Week In Review, Dec. 7, 2018
Dec. 7, 2018
Here is the latest edition of Week In Review - a series of weekly messages from the Mayor and City Council to help Richardson residents and businesses keep up to date on events at City Hall. If you would like to sign up to receive this in a weekly e-mail click here.
Santa’s Village Cancelled Tonight Due To Weather
Richardson’s Santa’s Village activities are cancelled for Friday night, Dec. 7 due to safety concerns related to the weather. Parks and Recreation Department personnel will continue to monitor the forecast throughout the weekend to determine any impacts on operations at Santa’s Village for Saturday, Dec. 8 and Sunday, Dec. 9.
Event information for Santa’s Village throughout the month of December is available on the City’s website at www.cor.net/santasvillage as well as the Parks and Recreation event information line at 972-744-4301.
MRMC Marks “Topping Out” of New Addition with Ceremony
City Council members and City staff joined representatives from Methodist Richardson Medical Center (MRMC) for a “topping out” ceremony earlier this week to celebrate a milestone in the construction of the facility’s $85 million expansion—the installation of the final steel beam. The new expansion includes 150 private patient rooms, the hospital’s ninth operating room and a 500-vehicle parking garage. The hospital, located at 2831 E. President George Bush Turnpike, opened in 2014 but fast-tracked expansion plans due to an increased demand for specialized patient care.
Construction on the project is scheduled to continue until late 2019. For more information on MRMC and area health care, click here.
Community Services Staff Improve Area Homes
Staff from the City’s Community Services Department worked tirelessly Thursday to improve the appearance of several Richardson homes eligible for the City’s Volunteer Assistance Program, as part of an annual “blitz” of volunteer work the Department has carried out in November and December for several years. Seven volunteers visited 10 homes, trimming vegetation and, from one home, hauling almost 1,500 pounds of backyard and side yard “junk” (as deemed by the homeowner) to the dump. A similar volunteer work day was held by the department in November, at which they trimmed vegetation at 10 homes.
The City’s Volunteer Assistance Program partners local volunteer groups with residents who have a code violation but cannot properly maintain their property due to age, finances or disability. For more information, click here.
Tree Lighting Ceremony Kicks Off Santa’s Village; Parade Winners Announced
Santa’s Village 2018 opened to an enthusiastic crowd Dec. 1 thanks to nice weather and the grand arrival of Santa Claus, just as the Mayor flipped the switch to light the 4,600 lights of the Village’s giant pecan tree. The colorful “wonderland” has been provided by the City and enjoyed by area families for 30 years. Prior to the tree lighting, awards were handed out to winning entrants in the Richardson Christmas parade, held earlier that day. The top three specialty awards announced:
- Mayor’s Award—YMCA Adventure Guides-Young Bucks
- Grand Marshal’s Award—Cub Scouts 871 (pictured above)
- Chairman’s Elf Award—Boy Scouts 1001
Remaining dates and hours of operation for Santa’s Village are Dec.7-9 and Dec.13-16 from 6-9 p.m. Admission is free as well as adjacent parking, with a free ticket required for the Dec. 13 “Hometown Thursday” (see story below). Each of the tiny buildings features a treat and/or fun activity for children, including a visit with Santa at Santa’s House and Workshop and free Santa photos. Attendees can also enjoy live performances and warm up with a cup of hot chocolate and other treats sold at the Castle Café.
Santa’s Village is located on the City Hall/Civic Center plaza at 411 W. Arapaho Rd. behind the Richardson Public Library. For a performance schedule and more information, visit www.cor.net/SantasVillage.
Hometown Thursdays Continue Dec. 13
Thursday, Dec. 13 is the date of the final 2018 “Hometown Thursday,” a night at Santa’s Village reserved especially for Richardson residents. A free ticket is required to attend. Tickets are available (while they last) at the following locations during normal business hours:
- Richardson City Hall, 411 W. Arapaho Rd.
- Heights Recreation Center, 711 W. Arapaho Rd.
- Huffhines Recreation Center, 200 N. Plano Rd.
Richardson residents must show proof of residency, such as a driver’s license or water bill, to receive up to eight tickets per night. A limited number of tickets are available. For more information, visit www.cor.net/SantasVillage.
Toy and Food Drive Ends Dec. 13
The Richardson Fire Department is accepting donations of unwrapped toys and canned/shelf stable food for its annual toy and food drive. The event brightens the lives of the clients of Network of Community Ministries. Items may be taken to the following locations during normal business hours through close of business on Thursday, Dec. 13:
- any Richardson Fire Station
- City Service Center (1260 Columbia Dr.)
