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only in Texas

Boo: The Rise And Fall Of Texas Ghost Towns

Oct 30, 2017

From Texas Standard:

You’ve seen them as you drive along lonely Texas highways or tucked away in the odd corner of an otherwise urban landscape. They're the bones of once-loved homes, cemeteries overgrown with weeds, even whole towns that time forgot: They're ghost towns.

Liz / Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

History has molded Texas — literally — to form today's unmistakable shape with its sharp angles of the Panhandle, sweeping curves along Mexico and jagged edges near the Red River and the Gulf.

Now, nearly 170 years since the state's borders were defined, we eat Texas-shaped waffles, swim in Texas-shaped pools and sleep on Texas-shaped pillows.

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Eating a ripe, juicy peach -- from a fruit stand along a country road or from a farmer's market or inside a grocery store -- is a summertime ritual for many Texans. 

While we can get peaches and most produce all year round, the best chance to eat homegrown fruits and vegetables at their peak is knowing their typical season. 

Nick Fox / Shutterstock

Route 66, the “Mother Road” that connected Chicago to Los Angeles, and runs through the Texas Panhandle, could soon be dropped from a National Park Service preservation program.

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Forget ghosts and goblins. Nothing strikes fear quite like death, which is why there are a lot of superstitions about it. Those superstitions are the focus of a book called "Death Lore: Texas Rituals, Superstitions, and Legends of the Hereafter."

an.no/Avisa Nordland

Five stories that have North Texas talking: Norwegians are crazy for Texas; a Plano family sleeps in one big bed; Fort Worth police stop a DeLorean – kind of; and more.  

Back to the Future Part II lied to us. It’s 2015 and we don’t have flying cars, the Cubbies aren’t (likely) going to win the pennant, and where we’re going we most certainly need roads. Sure, hoverboards technically exist, but you’re not going to be able to hitch a ride on the back of a hover-converted Jeep any time soon.

But Back to the Future isn’t the first work of fiction to bungle utopian promises of the future, let alone the future of the Lone Star State. So, in honor of the unofficial Back to the Future Day, we’ll look back at nine times when fiction got it wrong.

World Class Memories On YouTube

Texas has a long, rich history of colorful car dealers selling cars on TV. We’ve searched YouTube for some classic commercials from yesterday and today.

Craig Chew-Moulding / Flickr

August in North Texas may not be anyone’s favorite weather, but it’s peak season for creative complaining.

Bemoaning the sweltering heat is almost a hobby during the summer. And just about everyone has their own, unique way to describe it.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

This weekend in Cleveland, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will induct a North Texas legend. Stevie Ray Vaughan and his band Double Trouble – Chris Layton, Tommy Shannon, and Reese Wynans – are headed for the Rock Hall 25 years after Vaughan died in a helicopter crash.

Laurie Holloway/Dallas Zoo

A Dallas Zookeeper went on a fossil hunt with his little boy at a construction site in Mansfield. And the 4-year-old picked up what turned out to be a dinosaur bone – likely 100 million years old. On Wednesday, scientists found another key bone.

Dora Rumsey-Barling / Facebook

Five stories that have North Texas talking: Texas lawmakers call for an end to toll roads; a cow gives birth to four calves; a Dallas pothole has its own Facebook page; and more.

DPS: Glitter Bombs Weapon Of Choice For Gay Rights Advocates

Mar 9, 2015
Frankie Leon / Texas Tribune

In an email forwarded to legislative staffers on Thursday, a Department of Public Safety captain warned of "glitter bombs" being sent to state lawmakers.

Christina Ulsh

All of America has homecoming football games, parades, pep rallies and dances, but no place has a tradition quite like the Texas homecoming mum.

On a recent episode of KERA's "Anything You Ever Wanted to Know," a listener new to Texas asked for suggestions of books that would help him to learn about the Lone Star state. So we polled the smartest audience in radio, and here are the 12 books listeners recommended the most.

Jimmy Emerson / flickr.com/photos/auvet/

Hitting the road anytime soon?

Across Texas, you’ll pass through scores of towns. Some are poetic – Glen Rose, Pecan Plantation, Enchanted Oaks.

Maybe you’ll drive through the trio of sisters in Collin County – Melissa, Anna and Josephine.

There’s Sunrise and Sunset. A place called Paradise. There’s even Elmo and Kermit!

But you’ll also pass through Texas towns with some strange names.

Jimmy Emerson/Flickr / flickr.com/photos/auvet/

We all know Texans have a lot of state pride. And here’s more proof.

Nearly 70 percent of Texas residents who were polled say their state is the best place to live in the country -- that's one of the highest rates in the United States. Only Montana, Alaska, Utah and Wyoming ranked higher in terms of people feeling positive about their state.

Meanwhile, only 24 percent of Texas residents -- or about one in four -- say they would like to move out of the state if they could. That’s among one of the lowest rates of any state in the country.

Richard A McMillin / shutterstock.com/gallery-1034824p1.html

It’s time for the bluebonnet bonanza.

For just a few sweet weeks across North Texas, bluebonnets are in bloom. But act fast: They don’t last long.

The flowers typically peak in Dallas-Fort Worth in mid-April, but they should last through the end of April – and perhaps into early May if we’re lucky.

Texans have long been fascinated by bluebonnets. Join us as we travel virtually through the bluebonnets – you might just learn something new about Texas’ favorite flower.

Ron Doke/Flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/cobalt220/

What does the country think of Dallas?

(And, this being Dallas, we really do care what the rest of the country thinks of us. We might say we don’t care. But, deep down, we do.)

NPR journalists went to a Metro subway stop in Washington, D.C., where they saw a pair of posters “tempting passengers with images of a cosmopolitan city, an upscale arts district, a modern sports stadium.”

The poster's slogan is "Dallas: Big Things Happen Here." The reaction?

flickr.com/davehensley

Texas Independence Day is March 2. (On that day, back in 1836, the Texas Declaration of Independence was adopted at Washington-on-the-Brazos.) So, to celebrate, the KERA News staff figured we’d come up with a list of quintessential Texas experiences – a list of things you should do in the Lone Star State before you kick the bucket.

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As 2013 comes to a close, let’s take a look back at some of the most-read stories on KERANews.org.

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Five stories that have North Texas talking: chili vs. barbecue, meet Denton's "Sriracha Savior," a jury awards $500,000 to a prominent Dallas arts collector, and more: