Archive for June 2017

Great Texas Mosquito Festival

Celebrate Mosquitos? Where Else but Texas!!!!

But it is true. In Clute, Texas (55 miles southeast of Houston, near the coast) they not only celebrate them, they have a festival named for them – The Great Texas Mosquito Festival. Why? Let’s take a look.

Celebrating 37 years, the festival is scheduled for July 27, 28, 29 and attracts 13,000 plus visitors a year. In 2014 The Top Events USA named it as one of the Top 20 events and festivals in and around Houston. created, honestly, to encourage tourism in the city of Clute, it includes a “Mosquito Chase” 5 K Run and 600 meter Kids run on Saturday, Mosquito Calling and Mosquito Legs contests.

 Great Texas Mosquito Festival in Clute TXBut why mosquitos? Have you not been to the Texas coast? The story (tale) goes that a mosquito, “Will-Man-Chew”, came across Clute in 1981 and liked what he saw.  Deciding to settle there, he brought together his ambassadors or “Swat team” to every year present three fun-filled days of special events, games, food, carnival rides and contests, craft booths, cook-offs and much more, honoring him and his fellow mosquitos. That’s the story and they’re sticking to it, in fact, you can meet Willie at the festival – unless, of course, you are wearing bug spray.

Go online to www.mosquitofestival.com for all the information you need on this unique Texas festival and make plans to visit Clute. Especially check out their music lineup – over the years there have been some notable names, such as Asleep at the Wheel in 1982, Selena in 1994, Three Dog Night in 1996, Ronnie Milsap in 2000, Marshall Tucker Band in 2005 and The Texas Zydeco Band in 2008.

Wherever you head in Texas this summer don’t forget your sunscreen, bug spray and Rules of the Road. Safety on the Texas highways is our priority. Log into WirelessDefensiveDriving.com for all your safe driving information or just to dismiss a ticket.

Texas Wildflowers season

TEXAS IS WILD – WITH FLOWERS THAT IS!!

This time of year it is a great pleasure to travel the roads of Texas and take in the many colors that are Texas wildflowers. These stunning displays used to be grouped together and talked about as a whole. But there are many varieties and the best known have their own folktales. Let’s travel down the road a bit and take in some color.

Always singled out of the group is the bluebonnet. It tends to be one of the earliest and most vibrant bloomers. Comanche lore tells of a bitter winter when the medicine men thought they would need to sacrifice their prized possessions to placate The Great Spirit and one of the young girls took her doll that was adorned with blue jay feathers and when all were asleep she burned it and scattered the ashes in the wind. The following morning the hillsides were covered in blue.

Texas Wildflowers

Although traditionally blue, horticulturists have been experimenting with the variants on color. So now it is not unusual to find white, pink or a lovely shade of red. The pink ones have a legend of their own. It is told that a grandmother near San Antonio, many, many years ago, told her grandchildren that the pink ones had been found along a river downstream from the Alamo. It had been white but so much blood had been shed that it turned it pink. She said to always remember that the pink ones are a symbol of the struggle to survive and those who died to set Texas free.

Similarly, the well-known Indian Blanket wildflower is said to have been all yellow but when Cortes invaded Mexico in 1519 the flowers were permanently stained by the blood of the Aztecs. This is only one of the many tales of Texas wildflowers but represents how tied these legends are to bloodshed.

The two wildflowers are well known but another also dominates the landscape. No spring bouquet would be complete without Indian Paintbrush. It often accompanies bluebonnets because it is a parasitic plant – meaning it relies on other plants to grow. It can also be called Painted Lady, Prairie Fire and Butterfly Weed. Native American folklore dictates that an artist asked The Great Spirit for guidance on where to find colors to paint a sunset. The Spirit told him where to find brushes with vibrant colors and as he painted on a hillside, he discarded the brushes on the ground.  The next morning, you guessed it, the hills were covered in Indian Paintbrush. At least this one is not dominated by bloodshed.

There are too many Texas wildflowers to list and discuss. For more information on this, you cannot beat Texas Highways magazine and an article by Jane Kellogg Murray.

As you drive the highways and byways of Texas try to stop and smell the…..wildflowers? Whatever your destination, stay safe and for all your driving safety needs log into WirelessDefensiveDriving.com.

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