City names new director for Transportation & Public Works

A public works executive with more than 20 years of experience managing and improving organizations has been named the new director of Fort Worth’s Transportation & Public Works Department.

William M. Johnson will join the city in September.

Johnson has served in many executive roles across the country. Most recently, he was managing director of Witt O’Brien’s, a leading planning, response and resilience firm in Washington, D.C.

He has worked in many public works roles, including as deputy chief operating officer and public works commissioner for the City of Atlanta; transportation director for the City of Baltimore; streets commissioner for the City of Philadelphia; and key leadership roles for various firms involved with emergency management.

He holds a bachelor of science degree in engineering from the University of Mississippi and a master’s degree in geological engineering from the University of Missouri.

“William Johnson comes to Fort Worth with an incredible wealth of knowledge and experience, and we expect he will be an outstanding leader,” said City Manager David Cooke. “Throughout his career, Johnson has been known for improving the quality of services, controlling expenses and developing new and innovative processes.”

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Legends Hall at The Marq Southlake Public Open House

Fall in Love with Legends Hall first Open House on Thursday, August 15, 2019 from 6-9 p.m. at 285 Shady Oaks Drive, Southlake. Admission is Free.  The event will be perfect for eager brides, event planners, or individuals looking to host fun social events. Legends Hall will host a variety of vendors that will be sure to engage all of your senses and will be a fabulous evening out!

Dan Quinn will provide the evening’s entertainment in our Traditions Ballroom that will be sure to keep your feet moving! Bring your bridesmaids or friends for some dancing fun or learn more about DQB Entertainment services and all they can provide your special event.

Legends Hall preferred caterers will offer complimentary menu tastings and samplings.  Culinary Art Catering, City Kitchen, G Texas Catering, Hard Eight BBQ, Loveria Caffe, Scratch Kitchen, and Wildwood Grill will be sure to amaze you with all of their offerings! HD Liquid Catering will also provide complimentary signature cocktails.

Feast your eyes on the wonderful creations that Moonlight Cakes and Elegant Cakery will be treating our guests to. This is a wonderful opportunity to get ideas for the perfect cake for your special day!

Looking for an experienced event planner? LM Events will be on property ready to share their expertise on planning the perfect event from start to finish.

Do you have a getaway vehicle for your big day?  Are you looking for transportation for your night out?  Take you There Limo Service will be on property to showcase their signature limousine.

Have you set up your registry yet? Do you know what the essentials are for every bridal list? Pottery Barn experts will be on site to give you tips and tricks so you don’t forget any of those wants and needs.

For more information, visit Legends Hall at the Marq Facebook Event Page or visit the website at

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Public art dedication scheduled for Highland Hills Community Center

The Welcome Space, by artist Sedrick Huckaby, is the latest commissioned artwork to be added to the City of Fort Worth’s Public Art Collection and is located at Highland Hills Community Center.

The artwork will be dedicated at 6:30 p.m. July 23 at Highland Hills Community Center, 1600 Glasgow Road. The public is invited.

Two outdoor benches have the appearance of couches covered by quilts, welcoming visitors by seating them among the patchwork of community members who have graced the neighborhood over the years. The sitting area is one that recalls the African American artistic legacy of quilting and handmade crafts. Its jubilant color reflects the celebratory palette in many traditional African cultures.

The cultural quilts acknowledge the quilted past of the community, with some patches featuring portraits as a way of illustrating the variety of people who have made up this close-knit community. The portraits feature people of different ages and genders, while not naming anyone specifically, and also include other institutions commemorating the neighborhood’s history and heritage.

The artist was born in 1975 in Fort Worth. His formal education in art started at Texas Wesleyan University. He then transferred to Boston University, where he received extensive training in studio art. For graduate studies, he went to Yale University. He was named the Texas State Artist for 2018.

To learn more, contact Project Manager Alida Labbe at 817-298-3034.

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Jump into July with Southlake Public Library

Just because school is out, doesn’t mean you can’t learn a thing or two. The Southlake Public Library has a broad selection of events that anyone can enjoy for all ages from epic storytelling to a Young Picasso film night, to a writing course for those who paint with words; there is something for everyone. Check out our programs now while it’s still summer.

