On this Thanksgiving Day, we invite you to join members of our staff as they share some of the stories they’re grateful for over the past year: the new ideas and rediscoveries encountered, the events and activities that have moved us or touched us in some way in the past several months. Today’s Thanksgiving offering is a celebration of an ever more diverse Texas still growing, learning from the past and working to imagine a better future – a reflection of a place we call home:
Advocates are fighting to save this historic north Dallas cemetery
One story I was thankful for this year was the story of these activists who were working to get a historical designation for this hidden, little-known cemetery in north Dallas. It has some significant African-American leaders in Dallas’ history, and was among the first integrated cemeteries in Texas. I thought it was a really great story and I appreciate the work that activists and historians like this are doing to preserve Texas history. Texas’ history is so fascinating and it’s worth saving. – Alexandra Hart, reporter/producer
Black Women Who Kayak seeks to break down racial barriers in recreational sports
I am so thankful for Texas Standard’s interns. Overseeing them is one of the best parts of my job. I love getting to work with people at the beginning of their journalism careers. They’re excited and so hungry to learn – and they have fresh ideas! Our interns this past year were Addie Costello, Yvonne Marquez, Cristela Jones and Gabby Ybarra. With us right now are Tiara Allen and Terry Gutierrez. They’ve all put together wonderful content for us – including first-person narratives of Texans from all walks of life. Here’s a great story Gabby Ybarra found for us. – Laura Rice, managing producer
Once thought to be unmovable, the Battleship Texas journeys to Galveston for repairs
I’m thankful for stories that highlight a piece of Texas history and those individuals trying to preserve it. While in service, the U.S.S. Texas sailed through some of the globe’s most treacherous waters, and it is one of only eight ships to serve in both world wars. After being decommissioned, the Texas became a floating museum, docked beside the old San Jacinto Battleground near Houston. Back in August, though, after years of planning, the Texas once again set out into open waters when it was towed to Galveston for repairs. The day before the journey began, the Standard spoke with the chief operating officer of the Battleship Texas Foundation, Bruce Bramlett. – Leah Scarpelli, associate producer/director
In ‘a conservation victory,’ 45 endangered sea turtles hatch on Texas beach, make it to the water
In June, conservationists found something surprising in the waters off Matagorda Bay’s Magnolia Beach. Forty-five Kemp’s ridley sea turtle hatchlings had made it off the beach and into the inland waterway. Experts say it’s the first time the endangered turtles have been found there. David Brown spoke with Pamela Plotkin, an associate research professor at Texas A&M who directs the Texas Sea Grant program. I wanted to highlight this interview because I’m thankful to hear from scientists about how much care is involved in finding and helping these hatchlings survive, against great odds. – Shelly Brisbin, producer/reporter
What the Texas Standard’s staff is thankful for
Voices from behind the scenes and behind the mic share their thoughts about the team this Thanksgiving:
Commentary: ‘Three red marbles’ is a story fitting for Thanksgiving
We know many Texas Standard listeners are thankful for the “Stories from Texas” brought to us by our regular commentator W.F. Strong. Today he shares something a little different: a story about a store owner leaving a lasting impression on three young boys.
Oral history project preserves San Antonio’s West Side Sound
One of the things I love about the Texas Standard is how much music we feature on the show. In April, we aired a segment about a project to preserve a uniquely Texan musical phenomenon.
In the 1950s and ’60s, teenagers in San Antonio started playing rock and roll with some of the soul of Detroit’s Motown and distinctly Texas accents that was called the “West Side sound.” More than 50 years after that scene reached its summit, people still love this music. So, thankfully, cultural historians in San Antonio started a project to preserve memories of the music and the people behind it. – Michael Marks, reporter/producer