South Texas 24-7 is where active seniors and  those reveling in life after kids share an inspirational space. It is a website designed to enrich our lives through a variety of leisure activities and events available throughout the Rio Grande Valley of Texas.

Archive for January, 2013

Mission Staycation Day Announces Master Chef Citrus Salad Competition

Mission Staycation Day Announces Master Chef Citrus Salad Competition

Local culinary amateurs compete to create the best citrus salad recipe in the RGV

MISSION, Texas – The Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce (GMCC) and Mission Staycation Day farmer’s market announce the Rio Grande Valley’s first Master Chef Citrus Salad Competition. Culinary amateurs across the Valley are invited to compete in a culinary showdown at the March Staycation Day Market on Saturday, March 2 from 3-6 p.m. at the Chamber in Downtown Mission. The event will take place in conjunction with the monthly Mission Staycation Day Farmers Market, which is held the First Saturday of the month. Do you make the best salad in the Rio Grande Valley? We are challenging you to create the best salad using Mission’s famed citrus and local produce. We will provide the Valley’s freshest ingredients, you provide the recipe. The winning salad recipe will be featured on the menu of restaurants throughout the City of Mission. Contest judges will include chefs and owners of participating restaurants. “This citrus salad competition is a great way to combine the City of Mission’s rich citrus history with today’s culinary and business economies. We’re placing the Valley’s freshest produce and ingredients in the hands of valley residents and Mission business owners,” said Matt Z. Ruszczak, GMCC President and CEO. To start the competition, participants will choose from natural, chemical-free lettuce, citrus, nuts, seasonings and dressing basics, as well as a few surprise ingredients. Competitors are allowed to bring three of their own natural, organic and non-manufactured ingredients to give their salad a unique taste. Salads will be judged on presentation, taste, use of local ingredients, and mastery of the featured citrus ingredients. Only 10 participants will compete for the best citrus salad recipe. Sign up now to reserve your spot! The registration fee is only $15. For official rules or to sign up, contact the GMCC at 956-585-2727 or email

Mission Staycation Market Chef Mikal Marris teaches market attendees how to mix fresh and local greens, herbs and produce at a previous “Seasonal Palate” Cooking Class. For more information about the Citrus Salad Competition, call 956-585-2727.

QUICK FACTS: What: Mission Staycation Day Citrus Salad Competition When: Saturday, March 2, 3-6 p.m. Where: Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce, 202 West Tom Landry, Mission, Texas 78572 Event Details: Amateur Citrus Salad Competition, featuring Mission Staycation Day Market produce and the City of Mission’s famed-citrus. The winning salad will be featured throughout restaurants in Mission.

Chinese Ten Thousand Springs Pavilion Visits IMAS

Chinese Ten Thousand Springs Pavilion Visits IMAS

McAllen, Texas- The International Museum of Art & Science (IMAS) continues its partnership with the Smithsonian Institution; this time through the sharing of exhibits. The latest exhibit to make its way to IMAS entitled Within the Emperor’s Garden: The Ten Thousand Springs Pavilion gives the museum’s visitors the opportunity to watch during our hours of operation the exhibit be put together by Donald Williams, Senior Furniture Conservator Emeritus of the Smithsonian’s Furniture Conservation Institute, a group of his volunteers, and the IMAS Curatorial Department beginning Wednesday, January 30 to Friday, February 10, 2013. During this time IMAS Visitors and the Media are encouraged to interact and ask Mr. Williams about the exhibit and its process.

The final result of the construction, will be a pavilion made by Chinese artisans that demonstrates traditional Chinese carving and fine furniture techniques. No nails were used to build this model.The Ten Thousand Springs Pavilion (Wan Chun Ting), a celebrated example of classic Chinese architecture, still stands in the Forbidden City in Beijing, China. It was built in about 1420 and rebuilt in 1533 as part of the private pleasure grounds of two dynasties of Chinese emperors.

The opening reception will be held on Sunday, February 10, 2013 from 3:00pm to 5:00pm which coincidentally will be the Chinese New Year. Along the regular opening ceremonies, IMAS will be giving welcome to the Year of the Snake with fun family activities, sponsored by the McAllen Junior League, such as a game room filled with traditional Chinese games, food demonstrations, Chinese Astrology, demonstrations, plus much more. Additionally, throughout the exhibits stay until September 2013, IMAS will be hosting a series of events and programs that celebrate various Asian cultures. Admission to the opening reception and its festivities will be included in the price of General Admission; $7/Adult, $5/Senior Citizen (+55) and Student w/ID, $4 Child (4-12), and FREE for Members of IMAS.

