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Les Cockrell: Golden Corral offers free meal to veterans

The Golden Corral restaurant at 1724 S. Loop 288 in Denton will be among area Golden Corral locations honoring veterans today.

Veterans can eat free between 4 and 9 p.m., said Rich Masello, restaurant manager.

“We expect to feed about 1,100 veterans that night,” he said. “We appreciate the job they’ve done for us.

“Every Golden Corral will be doing it that evening. It’s free for the veterans; spouses have to pay.”

John Whitley, commander of Denton Memorial Chapter 106 of Disabled American Veterans, said he and other DAV members will be at the restaurant to offer information for veterans about signing up for benefits and other issues.

“We usually get five to six new members,” Whitley said, adding that donations are also accepted to help the DAV.

He said DAV chapters rely on donations for support.


Sanger library to have program on organic gardening Tuesday night

Organic gardening specialist “Tropical John” Thomas will present a program titled “Composting 101” at the Sanger Public Library at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Thomas is an organic specialist for a lawn and garden products company, a landscaper and a former nursery owner in Rockwall.

Those who plan to attend are asked to register with the library to ensure there are enough handouts for everyone. To sign up, call 940-458-3257, e-mail  or visit the library at 501 Bolivar St.


Denton Breakfast Kiwanis to conduct Turkey Roll Bicycle Rally

The Denton Breakfast Kiwanis Club will conduct the 30th Turkey Roll Bicycle Rally on Saturday to raise money for the club’s youth programs.

The ride send-off will be at 9 a.m. at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 2255 N. Bonnie Brae St., and riders can choose from among five courses ranging from 8 to 68 miles in length.

Online registration is available until 5 p.m. Wednesday at .

Riders can also sign up on the day of the event.

Denton Breakfast Kiwanis members will be at the church, on Bonnie Brae at Windsor Drive, at 7 a.m. to welcome and register riders.

Participants should enter the grounds from Bonnie Brae for registration and parking.

A “carb-load” spaghetti dinner is planned from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at the church, and riders and the general public are invited. Cost of the all-you-can-eat meal is $8 for adults and $5 for ages 3 to 12.

Early packet pickup will be at Denton Bicycle Center, 1700 N. Elm St., today through Friday and during the dinner Friday at the church.

Parking for the dinner will be in the lot east of the school; enter the hall south of the main school entrance.

Helmets are required for Saturday’s ride, and the event will be held rain or shine.

For more information, visit .


Library invites ‘Science Explorers’ to food program

Youngster ages 6 to 8 are invited to learn all about the science of food with simple, fun chemistry experiments at 4 p.m. Wednesday at Denton’s North Branch Library, 3020 N. Locust St.

“Science Explorers” will make invisible ink, microwave [and eat] marshmallows, make a lava lamp and more.

For more information, contact public services librarian Dana Tucker at 940-349-8715 or .


Local church offers ‘Surviving the Holidays’

“Surviving the Holidays,” a program for people who have lost a loved one, will be offered from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at First Baptist Church of Denton, 1100 Malone St.

Grief can make the holidays a painful time, and the free program is designed to offer encouragement, learning and fellowship. It features a video followed by small discussion groups to give ideas for facing the holidays.


Program on Horse Country Tour to be offered

The Denton County Office of History and Culture will play host to Dana Lodge of the Denton Convention and Visitors Bureau for a program on the Denton County Horse Country Tour.

Lodge’s talk will be from 12:15 to 1 p.m. Thursday in the Commissioners Courtroom at the Courthouse on the Square, 110 W. Hickory St.

The self-guided tour takes visitors winding through the back roads of Denton County and beyond for up-close views of working horse farms and ranches.

All Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum exhibits and lectures are free and open to the public. For more information, call 940-349-2850.


Widows of America sponsoring program

Widows of America Inc. will sponsor a “Master of Memory” program from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday for military wives, single or divorced women and widows of all ages at the Baptist Student Ministries Building, 1111 Oakland St. in Denton.

Margaret A. Jover, a Denton County Extension agent for family and consumer sciences, will speak on “Strengthening Our Memory Abilities.” The program does not concern aging processes, Alzheimer’s or the elderly, according to a news release.

There is no cost to attend but reservations are requested by Wednesday. A covered-dish supper will be served.

Call 940-648-2540 or 940-365-1401 to make a reservation.

Parking will be available at the corner of Oakland and Sawyer streets.

Widows of America has provided information, programs, personal growth and development opportunities for women who live alone in Denton County since 2000.


UNT’s Military History Center sets seminar

The Military History Center at the University of North Texas will present the 30th annual Hurley Military History Seminar from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday at UNT’s Eagle Student Services Center.

The topic will be “Death of the Wehrmacht: The Rise of American Combat Power and the Destruction of Hitler’s Army.”

The morning speaker will be Robert M. Citino, a UNT history professor, a military historian and author.

Luncheon speaker will be retired Army Lt. Col. James Megellas, one of the most decorated officers in the 82nd Airborne Division.

For more information, call 940-565-2690 or visit .


American Red Cross blood drive planned Saturday

An American Red Cross community blood drive will be conducted from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in the gymnasium of St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 300 W. Oak St. in Denton.

A photo ID is required to donate. Potential donors must be at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds.

Donors may give blood every 56 days. Walk-ins are welcome. For more information or an appointment, call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit and search by ZIP code.


Golf tournament raises $15,000 for Spina Bifida

The annual Austin Baker IV Memorial Golf Tournament raised $15,000 for the Spina Bifida Association of North Texas, according to an announcement from Cody Caldwell, an event spokesman.

This year’s tournament was played Oct. 20 at the Golf Course at Champions Circle in Fort Worth.

The tournament honors the memory of Austin G. Baker IV, who was born with spina bifida but went on to be a member of the Ryan High School swim team and a player in a wheelchair basketball league that he later coached, Caldwell said.

Caldwell expressed his gratitude to all who helped with the tournament, which this year featured a live auction and a raffle.

“This tournament is a great way for everyone to get together and have fun, but more importantly, we collectively are giving back to help a wonderful organization that helps children like Austin every day.

“We are beyond blessed with the support of family, friends, local businesses of Denton, and customers and vendors of Baker Tankhead Inc. to make the tournament a continued success in honor of Austin Baker IV,” he wrote.

LES COCKRELL is interested in your input for Out & About. Help share information about Denton County events and people by calling him at 940-566-6887. His e-mail address is .