July 27, 2014

  • Thwaites to Melt Teen Hearts at NorthPark

    the-giver-posterOK, teenage girls, get your best screams ready. Australian actor Brenton Thwaites, the young star of the upcoming movie The Giver, will make a public appearance at NorthPark Center on Monday.

    Thwaites will appear at something called the “Color Party,” which will include a scavenger hunt, a question-and-answer session, and a VIP autograph signing. The whole thing runs from 4-6 p.m. on the first floor of the mall, between Nordstrom and Macy’s.

    The Giver, which is based on the popular young-adult novel of the same name, also stars Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges. It will be in theaters on Aug. 15.

    By Todd Jorgenson Jul. 27, 2014 | 3:25 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • July 26, 2014

  • Wine Getaway Makes Great Weekend

    A couple relaxes at Becker Vineyards in Stonewall, Texas. (Photo: Elizabeth Ygartua)

    A couple relaxes at Becker Vineyards in Stonewall, Texas. (Photo: Elizabeth Ygartua)

    As soon as the thermometer in my car started reading 90 degrees, I was ready to flee Dallas — and quickly. After a 4.5-hour drive, and a friend and I were cooling off with local wine in Fredericksburg, where boutiques have been transformed into wine stores and restaurants feature local vintages.

    In the past 20 years, the area has become home to a flourishing wine community, particularly along U.S. Highway 290. Check wineroad290.com to see if your visit corresponds with monthly restaurant-winery pair-up events hosted by a collective of 13 of the wineries along the road. Read More…

    By Elizabeth Ygartua Jul. 26, 2014 | 10:00 am | 1 Comment | Comments RSS
  • July 25, 2014

  • Youngsters Take Love of Gaming to Next Level

    Eli Hoff, 9, right, and Dasch Gorcyca, 6, use their imagination to create video games during a summer class at Armstrong Elementary School. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

    Eli Hoff, 9, right, and Dasch Gorcyca, 6, use their imagination to create video games during a summer class at Armstrong Elementary School. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

    The final day of the Highland Park ISD summer game-design class gives precocious young video-game designers a chance to showcase their creation to their classmates.

    Then comes the best part for just about any kid under age 13. They get to play.

    That combination makes the class one of the most popular in the summer catalog for the HPISD Academy of Lifelong Learning. After all, what video-game aficionado wouldn’t want to combine their favorite classic gaming elements with their own imagination? Read More…

    By Todd Jorgenson Jul. 25, 2014 | 10:00 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Park Cities to Get Jiggy With GigaPower

    The name might be a little dorky, but GigaPower is coming to the Park Cities.

    Highland Park and University Park are among the first locations in the Dallas-Fort Worth area scheduled to get the latest high-speed Internet innovation from Dallas-based AT&T later this summer. There are no specifics on costs or restrictions yet, of course.

    The connection is part of the company’s fiber-optic U-Verse network, and is supposed to increase Internet speeds to 1 gigabyte per second, which means you can access parkcitiespeople.com that much faster. At least that’s what we assume you’ll be doing.

    The service already has launched in Austin and is slated for more municipalities through the rest of this year, as this map shows. Along with Dallas-Fort Worth, it looks like Raleigh and Winston-Salem, N.C., are up next.

    By Todd Jorgenson Jul. 25, 2014 | 9:22 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Former HP Golfer Leads Web.com Tour Event

    Paul Haley

    Paul Haley

    Former Highland Park High School golf standout Paul Haley took the early lead on Thursday after the first round of the Midwest Classic golf tournament in Overland Park, Kan.

    Haley, 26, who played college golf at Georgia Tech, fired a round of 64 (7-under par) to tie his career-best round on the Web.com Tour. It is the first time he has held the lead after the first round of a tour event.

    Looking over the scorecard, Haley hit 16 of 18 greens in regulation and needed just 26 putts during his round. If he can hold off a host of challengers over the next three days, he can clinch his first victory since the 2012 Chile Classic, and his first title on American soil.

