When my husband and I decided to move our family to Dallas two years ago, I wasn’t sure it would be a match. I was raised in the Midwest and had lived there as an adult, so moving south was going to be a big change for me — for all of us. As we drove the Lakewood and M Streets neighborhoods looking for a new home, I felt excited by the adorable older homes — something I’d always wanted — and comforted by the mature trees and spring flowers. The sight of daffodils, tulips, and irises reminded me of my mom’s Indiana flower beds. It felt familiar, closer to what I knew as home. Equally encouraging was the sight of our potentially new neighbors out and about, walking their babies and dogs, riding bikes, and running. Our family is active, so this neighborhood felt right to us.
When we excitedly decided on and purchased a home in Wilshire Heights, we knew that our son would attend one of the best elementary schools in Dallas ISD, Stonewall Jackson. This was a big factor in our decision. The school boasts a renowned garden with a plot for each child, chickens, and some of the best test scores in the city. Wilshire Heights also is home to another great educational option, St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic School, which offers pre-kindergarten through eighth grade in a private-school setting.
Now that we’ve been settled here for a while, here’s what else I love about living in Wilshire Heights:
An eclectic mix of homes and residents. The neighborhood is truly welcoming to all kinds of people — older couples, young families, singles, and young marrieds — all are living here. The neighborhood association hosts socials during the year and supports block parties organized by the residents. Surprisingly, these events manage to combine these diverse groups with aplomb. There are organized play-dates at nearby Tietze Park, an 8.2-acre space just blocks away thats offers ball fields, basketball courts, picnic areas, a public swimming pool, and playground equipment. The park also hosts an annual Easter egg hunt.
There have been some unexpected surprises too. As I’ve walked the neighborhood with my dogs, I’ve heard chickens clucking and crowing from a backyard, stopped to take a look at the book offerings in the Take a Book, Leave a Book box, and have watched someone walk a pot-bellied pig.
It doesn’t stop with the residents. The homes are a great mix, and they fit together just as well. In these 700 or so homes, you’ll see about every style — Craftsman, Tudor, classic ranches and two-stories — and new construction appearing as single-family and duplex homes. The homes and yards are well taken care of by homeowners who have a stake in the success of this neighborhood and community.
Close proximity to everything Dallas has to offer. Living in Wilshire Heights places you within walking distance of Greenville Avenue — with restaurants, live music, boutiques, grocery stores, fitness clubs, and more. The neighborhood is about a mile from White Rock Lake and Lakewood Shopping Center, and a 15-minute drive to downtown. All of these locations are easily accessible by bike or on foot using local streets and bike trails.
Wilshire Heights is a special neighborhood, even if only based on what it offers within its boundaries. It definitely has come to feel like home to me, holding many memories that I share with my family, from watching Saturday afternoon football games on the field at St. Thomas Aquinas to being within walking distance of Sunday night Cub Scout meetings at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church. I am a part of the eclectic pieces that come together to make this neighborhood a community and the place that I call home.
Lesly Huffman has lived in Wilshire Heights since 2013.