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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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September 6, 2017     Hays Free Press
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September 6, 2017
 

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New businesses find a home in downtown Buda. - Page 1D ~. HaysFreePress.com September 6, 2017 Page 1C II BY MOSES LEOS III A~fmid the constant buzz fans and the gush of mpane igniting in the air, ]osh Sneed walked the field at Lake Kyle Park Saturday, assess- ing the scene in flont of him. All around the greenerywere balloons starting to take shape. Large nylon structures rose high into the sky as revelers looked on in amazement, snapping photos and enjoying the moment. For Sneed, be's known this experience almost all his life. last weekend, he and many other pilots got their chance to share their craft when Kyle hosted its inaugural Pie in the Sky balloon festival. "It's good for the com- munity and I think it will bring a lot of attention for the city of Kyie and what they're trying to do," Sneed said. Kyle's festival was the culmination of several years of work involving commiffees, the citizenry and city staff. Scott Sellers, Kyle city manager, said the city has for several years sought to find a destination appeal for the city. "Over the years, Kyle has grown up fairly quicld~ but with nothing to its name other than s btazb of Austin, or sOitWaS assumed," "While those who live here know Kyle has much to offer, others pass through Kyle and don't stop because they don't have reason to." Itwas pie that many felt drew traffic offof Interstate 35 to the city. SpecificaU); the Texas Pie Company, located in downtown Kyle. After discussion, the city officially filed a trademark to the U.S. Patent Office to become the PHOTOS BY MOSES LEOS III Main: Colorful balloons took flight Saturday as the mass ascension event was held at Lake Kyle Park. Over a dozen aircraft, including Wells Fargo CenterStage stagecoach-shaped balloon, inflated in the inaugural event. According to officials, Pie in the Sky marked the first time the CenterStage balloon has participated at an inaugu- ral event. Inset: Members of a hot air balloon team test out a propane burner during a media event preceding the Kyle Pie in the Sky hot air balloon festival Friday. See more photos online at HaysFreePress.com. Pie Capital of Texas. signature event. ~ however, didn't come to fruition. Right around the time of the City officials attempted to While at a Kyle Chamber of filing~ Kyie sought to pair the create an event called the "Hog- "pie Capital" designation with a wash." Appeal for the festival, PIE IN THE SKY, 4C BY LESLY DE LEON In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, Sweeny residents John and Brittney Nichols and their children ar- rived in Buda before a voluntary evacuation notice was issued Aug. 30. "We didn't want to be stuck there with the kids," ]ohn said. While the Nichols family is trying to enjoy their time in Cen- tral Texas, they're worried about their home. When they left Sweeny, only six inches of floodwater covered their house's yard but they're concerned the situation will worsen. The nearby Brazos and San Bernard rivers continued to rise. It's expected to cause major flooding. "We're not going to know [the extent of the damage] until we get back," John said. They're not sure when they'll be able to retum to their home or to work. "FEMA said they would pay for our room until Sept. 25/' Brittney said. "Hopefully, we don't haveto stay that long." Despite their concems, the family enjoyed a BBQ dinner Thursday evening provided by Brooklyn's Down South in the Comfort Suites parking lot. "It's really good, we really appreciate it," Brittney said. "Ev- erybody has been nice to us." PHOTO COURTESY OF THE BUDA AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE Several evacuees who escaped the impact of Hurricane Harvey gather for dinner during an event held at the Embassy Suites hotel in east Buda. The event, hosted by the Buda Area Chamber of Commerce and Brookyln's Down South, provided a free meal to over 200 evacuees that are staying at Buda hotels. Brooklyn Robertson, owner of Brooklyn's Down South, worked with hotel manager Chris Griffin and the Buda Area Chamber of Commerce to host a dinner for up to 500 evacuees. A couple of days ago, Griffin reached out to Robertson about organizing a dinner for evacuees staying in Buda hotels. "For our area, we got a lot of people that came from Hous- ton," Griffin said. Approximately 40 rooms are occupied by 4 or 5 people each, Griffin said. People started ar- riving the Friday before Hur- ricane Harvey hit land, and have continued to arrive. "It's just constantly busy because people have gotten here and they don't know if they can go back home," Griffin said. Robertson said hotel manag- ers estimated 350 to 450 evacu- ees staying at 6 nearby hotels. "I started thinking, these people came here and didn't really have much of nothing," Griffin said. People impacted by the hur- ricane probably didn't budget for this catastrophe, Griffin said. When they arrived at Buda, they probably didn't have a hot meal and have been eating fast food. "Griffin reached out a couple of days ago and asked if we would consider possibly putting together a dinner because he had a lot of FEMA-supported evacuees that were staying here," Robertson said. Hoping to provide a small comfort, Griffin and Robertson coordinated the event in ap- prox~nately 30 hours. Robertson's restaurant pro- vided meat, rice and mashed potatoes. Lysa Gonzalez, Buda director of tourism, donated cookies and ice, while U.S. Foods donated chicken, Robert- son said. Volunteers created a tented dining area and some games for the children in the parking lot of Comfort Inn Suites. St. Stephen's Episcopal School students, including Robertson's children, painted baimers and drew on paper plates which were strung together to decorate the tents. Those impacted by the hur- ricane stopped by for a plate of BBQ and were greeted by friendly smiles and banners reading: "We are praying for you all" and "Texas unite." m cry Montage by Pauline Tom ruCOmmon thread ns from house to ouse throughout Mountain City. Our hearts and prayers go out for those so severely impacted by Harvey. Most of us know someone whose home flooded. Over and over, I hear Texans among us saying how proud they are to be a Texan. "We are Texas." Patricia Porterfield on Maple is from Rockport. On Saturday, she and Brian and their son joined a chainsaw team from Fellowship Church Plum Creek who worked through Operation Blessing at two homes in Rockport. Ron Tom went, too. MT. CITY MONTAGE, 2C Nmut Thyme by Chris Winslow "y favorite shade trees of all time . are the oaks. Planted and watered properly, young trees will grow fast and can dramatically enhance our landscapes. Apart from their beauty, there is a practical consideration too. If you plant them in the right place, shade trees will cool offthe air around your home and help offset costly utility bills. We have two native Texas oaks that are considered evergreen: the live oak and the Mexican white oak. Both hold their foliage throughout the winter months, but then shed their leaves around the end of February- early March. Spring growth follows in 2 to 3 weeks. Evergreen oaks are also highly effective as windbreaks and privacy screens. In addition, when planted on the east, south and west sides of a house, they'll provide you with winter shade. On the Texas Superstars list and one of my favorite Texas native shade trees is the Chinquapin oak. What makes this deciduous shade tree so wonderful is its uncommon appearance. The leaves can be 6 to 8 inches long and 4 inches wide. The leaf color is IT'S ABOUT THYME, 4C +