Take a look at the nine featured businesses of 2020 from Lake Houston-Humble-Kingwood

Dave Donohoo is a teacher at New Caney ISD. He owns Ettin Games and Hobbies. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
Dave Donohoo is a teacher at New Caney ISD. He owns Ettin Games and Hobbies. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)

Dave Donohoo is a teacher at New Caney ISD. He owns Ettin Games and Hobbies. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)

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Vessel Pilates owner Jessica Sowyrda streams workouts to clients. (Kelly Schafler/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Eduardo Garza, right, opened Kingwood Meat Market with his wife, Jennifer, in 2012. His son, Miguel, left, and daughter, Emily, help run the business. (Kelly Schafler/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Yummy Tummy Pastries provides custom cakes and baked goods for events and weddings. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
Look back at the local businesses Community Impact Newspaper featured throughout 2020 in the Lake Houston, Humble and Kingwood areas, including The Hop Stop, Vessel Pilates, Paco Pops and Yummy Tummy Bakery.

JANUARY: Ettin Games and Hobbies creates space for gaming enthusiasts

By day, owner Dave Donohoo works as a social studies teacher at New Caney ISD. At night, he brings his longtime passion for games into operating the Humble gaming store Ettin Games and Hobbies.

FEBRUARY: Aquatic Care Programs uses water therapy to alleviate patients’ pain

For almost 24 years, Aquatic Care Programs has been offering aquatic and land physical therapy for people in pain. Patients come in for various issues, including back pain, neck pain, shoulder injuries and neurological injuries.

MARCH: The Hop Stop brings craft beer, community feeling to Humble

Dawn and Rick Tyler’s love of beer coupled with their exit from the food service industry and logistics sectors, respectively, led to the couple opening The Hop Stop, a craft beer bar near downtown Humble that offers beer to go.

MAY: Vessel Pilates owner strives to create ‘wellness sanctuary’ despite coronavirus crisis

While Vessel Pilates owner Jessica Sowyrda normally offers Pilates, rebound and align, barre, yoga and suspension training classes, stay-at-home orders due to the coronavirus pandemic brought in-person sessions to a halt in mid-March. Instead, the studio began offering live classes every day via Zoom, a videoconferencing app, during the outbreak.

AUGUST: Paco Pops serves 80-plus flavors of handmade ice cream, pops

Paco Pops features more than 60 pop flavors, including Gansito and avocado, which can be dipped in rich Mexican chocolate and coated in a variety of toppings. Co-owner Francisco Sanchez said the shop also collaborates with local businesses to source unique ingredients for the pops.

SEPTEMBER: Kingwood Meat Market continues tradition of family-owned markets

When Eduardo Garza and his wife, Jennifer, noticed Kingwood was missing a meat market, he said, it seemed natural to open their own. The couple—with the help of their children, Miguel and Emily—opened the Kingwood Meat Market in March 2012.

OCTOBER: Family business K&S Sportswear faces new challenges during pandemic

For 25 years, K&S Sportswear has provided printing and design services to the Humble community. However, owner Brittney Mittag said, instead of a celebration to commemorate the anniversary, 2020 has brought unexpected challenges.

NOVEMBER: Kingwood gift shop The Forest Collection adapts throughout almost 14 years in business

Since The Forest Collection opened, owner Angela Leviner said, she has adjusted the store’s offerings. Moving from initially selling mostly jewelry and clocks, her store is a product of years of adapting to the interests of the community.

DECEMBER: Yummy Tummy Bakery owner overcomes health struggles, pandemic to serve community

“God gave me the strength that I need again, and I’m here to make my customers happy,” Yummy Tummy Bakery owner Letty Martinez said. “I want them to know that I’m here; I’m back; I’m better; I’m strong, and I want them to be happy when they buy a cake from Yummy Tummy.”
By Andy Li
Originally from Boone, North Carolina, Andy Li is a graduate of East Carolina University with degrees in Communication with a concentration in Journalism and Political Science. While in school, he worked as a performing arts reporter, news, arts and copy editor and a columnist at the campus newspaper, The East Carolinian. He also had the privilege to work with NPR’s Next Generation Radio, a project for student journalists exploring radio news. Moving to Houston in May 2019, he now works as the reporter for the Conroe/Montgomery edition of Community Impact Newspaper.


Coventry Homes will be one homebuilder in The Highlands, a the new master-planned community coming to the Porter area. (Rendering courtesy Coventry Homes)
New master-planned community The Highlands to bring 4K homes to Porter area

The community will also include recreational lakes, an 18-hole semiprivate golf course, more than 30 miles of hike and bike trails, a water park with a resort-style pool and a lazy river, and an event lawn with a pavilion.

The “Click It or Ticket” enforcement period across Texas roads will start on May 24. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
TxDOT will launch annual ‘Click It or Ticket’ campaign Monday, May 24

The campaign comes after a 2020 that saw a 16% increase in deaths of unbuckled motorists.

The Sgt. Luther James Dorsey Memorial Bridge was dedicated in November. The upcoming Memorial Day event includes the dedication of several more structures. (Courtesy Taylorized PR)
Montgomery County Veterans Memorial Park Commission hosts Memorial Day events May 30, 31

The Memorial Day event includes the dedication of an interactive acoustical monument honoring the Women Air Force Service Pilots.

Public schools cannot require students, teachers, parents and other staff members or visitors to wear masks after June 4, Gov. Greg Abbott declared in an executive order issued May 18. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Public schools can't require students, staff to wear masks after June 4, Gov. Abbott says

"Texans, not government, should decide their best health practices, which is why masks will not be mandated by public school districts or government entities," Gov. Greg Abbott said.

George Strait will perform at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo's 90th anniversary celebration next year. (Courtesy Pexels)
George Strait to close 2022 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo with concert March 20

Tickets for George Strait's rodeo performance will go on sale June 24.

Comprehensive High School No. 3's will be named West Fork High School.  (Renderings courtesy New Caney ISD)
New Caney ISD trustees approve name for comprehensive High School No. 3

Trustees also approved a 2021-22 compensation plan and officials discussed mask policies for the summer.

Effective June 26, unemployed Texans will no longer be eligible to receive the $300 weekly unemployment supplement from the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Gov. Greg Abbott announces end-date for Texans to receive federal pandemic-related unemployment benefits

Effective June 26, unemployed Texans will no longer be eligible to receive the $300 weekly unemployment supplement from the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program.

Photo of an H-E-B store
H-E-B makes curbside services free

Previously, curbside shoppers were charged a $4.95 fee on all orders, but moving forward that fee will be waived on purchases of $35 or more. Orders worth less than $35 will have a $2.95 "small basket surcharge" attached.

Each of the new locations will be available to the public to distribute and receive voter registration forms and applications to vote my mail as well as assisting with other election-related services. (Courtesy Unsplash)
Harris County elections administrator announces 8 new branch office locations

Registering to vote will soon be more convenient for Harris County residents with the opening of eight new branch office locations announced by the Harris County Elections Administrator's Office in a news release May 17.