Nantz retirement to be honored Friday

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

David Nantz will cap 37 years in the field of adult probation when he is honored with a retirement reception Friday, Feb. 24, at 3 p.m. in Burnet.

The reception will be held at the Sylvester H. Reed Memorial Building, 402 East Jackson Street.

Nantz has been director of the 33rd/424th Judicial District Community Supervision and Corrections Department (CSCD) for 14 years, a career he calls “meaningful.”

“I got my sociology degree from Lamar University in Beaumont and went to work right out of college for the Board of Pardons and Paroles in Houston,” said Nantz. “After about two years, I went back to my hometown of Beaumont in probation work in July 1979.”

As an arm of the 33rd and 424th District Courts for Burnet, Llano, Blanco and San Saba counties, the CSCD operates the District Intermediate Sanction Facility (ISF), is a 54-bed facility with a variety of programs.


No hiding from shadows for MFHS construction students

MFHS students view a master plan for Travisso development.

There was no hiding from shadows for Marble Falls High School (MFHS) students on Groundhog Day this year.

The Marble Falls Construction Trades Program was one of only two school programs in Texas, and 10 nationwide, to participate in the Toll Brothers Builders National Groundhog Day Job Shadowing event.

MFHS students traveled to the 2,100 acre Travisso master-planned community in neighboring Leander to explore all of the career trade opportunities available in the building industry.

The Toll Brothers’ mentoring event was designed to showcase to students the number of different in-demand careers that are available to students trained in workforce ready programs.


Library Thrift Store spotlights Strickland


Mildred and Art Strickland have lived a life of volunteerism in Marble Falls.

Mildred Strickland is being recognized by the Marble Falls Library Thrift Store as its Volunteer of the Month.

Mildred Strickland began volunteering at the Marble Falls Library Thrift Store after retiring from a teaching career of 30 years. When she began to volunteer in the early 1990s, the thrift store was located on Main at Fifth Street. Mildred continued to volunteer when the thrift store moved into the larger building previously occupied by the Marble Falls Library in 1997.


Klee to lead Congress in prayer


Harvey H. Klee of Llano County will be offering up a prayer before the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington D.C. on Feb. 28.

Klee, National and Texas State Chaplain for The American Legion, also is chaplain of the Highland Lakes Honor Guard. Rep. Michael Conaway extended the invitation to Klee to present a prayer as guest chaplain at noon at the Capitol, an event to be televised live on C-SPAN.

During his stay in Washington D. C., Chaplain Klee will be installed as a member of ANAVICUS – Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada, United States, an offshoot of ANAVIC, a Canadian veterans organization first authorized by Queen Victoria in 1840. It was Queen Victoria who granted permission for the members to wear berets of Royal purple. The United States Chapter was chartered in 1953 with membership by invitation only. Today, more than 1,100 Legionnaires wear the ANAVICUS Royal purple beret or cap.


MFISD technologist now Google certified

Adam Goodman trains Marble Falls High School teachers in the cloud-based Google tools for classroom.

Marble Falls Independent School District (MFISD) teachers working to leverage their students’ learning by using the latest resources now can get expert assistance from newly certified Google for Education Trainer, Adam Goodman.

Goodman is a district instructional technologist who helps teachers combine their successful traditional teaching approaches with available technology resources so students in Marble Falls are best prepared to compete in today’s information-based world.


Where there's smoke, wild or controlled fire?

Glynis Crawford Smith/The Highlander

Most of Burnet County got a view of the plumes of gray smoke from controlled burns in Spicewood Thursday morning, Jan. 26. It was no cause for concern, however, according to Fire Chief Scott Hannusch of the Spicewood Volunteer Fire Department. The billows of smoke, even from this vantage point on Ranch to Market Road 1431 east of Marble Falls were spectacular, but the landowners of the Wall Ranch east of Burnet County Road 408 and Texas 71 and at the Lowe Ranch on Burnet County Road 402 had the burn off swell in hand. Prescribed burn managers generate safety precautions for such burns landowners are urged to follow, and in some counties commissioners courts issue permits, but in Burnet County a call to the sheriff's office to keep the dispatch service informed is the main requirement, Hannusch said.

