State Fair of Texas Announces Heritage Hall of Honor

heritage hall of fame

The State Fair of Texas recently announced its two newest inductees to the Texas Heritage Hall of Honor. This biennial program was established in 1992 to recognize men and women who have made significant contributions to the agricultural heritage of Texas. These individuals have been accomplished farmers, ranchers, drovers, inventors, innovators, educators, authors, legislators, and preservationists. Their achievements span 170 years, reaching back to the birth of the Texas Republic and extending out into a limitless future.

Since 2019, the induction of nominees both living and deceased are considered annually. This year, Laurence M. Lasater and Frances Richmond Cooper are being recognized for their achievements and contributions that helped establish Texas as a premier agricultural leader in the nation. They join more than 70 men and women previously inducted into the Texas Heritage Hall of Honor.

Laurence M. Lasater of San Antonio was born to Tom and Mary Lasater, the founders of the Beefmaster Breed. In 1964 he and his wife, Annette, moved to Coahuila, Mexico, where their cattle became the foundation herd of the breed in Mexico. In 1971 they moved their family to San Angelo, where they established another Beefmaster herd and founded Isa Cattle Co. He is the author of The Lasater Philosophy of Cattle Raising, which was first published by the University of Texas at El Paso in 1971 and is now in its 16th edition in multiple languages. He was elected President of the Foundation Beefmaster Association and Director of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers. In 2019, he was inducted into the Beefmaster Hall of Fame. Laurence and Annette’s children, Lorenzo and Isabel, have since taken the reins of the family business and continue the Lasater legacy.

Frances Richmond Cooper of Mercedes began her career in 1954 as the secretary to the manager of the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show (RGVLS). In 1959, she became manager of the show, and was a key factor in the rise of the RGVLS to its position of being one of the 10 largest livestock shows in Texas. She was known as the heart and soul of the RGVLS. Upon retirement as manager in 1986, Frances was elected to the RGVLS Board of Directors, where she served until the time of her death. The Texas Association of Fairs and Events awarded her with its Lifetime Achievement award in 2002. In 2004, the International Association of Fairs and Expositions presented her with the prestigious Heritage Award. Frances was loved and respected by everyone that knew her, not only in the Rio Grande Valley, but throughout the state of Texas.

Prior Heritage Hall of Honor recipients include: Perry L. Adkisson, L.D. “Don” Anderson; Anne Armstrong; John B. Armstrong; Tobin Armstrong; Henry M. Beachell; Lloyd Millard Bentsen, Sr.; Othal E. Brand, Sr.; Dolph Briscoe, Jr.; Eugene Butler; Ogbourne Duke “O.D.” Butler, Jr.; Fred Campbell; Hoover Carden; John S. Cargile; Ben H. Carpenter; Sr.; John W. Carpenter, Sr.; Edward Cline; Susan Combs; Roy B. Davis; Eligio “Kika” De La Garza; Isaac Leonard Ellewood; Dr. Edward B. Evans, Sr.; Harold M. Freeman; Charles Goodnight; J. Evetts Haley; J. Walter Hammond; Cornelius Taylor Herring; William S. Ikard; Morgan Jones; John S. Justin, Jr.; Elmer Kelton; T.A. Kincaid, Jr.; John H. Kirby; Robert Justice Kleberg, Jr.; Herbert L. Kokernot, Sr.; Herbert L. Kokernot, Jr.; Tom Lasater; George Washington Littlefield; Watkins Reynolds Matthews; John Louis Merrill; Robert Lee “Bob” Miers; Thomas Volney Munson; Wade Lewis Pennington; Jim L. Peterson; Abel Head “Shanghai” Pierce; Lonnie A. “Bo” Pilgrim; Dr. Alfred Nelson Poindexter; Charles William Post; James L. Powell; Foy Proctor; B.J. Pryor; Col. Ike T. Pryor; J. Roy Quinby; Clarence Scharbauer, Sr.; Charles Armand Schreiner; Charles G. Scruggs; William M. (Bill) Sims; Christopher Columbus Slaughter; John B. Slaughter; Bob Stallman; Wenzel Louis Stangel; Charles W. Stenholm; Hallie Crawford Stillwell; Svante Magnus (S.M.) Swenson; Ann Burnett Tandy; Dr. T.D. Tanksley, Jr.; T.L.L. “Tom” Temple; S.M. True, Jr.; Daniel Waggoner; W.T. “Tom” Waggoner; W.R. “Billy Bob” Watt; W.R. “Bob” Watt, Jr.; and Mary Nan West Clayton Wheat Williams, Sr.

The State Fair of Texas is a celebration of all things Texan, and a great way to learn about agriculture and Texas heritage is by taking a walk through the Livestock barns or the Briscoe Carpenter Livestock Center during the State Fair. Visit The Heritage Hall of Honor inside the Briscoe Carpenter Livestock Center or visit to check out all of the inductees and learn more about the program.

The 2021 State Fair of Texas begins September 24 and runs through October 17 at historic Fair Park in Dallas. Hours are Sunday – Thursday, 10am – 9pm and Friday – Saturday 10am – 10pm. Tickets can be purchased online at:

by Gina Wiklund

Texas Foodie Adventures at Elmwood Gardens in Palestine Texas

“If You Love Flora Farms in Cabo Then Check Out Texas Foodie Adventures at Elmwood Gardens in Palestine Texas”

Real Farm to Table Goodness!

