2019 Park Place Dealerships – Texas Rangers Triple Play Game Show Spectacular Breaks Record with $770,000 Raised

Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation Escapes to Margaritaville

With a playful theme of “Escape to Margaritaville,” fans filled the Hilton Anatole ballroom May 5th looking for rare treasures, unbridled laughter and fun encounters with their favorite players and coaches at the sold-out 2019 Park Place Dealerships – Texas Rangers Triple Play Game Show Spectacular. And the Rangers hit a grand slam!

“The Park Place Dealerships – Texas Rangers Triple Play has always been our largest fundraising event and this year’s total made a record $770,000,” said Karin Morris, executive director of the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation. “The funds raised at this event directly impact our programming and partnerships. Since last year’s event, we have welcomed more than 25,000 kids to the Texas Rangers MLB Youth Academy at Mercy Street Sports Complex, presented by Toyota.”

The annual event featured Texas Rangers players, coaches, broadcasters, and alumni. Fans enjoyed unparalleled access to their favorite Rangers for autographs, photos and lively baseball conversations with a player, coach, former Rangers player or staff member seated at their table.

“This is the 15th year Park Place has been involved in this event and every year it surpasses our expectations,” said Jordan Case, Park Place Dealerships president. “Supporting the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation ensures children throughout North Texas will have opportunities to succeed through scholarships, new training facilities, and programs. Together, we are making our community stronger.”

(L to R) Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation executive director Karin Morris; and Park Place Dealerships president Jordan Case; with one of the Texas Rangers Baseball Club owners, Rangers COO and chairman of the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation Board Neil Leibman; Park Place Lexus Grapevine GM Gary Venner; Rangers manager Chris Woodward; and his wife, Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation Advisory board member Erin Woodward. Photo Credit: Michael Ainsworth

The live and silent auctions raised more than $225,000, also a record. The highest amount in the live auction was a $31,000 bid for a trip on a private jet with Hall of Fame catcher Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez to see the Rangers play against the Angels in Anaheim. The amount was doubled when the Rangers agreed to allow both of the two top bidders to take the trip for a total of $62,000 for the dream trip. 

Other notable experiences included a roadtrip to Boston to see the Rangers play the Red Sox that included transportation on the team plane and dining with Hall of Fame pitcher Dennis Eckersley; a trip to the Dominican Republic for a tour of the Rangers’ new Baseball Academy; private hitting and pitching lessons with current Rangers players, and many other exclusive experiences. Memorabilia from the worlds of sports and entertainment included a license plate signed by the stars of “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off;” a framed photo autographed by legendary players Ted Williams and Joe DiMaggio; an autographed seat back from the original Texas Stadium; a photo signed by the cast of “The Sandlot;” and countless signed jerseys and equipment from a wide range of sports.

Fans and players competed against each other in a spirited game of Heads or Tails. Tim Willett, auctioneer, would flip a coin and contestants placed their hands on either their head or derriere. If the coin landed on tails, all those with hands on their heads would sit down.

– Rangers players (L-toR) Rougned Odor, Elvis Andrus, Joey Gallo and Hunter Pence play Heads or Tails

Contestants were eliminated round by round until only two people were left on stage. Willett tossed the coin for one final flip, and Leta Farnsworth won tickets to the Paul McCartney and Billy Joel concerts later this year at Globe Life Park.

The highlight of the evening is always when the players compete in a pair of game shows. The entertainment began with a new game: Heads Up, where a player holds a card up to their forehead with a word or name written on it. Their teammates then give them clues to try to guess the answer. Rangers pitchers Jesse Chavez and Chris Martin were teamed up with catcher Jeff Mathis to battle Rangers’ bullpen coach Oscar Marin and pitchers Shelby Miller and Drew Smyly. The resulting antics were hilarious as players stammered and shouted answers under pressure as they tried to beat the clock. Jesse Chavez was holding a card with “Kanye West” on it and his teammates prompted him with, “Kim Kardashian’s husband!” To which Chavez replied, “Chloe?” The audience erupted in laughter.

