The town of Highland Park – and yes, it’s called a town, not a city – sits three miles north of downtown Dallas on 2.26 square miles of Texas’s most exclusive tree-lined neighborhoods.
It’s home to the first shopping center in the U.S., Highland Park Village; the oldest country club in Texas, the more-than-century-old Dallas Country Club; and eight parks.
The town gets its name from having a higher elevation than its neighbors and the 1907 decision by developer John S. Armstrong and his sons-in-law Hugh Prather and Edgar Flippen to set aside a fifth of their 1,326 acres for greenspace.
Wilbur David Cook, the landscape designer who planned Beverly Hills, California, designed the town’s layout.
The town, incorporated in 1914 – the same year Highland Park ISD formed – offers a full range of municipal services, including public safety, public works, and a public library.
WHAT’S UP WITH THAT?
The town’s legendary Big Pecan Tree is gone but not forgotten. The historic monarch inspired the tree logo still used on the top of Park Cities People and Preston Hollow People newspapers. And town leaders still tell the story of how it began as a plowed over sapling saved by a Civil War veteran who’d seen too much death. Unfortunately, disease and decline prompted the 150-plus-year-old giant’s removal in 2019. Still, Dallas County’s oldest tree lighting ceremony continues centered on the Landmark Tree, a nearby pecan grafted from the famous monarch and planted in 1951.
DID YOU KNOW?
Most Highland Park Department of Public Safety officers cross-train to serve as paramedics, firefighters, and police officers during their 48-hour shifts.
One of my favorite times of the year is late March through April when vibrant Azaleas bloom throughout the town.Doris Jacobs
GET TO KNOW YOUR PARKS (hptx.org)
• Abbott Park, 4814 Abbott Ave. – a tennis court, children’s play area, and walking paths.
• Connor Park, 4301 St. Johns Drive – footpaths and a vista of Turtle Creek.
• Davis Park, 4500 Drexel Ave. – home to the town swimming pool, a playground, tennis court, and footpaths.
• Douglas Park, 4500 Douglas Ave. – landscaping and pathways provide a scenic spot for a stroll.
• Fairfax Park, 4524 Beverly Drive – three tennis courts, a playground, and a playing field.
• Flippen Park, 4421 N. Versailles Ave. – a gazebo overlooks a fountain and reflecting pool.
• Lakeside Park, 4601 Lakeside Drive – 14 acres along Turtle Creek with plenty of walking paths and benches plus the Teddy Bear statues.
• Prather Park, 4509 Drexel Ave. – walking paths and benches along Hackberry Creek and a tennis court.
Also look for Dyckman Park, Lockard Park, Cave Park, Hackberry Creek, and the Mockingbird Green Space.