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Things to do in Sugarland

    Museum of Southern History Museum of Southern History Houston, Texas
    The Museum of Southern History tells about the events of the south that occurred after the Civil War, with outstanding displays of uniforms, tools, room settings, fine furnishings, weapons and clothes that attempt to convey the lifestyles of these hardy pioneers, as they settled in the mid Texas area and rebuilt their lives, as the remainder of the nation, but more emphatically in the south, began what would be called the infamous "Reconstruction" period; and leave a bitter taste in the south's mouth, more so than when the war began. The museum is situated with the Museum of American Architecture and Decorative Arts and the Dunham Bible Museum in the Morris Cultural Arts Center that are located on the campus of Houston Baptist University in Houston, Texas. The museum houses six distinct galleries, named the Victorian Dining Room, the War & American Culture, the Lady's room, the Blacksmith & carpentry shop, One Family's history and the Weapons room.  The Victorian dining room sits quietly with gold tones lit by a beautiful crystal chandelier, and the walls hung with marvelous oil paintings and there sits a silk settee that just wants you to sit in it a moment and relax. The long hardwood table is surrounded by lovely chairs, and a gorgeous china stand, all on hardwood flooring. The lady's bedroom is filled with canopy tester bed, crib, sewing table, chests of drawers and women's clothing, with a framed sampler created by Jane Price in 1811 and reads, "the word is to my feet as lamp-the way of truth to show-a watchlight to point out the path in which I ought to go." She must have been an excellent seamstress, since the outstanding stitches in the sampler and baby's quilt won her first prize four times in a row in her previous rural Louisiana home; with a forlorn bonnet and mourning gloves showcased to describe the constant realization that we are all temporal. The blacksmith and carpentry shop also include a few cases filled with uniforms and men's clothing, especially the buffalo hide that had been used to make a coat and gloves that had been worn by a frontiersman during the 1800s. There is a steel helmet there as well, while another case contains an outfit worn by an indentured servant, with its simple navy blue material contrasted by the fancy buttons sown onto it. In the weapons room, you will be in the biggest room of the house with munitions and weapons highlighted, various styles of pistols, heavy mortar shells and wood and metal bullets made in different shapes and sizes. There are numerous objects that were carried by the Confederate soldiers, along with a uniform worn by Pvt. Rene Henry Brunet, Jr. and a few mannequins that show the life of a Civil War soldier. There is another case set by a wall filled with medicinal weapons to fight against the constant threat of disease, the kind of tools used by doctors of the period, with little bottles of tinctures, small knives, scalpels and a big saw. Next to this room there is a wonderful wall mural that depicts the Battle of Galveston in 1863, and contains the cannon from the movie set, Glory, and the bell from the USRC Harriet Lane from 1857. In the family's history room, there is a case filled with ferrotypes, daguerreotypes and photographs that had been collected by one family and the jewelry of the women that belonged to it, shown in the very pictures themselves. The JoAnn Moore Collection chronicles the lives of a family that came to Texas in the 1830s, with a magnificent grand piano that really showcases the gentility of the period, and the need to include music and art to the frontiers. The last room deals with the war and American culture, chronicling the events of the war, as well as showing the various transitions made during and after it. There is clothing and Eastlake furniture from the Victorian period and a Progressive Era crazy quilt. There are numerous modern displays with a WWI uniform and gas mask, WWII war bond posters and it all is there to remind us that no matter how far or distant we go, war just seems to follow us.  The museum had been located in Sugarland, Texas for many years, but moved to its new location in 2007.  

