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Postal Customer


PAID Allen, TX Permit 178


July 2012

Vol. 22, Issue 7

cover story 50 A Formula for Healthy Success AHS + HOSA = CPR + EMT + CNA + CPhT


In Allen High School’s Health Science classrooms and lab, the next generation of doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists and others in the healing arts get a rare head start. They are learning the necessary skills for their Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Basic certification. by Peggy Helmick-Richardson

feature 18 Allen ISD students take on habitat restoration projects

Students at Ereckson Middle School and Allen High School demonstrated a bit of sweat equity and willingness to get muddy as they dedicated their time on habitat restoration projects. by Michelle Harlan & Emily Cantwell


special sections 20 kids korner

4th of July Fun by Deborah Dove

36 precious pets contest winners 39 pet page Bailey

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40 calendar 58 people seen

contents departments civic forum 8


Allen Animal Shelter offers low cost services


The road to Miss Texas goes through Allen by Jeff Mues

Barbara Peavy

office administrator Carrie McCormick


advertising sales Jill Edelman Joy Dickschat

Ready… set… action! by Jeff Mues

contributing writers

Parks & Recreation Month

Emily Cantwell

by Jeff Mues

Heather Darrow


Allen Masons award scholarships

Deborah Dove

Concert Series at Christ the Servant Lutheran Church

Michelle Harlan

library 15 16



by Kathleen Vaught



Allen Image

What ever happened to heroes?

Jeff Mues Dawn Bluemel Oldfield

by Tom Keener

Peggy Helmick-Richardson

Dallas Banjo Band

Marjorie Vaneskahian

by Tom Keener

Kathleen Vaught

education 22

Tom Keener

Four stars on Broadway stages

cover photo Larry Fleming

by Heather Darrow

helping hands 26

Christmas in July by Marjorie Vaneskahian

travel 28

Beat the heat in the mountains of Colorado by Deborah Dove

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beauty/fashion 32

Fall trends for young fashionistas by Dawn Bluemel Oldfield

Allen Image © 2012 by Moonlight Graphics. All rights reserved. Allen Image is published by Moonlight Graphics and individually mailed free of charge to the residents of the Allen area. Subscriptions are available to residents outside the delivery area at a rate of $2.50 per issue—$30 per year. Subscription and editorial correspondence should be sent to: Allen Image, P.O. Box 132, Allen, TX 75013, 972.727.4569, fax 972.396.0807 or visit our website at www.allenimage. com.

civic forum

Allen Animal Shelter offers low cost services by Kathleen Vaught

Adoptions, micro-chipping and low cost vaccinations are a few of the services offered by the Allen Animal Shelter, 770 S. Allen Heights. With the expansion of the facility in recent years and the continued growth of the city’s animal population, the shelter continues to add services. Beginning in July, in conjunction with Texas Coalition for Animal Protection (TCAP), the Allen Animal Shelter will offer low cost spay and neutering services. “In addition to the long-term health benefits, most people don’t realize how many unwanted pets a single unspayed female and her mate can create,” said Vikki Francis, Animal Control Supervisor for the City of Allen. “Spaying and neutering can break a cycle for that unspayed female and her mate that, if left unchecked, could create in excess of 120,000 unwanted dogs and cats after only six years.” Prices for low cost spay and neutering services will vary through TCAP from $35 to $85 depending on the type of pet, size and if it is male or female. Additional fees may apply depending on the current health status of the animal. These services, along with low cost vaccination clinics, will be offered on a regular basis. Please visit the Allen

Animal Shelter website at or call TCAP at 940.566.5551 for dates and times. The animal shelter also provides micro-chipping services for pet owners for $20, which includes chip registration with HomeAgain. Pet adoption continues to be the primary service offered through the animal shelter. The adoption fee is $90 for all dogs and cats. The fee includes micro-chipping and chip registration. Adopting owners are given a voucher that covers sterilization of the animal if required. To find out more information or to see what animals are available for adoption, visit: or watch “In The Dog House” produced by ACTV, available through video on demand at www.allentv. org or “During summer months, the number of unwanted or stray animals housed at the shelter increases,” said Francis. “We have so many wonderful animals available for adoption. And now we are able to offer the services you need to help you take care of them in the best way possible.” The Allen Animal Shelter is open to the public Monday and Friday 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The shelter is operated by the Animal Control Division of the Allen Police Department and offers tours or presentations for schools, civic groups, day care centers or anyone requesting further information. Contact 214.509.4378 for more information. v Kathleen Vaught is the senior marketing specialist for the City of Allen.

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The road to Miss Texas goes through Allen by Jeff Mues

Allen Event Center hosts the prestigious Miss Texas Competition for the first time, June 30 through July 7. Representing Allen on the road to Miss Texas will be Keli Kryfko, a junior Exercise and Sports Science major at Texas Tech from Mesquite. Keli is also pursuing a double minor in Hospitality and Mass Communications. A beautiful woman of intellect and ideas, Keli certainly boasts a resume that makes her a contender for Miss Texas. But she didn’t always feel like a contender. It’s hard to believe, but she was once clinically obese, and certainly not on the pageant path. “I felt like a prisoner in my own body. I had no knowledge of self-worth, self-respect or self-control. I grew up in a family where diabetes, heart disease and obesity were common and my life was headed down that same path,” explains Keli. “Now years, tears and conquering fears later, I have lost 92 pounds, and now have the opportunity to help others change their lives as well.” Through the Miss Texas Competition, helping others to overcome similar challenges is something she will have an opportunity to do. After all, the Miss Texas Competition, which was founded in 1936, exists for the purpose of providing personal and professional opportunities for

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young Texas women—promoting their voice in culture, politics and the community. Keli hopes to have an impact on all of these levels with a three-part agenda: (1) to increase awareness among students on how they can live a healthier lifestyle; (2) to fight for better food in school cafeterias; and (3) to take it to the family table to build a new generation of healthy eaters. While Keli hopes to make a positive impact on the judges and in the community, the City of Allen is excited about the economic impact the event will have. The Miss Texas Competition will bring many out of town visitors to Allen and will stimulate the local economy. With so much buzz surrounding Miss Texas, it is only appropriate to wrap things up with one of Keli’s favorite lessons. As she tells it, according to all known laws of physics, flight for the bumblebee should be impossible. But no one told the bumblebee! So from kindergarteners to senior citizens, she teaches each person she comes in contact with the 5 “Bee’s” to being healthy: Bee active: find 30 minutes to get moving; Bee cautious: watch out for those fats and sugars but add fruits and veggies; Bee honest: with yourself and others around you; Bee Positive: attitude is everything; Bee-lieve in yourself: The single most critical part of achieving a goal is believing in yourself and your capability to succeed. While scientists have had a difficult time explaining how a bumblebee flies, a bee believes it can fly and it does. Keli, too, hopes to fly. The winner of the Miss Texas pageant goes on to represent Texas at the most prestigious pageant of them all, Miss America, in 2013. So make plans to cheer Keli and the other contestants on at the various events. Tickets are available online at, charge by phone at 800.745.3000 or at Allen Event Center Box Office. Tickets will also be available at the door. v Jeff Mues is a senior marketing coordinator with the Allen Event Center and Allen Parks & Recreation Department.

Ready… set… action!

by Jeff Mues

Shakespeare once wrote, “All the world’s a stage.” If the lessons that can be learned through theatre were universally “acted” upon, our worldly stage would be a better place. Through theater, creativity can flourish, attitudes of tolerance and openmindedness are cultivated and means of self-expression can be developed. Additionally, children who get involved with theater can learn valuable skills and life lessons about responsibility, reliability, teamwork and commitment. Wouldn’t it be great if children could gain these skills through a fun, unique theatre experience right here in Allen? Wouldn’t it be fantastic if the famed Missoula Children’s Theatre would come to the Allen Public Library? Clear your schedules and consider this a casting call because this year the Missoula Children’s Theatre will present two weeklong camps where children can participate in a theater production from start to finish! Every child will receive a part! July 16 through 21, The Frog Prince—the classic story of a prince that was turned into a frog—comes to life. Then August 6 through 11, The Tortoise Versus the Hare—a musical

theater adaptation of the familiar family classic—tells the story of the annual race between the reptiles and the mammals in West Sandy Bottoms. Camps for those entering first grade through twelfth grade are offered. This is the seventh year the City of Allen’s Parks and Recreation Department has hosted the Missoula Children’s Theatre and over that time span they have delivered each time on their mission statement. “Within each Missoula Children’s Theatre cast, girls and boys are equal; the disabled become able; the shy experiment with bravery; the slow are rehearsed to perfection; and the gifted become part of the whole. The lesson

they learn is that all of them are necessary for the show to go on. Few arenas exist where responsibility is taught and learned so clearly. Missoula Children’s Theatre provides a unique opportunity to learn the lessons of group dynamics while excelling as an individual—a lesson from art that carries into life.” So ready, set, action! There’s still room to get your little actors and actresses signed up. There’s a part for everyone. Visit or call Tiffany Harben at 214.509.4707 for more information. v Jeff Mues is a senior marketing coordinator with the Allen Event Center and Allen Parks & Recreation Department.

Allen Image x July 2012


Parks and Recreation Month by Jeff Mues Soaring temperatures, children laughing, water splashing and the smell of hot dogs in the air can only mean one thing—July is here. For Parks and Recreation professionals, it is an especially important and busy month. In fact, July is the busiest month in America in terms of park usage. Fittingly, it has also been designated National Parks and Recreation Month by the National Recreation and Parks Association. Each year, the City of Allen helps commemorate this special occasion by offering a number of special programs and recreation opportunities. This year, with the Olympics set to kick off later this month, we are offering activities inspired by the 2012 Summer Olympics. As you are no doubt aware, the games of the 30th Olympiad will take place in London. To really experience the Olympics a passport is therefore required. But good news, the Parks and

Recreation Department is issuing very special passports this month! They are not your standard passports of course, but ones that will allow you to travel around our city’s many great recreation facilities earning a stamp for each fun activity, not to mention the opportunity to win great prizes. Passport activities include rock climbing, the lazy river, swimming and diving at the Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium; volleyball, basketball, disc golf and racquetball at Joe Farmer Recreation Center; table tennis, video games, BMX and foosball at The Edge Skatepark and Visitor Center; and ice skating, broomball, ice hockey and figure skating at Allen Community Ice Rink. Passports can be picked up at any of these facilities as well as at the main parks and recreation offices at Allen Civic Plaza. A print-it-yourself version will also be available for download at

A photo con­ test will be taking place again this year. Similar to last year ’s “Picture Yourself in a Park” contest, we are looking for great photos of you enjoying one of Allen’s recreation facilities—the Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium, the Edge Skatepark and Visitor Center, Joe Farmer Recreation Center, Allen Community Ice Rink or the Senior Center. If you have photos of yourself hitting the links at Chase Oaks, which is currently undergoing renovations, those count too! Submit your photos, new or old, via Facebook at AllenParksandRec. We hope to see lots of photos, including some action shots of kids earning their passport stamps! Some of our favorites could be included on a future cover of our Stuff Activity Guide! The second annual Twilight Festival in the Park will serve as the culmination celebration of Parks and Recreation Month. Bring the family to JFRC/Bethany Lakes Park and join us in fun-filled activities—bounce houses, face painting, balloon artists, kite demonstrations, concessions and more! When the sun sets we will settle down to enjoy a family, Olympicsrelated movie outdoors on a huge inflatable movie screen. Get those passports and cameras ready! For full details, please visit v Jeff Mues is a senior marketing coordinator with the Allen Event Center and Allen Parks & Recreation Department.

