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Featured Articles
» Murphy reverts to Stage 3 Modified for fall and winter
By Staff Writer | Published Yesterday | Local Government | Unrated

 

Twice a month back in place until March 31, 2015

MURPHY (October 28, 2014) It’s time to turn off the automatic controller for the sprinkler or irrigation system and turn it on only as necessary, says Candy McQuiston, Murphy’s Manager of Customer Service.

"The fall and winter dormant season for most grasses, plants, shrubs and ground covers is fast approaching," she said. "And, that means that these plants do not have the same watering needs as they do during the spring and summer. So using the manual feature of the controller only when necessary makes the most sense."

In addition to entering the dormant season, the City’s water supplier is reverting to Stage 3 Modified status, returning to the twice-per-month watering schedule. This will go into effect on Nov. 1 and will continue at least until March 31, 2015.

The North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) sells water to the City of Murphy, which then distributes it through the City’s system to homes and businesses. NTMWD has recently announced their intention to re-institute the Stage 3 Modified status. That status limits watering of lawns and landscaping with irrigation systems and automatic sprinklers to twice a month.

"Residents may still use soaker hoses and drip irrigation systems for foundations, trees and other landscaping as needed," added McQuiston. "Even so, watering of grasses such as rye or other cool weather grasses is not recommended during the fall and winter. And, warm season grasses, like Bermuda and St. Augustine, always go dormant during fall and winter."

McQuiston says residents should turn off the automatic controller of their sprinkler systems and turn it on manually only when necessary.

New schedules with allowed watering days to reflect the new restrictions are available on

www.murphytx.org.

» LIVING FOR ZACHARY’S 6TH ANNUAL HEARTBEATS RUN
By Staff Writer | Published 10/22/2014 | Health & Family | Unrated

PLANO, TEXAS (October 21, 2014) - Did you know that October is Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness month? To increase awareness and save lives, Living for Zachary is hosting their sixth Annual HeartBeats Run this Saturday, October 25 at Oak Point Park Amphitheatre in Plano with Fox 4 Sports Anchor Mike Doocy as the host and special guest, Dallas Cowboy’s legend, Drew Pearson! The 10K, 5K and 1 Mile Run/ Walk starts at 8:20 am


Karen Schrah, Zachary’s mom, felt compelled to warn others about SCA in hopes to prevent tragedies like the one that affected her family. “Each year, thousands of young people and their families are affected by SCA,” said Karen Schrah, President and Founder of Living for Zachary. “Living for Zachary is working to raise awareness by providing community education, youth heart screenings and AEDs to youth-based organizations.”


Every 39 seconds someone in the United States dies from heart disease*, while sudden cardiac arrest claims one life every two minutes, taking more lives each year than breast cancer, lung cancer or AIDS**. Ten thousand young people die from SCA each year*.

About Living for Zachary:

Living for Zachary is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness of sudden cardiac arrest and saving lives through community education and awareness events, promoting youth heart screenings, awarding student scholarships and donating automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to youth-based organizations. The organization was founded in honor of Zachary Schrah, who was only 16 years old when he collapsed during a high school football practice in Plano on April 2, 2009. For more information, visit www.living4zachary.org

*Source: American Heart Association

** Source: Heart Rhythm Society

 

» Animal Shelter native plant garden seeking volunteers
By Staff Writer | Published 10/20/2014 | Education | Unrated

MURPHY (October 20, 2014) Volunteers are being sought to assist in creating the native plant garden that will grace the entryway of the new Murphy Animal Shelter. The garden is one of only 13 awarded a state grant across Texas for this purpose, says Candy McQuiston, Manager of Customer Service.

"We’re developing and nurturing this native plant garden as a demonstration project," she said. "One of our principal aims is to show residents how to successfully landscape their homes with native and adapted plants."

The planting process, which includes minimal soil preparation, some minor digging and placing plants in specific clusters, will begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 1. The Animal Shelter is located at 203 North Murphy Road, behind the Murphy Activity Center and Murphy Community Center. Entry into the area may be limited, requiring volunteers to park in the Wal-Mart lot and walk to the shelter.

"We anticipate concluding around 2 p.m.," she added. "To help keep volunteer workers productive, we will have water, soft drinks, hot dogs and chips. Volunteers should dress appropriately with closed-toe working shoes or tennis shoes and gloves."

A grant from the Native Garden Grants Program from Keep America Beautiful allowed the City to partner with Lowe’s in providing support and materials to create and maintain the native plant demonstration garden. The grant included a $600 gift card to Lowe’s and $500 in maintenance assistance, a variety of gardening materials and additional support from Keep Texas Beautiful.

"Part of the demonstration is the planning, of course, but also that plants native to the area or successfully adapted to the area can thrive with little water and maintenance," she said. "The plants will all be listed in the Ladybird Johnson native plant database."

In addition to the professional Parks personnel on the City staff, gardening professionals from the Murphy Lowe’s store, the Murphy Middle School Environmental Club and some Boy Scouts will be on hand to assist in the installation of the garden.

"But, really, we want community volunteers to be part of the process and take ownership of the garden," she said. A rain-collection barrel is also planned for the site, further demonstrating how residents can enhance their gardens.

To enrich the learning experience of visitors once the garden is in place, a marker will be placed at each plant base with a QR code, allowing smart phones and mobile devices to access the plant’s characteristics, watering requirements and soil preferences online.

To learn how individuals and organizations can become part of this program, representatives may contact McQuiston at

cmquiston@murphytx.org, call the Customer Service line (972) 468-4100 or visit www.murphytx.org.

» Truck-wrap recycling art contest for students returns
By Staff Writer | Published 10/17/2014 | Education | Unrated

MURPHY (October 17, 2014) For the second year in a row, Murphy students will compete for a cash prize or an iPad mini by illustrating their commitment to recycling, says Candy McQuiston, Manager of the City’s Customer Service Department.

"Progressive Waste Solutions, the City’s Green Team and Keep Murphy Beautiful are teaming up again," she said. "We’re challenging students to show us how important recycling is to them by either drawing a poster or coming up with a super-hero," she said.

Murphy students in Kindergarten through fifth grade in any elementary school, home-schooled, or enrolled in private or charter schools can enter by creating a poster showing how recycling can have an impact on the residents of Murphy. Themes might include the importance and benefits of recycling or what the world may be like without it. The top two entries in each school will win a T-shirt for the artists. The grand prize for this level is $100 in cash.

Meanwhile, students in sixth through tenth grades are invited to develop a mascot for the recycling effort in Murphy. The mascot should be connected in some way to the student’s understanding of the importance of recycling in Murphy. The super-hero creation contest will accept any hand-drawn, stylized or painted mascots. Again, the top two entries in middle and high schools will win a T-shirt for the creators. The grand prize for the mascot contest is an iPad mini.

"The students in the younger category can show how they or their families recycle," said McQuiston. "Or, they might draw how a community can benefit from recycling. Older students can let their imaginations loose on the mascot. An action figure or an inanimate object or a big, furry animal with super-powers or a combination of all of these can be part of their creation."

The winning poster and the mascot will appear as wraps on the sides of the Progressive recycling truck currently in use. Residents have already seen the truck with last year’s winning entries as it goes around the neighborhoods of Murphy picking up recycling items.

Deadline for entries is Monday, Nov. 24 at 5 p.m. Submissions may be emailed to

customerservice@murphytx.org or dropped off at Customer Service on the first floor of the Murphy City Hall, 206 North Murphy Road. Rules and more information are available online at www.murphytx.org or by calling 972-468-4100.

Winners will be announced at the City Council meeting of Jan. 20, 2015.

» KIRKIN’ O’ THE TARTAN AT CORINTH PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
By Staff Writer | Published 10/16/2014 | Recreation | Unrated

Corinth Presbyterian Church will celebrate the Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan at 10:55a.m. on Sunday, November 2, 2014, the day we change the clocks back one hour. The Procession of the Tartans begins at 10:55 followed by the 11:00 a.m.worship service. It is celebrated annually on the first Sunday in November, and the public is always invited. Following the service, refreshments, including the traditional haggis, will be served and The Dallas Highland Dancers will perform traditional dances.

The Presbyterian Church has early origins in Scotland and Corinth Presbyterian Church in Parker, Texas, is proud to honor that heritage. Members and guests are invited to wear the Scottish tartan attire, but it is not required.

Corinth Presbyterian Church is located at 5609 East Parker Road, in Parker, Texas, directly across from the Parker City Hall. Additional information, a map and directions to the church can be found at

http://www.corinthpresbyterian.org or phone 972-372-4765.

The members of Corinth Church invite the community to join us in this Scottish tradition. The Kirkin' o' the Tartan is a traditional blessing of the tartans by the Clergy. “Kirk” is the Scottish word for Church. Tartan is the traditional kilt worn by the Highland Scots.

