Monday, March 30, 2009

Will The Waco Tribune Herald Survive The 2009 US Recession?

I have lived in the Waco area since 1983 and one of the first things I remember about this community from the beginning was that the Waco Tribune Herald newspaper was one of the best in the nation. When I first move here from the Amarillo area, I remember thinking to myself that Waco certainly had a good newspaper and my family has subscribed to the Tribune Herald ever since.

Now that the US economy is facing a potentially long lasting recession and with the growth of the Internet cutting into newspaper readership - hundreds of small and large city newspapers are finding it difficult to maintain circulation. I certainly hope that one of the casualties of this newspaper bust trend is not the Waco Tribune Herald.

Over the past few years, I have noticed that the size of the Waco Tribune Herald newspaper has become smaller and recently they announced an added fee to keep their weekly 'Startime' TV listing guide. Waco Texas would not be the same without the Waco Tribune Herald and my hope is that our local hometown newspaper does survive during these trying times for the newspaper business as a whole.

* Waco Texas News

Title: Will The Waco Tribune Herald Survive The 2009 US Recession?
Written: March 30, 2009
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New Waco Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center Is A Modern/Huge Hospital

On Saturday, my wife and I along with tens of thousands of other Central Texas residents visited an open house celebration at the new Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center hospital in Waco. After our Saturday visit, all I can say is WOW and how lucky we both are to have such a modern hospital right here in Waco, Texas.

For over one hour, my wife and I walked around the various floors of the new Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center in Waco and both of us were amazed with how large and how modern this new hospital was compared to the old Hillcrest Hospital. This new medical facility even offered food treats to all the thousands of visitors that showed up for this free tour and they also made available dozens of hospital employees to make sure we learned about all the new features there. They (hospital employees) also helped us keep from getting lost during our tour of this huge new Central Texas hospital.

This Saturday, the new Waco Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center Hospital will open to patients. I guess it's just a sign of the times that this new hospital along with the current Providence Medical Center are constantly growing and expanding to meet local medical needs. Most likely, these hospital expansion plans are due to the numbers of us baby boomers who are living longer and needing more medical care in our senior years.

* Waco Texas News

Title: New Waco Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center Is A Modern/Huge Hospital
Written: March 30, 2009
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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Downtown Waco Coming Alive Again With Loft Apartments/Condos

For years, I have seen Waco city leaders try and fail to bring life back to downtown Waco. That said, finally a new mix of loft apartments and condos associated with new yuppie restaurants and entertainment seems to have finally done the trick.

In most cities, their downtown sections have been dying on the vine for decades now. Over the years, Downtown Waco has tried and filed to attract western city residents back to the downtown area to no avail.

However, now with many older downtown Waco buildings being converted into loft apartments and condos, a younger group of Waco citizens are relocating to the downtown Waco area and along with them will come needed dollars to support the new businesses that are also being built there.

* Waco Texas News

Title: Downtown Waco Coming Alive Again With Loft Apartments/Condos
Written: March 29, 2009
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City Of Waco Needs More Police Officers To Protect Citizens

While most cities around the nation are tightening their belts because of the current nationwide recession, the City of Waco needs to consider expanding one part of it's budget and that is to hire more police officers to keep citizens of Waco and their property safe. For a long time, I have believed that some leaders in Waco have not allowed the Waco Police Department to expand with the growing crime rate and now that the 2009 recession is causing an even greater increasing in local crime, the need for more warm bodied police officers on the street is becoming a necessity.

I know the problems that Waco city officials will point to when it comes to putting more police officers on the streets of Waco and they are right that many people will not want higher taxes in order to pay for increasing the number of on the streets officers employed by the Waco PD. That said, sometimes elected officials need to take a stand and do the right thing even when some loud people do not want any tax increases.