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Snippets Allen Masons award scholarships Each year Allen Masonic Lodge No. 1435 holds fundraisers to provide scholarships to graduating Allen and Lovejoy High School seniors. Each of the following received $1,375. We offer our congratulations and best wishes to these outstanding young adults. We want to thank Pam Hill in the AHS College and Career Services Center and Jeannie Walls in the Lovejoy College and Career Services Center for their help and assistance. Kendall Crisp attends Lovejoy High School where she was selected to the Academic All-District Basketball Team. She is a member of the National Honor Society and in the PALS program. She will be attending Texas Tech in the fall. Natalie Falk attends Lovejoy High School where she a member of the Majestic Dance Team and Varsity Choir. She is a member of the National Honor Society. Natalie will be attending BYU or BYU-Idaho this fall, studying nutrition.

L to R: Natalie Falk, Megan Plate, Krystil Pruett, Kendall Crisp and Jim Porterfield

Megan Plate attends Allen High School where she is a member of the National Honor Society and ranks in the “top 10” of students in her class. She will be attending Texas A & M University in the Honors Business Program this fall. Krystil Pruett attends Lovejoy High School and is a member of the National Honor Society and she was a UIL Debate Regional Finalist. She will be attending UT Arlington this fall where she will be majoring in Civil Engineering. v

Concert Series at Christ the Servant Lutheran Church Hitting the ground running in mid December, Jordan Smith, the new Director of Music and organist at Christ the Servant, has been very busy with the church’s new concert series. The series began in March and the next concert is Tuesday, July 10 at 7:30 p.m., performed by Nick Carlson, a senior Organ Performance major at Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas. Carlson will play works by Bach, Vierne, Widor, Mendelssohn and more. On October 28 at 4 p.m., the choirs of Resurrection Lutheran Church in Plano and Christ the Servant will join to perform a Festival of Anthems and Hymns. Also performing in this concert will be the handbells and Youth Choir from Christ the servant. The last concert will be on November 3 at 7:30 p.m. Associate Professor of Music and college organist, Dr. Melody Steed, of Bethany College will be performing a solo organ concert.

Nick Carlson

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We invite you to come and enjoy these music events at Christ the Servant Lutheran Church, 821 S. Greenville Avenue in Allen. They are free and open to the public. For more information. please visit v


What ever happened to heroes? by Tom Keener

What makes a hero? Who are your heroes, and why do you admire them? National Public Radio commen­ tator Chris Tucker presents “What Ever Happened to Heroes?” Mr. Tucker will explore heroes in mythology, religion, war, social activism, sports, films and politics at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, July 19, at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Drive. In addition to defining a hero and determining his or her relevance to ancient and modern society, Mr. Tucker will also discuss the characteristics of heroes and what our choice of heroes says about our values and the values of society. Other topics covered this evening will include distinguishing heroes from mere celebrities and why it is a challenge to find true heroes. Recalling his childhood, Mr. Tucker notes, “One of my earliest heroes was the comic character Green Lantern. I read all the comic book heroes, but something about him appealed to me the most. I think it was the oath he took each time he re­ charged the ring, which I cite in the commentary. Years later, as an adult, I realized that I still remembered Green Lantern’s oath, and that got me to thinking about heroes--who they are, why we need them, what it takes to be a hero and more.” A former columnist and editor of D Magazine, Tucker is now an author, journalist, speechwriter and editor; a regular book reviewer for The Dallas Morning News; and a commentator for KERA 90.1 FM and National Public Radio. He has won numerous

writing awards from the City and Regional Magazine Association and Dallas Press Club. He holds bachelor ’s and master ’s degrees in English and American Literature from the University of North Texas. Sponsored by Back to Books, this program is free. v Tom Keener is the cultural arts manager with the Allen Public Library.

Allen Image x July 2012


Dallas Banjo Band Although the banjo has African origins, its modern configuration is truly an American phenomenon. Along with the fiddle, the banjo is a mainstay of American oldtime music. Celebrating their twenty-third year, the Dallas Banjo Band appears at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Drive at 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 13. From Dixieland to blues and ragtime tunes, the Dallas Banjo Band performs a variety of musical genres. This 20-piece band was formed in 1989 under the direction of Smokey Montgomery, formerly a banjoist with Bob Wills and the Light Crust Doughboys. Since then, they have performed with the Garland Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, and America’s Got Talent. Their arrangements appear on the sound­t rack for the film, Lugosi: Hollywood’s Dracula, and oxymoroni­cally, their songs range from Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake” to Gorney’s “Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?” Homebuilder Harold Poole, the band’s concertmaster, was an ex-guitarist who hadn’t played in 30 years when he met Montgomery. The connection was made via a flugelhorn player whose new house Poole was building. He notes, “Smokey loaned me his banjo for the week and sent

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by Tom Keener

me home with an instruction book. That was 20 years ago.” When asked why he prefers the banjo, he responds. “It is a happy instrument; it is hard to play a sad song on the banjo.” Poole then gleefully notes, “One of our numbers includes a wash board.”

This machine surrounds hate and forces it to surrender... —Pete Seeger The banjo’s popularity sharply declined as the acoustic guitar ascended to iconic status during the 1920s. However, the banjo experienced a revival when “The Ballad of Jed Clampett” debuted on the 1960s hit television show, The Beverly Hillbillies. This number 1 country hit made it to 44 on the charts in 1962. Sponsored by Bach to Books, this program is free. For information, call 214-509-4911. v Tom Keener is the cultural arts manager with the Allen Public Library.


Allen ISD students take on habitat restoration projects by Michelle Harlan and Emily Cantwell project,” said Bryce Madrid, a seventh grade leader of the Ereckson Environmental Club (EEC). “By adding native wetland grasses and plants to our pond, we want to improve the quality of water that runs off into the Connemara meadow. By doing that, we can attract more wildlife and plant diversity.” Wetland plants are often considered important to water quality for their biofiltration, or ability to remove contaminants from runoff water that eventually end up in local creeks and lakes. The native plants were donated by the University of North Texas, Lewisville Aquatic Ecosystem Research Facility. Students will be studying the quality of water before and after the wetland plantings were added and analyze the possible impact of water runoff from nearby neighborhoods and storms. To do this, EEC members were certified as Texas Stream Team monitors and will report More than two dozen Ereckson Middle School students their data to the organization’s website for public and volunteers demonstrated a bit of sweat equity and information. The results could have important implications willingness to get muddy as they dedicated an afternoon to for local residents who may have an interest in creating a create a new wetland area at Connemara Conservancy rain garden or to reduce the water runoff from their own Meadow Preserve in Allen. property. “We were excited to get our hands dirty with this “By examining how runoff water may be affecting our research areas, we are experimenting with some of the small changes people could make to improve the environment and minimize human impact on area water quality,” said Laurie Merrick, a science teacher and advisor to the EEC. EEC members will complete three projects at nearby Connemara Conservancy Meadow Preserve, including the new wetland habitat, and will be removing invasive plants and adding native grasses and aquatic Ereckson Middle School students and teachers take pride in their research at the new plants to support wildlife and wetland area at Connemara meadow preserve. to improve the quality of water that leads to Rowlett Creek. Healthy Habitats, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting education and environmental stewardship in the state of Texas, recently provided $30,000 in grants to three Allen ISD schools for several different habitat restoration projects in the area. “These young environmental leaders demonstrate the service leadership qualities and willingness to volunteer their own time to projects that we are thrilled to support in the community,” said Jana Harter, a grant consultant with Healthy Habitats, which is sponsored by Texas Service Learning, Texas Parks and Wildlife, Esri, Encana Oil & Gas (USA) Inc. and Texas Stream Team.

Ereckson students dig into new wetland area

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Ereckson 8th grade student Abby Johns digs into wetland project at Connemara meadow.

AHS students planting the promise of a rain garden

plants’ natural removal of contaminants as it absorbs chemicals into the roots and releases oxygen into the water. The plants can increase habitat for wildlife and reduce erosion caused by fast-moving surges in rainfall runoff. National trends appear to support the idea. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) touts the concept of rain gardens on its website and encourages planting native, climate-tolerant plants to absorb rainfall as an important tool in adapting the landscape to extreme storms. The recent rain drought in Texas, combined with short periods of heavy rainfall, reinforce the importance of studying urban runoff. Water runoff in Allen ultimately ends up in creeks that lead to Lake Ray Hubbard, an important water source for the greater Dallas area. “Right now our water runoff from parking lots and lawns picks up contaminants and then runs directly into local streams and treatment facilities,” Reese explained. Students are excited about the prospect of making positive changes in a hands-on way. “With the grant, we hope to determine how well the rain garden is filtering the water that dumps into the creek,” says EA Team vice president and AHS senior Collin Pollitt. The next step will be to educate the community. EA Team members plan to visit local elementary schools to explain their project and talk about its impact on the community. In addition to creating the garden itself, they will be installing an information kiosk at the Allen Station park site to inform passers-by about the new improvements to their local park. The EA Team hopes the project will encourage others to build retention areas or rain gardens, because they are relatively inexpensive and not hard to do. v

Allen now has its first community rain garden designed to improve the quality of local water. A rain garden, also known as a bio retention area, naturally filters Article submitted by Michelle Harlan and Emily Cantwell. water runoff where rainwater and storm runoff typically collects. Students in the Environmental Awareness Team at Allen High School (AHS) installed the new rain garden project, located at Allen Station. “Cities nationwide are looking at efficient ways to minimize water runoff and cut down on the need for water treatment further down the line,” said Heidi Reese, advisor of the EA Team and environmental science teacher at AHS. “This is a great learning opportunity for students to determine a rain garden’s potential impact and might lead to greater community support for more Top L to R: Heidi Reese, Savannah Finch, Jenna Holbert, Collin Pollitt, Casey Bennett green infrastructure in our area.” (City of Allen), Jordan Machorro, Jared Machorro, Kathy Shang, Alyssa Fernandez; A rain garden functions like a bottom L to R: Cara Doil, Diana Elkassih, Raeesa Alam, Hae Song Lee. wetland area and is designed to naturally filter the water through Allen Image x July 2012


kids korner

4th of July Fun by Deborah Dove

FIREWORKS DISPLAY Red, White & Boom (McKinney) Celebrate Independence Day with hometown fun in McKinney, including a downtown parade at 10 a.m. Family activities, food and live entertainment at the Soccer Complex at Craig Ranch begin at 7 p.m. and fireworks at 9:45. Tune in to Classical 101.1 for a live simulcast of “Sounds of the Season” during the fireworks. All activities and events are free. Frisco Freedom Fest 2012 Beginning at 4 p.m. on the 4th, celebrate Independence Day in Frisco at FC Dallas Stadium and Simpson Stadium. The event includes the Children’s Expo, with fee based activities such as Euro Bungees, inflatables, train rides, and face painting as well as free ones such as puppet shows; local entertainment; a Hometown Heroes Exhibit where kids can meet members of the Fire and Police departments and learn about the equipment they use in their jobs; and the Taste of Frisco where Frisco restaurants will be serving some of their most popular foods. The event culminates in a 20-minute fireworks display, which will start about 10 p.m. and will be visible around City Hall and the FC Dallas Stadium. All American Fourth (Plano) Nothing says the Fourth like a parade. Plano’s annual Independence Day parade starts at 9 a.m. at the Plano ISD administration building at West 15th just east of Independence Blvd., then will travel west on 15th Street and north on Independence, ending in the Plano Senior High parking lot. This year’s theme “Freedom Isn’t Free: A Tribute to

Veterans” is sure to be meaningful. At 9:30 p.m., the city puts on its fireworks show at Oak Point Park and Nature Center at 2601 Spring Creek. Tune into 97.5 for a simulcast.

