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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - November 5, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas NEW PELS v ft v El po n u YmV HERALDZEITUNG Vol 148 No 251 22 pages in 2 sections November 5 1999 FRIDAY Serving Comal County since 1852 50 cents Don Ferguson assistant to the city manager talks with media representa tives about the third annual Holiday River of Lights during a press conference Thursday at the municipal building WAI Woman accused ofDWI bonds out FROM STAFF REPORTS A Canyon Lake woman accused of intoxication manslaughter and assault with a motor vehicle posted a bond after 274th Dis trict Judge Gary Steel denied a motion to reduce her bond Melissa Watson Choina 31 was booked in Comal County Jail Oct 27 on charges related to a fatal accident on FarmtoMarket 306 July 8 Bond on the intoxication manslaughter charge was set at and bond for the intoxi cation assault was set at On Wednesday morning Steel denied a request by Choinas attor ney Matthew Kyle to change the bond to a personal recognizance bond Personal recognizance bonds allow defendants to be released from prison without paying the bond amount but they would be liable for the bond money if they failed to make a scheduled court date Officials at Comal County Jail said Choina posted bond about 5 Wednesday Choina was driving a vehicle that struck a Ford Thunderbird carrying four children and two adults about noon July 8 on FM 306 just south FarmtoMarket 2673 Joshua Rutherford 3 was a pas senger in the Thunderbird He died two days later at a San Antonio Hospital Choina also faces four counts of intoxication assault for critically injuring three passengers in the Thunderbird and one passenger in her vehicle Three passengers in the Thun derbird Brian Hollek 12 Kyle Hollek 10 and Annette Webb 59 were critically injured in the accident and airlifted to University Hospital in San Antonio Choina and her 13yearold pas senger both were taken by Star Flight helicopter to Brackenridge Hospital in Austin If convicted of the seconddegree felony charge of intoxication manslaughter Choina could face two to 20 years in prison and a fine not to exceed If convicted of the intoxication assault charge she could face a two to 10year prison sentence and a fine not to exceed Officials with the Texas Depart ment of Safety reported Choinas level exceeded twice the legal limit at the time of the fatal collision DPS Trooper Jim Shea said Choina had a level of at the time of the accident The legal level in Texas at the time of the accident was State law reduced the legal level to on Sept 1 Choina is scheduled for arraign ment Nov 22 City starts plugging Holiday River of Lights BY PERI STONEPALMQUIST Staff writer Local residents visitors making their way through this years Holi day River of Lights can expect 15 new displays including a 30foot ice castle a waterskiing Santa and an antique auto scene Not to worry though old favorites such as the 15foot illumi nated red bear display and Christ mas tree remain features in the 52 day drivethrough light display in Cypress Bend Park which runs Nov 12 to Jan 2 The displays are larger than life said Don Ferguson assistant to the city manager People often leave feeling in The display park showcases more than 40 luminous animated displays positioned along a seventhtenth mile trail of sparkling lights The drive typically takes between 15 to 35 minutes Ferguson said The time all depends on how many people show up each night About vehicles carried an estimated visitors through the display park in the first two years of the display Visitors from as far away as Mexico Canada and Japan have come See SEE THE LIGHTS Admission is for up to eightpassenger vehicles for nineto 24passenger vehicles and for buses Season passes are Advance tickets and season passes can be bought at 424 S Castell Ave and Landa Park What its all about WAI Eugene Eike a New Braunfels Lions Club member helps prepare Wurstfest sausages for the organiza tions food booth Many nonprofit and community service organizations raise funds by operating food booths during Wurstfest Eike reports that all 200 members of the club volunteer during Wurstfest The 10 day salute to sausage continues today through Sunday with plenty of food fun and entertainment For a schedule of events see Page 4A Libraries hoping for sales tax Tye Preston Bulverde library supporters calling for election BY ERIN MAGRUDERB Staff Writer Rural libraries in Comal County have relied heavily on Comal County government funding to make ends meet Now supporters of those libraries want county voters to approve special taxing districts to generate funds Recently the Texas Legislature passed a lanotiar er alternative to generate more revenue by creating taxing districts With the possibility of future cuts in county funding Bulverde Community Library and the Tye Preston Memorial Library in Canyon Lake are seeking to establish such districts to meet the needs of the growing communities they serve The proposed districts will generate revenue from a percentage of the sales tax within the geographical bound aries of districts The sales tax does not include gro ceries or prescription medications The libraries are seeking to raise the sales tax cent of purchases within the maximum allowed under the legislation Property taxes will not be increased See SCHEEL Taking flight in NB difficult for commuter air service 4 StT jl t 1 J 11 Opponents supporters speak out at forum BY PERI STONEPALMQUIST Staff writer Attracting a commercial airline to New Braunfels will be an uphill battle local res idents were told Thursday Its a huge very competitive con sultant Randal Wiedemann said Wiedemanns consultant team Wiedemann Associates along with Wilbur Smith Associates and Kramer Asso ciates have been contracted by Texas Department of Transportations aviation division to conduct a study evaluating air service needs in 31 communities including New Braunfels As part of the study funded through federal state and local money Wiedemann came to New Braunfels Thurs day seeking public input on possible air commuter service for the city The study will look at the feasibility of attracting an airline company here as well as the need for commuter service Public sentiment seemed divided on both issues New Braunfels Municipal Airport man ager Darrell Phillips said he believed the airport had a lot to offer a commercial airline including plenty of space for a repair shop and a good location We do have a carrot to dangle to get those airlines he said New Braunfels location however was not necessarily an asset Wiedemann said The one thing youre up against is that youre close to San Antonio International he said Commercial airlines might figure that they wouldnt gain any new customers with flights to and from New Braunfels with other air ports so close he said The city will have to show a real need and interest in commuter service for New Braunfels Phillips said he thought it was there espe cially to Houston A large majority of tourists in New Braun fels come from Houston he said And sev eral Houston residents have weekend homes in New Braunfels And a commuter flight would just give them more time on the he said But commuter flights could be as much as or more Wiedemann said Most people pick flights based on price New Braunfels resident Barren Casteel said I think we would kill to save he said Jerry Ford owner of the intheworks Gruene development Cotton Crossing said he would choose convenience over money Wiedemann suggested the city look at the possibility of a private airline company but final recommendations wont come until the study is completed probably in July 2000 Were going to be very realistic with he said We wont sugarcoat Phillips said New Braunfels shouldnt wait too long before making any decisions San Marcos will offer stiff competition I think we have a jewel in the rough in this he said of the airport Its a valuable tool for this community And thats what its for We need to put it to work for this INSIDE 12A Key code 76 Pickles becoming yuletide fave BY JACOB WESOLICK HeraddZeitung Correspondent tradition every year We would hide it the orna ment under the tree and every ered hiding a pickle in a tree to be one of their annual holiday traditions We did not know this the Christmas Pickle tradition until a few years ago when somebody had given us the ornament and told us the Mary Adel Schneider said Now the Schneider family celebrates the Christmas Pickle Schneider said Its an interesting tradition Grandchildren enjoy looking for it the Christmas Pickle to see who could find it she said The Christmas Pickle is con sidered a special tree decora tion by many German families but very few Americans are aware of the tradition German legend says mothers and fathers would hide a glass ornament of a pickle in the familys Christmas tree and the first child who found the spe cial ornament would receive an extra gift left by Saint Nicholas New Braunfels resident Hellen Hoffman said 1 did it as a child We had a pickle it was the ugliest and whoever found it would get a treat It was a tradition and 1 think Ger See WAI Sophienburg Museum sells Christmas pickles at its Wurstfest booth and its muse um shop
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