Israel Luna’s “Ouija Experiment” screens at Inwood’s midnight movie this weekend

Israel Luna is used to working just as hard getting his movies to his public as making them — such is the life of the independent filmmaker. His Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives made it to the Tribeca and other film fests, but he’s taken an old-school roadshow approach to his latest, The Ouija Experiment.

Without a distributor, Luna has been taking the print of his low-budget horror film around the country himself, showing it wherever there’s an audience. And what better audience than his hometown for a traditional midnight screening? Ouija will show Friday and Saturday nights at the Inwood — fitting, since the movie was shot locally.

It looks pretty scary to us, too — just check out the trailer below.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Police seek suspects who robbed Bio Scrip on Cedar Springs, 7 other businesses

DPD is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying two suspects who are now believed to be responsible for up to eight recent aggravated robberies. Among the stores hit were Bio Scrip Pharmacy at 3826 Cedar Springs Road on Dec. 23 and Skylight Wireless at 3218 Oak Lawn Ave. on Dec. 26.

The first suspect is described as a black male in his early 20s, standing 5 feet, 8 inches tall and weighing 150 pounds, wearing a white hooded sweatshirt, red T-shirt and black or blue cap with a red bill. The second suspect is described as a black male in his early 20s, standing 6 feet tall and weighing 220 pounds, wearing dark jeans and a dark hooded sweatshirt.

The two suspects are also believed to be responsible for recent offenses at the following locations:

• T-Mobile 3003 Knox
• Metro PCS 3610 Inwood
• Baja Auto Insurance 2542 Gus Thomasson
• Raven Pharmacy 500 W. Jefferson
• EZ Money Loan 5365 Spring Valley Rd
• Metro PCS 4825 Ross Ave

If you have information about these suspects or any of these crimes call the Dallas Police Department Crimes Against Persons Unit at 214-671-3584, or if you wish to remain anonymous, contact CrimeStoppers at 214-373-TIPS (8477).

—  David Taffet

Couple pledges $2M to RCD

Donation tagged to help pay for construction of center’s new facilities

CeCe Cox
Cece Cox

DAVID TAFFET  |  Staff Writer
taffet@dallasvoice.com

In what has been described as the second-largest gift ever given to an LGBT organization by a living donor, Dallas couple Eric V. Culbertson and David W. Carlson have pledged $2 million to Resource Center Dallas, officials announced this week.

RCD Executive Director and CEO Cece Cox said the donation would be used to help pay for construction of a new building that will consolidate programs and double the agency’s available space. Property has been purchased for the new building on the corner of Cedar Springs and Inwood roads.

Cox said that the center has already hit the 30 percent mark in its effort to raise the $12 million needed for the new facility.

“We’re aiming to break ground in 2014 and move in 2015,” she said.

Cox said that the donation was a result of building a strong relationship but the money was pledged after the couple took a tour of the center’s facilities.

She said they told her, “We had no idea you did all this.”

Culbertson is the owner of Salon Three-Thirty located in Uptown at 2510 Cedar Springs Road. For the past several months he has offered yoga classes at Resource Center Dallas through his new non-profit group, Strength Through Yoga, which takes “the empowering aspects of yoga to organizations and individuals who can use it to heal and strengthen the mind, body and soul.”

Carlson is the founding chief financial officer of GameStop. The Grapevine-based video game and entertainment software retailer has more than 6,500 stores worldwide and is ranked 255th on the Fortune 500. GameStop has been the presenting sponsor of Black Tie Dinner for several years.

Carlson retired from GameStop recently and is now co-owner of Uptown Energy Fitness in West Village.

The couple declined to be interviewed for this story but released comments in a statement.

“The driving force for our donation was the center’s staff,” Culbertson said. “They make [the center] what it is, working so hard and doing so much.”

“After touring all the facilities, and understanding the full scope of services, we knew that the center needed to have a new building, and very soon,” Carlson said.

Cox said she wanted others in the community who are not familiar with Resource Center Dallas to come tour the facilities.

“I want people to come meet our staff. They’re so passionate and so great at what they do,” Cox said. “We are the only organization who does what we do. We started in this community and are still in this community.”

She said that in Dallas two-thirds of new HIV infections are in the LGBT community, higher than the national average.

“People are living longer so we’re caring for them longer. And our dental program is one of only two in Dallas,”  that is providing care to people with HIV who cannot access care elsewhere, Cox said.

Although the Nelson Tebedo Clinic recently added a new dental room, the new building will allow the agency to increase services.

In addition to HIV services, RCD runs a number of programs for the LGBT community, Cox said, adding, “There’s more and more demand for our cultural competency training.”

The center recently completed sensitivity training for 700 Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission employees statewide, and Communications and Programs Manager Rafael McDonnell, who has participated in most of the TABC training classes, said that the last class included TABC Administrator Alan Steen.

Cox said that the state agency recently signed a new contract with Resource Center to continue services. She also pointed out the counseling program RCD provides in conjunction with Southern Methodist University.

