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DPCAC tours new Coast Guard station

Written by staff. Posted in Community

dpcaceditedDeer Park Community Advisory Council members and guests met at the new US Coast Guard Station in late May for a presentation about the Coast Guard’s work and its interaction with industry as well as a tour of the new facility at Ellington Field.

Capt. Rob McLellan, Deputy Commander, USCG Sector Houston-Galveston, talked about the Coast Guard’s missions and the programs in which they interact with industry. This Coast Guard sector includes not just Houston and Galveston but also extends east to Lake Charles and as far north as the Oklahoma-Texas border. The Coast Guard by law is charged to carry out 11 missions: ports, waterways, and coastal security; drug interdiction; aids to navigation; search and rescue; living marine resources; marine safety; defense readiness; migrant interdiction; marine environmental protection; law enforcement; and ice operations. In south central Texas, they carry out all but ice breaking. The agency is now part of the US Department of Homeland Security. The first priority is always saving lives.

Capt. McLellan and Commander Luis Sandoval, Chief of Logistics took DPCAC on a tour of the Command Center and Vessel Traffic Service. The Command Center includes not only Coast Guard operations but also seats for the Harris County Sheriff’s Office and access to its cameras as well as desks for Customs and Border Protection. From this room, the Coast Guard monitors the ship channel with cameras that can zoom in on anything suspicious. Officers showed members footage of fires as they occurred this spring at two ship channel refineries. The Coast Guard conducts Search and Rescue missions from this Command Center, and they track helicopters and boats during a response.

Vessel Traffic Service technology was impressive, especially to DPCAC members who first saw the operations 25 years ago, before it was computerized. Cameras, radar, and an automated identification system let the Coast Guard track ships and barges. At any time, they are tracking 600-700 vessels. They can click on a screen and see the vessel’s name, cargo, where it came from and where it is going, size of ship, whether it is loaded or not, and more. The tracking begins when the vessel is overseas. All deep draft vessels are required to give a 96-hour notice of arrival.

Visitors are welcome to attend the August 22 DPCAC meeting on Industrial Hygiene: Protecting People from Workplace Hazards. For details, contact facilitator Diane Sheridan at 281-326-5253. Visit to read recent meeting summaries, find links to useful resources on emergency communications and the environment, see lists of DPCAC community and plant members, read our mission and purpose statements, and offer input.

Concerts in the Park kicks off tonight

Written by Holly Galvan. Posted in Community


The Deer Park Parks and Recreation Department's Concerts in the Park series kicks off tonight at Dow Park with the Gary Michael Dahl Band. Prior to the concert, the department will host a public meeting at 6 p.m. in the Dow Park Pavilion. Both the meeting and the concerts are free. 

Cenikor partnership puts program in San Marcos

Written by staff. Posted in Community

Cenikor biggerThe Hays Caldwell Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse has collaborated with the Cenikor Foundation to form a strategic partnership, to expand their respective services capabilities and to enhance HCCADA’s youth and adolescent prevention programs and treatment services to adults with substance abuse. HCCADA has served San Marcos, Texas and the surrounding areas since 1984. Cenikor, now celebrating more than 49 years, offers a continuum of care in Texas and Louisiana, dedicated to assisting people develop the skills needed to become responsible citizens free of substance abuse.

“The Hays Caldwell Council is excited for this partnership with Cenikor and the expansion of services to the communities we proudly serve. We recognize that what we do each day changes the life of someone in need, their families, and our community. Cenikor has many great inpatient and outpatient programs and we are glad they see the need to expand their outpatient programs into the San Marcos area and beyond,” said Grace Davis, Executive Director of HCCADA.

HCCADA’s former Board of Directors will remain engaged and serve as the Regional Advisory Board to support ongoing efforts to expand community participation, promote recovery, and help meet the needs of those in the local communities they serve.

"Cenikor is eager to partner with Hays Caldwell to help expand our continuum of care in this area of Central Texas," says Bill Bailey, President and CEO of the Cenikor Foundation. "We have a strong Texas presence with locations in Houston, Waco, Fort Worth, Tyler, Temple and Killeen, so this relationship helps expand Cenikor's service capacity and our reach. We share a mission and philosophy focused on helping people achieve better health and better lives through recovery, so it makes sense for our two foundations to forge this alliance."

Cenikor is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to helping people with substance abuse and behavioral health issues through a full continuum of care. Cenikor proudly serves over 1,000 clients per week, offering prevention, short-term inpatient, long-term inpatient, ambulatory detoxification, inpatient detoxification, adult outpatient, adolescent inpatient and adolescent outpatient programs throughout Texas and Louisiana. Cenikor Foundation is one of the oldest and most successful substance abuse treatment centers in the nation, and looks forward to great positive impact through its work with HCCADA.

HCCADA provides prevention and education services to over 30,000 local youth and adults along with outpatient treatment, counseling, intervention, and treatment referrals. For more information about HCCADA please call 1-800-733-1214 or visit For more information about Cenikor please visit or call 888-CENIKOR (236-4567).

Rotary hears about the dangers of 'The Last High'

Written by Bobby Vasquez. Posted in Community

teaser synthcannabisIN OUR COMMUNITY
The Deer Park Rotary Club recently hosted representatives of the Bay Area Council on Drugs and Alcohol to talk about the still-growing rise of synthetic cannabinoids/marijuana. A locally filmed documentary is shedding new light on the dark impact of using the dangerous substances.

Library to host Termite Watkins

Written by staff. Posted in Community

TermiteWatkinsThe Deer Park Pubic Library will host former boxer Maurice "Termite" Watkins as he shares his story with the community June 17. The program will begin at 11 a.m. in the Deer Park Public Library’s meeting room.

Watkins’ boxing accomplishments began at a young age. He became the National Golden Gloves Featherweight Champion when he was just 16 years old. He won 128 bouts as an amateur and 61 matches as a professional. He challenged Saoul Mamby for the World Boxing Council's Light Welterweight Title and was the undercard of Muhammad Ali's "Last Hurrah" match against Larry Holmes. After he retired from boxing he worked as a car salesman before returning to the pest control field. This decision would take him to the war-torn nation of Iraq, where he was approached to lead the country's first national boxing team in decades. Watkins will discuss his remarkable road to the Olympics in his library presentation.

This presentation is the latest installment in the library's Featured Friday series. These monthly programs offer a variety of lectures, movies and special programs of cultural, historical and local interest.

Refreshments will be provided by the Friends of the Deer Park Public Library. No registration is required and all are welcome to attend. There is no admission fee. The library is located at 3009 Center St.

Business Beat: June 2016

Written by Debbie Westbeld. Posted in Community


Business Beat is a monthly column recognizing Deer Park’s newest businesses and giving you other interesting business news from around town. Debbie Westbeld is the Economic Development Administrator for the City of Deer Park, and can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 281-478-2042. Visit for more business information.

Seals participate in Red Nose Day

Written by staff. Posted in Community


Members of the Deer Park Seals swim team partipated in last week's nationwide Red Nose Day. Proceeds from Red Nose and Red Flair purchases benefit the Red Nose Day Fund* which supports charities with domestic and international reach aimed at fighting childhood poverty, including Boys & Girls Clubs of America; charity:water; Children’s Health Fund; Covenant House; Feeding America; Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance; National Council of La Raza; National Urban League; Oxfam America; Save the Children; and The Global Fund. Photo provided by Regina Lee.