Out About Town SHOPPING, ATTRACTIONS, ARTS

ISITORS TO THE AREA MAY BE SURPRISED AT AND RESIDENTS MAY take for granted the variety and abundance of activities that Dallas/Fort Worth has to offer. Events and activities through-out the area are seemingly endless, and though it may sound trite, Dallas truly is all things to everyone: a cosmopolitan center surrounded by sprawling suburbs; rustic ranches and massive mansions; a sports-crazed town with world-class culture.

For the avid shopper, there are shopping centers and designer stores. And for the especially ambitious, shopping in Dallas can be an event in itself: the restaurants and museums throughout the area can turn a day at the stores into an experience to remember. And for night life, the city never disappoints. From the glitz of the West End to the hip spots in Deep Ellum, you can always find music and good times in the city.

Finally, there are the sporting events. Dallas is home to the world’s most famous football team (and the most rabid fans), along with professional baseball, hockey, basketball, and soccerteams. So hit the town. There’s plenty to enjoy.

SHOPPING

Shopping is a hobby for some people and a passion for others. There is the theory that the only reason to make money is to spend it, and Dallas certainly offers plenty of opportunities.

Most notable is the shopping mecca that is NorthPark Center, located at Park Lane and Central Expressway. Conceived by developer/art collector Ray Nasher, the nation’s first upscale covered mall opened its doors in 1965. In pre-boom Dallas, Nasher was considered a visionary for combining in a retail center award-winning design, convenience, and environmental beauty.

Department stores like Dillard’s, JCPenney, Lord & Taylor, and the most popular Neiman Marcus in the chain are the cornerstones of the mall, with a supporting cast of numerous shops.

But there’s more than mere shopping at NorthPark; there’s people-watching, as some locals choose to get their exercise by walking the half-mile of the horseshoe-shaped mall. And there’s art appreciation: Sprinkled throughout the mall are rotating pieces of Nasher’s acclaimed and envied collection.

The Dallas Galleria (LBJ Freeway at Dallas Parkway) provides an expanse of stores anchored by such heavyweights as Macy’s. Marshall Field & Company, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Nordstrom. The five-storied mall also includes many restaurants and an ice rink.

Valley View Shopping Center (LBJ Freeway at Preston Road) is an impressive mall, with outlets of such department stores as Dillard’s, JCPenney, Foley’s, and Sears.

Prestonwood Town Center (5301 Belt Line Rd.) offers a northern outpost for Neiman Marcus and Lord & Taylor.

Of course, not all shopping is confined to indoor malls. Highland Park Village at Mockingbird Lane and Preston Road is built with its stores facing inward and is believed to be the second-oldest shopping center in the United States.

Although the Village has adopted a more egalitarian approach to its mix of retailers, it is still best known for its covey of designers who come together only in rarefied settings (e.g. Rodeo Drive, Worth Avenue, Fifth Avenue). Calvin Klein, Polo Ralph Lauren, Chanel, Hermes, Escada, and Ultimo lure the designer-conscious, while the Gap, Banana Republic, and Ann Taylor attract the hoi polloi.

Inwood Village (Inwood Road and Lovers Lane) is another example of a dressed-up strip mall, with stores, shops, and boutiques worthy of strolling, browsing, and buying. Retail stores include Barry Bricken (5450 Lovers Ln.), The Carriage Shop (5550 Lovers Ln.), La Chemise Blanche (5450 Lovers Ln.), St. Bernard Sports (5570 Lovers Ln.), and Into the Garden (5360 Lovers Ln.).

Preston Center at Preston Road and Northwest Highway has quickly become an envied address for upscale boutiques- Tootsies (8300 Preston Rd.), Hartley & Co. (4020 Villanova Dr.), Joan Vass (8300 Preston Rd.), Tie-Coon Trading Co. (4015 Villanova Dr.), Translations (4014 Villa-nova Dr.), and Loretta Blum (8412 Preston Center Plaza) among them.

Throughout the area, there are pockets of specialized retail. The Uptown and Oak Lawn area, for instance, has a number of art galleries: Gerald Peters (2913 Fairmount St.), Hamdy Hughes Fine Arts (2708 Fairmount St.), Florence (2500 Cedar Springs Rd.), Altermann & Morris (2727 Routh St.), and Edith Baker (2404 Cedar Springs Rd.).

