RGVFC Toros Announce Partnership with H-E-B for Naming Rights of New Soccer Stadium in Edinburg

Edinburg, TEXAS – The Rio Grande Valley FC Toros announced a partnership with H-E-B for the naming rights of the new 9,700-seat soccer-specific stadium in Edinburg, which is now known as H-E-B Park.

“We wanted a partner that is not only a brand that we all recognize, but we also wanted to make sure they have a deep commitment to the community,” said RGV FC President, Bert Garcia. “We are delighted that H-E-B has made this commitment to the RGV FC Toros, the City of Edinburg, but more importantly the Rio Grande Valley. We look to make H-E-B Park the home of affordable family entertainment.”

Amenities at H-E-B Park will include a full-service restaurant and concessions, a park with a playground, an amphitheater with a capacity for 2,000 individuals, practice fields, executive lounges, a sports bar, and 33 suites. Suites include VIP amenities and a 16-seat capacity.

Completion of H-E-B Park will be later this year.

For more information about the RGV FC Toros, click here: www.rgvfc.com


Long-awaited Skate Park Moves a Step Closer

For eight years, skateboarders have pushed for a park where they can hone their flips, pops and grinds.

City commissioners today will appoint a committee to give residents a chance to plan the $130,000 project that’s part of a $1.2 million sports complex.

“We want parents and skaters to have some input,” City Manager Eleazar Garcia said.

He said commissioners will each appoint a representative to the committee.

Eight years ago, skateboarders petitioned commissioners to build a skate park.

“It was requested by the community,” he said.

Garcia said a $1.2 million bond issue to fund construction of the sports complex gave the city money for the project.

“It’s going to keep skaters off the streets and in a safe place,” he said.

Garcia said engineer Joe Muñoz contracted Tony Misiano of Misiano Skateparks to develop the…

Read more at The Brownsville Herald.

New $5M Entertainment Center to Open in McAllen

Miguel Kamel flipped through glossy pages of artist renderings of his new $5 million entertainment center inside a coffee shop on Expressway 83 on a recent weekday afternoon. He traced a finger along the company’s logo of the letter “e” inside a glowing circle and said it stood for Europa.

“Not too expensive, but a completely different experience and place for adults to hang out at night,” Kamel said. “I think it inspires the image of elegance from the old country (in Europe), inside it will be just beautiful.”

On a 2.4-acre lot, a sleek geometric grey building with glass paneled balcony, fountains and underground parking garage is planned to sit on the corner of Expressway 83 and Taylor Road by summer 2016.

Inside the more than 26,200-square-foot building there’s planned to be space for several bowling lanes, two of which may be separated for private parties, about 30 arcade games and VIP rooms. Modern spherical chandeliers are planned on the inside bar area, with…

Read more at The Brownsville Herald.

McAllen Least Costly in US for Retirees


McAllen has long done its best, and has been quite successful, at attracting Winter Texans to the City of Palms. But now we’re learning that McAllen has been ranked the most affordable place to retire in the United States. Therefore, we suggest that retirees give us another look and perhaps consider living here year-round.

The website analysis by SmartAssets stated that a nest egg of just $369,857 would be sufficient to enjoy a comfortable retirement here, based on the cost of living and current local tax rates. It cited tropical climates, lots of sunshine, low-cost living and lower taxes as making this a wonderful place for seniors to locate permanently.

Compared to Honolulu — which also has great scenery and tropical weather — McAllen is much more affordable. The website says to retire comfortably in Hawaii, a senior needs $1.6 million in savings. Likewise, it dubbed McAllen the “Texas Tropics,” and stated: “Unlike Hawaii, however, you don’t need to be a millionaire to retire in the Texas Tropics.”

The only other Texas cities to make the Top 10 include…

Read more at The McAllen Monitor.

AQUíneañera: Culturally Charged Two-Day Music Fest Hits McAllen on Saturday


If you follow Patrick Garcia — South Texas College English instructor, local concert promoter and creative mind behind alternative art fest Galax Z Fair — on social media, you’ve witnessed his awareness of Latino and pop culture.

Whether he’s driving around with a Donald Trump piñata (which he’s guaranteed will make an appearance at his inaugural two-day, Chicano-infused fest, AQUínceañera) or expressing his desire to extend an invitation to Ann Coulter (who’s made recent headlines promoting “Adios, America!,” a book critical of immigration policy), Garcia has a knack for mashing Hispanic issues with entertainment to create something culturally relevant.

And it was in this spirit that AQUíneañera was born.

“Regarding the name and theme, I love where I’m from and I love the border community. I’m on a relentless fight to make people really appreciate the place,” the Brownsville native said.

Including a play on the word “aqui” is a celebration of this place, Garcia said.

“You can move to Austin or New York and someone can say, ‘that’s so Valley,’ and that’s a cool thing,” Garcia said. “People don’t realize that their cultural identities come from places. How can we combine the cultural element with the alternative element?”

Garcia plotted AQUíneañera — an outdoor music event that avoided the punishing summer heat by taking place at night — and felt confident in the idea of a Latino-centric fest when he booked Downtown Boys.