The Rangers’ rookies never fail to entertain. Kyle Dowdy, Brett Martin, Adrian Sampson and Ariel Jurado performed a hysterical skit to “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X, featuring Billy Ray Cyrus. Don’t worry. They won’t be taking this show on the road any time soon. But it certainly made for some memorable moments.

Rangers’ rookies Kyle Dowdy, Brett Martin, Adrian Sampson and Ariel Jurado perform a skit (Photo by Michael Ainsworth)

If you think the Rangers are competitive on the field, imagine what happens when the infielders match wits with the outfielders in Fielders Feud, a popular spinoff of the popular Family Feud TV game show. Players tried to guess the top answers given by 100 Rangers fans in a survey taken at Globe Life Park. Both teams were stumped when it came time to guess the fans’ responses to the question, “What are your favorite memories from Globe Life Park?”

Rangers Hall of Fame broadcaster Eric Nadel moderates Fielders Feud with Infielders Isiah Kiner-Falefa , Logan Forsythe, Rougned Odor and Elvis Andrus competing against Outfielders Hunter Pence, Delino DeShields Jr, Joey Gallo and Nomar Mazara

Players were able to match answers such as “Beltre’s 3000th hit” and “Striking out A-Rod in the ALCS.” But the crowd let out a gasp when “Rougie’s Punch” was not one of the top answers.

“The Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation was recognized last year with the Allan H. Selig Award for Philanthropic Excellence for our Richard Greene Scholars program,” concluded Karin Morris. “As part of this recognition, the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation will receive a $10,000 grant from Major League Baseball Charities.”

Named after the former Mayor of Arlington who led the campaign to keep the Rangers in Arlington and construct Globe Life Park, the Richard Greene Scholars program provides a $10,000 scholarship every year to a student at each of the Arlington ISD high schools. During the recipient’s senior year, he/she rotates through an internship every six weeks at different community service and local government entities. 

Now in its 22nd year of operation, the Richard Greene Scholars program has provided more than $1.2 million in college scholarships to Arlington high school students. In addition to financial aid, the program has become a cornerstone leadership development program by engaging recipients with local civic and business communities, including Arlington ISD, the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, the City of Arlington, the Texas Rangers and the Rangers Baseball Foundation, and several other civic partners. 

Since its inception in 1991, the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation has invested more than $30 million in our community to help children through support of programs including the Texas Rangers MLB Youth Academy at Mercy Street Sports Complex, presented by Toyota; youth fitness and wellness programs like the just keep livin programs; scholarships and summer programming for children in challenging circumstances.

Ken Schnitzer founded Park Place Dealerships in 1987 with a single Mercedes-Benz dealership on Oak Lawn. Today, Park Place employs more than 2,000 people and operates 16 full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, McLaren and Maserati. For more info, visit parkplace.com.

Why the Lexus RX350 is Everything Under the Sun- and Perfect for Summer

If you are visiting a Park Place Lexus dealership this summer, expect the 2019 Lexus RX SUV to be a bright spot. The best-selling Lexus model will be in hot demand for SUV enthusiasts and luxury vehicle fans.

1. Design

The 2019 RX features an immaculate interior to capture the draw of your attention around the cabin. Form-fitting seats and smooth finished wood trim surround the seating areas. There’s enough room for five individuals inside the RX models in addition to plenty of trunk space for several golf bags or four large suitcases. If you plan to hit the golf course or travel around the country this summer, the 2019 RX is a fantastic summer pick up.

For larger family trips, one should consider the RXL, which provides a third-row to seat two additional occupants. Seating seven people offers additional flexibility for families looking to cut back from using two vehicles during vacations. During the heat of the summer, back row passengers will also appreciate multi-zone climate control.

2. Performance

2019 RX drivers would enjoy two potential driving experiences with the 350 and 450h Hybrid. The RX350 continues to provide a powerful V6 engine with 295HP and 268 lb-ft of torque. If you prefer the gas/electric version, the RX450h offers 308 combined EPA-estimated fuel efficiency with 30 mpg combined EPA-estimated fuel economy.

Drivers also maintain exceptional control over the RX with several driving modes available from “Normal,” “Sport,” “Eco,” and “Sport S” as standard modes for the RX350. The RX450h Hybrid enables EV mode for electric power at lower speeds for short distances. For any F-Sport drivers, the F-Sport package adds the “Sport S+” and “Customize” mode for an enhanced athletic drive.