    Read More…

    By Todd Jorgenson Jul. 25, 2014 | 7:56 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • July 24, 2014

  • Churches: NDSM Benefits Outweigh Restrictions

    (Source: North Dallas Shared Ministries’ 2013 Annual Report)

    (Source: North Dallas Shared Ministries’ 2013 Annual Report)

    Since 1983, North Dallas Shared Ministries has helped those in need with food, clothing, medical, and financial assistance. But how those seeking help get approved — or not approved — for services has caused a bit of discussion among the philanthropic crowd.

    By its nature, the center works with clients in specific areas.

    “We do zip-code verification to get financial assistance,” said executive director Judy Rorrie, who has worked with NDSM essentially since its founding. “They have to live in one of the 20 zip codes that we serve.”

    From looking at the organization’s Facebook page, the fruits of their good work is evident: photos from charity events such as food drives with Ursuline Academy and the Episcopal School of Dallas abound.

    But there are also concerns voiced through reviews and posts to the page. One commenter claimed he was turned down due to his “debt-to-income ratio.” But Rorrie says no such “ratio” is used.

    Read More…

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 24, 2014 | 9:00 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • July 23, 2014

  • Tool Sheds, Drought Plans, and Budgets, Oh My!

    Here’s what’s up for grabs at the Highland Park public works committee meeting tomorrow morning. Drexel Drive. 8 a.m. You know what to do:

    Public Works Agenda

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 23, 2014 | 4:37 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Patrons Leave Notes on Ballet School Window

    Reflective windows make for shiny pictures, but you can see the sweet messages left where Dallas Metropolitan Ballet once stood. (Staff photo: Sarah Bennett)

    Reflective windows make for shiny pictures, but you can see the sweet messages left where Dallas Metropolitan Ballet once stood. (Staff photo: Sarah Bennett)

    Hearts across the Park Cities are undoubtedly breaking due to the retirement of Ann Etgen and Bill Atkinson, longtime directors of Dallas Metropolitan Ballet on Hillcrest Avenue. The school sat in its street-facing lot in Snider Plaza for decades. Though the lot is now vacated and the signs are down, patrons have decorated the windows with thank-you notes and pictures. Did you take classes at Metropolitan? Tell us some of your memories.

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 23, 2014 | 3:35 pm | 4 Comments | Comments RSS
  • Dangers of Valet Parking Increase by One

    Valet parking is a necessity in and around Dallas, whether you love it or hate it — and in the Park Cities, especially.

    I, personally, have a tendency to distrust handing my keys to a stranger who’s also handling countless other keys.

    But apparently, there are some valet attendants around town who are willing to risk their lives to protect your vehicle. 

    At 4:06 p.m. on July 10, a customer left their vehicle running with the door open to drop off at the valet station at the Hilton Dallas/Park Cities near Preston Center. A thief then jumped in the car in an attempt to drive off.  Read More…

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 23, 2014 | 11:00 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Save Your Teenager’s Wet Phone?

    Once upon a time, an SMU senior was on a spring-break ski trip with her friends. That senior left her cellular device a little too close to the jacuzzi one night during the trip. Upon her return to the Hilltop, she suffered the tragic loss of her cell phone to water damage. Park Cities problems, amirite?

    Now, before you judge me too harshly for my lack of thinking on that trip, I’m willing to bet that many of your teenagers — or perhaps you yourself — have felt the pain of a cell phone that has succumbed to water damage. We’ve all tried the tech-age adage of putting your phone in a bag of rice. Not so helpful.

    That’s why I thought you all would want to know that there’s a kiosk in Vista Ridge Mall in Lewisville — I know, north of 635 — that claims to be able to save your phone. DryBox Rescue looks a bit like a RedBox kiosk, but instead of spitting out DVDs, it gives you a dry cell phone instead. Apparently, it takes 30 minutes if you bring your phone in within three days of the water damage.

    Does it work? Is it actually effective? I have no idea. I haven’t tried it myself. But it might be better than that bag of rice if you’re in a jam. Anyone know of any places a little closer to home that can salvage your phone?

     

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 23, 2014 | 10:28 am | No Comments | Comments RSS