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COPPELL, Tex. – An evolution of the annual Smartscape Tour of Coppell, the Sustainable Home and Garden Tour will expand to include features such as solar, rain water catchments, compost methods, and backyard habitats in addition to Smartscape design. This casual self-guided yard tour will take place on Saturday, October 1st from 8 a.m. to noon.

The idea is to provide people the opportunity to talk to homeowners casually about the real impact of investing in features that can be both beneficial to the environment and cost saving. City of Coppell Community Programs Coordinator, Molly Bujanda says, “In our environmental education classes we find that people are curious about the costs of investing in alternative energy or water wise irrigation, but don’t necessarily want to get this information from a company who has an interest in selling the idea. The tour will allow people to compare something like the cost of renting vs. purchasing solar in an environment that feels like talking to a neighbor.”

Each home will boast diverse highlights. Tour-goers will be able to attend all stops or pick and choose the locations that are most relevant to their interests. The features will include but are not limited to rented and purchased solar, shade gardens, water wise and habitat friendly native landscape designs, vegetable gardens, and smart irrigation. People who visit all stops will have the opportunity to complete a scavenger hunt that will qualify them to win a rain barrel or compost bin from the City of Coppell.

Keep Coppell Beautiful’s new spin on the Smartscape Tour offers a fun day exploring local gardens that will inspire greener living. To attend, no registration or payment is required. Simply collect your map from Helping Hands Garden, 255 Parkway Blvd. (next to Town Center) on Saturday, October 1st between 8 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. The first 100 people will receive a green living giveaway.

For more information, visit

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Keep Coppell Beautiful (KCB) offers regular classes on gardening and green living topics such as rain water harvesting, composting, vegetable gardening and more. Now Coppell residents have the opportunity to show what they’ve learned with a chance to win $250 to spend at the Coppell Farmers Market! KCB will be looking for any and all green living ideas that may inspire others to make practical ecofriendly changes at home. Amateur photographers are welcome to participate.

To qualify, contestants must be residents of Coppell and photos must be taken within city limits, agree to have their photos shared online, and meet photo requirements. . Photos should inspire green living showcasing ideas such as:

  • Eco-friendly gardens or landscapes, that utilize native and drought tolerant plants
  • Conserving water through rain barrels, drip irrigation or other methods
  • Recycling/Waste Reduction around your house
  • Repurposed material projects
  • How you are using eco-friendly technology

With each photo should be a short description of how the photo represents eco-friendly practices. Photographers younger than 18 must indicate so.

The contest runs July 1st to August 31st. To submit your photo you can post it on your Instagram with the hashtags #ThinkGreen2016 and #KeepCoppellBeautiful, tag or share your photo with the Keep Coppell Beautiful Facebook page, or email your photo as a jpeg file to By submitting your photo, you are giving KCB the right to use your photo.

If you have any questions email

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Dozens of community groups came together to beautify Coppell as part of the annual Clean Coppell event in April. The two week event is a community wide effort to clear Coppell streets and neighborhoods of litter. This year, many groups stepped up to volunteer for beautification projects in addition to the usual litter cleanups. Projects included painting a fresh mural, trail maintenance, planting for the monarchs, and replacing weathered stickers and labels at community gardens and parks.

The Friends of Coppell Nature Park partnered with Keep Coppell Beautiful to offer the trail cleanup and planting for the monarchs. The Friends hosted Rejoice Lutheran Church and Cub Scout Packs 850 and 841. They also worked with Girl Scout Troops 7233, 7232, and 4635 to plant native sedges at the Biodiversity Education Center’s native demonstration garden.

Allstate pitched in to clean up and whitewash the pedestrian underpass at Parkway Blvd which citizens have complained about since it had become a site for graffiti. The following day, 10 youth members from the 4-H Cowboys of Coppell painted hand trees, a colorful illustration of the collective effort to take action for a better community.

