If you’ve lived in this area for even a short length of time you’ve become aware of, and probably have been a customer of, the Pumpkin Patch at 5100 Cross Timbers Rd. (FM 1171) and Lusk Lane.
Jan Balekian is the owner of the 25 acres that turn the landscape a beautiful orange color during the month of October each year, as thousands of area residents shop for their favorite symbols of Halloween. During the Christmas season thousands of ornamental trees for sale become part of the scenery along that same stretch of road. The Pumpkin Patch has become so synonymous with our town that the mere mention of the name in towns and cities throughout North Texas will elicit a favorable response and a wholesome identity for our town.
Recently, Jan has faced a financial challenge to maintain this historical gem for posterity. She came over for an interview to explain her reasons for wanting to sell a small portion of her property in order to have the resources to continue. The following was sent in her own words:
“I would like to respond to some of the rumors that have been going around for the last few months regarding CVS Pharmacy. I have been spoken of harshly regarding the sale of my 2 acres on the corner of 1171 and Lusk Lane, and I feel people need to understand my situation.
“I moved into a 1929 shotgun house, that most people wouldn’t have considered, in a town that very few inhabited back in 1975. At the time, it wasn’t even Flower Mound, the official title was Flower Mound New Town and the population was a whopping 1260 residents. Our address was Route 1 and our original 900 square foot home had propane space heaters in every room and 2 tiny window air conditioners. We raised 2 daughters here and since, 9 grandchildren. Back then, we were the only ones living out this way for many, many years…
“Then, New Town became Flower Mound and started to slowly grow…the late 80’s and early 90’s saw explosive growth-almost every development needed zoning and allowances to accommodate the numbers that wanted to move to here. Flower Mound has developed into a beautiful community that we’re all very proud to call home, and yet people still want to impede the momentum of what Flower Mound has to offer.
“I love Flower Mound! This is my homestead and my life and I have not entered into this decision lightly. Most importantly, I LOVE MY PUMPKIN PATCH! I have loved hosting The Flower Mound Pumpkin Patch for the last 26 years and the new generations I get to witness enjoying it! In spite of what some may think, the Flower Mound Pumpkin Patch is NOT funded by the town in any way. All costs are covered out of my pocket. It’s been my pleasure to watch it grow and offer it free until circumstances changed a few years ago…
“My husband of 44 years walked out and my finances are running thin. As I approach my golden years, with Alzheimer’s taking my Grandparents as well as my father and aunt at 96 and 87 years old respectively-I must have a plan in place for my future. This is my life and I love it! I have prayed and put this in the Lord’s hands-asking for His guidance and direction in this matter. I approached CVS over a year ago because I knew my time was getting short to find a solution. This is how I can remain and do what I love to do for the community and protect my future without having to sell out. All the surrounding corners have been sold, so in a way, they are squeezing me out. If I fail to procure the deal with CVS my only option will be to sell ALL 25 acres for more houses and unfortunately – no more Flower Mound Pumpkin Patch.
“I hope you can now understand better my reason for approaching CVS and know that it has been a hard decision to make. I am asking for your support when this is presented to Planning and Zoning on March 26th and Town Council on April 2nd. If you are unable to attend, please send an email to the town council or the town manager to encourage this decision on my behalf. I have loved supporting my town and have dedicated 26 years of my life, doing what I love and hope to continue as long as I am able. Thank you for your time.”
Bob Weir is a former NYPD officer, long-time Flower Mound resident and former local newspaper editor.