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The national Amber Alert system, which highlights when children go missing, is the subject of a new original documentary streaming on Peacock TV.

Called Amber: The Girl Behind the Alert, the show recounts the history of the Amber Alert and its origins in Dallas-Fort Worth.

The Amber Alert broadcasts across 50 states when a child goes missing, with details that include the child's appearance and possible abductors. The system has led to the recovery of more than 1,000 missing children.

The show delves into the case that inspired its creation: the 1996 abduction of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was kidnapped on January 13 while riding her bike in Arlington.

She was reportedly taken by a man driving a black pickup truck, but there was little for police to do but search the surrounding area.

Her remains were found four days later by a man walking his dog, in a stream of water that was eight miles away from where she was abducted. An autopsy determined she died of stab wounds to the neck. The case remains unsolved to this day.

The documentary includes never-before-seen footage of Amber's family leading up to and after her disappearance, as well as an interview with Amber's mother.

It also interviews Fort Worth resident Diana Simone, a massage therapist who saw the story on the news and called a local radio station, urging them to air details about the child's disappearance and the suspect’s vehicle, so that those driving could take part in the search, too.

Eventually, this idea became the Amber Alert (which stands for America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response).

The alert was used for the first time in 1998, when eight-year-old Rae-Leigh Bradbury of Arlington was abducted by her babysitter. She was missing for 13 hours.

The documentary interviews Bradbury's mother, Patricia Sokolowski, who recalls when the alert was sent out that evening and a driver called in to report that he had seen the babysitter on a local highway.

"That’s her!" the driver says in 911 audio, played in the documentary. "I can't believe it."

The next day, Patricia and baby Rae-Leigh were reunited.

There's a trailer on Oxygen.com.

Photo courtesy of Magnolia

7 spectacular surprises inside Chip and Joanna Gaines' new Fixer Upper castle in Waco

Royal revelation

“Are you ready to see your fixer upper?” the enthusiastic tour guide asked, channeling Chip and Joanna Gaines and their famous “big reveal” line from TV’s Fixer Upper. This time, it wasn't the home owners waiting outside a first glimpse at their home makeover; it was a small group of tourists gathered on the porch, ready to step inside the Gaineses’ most ambitious renovation project yet — a century-old castle in Waco.

For the first time ever, Texas’ king and queen of renovation have unlocked the doors and let the public into one of their famed fixer-uppers before it’s featured on their Magnolia Network show.

Known as the historic Cottonland Castle, this three-story, 6,700-square-foot residence was started in 1890 and finished in 1913. The Gaineses purchased the dilapidated structure in 2019 and designed and executed a regal flip that will be featured on an eight-episode special called Fixer Upper: Welcome Home – The Castle, beginning October 14.

They plan to sell it in the fall. But before a home sale comes an open house, and for three months only — through October 29 — the castle is open six days a week for guided tours.

Hour-long castle expeditions take visitors through every room, nook, and cranny — from turret to toilettes. Knowledgeable guides dispense history, impart design information, and reveal behind-the-scenes stories from Chip and Jo that may or may not make it on TV.

For Fixer Upper fans, Magnolia maniacs, and Gaines gangs in Fort Worth, it’s worth the 90-minute drive down I-35 to experience the castle transformation in real life before it hits the small screen. A tour offers the very rare chance to walk through the door (in this case, a 10-foot-tall, 400-pound, solid-oak door) into the world of a Chip-and-Jo reno.

Without revealing too much, here are seven fun surprises you’ll find behind the castle walls.

1. History meets homey. A castle museum, this is not.

“Chip and Joanna’s vision was that they really wanted to honor it with historical pieces but also make it more practical for the modern family that’s going to live here in the future,” guide Megan Shuler said at the beginning of the tour.

