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For Super Bowl LI in Houston the NFL hosts Play Football Family Festival – #LetsPlayFootball #NosUne #ad

This content is a paid product endorsement for the NFL and in collaboration with DiMe Media. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

For Super Bowl LI in Houston the NFL hosts Play Football Family Festival - #LetsPlayFootball #NosUne #ad

Let me set the scene, first of all. There were just over five minutes on the clock in the last quarter of the game. Edgar’s basketball team was up by more than 10 points and tensions were running extra high as their opponents desperately tried anything to salvage the spot they had earned in the championship game this Saturday.

Fifteen minutes later and it was official. The Mustangs are going to the championship game. I was ecstatic, bursting out of my seams quite literally! 

Oddly enough, by that point, walking inside the stadium of my old high school district for another equally mesmerizing experience. This time for a Super Bowl LI event hosted by the NFL at the Aldine Independent School District. I graduated from Aldine’s Eisenhower High School 20 years ago now. Wow, I just literally did the math right now! 

For Super Bowl LI in Houston the NFL hosts Play Football Family Festival - #LetsPlayFootball #NosUne #ad
NFL Football’s mission is to grow the game of football to an increase in kids playing football.

The Play Football Family Festival took place at the M. O. Campbell Educational Center, which is home to the W. W. Thorne Stadium. If you’re not from Houston all you need to know is that it’s a huge football field with plenty of space for multiple training exercises to take place at the same time. That’s precisely what happened at the Play Football Family Festival.

Also part of day’s activities were meet-and-greets with pro-NFL players like Tony Gonzalez and Joey Bosa, football gear fittings, and a very honest and poignant conversation between parents and coaches about the decision to let their children join a football team or not. That was a conversation that hit home for a lot of us as parents because many in the room had grappled with the very same question about their own kids.

For Super Bowl LI in Houston the NFL hosts Play Football Family Festival - #LetsPlayFootball #NosUne #ad
The vision of NFL Play Football is to: shape the football journey for kids 6 – 18 years old; advocate for safety for football participants; promote life values through the game of football; and connect the football community.

The jury is still out about that one in our home, but it was pretty insightful to hear directly from the pros about this debate. Ultimately, the consensus being that it’s a very personal decision for parents to make with their children as a family. The benefits of participating in team sports, however, are pretty crystal clear.

Our family knows.

When Edgar first joined the basketball team we weren’t sure what to expect. He hadn’t previously participated in any structured sports activities and we didn’t know how serious he was about the commitment. Two years later and one game away from a major championship, I can honestly say team sports have given him the confidence and humility to understand what it means to be a part of a team – not only on the court or in the field, but in life. Those are life lessons I can’t just tell him about.

I think the same can be said for a lot of the families that spent part of their evening with us that night. The event was about celebrating the arrival of Super Bowl LI to Houston, and, more importantly, about motivating more young people to discover their capabilities on the field.

Houston is the 3rd largest Hispanic Market

Houston is the third largest Hispanic market
Art Cars Attack by M Glasgow

It’s true.  I know some of you all won’t believe us, but it is actually true.  According to several sources, based on population alone, Houston is the third largest Hispanic market in the country, surpassed only by Los Angeles in California and New York City in New York.  In fact, 44 percent of our city’s residents are actually Hispanic.  That’s almost 4 1/2 out of every 10 Houstonians, emphasis on the almost.  As in that number is almost guaranteed to keep climbing.

As we might say at Casa Los Metiches, that’s a whole lot of Mexicans!  But wait, before you start writing that angry email about how not all Latinos are Mexicans… I know.  It was supposed to be a joke.  It usually is at our place.  Even if a very poor joke at that.

Pero bueno, last year a couple of our East Coast friends from NYC and Philly were actually stranded in Houston for a few days.  Como buenos Tejanos – you didn’t think we were just going to leave them hanging did you? – we drove them around a couple of times just to get them out and about, y por qué no, to explore a little bit of our great city también.  There’s so much to see here, you know if you’ve ever been.

We took them to my favorite Mexican restaurant, Taquería Alteño (they serve the best quesadilla grande there and play live conjunto or ranchera music on the weekends); we visited the local panadería, El Bollillo Bakery, and had the best conchas in town accompanied with a little hot chocolate from La Abuelita (you know that stuff is good); and we also took a little detour to the local farmer’s market off of Airline Drive, where we picked and ate fresh fruit samples with our hands and pigged out on street tacos from a local mobile vendor.  They were so good!

Afterwards one of our guests turned to me and said, “is there anyone who doesn’t speak Spanish here?”  Everyone else also chimed in sharing some of the things they had seen that they had really enjoyed.  There was the food.  The friendly local culture where everyone says “hello,” “good bye,” and still holds the door open for one another.  The very affordable prices (especially in real estate and day to day necessities) in comparison to their homes on the East Coast.  And of course, our wide open spaces.

I confirmed to them then something I’ve known about myself for a very long time now.  Houston is my home.  I’m happy here.  I don’t want to leave and I do consider my city to be pretty damn great!

Happy to hear I’m not the only mexicano (okay, Latino) who feels that way!

¡Levanten las manos Houstonianos! 

Of Course Houston Is Promoting Our Food Now!! Duh.

Of course we’re promoting our food as one of the biggest draws for visiting the city of  Houston!  You don’t earn the title of “Fattest City in the Country,” and then decide to let it go, if you don’t know your way around the kitchen.  ¡Punto y aparte!  

I’m kind of loving the new pr campaign unveiled this week by the city of Houston, which among other things highlights the fourth largest city in the US of A by saying “Houston is Tasty.”

No chit Sherlock!

If you’ve ever been to Houston you know we have every style and kind of food imaginable.  And it’s almost all delicious.  I won’t say all because someone had to keep Marvin Zindler employed for all of those years.

houston is tasty my houston juanofwords
My Houston campaign 2013.
houston is tasty my houston juanofwords
My Houston campaign 2013.
houston is tasty my houston juanofwords
My Houston campaign 2013.

Still don’t believe me?  Check out the video below and visit the official My Houston website for the full campaign.  ¡Uy ya me dio hambre! 

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