Magik Theatre presents Kingdom of Texas Show
July 16 at 2 p.m.
For more than 100 years Texas was a Spanish Colony known as “The Kingdom of Texas” – that’s just one of many Texas facts in this crash course in Texas lore. Stories like the Legend of the Bluebonnets, the tale of Pecos Bill and of course, Davey Crockett and the saga of the Alamo will also be included. This show is sure to make your kids are experts in all things Texas.

Master Storyteller DeCee Cornish
July 18 at 11 a.m.
Sometimes it is okay to just have some FUN!  Come and enjoy storytime with DeCee Cornish. Enjoy stories from Tall Tales to Fairy Tales and all things in between.

Jenny Martin Writing Class
July 18 at 6 p.m.
Join Jenny Martin for an inspiring workshop, in which you’ll discover the keys to unlocking your own unforgettable, spellbinding prose. This workshop is for fiction writers of all levels; participants will be able to discuss, brainstorm and ask questions about the writing and publishing process.  Teens and adults only. To register, click here.

Hampstead Stage presents Jungle Book
July 19 at 11 a.m.
The Jungle Book comes to life as Mowgli, an abandoned “man-cub” raised by wolves, embarks on an adventure in the jungle. Through the use of puppets and masks, we meet Baloo the bear and Bagheera the black panther, who guide Mowgli on his journey. Mowgli must escape from Kaa, the python, and defeat Shere Khan, the tiger. Join us on a daring quest, discovering the importance of family and a heroic battle of good versus evil. Best for ages 5 and up.

Young Picasso Film Night
July 19 – 6 p.m.
Too long ignored, it is time to look at the early years of Picasso: the upbringing and the learning that led to his extraordinary achievements. APEX Arts League and the Southlake Public Library invite you to Exhibition on Screen, a unique exploration of artistic masters. Beverages and appetizers will be served at this event. Ages 21 & up only. To register, click here.

SPACE – The Final FUNtier
July 23 at 2 p.m.
The universe is an amazing place and full of people of all kinds.  We will meet many of them in stories and songs.  Nancy and her friends will encourage her audience to learn more about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math and introduce some wonderful facts about space. Best for ages 4-8.

End of Summer Playdate!
July 25 at 10 a.m. in the Library
All preschoolers are invited to join us for a fun-filled playdate, toys and snacks provided. Best for 5 an under.

Dallas Zoo
July 25 at 2 p.m.
A 45-minute interactive program that features animals from around the world. Best for ages 4-10.

DIY Beauty Workshop
July 25 at 6-8 p.m. Town Hall 3rd Floor
These classes are pure, natural and fun. Join two of your favorite Southlake librarians as they explore making beauty products from natural ingredients. Supplies, instruction and hilarity are provided. This workshop is for ages 13 & up. To register, click here.



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Fort Worth Public Library locations offer passes for free Botanic Garden admission

The Fort Worth Public Library will offer passes to allow library users to visit the Fort Worth Botanic Garden at no charge after the new garden fee system is enacted on July 19.

The passes may be checked out from a library to provide one week of free admission for two adults with children who are 17 or younger and all reside in the same household.

Passes are not valid at special events or for educational programs at the Botanic Garden. Library users may also check out a digital pass on their mobile device if they use Overdrive’s Libby app with their library card number.

Additionally, passes must be checked out and returned to the same library, and should not be placed in the book drop. Pass users must present the due-date slip as well as the pass at the Botanic Garden.

More about the fees

The City of Fort Worth is implementing the fees to fund needed maintenance and improvements at the garden. Entrance fees will be $12 per adult and $10 for senior citizens; $6 for children ages 6-15; and children under 6 will be free. The admission fees grant access to all areas of the garden, including the Japanese Garden, which has had a separate entrance fee in the past.

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Martinez earns statewide honor for public works officials

Richard Martinez, assistant director in the Transportation & Public Works Department, was named Top Public Works Leaders of the Year during the recent convention of the American Public Works Association-Texas Chapter.