While many original features — including seven fireplaces — were restored, the castle has been fixed up as a home for the future, not a shrine to the past. One-of-a-kind and collected antiques (such as the kingly dining room table from Round Top, Texas) blend with pieces from the Gaineses’ own Magnolia Home collection. A 17-page “Castle Sourcebook” lists design elements and products and where to buy them. And in the ultimate modern touch — a branding tie-in — a forthcoming “Colors of the Castle” paint collection will be available through Magnolia this fall.

2. Sweet nods to the castle’s past. Posted on the wall in the foyer is a poem written by Alfred Abeel, the owner who completed construction in 1913. It talks of making the castle “‘home sweet home’ all seasons of the year.”

On the center of the dining room fireplace mantel is Abeel’s family crest, along with the phrase (in Latin), “God’s providence saves me.” Next to it, children’s heights are recorded from the 1930s to the early 2000s, the last time a family lived here.

3. A cozy nook in the turret. The original design was modeled after a small castle on the Rhine River in Germany, and there is one tower turret. A space historically used (in “real” castles) for military defense has, here, been turned into one of the coziest corners of the house. Tucked into a corner next to the winding staircase, two comfy chairs sit under an antique-y light fixture from Austria. It's the perfect place to curl up with a book from the library upstairs.

4. Rooms with storylines. “One of the challenges Chip and Joanna had when they bought the castle was, there was no one, really, they were designing it for,” Shuler explained. “So they would create storylines for each room to help tell their story.”

Two of the four bedrooms, for example, are the “boy’s bedroom,” and “girl’s bedroom.” The storylines are that the future homeowner’s son would come back from college and stay in his childhood bedroom, and that the future homeowner’s granddaughters would stay in the room while hanging out at the grandparents’ house.

The boy’s room contains more masculine furnishings and decor, including a watercolor portrait of Roy Lane, the famous architect who helped complete the castle. The girl’s room is painted in “Rose Pink,” a color named after Joanna’s grandmother.

5. Bodacious bathrooms. There are three-and-a-half “throne rooms” in the castle, and they’re some of the prettiest spaces, mixing metals, woods, and tiles; even original radiators look like works of art. One of the most spectacular rooms in the house, in fact, is a grand, gleaming bathroom — which (tease!) will be fully revealed on the show.

6. Party in the basement. “Gathering spaces” are a hallmark of Chip and Jo’s homes, and in the castle, they take place in the dungeon — er, basement. A “card room” for poker games or family game nights sits next to the family room, which houses the only TV in the castle. The guest bedroom’s also in the basement, along with a laundry room and a former wine cellar now left “blank” for the new owners to reimagine.

7. Behind-the-scenes tales and tidbits. Fixer Upper devotees will devour the charming and quirky tidbits about the Gaineses shared throughout the tour. There are a few design elements and furnishings originally meant for their own home, including an item banished to the castle by their daughters. There’s a fun story about what Chip did when they found bones — yes, bones — in the basement. And, the prime selfie spot for Fixer Upper fans is a large mirror that, the tour guides say, Joanna used to touch up her makeup during the filming of the show.

Castle tour tickets, $50, are available through the website, with 20 percent of proceeds benefiting The Cove nonprofit organization. (Note that the home does not have an elevator and requires guests’ ability to access three staircases.)

Tips for a Magnolia pilgrimage in Waco:
Shop: No castle jaunt would be complete without a stop at the Magnolia Silos complex. A new 8:15 am tour, offered Monday through Saturday, takes visitors behind the scenes and on the roof before the crowds (and the heat) arrive. Hint: August is a “slower” month at the Silos, and Tuesday through Thursday are less crowded. Tour tickets are $25 and come with a free coffee from Magnolia Press.

Eat: Chip and Joanna’s Magnolia Table cafe stays busy all day, every day. If you don’t have time to wait for a table, visit the takeaway market next door. Grab to-go items like pimiento cheese and crackers, a butter flight, banana pudding, and chicken salad sandwiches, and enjoy them on a table outside (if it's not too hot).

