The latest in a line of University of Texas controversies, The Daily Texan reports Wednesday that the Longhorn band will not attend this Saturday's football game due to band members voting they did not want to play "The Eyes of Texas."
According to The Daily Texan, members of the Longhorn Band were surveyed asking if they would be willing to play the song, with the results coming back showing that the band would not have the instrumentation for this weekend if asked to play.
This news comes on the heels of the university community speaking out against "The Eyes of Texas" earlier this year, citing the divisiveness of the song and its racist history. A petition with over 8,000 signatures has made its way around the internet calling for a "re-dedication" of the song.
"All of us on staff will do everything we can to create and maintain space for conversations," Longhorn Band Director Scott Hanna said in a message to band members, obtained by The Daily Texan. The message also stated that the results of the survey would not impact whether the band plays and performs at future games, both home and away.
On Wednesday evening, UT President Jay Hartzell said that a recording of the song will still be played at the game this Saturday and will continue to be played at future games.
In July, Hartzell said in a statement that he wanted "The Eyes of Texas" to be a uniting song that the university, students and athletes had the power to define, or redefine, and that the the university would be held accountable to the institutions core values.
Just two weeks ago, senior quarterback Sam Ehlinger and others were hailed as heroes by boosters and alums for standing and singing "The Eyes of Texas" after the four overtime defeat at the hands of the Oklahoma Sooners.
Athletic Director Chris Del Conte told fans in his weekly email last Wednesday that the University would continue to play "The Eyes of Texas" while also looking into the songs history and what the contemporary meaning of a song over 100 years old is.
"I do want to clarify that I have had many conversations with our head coaches outlining my expectations that our teams show appreciation for our University, fans, and supporters by standing together as a unified group for "The Eyes," while we work through this issue," Del Conte wrote last week.
This story was edited from its first publication to add the comment from the UT president.
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The Texas French Bread Bakery, located on 2900 Rio Grande Street, has been completely destroyed after a fire erupted on Monday night.
The Austin Fire Department responded to the fire just before 11 p.m., where they arrived to see flames coming from the roof of the bakery. Firefighters fought the fire for about an hour before the roof collapsed.
While no one was injured in the fire, firefighters say the historic building was completely totaled.
Texas French Bread just went up in flames pic.twitter.com/agXqKN3c00
— Jordan (@AimIessFriend) January 25, 2022
AFD determined that the fire was accidental and caused by mechanical failure. AFD said the damages amounted to $1.6 million total: $1.1 million in structural damage and $500,000 in damage to the contents of the bakery.
This year, Texas French Bread will celebrate 40 years of business. Before the bakery occupied the building, it was the Rome Inn, a music venue that hosted 1970s artists like Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Austin's first major league team is ready to extend its reach with a new collaborative sports complex The Pitch, an Austin FC destination packed with local food, beverages and Verde fervor is set to open in Northeast Austin in February.
The Pitch, a collaboration between Austin FC and Karlin Real Estate, among other entities, will be located in the 50-acre Parmer Pond District, which already hosts the club's practice facility St. David's Performance Center.
Dubbed a "true destination" for both soccer fans and the community, The Pitch will consist of multilevel shipping containers designed by Mark Odom Studio that will carve out into a 1,200-seat stadium complete with a soccer pitch made of turf, food and beverage options and a five-acre "Parmer Pond" featuring jogging trails.
Made from multilevel shipping containers, The Pitch will include food and a 1,200-seat soccer pitch made from artificial turf. (The Pitch)
“The launch of Karlin’s new food and entertainment experience will greatly enhance the Parmer development while perfectly complimenting St. David’s Performance Center,” Austin FC founder Anthony Precourt said. "The Pitch... will offer a strong variety of food options and gathering spaces for guests who will utilize St. David’s Performance Center and Parmer Field for a variety of events.”
The Pitch project lead Dave Greeley, who helped come up with the concept, is a former president of Austin FC parent company, Two Oak Ventures.
“The vision behind The Pitch at the Parmer Pond District is to be a first-of-its-kind sports, dining and entertainment destination,” said Dave Greeley, The Pitch project lead and Team Orbis president. “This will be an unmatched experience for Parmer Austin tenants, Austin FC and club supporters, and the community."
With its proximity to the practice center, the venture hopes to contribute to the growing "soccer city" of Austin during Austin FC matches and youth games with the Austin FC Academy hosted at the St. David's Performance Center.
The Pitch hopes to converge both community and club interests with Austin FC. (The Pitch)
In addition to the soccer pitch, stadium and pond, The Pitch will provide a foody experience made by the creative team behind Austin staples like Fareground and Easy Tiger. The complex will offer local bites including:
- Ranger Burger, which offers beers and burgers made from highly-coveted Wagyu beef direct from Ranger Cattle in East Austin
- Ga Roti, which merges flavors from Northern Vietnam with the culinary techniques of France to create a unique rotisserie chicken joint
- Taco Flats, a local taco chain serving Mexico City-style tacos, micheladas and more
- Sand Bar, which fulfills its namesake with beauty cocktails, local beers and a sand volleyball court
- Coffee Club, a coffee shop and bakery
- Corner Kick Bar, the soccer-focused main bar of The Pitch complete with "tunes, TVs and (a) beer garden"
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