Posts by Sarah Bennett

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    • Sarah Bennett
    • Assistant Editor
    • After graduating from SMU with a creative writing degree, Sarah interned with D Magazine and joined the People Newspapers team in January 2013. She enjoys annoying coworkers with her ceaseless Mustang pride. After a freelancing hiatus, she returned in May 2014.
  • 4200 Block of Mockingbird Closed Tomorrow


    Tomorrow, the 4200 block of Mockingbird Lane will be closed from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for repairs. Detour signs will let you know where to go, as the repair area is bounded by Preston Road and Douglas Avenue. Drivers are encouraged to take Douglas Avenue to Beverly Drive, Beverly Drive to Preston road, and Preston Road to Mockingbird Lane to avoid the area. This is only for eastbound drivers — westbound will not be affected.

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 28, 2014 | 11:13 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Churches: North Dallas Shared Ministries 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.

    “That’s a bunch of baloney,” Rorrie said. “You’d have better luck if you looked at our website [for eligibility requirements].”

    Though most of the programs offered by NDSM — such as clothing and food assistance — do not require income verification, financial aid does require it.

    “Because we’re an emergency aid center, there needs to be income, which is then verified,” Rorrie said. “If someone comes and asks us to help with July rent but there’s absolutely no way August could be paid, then we’re not really helping the client because they’ll be evicted in August and we haven’t been good stewards of our resources.”

    Read More…

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 24, 2014 | 9:00 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • 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
  • Learn About Nixon at HPUMC’s ‘Authors Live’

    rsz_the_nixon_defensecover_largeThe next installment of Highland Park United Methodist Church’s “Authors Live” series will feature John W. Dean and his book, “The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It” on Wednesday, Aug. 6.

    Dean was legal counsel to President Nixon during that whole Watergate-scandal thing and testified before the Senate. The release of the book is meant to coincide with the event’s 40th anniversary this year.

    As always, the free event takes place at the church at 7 p.m. But if you’d like to pay $30 — which includes a copy of the book — and attend a reception at 6 p.m., make your reservations here or call (214) 523-2240.  You can buy a book and get it signed afterward.

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 23, 2014 | 8:00 am | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Don’t Freak Out at HPHS Drill Tomorrow

    From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. tomorrow, a training exercise in an active threat or mass casualty will take place at Highland Park High School. Repeat: this is only a drill. Remain calm.

    But, drivers and residents alike will undoubtedly see police, fire, and emergency vehicles at the scene. Westchester Drive will be closed to traffic from Emerson Avenue to Grassmere Lane for the duration. Yes, there will be traffic barriers and signs.

    The exercise will include the University Park fire and police departments, Highland Park DPS, and SMU police. Stay safe out there, everybody.

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 22, 2014 | 12:11 pm | 1 Comment | Comments RSS
  • Leigh Bailey’s Clan Welcomes Newest Member

    We got the news today that legislative candidate Leigh Bailey gave birth to a little boy this morning, named Trey Bailey Carrizales. Trey was born at 5:24 a.m., to be exact, weighing in at 8 lbs., 2 oz. We hear everyone’s doing just fine. Congrats to Leigh and her husband, Vinny!

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 21, 2014 | 3:28 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
  • Pirch Heads For NorthPark

    An appliance/plumbing/outdoor showroom called Pirch is heading for NorthPark next month. It will be the store’s first location not only in Texas, but in the whole Southwest region.

    Nancy A. Nasher, president of the NorthPark Development Company, said in a statement that she hopes the store will “revolutionize the home building and remodeling industry.”

    Pirch also greets customers at the door with complimentary “signature beverages” at Bliss Cafe. I have no idea what that means exactly, but they do have a blog called The Blissery, featuring healthy recipes and lifestyle tips.

    The chain already has a number of stores across California and one in Illinois. The NorthPark opening is set for 10 a.m. on Aug. 23.

    By Sarah Bennett Jul. 21, 2014 | 12:04 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
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