For Mika Manaster, the Northaven Home Tour is more than just a showing of architecturally significant homes.
While most home tours are designed to highlight houses, the inaugural Northaven Home Tour is designed to highlight an entire community.
Manaster, the media coordinator for the home tour, is also the mother of a third-grader at Arthur Kramer Elementary, the school presenting the tour.
“There is so much tradition and pride in this community, especially in our school,” Manaster said. “Kramer has a rich, diverse population, while providing a top-notch education. There is a lot of love in Kramer, and we want to show it off.”
The Kramer PTA joined with the Hillcrest Forest Neighborhood Association to host the event in order to raise money for the school, as well as raise awareness about the direction Kramer is going and potential benefits for the neighborhood.
While many Preston Hollow residents send their children to private schools, organizers of the tour want to quell some of the anxiety that follows mention of a Dallas ISD education.
“The neighborhood loves the school,” Manaster said. “The more we can increase the value of the school, the more we can bring to the neighborhood.”
Kramer has been recognized as an International Baccalaureate school and has won a Green Ribbon Award – a national recognition that the school is improving the health and wellness of its students and staff, and teaching environmentally “green” practices – five years in a row.
Despite the sparkle of what some residents call the “hidden gem” of public education, Kramer has stiff competition, surrounded by Dallas’ most notable private elementary schools.
St. Mark’s School of Texas, The Hockaday School, Greenhill School, and Parish Episcopal School are all situated less than 10 miles from Kramer, which encourages frequent comparisons; but Manaster argues that Kramer may hold an edge when it comes to the dedication of the families that embrace their local public school.