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ELLIS COUNTY

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Table of contents Welcome to Ellis County, Texas!

WAXAHACHIE

RED OAK

ENNIS

MIDLOTHIAN

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Page 22

Page 36

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Page 31

MAYPEARL Page 41

Scott Brooks Publisher

Sharon Rexrode Lead Designer

Travis M. Smith Managing Editor

Andrew Branca Staff Writer

Wendy Anderson Business Manager

Chelsea Groomer Staff Writer


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Letter from the Mayor

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WAXAHACHIE

As Mayor of Waxahachie, I want to welcome you to our beautiful and historic City. Waxahachie is one of the most historic communities in Texas, but at the same time has a distinct vision and plan for the future. Waxahachie is known as the Gingerbread City because of our many 19th century homes and buildings. In 1997, the Texas State Legislature designated Waxahachie as the Crape Myrtle Capital of Texas. Each summer, thousands of visitors flock to Waxahachie to enjoy the charming historic streets lined with countless beautiful Crape Myrtle trees in full bloom. Our historic downtown area is home to the Ellis County Courthouse, which is one of the most photographed buildings in Texas. Built in 1895, and designed by architect James Riley Gordon, the courthouse was recently restored to its original historical significance. The scenic beauty of Waxahachie extends to its 18 recently improved city parks, the Waxahachie Creek Hike and Bike Trail, and two new splash pads. The City’s largest and oldest park, Getzendaner Park, was established in the late 19th century and contains one of the few remaining Chautauqua buildings in the United States. Arts and culture also add to the quality of life in Waxahachie. Our strong cultural heritage is displayed at the Ellis County Museum, located in the historic downtown district. ART on the Square is the new home of the Ellis County Art Association and it showcases the work of many local artists. Additionally, the Waxahachie Symphony Association has brought outstanding classical performances to the area for over 30 years. Each spring, the Crossroads of Texas Film and Music Festival celebrates Texas movies and music with a four-day festival. Education continues to be an important part of the Waxahachie community. Navarro College is an excellent two-year college offering associate degrees in several areas of study. Southwestern Assemblies of God University offers over 60 fouryear degrees and is home to several thousand students. Both Navarro and SAGU have recently experienced tremendous growth and as a result, have each expanded their facilities. Waxahachie Independent School District offers our children an outstanding variety of educational opportunities including academics, arts, music, athletics, agriculture and vocational training. The new Waxahachie High School is scheduled to open in Fall 2018 and will be a 480,000 square-foot state-of-the-art facility for our students. These assets serve the City well. Moreover, Waxahachie has the location! We are ideally situated 25 miles south of Dallas and 35 miles southeast of Fort Worth. Interstate 35E and Highway 287 intersect within the city limits on the north side. The cities of Waxahachie and Midlothian are partners on the Mid-Way Regional Airport, conveniently located on Highway 287 between the two cities. The airport has grown to become one of the premier aviation centers of the D/FW Metroplex and is able to accommodate most corporate jets. We are proud of Waxahachie and would love to welcome you. Please visit us for a weekend, or better yet, make Waxahachie your new home.

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We are proud of Waxahachie. Please visit us for a weekend, or better yet, make Waxahachie your new home.

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Mayor Kevin Strength


Bob is Back i n Town

Live music, street performers, food and handcrafted items are just a small fraction of the fabric that weaves itself around Waxahachie as part of the Texas Country Reporter Festival. On Oct. 28, 2017, the festival once again returned to the center of downtown activity for its 22nd year. Spurred from the weekly “Texas Country Reporter” television show, the festival brings the personalities and stories found on the backroads of Texas to one central location. “We have a good mix this year of people that have been here for several years and a few new people that are coming this year. There are around 300 (booths), and we are right at 60 (booths) around the courthouse square and those are the ones that have been featured on the TV show,” said Bob Phillips ahead of the festival in 2016. “Our food court, I think, is one of the best food courts at any festival anywhere. Right there on the town square, we are going to have an incredible snow cone stand. They make their own syrup and such. It is not like any snow cone that you have had in your life.” To say the festival brings about all walks of life from all corners of the great State of Texas could very well be an understatement. For example, in 2016 the festival proudly

Annual Texas Country Reporter Festival brings over 50,000 visitors annually boasted a vendor who offered the newly statelegislature designated “Texas Cupcake.” The tasty pastry stands outs because of the pecans incorporated into its recipe. There was even a visit from Austin-based Amy’s Ice Cream, which, according to its website, started in 1984 and has more than 350 flavors in its daily rotation. While the festival typically begins at 9 a.m. on the Saturday of the weekend, the opening ceremonies normally commence at 9:30 a.m. — when Bob and Kelli Phillips are welcomed back “home” to Waxahachie. The festival changed its opening ceremonies in 2016

from the grand-entry-parade style previously used to a “Texas-sized” grand opening. “Of course, we are going to have the Waxahachie High School Cherokee Charmers involved. We will have the drumline involved,” said Laurie Moseley, director of the Waxahachie Convention and Visitors Bureau. “It is going to more of a ceremony type of thing with the color guard that will present the colors, the pledge of allegiance and the Texas pledge.” CONTINUED PAGE 6

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Despite the tweaks and subtle changes for the weekend, one main feature remains untouched — live music. Past acts have included Restless Heart, America, Orleans, Fireball, The Bellamy Brothers and Eddy Raven, just to name a few. Along with the live music, the festival features several live acts and demonstrations on the main stage. In the past, those acts have included the likes of Gary Saurage, the owner of Gator Country located in Beaumont. “He (Saurage) is one of the foremost experts on alligators in America,” Phillips said. “[He] is bringing alligators, snakes and all kinds of creatures. He does an incredible show. People are amazed when they watch him handle these things.” One of the newer features introduced at the festival is the Texas Country Reporter Festival Wisdom Series. The Wisdom Series highlights people featured TCR television show who speak about their unique talent. “A lot of the people that we

Bob Phillips, the host of the “Texas Country Reporter,” is honored with a star on Waxahachie’s Walk of Fame during a previous Crossroads of Texas Film Festival. Wood craftsman Phil King demonstrates his handmade wine stoppers during the “Texas Country Reporter” Festival. feature on our television show have an interesting knowledge about a particular subject that is far more detailed than we have time in a six or seven minutes. Some of those people we have invited to come to the little pocket park there around the square,” Phillips said. “There will be five different ones that are going to be there throughout the day. “I hesitate to call it a lecture series. It is more of discussion. They are going to be presenting their subject and talking about it. There is a forensic sculptor for instance named Amanda Danning that is coming.

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This is the person that the Smithsonian A special “Texas Edition” soap bar made comes to when are doing an ar- by Amanda Peters and her family was on sale Saturday during the Texas Country cheological dig Reporter festival in Waxahachie. somewhere and comes across a human skull.” With the personalities in place and city prepared, Mosley previously said a good-weather year could expect to bring upward of 50,000 visitors to Waxahachie. “Our downtown has never looked better with all of those store fronts being filled,” she added. “It is going to be an exciting year for our visitors, our businesses, and the festival.” For more information about the festival, visit the “Texas Country Reporter” website at www.texascountryreporter.com or the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce website at www.waxahachiechamber.com.


Leaving a New Mark On History By Chelsea Groomer cgroomer@waxahachietx.com

Transposing history’s memories over the ever-swinging pendulum of time, the historical structures of Waxahachie carry on with dignity and character, reminding those of the city’s rich heritage. With hopes to link the present to the thread of the past, Historic Waxahachie Inc. continues to preserve those ties for the future through its Historic Marker Program. “HWI is trying to augment interest in Waxahachie’s historic structures. We have more than 200 historic structures that are over 100 years old. HWI is trying to encourage homeowners and visitors interest, and get greater recognition for them for the history that’s here in Waxahachie,” explained Melissa Chapman, HWI Chairman for Historical Markers. According to HWI, the Historic Marker Program gives recognition to enhance Waxahachie’s tourism, generating increased income to local merchants and to the city, as well as, encouraging ownership interest of historic structures. Moreover, these structures and their owners receive the recognition they so richly deserve. Chapman went on to discuss that the past markers, which resemble CONTINUED PAGE 8

The Waxahachie Cotton Mill Office is the only standing relic of Ellis County’s largest cotton industry, built in 1905.


Leaving a New Mark On History

The Joshua Chapel A.M.E. Church was built in 1917-1918 with a unique architectural and cultural history.

metal plaques hung near the front door, were not obtaining adequate from onlookers. “Currently, the visibility of the markers is limited because we have markers on people’s doorways. So from the street, it’s difficult to see, and some people don’t necessarily want others walking up on their front porch to learn about their house. So we put together this program with the sidewalk signs to increase the visibility of the historic markers in Waxahachie,” she clarified. After the revitalization of the markers, the organization hopes the new signs will be more noticeable than before. As mentioned, the redesign has gone from a plaque-like frame to a double-sided metal sign, measuring eight inches high by sixteen inches wide, and hung on a steel arm. “Historic Waxahachie is always looking for new things to highlight our historic properties here in town. So one of our projects that we’ve taken on, in addition to our Historic Marker Program, is doing sidewalk signs that bring the markers out to the streets, so people who are driving or walking by can easily see historical information about where they are,” Chapman noted the purpose of the advancement. Similar to the standardization of the Rotary Flag program, the Sidewalk Signs are installed by HWI at each home in specific positions by the sidewalk.

“ The Odd Fellows Lodge No. 80 was placed on the list as a building worthy of saving, since it’s dated construction in 1911.

“HWI is trying to augment interest in Waxahachie’s historic structures. We have more than 200 historic structures that are over 100 years old. HWI is trying to encourage homeowners and visitors interest, and get greater recognition for them for the history that’s here in Waxahachie,” explained Melissa Chapman, HWI Chairman for Historical Markers.