When it comes to hiring more police officers to patrol the streets of Waco, the Waco City Council should do the same thing that school boards have done for years and that is to just do the right thing. If school boards followed the advise of some loud mouths that never want increase taxes under any circumstances - our school children would be learning in an open field under a tree somewhere, instead of in a comfortable tax supported building.

* Waco Texas News

Title: City Of Waco Needs More Police Officers To Protect Citizens
Written: March 29, 2009
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Baylor Lady Bears Fall To Louisville In 2009 Sweet Sixteen Tournament

The Baylor Lady Bears basketball game this morning against Louisville was tough to watch. Like most other residents of Waco - I was hoping for a victory and a repeat of a national championship for the Lady Bears, but that was not to be in 2009. That said, the Baylor Lady Bears under the leadership of Kim Mulkey have nothing to be ashamed of because they had a wonderful season and for the 2009 departing seniors, they will have memories that will last a lifetime.

Back in 2005, the Baylor Lady Bears won it all and brought Baylor University it's first national championship in ladies basketball back to Waco. I still remember staying glued to my TV set during that national championship game in Indianapolis and also I remember letting out the biggest cheer of my life when that final buzzer proclaimed the Lady Bears as national champions.

According to the experts and Baylor Lady Bear team officials, next years recruiting class for the Lady Bears looks fantastic - so maybe 2009 was just a warm up year for the 2010 season when the Lady Bears will go all the way again. From an old Waco resident to a bunch of professional young ladies at Baylor, 'high five' to a job well done.

* Waco Texas News

Title: Baylor Lady Bears Fall To Louisville In 2009 Sweet Sixteen Tournament
Written: March 29, 2009
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Saturday, March 28, 2009

Tom's Burgers On Sanger Avenue Is One Of My Favorite Hamburger Joints

For years, I have been stopping by a little hamburger joint called 'Tom's Burgers' on Sanger Avenue to enjoy a quick lunch or dinner. Tom's Burgers has been around Waco for years and in addition to good food and friendly people taking your order, the price tag is small for the amount of food you receive and it's quality is great.

I know, most people these days are moving away from hamburgers that are cooked on a grill the old fashion way - but for old timers like myself, those are the best kinds of burger a person can eat. One of the things I like the most at Tom's Burgers is their Frito Pie. For less than $2 their Frito Pie is delicious and is a very filling meal.

To the best of my knowledge, Tom's Burgers is open seven days a week and on weekdays I know they close at 8pm. For a good old fashion hamburger or something special like Cajun fries, milk shakes or even sweet potato french fries - Tom's Burgers in Waco is hard to beat.

* Waco Texas News

Title: Tom's Burgers On Sanger Avenue Is One Of My Favorite Hamburger Joints
Written: March 28, 2009
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Starplex Six Theater Provides Central Texas With Affordable Family Entertainment

Most weekends, my wife and I visit the Starplex Six Theater on Valley Mills Dr behind Casa Ole in Waco to watch a movie. Here in Waco there is a big, new release, Starplex 16 Theater Complex as well - but the ticket prices there are much higher.

Usually we visit the Waco Starplex Six Theater on Saturday or Sunday afternoons and the ticket price is only $1.25 per person. Of course, if you want popcorn and a Coke the price for those is about the same as the first run Starplex 16 in Waco which is located just down the street.

For my family and maybe yours too - the recession of 2008/2009 has caused us to be more thankful for the jobs we have and it has also reminded us of the need to save money whenever and wherever possible. Everyone needs a break from a long work week and for us seeing a good movie is just what the doctor order. If you're want to see a good movie this weekend, visit the Waco Starplex Six Theater.

* Waco Texas News

Title: Starplex Six Theater Provides Central Texas With Affordable Family Entertainment
Written: March 28, 2009
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Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center Set To Open New Waco Hospital In Association With Scott & White Temple

Today, there will be an open house at the new Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center in Waco and next Saturday the hospital will open it's doors for patients. For over a year I have been driving by the new Hillcrest Hospital located at I-35 and Loop 340 in Waco and from a humble beginning, this new medical center is finally finished and ready to open for business next weekend.

