July-August 2017

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Pauline Reese Treasures Her East Texas Roots

Pauline Reese always knew she was destined to be a country music singer. Today, the singer with East Texas roots just wrapped up her seventh album featuring a duet with Willie Nelson, and was recently named the 2017 CMA (Country Music Association) of Texas Music Female Vocalist of the year.

Happy Birthday Van Cliburn

Kilgore’s Van Cliburn was born July 12, 1934. He took the world by storm when at 23 he won the International Tchaikovsky Piano Competition in Moscow during the Cold War.

Legendary DJ Tom Perryman Turns 90

Legendary DJ Tom Perryman was born July 16, 1927, and grew up near Kerens, Texas.

Cowboy Poet Is Gone But Not Forgotten

Get Ready for the Great American Eclipse of the Sun

The eclipse of the sun occurring August 21 this year is dubbed the “Great American Solar Eclipse” because of how the path of totality crosses directly over the continental United States. It is only visible from the United States and parts of Canada and Mexico.

Head for the Water to Cool Off This Summer

East Texas is fortunate to have an abundance of inviting cool water in the region — from diving ponds to massive lakes — so it’s no surprise how many choices people have to explore throughout the summer.

In Memory of Shorty the Squirrel

Shorty the squirrel lived outside the Smith County courthouse for 15 years. He was a panhandler and a beggar, but beloved by the town — and particularly by Miss Geneva Pillow, who fed him daily.

NET People: Yaziri (YO) Orrostieta

Yaziri Orrostieta (who goes by “YO”) is the marketing director at Heritage Land Bank. Prior to her current position, she served as the marketing manager at Mentoring Minds. She has spent the last 26 years of her life in East Texas.

NET People: Danny Pickens

NET PEOPLE: Jack Canson

Jack Canson of Marshall is the town’s very own muse. Together with his wife, Nancy, the couple helped Marshall claim the title of “Birthplace of Boogie Woogie.”

Explore the Treasures Along El Camino Real

Early Spanish explorers, traveling from Mexico City, embarked upon the untamed wilderness that was Texas 300 years ago. They followed a series of trails first trodden by Native Americans like the Caddo tribe.

Making a Splash

Three contemporary Texas artists are featured in a celebration of summertime in Tyler Museum of Art’s exhibit “Making a Splash” that runs through September 17.

Congressional Art Competition Winners Announced

Each spring the United States House of Representatives sponsors a nationwide high school visual arts competition to recognize and encourage artistic talent in the nation. Since its beginning in 1982, more than 650,000 high school students participated.

East Texas Artists

Longview Museum of Fine Arts is proud to present “East Texas Collects,” an exhibition featuring notable works of art from more than 30 artists from the East Texas area.

 Deep in the Art of Texas

“A Pop Art Portrait of John Wayne” by artist Cheryl Hicks is one of the pieces of art found in the latest exhibit “Deep in the Art of Texas” at Gallery 211 in Athens through August 12.

Potters Brown Still Playing in the Mud After 46 Years

Potter Doug Brown started the Edom arts community when he moved to East Texas in 1971. The very next year he and other artists started the Edom Art Festival which marks 45 years with this year’s event October 14 and 15.

Texas Shakespeare Festival Presents Season 32

Now in its 32nd season, the Texas Shakespeare Festival is a strong and vital cultural asset for all of East Texas. The festival’s 2017 summer shows features six plays performed from June 29 through July 30 at The Festival Center, 815 Houston Street in Kilgore.

Summer Musicals Show the Magic of Live Theatre

Northeast Texas continues to grow its offerings for summer musicals each year and this one is no exception. Stages in Greenville, Lindale, Longview, Nacogdoches, Palestine, and Tyler are bringing great entertainment to audiences of all ages with some classic and comedic favorites.

Denial: DVD Review

How does someone prove that the Holocaust actually existed, that Nazi Germany murdered six million Jews, gypsies, and homosexuals during World War II?

Fences: DVD Review

While Denzel Washington gives a showy, memorable performance in Fences, it was the quieter performance by Viola Davis that won an Oscar this year.

Phoebe in Wonderland: DVD Review

An unexpected, extraordinary performance can turn an average movie into an emotional masterpiece, which is one fact of Phoebe in Wonderland.

Young Sheldon Grows Up in East Texas

Fans of The Big Bang Theory are used to hearing Sheldon Cooper talk about his colorful East Texas roots. Now a spin-off actually depicts his character’s life as a child growing up in East Texas.

Geddie Releases Two New Books

East Texas author Tom Geddie has published the ninth book, Under a Forever Sky, in his character-driven Desert Magicians series and a new book of free verse poetry, A Secret Traveler’s Private Notes.

