House Votes to End Jail Time for Those Too Poor to Pay Fines in Texas

Texas legislators in the House have just voted in favor of allowing poorer residents to pay off traffic tickets in methods other than money.

Low-income Texans are often punished for not paying their traffic tickets on time, resulting in more fines and punishments that usually only push them further into debt. Sometimes, these mounting fines and punishment result in jail time.

Now, however, state judges can ask defendants being tried for overdue fines about whether they…

With Uber and Lyft coming back, RideAustin might be in trouble

With Uber and Lyft coming back, RideAustin might be in trouble

When The Next Web writers were in Austin for South By Southwest, we were pretty impressed with RideAustin. And now the municipal ridesharing app we called “the future of ride sharing” might be in trouble.

Ridesharing apps Uber and Lyft are returning to Austin next week after a spat over background checks sent them packing last year. With them back, there might not be room for a homegrown app like RideAustin in the city anymore.


Cowboy Church of Ellis County

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Cowboy Church Map Data © 2017 Google
A cross and a western motif Map Data © 2017 Google
Service times Map Data © 2017 Google

When cowboy church members say “Sunday clothes,” they are just as likely to be talking about jeans, boots, and a cowboy hat as a nice suit.

Delicate painting
Schulenburg, Texas

Cowboy churches have a “come as you are” philosophy toward attendance, and no cowboy church gets more attendance than the one in Ellis County, founded in 2000 in Waxahachie, Texas.

The first cowboy churches came about in 1972, when a man named Glenn Smith left life as a cowboy and rodeo clown to become a minister with…

Austin Is on a Mission to Keep Maker Faire Weird

No, you’re weird! By now, everyone has heard the unofficial slogan of the city of Austin, Texas: Keep Austin Weird. Originally meant to promote supporting small, locally owned businesses in Austin (versus big franchise stores), the slogan stuck over the years, because let’s face it: Austin is one of the most wonderfully weird places there is. With no shortage of self-expression, creativity, art, and supportive community in Austin, it’s also home to one of the longest-running Maker Faires. The 8th annual Maker Faire Austin takes place this weekend, May 13 and 14, at the Palmer Event Center. Aside from art collective Vision Gland’s immersive 12-room project that we profiled last week, there are a plethora of other unique and amazing projects and presentations on tap. Here’s a baker’s dozen to whet your appetite.

Total Unicorn

Total Unicorn is a machine that sounds, looks, and moves a certain way. Frequencies oscillate. Z spaces. Toes point. Creamy cells of uptempo love handles find this trio fragrantly modern, recently juvenile, infinitely uniform.

See Total Unicorn perform on Saturday, May 13, from 2:00 – 2:30 PM on the Dark Room Stage.

Send in the Clown

Multi-disciplinary artist April Garcia‘s favorite creative veins are soft sculpture, wearable art, installation, acting, costume design, and puppet design.

Austin Toy Museum

The Austin Toy Museum is a nonprofit which also offers art classes. They will demo silicone mask-making, resin casting, and mold-making techniques.

Paper Machine

Paper Machine is a collection of projects that combine simple materials such as papier-mâché/cardboard/foam with LEDs, motors, PC-cooling fans, and mechanical joints to create inventive and affordable costumes. Maker Jose Acosta is a classically trained sculptor with an engineering background, who likes to combine these disparate fields in making fun projects…

Watch Good Samaritans Rescue And Revive An Infant And Toddler From Texas Floodwaters

Tom Mitchell was out driving around when he came upon a terrifying scene Saturday: a pickup truck flipped over in a ditch full of rushing water near Myrtle Springs, Texas.

Inside was Phillip Ocheltree, his infant son Marshal, and his toddler daughter Addyson.

When Mitchell arrived, half a dozen people were working frantically to extricate the family from the vehicle, but the rushing water was so swift that they couldn’t even open the door.

Then one of the rescuers rushes from the vehicle carrying an unresponsive infant.