    Central Unit
    Central Unit Sugarland, TexasThe Central Unit was previously known as the Imperial State Prison Farm and the Central State Prison Farm, and is located in Sugarland, Texas, sitting on 325 acres, some two miles from the center of town, after opening in 1909, with 950 beds for men; and sits adjacent to the Sugar Land Regional Airport, and the runway runs between two areas of the prison land. The Imperial State Prison Farm would open on the Imperial Sugar plantation in 1909 and become one of the first penal facilities owned by the state. It did originally contain 3700 acres and was the heart of the state's correctional agriculture production, and by 1930, it would become the Central State Prison Farm, with the name central coming from the site's history as the central farming and distribution point of all the agricultural foods from the correctional institutions for quite a few years. The years passed and the prison changed, losing most of its land in 1991, when a lot of it would have to be used by the state for highways, and by 2007, the prison was encircled by the developing companies as they tried to squeeze the prison out of existence. In March of that year, 39 year old David Shane Roberts would escape from it. By 2010, the expansion of Greater Houston had moved to within half a mile of the prison, which is located only three quarters of a mile from the intersection of US Highway 90A and Texas State Highway 6. By 2004, the prison had become a minimum security facility, housing about one thousand first time offenders, all in the Main Building, with twelve prefab dorms separate from the main building, but still inside the yard, as well as a trustee camp that is located outside of it. The inmates are allowed to grow crops just a few yards from the runway of the airport, with the Sugar Land Distribution center warehouse located inside the compound. There are 113 housing billets for the staff members and their families, with 48 duplexes, 9 mobile home units and 14 single family houses. One of the most famous inmates that was imprisoned here was William Ledbetter, also known as Lead Belly, one of the most prolific musicians of our time, able to play on the guitar, accordion, piano, concertina, mandolin, violin and harmonica, using the twelve string guitar most. His strong vocals made him one of the finest singers of his era, singing blues and folk songs.

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    Houston Museum of Natural Science at SugarlandHouston Museum of Natural Science at Sugarland, Texas
    The Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land, Texas contains many outstanding exhibits that include coming face to face with Stan the T-rex, taking adventurous trip at the Hall of Space Science, the Gyro-Xtreme and the wildlife lab about endangered species. The main unit of the Central State Prison Farm, reopened as the Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land in October, 2009, also included the three barns that had been constructed in 1939 to replace other wooden structures that had been located on the older Imperial Prison Farm, that was the previous name for the prison. After the main unit had opened for the prison, it would be renamed the Central State Prison Farm # 2 and later nicknamed, "Two Camp" by the staff and residents that lived in the area, with the bricks for the new structure coming from the close by Jester Unit plant, marking a shift, finally, from wood to mason buildings, and during its period from 1939 to 1968, it would contains mostly African Americans that would be spread around the nine wards called, tanks, that had been located on the second and third floors. From 1968 until 1999, the building would be used for storage, with numerous windows bricked in, to protect them being broken by anyone, and in 1995, it would used for the movie, "Powder". Current exhibitions include; the archaeopteryx which is a classic link between two groups of animals that include birds and small therapod dinosaurs; dino mummy is about the huge herbivorous dinosaur that still had its last meal inside its stomach called Leonardo; science on a sphere that uses advanced imaging techniques that show an illusion of the moon, sun or other celestial body that rotates in space; earth science that showcases large geodes, outstanding fossils and crystallized slices of petrified wood; paleontology that offers you a very close look at a t-rex, as well as nine other species; dig pit where all the aspiring scientists dig for dinosaur bones or fossils; the space science exhibition that offers excellent images from the Hubble; life science tells about the history of the earth and life on it, with a splendid collection of petrified wood pieces and a large number of skulls; discovery works; children's art gallery that showcases new art from students and the digital domed theater with special shows given every half hour.

     Houston Masonic Library & Museum Foundation
    Houston Masonic Library & Museum Foundation Houston, Texas
    The Houston Masonic Library and Museum in Houston, Texas was started to document, save and educate the citizens of this region about the wonderful effects that the Masons have had on their heritage. All through American and Texan history, there have been many famous people that have helped shape our great nation, city and states, and the history of Texas would become very difficult to describe without the accompanying story of the masons. Stephen F. Austin, numerous defenders of the Alamo, Sam Houston and Santa Anna and many soldiers at San Jacinto, were all masons that took part in the incredible history of Texas, with many cities and streets named after the members of this fraternity. The main goal of the library and museum is to become the most significant source of Masonic education in the nation, as they go about collecting and preserving the records and relics of Houston, Harris County, Texas and the nation. One incredible story and relic are centered around General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, and his Masonic homemade apron, that was discovered belonging to a family named Stiles in Broken Bow, Oklahoma. There is a very informative article on the mason's library and museum page that tells the excellent story and how it was found, proving to one and all that Santa Anna was a mason and had an apron made just for him to attend the meetings. It is a wonderful story, written by Rando Reaves, and how he discovered there was such a relic, and the long and difficult time he had in finding it, and when he did, it was marvelous. Evidently, the guard that watched over the general when he was captured, was named John Stiles, and the apron was given to him, since Santa Anna would not be needing it anymore. John kept the apron and passed it down to his first born and instructed him to give it to his first born and so on down the line until the present Stiles family member is getting ready to pass it along to his first born son. There is an excellent picture of the apron on the site and well worth looking into, even if you're not a mason.

