ARCHIVE: Lively Live Music Venues Rock Leon Springs

Story and photograph by Pamela Price

This story originally appeared in the Leon Springs Community News, July 2010 edition.

The stage at Scenic Loop Cafe (Image copyright Pamela Price)

Live music has been part of the Leon Springs community at least since the days when locals and Camp Stanley soldiers mingled at the old “B-29 Club.”

Recently and as the community has become suburban in character, a crop of new restaurants pairing music and food has appeared. Of these, the majority are open-air, family friendly venues that provide residents of all ages a chance to enjoy live performances under starry skies.

To help readers explore the combo food and music scene better, we’ve put together this overview of neighborhood hotspots. For more detailed information on upcoming musical acts–including ticket prices, please visit the venues’ respective websites except where noted.

Leon Springs Dance Hall – The big, eye-catching barn went up alongside IH-10 in the early 1990s, giving then-upstart musicians like The Dixie Chicks a place to perform. Things at the dance hall have been comparatively slow the last several years, but that will change in August. Thanks to a new booking agent, the venue will feature local and national acts Thursday through Saturday evenings. Owner Richard Ojeda promises Sundays will be family friendly with cheap eats, snow cones, popcorn and a moon bounce, too. 24135 W IH-10 • 210-698-7070 • Continue reading “ARCHIVE: Lively Live Music Venues Rock Leon Springs”

ARCHIVE: Getting Out of the House (Dominion Business Center profile)

Story and photograph by Pamela Price

Bobby Freeman (Image copyright Pamela Price)

This story originally appeared in the Leon Springs Community News, July 2010 edition.

The world of work is changing rapidly. Take for instance the rise of telecommuting, which is increasingly popular not only because employees enjoy the flexibility and convenience it affords but also because entrepreneurs and business owners have discovered it’s budget-savvy.

Trouble is, if you’ve spent your week working in pajamas at your “virtual office,” then your real house isn’t always presentable for clients or teleconferencing. And then there are the inevitable distractions—phone marketers, the doorbell, Facebook, telenovelas—and, perhaps most troublesome, the loneliness one can encounter when stuck at home all day.

“People want to work from home but not ‘be’ at home,” said Bobby Freeman, co-owner of the Dominion Business Center. Freeman opened the company in May with partners Ryan Kohnen and Dennis Stanko, “Sometimes when you’re working from home, you need to get out and see life, conduct some business.”

The Dominion Business Center provides support for folks in that predicament via a cheerful suite of conference-style rooms in a building at 4 Dominion Drive. The bulk of the center’s clients include computer firms, marketing and public relations professionals, entrepreneurs, and consultants. One local title company uses the site now for some closings.

“It’s a professional meeting space where my staff and I can gather. We all run virtual offices most of the time, working from home, coffee shops and restaurants,” said Debi Pfitzenmaier of PfitzPR. “Frankly, I got tired of smelling like coffee, having business meetings at restaurants and, as my business grew, I really didn’t want to continue using my home address as my business address. Dominion Business Center gave me a professional and affordable option. I can host clients there, give presentations and hold face to face brainstorming and collaborative meetings.” Continue reading “ARCHIVE: Getting Out of the House (Dominion Business Center profile)”

ARCHIVE: Farmer’s Market Celebrates Local Food, Nurtures Community


Image copyright Pamela Price


Story and photograph by Pamela Price

This story originally appeared in the Leon Springs Community News, July 2010 edition.

When it comes to open-air markets featuring fresh fruits and vegetables, it’s the large, urban Pearl Farmer’s Market that gets most press coverage locally. As it happens, the more intimate Leon Springs Farmer’s Market is slightly older and has its own dedicated fan base. Plus, seeing as it’s situated between Leon Creek and the emerald-green hills from which the community’s namesake spring gurgles forth, the market’s air is fresher, too.

Admittedly, this reporter is partial to our community’s Saturday morning market, having been a customer since it’s inception. In interest of full disclosure, I’ve helped prepare the market’s newsletter and pitched in with special projects over the last two years, too.

It doesn’t take an insider to appreciate the market’s unusual history, however. Founded in August 2007, the market came to be when then-city council candidate Mario Obledo promised Leon Springs voters that he’d create a market for them even if he didn’t win election.

Yes, Obledo lost his bid for the District 8 seat, but Leon Springs landed a market manager. Continue reading “ARCHIVE: Farmer’s Market Celebrates Local Food, Nurtures Community”

ARCHIVE: Sidewalks would support local “green” lifestyle

Trish Baker, Leon Springs Resident

Story and photo by Pamela Price

This story originally appeared in the Leon Springs Community News, June 2010 edition.

