Five stories that have North Texas talking: Coco is here!; NPR is here!; NBC is here!; and more.
- Conan O’Brien aired his first Dallas-themed show Monday night on TBS. If you missed it, catch up on highlights here. The Dallas-themed shows air through Thursday from the Majestic Theatre. O’Brien burst onto the stage, squealing: “Yee haw! Hello Dallas!” OK, onto the jokes. He told the crowd: “So nice to be here. … Finally, I’m in a city where my hair is big enough to fit in. You guys invented this!” He also sucked up to the audience: “I’m going to try my hardest ever to give you people a great show. You know why? Because I know you’re armed.” Then he offered a history lesson. Dallas became a city in 1871, O’Brien told the audience. “That’s the year the founding fathers broke ground on the first Whataburger.” And he offered a nod to the NCAA. “It’s great to be here in Dallas for the Final Four. Of course, in Texas, the Final Four refers to the number of Democrats in the Legislature.” And speaking of sports: “Of course, sports isn’t the only thing you have in this town. Dallas is home to many incredible art museums. And while I’m here, I plan to drive by all of them.” And then crew members hauled out Big Tex’s giant boots. The 55-foot-tall cowboy from the State Fair of Texas was too big to fit into the theater. After the Lucchese boots were placed on stage, O’Brien knelt down and licked them. He declared: “Tastes like freedom!” O’Brien traveled to Johnson County to be trained to become a Texas deputy. Watch Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki give O’Brien a Texas citizenship test:
- NPR’s Texas adventure continues Tuesday on “All Things Considered.” On Monday’s program, host Melissa Block interviewed Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and visited Klyde Warren Park. And NPR’s Wade Goodwyn reported on the state of life in South Dallas. And what’s in a Texas town name? NPR explored the story behind Turkey, Texas. It’s in Hall County, about two hours northeast of Lubbock. “All Things Considered” is broadcasting from the KERA Newsroom all week. Here’s more from the series, called “Deep in the Heart of (a Transforming) Texas.” And check out the program’s adventures on the NPR “On the Road” Tumblr. “All Things Considered” airs at 4-6:30 p.m. on KERA 90.1 FM. In other “NPR on KERA” developments, Melissa Block will talk about NPR life with KERA’s Krys Boyd on “Think” – that’s at noon today.
- A former state legislator who was instrumental in creating many North Texas sports venues has died. Ray Hutchison passed away Sunday. He was 81. He died from heart complications. His funeral is Thursday. The Dallas bond lawyer helped with the financing of Cowboys Stadium, American Airlines Center, Globe Life Park and Texas Motor Speedway. Former Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk once joked that D/FW International Airport should be renamed Ray Hutchison International Airport because of the role he played. In the early ‘70s, Hutchison led the negotiations to move the Washington Senators to Arlington to become the Texas Rangers. He was the husband of Kay Bailey Hutchison, the former U.S. Senator. Ray Hutchison was a politician himself, representing Dallas in the state house in the ‘70s. He ran for governor in 1978, but lost in the Republican primary.
- When it comes to proposing at a Major League Baseball stadium, doing it at Globe Life Park in Arlington is a relative deal. It costs $200 to propose at the home of the Texas Rangers – and that puts Arlington in the middle of the pack. That’s according to Swimmingly.com, which reached out to every team to determine the cost of a proposal. Proposing at the L.A. Dodgers’ stadium will set you back $2,500. In Pittsburgh, it’ll only cost you $39. Five stadiums don’t allow proposals. Swimmingly reports: “The Indians’ fireworks proposal could be the most romantic option, but the Phillies’ four-ticket package is a surprisingly good value. Of course, if you’re feeling thrifty, you could always tuck a ring in your pocket, wait for a pitching change, then pop the question the old-fashioned way.” By the way, the Texas Rangers lost Monday to the Phillies, 14-10. By the way, have you seen this incredible photo from Louis DeLuca in The Dallas Morning News?
— Dallas Morning News (@dallasnews) March 31, 2014
- And it’s “lights, camera, action” today at Trinity Groves in Dallas. KERA’s Doualy Xaykaothao reports the NBC comedy pilot Two to Go is filming in Dallas – and they’re transforming a section of Trinity Groves into an L.A. farmers’ market. Trinity Groves, of course, is the hottest spot in Dallas these days: a 15-acre restaurant, retail, artist and entertainment spot at the base of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge in West Dallas.