Absolutely! Brazos Cares About Community

It’s finally Fall, and that means back to school, Friday night lights and two-digit instead of three-digit temperatures.  In Fort Bend, this season also marks the beginning of Fall fun with many community events.  So, what’s happening this Fall in the Bend with our amazing community organizations?

We reached out to several area philanthropies and asked just that:  What are your plans for the next few months?  What we discovered is there are so many fun and festive ways to support our community organizations over the next several months.  So many, in fact, that we put a Community Event Calendar together as a resource for our friends and neighbors to “save those dates” for everything from galas, to toy drives, to festivals!

We hope to see you this Fall as you are out and about in Fort Bend doing what we all do best – supporting our community partners – all while having a great time!

Join Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital for Annual Flu Shot Toy Drive

Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, in collaboration with the Exchange Club of Sugar Land, Fort Bend Exchange Club, Rotary Club of Sugar Land and Toys for Tots Fort Bend, is offering free flu shots on Saturday, October 21st to community members who participate in Santa’s Gift Exchange. Fort Bend and surrounding area residents can bring a new, unwrapped toy in exchange for a free flu shot.

To participate in this community event, please bring a new, unwrapped toy to Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, located at 16655 Southwest Fwy., Sugar Land, Texas 77479, between 8 am and noon on Saturday, October 21st. Registration is required. One flu shot per unwrapped toy. No stuffed animals or clothing items allowed.

To register, please visit join.houstonmethodist.org/flushot-sl or call 281.274.7976.

The flu kills as many as 20,000 people a year. The vaccine is indicated for active immunization for the prevention of influenza disease caused by influenza virus subtypes A and B. Vaccination with the flu vaccine may not protect all people who receive the vaccine. Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital will distribute a limited supply of the influenza vaccine to persons age 18 and over with no history of Guillain-Barre Syndrome and who are not pregnant. High dose flu vaccines will not be provided during this event. Please consult with your primary care doctor if high dose flu vaccine is the right option for you.

Fort Bend Hope Where Learning Never Stops

Fort Bend Hope (FBH) is a happy place where learning never stops! On an average day one can hear the laughter of children as they continue learning after school, and the sound of adults learning to speak a new language, getting a GED or becoming US citizens.  Fort Bend Hope is solely focused on education and offers these programs for children and adults as it believes education is the key to breaking the cycle of generational poverty.  Education is so much more than facts and figures.  Education equals choices and opportunities for the learner.  Education is the key to unlocking the American dream.

To make all of this possible, Fort Bend Hope depends upon the generous spirit of volunteers.  From helping a child with their homework to working with an adult who is studying for their citizenship, there are countless opportunities to get involved at FBH.  FBH prides itself on providing a great emotional return on the volunteer’s investment of time.  Kendall Boyd, a longtime volunteer, says, “I always take more home with me than I arrived with because of the energy and excitement the children have.”  Lynette Evertson, another longtime volunteer, lives for the “Aha moment.”  “It’s so exciting to see the look on their face when they understand a new concept.”

At Fort Bend Hope the volunteers are game changers. FBH wants the community to be involved in their mission. Contact them today to impact someone’s future.  For more information or to volunteer, call 346.702.3806 or email at leslie@fortbendhope.org.  Fort Bend Hope where learning never stops!

It’s Cowboys, Cattle and Cannons at George Ranch Frontier Days

For a great day of Fall family fun on Saturday, October 21st, visit Fort Bend’s famous spread for George Ranch Frontier Days. Presenting Sponsor Polly Shouse, The George Ranch and the Fort Bend History Association have partnered to host their largest living history event of the year.  It’s a day filled with cowboys, cannons, history and fun with cattle working demonstrations, historic home tours, battle re-enactments, games, vendors, food trucks, live music and entertainment, hands-on activities and more!

Costumed guides will be on hand to tell tales of 150 years of Texas history, and Sky Kings Falconry will present “Native Birds of Texas” featuring hawks and owls.  Other attractions include a Cowboy Fast Draw Contest, music from Grandmas’ Boyfriends Barbershop Quartet and Museum of the Pacific War weapons demonstration.

On Friday, October 20th, schools are invited for Field Trip Friday from 9 am to 2 pm.  Schools sign up by contacting Maggie Trinker at 281.343.0218 ext. 220 or mtrinker@georgeranch.org.  Advance registration is required, and space is limited.

