Museum scales back reopening, bar owners react to second shutdown and more: Houston-area business, community news

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller recently backed a movement calling for the reopening of winery and distillery tasting rooms and brewery and brewpub taprooms. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller recently backed a movement calling for the reopening of winery and distillery tasting rooms and brewery and brewpub taprooms. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller recently backed a movement calling for the reopening of winery and distillery tasting rooms and brewery and brewpub taprooms. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Read the latest news from the Greater Houston area on Community Impact Newspaper’s website.

Houston metro

Texas agriculture commissioner joins voices calling for reopening of tasting rooms, taprooms

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller said he has written a letter to Gov. Greg Abbott calling for lenience in a recent order shutting down bars, particularly for establishments he said are important to farming business in the state.

'Refinancing isn't free:' How to navigate refinancing a mortgage

When interest rates are low, homeowners may look to save money by refinancing, which means getting a new mortgage with a better term or interest rate to lower payments.

Walmart to bring drive-in movies to 160 stores nationwide in August, launch virtual summer camp

In communities across the nation, Walmart Supercenter parking lots will be transformed into contact-free, drive-in movie theaters beginning in August, and families can also enjoy a virtual summer camp experience Walmart is launching July 8, according to a July 1 release from the company.

The Woodlands

The Woodlands Children's Museum dials back reopening in light of rising regional COVID-19 cases

Less than a month after it reopened for limited public hours, The Woodlands Children's Museum has returned to being closed for most in-person activities, museum officials announced July 4.

The Woodlands businesses react to reduced capacities, closures

Just weeks after being able to reopen, Gov. Greg Abbott announced bars would be closing and restaurant capacities reduced back to 50% instead of 75% on June 29 in an effort to contain coronavirus cases across the state.

The Woodlands Township closes Harper's Landing Pool due to staffing challenges

The Woodlands Township announced the closure of Harper's Landing Pool on July 1.


Annual Tomball Night, Parade of Lights canceled due to health concerns

The Greater Tomball Area Chamber of Commerce announced via Facebook July 6 that its annual Tomball Night and Parade of Lights would be canceled this year due to health and safety concerns.


Apara Autism Center opens in Katy area

The health care business has a location in Sugar Land and provides applied behavior analysis through one-on-one therapy for children on the autism spectrum.

CBD American Shaman opens in Katy area

CBD American Shaman at Park Row opened June 19.


Langham Creek YMCA completes renovation of outdoor pavilion, gym, child watch area

Officials with the Langham Creek Family YMCA in Cypress announced the completion of a number of renovations July 2, including renovations of the indoor gym, outdoor pavilion and child watch area.

Lake Houston-Humble-Kingwood

Q&A: Ashworth Design & Remodeling weighs in on pandemic's effect on business

Bruce Sommers has been remodeling homes since 1983. He opened Ashworth Design & Remodeling LLC in 2011.


Dynamo Dash Youth soccer to be offered at Broussard Park this fall

Dynamo Dash Youth has expanded into Tomball, now offering a fall soccer program at Broussard Park, according to a June 28 news release.


Gov. Abbott’s second round of bar closures a ‘gut punch’ for Spring, Klein bar owners

After just five weeks of getting back to business following statewide closures due to the coronavirus pandemic, Texas bars like Two Mules Tavern and The Jailhouse Saloon in the Spring and Klein area were hit with an unexpected second shutdown June 26.South Houston

Sugar Land-Missouri City

Missouri City farmers market celebrates 1 year of serving the community

Farmers Market Partners-Missouri City celebrated its one-year anniversary June 27.

Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center plans July 7 reopening with minds-on, not hands-on, activities

The Fort Bend Children's Discovery Center, located at 198 Kempner St., Sugar Land, reopened July 7 after being temporarily closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Bay Area

Q&A: Christian Brothers Automotive CEO talks commercial real estate, essential business operations amid pandemic

Josh Barker, the CEO of Christian Brothers Automotive, spoke with Community Impact Newspaper about how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted business and provided insights on the potentially altered future of commercial real estate.

The Woodhouse Day Spa opens Baybrook Mall location

The Woodhouse Day Spa opened its newest location at Baybrook Mall on June 17.


