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Posts published in “Day: April 1, 2008

Aldine Y.O.U.T.H. Community Forum called a success

By SYLVIA BOLING Special to the Northeast News 
The first “Our Community Talks”  meeting held on March 19th at the Aldine Y.O.U.T.H. Community Center, 4700 Aldine Mail Rt.,  was truly fantastic. 
We had over 50 people in attendance representing law enforcement, parents, youth, High School students, college students, business, government, senior citizens, community service, probation officers, healthcare, Metro, other service providers, etc.—all races, ages, genders, income levels, etc. 
The discussion was lively and very reflective. So many people felt that the meeting was really what we always needed and want to continue with a series of follow up meetings.
Of course, we did not have time to discuss all issues in detail, but did get general feedback on many of them. 
We started out with some statistics about the plight of many of our low-income youth and how much we are paying to keep them incarcerated, with little or no return on investment. 

We defined the word “community”, defined what crime means— the effect it has on all of us including some of the root causes, the sheriff discussed some of the crimes in our area, the topic of domestic violence was discussed as it was one of the big issues in our community (Aldine Y.O.U.T.H. is having a workshop on this topic on April 11).
Art Murillo, from METRO, discussed some transportation issues. All levels of education and need for other educational opportunities in our community were also discussed. Lots of good ideas and thoughts were shared by many on these and other topics.
We would like to make this forum a monthly community meeting, each month discussing a specific community topic, again making sure that people are there with information needed and also a cross section of the community represented. 
The goal will be to discuss the issue and then to brainstorm on solutions and how everyone can and should be part of making our community better, perhaps forming committees toward this end. 
This forum presented  a wonderful opportunity for community networking and building new relationships, which is vital if we are ever going to be able to heal and improve our neighborhood. 
 Thank you to all those who attended our first “Our Community Talks” meeting. 
If you are interested in attending the next meeting and sharing your ideas and offer your solutions and help, please call the Aldine Y.O.U.T.H. Community Center at 281-449-4828.

Elissa visit is first in 20 years

The public was treated last weekend to the first visit to Houston in 20 years of the tall ship Elissa, a square rigged schooner that usually berths in Galveston harbor.
The ship was on display at the Port Authority of Houston’s Bayport Cruise Terminal, at the end of Cruise Road of Texas 146 in Pasadena, close to Clear Lake.
The 1877 sailing vessel usually can be seen at the Seaport Museum in Galveston, but the Port Authority brought the ship to Houston to highlight the new cruise terminal facilities for the public, with the cooperation of the museum.
The Elissa was found in a scrap yard in Greece in 1974, and purchased and restored by the Galveston Historical Foundation. This restoration work cost over $5 million dollars, and took over eight years.
Today, volunteers continue to maintain the vessel, and take it on occasional sailing tours. She was part of the historic Tall Ships parade in 1986 past the Statue of Liberty in New York harbor.
In addition to being on tour at the Port Authority, the Elissa will participate in the Houston Yacht Clubs 22nd annual Elissa Regatta.
The Elissa was built in Scotland, and sailed worldwide, calling on Galveston twice.

The Bank Job is underrated

“The Bank Job”
Running Time: 110 minutes
MPAA rating: R

“The Bank Job” is a great little caper movie that hasn’t gotten much hype or promotion, which is a shame. It’s smart, funny, filled with twists and turns, and has solid performances from a great cast.
The film is based on the real-life 1971 heist of the vault of a branch of Lloyd’s bank in England. What is intriguing about the story of the robbery is that a government gag order on the press (for reasons of national security) has left the crime officially unsolved and some 500,000 pounds in loot still unrecovered.
The cast of characters includes a shady chop-shop owner (Jason Statham), a hot model from his past working for British intelligence (Saffron Burrows), the porn king of London (David Suchet) and a militant black revolutionary who rolls with the handle Michael X (Peter de Jersey).
Michael X allegedly has compromising photos of a member of the royal family in the vault. The hot model convinces Statham to rob the vault, telling him the alarms will be off because they need to be repaired (not telling him about the photos). What the robbers don’t know is that the vault also holds a ledger kept by the porn king detailing the names of cops on the take and members of Parliament who frequent his brothels.
The gang is successful in looting the vault and unwittingly making off with the compromising photos, the incriminating ledger and a half-million in swag. They also have the mob and MI5 on their tails.
I don’t want to give anything away because the film has so many great twists that to get any further into the plot details would spoil the movie. Let’s just say that, if you liked “Oceans 11” or love a great heist movie, “The Bank Job” is right up your alley.