Kennard FFA wildlife managemant team

(Photo by Lane Hoy/ Kennard Agricultural Sciences Instructor)(Photo by Lane Hoy/ Kennard Agricultural Sciences Instructor)

On Oct. 19 the Kennard FFA wildlife management team participated in the area wildlife contest, placing second and being eligible to attend the regional contest that is held at SFA on Nov. 1. This contest challenges the knowledge of plant and wildlife identification as well as best management practices for selected areas. The contestants include Jess Barclay, Dylan Cole, Preston Mooneyham and Justus Hooper.

Lovelady Teacher Studies With Distinguished Scholars At UT

Special To The HCCourier

A Lovelady ISD teacher was selected to attend "Teaching the American Literary Tradition," a professional development institute sponsored by Humanities Texas, the College of Liberal Arts at The University of Texas at Austin (UT) and the Harry Ransom Center.
Lisa Sullivan, who teaches English Language Arts at Lovelady Junior High/High School, was one of 50 Texas public school teachers invited to the Austin institute, which took place from June 6-9.
The program consisted of three days of dynamic presentations and small-group seminars covering central topics in American literary history, including the literature of the Civil War era and the Gilded Age, the Harlem Renaissance, the rhetoric of the civil rights movement and Southwest and Latino literature in the twentieth century.
Randall Fuller, Chapman Professor of English at the University of Tulsa, discussed the American literary tradition in his keynote lecture.
Other faculty included Cody Marrs of the University of Georgia; Debra Moddelmog of Ohio State University; Roger Reeves of the University of Illinois at Chicago; John Phillip Santos of The University of Texas at San Antonio; Julie Buckner Armstrong of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg; Eric Lupfer of Humanities Texas and Phillip J. Barrish, Evan B. Carton, Oscar Cásares, Coleman Hutchison, David Kornhaber, Julie A. Minich and Jennifer M. Wilks of The University of Texas at Austin.

"It's important to attend trainings that offer grade-appropriate topics and professional development that elicits higher level thinking. Humanities Texas offers both of these. It's also beneficial to discuss literature with peers from other schools," said Sullivan.

"Humanities Texas was pleased to cosponsor 'Teaching the American Literary Tradition,'" said Executive Director Michael L. Gillette. "Giving talented teachers the opportunity to interact with their peers and leading scholars will enable them to engage students with exciting new perspectives on our nation's history."

"Teaching the American Literary Tradition" was made possible with support from the State of Texas and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Humanities Texas is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Its mission is to advance education through programs that improve the quality of classroom teaching, support libraries and museums and create opportunities for lifelong learning for all Texans.

For more information about Humanities Texas, visit For information about The University of Texas at Austin, visit For more information about the Harry Ransom Center, visit

Young Thespians Prepare For ‘Aladdin’ Production

The Missoula Children's' Theatre is a nationally-touring theatre company conducting a week-long theatre residency in Crockett this week.

Monday morning, June 13, the Missoula staff conducted auditions for Houston County children to participate in their production of "Aladdin."

Besides rehearsing and putting on a full-length professionally-produced show, the children will also participate in workshops focusing on movement for acting; stage make-up and the actor's tools: concentration, memorization and imagination.
The Piney Woods Fine Arts Association presents this opportunity every year free of charge.

This year's cast is: Aladdin, Kaylee Brownwell; Scheherazade, Addie Coldiron; Dinazade, Rachel Cutler; Aladdin's Mother, Deborah Bolden; Mysterias One, Victoria Hanna; Princess Dory, Megan Gentry; Sultan, Camryn Craven; Grand Vizier, Hannah Owens; Donkey, Emma Gibson; Goat, Emily Streetman; Ali Baba, Katie Bradshaw; and Cassim, Rachel Connell.

