A gem that I learned about when moving to Houston is the Lanier Theological Library.  Mark Lanier is graciously building a great academic resource for Houston by establishing a Tyndale House-style library by slowly purchasing the libraries of scholars when they retire/die.  In addition to the library, Lanier also sponsors speakers and conferences.  I had the pleasure of attending a recent conference (March 16-17) focused on the Philistines as part of the wider movement of the Sea Peoples: “Recent Research on the Sea Peoples and Philistines”.  On Friday afternoon, there were several presenters that presented historical and archaeological research on the Sea Peoples movements (mostly around 1200-800 BC), and then on Saturday evening Sy Gitin focused specifically on work at Ekron (around 700-500 BC).  Most lectures are open to the public, but the Friday conference was specifically limited to local scholars, which were drawn from a variety of faculty of graduate and undergraduate programs around Houston.  Though the topic wasn’t a particular interest of mine, I learned a lot relish opportunity to participate in other quality events in the future.