Jersey Village native to lead Air Force's Thunderbirds; H-E-B makes curbside services free and more Houston-area news

The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds perform demonstrations across the country. (Courtesy Tech. Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez/U.S. Air Force)
The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds perform demonstrations across the country. (Courtesy Tech. Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez/U.S. Air Force)

The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds perform demonstrations across the country. (Courtesy Tech. Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez/U.S. Air Force)

Read the latest business and community news from the Greater Houston area.


Jersey Village native named next commander of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds

Lt. Col. Justin Elliott, commander of the 59th Test and Evaluation Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, will be Thunderbird 1, the squadron’s commander and lead pilot next year, according to a press release.

The Woodlands

More than 50 homes priced at over $1M sold in The Woodlands area in April

A total of more than 50 houses priced over $1 million sold in April throughout The Woodlands area, including 17 priced over $1.6 million.

Lake Houston-Humble-Kingwood

National gym chain Crunch Fitness to replace former 24 Hour Fitness spot in Atascocita

Crunch Fitness, a national gym franchise, will open in July at 7068 FM 1960 Road E., Humble. The business is replacing 24 Hour Fitness, which closed its Atascocita location along with at least 11 other facilities in the Greater Houston area last June.

Chicago-based Rosati's Pizza to open Kingwood eatery off Northpark Drive

Rosati’s Pizza will open a new location in August at 25661 Hwy. 59 N., Kingwood. The Chicago-based brand specializes in thin-crust and deep-dish pizzas. The menu also features chicken wings, pastas, salads, desserts, beer, wine and mixed drinks.


La Borra Del Café coming to Katy's Villagio Town Center

La Borra Del Café, a Mexican coffee chain, is expected to open in Villagio Town Center at 22764 Westheimer Parkway, Ste. 620B, Katy, in late 2021 or early 2022. La Borra Del Café’s menu includes a variety of Mexican pastries as well as frappes, Mexican hot chocolate and coffee.


Tres Carnales opens in Pinehurst, offers drive-thru service and micheladas

The business offers drive-thru service with micheladas, snacks, fountain drinks, and draft and bottle beers as well as food trucks.


H-E-B makes curbside services free

Texas-based grocery store H-E-B announced May 17 that it would make curbside pickup services free at all curbside locations across the state.

Vanessa Holt, Olivia Aldridge, Kelly Schafler, Danica Lloyd, Morgan Theophil and Anna Lotz contributed to this report.


A house in the Balmoral development in Kingwood.
2,300 homes slated along FM 2920 in Hockley

Land Tejas will construct 2,300 new homes in a 646-acre development in Hockley.

The pizza and pasta eatery is opening this fall. (Courtesy Russo’s New York Pizzeria & Italian Kitchen)
Russo’s New York Pizzeria & Italian Kitchen coming soon to Bridgeland

The eatery specializes in New York-style pizza, but calzones, pasta, deli sandwiches, salads and soups are also on the menu.

Harris County Pets facilitates pet adoptions, foster placements and more. (Courtesy Harris County Pets)
Harris County Pets temporarily waives adoption fees to control increase of population

Harris County Pets has exceeded its capacity to house its growing pet population, officials said.

Masterpiece Desserts is opening in late June with plans for a grand opening in late July. (Courtesy Masterpiece Desserts)
Masterpiece Desserts to open Cy-Fair storefront this month

This is the first brick-and-mortar location for the business, which specializes in miniature cheesecakes.

Americans spent 44% more shopping on websites, including Amazon, in 2020 than in 2019. (Courtesy Amazon)
Surge in online shopping strains Houston’s distribution channels

Online spending in the U.S. was up 44% from 2019 to 2020, and transportation expert Bill Eisele said this uptick has put a strain on the region’s transportation system.

According to county officials, 40% of the $125 billion in damage caused by Hurricane Harvey took place within Harris County. (Shawn Arrajj/Community Impact Newspaper)
Texas General Land Office says it is 'not feasible' to request $750M in federal flood aid within 30 days

Houston-area officials ask for 30-day-dealine on the Texas General Land Office's formal request for $750 million in federal flood aid funding, but GLO says it is not possible.

Texas Central has signed a $16 billion contract with Webuild to lead the civil construction team that will build the train. (Rendering courtesy Texas Central)
Texas Central signs $16B construction contract for high-speed rail project

Texas Central could be one step closer to starting construction.

Russ Poppe, the Harris County Flood Control District executive director, will officially step down July 2 after nearly fifteen years in the position. (Courtesy Harris County Flood Control District)
Executive Director Russ Poppe announces resignation from Harris County Flood Control District

Harris County Flood Control District Executive Director Russ Poppe announced his resignation June 11.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas issued a call for Texans to conserve energy June 14. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)
ERCOT asks Texans to conserve energy with generation outages 2.5 times higher than normal

"This is unusual for this early in the summer season," said Woody Rickerson, ERCOT vice president of grid planning and operations, in a news release.

League City's Helen Hall Library History Club hosted an event related to Juneteenth on June 7. The holiday honors Union Gen. Gordon Granger coming to Galveston in 1865 to announce the liberation of enslaved people in Texas. (Graphic by Justin Howell/Community Impact Newspaper)
Celebrate Juneteenth in Galveston with a movie screening, parade and more on June 17, 19

The Juneteenth Legacy Project, which aims to recontextualize the day and properly communicate its story and relevance, is hosting or advertising numerous events over the course of the holiday weekend.

Missouri City resident Jackie Ward became the chief nursing officer at Texas Children’s Hospital in January. (Photo by Michael Carr Photography, graphic by Chase Brooks/Community Impact Newspaper)
Q&A: Jackie Ward, Texas Children's Hospital chief nursing officer, discusses career, nursing during COVID-19

Prior to becoming chief nursing officer, Missouri City resident Jackie Ward worked as an oncology nurse and in a variety of leadership roles at Texas Children's Hospital.