August 2019 Yard of the Month

Congratulations to the owners at 712 Newberry Lane! Here is what they had to say about their yard.

Thanks for honoring us with YOM! We moved here in 1991 and the landscape has evolved as trees grew and shade progressed. I took out plants that were fine at 1st, but no longer made the grade in our ever increasing shade. We put in a swimming pool and then took out a swimming pool, tore down a garage, rebuilt a bigger garage, so things were forever changing. I put in more and more shade loving plants on a trial basis until I finally found the shade tolerant shrubs and perennials I liked and that did well. For years I never used any chemicals at all. Just all organic stuff. As I’ve gotten a bit older and a bit slower, I’ve started using just a few chemicals every now and then.  I don’t bend and stoop so well anymore, but I still enjoy the mowing and edging. This spring, I gave away almost all my garden tools except for 1 shovel and some pruners. Anything that requires more than that, I’ll hire it out. I’m retired now so I have more time to take care of everything at a little more leisurely pace. I try to do at least a little bit in the yard everyday. Ive always enjoyed taking care of my yard with the same pride my dad always did. Growing up, we always had the best yard on the block. I guess now, I can say that too…for at least a month. 

Thanks for the Honor!

Brent and Lyn Hendrex

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

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   

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.

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.

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

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 to reserve your spot today. Only 20 spots are available, so spin your wheels fast.