Community news: Royal foundation awards research grants



Royal foundation awards research grants

Edith Royal, widow of legendary Texas Longhorns football coach Darrell K Royal, celebrated her 90th birthday at a gala this month that featured actor Matthew McConaughey, golfer Ben Crenshaw, Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbot and the recipients of five research grants totaling $750,000.

The DKR Fund, which provides education about Alzheimer’s as it seek a cure for the disease, announced the Alzheimer’s research grant winners at the celebration, held at the Hotel Granduca Austin.

Receiving $150,000 each were: Ismael Al-Ramahi, an assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine, who is studying ways to clear an abnormal accumulation of a protein from the brain; Dr. Kan Ding, an assistant professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, who is studying dementia related to traumatic brain injury; Bridget E. Hawkins, an assistant professor at the UT Medical Branch at Galveston, who will test an intranasal spray’s effects on injured nerve cells; Sven Vanneste, an associate professor at UT-Dallas who will use non-invasive brain stimulation to improve word retrieval in patients with mild cognitive impairment; and Yingfei Wang, an assistant professor at UT Southwestern, who will study factors that cause nerve cells to die.

— Mary Ann Roser, American-Statesman


Join Junior League for ‘Christmas Affair’

The Junior League of Austin will present A Christmas Affair, a four-day shopping event that raises funds for the nonprofit.

Market days will be held at the Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Road, from Thursday to Sunday ; hours vary each day. Admission is $15 per day, and tickets are on sale at

It will include about 200 vendors, plus children’s activities. Shoppers can also purchase tickets to brunch, tea room and breakfasts with Santa that are being held concurrently with the market days. For assistance purchasing tickets, call 512- 888-9021 or email

— American-Statesman staff


Meetings set for city projects

Residents will have two opportunities to learn about and give input on local projects at upcoming meetings.

There will be an open house about the Heatherwilde Boulevard Widening Project on Wednesday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Pflugerville Community Library, 1008 W. Pfluger St.

The Pflugerville Parks and Recreation Commission will have a public hearing about the preliminary design reports for the Stone Hill and Highland Park/Highland Park North Community Park projects. Input will be gathered from attendees at the session, set for 7 p.m. Thursday at City Hall, 100 E. Main St., Suite 500.

— American-Statesman staff



GIS Day to inform about system

Coordinated by the Williamson County Geographic Information System Council and its member agencies, the public is invited to attend GIS Day.

The free event will include a number of speakers giving presentations that explain how GIS is used in accurate emergency response dispatching, determining possible storm paths and more.

Presentations will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday at the Dell Diamond’s United Heritage Center, 3400 Palm Valley Blvd.

To view a detailed schedule of speakers, visit

— American-Statesman staff


Tickets on sale for Santa breakfast

Families can celebrate the holiday season with a Pajama Breakfast with Santa.

Tickets are $10 per person; VIP tickets are available for a family of four are $55 or for a family of six for $75.

The breakfast will begin at 8:30 a.m. Dec. 12 at the Gin at the Co-op, 420 U.S. 79.

McDonald’s pancakes, sausage and juice will be served and children will be able to participate in wish list making and crafts, in addition to taking pictures with Santa. Don’t forget a camera.

Purchase tickets online at using the keyword Santa or buy them in person at the Hutto Parks & Recreation office, 306 E. Live Oak.

— American-Statesman staff



Victory Gardens meeting Wednesday

The city of San Marcos Engineering Department will hold a neighborhood meeting about the scheduling of utility improvements in the Victory Gardens neighborhood.

Residents are encouraged to attend the session set for 6 p.m. Wednesday at the the San Marcos Senior Citizen Center, 810 Arizona St.

City staff will report on CenterPoint Energy’s schedule for the rest of the neighborhood as well as the San Marcos Electric Utility work that will follow. For more information about the public meeting, call the Engineering Department at 512-393-8130 or email

— American-Statesman staff

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