Fall and cooler weather has finally arrived and with it is my favorite time of year, the season of thankfulness. Over the last two years we have all faced many challenges and through it all it has been my goal to each day find something in which I can be thankful. And there truly is a lot.
The City is in good financial standing. We received affirmation of our AAA bond rating from Standard & Poors as we plan to issue Certificates of Obligation for street and park projects. In 2018 the City’s rating was increased from AA+ to AAA, which is the highest rating possible. S&P credited this to the City’s strong economy, strong financial policies and practices, and strong budgetary performance and flexibility. For this I am grateful to our staff who conservatively and diligently plan and implement the City’s annual budget and the five-year outlook as well as the Council’s that have put a fiscally sustainable and conservative policy in place.
In December we will vote to issue CO’s for parks and street projects totaling $15.75M, including the issuance cost. All the anticipated projects can be found on the City website, but a few highlights include street reconstruction for 28 streets, overlay on Sellmeyer Lane and a portion of Highland Shores Boulevard, a pedestrian crossing at Highland Shores Boulevard and Community Center Drive. Park project highlights include improvements to Pilot Knoll Park along with the addition of rental cabins to provide a revenue stream, tennis court improvements, lighted basketball courts at Unity Park, and renovations to the baseball and flag football fields at Unity Park and Brazos Park.
I am grateful to our Veterans. In Highland Village we have honored and remembered the men and women who serve in our armed forces to protect our country for many years. On the south side of the Municipal Complex we have the Armed Forces Monument and the Veterans Monument. Twice a year, around Veterans Day and Memorial Day, we hold the Honor Our Veterans ceremony where the names of Highland Village veterans, living or deceased, are placed on the Veterans Monument. If you would like to honor a Highland Village veteran this way, visit the City website at highlandvillage.org for qualifications and details.
We are continuing the tradition of bringing in the holiday season with Our Village Glows on Saturday, November 20 at The Shops at Highland Village, beginning at 5 p.m. The City partners with the Highland Village Women’s Club and The Shops at Highland Village to bring this festive event to the community. Once again this year the 60-foot Christmas tree will feature a themed “Let it Glow, Holiday Light Show Spectacular” which includes 245,300 LED tree lights synchronized to holiday music. This is a great family event with musical entertainment, horse-drawn carriage rides, face-painting, cookie decorating, ornament making and pictures with Santa. I hope to see you all there as we kick of the holiday season in Highland Village.
Our Parks Department is hosting the Wine Down with the Grinch on Friday, December 10. This event is for adults age 21 and up and is a perfect date night opportunity for couples during this holiday season. Attendees will experience live music, adult beverages, hors d’oeuvres, and a special guest appearance from the Grinch. Space is limited for this event so you’ll want to sign up early at hvparks.com.
Then on Saturday, December 11 come to Doubletree Ranch Park for Christmas at the Ranch. Bring the whole family for Santa’s workshop for children, a special visit from Santa and his reindeer, tubing snow hills and much more. You’ll want to visit the Doubletree Ranch Park throughout the holiday season as it will be turned into a winter wonderland with Christmas lights and various lawn ornaments. Insider tip, it’s a great place to snap that holiday photo for your family Christmas card.
While we are enjoying the month of thankfulness, we are participating in the We are One Community Thanksgiving Food Drive-Thru. The event will take place on Saturday, Nov. 20 at Music City Mall in Lewisville from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. and will provide turkeys and accompanying food, diapers, flu shots and COVID vaccinations to families in need for the 2021 Thanksgiving season. Volunteers are needed to assist at this event – if you’d like to participate you can find more information at weare1community.org.
Our local business owners are gearing up for the holiday season. This is the busiest time for our retailers and restaurants and it is the perfect time for you to see what we have to offer in Highland Village. You know we’ve long said ‘we have it all in Highland Village’ and I truly believe we do. I hope you’ll make your plans to experience Highland Village as you prepare for holiday gatherings and gift giving. Keeping our sales tax dollars at home not only benefits the business owners who have chosen to set up shop in Highland Village, it also benefits our local economy.
We always receive questions about trash pickup during the holidays. As a reminder, Community Waste Disposal will not run trash pickup on Thanksgiving Day so Thursday’s route will move to Friday and Friday’s route will move to Saturday. Christmas Day and New Year’s Day fall on Saturdays so there will be no changes to our trash pickup schedule the week of Christmas and New Year’s.
I am thankful for each of you. I see our community pull together to help one another, generously give to those in need and share their time and talents. Highland Village is a wonderful place to live and serve, I am thankful to serve as your Mayor. I wish each of you a happy Thanksgiving and memorable times with family and friends.
Remember, it is thankful people who are happy people.