he raised and Jerry Goins was proud of the 20 eggs he gets almost every day from his hens. Buddy Shipp, Gary Jones and others have bought potatoes and anxiously awaiting a time to plant. Ginger Capps purchased one of the Circle E candles that we now have in the store.

Have a great week and don’t forget to come see us…’round the table.

 

 

February 13, 2017

 

The Diboll Business Association was proud of the response to the 4th Annual BEST OF 75941. Congratulations to each winner and let me thank everyone for the two awards Poulands’ The Everything Store received. Andrea received the Best Store Clerk. Personally, I think she is very deserving and has probably worked in her position longer than anyone, starting when she was a junior at DHS. She is a very hard worker, dependable, loyal, knowledgeable and reliable. We are very proud of her! The second award was for The Best Place to get a cup of (free) coffee. Anyone is welcome to not only enjoy a cup of hot coffee but sit and visit at the “round table”. Quite a few ladies enjoy coffee with the guys who seem to have more time to spend reminiscing about “the good old days.” We cordially invite any and every one to stop by and visit.

Andrea has started carrying the popular Circle E candles which have made nice Valentine gifts for some of our customers. Sam McDonald from Corrigan and his brother, Bob from Livingston, stopped by. Sam bought his wife Bonny a Bird of Paradise candle for Valentine’s Day. They have been married for 48 years. Sam retired as high school principal from Corrigan-Camden ISD about 15 years ago and remembers working with Jim Dunlap and Don Robbins. Sherry (Sprayberry) Hughes is the present superintendent and he was quick to say he taught her in high school and hired her as an English teacher after graduating from SFA. She later became a principal and a few years ago was selected as their superintendent. Bob McDonald enjoyed a Junior High teaching career in the Big Sandy ISD. Another customer bought his wife one the fragrant candles and shared that next year they will have been married 50 years.

Dennis Lenderman stopped by for a short break before joining his wife Karon for lunch.  He carried her some chocolate covered strawberries that Andrea had made. They had enjoyed dining out the evening before and Dennis had plans on Valentine’s Day to cook supper for their parents. His menu was grilled chicken and sautéed mixed vegetables. Their two granddaughters and their parents, Ashley and Raul Rios were driving to San Antonio for 14-year-old Kylie to participate in the Calf Scramble at the stock show. 10-year-old Kyna was going along to cheer for her sister. Perhaps Kylie can depend on her experience from catching a calf at this year’s Ft Worth stock show. We wish Kylie and also Gentrie Eldridge “good luck” in San San Antonio. Gentrie is also competing in the calf scramble and traveling with Sheila Eldridge. After the scramble, they had plans to spend the night with Jordan Eldridge in San Marcus.

John Ralph and I traveled all the way to Tyler to meet former DISD superintendent Bill Ward and his wife, Neita Fran, for lunch at Traditions. Bill and I enjoyed having liver and onions which is hard to find on most restaurant menus. After a good lunch we drove to “Valerosa” which is Neita Fran’s art gallery in Tyler’s Bergfeld shopping center. Neita Fran also had a gallery during the years they lived in New Mexico where she designed and sold custom made southwest jewelry. She has incorporated the jewelry into the Tyler gallery as well as art work from local artisans. They presently live in Neita Fran’s hometown of Arp in a gated area. Their home is for sale and Bill can hardly wait to build a new home on the range.

Gaylon Wallace enjoyed visiting at the round table with JR and Gary Gaylada from Slocum. They discussed trail rides, horses, mules, donkeys, wagons, dogs and just about everything else in between.

Sue and J. D. Johnson have celebrated recent birthdays. Sue’s birthday is February 7th and J. D.’s is the 10th. Sue’s nephew and wife, Bo and Cathy Haney, treated them to lunch at Ralph and KaCoo’s and presented Sue with a Pandora “Aunt” charm and a gift certificate to Boot City for J.D. Andrea gave them two packages of her homemade peanut brittle and J.D. said he thoroughly enjoyed eating both packages.

Lisa Crager was wearing a wide smile when she came in with her husband David. She had been retired about two hours and couldn’t have been happier. She took an early retirement even after working 41 years starting at Temple Industries. She worked two years while in high school. Her first job was working in the attic of the old commissary building adding labels to paint buckets filled with rich lighter. After graduation she worked in accounts payable with Lena Coody, Jewel Smith, Jimmy Nelson, Sue Johnson and others; for Spencer Knutson and Dennis Maynard in Forest Division; Environmental/Engineering with Gary Frost, Ben Crim, Linda (Poland) Syler, G. Wayne Hardy; Lumber mill for Darin Simpson; Safety with Jack Matthews; Minerals for Lowell Woods; Maintenance with Bill Fulmer and retired back in environment with Pat Miller. I probably missed some of this but David said she worked in every department except legal and sales! David and Lisa were leaving that afternoon to enjoy some R&R in Jermyn where they have family land they plan to build on.

  1. D. Johnson and Sue were still seated at the RT when Lisa shared her work experience at Temple, they all agreed it was a great place to work. Sue retired after 34 years and J. D. retired after 43 years. He also worked in several places including: sawmill, “fighting the bear”; treating plant; fiberboard with Ruben Saxton; sales; invoicing with Frank Smith and Jerry Hall and finally in “Personnel” with Vernon Burkhalter, Betty Baskette, Geraldine Pouland, Betty Barkley and Lucille Warner.

We also learned that Stacy Lucas is happy about retiring on the 17th and Ruby Gordon retired on the 10th after 50 years!! What loyalty. Congratulations and enjoy your retirement!!