For upscale home furnishings, head to Knox Street, home of garden and patio supplier Smith & Hawken (3300 Knox St.), Weir’s Furniture (3219 Knox St.), and the Pottery Barn (3220 Knox St.). New to the neighborhood are Restoration Hardware (3133 Knox St.). the first Texas branch of a California chain called “the Tiffany’s of hardware stores,” Laura Ashley Home (3212 Knox St.), and the flagship Crate & Barrel (3104 Knox St.), a newly constructed, almost cartoonish building.

Grapevine has recently entered the mix of shopping opportunities. Grapevine Mills (International Parkway at State Highway 121), easily accessible from all directions and just two miles north of DFW airport, prides itself on “shoppertainment,” a combination of great stores and entertainment. Grapevine Mills offers a bevy of manufacturer and retail outlets, in addition to GameWorks and the Rainforest Cafe.

ART & MUSEUMS

Dallas and Fort Worth combine to offer world-class culture and art, from historic museums to modem galleries, from beautiful ballet to world-renowned opera.

Northeast up Ross Avenue at Harwood is Dallas’Arts District, with its two linchpins, the Dallas Museum of Art (1717 N. Harwood St.), and The Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center (2301 Flora St.). The DMA houses one of the best collections of pre-Columbian art in the country, and since the museum moved to its Edward Larrabee Barnes-designed home in 1984, large donor gifts have resulted in major additions: The Wendy Reves collection of decorative arts opened in a new wing in 1985, designed as a replica of the Reves’ French villa, and the Museum of the Americas opened in 1993 in the Hamon Building, withexhibits that tell the story of the art of Western civilizations.

The Meyerson Symphony Center, also known as “The Mort.” had its start in a S17 million gift by Ross Perot, himself something of a Dallas icon, with the stipulations that the symphony center be designed by I.M. Pei and be named after Perot’s top lieutenant at opened in 1989, winning acclaim for not only its design but also for its acoustics.

Another museum that can be found downtown is the Sixth Floor Museum (411 Elm St.), a somber look at the life and death of President John F. Kennedy. Located in the former Texas School Book Depository, the museum includes the supposed sniper’s nest.

To hear an alternative explanation of the violent events of Nov. 22.1963, try the Conspiracy Museum (110 S. Market St.). This museum exposes the alleged coverups of the assassinations of Presidents Kennedy, Lincoln, and Garfield, Martin Luther King Jr., and Robert Kennedy.

To the east of downtown lies Fair Park ( 1300 Robert B. Cullum Blvd.). one of the country’s largest collections of art deco architecture. Site of the State Fair of Texas, Fair Park also houses numerous museums and attractions that are open year-round: African American Museum, Age of Steam Railroad Museum, The Dallas Aquarium, The Science Place, Dallas Horticulture Center, and Dallas Museum of Natural History.

There’s theater at the Dallas Theater Center (3636 Turtle Creek Blvd.). Theater Three (2800 Routh St.), Majestic Theater (1925 Elm St.), and others.

In Fort Worth, there is a “cowboys and culture” combination thai finds its best illustration in the Cultural District. Every January, the old Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo {now 101 years young and featuring the longest parade of horse-drawn vehicles) that is held at Will Rogers Coliseum brings real cowboys and all man-ner of livestock in comfortable proximity to museums housing some of the world’s greatest art.

The Kimbell Art Museum (3333 Camp Bowie Blvd.) has an excellent collection of European and Asian art and is home to many blockbuster traveling exhibits; the Kimbell’s Buffet Restaurant makes a great place for a break.

The recently renovated Amon Carter Museum (3501 Camp Bowie Blvd.) houses former Fori Worth Star-Telegram publisher Amon Carter’s famous collection of Remingtons and Russells, a fine grouping of 19th- and early 20th-century American paintings, and an outstanding American photography collection. This institution houses 385,000 treasures of American art.

The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth (1309 Montgomery St.) features excellent American and European contemporary art and a new collection of international photography. The Modern Art Museum’s Scott Theater is home to the Fort Worth Theater, as well as concerts by Texas singer-songwriters such as Ray Wylie Hubbard and Tish Hinojosa.

The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History (1501 Montgomery St.) features excellent exhibits on Texas’ natural history, as well as the exciting Omni Theater and the Noble Planetarium. All the museums are within easy walking distance of one another.