Keep Coppell Beautiful offers Clean Coppell each year as part of the statewide Don’t Mess with Texas Trash-Off and nationwide Great American Cleanup. Families, scout troops, schools and workplaces are encouraged to join together in a unified demonstration of community pride and commitment to a beautiful environment. Molly Bujanda, Community Programs Coordinator with the City of Coppell said, “It’s really inspiring to see how our local community contributes to such a big impact. Last year, 37 million pounds of litter and debris were collected across the United States during the Great American Cleanup. Coppell residents contributed thousands to that number.”

Keep Coppell Beautiful will provide opportunities for Clean Coppell again next year. Community groups are encouraged to identify potential sites for cleanup and beautification. It’s never too early to start thinking of projects to better our neighborhoods. Follow Keep Coppell Beautiful on Facebook for updates or contact to get involved. 

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               Seventy-two volunteers representing over a dozen community groups came together on November 7th to make the first Community Planting Day a success! Volunteers pitched in to plant dozens of native and well-adaptive plants that will be part of an elaborate demonstration rain garden at Coppell’s Biodiversity Education Center. The event which included the Arbor Day tree planting, was originally scheduled for October 31st, but had to be postponed due to storm warnings.

               The project was organized by local non-profit, Friends of Coppell Nature Park in partnership with the City of Coppell. Local Coppell resident and landscape architect, Janna Tidwell created the landscape design as a huge gift to the community. She also drew donations of time from other professionals that advised on irrigation and sustainability. The plants in the design require minimal water and utilize drip irrigation. According to Jen Ferguson, Community Programs Manager with the City of Coppell, “Coppell has an outstanding number of engaged citizens that enthusiastically give back to their community. The native plant demonstration garden will serve as an excellent learning grounds for water conservation and horticulture, further adding to the unique attributes that keeps our city special to our residents.”

               “Many hands make light work” was proven true, as volunteers hammered out the planting, mulching, watering, and clean-up before noon! The entire truckload of mulch disappeared quickly as they had five wheelbarrows lined up, using an efficient assembly line for distribution to garden beds. There was great comradery among the diverse groups, as families, community groups and professional associations worked together. One North Lake student said, “It feels good to get outdoors and do something good for the community.”

               Come check out the new rain garden and take a walk through the Coppell Nature Park! The Biodiversity Education Center is a “green” constructed net zero building nestled on the sixty-six acres of nature preserve in Wagon Wheel Park. It is available for use by Coppell non-profit entities for meetings and environmental education.  It is also a great location for Coppell ISD field trips and facilitates a regular schedule of classes and events that are free to the public.  To find out more about the Biodiversity Education Center and to obtain forms for its use, please visit .  The center may be reached at 972.304.3581 or  


November 7th is Community Planting Day at the Biodiversity Education Center!

You are invited to come help the Friends of Coppell Nature Park plant an extensive native demonstration garden designed by professional landscape architect and Coppell resident, Janna Tidwell. Volunteers are needed all day from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. in two hour shifts. Come share in this positive community event with friends and family. Lunch is provided, and in the spirit of Halloween, there will be face painting for the kids from 10am-2pm.

What will volunteers be doing? Plants will already be laid out in their designated spots so they can easily be picked up and planted. Supervisors will be present in each section to give instruction and facilitate the work so that the end result is a gorgeous professional landscape design! After each section is complete, it will be mulched to make for a picture-perfect shot of a beautiful fresh garden. This is an excellent learning opportunity since volunteers will identify native plants, get the hands-on experience of putting them in the ground, and see how their work contributes to a larger landscape plan.

What is required to volunteer? Pick one or more shift from the registration link below. Simply sign in upon arrival near the entrance to the Biodiversity Education Center. Just look for the Friends of Coppell Nature Park canopy to get set up! Since supervisors will be present to clarify what the plants need to thrive, there is no need for a green thumb, just the desire to be part of a project that will serve as an excellent learning ground to thousands and beautiful gem in our community. Gardening is hard work and a science however, so we are looking for volunteers that can follow directions closely and don’t mind getting their hands dirty.