Formerly known as Drane Hall, the current Collins Hall dormitory on the SAGU campus dates back to 1902 and is documented on the National Register of Historic Places.

metal plaques hung near the front door, were not obtaining adequate from onlookers. “Currently, the visibility of the markers is limited because we have markers on people’s doorways. So from the street, it’s difficult to see, and some people don’t necessarily want others walking up on their front porch to learn about their house. So we put together this program with the sidewalk signs to increase the visibility of the historic markers in Waxahachie,” she clarified. After the revitalization of the markers, the organization hopes the new signs will be more noticeable than before. As mentioned, the redesign has gone from a plaque-like frame to a double-sided metal sign, meaCONTINUED PAGE 9


Leaving a New Mark On History suring eight inches high by sixteen inches wide, and hung on a steel arm. “Historic Waxahachie is always looking for new things to highlight our historic properties here in town. So one of our projects that we’ve taken on, in addition to our Historic Marker Program, is doing sidewalk signs that bring the markers out to the streets, so people who are driving or walking by can easily see historical information about where they are,” Chapman noted the purpose of the advancement. Similar to the standardization of the Rotary Flag program, the Sidewalk Signs are installed by HWI at each home in specific positions by the sidewalk. “We just put in about ten signs on Main Street this morning (Tuesday), and we have about 35 markers up right now, and over 250 homes that are eligible for markers,” Chapman added. The non-profit has made its a goal to preserve one of the finest concentrations of tum-of-the-century commercial and residential architectural structures in Texas since 1977. “Our goal is to heighten the awareness of our historic structures. I think it helps people have a greater appreciation for the history that’s around them and will hopefully encourage conservation and restoration of these Waxahachie jewels. I think it will help people be more mindful, as well as interested,” Chapman expressed. “We feel like the sidewalk signs not only increase awareness, but they also add value to the homeowners’ property because it becomes a real estate differentiator between a recognized historic home, and one that has been altered and renovated, no longer maintaining it’s historic architecture.” Chapman also added that any HWI home is eligible for attaining the sidewalk sign installment at the homeowner’s request. “All they have to do is go on the Historic Waxahachie website and fill out a form and order one. It’s up to the homeowner whether or not they choose to participate,” Chapman explained the simple process. According to Chapman, any home that is over 50 years old is eligible to be considered for a historical marker. She explained that, for those interested, there are forms online to help walk those “younger” homeowners through the process. Chapman also stated she is confident that the redesigned signs will boost respect for the history of Waxahachie, as well as, enrich its appearance. “In doing so, we’re hoping it’s going to enhance the city’s image of the unique Texas gem with a wealth of charming, historic structures,” she encouraged. To connect with Historic Waxahachie Inc., visit historicwaxahachie. com. ----Chelsea Groomer, @ChelseaGroomer (469)-517-1450

The West Main Street home was designated on the National Register of Historic Places West End District, dating back as far as 1900.

Located on Kaufman Street, the Waxahachie Lumber Company is the only surviving building from the Waxahachie Lumber Company, established in 1930.

Historic Waxahachie announced its “2017 Most Endangered Places” list on June 16.

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TAKE THE TOUR WITH YOU

Historic Waxahachie Inc launches new historic-home tour app for all generations By Chelsea Groomer

Updating history with a technology twist, Historic Waxahachie Inc. gave a digital facelift to its tour brochure, translating the platform into an app that embraces younger generations. “Historic Waxahachie has had two brochures we’ve put out for a long time, one is a driving tour, and the other is a walking tour,” explained Jerry Chapman, President of Historic Waxahachie Inc. “We updated those periodically, and because we’ve added some younger people, they pointed out the last time we had these printed, they said, ‘You know there’s not a lot of people that use printed tours anymore.’ So that got us talking about it, and everybody was saying that people now use their cell phones.” Compatible with both Apple and Android products, the app underwent about seven months of development, launching in December 2016. “We didn’t know what the costs would be, but we found that it was very affordable if we found somebody who could build it, and that ended up being me,” chuckled Greg Nehib, board member of Historic Waxahachie Inc. and lead developer of the app. Along with Nahib, Craig Hargrove, John Wedel, and the rest of the Historic Waxahachie Committee joined in a team effort to see the app through to fulfillment. Compatible for both Android and Apple “So I built the app and submitted it products, the tour app is available for to the company, On-Cell, our partdownload. ners that host for us, and they gave us a user interface that was somewhat intuitive,” Nahib described the process. “That allowed us, the committee, to add our text, pictures, and voice-overs. We also had to build a few structured things, but it wasn’t like software programming, so we basically took that brochure and turned it into an app.” Although the printed tours have not been discontinued, Historic Waxahachie will proceed to provide paper brochures at the Ellis County Museum along with the same 36 Historical Downtown sites listed. “People can still pick up the printed brochures - we haven’t stopped printing those,” Chapman assured. “Although the app is pretty neat. It With 36 historical locations listed, the app shows the next destination through has written verbiage you can read, and voiceover that will tell you its satellite mapping feature. where you are and you can see dicgroomer@waxahachietx.com

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rections to where your next stop will be. It’ll even tell you when a building was built and any architectural significance that relates to it,” he described the latest features. Complimenting both era’s mediums, the app’s enhanced qualities such as visual clues, audio recordings, readable material, and satellite mapping, is setting Waxahachie apart from other towns. “We don’t really see other cities our size doing this,” Nehib recognized. “Preservation Texas built an app, and it’s for multiple sites around Texas like San Antonio has done one and some larger cities and statewide organizations, but not a city of this size.” Pioneering the small town tour trend, Historic Waxahachie initiated a soft opening of the app on Gingerbread Trail weekend, June 2-4, 2016, raking in a surprising response. “We actually had over 5,000 views on Facebook, and a 125 download count, so it’s already exceeded what we expected,” Nehib admitted. “We’ve heard of several people who have shared it with their friends and families in different areas just to show them our city.” “It’s even driven people to get iPhones that you would have never imagined, or people who have iPhones and not a lot of apps - this is one they’ve committed to downloading because the interface is pretty simple to use. Everybody is excited about it,” he encouraged. With growing acceptance of the new medium, the Historic Waxahachie committee hopes to continue the updates with more bells and whistles. “We thought about using this for other things, like scavenger hunts. There are a lot of additional pieces we could do if this app goes well. We didn’t buy the full platinum package of software yet, but we’re considering it,” Nehib told. Encouraging to the community to take full advantage of the virtual tour guide, Chapman and Nahib urge locals and the youth of Waxahachie to download it and learn about their heritage here. “I really hope that a lot of the kids and teachers can use Historic Waxahachie as an educational tool to get to know their city a little better because we have a lot of history here,” Nehib pointed out. “Waxahachie has a rich history in the cotton industry and a lot of architecture resulting in thriving businesses, railroads, and other facets. It also helps you know where you’re from and gives you confidence in knowing who you are and where you come from,” he included. From the Roger’s Hotel to the Ellis County Courthouse, and the Old Ellis County Jail, the app encourages exploration and education at a price the whole community can afford – free. “It’s totally free,” Nehib reaffirmed. “That was the design from the beginning, we didn’t want people to pay for it, and we just want people to enjoy the town.” “We’re not making money on it,” Chapman added. “We just want to get the information out and encourage the community to use the app.” As for the future of the digital brochure, Chapman is confident that this is just the beginning of a historically influenced city. “I think we’re going to see more and more people walking around Downtown with their phones out pointing at things,” Chapman chuckled. “And people will say, ‘Hey, what are you doing?’ And they’ll say, ‘Look at this app, it’s pretty neat!’” Free downloads of the “Tour Waxahachie” app is available in both the Apple App Store and in Google Play. For more information, visit historicwaxahachie.com/downtown-walking-tour or on Facebook at facebook.com/historicwaxahachieinc.


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Glory

Newborn King to the

Bethlehem Revisited has transformed downtown Waxahachie into a storybook Bible lesson for over 20 years WAXAHACHIE – Each year before the opening scenes of Bethlehem Revisited near downtown Waxahachie, the cast and organizers celebrate by retelling the birth story of Jesus. Just before the 20th annual re-enactment that turns a couple of blocks of the historic Gingerbread Capital into an all-too-real Bethlehem, effervescent community members honored the makeshift city’s founder, Hilda Chapman. Chapman, who passed away in 2014, was instrumental in turning the dream and two-by-four booths into a walking, breathing, biblical history lesson. “The early years were very fundamental. The booths were made of two by fours with painted plastic. There were no sidewalks, making it difficult for wheelchair visitors,” said Elizabeth Tull just before opening night in 2016. “Now we have a village of permanent buildings, sidewalks, park benches and lighting that make it an attraction for visitors from all over the state and some out of state.” For casting coordinator Paige Gordon, the process to begin filling roles or finding the next Mary starts in September. First, she contacts actors from seasons past. Gordon will then reach out to casting colleagues for new actors or tradespeople. She tries to find those who “have a trade that would apply to the Bethlehem village as it was at the time of the birth of Jesus.” “Many of the cast have been with the production since its beginning, while others are newcomers that bring crafts the way they were done in the time,” Gordon said. “We have actors that come from as far away as Weatherford and other areas outside the metroplex.” The streets came to life every Friday night — lined with street merchants selling bread, fruits, and livestock. Other craftsmen, such as the cloth weavers, flute and soap makers, are always busy plying their skills under the star shown above the small village. “They are all skilled and use processes and techniques that were used [during that period],” Gordon noted. “The lady the dyes the cloth uses the same materials and dyes. The wool weaver uses the

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same tools to weave cloth for clothing that were used back then.” The production story begins with Mary and Joseph entering the city among the villagers seeking a place to give birth. The couple then meets the innkeeper who says, “The inn is full. There is no place here for you, but I have a stable that you can use.” With an invite to the stable, Joseph leads the donkey carrying Mary to the outskirts of the village. As the numerous guests follow, several parents typically explain the story of the birth the to their children following. “I saw baby Jesus,” is a frequent comment of the many children lined around the wooden fence bordering the stable. With the birth announced, King Herod commands the three wise men to seek the baby. They zigzag their way through the city, stopping at the tax collector before visiting the innkeeper and finally arriving at the stable to present their gifts. CONTINUED PAGE 12

Actors portraying Mary and Joseph celebrate the birth of baby Jesus during the opening weekend of Bethlehem Revisited.