Stay: Availability at Magnolia’s four vacation rentals can be hard to come by, but watch the website for nights to pop open. Make it a girls’ getaway with a stay at the grand Hillcrest Estate (which sleeps 12), or go solo and book the darling Hillcrest Cottage, the Gaineses’ newest and smallest lodging, which opened in fall 2021. A forthcoming Magnolia boutique hotel, in the historic Grand Karem Shrine building downtown, is slated to open in 2024.

The castle will be on tour only through the end of October, before it's featured on a special season of Fixer Upper - Wecome Home.

Photo courtesy of Magnolia
The castle will be on tour only through the end of October, before it's featured on a special season of Fixer Upper - Wecome Home.
Photo by Shelley Neuman

Willie Nelson's canceled show tops this week's 5 most-read Fort Worth stories

This Week's Hot Headlines

Editor's note: A lot happened this week, so here's your chance to get caught up. Read on for the week's most popular headlines. Looking for the best things to do this weekend? Find that list here.

1. Willie Nelson cancels Fort Worth show at Billy Bob's Texas next month. Country music legend Willie Nelson has canceled his March 19 concert at Billy Bob's Texas in Fort Worth as part of a spate of cancellations on his current tour. According to SavingCountryMusic.com, 88-year-old Nelson announced February 14 that he is canceling most concerts at indoor venues for the foreseeable future.

2. Spicy Korean fried chicken chain to open its first location in Fort Worth. An international fried chicken chain is coming to Fort Worth: Bonchon, the brand known for its unique and spicy Korean-style fried chicken, is opening its first Tarrant County location in southwest Fort Worth, off the frontage road of Chisholm Trail Parkway.

3. 5 Fort Worth restaurants earn spot on 2022's best list by Texas Monthly. Once again, Texas Monthly has published its list of the state's best new restaurants. The 21st edition of the list highlights the magazine's favorite dishes from around the state, and five Fort Worth bars and restaurants received recognition for their dishes or drinks.

4. First-ever Reality Fest brings stars and secrets of reality TV to Fort Worth. There's never been a Real Housewives of Fort Worth or a Survivor: Fort Worth, but the city will be the center of the unscripted TV universe during the inaugural Reality Fest this fall. Taking place September 17-18 at Arts Fort Worth, Reality Fest promises two days of events dedicated to all things unscripted.

5. Authentic deep-dish pizza from Chicago is coming to Fort Worth. An authentic Chicago-style pizza name is coming to Fort Worth: Rosati's Pizza, a chain based in Illinois that's been doing Chicago-style pizza since 1964, is opening a location at 5152 Golden Triangle. It's going into a new little center at the intersection of Park Vista Boulevard, and is anticipated to open in mid-2022.

Willie Nelson has canceled his March 19 concert at Billy Bob's Texas

Photo by Shelley Neuman
Willie Nelson has canceled his March 19 concert at Billy Bob's Texas
Facebook/Real Housewives of Dallas

First-ever Reality Fest brings stars and secrets of reality TV to Fort Worth

Hollywood in Cowtown

UPDATE 7-22-2022: Reality Fest has been postponed. In an e-mailed statement, organizers said, "We have decided to postpone the event as it is currently scheduled in September while we run the traps for the future. We apologize for the short-term inconvenience; however, we believe that the moves we’re making now will serve to launch our inaugural Reality Fest event to a much higher orbit in the future. That means better exposure for Reality Fest, which translates to a bigger impact for the kids for whom we’re all working in the first place." Those who have already purchased a ticket or sponsorship level for the September dates have been refunded in full. For more information, visit the website.

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There's never been a Real Housewives of Fort Worth or a Survivor: Fort Worth, but the city will be the center of the unscripted TV universe during the inaugural Reality Fest this fall.

