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Les Cockrell: Exhibit features at-risk children

Out & About

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and an exhibit titled “Keeping Children from Falling through the Cracks” will be on display through Friday in the lobby of the Denton County Courts Building, 1450 E. McKinney St.

Court Appointed Special Advocates of Denton County is sponsoring the exhibit.

CASA’s vision is “to provide a court-appointed special advocate for each child in the child protection system,” according to a press release. In 2012, there were 559 children in the care of Child Protective Services in Denton County, and only 70 percent, or 455, had a CASA volunteer.

“Half the children in the child protection system in Texas do not have CASA volunteers to advocate for them,” said Sherri Gideon, executive director of CASA of Denton County, in the press release. “Many fall through the cracks of an overburdened system, but the half who do have a CASA volunteer are more likely to grow up to be healthy, productive citizens.”

CASA advocates are volunteers who devote their time to make sure the best interests of the children are represented while the children are in the custody of the state, Gideon stated.

The exhibit displays photos of children and a success story of how a CASA volunteer impacted a child’s life and provides a list of resources for recognizing the warning signs of abuse in at-risk families.

CASA of Denton County is a member of the Texas CASA network, which comprises 69 local programs serving children in 206 counties. In 2012, 7,260 volunteers advocated for nearly 23,000 children in the state’s legal responsibility, according to the press release, but more than half of the children in the child protection system do not have advocates to speak for them in court.

For more information about becoming a CASA volunteer, visit  or call 940-243-2272. The next academy for new advocates will begin May 31.


UNT observance to feature art show, food fair

The University of North Texas will observe Celebrating Great Global Citizens Month in April to help educate students, faculty, staff and community members about diversity, internationalism and sustainability.

Scheduled events include an international art show that opens with a reception at 3 p.m. today and runs through April 19. The show will include art and sculptures from UNT’s international students and will be offered in the Union Art Gallery on the third floor of UNT’s University Union, located one block west of Welch and West Prairie streets at 1155 Union Circle.

An international food fair is planned for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday at Baptist Student Ministries on the east side of the University Union. The fair will feature dishes prepared by international students, and food coupons will be sold for 25 cents apiece.

The Kerr, Bruce and Mean Greens cafeterias will be serving ethnic foods throughout April, which will include cuisine from Morocco, Cuba, Brazil, Asia and India.

A series of films from Germany, Spain and China will be shown on campus throughout the month.

A schedule of events for Celebrating Great Global Citizens Month is available at . For more information, call UNT-International at 940-369-8625.


Hospital to host free lunch seminar on robotic surgery

Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Denton will host a free lunch seminar from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday to share information about robotic surgery options, according to a press release from the hospital.

Dr. Victor Cobos and Dr. Christina Dooley will give a presentation titled “Advances in Medicine: Gallbladder and Gynecological Diseases.”

The seminar is free, but registration is required by calling 1-877-847-9355.

For more information on the hospital, visit .


Red Cross schedules three blood drives in area

The American Red Cross has scheduled three area blood drives this week, according to a press release.

The first drive will be held from 3 to 7 p.m. today, at Camey Elementary School, 4949 Arbor Glen Road in The Colony.

Two drives are planned for Thursday in Denton: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Texas Woman’s University Student Union, 420 E. University Drive; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at UNT’s McConnell Hall, 1511 W. Mulberry St.

All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in.

To make an appointment to donate blood or for more information, visit .


Denton County Master Gardeners slate plant sale

The Denton County Master Gardener Association will hold its annual plant sale from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 6333 Hobson Lane in Denton.

The sale will offer a wide selection of grasses and ground covers, perennials, herbs and pass-along plants from the yards of master gardeners, organizers said. Also featured will be a wide selection of “Earth-kind roses,” among the most thoroughly tested and environmentally responsible plants for use in Texas landscapes.

The Master Gardeners’ Garden Shoppe will be open, offering pots, garden art and tools, and veteran gardeners will be on hand to offer landscaping advice, recommendations on plant care and tips on using herbs in cooking.

All money raised from the sale will help fund local educational activities.


Denton DAR members to host Caraway at meeting

Members of the Benjamin Lyon Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution will meet at 1:30 p.m. Friday at Good Samaritan Society-Denton Village.

Georgia Caraway will speak about caring for antiques. Guests are welcome.

For more information, call Diana White at 940-387-4741 or visit .


‘Take Aim at Cancer’ event set for Saturday in Roanoke

“Take Aim at Cancer,” a kick-off charity event for Swim Across America’s Dallas Open Water Swim, will be held from 6 to 11 p.m. Saturday at Cinnamon Creek Ranch in Roanoke.

Swim Across America is dedicated to raising money and awareness for cancer research and treatment through swimming-related events. Proceeds from Saturday’s event will go to the Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer Center in Dallas.

The charity event will include archery, a silent auction, raffle prizes, live music, dancing and a dinner.

The open-water swim is planned for June 8 at Lake Ray Hubbard, east of Dallas.

The charity event is open to the public. Tickets cost $65 in advance or $75 at the door.

Cinnamon Creek Ranch is located at 13794 Old Denton Road in Roanoke. For more information, visit .


Denton Bach Society to host evening of music on Sunday

The Denton Bach Society will present an evening of music titled “Choral Gems of the Romantic Period” from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Sunday at First Presbyterian Church of Denton, 1114 W. University Drive.

The program will feature works by English composers Charles Villiers Stanford, Charles Hubert Parry and Edward Elgar. Representing Germany’s contribution to the Romantic period will be selections by Brahms, Schumann and Schubert.

Tickets cost $15 for adults and $12 for students and seniors.

For more information, visit .


Prosper residents make annual cleanup a success

Prosper residents didn’t let rain and chilly temperatures discourage them from participating in the town’s cleanup and recycling event March 23, according to a press release.

Last year’s turnout, under more favorable weather conditions, was 55 participants who unloaded just more than 8,700 pounds of trash and recyclables.

This year, some 250 residents brought out 39,400 pounds of trash and recyclables.

Residents who wish to make use of a hazardous household waste voucher should visit Prosper Town Hall to get one. A photo ID with a valid Prosper address is required. Vouchers are issued at the rate of one per household per year.

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 .