Yummy Pho & Bo Ne Pearland pushes back early July grand opening

The grand opening had originally been planned for July 6 but has been postponed due to COVID-19.

Goldfish Swim School of Sugar Land to begin lessons July 7 with coronavirus safety measures

The business offers indoor swim classes and programs to teach children ages 4 months through 12 years old how to be safe in and around the water.

Heights-River Oaks-Montrose

Houston ISD will restrict facility access, limit curbside meal program July 3-19

Citing public health guidance and the rapid increase in local COVID-19 cases, Houston ISD will begin restricting access to all district facilities July 3-19.

Vanessa Holt, Shawn Arrajj, Dylan Sherman, Jen Para, Claire Shoop, Kelly Schafler, Anna Lotz, Colleen Ferguson, Haley Morrison, Adriana Rezal, Andrew Christman, Matt Dulin, Nola Valente and Ben Thompson contributed to this report.



Candidate filing for the May 1 election opened Jan. 13 and will close Feb. 12. (Community Impact staff)
Filing period now open for Clear Creek ISD board election

At-large Position A, as well as Districts 4 and 5, are up for re-election.

Eleven days after officials across Harris County's criminal justice system met to discuss how to alleviate overcrowding at the county jail during the coronavirus pandemic, progress has been "excruciatingly slow," according to the Harris County Sheriff's Office. (Courtesy Brian Jackson/Adobe Stock)
Progress 'excruciatingly slow' on effort to address overcrowding at Harris County Jail

"I know it is keeping many of us awake at night, and it should. It absolutely should," said U.S. District Judge Lee Rosenthal, who is presiding over an ongoing lawsuit dealing with the county's felony bail practices.

Texas Medical Center offers coronavirus updates

More than 118,000 people have received their first shot.

Harris County Flood Control District is planning to submit preliminary flood plain maps to the Federal Emergency Management Agency in late 2021. (Kelly Schafler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Harris County's preliminary flood plain maps to be released in late 2021

The new flood insurance rates in Harris County could take effect in 2023 or 2024.

vaccine drive-thru
Houston opens first drive-thru vaccination site

The site aims to distribute 1,000 doses per day for the first week and can scale up if more doses become available.

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo announced the opening of a COVID-19 vaccine waitlist at a Jan. 25 press conference. (Screenshot courtesy Facebook)
Harris County to open waitlist for COVID-19 vaccines Jan. 26

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo warned that vaccine supply remains "extremely limited," and it will still take time for those waitlisted to get an appointment.

There are a total of nine existing vaccine hub sites across Harris County and Galveston County. (Courtesy Texas Children’s Hospital)
NEW: Clear Creek ISD, Harris County Public Health to use Challenger Columbia Stadium parking lot as vaccine hub

The stadium is one of eight rotating sites; it will be operational Jan. 27-30.

Eric Williams started as superintendent Jan. 18. (Courtesy of Clear Creek ISD)
Eric Williams concludes first week as Clear Creek ISD superintendent

Williams plans to spend his first months on the job discovering how the district can sustain and build on its quality of education.

“Hope is on the horizon,” Fort Bend County Judge KP George said at a press conference Jan. 4. “The vaccine is here.”
Vaccine distribution starts in Fort Bend County and more top Houston-area news

Read the most popular news from the past week from the Houston area.

One local health system leader said he expects everyone, including those under age 65, will have access to the vaccine within the next 90 days. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Houston-area health system leaders talk progress, hurdles during COVID-19

Officials from CHI St. Luke’s Health and UTMB Health said community members must remain vigilant as case counts climb but that they expect the current surge to peak by early February.

During a North Houston Association meeting Jan. 20, Jazz Hamilton—first vice president with the Retail Brokerage Services Group for CBRE—discussed how the future of retail will likely be shaped by the conveniences to which consumers have become accustomed amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper)
Pandemic-induced retail conveniences are here to stay, official says

According to Jazz Hamilton, first vice president with the Retail Brokerage Services group for CBRE, between January and November of 2020, consumers spent almost $550 billion online—a 33% increase from 2019.