Category Archives: Events

Moving Beyond, Part 1

Four years ago, we knew we wanted to do a website for our community/history project, Voices of the Violet Crown. When we launched it July 5, 2011, we envisioned having maybe a year’s worth of stories to share with neighbors, both near and far. Since then, we have filled up our corner of the blogosphere with posts, features, videos, photos, and community links and news. In 2003, we began our project with exhibits—history, maps, community … Read more

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Common Ground of Community

In early 2003, when a small group of us neighbors (soon to become the nonprofit Violet Crown Community Works) envisioned the very first Violet Crown Festival, the heart of the event was clear: See that Jean Graham’s mosaic Wall of Welcome becomes a reality. Celebrate the Brentwood and Crestview neighborhoods, which we see as sharing many common concerns and goals. Bring together all elements of the community—individuals of all ages, schools, neighborhood associations, community groups, … Read more

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The Kind of Neighborhood It Is, Part 2

In 2010, we interviewed members of the Friends of Brentwood Park leadership team shortly before the group’s historic planting of 115 trees that November. Among them was Denman Glober, who defined synergy as: The abilities and interactions between group members that build on each other and lead to accomplishing a greater goal. Since FOBP officially adopted Brentwood Park in Summer 2009, the group has accomplished a lot—tree planting and dedication; neighborhood survey and park master … Read more

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The Kind of Neighborhood It Is, Part 1

When I heard about Crestview Neighborhood Association’s Volunteer Appreciation Party, coming up on April 9, 2012, it got me thinking about all the different ways people contribute to our community. Don Gresser and his wife, Gladys, had lived in Crestview for 61 years when we interviewed them in March 2009. In telling us about their lives, more than once they mentioned how they volunteered for one project or another. For many years, they helped distribute … Read more

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Lowdown on the W.O.W. and More, Part 2

“People are the real heart of this neighborhood’s history,” narrator Howard Bennett says in our film A Community Mosaic. “Our community has more stories than there are mosaic pieces on our amazing Wall of Welcome.” Curious to learn more about Brentwood and Crestview, we began gathering stories from neighbors through our project Voices of the Violet Crown. We’re grateful to all who shared them, especially those who had helped with the mosaic wall. (Check out … Read more

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Lowdown on the W.O.W. and More, Part 1

Seems like only yesterday! Late March is highlighted by anniversaries of a few historic—yet very recent—Brentwood/Crestview events. On the evening of March 25, 2008, with little fanfare, Jean Graham completed the mosaic Wall of Welcome (W.O.W.), left, on Woodrow Avenue in Austin. For Jean, it was the culmination of more than five years of creative focus—designing the wall, raising funds, researching neighborhood history, crafting mosaics, leading tile-making workshops for neighbors, and spending two years installing … Read more

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Blooming Where You’re Planted, Part 1

Even the most seasoned meteorologists missed it. A dry winter was predicted at the end of 2011, which was the driest year on record in Texas. Instead, surprise winter rains have brought some long-absent green back to Brentwood and Crestview. It’s still early, but spring’s on its way, and we’re turning more of our attention to our local greenscape. Community events by Friends of Brentwood Park, Sunshine Community Gardens, and Urban Patchwork Neighborhood Farms are … Read more

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Let There Be Luminarias!

Since 1994, luminarias have been a highlight of the holidays in our neighborhood, and this year is no exception. Thanks to the generosity of many neighbors, Arroyo Seco will once again glow with candlelight on the evenings of December 21-25. Brentwood neighbors started the luminaria project to celebrate the planting of more than 250 trees along Hancock Creek between Koenig and Justin in 1992. (More about Hancock Creek beginning here.) Lately, the project has continued … Read more

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The Gift Must Always Move

With Thanksgiving coming up, we’d like to acknowledge just a few of all who have encouraged us in our Voices of the Violet Crown community/history project, especially since 2007: Neighbors, friends, and family, who purchased copies of our film A Community Mosaic and book From Abercrombie to the Violet Crown, and Crestview Shopping Center businesses that helped sell them—Crestview Barber Shop, Crestview Beauty Salon, and Crestview Pharmacy. Texas Oral History Association, for acknowledging our project … Read more

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A Salute to Violet Crown Veterans, Part 2

Our special series for Veterans Day concludes with stories about Bob Harwood, Ben Petmecky, and Emory Muehlbrad and video clips of John Carlson and Bill Williamson talking about veterans settling in Crestview as it was being developed in the late 1940s and early 1950s. BOB HARWOOD Bob was awarded the Silver Star and Purple Heart for his service in the Army during World War II. He enlisted in February 1942 and served in the 6th … Read more

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