Public Communications

Join the spikeball roundnet craze on Feb. 7

By Samantha Holman, Event Specialist

We’re used to Texas A&M sports teams achieving high national rankings, but did you know an Aggie club team finished sixth in the Spikeball Roundnet Association’s College Power Rankings last fall?

Spikeball roundnet is a new recreational sport that requires agility, lateral movement, and hand-eye coordination. It’s similar to two-player volleyball, but instead of hitting a large ball over a suspended net, players hit a smaller ball into a circular net low to the ground.

Teams can still take three touches at a time — for a bump, set, or spike — as in volleyball. The objective is also the same: hit a shot the other team can’t return.

You can participate in this fun sport that’s sweeping the nation at the Spikeball Quick-Fire Tournament on Friday, Feb. 7, at Stephen C. Beachy Central Park. In a quick-fire tournament, you play games in a few hours rather than all day.

Teams consist of two players at least 14 years old and will compete against those close to their skill level as the tournament progresses. The competitive division plays by the official Spikeball Roundnet Association rules, while the recreation division focuses on developmental skills and is more relaxed on rules.

Registration ends Feb. 5, the cost is $30 per team, and equipment is provided. Register at rectrac.cstx.gov. You can also call 979.764.3486 or register in person at the Parks and Recreation office at 1000 Krenek Tap Road.

 


About the Blogger

Samantha Holman is in her first year as an event specialist in the Parks and Recreation Department. A native of San Antonio, she earned a bachelor’s degree in sport management from Texas A&M in 2018.


 

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Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meetings (Jan. 23)

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, Jan. 23. It’s not the official minutes.

The meeting can be watched live on Suddenlink channel 19 or online. An archive of previous council meetings is available on the website.

5:29 p.m.

The workshop has started. No action was taken in the executive session.

5:29 p.m.

Consent Agenda Discussion

The council pulled no items for discussion from the regular meeting’s consent agenda.

6:52 p.m.

Short-Term Rentals

After discussing possible short-term rental housing regulations and hotel occupancy taxes, the council directed staff to draft an ordinance for the council’s consideration.

Here’s the PowerPoint Presentation:

7:19 p.m.

Tree Preservation and Buffering

The council discussed potential regulatory options for new single-family homes to protect existing trees and provide a buffer to existing single-family homes in established neighborhoods. Staff was directed to explore a possible ordinance for the council’s consideration.

Here’s the PowerPoint Presentation:

7:25 p.m.

After the council discussed its calendar and heard committee reports, Mayor Karl Mooney adjourned the workshop. The regular meeting starts after a short break.

7:36 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

7:39 p.m.

Hear Visitors

No one spoke during hear visitors, when citizens may address the council on any item that does not appear on the posted agenda.

7:40 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve the entire consent agenda:

  • Changed the runoff election to April 18, if needed, after the Jan. 28 special election for Place 4 on the city council.
  • An annual purchase agreement not to exceed $115,000 with Fort Bend Services for dewatering chemical.
  • Annual purchases not to exceed $150,000 with NAPA Auto Parts (through the Purchasing Solutions Alliance) for auto parts, shop equipment and services.
  • An annual blanket purchase order estimated at $150,000 from SiddonsMartin Emergency Group (through the Buy Board Purchasing Cooperative) for repair parts and labor for fire trucks.
  • An annual blanket purchase order estimated at $180,000 with Lonestar Freightliner Group (through the BuyBoard Purchasing Cooperative) for repair parts and labor for fire trucks.
  • Annual tire purchases and retread services not to exceed $300,000 with Southern Tire Mart (through the BuyBoard Purchasing Cooperative).
  • A service contract not to exceed $210,000 with Xpedient Mail for utility bill printing and mailing services.
  • An annual service contract estimated at $1,200,000 with Paymentus Corporation for payment processing services.
  • The first amendment to an $18,160 agreement with Intrado Interactive Services Corporation for an economic development website.
  • A $305,000 contract with Dunham Engineering for designing and inspecting the recoating of the Greens Prairie Elevated Storage Tank.

7:50 p.m.

Building Setback Amendment

After a public hearing, the council voted unanimously to amend the city’s Unified Development Ordinance to allow the reduction of the side-yard building setback for certain single-family zoning districts down to five feet. Fifteen feet of building separation would have to be maintained between primary structures.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

8:04 p.m.

Tourism Consultant Study

The council directed the city manager to form a selection committee to hire a consultant this spring to study local tourism and explore opportunities to increase hotel occupancy.  The council voted unanimously to include a local hotelier as a member of the committee.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

8:06 p.m.

