Lakewood Craft Mall Plans Sept. 28 Opening

When native East Dallasite Steve Ashmore’s wife, Karen, told him she wanted a place to display her crafts, he took her seriously.

This month, Ashmore will open the Lakewood Craft Mall in the Lakewood Shopping Center, Abrams Road and Gaston Avenue.

The 11,000-square-foot craft mall is located in the former Minyard Pharmacy and Trice Carpet spaces. (The pharmacy has closed; Trice Carpets has moved around the corner next to Lakewood Ace Hardware.)

More than 350 individual display areas will be available for craftspeople interested in marketing their crafts to the public, Ashmore says.

“They can get as creative as they want to get in terms of displaying their work,” he says. “Then, they price it, and we sell it.”

Each craftsperson pays a set monthly fee for the display space and donates eight hours monthly to help operate the mall, says Ashmore, who operates a similar craft mall in Arlington.

Totes, tissue, fresh flowers and a full line of greeting cards with both alternative and traditional messages also will be available. Ashmore also plans a supervised children’s play area – filled with toys, a television and VCR, and a white marker board.

“I knew Lakewood was a very loyal neighborhood,” Ashmore says. “The whole area is a real revival, and I felt we would benefit from it and the other businesses could benefit from us.”

The mall, located at 1908 Abrams Parkway, is scheduled to open September 28, with a grand opening planned for early October. Call 823-5799 for more information.

East Dallas Baseball Team Wins Mays World Series

Lakewood resident Douglas Conner and 14 teammates from the Stallions baseball team realized their dream recently in Atlanta, Georgia. The team won the national Willie Mays World Series.

The 9- and 10-year-old boys, coached by Gregg hill, were part of 2,500 teams in the American Amateur Baseball Congress. The team members live in East Dallas and Lakewood, and they practice at Gaston Junior High School.

The Stallions competed nationally against teams from California, Missouri, Tennessee, Ohio, Connecticut, Georgia and Puerto Rico.

Conner admits he wasn’t sure his team would make it to the national tournament when they played at the regional level, but he says once the team reached the nationals, he had a hunch they’d win.

“It was scary when it came down to the last three outs. The last three plays were intense,” Conner says.

When the Stallions won, Conner says, “I was shocked for a second, then we all went wild, hugging each other and throwing each other up in the air. My coach even did a backflip.”

Conner says he hopes to play in the major leagues someday.

“I’ve always been good at baseball, and I’ve always liked it,” he says.

Conner’s baseball idol is Juan Gonzales of the Texas Rangers.

“He’s a good outfielder and all-around good player, and I like all-around good players.”

YMCA Offers Soccer, Education Programs

The East Dallas YMCA is registering children for fall soccer. Registration deadline is September 5 for returning players and September 7 at 1 p.m. for open enrollment. Practice games begin September 21, and the season begins September 28. Cost for YMCA members is $22, and $37 for program members.

Parent’s Day Out is geared for children from 12 months to two years. Pre-school Enrichment is offered from two to five years old. The school is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Registration fee is $15. Tuition for YMCA members is $12 daily, $86 monthly for two days weekly, and $122 monthly for three days weekly.

Call 824-8139 for more information.

East Dallas Coalition Plan Monthly Meeting

The Old East Dallas Coalition, a group of business interests and individuals interested in the Old East Dallas neighborhood, has scheduled its next meeting September 9 at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will be held in the Munger Place United Methodist Church’s fellowhip hall, according to chairman Joe Williams.

Ongoing group activities include:

The Code Enforcement Task Force, chaired by Yolanda Odom (824-0800), meets with officials from the City’s Neighborhood Services and Streets and Sanitation departments the first Thursday of each month at 7:45 a.m. in the community room of First Interstate Bank – Lakewood.

The Education Task Force, chaired by Candy Slocum (824-3604), is completing a directory of Old East Dallas public, private and parochial schools. The directory will be distributed this fall.

The Zoning Task Force, chaired by Thomas D. Moore Jr. (740-8499), is studying City procedures for Special Use Permits and Certificates of Occupancy for community service agencies. The group also is monitoring other zoning and development issues affecting the neighborhoods.

All meetings are open to neighborhood residents.

East Dallas Teacher Wins City-Wide Award

East Dallas educator Yvonne Bennett recently received the Teacher of the Year award from the Dallas Association for the Education of Young People. The award was presented during a ceremony at Dallas City Hall honoring Bennett, an instructor with the East Dallas Development Center.

The award is presented to one pre-school teacher annually. Bennett was recognized for her work with pre-school children and their parents, as well as her expertise in potty training. (This is not a misprint.)

The East Dallas Developmental Center, a non-profit child-care center, has been operating since 1980. The center recently relocated to 1926 Skillman in the Skillman/Live Oak Center. The group offers programs for children ages six weeks through kindergarten.

Call 821-7766 for information concerning the program.

News & Notes

CHAMBER EXEC RECEIVES AWARD: Judy Summers, president of the Greater East Dallas Chamber of Commerce, was elected vice president and 1992 conference chair of the Texas Chamber of Commerce Executives Association at the group’s recent conference in San Antonio. The chamber executives association is a professional group for chamber executives statewide. It is the largest such association in the United States.

REALTOR OPENS NEW OFFICE: Justiss & Justiss, Realtors has opened an office at 5728 Prospect, according to managing broker Richard Justiss. The Lakewood office of the real estate firm, which has been active in Kessler Park and surrounding areas for years, will be managed by Lakewood resident Susan Squire. The firm has scheduled several career nights in an effort to identify new sales associates. Also planned are several seminars for home buyers, Justiss says. Call 824-4444 for information.

MS. ROGERS’ NEIGHBORHOOD: Karen Rogers succeeds Michael Stiles as principal of Lakewood Elementary School. Rogers formerly was dean of instruction at James Madison High School in Dallas, Stiles has become an area coordinator for DISD.

Rogers plans to make special efforts to welcome students from outside the Lakewood neighborhood, particularly parents and students from Fannin Elementary and the Town Lake apartment complex.

Rogers began her education career as a 7th grade teacher at Cochran Elementary in Oak Cliff, and she later served as a desegration monitor for DISD.

“The district is a good employer,” she says. “And despite budget problems, I think we’re moving in the right direction.”