3. Safety

Thanks in part to the Lexus Safety System+, drivers can appreciate fewer collisions with advanced safety equipment. The pre-collision system with pedestrian detection anticipates individuals or a potential frontal collision with an audible or visible alert. These innovation along with several others contribute to the all-wheel drive Lexus RX350 and RX450 models both achieving 5 stars for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) safety ratings.

4. Multimedia

To stream all the hot summer soundtracks or search for popular vacation destinations, the Lexus RX models offer an efficient multimedia system. RX drivers can enjoy an 8-inch screen with HD radio, Bluetooth audio, voice recognition, two USB ports, and more. Drivers can upgrade from a 9-speaker audio system to a 12-speaker premium audio system with a 12.3 inch screen and full navigation.


If you are interested in the 2019 RX350 or 2019 RX450 Hybrid model, visit the Park Place website for inventory options.


Carroll Education Foundation (CEF) has been integral in supplementing funds for teachers and educators to bridge the gap between state funding and the needs of the teachers to provide a quality education to Dragon students. For the past 11 years, Park Place Dealerships has supported CEF and will be the presenting sponsor of the Carroll Education Foundation Gala next month.

With a theme of “A Night with Carroll Superstars,” the CEF Gala will be held Saturday, May 18 at The Bowden in Keller. The CISD Superstar Teachers will be revealed. The event is already 85% sold. More information is available at carrolleducationfoundation.org/annual-gala/

Gary Venner, Robert Hinkle, Kathy Talley, Leighanne Christon and Matt Woolsey at the Carroll Education Foundation reception at Park Place Motorcars in Grapevine, Texas on April 4 2019. (Michael Ainsworth)

A kick-off reception was recently held at Park Place Motorcars Grapevine in conjunction with the launch of the all-new Mercedes-Benz A-Class sedan and the new GLE SUV.

Starting at a base price of $33,000, the sporty new A-Class is the entry-level luxury compact for today’s tech-savvy driver. With advanced voice recognition software, as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the car responds to commands and requests much like the smart phones. Powered by a turbocharged inline 4-cyclinder engine that pumps out 188 horsepower, and driven by a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission with manual shifting, this peppy sedan can go from 0-to-60 mph in about six seconds.

The fourth-generation GLE, priced at $58,000, is king of the mid-sized SUVs. Standing tall on the new “Modular High Architecture” platform, the GLE looks great and performs even better. Both come with Mercedes’ nine-speed automatic transmission.

Both models also feature dual 12.3-inch screens mounted side by side on the dash, one for virtual gauges and the other for the infotainment touchscreen. Simply say, “Hey, Mercedes,” and the new MBUX system’s voice-command feature will respond to commands such as “Find the nearest restaurant,” and it will set the destination in the navigation system. Say, “I’m cold,” and it’ll raise the interior temperature. Like your smart phone, the more you use it the more it gets to know your preferences.


The Carroll Education Foundation’s mission is to build financial support from the community and corporate partners to ensure excellence in education for all students in CISD.


Ken Schnitzer founded Park Place Dealerships in 1987 with a single Mercedes-Benz dealership on Oak Lawn. Today, Park Place Dealerships employs more than 2,000 people and operates 16 full-service dealerships in Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston. For more info, visit parkplace.com.



Park Place Reveals Mobile Pop Up for all New Automotive Experiences

Park Place Dealerships revealed its new mobile pop up at the 2019 DFW Auto Show this past March. The Mobile Experience Unit will be used across DFW at events throughout North Texas to bring the Park Place brand directly to the automotive enthusiast.

“The mobile pop up gives us the opportunity to expand the presence of our brand beyond the parameters of the dealership,” said Dave Evans, Chief Marketing Officer at Park Place Dealerships. “Experiences play a huge role with customers today and are the main drivers of customer engagement. We believe the mobile pop up allows us to engage with the consumer wherever we want to take it.”


