Margot’s StoryMy Dallas Story
NAME: Margot O’Daniel
OCCUPATION: Ruthie’s Rolling Cafe/ Marketing & Social Media
CURRENT NEIGHBORHOOD: Uptown Dallas – West Village
Q: What made you decide to choose Dallas when you moved from Evanston, IL. in 2010?
A: I chose to come attend SMU five years ago because I wanted to be in a city that had all the benefits of a big city with a neighborhood-like feel. After graduation I stayed because I fell in love with the city. From my perspective, Dallas is a place of prosperity and it is easy to thrive here. It is a great place for young adults like me to grow up and learn what they are capable of. The great economy in Dallas makes it the perfect place to find a career path that you love. For me, working at Ruthie’s Rolling Cafe work doesn’t feel like work–it’s rewarding and fun. And when I am not working, there is always something exciting going on in Dallas to be a part of. I am always checking social media to find out what is going on that day and I am never without options.
Q: How did you choose which part of town to live in?
A: I chose to live in Uptown because there are so many people my age, and I chose to live in West Village specifically because it is pedestrian-friendly. Restaurants, shops, grocery stores, coffee houses, gyms and everything I need are well within walking distance. My favorite part is that I’m close to the Katy Trail, where I love to run and walk my dog. As I get older and have a family, I would like to live closer to the White Rock Lake area, but I am exactly where I want to be for now.
Q: How has your opinion of DFW changed since moving here?
A: At first I thought there wouldn’t be very much to do outdoors, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. The neighborhood I live in is great for walking, the Katy Trail crosses all across the city but provides a less urban feel, and several parks that branch off the Katy Trail are serene places to go. If I hop in the car it is a short drive to get to the Dallas Arboretum, White Rock Lake, or Trinity Groves which are perfect places to get away to.
Q: Describe your perfect day in DFW or the surrounding areas.
A: My perfect day in DFW would be a Saturday. I would wake up early to go for a run with my dog Lulu. On the way back home, I would stop at the West Village Farmers Market to get some fresh veggies for the week and a coffee. I would meet my friends later to have brunch on a large patio at one of the restaurants in the Trinity Groves area. After brunch we would take a walk over the bridge and take pictures of the Dallas skyline. I would check out the Perot Museum in the late afternoon. Then I would ride the trolley with my boyfriend near Klyde Warren Park to have dinner on a picnic blanket.
Q: What advice would you give to someone who just moved here?
A: Go to Trinity Groves for brunch. Venture around White Rock Lake. Check out Katy Trail. Ride the trolley from West Village to Klyde Warren Park. Try The Boss from Ruthie’s. Visit the museums. Become a part of organizations that give back to the community like the Junior League of Dallas. Try a new restaurant every week. Don’t get stuck doing the same thing or sticking around the same area. Experience all that Dallas has to offer so you can find your favorite places to go and things to do.
Q: What is your passion and how does Dallas help fulfill it?
A: For me, the foodie scene has caught my attention. Since I moved to Dallas, my passion for the food and restaurants has taken off. I love trying new restaurants and when the food truck trend hit Dallas, I was excited to jump on board. I was welcomed at Ruthie’s Rolling Cafe where I began as an intern while I was still in college. Now that I have graduated, they have hired me for marketing and social media. Since then, one opportunity has led to many more. I just wish I had the time to take advantage of them all! For now, I quench my craving to be even more connected with the foodie scene as a contributor for the Dallas Foodie, just for fun.
Q: You seem enthusiatic about your job. Why?
A: I love working for Ruthie’s Rolling Cafe. Our mission is to provide exceptional service and quality comfort food, in order to impact our local community and organizations. We build relationships with our Ruthie’s Dozen nonprofits. It is great to know what is going on in the community, so we can know what we can do to improve it. Our owner Ashlee Kleinert’s priority is the Dallas community. She inspires us, and all of us at Ruthie’s have a passion for building up others and we do whatever we can to help.
Q: Favorite festival/ event?
A: I am extremely excited about The Reunion Lawn Party at Reunion Tower that is having a summer series this year, on the last Saturday of every month from June through October.
Q: Where do you like to shop? Why?
A: North Park Center has all my favorite stores in one place. I love all the water fountains with the turtles and baby ducks–so cute!
Q: How do you interact with your community?
A: Once a month on Saturday morning, Tango Tab gathers a bunch of people together to make sandwiches for local food pantries at The Nodding Donkey bar. I love to get my friends together to give back during our weekend free time. I also joined Genesis Young Leaders to support the Genesis Women’s Shelter; we get together to play with the kids at the shelter and sometimes we go to happy hour together. I also support the nonprofit Executives In Action, who puts on an annual Great Texas Food Truck Rally around September.