George Ranch Frontier Days will be open to the public on Saturday, October 21st at the Ranch, located at 10215 FM 762 in Richmond, from 9 am to 5 pm.  Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for children and children four and under are free.  To purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.georgeranch.org/programs-events/george-ranch-frontier-days/.

Reining Strength Therapeutic Horsemanship: The Path to Success

By partnering with horses, Reining Strength Therapeutic Horsemanship (RSTH) helps people realize their individual potential through customized equine-assisted services (EAS).

Reining Strength is a nonprofit organization located in Fort Bend County and a Premier Accredited Center through the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH). They provide EAS for people ages two through adults, who have physical, cognitive, social or emotional needs.  Some examples of the diagnoses that benefit from EAS are individuals with autism, cerebral palsy and PTSD to name a few.

Reining Strength offers both therapeutic horsemanship and equine-assisted learning.  Sessions are taught and facilitated by a Certified PATH Riding Instructor or PATH Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning and are available Monday thru Friday. RSTH’s equine-assisted learning program is unique, and they work with organizations like Parks Youth Ranch, Gigi’s Playhouse of Sugar Land and Houston Methodist Hospital.  Contact RSTH today to set up customized programming for team building or personal growth for your business.

Reining Strength’s volunteers are the backbone of the organization! You’ll never find a more rewarding volunteer opportunity.  There are so many ways to help – volunteer during lessons, help in the office or join the Derby Day Fundraiser committee.  The best way to learn about what RSTH does is to see them in action. Schedule a tour at the Reining Strength facility, located at 7126 FM 359 Road in Richmond, Texas, 77406, visit the RSTH website (for more information on touring, giving or volunteering) at www.Reiningstrength.org or call 832.451.6874.

The Ultimate “Tailgate” Party Happens January 27th

The Homeless Pet Placement League’s (HPPL) second annual fundraising event, the Ultimate “Tailgate” Party, will be held on Saturday, January 27th, 2024 at Sugar Creek Country Club in Sugar Land.  Don your favorite jersey and join the party from 6 to 10 pm that features an open bar, big board, silent auction, wine pull, door prizes and the dog toy “wine” pull!

HPPL Vice President Eileen Akerson, co-chairs Vivian Douglas and Vicki Stevenson and the pawsitively fantastic “Tailgate” committee are preparing for a fun-filled event to support homeless animals at a time when shelters are filled with pets needing forever homes.  “The Ultimate ‘Tailgate’ Party is a fun, casual, football-themed event to celebrate the tireless efforts of our compassionate fosters, volunteers and community partners,” said Akerson.  “Their important work would not be possible without the generosity of our kind donors and supporters, and we are thrilled to bring the ‘Tailgate’ Party back for a second year in support of our mission.”

Funds raised will be used to support and expand the mission of the HPPL and its programs and services in the community.  HPPL asks the community to lend a paw by supporting this event.  “Now, more than ever, we need the community’s assistance as we strive to rescue, rehabilitate, foster and place homeless animals in forever homes.  There is no greater love than the love of a rescued animal,” shared Akerson.

Tickets are $75 and sponsorships range from $1000 to $7500.  To find out more about the Ultimate “Tailgate” Party, email gala@hppl.org or call 281.658.6592.  The HPPL is a registered non-profit animal welfare organization. For more information, visit www.hppl.org.

The Art League of Fort Bend and the Fort Bend Art Center

The Art League of Fort Bend (ALFB), a 501c3 non-profit organization, began in 1957 with the vision of providing a community place where artists of all ages and stages could come to create, study and exhibit their talents. The mission is to encourage artistic development and cultivate an appreciation for the arts through education, exhibitions and community outreach.

In November 2017, the ALFB was given an opportunity to occupy space at 2012 Avenue G in historic downtown Rosenberg, and the Fort Bend Art Center (FBAC) was born.  The FBAC contains 6,000 sq. ft. of gallery space, artist studios, classroom and office space and a gift shop.

Artists meet, display, create and sell their work and provide education in this space. Instructors offer a variety of art classes and guitar lessons. Over 30 gallery member artists display paintings, drawings, photography, textiles, jewelry, sculptures, glass and ceramics. Gallery displays change quarterly, so there is always something new to see! The gift shop boasts an eclectic variety of gifts.

Two annual ALFB art shows qualify artists to participate in the regional Lone Star Art Guild annual exhibit.  Many award-winning artists show and sell their artwork on the walls of the FBAC.

