Five stories that have North Texas talking: Get ready for Coco; military veterans are in the spotlight today at the George W. Bush Institute; so long, Summer Adventures in Fair Park; and more.
- Conan O’Brien is coming to Dallas – he’ll be taping his TBS show at the Majestic Theatre March 31-April 3. (Seems that practically everyone will be in North Texas in early April for the NCAA Final Four in Arlington.) Get your tickets here. But you’ve been warned: “Please note ticketing will be in excess of seating capacity and a reservation does not guarantee admission. Although we do not anticipate turning reservation holders away, it is possible. The closer you arrive to the check-in deadline stated in your reservation, the higher your chance of being turned away. TRANSLATION: Please come as early as possible!”
- Military veterans will be the focus today at the George W. Bush Institute at the Bush Center. The institute, which is the center’s policy arm, will bring together leaders from private, public and non-profit sectors to examine how Americans can better support veterans and their families. President George W. Bush will address the event. Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, will also deliver remarks. She’s the co-founder of Joining Forces, an effort to help military families. Watch videos of Bush and Biden addressing the event.
- Rock musician Ted Nugent appeared with Republican governor hopeful Greg Abbott in North Texas Tuesday – and that attracted criticism from Wendy Davis, Abbott’s Democratic rival. Davis, who was in Fort Worth, said she thought that Abbott appearing with Nugent on the first day of early voting spoke volumes about the Republican candidate. “Greg Abbott’s embrace of Ted Nugent and his ideals is an insult to every woman in Texas and it should be an insult to every man, every husband, brother, father, son, in Texas,” Davis said. Davis said that’s because Nugent has demeaned women verbally and otherwise. Abbott told reporters that he doesn’t know what Nugent has done in the past. Abbott told reporters: “I don’t know what he may have said or done in is background. What I do know is Ted Nugent stands for the Constitution. He stands against the federal government over-reaching.” Here’s a recap of Nugent’s visit.
- How much water is being used during the fracking process? The Texas Tribune crunched the numbers and produced this visualization. “The amount of water used for hydraulic fracturing in Texas is less than 1 percent of the state’s total water use. But in at least one county, the amount of water used for fracking in 2012 was more water than the entire county used in 2011. And in other counties, fracking water use in 2012 equaled at least half of the county’s water usage in 2011.” The Tribune also focused on Montague County, which is northwest of Dallas-Fort Worth and is part of the Barnett Shale. The Tribune reports: While drilling activity has decreased in the Barnett Shale, “water use for fracking is still high in Montague County. Fracking operations there in 2012 used about one-third the amount of water the entire county, with a population of about 20,000, used in 2011.”
- So long, Summer Adventures. The summertime attraction in Fair Park is shutting down after just one season. City officials have long tried to pump up offerings at Fair Park throughout the year. The State Fair of Texas, which operated the theme park, was disappointed in the low attendance figures. (It’s not saying how many people attended last summer.) The State Fair spent about $30 million on creating Summer Adventures, although many of the attractions, including Top o’ Texas tower, will continue to be used during fairtime. “We used social media, we did advertising, we even cut our rates in half hoping there at the end we could introduce it to a lot of people,” State Fair spokeswoman Sue Gooding told The Dallas Morning News. “But this just wasn’t a viable opportunity this summer to make that work.”