How can I get involved? You can sign up for volunteer shifts on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday here, BEC Rain Garden Planting Day. Click here to sign-up to volunteer. This is also posted on the Friends of Coppell Nature Park Facebook page as an event here. Please feel free to “share” the Facebook page so all your friends will see it and/or send the BEC Rain Garden Planting Day sign-up link to your friends.  For more information, email

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Keep Coppell Beautiful to recognize residents with sustainable landscapes


Tour of Coppell: Texas SmartScapes applications to have your home featured on this year’s tour are now being accepted.  Each year, Keep Coppell Beautiful recognizes Coppell residents who have implemented Texas SmartScape concepts into their landscapes. These homeowners are eligible to be featured on the Tour of Coppell: Texas SmartScape, Saturday, October 3.  Last year’s tour drew over 1,100 people from all over the region! 

The application focuses on the types of Texas native and adapted plants incorporated, use of compost and mulch, irrigation practices, and turf reduction.  The applications are open to Coppell residential landscapes only.  Applications are due August 7, 2015.

Landscapes that incorporate these sustainable techniques conserve water and protect water quality, as well as save the homeowner on their water bills!  The Texas SmartScape  program has a plant database of over 200 native and adaptive plants that thrive in the North Central Texas climate.  The website also walks you through the steps to create your own lush landscape that uses little water, fertilizers and pesticides, and also attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.

Homeowners chosen for the tour will receive a Texas SmartScape™ yard sign.

To apply to have your home featured on the tour contact Keep Coppell Beautiful at, or call 972-462-5191.

For more information, visit  To learn more about Texas SmartScape™, visit

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Keep Coppell Beautiful Environmental Education is offering a Fall into Winter Gardening class on Saturday, July 25, from 11:00am- 12:30pm at the Biodiversity Education Center.  The center is located in Wagon Wheel Park next to Coppell Nature Park (367 Freeport Parkway, Coppell TX 75019).

Fall and winter make for a harsh outdoor environment, but that doesn’t mean gardening has to come to a stop.  Healthy soil is essential to plant vitality and these slow seasons present a great opportunity to invigorate beds before the upcoming spring. Fall may be the best time of the year to plant in order to get the best results and an ideal time to evaluate a garden’s design. Reviewing what worked and did not work will allow for accurate removal or relocation of certain plants. Taking these steps to winterize will make for a better looking garden during cold weather months and improve outcomes for the approaching spring.

Soil maintenance and design adjustments aren’t the only options for winter gardeners. Many plants and vegetables struggle in the cold, however, there are quite a few vegetables that thrive in the chilly weather. Cole crops have an affinity for cold weather and will allow a harvest in much of the winter. With proper plants and cultivation, any garden has the capacity for year round yields.

Brad Sandy, of the Dallas County Master Gardeners, will cover numerous cold season gardening topics with professional tips and tricks to keep plots from becoming rectangles of bare earth. With over 10 years of gardening leadership and regularly lecturing at the Dallas Arboretum, Mr. Sandy has become a regional authority on educating the public over soil preparation. You’ll also find out how to grow in the cold weather and when to begin planting for the best spring harvest. Brad will cover proper planting times, soil cultivation, winter friendly veggies and a touch of design for the bitter seasons.

Learn to garden all year long by thinking ahead and properly planning from this class. 

Free to the public.

For more information about other class offerings visit our website at

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Tickets to the Fifth Annual Farm to Table Dinner go on sale this Saturday morning at 8:00 a.m. at the Coppell Farmers Market. Look for the special area setup for ticket sales. Tickets are $100 each and can only be purchased with cash or check. There is a 4 ticket maximum per person. Make sure to arrive early, as tickets sold out in just 2 hours last year.

This unique Coppell experience is known for “honoring the face and taste of local food.” The highly anticipated event is set for Sunday, May 31st from 6-9pm in Old Town Coppell on the lawn behind the Coppell Senior and Community Center.

Believing that all local citizens should have access to locally produced, healthy food, the market committee designated at the dinner’s inception that proceeds support the acceptance of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Lone Star food stamp cards) at the market and marketing expenses.

Four chefs familiar to the Coppell Farmers Market are working together for this lovely evening. Vendor “Two Chefs” Robby and Victoria Hooker, who sell their fresh chips and salsa weekly, brought the concept to the market. Robby is now Head Chef for Lewisville ISD and Victoria is the Head Chef at SMU.  This year they are assisted by Chef Joe Baker, who has his own catering business and is known to market customers for his macarons and truffles, and Chef Hugh Stewart of Chamberlain’s Fish Market Grill, who offered last Saturday’s chef demonstration.

Presenting this dinner for the fifth year hasn’t slowed these chefs down. Their enthusiasm hasn’t waned as they voluntarily added a seventh course this year.  Chefs and students from two local culinary schools, Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts and The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Dallas, will assist with preparation and serving this elegant, locally sourced dinner.  The multi-course seated meal with wine and ale pairings will be beautifully served outdoors accompanied by live music.

In continuing with the first part of the dinner’s mission to “honor the face of local food”, producers who contribute to the dinner sit among the attendees and are introduced during the evening. Meet the market vendors in a more relaxed venue and dine with neighbors in a unique setting.

The Coppell Farmers Market is open every Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon at 768 W. Main Street in Old Town Coppell.  Lone Star Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) and bank ATM cards can be used to purchase wooden market tokens (market cash) at the CFM info booth in the center of the pavilion. For the most current market news and events, join the Coppell Farmers Market on Facebook and Twitter and subscribe to a weekly email update at

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The Coppell Farmers Market is hosting their fifth annual Farm to Table Dinner on May 31, 2015. The focus is to celebrate urban and rural relationships in a one-of-a-kind culinary experience. The event at Grapevine Springs Park, 345 W. Bethel Road in Coppell, will begin at 6:00pm with mingling and appetizers followed by a 7:00pm outdoor dinner prepared by chefs and students from The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Dallas and Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts.  Six-courses served on long tables will be paired with locally crafted wine or ale and will spotlight the farmers and producers.  Light jazz by Coppell pianist, Roland Elbert, will complete the experience.  

The goal of the Coppell Farmers Market Farm to Table Dinner is to celebrate all who contribute to a local food system, to spotlight farmers and producers, raise awareness of the value of meals based on farm direct markets, and support local food access to all.  Ticket sale proceeds will support the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Lone Star Card) at the market, along with additional promotion of the Coppell Farmers Market.

The CFM volunteer committee has planned this dinner every year with Robby and Victoria Hooker, Two Chefs salsa vendor and professional chefs.  The Hookers assisted with similar dinners in North Carolina with Slow Food before moving to the area and are excited to bring their expertise to this endeavor and involve culinary students in the local food movement.  “It’s hard to believe it’s been 5 years since we started our dinners and they’ve become a true community celebration of local food,” said Karen Pearsall Gillham, the CFM Committee Chair, “and this year, the chefs and farmers are already planning some extraordinary culinary delights!”

Tickets for the May 31st Farm to Table Dinner go on sale at 8:00am on April 18th at the Coppell Farmers Market, 768 W. Main St.  $100, cash or check only, four ticket limit.  Tickets sold out in two hours last year!

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Keep Coppell Beautiful Environmental Education is offering a Secrets of Tomato Gardening class on Saturday, March 14 from 11:00 am – 12:30 pm at the Biodiversity Education Center, 367 Freeport Parkway at Wagon Wheel Park.  

Tomatoes are a favorite in North Texas vegetable gardens.  There is nothing like a vine-ripened tomato.  Many gardeners find growing tomatoes in the Texas climate especially challenging. Attend this class to tried and true methods of growing juicy, delicious tomatoes perfect for spring salads from expert Texas gardeners. 

Farm Girl Donelle Simmons will let us in on all of the secrets to growing organic and disease-free tomatoes in our environment.  Donelle will bring her passions about gardening and real food into the classroom.  Donelle, along with her mother Marilyn, grow and feed 15 families a year through their educational Community Sustainable Agriculture (CSA), offer an organic gardening radio show, speak at national conferences, and garden coaching advice to help others grow bountiful gardens.

There is no charge for this class and registration is not required. There is a 300 meter walk from the parking lot to the Biodiversity Education Center.  Use the Wagon Wheel Park entrance off of Freeport Parkway and follow the signs to the Biodiversity Education Center.