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Best of 2012

Dec 04, 2012 02:34PM ● Published by tina

Looking back at 2012... the annual Best of from Southlake Style

Protecting our own annual tradition our editorial team takes a fond look back at the year 2012. We’ve compiled our list of special people, places and events marking the passing of another great year.  What follows are 46 items that are part history, part humor and all Southlake Style. As in years past we aim to shine the spotlight, refresh your memory, and reflect upon the happenings of our home town.

Best Man – Before Southlake was a destination for thousands there was a man with a vision of a place for both community and commerce. Along with business partner Peter Cooper the late Brian Stebbins proved doubters wrong by building a thriving downtown where no one thought possible. He left us too soon, but his love for Southlake lives on in many ways.

Best Cover – The sports scene is always rocking in Southlake and this year we enjoyed covering both Texas Ranger’s GM Jon Daniels and Super Bowl Champ Chase Daniel – but the hands down favorite as chosen by you was our February cover featuring Miss Teen Southlake Brittany Tew.

Staff pick –When a world-renowned artist offers to paint a custom cover…you run with it.  Now Time, Life and Newsweek all have something in common with us – cover artwork from Peter Max!

Best Anniversary – After 25 years of doing good throughout Northeast Tarrant County the Grapevine Relief And Community Exchange celebrated in style with their annual GRACE Gala.  Chaired by Tommy and Stephanie Pennington this year’s black tie fundraising event was a record setter!

30 years - Lets just say we felt the love when Victor and Kim Faszczuk celebrated their anniversary in Paris with a copy of Southlake Style.

Best Line – Its simple supply and demand- find the longest line and what’s at the end is generally worth waiting for.  Past honorees include the Apple Store and the drive-thru at Chik-fil-A. However, in 2012 the honor goes to those beating the heat at Milwaukee Joes Gourmet Ice Cream. Real ingredients, really good ice cream.

Best in Education- Robin Kuntz and the Department of Special Programs at Carroll ISD are helping Dragons with special needs reach their full potential through the C-STAR program (Carroll Students Transitioning to Adult Roles).

Best Mom – Each year we celebrate the lovely ladies in our lives with our “Best Mom” essay contest. Emotions ran wild both at home and at our offices as hundreds of essays came in for our seventh annual affair.  This year’s submission from Old Union Elementary Fourth Grader Annabelle Smith won our hearts and a $2,500 prize package for her mom Julie.

Best Kind of Mom – Parenting columnist and proud stay-at-home mom Jessica Begley, MFT, took an unbiased and in-depth look at career moms and at-home moms.  What she found- there is no right path for any one mom or family, but one thing seems certain; condemning another’s choice to feel better about your own should be the path least followed.

Best Arm- Texas A&M pitcher and former All-State Dragon Ross Stripling (’08) threw a no-hitter against San Diego State in May and was then drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth round of the MLB draft.  While pitching in the rookie league for the Ogden Raptors this summer he compiled an impressive 1.24 era in 36 innings of work.

Best Costume – As 2012 Miss Teen Southlake Brittany Tew knows what it means to dress for success. When she’s not in eveningwear, or performing with her puppets (she’s also a ventriloquist) Brittany can be spotted on the sidelines wearing the lovable Dragon mascot outfit during football games.

Best Bath – is a quick shower.  Have you not seen all the city’s water conservation efforts… or our July issue? 

Best Helping Hand –Emergency Medical Services Lieutenant Ryan Arthur followed his uncle’s footsteps into a career as a fire fighter.  In his new role the Southlake DPS Lieutenant tackles all aspects of public safety from answering alarm calls to helping with critical patients and providing all-important training to other staffers.

Best Trip – This year we’ve shown off many interesting travel spots from as far away as Hawaii and Alaska and many tropical ports of call.  We’ve also highlighted Texas beaches, enjoyed the outdoors in Avon, Colorado and the art and culture of New Mexico.  Nevertheless, our favorite trip is always Traveling with Style with our readers.