“This is one of the most accurate and authentic recreations we’ve seen,” said Cindy and Roy, of Lubbock, as they walked the pathway through the city. The reaction is exactly what Tull, Gordon and countless others aim for each and every year. “Our mission is to help bring the meaning of Christmas to the community and all that come,” said Tull of the annual reenactment. Bethlehem Revisited will take place December 1-3 and 8-10, 2017. The village is open from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. with the birth re-enactment beginning every thirty minutes. The village is located at 402 North College Street, behind the Central Presbyterian Church. There is no admission. However, donations are accepted.

For unto us a

There are no details left to the imagination during Bethlehem Revisited. Pictured, a young boy works away in a blacksmith shop.

Child is Born

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Shop, Dine & St SHOP Academy Sports + Outdoors 1650 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-4520 Aldi 401B N. Hwy. 77 855-955-2534 All Sports Trophies 109 N. College 972-937-2222 Ark Country Store 209 S. Hwy. 77 972-937-8860 Baylor Auxillary Thrift Store 431 N. College St. 972-937-5488 Bealls 791 N. Hwy. 77, Ste 201 972-937-9074 Belk 1540 N. Hwy 77 972-937-0347

Bellas and Broncos Bootique 512 W. Main 325-374-6890

Bon Ton Vintage 307 S. Rogers St. 214-546-3625

Best Buy 1168 W. Hwy 287 Bypass 972-923-7399

Boyce Feed & Grain Corp. 441 S. College St. 972-937-1541

Big Lots 507 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-8925

The Briarpatch 404 W. Main St. 972-937-7717

Big Thrift 109 N. Elm 972-923-0022

The Briarpatch #2 405 Water St. 972-937-1441

Bless Your Heart Boutique 315 W. Main, Suite 16 214-463-5571

The Briarpatch # 3 507 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 406 972-923-1884

Bling It On 207 S. College St. 214-399-7192

Burke’s Outlet Stores 401 N. Hwy. 77 , Suite 101 972-923-8906

Blooms & More 1309 W. Main St. 972-937-3111

C.A. Wilson Company 308 N. College St. 972-923-0024 Cabinet Specialists Showroom 101 S. College 972-938-9623 Cato Fashions 800 N. Hwy. 77 , Suite 130 972-937-1950 Claire’s 1317 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-0133 College Street Bookstore 311 N. College St. 972-938-8185 Common Threads Quilting 315 S. Rogers 972-935-0510 Crafty Scrapper 108 S. Rogers St. 972-923-3151 Divine Flowers & More 401 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 19 972-923-9900 Dollar General 600 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-1535 Dollar Tree 791 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-7025 The Dove’s Nest 105 W. Jefferson 972-938-3683

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Elf Shoe Repair 507 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 1100C 972-938-7979 Ellis County Bicycle 303 S. Elm 469-309-9558 Ellis County Music Center 1568 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 102 972-937-5300 Enchanted Energy Haven 301 N. College 469-716-0707 Eubank Florist 107 W. Franklin 972-937-2920 Faith Armory Tx 507 N. Highway 77, Suite 404 972-755-1770 Family Dollar Stores, Inc. 504 Ferris Ave. 972-937-1416 Famous Footwear 1445 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-9851 Farmhouse 308-A S. College St. 972-938-9090 Fiesta Market 610 Ferris 972-937-1480 Firehouse Children’s Clothing 109 N. College 972-937-3473 First Look Boutique 1204 Ferris Ave., Suite B 972-923-0778 Five Below 1700 N. Hwy 77, Suite 140 972-937-2706 Fresh Flowers and Gatherings 410 S. Rogers 972-935-3478 GG’s Vintage Home 311 1/2 S. Rogers St. 972-742-9830 Game XChange 507 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 100B 972-923-2111 Game Stop 1035 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 800 972-937-2739 Gingerbread Antiques 310 S. College 972-937-0968


tay Waxahachie Glenn’s Warehouse Carpets 301 N. College St. 972-937-8848

HEB 800 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-2283

Jewelry Galore 1447 N.Hwy. 77 Suite B 972-923-0731

Maurices 1451 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 110 972-937-3234

Glory Bound Vintage Market 209 W. Jefferson St. 214-463-5553

Hibbett Sports 791 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-1088

Junk for Joy 101 S. College 972-765-7900

Maxwell Jewelers 311 S. Rogers 972-937-4381

GNC 1316 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-3370

High Cotton Exchange 209 S. College 469-744-4632

Kirkland’s 1700 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 130 972-923-7724

Merle Norman 401 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 8 972-937-9696

Gran’s Antiques 208 S. Rogers 972-923-2207

Hip, Haute & Happenin’ 214 S. Rogers 214-463-5777

Klassy Klutter 210 N. Monroe 972-937-4608

The Mix: It’s Everything 107 W. Franklin 972-938-2403

The Greenery 3671 N. Hwy. 77 972-617-5459

Hobby Lobby 1201 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 1201B 972-923-8950

L & J Manufacturing Jeweler 130 N. Hwy. 77 , Suite D 972-923-0812

Moonlight Dress Boutique 312 W. Jefferson 972-333-6068

H & H Grocery & Deli 602 S. Rogers 972-937-2971

Home Depot 1315 N. Hwy. 77 972-938-8188

Lone Star Western & Casual 1568 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 104 972-937-5552

Mosaic Madness 211 S. College St. 972-937-5797

Happy’s Home Furnishings 114 W. Main St. 972-937-6767

JC Penney 1441 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-3042

Lowe’s Home Center Inc. 1420 N. Hwy. 77 214-399-2000

Multitudes 205 S. College 972-923-0345

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Shop, Dine & St My Father’s House 308 S. Rogers 972-923-4462 Napa Auto Parts 209 W. Main St. 972-937-2976 Office Depot 1201 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-2292 Old Town Village Antiques & Uniques 307 S. Rogers 972-938-9515 Painting with a Twist 507 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 612 972-937-1255 Paris Market 110 S. Rogers 972-825-7027 Parish Music Store 102 N. Hwy. 77 972-938-1245 Payless Shoesource 401 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 20 972-937-0202 Pet Smart 1451 N. Hwy 77 972-937-3767 The Photography Studio 116 N. College, Suite C 972-227-2260 Polkadots 503 Ferris Ave. 972-567-4156 Red Barn Flea Market Antiques & More 305 W. Madison 214-546-8021

Roland’s Nursery & Landscape 2240 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-3432 Ross Dress for Less 1443 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-1565 Rue21 791 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 501G 972-923-9660 Sally Beauty Supply 1318 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 1 972-923-3882 Sears 600 N. Hwy. 77, Suite E 972-937-2310

T. Beresford 207 S. College St. 972-937-2700

Wild Thyme Herb Shop 100 N.College, Suite 120 512-284-1152

Target 1316 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-8930

Wiley’s Diamonds & Fine Jewelry 2251 Brown St. , Suite 102 972-937-4422

Texas Pearls & Company 213 S. College 214-463-5532

The Zig Zag Stripe 113 N. College St. 469-716-3002

Three Bear Headquarters 406 W. Franklin 972-921-9726

DINE

Tire Town 300 Water St. 972-937-1100

Secondhand Treasures Resale & Thirft 214 S. Rogers 972-937-1665

T.J. Maxx 1700 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 110 972-937-2738

Shoe Carnival 1700 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-0011

Tractor Supply 1201 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-1988

The Shop 315 W. Main St., Suite 13 972-937-9777

Tuesday Morning 1700 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 166 972-937-6153

SoCo Depot 501 S. Rogers (Historic MKT Depot) 972-351-0086

Ulta Beauty 1700 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 120 972-923-7761

Soul’s Harbor Thrift Store 215 E. Madison 972-937-9189

The Velvet Angel 301 S. Rogers 972-923-4433

The Studio 3671 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 200 972-617-7740

Vineyards Auto Supply 802 Ferris 972-937-6003

Styles For Less 1700 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 170 214-750-4711

Wally’s Party Factory 506 Ferris Ave. 972-937-6303 Wal-Mart Supercenter 1200 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-3460 Waxahachie Architectural Salvage 408 S. Rogers 214-63-5511 Waxahachie Auction House 212 S. Rogers St. 972-693-0572 Waxahachie Pawn 912 Ferris Ave. 972-938-7296

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The Webb Gallery 209 w. Franklin 972-938-8085

77 Donut Shop 101 Becky Ln. 972-576-0997 A & W Restaurant 1320 N. Hwy. 77 972-268-6059 Ann’s Health Food 2305 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-1400 Applebee’s Grill & Bar 601 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-9422 Asian King Buffet 507 N. Hwy. 77, #950 972-937-5888 Atkins Seafood 300 Ferris Ave. 214-463-5490 Bistro 115 115 W. Franklin 214-903-7310 Bittersweet Bakery 315 W. Main St., Suite 15 972-937-2253 Braum’s Ice Cream 504 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-3006 Buffalo Wild Wings 1635 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-8936 Campuzano’s Fine Mexican Food 2167 N. Hwy. 77 972-938-0047 Cancun’s Ameri-Mex Restaurant 1585 N. Hwy. 77, Suite G 972-351-0053 Johnny Carino’s 988 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-923-2631


tay Waxahachie Catfish Plantation 814 Water St. 972-937-9468

The Courthouse Café 115 E. Franklin 972-937-2171

El Mexicano Grill 114 E. Franklin 972-937-1191

IHOP 1206 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-0272

Chicken Express 795 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-0444 Chick-fil-A Waxahachie 996 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-1504

Cowboy Chicken 508 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-8600

El Pollo Regio 1102 Ferris 214-463-5503

Jack in the Box 1204 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-9323

Dairy Queen 1226 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-1690

El Trebol Taqueria 1204 Ferris Ave. 972-937-5373

Jimmy John’s 895 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-1200

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit 1009 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-3030

Farm Luck Soda Fountain 117 W. Franklin 214-903-8021

Kentucky Fried Chicken 1209 N. Hwy. 77 972-938-0885

Domino’s Pizza 985 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-923-3030

Fresh Market Coffee 410 S. Rogers 901-647-7742

Kika’s Grilled Chicken 317 S. Elm 972-937-1415

Donut Palace 401 E. University Ave., Suite 21 972-937-8899

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop 791 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 501-B 972-937-9400

