Katy-area fans of the affordable and stylish Warby Parker no longer need to head into Houston or hunt online for choice eyewear. The growing spectacle brand is set to open its 18th Texas story in Katy at the buzzy La Centerra at Cinco Ranch on Saturday, January 14.

For its newest Houston-area location, Warby Parker promises a "a one-stop-shop" for cool eyewear, plus eye exams, per press materials. Shoppers can expect the brand's full sun and optical eyewear offerings, including the newly launched spring 2023 collection. The new line includes designs from notable names including Christina Ricci, Jeremy O. Harris, Arpana Rayamajhi, and Henry Eikenberry.

In keeping with the company's focus on cool store design, the La Centerra locale features in-store artwork by Anna Broadhurst.

As customer know, each store offers the brand’s glasses, contacts, and more. Eyewear options include the Gallery Edition and Sculpted Series collections, the Warby Parker brand of daily contact lenses (Scout by Warby Parker), and third-party contacts.

For those who dread eye exams, Warby Parker offers customers ar Virtual Vision Test, which is an app that allows users to update both glasses and contact lens prescriptions (if eligible) using an iPhone X.

Well-known among the glasses-wearing public as an online one-stop shop that would send people five pairs of frames to try on, offering both those and the necessary prescriptions for relatively inexpensive rates, the company had been quietly, concurrently, building its brick-and-mortar business.

Noted for its charity as well as looks, Warby Parker distributes a pair of glasses to a person in need for every pair of Warby Parker purchased; to date, more than 10 million pairs have been distributed, the company states in a press materials.


Warber Parker — La Centerra, 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd., Suite A130. Hours are Monday-Saturday 11 am-7 pm, Sunday noon-6 pm. For more information, visit the official site.

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Montrose's hottest mixed-use hub rejuvenates with 3 new wellness concepts


Hot mixed-use hub Montrose Collective recently unveiled three new wellness concepts adding to their already jam-packed roster of top-notch restaurants and retailers. The walkable development is nestled in the heart of the storied Montrose neighborhood and has been a local favorite since it opened in 2021.

Skin Laundry, The Studio BE and Sisu Clinic officially opened their doors earlier this month. Sisu Clinic is a doctor-led aesthetic medicine destination offering a comprehensive range of beauty treatments, including Botox, dermal fillers, and more. Founded in 2018 by medical co-founders Dr. James Cotter and Dr. Brian Cotter and serial tech entrepreneur Pat Phelan, Sisu's mission is to empower patients to overcome their physical insecurities and live their best lives. The core tenants of the business are empathy, integrity, innovation, and timelessness. With locations in Miami and New York, the opening of their clinic in Houston is the brand's first foray into the Texas market.

"We are excited to have these premier wellness tenants call Montrose Collective home," said Barton Kelly, Principal at Radom Collective. "The mission of these two tenants – empowering individuals to be the best they can be and be present – perfectly aligns with the mission of Montrose Collective. Together, we encourage individuality, inclusivity, and community."

The Studio BE already has a large Houston following at its Heights location and is excited to expand its presence in Montrose. The boutique fitness studio offers yoga and Pilates classes — including mat, aerial, prenatal, and strength-training formats. One of BE's priorities is offering small in-person classes, allowing their highly trained instructors to focus and give personal attention to class participants. Beyond the traditional classes, The Studio BE encourages participation by offering virtual streaming or on-demand classes to all levels of experience and hosts wellness retreats and yoga teacher training throughout the year.

Skin Laundry, the California-based aesthetics brand, has more than 30 locations spread across the U.S. and chose Montrose Collective for its first Texas outpost. Known for using advanced technology and utilizing medical-grade lasers to rejuvenate skin cells, boost collagen production and improve clarity for transformative results, Skin Laundry customizes their services to each client's personal skincare needs. Skin Laundry offers a membership-based business model, offering three membership tiers for $150-$350 that provide various perks and services.

“Montrose Collective is now an integral piece to the fabric of the community with highly acclaimed restaurant concepts, unique brands and wellness experts,” noted Kelly. “In Montrose’s ever-evolving landscape, Montrose Collective will continue to stay relevant with the introduction of new tenants and one-of-a-kind events.”

To celebrate its newest tenants, Montrose Collective is hosting a Day of Wellness on Saturday, March 25, from 10 am to 1 pm. The outdoor event will feature a variety of local, health-focused vendors, a brown bag decorating contest benefiting Kid's Meals, and a mimosa bar at Sisu Clinic. Guests can also register to attend a cardio dance class led by Erin Stewart of Savor + Sweat – all proceeds will be donated to Kid's Meals.

women in a circle

Photo courtesy of Skin Laundry/Instagram

Skin Laundry is a wonderful addition to the wellness community in the development. Specializing in luxurious facials, this clinic stands out due to its team of registered medical professionals.

Luke Bryan closes RodeoHouston 2023 with year's biggest crowd and true American Idol heartthrob swagger

rodeo idol

For nearly all of the rodeo concerts I’ve seen this season for CultureMap, I’ve stuck my AirPods into my ears when I got out of my truck and listened to the artist for that night as I did my nightly lap around NRG Park heading into the concert. It functions as a way to drown out the crowd noise, soundtrack my evening, and get into creative writing mode. It’s like breathing in the air on a new alien planet.

Some nights, like New Kids On the Block, it blended perfectly with oodles of elderly millennials in vintage ‘80s garb double-fisting wine cups in the concourses. Chris Stapleton’s western bedroom noir made me play gentle air guitar as I took the escalator up the side of the stadium with thousands of sweaty couples. The merrily morose indie country of the Turnpike Troubadours paired nicely with the party bus line oozing pre-gamers and the Parker McCollum and Margo Price lookalikes.

On Sunday March 19, the season closed out with lovable horndog Luke Bryan, which made for a slightly swaggery walk-in from the purple lot for me. “Country Girl (Shake It For Me),” makes this painfully urban cowboy shake it in his pretty little Tecovas, no lie.

“Kick the Dust Up” almost made me buy a new John Deere Gator XUV off-road cart for running errands around Montrose. “Knockin’ Boots” made for an awkward elevator ride up the seven floors of NRG Stadium, listening to Thomas Luther Bryan sing “Boys like me need the girls like you to kiss me” alone with an NRG attendant.

Closing the RodeoHouston season with a sold-out late matinee, Bryan jumped out of the Ford transport in full “Coolest Drunk Dad at the PTA Fundraiser Karaoke Jam” mode, setting things off with “I Don’t Want This Night To End” from 2011’s Tailgates and Tanlines. Our Tailgate Elvis – is it too late to copyright that? – settled into a flirty crowd-pleasing hits set, with jeans as tight as yoga pants.

This was Bryan’s 10th RodeoHouston show, which he credited with helping him “Buy Dirt” in more than a few states in the union. While you weren’t looking he became one of the busiest country acts of the past two decades, currently presiding as a Supreme Pop Judge on ABC’s American Idol with Justice Katy Petty and Chief Justice Lionel Richie.

In just a few days, Bryan will continue his ongoing residency at Resorts World Theatre in Las Vegas, which could be called Nashville West for the proliferation of country stars posting up for weeks at a time for music-hungry revelers. Heck, Houston is arguably the country music capital of the world during rodeo season.

Bryan’s backing band seemed seamlessly seasoned from residency shows, aiming for the biggest riff, the biggest synth line, and the biggest chorus.

Tailgate Elvis is everywhere — and 74,779 rodeo fans can’t be wrong.

In closing, it seems that this real was the first “normal” RodeoHouston since COVID, with most of 2020 and the totality of 2021 falling victim to the virus. Last year still felt shaky and unsure, with most of the city still getting used to walking in large crowds and eating corn dogs again in public with dignity. It was Remedial RodeoHouston. The 2023 season was the true return of the rodeo, pre-pandemic and ready to party, with fans eager to sell out NRG Stadium for their favorite artists, eat fantastically insane food, and drink all the alcohol.

Note: Houston, we don’t know how to walk in public. We stop abruptly, walk against the human current, make erratic lane changes, and just generally walk just like we drive. It’s truly one of our best civic traditions and I can’t wait to do it all again with you at Minute Maid Park in a few weeks.


I Don’t Want This Night To End

Kick The Dust Up

Rain Is a Good Thing

What Makes You Country

Buy Dirt

Country On

Crash My Party


Sunrise, Sunburn, Sunset

Play It Again

One Margarita

Knockin’ Boots

That’s My Kinda Night

Country Girl (Shake It For Me)

Photo by Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo

Brad Paisley steals hearts — and a fan's phone — in his Star Trail of Fame RodeoHouston show

a star is born

Just a few hours before hitting the stage for his 15th show at RodeoHouston on Saturday, March 18, Brad Paisley was inducted into the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s Star Trail of Fame.

The guitar picker joined the likes of Brooks & Dunn, Reba, Charley Pride, Elvis Presley, Gene Autry (the first performer ever), Roy Rogers, Alan Jackson, George Strait, and Selena.

Unless you are a certified rodeo rat like myself and have spent years stalking the halls of the NRG Center assignments, you’ve likely never seen this wall of gold plaques, located on the second floor of NRG Center outside HLSR’s offices.

Paisley’s star is the tenth on the wall, hanging next to Selena. On Saturday, he spoke briefly at an unveiling ceremony hosted by HLSR organizers.

“There’s nothing like this in the world,” Paisley told the assembled Houston press and rodeo brass on Saturday afternoon. “You guys realize that.”

It’s an honor reserved for the performers who’ve made a pronounced mark on the event. For some, like Reba and Strait, it’s about longevity and universal draw. While Selena (1993, 1994, 1995) and Elvis Presley (1970, 1974) only appeared at the rodeo a handful of times, their appearances have grown into sacred cultural milestones for two distinct demographics.

In Houston, you can age a native by who they first saw at the rodeo, like cowboy cosplay carbon dating. It doesn’t take long into a casual conversation about the rodeo without someone bragging about who they first saw.

Not unlike vegans, it won’t take long for someone to edify you with tales of seeing Elvis’ name on the Dome’s exploding scoreboard, or seeing Selena’s famous outfits in living color on Diamond Vision from the cheap seats. For me, it was being four years old and Strait showing off some of his ocean front property in 1987.

Paisley’s rodeo stops have always been breathers, nights to stretch and enjoy the scenery, like an industry night for the rodeo season. He’s performed at every RodeoHouston held since 2014, and without COVID changing the world’s plans, Saturday night’s matinee would have been his 17th show.

I’ve never heard anyone say an unkind word about a Paisley variety show stop. The rodeo’s starred stage, in whatever iteration, feels like home to him. The Grand Ole Opry and Guitar Hall of Fame member could be the house performer at an all-year rodeo theme park and no one would bat an eye.

He’s grown into an ambassador for a gentler, comical side of modern country music that’s always needed. Running counter to the stuffy modern hat acts, the sterner indie-toned traditionalists, and the rap-liters. Paisley’s the dude playing the hits, showing off his picking fingers, and having a beer with everyone in the room. No one else on this year’s rodeo lineup besides Paisley has recorded a song with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, either.

On Saturday night, Paisley brought the warmth from his plaque unveiling onto the stage in front of a sold out matinee crowd. “River Bank” kicked things off with Paisley’s slashing riverbilly guitar out front.

It only took three songs for Paisley to make his first tour onto the dirt for “Perfect Storm”, which morphed into a cover of “The Love Boat” TV theme song as Paisley took a victory lap on the west side of the stadium. Of course, “Water” was the next song.

Music videos have always been Paisley’s multimedia creative jam and he made sure to sprinkle some gems from his videography into the set and screens. “Waitin’ On a Woman” came with the requisite posthumous cameo from Andy Griffith from the music video. For “Celebrity,” Paisley’s own mascot from the industry-skewering viral video made a minor cameo in the chute seats.

For a foggy mountain jam, Paisley and his band members with instruments that can go mobile joined him on the dirt for a road trip.

“You’re such a beautiful mix of Budweiser, cow shit, and Brut Cologne,” Paisley told the crowd as “I’m Still A Guy” worked its way into the set list.

Paisley stole a fan’s phone for a spell and began to play on Aurora Fernandez Sordelli’s Instagram account, perusing her socials and critiquing her profile. It completely made sense for United States Congressman Dan Crenshaw to sit in on “American Saturday Night,” playing tambourine more than slightly off beat.

Brad Paisley RodeoHouston 2023

Photo by Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo

“The Brad Paisley Variety Hour has been a certified hit for 15 rodeo seasons running and hopefully, we’re only at the beginning of its run.


River Bank

Wrapped Around

Perfect Storm

The Literal Love Boat Theme


Waitin’ On a Woman



Last Time For Everything

Old Alabama

I’m Still A Guy

This is Country Music

American Saturday Night (with Dan Crenshaw on tambourine)


She’s Everything