Experience B-CS Appointment

The council voted unanimously to concur with the City of Bryan in appointing Noel Mayes to fill an unexpired term on the Experience Bryan-College Station board. The term expires in October.

8:09 p.m.

Spring Creek LGC Appointments

The council voted unanimously to appoint Jane Kee and Thomas Jackson to the Spring Creek Local Government Corporation board.

8:15 p.m.

Committee Appointments

  • The council appointed Mark Smith as the chairman of the Zoning Board of Adjustments.
  • The council appointed Gerald Burgner, Shirley Dupriest, Lou Hodges, Thomas Smith, and William Wright to the Historic Preservation Committee. Burgner was selected as chairman.

8:18 p.m.

After the council discussed future agenda items, Mayor Mooney adjourned the meeting. The council meets again on Thursday, Feb. 13.

 


About the Blogger

Colin Killian has been with the City of College Station since 2010 after serving 23 years as associate media relations director for the Texas A&M Athletics Department. Killian has also worked as a reporter and editor for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and Lewisville News. A native of Hobbs, N.M., he graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.


 

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Improvements on the way at Central, Bee Creek parks

By Kelly Kelbly, Assistant Parks and Recreation Director

Abolitionist Frederick Douglass once wrote, “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.” A true application of that statement is dealing with construction projects in our community parks.

A prime example is the struggle you may encounter at Stephen C. Beachy Central Park and Bee Creek Park in the coming months. Next week, construction crews will begin demolishing the Central Park pavilion, restrooms, and athletic shed, as well as the Bee Creek restrooms. Reconstruction of the facilities should be finished by late fall.

The brief inconvenience will be worth it. When the project’s complete, you’ll have beautiful, functional facilities for your visits to these popular parks.

At Central, you’ll have more climate-controlled restrooms, a new kitchen to rent, and a larger pavilion footprint that allows for more seats and foot traffic. The athletic shed will also have more climate-controlled restrooms and additional seats. At Bee Creek, user groups and park patrons will enjoy more restrooms in the structure nearest the ball fields.

The parking lots may be closed at times during construction, but we encourage you to continue to use the parks. And don’t worry — ample porta potties will be available.

 


About the Blogger

Assistant Director Kelly Kelbly is in her 19th year with the College Station Parks & Recreation Department. A native of Gilmer, Kelly is a 1998 graduate of Texas A&M.


 

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5 things to watch at Thursday’s city council meetings

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

The College Station City Council gathers Thursday at city hall for its workshop (about 5 p.m.) and regular (6 p.m.) meetings.

Here are five items to watch:

  1. Short-Term Rentals: The council will have a workshop discussion about possible short-term rental housing regulations and the collection of hotel occupancy taxes.
  2. Tree Preservation and Buffering: Another workshop item is potential regulatory options for new single-family homes to protect existing trees and provide a buffer to existing single-family homes in established neighborhoods.
  3. Building Setback Amendment: After a public hearing, the council will consider amending the city’s Unified Development Ordinance to allow for the reduction of the side-yard building setback for certain single-family zoning districts down to five feet.
  4. Tourism Market Study: The council will consider engaging an outside consultant to identify opportunities to increase hotel occupancy.
  5. Board and Committee Appointments: The council will make appointments to the Experience Bryan-College Station board, the Spring Creek Local Government Corporation, the Historic Preservation Committee, and the Zoning Board of Adjustments.

Related Links:                                                                 

 


About the Blogger

Colin Killian (@ColinKillian) has been with the City of College Station since 2010 after serving 23 years as associate media relations director for the Texas A&M Athletics Department. Killian has also worked as a reporter and editor for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and Lewisville News. A native of Hobbs, N.M., he graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.


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When will College Station get a water reservoir?

By Jennifer Nations, Water Resource Coordinator

From time to time, someone will ask, “when will College Station get a water reservoir?” Throughout my 23 years with the city’s Water Services Department, the answer has always been “it won’t.”

But if such a topic were to surface, it would likely happen at a meeting of the Brazos Region G Regional Water Planning Group, one of 16 regional groups in the state.

College Station will be among the water users discussed at the regional planning group’s public meeting on Tuesday at 10 a.m. at the Carters Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant. They want to gather input from stakeholders in Brazos, Burleson, Grimes, Lee, Milam, Robertson, and Washington counties on matters related to available water supplies, projected needs, and management strategies.

The feedback will help shape the 2021 Regional Water Plan the regional groups submit to the Texas Water Development Board.