Taking place September 17-18 at Arts Fort Worth (formerly the Fort Worth Community Arts Center), Reality Fest promises two days of events dedicated to all things unscripted. "Meet some of your favorite stars, get casting tips, learn what goes on behind the scenes of your beloved series, and have a chance to party with some of your favorite cast members," the organizers say on the website.

Proceeds will benefit the Lone Star Film Society's educational film camps for aspiring filmmakers.

Reality Fest is the creation of Tricia Jenkins — a Texas Christian University film and TV professor, Fort Worth Film Commission executive board chair, and Lone Star Film Society board member — and reality TV star Clint Robertson.

"Reality Fest is a new event that we are launching this year, and if it’s successful, we hope to run it every year in Fort Worth," Jenkins says.

The idea came last year, she says, when she taught a class on unscripted series and brought in Robertson as a guest speaker. Robertson, a TCU grad and DFW native, was a runner-up on NBC's The Apprentice and is the current host of HGTV’s Boise Boys and Outgrown.

"Over dinner, he mentioned how much he had wanted to start a 'reality con' where people could come meet their favorite unscripted personalities and learn what goes on from the production side, as well," she says. "Since I had experience programming events and knew a lot of local people who had been in unscripted series, we started brainstorming how to launch this."

The Fort Worth Film Commission hopped on board as co-producer of the event.

Although tickets have not yet gone on sale, the festival has a robust lineup of speakers and near-full schedule published on its website. Panelists will include popular stars of reality franchises like The Real Housewives of Dallas and Survivor, as well as hosts of HGTV shows and even an award-winning Fort Worth chef who's competed on Food Network.

Robertson will deliver the keynote and welcome to open the festival on September 17.

Panels and their participants so far include:

  • "The Reality of Home Improvement Shows" — Clint Robertson, host of Outgrown and Boise Boys (HGTV); Grace Mitchell, host of One of a Kind (HGTV); Andy Williams, host of Flip or Flop Fort Worth (HGTV)
  • "Producing Unscripted Series" — Carolyn Bailey, CEO of Script & Screen, producer AMS Productions; Alan Farris, co-founder of Script & Screen
  • "Casting" — Jodi Wincheski, former casting director for Survivor and The Amazing Race; Riley Wincheski, psychological background checks for Survivor
  • "The Inner Circle" — Terilisha, Season 2, The Circle (Netflix); Lee Swift, Season 2, The Circle (Netflix)
  • "All Things Survivor" — Michaela Bradshaw, contestant on Survivor; Libby Vincek, contestant on Survivor; Danny McCray, contestant on Survivor
  • "Working with Your Celebrity" — D'Andra Simmons, cast of Real Housewives of Dallas; Elena Davies, contestant on Big Brother; Ashton Theiss, contestant on The Amazing Race
  • "The Real Housewives Franchise" — LeeAnne Locken, cast of RHOD; Kary Brittingham, cast of RHOD; Jeremy Nguyen, associate producer, RHOD and RHOSLC
  • "Up Close and Personal with Reality Chefs" — Fort Worth chef Juan Rodriguez, Iron Chef and Chopped

More speakers and seminars are being announced as the event nears. There will also be a cast member after party (ticketed separately), where attendees can mingle with cast and production professionals.

Two-day passes have just gone on sale; a $95 "early bird" deal is on until June 15, then the price goes up to $125. For more information, visit the event's website.

Two of these former Real Housewives of Dallas stars will be speakers.

Facebook/Real Housewives of Dallas
Two of these former Real Housewives of Dallas stars will be speakers.
Jonathan Morris/Instagram

Chip and Joanna Gaines' Magnolia Network premieres with Fort Worth's favorite show TBA

Holy Shiplap

Y'all ready to see a lot of Fixer Upper? Cruise on over to Chip and Joanna Gaines' new Magnolia Network, which finally premiered on cable TV Wednesday, January 5, taking over the old DIY Network. But it debuted without one very important show — read on.