About the exhibit: The exhibition was organized by the Smithsonian’s Museum Conservation Institute and the Smithsonian International Gallery, with assistance of the China Red Sandalwood Museum and the Savannah College of Art and Design. Special thanks to the Embassy of People’s Republic of China, Washington DC; the Smithsonian Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery; the Palace Museum, Beijing; and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Smithsonian’s Office of Exhibits Central designed and edited the exhibit.

Pictured: The Ten Thousand Springs Pavilion

The International Museum of Art & Science is fully accredited by the American Association of Museums. The mission of the International Museum of Art & Science is to promote a deeper appreciation of the arts and sciences through exhibitions, cultural events, and educational programs; and to preserve, expand, and display its permanent art and science collections. The museum is located at the intersection of Bicentennial Way and Nolana Avenue. Monday: Closed; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Thursday: 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Sunday 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.. IMAS provides $1 general admission to the public every Thursday evening from 4:00p.m.-8:00p.m.. Log onto for more information.

Project Insight Upcoming Activities

Project Insight’s Upcoming Events

February 1, 2013 (Friday)

Renaissance Hospice & Palliative Care Luncheon at Legacy Life Events Center from Noon to 2 p.m.

“Creating Your 2013 Vision Board” presenter: Marsha Nelson, Ph.D. Project Insight’s Executive Director at Legacy Life Events Center, 4610 S. Jackson Rd., Edinburg, TX 78539 telephone 956.618.5900. Lunch is provided complimentary by Renaissance Hospice & Palliative Care. To R.S.V.P. or for information please contact, Jessica Ochoa at 956.682.0500 or

February, 6, 13, 20, 27 (Wednesday)

H.O.P.E. (Helping Other Patients Emotionally) Cancer Survivor & Caregivers Support Workshops are offered from 10 a.m. to Noon weekly on Wednesdays in Conference Room B at the McAllen Public Library at 4001 N. 23rd Street, McAllen, TX 7850. Presenter Marsha Nelson,Ph.D. will be taking the participants through the activities in the Creative Journal for the Cancer Survivor Workbooks Vol. I & II. Co-authored by Lucia Capacchione, Ph.D.& Marsha Nelson,Ph.D. For additional information, please contact H.O.P.E. Director & Leukemia survivor, Mr. Izzy Torres, or 956.624.3840 cell. There is no cost to these workshops, the public is welcome.

February 9, 2013 (Saturday)

Project Insight Youth Community Service Day at El Rocio Retreat 519 S. Inspiration Rd., Mission, TX 78572 Any youth from the ages of 8-16 are invited to participate from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Silk Scarf dying, Hand massage training and a trip to The Bridges Alzheimer’s Assisted Living Center in Mission, to offer the residents a Valentine’s Gift of hand-massages. Lunch included. There is no fee for this day of community service activities. Community Service Certificates will be awarded to all participants. For additional information or to R.S.V.P., please contact the Project Insight Youth Coordinator, Alejandra Paulson at 956.292.1604 or

February 21, 2003 (Thursday)

Third Thursday Potluck at El Rocio Retreat, 2519 S. Inspiration Road, Mission, TX 78572. 956.584.7432 Presenter, James Dunn will offer, “Changing Your Handwriting CAN Change Your Life.” Participants are asked to bring a food item to share. There is no fee and no reservations required to attend. For additional information, please contact Marsha Nelson, Ph.D. or 956.802.9993 cell or

February 23, 2013 (Saturday)

Project Insight’s 9th annual, “An Evening of Art from the Heart” fundraiser @ El Rocio Retreat from 6:30 – 11 p.m. honoring Anthony S. Sala, Jr. Practice Director for Texas Oncology-McAllen and his daughter, Gracie Sala, Sharyland H.S. junior, scholar, artist, and community volunteer.

