Five stories that have North Texas talking: the State Fair of Texas opens today; watch Big Tex bust a move; an 80-year-old Fort Worth man goes viral; and more.
Big Tex and his pals are back! It’s opening day for the State Fair of Texas. Gates open at 10 a.m. (Don’t forget: Leave your selfie sticks at home!) The opening ceremony takes place at 7 p.m. on the Hall of State steps. The Starlight Parade starts at 7:15 p.m. Tonight on the Chevrolet Main Stage: Craig Wayne Boyd at 8:30 p.m. And, of course, many will be devouring corny dogs and the top new fried foods, including Fernie’s Holy Moly Carrot Cake Roly and Smoky Bacon Margarita. (Read up on the top new foods.) Last year’s fair sold $42 million in food and ride coupons. Visit the State Fair’s website to plan your trip.
- KERA is at the fair today. Join Jeff Whittington at noon for a special edition of “Anything You Ever Wanted To Know” – live from the fair. We’ll broadcast from a shady spot along First Avenue between Big Tex Circle and the Lagoon. (We’ll be next to the Kids’ Boardwalk.) You can step right up and ask questions and give answers – in person! (Or you can do it the old-fashioned way. Email email@example.com or call 1-800-933-5372 or send Jeff a tweet at @JeffWhittington.) Learn more here. (And if you can't join Jeff, tune in on KERA 90.1 FM.)
- Watch Big Tex bust a move. To get you in the State Fair spirit, take a look at this groovy video from KERA's Dane Walters, featuring Big Tex showing off his moves at last year's fair.
- Southern Methodist University has raised $1 billion. SMU says it’s raised the money ahead of schedule. The money will help fund scholarships, academic programs and facilities. The announcement was made Thursday, the 100th anniversary of SMU’s opening. SMU says it joins 35 private universities in the U.S. that have raised $1 billion or more through major gifts campaigns. Others include Columbia, Emory and Vanderbilt.
- An 80-year-old Fort Worth man has gone viral after a video of him was posted on BuzzFeed. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports: “Doggone it, Wally loves his ride. So do Buddy, Daisy, Jack, Mickey, Ms. Nell, Chubby, Clyde and Bonnie, all former stray dogs who belong to 80-year-Eugene Bostick of Fort Worth. The ride, which Bostick built himself, has made the retired Union Pacific railroad employee and his pups viral superstars. After a video appeared on BuzzFeed earlier this week, Bostick and his dog train have attracted thousands of views and calls from all over the country. ‘We got a call from New York one morning telling us the video had gone viral,’ said Patricia Bostick, Eugene Bostick’s wife on Thursday. ‘The phone hasn’t stopped ringing.’ All for a dog train built with 55-gallon fiberglass barrels.” [Fort Worth Star-Telegram]