Posts Tagged ‘Community Journalism’

Now this was one heck of a partay.

DJs Crizzly, Hauss-Style, Bog and Lazy K threw down some incredible beats for five hours at the Pipe Creek Community Center on Monday, kicking off Christmas break in delicious bass-saturated style.

I had the pleasure of shooting photos and video alongside my videographer mate, fellow Bandera High School grad Caleb Burnett.

I had a blast and I can’t wait for the next event – grapevine says we might see another concert at the end of January. I’ll keep you posted.

You can view some of my favorite photos from the event attached to this post.

To view the full photo gallery, click here.

To view Caleb’s photo set, click here.

For high-def video and audio from the event on YouTube, click here.

To watch my audio slideshow with over 560 images from Tannen-Bombz, click here.

To let me know what you think, post a comment below, drop me an e-mail to, hit me up on Twitter @BanderaOutlaw, or call/text me at 830-688-1564.


It’s no secret that I love choir.

I did four years myself back in my high school days at Bandera, including as president and student director under director Jerry Neuenschwander. I met my then-wife-to-be on my first day of choir class. If it weren’t for choir solos, I think I’d have never been given the opportunity to know people in so many different cliques and walks of life. Music is an integral part of my every waking moment.

You can safely say choir class did more for me in life and love than just about anything else in high school.

It’s always with great pleasure that I photograph the Bandera choirs whenever I can. You can find my full album of photos from tonight’s Bandera Middle School and High School Holiday Choir Concert in the Gallery.


Parades are a fun and dynamic event to shoot for a photographer. You never know what your light’s going to be like, you never know who or what you’ll see in the parade, and you almost always have 360 degrees of access to shoot from.

Outlaw Goodwill Ambassador Canon and I took in this morning’s Holiday Parade from the Courthouse lawn to snap a few close-ups of the floats and their riders. Bulletin editor Jessica Hawley-Jerome was officially on-duty shooting the parade for the newspaper, so I double-teamed from a different angle. When we work an event together, we try to catch different people and different perspectives to give the best coverage as we can.

Outlaw Baby Photographer Jacklen and Outlaw Spokesmodel McCayla were on board the Girl Scouts float and had fun tossing candy to parade-goers.

The evening turned extra cold for the Cowboy Campfire Christmas with the Kemp Family Singers, Lee Haile and his stories, the Riverside Players’ presentation of the nativity, and other performances down at the Bandera City Park, my favorite place to take photos in the wide world.

You can find all of my images from the two events in the Gallery: Bandera Holiday Parade here, and Cowboy Campfire Christmas here.


Cowboy Christmas is always a fun event to photograph out front of the Bandera County Courthouse. The live nativity, choral singers, Bandera High School band and carolers, youth dance classes, open-late merchants and Christmas lights at the Bandera City Park kick off the Christmas season in Bandera.

You can find all of my photos from tonight’s festivities in the Gallery.

Don’t forget about the holiday parade tomorrow at 11 a.m. (watch for Outlaw Spokesmodel McCayla riding on the Girl Scouts float!) and Cowboy Campfire Christmas at the City Park at 5 p.m.

I’ll see you guys there!


National Geographic Traveler’s list of the top 50 Drives of a Lifetime, featuring the World’s Greatest Scenic Routes, landed on social bookmarking site‘s front page today.

And guess which route is featured alongside drives along the Amalfi Coast of Italy, the Florida Keys, and the Pirate Route of Jamaica? Yep, the Texas Hill Country.

And guess which town gets first mention along that route? Indeed, the “hell-raising Cowboy Capital of The World,” Bandera, Texas.

The article mentions Bandera’s massive chicken-fried steaks, Arkey Blue’s Silver Dollar saloon, the Frontier Times Museum, and OST (Old Spanish Trail).

From Bandera the route winds through Kerrville, Fredericksburg, Enchanted Roch, Johnson City, New Braunfels (where my wife is now with our kids at the children’s museum) and San Antonio.

Being featured on the front page of is a rare honor and creates a huge amount of web traffic to the linked web sites. One strategy of some internet moneymakers is to create a web site at a cost of only a few dollars, then post photos, articles, and videos until one is featured on Digg’s front page. They then sell the domain for a big profit.

The Bandera-mentioning National Geographic article appears today alongside “4th Generation iPhone Now Being Tested,” “Puppy VS. Praying Mantis,” and “The Paint-Less Coca-Cola Would Save Earth One Can at a Time.”

29 Nov 2009

Bandera lands on Digg via National Geographic

Author: James Taylor | Filed under: Community Journalism


Update: Read Bulletin Managing Editor Jessica Hawley-Jerome’s story on the dachshund rescue, now posted to Four children living in “deplorable” conditions were also taken from the puppy mill property by Child Protective Services.