CRAFTS Fourth Flip Flops 1/4 yd. fabric (a patriotic print or solid red, white and blue) 1 pair flip-flops Scissors Cut fabric into 1” x 9” strips. Tie the strips in a knot around the straps of the flip-flops. Continue to add strips alternating sides until you have the flip-flop fringe as full as you choose. Trim fringe with scissors to desired length. Fireworks Painting Two Ways (make separate pictures or combine techniques in one picture) Black construction paper Plastic scouring pad(s) Washable poster paint Glue Glitter Way 1 Dip the pad into paint and then press onto paper. Change colors and press again until you have the desired number of “fireworks.” Let paint dry. Dip scouring pad into glue and press onto paper. Immediately sprinkle with glitter. Way 2 In a paper cup, dilute desired paint color with water until slightly runny. Using a paintbrush, drip a few drops of paint onto a piece of paper or card stock (be sure to rinse the brush between colors), then hold a drinking straw directly over each puddle of paint and blow gently to create a starburst effect.

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TREATS Pretzel Sparklers 24 long rod pretzels 12 oz. package of white chocolate chips Red, white and blue sprinkles Line baking sheet with waxed paper; place wire rack on top. Place chocolate chips in microwavable bowl. Microwave on high 1 minute; stir. Microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until chocolate is melted and smooth. Dip one half of each pretzel rod into melted chocolate; roll in sprinkles. (Drizzle melted chocolate from spoon while rotating pretzel, to get even coverage.) Place decorated pretzels on a prepared wire rack; let them stand until set. Skyrocket Ice Pops 12 (8 oz) plastic cups 12 popsicle sticks Red Layer: 4 c. cran-raspberry juice Red food coloring White Layer: 2 c. frozen whipped topping 2 c. vanilla yogurt Blue Layer: 4 c. grape juice Water Blue food coloring Mix grape juice and water, adding food coloring until mixture turns blue. Pour into the plastic cups, filling each 1/3 full. Place in the freezer. Once they start to freeze, put a popsicle stick in the center of each cup and freeze until solid. Mix yogurt and whipped topping together. Spoon into cups on top of the frozen blue layer, so cups are 2/3 full. Freeze for one hour. Add food coloring to cran-raspberry juice until red color is achieved.

Pour into cups and freeze until they are solid. When ready to serve, run the outside of cups under cold water, remove plastic cup and serve.

ACTIVITIES Bike Parade Trick out the bikes in the neighborhood and hold a Fourth of July parade. Here are some ideas to get you started. • Tie curled, metallic red, white and blue curling ribbon to each handlebar • Slide bells onto metallic pipe cleaners and wrap around bike frame • Using scissors, snip along the length of a straw. Snap onto spokes. Cut some shorter than the length of the spoke so they will make noise as they slide. You can also clothespin playing cards to the spokes of the bike so that they slap the frame as the wheel turns. Balloon Fireworks Pull the end of a balloon over a funnel. Fill 1/4 full with confetti. Inflate with a hand pump and tie off. Tie overhead, then pop with a pencil to release the confetti. Firefly Tag This is a fun game to play while you’re waiting for the fireworks to start. To play, “it” (the firefly) gets a flashlight and heads away from the group with the light off, silently counting to 60. When he reached 60, he must flash the light once. The rest of the players count to 100, then try to find and tag the firefly who tries not to get tagged by hiding and/or changing directions. Every 60 seconds, the firefly had to flash the light. The first person to tag the firefly becomes it.


Four stars on Broadway stages by Heather Darrow

John Lithgow and Brian J. Smith in The Columnist. It’s not what you might expect— four former community college theater students performing on four distinct Broadway stages simultaneously— unveiling the intricacies of politics and hidden agendas with John Lithgow, cavorting with Beau Bridges and Nick Jonas and literally soaring out over the audience and uttering the words “When I was a boy I wanted to fly.” With an influx of Tony nominations, glowing reviews from Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, The Hollywood Reporter, Entertainment Weekly,, Rolling Stone and The New York Times, their success is undeniable. Of course, those who truly

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know the Collin Theatre Center are privy to the fact that Collin College alumni have been making headlines in film, national television and prestigious theatrical venues for years.

The Scholar Actor “It’s Texans taking over Broadway. It’s pretty crazy,” Brian J. Smith said, laughing. “Collin was where I developed confidence in myself. I didn’t know if I was any good. Collin is where I was told, ‘Yes you are, you should be proud of that and do this.’ “I wouldn’t have had the guts to audition for Juilliard without Collin College,” Smith added. Known for the television show

Stargate Universe and PBS’s Murder on the Orient Express, Smith is currently playing Andrei in The Columnist. This is his second time on Broadway. He performed in Come Back, Little Sheba in 2008. When he is not rehearsing or acting, Smith is reading Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, Proust’s last volume of In Search of Lost Time and a biography on Lyndon Johnson. “Being on stage with John (Lithgow) is very exciting. I have always been a big fan. Every night when I go out there I have to pinch myself and then, of course, do my job. As a human being, John is extraordinary. He is one of the nicest, most generous, kindest men I have ever known. He makes us feel like a company,” Smith said. According to Smith, his fellow actors have so many famous friends that he has requested not to know who is coming to performances to avoid anxiety. “Last night Jim Caviezel (The Thin Red Line) was here. Another night Grace pulled me in and said, ‘I want you to meet my mom (Meryl Streep),’” Smith said. Smith was drawn to his role as the Russian Andrei. A history buff, he finds communism and the pre-Berlinwall-falling era fascinating. “This is the first time I have been able to play a character that is pretty transformative. The play takes place between 1954 and 1968. Andrei undergoes a lot of life changes. There is a bit of characterization that I have to build up just by being a Russian. The way they use their bodies is very different. There is nothing like being on

Elizabeth Judd stage. Telling a story to a live audience is what I love most,” Smith said.

I Believe I Can Fly Elizabeth Judd says when she is part of the ensemble flying out over the audience in Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark people describe the scene as beautiful. “It was awesome and scary at first. We are hooked on safety lines and holding ourselves up. It is cool to be able to do that at your job every day.” Judd is also the understudy for Mary Jane. She was one of 20 girls who sang and danced at the audition. “It was pretty awesome. It changed my whole life in a couple of days. I went on for the first time on Sunday as Mary Jane. It was the happiest day of my life. My whole family was there to see it. It’s incredible to be on Broadway getting to do what you love,” Judd said. When Judd was 10 years old, she saw Phantom of the Opera and was hooked. She says she began taking voice lessons because her mother could not get her to be quiet. Judd Allen Image x July 2012


Jason Ralph claims she learned dedication and a positive attitude at Collin. “All the Collin professors were so incredible to me. They gave me the tools I needed to keep going. Over and above the awesome technical training, they were always helping and encouraging me. That is irreplaceable.” Judd loves performing for the children who give themselves over completely to the world of imagination. “Tyra Banks came to the show yesterday. Mary Louise Parker and Bono came the other day. Celebrities come and they bring their kids. I’ve learned so much so quickly in this show. It is human nature to put limits on yourself, but I have learned to show that I am not terrified and just go full throttle for it.”

Free Falling Faith Looking back it all seems like a blur for Jason Ralph. As the understudy for five parts in Peter and the Starcatcher, he recently had the opportunity to see John Kresinski (Jim from The Office) backstage. Not too long ago, Jason Ralph switched roles. Instead of serving as the reader for other actors, he was the actor reading the lines, hoping to be selected for the part. “The casting director had never seen me act before. I did the first piece

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and watched out of the corner of my eye and saw him sigh in relief and think, ‘Thank God. He’s not terrible,’” Ralph said, laughing. Ultimately, it came down to Ralph and two other actors. He tossed a toy football to his competition to relieve the tension. Finally, he was alone in the hall throwing the football into the air. “I went in last. It was magical. The room was friendly, and I felt well prepared and excited. The casting people were my friends. I had worked with my reader before. The stars aligned. It couldn’t have been more comfortable and fun. I am hesitant to say my dream came true because that sounds like the end, and I am not there yet. Suddenly, I am standing on Broadway and looking down 47th street, and I see Peter and the Starcatcher on the marquee. I am walking to work on Broadway,” Ralph said in disbelief. Ralph says two important stops on the road to Broadway were Collin College and SUNY Purchase. He notes that every year he attended SUNY Purchase there were two people from Collin College in every class. “It is 100 percent true that I would not be where I am now without Collin College. I turned Collin College into my own personal theater conservatory. The professors are phenomenal. They

taught me what acting could be and the amazing possibilities that await you. There were so many Collin graduates at SUNY Purchase that it was like Collin was a feeder school. A thousand people audition for the program, and they take like 22 people a year.” According to Ralph, the opening lines of the play reveal the in-yourface experience the audience can expect throughout the performance. The entire company rushes on stage and utters the words “When I was a boy I wished I could fly.” This simple phrase parallels Ralph’s courageous philosophy to only do what makes him happy. “That mindset has set me up. It is an energy you put out there to be brave enough to fail and to be poor for a long time just to do the thing you love. The key is to keep doing it. You do it because you love it, and in the moments when you don’t love it the key is finding that love again.”

Humble Household Name Though he’s amassed a generous fan base as Marc St. James on Ugly Betty and The Temperamentals, this is Michael Urie’s first time performing on Broadway, and he loves it. Urie is performing in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying with Beau Bridges and Nick Jonas. In 1998, Urie experienced his first on-Broadway performance, Ragtime, with his fellow Collin College students. He says he was mystified by so many plays showing simultaneously in the same neighborhood and the thousands of people who flocked to see the performances. “I certainly didn’t see how I’d ever get on those stages. Broadway is a small club, which many working actors never achieve. I’m honored to be in the club. TV is extremely wide reaching. I can be anywhere in the world and not be surprised if someone knows me. Theatre is far more elite. You have to be in the theatre or you miss it. People have a much more personal and lasting experience.” Urie first saw How to Succeed in

Business Without Really Trying when he was 16 years old. Roger Bart played Bud Frump, the role Urie plays. Even then, Urie knew he wanted to play the actor the audience loved to hate, but he never dreamed he would have the opportunity since he does not consider himself a natural singer or dancer. “There were many, many times I thought I’d never get it. I wouldn’t say it’s ‘easy’ now, but I definitely ‘got it’ and am no longer terrified!” Urie says he learned passion for the theater from his Collin College professors. “If Professor Brad Baker hadn’t talked me into auditioning for Juilliard, I might still be in Collin County doing shows. I learned that the theatre is a sacred place and everything that’s done inside of it has to matter every time.” Urie says he is dancing like a maniac and having fun performing with the talented cast. He hopes to act in another musical someday. “We’re having a really good time. Nick and I rehearsed together and joined the show on the same night, which was pretty special. The scenes we have together are among my favorites because of that.” When asked about his future, a very grounded Urie says he hopes his luck continues. v Michael Urie Heather Darrow is a public information writer for Collin College.

