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Arts + Culture

Ready, Set, Read: Mayor’s Summer Reading Challenge

Take the pledge to read 20 minutes a day.



Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings will join Dallas families to kick off the 2019 Mayor’s Summer Reading Challenge at the Festival of Books and Ideas on Saturday, June 1.

Open to all ages, the free 10-week program, which runs June 1-Aug. 10, encourages the family to read every day. Participants can enjoy fantastic prizes and more than 2,500 weekly STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) activities offered throughout the summer at neighborhood locations. Registration is open at any of the 29 Dallas library locations or online.

“As Dallas mayor for the last eight years, I’m delighted to see how the Mayor’s Summer Reading Challenge has inspired thousands of families to carve out time to read and make it a favorite pastime,” says Mayor Rawlings. “Children suffer quite a bit of learning loss during the summer months, but just 20 minutes of daily reading can counter those effects while increasing literacy and a lifelong love for learning. I look forward to seeing the program’s continued growth as I pass the torch to the new Dallas mayor.”

In addition to the Festival of Books and Ideas – a free, open to the public event, special kickoff parties will take place at every library location. These include carnival games, space-themed parties, a 90s party, fire truck show and tell, animal shows, STEAM activities, musical performers and more. Check with each local library for details of their kickoff party.

Participants who sign up by June 1 will be entered in a drawing for four tickets to see Aladdin at the Music Hall at Fair Park.

Young Challenge members can earn incentive prizes – including books plus coupons and passes to local attractions – for every 10 days they read at least 20 minutes. Adults will be entered into prize drawings for every 10 days of 20-minute reading they log. Reading can be reported to any Dallas Public Library or online.

Kids who read at least 50 days by Aug. 10 will be entered to win grand prizes including special experiences such as behind-the-scenes access to the lemur exhibit at the Dallas Zoo and Dallas Stars tickets with a post-game meet-and-greet with the team.

For adults, the grand prizes include hotel stays, creative arts workshops, theater and dance performance tickets plus gift certificates to restaurants, hair salons and comedy clubs.

For 46 years, the Dallas Public Library’s summer reading program has encouraged nearly 330,000 children to read. The Mayor’s Summer Reading Challenge is a collaborative effort between the City of Dallas Mayor’s Office, Dallas Public Library, Dallas ISD and dozens of community sponsors and donors. Click here to sign up, learn more, or to see the details and rules.

Around + Beyond

Chinese New Year Dinner

The Chinese New Year is filled with lots tradition. Come celebrate at The Chinese Neighbor.



Photo courtesy of The Chinese Neighbor

The Chinese Neighbor will host an 8-course feast of special dishes by Chef Bob Tam on Sunday, January 26 from 5pm to 7pm at the Prosper, TX location.

The Chinese New Year is filled with lots tradition. The Year of the rat celebrates wealth, surplus and the beginning of a new day.

The menu has been set, but may change due to availability of ingredients & Chef Bob Tam’s whimsey.

First Course – Malted Shrimp Chips, Chinese Onion Dip
Second Course – Century Deviled Eggs
Third Course – Smoked Salmon “Everything” Eggroll
Fourth Course – Mustard Green Egg Drop Soup
Fifth Course – Grilled Cheese Dumpling, H.K. Borscht
Sixth Course – Golden Boy Pizza’s Clams Clams & Garlic, Lo Bak Go (Daikon Crepe)
Seventh Course – Mala (Sichaun Peppercorn), Carbonara Lo Mien
Eight Course – Truffle & Crispy Egg Custard Fried Rice

Visit the Eventbrite page for more details and to purchase tickets.

This information was provided as a press release.

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Arts + Culture

Al Biernat’s North & Samuel Lynne Galleries Hosts Exclusive VIP Closing Reception for Fine Art Photographer David Yarrow

Yarrow returned to Dallas for the weekend to preview his latest exhibition.



Photo courtesy of Tamytha Cameron

Al Biernat’s North and Samuel Lynne Galleries hosted a private VIP reception for fine art photographer David Yarrow Sunday, November 17.

Yarrow returned to Dallas for the weekend to preview his latest exhibition.

Guests enjoyed a brief presentation by Yarrow and viewed selected work from the exhibition.

In closing, all were invited to purchase Yarrow’s second book, a comprehensive collection of his photographic travels through the Americas, Africa, Antarctica, the Arctic, Asia, and Europe.

The book, featuring a foreword written by global NFL star Tom Brady and an afterword written by American cultural icon Cindy Crawford, is available at Samuel Lynne Galleries.

In addition, Yarrow’s exhibit will be open at Samuel Lynne Galleries until February 1, 2020.

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Arts + Culture

Cool Thursdays Concert Subscriptions for 2020 On Sale

Prepare to enjoy great tunes and an amazing view.



Photo courtesy of Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden

The Dallas Arboretum’s premier concert series “Cool Thursdays” season subscriptions, sponsored by Wells Fargo, are on sale now.

As Dallas’ only concert series overlooking the picturesque White Rock Lake on the award-winning Martin Rutchik Concert Stage and Lawn, concert subscriptions have a history of selling out quickly.

In addition to the coolest view of White Rock Lake, attendees can bring picnics and beverages or purchase food from some of DFW’s favorite food trucks. The gardens are also open to stroll through before the concert to enjoy the stunning floral displays.

The 2020 lineup will feature nine new exciting tribute bands.

New bands for spring include “Hotter Than July”, A Stevie Wonder Tribute Band, “JT”, The Incredible Tribute to Justin Timberlake and “Kids In America”, Totally 80s Tribute Band.

New bands for fall include “The Troubadour Experience”, A Tribute to George Strait, “Hot August Night”, A Tribute to Neil Diamond and “The British Are Coming”, World’s Greatest British Rock Tribute Group.

Subscription packages are the smartest deal for tickets, offering savings of up to 66 percent, and make for unique and long-lasting Christmas gifts.

All packages purchased by December 3 will be delivered in time for the holidays.

Complete series subscriptions – 22 concerts – are on sale for $333. Spring series only – 13 concerts – are $210, and fall series only – 9 concerts – are $165.

See the full band lineup with dates and purchase concert subscriptions here.

The concert series continues every Thursday this spring and early summer and again in the fall. Gates open at 6 p.m., spring concerts begin at 7:30 p.m. and fall concerts begin at 7 p.m.

For group tickets of 15 or more, call 214-515-6520.

On-site parking is complimentary for all concerts and we encourage our guests to take advantage of the close covered parking available at the parking garage.

Hotel Accommodations for Cool Thursdays Concert Series are sponsored by: The Westin Dallas Downtown.

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