The new station, which the Gaineses announced way back in 2018, stealthily jumped from streaming platform (Discovery+) to cable world overnight January 5, then aired an entire day's worth of Fixer Upper reruns before officially making its official launch official at 8 pm ... with Fixer Upper: Welcome Home.

The Waco TV stars had promised more than themselves, though. And they made good on it. By Day 2, viewers got a marathon of Maine Cabin Masters and the introduction of The Lost Kitchen, one of Magnolia's new original shows. Then more Fixer Upper.

As reported by People magazine, in addition to five seasons' worth of Fixer Upper, the Gaineses are launching the network with "a huge slate of original programming throughout the month of January," including Magnolia Table with Joanna Gaines, Restoration Road with Clint Harp, Home Work, Family Dinner, The Johnnyswim Show, Mind for Design, and Zoë Bakes.

Next month, two more original series will premiere, the magazine says — Super Dad and The Lost Kitchen — as well as Season 2 of Magnolia Table. In March, Season 3 of Magnolia Table will drop, they say, along with three more series: Ranch to Table, Inn the Works, and Homegrown.

Missing from that three-month planner is Self Employed, the Magnolia original series starring Fort Worth entrepreneur Jonathan Morris.

In the show, Morris travels around the country meeting inspiring small-business owners, who share stories of success, challenge, and resilience — along with lessons and best practices to inspire other entrepreneurs. The series debuted last summer, with all eight episodes now available to subscribers of the Magnolia App and Discovery+.

In the first season, Morris travels around Dallas-Fort Worth, to Atlanta and Detroit, showcasing a cheesecake guru, skincare queen, recycling pioneers, Fort Worth's best-known ice cream maker, and more. He's an affable, empathetic, and naturally curious host who makes trimming leather, tossing plastic bottles, and scooping ice cream in the heat look fun. (Each episode also shines a tiny spotlight back on Fort Worth, too.)

Given the grave omission of Self Employed from the Magnolia lineup, CultureMap reached out to a network spokesperson to find out when the show might make its TV debut, and if another season was coming.

"We do not have a cable premiere date for Self Employed yet, as our original shows will premiere throughout the year," spokesperson Taylor Griffin said by email January 6. "No news yet on a season 2 either, but will keep you posted."

In a December news release, the Gaineses said, "We've been amazed by the stories and storytellers we've found, people whose lives are living proof that our world is full of beauty, hope, courage, and curiosity. We can't wait to see these stories brought to life on cable this January, and we're hopeful about the impact it might have — to help reclaim the best of what television can be."

Given that Morris posted happy Instagram snaps of himself with Chip and Joanna on November 17, 2021, we'll cross our fingers he's one storyteller who's still part of their grand TV plan.

Magnolia Network is available now for cable subscribers who previously had DIY Network. Providers differ; on AT&T Uverse in Dallas-Fort Worth, it's channel 1454 in HD.

Photo courtesy of Netflix

Netflix's Cheer goes full out for new season showcasing 2 Texas college rivals

On the mat

Flip out, Cheer fans. The Netflix sensation is coming back for a second season January 12, and it's doubling down on the Texas-sized drama.

Not only will the new season of the hit cheerleading reality series return to Corsicana to follow the twists and turns of Navarro College's national championship cheer team, but it'll get on the mat with Navarro's biggest rival, Trinity Valley Community College — located just 40 miles up the road in Athens.

Netflix made the surprise announcement on December 28 and described the new season like this:

The Emmy-winning breakout sensation is back and the stakes have never been higher. As Navarro defends its championship crown against a slew of challenges, including their fiercest rivals at Trinity Valley Community College, unexpected events threaten the camaraderie of the team and the season itself.

The biggest unexpected event, as loyal fans know, was the September 2020 arrest of breakout star Jerry Harris on several federal sexual misconduct charges, including soliciting child pornography. According to Variety, which was first to report the news of a new season, “Cheer deals with the allegations against Harris up front, and in an episode that focuses on the misconduct accusations, the brothers who first came forward about Harris are interviewed."