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helping hands

MONDAYS Bar-B-Cutie, 208 Greenville Ave. 10% of sales at lunch and dinner on July 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 Yogurtville, 1108 N. Greenville Ave #135 at Exchange All day 10% of receipts that are dropped in basket at register on July 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

TUESDAYS Cosmic Jump, 1300 Central Expy N #300 at Exchange 20% of sales from 6-8 p.m. on July 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 Pluckers Wing Bar, 190 E Stacy Rd, Suite 1800 10% of sales from 5-7 p.m. on July 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

THURSDAYS La Finca Chaquita, 107 N. Butler Dr., downtown Allen 10% of sales from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on July 5, 12, 19, 26

FRIDAYS Elke’s Market Café, 105 N. Greenville Ave. at Main St. 10% of sales from 11 a.m.2 p.m. in the café on July 6, 13, 20, 27

ALL MONTH Market Street, Bethany/75 Watters Crossing Shopping Center Make a donation to ACO’s Christmas in July Campaign at the register, July 1-31, at ACO Resale Shop, 801 E Main Street.

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Christmas in July by Marjorie Vaneskahian There is no better place to be during the holidays than at Allen Community Outreach. From midOctober until just days before Christmas, ACO is filled with families in desperate need of food for Thanksgiving or toys for their children at Christmas. The number of families who request our services each holiday season is huge and it’s hard to imagine that so many of our neighbors must rely on ACO for assistance. “Christmas In July” has become a tradition every year as we send letters reminding you of the need here in our community and asking for your support during this critical time of year. Why do I think ACO is the best place to be during the holidays?

During holiday months it is filled to capacity with donations of food, toys, gifts and cash donations. I have the best seat in town to view how generous and kind our community is with their giving. But, as I sit here in the summer months, I see the donations that rush in during the fall slow to a trickle. Yet the summer months can be much more stressful and dismal for families facing financial disaster. Electric and water bills are highest this time of year. Kids are out of school and constantly looking in the fridge and pantry for food that just isn’t there. Our elderly tend to sit in stifling heat to conserve on the high electric bill they cannot pay. But, your donations can change that. You can ensure that children this summer will not go to

bed hungry and that they will have new school supplies in August. More than 150 families come to the ACO Food Pantry each month, and leave pushing baskets of groceries. Without this assistance there would be nothing in their pantries. They would not be able to feed their kids. We’ve had volunteers that turned into clients needing ACO services. And, thanks to donations from our community, we’ve seen clients get back on their feet and turn into volunteers and donors. One of our volunteer’s experiences is told in our “Christmas In July” mailing on its way to you now. Read about Tonya and her family. Your support of ACO is critical to area families. We don’t receive large government funding or donations from United Way. ACO is supported by local families and individuals like you. We are able to transform lives because of monetary gifts from $5 to $5000. With your gift, $25 will give a child a summertime “Food4Kids” bag of favorite breakfast and lunch foods for two weeks. Fifty dollars will pay for 10 days of Meals On Wheels deliveries for a senior or homebound neighbor. A family of six can be fed for one week with $100. You can assist a family with utilities for one month for $250. And, $500 will keep a family in their home for one month. The “Santa” level is $1000 annually and your commitment to support five years with an annual payment of $1000 will ensure that many families in the future will have their lives transformed with your help. Soon information will arrive in your mailbox telling you more about ACO’s annual “Christmas In July” campaign to GIVE WHERE YOU LIVE! You’ll receive a return remittance envelope to mail your donation or simply visit ACO’s website for more information and donations made securely online at Local restaurants and businesses are showing their support for “Christmas In July” by donating a portion of their proceeds to ACO.

Please support these local businesses all month long. Please show your support of the only local agency providing basic human service needs to our community. Remember to tell your neighbors that you are supporting GIVE WHERE YOU LIVE! and ask them to also give. Encourage them to dine at ACO supporting restaurants and to visit supporting businesses. On behalf of the hundreds of families ACO helps each year, I thank

you. You do transform lives with your generosity. Come sit with me this July and let’s watch the gifts and donations rush through our doors. For more information about ACO donations visit or call 972.727.9131. Allen Community Outreach Center, ACO Food Pantry and ACO Resale Shop are located at v 801 E. Main Street in Allen. Marjorie Baker Vaneskahian is the Director of Volunteer Services at ACO.

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Beat the heat in the mountains of Colorado by Deborah Dove

If there is ever a time to run away from Texas, the months of July and August are undoubtedly it. One hundred degree plus days, unrelenting sun that could fry an egg on the sidewalk and stifling heat are enough to make even the most die hard Texan long for a cooler climate. If you yearn for cool nights, days that are sunny but pleasant, and a wealth of outdoor activities, consider heading to Colorado this summer. Following are a few of my favorite Colorado destinations. The drive isn’t for the faint of heart (most summer vacation destinations are between 850 and 945 miles from Allen) but it’s definitely doable in the summertime.


The Silverton Railroad as it winds through the mountains.

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Located in the southwest corner of Colorado at the foot of the San Juan Mountains, Durango is one of the most scenic areas in Colorado (and that’s saying something!) with mountains, desert canyons, streams and pine forests. Durango is also home to several great must-see attractions. The first, Mesa Verde National Park, contains one of the bestpreserved glimpses into North America’s prehistoric past with more than 600 cliff dwellings where Puebloans built homes and villages in caves and under the overhanging cliffs during the late 1190s. Numerous tours are available, including self-guided tours, ranger guided walking tours and half day bus tours. Best of all, the entrance fee to this park is only $15 per car (although there is an additional fee for guided tours). Another must-see in Durango is the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. Once used to haul silver and ore from the San Juan Mountains, the train now offers an amazing scenic ride along the Animas River as it makes its 3,000 foot climb to Silverton, passing fertile farmlands, old stagecoach roads, old mining camps, cliff edges, waterfalls and mountain peaks reaching over 14,000 feet, often with year-round snow. Visit their website at www. for pricing and special deals. The San Juan Skyway, a 236-mile paved highway loop, roughly parallels the route of the railway if you prefer to drive it yourself. Colorado is beautiful in the summer and the climate lends itself to enjoying all the outdoor activities the area has to offer. Southwest Whitewater and Mild to Wild both offer whitewater rafting river trips for all experience levels, from the mild rapids of a half-day family friendly float on the lower Animas to one of the toughest commercially-run trips in the United States through 26 miles of class IV and V rapids. Plenty of opportunities for hiking and fly-fishing also abound.

The Durango Mountain Resort is a vacation in itself. In addition to offering lodging that is nestled in the mountains yet still convenient to all Durango has to offer, there are a ton of summer activities guaranteed to thrill everyone in the family. The Purgatory Plunge is a zip-line experience that takes riders soaring the length of a football field at speeds up to 35 mph ($25). To ride the resort’s Alpine Slide, riders are carried up the mountain on a chairlift, then descend along a half-mile track on a sled where the rider controls the speed ($13). Round trip chairlift rides to enjoy a bird’s eye view of the scenery, panning for gold and gemstones, miniature golf, disc golf, a mechanical bull and climbing wall are other activities offered at the resort. Mountain scooters and mountain bikes are also available for rent to explore the miles of scenic trails. Visit for more information.

Colorado Springs Just south of Denver, Colorado Springs is a vacationer’s dream with tons to see and do, not to mention the home of Pikes Peak, America’s most famous mountain. Be sure to travel the 19-mile Pikes Peak Highway to the summit of Pikes Peak, which inspired the song “America the Beautiful.” The area also boasts the Garden of the Gods, a national natural landmark of 300-foot towering sandstone rock formations set against the backdrop of Pikes Peak, Cave of the Winds (teens will love the Lantern Tour complete with ghost stories and with only a lantern to light the way), and The Royal Gorge, known as the Grand Canyon of the Arkansas. You can get a panoramic view of the gorge from the Royal Gorge Bridge, the world’s highest suspension bridge at 1,053 feet, on the world’s longest single span aerial tram or from aboard the steepest incline railway.

The Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs.

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Estes Park Located further north in the Colorado Rockies, you won’t soon forget hiking along the amazing backdrop of the mountains or the

thousands of stars you can see at night. The YMCA of the Rockies is minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park and offers gorgeous scenery, friendly staff, affordable lodging in hotel style lodge rooms, cabins or vacation homes, all with cafeteria meal options and a wealth of activities at your door step. On-property recreations, many of which are free to park guests, include

low and high ropes courses, hiking (guided and self), biking, horseback riding, fishing, roller skating, archery, disc golf, mini golf, climbing wall, zip line, swimming, canoeing, campfires, arts and crafts, court sports, family activities such as kickball and capture the flag and more. White water rafting for all levels is available nearby through the Rapid Transit Rafting Company. Lodging starts at a very affordable $99 per night. For more information, visit their website at Rocky Mountain National Park itself is one of the most beautiful places on earth and is filled with the opportunity to enjoy its vistas, waterfalls and wildlife with scenic drives, over 355 miles of hiking trails, horseback riding and mountain climbing. There are also several lakes inside the park for fishing. Be sure and drive to the summit of Trail Ridge Road for an amazing view. The mountain town of Estes Park features quaint shopping at more than 300 shops, several wineries and a variety of restaurants. v Deborah Dove is a freelance writer from Allen.

Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park near Estes Park.

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by Dawn Bluemel Oldfield

Clothing is an important part of who we are. As adults we find clothing styles that are versatile and reflect our personalities, activities and feelings. The right outfit can give us confidence for an important meeting or make us feel pretty on a special date. A favorite soft sweater brings comfort when we are cold or feeling down, and who doesn’t have a “lucky” shirt or hat they wear when their favorite sports team is playing?

Kids want clothes that are fun, a touch sophisticated, yet functional, too. Just because they are young doesn’t mean they don’t want to be fashionable! Look at celebrity tykes Suri Cruise and Maddox Jolie-Pitt, or performers like Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber, gracing magazine covers, their trendy threads setting the fashion world a-buzz. Back-to-school is right around the corner and fall fashion trends have something for every boy and girl. This is a great time of year to go shopping with your child and—whether they are in PreK, elementary, middle, or high school—help them find outfits that will give them confidence in the classroom, let them be comfortable around their peers, yet allow them to express their personal style. Children need to explore their interests and that is as true for fashion as it is for extracurricular activities.