From country roads, rolling hills, prairies and Piney Woods, East Texas has always had a great deal of appeal to those seeking a bit of solitude in the countryside. Tucked away in a quiet corner just two hours from Dallas, is the ultimate Epicurean experience — Texas Foodie Adventures and Cottages at Elmwood Gardens by Provence. This sophisticated, gourmet food experience is certain to tantalize each of your senses.

The juncture is set on 32 acres of beautiful, captivating gardens, complete with rustic cottages and mouth-watering meals you won’t soon forget. This indulgent escape is a popular destination for guests who are looking for a nearby staycation, a mid-week getaway, family celebrations, milestone moments or romantic rendezvous. This unique and authentic Texas homestead has also become a popular destination wedding venue featured in Vogue magazine as one of the most beautiful venues in Texas.

Onsite accommodations at Elmwood Gardens by Provence offer a comfortable, cozy, and a casual escape. Three one-bedroom cottages are available, and each can accommodate up to 4 guests. The romantic Honeymoon Suite – complete with an opulent purple tub – is best suited for couples seeking a starry-eyed stay with their significant other. An adjoining cottage, The Texas Rose, is perfect for families. For more seclusion, Annette’s Hideaway, situated near the Wildflower Gardens is a perfect retreat. Each enchanting countryside cottage comes complete with lazy-day porches, and an abundance of character, warmth, water views, and infinite charm. Each cottage is also air conditioned, quaint, and curious. These unique cottages are packed full of Texas history and filled with wonderment and a wow-factor unlike any other.

After a restful sleep in one of the intimate and welcoming cottages, the Foodie Adventures begins with a bountiful gourmet breakfast prepared by acclaimed Executive Chef Pamela Horowitz of Provence Catering. Breakfast is included in all overnight stays and may be served at the charming Wisteria House, one of the lush gardens, on the back porch of your vintage cottage or the mystical rock garden.

Following breakfast, guests are free to explore the engaging and winsome property. From photography to bird watching, hiking or a property-wide scavenger hunt, the homestead offers many distinct and memorable activities.  Other happenings might include harvesting from the onsite vegetable gardens, painting the striking scenery with waterclors or even a met and greet with the horses.

After reveling in all that the property has to offer, guests can delight in a bountiful picnic basket lunch filled with scrumptious delights or indulge in a delicious 3-course luncheon from Chef Pamela’s farm-to-table kitchen. Or you may opt to kick back and relax, take an afternoon nap before you wallow in an exquisite 6-course dinner tasting menu. Each course is masterfully prepared and presented elegantly in a charming, enchanting setting.

Global fusion and trend-setting fare always abound from Chef Pamela’s gourmet, made-from-scratch kitchen. If you enjoy decadent sauces and rich flavors, this Foodie Adventure was designed with you in mind. The talented team of Chefs make sure each meal is a feast of beautifully plated dishes and a symphony of farm fresh flavors. Romantic candle-lit dinners are a specialty, and they can accommodate vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, Halal, Kosher-style or special diets or food allergies. After dinner enjoy an outdoor movie under the stars at the outdoor Sunset Cinema boasting one of the largest outdoor BBQ kitchens in Texas.

So, when you find yourself seeking refuge from your hectic lifestyle, this is the perfect place to unwind and indulge yourself in an experience that fills the senses. Reservations for Texas Foodie Adventures and Cottages at Elmwood Gardens by Provence can be made by calling: 903-549-2716 or 214-557-3351 or you can email: To learn more about the property, view a sample menu, or book your trip, visit their website at: Whether you are seeking an intimate affair for two or a rock star worthy wedding for 200, they can fulfill your every dream.

Cottage accommodation pricing for Annette’s Hideaway is $229/night; Texas Rose Cottage – $249/night and the Honeymoon Suite – $299/night. Lunches Start at $39.95 per person; 3-Course Dinners start at $75 per person and Tasting menus start at $150 per person. Dine-in only Texas Culinary Adventures require one-week advance reservation. Due to weddings and events, the weekend reservation policy states that your stay must be booked within 6 weeks or less of your desired dates. Call to inquire about seasonal flexibility on reservations.

This hidden gem is just a short jaunt from Dallas, Shreveport, Houston, or Austin. Driving there from any direction is a serene journey on beautiful, winding country roads that are sure to rejuvenate the soul. And, after you traverse the amazing property and relish in gourmet meals, the area boasts world-class golf, boating, fishing, hunting, mudding, yoga, zip lining, spa treatments, wineries and horseback riding nearby.  


Throughout her career, Chef Pamela’s creative cooking style and flair has attracted a great deal of national attention and she has been featured on CNN, FOX-TV, NBC, New York Times, New York Daily News, and Food Network. She has also catered parties for many high-profile events and notable clients, including CEO’s, American Presidents, a Supreme Court Justice, the Duchess of York, the King of Spain, David Letterman and Howard Stern.

by Gina Wiklund