July 2019 Yard of the Month: 705 Thompson Drive

Congratulations to the Smith family!

Thank you so much for the honor of Yard of the Month, and the yard thanks you!!  It’s a living breathing thing you know, and welcomes the honor too.

Our family moved here over 20 years ago.  Back then the yard was more of a playground than anything else.  Sunny in the morning and shady in the afternoon.  Perfect for kids.  Except for the fruit bearing Mulberry in the center of the yard that dropped rotting fruit and drew clouds of flies.

Over following the years, the Oak trees grew larger and the shade made the grassy yard smaller and smaller.  The Mulberry eventually succumbed to acute bad weather, creating a bright sunny center to the yard.

Once the kids had grown, the need for a play area yielded to carrying on my grandmother’s tradition of lovingly caring for plants.  The Turk’s Cap was one of her favorites.  Unfortunately, the amount of shade, long periods of Texas drought and the massive rains we’ve had in recent years, made choosing suitable plants for the less sunny areas a real challenge.  That and the need to dig up the front walk to install a French drain system didn’t help matters…well actually it did.  The extra soil against the house and the new flagstone walkways provide amazing drainage and a softer feel.

As you might imagine, the choice of perennials of all shapes and sizes was a natural one.  Some native and some not so native, but almost all were hardy enough to survive.  Through many trials and lots of tribulations, several varieties have set deep roots and continue to flourish.  Those that can’t make it are experimentally replaced by either annuals or other perennials.  It’s been an everlasting search for color and capability.

A big shout-out to my daughter Emma who put her amazing artistic talents and her flourishing botanical skills to work creating multiple potted plant arrangements and choosing plants for the yard.  It is so amazing what a colorful glazed pot can do as an accent piece.  She’s a whiz.  While she moved away two years ago, she still sends sketches of possible plant arrangements for me to try.  Which of course I do.  

And I cannot thank my neighbors enough for all of the encouragement and kindness they’ve shown over the years.  They are truly a blessing, and one of the main reasons I still live here.

Brent Smith

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June 2019 Yard of the Month: 715 Parkview Circle

The June 2019 Yard of the Month belongs to Jill and Mike Nowell. Here is what they had to say about their yard:

We learned of this honor right as we were celebrating our second year of living in the Heights Park neighborhood.  What a wonderful “anniversary gift”!

Our property was previously designed and built by the original owner in 1960 and had never changed hands until it was sold to us.  Despite only one exterior picture appearing on the MLS listing and concerns about living across from a park by our real estate agent, we knew we were home the first time we walked in the door.  We purchased the home knowing It was in serious need of a good update if it was to become our future “empty nest”.  The house was gutted, reconfigured both inside and out, and handed back to use by our general contractor as a new home!   

It took several months before Mike found time to plant anything in the yard, but he rediscovered that he thoroughly enjoyed the process of working to create something beautiful.  He and our youngest son, Aaron, worked tirelessly, over several weekends, to create what you see today.  One unique feature of the landscaping is the yellow rose bush on the front side of the beds beside the house…the bush was given to us by dear friends, in honor of Mike’s Mom, who died unexpectedly in April; yellow roses were her favorites.  Another interesting reminder of the history of the house are the perennial purple irises, at the base of the crepe myrtle, which bloom late Spring; they act as a reminder that is it almost planting season.

Despite our agent’s initial concerns, we feel very blessed to live across from Heights Park and watch all the hustle and bustle of park life.  We are happy to share this wonderful neighborhood with great people and are excited to call Richardson our “forever home”.

Mike and Jill Nowell   

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Celebrate Neighbors, Summer and Fun at Block Party

Neighbors playing corn hole at the heights of summer

Back by popular demand for the fourth year in a row, the Heights Park Neighborhood Association is excited to present The Heights of Summer Block Party from 5-8 p.m., Saturday, June 1, on the 500 block of Parkview Lane! It’s truly a wonderful time to meet your neighbors and make new friends.

This year’s big draw: FREE hot dog meals for the first 70 HPNA members (limit two meals per family). Additional meals will be $5 each (hot dog, chips and drink). You can become a member now or at the event.