“I believe that clothes can give people a better image of themselves; that it can increase their feelings of confidence and happiness.” – Giorgio Armani GiggleBrush Designs, located in Downtown McKinney, is a baby and children’s boutique specializing in gifts, bedding, décor, everything for the nursery, and clothing in sizes for newborns to 6X. Owner Kristen Christopher says, “We are slowly adding clothing for older children to the collection.” With a successful business, her experiences at market and, not to mention, having three children of her

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popular for both sexes. For guys the color emphasis in this style will be olive and faded gray, along with burnt shades of orange, yellow, blue and brick red. Girls will be stunning in winter earth tones of berry, gray, green and purple with fluorescent accent touches for a fresh look.” Color has been very popular and Kristen thinks it will continue to find its way into both children and adult closets through fall before we see this trend peak. “Color is still hot. Colorful denim remains a trend and we’ll see a lot of bright color in jeans, jackets and shirts. Designers are mixing it up a bit by combining pallets and pairing softer shades or pastels with the brighter prints for a more urban look.” According to the designers, we’d better hope for a little cold weather. “Faux fur is going to be very popular this fall and winter for all ages. Watch for fun faux fur vests, ponchos, jackets, hats, and even fur skirts,” Kristen says with a grin. Accessories have been one of the biggest trends the past couple years and Kristen confirms that will continue. “Scarves will remain a very popular accessory as will gloves. Animal hats and knit scarves with gloves built in

own, Kristen has quite the eye and first-hand knowledge about children’s fashion for all ages. “This is such an exciting time in children’s clothing design,” Kristen enthuses. “This fall offers kids—from infants to teens—fashions that are suitable for every occasion and match everyone’s personal style and personality. You can find the hottest trends for kids in every price range.” Kristen shares, “Some trends from last fall are holding strong. Woodland, plaid, animal prints, tees and hoodies with graphic designs and leggings continue to be popular, but with subtle twists. For example, animal prints are still popular, but instead of a black and white zebra print, it might be pink and white, or green and brown with lace and floral embellishments. In fact, embellishment is one of the biggest trends for fall. You’ll see a lot of girls’ accessories and clothes embellished with tulle, faux fur, ribbon, flowers, sequins and rhinestones.” “Some of the newer trends are modern twists on classic styles, Kristen says. “The preppy and military/uniform look is coming back. This casual, layered look will be Allen Image x July 2012


are a fun way to keep warm when the chill of fall finally arrives. Designers are showing a lot of fedora hats, especially for boys. They’ll be a big trend for girls, too, only adorned with ribbon or flowers. Of course, “fascinators” embellished with feathers, flowers, ribbons and rhinestones will continue to be popular for girls of all ages—baby to adult. Ballet flats, Toms Shoes, Vans, Converse and boots are footwear trends that are back and strong for both boys and girls.” Of course, you can’t go back to school without a way to carry books. “Vera Bradley messenger bags in quilted floral prints will still be popular with older girls, as will small cross-body purses to carry along with their messenger bags. Athletic, sling backpacks are a good style for middle school and high school boys. Younger kids will love the spiked dinosaur Madpax. These soft, spongy packs come in bright colors and in different sizes with styles like Bubble, Spiketus Rex and Lator Gator. Also for the PreK-elementary set are backpacks shaped like or embellished with animals, many of them on rollers,” Kristen says. Don’t forget the babies! Cute barely begins to describe their clothes. Kristen smiles, “For baby girls, the clothes are all very ‘girly girl’ mixing sweet feminine florals with animal prints and lots of ruffles, layers and textures. They’re all very soft and minky to the touch. Toe Blooms or ballet flats complete any outfit. Boy clothes have a ‘little man’ look this season with rugged woodland outfits. Or, for a more dressed up look, ties are popular along with onesies that look like gentleman’s shirts.” Kristen concludes, “There are so many fabulous, fun, practical and fashionable styles to choose from this fall. Dressing your child—no matter what age—will be easier than ever!” v Dawn Bluemel Oldfield is a freelance writer. Photos by Gwen Guess

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For MarketPlace Your Health

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pet page


Bailey is a nine-month-old boxer-plott hound mix who is sweet and loving and yearning for a forever home. Her estimated weight when she is full-grown is about 60-70 pounds. She was a stray that was taken to a local animal shelter. When her time was up at the shelter, wonderful volunteers with CCHS took her into their foster program to ensure her the chance to find her happily ever after.

Bailey is yearning for a forever home! Bailey loves to give kisses and play with other dogs. She is crate-trained and housebroken. Because she is just a puppy, she will need a home with people who have the time and patience to teach her to be the best dog possible! Bailey’s adoption fee includes all vaccinations, spay surgery, microchipping, rabies vaccination, first month’s dose of heartworm prevention and deworming. If you are interested in adding Bailey to your family, please complete an application online at: adoption-application.html . Allen Image x July 2012


calendar JULY 2-11Plano Children’s Theatre presents Suessical, Jr. the Musical, Plano Children’s Theatre, 1301 Custer Road, Ste. 706, Plano. See website for showtimes. Tickets-$7/advance; $9/door.

family to enjoy the skate park, 6-8 pm. Children must be accompanied by at least one parent to gain entrance to the park. 13

For more info:



Kaboom Town 2012, 5 pm to midnight, Addison Circle Park, Addison. 30-minute fireworks show choreographed to music. Great food, live music, Addison Airport Air Show featuring the Cavanaugh Flight Museum Warbird Flyover. For more info: “A Star-Spangled Spectacular!” with the Dallas Wind Symphony. A Red, White and Blue musical salute to America! at noon in the Allen Performing Arts Center at Allen High School. For more info: 214-428-2263 or 2012 Red, White & BOOM! Hometown Parade & Car Show. Downtown McKinney. Parade, 10 am; car show, 1 pm. Soccer Complex at Craig Ranch, 7 pm—family festival & live music, concluding with a spectacular fireworks show at 9:45 pm. For more info: Frisco Freedom Fest, 4 pm, Simpson Plaza, Frisco Square, 6101 Frisco Square Blvd. and FC Dallas Stadium. Children’s Expo; Community Stage with local entertainers; Hometown Hero Exhibit; and the Taste of Frisco. FC Dallas will host a soccer match with Toronto FC. Finale will be the fireworks show. For more info:

Patriotic Pops by the Plano Civic Chorus and Plano Symphony, 3 pm, Eisemann Center, 2351 Performance Dr., Richardson. Plano Symphony Orchestra entertains with an tribute to America. For more info: 10 Presenting Nick Carlson on the Organ, 7:30 pm, Christ the Servant Lutheran Church, 821 S. Greenville Avenue, Allen. For more info: Peter Pan presented by Dallas Summer Musicals, Music Hall at Fair Park, Dallas thru the 22nd. Cathy Rigby takes flight in Peter Pan! For more info:


Allen Event Center Tickets on sale now through Ticketmaster (www., charge by phone at 800.745.3000 or at the Allen Event Center Box Office. For more information, visit 4 Miss Texas Preliminary Competition 5-7 Miss Texas Teen Preliminary Competition Miss Texas Preliminary Competition 12

Parks and Recreation Events Family Night at The Edge Skatepark and Visitors Center. An opportunity for the

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Family Night at Ford Pool, 6:30-8:30 pm. An evening of food, fun and family time, as we keep the pool open late and take care of supper so you can enjoy. Early registration is available at the DRN. Each paid guest will receive a concessions coupon. SNAP Dance for Adults with Disabilities (Patriotic Theme), Recreation Hall, 7-10 pm. Live music, a fun and creative theme, snacks and a commemorative photo mailed to each participant’s home. For complete information or to get on the email distribution list, email or call 214.509.4707. Community Wide Garage Sale. Join us for a community-wide garage sale at Joe Farmer Recreation Center. A wide variety of treasures are for sale at great prices. Browsing is free so come down to buy that perfect find for a bargain price! Make some extra money selling items. (Each space is 17’ X 10’. Vendors must provide their own tables and chairs). Dive In Movie. Grab your swim suit and towel to join us at the Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium for a dive-in movie. Come to swim and be entertained by one of the latest movies! Concessions will be available. Tubes and noodles will be available to rent. Twilight Festival in the Park, Joe Farmer Rec Center/Bethany Lakes Park. Celebrate National Parks and Recreation Month. Funfilled activities including bounce houses, face painting, balloon artists, kite demonstrations, concessions and more! When the sun sets we will settle down to enjoy a family movie on a huge inflatable movie screen. Fun for the whole family! For more info: 972-912-1097 or www.AllenParks. org.

Adult Athletic Leagues Tennis and Soccer—Reg. is open for Summer Tennis and Soccer camps. Allen Academy of Skating—Learn to Skate classes for all levels ages 3-adult. Cost: $80 for 8 weeks. June 5–Aug. 4. Softball—Reg.: July 2–31 ($345). Format: 8 game season + playoffs. Play begins Aug. 20. Kickball—Reg.: July 2-31 ($345). Format: 8 game season + playoffs. Play begins Aug. 20. Flag Football—Reg.: July 2–31 ($350). Format: 7 game season + playoffs. Play begins Aug. 21. Ultimate Frisbee League—Reg.: July 2–Aug. 5 ($265). Format: 14 game season + playoffs. Play begins Aug. 23. Soccer—Reg.: July 2–31 ($515). Format: 8 game season. Play begins Aug. 21. Girls’ Learn to Play Hockey Program— July 22– Aug. 26, Sundays, 4:30 pm. Six-week program teaches the FUNdamentals of ice hockey through various drills, personalized instruction and small area games. Pre-registration required and space is limited. With the support of past grants from TAHA, we are proud to offer hockey sticks and rental skates to use for the duration of the program with no charge. Ages: 4-12. Cost: $60 for six 60-minute sessions Girls’ Skills Program— July 22-Aug 26, Sundays at 4:30 pm. Girls’ ages 7-10 with some skating and hockey experience may participate in a

fun, age-appropriate skills program this summer! Sessions will be structured to follow USA Hockey’s American Development Model (ADM; All on-ice participants must wear full equipment and must have previously completed a basic hockey learn to play class. Pre-registration is required. Cost: $60 for six 60-minute sessions For more information, log on to or call the Athletic Information Hotline: 214-5094810.

ALLEN PUBLIC LIBRARY Children Baby and Me: Pre-walkers with adult, Tue. & Thu, 10:15 am. Fun Ones: 1-year-olds with adult, Mon. & Wed., 10 am; and Tue. 6:30 pm. Together Time: 2 & 3 year-olds with adult, Tue. & Thu., 11:15 am; Wed. 10:45 am. All by Myself: 4 & 5 year-olds, Wed. 11:30 am. Family Storytime: 2-6 year-olds & family, Mon. 11:15 am; Thu. 7 pm. 2 Family Movie: Mr. Popper’s Penguins (PG), 2:30 pm, Auditorium. Free tickets are given out starting at 2 pm, space is limited. 2-8 Red, White and Blue Scavenger Hunt, Ages 0-12, is on-going during regular library hours in the Children’s Dept. 9 Magician Jeff Lee, 3:45 pm, auditorium.Ages 5 & up. Free tickets are given out starting at 2:30 pm, space is limited. 23 Family Movie: The Secret World of Arrietty (G), 2:30pm, auditorium. Free tickets are given out starting at 2 pm, space is limited. 30 David Slick-Comedy Variety Show, 3:45 pm, auditorium. Ages 5 & up. Free tickets for the show are given out starting at 2:30pm, space is limited.