Mark your calendars. The FISH truck will be in our parking lot on March 1st from noon until 1PM. It’s time to start stocking ponds.

Again, thank all for voting for us and don’t forget to stop by and visit us…’round the table.

February 6, 2017

 

Brenda (Minyard) Jones stays busy since retiring last October. Brenda worked 36 years for the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services Division for Blind Services. She is also very active in and supportive of her church. She is married to Gary Jones and they have two daughters: Misty lives in The Woodlands and has one daughter; Jennifer works for The Campbell Group and lives here with her husband, Aaron and their three sons: Ethan, Ben and Cooper. They also have one son, Jonathon who lives in Diboll. Since retiring, Brenda has had more time to attend the grandsons’ ballgames and their activities and also enjoys babysitting her granddaughter while her mom works out of town. Brenda says, “I am enjoying retirement and definitely recommend it.”

According to their newsletter, the youth at First Methodist in Diboll invite you, your friends and family to attend their church on February 19th.  Immediately following the morning worship everyone will meet in the Fellowship Hall for a Camp Fundraiser luncheon. Because camp funds keep going up every year and the youth have to pay their own way, they would greatly appreciate your help toward this special event.

Burlon and Jan Wilkerson recently drove to Canton to spend the night. The next morning they drove to Emory for the Eagle Festival.  It is a two day event celebrating all the eagles they have in the area. They attended a Birds of Prey show, listened to a local band, visited with vendors, and took a 3 hour bus tour to the nesting grounds.  They saw many nests, most were empty but they did get to see an eagle in a nest near the end of the tour which was very impressive. They made a stop at a local bakery ran by Mennonites, “The Cinnamon Bear”, and testified the sweets were wonderful.  That evening they ate catfish at a local restaurant before going back to Canton. On Sunday they made a side trip to Terrell to the Outlet Mall, then back through Tyler for a second stop of the week-end at “Andy’s Custard”. I learned that Andy’s Frozen Custard has always been fanatical about custard, and has served it with pride since 1986 and is the largest dessert only franchise in the world!

If you haven’t seen or heard it yet, you probably will… our Diboll policeman, Brandon Lovell in a photo with Lady GaGa. Brandon was working as a motorcycle policeman in Houston during the Super bowl. He was part of the escort team that brought celebrities to the stadium including the star of the half time performance, Lady GaGa who took time to pose for a picture with Brandon.

Betty Hendrick sent the following email.  Sometimes, a group of dear friends gets together for birthday celebrations—yes, they still celebrate and are grateful! The ladies at the Airport Café often ask who is being honored. Last week, however, Donnie (Weeks) Smith had never eaten one of those tasty burgers, so she and Polly Leavell came to get Donnie’s opinion—-it was sort of a comparison between those burgers and Ray’s in Lufkin and the gathered friends had a good time as they often do.  Those present were: JoAnn Rainwater, Nita Hurley, Ginger Capps, Donnie Smith, Polly Leavell, and Betty Hendrick.  As usual, the conversations were a lot of “Do you remember….” (and we are glad when we can!)  and shared laughter.  As the friends grow older, there are more notations about doctor visits, etc. but it was a good time had by all.

On another note:  Hannah Flynt, Billie Jean and Donald Capps’s granddaughter, will be competing in the State swim meet on February 18th.  She is the daughter of Sherri (Capps) and Tim Flynt.  They live in Huntington; she is a remarkable young lady as well as an excellent swimmer.  Good luck at the State meet!

          Pastor Kenny Hibbs and his wife Carrie were returning from a “Hot Hearts” Youth conference in Beaumont last week. Driving along near Woodville, Kenny’s phone rang and it was Gary Martel. They exchanged the usual greetings ‘how are ya’ and ‘where are ya’ and Gary replied, “I’m in the pickup in front of you”. They stopped and enjoyed a short visit. The Martels are having a great time keeping their grandbaby as much as possible.

          Coming to Diboll to eat at Los Jarritos was a group that call themselves the “Over 50’s”. John Ralph and I were invited to join this group several years ago and don’t really know why unless it was at the invitation of John and Fran McGilvra and we just kept meeting them month after month. Most of the group has ties to Hudson either living or graduating from there but they still let us join them. Anyway, twenty folks gathered Monday for delicious Mexican food that everyone loved. It was great to see Annette and Darrell Richardson come as they have not been since last fall. Pat Brown was another sweet lady that we were happy to see and she too has been “under the weather” for some time. Others included: Mr. & Mrs. Charles Nix; Jerry and Dorothy Collins; Bob and Jimmie Putnum; Fran McGilvra; Jerry and Geraldine Bishop; Rufus Dunn; Barbara Clark; Jean Lee and her sister, Jackie; Bob and Nell Horton and of course, John Ralph and myself.

          Come see us…’round the table.

January 30, 2017

 

It was a sad evening when I arrived home and discovered my pet rooster, Harold, met his fate underneath the tire of a stranger’s vehicle. John Ralph bought Harold and two beautiful hens for me from Harold Moore about four or five years ago. Needless to say I was hesitant to accept his gift because the only time I had been near a rooster, it spurred me! That was many years ago when we lived in Copestown. Anyway, Harold and his two lady friends that I named Thelma and Louise, came with their own high rise chicken coop which was moved into our backyard. Harold, Thelma and Louise are Silver Duckwing Bantams which are miniature members of the chicken family. It didn’t take too long for me to get comfortable with these three little ones and unafraid to hold them. We eventually let them have full range of the backyard.  They all got up early every day (early birds get the worm) and would come to our patio back door where Harold, though small in size, had a very loud “cock a doodle doo”. J.R. usually was already up and loved it when Harold’s crowing woke me. We eventually bought more “bannies”, roosters and larger hens that produced large brown eggs and sometimes adorable baby chicks that increased our flock. As we got more chickens, Harold had more and bigger responsibilities protecting and taking care of the ladies from roosters who were three times his size. They didn’t scare Harold! This LITTLE bully was my BIG pet. He would come when I called him, follow me around like a puppy and eat out of my hand when none of the others would. I shall miss him! He is survived by seven beautiful bantam ladies; eight larger hens and two relieved roosters.

