Villa Finale: Museum & Gardens, the final home of local preservationist Walter Nold Mathis and the only National Trust for Historic Preservation site in Texas, recently became the recipient of a generous grant from the King William Association.  This grant helps to ensure that Villa Finale’s educational series for children and families continues to thrive. 

Blue Star Contemporary fulfills our mission to inspire, nurture, and innovate through contemporary art in part through our MOSAIC Student Artist Program, led by renowned muralist and our Artist-in-Residence Alex Rubio.  Students are mentored five days a week, after school and during summers, for an intensive, year-round, arts education.  Students participate in BSC’s programs and also attend workshops, lectures and exhibitions at local cultural institutions and artist studios to gain further exposure to the city’s artistic landscape.

Student exhibitions and public art projects, which include a large hand-made mosaic mural at H-E-B’s East Side location and the River Walk’s Compass Rose designating the city’s geographic center, become part of San Antonio and its vibrant and rich visual culture.

Our hands make us human.  We are different, for both good and bad, from all the other living things on our Earth, because of what we can do with our hands.  True, our simian brethren can make and use simple tools, but I doubt the average silverback gorilla is going to engrave treasury notes or sculpt the next David. 

The difference lies in our ability to do very fine work emphasizing highly sensitive control of pressure applied by our fingers and the ability to grasp and manipulate very small objects like engraving tools, bobbins and thread for lace making, rosin-coated bows and micro-surgical tools.

To celebrate the King William Association’s 50th anniversary, two Christmas ornaments were created.  The ceramic ornament is from a Caroline Shelton 1977 watercolor print and costs $10.  The metal ornament was designed by Mike Schroeder using a window hood from 323 Adams Street and costs $20.  

Come by the King William office to purchase.  Your support is appreciated!

Dear King William Friends,

Hopefully everyone is enjoying the cooler weather.  It’s always a great time to be in San Antonio as the summer heat gives way to the arrival of fall and its mild temperatures.  For many, this change in weather allows folks to enjoy the outdoors and take care of projects that were delayed until triple-digit temperatures became a distant memory. 

The KWA awarded The Cannoli Fund a community grant for 2017-2018 that will help fund two programs of our animal welfare group that works in greater King William and Lavaca.  

One of the programs is new: SOS: Save Our Strays.  Our organization does not rescue stray animals itself, but provides advice, access to resources and financial assistance for neighbors who do.  Stray dogs and cats have roamed the streets of King William for decades.  In the past, our Cannolicare program, which provides financial assistance for major veterinary care, has supported neighbors rescuing these animals.  Although Cannolicare officially provides $400 per animal towards veterinary care, we have often increased that amount to help save strays that suffer from at least one serious and costly medical condition, like heartworm disease.  

For many years, the King William Association has been proud to award grants to schools and nonprofit organizations in the King William area.  The mission of the Association is to promote its residents’ educational, cultural and recreational pursuits, as well as to preserve the neighborhood’s historic structures and the diversity of its people.  

In an annual competitive process, organizations submit a grant application outlining their missions and goals, describing the program or project for which funding is requested and how such funding will address the needs of the organization, and explaining how their project fulfills the Association’s mission. 

If you’ve ever needed a first responder in an emergency, you know how helpful they can be.  What do you know about our own fire department?

The SAFD consists of 51 fire stations and 1800 uniformed and civilian employees.  First responders provide service to well over 1 million citizens and visitors within a response area covering over 460 square miles. SAFD responded to over 167,000 emergency incidents in 2015 with medical emergencies accounting for more than 80 percent of total calls.  Through careful resource management, the San Antonio Fire Department (SAFD) has one of the lowest response times and property damage rate for cities of comparable size.  

The sign on the door said “Closed during August,” but there was a lot of action inside the San Antonio Art League & Museum.  Downstairs, volunteers and board members were carefully sliding out paintings by the Onderdonks, William Merritt Chase and Jose Arpa from their storage spaces as they documented and tagged the 600+ artworks in the League’s Permanent Collection.  Meanwhile, the old Gift Shop was being scaled down to provide more exhibition space.  Upstairs, SAAL&M members were putting together a salon-style Members Gallery that will showcase work by nine different artists every two months.  

Adding to the mix was excitement and anticipation about the blockbuster September exhibit, a solo show by James Wyatt Hendricks, the Art League’s Artist of the Year for 2017. If you haven’t seen it, it’s up until October 22, and it’s not to be missed.  Hendriks’ interpretation of Myth and Hero in metal, resin, paint and Prismacolor fills the gallery with magic. 

Do you want to be part of The Party with a Purpose year-round?  When you join the Fiesta San Antonio Commission, you become part of a proud tradition celebrating San Antonio’s culture and diversity – and receive benefits all year long!  

Just some of the benefits you will have access to include your very own exclusive annual Fiesta® member medal, special discounts, early access to tickets and opportunities for discounted advertising through the Fiesta® Commission.

Even the signs and advertisements that proclaim “Back to School” have begun to disappear after their fervid flowering at the end of August.  I’m back in the classroom and so is my latest crop of graduate students.  The economy is strong, and they all have part time jobs in the architects’ offices where most of them are likely to begin their post-graduate careers.  Finding an opening as an undergraduate isn’t so easy; employers aren’t as likely to be charitable about less developed skills and translucent resumes. 

Every August at the KWA General Membership meeting the slate for next year’s board members are named by the nominating committee in addition members have an opportunity to nominate a qualified member “from the floor”.  This year we have nine returning board members and six new members.  Elections will be held at the September 6 General Membership meeting.  Please come out, vote and meet your board members.  

