An early morning start on Friday, Feb. 12, began a weekend full of exciting experiences in Houston. The first taste of the town was at Irma’s Restaurant across the street from Minute Maid Stadium. This colorful restaurant was started by a woman of humble beginnings who now caters to Houston politicians and countless famous people.
After a delicious lunch accompanied by Irma’s signature lemonade, the seventh-graders visited the Museum of Health and Medical Science. A 4-D movie presentation from a bug’s-eye view on the human body and a chance to explore many vital organs from the inside-out proved to be a memorable experience for our students.
The next stop was a sobering trip to the Houston Holocaust Museum. Students were able to see many of the artifacts recovered from concentration camps, historical photographs, as well as a video of survivors recounting their experiences.
After leaving the Holocaust Museum, students were taken to their home for the weekend, the great J.W. Marriott Hotel. A few elevator rides later, students were dressed for dinner at Maggiano’s for an authentic Italian dinner. They were able to sample many delectable items from the menu such as eggplant parmesan, spinach manicotti, and the overall favorite - calamari! The stuffed students then returned to their five-star hotel for a night of giggles and, eventually, restful sleep.
An early morning breakfast with sponsors in the hotel restaurant began the second day in Houston. First stop was a visit to the Museum of Natural Science. Here, students walked among the dinosaur bones and were in awe of the many gems and diamonds. One of the favorites of this museum was the Butterfly Garden. The students were able to stroll through a three-story arboretum full of rare and beautiful butterflies.
After a quick check for stowaways and a trip through an underground tunnel, which was a work of art itself, the group was ready for lunch at the Museum of Fine Arts. The afternoon was spent visiting with a local artist at his home and studio. The students were able to witness the time and work that goes into the development of an intricate painting.
The night ended with the students dressed in suits, ties, dresses and heels, with a trip to the Wortham Theater to watch an interpretive dance version of “Romeo & Juliet.” The students then returned to the hotel for a late night swim in the heated pool at their luxury hotel.
Another early morning breakfast got the day going as students packed up to spend their day at NASA. Students rode a flight simulator, toured the cockpit of a space shuttle and enjoyed many interactive games and presentations. An awesome video entitled “Why I Became an Astronaut” allowed the students to witness the trials and tribulations of becoming an astronaut. Students wrapped up their stay at NASA with trying out the “Bed of Nails” and “Zero Gravity” maneuvering station.
Next, a seafood lunch was enjoyed on the Kemah Boardwalk at the Chart House. Students sampled a variety of fresh seafood including oysters on a half-shell. Some of the more adventurous students were able to swallow one with surprised eyes and a few shivers. A short drive home, with a quick visit to the famous Buc-ee’s, made for a tired bunch of kids arriving back to Beeville on Sunday.
The MMS students are thankful to the Barnhart Foundation and travel agent Darlene Conoly for the wonderful trip of a lifetime.