April 18, 2014

  • Trustees Expecting a Crowd Monday?

    The Highland Park ISD Board of Trustees has scheduled another workshop regarding the district’s master facilities plan, i.e. “where the heck are we gonna put all these kids?” Usually, such meetings happen in the board room at the Administration Building, which comfortably holds the trustees and only a few other people. But this one, which is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. on Monday, will happen in the 5/6 Assembly Room at McCulloch Intermediate School.

    By Dan Koller Apr. 18, 2014 | 8:36 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • April 17, 2014

  • We Could Use a Famous Guest Editor

    HP-News copy

    Smashing Pumpkins front man Billy Corgan guest edited this week’s edition of the Highland Park News, a paper covering his hometown in suburban Chicago. This sounds like a great idea. Which celebrity with Park Cities ties wants to take over here for a few weeks so Todd and I can recharge our batteries?

    By Dan Koller Apr. 17, 2014 | 10:41 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Destination Imagination Team Bound For Globals

    Back row: Max Law, Jack Perdue, and Mark Van Kirk; front row: Sarah Ho, Maddy Helton, and Allison Brown

    Back row: Max Law, Jack Perdue, and Mark Van Kirk; front row: Sarah Ho, Maddy Helton, and Allison Brown

    “Creativity to the Power of 6,” a Destination Imagination comprised of five fifth-graders from McCulloch Intermediate School and a sixth from Cistercian, competed at the state tournament last week in Austin, and they did well enough to advance to the Destination Imagination Global Finals. In late May, the team will travel to Knoxville, Tenn., where more than 1,300 teams from 45 states, seven Canadian provinces, and 13 other countries will gather to showcase their creative solutions.

    The team members, who have been together since third grade at University Park Elementary, have been working on their challenge solution for most of the school year. They chose the scientific challenge — “Going to Extremes” — in which teams were asked to create an extreme environment and present a story about characters attempting to adapt to conditions in order to survive there. They were also asked to design and create a prototype of “extreme gear” and to explain the technical methods, research, and science they used to create it. In addition, the team also had to solve an unknown challenge on the spot.

    Competitors are required to do all aspects of the challenges by themselves with a tight budget and without interference from adults and non-team members.

    By Dan Koller Apr. 17, 2014 | 8:32 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • McCulloch Sixth-Grader Earns Twirling Trophies

    Heather Skidmore and her hardware

    Heather Skidmore and her hardware

    The May edition of Park Cities People, which should be landing in your mailbox any day now, includes a story about sisters Mela and Mallory McMinn, who began twirling batons for the Highlander Band last year because, really, no one else was ready to step into the role after Amber Appel graduated.

    Well, we now know of another twirler who’s waiting in the wings.

    Heather Skidmore, a sixth-grader at McCulloch Intermediate School, recently competed at the NBTA Southwest Regional Baton Twirling Championships in Canyon, Texas. She brought home honors as the Solo and Fancy X-Strut winner in the 10-12 Advanced Division. Heather, who twirls under the direction of Dory O’Neal, is also the 10-12 Beginner 3-Baton champion.

    By Dan Koller Apr. 17, 2014 | 7:30 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • April 16, 2014

  • Local Business Creates ‘Boston Strong’ Tanks

    Remember folks, it's for a good cause.

    Remember folks, it’s for a good cause.

    This week marks the one-year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings, and one local business has decided to make a fashion statement for a good cause.

    The PilatesBarre, which has locations in Snider Plaza and Devonshire, has introduced “Boston Strong” tank tops, which it is selling for $35 apiece. All of the proceeds will go to Staches for Boston PD, a nonprofit started by Dallas runners that benefits first responders in Boston.

    The project has special meaning for Randi, one of the Pilates instructors at the club, who will run in this year’s marathon on Monday in Boston.

    The camouflage tanks are available now at both PilatesBarre locations.