Tickets are $40 pp including dinner,wine tasting,art show,live music, silent and live auction. All proceeds are used for the 9th annual Project Insight Youth Camp, H.O.P.E. Cancer Survivor Support Workshops, Renaissance Hospice & Palliative Care Luncheons, Pathways, and more. For tickets or to make donations or offer auction items, please contact, Marsha Nelson,Ph.D. or 956.802.9993 cell

Workshop Series at Quinta Mazatlan On Creating a Backyard for Birds & Butterflies

Workshop Series at Quinta Mazatlan

On Creating a Backyard for Birds & Butterflies

Birds and butterflies like the same things you do–pretty flowers, water, shelter and a nice place to raise the family.  You can learn to create a little outdoor habitat at the “Backyard Habitat Steward” series at Quinta Mazatlan in McAllen.  The series is from February 4th to March 19th, and is every Tuesday morning from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.  The series features experts in the valley leading walks, talks and hands-on projects.  Most importantly, you are receiving ideas for your new or improved backyard habitat for birds, butterflies and other wildlife.

The Backyard Habitat Steward program kicks off with Mike Heep, Heep Nursery, on the best native plants for your backyard.  Participants will also have an opportunity to purchase native plants to attract wildlife.  The second session takes you on a Tree Walk through the woods with Mark Kroeze, McAllen’s Urban Forester.   This leads naturally into a session on the wildlife you can attract to your yard with plants and feeders by Christine Williams, Park Naturalist at Quinta Mazatlan.  The 4th session is about Butterfly Gardening with Mary Thorne, author of Caterpillar Caregiver.  One needs good soil for plants, so the next topic is on green gardening and healthy soil with Roy Custodio, City of McAllen Composting Center.  Water features are important for any garden design and Allen Williams with Williams Wildscapes will share his tricks of the trade.  The finale features backyard photographs from each participant and local experts will provide ideas on what you can do with your blank slate or what you can do to enhance your garden.

Increasing urbanization and decreasing native habitat will continue to cause stress to native wildlife populations.  The Backyard Habitat Steward program hopes to reverse this trend by encouraging participants to add more wildlife habitat to the Valley.  Whether your yard is comparable to a football field or a postage stamp, you can make a difference for wildlife in South Texas.  This program will utilize the 3 basic principles of wildlife habitat to help you make-over your yard:  food (native plants), water and shelter. Backyard Habitat Steward will show you how to offer everything local wildlife needs to thrive in a way that is beautiful and pleasing to YOU.  Quinta Mazatlan is continuing to affect change outside the gates and hopes you will join us in this cause for conservation!

The registration fee of $60 includes all 7 classes, binder full of information and a mesquite feeder.  Book your spot now!  For more information call 681-3370, e-mail or visit  Upon completion of Quinta Mazatlan’s Backyard Habitat Steward program, participants will have the knowledge and resources necessary to transform their yard into rich wildlife habitat and have the opportunity to become a Certified Backyard Habitat Steward

Mike Heep, from Heep’s Nursery, will cover plants that attract and support birds and butterflies at the first Backyard Habitat Steward series which begins Tuesday morning on February 5th.

Save the Date! Feb. 10th Wedding Showcase. No Entrance Fee!


Renaissance Casa de Palmas

invites you to our fabulous wedding showcase Feb. 10th. Join us for complimentary appetizers from 12pm-5pm
No entrance fee! No need to RSVP!

Bird Banding Demonstration

2013 Natural History Speaker Series

Week 5 – Mark Conway

Bird Banding Demonstration

The Valley Nature Center along with the Weslaco Area Chamber of Commerce presents the 5th Week of the 2013 Natural History Series at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, February 2, 2013 at the Valley Nature Center located on 301 S. Border in Weslaco. This week’s presentation will be a “Bird Banding Demonstration” presented by Mark Conway.

Mark Conway is a bird bander and teacher from Harlingen Texas. He moved to the Lower Rio Grande Valley seventeen years ago and has been banding birds since he arrived. Mark conducts research at several locations in the Valley, including Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, Texas Parks and Wildlife’s Arroyo Colorado Unit, Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge and Los Ebanos Nature Preserve. Mark’s current areas of research are Clay-colored Thrushes, Common Yellowthroats, Seaside Sparrows and winter site fidelity among passerines. He also compiles the Harlingen Christmas Bird Count, runs a Breeding Bird Survey in the Valley and birdwatches as time permits.

Admission will be $3.00, payable at the door and VNC members are free.