During the DFW Auto Show, the pop up will be onsite to deliver an inclusionary experience for everyone who stops to visit the Park Place area. The mobile unit has already provided innovative experiences for clients at both the 2018 Park Place Luxury & Supercar Showcase and at the COTA track.

Park Place continues to be an innovator in the automotive space by developing unique offerings to expose current and potential clients to the brands. In the past year, Park Place introduced and expanded Park Place Select, an automotive subscription service.

“As a company, we must be in tune with where our clients spend their time and how they use their vehicles,” remarked Evans. “Our client’s transportation needs are as diverse as they are, and range from attending festivals and sporting events to shuttling friends and family to racing their cars, or simply enjoying life. We expect the mobile pop up will help us deliver an unparalleled, client-focused experience.”

Ken Schnitzer founded Park Place Dealerships in 1987 with a single Mercedes-Benz dealership on Oak Lawn. Today, Park Place Dealerships employs more than 2,000 people and operates 16 full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, McLaren, and Maserati. For more info, visit parkplace.com.


2019 Allen Eagle Run Attracts 3,600 Participants

The 11th annual Park Place Lexus Allen ISD Eagle Run took place on March 2nd at Eagle Stadium in Allen and attracted more than 3,600 participants. The event included a family fun walk/run and 5K with participants and spectators enjoying a festival-like atmosphere including a mascot run, giveaways, musical entertainment and photo opportunities.

Park Place Lexus Plano was the title sponsor for the event and is a champion of the Foundation for Allen Schools which supports educational grants, scholarships, and a reimbursement program for educators. The Foundation has invested more than $1 million in Allen ISD teachers and students.

“Supporting educators and students in our community today has a long-term benefit for the business community,” said Chris Brunner, General Manager at Park Place Lexus Plano. “When we have strong, education programs, we are graduating students with bright futures that will make their way to the work force. We hope to hire some of these students to be a part of the Park Place team in the future.”

While the weather was chilly on March 2, the enthusiasm of participants heated up the event. The winner of the 5k was 28-year old Aaron Pearson with a time of 17:26.

Park Place Dealerships was founded in 1987 with one dealership in Dallas and today employs more than 2,000 people operating 16 full-service dealerships in Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston. Park Place Lexus Plano is located on the Dallas North Tollway at Spring Creek Parkway. For more info, visit parkplace.com.

Lexus Earns High Praise from Kelley Blue Book Awards

For many, Lexus retains a strong place in driver’s hearts due to the brand’s 30 year history of ownership experience. If you drive a Lexus, there’s a good possibility it’s not your first, and if it is, it’s a  good chance it won’t be your last. 

In addition to celebrating its 10 millionth vehicle sold globally, Lexus recently earned the title of ‘Best Luxury Brand’ according to Kelley Blue Book’s 5-Year Cost to Own Awards. KBB’s 2019 5-Year Cost to Own Awards are based on several factors outside a brand’s total cost of vehicle ownership well beyond the monthly payment. These vital values included insurance costs, fuel costs, fees, maintenance, repairs, and depreciation.

Four Lexus models were KBB 5-Year Cost to Own category winners. The 2019 Lexus UX won the ‘Best Luxury Subcompact SUV/Crossover Award.’ The Lexus UX made its debut in December 2018 as a luxury subcompact SUV with intentions of being an urban explorer on wheels. A signature design, sedan-esque luxuries with SUV seat positioning, and intuitive technology have established a new niche segment for SUV enthusiasts.

The Lexus NX won the award for ‘Best Luxury Compact SUV/Crossover’. The NX driving experience is fashioned for owners who have a busy lifestyle and enjoy the sporty feel of the road. The NX300’s 2.0L engine outputs 235 horsepower (HP) with 258 lb.-ft. of torque, which produces enough power for one’s daily commute. Additional design and safety elements are available to enhance the athletic abilities of the compact model.

Earning ‘Best Luxury Mid-Size SUV/Crossover (2-row)’ is the 2019 Lexus RX. Lexus ignited the luxury crossover category with the RX model in 1998, and the RX hasn’t looked back since, as 2018 marked an all-time year for RX sales. The effective Electric Power Steering (EPS) provides exceptional driving feedback for all drivers. RX also empowers all vehicle occupants with cutting edge multimedia options including an eight-inch multimedia screen, Scout GPS Link navigation, and nine audio speakers.