Half Price Books Opens First East Texas Store

The nation’s largest family-owned new and used bookstore chain opens its first store in East Texas soon. A new Half Price Books store celebrates its grand opening in Tyler with special festivities over Labor Day weekend, August 31 through September 4.

July/August 2017 Poetry

The sun-drenched shadow of a butterfly Seeking solace upon a soft breeze.

East Texas Writers Guild Hosts Conference

The East Texas Writers Guild’s 14th Annual Summer Writing Conference, “Keys to Successful Writing,” is scheduled for 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. July 15 at Tyler Junior College West Campus, 1530 S SW Loop 323 in Tyler.

Renowned Cellist Yo-Yo Ma Performs in East Texas

The University of Texas at Tyler and the East Texas Symphony Orchestra co-presents a performance by renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma at 7 p.m. September 17 at the UT Tyler Cowan Fine and Performing Arts Center.

Bruce Robison and Brother Song Swap in Greenville

Bruce Robison — along with his brother Charlie — performs July 14 at the Texan Theater in Greenville. Bruce recently released his latest record, Bruce Robison & The Back Porch Band.

In Loving Memory: Jimmy LaFave

Wills Point native and Texas singer-songwriter Jimmy LaFave passed away May 21 at the age of 61 after a year-long battle with cancer.

Shoji Tabuchi Brings Branson Show to Greenville

Branson entertainer Shoji Tabuchi performs August 5 at the Greenville Municipal Auditorium along with his family and large cast presenting a sparkling family variety show.

Curtis Grimes Plays Multiple Venues in East Texas This Summer

Gilmer native Curtis Grimes was raised on a steady diet of George Strait and Alan Jackson, and he possesses the everyman charm of both his heroes along with a refreshingly mature voice that truly stands out.

Don Henley’s Still Rockin’ at 70

Linden native and Eagles cofounder Don Henley is celebrating his 70th birthday July 22 in Dallas at the American Airlines Center.

Brandon Rhyder Releases New CD

East Texas native and singer-songwriter Brandon Rhyder recently returned to the studio after a four-year hiatus

Phinessé Farms Offers Wines in Downtown Sulphur Springs

You’ll Never Be Hungry Again

The fourth edition of You’ll Never Be Hungry Again was recently published by Bobbie Smith Hardy, owner of the Gone With the Wind Museum in Jefferson.

Growth on Tap for Brewing Company

Founding brewmasters and brothers Brian and Matt Gilstrap, along with co-owner Annie Gilstrap, opened East Texas Brewing Company in the downtown area of Tyler earlier this year in response to the area’s demand for more craft beer.

New Mineola Restaurants Add to the Town’s Culinary Spreads

Long-time favorite restaurants in Mineola like East Texas Burger Company, La Waffalata and Kitchen’s Hardware and Deli continue to serve up award-winning delicious foods to residents and visitors alike.

Solar-Powered Residence Marries Common Sense with Energy Creation

Many people consider using solar energy to power their homes, businesses, and even motor homes. Installing solar panels can help reduce utility bills and some buyers appreciate using the sun as their main source of energy for independence and sustainability.

Diverse Women Are Building Better Communities

Crystal Bryce and Sreenidhi Vedartham bonded this past year over their desire to help women entrepreneurs. Their group, Embark Women, is a diverse network of professional women in East Texas supporting each other through networking, discussions, workshops, and more.

Copper Leaf Day Spa Enlarges Space and Services

Copper Leaf Day Spa and Salon in Winnsboro recently expanded their space to include the building at 213 North Main Street in Winnsboro where they operate their Directional Wellness division.

Adventures of Seri & Abi Tyler State Park

Seri and Abi show kids and adults alike how to have a fun afternoon at Tyler State Park.

Take A Stand Against Media Violence

No one’s arguing about this anymore. Exposure to violence in media, including television, movies, music, and video games, represents a significant risk to the health of children and adolescents.

Founding Mothers

For a little summer reading that celebrates women who made their mark on history, New York Times bestselling author Cokie Roberts’ 2014 children’s book Founding Mothers: Remembering the Ladies is a follow-up to her acclaimed Founding Mothers adult offerings and is worth a family trip to a local library.

Livingston’s Night at the Museum

Livingston the Lion, a stuffed animal from the late 1800s, is hosting an event for kids and their stuffed animals, dolls, or action figures on August 4 at the Sam Bell Maxey House State Historic Site in Paris.

The Poetry of Claire Simmons

Claire Simmons won a place in six of the last seven years of poetry contests held by or in partnership with County Line Magazine and including thousands of entries from all over Northeast Texas.

Remembering Elvis in East Texas

As people around the world honor “Elvis Week” August 11-19, East Texans are stepping up as well to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death on August 16, 1977. He was 42.