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What's Goin' On? News, Current Events, Calendar, Press Coverage, and the Spirit Newsletter at Down Home Ranch, Elgin, TX 78621

The Latest News from DHR
DHR's January 2014
Spirit Newsletter

Upcoming DHR Events
Mark Your Calendars!

2014 Swim Fest
Saturday, August 30

2014 Chainsaw Manicure
Saturday, October 18, 8am-4pm

2014 DHR Golf & Gala
Fri & Sat, April 4 & 5

Tell a Friend About
News & Events at DHR!

Updates on Recent Events

2013 Chainsaw Manicure Facebook Photo Album

2013 Swim Fest
Facebook Photo Album

Other Important Events

NDSC National Convention
July 11-13, 2014
Indianapolis, Indiana

World Down Syndrome Day
March 21st, Every Year

FRED Conference
FRED: Farms and Ranches Enabling People with Disabilities
Conference for Special Needs Lifelong Communities
March 28-29, 2014
LAX Marriott, California

News & Events

DHR's Latest Newsletter

Spirit Newsletter:  January 2014

We're excited to share all the lastest news about Down Home Ranch. Here's a quick preview of what we've included in the January 2014 edition of the Spirit Newsletter:

  • Ranchers & Changes for 2014 and Beyond: Building a Bigger and Better Community of Independence
  • Founder's Legacy Campaign
  • Rancher Life and Work: What's Life Like for a Rancher Living at Down Home Ranch?
  • The Best Staff in Our History: Check out these staff profiles and learn why the Ranch has ample reason to be proud.
  • Enterprise: DHR Gardens, InnKeepers
  • Our Amazing Volunteers, along with our latest Wishlist
  • The Importance of Our Annual Chainsaw Manicure
  • FRED Conference Highlights
  • Listing of DHR's Board of Directors, Advisory Board, Administration and Staff
  • Thank You for Your Continued Support

A Recent Post from the DHR Blog

God's Economy, 1/2/2014

Image: Young chick born at Down Home Ranch Prancer, the baby chick

There was a death yesterday at the Ranch, a small one.

The baby chicken Ashley was caring for so lovingly, who seemed to be doing so well, just (as my grandmother would have said) up and died.

Naturally most of the Ranchers had invested heavily in little Prancer's struggle to live, stopping by Ashley's office multiple times a day to ask about him. There is widespread sadness over his demise.

Most people would probably shrug and move on down the pike. In Mother Nature's economy, (which Prancer's mother shares, having ditched him out of the nest as soon as she detected something amiss) that makes sense. Cut your losses, concentrate on those remaining.

But scripture says that not one sparrow will fall to the ground outside our Father's care.   Read the full article >>

DHR Is In the News!

12 Days of Giving: Down Home Ranch, Your News Now, 12/13/2013

Image: 12 Days of Giving link to video at TWC YNN 12/13/2013 Click to watch the video

Many thanks to TWC's Your News Now for kicking off their annual 12 Days of Giving series with Down Home Ranch.

The video features beautiful images of DHR's garden and ranch enterprises and shows the many ways we welcome volunteers to join our "community of opportunity."
Watch the video >>

Another Post from the DHR Blog

Racing the Clock, 7/29/13

Image: Judy Horton with young attendee at the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) Convention Judy Horton with young attendee at the National Down Syndrome Congress Convention

Jerry and I, three staff, and two Down Home Ranch Board members attended the National Down Syndrome Congress Conference (NDSC) in Denver in mid-June. Jerry and I went up early to attend the Global Down Syndrome Foundation Round Table on current advances in Down syndrome research and treatment.

Wow! What a difference a few years make! Down syndrome has traditionally been a subject few were willing to tackle in terms of research. The reasons are complex and varied.

First, there's the matter of an entire chromosome being involved, not a single gene, as in cystic fibrosis. It has only been in the last decade or so that researchers have been willing to tackle such a complicated and daunting task. Where to begin?   Read the full article >>

Another Article Research on Down Syndrome

Down Syndrome Reversed in Newborn Mice with Single Injection, ABC News, 9/6/2013

US researchers have found a way to reverse Down syndrome in newborn lab mice by injecting an experimental compound that causes the brain to grow normally.

The study, published in the Science Translational Medicine journal, offers no direct link to a treatment for humans but scientists are hopeful it may offer a path towards future breakthroughs.

There is no cure for Down syndrome, which is caused by the presence of an additional chromosome and results in intellectual disabilities, distinctive facial features and other health problems.

The team at Johns Hopkins University of Medicine, in Baltimore, used lab mice that were genetically engineered to have extra copies of about half the genes found on human chromosome 21, leading to Down syndrome-like conditions such as smaller brains and difficulty learning to navigate a maze. On the day the mice were born, scientists injected them with a small molecule known as a sonic hedgehog pathway agonist.  Read the full article >>

Another Post from Judy's Blog

Well glory hallelujah!, 2/10/2012

Dr. Jon Pierce-Shimomura, Assistant Professor of Neurobiology at the University of Texas at Austin Dr. Jon Pierce-Shimomura, Director of the Pierce-Shimomura Lab at the University of Texas

Yesterday I wrote about coming advancements in the possibility of medical intervention to overcome the disabling effects of Down syndrome in the brain. This was in the context of a promise to a family with a newborn with Downs.

Little did I realize...

In today's Wall Street Journal there is an article on page A3 entitled "New Attack on Alzheimer's." It reports the success researchers at Case Western Reserve have had in reversing—not preventing—reversing advanced Alzheimer's in mice bred to develop the disease.

So? You may ask. Mice are not men and Alzheimer's is not Down syndrome. Read the full article >>

More News: Thanks for Spreading the Word!

Over the years, folks in the media have visited Down Home Ranch and shared wonderful stories, blog postings, news articles, and videos about us. The stories below will give you a flavor of where we've been and what we're doing now. Many thanks to these authors for sharing their stories and spreading the news about Down Home Ranch with others. If you'd like to catch up on the latest news and current projects at Down Home Ranch, check out the DHR Blog and our Facebook Page.

Down Home Ranch, 4/20/2012: Higgins unHinged blog author is a very special, very long-time friend of Jerry and Judy. He shares a bit of that personal history in this post, along with a description of the early days at Down Home Ranch.

My New Home Town, 3/21/2012: bean&noodle blog author lovingly describes her recent visit to Down Home Ranch, shares pictures and a video.

Advancing Down Syndrome Research, 3/21/2012: Texas' First Lady, Anita Perry, gives a nod to Down Home Ranch.

Down Home Ranch - 20 Years of Thanks, 4/18/2011, a video by Chris Hatcher

Checking in at the Chicken Hilton: This is a reprint of an article, written by Judy Horton, that appeared on page 72 of the February/March 2011 issue of Backyard Poultry.

News 8 Austin, 12/21/10: Poinsettias Supply Down Home Ranchers with Holiday Spirit

Austin Statesman, 10/16/10: 'Texas Chainsaw Manicure' benefits Down Home Ranch
High Plains Observer, 10/16/08: DHR Earns National Recognition for Wildfire Preparedness

Assignment America, 6/8/07: Steve Hartman, The Vacation of a Lifetime

People Magazine, 5/21/07: Heroes Among Us - Home on the Range
People Magazine, 5/21/07: Heroes Among Us - Home on the Range (with extra photos)

Originally Published in the Dallas Star-Telegram, 12/3/06: Kelly's Gift


20250 FM 619 • Elgin, TX 78621  •  Directions
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