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New School Year Begins

Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 17 Sep 15 - 0 Comments


Children in Calhoun County began the 2015-2016 school year on August 24. The Dolphin wishes them a happy time of learning experiences and looks forward to reporting on their accomplishments. Pictured above (l to r) are Blake Bowman, Emily Ferrell, and Luke Doggett, second graders at Port O’Connor School.

Shelby Wheat enters the First Grade at Port O'Connor School.

Shelby Wheat enters the First Grade at Port O’Connor School.

First Day at POC School: Aiden McClelland, Justice Epley, Keegan Short, Ashton Albrecht

First Day at POC School: Aiden McClelland, Justice Epley, Keegan Short, Ashton Albrecht

Brennan Gregory with his grandparents, Sandy Gregory and Lori and Billy Hemphill at Grandparents Day at Seadrift School.

Brennan Gregory with his grandparents, Sandy Gregory and Lori and Billy Hemphill at Grandparents Day at Seadrift School.

Lamar Williams and his grandfather Ranier Brigham at Grandparents Day at Seadrift School.

Lamar Williams and his grandfather Ranier Brigham at Grandparents Day at Seadrift School.


Kailey Treumer and her grandmother.

Kailey Treumer and her grandmother.

Sage Carter and Ava Salazar enjoying drawing with their grandparents at Seadrift School.

Sage Carter and Ava Salazar enjoying drawing with their grandparents at Seadrift School.

Citizens of the Week at Port O’Connor School

Week ending September 4th:
PK- Riley Pagel; K- Abygail Gonzales; 1st- Connor Ferrell; 2nd- Anthony Flores; 3rd- Christopher Richter; 4th-Sergio Sanchez; 5th- Gage Spencer

Week ending September 11: PreK- Addilynn Ruddick; K- Audrey Rhoads; 1st- Shelby Wheat; 2nd- Cole Spicak; 3rd- Maddix Delgado; 4th- Matthew Stapp; 5th- Ashton Fowler-Albrecht

Port O’Connor School thanks Johnny Hawes and Jenny O’Neill and the Doggett family who spent the weekend prior to school starting mowing and weed eating to get our playground ready for the returning students. We are so lucky to have people like them in our community.

A Welcome Sight in Port O’Connor by Joyce Rhyne

Archived in the category: General Info
Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 17 Sep 15 - 0 Comments
Artist Daniel Pacl by his Port O’Connor mural

Artist Daniel Pacl by his Port O’Connor mural

“Welcome to Port O’Connor!” The beautiful new mural at the corner of Hwy 185 and Byers needs no words to convey that happy message. Dedicated to our fishery and fishermen, the giant speckled trout and redfish beckon one to “come on down” and enjoy all the water sports and fun-in-the-sun our little town has to offer.

The mural is the work of Daniel Pacl of Austin, a freelance artist and avid angler, who describes himself as “an overall fishy dude”. His art is very much geared toward fishing. Daniel is a fishing guide on Lake Lady Bird. (This lake, formerly called Town Lake, is the best kept secret in Austin, he says.) In addition to catching lots of fish, he has won awards for fish taxidermy.

“As an artist, pen and ink has always been my specialty,” says Daniel, “but I am quickly falling in love with painting.” He has painted everything from guitars to boots, but this mural on the side of Marty’s Landing is the largest painting he has ever done.

Assisted by Port O’Connor local, Jeremy Riddle, who held the ladder and adjusted the lights, Daniel created the mural over a period of about a month, usually working four nights a week, (nights to avoid the heat and brightness of the sun.)

Returning to Austin, Daniel will be working on a line of T-shirts and custom fly boxes, under the brand name “FISHTHIRTY”. His slogan is: “Real anglers know what time it is.” He is also seeking more work as an artist, designer, writer, and is open to painting more murals to further beautify our town.

Pictures of his artwork and his fishing photos can be viewed at: Instagram/itsalwaysfishthirty. His website,, will soon be up and pen and ink drawing prints will soon be available at Marty’s Landing. You can contact Daniel Pacl at:

Busy, Busy, Busy With “Friends!” by Virginia Dell Lichac

Archived in the category: Events, General Info, Organizations
Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 17 Sep 15 - 0 Comments

The Hot Diggity Dog shindig on Saturday, August 29 was a hit! We took in almost $2,000 with sale of T-shirts, renewals and new memberships and the donation box! 150 hot dogs barbecued by “The Man”—Virgil Price were scarfed down with trimmings of delicious chili and sauerkraut. Jerry Lichac cut five huge chilled watermelons which were devoured with equal enthusiasm! Our cute Student Advisors manned a lemonade stand offering a cool drink for 25 cents, their profit going toward student activities. The day was gorgeous with a lovely breeze under the front beach pavilion. Many thanks to Pam Ray for masterminding the fun event and kudos to many others that pitched in for fun and food!

Night Under Texas Stars is rapidly approaching on Saturday, September 19 from 6-9pm at the Sanctuary. Tickets are still being sold for this major fundraising extravaganza and “Friends” will be hosting fifteen Texas authors for an elegant evening of dining and socializing with guests and authors. Please contact Joanie Morgan to get your tickets at The Treasure Chest and plan on spending a lovely evening with like-minded reading enthusiasts. If you have a silent auction item to donate, please let “Friends” know. We would like as many items as possible that are literary related.

