The Lead Sept. 15, 2022: Peterson Health presents a state of health with cautious optimism

During his speech, Peterson's Edmondson decries the lack of civility directed at health care workers.

Good morning, Kerr County!

Weather? It's going to be sunny and warm. Rain? Haha. The long-term forecast is about as generic as you can imagine. It's going to be sunny and warm — at least through Wednesday.

On today's The Lead Live!

We welcome Rain Thoresen to the show, and she will give us an update on Kerrville's third annual River Fest. Thoresen works for the city's parks and recreation department. Also joining the show will be Texas Hill Country Advisor Andrew Gay and the Kerrville Convention and Visitor Bureau's Leslie Jones.

Today's newsletter is sponsored by KPUB

Mark your calendar for Public Power Week Oct. 2-8, and the Bucket Truck Rides

The Kerrville Public Utility Board (KPUB) is hosting a family-friendly event to meet our heroes in hardhats while we celebrate Public Power Week!


Please mark your calendars for Saturday, October 8, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., to join us in Louise Hays Park for a free community event!

This will be a free community event with family-friendly activities that will include taking a ride in one of KPUB’s bucket trucks, arc & spark demos, line worker tool displays, photo ops with our linemen, face painting and more.

KPUB will be providing free hot dogs, chips and refreshments on a first-come, first-served basis, as well as a free t-shirt for the first 100 attendees. For more information:

Welcome to The Lead.

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In case you missed the news from earlier in the week here's a quick-hit recap

  • The Kerrville City Council voted unanimously to accept the first reading of an ordinance that would restrict short-term rentals to specific zones in the city. The Council, however, balked at instituting a permitting mechanism when significant opposition and the Council's own questions required further study on the matter.
  • It's been a nagging situation for more than five years, and on Tuesday night, the fate of a proposed Clay Street parking faced a pause. After back-and-forth on language about an agreement between the city of Kerrville and the property owner of a Sidney Baker Street strip mall faltered, the City Council voted to table the item until both sides could clean up the legal language.
  • The Kerrville City Council approved 4-0 a plan to ask its Economic Improvement Corporation to spend $1 million to extend the Guadalupe River Trail along the river's north side opposite Louise Hays Park. It's a hefty price tag for the city, but City Councilmember Kim Clarkson noted it was good to see a quality of life project come before the City Council.
  • Kerr County Judge Rob Kelly announced that the commissioner's court would hold a public hearing at 9 a.m. on Oct. 11 to provide comment on the proposed subdivision code — a project two years in the making.
  • Schreiner University women's volleyball team made their home debut Tuesday in front of more than 300 fans but couldn't overcome Hardin-Simmons in a five-set thriller. Brook Beyer led the Mountaineers with 19 kills, and Kayla Lofland added 14. The Mountaineers fell 15-13 in the final set.

Upcoming Featured Events

The Kerrville Chalk Festival, Oct. 15-16, Kerrville City Hall.

Kerrville Chalk Festival is a family-friendly art event for the Texas Hill Country. More than 65 artists create large-scale chalk drawings directly on the pavement. Kerrville’s downtown becomes a festive canvas for local and regional artists, as wells as invited guest artists from around the United States.

The Festival has live music, many free activities, food trucks, as well as wine and craft beer. It attracts an estimated 10,000 attendees annually. Read about the history of chalk art.

Held at Peterson Plaza in the heart of downtown, the event encourages tourists and locals to dine, shop, and experience the beauty and charm of Kerrville, Texas.

The 2022 beneficiary is Kerrville Arts and Cultural Center (KACC). KACC was founded in 1995 by a group of artists with a mission of providing a show place for local artists and to further the arts and culture in the community. The Center is comprised of sixteen affiliated groups representing over 500 artists and has three distinct gallery spaces. It attracts over 20,000 visitors annually.

