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Les Cockrell: Bazaar to offer handmade gifts for holidays

Shoppers seeking handmade holiday gifts may want to check out the Blue Ribbon Bazaar planned from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Denton Senior Center, 509 N. Bell Ave.

The annual arts and crafts show will feature about 35 vendors, all senior citizens, who have created a selection of handmade items, organizers said.

Crafts on display will include crocheted and knitted hats, scarves, afghans, baby hats and blankets, pillows and other creations. There will also be decorative carved wood items, children’s toys, religious pieces, handmade jewelry, necklaces, earrings and bracelets.

The sale will feature Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations, and there will also be small selection of baked goods, including cakes, cookies and brownies.

The annual event features a festive atmosphere and Christmas music, and Jeff Gilbert, center manager, is scheduled to serve as master of ceremonies. Vendors donate items for door prizes to be given away during the sale.

For more information, call 940-349-8720.


Park to feature program on animals, guided hikes

Area families can learn more about animals and participate in several guided hikes this weekend at Ray Roberts Lake State Park.

A program titled “The Fast and the Furriest,” rescheduled for 5 p.m. Friday at the park’s Johnson Branch Unit, will teach participants how to identify mammals found in the park based on tracks and other signs. The program will be offered in Pavilion 1.

The first of three hikes to be offered at the park will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday at Johnson Branch’s Pavilion 1. Hikers will look and listen for birds as they cover just over a mile on paved and unpaved trails. Binoculars are recommended, and the park will have a limited supply of binoculars and pocket field guides available.

A second hike at Johnson Branch will be offered at 10 a.m. Saturday and participants will study birds and trees along the Vanishing Prairies Trail. The hike will begin at Pavilion 1.

The park’s Isle du Bois Unit will host a guided hike titled “Lost Pines Adventure” at 10 a.m. Saturday. The half-mile hike will begin at the Lost Pines Nature Trail.

Park staff members recommend that hikers wear sturdy shoes and bring water.

Park admission is $7 for those 13 and older. For more information about Isle du Bois events, call 940-686-2148. For more information about Johnson Branch events, call 940-637-2294.


Red Cross schedules blood drive at church Saturday

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

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

Walk-ins will be welcome, but donors can call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit to schedule an appointment using sponsor code “standrew.”


North Branch Library to celebrate games Saturday

Denton’s North Branch Library will celebrate “International Games Day @ Your Library” from 1 to 6 p.m. Saturday.

The Denton High School Chess Club will be on hand for come-and-go chess matches and will share tips. Representatives of Madness Comics and More Fun Comics will demonstrate popular board and card games.

The American Library Association and Konami Digital Entertainment are supplying Yu-Gi-Oh demonstration kits, and a volunteer will explain how to play the game. The library also will set up various board games for all ages. The library is at 3020 N. Locust St.


Environmental area to host log house tours, night hike

Visitors to the Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area on Saturday can visit the area’s restored log house and participate in a night hike.

The Minor-Porter Log House, furnished with typical features of frontier life circa 1870, will be open for tours from noon to 3 p.m. Volunteers will be on hand to guide visitors and answer questions. The open house is free with regular park admission, which is $5 for adults and free for children 5 and younger.

The night hike will get underway at 5:30 p.m. as trail guides lead participants down the Redbud Trail. No flashlights are necessary.

Cost is $7 per person for ages 5 and older, and registration is required by calling 972-219-3930 or e-mailing

LLELA is open to the public every Friday, Saturday and Sunday for fishing, hiking, camping, bird watching, kayaking, canoeing, picnicking and other outdoor activities. LLELA’s entrance is at 201 E. Jones St. at the intersection of Kealy Street in Lewisville. For more information, call 972-219-3930 or visit


Amateur skate tour to stop in Lewisville on Saturday

The final stop of the season for the 2013 Scion Regional Amateur Skate Tour will be at 1 p.m. Saturday at Scion of Lewisville Skate Park at Toyota of Lewisville Railroad Park, 1301 S. Railroad St.

The event will feature some of the top amateur street skaters in the region competing in street and bowl competitions for more than $2,500 in cash and prizes, according to an event announcement. In addition to the skate competition, the event will features artists, a DJ, vendor displays and prize giveaways from skate shops and series sponsors.

The event is free for spectators. Registration for participants is $15 online in advance, or $20 on the day of the event. Competitors can register online at


Society to present talk on Comanche culture

The Joel Terrell Society, Children of the American Revolution, will present a program celebrating American Indian culture at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the meeting room of Denton’s Emily Fowler Central Library, 502 Oakland St.

Guest speaker Mary Red Eagle will discuss the Comanche Nation of the past and how the Comanche people today live, study and play. Refreshments will be served, and guests are welcome.


Workshop to provide holiday grief support

The VNA Ann’s Haven “Grief Through the Holidays” workshop will be offered from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 7 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the hospice agency’s office, 325 W. McKinney St., Suite 101 in Denton.

There is no fee to attend, but reservations are required by contacting Jerald Garner at 940-349-5900 or Attendees are encouraged to bring a brown-bag lunch.

The workshop is designed to provide support and practical suggestions for dealing with grief during the holiday season. Free grief resource literature will be available.


Library slates program on Portal to Texas History

Tara Carlisle of the University of North Texas Libraries will present a program titled “The Portal to Texas History: Your Threshold to the Past” at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Sanger Public Library.

Carlisle will provide an overview of the sources in the Portal to Texas History and recommend search tips and resources for genealogical research.

In recent years, communities and individuals from across Texas, representing historical societies, museums, libraries, colleges and universities and private collectors, have contributed more than 300,000 Texas history materials to the Portal to Texas History. The materials are available online for anyone.

The library is at 501 Bolivar St. Reservations are not needed, but for more information call 940-458-3257, e-mail, or message the library on Facebook.


Church offers holiday grief support program

A program to provide support during the holidays for area residents who have lost a loved one is set from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at Crossroads Bible Church, 8101 Justin Road in Justin.

GriefShare’s “Surviving the Holidays” program is free, but registration is required by calling 972-355-3343. For more information, visit

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