Joel Bernstein / 'Songs From A Prarie Girl'

Not since Wham!’s 1984 single “Last Christmas” has a holiday song been accepted widely into the canon. The good ones made later usually follow the lead of the classics in at least one way: they pine for another time or place. Music historian Ted Gioia, author of The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire and the forthcoming Love Songs: A Hidden History, explains why the past - or our idea of it - is a comfort each season.

You can listen to our special audio holiday card here.

Santa sees you when you're sleeping, he knows when you're awake ... but how does he do it? Sure, the elves lend a hand — but, as it turns out, hours of surveillance video make the job a lot easier.

This year, we present an audio Christmas card to share the real* story on how the North Pole decides who's naughty or nice.

Courtney Collins / KERA News

It’s hard to picture classic holiday toys without imagining a shiny, electric train.  Multiply that vision by 100, and you’ll get an idea of the annual tradition known as the Trains at NorthPark.

It’s one of the few places you can take a train ride from San Francisco to New York in just a couple minutes.

Doualy Xaykaothao / KERA News

Holidays can be tough for any family. But when family includes a child or children in foster care, the stressors can multiply. One foster mom in Tarrant County shares her story. (And just a note: We’re identifying the mother and her adopted children only by their first names, at her request.)

Nine Things You Need To Know About Making Tamales

Dec 24, 2013

Tamales are as much a part of the holidays as eggnog, caroling and fruitcake. It’s not just the food itself, but the family effort to make them which makes tamales so special. Fronteras contributor Yvette Benavides explains the 9 rules for making the perfect Christmas tamale.

Bignestegg / Flickr

Five stories that have North Texas talking: The Cowboys make backup plans for Romo’s absence, school districts struggle with large class sizes, Ryan O’Neal wins court battle over Fawcett portrait, and more:

Homeless For The Holidays

Dec 18, 2012

While holiday traditions celebrate family and friends, commentator Rawlins Gilliland shares how Christmas became the catalyst for him to reach a mentally lost and homeless soul.

Russ / Flickr

We consulted UNT’s Steve Wiest, the jazzman who directs the famed One O’Clock Lab Band, about the particulars of terrible tunes. Turns out, there is an explanation.

Perry for President — Again?

Nov 29, 2012
Courtney Collins / KERA News

Five stories that have North Texas talking: Triumph of the "Overly Attached Girlfriend," Powerball potential, a burlesque Nutcracker and more.

A memorial service is planned for Parr Park in Grapevine this morning for the victims of the Christmas day murder suicide that left seven people dead. KERA’s BJ Austin reports on the latest in the investigation.