Axios Dallas

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Happy Wednesday! Avoid the delusions of rage.

β˜€οΈ Today's weather: Highs in the 90s with the possibility of rain at night.

🎡 Sounds like: Eastern bluebird's song

🏈 Situational awareness: The Dallas Cowboys will play the Cleveland Browns the first week of the season. The rest of the NFL schedule will be released tonight.

Today's newsletter is 907 avian words β€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: NRA hosts annual meeting in Dallas for first time since 2018

Former President Trump spoke at the last NRA forum in Dallas in 2018. Photo: Smiley Pool/Houston Chronicle via Getty Images

About 75,000 people are expected to attend the National Rifle Association's annual meeting and exhibit this week in Dallas.

Why it matters: The NRA is in transition. Their longtime CEO, Wayne LaPierre, stepped down this year before top officials were set to face a civil trial over fraud and mismanagement allegations.

The big picture: The NRA has about 4 million members but declines to release exact membership figures.

  • About 42% of Americans report having a firearm in their household, per Gallup polling. And 56% want stricter gun laws, though that percentage was higher in the 1990s.

The latest: Former President Trump will be in town Saturday for a free event for NRA members. He has been on trial in New York in a hush money case involving Stormy Daniels.

  • Gov. Greg Abbott will also speak Saturday at the forum.

State of play: Dallas and the state could spend as much as $1 million in incentives to bring the annual meeting here. The city's portion is estimated to be about $138,000, per WFAA.

  • The event was last in Dallas in 2018, when about 80,000 attended and Trump also spoke, per an NRA spokesperson.

How it works: The forum is one of the largest gatherings for NRA members, who can peruse new firearms and gear from 650 vendors. There are no takeaway sales at the event.

Flashback: Gun reform activists rallied outside Dallas City Hall during the 2018 convention.

What they're saying: NRA organizers say they aren't aware of any planned protests this week but support opponents' rights to assemble.

  • "We support the First Amendment, just as we support the Second Amendment," NRA spokesperson Nick Perrine tells Axios.

If you go

2. 🏠 Last call for most property value protests

Illustration: Natalie Peeples/Axios

Today is the deadline in many North Texas counties to file a protest to your home's 2024 appraised value.

Why it matters: Because Texas doesn't have a state income tax, property taxes help fill the gap by funding public programs such as schools, road repairs and law enforcement.

  • They're also a dreaded expense for property owners. Texas' median property taxes rose 26% between 2019 and 2023.

State of play: The Dallas, Denton and Collin appraisal districts say today is the deadline to submit a protest or 30 days since a notice of appraisal was mailed, whichever date is later.

Zoom in: The Denton Central Appraisal District estimates 100,000 property owners will challenge their valuations, per KERA.

Between the lines: If you're planning to stay in your house, it helps to keep the property appraisal as low as possible because appraisals determine taxes.

  • But if you're planning to sell soon, you may want that value to be as high as possible.

The bottom line: Make sure your notice includes any relevant exemptions, and double check all of the other information.

  • Some homeowners hire a company to protest their property value on their behalf. The company keeps a cut of the tax savings if it's able to lower the value.

The protest process

3. πŸ’™ Cowtown picks eastern bluebird to represent city

Fort Worth claims the eastern bluebird. Photo: John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Fort Worth elementary students have spoken: The official bird of Cowtown is the eastern bluebird.

State of tweet: Online voters chose the bluebird over five other birds on a list curated by Fort Worth ISD students.

  • Students researched a variety of birds and recorded video arguments for their selections.

The big picture: Eastern bluebirds can be territorial and protective when nesting but are friendly overall, qualities the elementary students say represent Texans and Fort Worth residents.

  • The birds are associated with hope, happiness, joy and peace.

Fun fact: The eastern bluebird loves to snack on mosquitos and other insects, according to students at Westcliff Elementary who recorded this informative video on the bird.

  • Plus they don't attack small pets like one of their contest competitors, the red-shouldered hawk.

Fly out: The bluebird lives in North Texas and toward the eastern and northern reaches of the U.S. They're typically found in open parks and meadows, perching high in trees or on power lines.

What you can do: Help the eastern bluebird's avian friends by turning off or dimming lights at night during main migratory seasons.

  • Check Birdcast to see how many birds migrated last night in Tarrant County and other parts of Dallas-Fort Worth.

4. πŸ—ž Burnt ends: Bite-sized news bits

Broad strokes of other news. Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

πŸ“£ Fort Worth's Opal Lee is headed to Japan to share Juneteenth's story. (NBC5)

πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ Childish Gambino announced a new tour with a Dallas stop in September. (The Dallas Observer)

πŸš— A Fort Worth woman says her ex racked up $17,200 in toll fees, getting her flagged as a habitual violator. (DMN)

Sponsored event listings

Future events

πŸ“† Start planning your days ahead.

Silent Disco at Klyde Warren Park on May 24th:

There's truly no party like a silent disco! Come dance under the stars with us. Enjoy electrifying music from a local DJ + playlists on your own personal headset, while we dance to the beat together. $10-$35.

Hosting an event? Email [email protected].

5. β˜• One Yemeni coffee shop to go

Couldn't turn down this pistachio concoction. Photo: Naheed "Nutty" Rajwani-Dharsi/Axios

We're on a quest to try every Yemeni coffee shop in North Texas. Today's stop is pricey, but you can hang out there for hours.

The intrigue: Haraz Coffee House gets its name from Yemen's Haraz Mountains, which have been part of the coffee trade for centuries. Yemen is also believed to be one of the first regions to export coffee.

Vibe check: The utensils are gold and the booths are plush. Haraz coffee shops are usually open late.

A honeycomb-shaped pastry on a plate
Finally, bee bites that don't sting. Photo: Naheed Rajwani-Dharsi/Axios

What to order: Pistachio latte and bee bites, which taste like Hawaiian rolls filled with cream cheese and topped with honey.

Where: Haraz Coffee House, locations in Irving and Plano.

Cost: $7.95 for the latte, $7.50 for the pastry.

Six word review: Sweet, savory bites supplement classy coffee.

πŸ˜‹ Have a favorite coffee shop we should try? Hit reply and let us know.

This newsletter was edited by Bob Gee and copy edited by Carolyn DiPaolo.

Our picks:

🌷 Tasha is dying to check out the new mural outside Meow Wolf Grapevine.

🍩 Naheed is intrigued by Dolly Parton's doughnuts.

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