New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - September 29, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas
N E W rBStasy N F ELSWater Restrictions
■ New Braunfels Utilities customers cannot water today with a sprinkler. Use of a hand-held hose, bucket, drip irrigation system or soaker hose is allowed on any day at any hour.
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Vol. 149 No. 238 18 pages in 2 sections September 29, 2000
Serving Comal County since 1852
day at the fair
Fairground fun entertains locals through Sunday
By Ron Maloney Staff Writer
Local youth — the very young and some not so very young — have gotten through “suicide night” at the Comal County Fair, which is what the kids call the fair s first night when the rides first open.
The traditionalists had Wednesday night s “Night in Old New Braunfels,” where a good time was had by all.
Today is the Fair Day — the traditional county holiday where schools are closed and activities heat up at the height of the day — right after the fair parade.
Families who went out Thursday evening got a little preview — w itll fairly short waits for rides.
Ian Wofford, 9, made the fair Thursday evening with his
See FAIR/9 A
K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung
Mary Owens (left) and Pearl Beierdorfer finish up the ribbon placements on spreads and jellies for the 107th annual Comal County Fair Thursday morning. Entries in most categories were up this year from previous years at the fair. First, second, third and show ribbons were awarded, as well as ribbons for tri-color entries.
Downtown New Braunfels
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Parade Route Streets Closed
The Comal County Fair Parade steps off today at 10 a.m. and will wind its way down San Antonio Street from Santa Clara Avenue to Prince Solms Park. lf you plan to go:
• Plan to arrive early. The shady spots are
the best, and thpv go fast.
• San Antonio Street will be closed, and no parking will be allowed on it.
• Bring your lawn chairs, walking shoes and sunscreen.
• Bring your sunglasses.
• Bring juice or bottled water; snacks are not a bad idea, either.
• Don’t forget your camera: it will be hard to go home and get it.
• Don’t forget film.
• Plan to meet friends you may not have seen since last year!
Key Code 76
NBU considers electric rate freeze
By Jo Lee Ferguson
A proposal before the New Braunfels Utilities Board of Trustees would eliminate a possible fee increase for residential electric customers this year.
In budget discussions earlier this year, New Braunfels Utilities announced that it planned to decrease the subsidies paid by commercial electric customers that have historically provided lower bills for residential customers.
To do this, NBU proposed a $2.50 a month increase, from $10 a month to $12.50 a month, for residential electric customers.
At the same time, commercial cus
tomers' bills were proposed to decrease.
However, the rising fuel costs that affected customers’ bills this summer have caused NBU to reconsider the proposed residential price increase.
“We don’t feel that it is the right time to approach customers w itll additional increases,” said Dave Berg, a consultant who presented the board of trustees with a number of rate recommendations Thursday.
However, NBU General Manager Paula DiFonzo said commercial customers still are targeted for a slight rate reduction.
If the board of trustees and New Braunfels city council eventually approve the rate recommendations, NBU
plans to sw allow the costs of not raising residential rates and lowering commercial rates.
“We're going to absorb that and not raise that rate at this time,” DiFonzo said, explaining how the utility could offer lower commercial rates while leaving residential fees untouched. “We’re reducing our revenues.”
That will help reduce the subsidy commercial customers pay for residential customers, she said.
The rate proposal was part of a larger package Berg presented to the board. The “Electric Unbundling and Rate Design Study” Berg presented to the
Treefrog Ed settling into new digs
By Jo Lee Ferguson Staff Writer
Treefrog Ed’s fans were restless Thursday.
Ow ner Karen McDonell and Manager Donna Lemley were inside, setting up toys and displays at their new location when two young, blond-haired children pressed their faces to the glass.
The woman with the children smiled at McDonell as she opened the door and explained that the store was not yet ready for business. The children peeked around McDonell’s legs and into the store, smiling and fidgeting w itll excitement.
Treefrog Bd opened dow ntown on Castell Avenue a little more than a year ago. The store sells educational toys and books
and off ers a variety of classes and special events for children and field trips for schools.
The business closed its Castell Avenue doors just one week ago and will reopen Saturday in its new location at 249 W. San Antonio St. The business resumes its normal hours Saturday and will be open from IO a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
The new location’s opening includes a special event for children.
“Dinosaur George,” also know n as George Biasing of Dinosaur World in San Antonio, will present “Dinosaurs Galore!” at I p.m. Saturday.
Cost is $3 per person.
Meanwhile, McDonell and Lemley are working long hours to prepare the store to open.
“Getting it done this quickly has been a challenge,” McDonell said.
But she said it has also been exciting to move into a new location that will allow the business to fulfill its potential easier than at its previous location.
“That’s why we have been willing to work so hard,” McDonell said.
McDonell has been involved in a number of small business ventures. Before moving to New Braunfels, McDonell and her husband operated an environmental lab in Lubbock. She also operated a business that sold printed educational material for children.
Many people hear of McDonell’s new venture and assume she was a teacher at one
point, McDonell said.
She has never been a teacher, but Treefrog Ed compiles a number of things that arc dear to her heart, including education.
Lemley, however, is a former teacher. She taught McDonell’s son in third grade.
“I stole her away,” McDonell said. “She certainly is an integral part of the success of this business as well.”
McDonell said she spent several years developing the idea for the business.
Her son, Shan, provided much of the inspiration for the store and its name.
“I’m just such a big believer that the most important thing ifl had to pick something that would contribute most to the
See TREEFROG ED/3A
Arrested H.S. teacher resigns from position
By Ron Maloney
BULVERDE — A Canyon High School teacher who was arrested Sept. 13 for possession of marijuana and firearms on the school campus resigned Thursday.
The Comal Independent School District Board of Trustees accepted the resignation of Joel L. Brown, 49, Thursday night in executive session at its regular meeting in Bulverde.
District officials declined to discuss the case.
“It’s a personnel issue still. It’s in the court’s hands now,” said CISD public information officer Kart Hutchison.
Brown, a special education teacher who worked in the CISD for about two years, was caught up in an unannounced campus-wide sweep when a drug-sniffing dog alerted on his vehicle, which was parked in a faculty parking lot.
Sheriff’s deputies were called in, and Brown allowed them to search his vehicle.
Found inside were a small quantity of marijuana — less than two ounces — and a pair of weapons.
The weapons were a loaded .22 caliber rifle and an unloaded . 12 gauge shotgun.
Under state law', no one can have firearms on a school property.
The drug charge is a class A misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $4,000 and up to one year in county jail.
The weapons charge is a third degree felony punishable by two to IO years in state prison and a possible fine up to $10,000.
Brown posted $2,500 bail and was released from custody shortly after his arrest.
He was immediately placed on paid leave by the school district.
Brown had worked in the CISD for a little more than
Before that, he worked IO years in the Hays County and San Marcos school districts.
Prior to his work in Texas, Brow n was a teacher in South Dakota.
Karen McDonell of Tree Frog Ed is getting ready for business at the new location at 249 West San Antonio Street. McDonell and her staff plan to be open Saturday, and ready for their first special event, Dinosaurs Galore!
K. JESSIE SLATEN
Donna and Rick Wilson, owners of Riley’s Tavern in Hunter, scrambled Thursday afternoon to find out why their business was shut down by TABC. They reopened by 5 p.m. See story on Page 9A.