Klopfer Haus 100 N. College 972-923-4425

Donuts Plus 130 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-9538

Go Loco Street Tacos & Burritos 625 Ovilla Rd. 972-937-0023

La Feria Paleteria 401 N. Hwy. 77 214-865-9694

Donut Time 2100 Brown, Suite 101 214-903-7559

Golden Spice 1101 Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-8818

Little Caesars Pizza 508 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 100 972-923-2003

The Doves Nest 105 W. Jefferson 972-938-3683

H & H Grocery & Deli 602 S. Rogers 972-937-2971

Logan’s Roadhouse 1150 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-4511

Edible Arrangements 508 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 200 214-903-4422

Harris BBQ 220 S. Hwy. 77 972-923-0040

Long John Silver’s 1320 N. Hwy. 77 972-268-6059

Einstein Bros Bagels - SAGU Hagee Communications Center 1200 Sycamore St. 972-923-5505

Hibachio 503 N. Hwy. 77 469-340-0137

Los Tapatios 100 S. Hwy. 77 972-937-4545

Hideout Grill & Sports Bar 6350 N. I35E 214-797-5451

Marble Slab Creamery 1440 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 8 972-937-9600

Chili’s Grill & Bar 998 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-4005 Chipotle Mexican Grill 1440 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-0011 Church’s Chicken 704 Ferris Ave. 972-937-3219 CiCi’s 1440 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 7 972-938-0047 College Street Pub 210 N. College St. 972-938-2062 Cork & Keg 100 College 214-980-1005 Cork House Winery 213 E. Main 972-921-1069 Cotton Patch Café 793 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-1221 Country Café 217 S. Hwy. 77 972-923-0214

El Fenix Restaurant 1035 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 469-517-0370

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Shop, Dine & St

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Marco’s Pizza 1107 Ferris Ave. 972-937-2771

Oma’s Jiffy Burger 403 Water St. 972-937-9190

Popeye’s 1615 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-1860

Smoothie Factory 1440 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 12 972-937-0118

McAlister’s Deli 1620 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 700 972-923-1106

Osuba Hibachi Sushi & Bar 606 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-6666

Pop’s Burger Stand 107 S. Monroe 972-923-8922

Smoothie King 1035 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 500 214-903-8008

McDonald’s 1207 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-0844

Panda Express 1330 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-0020

Railport Brewing Co. 405 W. Madison

Snowflake Donuts 2251 Brown St. 214-463-5727

Merry Toppins 791 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 501-E 972-923-1500

Papa John’s Pizza 200 N. Hwy. 77, Suite B 972-937-6600

Mi Casa 1200 Ferris Ave. 214-463-5904

Papa Murphy’s 1620 N. Hwy 77, Suite 100 972-268-9207

Mr. Jim’s Pizza 401 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 3 972-923-3820

Pho Noodle & Asian Cuisine 1035 N. Hwy. 77 Suite 200 972-937-8881

Olive Garden 1302 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-9496

Pizza Hut 1090 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-2013

Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers 1600 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-0312 Rice Box Express 201 N. Monroe 972-937-4269 Ryan’s 1400 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-9870 Sammy’s Tacos & Seafood 121 N. Hwy. 77 214-399-8645 Schlotzky’s 507 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 126B 972-923-1818

Snowflake Donuts 713 Ferris 214-463-5918 Sonic Drive-In 1104 Ferris Ave. 972-937-6121 Sonic Drive-In 3298 S. IH-35E 972-923-1498 Sonic Drive-In 2971 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-8687


tay Waxahachie Starbucks Coffee 1198 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-8615 Straight from Philly 110 E. Main St. 972-923-0202 Subway 1035 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-3330 Ta Molly’s Mexican Kitchen 1735 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-7772 Taco Bell 602 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-5001 Taco Bueno 1080 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-3363 Taco Cabana 1205 N. Hwy. 77 972-923-7781 Taco Casa 908 Ferris Ave. 972-923-7771

Taste of Mexico Restaurant & Bakery 112 W. Marvin 214-463-5479 Tomatos Mexican & Italian Restaurant 619 Ferris Ave. 972-937-7931 Toshio’s Taste of Japan 100 N. College 972-923-4425 Tuscan Slice 401 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 15 972-937-6770 Two Amigos Taqueria 212 W. Jefferson 972-923-3305 The Vault Smokehouse 305 W. Madison St. 469-672-4637 Waffle House 1020 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-923-1045

Wall Chinese Café 995 W. Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-937-2833 Waxahachie Donuts 1311 W. Main 972-923-1689 Wendy’s 1060 W.Hwy. 287 Bypass 972-938-3887

STAY Best Western Plus 1701 US Highway 77 North 972-938-1600

Super 8 Motel 400 N. I-35E 972-938-9088

Comfort Suites 131 RVG Plaza 4 69-517-1600

Exectutive Inn & Suites 803 S. I-35E 972-937-8223

Hampton Inn & Suites 2010 Civic Center Lane 972-923-0666

Motel 6 200 N. I-35E 972-937-4202

Holiday Inn Express & Suites 984 US Hwy 287 Bypass West 972-938-3300

Chaska House/ The Retreat Luxury Guest Suites 716 W. Main St. 972-937-3390

White Rhino Coffee House 414 W. Main

LaQuinta Inn & Suites 311 Stadium Drive 972-937-5525

Wingstop 1440 N. Hwy. 77, Suite 13 972-923-9505

Fairfield Inn & Suites 2020 Civic Center Lane 972-937-8886

The English Merchants Inn 717 W. Main St. 254-366-0229

Whataburger 604 N. Hwy. 77 972-938-8707 Whataburger 2965 N. Hwy. 77 972-937-2844 Whataburger 114 Broadhead Rd. 972-923-3750


C F M F rossroads

ilm&

usic

estival

Waxahachie’s Crossroads of Texas Film Festival is now named the Crossroads of Texas Film and Music Festival. The dates for the 2018 festival will be April 19-22, 2018, and will once again feature favorite Texas films, but also include more Texas music. “Since the festival began in 2014, we have incorporated more music into the programming each year, so it just made sense to have the festival’s name reflect that,” said Amy Borders, festival director. “The films and the music that come out of Texas have a real richness and authenticity that others don’t always have, and we will keep celebrating that,” she said. The event will celebrate its fifth anniversary in 2018. Each year, the programming committee selects a theme for the festival, and they have chosen “Heroes” for 2018. The idea is to curate an event that will include films that tell the stories of all types of heroes – military, first responders, musicians, athletes, cowboys, and everyday people, with the lineup announced in late 2017. “One of the elements we have in the works is a closing night concert and live album recording with some iconic Texas musicians,” said Borders. In addition to the updated name, the festival will also have a different venue, the historic 1902 Chautauqua Auditorium that will house all the events for the four-day celebration. “The Chautauqua is a venue that just feels really good, not to mention the history. Entertainers from Will Rogers to Flaco Jimenez have performed on that stage. It’s like Gruene Hall and the Majestic Theater all rolled into one,” said Borders. Tickets for the 2018 festival will go on sale following the lineup announcement later this year. For more information on the Crossroads of Texas Film and Music Festival, please visit the festival website at www.crossroadsoftxff.com, or call 469-309-4012.

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Letter from the Mayor ENNIS

A

As the Mayor of the city of Ennis, a proud Texas Main Street City, I am overjoyed to share with you all of the amazing revitalization projects that are on the horizon for our beloved city. The approved Downtown Master Plan includes numerous projects that are all part of an intricate puzzle designed to convert our downtown into an experiential destination where locals and guests will shop, dine and be entertained. The first completed project is Minnie McDowal Park located at 119 N. Dallas St in the heart of downtown. The park is truly a gift to our city. It is a unique, beautiful gathering place featuring a handcrafted “art wall sculpture” and “performance gazebo.” The impressive art wall sculpture will attract people from all over the region to experience downtown, Ennis. The park also has a water feature, climbing rocks for kids and plenty of seating to relax and take in the moment. Upcoming projects include an impressive new Welcome Center, conversion of Dallas St. to a scenic tree-lined, level grade boulevard, North and South Plazas and the downtown underpass which is an aesthetically-pleasing trestle bridge on Ennis Ave that will allow the train to pass overhead. These projects are just the tip of the iceberg. There are many more that have been approved by the City Commission and are slated to be completed in the next five years. These changes will truly turn our city into a “destination.”

Download the FREE Ennis Y’all Mobile app

What Ennis is currently known for are its people and its festivals, and boy do we know how to do festivals! Thousands of people flock from all over the world in April to see our 40 miles of rural bluebonnet trails, the “Official Bluebonnet Trail of Texas,” and enjoy shopping, entertainment, and family-friendly fun at our annual Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival. Our Czech heritage comes alive every Memorial Day weekend during the National Polka Festival, and we host many other charming hometown events like Ennis Autumn Daze, Parade of Lights, Blues on Main and Ennis Freedom Fest, which includes the Red White and Bike Parade and a spectacular fireworks show. For a rush of adrenaline make plans to attend the AAA Texas NHRA Fall Nationals at the Texas Motorplex to witness Nitro-burning cars go 330 MPH! Between the exciting events and the Farmers Market that takes place every Saturday from April to October, there is always something to do in Ennis that is family friendly and provides the perfect environment to meet new people and experience new things. Now is the time to mark your calendars and plan a trip to the great city of Ennis. Stop by the Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau upon arrival for a welcoming smile and more information on all that we have to offer. For more information, download the free Ennis Y’all Mobile app for a complete list of shopping, dining, lodging, attractions, and events. You can also visit www.visitennis.org or call 972-878-4748.

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Mayor Angeline Juenemann


Celebrate Springtime in Ennis

Spring events are in the air in ‘Bluebonnet City of Texas’

ALL PHOTOS COURTESY ENNIS CVB

By Travis M. Smith

tsmith@waxahachietx.com The City of Ennis is gearing up for a busy tourism season this spring, with the return of the Ennis Bluebonnet Trails, presented by The Ennis Garden Club, that span the entire month of April. This year will also mark 66 years of the Ennis Garden Club will host the event.