Also in the cast are Palm Trees, Nicole Martinez and Logan Ray; Genies, Preslie Beavers, Isabel Hewett and Megan Pennington; Sinbad, Rocko Bishop; Sailors, Brenna Ashley, Emily Ackley, Carmen Coldiron, Kaycee' Deckard, Elena Hewett, Hannah Hickson, Jason Johnson, Olivia Mates, Raylee McLain, Joseph Meador, Kimberly Myers, Sarah Schwingdorf; Camels, Dakota Boone, Kaelyn Marcelo-Ramirez and Adam Redding; and Wonders, Logan Dilli, Lauren Gentry, Crystal Johnson, Kaitlynn Patterson and Hayden Ray.

Vagabonds will be portrayed by Riley Beaver, Claire Catoe, Lillian Fults, Taylor Hickson, Avery Huffstuttler, Hanna Huffstuttler, Ashlynn Long, Maklory Mintor, Kennedy Patterson and Gaven Salmon.

Penguins will be played by Landry Beaver, Katie Gentry, Edward Hewett, Kendall Hickson, William Mathis, Daniel McLain, Desmond Reddig and Ryan Young.

Assistant directors include Jamie Brownwell, George Brownwell and Yazaret Marcello-Ramirez.

The Genie-Tour Actor/Director is Jordan Brooks and the Director-Tour Actor/Director is Molly Malady.

The kids will perform two shows this Saturday, June 18 at 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. at the Crockett Civic Center.

The box office at the civic center will open one hour prior to the start of each performance.

Tickets are general admission, $3 for all children 18 and younger and $6 for adults. Tickets are available at the door or the

PWFAA office located at 603 East Goliad Suite 203, across from the Crockett Post Office. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Cowboy Culture - They Start Young In Houston County

Retired cowboy Rick Hargrove shows off one of his Bingo Hickory quarter horses and her colt on a ranch he leases off FM 2022 in Houston County.  He still participates in team roping events with one of his horses. (Photo by Alton Porter/HCCourier)Retired cowboy Rick Hargrove shows off one of his Bingo Hickory quarter horses and her colt on a ranch he leases off FM 2022 in Houston County. He still participates in team roping events with one of his horses. (Photo by Alton Porter/HCCourier)

By Alton Porter
Courier Reporter
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Third Of An HCCourier Series

Rick Hargrove knew from the very beginning that he wanted to be a cowboy. So, he started practicing to become one at the tender age of three years old.

Then, starting in the mid-1980s as an adult making a living at cowboying, he practiced the vocation until his official retirement in 2002.

Although he might be officially retired from working cattle for others, Hargrove, 65, still ranches for himself and participates in team roping events.

He carries on his ranching practice on about 100 acres of land he owns at his homestead in the Grapeland School Independent District in Houston County and another 130 acres he leases off FM 2022.

Hargrove has 25 head of cattle and 15 horses of the Bingo Hickory Quarter Horse bloodline on the FM 2022 property.

"I came up on a farm," Hargrove said, noting that his family has been engaged in agriculture for many years. "We gardened and we farmed and we had cattle and horses," he explained.

"I've always been one," he said about being a cowboy. "I've enjoyed it."

He added, "I had my first horse when I was three years old. When I was five, I had a horse that threw me, and I spent 36 days and nights in Texas Children's Hospital for a broken arm.

Hargrove said his dad got rid of that horse, and the incident didn't deter him from wanting to become a cowboy. His dad got him another horse.

As a young fellow, he said he participated in calf roping and goat roping events, and graduated up to bull riding when he got a little older. "I rode bulls up until I graduated from high school," added Hargrove.

While in high school, he said he also worked on "a ranch – (Spanish Bit Plantation) -- down in Rosharon, Texas," where the owner "was one of the pioneers of the Brangus breed" of cattle, and who made his own Brangus cattle out of Brahma and Angus cows.

"The owner," Hargrove said, "had 30,000 acres down on the salt grass right on the water, and in the wintertime, he'd buy 3,000 cross-bred cows and we'd turn them out down there and put those Brangus bulls on them. And he'd bring them in during the spring. We'd gather everything, sell all the bred cows."

After high school graduation, Hargrove said, "I immediately joined the Navy. The Vietnam War was going on, and I spent four years in the Navy.

Hargrove said he worked as a welder for a few years. Then, came home. "I've always had horses, and calf roped and team roped," and he went to work for Skinner Brown in Crockett, who owned a lot of land and cattle.