So please join us to see how bird banding is done! For more information on Valley Nature Center’s (VNC) Natural History Speaker Series contact the VNC at (956) 969-2475 or visit our website at

U.S. Air Force Dimensions in Blue Jazz Band will…

Weslaco Economic Development 3:26pm Jan 22

U.S. Air Force Dimensions in Blue Jazz Band will play at Alfresco Weslaco – Jazz & Art on the Street on February 28th! save the date!

STC Art Exhibition

The McAllen Arts Council and McAllen Public Library proudly present an exhibition of artworks by South Texas College art faculty. Thirteen South Texas College artists will be showing their work in the Lobby Gallery. The exhibit provides an illuminating look at different artistic inspirations and why their creators chose their particular direction for expression. Statements about the works let us share the artists’ motivations, and in some instances, allow insights into the artists’ teaching visions. The exhibit will be on display through April 12. We hope that you can attend.

Cross Connections Internation Exhbition at UTPA Art Annex

The Art Department at The University of Texas – Pan American, is presenting Cross Connections 2012-2013. This is an international visual communication juried show held at five countries and many different locations, and was organized by Chair and Professor Susan Fitzsimmons for UTPA in conjunction with other Chairs and Directors from Art institutions around the globe. Nine institutions have hosted this exhibition which features 90 juried works of faculty and students from the USA, China, South Africa, Mexico, and Belgium. The exhibition represents a significant overview of international visual communication in different fields. This show has already made a mark within their respective countries and has been exhibited at the following schools:

Central Academy of Fine Arts, China

Luxun Academy of Fine Arts, China

National School of Fine Arts, Mexico

Shanghai University, China

Sint-Lucas Ghent, Belgium

The University of Texas – Arlington, USA

The University of Texas – Pan American, USA

Truman State University, USA

University of Pretoria, South Africa

Approximately ten best works from each institution were selected from hundreds of entries within the categories of Poster; Logo; Collateral design and retail design: Package design: Information design: Illustration: Traditional / Digital / Print-making; Photography; Traditional / Digital, Animation and 3D modeling.

The show was organized and curated by the following art Chairs and Directors:

Prof. Susan Fitzsimmons, Chair, Department of Art / UT-Pan American

Prof. Russell Nelson, Chair, Department of Art / Truman State University

Prof. Robert Hower, Chair, Department of Art & Art History / UT-Arlington

Prof. Ma Jun-Cheng, Assistant Dean, School of Urban Planning / CAFA

Prof. Sun Ming, Vice President, Luxun Academy of Fine Arts

Prof. Du Shiying, College of Fine Arts / Shanghai University

Dr. Marijke Dirickx, Director, Department of Visual Communication, Sint-Lucas Ghent

Prof. Elfriede, Department of Visual Arts, University of Pretoria

Cross Connections opening around the world


Pencil Drawing Workshop & FREE Demonstration with Vern Mauk at IMAS

Pencil Drawing Workshop & FREE Demonstration at IMAS

McAllen, Texas- Winter Texan and Artist Vern Mauk will be holding a Pencil Drawing Workshop on Saturday, January 26, 2013, from 9:00a.m.-3:00p.m. in which he will be giving tips and teaching different techniques to participants, including perspective, light and dark, figures, and some cartooning if time allows. Beginning, intermediate, and advanced artists are welcomed to register.

Participants will need to bring: flat pencils in B range, 1 graphite stick, 1 drawing pad (9?x12?, Strathmore with spiral binding), soft eraser, and drawing pencils: 2b, 4b, 6b and 8b. The cost of the workshop is $40/Member, and $45/Non-Members. Participants must be 14 years of age or older. Pre-registration is required.

A FREE Pencil Drawing Demonstration will be given on Thursday, January 24, 2013 at the IMAS Cafe.

For more information, please contact IMAS at(956) 682-0123 or visit

Winter Texan and Artist Vern Mauk

The International Museum of Art & Science is fully accredited by the American Association of Museums. The mission of the International Museum of Art & Science is to promote a deeper appreciation of the arts and sciences through exhibitions, cultural events, and educational programs; and to preserve, expand, and display its permanent art and science collections. The museum is located at the intersection of Bicentennial Way and Nolana Avenue. Monday:
Closed; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00
p.m.; Thursday: 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Sunday 1:00 to 5:00 p.m..
IMAS provides $1 general admission to the public every Thursday evening from 4:00p.m.-8:00p.m.. Log onto for more information