September 11, 2017 is a special date for the King William Association (KWA) and neighborhood.  It’s the sixth anniversary of the designation of the King William Cultural Arts District (KWCAD) by the Board of Governors of the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Ours was the first Cultural Arts District in San Antonio, and is distinguished by being one of few in the state that was sponsored by a neighborhood group and not a city government. Since then, Zona Cultural, sponsored by the City, was named San Antonio’s second cultural arts district in 2015.  This downtown district is supported by Centro San Antonio, a collection of downtown organizations with a goal to keep San Antonio vibrant. 

New members welcome!

Books of every description – new, old, fiction, nonfiction, bestsellers, obscuriana. 

Meets last Monday of each month, 6:30 p.m.,at Liberty Bar. 

For more information contact Annice Hill at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Over 23 years ago a group of King William neighbors were working and planning a program.  Neighborhood leaders, who realized the urgent need in the community for youth development programming with a critical emphasis on the arts, launched SAY Sí.  Starting from very humble beginnings, but with admirable ideals, the program quickly grew. 

After 23 years we have broadened our philosophy beyond arts education to join an international movement, creative youth development.  At the forefront, SAY Sí has successfully shown that creative communities help young people succeed.

One last look.  I’m standing in the now empty house that I’ve loved and labored over for almost eleven years.  It looks for all the world like the last scene from Checkhov’s Cherry Orchard.  There is the shadow of a banjo clock on the wall at the landing where its rhythmic ticking acted as the beating heart of the place.  The chandelier with its Edison bulbs in the dining room now floats over empty space, no table to illuminate.  The built-in china cabinet is void of its contents, its mirrored back reflecting nothing but daylight filtered through lace curtains. 

The 85th legislative Session was certainly challenging; however, our office had some victories, two of which I want to share with you here.

SB 725, also known as the Student Fairness in Feeding Act, was developed as a result of my visits with educators from all 55 public schools in my district.  No matter which school district, these educators identified chronic hunger of students as a problem, yet ripe, edible, and wrapped food was being thrown away daily.  Schools want to give their kids this food, but fear of violating policy kept them from doing so.  The bill permits schools to have an on-campus food pantry that allows schools to collect the food that would have previously been thrown away to give to their hungry children.  I will continue to fight for Texas children, especially those most vulnerable.

Steel City Pops opened at the end of June and is one of the new businesses at 812 S. Alamo Street (behind Credit Human).  Originally started in 2012 by Alabama native Jim Watkins, the business is still family-owned and branched out to Texas.  A new King William neighbor, Ben Cleveland, is the General Manager.  Ben is from Alabama but married to a San Antonio native, so moving here was an easy decision. 

 

In 1986 the King William Association announced in its newsletter that it wanted to mark its 20th anniversary with house address signs which included “Est. 1967.”  The original oval plaques were designed and custom made by KWA member Bob Bradley using wood and silkscreen printing.

The design and material has changed over the years as different contractors were selected.  The “Est. 1967” remains on the plaque to remind all of our Association’s beginnings.  The KWA currently has plaques available for $60 if you would like to purchase one for your home. 

- Cherise Bell

Hooray for another great July 4th Regatta in King William!  The Regatta is organized by the near-mythical King William Yacht Club for the happy purpose of enjoying our neighbors and our neighborhood by cruising our portion of the San Antonio River.  The canoe and kayak races kicked off the festivities, but just-for-fun paddlers were the heart of the celebration.  Mike Casey was the only original KW Yacht Club member who participated in the paddling this year.  Mike brought his singular style and grace to the canoe he shared with new neighbor Monica.  

I’m looking forward to an extraordinarily long Fourth of July holiday this year.  Thanks to the happy news on the calendar, I see it occurs on a Tuesday.  I’ll do what millions of my countrymen will do and take Monday off, stretching this to a four-day escape from the cares of business as usual. 

If Memorial Day was any predictor, I’d like to be on the back porch with a cup of coffee or glass of wine (depending on the hour), savoring the sight of a tropical downpour cascading through the pecan trees.

The groundbreaking for the Linda Pace Foundation’s new structure, conceived by its founder Linda Pace (1945-2007) and designed by acclaimed architect Sir David Adjaye, took place on May 31 at 150 Camp Street off of S. Flores Street.  The modern crimson-hued building will house the Foundation’s growing collection of more than 800 paintings, sculptures, installations and video works by contemporary artists from around the world.  The $16 million project, which includes a 14,000-square-foot, two-story building, is privately funded by the Linda Pace Foundation.  In addition to Adjaye Associates as the design architects, the local teams that are working on the building project include Alamo Architects.

At the March 5, 2014 membership meeting, revised bylaws were presented and approved with exceptions.  The exceptions caused duplications and duplicate numbering to occur.  Brad Shaw, Parliamentarian, has renumbered the bylaws and will be presenting the corrected bylaws at the August 2, 2017 KWA General Membership meeting. 

According to the KWA Bylaws ARTICLE X11 AMENDMENTS:

These By-Laws may be amended by a two-thirds majority vote of the active members present and voting at any general meeting of the Association where a quorum is present, provided that the proposed amendment has been presented in writing by the Parliamentarian to the general membership at least two weeks prior to voting. 

If you wish to see the renumbered bylaws prior to the member meeting, please come to the KWA office or go the KWA member portal on our website at www.ourkwa.org

- Cherise Bell

 

Amols’, our iconic novelty and party store on S. Flores Street, will be moving a couple of miles up the road toward the Deco District soon, and owners Jeffrey and Maritza Weiss aren’t happy to go.  After 55 years at their current location, the decision to move is a very emotional one.  The neighborhood went through hard times, but Jeffrey’s grandfather, founder Julian Amols, stuck it out at the same address downtown.  Julian loved the central location with easy access to highways on both sides.  

“I grew up here – this is our home.  I have always worked here and we love this neighborhood and location,” said Jeffrey.  He grew up working with his grandfather and took over the business in 1991.