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Local Restaurants in Sugarland

    Perry's Steakhouse & Grill
    Entrees; steaks & chops, finely seasoned with kosher salt, black pepper & topped with garlic herb butter; filet mignon 8oz., prime ribeye 14oz., prime NY strip 14oz., bone-in filet mignon 14oz., prime bone-in cowboy ribeye 22oz., prime bone-in NY strip 20oz., double cut lamb chops 14oz.; fried shrimp served with choice of FF or sweet potato fries; grilled salmon topped with Cafe de Paris butter, served with sautéed spinach; sesame crusted ahi tuna with wonton salad & sushi rice; pecan-crusted red snapper topped with jumbo lump crabmeat, served with broccolini; Hong Kong style sea bass served with julienne veggies & sushi rice; steamed lobster tail 8 or 16oz.; chicken Oscar is free range chicken served with Oscar topping & steamed veggies; filet Perry topped with jumbo lump crabmeat & herb garlic butter with steamed veggies; southwest filet mignon 14oz. wrapped with Applewood smoked bacon, served with corn & fig relish; prime 3 peppercorn demi glaze; chateaubriand for 2 carved tableside & topped with Perry's sauce trio & steamed veggies; petite surf & turf is 6oz. filet & 14oz. lobster tail with steamed asparagus; symphony kabob is hanging presentation of filet mignon, lobster & shrimp, served with steamed asparagus; Perry's famous pork chop carved tableside hand selected in Midwest specifically for Perry's Steakhouse, prime chop is cured, roasted, slow-smoked & caramelized with house made applesauce.

    Kona Grill
    Entrees; macadamia nut chicken is signature dish, with parmesan garlic mashed potatoes & haricot verts, served with house shoyu-cream sauce & pineapple-papaya marmalade; Korean BBQ chicken is spicy char grilled kimchee marinated chicken breast with sweet pineapple rice & sautéed baby bok choy; miso-sake marinated sea bass baked & served with shrimp & pork fried rice & grilled broccolini; big island meatloaf is traditional meatloaf enhanced with sweet Italian and andouille sausages, served with sautéed mushrooms, parmesan garlic mashed potatoes & haricot verts, served with house shoyu-cream sauce; kona filet is house cut filet with house seasonings, served with haricot verts, parmesan garlic mashed potatoes & sautéed mushrooms; Hawaiian ribeye is char grilled Hawaiian marinated ribeye, wet aged for 28 days, with grilled golden pineapple & crispy onion rings, served with haricot verts & parmesan garlic mashed potatoes; pork tenderloin baked with almond crust, served with parmesan garlic mashed potatoes, sautéed baby bok choy & red pepper-shiitake mushroom sauce; sweet-chili glazed salmon served with shrimp & pork rice & grilled broccolini, garnished with green onion curls; pan-seared ahi, served with baby bok choy, steamed white rice & sweet-chili sauce; simply grilled fresh fish served with seasonal salsa, grilled broccolini & sweet pineapple rice; family style white truffle lobster mac & cheese is cold water Maine lobster & cavatappi pasta baked with aged cheddar, gouda & parmesan cheeses, served family style.