The list of fun summer activities includes:

  • Bounce house
  • Water race
  • Flickin’ Chicken
  • Corn hole
  • Scavenger hunt
  • Story time
  • Live DJ
  • And much more!

Also a benefit to HPNA members: there will be prize drawings for some cool local gifts.

Note: this is a BYOB(everage) and BYOC(hair) event!

Wanna get fired up for it? Check out a video of last year’s bash.

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May 2019 Yard of the Month: 614 Greenleaf Drive

May 2019 Yard of the Month: 614 Greenleaf Drive
May 2019 Yard of the Month: 614 Greenleaf Drive

The May 2019 Yard of the Month belongs to Kyle and Whitney Beeman. Here is what Whitney had to say about their yard:

We are thrilled to be selected by the Heights Park Neighborhood Association as the Yard of the Month for May. Thank you for this honor!

My husband and I bought our home in June 2015. This was our first home purchase. We consider ourselves lucky every day to live here among amazing neighbors and friends. To say our little house and yard needed TLC is an understatement. So we immediately began renovating. We called the exterior “The Christmas House” when we first moved in because of the green roof, red shutters and red door at the time. The day we got keys we found a notice from the city in our mailbox because the weeds in the yard were 3 feet tall.

The first addition to our yard was the west flowerbed under the bay window (which is our golden retriever Abby’s favorite spot to look out). Somewhere over the life of the house, the trees in the front yard were removed. This fact and the help of our neighbors sparked inspiration for Texas-native plants to fill the full-sun beds. We love the contrasting colors and textures with rosemary, juniper, loropetalum, pittosporum, Mexican feather and purple fountain grasses. The final addition to this bed was our beloved forest pansy redbud, which produces the most beautiful fuchsia blooms in early spring.

We then began the revitalization of the existing east flower bed, continuing the Texas-native theme. An addition of the red yucca in the center adds a fun pop of color when it flowers. Future plans for our front yard landscape include planting a tree so we can have at least some shade on those hot summer days!

We love our neighborhood and all of the beautiful people and yards it includes. Please stop by to say hello the next time you find yourself at 614 Greenleaf!

Kyle and Whitney Beeman
614 Greenleaf Drive

Yard of the Month

Is your yard a source a pride? A work of art? A labor of love? It’s time to receive some formal recognition for all those hours of hard work.

The HPNA Yard of the Month contest is for all residents of Heights Park neighborhood, and nominations are due by the 20th of each month. Nominations received by the 20th will be considered for the next month’s YOM. Nominations received after that will be considered in the next cycle.

Visit this site each month to see photos of the best yards in our neighborhood. View the Contest Rules here.

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City Council Election Information

Richardson residents will elect City Council Members this spring. Richardson residents are able to cast votes for each of the seven places. Heights Park residents are represented by the Place 3 City Council member. See all candidates below.

The deadline to register to vote is Thursday, April 4. Early voting will be held April 22-30. Election Day is Saturday, May 4. There are many locations for early voting, including the Richardson Civic Center/City Hall. Election Day voting will be held at City Hall. For more information, visit the City of Richardson elections site.

City of Richardson General Election
Candidates listed as they will appear on the ballot

Mayor, City Council Place 7
Paul Voelker

City Council Place 1
Bob Dubey
Jason Clarke

City Council Place 2
Mark Solomon

City Council Place 3 (Includes Heights Park)
Franklin Byrd
Dan Barrios
Janet DePuy

City Council Place 4
Raymond DeGuzman Sr.
Johnny Lanzillo
Kyle Kepner

City Council Place 5
Mauri Long
Ken Hutchenrider

City Council Place 6
Steve Mitchell

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Find Deals, Sell Stuff at Junk in the Trunk on March 23

Heights Park Neighborhood Association is steering a fun spring sale — Junk in the Trunk. The event will be from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 23, in the Heights Elementary parking lot.

Neighbors who reserve a spot will be selling an assortment of items — from the trunks of their cars and alongside them — in assigned parking spaces at the elementary school.