Last Saturday morning, David Crager came in and picked up a cold biscuit from breakfast and smeared it with some of Terry Gipson’s homemade mayhaw jalapeno jelly. He ate, visited at the round table and left but later came back with his wife Lisa. David wanted Lisa to try the jalapeno jelly which she did and he’s hoping they will make their own later in the year. David was wearing his usual, overalls, but Lisa came in sporting a trendy black hat that David had bought her. The hat complimented her, her boots and jeans. That evening David and Lisa went to Ralph and Kacoo’s where they met her parents, Terry and Dale Grantham and her sister Marty and her daughter, Anna, from Jasper. Rayburn and Tina (Grantham) Hance were also there to proudly support and listen to their son, Marshall Hance, who was entertaining on the patio that night. Lisa shared that Marshall thoroughly enjoys being a full time musician after completing his education at SFA. He has a band and frequently entertains at two places in Nacogdoches and also in Dallas.

Andra (Willmon) Terburgh stopped by on her way back home after visiting with her mom, Billie Willmon in Diboll.  After graduating from DHS and AC Andra worked   at the East Texas Medical Center in Tyler for 18 years. During this time folks realized she had a talent for decorating and planning parties. When the owner of Kiepersol Restaurant, Winery, Bed and Bath in Bullard, Pierre DeWitt, was looking for someone to help market his new winery, someone gave him a napkin with Andra’s name and number on it. He called, they met and she was hired. One day while working at Kiepersol she met the landscaper/horticulturist from South Africa. She said he was wearing a backpack sprayer with shorts and rubber boots and had beautiful blue eyes. Their first date was in January for her birthday and in June they were married in the private family chapel at Kiepersol.  Johan assisted Marnelle De Witt, the owners’ daughter and winemaker for a while until he opened his own landscaping business in Tyler. Andra is a full time interior designer in Tyler except when she is taking care of their 12-year-old daughter, Olivia and 11-year-old Simon. She’s still planning parties too. Simon’s birthday party was January 20th and she planned his party for 25 boys that included games, dinner and a traditional sheath birthday cake.

Darryl Stanley came in to get feed and proudly shared that his granddaughter, Kate Sabesta, entered the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s Art Contest through her school. Kate got a blue ribbon but missed by one place getting to exhibit it in Houston but all the art pieces are displayed at the Museum of East Texas.

Mrs. James Adams from Lufkin was so happy to hear about Vetericyn, a medicine she is hoping will heal her little 12-year-old dog, Susi, as well as it did Andrea’s fingers. Andrea believes in this product from using it on two of her fingers that were busted open from a chute while working cows. She keeps it handy all the time.

Thomas Lowther came in wearing a sling after having shoulder surgery a month ago. He and his wife Renee are the original designers of the tee shirt he was wearing that tied on the side. Believe it or not, this actually slowed Thomas down but only for a short time. Earnest Rast came in and was also moving slow after a successful back surgery.

Mark Hafernick who grew up in Czech area around Prasek’s below Houston brought us some thick cut noodles and chicken seasoning from the Czech Bakery and suggested we try them. He told us how his grandmother made chicken noodle soup and Andrea tried it one day. It was truly delicious, everyone enjoyed it. Mark’s mother lives near Prasek’s.

Skeeter Scarborough spent the weekend with his son, Marvin, at the 6S Ranch that he owns about 5 miles out of Lindale in the Sandflat community. The 130 acre 6S Ranch is a wedding venue and shooting range. This past weekend 26 teams competed in a Chili Cook-off to benefit a friend who lost his house in a tornado.

It’s not too late to order smoked Pork Butts that will benefit Kim Baker Vann. Call David Lawson 936-676-0692; Shon Laird 936-240-2478 or Les Bradshaw 936-645-6676.

Chad Ward would like for everyone to know he has Border collie puppies for sale, just in time for Valentine’s Day. They are black and white and red and white. His number is 936-635-9735.

Valentine’s Day is approaching. You have an opportunity to treat your sweetheart to an evening of dining by candlelight with great food and entertainment. The proceeds will benefit Project Graduation 2017. The event will be February 11th at 6PM in the Fellowship Hall at First Baptist Church in Diboll. You can dine in or carry out and choose between Rib Eye Steak and Grilled Chicken Brest. $25 per person or $40 per couple. For reservations or more information, contact: Ladonna Garza 635-4468 or Allison Amason 414-0145.

Come see us…’round the table.

January 23, 2017

 

Young US Air Force serviceman, Stephen Badeaux, who is based in Japan wanted to spend some R&R in Australia. He invited his mom, Melissa (Mullins) Jones and his sister, Sara, to meet him in Australia. Sara is an accounting major at Lamar University and having studied about the Great Barrier Reef quickly decided it would be a good trip. A good friend of theirs from Teague, Linda Ward, also accepted the invitation to travel with the girls. The threesome left from Dallas and were met by Stephen in Sydney, Australia 17 hours later. They jumped in their rented vehicle with its snorkel, cattle guard and steering wheel on the wrong side and tried to adjust to driving on the opposite side of the street. They did not take the time to sightsee around Sydney but drove toward Cairns where they had a 3rd story apartment rented for the entire time.