Movies Movies for the entire family! Of Mice and Muppets. All films are free and begin at 7 pm on Tuesdays. 3 Muppet Treasure Island 10 An American Tail 17 The Great Muppet Caper 24 Stuart Little 31 The Muppets (2011)

Teens Programs for ages 12-18 and held from 2-4 p.m., 2nd floor meeting room unless otherwise noted. 5 Zombie Survival, 1st floor meeting room. Come to the library and learn how to survive the zombie apocalypse! 7 Steampunk—come dressed in your steampunk best (or not, it’s up to you), let your crafty side show by creating a steampunk work of art, and enjoy steampunk-themed television shows. 12 Candy Sushi—Do you know what’s even better than real sushi? Sushi made out of candy! Come try your hand at making (and eating) these sweet creations. 14 Talent Show Tryouts, 12-1:45 pm, 1st floor meeting room. Have a talent to show off? Read, Rewind, Rant, Repeat: A Genre Club—this month’s genre is fantasy. (Think dragons, fairies, vampires and alternate

worlds.) Read a book, watch a movie or do both…then come and tell us your thoughts. 19 Batman—celebrate the release of Batman: The Dark Knight Rises with our Batman themed party! Try Lego Batman on our Xbox and test your knowledge of the Batman world. 21 Chocolate Olympics—the Summer 2012 Olympics are about to begin! If you can’t make it to the games in London, join us at the library for our own Chocolate Olympics! 26 Talent Show, Civic Auditorium. Come one, come all to Allen Public Library’s extraordinary display of talented teens! 28 Game On—join us for a mix of Xbox, board and card games. Featured—Rock Band for Xbox and the Pirate’s Cove board game. For more info: 214-509-4913.

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Adult Summer Reading program thru Aug. 4, Reading Takes You Everywhere. 18 or over with a valid Allen library card. First 200 to sign up receive coupon for a cookie from Reading Café. Must complete 5 items to be eligible for gift card drawings. Drawings Aug. 5, before library opens. First 350 to turn in a reading log receive tote bag & book. For more information, please call the reference desk at 214-509-4905. Bookends Online Bookclub, Still Missing by Chevy Stevens. Discussion begins online through Goodreads. For more info: 214-509-4905. Armchair Travelers visit England with Gill McNab, 7 pm, 2nd floor Adult Program Room. Stories, pictures, and anecdotes from her time in England. British-inspired refreshments will be served. There’s no charge, however, registration is required. For more info: 214-509-4905.

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Concert by the Creek, Breckenridge, 7-10 pm. Concert by the Creek, Watusi, 7-10 pm. Concert by the Creek, Sabrina and Gypsybleu, 7-10 pm. Movie Night, Hugo, 9 pm. For more info:

Connemara Conservancy

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Habitat Walk, 9 am. Bird Walk at the Connemara Meadow Preserve, 8 am-11 am, Allen. Bring your binoculars and field guides if you have them and learn what to watch for in habits, characteristics and calls from Gailon and Rodney, both with Prairie and Timbers Audubon Society. All ages are welcome. We recommend wearing long pants, closed-toed shoes, sunscreen, and insect repellent. Open House, 12-5 pm, join us to wander (and wonder) at the Meadow by hiking the trails, watching the flora and fauna. Enter at Wooded Gate on East side of Alma, south of Bethany. Astronomy Walk, 9-11 pm. Join Clyde Camp for an Astronomy walk. Meet at the Suncreek Park circular parking lot at 9 pm sharp and walk to the Meadow the back way. For more info:

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CLUBS & ORGANIZATIONS City of Allen offers a variety of affordable recreational classes and programs. Register at Joe Farmer Rec Center, 214-509-4750 or Rodenbaugh Natatorium, 214-509-4770. For more info: Kids Helping Kids, bring new or gently used toys to Kids Pediatric Dentistry, donate to children in the area. Receive chance to win prize. For more info: 972-727-0011 or www. Texas Health Presbyterian, a variety of events. For more info: American Cancer Society, Road to Recovery needs volunteers to drive cancer patients to appointments. If you have a car and can spare time 9-5, you can help. For more info: Debbie Moen, 972-712-5711. Allen Early Childhood PTA, support for parents and caregivers of preschoolers. Each month filled with fun activities for you and your children. Activities include play groups, park days, lunch with friends, field trips, Mom’s Night Out, Dads and Kids, and other great events. Come play with us! For more info: or information@

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Baylor Health Care System offers support groups, medical information and events. For more info: Plano Bicycle Association, club rides, social activities, monthly meetings, newsletters. For more info: Chris Mathews, 972-964-2869 or Divorce Care, 13-week courses—biblical teaching for recovering from divorce. For more info: Kim Tedford: 214-544-8050 ext. 109, or www. Urban Explorers, laid back, fun, diverse social group with meetups throughout Dallas area. Something for everyone! For more info: MOMS Club McKinney Central, support group for stay-at-home moms. Play groups, daytime activities, Mom’s Night Out, holiday parties, babysitting co-op, etc. Monthly bus. meeting. For more info: Heart Link Women’s Networking group. Industry specific, women only business networking. Monthly meetings—days and locations vary. For more info: http://75002.TheHeartLinkNetwork. com.

Every Monday Ericsson Village Toastmasters Club, 12-1 pm, Ericsson, 6300 Legacy, Plano. Guests welcome For more info: Per Treven, 972-583-8273 or per. Allen Toastmasters’ Club, 6:30 pm, Keller Williams office at 1002 Raintree Circle #100, Allen.Guests welcome. For more info: Joe Nave at 214-566-3100. Allen Symphony Chorus rehearsals, 7-9 pm, choir room at First UMC. For more info: Henry@ Fit and Funky Fit Club, 7:30 pm, Unlimited Success Martial Arts, 604 W. Bethany, Ste. 208, Allen. Work out to p90x, Insanity, etc. Free. For more info: Preston Persuaders Toastmasters, 7:15 pm, Custer Road United Methodist Church, Rm B2, 6601 Custer Road, Plano. For more info: Ed Meissner, 469-323-0538 or Todd Richardson, 214-497-4495 or www.

Every Monday, Thursday & Saturday Allen AA meets, 601 S. Greenville. For more info: 972-359-7383. Second Monday American Association of University Women-Plano/Collin County Branch, 6:45 pm, 2nd Floor Conservatory, Senior Living Center, 6401 Ohio Dr., Plano. Open to anyone with bachelors or assoc. degree interested in helping women. For more info: Carol, 972-862-3460 or www. Sons of Confederate Veterans, William H. L. Wells Camp, No. 1588, 7 pm, Tino’s Too Restaurant, 2205 Ave. K, Plano. Speakers, programs, etc. Open to anyone interested. For more info: Lloyd Campbell, 972-442-5982. McKinney Childcare Association, nonprofit org. of state-listed, reg. and lic. home childcare providers McKinney area, 7 pm, locations vary. For more info: Alice Lang, 972-346-2280 or www.

Heard Museum Collin County Hobby Beekeepers, 7 pm, Heard Craig Center, McKinney. For more info: 972-562-5566 or www. Collin County Early Childhood PTA, 9:45 am, Parkway Hills Baptist Church, 2700 Dallas Pkwy., Plano. Nursery res. required. For more info: Suzanne Judkins, 972-712-3634. McKinney Ladies Association (SRLA), 7 pm, location varies. See website for outreach project of the month. For more info: Third Monday Allen Retired Educators, 10:45 am, Patrizio’s Restaurant, 101 Fairview Station Pkwy, Village at Fairview, Stacy Rd.. Anyone with a heart for education is welcome. For more info: Jerri Caldronia, at jlcaldronia@ Plano Amateur Radio Klub, 7 pm, all welcome. For more info: Collin County Aggie Moms, 7 pm, Texas A&M Ext. Center, Coit between Bush Tollway & Campbell. For more info: 972-382-3124 or www. Breast Cancer Support Group for patients, family & friends, noon, N. Central Medical Center, 4500 Medical Center Dr., McKinney. For more info: Kelly Finley Brown, 972-540-4984. Fourth Monday Allen Seniors Genealogy Club, 1 pm, Allen Seniors Center. Must be a member of ASRC. For more info: or Richard Henry, 972-390-7402. Texas Democratic Women of Collin County meets at 6:45 pm, Collin College, Frisco campus, Rm F148. For more info: or Barb Walters, 214-477-5183. Plano Photography Club, 7 pm, Grace Presbyterian Church, 4300 W. Park Blvd., Plano. Visitors welcome. For more info:

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Legacy 4-H Club (Allen and Lucas), 7 pm, Lovejoy High School, Lucas. For more info: or 214616-2460. Every Tuesday Toastmasters Creative Expressions, 11:15 am-12:30 pm. Raytheon, McKinney. Guests welcome. Allen/Fairview Chamber of Commerce Tuesday Morning Live networking breakfast, 7:30 am, 5th Street Pizza, 111 Central Expwy., #102, (Inside Stacy Furniture). $1 member/$7 non-mem. 1st visit free. For more info: 972-727-5585. Allen Serenity Al-Anon Family Group, 7 pm, First United Methodist Church, Wesley House, 601 S. Greenville. Offers strength and hope to friends & family of alcoholics. For more info: 214-363-0461 or Take Off Pounds Sensibly, 6:15-8 pm, Good Shepherd United Methodist Church, 750 W. Lucas Road, Lucas. For more info: 1-800-YEA-TOPS or 2ChangeU Toastmasters, 7-8:45 pm, Custer Rd United Methodist Church, Rm B5, 6601 Custer Rd., Plano. Visitors welcome. For more info: Every Tuesday & Thursday Volunteer Master Gardeners offer landscaping & gardening advice, 9 am-4 pm. Texas A&M’s Co-op Extension, 825 N. McDonald #150, McKinney. For more info: 972-548-4232 or 972-424-1460.

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First Tuesday Heard Museum Native Plant Society meeting, 7:30 pm, One Nature Place, McKinney. For more info: 972-562-5566. First and Third Tuesday Common Threads of Allen, 7pm, A Real Bookstore, 113 Praire Rd., Village at Fairview. Share needlework projects, learn new techniques, make new friends. For more info: contact Debi Maige at 214-7040994 or Allen Lions Club, 7 pm, Twin Creeks Golf Club, 501 Twin Creeks Drive. For more info: Second Tuesday Allen Senior Citizens Luncheon, 11:30 am, St. Jude Catholic Church, 1515 N. Greenville. For more info: 214-509-4820. Blackland Prairie Chapter of Texas Master Naturalists, 7 to 9 pm, Heard Museum, 1 Nature Place, McKinney. Visitors welcome. For more info: or email info@

Collin County Archaeology Society, 7 pm, Texas Star Bank, McKinney. For more info: Allen Democrats, 6:30 pm, Reel Thing Catfish Cafe, 600 E. Main St., Allen. For more info: Deborah Angell Smith 214-8933643. Plano Pacers run at Schimelpfenig Library parking lot, 5024 Custer, in Plano, 7 pm. For more info:

Collin County ADD/LD Parent Support Group of Collin County, 7-9 pm, parlor, First United Methodist Church, 601 S. Greenville Ave., Allen. For more info: Shirli Salter, Newcomer Friends of Greater Plano, 9:30 am, refreshments, 10 am meeting, Collin College Courtyard Center, 4800 Preston Park Blvd., Plano. Program: Speaker and author Julie Alexander will discuss her book More Great Days and share ideas on how to enjoy life in a stress-filled world. Guests welcome! For more info: Third Tuesday Allen-Frisco-Plano Autism Spectrum Parents Group provides support & resources for parents of children with autism & related developmental disabilities. Join online group at autismparentsupport. Daughters of the American Revolution, NSDAR, The General Bernardo de Galvez Chapter meets Aug.-May. For more McKinney Area Newcomers’ Club, Welcomes new residents, 9:30 am, Trinity Presbyterian Church, 5871 W. Virginia Pkwy., McKinney. Speakers, prizes and refreshments each month. Genealogy 101 by Susan Kusterbeck from McKinney Library. If you are unsure how to start tracing your family tree, this program is for you. For more info:

