By Highland Village Mayor Charlotte Wilcox
That was fast! Summer, that is. At least for our families with kids in school and our teachers and staff at LISD. The summer was a short one, but the silver lining is school will be out by Memorial Day next year. Our kids are heading back to school on August 15 and for many of us we are still in summer vacation mode. Let’s remember to slow down in the school zones, watch for the kids walking through the neighborhoods on the way to and from school and most importantly don’t text and drive. Stay focused on your surroundings so we can all have a great start to the school year.
New this year at Briarhill Middle School is the addition of a full-time School Resource Officer. In Highland Village we have been fortunate to have our police department involved in our schools with our kids starting in elementary school. This is where the relationships are built. This is where our School Resource Officer has the opportunity to positively impact a child’s life. And we have seen the benefit of this over and over. So while we will have one officer dedicated to Briarhill Middle School we know it is important to have an officer involved with our elementary school students. This year we have budgeted a new position in the police department to allow for one School Resource Officer at Briarhill and one to focus on our three elementary schools. This is part of our community policing model. The public safety education, training and relationship building that happens in our schools is essential to the development of the student’s life skills.
Our police department has also played a big role in raising funds for the Texas Police Chiefs Association’s Fallen Officer Fund. Since 2008 the department has held a bike race and 5k run fundraiser for the families of police officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty and, with the help of the community, has contributed over $160,000 to the fund. The event, held the third Saturday in October, will continue again this year with some enhancements. The TXFallenPD Tribute Event will be held at The Shops at Highland Village on Saturday, October 20 and will include a 5K run, bike race, and a police obstacle course race. There is entertainment and live music, vendors, demonstrations, raffle prizes, a kids zone, food and drinks throughout the day. You can be part of this fundraising effort again this year by sponsoring the event, providing a cash donation to the fund, donating an item for the silent auction, participate in the run or bike race or attend the event. You can also purchase a Memorial T-Shirt, which has a new design. This year’s Memorial Shirt has the names of every Texas officer killed in the line of duty in 2017. You can remember these heroes by purchasing a shirt for $20 at the Highland Village Police Department located at 1000 Highland Village Road. All proceeds from the sale go directly to the Fallen Officer Fund to assist families of fallen officers in Texas. More details about the event can be found at TXFallenPD.com. I hope you’ll consider helping us support the families of fallen Texas police officers.
The City has contracted with Community Waste Disposal (CWD) for solid waste services in Highland Village. CWD will begin service in Highland Village on September 3. In order to better serve the community, adjustments have been made to some of the collection routes. Our residents can determine their collection day by entering their address on the interactive map found at highlandvillage.org.
The City contract with CWD also includes an upgrade to a larger 95-gallon recycling cart if requested by the resident. Residents can keep their existing blue 35 or 65-gallon recycling cart or exchange it for a larger 95-gallon blue recycling cart at no additional cost. If residents choose to exchange their existing blue recycling cart for a 95-gallon blue recycling cart, CWD will deliver the cart on their current service day, the week of August 27 and collect their existing blue recycling cart. Highland Village residents who would like to exchange their recycling cart should complete the form on the City website to be added to the delivery list.
Finally, since it’s hot and it’s August, that means it’s time for the Highland Village Lions Club Balloon Festival. Again this year the event will take place August 17-19 at Unity Park, which means many Highland Village residents can walk to the festival and enjoy the hot air balloons, the music, arts, crafts and the kid zone. Moving the festival to Unity Park has made this a true community event. This festival is the main fundraiser for the Lions Club and they use the dollars earned to provide vision and hearing tests for preschool children and others in our community. The festival is free to attend, the Lions Club just asks for a $5 donation for parking. You can see all the activities at www.lionsballoonfest.com. And if you have old glasses you’d like to donate you can take them to the festival or you can drop them off in the Lions Club eyeglass donation box in the rotunda at City Hall. I hope to see you there at the Balloon Festival!