“This is what we need. They’re on a national scale. The Hispanic, Spanish-speaking narrative is now breaking the national consciousness with some of these artists,” Garcia said. “They want to come back.”

Downtown Boys, who “might just be the most relevant band in America,” according to Paper Magazine, will drive 14 hours after their El Paso performance to make the show.

“They made a humongous impression on the local, Hispanic punk community because their singer sings in Spanish and it’s politically charged. They were 100 percent down,” Garcia said. “They’re a hugely popular band right now. They’re perfect. They’re the reason I thought I could do this. As long as I have them on board, I feel good.”

This is not going to one of those festivals with…

Read more at The McAllen Monitor.

Rancho Viejo Stages Outdoor Movie


Get ready for Movies Under the Stars this Saturday on the lawn outside Town Hall in Rancho Viejo.

The movie begins at 8:30 p.m.

“Each movie night will feature a movie, free of charge, and open to the Rancho Viejo residents, ” according to an alert from town officials. “Bring your blankets, lawn chairs and picnic baskets to the lawn by Town Hall to enjoy this free and wholesome community activity.”

Saturday’s movie will be…

Read more at The Brownsville Herald.

McAllen Welcomes Home Miss Texas USA

55a57c8973b0b.imageMiss USA first runner-up Ylianna Guerra made her homecoming at a crowded airport terminal Tuesday afternoon.

The McAllen native competed in the Miss USA pageant Sunday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, finishing behind only Miss Oklahoma.

Guerra walked through two lines of local cheerleaders, mariachi performers, friends and family trailed by a mob of cameras.

Her face donned countless buttons, posters and T-shirts throughout the crowd of supporters, who waved Texas flags.

“This is absolutely incredible,” Guerra said before thanking the assembly. “I was not expecting this at all, so what a great surprise.”

City, school and chamber of commerce representatives greeted the local beauty queen.

“I have very few good things that happen to the city manager. This is the biggest and best that’s ever happened to me since I’ve been city manager,” McAllen City Manager Roy Rodriguez said. “On behalf of the mayor and the city commission…

Read more at The McAllen Monitor.

RGV to Get New Franchise in United Soccer League

The Rio Grande Valley Vipers, United Soccer League and Houston Dynamo formally announced Wednesday afternoon the Vipers as the newest franchise in United Soccer League.

The Monitor reported in late March the Vipers had been granted a franchise by the USL to locate in the Rio Grande Valley.

The new franchise, which does not have a name or logo yet, will be owned and operated by the Vipers, with Major League Soccer’s Dynamo controlling soccer operations. It is similar to the Vipers’ relationship with the NBA’s Houston Rockets as the Rockets’ NBA D-League affiliate.

The Vipers soccer team is expected to be ready to begin play in the spring of…

Read more at The McAllen Monitor.

Public Hearing Set for New Fire Station


The city’s plans to construct a 7,000-square-foot fire station on Brennaman Road and Stuart Place Road goes to a public hearing tomorrow.

The hearing will be before the City Commission at its regular meeting, starting at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall, 118 E. Tyler Ave.

There only will be one public hearing on the issue, which has drawn 10 residents concerned about the effect on property values and their quality of life.

The city’s Planning & Zoning Commission voted last week to recommend approval of the city’s request for a specific-use permit to allow the fire station in a nondesignated zoning district.

The property encompasses 6.09 acres of land, and it is between Business 83 and the expressway. The city purchased the property in February for just less than $240,000.

Surrounding properties are zoned single-family residential to the north and east, and not designated to the west and south. City officials have said land uses include single family residential and agricultural.

Area residents have petitioned the city and P&Z, urging them not to approve the request.

The fire station would be across the road from Jack H. Chapman’s house.

Chapman wrote to the city March 30, noting that using the “special permit” clause to inject a fire station in a residential zone suggests there is some “special circumstance” or “compelling need” mandating the placement of…

Read more at The Valley Morning Star.

USS Ranger Arrives at Port of Brownsville

55a331b386a89.imageAlong the jetties of Isla Blanca Park on South Padre Island, spectators lined the jagged rocks Sunday afternoon in anticipation of the USS Ranger, a naval ship that was once home to thousands of crewmen at a time.

David Champion, accompanied by his son, Omar “Marty” Champion, said he traveled from McAllen to attend the arrival in memory of flight crew members that perished in 1959 when his squad lost two aircraft and six men. Champion said he served from 1956 to 1962 in the U.S. Naval Aviation unit.

As Champion watched the massive aircraft carrier glide along the briny Gulf Coast waters, he said he had mixed emotions.

“It’s bittersweet that that she will be laid to rest and used to build something better for humanity in general,” Champion said.

The vessel is the second ship to be dismantled in the Rio Grande Valley’s International Shipbreaking Ltd., the first being the USS Constellation. The Ranger was towed to the Port of Brownsville from the Navy’s inactive ships maintenance facility in Bremerton, Wash.

As the ship approached, Champion spoke of his most vivid memory from his time on the ship, what he called the “flight deck ballet.” He explained that it had to be lived to be understood.

“It’s the smell of jet fuel, the people working in hot, dangerous conditions without getting hurt, so to speak. You hear a click, click, click and the next thing you know there is a rush of…

Read more at The McAllen Monitor.