Category Archives: News

Linda’s Cakes Transforms to Serve Community

Andrea Bernes of Linda’s Cakes & Desserts Speciality Shop helps a customer with a purchase of goods like beans and potatoes now being sold at the Brownsville bakery. (Courtesy)

For Andrea Bernes, it started with a question that would transform her bakery in the coronavirus era. “A customer asked me if I would sell her flour,” said Bernes, the owner of Linda’s Cakes & Desserts Specialty Shop. Bernes mulled that over. It was mid-March and long lines were forming at grocery stores as the COVID-19 crisis arrived in the Rio Grande Valley.  “Then one of my suppliers asked if…

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RGV Businesses Move Quickly To New Normal

Family Nurse Practitioner Michael Menchaca is at 100-percent telemedicine during the coronavirus crisis. (Courtesy)

Rio Grande Valley businesses, like those around the country, are dealing with disruptions and an upheaval in a way of life unlike anything experienced in our lifetimes.  Here’s a look at how three RGV businesses prepared for what they knew was coming and how they are doing in adapting to a new normal. Menchaca Family Clinic Michael Menchaca didn’t wait for any official announcements for Menchaca Family Clinic. The family…

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The Smoking Oak Keeps Flame Going

Brisket sandwich from The Smoking Oak.

Mario Dominguez is a believer in the Central Texas style – and oak is the key. He starts the flame every Tuesday night at his hometown barbecue restaurant in Mercedes. It will then burn steady and sure for the next five days at The Smoking Oak. The line of customers starts forming before the noon hour at the BBQ restaurant on 546 Hidalgo Street. The oak burns slow, thus giving…

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Kapal Gains State Designation

The Donna facility of Kapal Industries, a cabinet and countertops manufacturer.

Irineo Capetillo knows what it’s like to navigate through the birth, emergence and subsequent struggles of a business that even in success, needs assistance if it hopes to see further growth. Going into 2019, Capetillo knew his Kapal Industries had outgrown its Donna facility. He also needed a second facility to expand his cabinet making and countertops manufacturing operations. The early search for a second facility in the Rio Grande…

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Determination Tops Ranch House Burgers

Ranch House Burgers II in Mission. (Courtesy)

Ranch House Burgers II has new and temporary hours in the era of COVID-19. Every other day, the Mission restaurant is open from midnight to 3 a.m. Its customers are primarily police officers, state troopers and first responders. “They got tired of burritos from the convenience stores,” said Mike Barrera, the restaurant’s owner. “We’re a business, so we do charge for the meals to help keep my staff employed, but it’s…

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Farmers Market Reinvents the Wheel

Onions, vegetables and fruits are bagged for pickup and delivery from Rancho Viejo Farmers Market. (Courtesy)

One day, Bonnie Emerson was getting ready to stage another weekend Rancho Viejo Farmers Market – and then the world changed.  The threat of the coronavirus led Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to issue an executive order on March 19 that limited public gatherings and eventually led to the closing of many businesses. The Rancho Viejo Farmers Market of March 21-22 saw an abrupt cancellation with no roadmap of what to…

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All STC Summer Courses Will Go Online

STC Summer

South Texas College will maintain a distance learning environment for all classes during the summer 2020 semester which begins June 1. There is the potential of classes returning to a face-to-face format during the term if conditions allow. Students already registered for summer semester courses were notified of the online or alternate class format changes. “We are striving to insure that students are able to continue moving towards the academic…

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Summer/Fall Registration Underway at TSC

TSC Registration

Texas Southmost College’s registration is currently underway for both the summer and fall 2020 semesters. TSC Executive Director of Academic and Student Services Vanessa Vasquez said it’s important for students to keep in mind the benefits of registering early. “We’re moving ahead with registration anticipating this COVID-19 crisis will be behind us soon,” said Vasquez. “Classes fill up fast, so locking in your schedule early gives you time to work…

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Survey on Reopening Economy Looks to Businesses

open sign

The McAllen Chamber of Commerce is collecting information from businesses regarding reopening the economy. The online survey is gauging what business owners and representatives of non-profit organizations in the region are willing to do in order to reopen business. The survey is primarily designed for small to medium-sized businesses. This includes franchise operations and local branches or stores of larger companies. Larger companies may still provide responses. Individual responses will…

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Fazoli’s Donates Free Meals to Pharr Families

Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez, the Pharr City Commission and PSJA ISD Culinary Arts program students accept a donation from Fazoli's during their Grand Opening celebration in Pharr in 2017.

The City of Pharr, Fazoli’s and local school districts are working together to help feed Pharr families in need. “Plans are underway to provide free meals to our families most in need on a weekly basis,” said Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez. “I wholeheartedly want to thank Jerry Maddox, Fazoli’s owner, for opening his doors and being so generous during these uncertain times. This is certainly a difficult time for many families…

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