With more than two weeks to explore Australia, one of the first adventures was a two hour train ride on the Kuranda Scenic Railway which has been in operation for over a century. The train took them through lush regions, mountainous scenery and several waterfalls. The destination, Kuranda, is a beautiful village hidden by tropical rainforest. Fig trees line the main street while colorful parrots and butterflies flock among ferns and orchids. There are galleries, markets, boutiques and places where they tasted crocodile, kangaroo and emu. They returned via the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, a 90- minute experience that took them over and through the World Heritage Rainforest, allowing stops at two rainforest stations. During the entire trip they saw multitudes of waterfalls including Babinda Boulders, Crystal Cascades and Josephone Falls.

The group spent New Year’s Eve on the Cairns Esplanade which is a picturesque long stretch of boardwalk and shoreline in the heart of Cairns overlooking the Coral Sea with incredible sunsets. It also has parks, playgrounds, Lagoon and recreational facilities that are all free. One day was spent in a habitat observing kangaroos, tropical birds, wallabies and the popular Koalas bear which they petted. Linda enjoyed a tour of the living history of the Tjapukai Aboriginal people, the Australian indigenous people from Queensland’s far north and learned about the boomerang, didgeridoo and fire making. As a souvenir and because of his love to play guitar, Charlie Mullins received an Australian Didgeridoo which is the world’s oldest wind instrument made and used by the Aborigines. Another day was spent stepping back in time taking an umbrella tour of the Paronella Park with its recreated tropical gardens, remarkable architecture, wildlife and fresh local produce. They also enjoyed touring the Chillagoe Caves. During their stay, the group enjoyed eating lots of shrimp or fish n chips; hamburgers with beets (ugh!); French fries were called “hot chips” that had chicken salt on them. They also saw lots of acreage with sugar cane, bananas, different fruits and coffee beans.

The group took two different boat trips to the Great Barrier Reef to enjoy snorkeling in their “stinger” suits which were required to protect from the stings of the jelly ray fish. They witnessed a couple of swimmers that had to be air-lifted due to being stung. This group also noticed that sharks were swimming nearby but were told not to worry about them. (Must be “fake” news that I recently saw that swimmers were hospitalized due to sharks in this same area?). After two weeks of fun, everyone returned to their homes safely. Melissa is looking forward to July when Stephen will be living in England and is already planning another trip to visit him. Thank you for sharing your memories.

Donnie Kee stopped by the round table. He was going stir crazy staying in the house too much watching it rain. Delbert and Carolyn Ellison came in for fishing licenses to go fishing when the sun comes out. We are glad when customers bring us good stuff to eat. Recently, Mary Lou Havard’s daughter, Mary Beth Boatner, who lives in Lafayette brought us a Mardi Gras King cake as she has done for years. It was really good but having the “baby” taped to the cake plate is not as much fun as when it was baked inside the cake. The tradition was whoever found the baby had to bring the cake next time. A lot of times we get “left overs” and certainly proud that folks think of the round table. That was the case when Mike Gibson brought several cupcakes piled high with creamy colorfully icing left from a birthday celebration.  A grateful thank you to Bettye Greer who baked and brought us a delicious King Ranch Chicken Casserole “just because she wanted to.” Margie Bass is always bringing us something. Sometimes it cute creations she has made from Pinterest and sometimes it new recipes she tries. The Ham Sliders with Pepper jack cheese were a big hit. Thank you all and remember, we don’t, or haven’t yet, refused anything!

Vernon Glass frequents the round table pretty often. He came in after New Year’s Day and showed me part of his billfold where he carries a few black eye peas year round for good luck. Vernon was born in the logging camp at Fastrill. His mother died when he was two and his father, Doyle Winston Glass, married Corrine (Thames) Flowers; her children were: J. D. “Sonny”, Kenneth, Travis and Mollie Sue. They moved to Diboll where Doyle was the “company” plumber and later had two children: Sambo and Jerry Nell Glass and then there was always, Vernon. While going to school Vernon worked in and around several mechanics that influenced him. Some of them included: Benny Rector; Jack Vaught; Weldon Bowman; Harry Nivens; and Lee Estes. Vernon graduated from DHS in 1957 and worked 15 years as a machinist for DEMCO until the devastating fire when he went back to mechanicing in his own shop and earned a reputation for knowing how to work on Model T’s and Model A’s. He has lived in Pine Valley for 48 years where he continues to “mechanic” and farm 12 acres. He is presently rebuilding a 1955 Ford Flathead motor and can be seen driving around town in his 1929 T-model or his 1945 Ford pickup truck.

The Masonic Bodies of Districts 20-21A is hosting an important Fundraiser Event. They will be taking orders for Smoked Pork Butts that can be picked up on Saturday, February 11 at the Lufkin Lodge #669 at 508 N. John Redditt Drive between the hours of 9 AM and 1 PM. Fundraisers show how good folks in East Texas are compassionate and come together to help when there is a critical need. It is with a sad heart to let you know the proceeds will benefit Kim (Baker) Vann with her medical treatments and expenses incurred traveling to M.D. Anderson in Houston. Kim is the precious daughter and only child of Bobby and Rosemary Baker of Diboll. She and her husband Paul live in Wells where Kim has resigned from teaching. They have two young daughters, Kaylee and Krista. Previously, Kim taught music in the Diboll ISD for several years. PLEASE continue to keep this family in your prayers. To pre order, contact one of these gentlemen which all have a 936 area code: David Lawson. 676-0692; Shon Laird 240-2478 or Les Bradshaw, 645-6676. The cost is $30 each and this compassionate organization says “Thank You” in advance for your support.