In addition to the event, 2017 marks 20 years of Ennis being designated as the official “Bluebonnet Trail of Texas” and “Bluebonnet City of Texas,” according to a resolution, HCR 116, signed by then-Governor George W. Bush on June 18, 1997. According to a City of Ennis press release, the bluebonnets in the CONTINUED PAGE 24

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Ennis area typically begin blooming during the last week in March and usually peak around the third week of April. The release notes that bloom time can vary year to year due to weather conditions or the amount of rainfall, among other factors. “In 2017, wildflower experts are predicting earlier bloom times for the season due to the extremely mild winter,” the release explains.” For updated on the bluebonnets in the area, visit bluebonnettrail.org “Ennis Bluebonnet Trails is one of the most beautiful destinations to include in your travel plans for the month of April. We are just south of Dallas—Ft. Worth and we have the very best trails for viewing wildflowers in the state. The Ennis Garden Club invites you to join us for a private tour for buses or on your own viewing of our forty miles of trails in our beautiful countryside,” said Sandy Anderson, Chairwoman of the Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival. To highlight the season, the Ennis Garden Club has planned the Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival for April 7-9, which includes a Friday night dance and vendors, Wine Wander, art and craft exhibitions, great live entertainment including bluegrass music and more. “Ennis Garden Club hosts this family festival and is excited that generous community sponsors have committed to help make this event the best ever,” said Alan Daugherty, Ennis Regional Medical Center CEO. “Ennis Regional Medical Center is proud to be the title sponsor for the 2017 Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival. As the title sponsor of this festival, we join hands with the Ennis Garden Club to ensure the best festival for years to come. Ennis Regional Medical Center is the community hospital in Ennis, and we couldn’t be more pleased to be such an integral part of this important event for Ennis.” Also sponsoring the festival this year is longtime supporter Kolache Depot Bakery, along with Ennis Main Street and Sleepy Hollow Estates. “In 2017, the organizers have taken the festival up a notch,” the City of Ennis press release states. “The nationally renowned Quebe Sisters, a bluegrass band, will be performing on Saturday, April 8. Also new this year is the Wine Wander. Ticket holders can pick up their souvenir wine glass and bag and stroll through the festival while tasting some of the finest wines in Texas. “There is also a children’s activity area, food and drinks, bluebonnet souvenirs, railroad, and heritage museum, farmers market on Saturday, and wildflower walks on Saturday and Sunday only at Kachina Prairie, a nearby native prairie — weather permitting. Admission is free to all exhibits at Pierce Park, which is located on Northwest Main Street. The festival will also be held on W. Knox Street and N. Dallas Street in downtown Ennis.”

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PHOTO COURTESY ENNIS CVB

Individuals can drive the 40 miles of mapped bluebonnet trails along winding country roads at no charge. Trail maps can be picked up all month at the Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau during April. However, during the festival weekend, the printed maps will only be available at Pierce Park at the Ennis Garden Club souvenir tent and online. There will also be a new mobile app, “Ennis Y’all” that will feature the official bluebonnet map as well as Ennis shopping, dining, lodging, and attractions. The Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau is also again sponsoring its annual “Bloomin’ Bluebonnet” photo contest. Photography contest forms can be downloaded from the website of www.visitennis.org. Another exciting event taking place Saturday, April 8 during the festival will be “Buzz the Bluebonnets.” This event, hosted by the City of Ennis Municipal Airport, will allow aircraft owners to fly in and view the bluebonnets by air. The airport event will feature, food and aircraft from the Cold War Air Museum and Commemorative Air Force. Free transportation from the airport to historic downtown Ennis for the Bluebonnet Festival will be provided. CONTINUED PAGE 25


Other April events in Ennis also include live theatre at the new downtown Ennis Public Theatre and at Theatre Rocks, along with the Ennis Famers Market always held on Saturday mornings on N. Dallas Street in downtown Ennis. According to the release, new, this year will be the Main Street Midway, a quality carnival located in downtown Ennis that will run April 12-16. “Ennis also has unique shopping opportunities in its downtown,” the release adds. “Ennis is also known for Lake Bardwell, the Ennis Railroad and Cultural Heritage Museum, events at the Texas Motorplex, the nearby seven screen Galaxy Drive-in Theatre, the Sugar Ridge Winery, the annual National Polka Festival on Memorial Day weekend and much more. “Ennis is a quick trip south of downtown Dallas, just 25 minutes on Interstate 45. Visitors can stop by the Convention and Visitors Bureau office, located at 002 East Ennis Avenue, for brochures and maps of the trails. The Ennis CVB is open seven days a week in April only to serve the bluebonnet seekers except for Easter Sunday.” For more information, contact the Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau at (972) 878-4748 or follow the Ennis CVB on Facebook and

PHOTO COURTESY ENNIS CVB

Twitter. The staff at the Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau encourages visitors to call, email, or visit the website before driving long distances for the latest status of the bluebonnets. Status updates for the best viewing times are available online at www.bluebonnettrail.org and on the Facebook pages of Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival and Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau. We welcome you to Ennis, a proud Texas Main Street City.

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Rebuilding History toward a future By Andrew Branca

abranca@waxahachietx.com When a tornado struck the city of Ennis in 2013, its downtown sustained a massive blow — both financially and culturally. In fact, some residents thought that its history might be permanently lost. However, residents, community leaders, and city officials are working to preserve that history and build a brighter future for the city with the downtown revitalization project that is underway. “The tornado significantly damaged five of our most historic downtown buildings. They were literally under threat of demolition. So a group of citizens organized themselves and said, ‘You know what, we are not going to let this happen.’ They petitioned our city commission and a grant program was created to try and preserve and restore our downtown buildings,” Ennis Development Coordinator Marty Nelson said. “That program was so successful that now it has led to the next step, which is an infrastructure investment and the creation of a downtown master plan. When you get to a downtown master plan, it is going to create a lot of projects. At the end of the day, you are going to have projects that are going to cost a lot more than any one source of funding can provide.” ESTABLISHMENT OF TIRZ

Nelson said some different revenue sources general fund and the remaining 75 percent have been developed over the past few years will go into the TIRZ fund. The Ellis County to make this master plan successful, which Commissioners Court at its Dec. 20 meeting include the City of Ennis and the city’s Eco- also approved this same 30-year agreement. nomic Development Corporation (EDC). To Nelson said the Downtown TIRZ covers an have long-term financing to revitalize down- eight-block area of the historic downtown town, a tax increment reinvestment zone that totals 297 acres of property. A second (TIRZ) was established. TIRZ will be established around the Interstate “Tax increment financing (TIF) works off of Highway 45 area. the new value of the zone. When you establish The City of Waxahachie has seen success a TIRZ, it has a baseline value and, for our through its TIRZ. Some of the projects they TIRZ, that value is about $66.5 million. So CONTINUED PAGE 27 as investment goes into the downtown and into the TIRZ the property value begins to appreciate,” Nelson said. “As the property values appreciate that begins to generate more property tax revenue.” Nelson said the City of Ennis agreed to establish a TIRZ. Under the agreement, 25 percent of new property tax value will Buildings in downtown Ennis sustained heavy damage from May 2013 go into the city’s tornado storm.

Downtown Ennis still in process of recovering from 2013 tornado 26


have been able to complete were the restoration of the MKT train depot on Rogers Street, new street lighting, landscaping features and the purchase of the Texas Theater to preserve it as a downtown entertainment venue. PROJECTS TO BE FUNDED One of the first projects that will be undertaken by the city is the replacement of infrastructure — water and sewer lines — in down-

town. The existing water and sewer lines are more than 100 years old and constructed of cast iron or clay. “All of the projects are evaluated on an objective scale. I think there were 30-some projects and 13 evaluation criteria. So projects could score between a zero and a 13. The most important project is the downtown infrastructure,” Nelson said. “Over the years, the capacity in the water lines and sewer lines degrades. Over time a water line that used to have a 100 percent capacity now has 20 percent. So you now have 20 percent of the capacity left to support all of what is going on in downtown.” Nelson said the infrastructure projects are geared to start in 2017, and the City of Ennis is contributing $7.5 million to the project. It will include the replacement of alleyways and the infrastructure in downtown and along Dallas Street, as well. DOWNTOWN TRAIN BRIDGE To help connect visitors and residents to the downtown of Ennis to the I-45 business corridor, an underpass could be installed to elevate the existing railroad tracks. “Part of this revitalization is getting someone from I-45 to come into the downtown. In our case it is somewhat unique for us is that we have this railroad crossing that creates this physical barrier,” Nelson said. Ennis Main Street Coordinator Becky McCarty shared Nelson’s thoughts about how this new bridge will improve connectivity between the two points in the city. “When you go to downtown or go to the Walmart or when anybody is exiting off of I-45 you get on Ennis Avenue when you get the to Kaufman Street there is not anything there visually, or there is a train. There is nothing to pull you in,” McCarty said. “If there is a train every resident in Ennis is going to turn right or left. They are going to go left so they can go under the under pass and completely bypass downtown Ennis or are going to right and go wherever they need to go so they can cross. Downtown has become a pass through. So that is one of the big things. Even being here at the visitor’s bureau they get to Kaufman Street, and they say there is nothing else here. They turn around and go back the highway.” Nelson added that the new bridge would not only improve safety and connect both areas of the city, but it will serve as a giant billboard and a gateway into downtown. The bridge will feature the city name prominently on the top of it. The city has sent out a request for quotes with hopes of landing an engineering firm that can do this type of construction for the bridge project. OTHER PROJECTS Work has already started on Minnie McDowal Park that is located at the intersection of Dallas and Knox Streets, as the property was previously purchased for a new welcome center in downtown. This new building is looking to house the convention and visitor’s bureau, the economic development team, the building inspections team and possibly the chamber of commerce. “We recently took a road trip to Rockwall and they went through an entire downtown infrastructure upgrade. They updated all of their streets, sidewalks, access to all of their buildings and we talked to them about how businesses survived,” McCarty said. “We are trying to work with our partners that are doing the infrastructure. One of the marketing campaigns that we have going on is called ‘Here we Grow.’ Yes, all of our businesses are open but pardon our dust. We have got stuff going on, so come and check it out.”

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Shop, Dine & ENNIS SHOPS / ANTIQUES Action Pawn 806 E. Ennis Ave.

Felcman’s Men’s and Ladies’ Shop 111 W. Knox St. First Look Boutique 201 W. Brown St Fun Sports

All in the Family 115 W. Ennis Ave.

Furniture Planet 300 S. Kaufman St.

Apple Annie’s Garden Gate Floral & Gifts Shoppe 402 W. Ennis Ave.

Game Stop 1012-K Ennis St.

Beall’s 201 S. IH-45 By Gones Antiques 106 S. Dallas St.

Gebo’s 1906 S. Kaufman St. Hibbett Sports 201 S. IH-45

Vintage Cross 101 S. Dallas St. Wal-Mart Supercenter 700 E. Ennis Ave.

ART GALLERIES La Juan Schlegel - Professional Bluebonnet Artist Sudio (inside Interior Ideas) 211 W. Knox St.

CAFES, DELI’S, RESTAURANTS

Interior Ideas 211 W. Knox St.

Amigos de Nutricion 108 W. Crockett St.

K & L Tees 100 N.E. Main St.

Bailey’s Cafe 508 S. Kaufman St.

Kindred Soule Marketplace 200 W. Knox St.

B and D Exxon 4942 IH -45

La Guadalupana 507 S. Clay St.

Bella Italia Italian Restaurant 105 S. Kaufman St.

La Hacienda Boots 305 S.W. Main St. Suite M

Birrieria Aguinaga 808 W. Ennis Ave.

Czech Heritage Shoppe and Antiques 219 W. Ennis Ave.

La Potosina Fashions 104 W. Brown St.

Braum’s Ice Cream & Dairy Store 900 E. Ennis Ave.

Main Street Hardware 201 S.W. Main St.

Bubba’s Bar-B-Q & Steak House 210 S. IH-45

Dirt Cheap 1205 W. Ennis Ave.

Momma’s Junk 2701 N.Kaufman St., Suite C

Burger King 101 N. Kaufman St.

Dollar General 305 W. Ennis Ave.

Nwynn’s Jewelers 1012 W. Ennis Ave., Suite L.

Casa Italiana 305 S.W. Main St., Suite C

Dollar Tree 1012 E. Ennis Ave.

Pawn Shop and More 1203 W. Ennis Ave.

Chamoyadas Snacks & Mas 104 W. Crockett St.

Ebenezer’s Resale 305 S.W. Main St., Suite G

Plaza Lerdo 119 S. Dallas St.

Charlie’s Exxon & Grocery 501 E. Ennis Ave.

E.J. Party and Bridal Supply 305 S.W. Main St., Suite H

SGH Floral Designs 101 S. Dallas St.

Chicken Express 1701 W. Ennis Ave.

Ennis Auction House (Monthly Antique Auction) 210 N. Dallas St.

Soul’s Harbor Thrift Store 205 W. Brown St.

Chili’s Grill & Bar 1006 E. Ennis Ave.

Str8 Vapes 204 W. Knox St.

Chipotle Mexican Grill 905 E. Ennis Ave.

Tractor Supply Co. 300 S. IH-45

Cotton Patch 706 N-IH 45

Tyler Street Place 610 E. Tyler St.

Dairy Queen 1005 E. Ennis Ave.

Cato Fashions 1012F E. Ennis Ave. Chic Boutique & Gift Emporium 211 N.W. Main St. Confetti’s 106 N. Breckenridge St. Cowboy Trading Co. 5200 N. IH-45 Crossroads Guitar and Amp Repair 811 E. Ennis Ave., Suite C

Ennis Furniture 305 S.W. Main St., Suite N Factory Connection 1303 W. Ennis Ave.

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Denny’s 301 N. IH-45 Domino’s 306 E. Ennis Ave. Don Jose’s Restaurant 2301 W. Ennis Ave. Donut Palace 2203 W. Ennis Ave. El Mexicano Grille 219 W. Ennis Ave Emporium Sweets 101 S. Dallas St., Suite 102 Ennis Café 2709 S. Kaufman St. Ennis Donut Shop 501 E. Ennis Ave. Ennis Regional Medical Center Cafeteria 2201 W. Lampasas St. Fiesta Grill Mexican Restaurant 309 S. Kaufman St. Finn MacCool’s Pub 207 W. Ennis Ave. (Bar Only) Firehouse Grill 219 S.W. Main St. Flavor Creations Snow Cones 711 W. Lampasas St. Four Star Quick Pantry 2201 W. Ennis Ave. Fresh Donuts 415 S. Clay St. Golden Chick 901 E. Ennis Ave. Grand Ennis Buffet 201-A S. IH-45 H-E-B Bakery/Deli 101 S. Clay St. Heavenly Donuts 117 W. Ennis Ave. Herbal 106 W. Brown St. Hilda’s 308 E. Ennis Ave. iHop 111 S. IH-45


& Stay Ennis J.J. Hughes Grocery 1108 N. Kaufman St.

Pop Top Coffee Shop 120 N. Dallas St.

Jack In The Box 1102 E. Ennis Ave. Kindred Soule Marketplace 200 W. Knox St.

Quik Trip 100 N. IH-45

Kolache Depot Bakery 1103 E. Ennis Ave. Kwik Pick Grocery and Deli 901 S. Kaufman St. La Grande Supermarket 1511 N. Kaufman St. La Michoacana 401 S.W. Main St. Little Caesers Pizza 1011 E. Ennis Ave. Little Habana Bakery 212 W. Brown St. McClain’s Food Store 301 W. Brown St. McDonald’s 1203 E. Ennis Ave. Napoli’s Italian Restaurant 110 W. Ennis Ave. Norteno’s Restaurant 814 W. Ennis Ave. Paleteria Los Michoacanas 305 S.W. Main St. Papa John’s Pizza 1012 E. Ennis Ave. Pizza Hut & Wing Stop 807 W. Ennis Ave.

R.L. Harris BBQ 107 E. Brown St. Rudy’s Snack Bar 1906 N. Kaufman St. Sno-Biz 200 N. Kaufman St. Sonic Drive-in 401 E. Ennis Ave. Speedy Mart 2108 W. Ennis Ave. Starbucks 905 E. Ennis Ave. Steak and Shake (coming soon) 2200 Lake Bardwell Rd. Subway 3203 N. IH-45 Subway 600 E. Ennis Ave., Suite A Subway 3105 S. Kaufman St. Taqueria Dona Mary 1405 S. Kaufman St. Taco Bell 1107 E. Ennis Ave. Taco Cabana #279 203 S. IH-45 Taco Gomez 101 S. Kaufman St.

Tokyo Grill & Sushi 1012 E. Ennis Ave., Suite-I Tom’s Food Market 600 W. Gilmer St. Vintage Cross Café 101 S. Dallas St. Waffle House 105 Chamber of Commerce Dr. Wall Express Café 1001 E. Ennis Ave. Wal-Mart Supercenter 700 E. Ennis Ave. Wendy’s 1004 E. Ennis Ave. Whataburger 105 N. IH-45 Wildflower Café 211 W. Knox St. Wooden Nickel Bar 111 W. Ennis Ave.

OVERNIGHT ACCOMMODATIONS Comfort Suites 400 S. IH-45 972-872-9898 Days Inn 600 N. IH-45 972-875-6990 Holiday Inn Express & Suites 601 N. Sonoma Trails 972-872-2829

La Quinta Inn & Suites 110 S. Sonoma Trails 972-875-4000 Motel 6 100 S. IH-45 972-875-3390 Quality Inn 107 Chamber of Commerce Dr. (N. IH-45 and Hwy 34) 972-875-9641

BED & BREAKFAST INNS Greenlee Acres 1008 Shankle Rd. 972-977-1428 Moore-Ventura House Bed and Breakfast 400 W. Denton St. 972-878-7300 Preston Street Inn 810 N. Preston 469-383-9242 Thomas Carriage House 2105 Country Club Rd. 214-212-1163 Winding Ridge Bed and Breakfast 512 Sugar Ridge Road 214-543-3057

RV/CAMPSITES Lake Bardwell Parks 972-875-5711 or 1-877-444-6777

Welcome to Ennis! Enjoy your Stay! 29


Letter from the Mayor RED OAK

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Welcome to Red Oak, Texas! Red Oak is strategically located along Interstate Highway 35 East, only 20 minutes south of Dallas and 30 minutes southeast of Fort Worth, making it convenient to both Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and Dallas Love Field. With our winding streets, rolling hills, and abundance of red oak trees, Red Oak is a great place for individuals and families to call home. Red Oak offers sensibly priced housing from affordable to luxury. Our residents enjoy the advantages of suburban living with nearby metropolitan conveniences of shopping, arts and entertainment, professional and collegiate sports, and a wide variety of other amenities. Our residents and visitors take pleasure in community events such as the annual Red Oak Easter Egg Hunt, Red Oak White and Blue (July), Founder’s Day (September), Red Oak Fall Festival (October), Christmas in Red Oak (December), to the many church activities and civic clubs. The Red Oak ISD (ROISD) shines in academic and athletic excellence. Recently named as the #1 School District in Ellis County; the #3 Safest School District in the State of Texas; and the #13 Best School District in all of Dallas/Ft. Worth. The ROISD is committed to preparing students for their next steps after graduation through partnerships with the University of Texas at Arlington, Navarro College, and Texas State Technical College North Texas (TSTC), located in Red Oak. The TSTC North Texas campus boasts the Jim Pitts Industrial Technology Center, a facility of more than 100,000 square feet. This facility houses many of TSTC’s high-tech, advanced workforce programs with state-of-the-art labs for students to develop skills that are critical in the workplace. Technical and vocational higher education programs are offered in areas of electrical power and controls, logistics technology, diesel equipment technology, computer aided manufacturing and basic machining, computer aided drafting and design, computer networking, cyber security, combination welding, heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration, and industrial maintenance. By working together to develop a shared vision, the City of Red Oak, the ROISD, Red Area Oak Chamber of Commerce, TSTC North Texas, Ellis County, and our business partners have developed a solid relationship with a focus toward building for the future. This shared vision approach creates a dynamic environment for preparation and planning to meet opportunity which encourages continuing success. Join us in Red Oak! Whether you are looking for a great place to visit, an enjoyable community to live, or a businessfriendly environment to build your business, Red Oak invites you to join us and become a part of one of the fastest growing communities in all of Texas.

