Listen to Austin 360 Radio

Tribeza Brunch, Party with a Purpose, Castro Brothers and more

Michael Barnes
mbarnes@statesman.com

STYLE: Maybe the best picnic brunch ever. The weather was ambrosial. Like Northern California in October. The setting — under a spreading pecan at green Springdale Farm — was Edenic. The guests at the Tribeza Style Week Southern Brunch looked glorious and even made subjects like curing concrete sound fascinating. The food was fresh and served family style to perhaps 150 glowing brunchers while Whiskey Shivers fiddled and sang their hearts out. Congrats to Lauren Smith Ford, George Elliman and crew for the Sunday high. (Thanks also to Bennett Ford, Daniel Mahoney and Annie Mahoney for the conversational lift.)

CHARITY: Dell Children’s global outreach matures fast. Last year, it was held at a warehouse. This year, the Party with a Purpose checked into the Four Seasons Hotel, the classiest joint in town. Benefiting the Dell Children’s Global Surgical Outreach, the event featured the timeless Texas swing of Ray Benson and his band and a clever digital bidding system. The outreach has, in its second year, only gotten as far as Guatemala, but with other partners it is sure to expand strategically. The cause got a crucial boost from Christine and Louis Messina, who brightened my evening with chat about her new business, the Candy Jar, and his high-flying music promotion clients, among them, yes, George Strait, Kenney Chesney and Taylor Swift. (He’s got four new acts that I’m sampling on Pandora.)

CITY: Homeless advocates improve shelter, push for housing. Reported by Andrea Ball in the Statesman. “Nine years ago, the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless opened its doors with a clear mission: to unconditionally house people who had nowhere else to go. They didn’t force people into jobs programs, require them to get social services, or impose deadlines on how long they could stay. The creation of the ARCH signaled a new phase in the city’s evolving approach to homelessness, one focused on getting people off the streets quickly. Now the city is refocusing its efforts again, this time toward permanent supportive housing. Advocates for the homeless are chasing that goal in a number of ways. They’re trying to sell voters on a $65 million affordable housing bond that will be on the November ballot. The nonprofit Foundation Communities is planning a 135-unit low-income apartment building in downtown Austin. Mobile Loaves and Fishes is developing a 27-acre community to provide affordable housing for the chronically homeless in Central Texas.” ttp://shar.es/KoBXf(Crucial bond voet coming up in November.)

BUSINESS: Buses, bikes and maybe rail for Guadalupe and Lavaca streets. Reported by Ben Wear in the Statesman. “Say goodbye to another 267 parking spaces in and near downtown. Or about 9 percent of the 3,000 or so on-street parking spots in the city’s core. The city of Austin for a while now has been eliminating on-street parking through a variety of means, principally the “great streets” program where sidewalks are widened by several feet. In this case, however, the space-slayer will be new “transit priority” lanes and bike lanes the city and Capital Metro are installing on Lavaca and Guadalupe streets between West Third and West 17th streets. By late October or November, after city crews have finished resurfacing those two main downtown arteries, and other workers have restriped them, the right-hand lane on both one-way streets (Lavaca northbound, Guadalupe southbound) in that stretch will be reserved mostly for buses. Regular drivers will be able to use them only to make right turns. The bike lane on each street will be tucked in between that bus lane and the curb. ttp://shar.es/KoBCI (Local business people complain.)

LAW: The Castro brothers in Iowa. Reported by Eugene Sepulveda in Community Matters blog. “Excellent trip to Des Moines w/ Mayor Castro & Congressman Castro. Enjoyed meeting and chatting w/ Senator Harkin and met lots of his Iowa staff, organizers and supporters at his major donor dinner. Last night we hosted new friends in my hotel room for a boxing match watching party. This morning, we met with Hispanic political leadership and spent the afternoon at the Steak Fry, where Mayor Castro shared the stage with the Senator and Vice President Biden. I’m blown away by the Castro brothers’ popularity in Iowa. Joaquin arrived at the fair grounds with the Senator & Mayor in the VP’s motorcade and since he wasn’t speaking, joined the crowd – they literally rushed him, jockeying for pictures. Everywhere we’ve gone, Joaquin and Julian have been stopped, approached, grabbed for pics – and it isn’t only Hispanics and young voters. I’m appreciative they are both traveling the country, campaigning for the best Democratic candidates.” http://communitymatters.biz(Good to hear they buzz beyond Texas.)