 

Hong Kong Sea Bass Perry's Steakhouse & Grill Sugarland, Texas

 

Chicken Oscar Perry's Steakhouse & Grill Sugarland, Texas

 

 

 Korean BBQ Chicken Kona Grill Sugarland, Texas

 

Hawaiian Ribeye Kona Grill Sugarland, Texas

 

 

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    George Thomas "Mickey" Leland Library & Museum George Thomas Leland Library & Museum Houston, Texas
    George Thomas "Mickey" Leland was a Democratic congressman from the Texas 18th District, and chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, and a staunch anti-poverty activist, born in Lubbock, Texas in 1944. Mickey attended Wheatley High School in Houston and got his bachelor's from the Texas Southern University in Houston. During the 1972 election, the state of Texas would allow its state house of representatives and senate seats to be elected in single member districts, which was highly unusual, but perfectly timed, since five minority candidates, named the People's Five, would be elected, and included Leland, Benny Reyes and Craig Washington, for district seats in the house of representatives, which became the first time that had even happened since Reconstruction. Mickey would stay in the state legislature until he was elected to the national Congress in 1979, and stay there until his death in 1989, when he was just 45 years old. Mickey had been one of the most effective advocates on public health issues and hunger, and he sure would have loved to see Barack win and most assuredly have helped straighten out the fiasco with this new health care scenario. He started the congressional select committee on hunger and started a few programs that had been designed to alleviate the famine crisis in Ethiopia and Sudan during the majority of the 1980s. Mickey would initiate many afro-centric cultural firsts in the capitol that included African type hats and wearing a dashiki. In 1989, Leland died in a plane crash in Gambela, Ethiopia while on a mission to Fugnido, Ethiopia and cost 15 people their lives. The library and museum in Houston is dedicated to his passions, which included Africa, oppressed people, health and education, both in this nation and those of Africa. The museum serves as a community facility that offers an environment of education and history through spiritual understanding, music, travel, art and ancient studies, and especially showcase the life of Congressman George Thomas Mickey Leland's passions.

    Beercan House
    Beercan House Houston, TexasThe Beercan house in Houston, Texas was under construction as early as 1968, by retired upholsterer for the Southern Pacific Railroad, John Milkovisch. John started to inlay rocks, marbles and metal pieces into redwood and concrete to create unique landscape sculptures, although he was the first to claim that he hadn't attended any kind of school or college to learn how to create the "crazy" things he did. After he had finished covering the front and back yard of his house, because he had finally gotten tired of mowing the grass, he began to work on the house itself, adding aluminum siding; which turned out to be aluminum beer can siding. During the ensuing 18 years, he covered the house under a layer of flattened beer cans for two reasons; decorative and practical. There are garlands of cut beer cans that hang from the roof, which made the house sing when the wind blew, as well as lowering the utility bills. Sometime afterwards, Ripley's Believe It or Not arrived on the scene and estimated that more than 50,000 cans were used to create the colossal monument to recycling; and John considered it a great and enjoyable pastime rather than work of art, which many others did. He loved to watch people's expressions, and it would make him laugh to hear and see the cars come screeching to a halt outside his front door, just to look; and quite a few would be embarrassed, although they didn't stop them from driving around the block to see it a couple more times or to bring friends in the loaded down cars. The house and his yard is filled with various types of beer cans that John drank, with some help from his wife, Mary and their neighbors; and his favorite was always the one on special. The house has now been added as a permanent exhibit of the Orange Show Center for Visionary Art, and is in the process of being renovated. Does that mean more beer to be drunk? John used different parts of the cans to make wind chimes, fences, curtains, sculptures, windmills and more. When you visit the Houston area, be sure to look at the house that has now become a permanent exhibit for all to enjoy and marvel at.

