We update our local news twice a day every weekday (about 6am and 2pm) and occasionally at other times too.

We primarily focus on our three “home” counties – Matagorda, Jackson and Wharton counties, and also include items from slightly further afield if we feel them to be impactful on us all.


The Lower Colorado River Authority’s General Manager, Phil Wilson, addressed the Bay City Chamber Luncheon about Arbuckle Reservoir and the ongoing drought in south Texas. Arbuckle Reservoir, a 90,000-acre project in Wharton County, is nearly complete, set to be operational by December. It will provide more capacity for firm water customers, reducing pressure on the ... Read more

During a recent Wharton Independent School District board meeting, attorney Rachel Rust accused board member Ann Witt of misrepresenting her residence. Rust presented evidence that Witt had claimed her home in Houston as her homestead while serving on the board, which may violate the district’s residency requirements. . Witt’s term began in May 2022, overlapping ... Read more

Sponsors are backing the Bay City Junior Service League’s annual Charity Ball on February 3rd. This event is a vital fundraiser for the league, benefiting worthy organizations in Matagorda County. Thanks to corporate sponsors like 7J Ranch, Bay City Abstract and Title Co., and others, the league can make a significant impact in their community. ... Read more

El Campo High School’s pep rally on Friday morning was filled with excitement as senior Drake Resendez clinched the coveted title of 2023 homecoming king. Despite suffering an injury earlier this football season, Resendez, who played for the Ricebirds, received this prestigious honor. His proud parents are Adam Resendez and La’chelle Yount. Adding to the ... Read more

In the first two games, the Ricebirds struggled, going 0-2 with just 14 points. But since star senior Oliver Miles returned, they’re on fire, beating C.C. Veterans Memorial, Wharton, and Navasota. Miles, a Texas Tech commit, shines with a 61% completion rate and 128 rushing yards per game, including a 70-yard rush. Ja’Kwaun Hudlin adds ... Read more

The Bay City Police Department and Bay City Public Library are partnering for National Night Out, fostering camaraderie between the public and law enforcement. Starting at 5 p.m. on October 3rd at the library, the event will feature family-friendly activities, including chalk art, games, and booths from local organizations. A highlight is the Great Silly ... Read more

Harmful algal blooms have invaded the Gulf Coast, from Galveston to Brazoria County, and are spreading southwest due to ocean currents. Matagorda County should expect potential Red Tide impacts, warns Bryan Frazier, Brazoria County’s Parks Director. These blooms release toxins, leading to fish kills and harming marine life. Dead fish have been reported along the ... Read more

A Boling man, Ryan Cruz Reyes, is the latest suspect arrested in the theft of holy items from St. Robert’s Catholic Church in El Campo. The investigation is ongoing, and there may be more arrests. The stolen church tabernacle and sacred items were found damaged in a field. It seems the thieves had hoped for ... Read more

Wharton County has experienced a larger-than-usual cricket emergence following recent rainstorms. These insects appear after long periods of drought, mate, and die off. Crickets tend to swarm in dry springs and summers, with the most significant numbers in August and September after a summer drought breaks. While they won’t breed indoors, they can damage clothing ... Read more

Edna ISD recently bought land for a new sports complex, sparking a bond proposal. The complex offers control over athletic facilities, extra parking for big events, and safety improvements. The bond is solely for capital improvements, not salaries. Edna ISD already excels in career and technical programs. Property values and construction costs are factors, but ... Read more

A 30-year-old man, Nabeel Ahmed, has been sentenced to life in prison for a 2022 murder in Needville. Ahmed was convicted of murdering an acquaintance after a night of drinking and arguing. He intentionally ran the victim over with his truck, then fled, even bragging about it on social media. During the trial, evidence of ... Read more

Wharton County has lifted its outdoor burning ban, but don’t start any fires just yet, especially if you’re in El Campo or Wharton city limits. Recent heavy rains moved the area out of wildfire danger on the Keetch-Byram Drought Index. Be cautious; the grass isn’t fully recovered. Rural residents should use screened barrels for burning ... Read more

