October 21, 2014

  • HPHS Highland Belles Honors Squads Unveiled

    The director of the award-winning Highland Belles drill team, Shannon Phillips, has announced the 2014-2015 honor squads. These ladies are recognized for their excellence in dance and high kick. In addition to the squads, Maddie James was named Miss High Kick.

    All Americans (front row L to R) Annie Combs, Fields Dunston, Alexa May, Audrey Gruber, Emma Bailey, Caroline Magee, Lynn Wismer (back row) Maddie Basso, Landry Myers, Elise Wilson, Ellie Gosnell, Elizabeth Cooper, Olivia Gruber, Flora Kate Richards.

    All Americans (front row L to R) Annie Combs, Fields Dunston, Alexa May, Audrey Gruber, Emma Bailey, Caroline Magee, Lynn Wismer (back row) Maddie Basso, Landry Myers, Elise Wilson, Ellie Gosnell, Elizabeth Cooper, Olivia Gruber, Flora Kate Richards.

    Kick Company (front row L to R) Martha Givhan, Fields Dunston, Alexa May, Audrey Gruber, Emma Bailey, Caroline Magee, Savannah Ford (back row) Maddie Basso, Allie Porter, Maddie James, Raquel Cook, Leslie Hudson.

    Kick Company (front row L to R) Martha Givhan, Fields Dunston, Alexa May, Audrey Gruber,
    Emma Bailey, Caroline Magee, Savannah Ford (back row) Maddie Basso, Allie Porter, Maddie James, Raquel Cook, Leslie Hudson.

    By Allyssa Schoonover Oct. 21, 2014 | 11:40 am | No Comments | Comments RSS

  • Providence Releases New CD of Hymns

    Providence 9

    Students from five grade levels participated in the recording at the school on Sept. 9. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

    A sea of children stand in their uniforms, boys in pressed shorts and girls in smocks with Peter-Pan collars, hands folded, eyes gazed with intensity.

    They’re singing their hearts out with purpose — to record a CD of hymn medleys to be sold by their school, Providence Christian.

    “It’s a rare feat, to have that many children sing by memory and learn all those words — words some of them don’t even understand yet,” pianist David Leeman said.

    Each school year, students from classes one through five at Providence learn a hymn a month. Then, at the end of the year, Leeman crafts the hymns into an arrangement. This year’s medley contains nine traditional hymns.

    “It’s such a wonderful thing that we do,” class three teacher Allison Ellis said. “The kids work hard on these hymns for a whole month — they sing them every day, and they love it. The families have really grown to love these hymns.”

    Even with each year’s medley performance, the school hasn’t recorded a CD since 2009.

    “It’s a good way to review, and the parents love it — they always cry,” music director Barbara Leeman said.

    She’s been at Providence for 18 years, with her husband assisting through arrangements and piano accompaniment.

    “Because we’re a classical school, we believe in traditional hymns,” she said. ‘They’re at the risk of being lost [in popular culture].”

    With five classes of children participating, the total number of singers rounds out at about 200.

    “The hymn medley was special because we got to sing before the Lord and sing with our friends,” class four student Hannah Ball said.

    For Leeman, that’s an important experience for children to have.

    “We need to sing our theology and teach it to children,” she said. “We don’t teach ‘kiddie’ songs. These hymns are time-tested. Just like what we read in literature, we only sing great music.”

    The children participate in roughly five performances each year: Grandparents’ Day, Christmas Chapel, Fine Arts Day, the school musical, and, of course, the hymn medley. And the school of thought is the same for each performance.

    “Culture is screaming something else in their ears,” Leeman said. “But we are giving children something they’ll have their whole lives: familiar words from reading the hymnal. We have college-age kids and older coming back and thanking us. Every child can sing, and sing high.”

    The CD will be released later this month or early November, to be available for purchase before the holiday season.

    This story originally appeared in the October issue of Park Cities People, on stands now.

    By Sarah Bennett Oct. 21, 2014 | 10:00 am | No Comments | Comments RSS

    October 20, 2014

  • Scots Look to Make a Run at District Title

    See "read me" for names 2

    The Highland Park boys cross country team includes, from left, John Henry Campbell, Griffin Beitter, Danny Leland, Brooks Munn, Jake Harvill, Austin Roberts, Rico Lara, Andrew Kliewer, and Matthew Meletio. (Photo: John Beitter)

    The Highland Park boys and girls cross country teams will begin their first postseason at the Class 6A level on Tuesday at the District 10-6A meet at Warren Sports Complex in Frisco.

    The girls race will start at 9 a.m. followed by the boys at 9:55 a.m. The Region II meet will be Nov. 1 at Lynn Creek Park in Grand Prairie, with the state meet slated for Nov. 8 at Old Settlers Park in Round Rock.

    The HP boys have been led all season by senior Rico Lara, while junior Hope McLaughlin paces the Lady Scots.

