Category: Business

Making Chores a Slam Dunk

Photo courtesy of 0
Photo courtesy of

When Marshall McKinney decided to launch the Dunk Collection after his college graduation, he had a product he knew from experience would be successful. Just how quickly that success came, after gaining recognition from Dallas mogul Mark Cuban in March, was a welcome surprise to McKinney.

The Dunk Collection piqued Cuban’s interest when McKinney presented the Dirty Dunk on the court at a Dallas Mavericks game on March 3.

“We did a little ‘Time Out’ show on the court, and everyone saw it,” McKinney said. “I guess Mark [Cuban] liked the product, because later on that night, we got a message from him saying he wanted to talk about it.”

DFW Restaurant Week Kicks Off Near You


DFWrestaurantweek (2)It’s that time of year again when hungry souls, or bellies, across Dallas-Fort Worth travel near and far to dress up, take shameless food pictures for Instagram, and dine on a budget at the area’s most popular hot spots.

DFW Restaurant Week kicks off today and runs through Aug. 21 (with some restaurants extending until Sept. 4). More than 130 Dallas restaurants are offering three-course prix fixe dinners for $35 or $45. Many restaurants are also offering a two-course lunch menu for $20.

Guests can treat themselves while also giving back to the community with 20 percent of proceeds going to the North Texas Food Bank and Lena Pope, an organization providing intervention, counseling, and educational services to meet behavioral health needs of children and families.

Organization Puts At-Need Drivers On the Road

On the Road Lending  has provided loans to 50 families across Texas.
(Photo: John B. Sutton, Jr.) 0
On the Road Lending has provided loans to 50 families across Texas. (Photo: John B. Sutton, Jr.)

When West Dallas resident Kimbely Rankin learned that her eldest child, Brian, 13, was offered a scholarship spot at the Covenant School in North Dallas last year, she didn’t know what to do.

She didn’t have a car and it would have taken Brian more than an hour to get to school riding DART, and even then he still would have been late to class.

Brian’s mentor through Mercy Street Doug Dixon, of University Park, referred Kimbely to On The Road Lending. Through the program, she was able to receive an affordable car loan and purchase a 2013 Ford Focus. This has allowed her to get Brian to his new school and substantially reduce her morning commute.

“… If there’s an emergency with my children, I’m able to just jump in the car and go, versus trying to call someone to come pick me up or trying to get there on the bus,” Rankin said.

Vacationers Cruise on Hillcrest in Ship Shape Shop

Ahoy Cruises owner Tom Pecena (Photo: Konrad Kaltenbach ) 0
Ahoy Cruises owner Tom Pecena (Photo: Konrad Kaltenbach )

As soon as you step into Ahoy Cruises on Hillcrest Avenue, you are transported to a maritime oasis, complete with model ships in glass cases, a wall-sized map of the world, and owner Tom Pecena dressed in a blue blazer, white pants, and boat shoes.

Pecena has been offering free cruise consultations at his one-man operation since 1999. His interest in boats dates back to his childhood, when he became fascinated with passenger ships and ocean liners, such as the Titanic and Queen Mary. He began cruising in 1982 and still goes on as many as five a year.

Pecena likes to help customers find a cruise that best suits their preferences. And it doesn’t hurt that cruise lines pay him a commission for each voyage he sells.

Pediatrics: Now, There’s an App for That

PediaQ sends nurse practitioners at times when general pediatricians normally aren't available. (stockbroker / 123RF) 0
PediaQ sends nurse practitioners at times when general pediatricians normally aren't available. (stockbroker / 123RF)

With the PediaQ app, medical house calls of old meet new age on-demand technology. Jon O’Sullivan, a Highland Park resident with a long-time career in healthcare, thought up PediaQ in the summer of 2014 and has since grown it into what he describes as one of the best-reviewed medical apps on the market, based on patient reviews.

Thanks to his background in hospital consultation and his own children’s use of apps, O’Sullivan recognized a need in the health services market for frequent service, immediate response, and conservation of either time or money: these were the criteria he knew his app needed to satisfy.

Like Mend, another app on the market, PediaQ offers on-demand healthcare that comes straight to your door. But PediaQ is the first app in the country that does this with child healthcare.

Mile-High Pies Come to Park Lane

The diner will seat 133 and will be open Monday through Thursday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m., 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. (Photo: Imani Lytle) 0
The diner will seat 133 and will be open Monday through Thursday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m., 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. (Photo: Imani Lytle)

Oak Cliff staple Norma’s Cafe celebrated a grand opening at Caruth Plaza on Park Lane, its fourth eatery, on July 12.

“Truth be told, we’ve been jonesing for that spot for a long time,” said Bill Ziegler, Norma’s director of operations. “I drive by it every day, and I noticed the Souper Salad was gone and I called our broker immediately and jumped on it.”

The Park Lane location was originally slated to open in June, when Norma’s was celebrating its 60th anniversary, but the unseasonable rain caused construction delays.

The new 4,100-square-foot cafe features Norma’s iconic red diner chairs, Texas-themed decor, and famous pie counter stocked daily with fresh trademarked Mile-High Cream Pies in different flavors, such as coconut, chocolate, lemon, and peanut butter, all topped with at least two inches of lightly flambéed meringue.

Breaking the Bank Over a Broken Limb

Hospitals - P.N. - 2016-3-ED 1

While critics have complained that freestanding emergency rooms are overpriced and even deceptive, staff boast they provide high-quality and convenient services. But at what cost?

The Texas Association of Freestanding Emergency Rooms states that ERs have to charge more than non-emergency clinics in order to cover costs associated with state-of-the-art medical equipment, as well as the costs of having ER-trained physicians available 24/7.

State law requires ERs to clearly note they are an emergency facility. However, the Better Business Bureau reports numerous complaints from families who claim they were unaware of the distinction until receiving the bill.

Allen Warchol, a Dallas native who now lives in Los Angeles, was in town for the holidays last year when his daughter developed a rash around 11 p.m. Erring on the side of caution, he and his wife went to a nearby facility so a doctor could take a look. They had no idea the small building they were in was actually considered a full-service emergency room. 

i360 Individualizes Outpatient Treatment


For the past eight years, psychologist Dr. Kevin Gilliland and his team at Innovation 360 (i360) have served many Park Cities and Preston Hollow patients struggling with issues such as mental health or addiction with a different kind of treatment.

Gilliland started i360 in 2008 in a spot near Preston Center to meet some of the gaps he saw in the outpatient treatment industry.

“There were a lot of ends that just weren’t being met,” he said. “You may not need residential when you’re depressed or drinking too much, but you need more than seeing somebody in individual therapy.”

Rather than having patients go through more emotional turmoil to take off work for outpatient treatment — which requires patients to live at home and go daily to a clinic for treatment until they complete their program — he wanted to find a middle ground where clients could receive the treatment they deserve and resume everyday life.

Local Couple Serves Berry Cool Treats

Photo: Imani Lytle 0
Photo: Imani Lytle

Locally-made Berrynaked popsicles might soon find their way into ice chests at Highland Park ISD schools.

“They want to make it a part of the plated lunches at the elementary and a more a-la-carte feature for the higher grades,” said Heather Kim, who owns the Inwood Village-based Berrynaked with her husband, Gavin.

HPISD spokesperson David Hicks said the district would likely have an answer for the Kims sometime this summer.

The University Park couple started serving up frozen confections and fresh purees in their shop in 2014, determined to offer their neighbors healthy desserts and “anytime” snacks. The Kims said they were impressed with the district’s commitment to that same idea.