- City Hall, (411 W. Arapaho Rd.) Rooms 105 and 202
Gift suggestions include:
- Lego sets
- Nerf balls
- action figures
- dolls (including My Life dolls)
- sports team caps
- toy cars
- giant stuffed animals
- self-contained art and craft kits
- kitchen sets
- video games
- board games and playing cards
- baby walker toys
- pop-up play tents
- sports balls and equipment
- cologne, bath and body lotions, body spray
- makeup and manicure kits
- wallets, scarves, hats, gloves
- Ugg-type (fur-lined) boots of all sizes
- super hero/action figure costumes
- fleece blankets
Please no wheeled toys such as bicycles, scooters, wagons, skates or tricycles.
Final Report Given on Collins/Arapaho TOD and Innovation District Study
The Collins/Arapaho Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) and Innovation District Study officially wrapped up this week, with a written report given to the City Council and a presentation at Monday’s City Council work session. Development Services staff and members of the City’s consultant team highlighted the vision, goals and strategies for the 1,200-acre area that were developed from the nine-month study, which included extensive input from stakeholders, the City Council, institutional partners (UT Dallas, Richland college, DART and the Richardson Chamber) and the public. The results align with and expand on objectives developed in a 2017 study conducted by the Chamber’s East Arapaho/Collins task force.
Following are the 10 key strategies proposed for the City to help make the district “the premier tech hub in Texas,” supporting innovation and a range of businesses while encouraging the creation of an inviting, green, lively, walkable and bikeable space:
- Manage the experience and marketing of the District
- Support building upgrades and modernization throughout the District
- Allow zoning flexibility in industrial zones
- Encourage vibrancy through placemaking activities in places with a high concentration of workers
- Improve the District’s edges and gateways
- Redesign key streets for better mobility
- Create a shared “innovation space” for new businesses
- Strengthen partnerships with universities and colleges for programming and marketing
- Create new open space amenities to attract and retain both new and existing businesses
- Redevelop key opportunity sites to bring new uses and activities to the District
Development Services plans to refine the strategies and options for implementation utilizing City Council feedback and continued input from institutional partners and the private sector.
To view Monday’s presentation, click here. Updates on the project may be viewed at www.cor.net/collinsarapaho.
CityLine Merry Market Dec. 8
CityLine hosts its annual Merry Market and Festival Saturday, Dec. 8. The event will bring together local artisans, live music, roaming entertainers and activities for both children and adults from noon-7 p.m. inside The Lyla, located at the corner of N. Plano Road and E. CityLine Drive. New to this year’s event are “Photos with Scrooge” and three modern wreath workshops.
Admission is free, including free hot cocoa and cookies. (Registration and an extra charge is required for the wreath workshops.) For more information, visit www.citylinedfw.com/events and follow the event on Facebook for updates.
Stamp Show Continues Through Dec. 8 at Civic Center
Looking for a unique holiday gift for that “person who has everything?” Consider a collectible postage stamp. Thousands of stamps depicting just about anyone’s interests and hobbies will be for sale Dec. 7-8 at the Texas Stamp Dealers Association Show, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday at the Richardson Civic Center. Find stamps depicting famous icons of sports, music, TV, movies, literature, theater and comics; those that commemorate historical events such as space exploration; stamps from favorite travel destinations; and many more.
Admission and parking are free. For more information, visit www.TSDAstamps.com. To view a video about the stamp show created by CITV, click here.
“Holiday in the Park” at Richardson Restaurant Park Dec. 8-9 and Dec. 15-16
The Richardson Restaurant Park, 744 S. Central Expwy., will host its second annual “Holiday in the Park” event over two weekends this month, featuring free musical and dance performances Saturdays beginning at 11 a.m. and Sunday afternoons.
For more information and a performance schedule, visit Richardson Restaurant Park’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/pg/richardsonrestaurantpark/.
Registration Deadline Nears for “Breakfast with Santa”
Create a holiday memory with your child and share breakfast with Santa Claus Saturday, Dec. 15 at Huffhines Recreation Center from 9-10 a.m.
Fee is $10 per person; children will also make a craft. Pre-registration (by Dec. 11) is required. Register online by clicking here or visit www.cor.net/parksonline (activity #11619). For children ages 2-5.
At the Eisemann Center:
- “The Nutcracker” Dec. 7-9
Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Hill Performance Hall. Tickets are $11-$52. (The Saturday matinee will be a “sensory-friendly performance” specifically designed for children with sensory processing disorders like autism, Asperger syndrome, Down syndrome and other special needs.)
Dallas Repertoire Ballet invites you to escape the hustle and bustle of the holidays as they present their annual production of the beloved family classic, with a cast of more than 130 dancers.
- “Holiday at the Ballet” Dec. 8-9
7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the Bank of America Theatre. Tickets are $19-$32.