Under the regional water planning process, stakeholder interest groups such as cities, water utilities, agriculture, river authorities, industry, environmental, groundwater conservation districts, and more gather regularly to discuss water needs and strategies. Discussions include population projections, user needs, and strategies such as reservoirs, groundwater wells, and conservation.

In other words, individuals with knowledge of water needs and population collaborate to make sure our water future remains sustainable.

The regional water plans are developed on a rolling five-year cycle, then consolidated into a state water plan. The latest five-year plan – to be finalized in 2021 — is in the draft stage and is almost ready for its public debut. The final version will be reviewed by the Texas Water Development Board and incorporated into the next state plan.

The regional meetings tend to be “must-see” events for water nerds like me, but the public and other water professionals are also encouraged to attend. Even if you don’t consider yourself a water nerd, you may come away impressed at the diligent planning that goes into ensuring that Texas and the Brazos Valley continue to have a reliable supply of one of our most vital resources.

For more information, go to brazosgwater.org.

 


About the Blogger

Jennifer Nations has been the City of College Station’s water resource coordinator since 1999 after two years as BVSWMA’s environmental compliance officer. She’s also chair of the Water Conservation and Reuse Division for the Texas Section of the American Water Works Association. A native of Fremont, Calif., Jennifer earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental & resource science from UC-Davis in 1995 and a master’s degree in water management & hydrologic science from Texas A&M in 2016.


 

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Hospitality, venues drive thriving sports tourism industry

By Katie Kwiatkowski, Tourism Events Supervisor

People around the country recognize College Station as a special place filled with friendly, hospitable people and top-notch sports facilities. Those factors are the cornerstones as we attract well-attended, high-caliber events that substantially impact on our local economy.

College Station has become such a desired destination for sports tournaments that we see many events return year after year. In 2019, events we hosted attracted about 27,000 participants and recorded an overall attendance of more than 67,000.

We’ll host multiple events in the spring, including football, soccer, and softball. The frequent rain we experience each spring makes us appreciate the four synthetic multi-purpose fields at Veterans Park and Athletic Complex. Thanks to that worthy investment, we can accommodate sizable events even when bad weather rolls in.

Summertime is always our busiest sports tourism season. This year, we’ll host our most prominent football events in June with the Texas State Championships and Southwest Regional Showcase, Adidas Texas State 7v7 Championships, and PrimeTime Sports 7v7 Tournament of Champions. Softball and soccer tournaments will follow as we move into July and August.

In the fall, we’ll host bocce, softball, and soccer tournaments — most of which are recurring events — before we wrap up the year with the 10th Annual BCS Marathon.

Here’s a look at our complete list of tourism events for 2020:

2020 Sports Tourism Schedule

Jan. 18-19 Brazos Valley Elite Sports Group
Jan. 25-26 Brazos Valley Cavalry Tournament
Jan. 31 – Feb. 2 Soccer Youth All-American Series
Feb. 9 ODP Pool Training
Feb. 15-16 Premier Soccer Spring Cup
Feb. 20-22 NFCA Texas Leadoff Classic
Feb. 29 – March 1 Aggie Classic – NTFCA
March 14-15 USSSA “What’s Your Legacy?” (Aggieland Classic)
March 26-29 SPA Salute to Veterans NIT Tournament
April 25-26 5 Tool Spring Battle Tournament
May 1-3 USSSA Budweiser Invitational
May 16-17 US Club Cup
May 23-25 STYSA State Cup
June 6-7 Texas Youth 7v7 State Championships
June 12-14/19-21 Texas State Championships and Southwest Regional Showcase
June 25-27 Adidas State 7v7 Championships
June 27-28 Primetime Sports 7v7 Tournament of Champions
July 9-12 Aggieland Classic SSUSA
Aug. 29-30 Aggieland Friendship Cup
Sept. 25-27 College Station Senior Games
Oct. 1-3 Special Olympics Fall Classic
Oct. 16-18 USSSA Budweiser Invitational
Dec. 5-6 Southampton Cup – Texas
Dec. 11-13 ODP: South Texas Regional Tournament
Dec. 12-13 BCS Marathon

With your valuable support, we can continue to attract significant events such as these to our growing community to fill our hotels, restaurants, and retail shops. When that happens, our entire community benefits.

 


About the Blogger

Tourism Events Supervisor Katie Kwiatkowski joined the Parks and Recreation Department last summer. She previously served as sports services manager at BCS Sports + Events. A native of Brenham, Katie earned a bachelor’s degree in Agribusiness from Texas A&M in 2016.


 

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