Tell someone about the conference sponsored by the Diboll ISD Family Education Center that will be Friday, January 27 from 8:30 until 2:30. There will be several speakers and topics to choose from that will encourage strong families. A free breakfast and lunch, door prizes and the opening motivational speaker will be Melissa Radke. This beautiful center is located at 209 S. Neil Pickett Dr. in Diboll.

The Alcohol & Drug Abuse Council of Deep East Texas “ADAC” will benefit from the proceeds of the Oscar Brookshire Memorial Concert at the Pines Theater, February 2nd at 7PM. The concert will feature 2015 Grammy Award Winner, Mike Farris, a solo acoustic show. Tickets are $30 and available at www.thepineslufkin.com

Come see us…round the table.

January 9, 2017

 

Los Jarritos is a very popular place to eat good Mexican food and visit with folks. The owners, Julie and Carlos Galvan, are very dedicated hard workers. So, I was glad to see that they closed the restaurant the day after Christmas. I learned later that December 26th is Carlos’ birthday and Julie had several family members come to their home and surprised Carlos with a steak dinner and large birthday cake. Two days later, the 28th, was Julie’s birthday and Carlos, after the restaurant closed that night, surprised Julie with a birthday cake at their home. Everyone insisted she blow out all 42 candles! Julie’s sister, Nancy, and her two daughters 19-year-old Aranza and 22-year-old Adriana have been visiting from Mexico for almost three weeks and they have all enjoyed too much eating and shopping. During this time, the family was invited by Brandon Belt and his wife to visit their new home in Hudson. (It was formerly owned by Shane Squyres and his wife and built by Melvin Linton, Jr., all of Beulah.) Although the water was cold the younger ones really enjoyed riding the paddleboat on the pond. Brandon and his wife Haylee are regular customers at Los Jarritos when he isn’t playing first baseman for the San Francisco Giants. Julie shared it took Nancy and her daughters almost 12 hours to get back home near Mexico City because of the people protesting the high fuel prices.

The Diboll ISD Family Education Center is excited about the upcoming “A Conference for Everyone!” It will be from 8:30 until 2:30 on Friday, January 27th. at the spacious Family Education Center on the former H.G. Temple campus. This conference is designed to unite and help make strong families. A few of the sessions will include: Dealing with Children’s Behavior; Bullying; Technology & Students; Fit & Healthy for Life; DISD Career Opportunities; Nutrition and Be Safe at Home. It will be worth it to hear the outstanding motivational speaker, Melissa Radke. There will be FREE Breakfast; FREE Lunch and Door Prizes. Other speakers include: Cathy Pavlic; Ashlei Rios; Shawna Neal; Jana Coulter; Donna Grimes; Joel Reddus; Beth Wilbanks and Dr. Laura Beth Cooper. Charlotte Morris Carter is the director of the Family Education Center and needs volunteers to help that day with directions, parking, serving, etc. She also can use donations for about 15 door prizes ASAP. If you can help, give her a call at 936-675-1310. The invitation says: Be motivated, be inspired, be encouraged, be blessed, be informed, BE HERE!

The week after Christmas, local sisters Fran (Miranda) Rodriguez and Carmen (Grumbles) Miranda traveled to San Jose, California, then on to Fremont to attend the funeral of their oldest sister, Sofia Miranda Torres. She was born in Fastrill, Texas and grew up in Diboll during the 40s.  She joined the U.S. army as a WAC during WWII and met her husband Leo at the naval base in Norfolk, VA. They married in 1945, later moving to Kingsville, Texas where he worked at the naval base in Corpus Christi. Then they were transferred to the naval base at Alameda, CA. Sofia loved coming back to Diboll to visit family before her health declined.  Her daughter, Susana Torres, also traveled to Fremont to attend her mother’s funeral.  For more information, Sofia’s complete obituary is published in this week’s paper.

One day recently my old key board was sitting on the round table when a couple came in and the lady asked if it was OK if she played it. She sat down and began to play and sing “Sweet Sweet Spirit”. We learned they are Denny and DeAnza Duron from the Shreveport Community Church where he is the pastor. Traveling with them was their daughter Destiny Deaz, her five-month-old baby and Ashley who was helping with the baby. They were on the way to Houston to fly to Japan to take part in an evangelical conference that also included Joyce Meyers and other speakers. Denny Duron preached his way through college at Louisiana Tech and later played two years for the World Football League until he met DeAnza. He continued to coach football and said their church has a Christian Academy. He was quick to share their football team played the Lufkin Panthers during the time Dez Bryant and Reggie McNeil were on the team and proudly added “Evangel Christian Academy was the only team to beat the Panthers that year.” We look forward to them stopping by again.

Charles and Becky Donahoe came in with a flat Saturday morning and we twisted their arm to eat breakfast at the round table. Actually, Becky was ready to try some of Andrea’s homemade biscuits, it was Charles that had to be convinced it was a good deal. That was one of the coldest days we had last weekend. Brent Hawkins came in and said they didn’t have electricity in Livingston as of 6AM that morning and no water in the barn with all their animals. Loree Olson, Don Hendrick and Donnie Stephens all came in at different times for Colorado pintos. Melvin Linton, Sr. had to come in to get a battery for his pickup.

Project Graduation is having a BINGO, January 21st at the Lottie and Arthur Temple Civic Center. They still have a few $100 tickets left with the opportunity to win $10,000 cash. Tickets are available here at Pouland’s.

Come see us…’round the table.

January 2, 2017

RT NEWS January 2, 2017

A good thing about the holidays is seeing and visiting with friends and family. A dear friend, Carolyn (Kelly) Steinberg from Little Elm called to say she and two of her grandchildren wanted to stop by the store after Christmas and visit on their way back home. With that, JR got on the phone and started calling some of her DHS classmates and friends to stop by and visit with Carolyn last Friday afternoon. She was later than we anticipated and missed the first visitor, Betty Ann (Wilkerson), who couldn’t stay because of another appointment. Next was another classmate, Frances (Johnson) Thompson who was truly happy to see Carolyn and shared with us that Carolyn let her borrow a beautiful yellow prom dress when they were in junior high. The prom was in the “old” gym where the present primary school is located today. Alma (Wilkerson) Breazeale, stopped by; she brought her 1957 DHS annual with her which brought about lots of memories of other classmates. Kenneth and Ginger Capps both enjoyed listening and contributing stories at the round table. Although Nita (Ramsey) Hurley was much younger, she and Carolyn both took piano lessons from Mrs. W. F. Purdy as did I and we all shared our anxieties associated with piano recitals. Nita also remembered hearing Carolyn sing a solo at her church, Diboll United Methodist, which was also the site for most of our recitals during May when Mrs. Purdy would line the bannisters with fresh cut magnolias. Sisters, Donnie Smith and Charlene “Polly” (Weeks) Leavell also contributed memories from school and First Baptist Church where Carolyn was a member. Polly and I refreshed Carolyn’s memory of being our chaperone for summer camp at Pineywoods Encampment between Corrigan and Groveton. Fran McGilvra came in for her daily afternoon coffee and although she attended school in Hudson remembered sharing a dorm with Carolyn at Pineywoods. JoNell (Vaught) Placker stopped by as well as Bettye Greer who remembers everybody that attended school in Diboll since she worked there beginning when they moved to Diboll for her husband Bill to teach science in the early ‘50’s. It was a good afternoon. Carolyn had two of her grandchildren with her; 9-year-old Devin and 7-year-old Alexis.

Leonard Robison joined the round table that same afternoon for coffee. He and Billie and his sister Erna had spent part of the Christmas season at their grandson’s new house in New Elm and learned from Carolyn that his house joined her subdivision in Little Elm near the fast growing area around Frisco. Carolyn was able to earn a music degree from SFA with music scholarships. She continues to teach piano and is a Degreed Teacher National Federation of Music. While in high school, she also worked for Mr. Schinke at his nursery and florist and shared with me “tips” she learned from him about how to care for house plants.

One DHS classmate that Carolyn hated she missed seeing was Kenneth Ashworth who stopped by earlier that morning with his wife Ann on their way to Houston to fly back home to Ireland where they have served as missionaries for 32 years. They have been married for 54 years and have two sons that are pastors; a daughter who spent three years in the underground church in China as a missionary and six grandkids. Kenneth and Ann are very devoted and live by faith of a vision of a European Revival in the center of Ireland where they have been living. They work with the Jerry Smith Ministries in Oklahoma and they welcome anyone to contact them especially if you would like to donate to their ministry. Their home address is: Ashworth Family Ministries, Rehoboth, Barrymore, Athlone, Co. Roscommon, Ireland. The custom in Ireland is to give your home a name. ”Rehoboth” is the name of the Ashworths’ home. They found “Rehoboth” in the book of Genesis and it means “The Lord has made a place for us and we will be fruitful in the land”.

Sherri Paresa came in the store on the recommendation from WilberTeer to try Colorado Pinto beans. He loves them. Sherri bought a large bag that day and after Christmas she came back for another bag. She gave the first bag away with a Dutch Oven as a gift. Someone really got a nice gift and here’s hoping Sherri will be back for more beans.

Darrell Chapman is married to Kim (Placker). They live in Bullard and Kim sent Darrell to Poulands to buy jelly and cattle feed for their longhorns, horses and dogs. We truly appreciate their long-distance shopping with us. Of course, being in Diboll gives Darrell an opportunity to check on his mother-in-law, JoNell.

Retired Judge Barry Bryan came in specifically to buy “Cobbler in a jar”. He and his wife Lynn (Courtney) had been here for the Christmas holidays and were returning the next day to their home in northern California. They built a new home “in the woods” and enjoy seeing bucks roam nearby. It rains a lot but seldom thunders and the temperature hardly ever dips below 36 degrees or reaches higher than 65. The locals say it is unbearably hot if the temperature gets above 70 degrees. Barry enjoys working in his wood working shop and has taken some creative writing courses. Lynn enjoys weaving, knitting, and crochet and has gotten into mosaics which are displayed in their home. There is no need for air conditioning and they use wood to heat the house; a cord of wood is about $300.

Ted Lankford came in with his son Barrett to buy corn for their deer feeders. Mark Hafernik was in buying tractor tires. Billie Lamb was in getting keys made and news is that Sue Johnson got an 8 point buck.

Dianne and Mike Gibson and granddaughter, Lena Tate spent a day in Huntsville visiting with grandchildren. They met at the Café Texan. Dianne’s granddaughter, Chelsea was there with her two sons, Gavin and Nolan. Her grandson and his wife, Zachary and Brittani Tate were also there with the new great-granddaughter, Maisie who was born around Thanksgiving. They also brought Maisie’s older twin brothers, 2-1/2 year old Jude and Lennon.

Enjoyed meeting Bryan Perry who is married to Ave Marie (Rodriquez) who graduated from DHS in 1999. They live in Frisco where he works in the IT department of Wing Stops. Her parents are Jesse and Rosemary Rodriquez of Diboll.

