Five stories that have North Texas talking: Remembering when the Yankees played in Greenville; AT&T Stadium hosts more big events; White Rock Lake throws a party; and more:
- The White Rock Lake Conservancy is hosting Celebration! White Rock, a race and festival, at 6:30 p.m. at Winfrey Point. Celebration! White Rock will feature a 5K race, a 10K race, music and more. Registered race participants will receive free food and beverages after the run. The after-race festivities include music from Good Times Van. White Rock deserves its own party, says Bill Mateja, chairman of the White Rock Lake Conservancy. Proceeds will benefit improvement projects at the park, including the Stone Tables and Pavilion, reconstruction of fishing piers, and other infrastructure projects.
- On this day 65 years ago, the minor league Greenville Majors faced a team called the New York Yankees in an exhibition game. They played at the old Majors Stadium in Greenville. Joe DiMaggio was there. So was Yankees manager Casey Stengel. Guess who won? The Majors: 4-3. The city is remembering the big day with the Greenville Majors Remembrance Ceremony at 4 p.m. today inside Greenville Municipal Auditorium. Greg Sims, who organized the event, told KETR public radio that the event is designed to give fellow fans a taste of what it might have felt like to be at the game. “It is a real David and Goliath story,” Sims told KETR. “It is meant to be totally campy. We can cheer the Majors and boo the Yankees.” Despite the big win, the team folded a couple years later. Other minor league teams played at the stadium, which was eventually demolished. Its arched entryway, a Works Progress Administration project, remains.
- Artist Julian Schnabel is coming back to Texas. Before he became an international star for his huge “plate paintings” and directing such movies as “Before Night Falls” and “Berlin,” Schnabel was a New York teenager who moved to Texas. On Friday, the Dallas Contemporary opens a new show of Schnabel’s paintings. KERA’s Jerome Weeks contacted the artist in his New York City home. Schnabel had attended SMU, but quit. “Wasn’t learning anything,” Schnabel told Weeks. “Was a waste of time. I mean, I thought it could be interesting, to live in Dallas. I knew some artists there. And I liked it there.” Read more on KERA’s Art&Seek.
- AT&T Stadium, which just wrapped up hosting the NCAA Final Four, has plans to host yet another big event: the 50th annual Academy of Country Music Awards. The show will be on April 19, 2015. Tickets for the show go on pre-sale Thursday. Plans are in the works to have up to 90 performances over three days. “The goal is, you’ll see 50 acts for our 50 years,” Bob Romeo, chief executive officer of the Academy of Country Music, told The Dallas Morning News. “Romeo and his team picked AT&T Stadium ‘because it says ‘big.’’ They considered hosting the ACM Awards at the Arlington site at the stadium’s inaugural year in 2009 but decided to wait in case the stadium wasn’t open by April. (And it wasn’t.) ‘We’ve been looking at it ever since then,’ Romeo said.”
- What’s up with the North Texas branding with big sports events in our region? This week, it was the North Texas Final Four. In 2011, it was the North Texas Super Bowl. North Texas highlights regional cooperation, but there are plenty of critics. Columnist Bud Kennedy with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram has some advice: “Dallas and Tarrant county business leaders should sit down again and talk about the best brand for our region. Dallas/Fort Worth Airport is why we can host world and national events in the first place. … We all win by branding those events ‘DFW’ or ‘Dallas-Fort Worth.’ It took the brilliant Charles Barkley to say what we have all been thinking the last few days. ‘North Texas,’ he said on Conan: ‘Isn’t that the stupidest thing you ever heard? ‘When I jumped on the plane, I didn’t say I was going to ‘North Texas.’”