When I first came to your wonderful city, people would drive in from miles around just to see me.
I had no idea how much you would love me and for that I’m grateful. Thank you for letting me stay and represent your city.
Over the years I’ve watched you leave to work, school and to vacations. I’ve seen your children go off to college, some to war and some left for good but not forever. They’ve grown now with children of their own. They’ve made me proud.
When your friends and family came in from out of town they’d wind their way down these tiny streets and take pictures of me. They didn’t care that I was getting older and faded. They just kept on taking pictures.
I felt proud to represent your city. I always have and I always will. At any rate, I penned out this letter to let you know that I’m grateful for the upgrades inside of me and for the fresh coat of paint.
I don’t know who’s responsible for all of this attention but thank you from the bottom of my heart. I know that the city is growing and that you’ve got more important things to do than to make me look fresh and young again, but I have to admit it feels good.
And to the next generation of Poteetians, I love you all and remember if you ever leave Poteet, don’t worry …
I’ll be here when you get back.
The Giant Strawberry Water Tower
P.S. How come no one ever gave me a name?
– ‘A fresh coat of paint’ by Donovan Garcia
The City of Poteet residents have prided themselves in being the Strawberry Capital of Texas for many years. With that comes the pride in their iconic Poteet Strawberry Water Tower that sits on the northside of town overlooking the city.
Throughout the year, especially during the annual Poteet Strawberry Festival held in April, thousands of people travel to Poteet for strawberries and to see who can take the best selfie with the Strawberry Tower. As does any long-standing monument, the Tower has faded over the years and citizens have taken notice, wondering when and if it will ever glow again. To their surprise last week, the iconic tower could be seen getting a new fresh coat of paint as the City of Poteet made headway on their latest water project.
Earlier this year, Poteet Mayor Willie Leal Jr. presented a preventative maintenance program to the city council for the three water towers in town.
In July 2020, the City entered into a Limited Maintenance contract for services with Maguire Iron, Inc. out of Sioux Falls, SD. The maintenance contract is a five-year contract for $49,099 a year that will terminate in 2024.
“Our goal is to enter into a long-term maintenance agreement with Maguire Iron, Inc. that will continue to service our water storage tanks for many years,” said City Administrator Eric Jiminez.
According to Mayor Leal and Jiminez, the contract consists of the exterior and interior renovation and repairs to the Strawberry Pedestal tank along with the repainting of the Strawberry Tower.
“As you know, the Strawberry Tower is an icon and the staple of the city. That tower means everything to the citizens of Poteet,” said Jiminez. “It was a goal of mine, as the City Administrator, to repaint the Strawberry Tower and to bring all the water towers into compliance.”
The contract also included much needed repairs of the city’s additional water storage tanks in order to meet all TCEQ requirements and regulations. The contract also consists of TCEQ required yearly inspections that the city normally pays a third-party contractor to perform.
The Limited Maintenance contract, according to Jiminez, was long overdue. The city does not have the equipment or staffing to make such repairs. The city’s water storage tanks are the lifeline of the city.
“I am thankful the city council had the foresight to see how important this Limited Maintenance contract was for the city,” said Jiminez.
Mayor Leal stated that the new look for the Strawberry Tower improves the image of Poteet and brings up the morale of the city. With the city growing, he added that citizens have a lot to be proud of and the tower is just part of the reason.
“Our football team made playoffs for the second year in a row and our Aggie Band received a Division I rating in contest,” said Mayor Leal. “We’ve broken ground on our new home subdivision, and, as soon as it’s possible, we’ll have more murals painted in the downtown area. We’re only going up from here.”