Memo from the MANAGER

Nice matters


  Last week someone told me that my problem was that I am too "nice".

  The comment kind of set me back as I have never had someone tell me that. 

   Usually, I have people tell me they think I am "tough," "hard to read," or "intense." But, too nice? I really didn't know how to take that comment and as such, it has been occupying my mind for the better part of the last week.
Gary 2013   But, after thinking about it, I was left with a single conclusion - I blame my wife, Cozy.

   Plenty of times she has been referred to as "nice." For those who know her, she is regarded as one of the purest hearts around. If you go in her kitchen, she proudly displays a sign that says "nice matters," which is universally known as her mantra among the Greer family.
   So, for the past 30 years, she has been married to a City Manager who continually deals with a great number of people, is constantly involved in tough issues and daily works with elected officials. She has been my top advisor through the years and, in every instance, she has counseled me to take the high road and be nice and respectful in all interactions.
   Sometimes I don't want to do that, b
ut she convinces me to think of what is really important. Often, that advice drives me crazy and, as such, I have occasionally strayed from her advice (more often when I was younger) only to find out what goes around comes around.

   So, I think the combination of her advice and my experience has moved me to be a "nicer" person. And this nice thing carries over when City Council members ask for my advice. I always suggest respectful and nice courses of action. It seems that we always solve problems better when we are nice and respectful to one another.
   In the final analysis, I will take the comment last week as a compliment.
   I'm not sure I would have earlier in my life, but it seems clear to me now. It took her 30 years, but I think Cozy has proved to me that in life, career, politics, and family - nice matters! 

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Traffic ALERT
Left lanes on I-35E to close during nighttime hours; Valley View closures now extended to July 21 

FARMERS BRANCH ~ The left lane of north and southbound I-35E will be closed nightly from 9 p.m. through 6 a.m., between Valley View Lane and Valwood Parkway, through July 25, according to officials with the 35Express construction group.

   Also, due to unusual mid-summer rain events, officials with the 35Express group have again extended nighttime closures of Valley View Lane under Interstate 35E now until Monday, July 21.

  Construction crews close the intersection to affect work on the overhead bridge and support during the nighttime hours of 9 p.m. through 6 a.m.

   All closures are subject to weather conditions and may be postponed if necessary.

   More info at or call 214.483.7777.


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Featured STORIES


FARMERS BRANCH ~ Actually invented 50 years ago, and named after either a dog or a rowing boat, and not a gherkin, Pickleball is now one of the fastest growing sports in the United States.

Using a paddle and a whiffle ball, the game of Pickleball is gaining traction in the U.S.

   Described as a combination of tennis, ping pong and badminton, the name supposedly is attributed to the inventor's dog, Pickles, who would chase the ball during the game, or from a rowing boat shaped like a pickle that requires teamwork. Either way, the team sport has found a home in Farmers Branch with frequent play at the Community Recreation Center and, now, with two courts installed at the Gussie Field Watterworth Park tennis courts.

   "I find the dog story more romantic and believable," says John Gaylord, who plays Pickleball ever week. "You are welcome to believe whichever story you choose but once you step onto a pickleball court, you will be caught up in a fast and exciting game that will give you a good workout, promote teamwork and leave you eager for the next game."

   Pickleball is played much like tennis doubles but on a smaller court. Players can be either male or female or a combination. Local organizers say all ages are drawn to the sport, but it seems to be a big draw.

   Paddles are used in place of rackets and the ball resembles a "whiffle" ball. Scoring only happens when the server wins the point. First team to 11 points wins the game.

   The Farmers Branch Parks and Recreation Department has provided two Pickleball courts for play, laid over regulation tennis courts at Gussie Field Watterworth Park (the courts can be used for either Pickleball or tennis). If the weather is not agreeable, a local Pickleball group schedules times to play at the Farmers Branch Community Recreation Center. For more information on days and times when equipment and courts are available for play, call 972.243.6993.


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California company to relocate corporate HQ to Farmers Branch

FARMERS BRANCH ~ Ironclad Performance Wear Corporation has announced that their corporate headquarters will relocate from El Segundo, California to Farmers Branch, Texas later this summer. 

   Built on specially designing gloves for particular types of work or activity, Ironclad Performance Wear Corporation will be moving into a 13,000-square foot space in the 1900 block of Hutton Court.  Six employees will come from California with about 20 more from the local area.

