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Houston City Scope February 2017

Scholarship awardees of the 2016 Mayor’s Art Scholarship. L-R: Taylor Meyer (3rd place, 12th grade); Linda Li (2nd place, 12th grade); Joann Chung (1st place, 12th grade); Juliet Stipeche, Director of Education, Mayor’s Office, City of Houston; Asia Youngs-Bailey (2nd place, 11th grade); So Jeong Lee (3rd place, 11th grade); Debbie McNulty, Director of Cultural Affairs, Mayor’s Office, City of Houston.


The Mayor’s Office of Education, the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs, and the Houston Arts Partners coalition host a competition designed specifically for Houston-area school districts and students.

The Mayor’s Art Scholarship competition fosters collaboration among Houston-area high school fine arts departments and recognizes excellence in student art which expresses cultural identities and features of life in Houston area neighborhoods. It provides a forum for self-expression and creative thinking in neighborhoods, recognizes achievement and excellence in visual arts among high school students, and strengthens relationships among students, communities, and higher education.

Currently-enrolled juniors and seniors in Houston-area public high schools and public charter schools are eligible to enter.

For more information, visit the Houston Arts Partners website and view the information packet and entry forms.

Seniors’ Prize Levels: First Place: $1,000, Second Place: $750, Third Place: $500

Juniors’ Prize Levels: First Place: $500, Second Place: $500, Third Place: $500

All entries and paperwork should be dropped off at the Young Audiences of Houston office at 4550 Post Oak Place Drive, Suite #230 by 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17. For more information and entry forms, visit hapconference.org and click on Mayor’s Art Scholarship.



On Jan. 23 Houston Bike Share, along with City of Houston’s Mayor Sylvester Turner, BBVA Compass, the Houston Downtown Management District and Visit Houston, celebrated the opening of a new Bcycle station and the launch of a unique program funded by BBVA Com­pass with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The ceremony took place at the new “Crawford Island” Bcycle station located at 925 Crawford St. During the ceremony, Houston Bike Share and BBVA Compass introduced the “BBVA Com­pass Free Rides” program, designed to help alleviate increased traffic congestion and support Bcycle’s role as an official transportation partner for Super Bowl LI.

The Crawford Island station will be the 14th downtown location for Bcycle and their third station surrounding Discovery Green, offering easy access to Super Bowl Live events and the NFL Exper­ience at George R. Brown Convention Center. Through the “BBVA Compass Free Rides” program, individuals can receive free Houston Bcycle rides for the 10 days leading up to the Super Bowl, Jan. 27-Feb. 5, at all Bcycle stations around Houston. Every ride will be free after the rider reserves the bike with a valid credit or debit card, and provides an email address or mobile number at checkout. After the Super Bowl, Bcycle will continue to promote healthy living with “Bike Share Free Fridays” from Feb. 10 through March 31. Riders will be encouraged to post photos to their social networks incorporating the hashtag #WeAreMobile.

Mark Montgomery, BBVA Compass Houston CEO, expressed excitement about the launch of the new station and resulting program. “The buzz around the big game is building, and what a better way to strengthen that momentum than with this bright idea from organizations and people committed to this great city. We’re honored to work in tandem with the mayor and Bcycle to give Houston’s visitors and its residents a bright experience.”

Bcycle’s expansion is funded by a Federal Highway Administration grant, sponsored by the City’s Planning and Development Department. Houston Bike Share is responsible for $880,000 in local match funding. The Crawford Island station was made possible by the generous donations of local match funding and site construction, provided by Visit Houston and the Downtown District, respectively.

Visit houston.bcycle.com for more information, or follow @houstonbcycle on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.


Entering its second decade, Recipe for Success Foundation is a nonprofit that focuses on combating childhood obesity.


Recipe for Success Foundation, a nonprofit focused on combating childhood obesity, celebrated Veteran’s Day with the announcement of a new workforce development scholarship for U.S veterans interested in pursuing a career in urban agriculture.

The scholarship provides a 12-month Hope Farmer Training Program, which includes full-time wages, hands-on classes in horticulture, the business of growing and distribution of produce, as well as college level coursework in financial literacy, accounting, banking and business planning. Members of the Houston business community will mentor the trainees, who will also benefit from specially curated course work at Houston Community College and University of Houston in a well-rounded workforce development program designed to foster entrepreneurship.

Two U.S. veterans will be awarded the scholarship in early 2017, with one space reserved for a woman. The Foundation will gradually increase the number of annual awards to veterans to a total of eight by 2019.

Houston is home to one of the largest veteran populations in the country, and the Hope Farmer Training Program is a unique tool for empowerment and change. Research shows that veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress respond well to working in agriculture. Recipe for Success Foundation has built a coalition of support for the program with the Mission Continues, the Lone Star Veterans Association, Mental Health America – Veteran Outreach, Houston’s Department of Veteran Affairs and Goodwill Veteran Employment Services among others. By transforming retired warriors into a battalion of new urban agripreneurs, the Foundation seeks to help solve the problem of equitable access to affordable, fresh produce in the city’s poorest neighborhoods.

“We are particularly excited to provide the space for Vets to continue to serve their community in an environment that is conducive to their recovery from post-war stress,” says Gracie Cavnar, founder of Recipe for Success Foundation, which developed and operates Hope Farms.

Hope Farms is located at 10401 Scott Street, along Sims Bayou at the corner of Airport and Scott Streets.


(L-R): Jocelyne Juarez, Alan Medrano, BalletForte dancer Edie Peffley (Clara), Gwendolyn Friedman and Melanie Rivera.


Students from the Down Syndrome Academy of Houston attended BalletForte’s “The Nutcracker” on Dec. 9. The group was able to meet and greet some of the performers after the pre-professional company’s morning show. The Sugar Land-based ballet company invited the Down Syndrome Academy, part of Friends of Down Syndrome, to attend for the second year in a row. The Down syndrome adults learned all about the ballet and dancing in class leading up to the show.

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