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Texas Coast Living
Life on the Texas Gulf Coast
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Gulf Coast offshore wind farms face hurricane risk

Gulf Coast offshore wind farms face hurricane risk | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Proposed offshore wind farms along the Gulf coast are likely to be destroyed by hurricanes in a 20-year period.


The study from Carnegie Mellon University says strategies should be considered to protect the reliability of the nation's electricity grid and reduce risks to wind farm operators before large-scale offshore wind development advances in the United States.


The Gulf Coast has better offshore wind resources.

In South Texas, Baryonyx Corp. has been awarded leases totaling 67,500 acres off Mustang Island and South Padre Island. A group of developers called Wind Energy Systems Technology has a lease for 11,355 acres about seven miles off the coast of Galveston.


Mitigation includes increasing the strength and maneuverability of turbines.

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Port Aransas North Jetty offers angler adventure

Port Aransas North Jetty offers angler adventure | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Texas saltwater fishing benefits from a split personality that separates the bay anglers, who chase speckled trout and redfish in the shallows, from the offshore, big-water types who use baits larger than most of the keepers the inshore guys put on ice.


Where the angling world finds middle ground is at the passes, the openings where rivers meet ocean. It’s where the state’s barrier islands are cut, allowing the exchange of water through passes from bays to the gulf and vice versa.


Texas coastal passes are diverse in locale, geography and character. By Mexico is the Isla Blanca Pass jetties at Port Isabel. 


Port Aransas has the Aransas Pass Jetties and newest pass called Packery Channel near Corpus Christi on North Padre Island.

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Who's your Padre? Prepare for the annual storming of the beach

Who's your Padre? Prepare for the annual storming of the beach | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

If you're planning a trip to this island for spring break during Texas Week, March 10-17, you're going to find something new this year: dueling beach parties.


The party-centric Coca-Cola beach will be where it's always been — behind the Isla Grand Resort March 7-25. There'll be the usual stage with DJs, contests and attempts by various armed services branches to recruit you.


But also, during Texas Week, there will be a competing beach party at Clayton's Beach Bar, 6900 Padre Blvd. This bar opened last summer and immediately drew a crowd. It's enlarging its deck just in time for spring break. The Hilton Garden Inn nearby is enlarging its deck, too, by the way, so there should be plenty of space to hang out without getting sandy.

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Rio Grand Valley South Texas is a mecca for retirees

Rio Grand Valley South Texas is a mecca for retirees | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Ken and Shirley Morgan, both 75, say the Rio Grande Valley’s low cost of living was the determining factor in their decision to retire here.


They had heard for years that “you can retire in South Texas for half the money of Florida,” Ken Morgan, a retired oilfield worker from Oklahoma.


A close second to cost of living, is the Valley’s climate, followed by quality-of-life factors, which they defined as friendly people, a sense of community and “there’s always something to do.” plus South Padre Island and Mexico.


Many Winter Texans who come to the Valley ultimately choose to stay here year-round, and cost of living is often cited as the deciding factor. The Valley becomes their permanent retirement home.

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39th annual All Membership Show opens at Art Center of Corpus Christi

39th annual All Membership Show opens at Art Center of Corpus Christi | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

The Art Center of Corpus Christi opened its 39th annual All Membership Show. On view through March 4, the presentation features artwork in numerous media, styles and price ranges.


There are numerous traditional oil paintings of landscapes including ranches, farms and seascapes. Several large paintings of waves reveal the waves in between state of inhaling and exhaling, much like the artist seems to be in between realism and more abstract depictions.


The 39th Annual All Membership Show

Art Center of Corpus Christi, 100 Shoreline Drive, 78401


More information: call 361/884.6406 or visit www.artcentercc.org

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Bill would change Gulf of Mexico to Gulf of America?

Bill would change Gulf of Mexico to Gulf of America? | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

If a Mississippi lawmaker gets his way, the Gulf of Mexico will become the “Gulf of America.”


Mississippi State Rep. Steve Holland, a Democrat, has introduced a bill calling for the part of the Gulf of Mexico that is bordered by Mississippi to be renamed the “Gulf of America.”


The Gulf is bordered by the United States to the north (Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas), five Mexican states to the west (Tamaulipas, Veracruz, Tabasco, Campeche, Yucatan), and the island of Cubato the southeast.


