Updated: Breweries and Distributors Say Beer Fest's Organizers Owe Them $100,000

Categories: Spaced City

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Photo by Francisco Montes
Beer Fest, in happier times.
Updated (July 25, 10:33 am): An early version of this story attributed a quote to Geoff Marolda. It should have been attributed to Walter Gordy III.

Nearly two months after the fourth annual Houston Beer Fest, brewers and distributors say the event's organizers owe them more than $100,000.

Although an estimated 30,000 people poured into Sam Houston Park for the two-day festival in early June, the event's director, Timothy Hudson, said unforeseen problems, including staff theft, had delayed the payments. Hudson and others who helped promote the event have also blamed money woes on headlining entertainer Rick Ross' last-minute cancellation, an assertion that makes no sense. We feel Beer Fest's promoters are serving up a frothy pint of craft-brewed bullshit.

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Andre Johnson Reports to Texans Training Camp

Categories: Football, Sports

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Photo by Groovehouse
He's back. Thank God.
Numerous reports Friday morning indicate that Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson has reported to training camp and will begin workouts with the team. This comes amid much speculation that the disgruntled veteran had been present at NRG Stadium early in the week though his agent would not confirm it and reports from various media outlets stated this was not indicative of Johnson's imminent return.

Since the end of last season's 2-14 debacle, Johnson, who is under contract for two more seasons, reportedly has been unhappy with the team. The Texans dealt Matt Schaub to Raiders and fired head coach Gary Kubiak and while they did replace Kubiak with Bill O'Brien, someone that seems to now have Johnson's respect, they did not draft a high profile quarterback and head into training camp with Ryan Fitzpatrick as the presumed starter.

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Constructing the Perfect Five-Man College Football Coaching Wrecking Crew

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Sean is up for the challenge.
To say that the internet is the gift that keeps on giving implies that we're cool with all of its little trends, memes, and time wasters.

To be clear, there is plenty of repetitive, over-thought sludge that comes from our friend, the world wide web. Tebowing and flash mobs had their runs as general web nuisances, and don't get me started on whoever brought Gangnam style into the mainstream.

But occasionally, we get morsels of brain food that spark debate and evoke thought. To that end, of late, there seem to be a preponderance of salary cap style opinion purchase challenges (that's the best way I can describe them). In other words, "You have twenty bucks, here's five groups of mobsters categorized by city, each with his own price -- now go put together the most bad ass crew possible. GO!"

I don't know how it happened, I'm just glad it did. I love stuff like this. And with the college football season almost here, this is the latest....

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Just How Houston Are You? Sports Edition

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Just how Houston are you? Do you remember this team?
There was one of those stupid Twitter hashtags things about Houston this week, this one showing just how much of a Houstonian a person really is. I'm tired of writing about the depressing antics of the Houston Astros and CSN Houston, and I had to miss this week's CUSA Football Media Day in Dallas because of work issues. And frankly, I'm much too lazy to come up with something original to write about. So, with a sports theme, here's my version of #ImSoHouston...

1. ...that I remember when the Houston Rockets couldn't even sell out Hofheinz Pavilion.

2. ...that I remember Nolan Ryan pitching for the New York Mets.

3. ...that I remember what it was like to be awed by the best scoreboard spectacle in all sports.

4. ...that when I was a kid the Houston Cougars played football in a major college football conference and went to major bowl games on a yearly basis.

5. ...that I recall Tal Smith when he was the beloved, recently deposed general manager of a playoff baseball team and not the guy who helped to destroy a winning franchise.

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Athlete Twitter #FF: Philadelphia 76er Joel Embiid

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Via Twitter
Rookie Joel Embiid is becoming a Twitter star.
When you're the third pick in the NBA Draft, there are a ton of expectations.

Even with the relatively mitigated risk of the rookie wage scale, fans in the city that drafted a player are expecting some sort of return on the team's investment in the player, and on their investment in season tickets. For young players, that can be a lot of pressure.

Now, when you're injured and can't help the team, that's a different kind of pressure altogether. Yes, it's important to heal properly, but eventually fans get impatient, especially in a cauldron like Philadelphia. What's a young player, especially one with, say, a debilitating foot injury, to do?

Well, so far, Sixers rookie center Joel Embiid seems to have found a solution.

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Updated: Gay Marriage Would Be Big for Texas Economy, Study Finds

Categories: Texas

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Photo by Jose Antonio Navas

Update: Christy Mallory, senior counsel at the Williams Institute, told us in an email that in 2009 the institute examined the actual economic impact of gay marriage on Massachusetts - $111 million over the first four years following legalization.

That's smaller than the number the institute estimates in its Texas study, but Mallory said Texas has more same-sex couples. Here's the concentration of gay couples in the United States broken down by county, plus some other interesting numbers about gay couples.

Original post: Gay marriage probably won't be legalized in Texas until the Supreme Court makes the state do so. We do have a governor who compared homosexuality to alcoholism, after all.

But according to a study by the Williams Institute, if gay marriage were legal here in the Lone Star State, it'd be quite the financial boom.

The institute, a think tank housed in the University of California-Los Angeles School of Law, released a study Wednesday estimating the economic boost gay marriage legalization in Texas could provide. According to the study, Texas gay marriages would add an estimated $181.6 million in spending to state and local economies over three years, a boost of $14.8 million in sales tax revenue.


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Man Gets 11 Years in Online Drug Ring Deaths Case

Categories: Courts

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Somewhere, a guy called "Scootdog" is laughing his ass off.
A Houston man has been sentenced to 11 years in federal prison for his role in a synthetic drug ring that prosecutors say led to the deaths of two men in North Dakota and Minnesota in 2012.

John Robert Polinski, 26, was sentenced for his role as a "computer specialist" for an online drug importer and distributor called Motion Resources, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Fargo. Motion's owner, Charles William Carlton, 29, of Katy, pleaded guilty in March for his role, and will be sentenced August 28.

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Houston to Ban Smoking at Parks, Pools, Golf Courses

Categories: Spaced City

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That includes parks, golf courses and pools there, smokey.
Following a trend that is occurring in numerous cities across the country, the city will extend its ban of smoking already enforced in most public indoor spaces, outdoor stadiums and within 25 feet of buildings to larger outdoor areas as well beginning September 2. The downtown library facilities will actually be the first to enforce the outdoor ban starting today.

There are 36 other cities in Texas and numerous others throughout the country who have implemented similar bans. In the report from the Houston Chronicle pointed out that Houston's ban on smoking has lagged well behind that of other major cities. Houston banned smoking in indoor establishments including bars and restaurants in 2007.

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Some of Our Favorite Tweets from the #ImSoHouston Hashtag

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#ImSoHouston blew up on Wednesday.
It's rare when a hashtag gets so much attention it rockets to the top of the trending list in Houston. But that's what happened on Wednesday when #ImSoHouston cropped up and began a flood of responses from people describing why they too are SO Houston.

This spawned some memorable and hilarious responses from Houstonians. We have not only some very interesting folks here, but also some seriously self deprecating ones as well. Here is a selection of some of our favorites from Twitter. There were others posted on Facebook as well, but we'll stick with the hashtag.

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Houston Texans Sign Tyson Clabo, So It's Probably Safe to Make Wild 53-Man Roster Picks

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Shaping up for training camp.
Completely and utterly sucking the previous season has its privileges in the National Football League.

As a fan of the Houston Texans (if you are one), you may already know this, and if you didn't know this, you will find out repeatedly throughout the preseason and the early part of the regular season.

Sure, we all know about the privileges on draft night. First overall pick, Clowney, first pick in every round, "A second is really like a first! A third is really like a second!", blah blah blah... Well, there is also another key privilege that manifests itself frequently throughout the "roster construction" phase this summer, and that's being at the front of the one for any waiver cuts throughout the league.

Yes, the Texans essentially get dibs on other teams' garbage as they put it on the curb. It's like they're the most privileged homeless person ever!

As a result, the depth chart is probably going to look like a sea of revolving doors until Bill O'Brien determines he has the group he's ready to hit the over on 7/5 wins with.


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