Stars of the stage

Fox, played by Jorja Hahn, devises a sinister plan in a scene from “The Tortoise and the Hare Hit the Road.”

It was one of several Freddyburg Youth Theater performances presented Friday and Saturday.

For more on this story, read this week’s print and online editions of the Fredericksburg Standard-Radio Post. If you are a print subscriber, your full online subscription is free. All you need to do is call 830-997-2155 to get a password. If you are not a subscriber, call 997-2155 or click on the ‘Subscribe’ button on the left side of the home page and sign up today!

 — Standard-Radio Post/Richard Zowie


Eisbahn ice skating tradition to begin

When Eisbahn opens for the season on Friday, Nov. 28, visitors can glide — or slip and slide — their way over the frozen surface as part of the holiday celebration.

Eisbahn, which means “ice rink” in German, will give residents of the Hill Country and their guests a chance to celebrate the holiday season with a bit of ice skating, regardless of the weather outside.

The rink is set to open at 10 a.m. on Friday and will remain open until 10 p.m.

Hours will be 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. on Saturdays, 1-8 p.m. on Sundays and 4-8 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays and 4-10 p.m. on Fridays (before school is dismissed for the Christmas holidays.)

Once classes are out for Christmas break, hours will be from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays–Fridays.

On Christmas Eve, the rink will have shortened hours from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

The rink will be open as usual on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.


Panetti lawyers appeal district court's ruling

By Austin R. Eck

The 216th District Court denied two motions by Scott Panetti’s lawyers to alter the date of his execution, and now his legal team is appealing Judge N. Keith Williams’ decision.

Panetti’s lawyers argue that Panetti, who was convicted for the 1992 murders of Joe and Amanda Alvarado, had his right to due process violated when the court refused to modify his date of execution.

“In denying Scott Panetti’s request for a stay of execution, assistance of counsel and funding for a mental health expert and investigator, the trial court made precisely the same mistake that Judge Stephen B. Ables made in this case over a decade ago — a mistake that, the United States Supreme Court held, violated bedrock principles of due process,” Panetti’s legal counsel, Greg Wiercioch and Kathryn Kase wrote in a brief to the Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) of Texas.


FISD budget gets good marks from auditor in yearly report

By Richard Zowie

A local auditor gave Fredericksburg Independent School District’s 2013-2014 budget a “clean opinion” in its yearly audit.

During a special meeting Friday, the trustees voted 6-0 to approve the audit by Patrick Klein of the accounting firm Klein, Kraus & Company.

“We feel the financial statements of the school district fairly represent the financial position of the district,” Klein told trustees, along with Dr. Eric Wright, FISD superintendent and Deborah Ottmers, assistant superintendent for business and finance.

Klein reported the district’s cash on hand as of June 30 was $27,194,593. Of this, $9.03 million was in the construction fund and $2.4 million was in the debt service fund for bond payments.

The district, at the end of the year, had $13.825 million in bonds outstanding. The bonds currently carry “AAA” ratings with an underlying rating from Standard & Poor’s of “AA-.”


Peddler Show returning to fair grounds this weekend

“The Best Holiday Shopping in Texas” returns this weekend as the Peddler Show sets up shop at the Gillespie County Fair Grounds.

The show will run Friday through Sunday, Nov. 28-30.

Show hours will be from noon to 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 28; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 29, and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov 30.

Regular admission is $6 for adults, $5 for both senior citizens aged 65 years and older and for children aged 5-11 years. Children under five will be admitted free.

One paid admission is good for the entire weekend.

For $10, “early birds” who want to avoid the crowds can shop Friday, Nov. 28, in a Sneak Peak/Stroller Free opportunity from 11 a.m. to noon. 



Council eye potential uses for Old Fair Park land

By Matt Ward—

Expected growth in the neighborhood surrounding Old Fair Park has caused the Fredericksburg City Council to examine the future of the recreational park.

During its regular meeting Monday, the council approved a contract with Freese and Nichols, Inc. to aid in the development of three alternative conceptual master plans for the long-term future of Old Fair Park development.