Addison is predominantly known as Dallas’ dining purlieu, with more than 120 restaurants. But eating is not the only activity in Addison. Appreciate the theater at the WaterTower Theater (15650 Addison Rd.). or catch comedy at Addison Improv (4980 Belt Line Rd., Ste. 250).The Cavanaugh Flight Museum (4572 Claire Chennault St.) features 50.000 square feet of warbirds on display restored to their original condition.

SPORTS

NO MATTER THE SEASON, DALLAS/FORT Worth offer sexciting spectator sports. The Dallas Burn play soccer at Fair Park’s Cotton Bowl Stadium (3750 Midway Plaza, 214-979-0303). The Dallas Cowboys play football at Texas Stadium in Irving (2401 E. Airport Fwy., 972-579-5000). The Dallas Stars play hockey at Reunion Arena (777 Sports St.. 214-GO-STARS), which is also home to Dallas’ basketball team, the Dallas Mavericks (972-988-3865), and the indoor soccer team, the Sidekicks (972-988-3865). The Texas Rangers play baseball at The Ballpark in Arlington (1-30 at Highway. 157, 817-273-5100). Seasonal horse racing takes place at Lone Star Park ( 1000 Lone Star Pkwy., 972-263-RACE), with simulcast betting year-round. For a different kind of horsepower, NASCAR Winston Cup and Indy-style professional racing is at Texas Motor Speedway (State Highway 114 and I-35W, 817-215-8500). The Fort Worth Fire play hockey at the Will Rogers Memorial Center and Tarrant County Convention Center {817-336-1992). Championship rodeo goes on at the Mesquite Rodeo (1818 Rodeo Dr.. 972-285-8777) every Friday and Saturday, April through October.

There’s also the excitement of collegiate sports. For the ticket office of Texas Christian University athletics, call 817-921-7967, and for Southern Methodist University, call 214-768-2902.

ATTRACTIONS

Like an amusement oasis between Dal-las and Fort Worth, Arlington’s Entertainment District stretches along Interstate 30. anchored by Six Flags Hurricane Harbor, Six Flags Over Texas, and The Ballpark in Arlington.

The first “tourist” attraction in Arlington, of course, was Six Flags Over Texas (1-30 at State Highway 360). And this is the Six Flags, the first one ever, opened 35 years ago by Angus Wynne Jr., named and themed around the six flags that have flown over Texas: Spain, France, Mexico, the Confederacy, the Republic of Texas, and the United States.

Formerly Wet N’ Wild, Six Flags Hurricane Harbor ( 1800 E. Lamar Blvd., on the north side of 1-30) is a water park perfect for those Texas summer scorchers.In Grand Prairie, the Palace of Wax & Ripley’s Believe It or Not! (1-30 at Belt Line Road) features more than 175 lifelike figures and Ripley’s unique collection of oddities.

The Movie Studios at Las Colinas Tour (N. O’Connor Boulevard at Royal Lane) offers a glimpse at moviemaking magic. This motion picture and television production center spawned such movies as Robocop, Problem Child, Leap of Faith, and JFK,

The 25-acre “Wilds of Africa” exhibit at the Dallas Zoo (650 S. R.L. Thornton Fwy.) was recently named the best African zoo exhibit in the country. And the Fort Worth Zoo {1989 Colonial Pkwy. ) has been ranked as one of the top five zoos.

For those who still associate the city with the television show, “Dallas” memorabilia is showcased at the Southfork Ranch (3700 Hogge Rd. in Parker).

NIGHTLIFE

For night owls, the area does not Disappoint. In downtown Dallas, the West End seems to attract those of the tourist persuasion. The area features, among other things, our very own Planet Hollywood (603 Munger Ave.).

To the east of downtown is a section with deeper roots. Deep Ellum. Since the end of the 19th century, displaced African-Americans established a vibrant community around the intersection of Central Avenue and Elm Street, the growth of which was enhanced by the nearby terminals of the town’s first railroad in 1872. The area developed a reputation of hard living and wild night life, both praised and lamented by such blues musicians as Huddie ’Leadbelly” Ledbetter and Blind Lemon Jefferson. Today, Deep Ellum is still the place to go for live music, tattoos, eclectic shopping, good food, and wild night life.

For tradition, there’s Lower Greenville, where one could argue that the party has yet to stop for two decades. While some of the area has been gentrified, there are still plenty of places to find a cold one.

A majority of the city’s gay population enjoy night life along Cedar Springs Road.

And one hip area is McKinney Avenue, with jazz joints, cigar bars, and the Hard Rock Cafe (2601 McKinney Ave.).

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