Peterson's State of Health Care features some ripples of concern, but the future remains bright

Peterson Health President and CEO Cory Edmondson presents a state of health care speech on Sept. 14, 2022 at Arcadia Live in downtown Kerrville.

Peterson Health President and Chief Executive Officer Cory Edmondson choked back tears for a moment, turning his back on the audience as he tried to compose himself.

It was an unexpected turn for an event called "The State of Health Care." Edmondson took aim at a rise in incivility toward staff, not just at Peterson Regional Medical Center but also across the country. However, he was consumed by emotion when relating a case where Kerrville Police responded to a call of a patient who allegedly tried to strangle a nurse. Edmondson said the nurse was able to get enough leverage to prevent serious injury, but the case rattled staff.

The American Hospital Association reported that 44% of nurses experienced physical violence, while 68% received verbal abuse. Edmondson said this sort of incivility must stop.

The AHA and the American Medical Association attribute much of the rise to reactions to the coronavirus pandemic.

The moment wasn't the only one of clarity for the audience as Edmondson guided a conversation about the state of regional care during a Kerrville Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon at Arcadia Live. During his talk, Edmondson powered through some of Peterson's challenges, including:

  • Providing mental health care for residents in a county that is among the leaders in Texas for mental health emergencies. Edmondson said the region's recovery community might inflate that data, but there remains a mental-health crisis regardless of the circumstances.
  • He pointed out that Kerr County's uninsured rate is 24% — among the highest in the state. And Texas is the national leader when it comes to uninsured.
  • He outlined how the rise in obesity continues to be a problem locally and nationally. "We're bleeding obesity," Edmondson told the audience.
  • And a startling data point was increasing expenditures on Peterson having to cover the costs of people who can afford to pay for health care but stiff the hospital for payment. While Peterson expects some charity care — those who cannot afford the costs — the rise in those not paying their bills is now a $30 million per year liability.
  • There was a discussion about the challenge of collecting money from the Medicare Advantage program.

The presentation included videos of Texas state Rep. Andrew Murr and U.S. Rep. Chip Roy providing their perspectives on the state of health care. Murr focused on the need for rural health care, a growing problem in Texas, where more than 180 counties are considered rural and many lack hospitals.

From left Kerrville Fire Department Chief Eric Malone, Peterson Health Vice President Tracy Davis and MHDD Deputy Chief Executive Director Landon Sturdivant were members of a panel discussion about mental health care.

There were two brief panel discussions, including one about mental health care. MHDD's Landon Sturdivant said the regional agency is attempting to stand up more mental health teams, including working closely with law enforcement.

Edmondson's speech also highlighted some of the wins for the health care provider, including recruiting new doctors, expanding services and breaking ground on a new surgery center in November.

And then there was Chip Roy

Congressman Chip Roy (a Republican representing the 21st District) chimed in a video about the state of health care, railing against vaccinations and other coronavirus-related measures. Roy is one of the leading critics of the National Institute of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, Roy frequently joins a small minority of Republicans to vote against health care bills.

Here are the health-care-related items Roy has voted against during this session of Congress:

  • Roy was one of 12 voting against modifying the extension of certain Medicare telehealth flexibilities after the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • Roy was one of 16 voting against requiring the Department of Education to encourage institutions of higher education to develop and implement evidence-based comprehensive campus mental health and suicide prevention plans.
  • Roy was one of 20 voting against expanding, and modifying programs, grants, and activities that focus on mental and behavioral health.
  • Roy was one of three to vote against directing the Secretary of Health and Human Services to support research on, and expanded access to, investigational drugs for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and for other purposes.
  • Roy was one of three to vote against the Public Safety Officers' Benefits (PSOB) program. The PSOB program provides death, disability, and education benefits to public safety officers and survivors of public safety officers who are killed in the line of duty or permanently disabled as a result of catastrophic injuries sustained in the line of duty.
  • Roy was one of 20 to vote against reauthorizing the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities. The center carries out activities to advance the health and well-being of vulnerable populations, including infants with birth defects, children with developmental disabilities, and individuals of all ages with disabilities or blood disorders.
  • Roy was one of 17 to vote against requiring the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to confer with urban Indian organizations regarding health care for American Indians and Alaska Natives living in urban areas.
  • Roy was one of seven, including California Democrat Eric Swalwell, to vote against authorizing the Department of Veterans Affairs to carry out specified major medical facility projects during FY2021. The bill also indicates the maximum amount that can be spent on each project.