After working several years for Brown, Hargrove said he teamed up with a good cowboy named Carroll Langham formerly of Latexo, who now lives in Grapeland, and they worked together 12-15 years.

Hargrove said "I got to winning so much in my team roping, I thought I could make a living doing it. So, I quit working cattle, and my son-in-law Billy Davenport took my place with Carroll. I tried to make a living team roping two or three years there, and I went broke.

"So, I got a job as a land man. I was leasing rentals around here for a while, and I still team roped. And I won a good bit. I always rode this Bingo Hickory horse that I had. And when he got too old, I found another one and I bought him. Then, I started raising them. I've been all over the country buying mares. And I breed those Bingo Hickory horses. That's what I do now. I'm still doing it. It's not much money in it, but it's enjoyable."

He continued, "I raise those horses and try to team rope a little bit. And I've been all over the country. Some of the guys who are big time now in NFR (National Finals Rodeo put on each year by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association), I roped for them when they were little kids. I came up with them, and I like to think I helped them get where they are."

When he was working as a cowboy to make a living at the trade, Hargrove said he did "everything a cowboy can do. I had dogs. I had all the equipment a (veterinarian) has. I did everything."

Some of those things included, catching wild cattle, penning cows, worming and vaccinating them, and pulling calves to help cows deliver them. "Anything a vet can do, all these cowboys have done," he said. "They're basically a cowboy and a vet."

Asked what he enjoyed most about cowboying, Hargrove said, "the penning part. Working the cattle with the horses, having the dogs bay them up, driving them to the pen. I enjoyed my dogs. That part was kind of enjoyable because you could see what your horse was made of. You shut the gate, let the cows by and hold the calves.

"After you get them to the pen, that's when the work starts. Then, you have to sort the cows off the calves, and you name it."
After the cows are sorted from the cows, treatments can be administered to the cows.

Asked what kept him going as a cowboy, Hargrove said, "It wasn't the money. It's just something that some people are born with. They just love it. You're in a different pasture nearly every day. All these cowboys work daywork. You see different things every day. Nothing's ever the same.

"Somebody might call you and say, 'I've had 20 people out here trying to catch this bull, and we can't catch him. We've had every cowboy in the county.' If they ever did that, if they call this guy I worked with – Carroll Langham – we never did come back without the bull or the cow or whatever it was. If nobody else could get him, we'd go get him."

Asked what he considers his biggest accomplishment as a cowboy, Hargrove said he was "pretty well known for having some of the best trained dogs. A lot of these younger cowboys now tell me 'your dogs were better than everybody else's.' I say, 'no, they weren't, I had the same dogs that everybody else had, mine just minded me.' My dogs would do exactly what I told them. I could call one dog out or all of them out. My dogs had a handle on them. That's kind of a cowboy expression meaning they would mind me to the word."

Asked if there was something he didn't like about cowboying, Hargrove said, "I enjoyed it all," adding, after pausing for a moment, "except the pay." He said, he and his co-worker charged more than other cowboys for the work they did, but they got it done fast and efficiently. We did our work and we got it done. A lot of days, we'd work a set of cows on four or five ranches. Maybe some of those younger hands could work only one set, while we worked four or five sets.

He said he did most of his cowboying in Houston County, but worked in Anderson and Leon counties as well. He added, he and his co-worker also had a customer down in South Texas near Beaumont.

Hargrove said he also participated in rodeos. "Two years in a row, I won the team roping event at the annual Myrtis Dightman rodeo in Crockett," he said, adding, one year, his team roping partner was Joel Lovell, and the other year, his partner was Lovell's son Coby Lovell, who currently goes to the NFR and is probably ranked in the top five in the event throughout the world. He said he did his participation in bull-riding when he was much younger, and he received several injuries from that participation.

He said Langham is the one cowboy he did most of his cowboying with, but he worked with others as well, including Billy Crowson, Ronnie Goolsby, Butch Arnold, Brandon Richburg and Caleb Rhone.