The professional company of Ballet Dallas along with the youth ensemble of Contemporary Ballet Dallas present “Clara’s Dream,” featuring favorite dances from Act II of “The Nutcracker.” The show also includes the premiere of two works from choreographers Hailey Von Schlehenried and Vincent Hardy, and a re-staging of Robert Beard’s “Ceremony of Carols.” Live musical accompaniment features the harp as well as the Open Classical women’s chorus.
- Keyboard Conversations® with Jeffrey Siegel Dec. 10
7:30 p.m. in the Bank of America Theatre. Tickets are $34-$40.
Pianist Siegel continues his popular “concert plus commentary” presentations with “Rachmaninoff and Debussy”—2018 marks the 75th and 100th anniversaries of the deaths of these two popular composers, and the program brings Preludes and Etudes of each to life (including Rachmaninoff’s “Prelude in C Sharp Minor”), plus Debussy’s “Clair de Lune.”
- “A Celebration of Hope and Unity” Dec. 11
7:30 p.m. in the Hill Performance Hall. Tickets are $49-$65.
This Eisemann Center Presents family concert features the world-renowned Sonos Handbell Ensemble from Oakland and opera superstar/mezzo-soprano Frederica Von Stade, along with the Dallas Street Choir, which is comprised of those experiencing homelessness. In the spirit of the season, donations of new and/or gently used warm winter clothing and blankets will be accepted.
Unless otherwise noted, tickets to Eisemann Center events are available at the Eisemann Center Ticket Office, 972-744-4650 and at www.eisemanncenter.com.
At UT Dallas:
- Musica Nova Dec. 7
8 p.m. in the Jonsson Performance Hall. Admission is free.
Students from the University’s Advanced Orchestra and Chamber Music Ensemble present “Musique a la Mode, A Celebration of Musical Styles,” along with UT Dallas faculty and other professional musicians under the direction of composer-conductor Robert Xavier Rodríguez.
- Annual Holiday Sing Dec. 8
4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in the University Theatre. Admission is free.
University Choir and Chamber Singers present a concert of diverse holiday music from around the world. The performance features Conrad Susa’s “Carols and Lullabies,” a work that brings together 10 Spanish carols and is accompanied by guitar, marimba and harp.
For more information on these and other UT Dallas Arts and Humanities events, visit www.utd.edu/ah.
Chamber Music Concert Saturday Features Chinese, Taiwanese and Czech Composers
Chamber Music International, a Richardson nonprofit that brings world-renowned classical musicians to North Texas, will present a concert tonight beginning at 7:30 p.m. at St. Barnabas Presbyterian Church, 1220 W. Belt Line Rd.
Tickets are $40 for adults, $35 for seniors and $10 for students. For more information and to order online, visit www.chambermusicinternational.org. Tickets may also be ordered by phone at 972-385-7267.
RCT Opens “White Christmas” Tonight
Repertory Company Theatre’s REP Company performers will present “White Christmas” Dec. 7-22. Based on the 1954 film starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney, this holiday classic includes some of Irving Berlin’s biggest hits, such as “Blue Skies,” “I Love a Piano,” “How Deep Is the Ocean” and the perennial favorite, “White Christmas.”
Show times are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $17 for youth and $27 for adults, available by calling 972-690-5029 or online at www.rcttheatre.com. Repertory Company Theatre is located at 770 N. Coit Rd.
Richardson Community Chorale Holiday Concert Dec. 13
The Richardson Community Chorale will present their third annual holiday concert, “Christmas with the RCC,” Thursday, Dec. 13, at 7 p.m. at First United Methodist Church Richardson, 503 N. Central Expwy., in the Worship and Arts Center. The Chorale will perform a variety of seasonal and holiday songs and will lead a Christmas carol sing-along. Guest artists include members of the Richardson Community Band and the First United Methodist Church Children’s Choir.
The concert is free and open to the public. A reception will follow. For more information, visit www.rcchorale.org.
Holiday Whodunit Continues at Richardson Theatre Centre
The Richardson Theatre Centre is presenting Ken Ludwig’s “The Game’s Afoot or Holmes for the Holidays” through Dec. 23. The mystery/comedy, set during the Christmas holidays of 1936, centers on Broadway star William Gillette, admired the world over for his leading role as Sherlock Holmes, who suddenly must become a real-life detective and assume the role of Holmes when a weekend guest is murdered at his home.
Performances are Thursdays at 7:30 pm, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20-$22, and include complimentary sweets, snacks and beverages.
For ticket reservations, call 972-699-1130. For more information, visit www.richardsontheatrecentre.net.
Lunchtime Lecture Series Continues Dec. 11: “Eleanor Roosevelt”
Richard Cudlipp presents the final installment in his lecture series about Eleanor Roosevelt Tuesday, Dec. 11 from 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m. in the Basement Program Room, entitled “The War, FDR Dies and Eleanor Becomes First Lady of the World.”