The senseless measure is called HB 150 - House Marine Resources Committee. Hopefully he will withdraw the bill and spare us all further embarrassment.


Holland says the measure is "joke" and meant to mock other bills that would crack down on illegal immigration.

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Gulf of Mexico Foundation Membership Kayak Winner

Gulf of Mexico Foundation Membership Kayak Winner | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

The Gulf of Mexico Foundation presented a new, yellow Ocean Kayak to the winner of a promotion it held recently as part of a membership drive.


The lucky winner of the random drawing was Ray Allen, Executive Director of the Coastal Bend Bays and Estuaries Program (CBBEP) in Corpus Christi, who is one of the many people who have signed up for the GMF’s new Individual Membership Program.


GMF President Dr. Quenton Dokken presented Allen with the kayak on January 30 at the site of a marsh restoration project on Nueces Bay.

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Fewer whoopers flying this season on the Texas Coast

Fewer whoopers flying this season on the Texas Coast | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Hopes for a record season for the whooping cranes at their wintering grounds are waning as the days go by and more birds fail to appear.


In October, Dan Alonso, manager of the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, predicted this would be a record-breaking season for the flock, with their numbers swelling to more than 300 birds.


Despite the estimate, only 193 birds have been counted in the refuge. Adding 16 birds known to be wintering between here and the flock's summer home in Wood Buffalo National Park in the Northwest Territories of Canada, the total of birds comes to 209, well below estimates from the beginning of the season, according to a news release from the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge.

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Free Galveston ferry delights Texas travelers

Free Galveston ferry delights Texas travelers | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Galveston's Bolivar Ferry, Texas' version of the famous New York Staten Island Ferry, may be the best tourist bargain in the Lone Star State.


It's free, and the roughly 20-minute ride each way between Port Bolivar and Galveston is an entertaining diversion from the beaches and historic districts that are the biggest local tourist draw.


Nowhere else in the vast state of Texas can you cross and share a waterway with ships on one of the world's busiest channels, feed scores of seagulls eager for bread or popcorn, and spot dolphins swimming and diving within shouting distance of the boat.

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Coast Guard training with the Texas State Aquarium

Coast Guard training with the Texas State Aquarium | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Coast Guard students and instructors of the Gulf Regional Fisheries Training Center visited the Texas State Aquarium to familiarize themselves with the various species of marine life in the Gulf of Mexico


This course teaches our boarding teams how to enforce the National Marine Fisheries rules and regulations in order to protect our natural resources.


This most recent class included students from Station Sabine Pass, Texas, Station Port O’Connor, Texas, Sector Hampton Roads, Va., the Coast Guard Cutter Brandt stationed in Corpus Christi, Texas, and the Coast Guard Cutter Amberjack, stationed in South Padre Island, Texas.

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Galveston has new attractions for Spring Break

Galveston has new attractions for Spring Break | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Galveston Island has new attractions and a wide variety of activities to make your trip exciting this Spring Break and beyond!


A new museum has opened in Galveston and Y'ARRR sure going to enjoy it! Pirates!


Legends of the Gulf Coast is a pirate-themed family attraction where visitors can learn about the legends, myths and stories of the last buccaneers.


The interactive museum features historical information, pirate artifacts, the deck of a pirate ship, a captain's cabin and actors portraying the notorious Jean Laffite and his brother Pierre, as well as the life that all pirates led.


The museum, which opened Jan. 27 in downtown Galveston, is open daily. For more information visit www.piratesgulfcoast.com

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Satellites Reveals Sea Turtle Hotspots in Gulf of Mexico

Satellites  Reveals Sea Turtle Hotspots in Gulf of Mexico | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Satellite tracking of threatened loggerhead sea turtles has revealed two previously unknown feeding hotspots in the Gulf of Mexico that are providing important habitat for at least three separate populations of the turtles.


The use of satellite tags for tracking marine animals has opened our eyes to the secret lives of some of nature's most elusive creatures.


These tags may now be the main hope for understanding what we can do, or what we should stop doing, in order to bring the turtles back from the road to extinction.


USGS provides science for a changing world. Visit www.USGS.gov

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Fracking Boom Could Finally Cap Myth of Peak Oil

Fracking Boom Could Finally Cap Myth of Peak Oil | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

The U.S. oil market could be on the verge of its own fracking revolution, similar to what the natural-gas market is already experiencing.


The Energy Information Administration estimates domestic oil production will rise because of continued development of fracking oil, in combination with the ongoing development of offshore resources in the Gulf of Mexico.


This should push oil prices down, as shale gas has done to natural-gas prices, and the year ahead could see the death of the peak-oil hypothesis.


Both fracking oil and shale gas are a boom to Texas and the Texas coast economies.

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New Slogan to help make Brownsville a tourist destination

New Slogan to help make Brownsville a tourist destination | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

South Texas coastal area city - Brownsville Texas has a new slogan: "Always a Fiesta" but, it won’t replace the current slogan ‘On the Border, By the Sea" just augment it.


The BCVB got a jump on the new campaign with a big, splashy ad in the latest issue of "Texas Monthly."


BCVB headquarters, the Brownsville South Padre Island International Airport and other locations around town are bedecked with papel picado banners, in keeping with the fiesta theme.

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Mardi Gras means fat business all over the Gulf Coast

Mardi Gras means fat business all over the Gulf Coast | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Mardi Gras has long been celebrated in coastal towns from Texas to Florida. And it means big business.


Revelers are expected to flock to the Mardi Gras celebrations on Texas' Gulf Coast, rain or shine.


Galveston, Crystal Beach and Port Arthur celebrate uniquely Texas versions of Madri Gras with parades, floats and costumes. From a convention and visitors bureau standpoint, you hope people come for Mardi Gras, fall in love with the area and come back to visit again.


Mardi Gras originated as the Fat Tuesday celebration in the U.S. back in the early 1700s.

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South Padre Mayor Appointed to Texas Coast Insurance Group

South Padre Mayor Appointed to Texas Coast Insurance Group | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus of San Antonio has appointed South Padre Island Mayor Robert Pinkerton, Jr. to the Joint Interim Committee to Study Seacoast Territory Insurance.


The committee will examine alternative ways to provide insurance to the state’s seacoast territory, which is currently served by the quasi-governmental Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA).


Additional duties for the committee include studying the residual markets of windstorm and hail insurance in other states, and studying windstorm-related building codes and mitigation strategies.

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South Padre on the 10 trashiest spring break list

South Padre on the 10 trashiest spring break list | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

For many college students the annual Spring Break revolves around booze, beaches and babes.


Coed Magazine.com has ranked the most popular U.S. spring break destinations by what the college students like most, but for a few weeks what some local residents call "trashy":


1. Las Vegas

2. Key West

3. South Padre Island, Texas

4. Daytona Beach, Fla.

5. Myrtle Beach, S.C.

6. Miami Beach

7. Panama City Beach, Fla.

8. Fort Myers, Fla.

9. Lake Havasu City, Ariz.
10. San Diego


Visit http://coedmagazine.com/2012/01/26/cheap-spring-break-destinations-college-usa/

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Finding a new approach to cold weather fishing

Finding a new approach to cold weather fishing | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

In all the major bay systems along the Texas gulf coast, die hard big trout hunters are in anticipation of finding that one truly big speckled trout of a lifetime.


The late fall and winter months are regarded as the best times to pursue real wall hanger size trout. According to Parks and Wildlife studies, water temperatures in the 60 to 80 degree range are the best for catching speckled trout.


During the winter months as the surface temps dip into the low 50’s it is a must to slow your presentations and possibly offer up a little bigger bait.

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Texan lawmakers angry that Canadian oil for the Keystone pipeline might go China

Texan lawmakers angry that Canadian oil for the Keystone pipeline might go China | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

The Canadians might not be allowed to build a pipeline going south to the Texas Gulf Coast, so now they’re determined to build one going west to the Canadian Pacific Coast.


After President Obama rejected the Keystone XL pipeline last month, the conservative Canadian government has begun looking for another potential buyer for the oil that was intended for the pipeline.


That buyer is China, the energy-craving economic giant that’s already invested more than $16 billion dollars in the Canadian oil industry in the last two years.


