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Hidden Gems: North Dallas

Every day we have a choice. We can support an up and coming podcaster, try a new family-run restaurant, join a boutique gym started by a local fitness champ or we could keep giving away our money to the handful of giants who already control so much of our commerce. Our daily decisions impact the kind world we live in; if we want a world where small businesses are growing and artists and creatives are thriving then we should support them with our time, money and attention. We’re proud to highlight inspiring creatives and entrepreneurs each week in Hidden Gems series.  Check out some of North Dallas’ gems below.

Courtney and Josh Willis

In 2010, while Josh and Courtney were in Uganda adopting their son, they met a very sick little boy at the orphanage named Regan. Because he was so sick, they assumed he had something difficult to treat like TB, malaria, or AIDS. He had an IV that stayed in his hand at all times to give him fluids, he was too weak to bear weight on his legs, and he couldn’t speak. Read more>>

Dr. Christin Bradley

My journey of how I got to where I am today wouldn’t be complete without sharing a glimpse of my childhood experience. While the typical child had the opportunity to grow up in their home town where they were born and live near relatives and childhood friends, my story was vastly different. Growing up in a military household, my childhood was quite unique, not only because I never knew how to accurately answer the daunting question. Read more>>

Sam Paige and Sierra Clark

I started working with Sierra as an actress on some of her film projects. Wanting to expand my knowledge as a filmmaker, I helped her on various projects as a location scout, art director, wardrobe, and so much more! Sierra became my best friend, and I just pitched the idea of partnering with her and making a production company. That’s when Gilden Media Productions was born. We have gone from making micro shorts to working on preproduction on three feature films. Read more>>

Edward “Ed” Perry II

Ed’s Media Photography is a Photography business that I started straight out of high school. I’ve been out of high school for about six years now and business has been booming ever since. Because of the pandemic we are in, myself and my staff thought it would be cool to throw a COVID-19 Senior Porch Photoshoot special. We only changed clients $10 for the Photoshoot. Initially, I didn’t think it’d get big but the post was shared throughout Facebook and even in multiple “Adopt A Senior” pages. Read more>>

Brittany Elliott

I’m 32 years old, born August 11, 1987 and I’ve been tattooing since I was 18 years old. I knew since I was an early teen that I wanted to make tattooing my career and life. I remember walking into a tattoo shop at 13 in San Antonio, Texas, called “Phoenix Graphics” with my Mom. My mom was heavy into drugs when I was younger so I rarely saw her. Anytime we did something together, it left a lasting impression on me. Read more>>

Max Rintoul

I started doing hair at a very young age on all of my baby sitters. I would go with my mom to all of her hair appointments and the stylists would bring out mannequins from the break room and would teach me how to use a curling iron and how to do different braids. By the time I was in kindergarten, I could French braid hair better than all the moms of my classmates. Read more>>

Sarah Rañola and Rachel Trammell

The initial inspiration for Hella Lumpia came from attending the Asian Night Market last July. It had been an aspiration of Chef Sarah’s to create her own business and brand, utilizing and expanding on the Filipino recipes of her childhood. Trying the food of Chef Denise of fellow pop-up Bilao and seeing the demand for more Filipino food in Dallas was just the impetus we needed. Read more>>

Dan Danzy

I started stand up comedy at the age of 18 in 2006 in Beaumont, TX. I moved to Dallas in 2010. I had a terrible drinking problem that led me to banishments from venues. I’ve been sober for four years (five years in November) since sobriety. I’m unbanished from those venues, became runner up at the Improvs Funniest Comic in Texas 2018, and am a professional working comic, video game streamer, writer, and content creator. Read more>>

Parker Cates

Starting in 2016, I opened our first business called Real Deal. It is a sober living company that helps addicts and alcoholics transform their lives and adequately transition into society. In 2018, I opened a company called EMCD that is a property company that owns the space that Real Deal leases from. Egon is also invested in other companies but has 100% control in Real Deal, EMCD, and DDR (DFW Drug Rehab). Read more>>

Justin McGee

Athletics and coaching has been a big part of my life. Going all the way back to 6th grade when I was a water boy for our high school football team, I have been drawn to institutional sports. While I have had success on the field as both a player and as a coach, the thrill of playoff victories and district championships aren’t the fuel for my continued participation in athletics. Read more>>

Dedra Weiss

With a fondness for vintage clothing and accessories, I began hand making beaded purses reminiscent of those from the 1900’s – 1940’s, but with a modern twist. I draw my purse designs to create a vintage or contemporary feel, weaving thousands of tiny, glass seed beads into a unique and functional purse. I made my first purse from a sack of antique seed beads given to me by my mother, salvaged from a vintage purse. Read more>>

 Laura Davis and Jonathan Garcia

We have both always had a love and passion for photography and all things artistic. We have always a knack for taking photos and making skits and short films. All for fun, until about a year ago. We were goofing around one night talking about how silly yearbook photos are, how they are so forcefully posed. We ended up taking “yearbook” photos of each other and they turned out amazing. Read more>>

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