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    Bayou BendBayou Bend Houston, Texas
    Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens is situated in the River Oaks community of Houston, Texas, on a 14 acre estate belonging to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and contains a fabulous collection of decorative arts, furniture and paintings that had belonged to the former city philanthropist, Ima Hogg. In 1973, it would be marked with a Texas Historical Commission marker and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. The magnificent mansion was designed by architect John F. Staub and constructed between 1927 and 1928 for Ima and her brothers, Michael and William C. Hogg. The mansion sits among towering trees and thick undergrowth, and as Ima put it, "nothing but a dense thicket". It would be one of the first houses to be constructed in the affluent subdivision that had been developed by the Hogg brothers, and during its construction, Ima told them to retain as many trees as could be. They only had to sacrifice one tree to build the house and the gardens were planted among the trees that were already there. Ima gave the estate its name, while her brother Will would argue, saying that it was too muddy or malarial or muskeetery, but Ima said that not all folks could have a bayou. She started creating a number of gardens that had been created to be used as rooms, outdoors, for living and entertaining, and in 1957, she donated the estate and her excellent collection to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; which opened to the public in 1966. Staub's designs for the estate house combined 18th century Georgian architecture with southern or Spanish Creole elements of architecture, with other parts borrowed from other southern plantation houses; while the interior seemed to be more northern in respect. Staub incorporated floorboards and paneling that was taken from two 18th century Massachusetts homes in Ima's bedroom and sitting room. The city named it an official landmark in February 1999. There are eight magnificent gardens along Buffalo Bayou, set amongst 14 gorgeous acres, with three of them named for a statue of a goddess or muse that is highlighted in the garden, Diana, Euturpe and Clio. The names of the other gardens are, Carla, White, Butterfly and East; however, in 2008, the damage that Hurricane Ike did to the gardens was irreplaceable, since there was one holly tree that had grown to be 55 feet high, and the tallest one of its kind in the county. The statues wouldn't be destroyed, but between 65 and 70 % of the pine trees were laid down.  The outstanding collection contains some 4700 relics and antiques that represent the historic and stylistic periods from 1620 to 1870 installed in the 28 period room settings that feature American decorative arts from that period. Ima started collecting this expansive collection of decorative arts in the 1920s, and to offer suitable settings for the marvelous collections and excellent antiques, Staub had to design simple but stately interiors that would reflect the style of American colonial rooms. When Ima was sitting for a portrait being painted by artist Wayman Adams, in 1920, she noticed an armchair that belonged to the artist, made in colonial America and would eventually obtain a similar Queen Anne armchair for herself. Almost 50 years later, she would get that same armchair and it had started a compulsion to create an American collection for some Texan museum. The collection contains some beautiful English ceramics that had been used in colonial America and other items that fit perfectly into her decor. Ima owned works by Matisse, Picasso and Klee, along with many others. She would serve on a committee that planned the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. and was an avid collector of fine arts, antiques and early American artifacts. Ima would endure the stigmatism of her name all her life, which had been taken from a poem written by her Uncle Thomas Hogg, and called the Fate of Marvin. Her father, James Stephen "Big Jim" Hogg would be a state attorney general and governor. She was a remarkable woman, regardless of her name, and well rehearsed as a pianist, establishing the Houston Symphony Orchestra and becoming president of the Symphony Society. After oil was found on her family's plantation, she would become very wealthy which she would use for the people of the state. 

    Byzantine Fresco Chapel Museum
    Byzantine Fresco Chapel Museum Houston, TexasThe Byzantine Fresco Chapel in Houston, Texas features the only intact Byzantine frescoes that are this big and significant in the whole Western Hemisphere, situated by the University of St. Thomas and part of the fabulous Menil Collection. These frescoes were brought here after being removed from a church in Lysi, Cyprus during the 1980s. The chapel was opened in 1997 to showcase the masterworks that had been created in the 13th century; which are a dome with Christ Pantocrator and a beautiful apse that features the Virgin Mary the Panayia. There are many names in the Hebrew language that represent God, and the Pantocrator is a Greek word that had been translated from Hebrew and has been used for God as the Lord of Hosts and El Shaddai. El Shaddai is another name for God that means God Almighty. Panayia is another Greek word, translated from Hebrew or Judaic and means Mary, the mother of Jesus, and is still used in Orthodox Christianity. The frescoes were stolen from the small church in Cyprus, near Lysi, that is located in the Turkish occupied area of Cyprus during the 1980s, then cut into 38 different pieces and finally shipped to Germany by the same thieves that had planned on selling them on the arts black market. Ironically, the frescoes would be purchased by the Menil Foundation, knowing full well, that the frescoes had been stolen, but had been given approval by the Church of Cyprus. The foundation then began a two year recreation of the paintings, which are quite unique in the Western Hemisphere. The most significant parts of the frescoes are those belonging to the apse and dome, which are representative of what was already mentioned. One of the guides at the museum, stated that Christ Pantocrator means, "All Sovereign" and defines a space that has neither beginning nor end. The marvelous 4000 square foot, $4 million structure had been designed by architect, Francois de Menil, and the interior is exquisitely filled with gorgeous woods, opaque glass and rough stone, creating a space that has become both spiritual space and an art museum. There are lovely glass walls that have been suspended, although they are not copies of the original chapel that the frescoes were taken from, but a new and vital concept to showcase the magnificent icons. Francois decided not to replicate the original chapel, but instead, created "a mediating external building with an embedded steel structure", a reliquary box, that creates a natural enclosure that represents a free standing chapel. "The Byzantine Chapel Museum is a religious building whose purpose is to restore spiritual significance and function to two thirteenth-century Byzantine Frescoes, a dome and an apse, rescued and restored by the owner.......The materiality of the original chapel is shattered and made ephemeral through the fragmented, freestanding sandblasted laminated glass structure which is an abstracted evocation of the original chapel. The infinite is evoked through the play of darkness and light." Francois de Menil, May, 1997.

