2020 Houston New Year’s Resolutions
As Houstonians, we have so much to be thankful for. We live in a diverse city that is rapidly growing in its culture and opportunities. But there are always things we can do to improve our city and give back. So, I have put together some resolutions for the new year that we can keep in mind going forward to be our best Houstonian selves.
1. Support Houston musicians
Houston musicians are having a moment right now - between Megan Thee Stallion and Lizzo, Houston women are killing the music game right now. I always encourage supporting live music, but it is important especially now that we have locals performing on a national stage (Lizzo put on a fantastic SNL performance recently)! Lizzo often returns to Houston to go to UH games and is a proud graduate of Elsik High in Alief. To keep the Houston music momentum going, check out local artists at joints that are only frequented by the locals: Anderson Fair, The Mucky Duck, Firehouse Saloon and the classic Continental Club.
2. Get on board the food hall craze
Across the country, food halls have been growing in popularity. Houston has a few, such as Finn Hall, Bravery Chef Hall, Conservatory and Politan Row (read more about Politan Row in Rice Village here) and we are slated to gain even more in 2020. Food halls are opening up in EaDo, Midtown and the Galleria area. If you haven’t already fallen in love with food halls yet, now is the time.
3. Get educated about local politics
Houston’s local politics scene has been pretty active recently. The big mayoral runoff race and tense city council races sparked lots of political discourse in Houston. In recent years, Houston has seen a surge in voter turnout, and an influx of new faces. This year marks a record high number of women serving in Houston’s city council. It is exciting to see Houstonians getting jazzed about local politics, and it is something we should encourage. If you live in Harris County, learn about your local officials here. If you live in Bellaire, here. If you live in the Villages, here.
4. Learn more about park conservation and erosion
So many of us take for granted the beautiful walk/run/bike trails we have around the bayous of our city. Memorial Park is going through a major rebuilding effort, and Buffalo Bayou Park is experiencing the negative post-Harvey and post-Imelda effects on its trails. There are many organizations throughout the city that support rebuilding the parks and replanting trees lost in the storms. Not everyone thinks our bayous are beautiful, but if you’re a true Houstonian, you should care about this! Check out organizations like Trees for Houston to get started. And if you want to explore on foot, see this story on where to run (or walk) around town.
5. Learn more about urban farming
Urban farming, or urban gardening, is the practice of growing agricultural products in the city. Groups like Urban Harvest and the Houston Food Bank have been making urban farming a reality in Houston, but there is still a lot of ground to cover. Because of its sprawl, Houston has many “unused” spaces that could be used for neighborhood gardens to grow food, but instead stay unused. Especially in Houston, real estate is the ultimate use for land. (See this article from Rice’s Kinder Institute explaining why urban farming growth has been stunted in Houston.). Gardening is in, so perhaps a good goal for this next year is to invest in a community garden or growing space, invest in a fruit tree, etc. Urban Harvest hosts gardening classes and workshops plus gardening-related events.
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