Five stories that have North Texas talking: a grand jury considers the Waco biker shootout; Laura Bush’s quest to preserve Texas’ natural beauty; learn about Friday's Aurora event; and more.
Are the bugs bugging you out? Dallas is one of the country’s buggiest cities. That’s according to Thumbtack, which reviewed its site for requests for pest-removal services, including “pest control, bed bug extermination, outdoor pesticide application, and termite and pest inspection.” Dallas ranked No. 7 on the list of most bug-ridden in the U.S. Other Texas cities are even buggier. Austin ranks No. 5 and Houston is No. 4. San Antonio is the second buggiest city in the country. Phoenix is No. 1. The least buggy metro areas include El Paso and Fresno, California. There is some government data to back Texas' strong showing: Among 25 selected metro areas, Austin and Houston had higher percentages of roaches and rats in occupied housing units, compared to other cities, according to U.S. Census data. (Dallas wasn’t included.)
- A grand jury is poised to consider the cases of 177 people arrested after the May shootout involving bikers and police in Waco. The McLennan County district attorney subpoenaed two high-ranking members of the Confederation of Clubs and Independents, a coalition of motorcycle clubs that advocates biker safety, to provide information Wednesday about the confederation's meeting that was to take place May 17 at a roadside restaurant. Nine people died and 20 were injured during the shooting, which authorities say arose from an apparent confrontation between the Bandidos and the Cossacks motorcycle clubs. None of the 177 people arrested and held for days or weeks on $1 million bonds has been charged. It remains unclear whose bullets struck those who died or were hurt. [Associated Press]
- Heading to Dallas’ Aurora on Friday? Here’s what you should check out. KERA’s Art&Seek caught up with Joshua King, who shares the not-to-be-missed installations this year. Check out the event details here. What’s Aurora? “For one night, 19 city blocks in downtown Dallas will be transformed into an open-air urban playground of new media art: light, video, sound, and performance,” Aurora’s website declares.
- Laura Bush wants you to help preserve Texas’ natural beauty. Texas Standard, the public radio newsmagazine, talked with the former first lady about her group, Texan by Nature, which is trying to get landowners to conserve their property. “I was always proud of Lady Bird [Johnson] – that she saw the beauty in our state and in our country,” Bush told Texas Standard. “When I came home from Washington, I joined with a group of my good friends… and we started [Texan by Nature] to use the platform that I have to reach all the different partners across the state, to encourage people to use native plants and to conserve our land. And the best way to do it is to use the things that are native here." Listen to the conversation here.
- KERA’s Think is in Austin all week, broadcasting special shows. Today at noon on KERA 90.1, Krys Boyd talks with Texan Zachary Thomas Dodsonnovel, author of “Bats of the Republic.” At 1 p.m.: food writer Toni Tipton-Martin talks about her book “The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks.” Catch up on previous Austin-based shows from earlier this week.