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    Contemporary Art MuseumContemporary Art Museum Houston, Texas
    The Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston is a nonprofit that is devoted to showcasing the outstanding collections of contemporary art of our age to the public, although it is not a collecting museum, but rather a showroom or forum where visual arts can be shown, including the past, recent past and feature new directions of art that will be sure to engage the public with their exhibitions and encourage a better understanding of contemporary art with informative educational programming. This magnificent museum is situated in a stainless steel structure that is a vibrant part of the Houston, Texas museum district. The iconic structure is easily recognized and designed for the museum by the well known and award winning architect, Gunnar Birkerts, allowing the museum to be opened in 1970. The museum itself had been born in the minds of eight Houston residents in 1948, with the express idea of being able to show old art to the community and to document its role in the modern world using lectures, exhibitions and other events. It would initially showcase exhibitions at different locales in the city, often using the Museum of Fine Arts; and some of the very first shows included, "This is Contemporary Art" and "Laszlo Moholy-Nagy: Memorial Exhibition. The continuing success of the shows would allow the group to construct a small museum in 1950, where the exciting works of Vincent van Gogh, Max Ernst, Joan Miro, Alexander Calder and John Biggers and his small group of students from the new fledgling Texas Negro College, which has grown into the Texas Southern University; and would show the community that they all were very receptive to these new ideas.

    Downtown Aquarium
    Downtown Aquarium Houston, Texas
    The Downtown Aquarium in Houston, Texas is both a restaurant and public aquarium that had been converted from two Houston landmarks; the Central Waterworks Building and the Fire Station No. 1. It is situated on six acres on Bagby St. and contains more than 200 species of aquatic creatures living in half a million gallons of water. This unique complex contains banquet facilities, a bar and two restaurants, owned by Landry's Restaurants, Inc and it is fully accredited by the AZA. It was back in 1999, when the city would announce it was looking for ideas to transform two of its downtown landmarks, and the plan fell to Landry's; since it would use the old waterworks building as a sharks-only exhibition tank, and the main restaurant would be situated on the second floor of the firehouse, that could be kept as it was while the construction went on; and it opened in 2003. The Aquarium Adventure Exhibit is located in the main building and houses five themed spaces, as well as the tiger habitat and numerous interactive displays. The fabulous White Tiger of the Maharaja Temple is home to the aquarium's white tigers, while the Discovery Rig contains three touch tanks that allow visitors and guests to get as close as possible to the magnificent marine life that is located there and includes; triggerfish, tangs, stingrays, butterflyfish, bamboo sharks and horseshoe crabs. The Louisiana Swamp is representative of the marsh and bayous of the Gulf Coast and houses; bullfrogs, alligators, catfish, spotted gar, alligator snapping turtles and crayfish. The Rainforest offers the tropical rainforests of the world, and the excellent life that thrives inside their rivers, like birds, poison arrow frogs, arawana, macaws, archerfish, red-bellied piranha, emerald tree boa and freshwater stingrays. The Sunken Temple contains lionfish, reticulated python, electric eel, tarantulas and pufferfish; while the shipwreck offers visitors the inner hull of a sunken 17th century Spanish galleon ship that allows them to look out and view beautiful living coral reefs and sea animals like a huge Pacific octopus, star fish, moray eel, garibaldi, clownfish, snapper, tangs and grouper. The Gulf of Mexico houses jack, tarpon, nurse sharks, redfish, snapper and more. There is a great train that tours the whole property called the C. P. Huntington and it stops in the midst of a 200,000 gallon shark tank that offers visitors a wonderful opportunity to view the most vicious predators of the deep; sharks. The shark tank is located in another structure, and apart from the main aquarium. Other exciting venues include the Diving Bell Ferris wheel and an exciting aquatic-themed carousel outside; and one of the restaurants contains a 100,000 gallon tank inside its restaurant that is the biggest cylindrical tank in the nation.