Red Oak invites you to join us and become a part of one of the fastest growing communities in all of Texas.

Alan Hugley, Mayor

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“Building our future from our heritage.”


History Comes Alive in RED OAK

All history photos from www.redoaktx.org/gallery

First citizens of Red Oak

RED OAK, TEXAS, is located in northern Ellis County on Interstate Highway 35, twenty miles south of Dallas. In 1844, Colonel James E. Patton and his family settled on Red Oak Creek. Red Oak was named for Red Oak Creek and for the plentiful supply of Red Oak trees along its banks. On July 25, 1847, James E. Patton also founded the Shiloh congregation of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church which was the first church in the area. The first store in Red Oak was constructed circa 1852, the store also served as the post office. In 1890, the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Rail Road (MK-T, or Katy) was completed; it was located approximately one mile to the northwest of Red Oak. In 1909, and once again 1919, fires caused CONTINUED PAGE 32

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extensive damage first to the southern and later to the northern part of town. In 1949, Red Oak was legally incorporated as a city under the Texas Local Government Code. Today, Red Oak is the home for an impressive portfolio of industries, businesses, and higher education including Triumph Aerostructures (advanced technology and manufacturing, defense, aviation and aerospace), National Freight Industries (transportation, logistics, distribution, and warehousing), and Knapheide Truck Equipment Center – Southwest (truck bodies), multiple banking and finance institutions, and a wide range of retailers and restaurants. Red Oak is also the home for Texas State Technical College North Texas (TSTC), a state-funded, higher education, technical-vocational college). In 1967, Red Oak was used for three days as the site of filming for the motion picture Bonnie and Clyde. In 1950, the population in Red Oak was 350 and increased to 1,882 by 1980. In the late 1900’s, cotton was still produced, although farming was not central to the local economy. From 2000 to 2010, the population in Red Oak increased from 4,310 in 2000 to 10,769 in 2010 --- exceeding 150 percent! Fun Things to Do! Red Oak is located within the Greater Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington Metropolitan Area. Within a drive time of only a few minutes, Red Oak residents and visitors have immediate access to world-class arts & culture, entertainment, and professional and collegiate sports. From our community, events such as our Founder’s Day to the many church activities and civic clubs, Red Oak is the perfect place for families and singles alike. Outstanding opportunities await residents and businesses in Red Oak. How’s the weather? The Red Oak-Dallas-Fort Worth area climate is humid subtropical with hot summers, characterized by a wide annual temperature range. Precipitation also varies considerably, ranging from less than 20 to more than 50 inches. Winters are mild with brief periods of extreme cold so that even in January mild weather occurs frequently. Hot spells in summer are broken into three-to-five day periods by thunderstorm activity. *Article courtesy www.redoaktx.org.

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Shop, Dine & RECREATION PLACES/FACILITIES Watkins Park 101 Live Oak St. (Basketball Courts, BBQ Grills, Covered Shelters)

Pearson Park 200 Lakeview Pkwy (BBQ Grills, Covered Shelters, Electricity)

ATTRACTIONS HISTORICAL AND LOCAL

Evelyn Pitts Room and the Ronald Reagan Room Red Oak Municipal Center: the perfect place for weddings, special occasions, or meetings. Seats up to 250 guests. $375 per room rental fee. Tel: (469) 218-1202

HOTEL INFO Comfort Inn 404 North I-35 East Red Oak, TX 75154 Ph: (972) 617-7797

Motel 6 202 North Interstate 35 Service Road Red Oak, TX 75154 Ph: (972) 617-3501

RESTAURANT INFO Amaya’s Grill 2 523 N State Highway 342 Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-3616

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Cancun’s 273 E. Ovilla Road, Suite 4 Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-2005

Junior’s Barbeque 251 E Ovilla Rd Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-5362

Chicken Express 126 E Ovilla Rd Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-5100

Little Caesar’s 109 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-5500

Church’s Chicken 100 Harris Avenue Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-9988

Lone Star Burger Bar 110 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-3999

Country Kitchen 279 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 (972) 576-5555

Long John Silver’s 410 N. Interstate 35E NB Service Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-515-8096

Denny’s 408 N. Interstate 35E NB Service Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-2000

McDonald’s Restaurant 109 Harris Ave Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-2282

Domino’s Pizza 107 E Ovilla Rd. Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-1414

Mamacita’s Restaurant 100 Plaza Drive, Suite 100 Red Oak, TX 75154 973-576-1118

The Donut House 205 S. Main Street Suite 1011 Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-5200

Mr. Jim’s Pizza 132 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-2533

El Pollo Regio 103 Harris Avenue Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-2415 Gran Gran’s Catfish and Soul Food 205 S. Main St., 10-07 Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-8226

My Sisters Affair Catering Waxahachie, TX 214-695-0801 Palio’s Pizza Café 102 E. Ovilla Road, Suite B1 Red Oak, TX 75154 (469) 552-6888


Stay Red Oak Panda Express Chinese Restaurant 102 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-3098 Pizza Hut Wingstreet 108 E Ovilla Rd Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-2222 Pizza Inn/Subway Sandwiches & Salads 200 S. Interstate 35E NB Service Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-7400 Plato Loco Restaurant 2520 Ovilla Road, Suite 400 Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-4554 Randy’s Bar-B-Que 101 Eagle Drive Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-3336 Sno To Go 2506 W. Ovilla Rd., Suite A Red Oak, TX 75154 940-465-1800 Snowflake Donuts 107 S. Hwy. 342 Red Oak, TX 75154 469-820-5107 Snuffer’s Restaurant 132 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-437-4010 Sonic Drive-In 210 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-3500

Sparacellos Deli 600 Methodist, Suite 3120 Red Oak, TX 75154 469-552-6333 Subway Sandwiches & Salads 109 W. Ovilla Rd. Red Oak, TX 75154 972-230-7850 Taco Bell 410 N. Interstate 35E NB Service Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-515-8096 Taste of Miami Restaraunt & Catering 205 S. Main St., Suite 1905 Red Oak, TX 75154 954-861-8810 The Wall Chinese Café 111 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-5822 Whataburger 105 Harris Ave Red Oak, TX 75154 972-617-5545 Whataburger 123 S State Highway 342 Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-1000 WingStop 102 E. Ovilla Road Red Oak, TX 75154 972-576-5550

SHOPPING INFO

A listing of shopping opportunities located in Red Oak may be found by visiting the following web site: http://www.redoak areachamber.com/default.asp

EVENTS

NAME, DATES, COST

Red Oak Parks and Recreation Commission’s Red Oak White and Blue: The Oaks Fellowship Church. June/ July, 2016. An evening of food, fun and watching fireworks sponsored by Citizen’s National Bank. No charge. Red Oak Parks and Recreation Commission’s Easter Egg Hunt: Watkins Park, April 2016. No charge. Red Oak Chamber Founder’s Day: Watkins Park. September 2, 2018 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. Parade, food, and all sorts of activities for the whole family. No charge.

Red Oak Parks and Recreation Commission’s Fall Festival: Watkins Park, October, 2016. The Parks and Recreation Commission and The Oaks Fellowship team up to create a safe atmosphere for children to play games, eat candy, go on a hay ride, win prizes and have fun. No charge. Red Oak Parks and Recreation Commission’s Christmas in Red Oak: Watkins Park , December, 2016. Activities from 11:00am – 2:00pm and a parade with Santa, hay rides, vendors, and much more. No charge. Red Oak Chamber Auction/ Dinner: Red Oak Municipal Center, October 2016, 6:00pm - 8:00pm. Tickets are $50.00 per person/Includes Dinner.

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History Comes Alive in

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MIDLOTHIAN

Midlothian is a growing, prospering community in the southern sector of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. With a population of 34,000, a rising median income of $85,329, and a diversified skilled workforce, Midlothian is positioned as a prominent destination for businesses, both big and small. Dive into the facts that position our community for continued growth. Location is both a priority and principal benefit in Midlothian. At the crossroads of major U.S. highways and just 30 miles from DFW International Airport, Midlothian offers prime access to key markets. Discover how our community is well-suited for transportation-heavy industries. Midlothian is home to a critical mix of skilled labor, professional positions, and a well-rounded community that’s filled with everything from small business owners to advanced manufacturers. With nearly 900 businesses and more than 8,000 employees, the drive for higher education breeds a local workforce that is well prepared to make something great in Midlothian. The numbers speak for themselves. Celebrating over 100 years of excellence in education, Midlothian Independent School District is the 22nd fastest-growing district in Texas. For higher education and career advancement, the Midlothian Higher Education Center offers various bachelor’s and master’s degree programs and connects Midlothian businesses to an educated workforce. Our local leaders continue to ensure that exceptional education remains a top priority in Midlothian. Among the many reasons companies choose to locate in Texas, having no state income tax is a major draw. The assessed property taxes in Midlothian are significantly lower than many other metropolitan areas that also face health care and additional educational taxes. Learn more about the development-friendly policies and resources Midlothian offers.

A Story of Growth

With a growth rate of 105% since 2010, the population reached 18,037 per the US Census, and has continued to soar. In 2015, Midlothian boasted a population of 34,000, nearly doubling over a five-year period. With median incomes and educational levels rivaling both the immediate area and the state, Midlothian offers a skilled and prepared workforce for advanced manufacturing and other various industries. A key piece of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, Midlothian is rich in assets conducive to a strategic long-term vision and competitive operations.

*All information provided by Midlothian Economic Development (midlothian-tx.org/midlothian-facts/). The MED office is located at 310 North Ninth Street, Suite A in Midlothian and can be contacted at (972) 723-3800 or found at www.midlothian-tx.org.

