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KPAC Blog
4:40 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

San Antonio Symphony's Dvorak Festival Is Finally Here

Sebastian Lang-Lessing
San Antonio Symphony

Next Friday the San Antonio Symphony’s month-long Dvořák Festival begins. An enthusiastic Maestro Sebastian Lang-Lessing describes Dvořák’s cello concerto as an outstanding one, and "probably also is the most popular cello concerto ever written."

For the Dvořák debut, the symphony is bringing back Chinese cellist Jian Wang.

"He’s looking forward to coming back to San Antonio this season, and we are looking forward to kick off the festival with him," Lang Lessing said.

It all starts with the spirited "Carnival Overture."

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Community Health
3:32 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

This Flu Season Shaping Up To Be One Of The Worst

In Bexar County during the last week of December, the University Health System saw a higher one-week volume of lab-confirmed flu than it saw during any week in the previous two flu seasons.
University Health System

An estimated six people are confirmed dead in Hidalgo County due to the flu -- one pediatric and five adult -- as the flu and flu-like illnesses continue to make their way around the country.

Flu deaths are difficult to confirm as the Texas Department of State Health Services does not require adult deaths to be reported, but Hidalgo County Public Affairs Director Karina Cardoza said the county monitored local clinics on their own.

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New Laws In 2014
3:00 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Concealed Handgun License Applications In Texas No Longer Require Social Security Number

Flickr user David Trawin (trawin) cc

A new law going into 2014 says applicants will no longer be required to provide a social security number when applying for or renewing a concealed handgun license. The new law was authored by state Rep. Lyle Larson, R-San Antonio.

So what does this mean for the general public and those in the CHL business?

"Some people were just concerned about providing all their personal information," said Michael Cargill, who owns Central Texas Gun Works and is a CHL instructor. "You really don’t need a social security number to do a background check on someone."

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Arts & Culture
2:44 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Do You Have What It Takes To Be The City's Next Poet Laureate?

San Antonio's 2013 Poet Laureate Carmen Tafolla in the TPR studios.
Chris Eudaily TPR News

The city of San Antonio is looking for its top wordsmith. The pay isn’t great, but according to Dr. Carmen Tafolla, the gig is.

"It is a wonderful, wonderful experience," said Tafolla, San Antonio's current poet laureate whose reign is nearing the end. She said she thinks highly of the city that allowed her the honor to represent it.

"We are very, very fortunate to be in a city that recognizes the power of poetry, the power of words, and its ownership by the community," Tafolla said.

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Fronteras Desk
1:58 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Replay: All Things Taco

A bacon, egg, potato, and cheese taco.
Joey Palacios TPR News

Fronteras: Remember those hard-shelled, spicy ground beef tacos that populated American kitchens a few decades ago? That's not the taco of today. Today it's grilled fish, kosher beef, Korean barbeque and fried eggs. We’re talking all things taco: From the evolution of the taco and how breakfast tacos are a morning staple close to the heart in South Texas, to Kosher tacos and tacos in the Navajo Nation.

*This show is a replay of the August 23, 2013 episode of Fronteras.

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Texas Matters
1:44 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Small Earthquakes Rock North Texas Town, Residents Demand Answers From Railroad Commission

Residents of Azle, near Ft. Worth, were asked to raise their hands if they've heard a loud "boom" accompanying recent earthquakes.
Mose Buchele for KUT

Texas Matters: Residents in North Texas are dealing with the increased frequency of small earthquakes that some people are linking to oil and gas drilling in the area. State Rep. Mike Villarreal talks about the possible conflict of interest with William White, who as chair of the Texas Finance Commission is also vice president of a payday loan company. Also on this show: Population growth in Texas and the Kallison ranching family.

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San Antonio Schools
9:33 am
Fri January 3, 2014

Saldana Calls On Texas Education Agency To Investigate South San ISD

Texas Education Agency

San Antonio District 4 Councilman Rey Saldaña has sent a letter to the Texas Education Agency asking it to investigate the South San Independent School District in light of numerous complaints from concerned parents and citizens.

The district is already on the TEA’s radar, but Saldaña is calling for a full investigation. In a two-page letter, Saldaña cites mismanagement of federal and state money, governance concerns, and the academic performance of students as the reason for his request. Although the city has cannot govern the district, Saldaña wants the state to intervene.

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KPAC Blog
4:13 pm
Thu January 2, 2014

Symphony Of The Hills Performs "America's Favorite Music" In New Pops Concert

The Symphony of the Hills will soon be playing a pops concert in Kerrville. 

"The title of this concert is America’s Favorite Music," said Conductor and Artistic Director Jay Dunnahoo, and he’s not kidding. The Symphony of the Hills’ January 11 concert at the Cailloux Theater runs the gamut of American music.

As Dunnahoo explained, the concert starts out with this one:

"'The Colonel Bogey March,' which is the music from the 'Bridge over the River Kwai,'" he said.

You may remember it as the popular song where the tune is kept by whistling.

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Government
3:59 pm
Thu January 2, 2014

Texas Architects Now Required To Be Fingerprinted Under New Law

Ryan Poppe TPR News

A new law that took effect Jan. 1 adds architects to the number of professionals in Texas that are required to be fingerprinted when renewing or applying for their license.

That information will be stored with the Department of Public Safety and Federal Bureau of Investigation's criminal background database.

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Government
3:30 pm
Thu January 2, 2014

Thanks To New Law, You Will Be Paying More For Mixed Drinks In Texas

Flickr user Joel Olives cc

Starting Jan. 1, 2014, the state will lower how much they charge bars and restaurants with the Texas Mixed Beverage Tax, which decreased from 14 percent down to 7 percent, but those purchasing a mixed drink will face a new surcharge of 8.25 percent, the same tax that is charged for the sale of beer and wine.

Austin businessman Bob Woody, who owns a restaurant, five brewpubs and a bar, said the new law will greatly benefit lounges and restaurants because the bill directly shows the new surcharge, but it may be problematic for high-volume bars.

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