New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 1, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas
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EL POSO, TX 79903Herald-Zeitungmm? w
Vol. 148, No. 138
12 pages in I section
June I, 1999 J I \ T,nnr>v ax 7 Serving Comal County since 1852 50 cents
Tuesday Serving Comal County since 1852dayVeterans recognize their fallen comrades; others spend day in Landa Park
By Christina Minor
For some, Memorial Day is not about tubing the river or cruising around the lake. Instead, it’s about spending time with family and friends and remembering those who lost their lives serving their country.
American Legion Comal Post 179 placed American flags beside die graves of veterans at the Comal Cemetery, Sis. Peter and Paul Cemetery, Hidalgo Cemetery and New Braunfels Cemetery, starting at 6:45 a.m. A tradition with the post, the flags are left all day Monday, then picked up in the evening. All flags were purchased by the post.
“We had maps of each cemetery, so we knew which graves to place flags on,’’ said post commander James R. Pickett Sr., a veteran of the Persian Gulf War. “We try to keep them updated. We added names of those who died within the last year.”
Afterward, the workers went back to the post home for a breakfast cooked by the Ladies Auxiliary.
“We placed around 1,000 flags on graves,” post member Russell Krueger said. “We don’t leave them out past sunset in order to preserve them. We had around 12 areas to covet.”
Comal Post 179 will have a memorial service at Prince Solms Park on July 4.
American Legion Guadalupe Valley Post 35 also placed flags on graves in the Guadalupe Valley Memorial Park. Post members and the Ladies Auxiliary Unit 35 worked together to place 792 flags on the graves of war veterans.
Post 35, in conjunction with the Boy Scouts of America Troop 133 placed American flags downtown along San Antonio Street and Seguin Avenue.
“Some of the flags are donated by businesses and others are purchased,” secretary/treasurer Joan Helmke said. “It takes about two hours to put the flags out.”
Joan and husband Leon Helmke went to four county cemeteries on Sunday to place smaller American flags on 49 war veterans’ graves. The flags are left on the graves ites.
“It’s hard work putting them out,” Leon Helmke said.
Landa Park was another area filled with people celebrating Memorial Day. The Community Bible Church of San Antonio reserved a pavilion for their annual picnic. More than 400 church members came to celebrate.
Organizers said the time was used to play games, get to know new members and meet in small groups. The church has been coming to Landa Park for seven years.
“We barbecue chicken and sausage and each member brings their own side dish,” said Carl Huffaker, associate pastor in charge of small groups. “We always reserve this pavilion, and this is the first year they have had this bridge. We used to have to walk around. Hats off to Landa Park for building the bridge.”
Mike and Jan Poehling of San Antonio and their two children came with the church for the picnic, but also had their own plans.
“The kids have been on the train, and we’re headed for the tube chute,” Jan Poehling said. “Some of the kids have even been fishing.”
Rob and Becky Poindexter of San Antonio and their two sons, also members of the church, were
American Legion Post 179 member Hanno Hoffman places a flag next to the gravesite of a fellow veteran at the Comal Cemetery Monday morning. The post will have a memorial service for those who served their country on July 4.
planning to tube the Comal River afterward.
Another church group, from the Good Shepherd Church of God in Poteet, came to Landa Park because members said it was quiet.
“It was here or Schlitterbahn. We choose here,” said Henrietta Ochoa of Poteet said.
Kids rode the paddle boats, went swimming and played volleyball.
The New Creation Christian Fellowship of San Antonio brought a group of IO to Landa Park for a church gathering. This was a first time the church has been to the park.
“It’s a nice area to meet. One of the guys had been here before and liked it, so we decided to come,” minister Curtis Campbell said.
The group went swimming, played sports and enjoyed good food.
“We wanted to do something for Memorial Day, so we decided to come to the park,” Campbell said.
Thelma Benaviez of San Antonio came for the first time with family and friends to Landa Park. Her
brother, Erick Benaviez of Laredo, was visiting for the weekend.
“We usually barbecue at home, but we decided to come this year because people said it was real pretty and it’s true,” Thelma Benaviez said.
Another family enjoying a picnic was that of Shawn and Angela Overeynder of New' Braunfels. They came with their children and siblings.
