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From Big Tex To Zebus To Fried Food, The State Fair Opens Today

Jay Raz
The Texas Star Ferris wheel at the State Fair in 2012.

Five stories that have North Texas talking: Fall means two things – pumpkin treats and the State Fair of Texas; the Texas Enterprise Fund is under scrutiny; once upon a time, Dallas tried to build a port; and more.

The State Fair of Texas opens today at 10 a.m. Get ready for a month of rides, music, football, fried food goodness, Big Tex, miniature cattle, and much more.

KERA's vice president of news, Rick Holter, spoke with Dottie Love, who’s shown off the mini cattle known as a zebu for a decade now at the fair. Never seen a zebu before? Here’s five things you should know.

Gut-busting food is the big name of the game at the State Fair, and KERA’s digital news editor and Big Texpert Eric Aasen has the round-up on this year’s treats.

Check out the fair’s daily schedule.

  • An auditor found Gov. Rick Perry handed out millions of dollars to 11 companies without the proper paperwork. The Austin-American Statesman and The Texas Tribune reports the audit covered the Texas Enterprise Fund, an economic incentive program which Perry has long championed. His staff said most of the problems happened during the first two years of the program, but the audit pointed out that inaccurate or incomplete information was reported to the public as late as 2013.

  • Dallas once tried to become a port city. Before the city had the idea to build a highway along the Trinity River, they had another idea -- to build a canal along the river and turn it into a port through the Gulf of Mexico. Clearly, the idea never happened. In the latest episode of the podcast 99% Invisible, Roman Mars and Julia Barton explore the grand plan, and ultimate failure of the Port of Dallas.

  • The Highland Park school district has pulled one book off of its suspended list. A Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls was one of seven books pulled from Highland Park classrooms last week. The move raised eyebrows because Walls is scheduled to be the keynote speaker at the Highland Park Literary Festival in February. In an email blast, the district says the person who challenged A Glass Castle withdrew that challenge on Wednesday.

  • It’s the season for pumpkin-infused treats. If pumpkin spiced lattes aren’t your thing, try any of the other pumpkin recipes in a new cookbook released by the Dallas Arboretum. Dallas Arboretum Pumpkin Festival Recipes was written by Chandler Lindsley, the granddaughter of Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt. The book can be purchased at the Arboretum’s Hoffman Family Gift Store.