Arcadia Live announced that it booked a discussion of the movie "Napoleon Dynamite," with cast members Jon Heder, who plays Napoleon, Efren Ramirez, who plays Pedro, and (maybe the best part) John Gries, who plays the van-living Uncle Rico. The event is March 31, 2023 (a Friday night), so there is plenty of time to prepare.

If you haven't seen the movie, it's about a high school kid with bad shoes, bad hair and a strange sense of how to feed a llama. It's a rural story with quirky characters and plenty of peculiar behavior — most notably when Uncle Rico, still longing to play in the NFL, knocks Napoleon off a bicycle with a steak.

Get your Symphony of the Hills tickets now

The first Symphony of the Hills concert of the 2022-2023 season is Oct. 6 at the Cailloux Theater, and tickets are on sale now.

The professional symphony will perform a concert entitled "When In Rome: Inspirations from Italy." The concert is set for 7:30 p.m. Reserved seating can be made online at or by calling or visiting the Cailloux Theater Box Office, (830) 896-9393.

The music program for the first concert:

  • Gershwin/Balentine – Suite from Porgy and Bess for violin and orchestra, with Nicole Cherry, violin soloist.
  • Mendelssohn – Symphony No. 4 in A Major, Op. 90 Italian.
  • Respighi – Pines of Rome.

The rest of the concert season includes:

  • The Miracle of Christmas with Grand Symphony Chorus on Dec. 1, 2022.
  • POPS Western Swing: The Official Music of Texas on Jan. 7, 2023
  • Edvard Grieg: Keyboard Brilliance, with Jiale Yi on Feb. 23
  • Orchestral Fire: Tchaikovsky on April 27, 2023

Details on all concerts and ticket information can be found at, via email at, or by calling 830-792-7469.

Walmart delivers for the Dietert Center

Pictured from left are Laura Maberry, Shelly Dreyer, Robin Anderson representing Walmart, Waverly Jones, and Dorothy Beene.

Kerrville's Walmart celebrated National Senior Center Month by surprising Dietert Center staff and volunteers with a new microwave. The Dietert Center staff said it was much needed. The store also provided popcorn to go with it, and two big boxes of sanitary wipes for use in the center.

Senior Center month is celebrated each September at more than 10,000 senior centers nationwide.

Free day at the museum

The Museum of Western Art is one of two Hill Country museums to offer free admission, thanks to Smithsonian Magazine's annual Museum Day event. Admission will be free on Saturday at MOWA and Bandera's Western Times Museum.

"We are pleased to participate in this year's Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day," MOWA Executive Director Darrell Beauchamp said. "This is an opportunity to introduce the public to our exhibitions and programs that we host year-round. That day, September 17 th , attendees will be the final chance to view Luckenbach Legacy: Hondo's Daughter, Becky Crouch Patterson and the art, tapestries, books and memorabilia that tell the story of a tiny town that achieved national acclaim through Hondo Crouch."

Museum Day tickets are available for download at Visitors who present a Museum Day ticket will gain free entrance for two at participating venues on

Saturday. One ticket per email address.

The museums are located:

  • MOWA, 1550 Bandera Highway, Kerrville. (830) 896-2553, or visit:
  • The Frontier Times Museum, 510 13th St., Bandera. (830) 796-3864, or visit:

Today's events:

High school volleyball

  • Cedar Park Summit at Our Lady of the Hills, 6 p.m.