The history of this event began following the failure of the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745 when the tartan was forbidden to be worn. The Clan System, with its representative tartans, was demolished as troops loyal to the Duke of Cumberland and the House of Hanover ravaged the Scottish Highlands, searching out Jacobite supporters. Anyone found wearing clan tartan was subject to arrest, imprisonment, or banishment to the colonies. Countless Scots were forced into the British army to fight in several wars on the European mainland and in the American colonies. Thus the Kirkin' o' the Tartan went into hiding, away from official eyes. Tradition holds that during this time, the women of the Highland clans would bring a small piece of their tartan to the Kirk (church) with them to be blessed secretly and to pray for protection for the clan and its members. Each Highlander secretly touched a bit of their tartan hidden among their clothing at the appropriate moment in the worship service.

The Kirkin’ in its present form was probably first held in 1941. Scottish-born Dr. Peter Marshall, pastor of New York Avenue Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C., and Chaplain of the U. S. Senate, led the service in an effort to promote solidarity among American-born and native-born Scots who were once again involved in a European war–World War II. Since that time, the tradition of the Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan has evolved into a colorful, festive occasion for celebrating Scottish heritage, asking God’s blessing and protection for those represented by the tartans, recognizing the historical contributions of native Scots and Scottish-heritage Americans, and celebrating the faith traditions of the Celtic and Scottish peoples. The service is a creative blend of music, hymns, and prayers from Scottish faith traditions. The heart of the tradition is the presentation of their tartan by representative clans and individuals, accompanied by the sound of the bagpipes.

Corinth Presbyterian Church was founded in Collin County on August 2, 1846, and continues to worship and service to the community. Many of Corinth’s founding members carried Scottish ancestry.

We invite you to worship with us and join us in this colorful and joyful celebration.

Recent Articles
» Fill the Boot drive closes yet another successful year
By Staff Writer | Published 08/6/2014 | Health & Family | Unrated

MURPHY (August 4, 2014) Final numbers are not yet in, but expressions of thanks from Murphy Fire Rescue and the cadre of firefighters who manned the Fill the Boot corner are being loudly voiced, according to Fire Chief Mark Lee.

"The boots were definitely filled," he said. "We have not counted all the coins yet because there was so many, but in terms of folding money, we collected $1,649. That alone would make this a rousing success."

Adding the coins could bring the total to a significant amount, and signal a successful return to the Fill the Boot campaign for Murphy Fire Rescue after missing the annual event in 2013.

"We had a small one-year lapse in participation, but we are still very much committed to the cause," he said. The International Association of Fire Fighters and many local firefighter associations and departments have partnered with the National Muscular Dystrophy Association in fund-raising for some 60 years, garnering millions of dollars in the fight against these neuromuscular diseases.

"We are dedicated to assisting our community, as firefighters and as residents, and so we gladly and eagerly do what we can to help," added the Chief. "And, while I have been part of these community fund-raisers and toy drives and other community-based programs for many years, I am always so very gratefully pleased to see the outpouring of generosity."

As is now becoming customary, the kindness of Murphy residents has shown through in the amount of money gathered, and in the many expressions of support the firefighters heard and saw over the three-day campaign. The funds will be combined with other firefighter companies and presented to the MDA during their Labor Day Telethon on behalf of the larger firefighting community.

"In reality, though, we only collected what the community was willing to give, so it’s a gift from the greater community," he said. The unseasonably cool weather was another positive note, giving firefighters a break from the usually oppressive heat of early August.

"All in all, we consider it a success, and we thank the MDA folks for their assistance as well," he concluded.

» Murphy Municipal Development District (MMDD) finalizes Fiscal Year 2015 budget
By Greg Goodwin | Published 08/6/2014 | Local Government | Unrated

A brief meeting was held to discuss and finalize the FY-2015 MMDD budget to be presented to Murphy City Council on August 5, 2014. The meeting was called to order and a quorum was certified. The minutes of the July 14, 2014 Joint City Council and MMDD meeting and the July 14, 2014 Budget Work Session were approved.
At this meeting, items discussed on July 14, 2014 were incorporated into the proposed FY- 2015 budget with a couple of adjustments. These were presented to the board by Kristen Roberts, Director of Economic and Community Development.
· It was noted that the Finance Department projected MMDD revenues for FY- 2015 at $883,600. This is an increase of 2.5% that is reflected across all revenue projections.
· Adjusted was the set dollar amount for Economic Incentives to
$100,000. Discussed was the possible focus of these incentives to be
Murphy Market Place.
· The Promotional Expense line item was adjusted to reflect $25,000 for
appropriate opportunities that become available during the Fiscal Year.
· It was discussed that in consideration of fees waived by the City for
yearly Murphy Chamber of Commerce events, that no additional specific
amount of funding be added at this time.

The formal reading of the City of Murphy’s Budget will be at the August 5,
2014 meeting. The first of two (2) public hearings on the budget is scheduled for August 19, 2014 with a second hearing scheduled for September 2, 2014.

Additional City Budget information can be found on the City of Murphy
website.