Also announced recently, there will be a new cooperative effort between Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center in Waco and Scott & White Hospital in Temple. While Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center Hospital will keep it's same name, half of it's new board of directors will be from Scott & White in Temple while the other half will be selected from the current Hillcrest board.

With health care one of the top issues facing the United States right now and with President Obama promising to change the health care structure in this country, this new hospital and it's new alliance with Scott & White in Temple should be a strong fit lasting well into the future.

Title: Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center Set To Open New Waco Hospital In Association With Scott & White Temple
Written: March 28, 2009
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Friday, March 27, 2009

Baylor Lady Bears Prepare For Sweet Sixteen Battle Saturday Against Louisville

Tomorrow morning at 11am, the Lady Bears of Baylor University will take on Louisville in their first game of a 'Sweet Sixteen' championship leading up to what most Baylor fans hope will be a repeat of a national championship in basketball. Baylor senior forward Rachel Allison is expected to start tomorrow's game against Louisville even though she suffered a knee injury in their game against South Dakota State.

With what has turned out to be a stroke of luck, Baylor University officials made the decision to hire coach Kim Mulkey many year ago to be the head coach of the Baylor Lady Bears. Since that smart move, the Lady Bears have not only been winning most of their games and have a national championship under their belt - but more importantly for Baylor and Waco, Texas - thousands of people attend Lady Bear home games all season long.

While I am not yet ready to proclaim the 2009 Baylor Lady Bears to be as good of a team as the one that won a national championship in 2005, they are certainly one of the best college woman's basketball teams in the nation right now.

Title: Baylor Lady Bears Prepare For Sweet Sixteen Battle Saturday Against Louisville
Written: March 27, 2009
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Amarillo Texas Blizzard Of 2009 Creates Havoc For Thousands Of Travelers

With less that a week to go before the month of April, residents of Amarillo woke up this morning with one of the worst blizzards in decades there on their hands. Yesterday it was almost 70 degrees in the Texas panhandle, but at noon today the temperature in Amarillo Texas had dropped into the teens.

Here in Waco, it is a cloudy Friday - but nothing severe like our neighbors to the north in Amarillo. Before this late winter blizzard of 2009 is finished in the Texas panhandle, weather experts predict that there could be 10 to 20 foot snow drifts in many areas.

Early this morning, Texas Department of Public Safety officials closed I-40 west of Amarillo to all traffic because of dangerous driving conditions. What is making matters worse is the fact that this late winter snow storm in the Texas panhandle is being driven by 40-50 MPH winds, which are causing huge snow drifts throughout the area.

Title: Amarillo Texas Blizzard Of 2009 Creates Havoc For Thousands Of Travelers
Written: March 27, 2009
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Thursday, March 26, 2009

Matt Baker Indicted For Murder In The 2006 Slaying Of His Wife Kari

It has been a long time coming, but former Waco pastor Matt Baker was indicted on murder charges yesterday in the 2006 slaying of his wife. Kari Baker was found dead in their Hewitt home in 2006 and in the beginning authorities do not believe foul play was involved in her death.

Now McLennan county prosecutors have successful indicted Matt Baker on a charge of murder and they will argue in court that Baker killed his wife by first giving her sleeping pills and then smothering her with a pillow. Linda Dulin, Kari Bakers mother, was instrumental in getting the Hewitt Police Department to continue to investigate the death of her daughter and after years of hard work she is finally going to see Matt Baker get his day in court answering a murder charge.

Matt Baker has appeared on various national television news shows over the years and he has proclaimed his innocence at every occasion. Baker is expected to surrender to McLennan County authorities soon and his bail has been set at $500,000.

Title: Matt Baker Indicted For Murder In The 2006 Slaying Of His Wife Kari
Written: March 26, 2009
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