Live music

  • The Collector's Edition — Joanne Marie and Me Wine Boutique, Ingram, 6 p.m. Information:


  • Thirsty Thursday Trivia — Arcadia Live!, 5:45 p.m. Information: The details: Join the Arcadia Live crew for another trivia night and, perhaps, become the new reigning Trivia Champ Team! Beyond bragging rights, winning teams will be awarded gift cards to local restaurants.

Friday, Sept. 16

Performing Arts

  • Leading Ladies — The Cailloux Theater, 7:30 p.m. The details: Two down-at-the-heels Shakespearean actors try to take advantage of a rich Pennsylvania widow who is looking to leave her fortune to missing relatives. They plan to impersonate the lost nephews "Max" and "Steve," and are surprised when the pair turn out to actually be nieces "Maxine" and "Stephanie." Undeterred, the pair continue the ruse by assuming female form. Their ploy becomes even more complicated when love enters the picture, and the laughs just keep on coming.

Live music

  • Aaron Lacombe — Arcadia Live, 7 p.m. Information: The details: Enjoy a magical evening of music, drinks and sunset along The Guadalupe River on the back deck at Arcadia Live.
  • The Flashbacks — Joanne Marie and Me Wine Boutique, Ingram, 6 p.m. Information:
  • Dave Kemp — Cafe at the Ridge, 6 p.m. Information:
  • Matty Lee — Pint and Plow Brewing Co., 6 p.m. Information: The details: Matty Lee plays reggae music inspired by blues and jazz.
  • Bob Stewart — The Pub at Inn of the Hills, 7 p.m. Information:
  • Mish Mash Band — Pier 27 River Lounge and Pizzeria, 8 p.m. Information: 830-896-7437
  • Modal Mojo — Southern Sky Music Cafe, 6 p.m. Information:


  • Tex Fest — Schreiner University, 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Information: The details: Live music every day. Bring a chair and enjoy this uniquely Texan event. The Trailhead Beer Garden (featuring a great variety of beers, wines, and other non-alcoholic drinks) will be open, and food trucks are available throughout the day. The featured events are: 8 a.m. to noon, Texas Heritage Days; 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m., WWII Demos (Texas Armed Forces Museum); 12:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m., live music from the staff and students of Schreiner University; Noon to 10 p.m., food trucks and vendors; 6 p.m., The Flyin A's, 7 p.m., Dead Texans Tours, 7:30 p.m., Josh Grider, 9 p.m., Bruce Robison. Saturday's lineup: Starting at 8 a.m., IBCA and HS BBQ Competition; 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., live music from the staff and students of Schreiner University; Noon to 10 p.m., food trucks and vendors; 3 p.m., Terri Hendrix with Lloyd Maines

High school football

  • Tivy at Marble Falls, 7:30 p.m.
  • Center Point at Harper, 7:30 p.m.
  • San Angelo TLCA at Ingram Tom Moore, 7 p.m.
  • Our Lady of the Hills at Waco MCH, 7 p.m.

High school volleyball

  • Utopia at Center Point, 5 p.m.

Markets and sales

  • Kerrville Farmer's Market — Butt Holdsworth Memorial Library, 4 p.m. Information: The details: There are some key changes to the market, with new management, and some additions and subtractions to the lineup. There's a wide variety of locally sourced produce, meat, eggs, bread, cheese, beer, wine and a selection of prepared food, all sourced within the Texas Hill Country.


  • Learn to Belly Dance — Kerr Arts and Cultural Center, 6 p.m. Information: The Cheeky Peacocks Dance Company The details: Bring a yoga mat, a bottle of water and a friend! The class is $10.

Science and Nature

  • 1-on-1 with a naturalist — Riverside Nature Center, 10 a.m. Information: The details: Naturalist, author, and columnist Jim Stanley and Texas Master Naturalist and native plant enthusiast John Hucksteadt will be available to meet one-on-one to answer questions, and discuss various topics, or listen to ideas about nature.

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