Don’t forget Project Graduation is still selling $100 tickets with the opportunity to win $10,000. Tickets are available here at Poulands.

Come see us…’round the table.

 

December 26, 2016

 

Pouland’s The Everything Store was closed on Christmas Eve and all of us thoroughly enjoyed spending time away from this place although it is good to visit with customers when they come in shopping for something special. Anyway, JR and I drove to Dean’s Meat to pick up the main dish for our Christmas evening gathering at the Swor’s. The owner, Dean McMullen, got up and met us as we were going through the buffet for lunch. He wanted to let us know that his family wouldn’t have Christmas dinner because he was selling us the steaks he was saving for his family dinner. He later sat down with us as we ate to re-assure us he was teasing. He introduced us to his wife who works with him and said they would soon be married 55 years and neither is ready to retire. We told Dean we had learned he had ordered a new catering trailer through our computer guru, Bill Havard, who traveled with his state trooper son-in-law, Chad Wilson to Georgia to bring the trailer back to Dean’s in Huntington. Dean also shared that the meat market, the day before, had sliced over 9,000 slices of ham for the Dream Center which coordinated a plan to cook and deliver 7,500 meals on Christmas Eve. Lots of volunteers helped make the meal a reality. Sincere thanks and congratulations to everyone that had a part in making Christmas Merry for lots of folks.

Pastor of the Diboll Methodist Church David Goodwin, who bears a good resemblance to Santa somehow convinced Gary Gores to dress as an Elf and the two delivered Christmas greetings to folks in Trinity Mission and other shut-ins. The “elf” has the proof in dozens of photos taken including one of Becky, a manager at the Family Dollar store who was checking out someone buying candy in a red suit. We’ve also heard that one of our local policemen stopped Santa Claus for speeding and was totally surprised when he realized who was driving the car. In his defense, who would ever think Santa would be driving anything but a sleigh?

Don & Sandy Hendrick celebrated Christmas eve at candle light service at First United Methodist church and in their home with all their family Laurel & Bob Youngblood, Jennifer Hendrick, Jordan & Tyler Eldridge, Lindsey ( Harper) & Earl Morris, Jayla Finley, Aiden Morris, J.R. & Alaryca, Aniston Ray Youngblood, Brynn Maxwell.  Tissue paper, wrapping paper & bows were flying for several hours with all these people opening gifts. On Christmas day this family went to church to celebrate the real meaning of Christmas.  At 5 PM the family had dinner with special guests James, James Jr and Jarred Galuszka, Alicia Cruz, James Snarr, Jose Calderon, Stephen Baird, David, Melanie, Natalie and Katie Goodwin

Robert Ramsey stopped by the store to visit. We were talking about Christmas when he said his wife Nancy gave him a package which surprised him because they don’t exchange gifts. He anxiously opened it and was happy to see it was two cans of mixed nuts which Nancy immediately took from him and said she needed those to make Texas Trash.

If you haven’t completed your Christmas shopping or thinking about gifts for special occasions during 2017, you might want to contact Frank Farrow who is a very talented craftsman with wood. From wolmanized wood he has, for years, made gliders and hanging swings but has added coffee tables, hall tables, clocks and jewelry boxes made from cedar that was grown in Beulah. He also continues to take special orders to build bird houses and squirrel feeders. He also proudly shared that he and Teresa have been married 53 years as of December 21st. Congratulations! By the way, his number is 936-829-5040.

Enjoyed visiting with Harold and Donna Plath who recently returned from their second home in Walden, Colorado. They have been there since June where Donna has worked in the local bank for 12 years and Harold does maintenance in the oil field and for local ranchers. They told us Walden is 62 miles from Laramie, WY; 62 miles from Kremmling, CO; 62 miles from Gramby, CO and 62 miles from Steamboat Springs, CO and they experience living with snow every month of the year except June and July. Donna said she wore insulated clothes to the annual 4th of July celebration. Walden is the only town in the county of about 800 people of which 550-600 live in town. Donna got her banking experience while working at Lufkin Federal Savings and Loan almost 25 years. When they are in Texas, they live in Central and Harold works at his shop in Apple Springs. They also enjoy their hunting lease, Las Escobas, in El Sauz near Rio Grande City where Harold has hunted since he was 8 years old.

Dianne Gibson and Betty Capps enjoyed traveling with the Senior Circle from Woodland Heights to Natchitoches, Louisiana where they spent two nights enjoying the Christmas lights along the Cane River. The days were filled with touring homes decorated for Christmas, shopping and eating. Two special restaurants where they enjoyed eating were The Landing and The Mariner. These two highly recommend joining the Senior Circle for $15 per year that includes monthly informative meetings and several trips during the year.

You can support Project Celebration by buying fireworks at their stand in the parking lot of J.R.’s Barn this week until midnight on New Year’s Eve. They also still have $100 tickets for sale with the opportunity to win $10,000. Tickets are available at Pouland’s.

Our thanks to Bill Smith for the delicious meal of hot tamales with all the trimmings and also to Darlene Stephens for a whole tray packed with lots of goodies including cranberry bread, crockpot candy and fudge. So many people have brought so many goodies to the round table and for that we are thankful. I noticed several enjoyed tasting the good food at the round table. At one time I saw Skeeter Scarborough, Buddy Shipp, Mack Coward, Bill Dean Yates, Gary Jones, Mark Hafernik, J.D and Sue Johnson and Fran McGilvra.

The coffee is always on, please me of you join us…’round the table.