When the smoke rose up from two agricultural burns in Spicewood last week, it climbed high into view over the Burnet County landscape and calls rolled in to the Burnet County Sheriff's Office (BCSO) dispatch center.

That was not a bad thing, because the heavy fuel load of grasses, weeds and undergrowth from a wet year do present a fire danger that challenge rural firefighting teams that need to respond quickly. In cases such as the two in Spicewood surrounds, prescribed burns may not only be clearing fields and pastures for new growth, but can prevent future wildfire spread.

What is important, said Fire Chief Scott Hannusch of the Spicewood Volunteer Fire Department, is reporting plans for burns to BCSO, 512-756-8080, to keep track of controlled burns and tell those reports from wildfire.


Averys attend Trump-Pence inauguration

The Trump and Pence families greet the 25,000 attendees at The Freedom Ball following the Inauguration. Graham and Mary Jane Avery, among the crowd, captured the scene.

At least two local folks swelled the crowd at the at the Inauguration of Donald John Trump and Michael Richard "Mike" Pence. Graham and Mary Jane Avery traveled to Washington, D.C. on Jan. 18 to represent the Burnet County Republican Party.

They began the celebration by attending a mixer for The Mighty American/Texas Strike Force where they heard experiences of Strike Force members from across the United States.

Festivities continued the next evening when the Averys attended The Texas Society of Washington, D.C. Black Tie and Boots Presidential Inaugural Ball, chaired by District 25 Congressman Roger Williams. Entertainment was provided by Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers, as well as the Beach Boys.


Burnet VFW calls on vets to pull post from brink

Burnet resident Bill Piotrowski is looking for a few good men and women who have previously served their country in the armed forces.

Piotrowski is the sole remaining officer for the Burnet Veterans of Foreign Wars Highland Lakes Post 6974 on US 281 in Burnet. He said he has been given until Feb. 7 to find seven people not only willing to join Burnet VFW as new members, but to take on officer positions within the organization, or the post will be forced to close for good.

“We owe it to our community, local veterans, friends, and fellow citizens to help keep this post open,” Piotrowski said. “On Feb. 7, 2017, a vote will decide the fate of VFW Post 6974. This vote could be the final chapter of a story that is over 50 years old, but we still have a chance to right this wrong. If we can find veterans who have served their country honorably in an overseas conflict, we can change this outcome.


Star Republican Women hear child services program

Dorothy Crockett/The Highlander

Associate Judge Cheryll Mabray of the Child Protection Court of the Hill Country addresses Star Republican Women in Horseshoe Bay on Jan. 10.

By Dorothy Crockett


'3 Ponies,' first new Sculpture on Main sale


With the three-piece sculpture installation, '3 Ponies,' are members of the board of directors of Highland Lakes Creative Arts (HLCA), Sherri White and Carolyn Bates, and the sculptor, Johnny Shipman. The colorful metal sculpture from Sculpture on Main in Marble Falls is the first of the year-long exhibition to be sold.

Highland Lakes Creative Arts (HLCA) has announced the first purchase in the permanent sculpture installation initiative of Sculpture on Main.

Eleven sculptures were introduced at the opening of the 11th annual event Dec. 2. Although entries in the show remain on exhibit along Marble Falls' Main Street, all are for sale.

The colorful set of metal sculptures, “3 Ponies” by Johnny Shipman has been purchased by an anonymous donor who already has named the three to represent family residences. The stallion will be named Kosse for a Limestone County family ranch, the mare will be called Dallas and the colt will be Rocky, for a Rockport residence.

Shipman has exhibited all over the Central Texas Area and several years in the Sculpture on Main event, selling several premier pieces to local patrons.


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