Options include:

1. Leaving the existing park alone while adding the new skate park developed by the Fredericksburg Morning Rotary Club, shared parking and relocation of the existing soccer field;

2. Reducing the existing park facilities by relocating the sports fields and creating a smaller, passive park surrounded by new commercial infill development; and

3. A complete redevelopment of the park site with a mix of new infill housing, retail and commercial uses.


Lawyers ask for clemency in Panetti case

By Austin R. Eck—

Lawyers for Scott Panetti, who was convicted for the 1992 murders of Joe and Amanda Alvarado, are seeking to have Panetti’s sentence commuted.

Panetti’s execution date is set for Dec. 3, but in a petition filed with the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles and Gov. Rick Perry asks for Panetti’s sentence be reduced to life in prison or a 180-day reprieve be granted so Panetti’s mental condition may be revaluated.

According the Texas Constitution, the governor may grant clemency on the majority recommendation of the Board of Pardons and Paroles.

The case has drawn national attention from death penalty opponents and advocates.

 In the petition to the board and the governor, Panetti’s legal counsel, Greg Wiercioch and Kathryn Kase, outline reasons why Panetti should not be executed including how his schizophrenia has affected his ability to understand why he is facing execution.


HCM’s climb to the top

Jayne Pope (left) and Debbye Cooley (right) credit team work with Hill Country Memorial's winning of a national award.

By Ken Esten Cooke–

Last week’s announcement that Hill Country Memorial Hospital had won its first Baldrige Award has put this town’s rural hospital in the national spotlight. The leadership and effectiveness award honors organizations that exhibit these qualities and are considered leaders in their field.

Jayne Pope, Hill Country Memorial Hospital CEO, and Debbye Dooley, executive director of business intelligence, sat down with the Standard-Radio Post for a discussion about the process.

What is difference here and other rural hospitals, many of which are struggling or have shut down?


Wild game on the menu at fundraiser Saturday

Shawn Lehne, Christie Mohr, Arah Campbell and Chris Schoessow show some of the prizes that will be given out during the Gillespie County Wild Game Dinner on Saturday, Nov. 22, at the Gillespie County Fair Grounds. Prizes include three Core 15-300 Blackouts with Zeiss Scopes, an Australian Shepherd puppy and jewelry from Segner’s Jewelers and Chämpe Jennings Jewelers. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday night. — Standard-Radio Post photo

An evening of food, prize drawings, games, exhibits and more will be featured at the annual Gillespie County Wild Game Dinner on Saturday, Nov. 22, at the Gillespie County Fair Grounds.

Gates open at 5:30 p.m.

Tickets for the annual event are $20 and are available in Fredericksburg at Arrowhead Bank and Lochte Feed and General Store and in Stonewall at Allied Ag.

The tickets will also be available at the gate for $20.

Tickets include the food, drinks and door prizes.

In addition, prize drawing tickets are also available where the admission tickets are being sold.

Proceeds from the event benefit youth and adult agricultural education in the Hill Country.

So far this year, $72,108 has been donated to local organizations.


City to host tree lighting event Nov. 28

Kenneth Keller, a lineman for the City of Fredericksburg, tests a street light’s photocell to ensure the recently-installed Christmas wreath will illuminate once the light turns on in the evening. Keller and other linemen installed the wreaths along Main Street. Keller added that the past week’s cold weather made him feel like the Christmas season has already arrived. — Standard-Radio Post/Richard Zowie

City officials and volunteers recently began preparations for the City of Fredericksburg’s annual tree lighting ceremony at Marktplatz on Friday, Nov. 28, featuring the 30-foot community Christmas tree and German Christmas Pyramid.

The festivities are sponsored by the 2014 Fredericksburg Christmas Committee.

Ceremonies will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a performance by the Ambleside Children’s Choir. The official lighting will take place at 7 p.m.

Featured items on Marktplatz include a privately donated nativity, 50-foot ‘Merry Christmas’ skylines and a ‘Gingerbread Village’ designed by local artist Margaret Hannum.

The tree will be decorated with ornaments designed by Hill Country artisans.

Entertainment for the evening will include Al Holzscheiter’s Brass Ensemble, Bethany Lutheran Church Carolers and dance to the music of The Power Section.  Free hot chocolate and cookies will be served.


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