Fourth Tuesday Allen/Fairview Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon and speaker, 11:30 am1 pm. $20 member/$25 guest. For more info: Heard Museum Prairie & Timbers Audubon Society meets at 7 pm, One Nature Place, McKinney. For more info: 972-562-5566. Porcelain Art Guild of North Texas, meets at 9:30 am, Carriage House, 306 N. Church St., McKinney. Open to anyone, beginner to expert, interested in china painting and porcelain art. For more info: Gayle Harry 214-509-0787. Every Wednesday Toastmasters SpeakUp Allen, 7 pm, Braums, 1222 W. McDermott, Allen. For more info: Dan Dodd, 972-571-7527. Allen Sunrise Rotary Club, 7 am, Twin Creeks Hospital, 1001 Raintree Circle. For more info: 972-673-8221 or Allen Rotary Club, Noon, Courtyard by Marriot, 210 East Stacy Rd. For more info: McKinney Chess on the Square, 4-7pm, Downtown McKinney Performing Arts Center. Open play & lessons. Chess promotes creativity, imagination and strategic thinking. For more info, 214-620-0527 or First Wednesday Collin County Master Gardeners Assoc. guided tour of Myers Park, 10 am, 7117 County Rd. 166, McKinney. Res. requested. For more info: 972-548-4232 or go to Allen Heritage Guild, Allen Heritage Center, 100 E. Main St, 6:30 pm. For more info: 972-740-8017 or www. Art History Brown Bag Series, 12:30-1:30 pm, Heard-Craig Carriage Hosue, 205 W. Hunt St., McKinney. Lectures presented by Annie Royer. Bring lunch and enjoy. For more info: 972-569-6909 or First and Third Wednesday Mothers of Preschoolers, 9:15-11:30 am, First Baptist Church, 1300 E. 15th, Plano. For more info: Debbie Parker, 972-424-8551. Second Wednesday Collin County Genealogical Society, 7 pm, Haggard Library, 2501 Coit Rd, Plano. Sept.June. For more info: VFW Post 2195, 7:30 pm, Cottonwood Creek Baptist Church, 1015 Hwy. 121, Allen. For more info: Larry Nordgaard, 972-727-9956 or Every Thursday Allen Kiwanis Club, Noon, Twin Creeks Clubhouse, 501 Twin Creeks Blvd. Visitors welcome. For more info: Sandy McNair, 214-548-5483 or Sweet Adelines, NoteAbly North Texas Chorus, 7 pm, Grace Evangelical Free Church, 2005 Estates Pkwy, Allen. Women of Allen & surrounding area invited. For more info:

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Speak Up! Frisco Toastmasters Club, 7-7:30 pm social, 7:30-8:30 meeting. U of D-Frisco campus, Frisco Chamber, 6843 W. Main St. For more info: NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness of Collin County), Recovery support group for adults living with mental illness. Led by trained individuals. Free, 6:30-8:30 pm, Custer Road UMC, 6601 Custer Rd., Plano. For more info: 214-509-0085 or Allen Classic Cars, 7-10 pm, 103-111 N. Central, parking lot of Chipotle and Stacy Furniture. First Thursday W.I.S.E. (Women in Support of Enterprise), 11:30 am. Location varies. Networking & discussion of women’s issues. Fun & informative meeting for women in Allen & surrounding areas. $20 member/$25 guest. Payment expected unless reservation cancelled 48 hrs. in advance. For more info: North Dallas Newcomers, meets Sept.-June. Our club is all about women coming together for friendship, fun and interesting activities. Guests are welcome. For more info:

Allen Garden Club, meets 7 pm, monthly gardening talks by area experts, Allen Heritage Center, 100 E. Main Street. For more info: Denise Webre, 972-390-8536 or Second Thursday McKinney Area Republican Co-Ed Club, 7 pm, Collin County GOP Headquarters, 8416 Stacey Rd., #100, McKinney. Location sometimes varies. For more info: collincountyconservativerepublicans. com. Legal Aid Clinic, 6 pm, First United Methodist Church. For more info: or 1-888-529-5277. Osteoporosis Support Group, 6:30 pm, Presbyterian Hospital of Allen, Community Education Rm-Medical Office Bldg. 2. For more info: 972-747-6036. First and Third Thursday Allen’s Community Theatre hosts Improv, 102 S. Allen Dr. For more info: Second and Fourth Thursday Allen High Noon Lions Club, 5th Street Pizza (inside Stacy Furniture), 111 Central Expwy. S. For more info: Tony Pritchard, 214-293-1598. Allen Area Patriots, 7-8:45 pm, New Heritage Church, 8 Prestige Circle, Allen. Local Tea Party presents speakers, enlightening and motivating citizens to participate in the political process. For more info: Third Thursday Collin County Republican Men’s Club, 7 pm, locations vary. For more info: Knights of Columbus, 7:30 pm, St. Jude Catholic Church, 1515 N. Greenville, Allen. For more info: Steve Nagy, 469-569-3357 or www.

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Men of Business, networking and discussion of men’s issues for men of the Allen Fairview Chamber. Call for location. $20 member/$25 guest. RSVP required. For more info: Allen/McKinney Area Mothers of Multiples, new & expectant moms’ forum, 7 pm, First Christian Church, 1800 W. Hunt, McKinney. For more info: or 972-260-9330. Allen Quilters’ Guild, 6:30 pm, First Presbyterian Church, 605 S. Greenville. For more info: Cancer Support Ministry, 7 pm, First Baptist Church Allen, 201 E. McDermott, Rm E101. Our goal is simple—to support you any way we can. For more info: James Craver, 972-727-8241. Breast Cancer Support Group, 6:30 pm, Presbyterian Hospital of Allen, 1105 Central Expwy. N., Community Education Room-Med. Office Bldg. 2. For more info: 972-747-6036. Fourth Thursday Voyagers Social Club of McKinney, 10 am, Heard-Craig Hall Gallery, 306 N. Church St., McKinney. Social club open to women in McKinney and surrounding areas. Meet new people and enjoy social activities. For more info: Every Other Thursday North Texas Referral Group, 11:45 am, Friday’s (121 & Preston by the mall). Beginning April 1. For more info: Every Friday Allen Senior Rec Center Dances, 1-3 pm. Ages 50+. Members free/non-member Allen resident $3. non-Allen resident $24/annually. Allen resident annual membership/$5. For more info: 214-509-4820. McKinney Chess, 9-11am during the summer for casual games of Chess/Lessons, The Village at Fairview—The Grotto (Prairie Road and Town Place, Fairview. Come to learn, Come to play! For more info: or 214-6200527. McKinney Chess Club meets 2-5 pm, Senior Center, 1400 South College Street , McKinney. Adults 50+(Free). For more info: 972-547-7491. Every Other Friday MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers), nondenominational support group for moms with kids birth to 5 years, 9:30-11:45 am, First Baptist Church in Allen. Childcare provided. For more info: 972-727-8241. First & Third Friday Classic 55+ Game Night, 6:30 pm, First Baptist Church Allen, 201 E. McDermott, Rm E104. Enjoy snacks, fellowship and games (dominoes, Skip Bo and other table games). Event is open to the entire community, no reservations are required. For more info: 972-727-8241 or Eddie Huckabee at

Every Saturday McKinney Chess Club meets 10:30 am-1:30 pm, McKinney Public Library, 101 E Hunt St. Any age. Free. For more info: 972-547-7491. Second Saturday Heard Museum Nature Photography Club meeting. 1:30 pm, Heard Museum, One Nature Place, McKinney. For more info: 972-562-5566. Department 56 Village Collectors Club meets in the Plano/North Dallas area to share ideas. For more info: Vrooman’s Regiment, Children of the American Revolution, service organization to teach children to serve their local community. For more info: 972-396-8010. Third Saturday Allen Folk Music Society, 7-10 pm, The Blue House, 102 S. Allen Drive, Allen. Musicians aged 15-100. Bring snacks to share. For more info: Fourth Saturday The North Texas Unit of the Herb Society of America, 10:30 am, North Haven Gardens, 7700 Northaven Rd, Dallas. Garden talks and programs by local experts are open to the public. For more info: Beth DiGioia, 972-658-6852 or American Sewing Guild, 10 am-noon, Christ United Methodist Church, 3101 Coit Rd (at Parker), in Plano For more info: Jane Johnson, 972-841-6854 or www. Last Saturday Plano Pacers run at Bob Woodruff Park on San Gabriel Rd., Plano, 8 am. For more info: Bob Wilmot, 972-678-2244, or www. Every Sunday Fit and Funky Fit Club, 7:30 pm, Unlimited Success Martial Arts, 604 W. Bethany #208, Allen. Work out live to p90x, Insanity, etc. Free. For more info: First Sunday Scleroderma Support Group, 3 pm, Allen Presbyterian Hospital, Conference Room 1. For more info: Cindi Brannum, 972-954-7185.

Please keep us informed of any local activities or events of general interest to our readers by fax to the Allen Image at 972.396.0807 or email to contact@

For Your Health

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For Your Health

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For Your Health

Allen Image x July 2012


cover story In Allen High School’s Health Science classrooms and lab, the next generation of doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists and others in the healing arts get a rare head start. Students in this program, based in the school’s new Career and Technology wing, have the opportunity to earn their Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) license, test for their state Pharmacy Technician certification and train for the national EMT basic certification. “We’ve been told by college administrators that they look for students who have had hands-on clinical experience because they find that these students know what they are getting into versus those students who say they want to be a doctor because of what they see on TV,” Kim Lane points out. “Grey’s Anatomy!” Nancy Lakvold retorts and both Health Science department teachers roll their eyes and laugh. A licensed physical therapist, Kim joined the then-2-year-old Allen High School Health Science program nine years ago, initially as a part-time teacher. Her arrival at that time doubled the number of the department’s instructors. Nancy, a registered nurse, came on board the following year. Today, the Health Science program has four full-time teachers as well as one contract instructor and the demand for classes is so high that students are turned away. “We are very proud of where the program is; I think we’ve brought it a long way,” Nancy notes. “The kids here have such incredible opportunities.” Kim adds, “When we came here, the certification stopped with the CNA; the EMT and Pharmacy Tech have since been added.” Although guiding students to achieve these professional credentials is obviously praiseworthy, it is only one side of this multi-faceted education. The program provides students countless opportunities to expand their knowledge and

experience in the world of medicine and health science and aid them in making well-founded educational and professional choices for the future. “In order to teach health science you have to have a current license in some medical field,” Kim explains. “It has to be at least a two-year program, and you have to have some experience working in that field. Plus, you have to have a teaching certificate.” As the Health Science team leader, Nancy coordinates the internships and EMT classes and co-teaches the Health Science class for CNA rotation with Kim. Nancy also conducts site visits for internships. Kim also teaches the Medical Terminology class. Registered nurse Stephanie Cook teaches the Pharmacy Technician Practicum as well as Principles of Health Science, the basic prerequisite for the Health Science classes leading to professional certifications. Lori Guerrero, also a registered nurse, teaches Principles of Health Science and Medical Terminology and assists Nancy with site visits. A certified paramedic and paramedic instructor, Joe Ahrens is contracted by Allen High School to teach EMT Basic, Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Basic Life Support and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) classes. Medical Terminology is the only class in the Health Science program open to ninth graders. “It is for students who not only want to get a better understanding of medical terminology,” Kim points out, “but also for students who are not really quite sure if they want to go into the health care field. It is also for students doing the International Baccalaureate.” The next step is Principles of Health Science. Providing an overview of health care fields, this class also trains students for their CPR certification. After Principles, seniors may enroll in the Pharmacy Technician Practicum and both juniors and seniors can advance to Health Science that includes hands-on learning through clinical rotation. Health Science, in