The Matagorda Regional Medical Center Foundation is hosting “PULSE…A Bavarian Experience” — an Oktoberfest-themed fundraiser to upgrade the Cardiac Patient Monitoring System at the medical center. Join the fun on October 7th at 6 p.m. in the outdoor Biergarten with Shiner Bock and more. Enjoy a Stein Hoist competition, live polka music, German cuisine, and ... Read more

A former Tenaris employee, Eddie Richardson, won a landmark judgment of over $1 million last Thursday in a religious discrimination, retaliation, and wrongful termination lawsuit. The award includes $11 thousand in back pay, $425 grand in compensatory damages, and $750 thousand in exemplary damages. According to Richardson’s lead counsel this is one of the biggest ... Read more

El Campo City Council approved $450 thousand dollars for vital road and excavation equipment for Public Works. A new $387 thousand dollar Caterpillar will replace an aging Gradall. They’ll finance it through First Financial Bank at 5%. Councilman Ward questioned alternate funding sources. They chose Caterpillar over Gradall XL3300. They also approved almost 65 thousand ... Read more

The mother of one of the El Campo men accused of stealing sacred items from St. Robert’s Catholic Church was arrested on Monday. Sandra Rivera Hedges, 61, was charged with tampering with evidence. She’s the mother of Thomas James Graham, who was arrested earlier for theft and tampering. Hedges took stolen items from her son’s ... Read more

Early Sunday morning, a submerged vehicle was pulled out of a retention pond in Fort Bend County. Around 6:26 a.m. in the 13400 block of US 59, the Northeast Fort Bend County Fire Department responded. They dispatched the Northeast Dive & Rescue team to Sugar Land to retrieve the submerged vehicle. Fortunately, the driver had ... Read more

On Monday at approximately 3:35 a.m., a Victoria Police Department officer spotted a Ford Fusion speeding north on Main Street. They pulled the car over in the 4300 block of Main Street and made a discovery – marijuana and a firearm inside the vehicle. The driver, Robert Garza, a 19-year-old from Cuero, was charged with ... Read more

A heated disagreement between parents at a youth football game in Fort Bend County turned violent at Harlem Road park, resulting in gunfire. Two people were hurt, an adult grazed by a bullet and a teenager physically assaulted. The Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office and the Fort Bend Youth Football League are investigating. In the ... Read more

The Texas Department of Public Safety issued a clear alert for a missing man named Gerald Blystone from Wharton. He was last seen on Sunday morning at 1405 Valhalla Drive in Wharton, around 11 a.m. Blystone is a 58-year-old white male, 5’6″ tall, 165 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was wearing a ... Read more

Wharton residents spoke out at a recent City Council meeting about the proposed I-69 overpass near Wharton Airport. Of the six public comments, five focused on this issue. One citizen urged the council to prioritize it in the upcoming meetings with TxDOT, emphasizing the impact on the community and emergency services. The proposed overpass would ... Read more

The Victoria City Council is set to finalize a downtown entertainment district ordinance amendment. This aims to simplify event planning for downtown businesses, attract more visitors, and boost local enterprises. The Entertainment District’s purpose is to promote restaurants and bars, draw more customers, and extend their stay to increase revenue. It covers an eight-block area, ... Read more

The City of Wharton’s Code Enforcement Department is alerting residents about overhanging tree limbs, aiming to enhance safety for first responders and utility lines. Tree limbs over streets should be trimmed to at least 13 feet and 6 inches high to ensure unobstructed passage for emergency vehicles. Additionally, City of Wharton ordinances, Chapter 70, Section ... Read more

Fort Bend County celebrated the grand opening of a playground at Bates Allen Park on September 14th. Located in Kendleton, the park is also home to the Fort Bend County Heritage Unlimited Museum, focused on preserving African American history from 1865 to 1965. The museum has been educating the community for nearly two decades. The ... Read more