The new season, Netflix says, will also deal with the aftermath of Navarro cheer team's newfound superstardom as "cheer-lebrities" (remember when coach Monica Aldama competed on Dancing with the Stars?) and, of course, the upending of their 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cheer became an instant hit when it debuted in January 2020, and went on to win three Emmys. The new season picks up after Navarro's 2019 victory at the national championships in Daytona Beach, Florida (the culmination of season one). Filming began in secret in January 2020, Variety reports, just before the pandemic shut the world down — and canceled the 2020 championships. Filming picked up in September 2020, just as Harris' legal troubles began. Netflix says:

Against that dramatic backdrop, the nine-episode season expands to showcase Navarro’s fiercest rival: Trinity Valley Community College. As with the Navarro team, TVCC has a charismatic coach and breakout stars whose struggles, triumphs and stories extend far beyond the mat. As both teams push for the 2021 championship in Daytona, familiar faces take compelling detours and new contenders make a name for themselves.

Season one Navarro favorites La’Darius Marshall, Morgan Simianer, Lexi Brumback, and Gabi Butler return for season two.

Viewers also will get to know TVCC's charismatic head coach Vontae Johnson, assistant coach Khris Franklin, and team members like Angel Rice, described in the trailer as "the Simone Biles of cheerleading."

Who will triumph as 2021 champion? Are are there even any other competitors? And will we finally learn what the team motto "FIOFMU" means?

Spoilers like this are easy to find, but why ruin the suspense?

Texas cheerleading is a hot TV topic right now. Cheerleaders in the small DFW town of River Oaks who were targeted by an attacker will be featured in a new crime series on Investigation Discovery TV, starting January 4.

The eyes of Hollywood also seem to be focused on Corsicana. Fruitcake Fraud, a documentary about an embezzlement at Corsicana fruitcake maker Collin Street Bakery, is streaming now on Discovery+.

The new season of Cheer begins streaming Wednesday, January 12 on Netflix. You can watch the official trailer below:

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'80s heartthrob Bryan Adams brings 2023 tour to Fort Worth with rock 'n' roll-icon guest artist

Summer of '23

Canadian singer/songwriter Bryan Adams, who's been entertaining audiences on stage and screen for four decades, is coming to Fort Worth for a show at Dickies Arena - and he's bringing along a very special guest. Adams is teaming up with rock 'n' roll icons Joan Jett and the Blackhearts for his "So Happy It Hurts Tour," stopping in Fort Worth on June 29, 2023.

The U.S. tour kicks off on June 6 in Baltimore, Maryland, and ends August 3 with a show in Seattle. He'll visit just two Texas cities - Fort Worth and Sugar Land, outside Houston, for a show at Smart Financial Centre on June 28.

Adams is touring in support of his 15th studio album, So Happy It Hurts, which was released March 11, 2022 via BMG. The album is nominated for Best Rock Performance at the upcoming 2023 Grammy awards, taking place Sunday, February 5.

Adams also is riding the wave as the lyricist for Pretty Woman – The Musical, the Broadway musical based on the famed Julia Roberts-Richard Gere rom-com. The touring musical currently is on stage at Dallas' Music Hall at Fair Park (through February 5) and is coming to Fort Worth's Bass Hall, February 7-12.

Barrier-breaking rock 'n' roll badass Joan Jett is known for Top 40 hits such as "I Love Rock 'N' Roll," "I Hate Myself For Loving You," and "Crimson and Clover." Joan Jett and the Blackhearts toured last year with Def Leppard, Motley Crue, and Poison. Bad Reputation, a 2018 documentary about Jett's life, is now streaming.

Tickets for the "So Happy It Hurts Tour" go on sale at 12 pm Friday, February 3 via ticketmaster.com.