The cost to sell items is $10 per car. Proceeds will benefit the Heights Elementary PTA. Email contact@heightspark.com to reserve your spot today. Only 20 spots are available, so spin your wheels fast.

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More Information about the Panelists Featured at the Last Meeting

Heights Park Neighborhood Association was pleased to present a panel of the following local experts at the recent neighborhood meeting.

Landscape Designers

Carol Feldman: Owner and landscape architect for Feldman Design Studios. The firm is a full-service design and land planning business located in Richardson, Texas, that creates aesthetically pleasing residential and commercial outdoor spaces with an utmost concern for human and environmental welfare.

Founded in 1996, Feldman Design Studios initially concentrated on residential properties and cultural landscape projects. In 2003, the firm branched out into commercial and public projects, integrating water conservation. Fifteen years later, the firm has a reputation for providing sustainable landscape designs and is known for its in-depth knowledge of native plants, water-saving techniques and water-wise strategies.

Carol was instrumental in the development of the Native Landscape Certification Program (NLCP) through the Native Plant Society of Texas. The series of four-day classes helps to certify professionals in the use of native plants in landscapes. Beginners learn much from these classes as well.  

Susie Grossman: Susie graduated from LSU in 2001 with a degree in landscape architecture. She has worked in Dallas, New Orleans and New York City, which is where she started to focus on residential design. She moved back to Dallas after getting married and having her first daughter where she ran the residential studio for Studio Outside. She started SKG Designs in 2014. She specializes in residential design including all scopes of design, such as hardscape, pools, master planning and planting design.

Realtors

Janet DePuy: A resident of Heights Park for about 19 years, she has owned two homes in the neighborhood. She also was one of original board members of HPNA, and served as president for 10 years. She has worked as a Realtor with Keller Williams for 18 years, served on the City Plan Commission for eight years, and is running for Richardson City Council, Place 3.

Dan Washburn: Dan Washburn is the broker/owner of Washburn Realty. He has over 15 years’ experience in working with home buyers and sellers. He has lived in Heights Park on Newberry Drive for over 10 years, has a 20-year-old son who went through our local public schools and two dogs which you probably have seen him walking at Heights Park. Dan specializes in Heights Park & Richardson Heights, assisting home-sellers in make ready, marketing and sale of their home to get top dollar and sell fast.

Interior Designer

Lauren Plantes: Lauren is owner of Elle Designs — an interior decorating and home renovation consulting company that specializes in creative design and planning of interior spaces. Elle Designs assists with remodel selections and consulting clients on updating beautiful and livable spaces in their home.

Lauren’s goal is to make the design process an enjoyable one, while delivering superior value and great quality. Interior decorating is something that can be quick, simple and affordable. Lauren has developed relationships with many professionals in the industry that helps her create exactly what her clients are hoping to achieve.

Organization

Rachel Baker: Rachel works with REdesign —a team of moms that specialize in spacial interior organizing and styling. They saw an opportunity to mix modern, functional design as their friends with young families simply did not know how to utilize their 1950s homes to their maximum potential. They like to keep a room organized, but still fun and functional while maintaining aesthetics. They are located in the Richardson area. Their motto is “A place for everything.”

Builder

Tim Summey: Tim Summey, owner of Summey Industries, founded his own company in 2008 but has been in the industry for 15 years. He grew up playing in the Rocket at Heights Park. Tim and his wife Rachel live on Winchester (they moved in in 2010) where they have 3 biological kids and have had three infant placements as a licensed foster family.

Summey Industries does bathroom and kitchen remodels, large-scale additions, and new builds in Dallas and Richardson.

Tim believes in high-quality craftsmanship, and he warranties the work he does. He is highly accurate in his time and budget estimation, and has never once come back to a client to ask for more money to complete a job he said could be done for less. (However he has absorbed the cost himself a time or two!) With a designer on staff, Summey Industries is equipped to handle the needs of your entire building project.

Fire Safety

Ryan Regenscheid: Ryan has been a firefighter paramedic with Richardson Fire Station 1 for eights years. Ryan grew up in Plano but now lives in McKinney with his wife and three kids.


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