Both adults and teens are welcome to attend. There is no registration required and participants may bring their own lunch. For more information, call 972-744-4376.
Free Evening Movie Dec. 13
The Library’s “Free Flix @ 6” movie series continues Thursday, Dec. 13 with a showing of the PG-rated 2018 Pixar animated movie, “Incredibles 2,” from 6-8 p.m. All ages are welcome, admission is free and snacks are included.
Location is the First Floor Program Room. For more information, call 972-744-4358.
Annual Grease Recycling Event Strikes Oil
More than 125 gallons of used cooking oil were collected during the City’s annual “Cease the Grease” collection event held Nov. 21-Dec. 3, a 25-gallon increase over 2017. Richardson’s Health Department coordinates the free collection each year to help divert holiday cooking oil and grease from being poured down kitchen drains, which can create buildup in sewer pipes and cause unwanted wastewater backup.
The City partners with Texas-based American BioSource to collect the oil/grease, which is recycled into bio fuels. The next City-sponsored grease collection is planned for April 13, 2019 at the annual Trash Bash event. Go to www.CeaseTheGreaseNTX.com to learn more.
School Recycling Challenge Held
The City’s Solid Waste/Recycling Services division recently sponsored the City’s second annual Recycling Challenge between two area schools in celebration of “America Recycles Day,” and awarded a trophy and prizes to the winning students earlier today. Fifth grade students from Saint Paul the Apostle School and North Dallas Adventist Academy participated in the 12-day competition Nov. 1-12, learning about recycling in Richardson and collecting recyclables to place in a large dumpster that each school received from the City. St. Paul the Apostle students won the contest, with 1,740 pounds of recyclables collected, and received the trophy. The Dallas Zoo and McDonald’s, 1215 E. Belt Line Rd., generously provided additional prizes.
The North Dallas Adventist Academy students will each receive a participation ribbon and a bag of recycling giveaways for collecting more than 660 pounds. Visit www.cor.net/recycling for more information about the City’s recycling program.
Phil-up Appearances Announced for December
Phil-up the Blue Bag, the City’s recycling mascot, will greet the public and hand out free rolls of blue bags to Richardson residents:
- Monday, Dec. 10 at Family Dollar, 1332 S. Plano Rd., from 1:30-3 p.m.
He will also be on hand in the Civic Center Dec. 8, 13 and 15 when Santa’s Village is open (6-9 p.m.). Children can stop by his table for a free ornament-making activity; in addition, vouchers good for free blue recycling bags will be given to Richardson residents Dec. 13.
Phil-up and the Public Services staff remind everyone to consider “buying recycled” when choosing everyday products and holiday gifts—it’s an important step in completing the lifecycle of a recycled item and “closing the loop” on the recycling process. By purchasing products made with recycled content (which is usually indicated on the outer packaging), you prevent those materials from ending up in a landfill, help maintain consumer demand for recyclables and ensure the continuation of recycling programs.
For more about Phil-up or to schedule a Phil-up appearance at a community event, visit www.cor.net/philup.
Drug Take-Back Options Available for Year-Round Disposal
If you missed the Richardson Police Department’s drug take-back events in 2018, the Health Department lists links on its web page to information about how to safely dispose of expired and/or unused prescription and over-the counter drugs year-round. The best disposal methods keep drugs out of our water supply. Here are two suggestions found at one of the links (from the Federal Drug Administration) on how to dispose of medicines in the trash:
- Take them out of their original containers and mix them with an undesirable substance, such as used coffee grounds or kitty litter. The medication will be less appealing to children and pets, and unrecognizable to people who may intentionally go through your trash.
- Put them in a sealed bag, empty can or other container to prevent the medication from leaking or breaking out of a garbage bag.
For more suggestions, click here.
Maintenance Helper II ($2,316-$3,196 monthly)
The Public Services Department has multiple job openings in Streets, Water and Wastewater for individuals who love working outdoors doing repair and construction to streets and water distribution and wastewater collection systems.
Combination Inspector ($3,963-$5,732 month)
Building Inspection is seeking individuals interested in inspecting buildings, construction sites and construction components for compliance with Building, Plumbing and Mechanical codes and laws.
School Crossing Guard-part time ($9.74-$15.46 hourly)
The Police Department is seeking individuals interested in assisting children and adults with crossing traffic crosswalks.
Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
Meet Bittie! She is a terrier mix, spayed female about 2 years old and up to date on all vaccinations. Bittie is a calm girl with a sweet demeanor. She is great with kids and dogs and is house trained, leash trained, loves car rides, treats and snuggling. What else could you ask for? Adoption fee is only $25 to make Bittie a part of your family.
For information about other animals available for adoption, visit the Animal Shelter’s web page here.
To read previous Week in Reviews, visit www.cor.net/WIR.