   "Ironclad is excited about our move to Farmers Branch and Texas," said President and CEO Jeff Cordes. "Many of us have personal roots in Texas and recognize the significant growth opportunity Texas offers today. Positioning our corporate headquarters in Farmers Branch and the north Texas region provides greater access to our expanding customer base and quality of life for our team members."

   "We couldn't be happier to welcome a company like Ironclad that exemplifies innovation in their industry," said Farmers Branch City Manager Gary D. Greer. "Locating here, in the heart of the Metroplex, sets the stage for future growth as they continue to expand."

   Ironclad Performance Wear Corporation will continue their distribution operations from their existing facility in Valencia, California. Their new corporate headquarters in Farmers Branch is expected to be open by September 1.


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Families invited to special summer Star Party, Friday at FBHP

FARMERS BRANCH ~ With a nod to safe solar observation of the late day sun and sunset, in advance of celestial viewing, a Family Star Party has been planned for the Farmers Branch Historical Park on Friday, July 18, from 7 until 11 p.m. 

   Free and open to the public, the party begins with a bring-your-own-picnic dinner to accompany safe solar observation and a "How To" telescope clinic. Volunteers from the Texas Astronomical Society of Dallas will be on hand.

   After sunset viewing at 8:15, the high-powered telescopes kick into gear for viewing of Saturn, Mars, summer constellations and more.

   For more information, call the Historical Park at 972.406.0184 or visit


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Vendor registration for annual Craft Fair now underway
FARMERS BRANCH ~ Residents over the age of 50 that want to sell handmade items at the annual Farmers Branch Craft Fair, coming this October to the Senior Center, may register as vendors now, during exclusive resident signup, through July 23. 
   Planned for Saturday, October 18, from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., the annual sale has become an unofficial kickoff for the impending holiday season with themed wares made by local and area artisans.
   Farmers Branch resident vendor registration will continue through Wednesday, July 23. Then, open registration commences July 24 and continues until all spaces are filled.
   Applications and more information are available at Call 972.919.8740 for more information.

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Construction CAM
Groundwork continues for waterworks
Updated: July 15, 2014 
FARMERS BRANCH ~ Construction continues throughout the summer on the new Aquatics Center to be located next to the Community Recreation Center on Heartside Place, near Valwood Parkway.
2014 Swim Season Options
2014 Swim Season Options

   The year-round, indoor section of the new complex is expected to be open next winter with the outdoor portion ready for the summer, 2015 swim season.

  In the meantime, Farmers Branch residents can still get season passes, at 2013 Farmers Branch prices, for the Carrollton Rosemeade Rainforest Aquatics Facility. Call 972.247.4607 for more information, or check out this video.



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Volume 4 | Edition 28 | Number 177   
Branch Bulletin
is published weekly by the  Communications Office
of the City of Farmers Branch, TX.
Three-time Award Winner for Excellence in
E-Newsletters in Texas
Awarded by the
Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers

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Fire Department promotes five, swears in five
FARMERS BRANCH ~ Mayor Bob Phelps was on hand to pin badges on members of the Farmers Branch Fire Department being promoted within the ranks, as well as on newly sworn-in firefighters during ceremonies Tuesday at Fire Department Administration.
(From left) Mayor Phelps, Chief Steve Parker, Firefighter Matt Mull, Firefighter Matt Ulibarri, Firefighter Scott Snell, Driver Morgan Bell, Captain Mike Campbell, Captain Jonathan Castro, Firefighter Richard Loftis, Firefighter Robert Shomody, Lieutenant Kyle Richardson and Lieutenant John Garcia.
Photo by Tom Bryson
FBHP Volunteers
   The Farmers Branch Historical Park is seeking volunteers to assist with school tours, special events and projects. No experience with museum work is necessary. Two training sessions for prospective and veteran volunteers is set for Thursdays, July 31 and August 7, 6:30 p.m. at the Historical Park. For more information, call or email Museum Educator Danielle Brissette at 972.919.8731.
Vintage Base Ball
   The Farmers Branch Mustangs Vintage Base Ball Club is seeking new players to engage the great game as it was played by 1860s rules - no glove, no ungentlemanly conduct, no stealing of bases and more. Residents are encouraged to come and play ball with the Mustangs or join the Mustang's Fan Club. No sports experience necessary. Upcoming open practices are from 6 until 8 p.m. on August 12 and September 16 at the Farmers Branch Historical Park. Call 972.919.8731.
Small Spaces
   "Gardening in Small Spaces" will be a featured presentation at the Farmers Branch Manske Library on Saturday, July 19 at 2 p.m. in the Library's meeting room. The session, with Dallas Master Gardener Barbara Gollman, will focus on gardening in a small yard, patio or apartment. Call 972.247.2511.
Rose Gardening
   The Farmers Branch Senior Center is sponsoring a Rose Gardening Group that meets monthly at the Center. Their next meeting is set for Wednesday, July 23 at 10 a.m. Call 972.919.8740 for more information.
Paddle Boarding
   The Farmers Branch Senior Center is also sponsoring a paddle boarding outing at Lake Ray Hubbard on Saturday, July 26 from 9 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. Cost is $13 and covers lessons, all equipment and two hours water time as well as transportation. Call 972.919.8740.
AARP Smart Driver
   The AARP Smart Driver Course will be taught at the Farmers Branch Senior Center on Thursday, July 24 from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Fees for AARP members are $15 and $20 for non-members. Call 972.919.8740.
Firehouse Theatre
   The classic musical, "Hello, Dolly!" will be presented by the Firehouse Theatre at the Plaza Arts Center in old downtown Carrollton with performances through July 27. For reservations and more information, call 972.620.3747 or visit
Current EVENTS
Town Hall Meeting to focus on streets
FARMERS BRANCH ~ The plans for street refurbishment in the next 10 years, stemming from the 2014 voter-approved $23.5 million bond program, will be the topic of discussion at a Town Hall Meeting, set for Thursday, July 24 at 7 p.m. at the Farmers Branch Senior Center. For more information, call 972.919.2515.
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Residents can opt for texts on mosquito spraying
FARMERS BRANCH ~ A new service on the City's website allows residents to sign up for text or email notifications when mosquito spraying will take place in a certain area of the City as a defense to the spread of West Nile Virus.
   Residents can access the signup portal through the West Nile Virus Prevention link on the left side of the City's home page at
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Oncor begins tree trimming in area neighborhoods
FARMERS BRANCH ~ Oncor has notified Farmers Branch that they will be trimming trees in several local neighborhoods in the coming weeks.
   According to Oncor, the area to be trimmed is generally bounded by Webb Chapel Road, Belt Line Road, Marsh Lane and Pebble Beach Drive. Oncor can be reached at 888.313.6862.
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Residents can keep up with street projects
FARMERS BRANCH ~ Residents are able to keep up with street projects under the voter-approved $23.5 million bond issue with new opportunities available online.
   The first street projects under the bond issue began last week with work on Templeton Trail.
   Residents can keep up with the schedule and scope of work online at
street repairs. Registration is available on that page for text alerts on street projects. Residents may also connect with the City on Facebook and Twitter for street program updates.
   In addition, the Town Hall Meeting on July 24 at the Farmers Branch Senior Center will focus on the upcoming Street program.
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Teen Camp Video Blog
Teen Camp Video Blog
"Don't Text & Drive"
Pool's Closed!
"Pool's Closed!"
Farmers Branch
"Above & Beyond" 
John F. Burke Nature Preserve: An Overview
"John F. Burke Nature Preserve: An Overview"
"Farmers Branch Connections"

LBJ Express
Check the latest weekly report on the five-year reconstruction of Interstate 635 that includes:
Check the latest information on the 28-mile, $1.4 billion reconstruction of Interstate 35E from LBJ, through Farmers Branch, to U.S. Highway 380 in Denton County.

About the City of Farmers Branch Farmers Branch Logo
An historic community in the geographic center of the DFW Metroplex, Farmers Branch boasts a residential population of 28,800 and a daytime employment population of 66,000. Located on the northwest border of the City of Dallas, the City's 27 parks and lush greenbelts feature nationally-acclaimed, award-winning soccer fields, football facilities as well as baseball and softball complexes. The city's location in the center of the Metroplex and only 15 minutes away from both DFW Airport and Love Field, along with the 2,200 hotel rooms within the city, make Farmers Branch an ideal location for residents and for business. For more information on the City of Farmers Branch, visit,, or call 972.247.3131.
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