    By Todd Jorgenson Oct. 20, 2014 | 11:33 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS

  • Free Classic Movies on the Lawn at Lee Park

    b70-3219The Lee Park Conservancy will help to celebrate the upcoming 75th anniversary of Arlington Hall this week with Movies on the Lawn, featuring back-to-back nights of classic 1939 films in an outdoor setting.

    The group will screen Gone With the Wind at 7 p.m. Tuesday and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Both screenings will be preceded by a VIP reception at 6 p.m.

    Admission is free, with beer and wine sold on-site, and food trucks selling other refreshments. You should probably bring lawn chairs or blankets, especially on Tuesday, since Gone With the Wind lasts almost four hours. And it’s worth it.

    By Todd Jorgenson Oct. 20, 2014 | 11:20 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS

  • HPMS Takes On Shrek: The Musical

    Fairy-tale characters put their best foot forward at dress rehearsal.

    Fairy-tale characters put their best foot forward at dress rehearsal.

    Some Highland Park Middle School students have been hard at work rehearsing for their upcoming performance of “Shrek: The Musical” on Oct. 23-26.

    The cast of 43 seventh- and eighth-grade students are in a Playbill class taught by Susan McCormick, the HPMS drama director. Megan Kelly Bates of the Preston Center Dance Conservatory has contributed to the show as well.

    The show features Stephen Bates as Shrek, Claire DeJean as Fiona, and Jack Smith as Donkey, accompanied by the whole slew of fairy-tale characters. The musical is based on the 2001 film and William Steig’s book. It hit Broadway in 2008 and was nominated for eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical.

    Admission is a mere $5 and tickets are available from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Oct. 23-24, and 30 minutes prior to the show.

    By Allyssa Schoonover Oct. 20, 2014 | 1:35 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS

  • Partners Card Program is Local Tradition

    2014 Partners Card co-chairs Andrea Cheek, Diana Hamilton, and Lisa Bhattacharya. (Photo: George Fiala)

    2014 Partners Card co-chairs Andrea Cheek, Diana Hamilton, and Lisa Bhattacharya. (Photo: George Fiala)

    In Dallas, the rush of swiping a Partners Card is just as much a symbol of fall as football and cooler weather.

    “Usually the weather’s beautiful, and it’s fun to walk around the stores and see the red and purple balloons,” co-chair Lisa Bhattacharya said.

    That’s because the fundraiser, which runs Oct. 24 to Nov. 2, has been benefiting the anti-domestic violence nonprofit The Family Place for 22 years. One thing that makes the feel-good shopping experience unique is that it focuses on area shops and vendors.

    “The Family Place is very right in that they did it in a grassroots kind of way,” Bhattacharya said. “We have kept true to our belief that this is about local retailers.”

    With more than 750 retailers in participation this year, the team of hard-working volunteers is ready to celebrate with a shopping spree and some retail therapy. And they know many others around town are, too.

    “We do all our shopping the week of Partners Card,” co-chair Diana Hamilton said of her own family’s involvement.

    In fact, acting as a participating shopper is how co-chair Andrea Cheek first got involved.

    “Being only 70 dollars, it’s a win-win-win across the board,” Cheek said. “For people that don’t often give to philanthropies or go to events, they feel like they can participate, too. Some people buy it because it goes to Family Place, and some buy it just for the discount.”

    For those that focus on the giving aspect, The Family Place’s purpose of making a difference is all the inspiration needed. After all, 100 percent of funds from the card sales goes right back to the cause.

    “Dallas is just extremely philanthropic and extremely open,” Hamilton said. “If all of us had deep pocketbooks, we would all be making an even bigger difference, but we have so many people in this community that want to help.”

    But then again, the rush of shopping doesn’t hurt, either.

    “I’ve even talked to people that make it their family tradition each year,” Cheek said. “They go shopping with their mom for Partners Card, and they get all their Christmas shopping done, which I think is kind of special.”

    By Sarah Bennett Oct. 20, 2014 | 12:27 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS

  • Calling All North Texas Artists

    The Meadows Museum at SMU is accepting applications through Nov. 3 for the Moss/Chumley North Texas Artist Award.

    The prize has increased to $2,500 this year and will be given to an outstanding North Texas artist. Eligible artists must be proven community advocates for the visual arts and have exhibited professionally for at least 10 years.

    All genres of art are accepted, ranging from sculpture to performance, but artists must reside in Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Hunt, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Tarrant, or Wise counties to be considered. A distinguished panel of local artists, curators, and directors will judge the submissions.

    The award will be given at a private museum event on Dec. 10.

    By Allyssa Schoonover Oct. 20, 2014 | 12:21 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS

    October 19, 2014

  • DAPS to Discuss Neurobics at Annual Meeting

    The Dallas Area Parkinsonism Society will hold its general membership meeting at 1 p.m. Monday at University Park United Methodist Church.

    Silverado Community ambassador Beth Geniewicz will present a program entitled “Neurobics: Awaken Your Senses, Stimulate Your Brain.” You can find more information here.

    By Todd Jorgenson Oct. 19, 2014 | 10:27 pm | No Comments | Comments RSS
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