Three people were arrested in Bay City after authorities responded to a disturbance call and discovered marijuana, edibles, THC wax pens, and firearms. The Bay City Police Department executed a search warrant on September 4th, prompted by the visible marijuana. Bryce Zepeda, 18, Quincy Travis, 21, and Maranda Segovia, 22, were arrested and face charges ... Read more

In a recent incident on North Mechanic Street, heavy rain wreaked havoc, leaving several vehicles stranded, including a police cruiser. The downpour caused temporary patches to disintegrate due to a compaction issue from prior dry weather. Fortunately, there were no injuries or significant damages. El Campo’s Public Work Director praised the swift response of contractor ... Read more

Governor Greg Abbott recently signed House Bill 1819, putting an end to curfews for minors enforced by cities starting September 1st. The aim of these ordinances was to protect children from crime and aid parents in supervision. Both Bay City and Palacios had curfew ordinances for minors, which restricted them from being out late on ... Read more

A second El Campo man was arrested for stealing religious items from St. Robert Catholic Church. Some items have been recovered, but more investigation is needed. The damaged tabernacle was found on Sept. 6, undergoing repairs. Thomas James Graham, 44, was arrested on Sept. 13th for theft and evidence tampering. They’re searching for 34-year-old Ryan ... Read more

On October 14th Texas will witness a rare annular solar eclipse, creating a stunning “ring of fire” effect. You can see it from your backyard or up close at the George Observatory in Brazos Bend State Park in Houston. This facility has one of the largest public telescopes in the U.S. Brazos Bend State Park ... Read more

Award-winning actress, author, and performer Mandy Gonzalez is set to debut at the Wharton Center on September 20th. Known for her roles in Broadway hits like “Hamilton,” “Wicked,” and “In The Heights,” she’s also a TV and movie star, featured in series like “Madam Secretary” and “Bull.” Gonzalez’s 2017 album “Fearless,” hit #13 on iTunes. ... Read more

Texas has struck jackpot gold once again! The other day a lucky individual in the small town of Lolita hit the jackpot, scoring a whopping $1 million prize from the Cash Explosion $10 ticket. And Wednesday, the Texas Lottery revealed another million-dollar winner! This time, it’s in Port Aransas, where a $1 million jackpot ticket ... Read more

Four former Cobra baseball team players from Industrial I.S.D. – Braxton Cole Warren, Zachery James Kuchler, Christopher Taylor McCrory, and Cullen Reid Stumfoll – faced a court hearing Wednesday. They’re accused of assaulting a younger player after an April 27th game. The legal proceedings began in July when they were charged with organized criminal assault. ... Read more

El Campo ISD is taking proactive steps to educate students about the dangers of Fentanyl, thanks to Texas law HB 3908 and the ‘One Pill Kills’ campaign. From grades 6-12, students receive age-appropriate Fentanyl education. Counselors and teachers address drug awareness year-round, with an added emphasis during Red Ribbon Week. The law also covers suicide ... Read more

Matagorda County is celebrating Texas Navy Day this Saturday, honoring the first Texas Navy established in 1835. This historic navy played a crucial role in Texas gaining independence from Mexico during the Texas Revolution, consisting of ships like the Liberty, Independence, Brutus, and Invincible. Despite being lesser-known, this navy holds significant importance in Matagorda’s history. ... Read more

Good news for Wharton County residents! The County Commissioners Court has unanimously approved the 2024 county budget and 2023 tax rate, bringing lower taxes and salary increases for county employees. This marks the 16th consecutive year of tax reductions, despite a generous 6% raise for county workers and a 9% raise for law enforcement officers. ... Read more

The Bay City Parks and Recreation Department is hosting the annual family-friendly Touch-A-Truck event on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Sports Complex. You and your kids can get up close and personal with fire trucks, tractors, police cars, and more. This year, it’s at the Sports Complex due to ongoing soccer ... Read more

Needville Little League earned hometown hero status for their impressive run at the Little League World Series in Pennsylvania. Although they fell short in the U.S. Championship game against California, their undefeated streak made Texas proud. They triumphed over teams from Pennsylvania, North Dakota, and Seattle. The boys received a celebration event at Needville Blue ... Read more