Save Saturday, October 24 for the annual Chili/Gumbo Cook-off at Hooper’s Bar and Grill. His new restaurant is still in the process of being completed, but Jim Hooper assures that he still plans to host the event this year as he has for the last several years. Hoop is an ardent supporter of “Friends” and the goal to build a new bigger and better library in little Port O’Connor! Of course, he wants a goodly number of cooks to put their culinary skills to work and silent auction items will be sought and welcomed!

Photos by Bill Tigrett

Photos by Bill Tigrett

Seadrift Sets Tax Rate, Budget for Year

Archived in the category: General Info, Organizations
Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 17 Sep 15 - 0 Comments

After having held two workshops and a public hearing, Seadrift City Council voted to adopt the tax rate for the year 2015-2016 of $0.500000 per $100, a slight increase from last year’s rate of $0.496600 per $100.

The Budget for the year was also adopted:

General Fund = $529,464. This includes administration and office expense, capital outlay, elected officials salaries, election expenses, employee salaries, general employee expense, legal and professional services, Municipal Court expense, Parks & Recreation maintenance and upkeep, property maintenance and upkeep, property insurance, public health and safety expense, services contracted, and streets and drainage maintenance and upkeep.

Harbor = $77,014. This includes capital outlay, series 2010 certificates, employee expense, legal and professional services, and harbor maintenance and upkeep.

Hotel/Motel = $23,050. This includes capital outlay, eligible property (depot/museum, civic center, sports plex, sports plex museum/visitor center parking, AD Powers Park pavilion, Ad Powers Park pier), promotions and advertising, and administrative expense (annual audit fee).

Details of the annual budget may be obtained at City Hall.

Mayor DeForest announced that the City has been awarded a Texas Department of Agriculture – Community Development Block grant of $275,000 to be used for sewer/water upgrades. The bulk of the grant will be used for installing a sewer main from the Grape Street Lift Station eastward down East Pine to the Blasingim Addition and then down Blasingim Road and connecting all structures to City Sewer and upgrading the water line in Blasingim Road and installing a fire hydrant at the end of Blasingim Road, plus replacing a 2” water line with a 6” water line down Armstrong Road and Cemetery Road, plus some water plant repairs, funds permitting.

Council entertained a request by Seadrift resident Tom Miller to improve and use as access the 10’ easement intersecting Oakland at 3rd Street between block 208 Lot B and block 200 Lot 12. Mr. Miller asked to be permitted to lay gravel on the easement in order to make his driveway wide enough to access the back of his property. Council had no objections, stipulating that there should be no building, blocking, or parking on the easement, as the easement remains public property.

Mayor DeForest informed the Council of the resignation of Municipal Court Judge Janet Rosenboom, who will be taking a position in Fort Worth, Texas. The Mayor has appointed Wesley Hunt, Justice of the Peace Precinct #4, as part-time Municipal Judge to fill the term of Municipal Judge from September 1, 2015 through May 31, 2016.

Police Chief Leonard Bermea introduced Officer Robert Montero. Officer Montero, a recent graduate from the Police Academy in San Antonio, is currently working part-time while seeking a permanent residence in Seadrift.

Seadrift City Council meets the first Tuesday of each month, 7:00 p.m. at City Hall. All residents are encouraged to attend where they can hear detailed reports from the various departments, learn of upcoming and ongoing projects, and have an opportunity to voice any concerns they may have.

Seadrift Police Officer Robert Montero

Seadrift Police Officer Robert Montero

Island Life… by Clint Bennetsen

Archived in the category: Featured Writers, General Info, Island Life
Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 17 Sep 15 - 0 Comments

Beneficial Late Summer Rain

Greetings from the island everyone. Hope all of you are doing well and enjoying these cooler mornings lately. You can certainly tell that the first day of Fall is Wednesday, the 23rd, and I’m ready for it! The older I get, not that I’m old, the less tolerable I am of the scorching heat and humidity.

Well after going through the middle of summer with practically no rain, the skies have opened up recently and blessed us with a nice drenching! The island has gotten close to 10 inches of heavenly water the past few weeks, enough to keep my rain tanks filled and help replenish the water table for the wells. I was beginning to get concerned about the lack of rain, but God has answered prayers in regards to that.

It’s amazing how quickly everything begins to come to life and turn green again after a nice soaking of rain. The island grasses and flowers add color to the fields and make the terrain much more pleasant to look at.

With summer nearly over, the number of weekend islanders will begin to dwindle now, and the island will become much quieter, as Fall and Winter slowly make their way across the bay. I’ll start stocking up on books to read during those days of inclement winter weather when I’m stuck inside. But I like the winter months, the peaceful solitude gives a person time to reflect and appreciate what they have, and the special people that have blessed their lives.

I’ve been trying to get in better shape lately, and a big part of that endeavor are morning and evening walks on the beach, seeing the beautiful gulf waters and witnessing stunning morning sunrises. But an early morning 7:00 a.m. beach walk a few weeks ago, turned out to be quite the opposite of an enjoyable and healthy stroll. About a mile into my walk, I came upon the drowned bodies of one, and then two, fishermen that were thrown from their boat in rough surf waters.

A third man was able to stay inside the boat until a Coast Guard helicopter from Corpus Christi arrived and landed on the beach, and the rescue swimmer swam out and brought him back onto the beach. My heart and prayers go out to the families of these two lost men, leaving this world while doing what they loved.

I cannot stress enough the respect that we must show to the seas, especially in rough waters, and the need to ALWAYS wear a life jacket in these conditions.

Well, that’s it from the island for now. Everyone take care and enjoy these cooler early Fall mornings that are upon us.

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