Lisa Elsik, The Kessler School: Ask pre-K Level One teacher Lisa Elsik what the best part of her job is, and she’s hard pressed to ﬁnd an answer, saying that she loves everything about it, from seeing her students develop and grow to sharing in their daily excitement for life. A teacher for 16 years — 14 of which have been spent at The Kessler School — it’s evident that she takes education seriously, saying that her students are learning “from the moment they walk in the door, to the moment that they leave.”
Tony Tovar: Anthony Tovar Jr. has been on staf with the DISD for 35 years, but has been involved for 47 years if you include his time as a student. He knew he wanted to be an educator and coach since he was in the ﬁ fth grade, and after spending six years as an assistant principal, he realized that dream in 2006, when he took the helm at Sunset High School. Since then, he’s remained devoted to the futures of his students and led the school to increase its standardized testing scores each year.
Dr. Darryl Curry: Dr. Curry has been treating aching tummmies around Oak Clif since 1986. In fact, some of his former patients have kids of their own now. He’s loathe to call his work as a pediatrician a “job,” saying that he has too much fun to consider what he does work. Fortunately for the community, Dr. Curry doesn’t plan to retire anytime soon; he can’t imagine a day without the tiny patients who he says are fun-loving and inspirational, even when sick.
Carlos Donjuan: Born in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, the inﬂ uence of his homeland is never far from Carlos Donjuan’s works. Documenting his experience growing up as an immigrant and “other” in the eyes of America, Donjuan mixes the skills he learned as a street artist with the education he received in the classroom to create complex works that weave art history with social and cultural issues, politics, religion, and family. Citing the grai ti movement as the driving force behind his art, he works with an inﬂ uential crew of local artists dubbed the “Sour Grapes” who bring street art into galleries.
PERFORMING ARTS VENUE
LIVE MUSIC VENUE
Kessler Theater: It’s only been a few years since the resurrection of the Kessler Theater, but it’s become the area’s go-to venue for a wide variety of live performances. After sitting unoccupied for decades, it’s been incredible for the community to witness the triumphant restoration of one of Dallas’ most historic buildings. From its Art Deco decor to its soaring acoustics, the Kessler is one of the most dynamic places to see a show.
Anytime Fitness: The perks here include af ordable membership fees, small group exercise classes, non-intimidating personal trainers, and all the equipment you need to get your body back in shape — and keep it there.
Grace Presbyterian Village: For 40 years, this sprawling, not-for-proﬁ t retirement center has provided gentle and ef ective care to the community’s cherished seniors. Dedicated to “mak[ing] each moment matter,” Grace Presbyterian Village provides skilled nursing and rehabilitation services as well as a rich community life.
Texas Theatre: It seemed that the public had all but forgotten this piece of Jef erson Avenue history, until Aviation Cinemas took over the lease and breathed new life back into its dusty rafters. In just a couple years, the company has begun the process of restoring the theater to its former glory days by showing an impressive selection of indie ﬁ lms, superhero blockbusters, and zany performances.
Stevens Park Golf Course: It’s been little more than a year since the redesign of Stevens Park Golf Course was completed, but it’s already being dubbed the “Little Augusta” of North Texas. Because it’s open to the public, golf pros and novices alike can practice their backswing on the recently renovated greens, tee boxes, fairways, and bunkers.
Belmont Hotel: If you’re in need of some close-to-home refreshing, this boutique hotel is the perfect place for a weekend getaway. A restored 1960s motor court hotel, the Belmont is full of retro charm you won’t ﬁ nd anywhere else. From live music to outdoor movies, there’s plenty to do while you stay, and Bar Belmont provides the best seat in the city to watch the sun set over the Dallas skyline.
Kidd Springs Park: It’s hard to believe that Kidd Springs Park is just a couple of minutes from downtown. With a lake full of wildlife, a butterﬂy garden, and shady walking paths, you’ll be transported away from the busy city and into a lush oasis as soon as you enter. As historic as it is beautiful, Kidd Springs Park truly is a patch of paradise in our urban metropolis.
Bastille on Bishop: The Bishop Arts District sees many festivals every year, but none are more beloved than this celebration of France’s independence and revolution. With events ranging from mussel cook-of s to French maid relays and games of petanque (all experienced with generous amounts of wine, naturally), we’re already excited for this summer’s celebration.