The winner of KBB’s ‘Best Luxury Car’ went to the gifted and talented, 2019 Lexus GS. The midsize sport sedan offers a stout appearance and luxury appeal within the industry. A comprehensive standard safety system is designed to protect all occupants and drivers on the road as the Lexus Safety system+ offers a Pre-Collision System (PCS), Lane Departure Alert (LDA), Intelligent High Beam (IHB), and more. GS drivers will appreciate the subtle Lexus interior styling plus modern touches of exterior character.

Enjoy all new or pre-owned Lexus models today from our Park Place locations in Plano and Grapevine. For more details on inventory options, visit www.parkplace.com.

Park Place Lexus and BodyWerks Grapevine Earn Certified Collision Center of the Year

Park Place is dedicated to maintaining our manufacturer’s high standards of quality- from service, sales, and to collision and body shop repair. You may not know this, but Park Place actually has three collision repair centers around DFW, one of which is Grapevine, Texas.  Park Place BodyWerks offers only Original Manufacturer parts, putting their client’s safety and overall quality first.  

In this case, Park Place BodyWerks Technicians are also Lexus Master Certified Technicians- further training that our shops require of the technicians. They hold their certifications by attending Lexus training each year. Park Place BodyWerks is one of three certified Lexus Collision Centers in the DFW area. 

Lexus officially recognized Mark Waugh, Eric McKenzie, and the entire collision repair team at BodyWerks Grapevine for their continue innovations in the way they deliver industry leading customer service.  As a result of grit and a commitment to upholding not just Park Place, but also Lexus Standards, they are officially one of two body shops recognized in 2018 for Certified Collision Repair Center of the year. And let’s just say, the competition wasn’t easy by any means. 

Park Place BodyWerks Grapevine was measured by 12 KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) throughout the year. The competition was strong and numerous withe 32 Lexus Certified Collision Centers in the country. Mark Waugh, Body Shop Manager, comments further saying “They are all great Collision Centers, so often it comes down to a point or two every year.”  This year the winner was decided by CSI to which Park Place BodyWerks Grapevine held the crown.

Mark owes this great distinction, without hesitation, to his entire team:

“I have the greatest TEAM in the country!  They are dedicated to doing the right thing every time.  When we became certified three years ago and I told my team we had a mission: to win the trophy of “Lexus Certified Collision Shop Of The Year” in our first year. We came in second place the first two years.  We won it in our third year of being on the program and no one has done that so I am very excited for the Team and honored to hang that plaque on our wall.  We are working on a repeat this year!

Learn more about the BodyWerks Process and our Lexus Certified Collision Repair Centers by visiting www.ParkPlaceBodyWerks.com.

The Park Place Luxury and Supercar Showcase is Set to Return on September 28, 2019

IRVING, Texas (March 4, 2019) – The 3rd Annual Park Place Luxury & Supercar Showcase, Dallas-Fort Worth’s premier luxury lifestyle and automotive event, will return this fall to the Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, September 28, 2019.

“The community has come out in force to support this event the last two years,” said Ken Schnitzer, Park Place Dealerships founder and chairman. “The third annual event will again showcase some of the most exotic and exciting vehicles that will please enthusiasts of all ages. What began three years ago as an engaging opportunity to celebrate our 30th anniversary has quickly turned into the foremost luxury lifestyle and automotive event in this region.”

Park Place Dealerships represents some of the most coveted brands in the world, including Rolls-Royce, Maserati, McLaren, Bentley, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, Volvo, Land Rover, and Jaguar which will all be featured at the event.

In keeping with a true lifestyle event, Park Place will expand its fashion, food and retail offerings within the Porsche Pavilion. There will be music performances on the Lexus Live Stage and beverages at The Mercedes-Benz Beer Garden on the lush Four Seasons TPC Championship golf course.

Within the event will be a juried Collectors’ Concours, featuring a diverse selection of rare supercars, luxury, sports, vintage and classic cars from private collectors.  The motoring festival also will include a Car Club Expo powered by Park Up Front as well as the beloved Kid’s Zone. 

Iconic luxury shopping and dining destination, Highland Park Village, will present a runway show produced by Jan Strimple Productions for the second year. The fashion show will feature looks from prestigious brands presented exclusively in the climate-controlled pavilion on the resort grounds, with retail pop-ups for guests to shop the day of the event.

Dallas’ Mad Hatter Shane Walker will return to judge the 2019 Haute Hat Contest on The Million Air Stage with categories for stylish men and women. Guests are encouraged to pair a hat with their favorite resort-inspired ensemble.

Ranging from $25 – $50 for general admission and $100 for VIP All Access, which includes the VIP Lounge with complimentary food and beverages from dozens of the area’s finest restaurants, tickets are on sale at LuxurySupercarShowcase.com. VIP Tickets are limited and have sold out the previous two years.

In 2018, the top Collectors’ Concours award winners were presented with the “Spirit of Park Place” hand-crafted sculpture by Dallas artist Brad Oldham:

  • Best of Show – 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB 6C
  • Chairman’s Choice Award – 1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II
  • Salesmanship Club Award – 1980 BMW M1

A Thank You To Our Returning Sponsors

Returning partners include the Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas, VIP Lounge Sponsors Allie Beth Allman & Associates – A Berkshire Hathaway Affiliate|URBAN, Captain’s Lounge Sponsor Celebrity Cruises, The City of Irving, Hill & Wilkinson, Hagerty, Event Architecture, AT&T Business, AVSD Productions, Digital 3 Printing, Fauxcades Décor, Brad Oldham Sculpture, D Magazine and NBC 5.

Restaurants featured in the VIP Lounge include The French Room, LAW, III Forks, Cool River, Chop House Burger, Dallas Fish Market, Wild Salsa, Oven and Cellar, Outlaw Tap Room, Kai, Toulouse, Whiskey Cake, Texas de Brazil, Princi Italia, CRU Wine and Food Bar, Pacific Table, Cork & Pig Tavern, Make Your Life Sweeter, and Carlton Provisions.

Additional sponsors include Lilium Florals, Perks & Provisions, Promo Resources, Sunnyland Furniture, RideCentric, iDesignMeetings, Marquee Event Rentals, Bachendorf’s, Jack Black, Maui Jim, Renegade Cigars, Tito’s Vodka, Peroni Beer, Waste Management, GL Seaman, Ratcliff Financial Services, Garages of Texas, Thermal Printing, and MarineMax Yachts.

Ken Schnitzer founded Park Place Dealerships in 1987 with a single Mercedes-Benz dealership on Oak Lawn. Today, Park Place Dealerships employs more than 2,000 people and operates 16 full-service dealerships in Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston. For more info, visit parkplace.com.


Lexus Earns Top Brand in J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study

To no surprise, Lexus has once again come out on top with it’s Safety and Dependability. Announced earlier this month, the luxury car brand earned the top spot in the J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study for the eight consecutive year.  The parent company’s namesake (Toyota) also took high honors, tying with Porsche for second place. 

This study is annually performed, to assess the dependability of some of the most common vehicles on the road. What you may not know is that this study evaluates vehicle’s that are three years old, so in reality, Lexus’ 2016 models  won this year’s accolade. 

That’s great news for all Lexus Lovers and consumers; as technology only improves every year, you can bet that if you’re sitting in a 2017, 2018, or 2019 model, you’re privy to its award winning dependability.  In individual categories, the ES model won compact premium car, while the GX won midsize premium SUV.

Learn more on our New, Certified, and Pre-Owned Lexus options on ParkPlace.com

Garland Couple’s Leading Role Takes Them to Hollywood

Klembara’s “My Place” Story Earns Couple Trip to Academy Awards

In today’s rough-and-tumble world, it’s refreshing to meet a couple like Teresa and Gary Klembara of Garland. 

Married for 36 years, the magic between them remains palpable – twinkling eyes, gentle touches and warm banter speak to an enduring love story that rivals anything in the movies.

It’s easy to imagine the sparks flying when they first met at J.C. Penney – he as a senior manager and she a manager trainee. They dated off and on for seven years before they, as Teresa says, “came to our senses and got married.”

Gary transitioned into a successful career as an international IT businessman and, after opting to leave her own successful retail management career at JCP, Teresa joined him on the road whenever she could. She also kept busy with sports and civic activities – “Keeping the home fires burning,” she says brightly.

Teresa’s bubbly laughter comes easily and often, especially when her affectionate rescue pooch, Brody, jumps into her lap for yet another smooch and snuggle. Gary shakes his head indulgently and pats Brody. This is, indeed, one lovingly pampered pup who, not surprisingly, embodies the couple’s lifelong commitment to each other and others.

They have a long-standing date for dinner and a movie with friends. “There are several couples we’ve been friends with for the past 30 years,” explains Gary. “When we’re in town we get together for dinner and a movie every Saturday.” 

When asked about their favorite movie to win an Oscar this year, Gary favored “Bohemian Rhapsody” while Teresa leaned towards “A Star is Born.”

It’s not all butterflies and unicorns

Lest they sound entirely too Pollyanna-perfect, however, just watch Teresa at a Dallas Stars hockey game. (They’ve been season ticket holders for 24 years). Without going into too much detail, let’s just say that her otherwise ladylike demeanor gives way when the puck drops. “She’s hilarious to watch,” says Gary. 

Then there’s their latest shared musical obsession – the Chicago-based heavy metal band Disturbed. “Their version of ‘Sounds of Silence’ is haunting,” she says. 

“When they came to Dallas recently, we went to their concert,” adds Gary. “We probably looked a little out of place, but nobody seemed to mind.”

“See, we can be edgy, too!” Teresa quips. 

Edgy or staid, the secret to their relationship is commitment – the promise to put each other first. 

“We both tend to go with the flow,” says Gary. “We’re grateful for the opportunity to make the most of what it is or isn’t,” adds Teresa. They often complete each other’s thoughts.

Their latest opportunity – making the most of an out-of-the-blue invitation to attend the upcoming 91st Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday, Feb. 24th in Hollywood. 

It’s an unlikely tale that not even a Hollywood scriptwriter could fashion. 

A throne fit for a furry king

The story actually goes back nearly 25 years ago, when Gary – an admitted car guy – checked out Lexus and, admiring the brand’s comfort, beauty and sense of security, bought a GS300. 

Several weeks later, it was Teresa’s first rescue dog, Lacey, who really sealed the deal with their second Lexus, an ES300, in what developed into a lasting relationship with Dallas-based Park Place Dealerships.

“I know how this sounds ,” she chuckles, “but Lacey traveled with me all the time and the car’s armrest wasn’t big enough for her to sit by me, so I had to say no.”  

Undaunted, their sales rep, Carl Keith, went to his home garage and fashioned a custom, leather-clad doggy perch. He called Teresa and showed her the homemade accessory. She welled up and bought the car “in three minutes flat.”

“I was blown away,” says Gary. That show of dedication from the dealership led to a relationship that continues to this day. In fact, Gary has acquired an astonishingly unbroken line of 18 Lexus vehicles from Park Place. 

“We want our clients to think of Park Place as ‘My Place,” explains Dave Evans, Park Place Dealerships Chief Marketing Officer. “Park Place team members are committed every day to create an ownership experience that can’t be found anywhere else. Our clients have fabulous stories about Park Place members who have gone above and beyond to make their experience memorable and we are sharing some of those stories through the “My Place” campaign starting with the Klembaras.”

The campaign kicks off locally during the Academy Awards show on Sunday, February 24. 

“We thought it only fitting that our stars, Teresa and Gary Klembara, should go to Hollywood and enjoy the Academy Award experience,” said Evans. “This is our way to say ‘thank you’ for their commitment to Park Place.”

So the burning question – what designer will they wear?

“Probably jeans and cowboy boots,” Gary grins.

“Texas chic!” Teresa pipes up. “We’ll represent Texas in all its glory. What do you think, Brody?”

Hearing his name, the rescue pup’s ears perk up and he answers with a lively bark. 

Meanwhile, Carl Keith, the Park Place Lexus sales manager, is happy to play “best supporting” role in this story.

Tune into the Academy awards and @parkplacetexas to learn more about the “My Place” story this weekend.