“It’s outrageous and unacceptable to drive our friends the Canadians into the arms of China,” Rep. John Culberson, a Houston Republican, told Texas on the Potomac. “Next to our national debt, the communist Chinese government is the biggest threat to American national security in the 21st century.”

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Snowbirds fly to south Texas to bird watching paradise

Snowbirds fly to south Texas to bird watching paradise | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Hundreds of species of birds travel south each year in search of sustainable food, warmer climates and increased daylight hours.


Two of the four major flyways in North America converge in south Texas, creating one of the nation’s premier hotspots for bird watching.


RV snowbirds also find winter homes in south Texas. Bird watching is a natural fit for RV campers and many plan their winter vacations to follow the birds’'paths.


Along the Texas coast and in the watersheds of the Rio Grand Valley, migratory birds make stopovers on their way to destinations farther south or find winter homes until mid-spring.

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Mardi Gras parades Crystal Beach and Galveston

Mardi Gras parades Crystal Beach and Galveston | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

The floats are getting their last minute decorations the beads are being prepared to be tossed and Mardi Gras revelers are resting up for two weeks of pre-Lenten celebrations. But the preparations aren’t in Galveston alone.


Kemah, Crystal Beach and Texas City each are hosting events leading up to Fat Tuesday.

Krewe De Peninsula


The oldest Mardi Gras celebration off Galveston Island in the county belongs to the folks of the Bolivar Lighthouse Krewe.


The peninsula’s Mardi Gras festivities started Saturday with the Mardi Gras ball at the Coconuts restaurant where King Robbie Byus and Queen Anne Willis presided over the party.

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Canada Keystone pipeline ships oil despite permit denial

Canada Keystone pipeline ships oil despite permit denial | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

TransCanada Corp. already is shipping close to 100,000 barrels of crude oil per day to the Cushing storage and trading hub regardless of President Barack Obama's denial of the Keystone XL Pipeline permit, just not to the Texas coast as planned.


President Barack Obama blocked the TransCanada permit to build the Keystone XL leg from the Canadian border citing potential environmental dangers if the route went through the Sand Hills region of western Nebraska, but the Keystone firm had vowed to construct a takeaway leg from Cushing to the Gulf Coast once the cross-border permit was approved.


This was a missed opportunity to reduce imported crude oil, create jobs and impove the economy. Let's hope the decision is reversed soon and the pipeline approved.


Pipelines are built and operated in safe and environmentally protective ways every day.

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Brownsville markets offer Mexican experience

Brownsville markets offer Mexican experience | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

Tourism in northern Mexico has been on a steady decline since 9/11, which prompted a clamp-down on border traffic.


Winter Texans - retirees coming to escape the cold and snow of the Midwest and Canada - began shunning Matamoros.


Parents of college students heading to South Padre Island for spring break made sons and daughters swear that they would not go to Mexico, long an attraction because of the younger drinking age.


Mexicans who used to make road trips north to shop at U.S. malls or relax on South Padre now opt to fly, frightened off roads under cartel control.


It's been the end of an era for vendors who'd once made comfortable livings selling crafts to tourists from as far away as Europe and Asia.

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Schlitterbahn New Year-Round Indoor Waterpark Hotel South Padre Island

Schlitterbahn New Year-Round Indoor Waterpark Hotel South Padre Island | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

New Schlitterbahn beachfront resort includes lodging, retail, restaurants, year-round indoor waterpark and special access to the summertime Schlitterbahn Beach outdoor waterpark.


Hotel guests enjoy the new spacious upscale accommodations, but resort guests will also receive a variety of VIP amenities including unlimited use of the Waterpark for the duration of their stay, extended use of select park rides and attractions, beach access amenities, Wi-Fi and free onsite parking.


The first phase of this project is scheduled to open summer of 2012.

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Texsas Coast Oyster season opening

Texsas Coast Oyster season opening | Texas Coast Living | Scoop.it

The Texas coast Red tide shortended oyster season.


But, after a three month delay, oyster season starts Feburary 2nd 2012 with the opening of San Antonio Bay and Espiritu Santo Bay.


The industry has already been suffering because of the stigma attached to Gulf Coast seafood in the wake of the BP oil spill. The recession has also been a struggle, since oysters aren't a staple food.


Call the Texas Department of State Health Services for updates on state waters opening for oyster season at 1-800-685-0361.

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