Spring in the Bend Science, Steers, Steam & Stars

COVER STORY | By Patti Parish-Kaminski –

Spring has sprung and that means longer, warmer days to be out and about.  There’s so much to do right here in our own back yard when it comes to getting out and enjoying all that the season and our community has to offer, so here’s a few of our favs close to home for the whole family to enjoy – just in time for Spring Break!

Get Ocean Bound! with the City of Sugar Land and the
Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land

When we turn on our faucets, we know that water comes out, but do we know what happens to it afterward? More importantly, do we know how to save it? The City of Sugar Land and the Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land, located at 13016 University Blvd., have partnered together to tell that story. Ocean Bound! educates museum visitors on the value of water and where it comes from to foster a deeper sense of connection and stewardship for our natural environment.

“Water conservation is crucial in meeting not just Sugar Land’s long-term water supply goals, but our entire region and beyond, and it will take a community-wide effort to achieve,” Sugar Land Public Works Director Brian Butscher said. “Our partners at the Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land embrace this message and are dedicated to helping spread this message in a way that’s unique and tailored to the Sugar Land community.”

Ocean Bound! runs through May 14th and costs $5 for the special exhibit fee, in addition to general admission. Exhibit stations include displays on watersheds that provide details on where our water comes from; a water conservation station where visitors can learn how to ensure we have enough water today and for future generations through indoor water conservation; and a water utility station that explores utility roles and the standards that are set to ensure high quality water for public consumption and use. By experiencing and interacting with the exhibit stations in Ocean Bound!, children and adults alike can see themselves as stewards of their environment and the ocean, regardless of where they live, and learn to make decisions that preserve water quality.

For more information and to buy tickets to Ocean Bound!, visit www.hmns.org/oceanbound.

Saddle Up for Spring at The George Ranch Historical Park

Watch the George Ranch cowboys as they wrangle, wrestle and round up history.

Saddle up your pony for some old-fashioned western fun during Spring Break March 11th through March 18th at the George Ranch Historical Park, located at 10215  FM 762 Road in Richmond. Follow the George Ranch cowboys as they wrangle, wrestle and blaze a trail through history to celebrate the Golden Age of the Cattle Drive.  Visitors will experience a steer round up, cattle roping, leatherworking demonstrations, chuckwagon cooking, branding boards – any and everything cowboy!  Spring Break hours are 9 am to 5 pm daily.  Visit https://www.georgeranch.org/event-calendar/spring-break-golden-age-of-the-cattle-drive/ for a complete schedule of events and to purchase tickets.

Easter is hopping on Saturday, April 8th at the George Ranch Historical Park with a Chuckwagon Breakfast and an Easter Egg Hunt.  Round up the entire family for a Chuckwagon Breakfast on the prairie at 9 am.  Enjoy eggs and bacon by the campfire then settle in to watch the cowboys in a private, cattle round up.  After breakfast, the little wranglers can participate in an Easter Egg Hunt in the 1860s Ryon Prairie Home yard and try their hand at egg dying.  Tickets for the breakfast, all activities and general admission to the park are $35 for adults, $25 for children ages 4 to 12 and children 3 and under are free.  Seating is limited.  For the Easter weekend schedule and to purchase tickets, visit https://www.georgeranch.org/event-calendar/chuckwagon-breakfast/.

Learn about the Run Away Scrape April 14th and 15th at The George Ranch Historical Park.

Henry and Nancy Jones are on the run as the Mexican Army advances Friday, April 14th and Saturday, April 15th at the George Ranch Historical Park!  Learn what life was like on the Texas Prairie in 1836 and how Texian families survived this unsettled but inspiring time during the Run Away Scrape.  Schools welcome Friday for self-guided tours focused on pioneer life and the Texian Revolution featuring cannon drills.  The park opens Saturday to the public for battle reenactments at 11 am and 2 pm.  Visit https://www.georgeranch.org/event-calendar/runaway-scrape/ for more information.

All Aboard:  Get Your Ticket to the Rosenberg Railroad Museum’s Spring Break Fun Days

Stop by the Rosenberg Railroad Museum during Spring Break for days filled with seasonal fun! On Wednesday, March 15th through Friday, March 17th from 10 am to 3 pm, the Museum will host their Spring Break Fun Days. Every day features a different theme that is both educational and outright fun. Hop aboard each day to see what new adventures and activities are in store!

Following Spring Break fun, the next stop for the Rosenberg Railroad Museum is their monthly Garden Railroad Fun Day. Get your ticket for Sunday, March 26th from 1 to 4 pm to participate in this special event.

For the entire month of March, the Rosenberg Railroad Museum’s theme is “Hop into Spring” in celebration of the Easter Season. Not only will there be fun activities and special trains in their Garden Railroad, but the March 26th Fun Day will feature an Easter Egg Hunt along the rails.  It will be the perfect spot to take the children for some spring-time shenanigans.

The Rosenberg Railroad Museum is located at 1921 Avenue F in Historic Downtown Rosenberg. For more information, visit www.rosenbergrrmuseum.org/events or call 281.633.2846.

Reach for the Stars at the George Observatory

See the moon from the George Observatory’s 36” Gueymard Telescope at Moonlight Madness. Photo by Joe Dellinger.

The George Observatory, located at 21901 FM 762 Rd in Needville, hosts Moonlight Madness on Friday, March 3rd from 7 to 9 pm identifying mountains, lunar maria, craters within craters and possibly even the elusive X formation. Learn where the Apollo missions landed, and take pictures with your own cell phone of what you see.  The event starts with a lecture presentation on the moon’s formations, the chance to actually feel a piece of lunar rock and a view from the Observatory’s 36” Gueymard Telescope.  Capacity is limited and 16 years and up only.  Tickets are $50, and advance purchase is required.

Family Space Day, a simulated space mission, is March 14th and 17th at the George Observatory.

Calling aspiring astronauts! Family Space Day, a simulated space mission, is on Tuesday, March 14th and Friday, March 17th. The Mission:  The year is 2094, and we are visiting the Moon to establish a permanent base.  You’ll navigate, analyze, build and complete the mission in the Space Station with expert advice from Mission Control. Work in eight teams, and learn what it takes to be an astronaut!  Make your reservation at https://www.hmns.org/george-observatory/events/ for a fun-filled adventure aboard the SS Observer in the Expedition Center.  Departure times are 1 or 3 pm.  This event is for visitors 7 years and older, and all children must be accompanied by ticketed adult.  Tickets are $20 per person.

George Observatory’s 36” Gueymard Telescope.

The George Observatory’s Director of Astronomy hosts Starry Night on Friday, April 14th an exclusive viewing of the night sky through the 36” Gueymard Research telescope.  From 9 pm to midnight, mingle with other enthusiasts for this private event as you make your way through the cosmos.  View galaxies, planetary nebulas or globular star clusters — you might see Jupiter’s Red Spot, Saturn’s Rings and craters on the moon.  Visit the upper deck to learn about the mythology of constellations, and how to use your planisphere so you can find your way around the universe!  Capacity is limited and 16 years and up only.  Tickets are $100, and advance purchase is required.  To purchase tickets to any George Observatory event, visit https://www.hmns.org/george-observatory/events/.

Get out and enjoy Spring Fort Bend – and don’t forget to tag us @FortBendFocus as you are out and about!