» City Council and Murphy Municipal Development District (MMDD) Joint Session
By Greg Goodwin | Published 08/6/2014 | Local Government | Unrated

The meeting was called to order and a quorum was certified for both City
Council and the MMDD.

A presentation was given by Aaron Farmer from The Retail Coach outlining the current status of the retail development study and recommendations. A demonstration of the mapping studies, showing the overall retail area that impacts Murphy indicated that the City attracts people from as far north as Lucas, as far east as eastern Wylie, as far south as Garland and on the west side, Richardson and Plano. The study so far recommends targeting retailers and developers for businesses involving Groceries, Sporting Goods, Dine-in Restaurants, Home Improvements and Clothing. A list of potential targeted businesses to attract to Murphy was presented and discussed.

A continued discussion involved the Economic Development Vision for the City of Murphy. Expressed by several Council and MMDD members was a continued desire to make Murphy a “unique” place to live and work and to look at attracting businesses, services and entertainment that will enhance that vision.

Council and MMDD then held a closed Executive Session. The regular meeting was then reconvened with no action taken. The joint regular session was then adjourned. The City Council and the MMDD then moved to separate meeting rooms for work sessions regarding Financials and FY 14-15 Budget proposals.

Discussions are ongoing with budget approval tentatively scheduled for the
end of August. Fiscal Year (FY) 14-15 budget information will be available on the City of Murphy website.

» Parks and Recreation hears Monarchs for Murphy presentation
By Greg Goodwin | Published 08/6/2014 | Local Government | Unrated

The meeting was called to order and Kim McCranie, Executive Administrative Assistant, certified a quorum.
The first item on the agenda was a call for discussion on planting wildflowers in various areas of City owned parks and open space. Rajesh Jyothiswaran- 728 Ashley Place, approached the city staff and gave a presentation to the board about Monarch butterfly migration. He said we are in the crossroad of the migration path of the Eastern Monarch. With development over the years of migration areas, migration has slowed considerably. Mr. Jyothiswaran inquired about the possibility of planting in certain Central Park areas and other open spaces, butterfly host plants to hopefully increase Murphy as a stopping point along their migration journeys. The board thought this was an idea worth investigating and requested the city staff to look into appropriate areas, care and maintenance costs as well as seasonal considerations. The board members liked the idea of “Butterfly Gardens”, and thanked Mr. Jyothiswaran for an informative presentation.
City Staff presented a Murphy Central Park Playground Shade Structure design and requested P & R Board input. The design consists of geometric canopies of various shapes and sizes suspended on metal poles. The board discussed canopy and pole colors and requested additional information from City staff about expected lifespan, replacement costs and maintenance.
Also discussed was the current state of the Murphy Central Park Learning
Center. Four (4) truckloads of mulch was donated by Raising Canes and
trucked in by Arborilogical Services. Additionally four (4) wood-grain benches have been added as well as an Owl House. The board discussed with staff possible future projects for the Boy Scouts, school field trips and future expansion.
Before deciding on a date(s) for Murphy Trail Connectivity Work Session(s), the board asked the City staff for an updated Master Trail Plan which should include new planning for trails and signage. Also City staff updates on the success of Amphitheater Concert events and the Timbers Nature Preserve projected completion date of May 2015.
The Parks and Recreation Board then approved the April 14, 2014 minutes and adjourned.

» Murphy Community Development Corporation (MCDC) holds a brief meeting
By Greg Goodwin | Published 08/6/2014 | Local Government | Unrated

The MCDC meeting was called to order and Lori Knight of the City Staff
certified a quorum. Individual agenda items were:
· The Regular Meeting Minutes for June, 16 2014 were approved.
· There was a request by City Staff to add an Event Coordinator and
amend the Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 budget to include this new position as
well as add to the FY- 2015 budget to be submitted to City Council. In
2013, the City of Murphy held eight (8) community events. In 2014/2015, the City of Murphy has sixteen (16) events scheduled. This increase has necessitated the need for a dedicated staff position.
· A public hearing was held but there were no comments on the MCDC FY- 2015 budget. With minor adjustments, the board approved the FY- 2015 budget to be presented to the City Council for final approval.
· The City Staff updated the MCDC board on the Community Enhancement Grant Program. Outlined were the Approval, Program Guidelines and Application process for eligible applicants. Possible recipients include community service organization projects and community enhancement projects that enhance the quality of life for the residents of the City of Murphy. Initial grants will be in the amount of $2500. Some projects could be eligible for a larger grant with the approval of the MCDC and City Council. The first application deadline will be January 31, 2015. Additional Grant information and the Program Overview will be available on the City of Murphy Website.

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