The ALFB is completely run by member volunteers.  Members host art walks, book signings, workshops and demos and participate in downtown Rosenberg’s events, including Chocolate Walk and Holiday Nights.  Members also provide community displays for Attack Poverty, the Fort Bend History Museum, Pecan Grove Country Club, the Sugar Land Airport and the George Memorial Library.

ALFB membership is open; information is available at www.artleaguefortbend.org. FBAC hours are noon to 5 PM, Wednesday to Sunday.

The Arc of Fort Bend’s “Best in the West” Moves to November 11th

The 45th annual “Best in the West,” presented by Prosperity Bank, has a brand-new date for 2023:  Saturday, November 11th at the George Ranch Arena, located at 10215 FM 762 in Richmond.

Still filled with all your favorites – BBQ dinner, live band, dance, silent auction corrals and a grand live auction – “Best in the West” is an evening of boot scootin’ fun all for a great cause.  The event benefits the Arc of Fort Bend County supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and this year’s co-chairs are Jenny Gortney, James Patterson and Ann Smith.

“’Best in the West” is the best little fundraiser in Texas,” said Co-Chair Jenny Gortney.  “We are excited about hosting our annual event a week early this year at our old stomping grounds – The Geroge Ranch – and invite the entire community to join us.”

“Best in the West” will feature their signature silent auction corrals filled to the brim with great gifts just in time for the holidays.  The live auction boasts several amazing items including trips, parties and hunting excursions.

New to the event this year is a raffle for a restored 1967 Mustang convertible.  Tickets for the raffle are $50 and only 2,000 tickets will be sold.

Event tickets are $75 per person and tables of 10 are $750.  To purchase tickets to the event or raffle, or for sponsorships, visit www.BestInTheWest.givesmart.com.

OakBend’s Patchwork of Life Event 2023

OakBend is excited to announce the 11th annual Patchwork of Life fundraiser, scheduled for October 12th from 6 – 9pm at Safari Texas Ranch. This event symbolizes the unity and support of community members and staff as they come together to create a beautiful quilt. Since its inception in 2013, Patchwork has thrived, thanks to the incredible generosity showcased through donations, sponsorships, purchases of Quilt Squares and live auction bidding.

Patchwork of Life presents four unique sponsorship opportunities, enabling donors to contribute at various levels. These include the Golden Threads Sponsor at $10,000, the Community Fabric Sponsor at $5,500, the Patterns of Hope Sponsor at $3,500 and the Stitches of Love Sponsor at $2,500.

All funds raised during Patchwork of Life will be allocated across multiple departments based on their specific needs. As an independent, non-profit facility, OakBend relies heavily on the support of external sources to facilitate vital purchases and improvements.

For more information regarding sponsorship opportunities or event registration, please contact the OakBend Development Office at 281.341.2014 or via email at development@obmc.org. Additional details can be found at oakbendmedcenter.org/patchwork-of-life.

We cordially invite the community to join us in making this year’s Patchwork of Life the most successful one to date! Your support will enable OakBend to continue delivering exceptional care to our community.

The Great Pumpkin Round Up: Open Saturdays October 14th
through November 25th at The George Ranch

Just in time for the fall season and fabulous photo ops, The George Ranch’s popular fall-themed event, The Great Pumpkin Round Up, presented by Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, returns this October, bigger and better than ever!

For the third year, The Geroge Ranch will showcase a fantastic fall feature created by local designer Lucas Chavez.  Chavez has spent months working with pumpkin producers in West Texas to design an autumn display exclusively for the Ranch that includes a hay wagon, training carriage, giant sugar cane vat and, of course, pumpkins galore! The design will feature more than twenty types of gourds, pumpkins and squash along with mums and fall plants.   

The perfect place for families and visitors of all ages to spend a fall-themed Saturday of fun taking photos, picnicking and touring the historic sites at The George Ranch, Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital is presenting The Great Pumpkin Round Up.

“The Great Pumpkin Round Up is such a treat for our visitors,” said George Ranch Site Director Adrienne Barker.  “We can’t wait to see the new design Lucas Chavez creates for us this year!”

The Great Pumpkin Round Up is included with the purchase of a regular admission ticket to The George Ranch where visitors can explore what life was like in Texas decades ago. The Great Pumpkin Round Up debuts Saturday, October 14th and runs through November 25th, 2023.

To learn more or to purchase tickets, visit www.georgeranch.org/general-admission/.