According to Hargrove, Klein Ranch was one of his biggest customers, adding most of his jobs were one-day deals, but he worked a week in the fall and a week in spring at Klein Ranch. Although most of the jobs were one-day assignments, he said he stayed busy, working six and seven days a week.

He said his days often got started at 7:30 or 8 a.m., and the work lasted until everything was all done, sometimes as late as midnight. He said there was no such thing as getting rained out. Instead they "got rained on," he added.

Asked what influenced him to become a cowboy, Hargrove said, "I just always wanted to be one. That's all I really ever wanted to do. I tried other ways of making a living. I didn't enjoy them. You know, you're here only one time on this earth. You might as well enjoy what you do.

"And, I was raised on a farm. I guess the first horse I rode was my granddaddy's plow horse. I was sitting up there on him as he was plowing. I guess I was two or three years old at that time. And my daddy bought me a little old horse" shortly after that from John Perkins of the former K Wolens department store in Crockett. Hargrove said that's the horse that he fell from, breaking his arm.

Hargrove said, "It's great to be able to do what you enjoy doing if you can make a living at it. Most cowboys are not real ambitious people. They enjoy what they do, and they know they're not going to get rich doing it. But that's just what they like to do."

What keeps him busy now, he said, is "I've got a few cows – about 25 head – and raising horses." He added, he also has about 20 white-tail deer and 30 axis deer on his property. He said he keeps deer so that his grandchildren have something to hunt, adding, "and they're very good to eat, especially the axis."

Latex Academic Teams Heading to State

Latexo Teams Headed to State

Latexo High School's UIL Academic teams were Regional runners up in 2A competition on April 23. Several individuals as well as teams are advancing to the state meet in Austin the last week in May. Team members include Jacob McCleod, Byron Williams, Raelynn Axelson, Rocko Bishop, Haylee Frizzell, Graycie Gibbins, Emma Johnston, Charles, Rothrock, Reese Filer, Sonny Townsend, Riley Catoe and Camryn Craven. The Current Issues and Math teams won first place. The Speech team placed first, also. Pictured are (back row) Riley Catoe, Charles Rothrock, Reese Filer, Sonny Townsend, Rocko Bishop, Byron Willias, Jacob McCleod, (front row) Graycie Gibbins, Camryn Craven, Emma Johnston, Raelynn Axelson and Haylee Frizzell. Last year, Latexo High School was Regional runner-up and State runner-up in Conference 2A. (Courtesy Photo)

Builders Association To Host Energy Code Training Class

The Deep East Texas Association of Builders, in conjunction with the Texas Association of Builders, is hosting a 2016 Energy Code Training class on May 12 at the Courtyard Marriott in Lufkin from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Fox Energy Specialists will facilitate the 2-hour class. The Energy Code training class will provide the full scope of the State HB 1736. The bill was passed into law during the 2015 Legislative Session, as the result of the Texas Association of Builders who pursued and won a significant victory with this bill. The legislation related to HB 1736, will ease and improve State Energy Code mandates on Builders and Consumers. The Legislation also implements intelligent and rational energy code policy that will result in significantly better compliance rates and allow for more cost effective implementation of the state energy code.

The 2-hour class includes a Texas Building Energy Performance Standards overview, Paths to 2015 Energy Code Compliance, Energy STAR Path and the "new" Energy Rating Index Path.

"DETAB is committed to supporting new home affordability," said DETBA president Rick Renfro. "An energy efficient home is more affordable today and in the future. The positive impact of HB 1736, for builders, housing industry professionals and home owners, is the reason for the energy code training. It is another way that your local home builders association is reaching out to provide this pertinent information that will produce a better, more energy efficient home. What we don't know can hurt us. This energy code training will help attendees to be better informed about the mandates regarding this new state wide energy code that was signed into law June 16, 2015".

The Energy Code Training class is available to builders, contractors and the general public. Attendees must RSVP by May 3 and a $20 registration fee (includes a box lunch) must be paid the day of the event. For additional information or to RSVP for the Energy Code Training class, contact Tim Hobbs, DETAB Executive Officer at 936-875-3000 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .