Have you ever wanted to test your horror survival skill, just in case you ever found yourself being run down by a blood sucking-vampire? Or what if you found yourself suddenly transformed into a blood-sucking vampire, would you be able run down enough prey to keep yourself fed? Well the Vampire 5k, happening this weekend in Fair Park, is the perfect place to see how you would fair on either side of good 0r evil.
What is it and how does it work?
The Vampire 5k is no ordinary 5k race where you’re competing for better time or first or second place; no here you’re competing for survival! Each participant chooses to either run as a vampire or as a citizen (when making the decision ask yourself, “do I only run when I’m being chased or do I love the thrill of the chase?) or you can sign up with multiple people and create either a clan (vampires) or a group (citizens). The day of the “race,” vampires must wear all black and citizens must wear all white with each team starting at two separate locations. The course will converge at an unknown distance and after that the chase is on! Citizens will be wearing two flags both of which the vampires must snatch from the citizens in order to turn them into fellow blood suckers. All of this will be made more intense by the zones of red powder and fog and other surprises along the course.
Are you ready to Go Green? Yes? Then mark your calendar for April 20th and 21st because Earth Day Dallas, held this year in Fair Park, is ready to show you how.
What better way to celebrate Earth Day than learning how to live eco-friendly with fun hands-on activities and performances from Dallas’ Anita Martinez Ballet Folklorico and many others. The Festival will be filled with hundreds of exhibitors sharing colorful displays, innovative products, scientific apparatuses, demonstrations, and hands-on opportunities for the whole family.
For some, Downtown Dallas is right at their fingertips, along with access to some of our city’s greatest restaurants, sites, museums and shopping. But for those have to endure a long trip down the toll way just to get a glimpse of the illuminated skyline, here’s a few events that might coax you out of your not so urban area.
As a resident of Dallas what do you think of when you think of Santa? Besides the obvious magical superhero who sneaks down your chimney and delivers presents, it probably involves hoards of hyperactive children in North Park mall crowded around a guy in a Santa suit, impatiently waiting to sit on his knee and tell him their Christmas wishes. Or maybe you think of those creepy giant inflatable lawn Santas that seem to be so popular now. If either of these scenarios are what come to your mind when you think of Santa then I think it’s time Dallas changed how it experiences Santa. I say we start with Santacon, which Dallas actually participated in for the first time this year. So what is Santacon?
Well Santacon is where a big group of people dressed up like Santa get together and go on a giant bar crawl through the city, and the whole group has to stick together as you go from bar to bar creating what you might call a joyful and surreal moment for on lookers. Why should Dallas adopt this tradition and partake in it annually? BECAUSE IT’S FUN! Just check out the footage from this years Santacon in New York.
Plus, as you can see from the video, you don’t have to just stick to a traditional Santa get up, you can let your Christmas imagination go wild!
Imagine, a giant gang of sugar plumb fairies, Santas, reindeer, sexy elves and walking christmas trees running around together in Uptown and Fair Park inspiring shock, awe and of course Christmas cheer. I’m going to assume that at this point you, like me, are convinced that Santacon is something that needs to be a part of Dallas’ Christmas every year, so how do we make that happen?
1. First thing we need to do is make Dallas Santacon grow because when it comes to Santacon bigger is better and more fun. A social media outlet needs to be set up to gather all the Santas together and help them coordinate where they’re going to meet and where they’re going to go. This will also help spread the news about what’s going on and encourage more and more people to participate.
2. Start points need to be set and instead going from bar to bar there should be certain zones in various neighborhoods established where all the Santas can congregate. For example, starting in Downtown, galloping along to Victory, and finishing in Uptown. It would also help if the open container laws in the established zones could be relaxed just a little. I promise to walk and cab it!
3. Finally since this would be Santacon in Dallas we need to find a way to put our city’s stamp on it. What could we do to make this the Santacon everyone wants to be a part of? We could end it with a big concert, do a city wide scavenger hunt, have a contest for best real Santa beard, a cookies and milk food challenge , what Santa can bring the most “reindeer” or any number of crazy things.
It’s time Dallas got Santa out of the mall and into the streets for a holiday celebration that gives people an excuse to cut loose from the mundane holiday responsibilities and let’s everyone’s Christmas spirit go wild.
We apologize in advance for any children that see Santa going crazy in Dallas next year.
Dallas’ first ever multimillion-dollar multimedia campaign will be announced at today’s annual meeting of the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau. The $5 million branding and marketing campaign will help Dallas rise in the ranks as a top convention destination city. The campaign took eight months to craft and used input from Dallas residents and Dallas-based marketing agency TracyLocke. With millions in potential revenue for hotels, restaurants and taxi drivers at stake, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings believes the campaign “is not just about the hotel rooms. This is about creating, year after year,” a reason for visitors to come back.