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    Holocaust Museum Holocaust Museum Houston, Texas
    The Holocaust Museum Houston, in Texas, opened in 1996, in the museum district and is the fourth biggest Holocaust memorial museum in the nation; dedicated to making people aware of the dangers that hatred, violence and prejudice that reared its ugly face during the Holocaust. The museum also tries to remind the world that these terrible dangers are still prevalent today. This museum encourages understanding, education and remembrance of the indescribable events that occurred and strives to make both students and the community, the world community is continuously made aware of them. The lesson that this event provided, and brings to light, is that all people should continue to strive together for harmony and peace. One of the museum's main objectives is to continue its educational programs that include a student program, teacher program and the academic program; with their special "Curriculum Trunks Program" that is made available to the nation's teachers that offers multi-media tools like lesson plans, videos, CDs, DVDs, maps, artifact kits, classroom sets of books, posters and plans for student activities that will create an environment for learning as much as possible. The museum offers teachers a training program, that may or may not be pertaining to the trunks programs or general workshops; as well as contests for students like the yearly "Yom HaShoah Art and Writing contest" that is part of the student programming. The museum's members are allowed access to the Boniuk Library that contains over 5000 volumes about the holocaust, post-holocaust period, WWII, Jewish history and related topics. Their library houses the HMH archives and HMH oral histories project, that contains a huge amount of relics, photographs, film reels and documents located in the archives and over 250 recorded testimonies from the actual survivors, liberators, witnesses and one member that belonged to the Hitler Youth program. It houses both temporary and permanent exhibits at the museum, with a significant permanent exhibition that is called, "Bearing Witness: A Community remembers" that is the testimony of area survivors living in the city. When you begin the exhibition, you will get an impression of the life of Jews and culture in pre-war Europe with authentic films, documents, relics and photos that show Nazi propaganda and the move that led to the "Final Solution". There are sections that deal with the resistance movements, like the Warsaw ghetto uprising, sabotage, the partisan movement, prisoner revolts and Lyndon Johnson's "Operation Texas" refugee effort. When you finish the exhibition you will watch two films of testimony that give first hand accounts of witnesses, survivors and liberators that moved to this area after the war. It is a heart wrenching journey down memory lane, one that the majority of Americans never knew until the war was over, and one that horrified many. It is one of those infamous events that stole millions of lives, dreams, marriages, births and hopes. It also is one of those horrible experiences that will never be forgotten by the free world, as it strives to continue bringing freedom and its high ideals to every nation on this earth.

    Fort Bend Museum
    Fort Bend Museum Houston, TexasThe Fort Bend Museum depicts life on the Brazos River with outstanding displays, walking tours of historic Richmond and historic museums; and the state historical commission has named the museum one of the best local history museums in the state. The museum association has strived to preserve and interpret the Fort Bend county and the state's history for almost four decades. The museum offers a n exciting number of educational programs for adults, teens and children, as well as sites throughout the Richmond Historic district. It also offers and encourages the community to take part in its many educational programs that include summer programs, field trips, teacher resources, Texian time machine, classes and workshops, scout groups and junior docent programs. Their main exhibits include; the Moore home and history from 1883 to 1975; Austin's colony from 1821-1836 and Fort Bend county history from 1837 to 1940; the Long-Smith cottage: Richmond city lifestyles from 1840 to 1860 and much more. The association also oversees the George Ranch historical park, Historic Richmond and Texian heritage.

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May 13, 2011