March 19, 2013 § Leave a comment
“From the Tank Farms in East Austin to Immigration Struggles in Arizona and Beyond”Saturday March 2, 2013 – Southwest Key’s El Centro de Familia – 6002 Jain Lane 78721
March 2, 2013 marked a moment to celebrate Dr. Sylvia Herrera, a longtime community organizer on civil, social, environmental and economic justice issues. Dr. Herrera is a native East Austinite who earned her Ph.D in 1998 (University of Texas at Austin in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Education) and she is a founding member of PODER (People Organized in Defense of Earth and her Resources) . Her research has examined health impacts in neighborhoods surrounding the Tank Farm (benzene) the Holly Street Power Plant (Electro Magnetic Fields-EMFs, noise) and the BFI Recycling Center (Noise, rodents).
Family, friends and supporters gathered to hear her speak about her work with PODER in East Austin and her current involvement on immigration rights issues in Phoenix, Arizona.The event was held at and sponsored by PODER and Resistencia Bookstore/Red Salmon Arts.
September 10, 2012 § Leave a comment
September 6, 2012 – East Cesar Chavez neighborhood – 1307 Haskell Street
City & East Austin Community Partner to Celebrate the Federal Designation of East Austin’s ‘Tejano Trails’ as National Recreation Trail
A ribbon-cutting ceremony & reception celebrating federal designation of the East Austin’s “Tejano Trails” as a National Recreation Trail system was held at the historic National Fish Hatchery pond (near the Rebekah Baines Johnson (RBJ) Tower, 1307 Haskell Street) in the East Cesar Chavez neighborhood.
Designation by the US Department of Interior creates more opportunities for the “Tejano Trails” to showcase a community dedicated to preserving its cultural history. These Austin trails highlight historic properties (residential/commercial/public) as well as local art commemorating Tejano music legends. The two trails are the ‘Tejano Healthy Walking Trail’ and ‘Trail of Tejano Legends’.
Here is an audio montage featuring various guests and co-sponsors of the ‘Tejano Trails’.
August 19, 2012 § Leave a comment
Saturday August 18, 2012 — Fiesta Gardens-West End, 2101 Jesse E. Segovia Street (Under the Pavilion)
I dropped by the Youth Event for the Festival Beach Master Plan at Fiesta Gardens. At this event, youth in the community were going to create a model of a park using cake as a building block. The activity would give the youth an opportunity to express their ideas of what they want to see in a park. The ideas and results of the event are to be presented at the community meeting tonight (Monday Aug.20 6pm-8pm) at the Community Meeting at the ESB MACC.
There was minimal attendance by the public. I only saw about one family participate while I was taking photos.
I had a chance to conduct a couple of quick interviews from two people at the park. Here they are:
Rebecca Brisco-Rohne – She was helping with a local clean-up effort by picking up trash around park with a team of 17 volunteers from LBJ School of Public Affairs. She was familiar with parts of the Master Park Plan dealing with trails and pedestrian walkway. While we walked, she spoke about her general ideas to improve the park and some of her concerns.
‘Rambo’ – Andy Ramirez — Rambo was sitting under the shade of a tree near the boat ramp at “Chicano Beach”. He is a native East Austinite who lives blocks away from the park. As a war veteran, he is taking advantage of a program at the Austin Community College to continue his education. Mr. Ramirez expresses his concern & frustration of rising property taxes for homeowners & residents in the area (especially elderly population with fixed incomes) due to new development. As a long time park visitor, he recognizes the new interest in the area by many people. A person who has deep roots in the community, Mr. Ramirez regards East Austin as ‘God’s country’ which needs to be treated with respect and care to preserve this precious place.
August 15, 2012 § 2 Comments
Last night I attended a small gathering at the Metz Recreation Center concerning the Master Park Plan for the Edward Rendon Sr. Park at Festival Beach, Fiesta Gardens and Holly Power Plant site park (in East Austin).
A community outreach team for the Master Park Plan facilitated a ‘platica’ with stakeholders interested in the future of these Parks. The Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) is working with a team of consultants led by Michael Van Valkenburgh & Associates Inc. (MVVA) on this public space project. Another ‘platica’ is taking place tonight August 15 6pm at Metz Recreation Center.
In the meeting, participants included a small gathering of residents (long term and newly arrived), neighborhood association members, and people interested in the hike/bike trails along the river. Participants of the ‘platica’ in some way found out about the meeting through an ‘commuinty advisory group’.
July 31, 2012 § Leave a comment
Over the course of the Spring of 2012, I had the honor to photo document the restoration of the ‘Hillside Miracle’ mural by Raul Valdez. The photos will be part of a documentary project that I’m producing about the mural within the community. It will also speak of the A.B. Cantu Pan American Recreation Center.
For now though, here is some information about the re-dedication of the mural:
‘HILLSIDE MIRACLE’ MURAL – DEDICATION
The City of Austin will dedicate the newly restored mural Hillside Miracle by Raul Valdez.
For over 30 years the mural has served as the backdrop for the Hillside Theater at the A.B. Cantu Pan-American Recreation Center. The mural dedication will precede a concert by AT Boyz and Joe Bravo & Ruben Ramos, part of this summer’s popular Hillside Concert Series presented by the A. B. Cantu Pan-American Recreation.
Mural Dedication at Pan American Rec Center
When: Tuesday July 31, 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Where: 2100 East 3rd Street
An Austin American Statesman story by Juan Castillo
About another recent mural project in San Juan, Texas : BRACERO AND FARMWORKER MURAL
About Raul Valdez
See ‘We Will Always Be Here” (Sol Rojo Productions)
This historic documentary (produced by Gilbert Rivera) captures the destruction of Valdez’ “Los Elementos” mural and the Juarez-Lincoln building, and the resistance to stop its destruction in 1983.
October 4, 2010 § Leave a comment
Austin, TX — On Tuesday October 12, 2010, the United East Austin Coalition and Friends of the Emma S.Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center will celebrate Dia de la Raza, marking the contributions of the indigenous peoples of the Americas.
See slide for information: