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Fort Worth - The 817 is Worth All the Hype

At one time, Fort Worth had the nickname of "Panther City" due to a story dating back to 1875.  It was rumored that the town had become such a drowsy place, that a panther (mountain lion) had been spotted sleeping on the steps of the courthouse.  In 1876 when the economy boomed due to the Texas and Pacific Railway coming to town, the city embraced the nickname of Panther City.

Things have changed since those days back in 1876.  Fort Worth has recently been named the #1 best downtown in the country to live in by Livability.com.  Fort Worth or as I grew up calling it, "Funky Town" has the true sense of culture that many Texas towns lack.  It has a very artistic side that can be found in the Kimble Art Museum.  It has one of the top Zoos in the state and a fantastic western culture in the Stock Yards.  The people of Fort Worth are friendly and posses a true "good 'ole boy spirit.

Here is a list of just a few things that make Fort Worth great:
  • Bass Performance Hall
  • Stockyard
  • Kimbell Art Museum
  • Fort Worth Zoo
  • Fort Worth Museum of Science and History
  • Omni Theatre
  • Amon Carter Museum of American Art
  • Billy Bob's Texas
  • Cowtown Coliseum
  • Fort Worth Botanic Gardens
  • Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
  • Casa Manana
  • Colonial Country Club
  • Sundance Square
  • And More...
Check out these two videos:


Married entrepreneurs behind Dallas-based Hari Mari flip-flops make a perfect pair





Published: 28 June 2014 06:13 PM
Brad Loper/Staff Photographer
Business partners often joke that they’re married to one another.
What happens when you actually are married to your business partner?
Consider husband and wife Jeremy and Lila Stewart, who launched flip-flop brand Hari Mari in Dallas two years ago.
They knew that combining home life and work life can be fraught with landmines. But just as there are horror stories, there are also successful couples who have built household brands together.
Through some missteps, the Stewarts learned to navigate the challenges of working as husband-and-wife entrepreneurs and find balance between their personal and professional lives.
“You have to work on it, and it’s a continual process,” said Jeremy, 35. “We’re at a really good stage right now.”
Along the way, they’ve nurtured Hari Mari into a premium flip-flop brand that is carried in 270 stores across 39 states. Hari Mari recently celebrated a milestone: It got picked up by national brands Jack Spade and Urban Outfitters. And sales are growing rapidly: Hari Mari sold more flip-flops in the first three months of 2014 than it had for all of last year.
“It’s been an absolute blast working with my husband. I can’t imagine doing it with anyone else,” said Lila, 33.
The transition from husband and wife to business partners wasn’t always easy, though, the couple say.
The simple part was knowing that they would work together to launch Hari Mari after the couple saw a void in the flip-flop market: a lack of color, character and comfort.
The brand also has a social mission, giving $3 for every pair purchased to a pediatrics cancer fund at Cook Children’s Health Care System in Fort Worth.
“Jeremy is the genius behind Hari Mari. I jumped on board the second I saw the flip-flops. He didn’t have a decision. I told him I would handle sales,” said Lila, who previously worked as a sales executive for AEG Live.
Lila handles sales and marketing while Jeremy oversees design and manufacturing. The couple says their complementary skills help run the company’s day-to-day operations.
In the early days, though, the couple struggled with resolving office conflicts. They first tried to handle business disagreements like they did personal ones. That meant having unfiltered, unvarnished conversations, which don’t always translate well in a professional setting, the couple acknowledged.
“We were talking in the office like we would talk to each other at home,” Jeremy said. “And it’s surprising and off-putting to everyone else, outside of us.”
Through those early disagreements, they learned not to give unsolicited advice. They also work hard to defer to the other’s expertise or focus.
Recently, the team was choosing color combinations for the brand’s 2015 line. As the creative one, Jeremy wanted wild and bright colors, such as a black and pink combination for men.
Lila leaned more conservative because she has to sell the line to customers.
“I tried to nix it, and he strongly disagreed,” Lila said.
In the end, the two agreed that Lila would make decisions for women’s colors and Jeremy for men’s colors.
It also helps the business to have a third partner, John Veatch, who provides an independent opinion and at times acts as a mediator.
Veatch said he uses humor to defuse tension between Jeremy and Lila.
“It’s a tough position that they’re in, and I’ve definitely noticed a marked improvement in the way they maintain the professionalism and not blur the line,” said Veatch, who handles advertising, marketing and other creative decisions.
The line between professional and personal issues is clear. While it took time, the couple has made a concerted effort not to let personal squabbles affect their work life.
“There are times where we go back home and it resumes, but again, it’s beneficial to everyone and to ourselves to not bring the extra baggage to the office,” Jeremy said.
The challenges of working with a spouse have been minimal compared with the upside of bringing up their professional “baby” together. The experience also has been good for the marriage, the couple say.
“You see your spouse in a totally different light, and it’s attractive,” Lila said recently from their new Deep Ellum headquarters.
Jeremy added: “I think so, too.”
Follow Hanah Cho on Twitter at @hanahcho.
Lila and Jeremy Stewart’s tips on working together:
Keep communications professional: Maintain business-related talks and emails, preserving a consistent style of communication across all work relationships.
Help each other: Divide the labor and be understanding about the amount of work the other is doing and help out when you can.
Strike a balance: It may vary from couple to couple. For some, it may mean working at home or discussing work at home in moderation. For us, rigid rules haven’t worked. Instead, we’ve adopted a flexible approach to work at home on an “as-needed” basis. Find what works for you.
Remember to compliment: Not unlike marriage, it’s important to let your co-workers know when they’re doing a great job. It’s no different when that co-worker is a spouse.
Celebrate successes: It’s important to balance the daily grind with wins and successes when they arise. It serves as a good reminder of what you’re working together toward.
Leave personal problems at home: Doing otherwise is a productivity killer. There’s plenty of time to settle those differences later at home.

Thrilla in Brazilla - Peticolas Brewing

Thrilla in Brazilla
Rating:
Star
Star
Star
Star
Star
By: http://www.examiner.com/review/peticolas-gives-us-a-thrilla-for-the-world-cup
In sports, it's World Cup time again as Brazil plays host to the 2014 soccer championship this summer. Media everywhere are attempting to be current and topical as they tie content to this event, the athletic competition or to thehost nation in general. Unfortunately, for craft beer this usually means some stale coverage of Brazil's Xingu dark lager, a decent but unremarkable import now found almost anywhere in Texas.
However, Peticolas Brewing has saved us from this fate by brewing a new beer specifically for the World Cup, the Thrilla in Brazilla. It was officially released on the first day of the contest for the Brazil vs. Croatia game, and early access was heavily tied to pubs showing and celebrating the opening match. This should surprise nobody as Michael Peticolas personally oozes soccer fandom from his pores.
The Thrilla in Brazilla is a light blonde/gold American-styleIPA with a thin head but good lacing down the glass. The aroma provides some preview of the taste with dry, floral hops, and the flavor follows suit with light blonde malt and more earthy, grassy hops on top of the more familiar citrus. As usual for Peticolas, the not unpleasant bitterness is very well-balanced with a tiny malt sweetness and a more dry, lingering floral finish.
At a more traditional 7.5% ABV and 75 IBUs, Thrilla is a much more approachable and sessionable beer than his potent Sit Down or I'll Sit You Down. This is the IPA Peticolas should be making year-round, not just to round out his standard portfolio of beers but because it would fit well into the developing landscape of Dallas IPAs. Thrilla contrasts well with Deep Ellum's full, robust IPA and Community's fruity, citrusy Mosaic, showcasing the more bitter and dry side of the hops spectrum.
With its bitter balance, Thrilla would pair well with heavy foods like steaks, burgers or anything from the grill to cut through those rich flavors. It's almost light enough to be called a summer beer, and should be enjoyed long past World Cup season.

Eight / 11 Place: Come Visit Downtown Frisco

Nestled in the cozy town square of Frisco, Texas is a quaint little wine bar named Eight / 11 Place owned and operated by Lance and Ursula Clayton. From the handmade mason jar lights to the rustic cocktail tables; Eight / 11 brims over with an intimate quality sure to be perfect for a girls night out or a date night with that someone special. The name of the establishment has a special significance to both owners who have significant family connections to the numbers eight and eleven. With a variety of wine and beer choices and some scrumptious munchies to pair with them, this place definitely needs to be on your "to try" list as the summer quickly approaches. Eight / 11 Place 7080 W. Main St. Frisco Texas 75034 469.888.4037 Hours: Tues-Sat 4:00-10:00 PM Sun 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM Closed Mondays

Teacher Appreciation Week - Texas Educators

As educators ourselves, we understand how hard teachers work on a daily basis. This week is teacher appreciation week and what better way to feel appreciated than by receiving a great deal at your favorite restaurant, store, etc.  Below, you will find deals offered to teachers by local establishments.  These are only a few of the many offers out there, so it never hurts to ask if one of your favorite places is doing something but not publishing it.  Also, each deal may vary based on the location.

If you are a parent, do not forget to recognize your child's teacher this week.

The Deals:

AC Moore – Teachers receive 15% off your entire purchase

Adobe Education Store
Save up to 80% on Adobe products if you are a student or for personal use by teachers, administrators, and school staff on their personally owned computers.  
http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/store/html/index.cfm?event=displayEduConditions&store=OLS-EDU&nr=1&promoid=DTEFR

Read More: 
Teacher Appreciation Week FREEBIES and Deals! | http://wgna.com/teacher-appreciation-week-freebies-and-deals/?trackback=tsmclip


Ann Taylor Loft – Enroll in the free Loft Loves Teachers program and save 15% off full-price purchases.


Apple - Apple offers special pricing on Apple products including computers, software and select third party products. This special pricing is available to college students, parents buying for a college student, or teachers, homeschool teachers, administrators and staff of all grade levels.

Applebees
On Tuesday May 4, 2010 select Applebees locations are giving teachers a free entree.
The locations appear to be in Kentucky, Ohio and Arizona.  For more information, check out this PDF: Applebees Teacher Appreciation
Must show check stub or school id.


Barnes & Noble – Save 20% off the publisher’s list price on all purchases for classroom use when you join the free B&N Educator Program.

Buca di Beppo: Get a FREE Buca Taster Bowl of Ravioli or Baked Ziti from May 6-10 with a valid school ID card. This deal is valid for dine-in only.


The Container Store – Offers special discounts to educators to help organize the classroom. This program ends December 31, 2014.


Chick-fil-A – Select locations offer a freebie on May 7th to teachers who present a valid teacher ID. Free offer may vary by location.


Chipotle - Show your school faculty ID on May 6th at any Chipotle from 4pm – close and they will hook you up with a buy one/get one burritos, bowls, salads or tacos! (call ahead and make sure your store is participating)


Crayola – Artful lessons, classroom resources and the latest information regarding special programs and offers.


FedEx Office – Offers teachers, professors, faculty and staff members 15% off on most products and services at participating FedEx Office nationwide. To receive your discount, simply present your discount card when making a purchase in-store or at fedexoffice.com and the discount will automatically be applied.


Ikea
Some IKEA locations are giving teachers a free meal all week (up to $7.99) in their 2nd floor restaurant.  Also, on May 4, Teacher Appreciation Day, they are giving teachers a free $10 IKEA gift card.

Call your local Ikea to see if offer is valid at your location

One free meal and one free gift card per teacher (must provide id).


Joanne Fabric - Sign up for a free Jo-Anne Teacher Rewards Discount Card and receive 15% off all purchases.

Lakeshore Learning - Join the free Teacher’s Club and save 15% off purchases everyday and receive special offers every month!

Michaels
All teachers receive 15% off their in-store purchase with valid school ID.  Some exclusions apply – please see store associate for details.

Read More: 
Teacher Appreciation Week FREEBIES and Deals! | http://wgna.com/teacher-appreciation-week-freebies-and-deals/?trackback=tsmclip

New York & Co - Teachers who show a valid ID can receive 30% off May 1-7 to celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week. Plus sign up for the Teacher Program and you’ll receive a 15% discount all year long.

PDQ Restaurant – Free combo on 5/6.  Valid for 3 piece tenders, sandwhich or salad combo with teacher ID.

Staples - It pays to be a Teacher Rewards member. When you sign up, you’ll earn 5% back in rewards, and an extra 5% back in rewards on teaching and art supplies. Plus, get free shipping on every staples.com® order.


Fresh and Light Mexican Shrimp Cocktail Recipe: Beat the Heat With This Tasty Treat

Now that the weather is heating up outside, many Texas will be looking for light tasty appetizers and meals to cook that do not require a lot of fuss. A shrimp cocktail is the perfect treat for sizzling days, and it goes great with a frozen skinny margarita or your favorite frosty Texas beer. The freshness of the lime and the creaminess of the avocado in this recipe make it the perfect starter for your southwest feast, or a meal in itself. Recipe: 1 pound pre-cooked shrimp ½ cup chopped red onion 1/3 cup chopped cilantro 1 jalapeno diced (take seeds out if preferred) 1 lime 3 Roma tomatoes 1 jar of your favorite brand of cocktail sauce (12 ounce) 2 ripened avocados Add salt to taste Directions: First prep all of your ingredients that must be diced and chopped: the onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and jalapeno. Place all of these items into a bowl, squeeze the lime juice from the lime over it, and add a dash of salt. Once this is completed add the entire jar of cocktail sauce and mix it in. Next, cut your pre cooked shrimp into decent sized chunks and fold them into your bowl with the other ingredients. Lastly, chill the entire bowl in the fridge until ready to serve, and right before serving cut up your ripe avocado and add over the top of mixture. This can be served in a large bowl to share from with tortilla chips, or to make it appear more posh; scoop into salted margaritas glasses with a slice of lime on the side.

Texas Residents Love to Call Texas Home

Source: D Magazine

Yesterday Gallup published a poll (see the map above) of the percentages of people in each of the United States who have a desire to move from their state. Texas was on the lowest end of the spectrum, with only 24 percent of us wanting to get out. Only Montana, Hawaii, and Maine (23 percent each) residents like where they are more.
It’s not surprising to see how many Texans are satisfied with their situation. With our relatively strong economy, relatively low cost of living, and our ridiculous sense of self-worth and belief in the exceptional nature of the Land of Friends, it’s to be expected.
See the rankings of the top and bottom of the list below. Half of everybody who lives in Illinois—the state of my birth and home to Heaven on Earth—want out. They cite the taxes.
Most-and-fewest-movers

Vox notes that fewer people are moving from state to state. The rate has fallen in half since 1990. The likely reason?
The economists who made that above chart, Greg Kaplan and Sam Schulhofer-Wohl, argued that the decline in moving in part happened because US jobs got less geographically specific, as they put it. Translated, that means it’s easier than it used to be to find a lot of the same sorts of jobs across a lot of different cities, as the Economist noted in 2012. A shift away from the goods-producing sector to services has helped this happen. Common services jobs, like healthcare and waitressing, can be done anywhere. But a lot of goods-producing jobs (manufacturing, mining, logging) have to be done in particular places (i.e. wherever the factories, mines, or trees are).
Likewise, there’s now more fluid information. People can easily look up places they might want to live. This could also be a factor that keeps people in place — they can research and hem and haw over a move, rather than crossing their fingers and driving across the country.

Suburbia Fest in Plano - Bringing Quality Music to the Suburbs








When music promoter Live Nation hatched a plan three years ago to bring a signature entertainment event to the North Texas area, top brass weren’t all that concerned about which city would serve as its home. Their real priority in developing what would become this year’s inaugural Suburbia Music Festival — kicking off in Plano on Saturday and Sunday — was to decide whether it should be a no-frills camping fest like Bonnaroo or a come-and-go shindig a laAustin City Limits.
A pastoral setting is key for either, said Danny Eaton, Dallas resident and Live Nation’s senior vice president: Tennessee’s annual Bonnaroo Music Festival is held on a rural farm, and an overwhelming number of its attendees set up tents or sleep in vehicles. Austin City Limits Music Festival, of course, takes at a park within its namesake town so that people from all neighborhoods can hike, bike and shuttle in.
Historically, North Texas hasn’t hosted regular festivals like either of those biggies, which attract attendance in the 70,000 to 100,000 range. We’ve mastered single-day events in Deep Ellum and downtown (Homegrown Music and Arts Festival is notable), themed multi-day fests (Denton’s Arts & Jazz weekend, Richardson’s nostalgia-driven Wildflower Festival are two), and enjoyed one-time flings with over-the-top affairs (the recent March Madness Music Festival in the surprisingly functional Reunion Park comes to mind). We’ve even had our own showcase-heavy version of South by Southwest in the form of the on-and-off festival 35 Denton. (This year, it’s off.)
But Live Nation wanted a large-scale gathering in North Texas that could become an annual, reliable destination and bring in music’s A-listers and buzz artists.
Eaton said that after many months of looking around, a colleague of his who regularly jogged at Plano’s 801-acre Oak Point Park & Nature Preserve brought the property to the team’s attention.
“It’s like this oasis in the middle of a large amount of population,” Eaton said. “You feel like you are getting away, but you don’t have to drive 100 miles and camp out. You can sleep in your own bed.”
Eaton and crew approached the city of Plano about the park. They didn’t have to do much convincing.
“When they came knocking at our door, we’d already been tasked with bringing a big event to the city,” said Amy Fortenberry, Plano’s director of Parks & Recreation. “But big events cost money, and I wasn’t sure how we could put on that kind of a party without money.”
So once a deal was in place late last year – one that would see Plano and Live Nation partner on a festival, with the latter bearing the brunt of expenses and logistics-planning – it was time to settle on a name and a concept. Rather than deny the past perception of Plano as typically suburban, a decision was made to embrace it.
“We felt that since we were in Suburbia, which makes up such a large part of North Texas, we wanted to celebrate it,” Eaton said, “especially when it’s coupled with the fact that something as beautiful as this park can be in a suburban location.”
“There were mixed reactions when we first heard the name ‘Suburbia’,” Fortenberry said. “But when we saw the whole concept put together, we got it.”
Regarding Suburbia’s lineup, variety reigns, with roots stars Alabama Shakes and EDM king David Guetta representing the yin and the yang of festival headliners. Supporting acts span an equally wide range, including hip-hop stars J. Cole and Run the Jewels; legacy radio acts Third Eye Blind and Violent Femmes; hipster heroes Tegan & Sara and Surfer Blood; and local luminaries such as Midlake and the O’s. Suburbia’s bill — refreshingly different from many of the increasingly similar lineups at fests around the country — was designed, in Eaton’s words, “like an iPod on shuffle.” It recently landed Suburbia a mention in Rolling Stone’s “40 Must-See Music Festivals.”
“The Rolling Stone thing is big for us in the first outing,” Eaton said. “People like all different genres now — that’s what this is.
“I think, in future years, we may be able to understand more what people want, and Suburbia will take more of a shape, but variety is definitely the theme.”
“I hope people will come with an open mind,” said Fortenberry, who admits that she’s been in musical discovery mode since the lineup was announced. “The 20- to 30-year-olds are already pumped about the lineup, but older people will also realize that there’s something for everyone.”
Is Suburbia fest the Austin City Limits of North Texas?
While Live Nation hasn’t officially signed on to produce Suburbia beyond its first outing, Danny Eaton feels confident it will be a part of Plano’s slate for many years to come — an event that matures beyond any “ACL of North Texas” labels, he said.
“There’s no question we’re looking long-range with this,” Eaton said. “We really hope this will be an organic experience. Once we get out there and get feedback and analysis of what happens, I feel it will take on a life of its own.”
The team that operates New Orleans’ Voodoo Music+Arts Experience will produce the inaugural Suburbia.
Getting to Suburbia
Transportation to the park in Plano is available in several forms, said Amy Fortenberry, Plano’s director of Parks & Recreation. Options include taking DART; using hiking and trails, including one that runs under US-75 from the west; biking to the venue; or driving and parking.
“Obviously, parks don’t set themselves up like AT&T Stadium when it comes to parking,” she said, but they have shuttles running to and from two parking lots for an extra fee. Parking costs $15 per day in the general admission lots.
On Twitter:  @HausofHunter


Something New is Brewing in Addison



When people think of Texas, many things come to mind: awesome barbecue, horse ranches, and country music.  However when people think of what Texan’s like to drink, beer is at the forefront of everyone’s mind.  A good beer can be a serious matter for many Americans, but for Texans, a good beer is more than just a drink, it is a culture. 

While businesses of all kinds continue to pop up around the Lone Star state, one can’t help but notice that breweries are quickly becoming new welcome additions to many Texas’ towns.  Addison, Texas, while known for its amazing restaurants and fun local bars, has never housed its own brewery. Bitter Sisters Brewing Company will fill that empty void and become the first brewery operating in Addison.  The brewery will be located on Surveyor Blvd. and is in the finishing stages of renovations so that the beer can begin to flow.

While the idea of a hometown brewery is exciting, it is the story behind Bitter Sisters Brewing Company that will have people from all over rooting for the company’s success.  Many would say that the idea for this brewery has been in the works for a while.  Matt Ehinger, owner and brewmaster, states that he and his family have been talking about this plan for at least 10 years.  Ehinger and the family finally decided that there was no better time than the present and thus Bitter Sisters finally became a reality.  The name comes from the three sisters in Matt’s wife’s family.  His wife, along with her two sisters and their husbands, are all deeply involved in the brewery making this a true family owned and operated place. 

Bitter Sisters is shooting for a late summer opening and will be draft beer only at first. Their beer will be sold at local bars and restaurants as well as in the brewery's tasting room.  The company considers themselves different than most breweries in that half of their portfolio will be lagers. Lagers are brewed at a cooler temperature for longer periods of time compared to other ales, so it isn't uncommon that most breweries only offer one lager choice.  Bitter Sisters will include German style Helles, Marzen, Irish Red Ale, and an India Pale as a year round offering. 

So Addison’s eagerly awaited Bitters Sisters Brewing company will represent more than just good beer; it will represent the family inspired dreams that all Texans can say they hold dear.  Look for Bitter Sisters big debut in late August and go have a beer with your own family, and become a part of theirs.


  

Texas Colleges - Represented in 2014 NFL Draft




The 2014 NFL draft is being well-represented by Texas colleges.  This does not take into consideration the Texas athletes that are playing for schools outside of the state.  The order you see below is based on their draft grade.

The draft will be held on May 8-10


GRADE
TITLE
9.00-10 Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-8.99 Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99 Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49 Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.50-6.99 Chance to become Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.00-6.49 Should become instant starter
5.50-5.99 Chance to become NFL starter
5.20-5.49 NFL backup or special teams potential
5.01-5.19 Better-than-average chance to make NFL roster
5 50-50 Chance to make NFL roster
4.75-4.99 Should be in an NFL training camp
4.50-4.74 Chance to be in an NFL training camp
NO GRADE Likely needs time in developmental league.


PLAYER
POS
HT
WT
COLLEGE
GRADE
OT
6'5"
308
Texas A&M
7.2
WR
6'5"
231
Texas A&M
6.4
QB
6'0"
207
Texas A&M
6.1
CB
5'9"
189
TCU
5.9
TE
6'5"
265
Texas Tech
5.5
OG
6'5"
329
Baylor
5.4
SS
6'0"
212
Baylor
5.2
RB
5'9"
201
Baylor
5.2
CB
6'0"
193
Rice
5.2
WR
6'0"
197
Texas
5.2
DE
6'3"
247
Texas
5.2
DE
6'3"
267
West Texas A&M
5.2
WR
5'10"
163
Baylor
5.1
WR
5'9"
188
North Texas
5.1
CB
5'11"
180
Texas
5.1
DT
6'3"
269
Texas
5.1
OLB
6'3"
241
Texas A&M
5.1
WR
5'9"
184
West Texas A&M
5.1
CB
5'11"
194
Baylor
5
K
6'2"
185
Rice
5
CB
6'0"
190
SMU
5
QB
6'4"
221
SMU
5
CB
5'11"
182
Tarleton St.
5
OG
6'3"
307
Texas
5
RB
5'8"
193
Texas A&M
5
K
6'1"
211
Texas
4.9
DT
6'2"
290
Texas Tech
4.9
QB
6'5"
235
West Texas A&M
4.9
TE
6'6"
256
Baylor
4.8
DE
6'4"
249
Rice
4.8
RB
5'9"
207
Sam Houston St.
4.8
OT
6'4"
295
Texas
4.8
DT
6'3"
274
Texas St.
4.8
QB
6'4"
216
TCU
4.7
WR
6'0"
183
West Texas A&M
4.7

*All grades are from NFL.com 
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