The campaign was made possible this year when the creation of the Dallas Tourism Public Improvement District was approved. It will last at least five years and will include 100-plus hotels within the city limits including the NYLO in South Dallas and the Omni Hotel in Downtown Dallas. Hotel owners agreed to be taxed to create the money pot used to boost marketing in the city. The tax, which hotels began collecting this summer, is paid by a 2 percent fee charged to hotel guest and is estimated to bring in up to $10 million a year. Philip Jones, chief executive of the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau, estimated the new Dallas branding campaign will cost up to $5 million.
Driving home from the airport last Friday, I was able to take stock of the progress on the new DART Orange Line extension and must say that I am impressed by the amount of progress that has been made thus far. It seems that Dallas is well on its way towards building a strong transit ridership base, one that will hopefully help to reduce traffic congestion on major roadways. But despite DART’s noble expansion efforts, the proportion of commuters who use mass transit to get from their residence to their place of employment in Dallas is significantly lower than cities of comparable size in the developed world, as noted in the Dallas Morning News on Thursday.
While we’re nowhere near having a system with the size and ridership of cities like New York, London or Tokyo, mostly due to the geographic expanse of the city and low population density, it’s hard not to appreciate what progress has been made thus far. The best way to create more ridership is to expand the system further and create more stations in residential areas, making it easier for more people to get to work via Light Rail. I personally would be happy to take the train to work every day if the nearest station wasn’t a ten minute drive from my house, by which time it makes more sense to drive the remaining ten minutes into Downtown.
This is a very interesting use of animation to tell a story about a city. We lifted this story summary in order to present it to you here and to think about how we could shoot something like this for Downtown Dallas.
“Metropolis is a quirky and very abridged narrative history of the city of Charlotte, North Carolina. It uses stop motion video animation to physically manipulate aerial still images of the city (both real and fictional), creating a landscape in constant motion. Starting around 1755 on a Native American trading path, the viewer is presented with the building of the first house in Charlotte. From there we see the town develop through the historic dismissal of the English, to the prosperity made by the discovery of gold and the subsequent roots of the building of the multitude of churches that the city is famous for. Now the landscape turns white with cotton, and the modern city is ‘born’, with a more detailed re-creation of the economic boom and surprising architectural transformation that has occurred in the past 20 years. (more…)
The formal opening of the Belo Gardens is May 10th. The park is coming together and there are many elements of this park to like. There is an one element that is not so popular, and Urban Planner Patrick Kennedy wrote this article about the 12 foot high, 60 foot yard-long “wall of spite”, that was constructed to separate the gardens from the Metropolitan Building. We wrote our own article about this very topic last year.
Kennedy is a good writer, so we lifted this paragraph from his article, “Urbanism is about agglomerating compatible projects so that the value of the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Think of a jigsaw puzzle. Any two pieces have a relationship. Everything has its place. The closer the pieces, the stronger that relationship must be.” Kennedy goes on to say that walls are antithetical to good urban design. Based on our own observation of this particular wall, we have to agree with Kennedy.
Belo Garden’s sponsors’ hope is that “Belo Garden will inspire others to contribute to help bring the rest of the Downtown Parks Master Plan to life” and that the gardens will provide “an urban oasis for Downtown Dallas residents, employees, visitors and students, and will stimulate economic development by creating in-demand views for nearby buildings.” We hope so, but we will think about what might have been if UCR and Jack Gosnell could have leased spaces on the Metropolitan Building’s first floor to restaurants that could have designed their space to maximize the park’s amenities.
We give Belo high marks for developing the park and low marks for constructing the wall. For now, we look to a great leader and eloquent orator who many years ago, implored the Soviets to “tear down this wall!”. Perhaps, even at this late date, it would be wise to reconsider a bad idea and an impediment to proper urban planning.
The meeting planners’ final evening at the Omni Dallas Grand Opening Experience drew to a close with the Gala Dinner and After Party, followed by a Gospel Brunch in the morning.
American Idol alum and North Texas resident Tim Halperin was already performing onstage when meeting planners entered the Omni’s Dallas Ballroom for the Gala Dinner. Halperin performed a cover of Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” and his original “I Wanna Fall In Love”.
Saturday, the third day of the “Definitely Dallas!” Grand Opening Experience at the Omni Dallas Hotel, meeting planners were given the opportunity to attend a variety of tours throughout the city. The Old American Golf Club, What’s New in Dallas?, Dallas Arboretum, a Shopping Excursion and a Downtown Dallas Tour were on the list for planners to choose from.
“I was born and raised in Dallas, then left when I was about 18 years old. This is the first time that I’ve come back as a tourist to see how Dallas has changed,” said Austin resident Ray Lindner.
The Downtown Dallas Tour started off at the Grassy Knoll before taking a tour of the Sixth Floor Museum. Members of the tour group were fascinated by JFK and asked many questions related to the assassination and conspiracy theories. “I was actually a student in Dallas when the assassination occurred,” said Lindner. “For me…it’s a step back in time.” (more…)