We received breaking news this morning of a massive seizure by Bandera County Animal Control. Bulletin Managing Editor Jessica Hawley-Jerome and I drove out to the pound to talk with officials and take photos; the result you can see in the surrounding photos.

These sweet-tempered little dachshunds, 43 of them (the largest seizure ever in Bandera County, according to officials), were rescued from an alleged puppy mill in Utopia.

It was a blessing to cross paths with these little fellows and ladies and take their photos for the newspaper. You can see more photos and read Jessica’s story in the Wednesday edition of the Bulletin.

Visit the Bandera County Animal Control web site for information on how you can help give animals a better future here in our community.

23 Nov 2009

43 dachshunds seized in Utopia puppy mill bust

Author: James Taylor | Filed under: Community Journalism

Update: Thanks to everyone who sent in their comments about What’s Missing in Bandera County! I’ll have a write up with your responses online this weekend. If you have anything else you would like to share, or a Bandera County article you would like to see written about, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Thank you again!

I recently posted the query on, “What type of restaurant would you like in Bandera?” with choices of Italian, 24-hour Diner, and Buffet. The 24-hour diner is currently in the lead with 40.1% of the vote.

To expand on that and touch on a broader theme, what do YOU guys believe is missing in Bandera County and why? Entertainment, health care, cultural arts, local news and information, whatever specific or broad idea that comes to your mind.

I’m interested in hearing your responses and will write an article about them for I’ll also be hitting up MySpace readers and the Twitterverse for their opinions.

The landscape of Bandera County is changing fast, despite many grognards who have decried otherwise, evidenced by new restaurants and ideas brought to life in the past couple of years. From the Arthur Nagel Community Clinic to the Ital’Yo gelato cafe, the Bandera Dodge House dance parties to the Dogleg Coffeehouse on Main Street.

I want to hear what you think is missing in Bandera County. Leave your comment below, e-mail, tweet me at, or call/text me at 830-688-1564.

Thank you, as always, for supporting The Outlaw!

18 Nov 2009

What is missing in Bandera County?

Author: James Taylor | Filed under: Community Journalism

You can read snippets of all my latest adventures and news via the Twitter feed on the right side of this page, or by visiting Daily doses of community journalism delights from all across Bandera County!

090929bulldogtimesI’m really enjoying what Jimmy Monroe, Emily King, and the Bulldog Times staff are putting out with their online edition. Lots of video content and the freshness that student journalism has to offer.

Multimedia is the future of journalism whether or not us ink-stained wretches are happy about it. I’ve always been a tech- and net-friendly guy, so I for one am excited about the new opportunities unfolding for delivering news and storytelling in new and important ways.

I’ve long advised the journalism classes at Bandera and Medina both on camera gear purchases, and have even given presentations to the Bandera class. It’s always great to see how students new to the game of journalism interpret and present their news.

I’m a journalism junkie and just finished watching the entire first season of The Paper on iTunes. If you want to see what high school journalism is like at the largest high school in the country, it’s a great documentary put on by MTV.

Some other favorite TV and movie interpretations of journalism include State of Play with Russel Crowe (which I rented recently over at Video Outlet), The Wire’s final season, and of course the old TV show Lou Grant.

The dead-tree newspapers of Bandera County have anything but multimedia or social media on their minds, so at this point, the Bulldog Times is leading the local path toward Journalism 2.0.

(Bulldog Cheerleader Senior Co-Captain Holly Garwood’s response to reporter Randi Thomas’ question about what the cheer team has learned “after a hard year” is priceless: “Our team has learned what not to do.” Love it!)

30 Sep 2009

Bulldog Times now has an online edition

Author: James Taylor | Filed under: Community Journalism, Sports

The Bulletin has taken me off of sports coverage duties to concentrate on Christmas events in December, but I will make every effort to get out and shoot some basketball action for

Right now I’m blogging from outside of the Bandera County Courthouse, waiting to photograph the Cowboy Christmas parade! Should be a fun show!

Community journalism is a great job to start with, and being able to practice my trade here in Bandera County only makes it that much more perfect.

If you would like to request photographic coverage of any specific event in Bandera County or reporting of a good story, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I want to tell the stories of our community through photos and the written word, and the best of those are always promoted by reader suggestions.

And if you have any thoughts or suggestions for the future of, please let me know! This site is built to benefit you, my wonderful readers, and anything I can do to better the experience for you is my pleasure to oblige. What do you want to see online that would benefit Bandera County?

Drop me an e-mail or use the comments feature of this blog to let me know!

6 Dec 2008

A Cowboy Christmas In Bandera, Texas!

Author: James Taylor | Filed under: Community Journalism