Right at the corner of Emerson Avenue and Westchester Drive, this townhouse stands adorned with some unusual Halloween decorations. The decor, full of caution tape and blue, hazmat trash cans, is clearly meant to indicate — or mock? — all the recent Ebola drama. Just to make sure it’s a joke, a white sign labeled “Happy Halloween” hangs from the balcony. What do you think? Was this in poor taste, or is the resident well within his rights?
October 23, 2014
Highland Park ISD has its finances in order, at least according to the Texas Education Agency, which gave the district a “superior” rating in the most recent Schools FIRST (which stands for Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas).
The highest possible rating reflects HPISD’s financial management and reporting system, and it was reached by analyzing staff and student data from the 2012-13 school year, as well as budget and financial data from the fiscal year ending in August 2013.
The financial accountability system was developed by the TEA in 2001, in response to Senate Bill 218. For you numbers gurus, you can examine the entire HPISD report here.
October 22, 2014
Highland Park easily won both the boys and girls team titles at the District 10-6A cross country meet on Tuesday at Warren Sports Complex in Frisco. Hope McLaughlin and Rico Lara claimed the individual gold medals.
In the girls race, HP won its 36th district championship — and its first in the new 6A classification — by placing six of its seven runners in the top eight overall. McLaughlin crossed the finish line in a time of 19 minutes, 38 seconds. Other top finishers for the Lady Scots included Emma Parker (third place, 21:01), Gabby Crank (fourth, 21:03), Anna Beecherl (fifth, 21:10), Becky Ketch (sixth, 21:10), and Olivia Aasheim (eighth, 21:27).
On the boys side, Lara’s time of 16:11 helped the Scots cruise to the team crown. He was followed by a slew of HP teammates, including Griffin Beitter (second place), Austin Roberts (fifth), Brooks Munn (seventh), Stanton Geyer (eighth), and Andrew Kliewer (ninth).
Both groups of HP runners will compete in the 6A Region II meet on Nov. 1 at Lynn Creek Park in Grand Prairie for a chance to qualify for the state meet on Nov. 8 in Round Rock.
Also at the district meet, the Scots swept the JV races, with Matthew Meletio winning the boys event and Brooke Foy taking the girls title.
Connecting Point of Park Cities, a day program for adults with disabilities, will host its second annual CPPC Luncheon on Jan. 23 at the Frontiers of Flight Museum. Marianne and Roger Staubach will be the featured speakers at the fundraiser.
There will be also be a live auction with signed Staubach memorabilia including a football with his Super Bowl dates, jerseys, and more.
The program fills a void for adults with disabilities, giving them the opportunity to continue to grow and learn instead of being confined to their homes. CPPC is getting close to capacity and hopes to expand with the support of the community, sponsors, and donors.
Area high schools are banding together for a cause, launching a drive to collect 25,000 shoes for Soles4Souls.
Highland Park High School, Ursuline Academy, Hockaday, Episcopal School of Dallas, St. Mark’s, Cistercian, and several other schools have joined the movement by setting up drop off locations. New and used shoes can be donated at the high schools throughout October.
Soles4Souls has distributed more than 22 million pairs of shoes in 127 countries since its inception in 2007. Noah Conner, a junior at HPHS and one of the student ambassadors for Soles4Souls, said everyone probably has a pair of shoes in their closet that they don’t wear, and they can be used to make the world a better place.
Bachendorf’s is sponsoring a signing event on Thursday, Oct. 30, with Rosa Lladro, daughter of one of the brand’s founding brothers. At the event, you will discover the newest additions to this fascinating porcelain brand, including the charming limited edition featuring the rhythms of the fifties, Let’s swing.
Rosa Lladro will be pleased to sign all your purchases. For more information go here. The event will be held at Bachendorf’s at Preston Center from 3 to 5 p.m. RSVP to 214-692-8400 or events@bachendorf’s.com.
Nelson Bunker Hunt, the prominent Texas oilman with longtime ties to the Park Cities, has died at age 88 after a long illness.
Hunt was known for numerous business dealings and investments, including those in Thoroughbred racing. The Dallas Morning News has an extensive look at his life and accomplishments here.
October 21, 2014
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. See the jump for more winners.
Looking for a great family activity? The Fort Worth Alliance Air Show is this weekend, Oct. 25-26. The headliners are the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds. It looks like it will be perfect blue-sky weather. It’s a great reason to be looking up instead of down at our phones! Admission is free, although you’ll have to pay for parking. All the details are at allianceairshow.com.
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.