Best in Dallas

All the things you thought Dallas didn't have

Dallas Zoo

Well, hello!I’ve been slacking and now I’ve enlisted help! Note that my last entry referred to our Korean student. Well, returning to teenager-parenting slowed down my blogging regularity. But she’s in Korea for the summer, so back to the keyboard!

This post is a guest entry from my daughter Bonnie. I’m including some of the awesome pictures she and husband Chris took. Enjoy!

Which Zoo?

“Let’s go to the zoo!”

It’s summer, and time to think of things to do with the kids. The zoo sounds like fun, but it’s hot, and you’ve heard from everyone who knows anything that of COURSE the Fort Worth Zoo is the best. But who wants to drive out to Fort Worth in this heat?

I’ve got news for you – Dallas has taken up the zoo-experience gauntlet and is truly now the place to be. The Giants of the Savannah section that they’ve been advertising so heavily really is as impressive as it seems (and don’t miss feeding the giraffes!), with large, realistic habitats and lots of viewing areas. The older section is pretty great, too – it’s always been beautiful, and moving the elephants and lions has given the zoo some space to spread out.

The most important difference, though, between the Dallas and Fort Worth zoos, is air conditioning. The Dallas Zoo has several very comfortable (and non-commercial – you don’t have to buy lunch, or feel like you should, to sit) air-conditioned seating areas. They double as classrooms, so they may be occupied occasionally, but when they’re open they have great views of the areas they’re located in (one in the Giants of the Savannah exhibit and one overlooking the gorilla exhibit near the tunnel) and pleasant couches and chairs.

Next time you’re deciding which zoo to go to, and wanting to beat the heat, check out the Dallas Zoo. You won’t be disappointed.

Yes, this is Dallas!What is this anyway, and why are they always so comical?

June 27, 2011 Posted by | Downtown, Outdoors, Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Rosemeade Market & Greenhouse

I just discovered a new place for house and yard plants, farmers’ market produce, eggs and more, gourmet foods, and the kind of decor that gets you excited about the season. Rosemeade Market is a delightful place. Right now it’s all decked out for fall with pumpkins, gourds, cute fall yard art, peppers, and cool-weather bedding plants. They encourage you to photograph your kids among the fall vignettes. It won’t be there for long, but hurry over with the children to play in the hay-bale maze and paint pumpkins while you shop. The fall decor will soon make way for Christmas and I look forward to seeing how they decorate.  The produce looks good and they have great selections of organic and specialty foods like gluten-free products and local honey. The plants for indoor and out would look great with their wide selection of colorful Mexican pottery. Located on Rosemeade Parkway between Marsh and Midway.

Farm-fresh eggs

Mandevillea vines and pumpkins

 

Hay-bale maze for children

October 27, 2010 Posted by | Creative, Dallas Suburbs, Edible, Outdoors, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Froggy’s and Tadpole’s

Froggy’s 5 & 10 is a wonderful combination of nostalgia, creativity, and fun for young and old. They boast an exceptional assortment of creative toys, costumes, books, and gifts for “kids” of all ages. It looks like the variety stores I grew up with; walls lined with blister packs of toys and games on pegs and every inch of space filled with something colorful. Tadpoles has toys and more for the even younger set, with the best selection I’ve seen of books for kids. A great selection of cards and small gifts for grown-ups is also available; mugs, magnets, and more with nostalgia and humor. Froggy’s 5 & 10 and Tadpole’s are in adjoining spaces on Knox Street between Weir’s and Wild About Harry’s.

October 3, 2010 Posted by | Creative, Knox Henderson, Uptown | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Howdy, Folks!

It’s that time of year again – we’re just days away from opening day of the great State Fair of Texas. You know, I actually know people who have lived here a long time and have NEVER BEEN to the Fair. Something about crowds and a questionable part of town… Well, their loss. The fall has been Fair time in my family for my entire life. As a child, I remember well coming home with an upset tummy because my Dad would let me eat anything – corn dogs, cotton candy, ice cream bars and taffy – we found plenty even before the days of the fried food competition. Add a few “funhouse” type rides and maybe a roller coaster and it was all worth the uncomfortable ride home.

My personal favorite place at the Fair is the Creative Arts building. I won a ribbon there as a teenager for a hooked rug. I love seeing what people can do with a camera or a sewing machine or other sometimes unlikely media. And don’t miss the butter sculpture.

The Fair has really come a long way in the last few years with beautiful landscaping and wonderful displays of gardening. I understand there’s a new greenhouse display this year and I look forward to it.

Music, new cars, arts, working animals and clever animals and birds, daily parades – we can spend a day and honestly never even make it to the Midway rides. One ride that shouldn’t be missed, however, is the Texas Star. The largest Ferris Wheel in the Americas marks the skyline of the Fair. The lines are long and it’s a bit pricey, but worth the wait.

So take an evening or a weekend day and visit Big Tex. They’re putting him up tomorrow. He’s always reminded me of my late Uncle Norton, who was the real deal.

The Fair opens Friday and runs for 24 days. Tickets are $15 at the gate but look for discount tickets (at Kroger & McDonalds) and special discount days. Every school student in the state receives a free ticket – don’t let it get lost in a locker or backpack!

September 19, 2010 Posted by | Edible, Fair Park, Historic | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Knox Street Market Update

It’s summertime at Knox Street Market! Here are some updated pictures.

June 16, 2010 Posted by | Creative, Knox Henderson | , , , , | Leave a comment

DFW Attractions Pass

I have suggested this for a long time and it’s now available! For one price, you can buy a 2- or 3-day pass to seven Dallas Fort Worth area attractions and get discounts on even more. (I’m breaking my no-Ft. Worth rule here, but it’s a great package.) You can visit places you know you want to see and check out some that you might not otherwise try. Dallas Museum of Art, the Dallas Zoo, The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza, Southfork Ranch of Dallas TV fame, plus 3 major attractions in Arlington and Fort Worth all for $29-$59. You also receive discounts for the Grapevine Vintage Railroad, Tussaud’s/Ripley’s, and the National Scouting Museum in Irving. Take a local vacation this summer or entertain out-of-town guests at the best places on both sides of the Metroplex! Order yours here. Where else can you get art, elephants, bowling and cowboys all for one ticket?

June 1, 2010 Posted by | Creative, Dallas Suburbs, Downtown, Historic, Outdoors | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rainbow Grill

Continuing with the hamburger theme, check out Sid’s Rainbow Grill on the Carrollton Square near Belt Line and 35E. With DART rail coming to the neighborhood soon more people will discover this place, but they do a brisk business now. (In fact parking can be a challenge.) The menu has other kinds of sandwiches, but the burgers are the best. The jalapeno burger is my favorite because they use just the right kind of peppers (equal parts flavor and heat) and they’re generous with them. Don’t miss the potato chips. House made with a mix of white and sweet potatoes – worth the trip all by themselves. For a summer treat, take the kids to Rainbow for ice cream or a soda. The bar has old-fashioned spinning stools so take the time to enjoy it there. A fun and nostalgic stop; the square is also charming and has several shops and restaurants that are worth a visit.

May 20, 2010 Posted by | Dallas Suburbs, Edible, Historic | , , , , | Leave a comment

Weir’s Furniture Village

The original location is on Knox Street and Weir’s now also has stores in Plano and Southlake. The store opened in 1948 and is currently in the hands of the 3rd generation of the family. Most of my household was furnished from Weir’s. I stroll through whenever I’m in the neighborhood of any of their stores. They carry furniture and accessories that simply feel like home. You find distinctive pieces instead of pre-arranged sets like so many stores are now featuring. Bargains can be found when they have a close-out item, but prices are fair all the time. If you don’t like something once it’s home, they will take it back. Don’t miss the Country Store where you’ll find old-fashioned candy by the ounce, fresh popcorn, and cold bottled soft drinks as well as gift items, children’s gifts, a selection of Christian books and cards, and even a Post Office. The history of the store is a fun read as they’ve really grown with Dallas.  Closed on Sundays; here’s where you’ll find them.

April 27, 2010 Posted by | Creative, Historic, Knox Henderson | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Gypsy Wagon

Right next door to Again & Again you’ll find everything from boots to baby items at The Gypsy Wagon.  Located in an old house off of Henderson Street, this fun shop features clothing, gifts, household items, jewelry and more.  Antique, handmade, and imported – all unique!  Don’t miss the little room with children’s toys and accessories. 5211 Bonita off of Henderson St. in Dallas.

March 28, 2010 Posted by | Creative, Knox Henderson | , , , | Leave a comment