Five stories that have North Texas talking: folks give the Alamo and Big Bend bad Yelp reviews; marking the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks; Meadows Museum gets more Spanish art; and more.
The Alamo, Big Bend National Park and the Texas state capitol are just a few classic Texas landmarks. But some folks don’t care for them – and they’re complaining about them on Yelp, the website where you rate restaurants and bars. Wide Open Country, a new Austin-based country lifestyle website, compiled a list of the 1-star reviews on Yelp for big Lone Star state institutions. One visitor wanted to park an RV near the Alamo and got frustrated: “Apparently, the Alamo has all of the visitors they ever want. I crossed San Antonio and the Alamo off my list and won’t ever try again. Very poor customer service. Apparently you need to drive to San Antonio somewhere else, then take a cab; I don’t know.” Another Yelper complained about Big Bend: “We never got to see any bears of mountain lions. You’d think with a park that size and such low populations of those critters they could train them to hang out 100 yards or so from the trails and stuff, but apparently our governments is too incompetent to even pull off some basic services. Thanks a lot Obama.”
- Today, Texas is marking the 14th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Gov. Greg Abbott has ordered all flags in Texas to be flown at half-staff to remember victims of the attacks. A steel sculpture in the form of a cross, taken from the rubble of the World Trade Center, goes on display at Dallas Love Field. A recently opened fire station in Beaumont gets a new flagpole. The Greater Austin Crime Commission planned a memorial gathering. A ceremony was scheduled at the Lincoln-Juarez Bridge in Laredo to honor the nearly 3,000 people killed by terrorists. Learn more here. [Associated Press]
- Newly-released emails show how former President George W. Bush’s White House staff reacted to the events of Sept. 11. The New York Times reports: “A series of White House emails released by the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum provide a fresh look into the horrific events of that day … that transformed the country, the world and a presidency. In messages to one another and the outside world on Sept. 11, 2001, aides to Mr. Bush pivoted from business as usual to shock and confusion and the opening of a new era of war.” [The New York Times]
- New managed toll lanes opened Thursday on Dallas’ LBJ Freeway. WFAA-TV reports: “After five years of construction, the congested commute along the LBJ Freeway will finally ease up. The new TEXpress toll lanes will open along the stretch west of I-35E to just west of Central Expressway. Hopefully the new lanes will help drivers bypass monster traffic jams. You can go with the flow of traffic on the free lanes above, or jump on the new pay-as-you-go Express lanes that keep you cruising at constant speeds of 50 mph or better. The charges will vary from a dime to 75 cents per mile, depending on how busy it gets. The lower the traffic, the less you pay. The toll will dip down to entice you to hop on.” KERA’s Courtney Collins has more details – she talked with traffic-weary drivers. [WFAA-TV/KERA]
- An exhibit of works from one of Europe's oldest and most significant private art collections will help a Dallas museum mark its 50th anniversary. More than 100 works from Spain's House of Alba go on display Friday at the Meadows Museum on the Southern Methodist University campus. The exhibit titled "Treasures from the House of Alba: 500 Years of Art and Collecting" runs through Jan. 3. Most of the works have never before left Spain. The exhibit features works by artists including Fra Angelico, Francisco Goya and Auguste Renoir. Other works include a 15th century Bible and a logbook from explorer Christopher Columbus. The Meadows Museum is home to one of the largest collections of Spanish art outside of Spain. [Associated Press]
The Associated Press contributed to this report.