Best Travel With Style Photo - Showing that the love of Southlake knows no bounds, Margaret Burnette shared her Style with some new friends in the Antarctic and won a great prize from Bag n’ Baggage.

Best for Your Sweet Tooth – With indulgent chocolate bar themed and colorful fruit flavors of popcorn Southlake’s Le Popcorn and Candy shop brings out the kid in everyone.  We suggest “Crazy Confetti” for a colorful blend of all their favorites.

Best Build- We were sad to see Larry North shut down operations, however it did leave room for Hines Development to join our list.  After several years of waiting, development officially began on Carillon- the 285-acre mixed-use development. Streets, infrastructure and homes within the development’s Chateaux district started to take shape in 2012.

Best Spritzer – with no less than eight confirmed cases of West Nile virus the City of Southlake partnered with several Denton County communities in aerial spraying to dramatically reduce the mosquito population.

Best Note Makers- The Apex Arts League continues to bring exquisite concerts close to home- including Holiday Brass this month’s concert featuring the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. But when it comes to local music it doesn’t get much closer than Home Grown Volume 2 the student produced CD from those currently rocking lessons at Hall Music Productions of Southlake.

Best Bat-man – From cellar-dweller to bankruptcy and then two consecutive American League Championships the Texas Rangers, under General Manager Jon Daniels, have clawed their way back to the top. Taking over the role in 2005 at the ripe old age of 28- Southlake’s resident baseball genius became the youngest GM in major league history and a driving force in the team’s recent success.  This spring he helped secure the off-season’s biggest free agent in Japanese phenom and $60M pitcher Yu Darvish.

Best Rub Down– It all starts with prep work and no one knows that better than resident grill master Kyle Clark. That’s why so many of his Rusted Truck Ranch catering and BBQ Boot Camps start off with his signature spices and rubs.  We can’t get enough of “Midnight Ride” Kyle’s tantalizing blend of whole peppercorn with a hint of ground coffee.

Best New Addition- In order to profile even more of one of the most notable high school sports programs in the country Dragon Pride Spring was published for the first time ever.  Dragon Pride now consists of two highly acclaimed issues for our readers.

Best Racket with a Racquet – Even though the Southlake Tennis Center is right in the heart of Bicentennial Park, no one has ever asked General Manager Mia Gordon-Poorman to turn down the volume.  In fact, recent accolades as a USTA National Outstanding Facility has the noise level continually on the rise at this city owned facility.

Best Legs: Leading the Southlake Girls Soccer team (25-2-2) with 35 goals and 13 assists junior forward Sophie Groff was also a First Team All State selection.  

Best Relay – the best relay is one you do for others- and for the past three years Southlake has rallied its residents to take part in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.  The local event which raises as much as $250,000 annually fell victim to rainy weather but more than 2,000 spirited participants braved the elements this May in the name of cancer research.

Best Big Wheels – Each morning the school drop-off lines resemble an endless presidential motorcade sans secret service of course. Luxurious, powerful (0-60 in 6.8 seconds) and room for the entire team the Cadillac Escalade could very well be the official vehicle of Southlake, should there ever be one.  

Best Not-So-Big Wheels – Slight yet stylish the Fiat 500 has the looks that appeal to young drivers and a parent friendly price-tag.

Best Ballots - Two ballots, one easy to choose candidate.  Southlake Mayor John Terrell rightfully ran unopposed for election to his second term. However, he still gave others a chance to cast their vote, which they did - recognizing him as the City’s Citizen of the Year.

Best New Park – The City proudly unveiled North Park with a grand opening ceremony in the fall.  Perhaps no one group is happier than the Southlake Carroll Lacrosse Association.  The SCLA plans to make great use of the park’s three lighted multi-purpose fields for practices and special team events.

Best With Restrictions – With more than 90 percent of the state still suffering from drought conditions many cities, including Southlake, spent the majority of the year under water restriction.

