East Dallas Urban Coop Tour
Stonewall Jackson Elementary School
5828 E. Mockingbird Lane,
Dallas, TX 75206
For a city known more for big business, big oil and big hair, Dallas has become “a hot bed of chicken keeping.” That’s from Mariana Greene, Dallas Morning News Garden and Home editor, who brought her “Tales from the Hen House” to the Dallas Arboretum earlier this year.
At this weekend’s East Dallas Urban Coop Tour -- A Peep at the Coops -- those of us who keep chickens, who are thinking of keeping them, or just remember the joys of hunting fresh eggs with our grandmothers, can get an inside look at what it takes to have farm-fresh eggs in our own backyards.
This year’s annual tour of 13 East Dallas chicken raisers is this Sunday, May 20, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., rain or shine. (After all, hens don’t take days off for rain.)
Headquarters for the tour is at the Gardens and Outdoor Science Lab of Stonewall Jackson Elementary School, 5828 E. Mockingbird Lane, just east of Central Expressway. The only charge is $5 for maps of the sites, available the day of the tour. Cash and credit cards accepted, and the maps can be shared by members of the same tour group.
The tour’s site, ww.apeepatthecoops.org/, states the first 750 people to buy maps also receive a reusable bag from Central Market with magazine, coupons, chicken info, and more.
Proceeds from maps, as well as from a raffle for a mobile chicken coop and sale of T-shirts, benefit the Stonewall Gardens. I first got to know these wonderful teaching gardens as a volunteer tutor at Stonewall more than a decade ago. The local Stonewall community values them so highly that when the Dallas ISD cut funding for the garden instructor position, volunteers established a non-profit organization for their support.
Also at the gardens, local chicken expert Dan Probst and Custom Coop Company owner Bob Richie, will present seminars on the hows of raising backyard chickens.
Food trucks from Easy Slider and Rock and Roll Bake Shop will be at Stonewall, so you won’t need to miss Sunday dinner to take the tour.
I haven’t seen a list of sites, but I hope one of them will be Ms. Greene’s own backyard chicken coop, whose bantam hen residents Thelma and Louise posed for the picture accompanying this post.
Please see the Peep at the Coops website for additional information, including parking, sponsors, and the etiquette of visiting the coop sites.