Global superstar Beyoncé rides into Arlington on highly anticipated world stadium tour

Worldwide concert news

Texas-born pop superstar Beyoncé is coming to Dallas-Fort Worth as part of her just-announced "Renaissance World Tour." She will perform at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on September 21.

And, fans who can't get enough can also catch Bey in her hometown of Houston, at NRG Stadium, on September 23.

Tickets for the world tour dates go on sale Monday, February 6. BeyHive members will enjoy an exclusive presale, while other fans can register now with Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan technology here. Those interested can find tickets, schedules, and more information at beyonce.livenation.com and tour.beyonce.com.

Beyonce kicks off her world tour on May 10 in Stockholm, Sweden at the Friends Arena. She'll dot Europe with big stadium shows through June 27, where she'll play Warsaw, Poland.

Her North American tour starts July 8 in Canada, where she'll play Toronto's Rogers Centre. Beyoncé will trek the U.S. through the summer and into September; her Dallas and Houston shows are the sole Texas performances.

She will end her tour in New Orleans (Caesars Superdome) on September 27.

The world tour comes as Beyoncé is awash in Grammy glow: in November, she was nominated for nine Grammy Awards, tying her with her husband (neé Shawn Corey Carter) for the most nominations in Grammy history. The Grammys take place Sunday, February 5.

Critics and fans have lauded Renaissance, her first solo work since the wildly popular and deeply personal 2016 effort, Lemonade — even through its minor controversy.

Start packing and planning those trips. Here's the entire tour schedule:

Europe

May 10, 2023 – Stockholm, SE – Friends Arena

May 14, 2023 – Brussels, BE – King Baudouin Stadium

May 17, 2023 – Cardiff, UK – Cardiff Principality Stadium

May 20, 2023 – Edinburgh, UK – BT Murray Field Stadium

May 23, 2023 – Sunderland, UK – Stadium of Light

May 26, 2023 – Paris, FR – Stade de France

May 29, 2023 – London, UK – Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

May 30, 2023 – London, UK – Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

June 08, 2023 – Barcelona, ES – Olympic Stadium

June 11, 2023 – Marseille, FR – Orange Velodrome

June 15, 2023 – Cologne, DE – Rhein Energie Stadion

June 17, 2023 – Amsterdam, NL – Johan Crujff Arena

June 21, 2023 – Hamburg, DE – Volksparkstadion

June 24, 2023 – Frankfurt, DE – Deutsche Bank Park

June 27, 2023 – Warsaw, PL – PGE Narodowy

North America

July 8, 2023 – Toronto, ON – Rogers Centre

July 12, 2023 – Philadelphia, PA – Lincoln Financial Field

July 15, 2023 – Nashville, TN – Nissan Stadium

July 17, 2023 – Louisville, KY – L&N Federal Credit Union Stadium

July 20, 2023 – Minneapolis, MN – Huntington Bank Stadium

July 22, 2023 – Chicago, IL – Soldier Field Stadium

July 26, 2023 – Detroit, MI – Ford Field

July 29, 2023 – East Rutherford, NJ – MetLife Stadium

Aug. 01, 2023 – Boston, MA – Gillette Stadium

Aug. 03, 2023 – Pittsburgh, PA – Acrisure Stadium

Aug. 05, 2023 – Washington, DC – FedEx Field

Aug. 09, 2023 – Charlotte, NC – Bank of America Stadium

Aug. 11, 2023 – Atlanta, GA – Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Aug. 16, 2023 – Tampa, FL – Raymond James Stadium

Aug. 18, 2023 – Miami, FL – Hard Rock Stadium

Aug. 21, 2023 – St. Louis, MO – Dome at America's Center

Aug. 24, 2023 – Phoenix, AZ – State Farm Stadium

Aug. 26, 2023 – Las Vegas, NV – Allegiant Stadium

Aug. 30, 2023 – San Francisco, CA – Levi’s Stadium

Sept. 02, 2023 – Inglewood, CA – SoFi Stadium

Sept. 11, 2023 – Vancouver, BC – BC Place

Sept. 13, 2023 – Seattle, WA – Lumen Field

Sept. 18, 2023 – Kansas City, MO – Arrowhead Stadium

Sept. 21, 2023 – Arlington – AT&T Stadium

Sept. 23, 2023 – Houston – NRG Stadium

As always, As with previous tours, Beyoncé will create activations, programs, and giveaways via BeyGOOD, the foundation she created in 2013.

