35th anniversary Bridal Extravaganza announces BES Photo Experience

July 2, 2019 by  
Filed under Community


Houston’s Most Established Wedding Show:

Saturday & Sunday, July 13-14, 2019

WHAT:                    The Bridal Extravaganza Show, returns to the George R. Brown Convention Center to celebrate its 35th anniversary. This two-day event features hundreds of bridal vendors, and three new features: Live Styled Photo shoot, onsite childcare and the BES Photo Experience.

Special Programming: Live Styled Photo Shoot

The wedding vendors of the Bridal Extravaganza and Styled Shoots of Houston collaborated to create a display of trending wedding design aspects couples can incorporate into their own wedding. This live styled shoot will take place both days of the Extravaganza, allowing attendees to experience wedding design, lighting and invitations, cakes and more.

Special Programming: Childcare with Adventure Kids Playcare

A partnership is announced with Adventure Kids Playcare to provide childcare. Brides can take more time to shop and meet vendors, knowing their children are being lovingly cared for. Adventure Kids Playcare offers a safe and fun place for children ages 18 months and older. Feel comfortable dropping children off in a safe and caring environment. Reservations are recommended. Childcare is $15 per hour.

BES Photo Experience

Enjoy an Instagram-ready photo immersion containing 35 photo walls. Take a picture and tag the Extravaganza for a chance to win special prizes.

Tickets are available online at www.BridalExtravaganza.com. General admission tickets may also be purchased for $20 cash at the door.

For more information, visit www.BridalExtravaganza.com

WHEN:                    Saturday, July 13, 2019

Bridal Extravaganza Show: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

See website for up-to-the minute schedule.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Bridal Extravaganza Show: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

See website for up-to-the minute schedule.

WHERE:                  Bridal Extravaganza Show

George R. Brown Convention Center

1001 Avenida de las Americas

Houston, TX 77010

COST:                       VIP Pass: $55-$65 (online only)

Includes general admission, Seminar, and front row seat at Couture Runway.

General Admission: $15 (online and valid for Saturday or Sunday) $20 (at the door, cash only)

About Bridal Extravaganza Show

Since 1983, the Bridal Extravaganza Show has been bringing brides and bridal businesses together.  The founder and creator Linda Miller set the standard for bridal events in the US and beyond.  Today, the Bridal Extravaganza carries out her vision – introducing the best bridal vendors to Southeast Texas brides.  Catering exclusively to brides, grooms, and their families; the Bridal Extravaganza Show is a one-stop-shop bringing Houston’s top wedding vendors together in one location. Brides have more options, more choices and can make decisions and get down to the business of wedding planning.


Houston History Bus, Downtown

October 22, 2018 by  
Filed under Blogs, Community

Best Way to Learn Houston History: Houston History Bus, Downtown

Not all history lessons take place in a classroom. Hop on board the city’s one-and-only yellow-school-bus-on-wheels for an in-depth exploration of downtown. The owner and operator, a resident historian for KHOU, personalizes each tour for 20 seat holders, primarily focusing on the city’s founding, the Texas Revolution plus some local street history for good measure.

The Pillot Building

August 29, 2018 by  
Filed under Blogs, Community

Located in the 1000 block of Congress Avenue at Fannin, the Pillot Building is a living marker of both our state’s history and a prominent Houston family. Joseph Eugene Pillot (1820–1896) emigrated from France in his youth, arriving in Houston in 1837, when it was still capital of the Republic of Texas. As a businessman, Pillot was involved with both the railroads and barge-shipping, helping to make his adopted city competitive with its then-rival, Galveston. He was also the proprietor of Pillot’s Opera House—a playhouse, music hall and all-purpose public auditorium—where noted performers of the day, such as Lillie Langtry and Edwin Booth, appeared. (Unfortunately, in 1889 the Opera House burned to the ground, a not-so-uncommon fate for buildings of the period.) One of Pillot’s sons, Camille Gabriel Pillot (1861–1953), became a partner in the Henke and Pillot grocery-store chain, which operated throughout East Texas for nearly a century before it was ultimately subsumed by the Kroger Company.

Yet another, later scion of the clan, Houston-born Eugene Pillot (1886–1966) achieved national recognition as a playwright, poet, author and songwriter; his most-noted work, the one-act Two Crooks and a Lady (written circa 1918), was produced across the country during the 1920s and 1930s and remains in print to this day.

The three-story Pillot Building itself is most notable for its cast-iron front structure and ornate Corinthian columns. The neglected edifice suffered major damage during the 1980s; it had to be painstakingly reconstructed using its original materials, a feat accomplished by Morris Architects and the construction firm of Henry Alvin Lott (1908–2006). Today the Pillot Building’s ground floor is home to Christian’s Tailgate Bar and Grill, a popular sports bar and restaurant. —Clifford Crouch

IIDA Houston City Center’s Product Runway

Product Runway is an avant-garde couture fashion design competition with a twist. IIDA Houston City Center’s Product Runway, influenced by the concept of the hit realty TV show Project Runway, is one of a handful of fashion shows of its kind in the country. Product Runway puts teams of interior design and architecture professionals and interior design students in a fashion design competition by creating handmade garments out of standard architectural finish materials such as glass, tile, carpet and wood. Product Runway promises to showcase eye-popping creations during a runway performance by each team on nearly 150 ft. of runway at Revention Music Center!