The Top Public Works Leaders of the Year program seeks to inspire excellence and dedication in public service by recognizing the outstanding career service achievements of individual public works professionals and officials, from both the public and private sectors. The primary focus of the award is on career service to the public works profession rather than on any one single event or project.

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Southlake Public Art Collection Now Available Online

The City of Southlake’s Community Services Department discussed Southlake’s Public Art Program, online art gallery, funding sources and art partnerships at the June 4 City Council meeting.

Throughout the years, the City of Southlake has developed a remarkable collection of public art and has consistently invested in routine maintenance and conservation of those assets.

If you drive around Southlake, you will notice that the City often utilizes open spaces, intersections, key gateways, key destinations and roundabouts as opportunities to place public art.

The Southlake public art collection has always been a staple in the community. It tells a story about the City’s history, artistic style and residents.

With the expansion of the public art collection, the Southlake Arts Council is working diligently to implement the City’s public art initiatives through Southlake Public Arts Programs.

The purpose of the Southlake Public Arts Programs is to enhance the cultural life of the community through the arts.  To accomplish this, the Southlake Arts Council was appointed by City Council to advise on art-related matters and align all the public art initiatives.  Resources for programs are granted through the Public Art fund and partnerships with arts organizations and community groups that bring art-related programming to the community.

A new addition to the program is the online art gallery available through the use of a story map which can be found on the City’s website.  Now you have the option to view the Southlake public art collection in person or online anytime. As a bonus, a Southlake Public Art Coloring Book is also available.

Learn more about the Southlake Public Art Program here.

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Discover magical mysteries with Southlake Public Library’s Summer Reading Program

Explore the nooks and crannies of the Rookery Woods Bookery, the Southlake Public Library summer reading program. Discover all the magical mysteries through the enchanted forest, travel through the En-trees, tour the Circulation Mountains and challenge yourself to visit the Outlands.

If you are worried about getting lost, we’ve got you covered. The summer reading program includes a map to the woods which takes you through a series of exciting adventures and activities that can earn you prizes as you reach new levels of learning.

The program starts June 1 and runs through July 26.

The library will host their annual Southlake Summer kick-off celebration in Bicentennial Park on Saturday, June 1 at 10 a.m. where kids can explore craft stations, participate in a scavenger hunt and sign up for the Summer Reading Program. We hope to see you there!

For more information, please contact the Southlake Public Library at 817-748-8243 or visit

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Sundance Square Plaza listed among 10 great public squares

The Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) named Sundance Square Plaza in their top 10 list of the best public spaces at the heart of cities in America.

Squares are the outdoor living rooms of cities worldwide, and they have been planned at the center of the best North American cities for half of a millennium. Century after century, they just keep giving to cities, residents and visitors.

Here is what the Congress said about Sundance Square Plaza:

“The nation is now going through a renaissance in the building of civic spaces, and the 2013 Sundance Square Plaza is a prime example. This CNU Charter Award winner is the crowning achievement of the revitalization of walkable urbanism in downtown Fort Worth. By the 1980s, downtown Fort Worth was a tired and decaying place. The wealthy Bass Brothers, based in Fort Worth, funded a revitalization of a 36-block area, named in honor of the Sundance Kid, who often visited the city with his partner in crime, Butch Cassidy. Sundance Square Plaza is the central gathering spot of that revitalization and downtown Fort Worth. The plaza is a 55,000-square-foot, European-style palazzo that regularly hosts concerts, movies, festivals and other events. It includes multiple water features, including a 216-jetted fountain and 65-foot wave wall. Four 32-foot umbrellas are another focal point.”

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Ash selected to lead Fort Worth Public Library Foundation

Andrea L. Ash has been named president and chief executive officer of the Fort Worth Public Library Foundation.

“I am honored to be joining such a passionate and dynamic team where I can combine my expertise with my passion of lifelong learning for the purpose of serving the Fort Worth community,” Ash said.

She will become the third chief executive officer in the 26-year history of the Fort Worth Public Library Foundation. The mission of the Library Foundation is to benefit the Fort Worth Library and the Fort Worth community by providing resources that support educational programming, buildings and infrastructure improvements. The Library Foundation has contributed more than $9 million to the library system and Fort Worth community in support of its mission since its founding in 1993.

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