For Trish Baker, crossing Boerne Stage Road near the Baywater Stage bridge is a daily habit.

“I go across the street to visit friends at the [Stage Run] neighborhood pool and at their home. I go to garage sales, as well,” says Baker, a resident of The Lodge at Leon Springs who uses a scooter. “I travel down it to H.E.B. and to my primary care doctor’s office and also to my allergy doctor at different times.”

One of Baker’s caregivers, Kay Anders, says of Baker, “She loves to go anywhere… or just travel around looking at the plants in the Hill Country. She loved looking at the wild flowers when they were in bloom.”

Does the regular Boerne Stage Road traveler consider the historic roadway safe for pedestrians?

“No, not all, because of the need for a walkway, or sidewalks, away from the highway,” Baker says, adding “Being able to use or cross Boerne Stage, on my own and not feel afraid, or unsafe because of the traffic, is extremely important to me as a stroke survivor… I have been able to make friends in different areas and maintain a sense of independence because of the road. A sidewalk would make so many lives easier and safer.”

As Leon Springs transitions from a semi-rural to suburban community, foot traffic on Boerne Stage appears to be increasing slowly. Continue reading “ARCHIVE: Sidewalks would support local “green” lifestyle”

ARCHIVE: Summit Christian Academy Students Brighten Lives of Children in Haiti

Story by Pamela Price

 Originally printed in May 2010 issue of Leon Springs Community News

In the wake of Haiti’s catastrophic earthquake in February, one small local school challenged students to think imaginatively about how they could help survivors.

“We don’t like to sell stuff to raise funds because that gets really old, so we asked our students to create ways to give of themselves,” said Shantel Leininger, marketing coordinator for Summit Christian Academy. “We also asked the kids how many of them slept in a bed last night, and then we told them how many children in Haiti had slept in the mud, on the ground.”

Recalling her reaction to learning about the many lives lost and uprooted by the tragedy, kindergarten student Grace Doss replied, “I felt really, really sad and we were praying for them.”

“We challenged the children to go home and ask for extra chores, offer to mow neighbors lawns and pull weeds,” said Leininger. “Then, rather than taking the money for themselves, we encouraged them to donate the funds.”

Doss donated all of her chore money, earned from helping with laundry and yard work. Her parents matched her $15 donation. Other students also asked their parents to reallocate money for family dinners out and ice cream shop trips to help Haitian children, too. Continue reading “ARCHIVE: Summit Christian Academy Students Brighten Lives of Children in Haiti”

ARCHIVE: Retired Trooper Tinkers with Tomatoes

Story and photo by Pamela Price

Originally printed in May 2010 issue of Leon Springs Community News

Henry Brune, Jr. of Leon Springs, Texas (Image copyright 2010, Pamela Price)

Although he retired as a sergeant from the Texas Department of Public Safety two years ago, Henry Brune, Jr. is still engaged with the law enforcement world. Currently he serves as president of the International Association of Auto Theft Investigators. Yet when he’s not fulfilling his presidential duties or traveling with his wife, Brune occupies himself in the couple’s ample garden in the Stage Coach Hills subdivision.

“I don’t grow potatoes or corn or anything that I can get cheaper at the store,” says Brune, gesturing to a large plot filled with young plants growing inside large tin cans to ward off pests.

Brune and his wife, Marjorie, moved into this house 1978, and they’ve gardened here ever since. They’ve cultivated vegetables in this location so long, in fact, that the trees in his and a neighboring yard have begun to compete with the largest of two gardens for sunlight.

“We grow things like tomatoes, peppers, okra, sugar snap peas. We’ve got cucumbers over there that grow well on a fence, Brune says. Continue reading “ARCHIVE: Retired Trooper Tinkers with Tomatoes”

HOAs Organize Volunteers for Service Projects

Story and photographs by Pamela Price

Originally printed in April 2010 issue of Leon Springs Community News 

Bill Vogle, far right, and Stage Run volunteers


While homeowners’ associations (HOAs) are most commonly thought of in their capacity to enforce covenant rules and restrictions, Leon Springs groups coordinate service and social activities for residents, too.

Take for instance the Stage Run HOA. On a recent sunny day in the neighborhood park, volunteer Bill Vogl stood before a small group of his fellow homeowners with a handmade poster board sign. Behind him, two children and their mother gathered trash and fallen limbs. In the parking lot sat a bright yellow sanitation truck on loan courtesy of Keep San Antonio Beautiful. Continue reading “HOAs Organize Volunteers for Service Projects”