“It* our first time hoe. We came because it lets the kids have a chance to be out. We’ve been on the train and are going swimming,” Angela said.
The Blain family of San Antonio and the Mills family of Austin got together for a fun day at the park. As soon as they arrived, they rode the train then decided to eat before going swimming.
“We just decided to come. We wanted to do something fUn and to get out of the house,” Elaine Blain said.
The Landa Park miniature golf course has been open since spring break, but recently opened sevenSee DAY/5
A Texas State Guardsman keeps watch Saturday as tubers float on the Guadalupe River. Guardsmen from Laredo volunteered to help provide security this past weekend.
I OO arrested along river
Number of citations
similar to Labor Day ’98
By Peri Stone Staff Writer
It might have been quieter this Memorial Day weekend on the Guadalupe River, but law enforcement officials arrested more than IOO people.
The majority were arrested for possession of marijuana and public intoxication, LL Ed Whitson of the Comal County Sheriff’s Office said.
Other arrests were made for indecent exposure, disorderly conduct and theft.
More than 200 citations woe written aking the river for minors in possession of alcohol, lack of floatation devices and possession of glass.
These statistics measured up comparably to Labor Day 1998, which was the first holiday weekend with beefed up security. Approximately IOO arrests were made then and 300 citations were issued in the county. This was the first Memorial Day weekend with increased security and at least one officer found the noise volume more manageable.
“It’s quieter than last year,” CCSO Captain David Ott said. “And I think it’s because we’re here.”
More than 35 county sheriff’s deputies patrolled the banks and the river along River Road Friday, Saturday and Sunday. An additional 30 non-certified river security personnel were on duty to identify troublemakers.
Downstream off of Gruene Road, six New Braunfels Police Department officers patrolled — about four too many for one tourist.
“Six seems like a bit much,” said David Rodriguez of San Antonio. ’Two might seem more appropriate. I’ve never known of any problems.”
New Braunfels Police officer Jesse Villarreal, one of the six patrolling the area, said things were quiet for the most part.
“Most of the trouble happens upstream,” he said.
Officer Terry Flugrath said, “We’re more like a PR informational booth.”
Soon afterward, a tourist lugging a huge tube wandered over to the cluster of three officers and asked them where to go. “Oh, and do you know what time it is,” the tuber asked.
The majority of river-goers were having fun.
“We didn’t have any trouble,” said a sun-burned James Tarver of Covington. “No fights, no fussing”
His wife, Patsy, agreed.
“Everyone’s just having fun,” she said.
And feeling more secure.
“People were thanking us for being there,” Ott «a»d “They said they felt more safe with us there.”
Legislature brings open government, money for teachers
By Peri Stone Staff Writer
To Comal County residents, the 96th Texas Legislature meant no state bed tax revenue for river cleanup but more open government for the public and more money for teachers.
Lawmakers also voted to allow several counties, including Comal, to set up groundwater districts.
The Legislature adjourned on Monday.
“This session was a good session,” said Rep. Edmund Kuempel, R-Seguin. “It was not a session Filled with many disappointments.”
But there was at least one disappointment for several New Braunfels residents.
Senate Bill 1772, which initially asked to use a portion of the state’s bed tax revenue in New Braunfels for river cleanup, died in a House committee.
The bill was changed in the Senate to allow New Braunfels to use city — not state — bed tax money for river cleanup, drawing criticism from local businesses and the Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce, Inc.
“I just thought we should make the money available if (the city) wanted to spend it,” said Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio,
a co-author of the bill.
Wentworth said he was “disappointed” that the bill died.
But Wentworth definitely had some victories to share.
After attempting to pass a bill regarding open records and meetings in 1993,1995 and 1997, Wentworth finally found success this session.
The bill “closes the loophole” in the open meetings act, forbidding elected officials to be briefed in private.
“The public needs to see that decision making process,” he said.
Both Wentworth and Kuempel agreed that
More on th# 95th Legislature
— Pages 3,4
a bill infusing funds into the education system was one of the most significant accomplishments of the session.
“(The education bill) is the most equitable bill I’ve seen this session — since I’ve been in the legislature,” Kuempel said. “I was happy that we’re getting teachers pay raises they so richly deserve and thank them for a job well done.”
Lawmakers approved a $3,000 pay raiseSee LEGISLATURE/3Inside
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