Hamburger (continued): Podunk ("Official Mythical Town of Texas")

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Fri Mar 2 00:30:54 UTC 2007

HAMBURGER (continued)
It appears that the hamburger legislation was unanimously approved by the
Texas House Culture, Recreation & Tourism Committee, without amendment.  "French
fries" from Paris, Texas--yep, the whole thing is going to the  legislature
for a vote, as is.
While looking up the Culture, Recreation & Tourism Committee, I saw  that
it's considering a "Podunk, Official Mythical Town of Texas" bill. You  can't
make this stuff up.
        Bill:   HCR 15    Legislative Session: 80(R)  Council Document: 80R
583 MMS-D

    Last Action: 02/27/2007 H Reported  favorably w/o amendment(s)
Caption Version: Introduced  Caption Text: Designating Athens, Texas, as the
Original Home of  the Hamburger.      Author: Brown, Betty      Subjects:
Resolutions--Official Designations--Miscellaneous  (I0719)
House Committee: _Culture,  Recreation, & Tourism_
(    Status: Out
of committee   Vote: Ayes=5   Nays=0    Present Not Voting=0   Absent=2
Actions:  (descending date order)    Description Comment _Date_
 Time       Journal Page  H  Reported favorably w/o amendment(s)   02/27/2007
    H  Recommended to be sent to Local & Consent   02/27/2007     H
Considered in public hearing   02/27/2007     H  Scheduled for public hearing on . . .
.   02/27/2007     H  Referred to Culture, Recreation, and Tourism
02/07/2007   366  H  Filed   11/13/2006


Podunk, adj. and n.

[< Podunk, the name of a river (1687; earlier as Potaecke  (1636), Potunke
(1671)) and any of several small towns and topographical  features in various
states of the U.S.; earliest denoting an Indian band and  village on the Podunk
River in Hartford County, Connecticut.]

        Bill:   HCR 81    Legislative Session: 80(R)  Council Document: 80R
4748 MMS-D       |
    Last Action: 02/27/2007 H Referred to  Culture, Recreation, and Tourism
   Caption Version: Introduced  Caption Text: Designating Podunk, Texas, as
the official Mythical  Town of Texas.      Author: Hernandez      Subjects:
Resolutions--Official Designations--State Symbols  (I0718)
House Committee: _Culture,  Recreation, & Tourism_
(    Status: In

     80R4748 MMS-D     By: Hernandez H.C.R. No. 81
CONCURRENT RESOLUTION    WHEREAS, The Denver  Harbor neighborhood, in northeast
Houston, is one of the oldest  communities in the Bayou City; and    WHEREAS,
Bounded on  the north by Wallisville Road, on the     west by the Houston
Belt and Terminal  Railroad, on the south by the     Southern Pacific Railroad,
and on the  east by the Port Authority     Railroad, the area was first settled
in  the 1890s; platting in 1911     and again in 1913 created what were
originally four distinct     subdivisions: Denver, Harbor,  Harbordale, and
Liberty Heights; and    WHEREAS, Many early  residents were Texans who had left
hardscrabble farms for the city in  hopes of making a better life for
themselves and their families; these  citizens found work on the     railroads and
at various industrial  companies that sprang up along     the Houston Ship
Channel; and    WHEREAS, Those who put  down roots in Denver Harbor found it a
  good place to raise a family; among the  neighborhood's amenities     were
Charles Eliot Elementary School,  churches, drug stores, and     the Globe
Theater, where children could  watch the latest Hollywood     westerns for the
sum of nine cents;  and    WHEREAS, The Great  Depression hit Denver Harbor
hard, and     many families in the neighborhood lost  their homes; as the 1930s
 drew to an end, however, a curious  occurrence did much to lift the
spirits of the beleaguered community:  on June 1, 1939, the morning     sun
revealed the word "Podunk"  emblazoned on the formerly blank     side of the local
water tower; though  the city tried repeatedly to     cover over the word, the
name would  always reappear within a few     days; and    WHEREAS, Inspired by
 the spunky defiance of the sign's     unknown painter, area residents soon
began asserting their identity     as Podunkers, and the name was even
adopted by a youth basketball     team, the Podunk Skunks; and    WHEREAS, Today,
Denver  Harbor reflects the ethnic diversity     of Houston itself, with
Hispanics  forming the core of its     population; the community is currently
undergoing revitalization,     especially along Lyons Avenue, where a  new fire
station has opened     and a number of new businesses have set  up shop; residents
are also     served by four elementary schools, a  middle school, and a
private     school; and    WHEREAS, The story of  this resilient neighborhood is
told in     the book Where the Hell Is Podunk,  Texas?, which won an honorable
  mention at the 2006 Independent  Publisher Book Awards; Dr. Jay     Grady,
the volume's author, grew up in  Denver Harbor; and    WHEREAS, Following the
publication of Dr. Grady's historical     account, a Podunk reunion brought
together many present and former     residents aged 80 and older; and
WHEREAS, The citizens  of Denver Harbor take great pride in     the heritage of
their community and in  the unpretentious name that     earlier residents made
their own, and  it is fitting that this     neighborhood's identification with
that  simple but enduring locale     of the imagination be appropriately
recognized; now, therefore, be     it    RESOLVED, That the  80th Legislature of
the State of Texas     hereby designate Denver Harbor, aka  Podunk, as the
official     Mythical Town of  Texas.
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