Features

Thu
03
Aug

DSHS band director begins final season

Keith Lancaster conducting a spring concert.

If you'll recall, River City was never the same after the Music Man came to town. The same may be said for Dripping Springs, after Keith Lancaster steps down as director of the Dripping Springs High School Band.

Lancaster is retiring at the end of the Fall semester. He leaves a stellar legacy of marching band and performance excellence, a plethora of trophies and accolades, and a lifetime of sharing his passion for music with thousands of students.

"For me, a passion for music began as a sixth grader, when band directors came to our school to make a presentation about the band and recruit young musicians," the director recalled during a rare free day during summer vacation. "I remember going home and asking my parents if I could be in the band."

Thu
03
Aug

Music for nursing home residents

Caroline Welton next to her piano. “She is a piano player and loves music,” Caroline’s mother says. PHOTO COURTESY OF AMY JEANNE WELTON.

As an American Heritage Girl (AHG), Caroline Welton has a mission.

She wants to initiate a new program, “Music and Memory,” at the Johnson City LBJ Nursing Home by providing 20 nursing home with a personalized playlist on an iPod, which contains music “that speaks to them.” The idea being that music has beneficial properties for people who suffer from memory issues, and can also help alleviate isolation.

The project involves interviewing 20 of the nursing home residents who are non-responsive and creating individual playlists of music on iPods for each of them. The playlists on the iPods will consist of music that was popular when the nursing home residents were in their 20s. Once donated, the iPods will be maintained by the nursing home and used for future residents as well.

Sun
25
Jun

DSHS Grad interns at Justice Department

 

Photo: Kristina Dickenson winning first place in "Hunt Seat Equitation," while attending Dripping Springs High School. She was also crowned 2015 Hays County Junior Livestock Show Queen in 2015, and was active in both FFA and 4H. PHOTO COURTESY OF LYNNE DICKENSON

 

Kristina Dickenson, a 2015 graduate of Dripping Springs High School, and student at Texas A&M University, began a summer 2017 internship with the office of Legislative Affairs within the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington D.C.

Kristina is the daughter of Dripping Springs Ranch Park Manager Lynne Dickenson.
“I’m very proud of her and in awe of her choice in college majors,” Lynne said of her daughter.  “Kristina was in the top ten of her DSHS class and was active in 4-H and Future Farmers of America (FFA) showing horses and goats.  She also rode in horse shows, participated in entomology and woodworking at school, and worked part time at Tractor Supply.”

Fri
09
Jun

DS Class of 2017 ends in the dark (with a surprising bang!)

 

DSHS Valedictorian Rachel Nix and Salutatorian Michael Martinets before start of processional.

 

The first official event to be held in the phenomenal new Tiger Stadium - the 2017 Dripping Springs High School Graduation Exercises - was blessed by pitch-perfect weather but delayed by 10 minutes due to the less-than-perfect traffic jam on Highway 290.

However, at exactly 8:10 p.m. DSHS Band Director Keith Lancaster launched the Wind Ensemble into the ever-familiar "Pomp and Circumstance" as the members of the Class of 2017 - clad in traditionally tasseled maroon caps and gowns with a gold stripe at the cuff - made their way into the stadium, filling almost 400 seats positioned in front of their academic mentors, administrators and an audience of families and other well-wishers.

Notably, this was the first graduating class in Dripping Springs High School history graduating in ceremonies held in Dripping Springs proper.

Fri
09
Jun

Alba is Dripping Springs through and through

Santos Alba served 25 years on the City Council

 

Dripping Springs was far different than today, back in 1941. That’s the year that former councilman Santos Alba made his appearance here. The only paved road was U.S. Highway 290 and Mercer Street was 290.

“Everything around was dirt roads,” Alba said. “When it iced you could not get out of Dripping.” Alba was the oldest among nine kids, which means he took care of his siblings.

As he grew older he was promoted in his duties to checking the fence lines.

“I’d pick up my rifle, cross ranches and meet the ranchers. When it would get late I’d come home. Now it’s property rights, they’ll sue.”

It was also different socially, where races did not mix. “They would hire you but don’t talk to their daughters.”

Thu
01
Jun

Center of the Plate fights hunger in Dripping

 

Grace Baxter loads one of the freezers

 

Baseball’s center of the plate concerns the ball passing over home plate. But this organization hits the plate when it comes to hunger. Center of the Plate (CoP) is a homegrown Dripping Springs organization of students in 4-H and FFA. They help others by putting meat protein on the center of needy families’ plates.

As Ag students they raise cattle and swine for school and show them off at places like the Hays County Livestock Show. They all go through the familiar process of raising animals.

They got together in October 2015 and came up with a project in early 2016. They decided they would like for the livestock they raised to be processed and the meats, i.e. beef and pork, would be stored and given to the less fortunate families in the community.

Thu
25
May

DSMS band holds memorable musical evening

 

Fron left to right: Composer William Owens, Band Director Loren Welles, honoree Linda McDavitt, Band Director Jay Larson, and Band Director Jana Galloway. SUBMITTED PHOTO

 

Musician-activist Bono must have attended last Tuesday's Dripping Springs Middle School (DSMS) Band's spring concert when he said, "Music can change the world because it can change people," and anyone in the packed house who didn't experience a lighter spirit, joy-filled soul and more positive outlook must have been texting the entire time.

The specialness of the evening was palpable when first entering the auditorium, and a large portion of the audience was had come to hear and see the premier of the newly-commissioned work by Texas Composer William Owens called "Voyage of the Bonfire," dedicated to former DS Band Director Linda McDavitt -- but more about that later.

Thu
25
May

DS Presbyterian, a vision for a new church

 

Dripping Springs Presbyterian Church (DSPC) began in the year 2000, when Rev. Nancy Marroquin was an intern at Austin Theological Presbyterian Seminary.

"We began as a vision for a new church in Dripping Springs, and when our studies indicated there was room for a new (Presbyterian) church (so that) the residents of Dripping didn't have to drive all the way into Austin to attend a Presbyterian church on Sundays," said Marroquin. "I loved the idea of being part of a new church and after being involved in children and youth ministries as a volunteer, I was called to begin the new church in Dripping Springs.”

Thu
18
May

Education in Dripping Springs through the year

 

Looking at Dripping Springs Independent School District (DSISD) today, with its stellar scholastic ratings and top academic performance, it’s hard to believe that at one time there weren’t any schools at all in Dripping.  But the road to today’s success was a long one.

It all started in the 1850, where mothers on a rotating basis would teach the dozen or so children. Then in the 1850’s Dr. Joseph Pound, one of the founders of Dripping hired a private tutor to instruct his and neighborhood children.

The Civil War interrupted the efforts to educate the children. According a one source at the end of the war Union Soldiers taught students the three or four months when they weren’t needed for farm work. This was not going to work for the students and the parents.

Thu
11
May

Tiger Golf starting to growl

 

Coach Jason Wahlers tees up at DSHS PHOTO BY GARY ZUPANCIC

 

This year’s 2017 District 26 – 5A Girls Championship for the Lady Tigers Golf has given a goal to the team, win more. Coach Jason Wahlers the head golf coach sees bigger things in the future.

The UIL rules for golf playoff paths are not your regular categories, District, Area, Regionals then State. Area is eliminated and if you win District, you’re just one step away from the State tournament.

It also doesn’t help that your foes are Vandegrift and Cedar Park, a couple of golf powerhouses. Advancing that far was a taste.

“It was a point of pride with the girls,” Wahlers said. The sport, although called a team sport really is a personal one, always trying to beat your own best.

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