Best Use of Glass- Dale Chihuly’s colorful and durable glass sculptures on exhibit throughout 2012 at the Dallas Arboretum.  When visited in the evening Chihuly Nights takes on a romantically illuminated glow that is a must-see for couples.

Best One Way View- Dark tinted glass partitioned the luckier Texas Ranger fans from sight during the inaugural season of the Batter’s Eye Club at the Ballpark in Arlington.  From these coveted centerfield seats Rangers faithful now enjoy their favorite team with air-conditioned comfort, a buffet, full bar and a private restroom.  

Best with Just About Anything – Straight out of Hatch, New Mexico comes the Hatch Chile Pepper.  For 17 years and counting the foodies of Central Market have put the spicy and tasty pepper in every recipe imaginable. From Hatch Brownies and Hatch Ice Cream to crab cakes and enchiladas the only thing stopping the flavor is the limited harvest each August.

Best Way to Lose Your Marbles – With six boys and a girl even a simple trip to the store is an adventure for the Reed Family.  Nevertheless, ex-corporate man and current Southlake Baptist Church Pastor, Clayton Reed is determined to not let life’s hectic schedule overrule his world.  His weekly “marble ceremony” marks off the time left with his children and is a reminder to enjoy life’s every moment- for we all know it passes by too quickly.

Best for Local Flavor – We all know the restaurant game isn’t easy and when it comes to adding a heaping portion of local flavor three Southlake favorites always come to mind. Resident Restaurateurs from Feedstore BBQ, Wildwood Grill and Johnny B’s Burgers and Shakes always fill our bellies and our city with pride.

Best Way to Admit Defeat– Sometimes you just can’t beat the heat and when that time comes you should make a trek 800 miles northwest to visit Avon, Colorado.  The Vail Valley has plenty of outdoor fun for the family and average August temperatures about twenty degrees cooler.

Best Hat Trick – From the Big Apple to the Lone Star State Fort Worth Star Telegram columnist, author, and public watchdog- Dave Lieber eventually found his way as the Yankee Cowboy. Donning the cap of ol’ Kris Kringle as the co-founder of Summer Santa Lieber has helped hundreds of children and earned the role of honorary Texan in the process.

Best Left Turns – Officially completed by the city after months of construction left turns are now a little safer thanks to the new medians along Southlake Boulevard.

Best Team Effort – Amidst reduced state funding, CISD School Board members; Read Ballew, John Thane, Erin Shoupp, Sue Armstrong, Craig Rothmeier, Sherri Williams and Fred Stovall tirelessly volunteer their time and expertise to keep every Dragon at the top of their game.

Best New Bars- A glass of wine or a cocktail from the master bartender at Patrizio’s new and trendy upstairs bar is a great place to enjoy the Southlake nightlife.  If you’re looking for some darts and a frosty cold one there is always plenty on tap at The Ginger Man.

Best Bird Watching – Established in 2008 and dedicated to education and conservation the Bob Jones Nature Center and Preserve consists of 76 acres to the north side of our city. An integral part of the Cross Timbers ecosystem the area is home to over 300 species of birds.

Best Drive –Motorcycle enthusiast Kevin Howel may look tough but he has a softer side. As the founder of Spokes4Hope he shares his love of riding two wheelers by delivering bicycles to kids. 

Best Accessory – When it comes to accessorizing “mum” is the word on most everyone’s lips each fall.  Big and gaudy with budgets to match mums have gone wild with everything from large stuffed animals and battery power lights to sound speakers and more.

Best Dragon Spirit – Was on display as hundreds gathered in a community-wide candlelight vigil for the Ledet Family.  Dragon Stadium went dark in remembrance of Paul and Mason Ledet and their father Leonard who all tragically passed away after their plane went down during a family trip.

Best High School Reunion–Chase Daniel along with fellow Dragon alumni Garrett Hartley and Justin Drescher are teammates on the NFL’s New Orleans Saints.  Not stopping at just football Daniel founded the Arlington based company 10-Star Apparel with two more of his high school running mates-Aaron Luna and Evan Fentriss.

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