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Somet hi ng to wi ne abou t

Local wines, sweets and tunes in downtown Midlothian

By Chelsea Groomer

cgroomer@waxahachietx.com

Each year, as the weather begins to warm, the Midlothian Chamber of Commerce uncorks its Wine and Arts Festival in downtown Midlothian. “[Last] spring, we had a couple of new things that were exciting,” explained Cammy Jackson, President of the Midlothian Chamber of Commerce. “We not only had 15 wineries that people could get tastings from but we also had a ‘sweets alley’ where people could get tastings of cake or cookies from Doolee’s Baking Co. or Jane Dough Bake House. “[...] The festival itself is free, and people can enjoy the shopping with the vendors or inside the businesses, or enjoy the music. All of that is for free.” In keeping the classics while mixing a new brew of festival fun, Jackson assures an enjoyable evening of food, music, and, of course, wine from across the state. From 50 vendors that include everything from boutique accessories to beard oils and grooming kits to skincare and makeup, Jackson said husbands may have to guard their wallets against the shopping frenzy. “We have several new businesses that will be represented,” Jackson included. CONTINUED PAGE 38

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She also emphasized the diverse, local musical lineup split between two separate stages for the first Saturday event. The streets are typically blocked off to ensure the safety of the patrons. “We’ll have bands that include Ninth Street Band, Midnight Train, Shades of Gray, and so much more on that stage. And then behind Woodrow’s Coffee Shop, we’re going to have four other artists as well,” affirmed Jackson before the 2017 weekend. “We encourage people to bring their lawn chairs so they can sit in the street and listen to the band while they’re not shopping around.” In addition to the music and shopping venues, the “Wine Walk” is sure to be a continued crowd-pleaser. “If people want to participate in the ‘Wine Walk,’ those tickets are $25, and with that, they get the 15 tasting coupons, plus a commemorative wine glass and tote, and a couple of goodies from the sponsors,” Jackson explained. Jackson guarantees an impressive evening the whole community can enjoy. “This event will happen rain or shine because there’s plenty to do. Plus, the rain never hurt anybody,” Jackson laughed. “It’s a fun festival and a great family event. The music is appropriate for all ages, the sweets and food trucks are out there – it’s just a great way to spend time with your family and have fun.” The Midlothian Wine and Arts Festival is annually held in mid-to-late April on North Eighth Street. For more information, connect with the Chamber of Commerce at midlothianchamber. org or call (972) 723-8600. ---Chelsea Groomer, @ChelseaGroomer (469)-517-1450

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Over $110 million in newness Already approaching 2016 growth, Midlothian planners expecting continued commercial and residential development

By Andrew Branca

abranca@waxahachietx.com Change and construction are evident throughout Midlothian, as construction crews work to build the future of residential and retail in the DFW’s Southern Star. This year alone the city has issued 443 residential building permits that have a valuation of more than $79 million. On the commercial side, the City of Midlothian has issued 11 building permits that carry valuations of more than $31 million. For historical reference, the city had 473 residential and 18 commercial building permits issued in 2016. Midlothian City Manager Chris Dick stated that he believes the draw for newcomers to the community is a combination of factors. “One is the school district. That is a big driver. I think that second is our location to the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. We are 25 miles from Fort Worth and 20 miles from Dallas. When you start looking at those commutes and compare that to some of our northern communities, the commute time is shorter,” Dick said. “Thirdly is just the number of people that are moving into Texas in general. You have a lot of people moving into the state. All over the state and the Metroplex is reaping the benefits of that influx of population.”

According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s website, Midlothian’s population was about 18,690 as of April 1, 2010. As of July 1, 2016, the census bureau estimated that number to be closer to 23,689. However, Dick stated that the city’s current population is roughly 26,000. Residential Development According to projections, Midlothian is on track to build around

CONTINUED PAGE 40


600-700 homes this year and is looking to continue that trend next year. Currently, the city has 8,626 total single-family residential lots. Of those lots, 1,663 are ready to be built upon by developers. “The average square foot builders are building is 3,269. That is the average square foot that we are building. Some are 4,000 some are 4,500. The smallest permits that we are seeing come through are in the 2,200-square-foot range,” Midlothian Assistant City Manager Kristine Day stated. “The average home price for construction value is $260,000. That is not sale value. Sale value is not too much more above that.” Homebuilders in the city include John Houston Custom Homes, Bloomfield, Lillian Custom Homes and D.R. Horton and Dick estimates that a home with the average square footage of 3,269 is around $100 per square foot. In anticipation of the growth, the Midlothian City Council has plans in its budget for the upcoming fiscal year to upgrade its streets and infrastructure. Of those projects, the city has identified 11-12 streets to rehabilitate and the work is mainly resurfacing projects that will not include the replacement of water and sewer lines. The cost of the projects is estimated at $1 million. A few of the roadway improvement projects include signal lights at FM 663 and Harvest Hill and FM 663 and McAlpin, a deceleration and right turn lane at FM 663 and Tower Road, shoulders for FM 1387 from Midlothian Parkway to Kensington Area and a grade separation at U.S. Highway 287 and Walnut Grove. In addition to the street work, the city is looking to do $480,000 worth of water sewer line work in the next fiscal year. Commercial Development One of Midlothian’s noticeable commercial developments is the 53-acre Midlothian Towne Crossing, which broke ground 16 months ago. The development is located along U.S. Highway 287 and 9th Street. Businesses that the city has confirmed for the development include Kroger, Petco, Ulta Cosmetics, Ross, Chick-fil-A, Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts, Famous Footwear, Burkes and Panda Express. “They are doing great and anticipate to be open by Thanksgiving to get that big Black Friday crowd. We have not been given firm dates, but we understand that Kroger should open sometime in October or November,” Day stated. “Several of the others would like to open sometime this year or early next year.” Other commercial developments that have been confirmed around the city include Jack-in-the-Box, McCoy’s Building Supply, 7-Eleven, Quik Trip, Anytime Fitness and a senior living development. “The McCoy’s is out going towards Waxahachie right there at Walnut Grove and (U.S. Highway) 287. It is a home improvement type of store and lumber. We were their number one site,” Day noted. “They are looking to catch everyone before they get to Waxahachie.

This (store) will give our builders in town another option to bid material.” Industrial Development Development activity has also taken place in Railport Business Park, the city’s industrial base, as well. According to the Midlothian Economic Development’s website, Railport is a 1,600-acre development that is zoned heavy industrial to light commercial. It is located off of Railport Parkway and U.S. Highway 67 in Midlothian. “Certainly, because of the residential growth and the commercial growth, we are diversifying. That does not mean we have not seen industrial clients come in. There was a large purchase of 375 acres that changed hands out there at Railport. The company that did the (purchase) is a company by the name of Jet Stream. We don’t know what they are manufacturing. That has been kept very confidential,” Dick explained. “Even though we are diversifying our tax base with the number of residential and commercial there is still an industrial component.” Dick added that the land purchased at Railport closed at the end of May. He also noted there is a new business park on U.S Highway 67 and Miller Road that economic development is looking at filling with manufacturing and distribution type of uses. Downtown Midlothian Dick explained development should not have a huge effect on the downtown business district. “Certainly we want our downtown to thrive. We do not want our downtown going away or drying up. I think that we will do whatever we can to keep this downtown thriving and keep it what it is today because it is such an important part of our community,” Dick stated. “It has been talked about at the council level through some meetings about the importance of our downtown. We certainly don’t want to see anything jeopardize that.” Dick added that it is a hectic but exciting time for the City of Midlothian and its residents — both new and old. “We are looking forward to the sustainability and the good quality growth in our community,” he said.

Midlothian Welcomes You! 40


History Comes Alive in

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MAYPEARL

Maypearl a pearl in the heart of North Texas.

Maypearl is on Farm Road 66 ten miles southwest of Waxahachie in western Ellis County. The settlement, originally called Eyrie, had a post office from 1894 to 1903. The name was changed to Maypearl on June 25, 1903, in honor of the daughters of two officials of the International-Great Northern Railroad, which had recently reached the settlement. Maypearl incorporated in 1910 and had a population of 417 by 1920. That year the community’s elementary and high schools served 300 students from the town and its environs, and the town had two banks, a weekly newspaper, four churches, and twenty-five businesses by 1914. The population remained at 350 to 400 from 1925 through the mid-1960s. The business community declined from twenty-eight to twelve establishments during the same period. Afterward, the population again began to increase, from 462 in 1977 to 626 in 1986, when some fifteen businesses operated in the community. In November 1988 federal officials selected Ellis County as the intended location for the Superconducting Super Colliderqv. In 1990 the population was 781. The TEA Recognized Maypearl Independent School District is located between Waxahachie and Midlothian in scenic Ellis County. The 84 square mile district consists of four campuses, Lorene Smith Kirkpatrick Elementary (PK-4), Maypearl Intermediate (5-6) Maypearl Junior High School (7-8) and Maypearl High School (9-12) and is home to more than 1100 students. Students in Maypearl are privileged in that they are able to be challenged academically with dual credit and college ready class opportunities, physically with the wide range of extracurricular sports for male and female students and artistically through art, music and band programs without having to choose one over the other. We have a program to fit the needs and interests of your student. Maypearl ISD is a fiscally sound district, recently receiving the highest rating awarded to Texas schools in the FAST system. Academically, all campuses are rated as MET STANDARD and the Junior High campus has received all 7 Designation Distinctions possible for 2 years in a row. We teach our students about citizenship, charity and compassion through our support of many national and local charities with food drives, blood drives, free clinics for vision and dental care, members of the Rachel’s Challenge program, and recently adding the Movement Towards The Future Mentoring program at the High school and AVID at Junior High.

EVENTS:

Courtesy Mary Sue Sword, Maypearl Chamber of Commerce, along with MISD and City of Maypearl websites.

Antique Alley – 3rd weekend of both April and September

Easter Egg Hunt – Community event – pictures with the Easter bunnyH Texas RoundUp – An invitational basketball game for coach nominated seniors from 1A – 4A teams throughout the state. Coaches and scouts from colleges come to watch a full day of events.

Christmas in Maypearl – a community event to bring everyone together to celebrate – shop – ride carriage rides – and kiddos train rides.

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Maypearl TX

A pearl in the heart of Texas

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Background sketch from Friends of Maypearl Facebook Page


Maypearl TX

A pearl in the heart of Texas

Welcome to Maypearl! Background sketch from Friends of Maypearl Facebook Page

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2017 destinations complete