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Les Cockrell: State park plans fish fest for Father’s Day

Three hikes and a Father’s Day Fish Fest are among the activities available for visitors to Ray Roberts Lake State Park this weekend.

An “I Heart Texas Hike,” will get activities rolling from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Friday at the park’s Johnson Branch Unit. Participants will meet at the park amphitheater and search for official symbols of Texas on the half-mile hike. Hikers should wear sturdy shoes and bring water.

Later in the day, a moonlight hike is planned at Johnson Branch. Participants will meet at 7:30 p.m. at Pavilion 1 and should wear sturdy shoes and bring a flashlight for the half-mile hike.

The Father’s Day Fish Fest is set from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Johnson Branch kid’s fish pond, and participants will get tips on casting and tying knots and then be able to do some fishing. Prizes will be awarded.

A moonlight hike will be held at 8:15 p.m. Saturday at the park’s Isle du Bois Unit. Participants will meet at the Hawthorn parking area, and the hike will follow the Randy Bell Scenic Trail.

The events are free with regular park admission, which is $7 for those 12 and older.

For more information about Isle du Bois events, call 940-686-2148. For more information about Johnson Branch events, call 940-637-2623.


Learning area to offer tours of log house Saturday

Visitors to the Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area on Saturday can step back in time by taking a tour of the Minor-Porter Log House.

The house, furnished with items that were typically found in pioneer homes on the Denton County frontier circa 1870, will be open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Visitors will be able to tour at their own pace at any time during the open house hours.

Volunteers will guide visitors through the structure and answer questions. The tour is free with regular park admission, which is $5 per person. Children 5 and younger are admitted free.

LLELA’s entrance is at 201 E. Jones St. in Lewisville. For more information, call 972-219-3930.


Lecture set on role of the railroad in North Texas

A lecture titled “Thundering Prosperity: The Role of the Railroad in North Texas Growth” will be presented by Michael Sturdy at noon June 20 at the Courthouse on the Square, 110 W. Hickory St.

Sturdy will present a brief history of the railroad in North Texas, from early attempts at creating a railway system in the Republic of Texas to the advent of the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad to the introduction of the Santa Fe Railway.

Sturdy is the director of education at the Museum of the American Railroad in Frisco.

He holds a master’s degree in history from Baylor University, has worked for the Dallas Historical Society and as a graduate editor at the Baylor University Institute for Oral History.

The program is part of the Denton County Office of History and Culture lecture series. For more information, call 940-349-2850.

All Courthouse-on-the Square Museum exhibits and lectures are free and open to the public. The courthouse has handicapped parking and accessibility through the north entrance.


Big Brothers Big Sisters honors Denton residents

Denton residents Richard Rogers and Katie Johnson have been named Denton County’s Big Brother of the Year and Big Sister of the Year, respectively, officials with the organization announced recently.

The award recognizes “outstanding volunteers who provide exceptional and life-changing impact to the children they mentor in the area,” the press release stated.

“The relationship Richard and Katie have with their ‘littles’ is the epitome of what we hope to achieve for all of our matches,” says Robert Roby, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters. “Their commitment to our program is truly inspiring.

“We are honored to have them both on our team.”

Rogers has been a Big Brother for six years, and Johnson has been a Big Sister since 2010.

For more information about Big Brothers Big Sisters, visit .


Local DAR chapter announces award winners

The Benjamin Lyon Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution recently announced the recipients of the DAR Good Citizen Award.

Ten area schools were asked to select outstanding young people who demonstrate the qualities of good citizenship, including dependability, service, leadership and patriotism, according to the chapter.

Students who were selected were invited to participate in an optional scholarship contest, and the winner of the local contest was Caren Stuebe from Northwest High School in Justin. Her winning entry will now be entered in the state contest.

Local award winners are Randi Martin, Argyle High School; Mahaley Millican, Aubrey High School; Katelin Pegg, Denton High School; Dionne Agawu, Guyer High School; Ashley Rennspies, Krum High School; Declan Johnson, Lake Dallas High School; Emily Edwards, Liberty Christian High School; Caren Stuebe, Northwest High School; Hannah MacElroy, Pilot Point High School; and Caitlyn Vaughn, Ryan High School.

Benjamin Lyon members who presented the awards at each school were Donna Cunningham, Amanda Cowan, Diana White, Lou Hayden, Pam Fant, Fran Hutcherson, Veneta Lewis, Ann Redfearn and Linda Scott.


Don’t forget

Interfaith Ministries of Denton Inc. will hold the third of four community registrations for the 2013 Apple Tree Project from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Denton ISD Administration Building, 1307 N. Locust St.

The Apple Tree Project provides Denton school district students from low-income families with school supplies, shoes, backpacks and new clothing in time for the new school year in August. Applicants can also call the office at 940-565-5479 to set up an appointment to register. Visit  for more information.

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 .