Monumental new sculptures by  renowned 9/11 artist take root at Texas Botanic Garden

blooming work

Here is something new for Texas travelers who enjoy exploring art in nature. An intriguing new collection of sculptures called "Intertwined: Exploring Nature's Networks," by renowned artist Steve Tobin, opened at the Houston Botanic Garden on January 28.

Tobin's collection of pieces soar and wind and unfold against the backdrop of the gardens paths and trees, connecting the bronze, glass, ceramic, and steel sculptures to the landscape.

The connection is important for Tobin, an artist who may be most well known for his Trinity Root, a memorial that was cast from the roots of the tree that protected one of New York City's cathedrals during the 9/11 attacks. As a child, he was known as "Nature Boy," which he says was as apt then as now.

"I would find twigs or mushrooms, and they would mean something to me," he says. "I'm the guy with my nose in the sand and my butt in the air, looking deeper than most people. I think I see more. I think it's part of my DNA."

Originally from Pennsylvania, Tobin graduated from Tulane University in 1979 with a degree in math. He was always drawn to art, however, and his massive creations - from eggs in birds' nests to roots and limbs woven together to branches stretching to sky - evoke the powerful pull he feels to the natural world and a desire to help others see its beauty. The Christian Science Monitor described his works as "monuments to the meeting of science an art."

"Science is more creative that art," he explains. "Scientists have to describe the universe from nothing, and the explanation has to work. Artists can make up whole worlds. Scientists don't get credit for their vast creativity."

By focusing his works on the natural world, Tobin looks to showcase how the two subjects work in harmony, and how people can interact with them. In Eagle Nest, a huge, polished steel egg sits perched in nest.

Polished to a high gloss, the egg becomes a mirror. "You look at the egg and you see yourself," Tobin says. "It shows that you are in the egg."

For Tobin, there is magic in helping people, whether they are art novices or aficionados, find a connection with his art.

"I've done my job when someone has an expression of magic," he says. "And once you open that door, even for a second, it can never be fully closed."

He says he is looking forward to Texas audiences seeing his works in the garden, which he feels is a natural place for his sculptures — the biggest of which is 30 feet high and took 2,000 hours of welding to complete.

Showcasing his sculptures there cements the harmony with nature he feel and thinks is something others should strive to see. Tobin even has a connection to Houston: one of his great friends, a woman he met at Tulane, lives there.

Two other pieces also have roots there. Tobin says Steel Roots will resonate particularly well in Texas. "It's made from repurposed oil pipe, a lot of it from Texas," he says. "So now, it's back home in a different context."

And when Botanic Garden guest encounter the Twisties, they'll likely recall hearing the terms from gymnast Simone Biles, who famously used the word to describe the disconnect she felt between her mind and her body. Tobin's sculptures are between eight and 17 feet high and evoke Asian calligraphy. He describes them as "distorted gymnastics."

Mostly, though, Tobin wants visitors to get a window into how he imagines the world.

"I try to translate into sculpture what I see so people can see what I see."

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"Intertwined: Exploring Nature's Networks" runs Saturday, January 28 through August 13 at Houston Botanic Garden, 1 Botanic Garden Ln. Regular garden admission is $15. For tickets and more information, visit Houston Botanic Garden online.

Photo courtesy of Houston Botanic Garden

Tobin's 'Romeo & Juliet' sprouts from the grounds.