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In its heyday, The TarryTown Shopping Center bustled with shoppers. But today, a lot of the beloved shops are gone. (Blair Newberry)

Tarrytown's Casis Village shopping center is buzzing with activity on a crisp Sunday afternoon in December. Customers flock to Randall's to check off their grocery lists, grab seasonal lattes from Starbucks and peruse the center's various thrifty boutiques and jewelry stores for Christmas gift inspiration.

For many longtime Austinites, the bustling plaza may bring back memories of the former glory of one of the city's most famous and controversial shopping centers, which has since been reduced to a ghost town by its authoritarian landlord.

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Jessica and Janessa Tomberlin are the co-owners of Crema Bakery in South Austin. (Kristin Finan)

Publisher's note: Austonia has donated $100 to Crema's community sack lunch program, via their @cremabakerycafe Venmo. Feel free to join us in support of this community service.

Colorful paper hearts adorn the walls and meticulously decorated cookies proclaim adorable phrases like "Love you a latte."

At Crema Bakery and Café on Brodie Lane in South Austin, Valentine's Day is more than just the sweet shop's biggest holiday of the year. It's also a tribute to the love that co-owners Jessica and Janessa Tomberlin share for each other.

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(Ascendant Capital)

Jeffry Schneider, founder and CEO of the Austin-based real estate investment firm Ascendant Capital, was one of three men arrested on Thursday and charged with defrauding more than 17,000 investors of $1.7 billion in what the Securities and Exchange Commission described as a "Ponzi-like scheme."

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At least 13 former and current University of Texas students were arrested and charged in connection with trafficking counterfeit prescription drugs laced with fentanyl and methamphetamines to UT students in Austin.

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