Monday, 26/6/2017 | : : UTC-5
Harker Heights Evening Star
Harker Heights Evening Star

Bringing the arts to Heights

Bringing the arts to Heights

By Bridget Carlson

Saturday Tap Tap Art School at Paris Gardens held their grand opening. Various artists from the area lent a hand to help others learn various arts such as gardening, rain barrel collection, cupcake decorating, painting and jewelry making.

“This event is about earth day and art since earth day was yesterday. We have free art activities for the kids and the kids are planting plants in the front and if they plant a plant they receive a free kids entrée from Outback. We also have a guy out here this is teaching about water conservation and rain barreling,” said Amelia Rabroker, president, Tap Tap Art School.

Hundreds showed up to this free event and were excited that Harker Heights will now have a creative facility for children and adults to learn about different types of art.

“This is a great opportunity for the local area. This is a beautiful building with the outdoors for the kids to learn about art,” said Harker Heights Resident Eunkyoung Mann. “We need more facilities like this in Harker Heights.”

Tap Tap Art School originally started as a mobile art school that held classes on a retrofitted old school bus.

“It started three years ago with the Tap Tap Bus. I have a school bus that has a classroom on the inside, and I travel to schools and daycares on the bus, and parties. Anywhere there is a big group. I provide art curriculum to schools and art parties for parties on the bus,” said Rabroker.

As the demand for classes became increasingly larger, Rabroker knew it was time to expand beyond the mobile classroom.

“With that, parents wanted to sign their kids up or hold their own parties, so it was becoming increasingly harder for me to have just classes that people could come to that didn’t require a school or some kind of group, so I thought of having some kind of a house to have classes in,” said Rabroker.

Setting down roots, so to speak, wasn’t without obstacles.

“This house had been sitting here vacant for several years, I didn’t know about it. A friend of mine told me about the house. We found out who owned it by looking at the tax records and I called the owner and asked if they would like to sell it; they said yes,” said Rabroker.

The next hurdle required rezoning of the property, which created another obstacle in itself.

“I went to the planning and zoning committee and they said ‘no we won’t do it’,” said Rabroker.

After running into the City of Harker Heights Mayor and pleading her case during an event in which he was on the Tap Tap Art Bus another meeting was set up with the planning and zoning committee.

“The next week I had a meeting with the planning and zoning committee. Mr. Molis down at the city is phenomenal. Him and his staff worked so hard to help me get this zoning. I can’t say enough good things about them,” said Rabroker.

After the open hearing and approval from the City Council, Rabroker was able to buy the house and turn it into what is now called Paris Gardens.

“The Paris family raised their children in this house and they are who I bought it from.  They were so wonderful. They were patient and anything I needed they did. So because Tap Tap Art School is a mobile school bus, so this house is Paris Gardens and named after the Paris family,” said Rabroker.

Tap Tap Art School at Paris Gardens offers children and adult classes.

“Our adult classes are Tap Tap After Dark and those are geared towards adults. We do a variety of mediums. We do painting, we are going to have clay, and jewelry making,” said Rabroker. “All of our staff are professional artists or certified art teachers.”

To learn more about the classes offered or the upcoming summer camps, visit their website at http://www.taptapartschool.com

About

Bridget is a Mother to four and has been a Military Wife for 17 years. She is the author of the Dear Military Spouse - Ask Bridget column, a journalist, editor for Harker Heights Evening Star, and professional photographer. She is also the face behind Antics of a Nutty Hiker, and loves to spend her time out on the trails racking up miles.

Contact Us

Phone: 254-699-3998

Fax: 254-699-1725

Address: 331 Indian Trail, Suite 103 * Harker Heights, TX 76548