The CFL game of the week featured an intense showdown between the Edna Cowboys and Refugio Bobcats, two fireball teams in our area. Edna is ranked third in class 3A, while Refugio is second in class 2A. Controversy arose during a third-down play when Edna’s incomplete pass was overturned, giving Refugio a chance. In double ... Read more

The Lolita community rallied together to find Shake, a 1.5-year-old emu who escaped from Samantha Player’s “funny farm.” Shake and his partner Bake, beloved farm residents, had an unusual escape when Bake’s aggression led Shake out of their pen. The community joined the search, with many spotting Shake and providing updates. After a few days ... Read more

In South Texas, a lucky Yoakum resident just scored a massive $1 million jackpot with a $10 Cash Explosion scratch-off ticket. Surprisingly, the winning ticket was bought in a small town near Victoria, at the Circle R Drive store in Lolita,. Remarkably, this marks the second top prize claimed in the game, leaving six more ... Read more

Wharton Independent School District is hosting Taxpayer Tuesday events starting on today at Wharton High School. The tour runs from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., including lunch. Join Dr. Michael O’Guin to learn about the district’s vision and initiatives. Explore classrooms to see community schools firsthand. Mark your calendar for future events on November 7th ... Read more

In Wharton County, a new wave of scammers is targeting residents, pretending to represent the sheriff’s office. They claim there’s a warrant for the recipient’s arrest due to missed jury duty. The scammers even fake being deputies and know victims’ personal details. They often ask for gift cards or money transfers. While one victim fell ... Read more

Some members of Kendleton City Council were surprised during Thursday’s budget workshop when they discovered a new city secretary, Dominique Spears, had been hired without their knowledge. Mayor Darryl Humphrey Sr. made this decision without council input. Christina Flores, the previous secretary, had been fired on August 23, with reasons undisclosed, though some council members ... Read more

The 77th annual Rice Festival is returning from Oct. 19 to Oct. 22, and the 2023 Rice Festival Queen’s dress, sponsored by OQ Chemicals, was revealed at the Lions Club luncheon at Bay City Country Club. New Beginnings Bridal in El Campo donated the queen’s crown, and Green Bros. Jewelry of Bay City donated the ... Read more

In Matagorda County, a new Texas law, Senate Bill 22, effective from September 1st, aims to support law enforcement in rural areas with a historic $330 million grant. This grant targets 236 counties with populations below 300,000, offering funds for salaries, hiring more deputies, purchasing equipment, and vehicles. However, the main challenge is attracting and ... Read more

Water line breaks are escalating in El Campo due to Wharton County’s ongoing drought, and repair parts are in short supply. Crews are now fixing 10 to 12 leaks per week, double the July average, using clamps to seal and reinforce the damaged pipes. Unfortunately, the clamp supply is running low due to drought conditions ... Read more

A family is seeking answers following the death of Reyes Vargas, 23, in Matagorda County Jail on August 26th. Vargas was arrested on August 25 after a police chase and faced multiple charges. He urgently asked his family to bail him out. Later, he was treated for an injury after an altercation with another inmate. ... Read more

Stolen holy items from St. Robert’s Catholic Church were partially recovered last week. An El Campo man, Jose De Jesus Manuel Jaramillo, 29, was arrested after being found hiding in a home. He’s facing charges for theft and criminal mischief in a place of worship. Police are still searching for one or possibly two other ... Read more

The 45th Annual Colorado County Fair in Columbus started last night. The livestock show and sale will continue until Saturday, with the junior sale happening at 1 p.m. on Saturday. The pageants for Fair Queen, Membership Queen, and more took place last night. The Membership Queen will be crowned on September 14th. Next week, enjoy ... Read more

On Saturday, Sept. 16th, from 10 to 2 p.m., it’s the fourth annual “Touch-A-Truck” event hosted by Bay City Parks and Recreation at Hardeman Park. Kids can explore big trucks and machinery that keep our cities running. There’s food, fun, and even a sensory-friendly hour from 10 to 11 a.m. Be cautious around these working ... Read more