Posts by Todd Jorgenson
Editor’s note: This story also appears in the March edition of Park Cities People.
The Miracle Mile stretch of Lovers Lane once was among the trendiest hubs for luxury shopping in Dallas. These days, while its collection of specialty shops continues to draw customers, its look has become more eyesore than eye candy.
So count Connie Sigel among the proprietors who are happy the city of University Park is going through the preliminary steps of a renovation project for the area that could help it reclaim some of its past glory.
“The curbs are in disrepair. It’s been on the backburner for so long,” said Sigel, who owns the clothing boutique Elements. “There’s a heritage there that needs to be preserved.”
The city has the money in its budget during the next two years for a project that has been discussed several times before. Now it finally seems to be gaining traction, with an engineering firm hired to begin a conceptual design and traffic consultants also on board.
Among the points of emphasis are replacing the pavement on Lovers between Dallas North Tollway and Douglas Drive, as well as widening the medians to possibly include landscaping and decorative lighting.
With spring around the corner, baseball season is getting into full swing. Accordingly, Highland Park will host its annual Scotland Yard Classic this weekend.
The Scots will play five games over three days as part of the round-robin event, facing Colleyville Heritage (1:30 p.m. today), Fort Smith (Ark.) Southside (6:30 p.m. today), Sachse (11 a.m. Friday), and Richland (4 p.m. Friday). HP also will meet Keller at 11 a.m. Saturday at Globe Life Park in Arlington.
Tournament games also will be held at Rockwall, Coppell, Plano East, and Trinity Christian Academy in Addison. Other participating teams include Grapevine, Belton, Rowlett, and The Woodlands.
For the Scots, the tournament will be the final tuneup prior to the start of District 10-4A play on Tuesday at Forney.
A full tournament schedule follows after the jump.
It wasn’t enough for the Highland Park girls soccer team to continue its on-field dominance on Tuesday night. The Lady Scots scored goals off the field as well.
The team presented a check to the HP Special Olympics program for $11,275 as part of its “Going for the Same Goal” fundraising campaign. The money will go toward soccer uniforms, equipment, and a banquet for the Special Olympians, who took the field at halftime of HP’s 2-0 win over The Colony at Highlander Stadium.
The victory, by the way, clinched another District 20-4A title for the Lady Scots (14-4-1, 6-0), who have won their six district games by a combined margin of 27-2.
As his high school basketball career ended last February, Will Miller had never heard of Mount St. Mary’s University. And the anonymity was mutual.
A year later, the former Highland Park standout is a starting guard for an NCAA Division I program, sharing a court with national powerhouses from Michigan State, Villanova, and BYU.
Miller emerged from recruiting obscurity though a connection in the coaching world that eventually led to him getting a scholarship offer from the small liberal-arts school in Emmitsburg, Md., a rural town of modest size near the Pennsylvania border.
Festivities on and off the field will surround the District 10-4A softball opener on Tuesday when Highland Park hosts Terrell.
The program will celebrate its 20th anniversary with appearances by former players, a photo button booth, a drawing to win Texas Rangers tickets, and hamburgers and hot dogs grilled by the team dads.
Lisa Prather, who was the pitcher during HP’s first varsity season in 1994, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch, and the HP Lads and Lassies will sing the national anthem.
Plus, of course, it will be the first district game played under the lights at the school’s softball field. For more information on the alumni festivities, call Barbara Orr at 214-683-5531 or Donna Hodges at 713-416-4352.
The work of the HP Design Company is on display throughout the halls of Highland Park High School, from posters promoting upcoming events to spirit shirts touting a club or team.
That’s the sort of real-world experience HPHS teacher Chris Fullwood envisioned when he launched the idea two years ago as a way to get students in his advanced graphic design class to extend their learning beyond the classroom.
His brainstorm led to an email sent to the entire school district explaining the concept and soliciting ideas for student projects.
“I wanted to give them an actual opportunity to work with clients,” Fullwood said. “I wasn’t sure what we were going to get. We got a great response. I got about 30 replies right away.”
It wasn’t a bad hair day, but an attempt at a world record that prompted an unusual scene at Armstrong Elementary School on Friday afternoon.
Students, parents, and faculty members donned more than 700 red-and-white striped “Cat in the Hat” hats, establishing a new record in honor of Dr. Seuss’ birthday.
Guinness World Records adjudicator Sara Wilcox was on hand to witness and verify the milestone. The old record was 281 hats, set last year by a group of schoolchildren at an organized event in New York City.
Friday’s event was the brainchild of the Armstrong Dads Club as a way of capping off Dr. Seuss Reading Week at the school. The week included guest readers each day, including parent volunteers and members of the Highland Park Department of Public Safety.
On Monday, the festivities kicked off with appearances by former Dallas Stars standouts Joe Nieuwendyk, Marty Turco and Jason Arnott, who ate green eggs and ham with students in the cafeteria while signing autographs.
The Highland Park tennis team returns to the court today at the McKinney North Invitational, its first tournament of the spring season.
The Scots will look to continue the dominance they showed in the fall, when HP won its sixth consecutive state title during the team season, its last at the Class 4A level before moving to the new 6A next year.
During the spring campaign, HP will play five times prior to hosting the District 10-4A tournament on April 4-5. The only other home appearance for the Scots will be Tuesday during a boys dual match with St. Mark’s.
By the way, the state tournament is slated for April 28-29 in Austin. The Scots won a mixed doubles championship last spring.
Even-numbered years have been kind to the Highland Park varsity lacrosse team, which has won Texas High School Lacrosse League state titles in 2004, 2008, 2010, and 2012.
Obviously the Scots would like that trend to continue this spring, with HP set to open the 2014 regular season with a game Friday at Allen.
The home opener for the Scots is scheduled for 3 p.m. Saturday against Houston St. John’s, and the schedule also features the usual matchups against local rivals ESD, St. Mark’s, and Jesuit prior to the postseason play in late April. The state tournament is slated for May 3-4 in Friendswood.
Acclaimed author Mark Salzman will bring his varied experiences to Highland Park this week as the keynote speaker for the 18th annual Highland Park Literary Festival.
Salzman will speak at 7 p.m. Thursday in the main auditorium at Highland Park High School. The event is free and open to the public, and will be followed by a book signing.
Salzman is perhaps best known for the memoir Iron & Silk, about his work as an English teacher and martial-arts student in China. The book was adapted into a movie in 1990 in which Salzman starred as himself.
The bulk of the festival activities will take place on Feb. 27-28, including keynote assemblies for HPHS students featuring Salzman (seniors and juniors) along with fellow authors Joaquin Zihuatanejo (sophomores) and John Owhonda (freshmen).
The final day of the event will include student writing workshops in a variety of genres, along with an open-mic night for students. The festival also includes a student writing contest in the spring.