    By Todd Jorgenson Apr. 16, 2014 | 12:07 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Livingston Ready to Pass the Torch

    Bob Livingston is flanked by Liz Spector, left, and his wife, Linda, at Tuesday's meeting. (Photo: Steve Mace)

    Bob Livingston is flanked by Liz Spector, left, and his wife, Linda, on Tuesday. (Photo: Steve Mace)

    The University Park City Council recognized retiring city manager Bob Livingston at its meeting on Tuesday with a standing ovation and a proclamation honoring his 23 years of service to the city.

    Livingston’s final day at UP will be April 29, meaning Tuesday was his final council meeting. Robbie Corder, who took over as assistant city manager last summer, will assume the city manager post on April 30.

    “It’s been the greatest place to work,” Livingston said. “I really appreciate the opportunity.”

    Livingston also will be honored at a public reception from 2 to 4 p.m. on April 25 at Highland Park Presbyterian Church.

    The council also recognized outgoing city secretary Liz Spector, who likewise is leaving at the end of the month. She will be replaced by current UP purchasing agent Christine Green.

    By Todd Jorgenson Apr. 16, 2014 | 11:52 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Lit Fest Provides Prizes For Prose

    HPHS alumnus Eddie Coker, shown with HP Lit Fest committee members Andrea Hamilton and Cari Meggyesy, was a workshop presenter at this year's festival.

    Highland Park High School alumnus Eddie Coker, shown with HP Lit Fest committee members Andrea Hamilton and Cari Meggyesy, was a workshop presenter at this year’s festival.

    The Highland Park Literary Festival wrapped up with an awards breakfast on April 10 that honored winners of the festival’s “Write Your World” student writing contest. Top prizes went to:

    • Fiction — Sarah Grace Forbes (first place), Keely Brown (second place), Hannah Kubik (honorable mention)
    • Creative nonfiction — George Abuhamad (first place), Kimberly Sun (second place), Yingfan Du (honorable mention)
    • Poetry — Chloe Sarfatis (first place), Christine Ramjee (second place), Lindsey Elliott (honorable mention)

    The bulk of the festival took place in late February, including an appearance by keynote speaker Mark Salzman and more than 20 other poets, playwrights, journalists, and songwriters. More than 50 HPHS students participated in an “open mic night” by performing poetry and music.

    By Todd Jorgenson Apr. 16, 2014 | 11:26 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
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    By Sponsored Advertisement Apr. 16, 2014 | 11:01 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • April 15, 2014

  • UP Council to Vote on YMCA Site Plan

    Here's an artist rendering of the proposed new Park Cities YMCA building.

    Here’s a rendering of the proposed new Park Cities YMCA building, which could become a reality by late 2015.

    UPDATE: The site plan was given unanimous approval by the council at the Tuesday meeting after a brief discussion about potential traffic impact. The original post gives the details below.

    Detailed plans for the facelift of the Park Cities YMCA will be up for approval tonight by the University Park City Council.

    The council’s agenda for its 5 p.m. meeting includes consideration of the site plan for the facility at 6000 Preston Road. A year ago, UP officials gave the go-ahead for the YMCA to demolish its existing structure and rebuild with a below-grade parking garage.

    The Y has been at its current location since 1951. Club officials have not said where they plan to relocate operations during construction. However, they expect the project to start this fall and be finished perhaps by late 2015.

    You can find all the details here about the site plan, which was approved by the city’s planning and zoning commission in March. We’ll hit some of the highlights of the proposal after the jump. Read More…

    By Todd Jorgenson Apr. 15, 2014 | 1:58 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Suspects at Large in Dallas Hit-and-Run Crash

    Dallas police are looking for suspects in a fatal hit-and-run accident that happened this morning in the M Streets, killing a teenager and injuring his mother, according to The Dallas Morning News. Apparently the incident began in Highland Park, when police tried to pull over a stolen Chrysler Town & Country for running a stop sign, which led to a chase through residential streets.

    By Todd Jorgenson Apr. 15, 2014 | 1:18 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS