From the late 19th century through 1930s, Dallas was served by several streetcar lines, the last of them abandoned in 1956.  In 1983, Dallas businessman Phil Cobb co-founded The McKinney Avenue Transit Authority (MATA), a nonprofit corporation with the mission of returning heritage streetcars to the streets of Dallas.  By the early 1990s, MATA was operating four vintage street cars on a trolley line linking the Dallas Arts District to Uptown Dallas. The line was called the “McKinney Avenue Trolley.” Today as the third largest street car operation in the U.S., it’s known as “M-Line Trolley,” with a fleet of air-conditioned and heated restored vintage trolleys operating 365 days a year, providing safe, clean, reliable, and convenient public transportation free of charge in Dallas’ vibrant Uptown District.

In 1991, beth founded and chaired trolleyfeast! As the first special event to generate public funding support for the trolley. For her, it was personal. In 1929, the streetcars of dallas connected the chain of four grocery stores across the city owned by her grandfather.

Conceptualized as an annual subscription event, Trolleyfeast! was a two week early-fall festival of parties hosted by Uptown Dallas corporations, merchants, and restauranteurs.  Caroline Rose Hunt served as Honorary Chair of the inaugural season sponsored by Beth and Jess Moore.  Party themes ran the gamut from a Sunday afternoon Dallas Cowboys game watch with Marianne and Roger Staubach to a black tie dinner to a late afternoon croquet party on the grounds of the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. Trolleyfeast! continued as an annual fundraising event until the mid-1990s, transitioning MATA to ultimately partner with corporate sponsors such as DART, Downtown Dallas, Inc., Uptown Dallas, Inc., and Klyde Warren Park — its lead sponsors today.

Beth Sanders Moore is creator and Founding Chair of Trolleyfeast!, an annual series of special events in Uptown Dallas to fund the McKinney Avenue Transit Authority.

Image: © MATA (Courtesy Image)

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