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 4.10.28 PM

Each of the 20 competing teams has been assigned one hard material and one soft material, which must collectively make up 80% of their final garment. With this year’s theme: Avant Art, each team will be assigned a specific art movement with a correlating artist, as well as a piece of work from their artist that shows a true representation of that particular movement. The majority of a completed garment (approx. 60%) must be made of their hard and soft goods that are as close to the team’s assigned art movement and artist. Teams are encouraged to work with their garment label representatives to select goods that will best reflect their particular art movement. The assigned artist and image should serve as an abstract design inspiration. Within the portfolio submissions, each team will be asked to describe how their garment’s design relates to or interprets their assigned art movement and artist. Final entries, also modeled by a member of the design team, must be designed and constructed completely by the team.

The 8th Annual Product Runway Fashion Show is scheduled for Friday, April 22nd at 8 p.m. at Revention Music Center. Funds raised by the evening of inspired designs benefit the Houston Furniture Bank, a local non-profit that focuses on making houses into homes by providing furniture for families in need via 70 agencies in surrounding counties.

Safe Haven

March 23, 2016 by  
Filed under Blogs, Community

Crime Stoppers of Houston breaks ground for Houston’s First Public Safety and Crime Prevention Block, honoring Dave Ward in the process.

by Laurette M. Veres

Houston media icon Dave Ward of ABC13 is the only news anchor to stay almost 50 years in one anchor chair, on one station, in one city, in one state, ever.

Ward efficiently delivers the nightly news and uses his celebrity status and creative ingenuity to benefit local charities and agencies. It was Ward’s idea to film crime reenactments and air the spots on the news for Crime Stoppers. The results were tremendous, and Crime Stoppers now uses the reenactments nationwide.

Ward was recently honored at the Building the Block Crime Stoppers of Houston Gala. The annual benefit raised more than $510,000 for Crime Stopper’s Tip Line and crime-prevention programs. Chairs Joella and Steve Mach, along with auction chairs Courtney Zubowski Haas and Dr. Eric Haas, led the event. VIP guests were able to mingle with best-selling author, Emmy Award–winning journalist and featured speaker Ted Koppel.


Laura and David Ward with former dateline anchor Ted Koppel

The smooth-talking Ward was rendered speechless when it was announced that the new Crime Stoppers building would be named The Dave Ward Building, Crime Stoppers of Houston. The next morning, dignitaries gathered at the 3000 Block on Main Street, donned hard hats and shovels, and broke ground for the new facility.

The new home of Crime Stoppers of Houston will be a state-of-the-art facility serving as a hub for crime prevention. Centralized operations, staff, volunteers, law enforcement, safe school, safe community and media teams will be housed in the 28,000-square-foot structure. Outside the facility, a 12,800-square-foot Harris County Sheriff’s Officers Memorial Garden will pay tribute to heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Crime Stoppers of Houston is Houston’s only nonprofit dedicated to public safety and has remained committed to its mission since 1981. They solve and prevent serious crimes in the Greater Houston Area with the help of citizens, media and the criminal justice system. Through close collaboration with local law enforcement agencies and the citizens of Houston, Crime Stoppers of Houston has successfully solved nearly 33,000 felony cases and arrested more than 25,000 felony fugitives through its 713-222-TIPS Tip Line Program. To make a donation, visit www.crime-stoppers.org.

An Act of Faith

March 23, 2016 by  
Filed under Blogs, Community, Features

by Matt Bartlett

West End Baptist Church has experienced better days. Founded in 1906, the church dwindled from 2,000 members in the ’60s to just 18 in the summer of 2015. The windows of the sanctuary were boarded and the upkeep of the buildings located at 802 Shepherd Drive was too much for the congregation to handle. After pressure from the city to make repairs and an offer from a third party to buy the land, the church’s future was uncertain. Then the congregation decided to do something truly remarkable: Rather than sell, the members voted unanimously on August 28, 2015 to donate the land and buildings, valued at 10 million dollars, to River Pointe Church of Richmond, Texas.

Renovations on the West End Baptist Church building are well underway.

Renovations on the West End Baptist Church building are well underway.

Led by Pastor Patrick Kelley, RPC was born 19 years ago inside a residential home in Richmond. Growing quickly, the church soon met at a local clubhouse, then two different high school auditoriums, before settling in to a 96-acre campus. RPC launched a Missouri City campus in 2012 and more recently, a West Houston campus at the beginning of 2015. Named the 25th-fastest-growing church in the United States by Outreach Magazine, more than 1,500 members attend weekly services in Richmond, Missouri City and West Houston.

By the summer, the West Houston campus had grown so quickly that church staff began considering a permanent building rather than continuing to rent the Moran Fine Arts Center for services. It was then that Pastor Kelley noticed the nearby West End Baptist Church and reached out to WEBC’s part-time pastor Michael Quintanilla. Through their discussions, the idea of a merger grew into a reality. Ultimately for the members of WEBC, the decision to join forces came down to their desire to “honor the legacy of their grandparents and great grandparents who, in 1954, sacrificed a great deal to build that building. They wanted to see it continue as a church,” recalls Pastor Kelley. In an effort to preserve that legacy, the campus adopted the name West End Church.

Construction is set to begin in the spring, with a grand opening tentatively scheduled for December 2016. Renovations will include a neighborhood coffee shop, a prayer garden, a children’s building and an extensive remodeling of the sanctuary, complete with new air conditioning, electricity and plumbing. During the renovations, the church will return to the Moran Fine Arts Center. For now, they are holding “pre-renovation” services inside the sanctuary.

When asked about what the new church would be like, Pastor Kelley described the merger as a “partnership” in which “the best of both congregations [would combine] to create a really effective ministry.” The people of WEBC have a long history of caring for the community in the heart of West Houston. River Pointe brings an effective ministry model, some great musicians and a large congregation excited about joining in with the good work already underway. Pastor Kelley calls the newly formed church a safe place to “process your doubts [without] feeling any pressure.” Come see for yourself.