turn, is a prerequisite for both the EMT and Internship Practicums. Due to the recognized value of the Health Science class, demand for it is significantly higher than slots are available and students are selected through an application process. “We typically have 70 to 90 students apply and we have 40 spots,” Kim shrugs. At the start of the school year, Health Science students are first required to complete about 52 hours of classroom education. Here they learn patient skills in the 10-bed Health Science lab. When their classroom training is completed in October, these students then put their newly-learned talents to the test by working directly with residents at the Life Care Center of Plano nursing home for 30 hours, six hours more than that required for state CNA accreditation. “They do actual hands-on patient care—showers, bed baths, changing Depends, taking vital signs…” Nancy points out. “There is a list of 51 skills that we have to teach them.” “Making a bed with a patient in it!” Kim adds. “That’s not easy and these are 16- and 17-year-old kids that we are taking in. And they do a great job!” Nancy nods, “We always stress that if the patient could do it for themselves, they would do it. So we are doing for them something they are no longer able to do for themselves.” In January, the Health Science students are tested by a State of Texas nurse examiner. Each student is randomly assigned five of the 51 required CNA skills to perform for the examiner at the nursing home. After passing this test, the students must then pass the written portion of the CNA test for certification. “It’s nerve-wracking,” Nancy exclaims. “They have to perform these skills in front of someone they’ve never met before and they don’t know what skills they will be given. And of course, it’s usually Murphy’s Law; whatever you don’t want to do is what Allen Image x July 2012


you’ll get!” Despite these challenges, Nancy boasts that every AHS Health Science student who has taken the CNA test has passed. Following their nursing home rotation, the Health Science students then advance to the local hospitals— Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Allen and Medical Center of McKinney. Nancy explains, “We do block scheduling, with 20 students on A day and 20 students on B day. Each hospital allows us to only take 10 students in, so 10 go to Medical Center of McKinney with Kim and 10 go to Texas Health Presby with me.” She adds that in addition, each student spends one day at Twin Creeks Hospital in Allen for physical therapy observation. “They are in pharmacy and radiology, and we’ve had students see both c-sections and natural births because they are able to go into labor and delivery at Texas Presby,” Nancy recounts. “And they go into surgery—I just had a student who saw a kidney being removed and some have seen robotic knee surgery.”

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“Or catheterizations and med ports being put in,” Kim continues. “They really get a great overview of what’s out there besides nurses, physicians and physical therapists.” Seniors who have completed Health Science may then opt to enroll in either the EMT or Internship Practicums. Students in the EMT Practicum start by serving a six-week internship with one of a number of fire departments in North Texas, working side by side with professional EMTs. The classroom training then runs from mid October to May. Following gradu­ ation, these students may then take the national EMT Basic certification test. The Internship Practicum involves a student working directly with professionals in their field of interest serving as mentors. Nancy boasts, “We have students in with anesthesiologists, neurologists, pain management, emer­ gency rooms, orthopedic surgeons, various physical therapists….” “We rely a lot on community involvement,” Nancy emphasizes. “We have to have a nursing home that

will allow our students in to do their CNA training, and I don’t know what we would do without the two hospitals. And with every student in an internship we have to find a site out in the community for them. So for next year we are going to have to find about 30 internship sites. “ The two teachers especially sing the praises of those individuals who provide their professional time to mentor Internship students. “If they are being a mentor and doing it the correct way, it does take more time,” Nancy notes. “They are not only doing a procedure, they are explaining what’s going on and giving background information like why they do it that way, what else they are considering doing, what kind of lab work they are going to run on the patient based on their symptoms…” Confidence in the students’ prior classroom preparation is one reason so many medical professionals are willing to work with the Health Science students. For example, one significant lesson all Health Science

For MarketPlace Your Health

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Kayla Maaraoui and Kelly Coughran students are drilled on are the rules associated with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA. According to the US Dept of Health and Human Services, “The Office for Civil Rights enforces the HIPAA Privacy Rule, which protects the privacy of individually identifiable health information; the HIPAA Security Rule, which sets national standards for the security of electronic protected health information; and the confidentiality provisions of the Patient Safety Rule, which protect identifiable information being used to analyze patient safety events and improve patient safety.” In other words, it is a violation of federal law to reveal private health information of a patient without his or her consent.

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Kim emphasizes, “We thoroughly educated our students about HIPAA, and we reiterate it and reiterate it and reiterate it throughout the year.” “We tell the parents at our meeting that their children will be coming home after having seen these exciting things but they won’t be able to tell them much about it,” Nancy continues. And understanding HIPAA is vital because these 16-, 17-, and 18-year-old Health Science students are often witnessing or participating in experiences usually reserved for far older students. “The experiences are incredible,” Nancy exclaims. “Some of these kids have already done a couple of rounds of CPR and they are not even out of high school. It’s not just theoretical; it’s hand’s on!

“We had one student who was on an EMT ride-out and a lady was about ready to deliver,” Nancy recounts. “So he was standing back and they told him, ‘Uh-uh, you’re new, so you get up there.’ And he’s the one that actually caught the baby!” Both women feel that the maturity of their students trumps concerns about their ages. “This gives them experience with people who are very vulnerable,” Nancy explains. “They develop a level of compassion that I think is unique for their age. These students go in and give their best. It’s heartwarming to see.” As the program has expanded, additional classes and certifications have been added. The newest offering is the Pharmacy Tech Practicum, intro­ duced in the 2011-2012 school year, that allows students an opportunity to train and test for professional Pharmacy Technician certification. In addition, instructors from the AHS science department offer medical science-related classes for the Health Science Department. Medical Microbiology and Pathophysiology is taught by Trish Border, and Chris Koder and Cara Johnson teach the classes of Anatomy and Physiology of Human Systems. To enhance their students’ educa­ tion, provide additional professional interaction, and encourage community activism, the Health Sciences depart­ ment offers its students the extra­ curricular Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA). Kim serves as lead sponsor with the other Health Science instructors assisting. In addition to bringing in speakers (and even horses that work as service animals), the members of local HOSA are actively involved in community outreach. “This year we went out to Mustang Creek Assisted Living and made gingerbread houses with the residents,” Kim recalls. “The residents and the kids had a blast.” Allen High School HOSA members also participate in the organization’s

nationwide biennial projects. “This year and last year it was for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation,” Kim notes. “Our HOSA members did education within the school regarding diabetes and we raised over $3,000 for JDRF and were recognized at state and will be recognized at national for doing that.” 2012 Allen High School graduates Beth Runyan and Lauren Campbell earned their CNA certificate and completed the EMT Practicum through the AHS Health Science program. Both also originally chose to participate in the Health Science program to confirm that working in the field of medicine was the right goal for them. “I knew it would help me decide if that was the right path,” Beth states. “I was planning on going to nursing school and it just solidified my plans.” She credits the Health Science program for her being accepted into the nursing program at Samford University in Alabama as a sophomore this fall. Her

current goals are to go into pediatric nursing and earn her master’s degree to become a nurse practitioner. “Last year I got to see a natural childbirth,” Beth recalls. “That was one of the coolest experiences I’ve had. And the actual patient care has been really rewarding. Going to nursing school, I already have a leg up.” Lauren concurs that the opportunity to work directly with patients is one of the program’s greatest advantages. “The sooner you learn how to do this, the better you will be with your bedside manner and your ability to be a good health care provider,” she asserts. Aspiring to be an orthopedic surgeon and starting Texas Tech’s Honors Program this fall, she was mentored in the Internship program by a local orthopedic surgeon. “I observed how he interacted with his patients and he would show me the x-rays and talk to me about how they would diagnose and what treatment

they would use for each patient,” Lauren recalls. One of Lauren’s more memorable moments as a Health Science student was getting the opportunity to observe a stent being placed in the coronary artery of a cardiac patient. Having completed her first year of Health Science and earning her CNA certification, senior Taryn Bryant is looking forward to her second year of clinical rotation and earning her Basic EMT certification next year. “I’ve gotten to experience a whole range of different things,” Taryn states. “I’ve seen a natural delivery, a c-section, a tubal ligation, an appen­ dectomy, a laproscopic hysterectomy done with a robot and a couple of colonoscopies. The experience has been incredible! “I absolutely love kids and the pediatric branch of health care, but being able to go to the hospitals and see the different options has encouraged me to maybe specialize,”

Allen Image x July 2012


L to R: Morgan Bonin, Carl McClellan (on board), Omid Monjazeb, Brianna Youngblood and Shannon McQuenney Taryn adds. Hoping to continue a family tradition and attend Texas A&M after graduation, her current career options include obstetrics/ gynecology or pediatric nursing. Allen High School alum Brandi Manthei earned her BS in nursing from Mary Hardin-Baylor College this May and immediately was offered a nurse residency position at Parkland Hospital’s Cardio-Pulmonary Intensive Care Unit. As a Health Science student, Brandi earned the CNA certification her junior year and was a member of the school’s first EMT class her senior year. “This experience and knowledge

5 6 w w w. a l l e n i m a g e . c o m

helped me tremendously in nursing school,” she declares. “A lot of students came to me for tutoring or to ask questions.” She also points out that the Health Science education gave her advantages in employment. While in college she worked as a health unit coordinator at a hospital and later with a home health care service for the elderly and disabled. “When they saw that I was already an EMT and a CNA, they knew with my training I would be able to handle anything that could happen,” Brandi explains. “They were more likely to give me patients in need of more help.” This experience proved valuable

again when she applied for the position at Parkland Hospital. “When I told them I was already a CNA and an EMT and did cardio ICU in nursing school, I think they felt confident that I knew what I was getting into,” she asserts. Graduating from Allen High School the year before the EMT program was offered, Mallorie Gabe took three years of classes from the Health Science curriculum that included her CNA certification and hospital rotation. “I knew I wanted to do something in health and I thought it would be a good way to see how I would react to patients,” she recollects. “It turned out to be the most amazing experience for me.” For her third year in the Allen High School program, Mallorie opted to intern at the North Texas Regional Cancer Clinic in Plano and she credits that experience for giving her a better idea of the direction she wanted to take professionally. “I was thinking about becoming a doctor, but after my senior year and doing hospital rotations, I knew I was more geared for nursing because I loved the hands-on patient care,” she explains. “And I became a cancer nurse because of my internship at the Cancer Center. I got to sit with patients while they got their chemo and that was life changing for me.” Mallorie has worked at the cancer unit of Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano since graduating last year from the University of Oklahoma with her BS in nursing. She hopes to return to school in the near future to earn her master ’s degree and become a nurse practitioner specializing in issues such as pain management and palliative care to help patients feel more comfortable while undergoing treatment. “I love my job!’ Mallorie declares. “I love everything about it, and I can’t imagine doing anything else.” v Peggy Helmick-Richardson is a freelance writer. Photos: Larry Fleming Photography.

For MarketPlace Your Health

Allen Image x July 2012


Allen Image July 2012  

Community Magazine

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