Press Play: Call me cliché? I'm fine with that!

Connie Swinney
Staff Writer •

Did you hear “the newslady” works for The Highlander again? How cliché!

It's such a cliché but there's no other way to describe it. I've come full circle. Twenty years ago, I wrote for the paper-of-record overlooking a lake in a charming little town nestled in the hills.

Now in 2018, I again work for the paper-of-record in a charming “little” town . . . er . . . but not so little anymore.

Because several thousand more people.

Because a hotel now blocks much of the lake view.

Because one big bridge over Lake Marble Falls has turned into two.

Not-to-mention more stop lights than you can shake a stick at.

I digress.

For those who have lived here all their lives or at least for the last couple of decades, you may recall my tour of duty as a staff writer with The Highlander in 1998 and 1999.


What Richard would tell the 18-year-old version of himself

By Richard Zowie

This time of year for the newspaper, we’ve been busy with high school graduations. I took pictures of both Faith Academy’s and Marble Falls High School’s graduations. Both ceremonies took me back to 1991, when I and others from A.C. Jones (Beeville) High School wore black caps and gowns and braved the non-air conditioned Bee County Coliseum (now the Bee County Expo Center). Thank goodness neither our valedictorian nor our salutatorian both chose short speeches.

As the Flames and Mustangs received their diplomas, it made me think of my own life since high school.

At 18, my plans were to go to college, get a journalism degree, write fiction novels and by my forties be married with four kids.

Life has certainly not turned out as planned.

The newly-minted graduates have certainly received plenty of advice already. Here’s what advice 45-year-old Richard Zowie give to his 18-year-old self:


Costas decries 'click-bait' culture of modern media

Bob Costas speaks to UT students and faculty while giving the ninth annual Frank Deford Lecture in Sports Journalism at Moody College of Communications.





By Lew K. Cohn

Managing Editor

The Highlander

Few journalists have credentials as impressive as NBC sportscasting legend Bob Costas, so when the 66-year-old New York native speaks about the current state of news media and sports — as he did Monday at the University of Texas at Austin — people listen.

Costas was at the Moody College of Communications' Belo Center for New Media to give the ninth annual Frank Deford Lecture in Sports Journalism to a capacity crowd of students, staff and the public. I was privileged to have the opportunity not only to attend the lecture, but to ask Costas a question of my own and to speak with him briefly afterwards.

Costas — the only person to have ever won Emmys in news, sports and entertainment — told UT students and staff that he was “impressed by the facilities, by the faculty members I've met and by the students I've met” during his visit to the Forty Acres.


BCISD calls for safety help

By Alexandria Randolph

HLN Correspondent

Burnet Consolidated ISD officials are calling for state leadership and funding for security enhancements in response to school safety measures suggested by the Texas Education Agency.

While recent school safety drills were motivated by a the school shooting tragedy at Parkland, Fl., school safety and security has always been an issue of constant vigilance for BCISD, said Superintendent Keith McBurnett.


Reliving the improbable 'Hail Mary' pass

It only took 47 years plus, but Managing Editor Lew K. Cohn finally got to meet Roger Staubach at the 15th Annual Hill Country 100 Club Awards Banquet in Burnet on Jan. 18 and hear the story of the 'Hail Mary' pass from the legend himself.




Lew K. Cohn

Managing Editor

The Highlander

The year was 1975 and I was in kindergarten. My favorite NFL football team was the Dallas Cowboys and my favorite player, without a doubt, was the quarterback, No. 12, future Hall of Famer Roger Staubach. My family were staunch Cowboys supporters and had been since the team was first formed as an expansion team in 1960. Blankets, pillowcases, toboggan hats, even pajamas — if it was branded with the “star,” I most likely got it from my parents in the 1970s.

An event would happen that year that would have a lasting impact on my friends and me as Cowboy fans. Of course, I am talking about the famous “Hail Mary” pass from Staubach to Drew Pearson to win the NFC Divsional playoffs.


Lamar dies mourning Houston's victory over Burnet

by Bartee Haile


Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar, second president of the Texas Republic, dropped dead of a heart attack at his Richmond home on Dec. 18, 1859.

When he stepped down as the Lone Star chief executive in December 1842, Lamar was a physical and emotional wreck. Not only had his grand plan of setting the new nation on an irreversibly independent course gone wrong, the voters had picked archenemy Sam Houston over soul mate David G. Burnet as his successor.

A much anticipated trip to Georgia to visit his daughter Rebecca, whom he had seen just twice in seven years, was almost permanently postponed by a duel. Blaming Lamar for his recent rejection as vice-president, Memucan Hunt demanded satisfaction but mutual friends managed to defuse the private powder keg.


Jordan: HSB prospering

Horseshoe Bay Mayor Steve Jordan provided this State of the City review for the Oct. 20 edition of The Highlander.



The measure of a well managed and open government is transparency and accountability. Your Mayor and Council Members have made these two issues our top priorities. 

I am happy to report the state of the City of Horseshoe Bay is very sound. Horseshoe Bay operates with two main budgets: the General Fund and the Utility Fund. General Fund sources come primarily from ad valorem property tax receipts and the services include police, fire, animal control, street maintenance, parks, code enforcement, development services and general administration. The Utility Fund includes operation of water, waste water, garbage and recycling. Utility Fund revenue is collected through usage fees in order to assure utility services are provided on a stand-alone basis.


Vegas tragedy hits close to home

By Lew K. Cohn

Managing Editor

The Highlander

On Oct. 1, I was shocked, along with the rest of the Highland Lakes, to hear about the mass shooting at a country music festival along the Las Vegas Strip which claimed the lives of 58 people (excluding the shooter) and injured 489 others, many of them critically.

The horrific tragedy especially hit home for me for several reasons. First of all, Las Vegas is where my wife and I were married in 2014. It is where my best friend, Bobby McCooey, and his family live. Bobby and his wife Michele stood up for us as best man and matron of honor at our wedding and were our official witnesses.


Red Cross on the front lines of disaster

State Rep. Terry M. Wilson

Special to The Highlander

In the wake of the historic damage caused by Hurricane Harvey and the resulting unprecedented flooding, I would like to make sure that everyone in our district has information on where to get help if they need it, or provide help if they are safe.


Disaster preparedness starts by identifying risks

Pat Williams Moore is unique in the disaster recovery and business/service resumption industry. She has been a pioneer since 1982 helping to drive the disaster recovery industry beyond the emergency response phase, and data-center-information technology recovery side into the organization-wide/enterprise-wide full recovery and continuity of operations strategic planning and implementation for businesses, institutions and communities. Moore is a Certified Disaster Recovery Professional and a Fellow of the Business Continuity Institute, and FEMA's National Business Person of the Year.

Editor's Note: The following is the first in an ongoing series of columns covering disaster preparedness and disaster recovery topics from Pat Moore, one of the country's leading disaster recovery educators who lives in Marble Falls.

By Pat Moore

Reprinted with permission


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