December 12, 2016

 

Congratulations to a longtime customer of ours, Sue Baker. Sue was all smiles telling about winning a book and gift card for completing a “reading challenge” at Temple Memorial Library. The challenge began in January and ended December 1. Forty books were selected by the library staff which also read the books. The purpose was to get people to read books they might not ever pick up to read on their own. Sue was one of five adults that completed the challenge and according to Justin Barkley, “A lot of adults were really close to completing the challenge.” Justin also said the library is working on another list of books to begin a new challenge in January.

Jack and Gayle Beene stopped by early Wednesday afternoon to visit and were disappointed they missed the annual Christmas dinner at the civic center. They live in Jack’s hometown of Mexia where they built a home on land that has been in his family for years. Jack enjoys rebuilding old tractors and Gayle volunteers helping others and enjoys her garden club and they are both active in their church. From here they drove to their old neighborhood in South Meadows and visited with former neighbors, Don and Dolly Whitaker.

Mark and Ann Hafernick hosted their grandson Gibson Hafernick’s 4th birthday party at their home. Gibson’s parents are Angela and Brian Hafernick. It was a farm party complete with plans for a hayride to the barn and an opportunity to feed chickens, goats, cows, horses and tractor rides were also on the agenda. Unfortunately, it rained 4”on that cold Saturday morning so the party was moved inside and original plans were substituted with lots of farm related games and activities. The children still had a wonderful time and left with homemade stick horses as their party favor!  The stick horses were made by Angela and members of the Caskey family at their Thanksgiving celebration. Attending were several of Gipson’s classmates from St. Cyprians, friends from church and cousins, Alex and Millie and their parents, Ron and Michelle Haney from Lufkin. Gibson’s maternal grandparents, Jim and Ann Caskey, also enjoyed the party which was lots of fun and turned out to be the best “indoor” farm birthday party ever!

Jimmie Woodard went with friends Dell and Jerry Sawyer to Durango’s Canyon outside of Mt. Enterprise and had a delicious meal at the Crater Restaurant and Club.  She reported that the food was good, but prices were a little high. The music was excellent and not so loud you couldn’t visit and enjoy your evening.  The ambiance of the outside surroundings was awesome.  The restaurant sits high and overlooks the crater and the Christmas decorations at the foot of the crater were pretty awesome. So, you might ask, “What’s the story on The Crater? “No one is certain. There is the legend that thousands of years ago a huge meteorite fell to earth and left this natural crater. One can find some interesting boulders which could possibly be meteorite debris. Then there are the stories that The Crater was formed by the Caddo Indians for their use. Arrowheads and Indian artifacts have pushed their way above the ground. Located on 120 acres, the restaurant sits on the rim of the Crater Amphitheater overlooking the stage at Durango’s Canyon and is open Wednesday through Saturday evenings.

          Two guys came in the store at the same time and I learned they both graduated from Diboll in 1992. Jose Hernandez, Jr. and Bobby Lee who both live in Diboll. Jose and his two brothers, Cesar and Juan had returned from Green Bay, WI where they watched the Packers win over the Houston Texans. Before that trip, Jose, his two sons, 9-year-old Trey and 11-year-old Santana and Chaundra Hawthorn attended the game between the Cowboys and Packers. In fact, they attend all the home games in Green Bay and have tickets on the 20-yard line.

          Bobby Lee, as a hobby, raises AKC Labrador Retrievers to run and compete in AKC field trials. After last week’s competition in Hillsboro, Bobby’s prize dog, “Jammer” who is only 16 months old is ranked #21 in the nation. He trained the dog for about a year but since then Jammer is being professionally handled and trained by Mike Johnson of Piney Creek Retrievers in Corrigan. Bobby also raises birds used in training dogs and presently has about 900 pheasants and ducks at his house.

          Two good friends who worked together for years and have hunted together for “too many years to remember”, Eugene May and John Wallace, truly enjoy hunting. They recently returned from a two-week trip to Montana and South Dakota.  They hunted for five days in Montana staying in the outfitters’ lodging. The temperatures broke records for being the hottest in years but these guys both got a mule deer before driving 300 miles to the area of the Badlands’ in South Dakota. Eugene had a picture of the 300 pound deer he bagged with four HUGE antlers that were extremely wide and tall. I was astounded but Eugene in his mild, quiet manner said it wasn’t much by SD standards. John Wallace amazed them all with his 4×4 mule deer he shot at 505 yards by carefully getting down on his bad knees, bracing and calculating the long distance shot. Before leaving home Eugene had already killed two nice 11 pointers; one in the Tower Club and one in the Dean Creek Club.

          Ramiro Perez came in just as Eugene was leaving and was very proud of the 14-point buck that he had gotten in the Tower Club. Ramiro said the thick rack scored 138 points and was 14-1/2” wide.

          The Diboll Lions Club met for their regular monthly meeting at the First Methodist church. The speaker was Drew (Andrew) Estrada, a senior at DHS and expected to be the Valedictorian of his 2017 graduating class. He told us about his freshman year when he planned to take a culinary class that filled up and he had to take an agriculture class. Getting injured and unable to play sports, he got involved in FFA and presently holds an area office that includes 89 school districts and 11,000 members. He has been accepted to Texas A&M and plans to major in Nutritional Science. He challenged the Lions Club to speak up and speak out for everyone in the community. This young man was a very impressive speaker.

          You missed a treat if you did not attend “Christmas in the Park”. It was a wonderful evening with singing and scriptures. After the program The Diboll Civic Club had the Christmas lights turned on in the park just in time for Santa to arrive on a firetruck. Please take time to drive through the park and see the many exhibits, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

          Please send me news and come see us…’round the table.

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