David Chard, dean of the SMU School of Education that administers the program, said that when he began the program he was told that no one would want to participate in it. He said there has been a waiting list of counseling students who want to work at RCD.

Cox said that the program is currently limited by lack of space. She said that the lunch program is one of the center’s great successes. United Way representatives told her that they saw a real sense of community among those who participated.

“They could go elsewhere for a meal,” Cox said, but they come to the Resource Center where they are welcomed.

To expand programs, Cox said RCD needs its new building. She is looking to develop more relationships like that with Culbertson and Carlson.

“Donors are relationships,” she said.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 5, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

Drive-by Tasting: One visit. One meal. One shot to get it right

TRIPLE THREAT | The trio of pork tacos from Goghee To Go packs some major punch.

Goghee To Go Korean BBQ Tacos

Growing up in Mesquite might not sound like an ideal setting to reflect my Latino heritage, but despite my white middle class neighborhood, one thing Mom didn’t skip out on was the cuisine. These street tacos gringos have been fawning over for a few years? Old hat. Barbacoa? Been there, done that — decades ago.

So when I heard a new taco stand was opening on Inwood in the Medical District, I yawned. What’s another taqueria to me?

That quickly changed when I discovered the twist: Goghee To Go offers Korean barbecue tacos. This was a perfect fit for the rules of Drive-by Tasting: One critic, no guests, visiting someplace new for lunch or a casual dinner. And we keep it cheap.

Menu options were easy but also impressive. I could get meat (goghee in Korean) prepared several ways, and all for $6.25 (chicken $5.95). The torta and nachos sounded good, but I opted for the simple three tacos plate with pork in a corn tortilla. (Options include beef as well as a portabella for non-meat eaters.)

The tacos came bustling with a zesty slaw in a Styrofoam box. Clearly, the environment is not on their minds, but who cares when this concoction is a fireworks display in both looks and taste.  The spicy factor is enough to clear the sinuses but won’t turn off anybody sensitive to even a little heat. The slaw, along with the pico and sesame soy sauce vinaigrette, really punches the flavor up but there is enough meat to get a balanced taste.

Goghee’s shtick is how they marinate their meats, and they do so to nice effect. The pork delivered in both natural flavor and a subtle saltiness. Some bites were a tad tougher than others, but this is minor compared to the overall satisfaction of the meal.

I was happily coerced into buying the half-order of their new menu item Goghee gimchee fries. Mostly covered by the same accoutrements, the fries also come topped with jack and cheddar cheeses and a creamy fresca sauce along with the same meat selections. I had mine with beef. This was a slight miss because the meat makes it too heavy, unless you’re a college student and actually want fries as your meal.

Goghee To Go really is a taco stand, with tables outside for dining for walkups and a drive-thru window. They cook the food directly upon ordering so they have the freshness factor down pat, but the wait could have easily gone a few moments too long.

Overall impression: The lady behind the counter was filled with bubbly customer service and knew her menu. GTG is simple and hip with lingering flavor, but not in a bad way.

Recommended: Yes.

— Rich Lopez

—  John Wright

Flu shots available in Oak Lawn

The flu vaccine is available in Oak Lawn

Flu shots are available.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, this year’s vaccine includes protection for swine flu (H1N1) and two other influenza viruses (H3N2 virus and an influenza B virus). It is an inactivated vaccine (containing killed virus), which means you cannot get the flu from the shot. However, side effects include soreness, redness or swelling where the shot is given, low-grade fever and aches.

Although the vaccine is recommended for everyone, two groups the CDC says should get protected are:

  1. People 50 years of age and older
  2. People of any age with certain chronic medical conditions (which includes people with HIV)

Those who should not get the vaccine:

  • People who have a severe allergy to chicken eggs.
  • People who have had a severe reaction to an influenza vaccination.
  • People who developed Guillain-Barre syndrome within six weeks of getting an influenza vaccine.
  • Children less than 6 months of age (influenza vaccine is not approved for this age group)
  • People who have a moderate-to-severe illness with a fever (they should wait until they recover to get vaccinated.)

This year the shots are widely available and are offered at both doctors’ offices and retail locations. (Last year, Oak Lawn area doctors were reporting trouble in obtaining the vaccine).

Among Oak Lawn retailers offering the vaccine:

Walgreens

3802 Cedar Springs Road at Oak Lawn: Walk-ins welcome. Available 24 hours a day.

3418 McKinney Ave. at Lemmon: Walk-ins welcome. Easiest when the most pharmacists are on duty from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

CVS

Go to website to find when flu clinics taking walk-ins are available at any store.

4207 Lemmon Ave. at Douglas: Best to call to make sure pharmacist is available. 214-528-0328. She will be in Mon. Oct. 4 from 3 p.m.-10 p.m.; Tues. Oct. 5 from 8 a.m.-3 p.m.

5659 Lemmon Ave. at Inwood: Call anytime to schedule appointment. 214-252-0121.

—  David Taffet