Balch Springs

  • Blogs

    June 5, 2014

    Mesquite Is Ready to Bail on DART, but the Agency's Bending Over Backward to Keep It

    After three years of bus service, Mesquite, DART's first non-member city partner, appears set to spurn the agency for Star Transit, a private bus company that serves Balch Springs, Kaufmann County and Rockwall County. City officials said the potential move stems from DART's changing its policies fo ... More >>

  • News

    April 10, 2014

    Deporter in the Court

    Dallas immigration judge Dietrich Sims was notoriously tough on the most vulnerable immigrants. Then they sent him the kids.

  • Blogs

    February 17, 2014

    A South Dallas Store Owner Accused of Food-Stamp Fraud Faces 305 Years in Prison

    There's not a lot of what Michael Pollan would call "food" at South Dallas' KSO Dollar Mart. Plenty of beer, wine and hair care products, according to the signs out front, but not much by way of whole grains or fresh produce. The store nevertheless did a thriving business in the federal government' ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 28, 2014

    Redflex, DFW's Favorite Red Light Camera Company, Is Accused of Passing Bribes in Texas

    For the past year Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc., one of the two big players in the red-light camera industry, has been embroiled in a bribery scandal in Chicago. The company, according to news reports, treated a senior transportation official to lavish vacations and had an unusually close relationsh ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 23, 2013

    The Texas Rangers Just Saved an Arlington Little League Shut Down by $20,000 Theft

    Claudia Yamell Castillo may not come out atop North Texas' (unofficial) Most Hated Person list for September. With a week to go, that Balch Springs teen who beat a puppy's eye out with a tree branch has to be the current favorite. But Castillo is a strong contender for runner up. According to polic ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 28, 2013

    You Should Really Quit and Take This Live-In Farmer Job at Eden's Organic Garden Center

    Been looking for greener pastures lately? Ready to trade in your 2' x 3' cubicle and asphalt parking spot for the soft curved line of dirt under your nails? Well, we might have an interesting opportunity for you. Actually, Marie Tedei, the founder and owner of Eden's Organic Garden Center in Balch S ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 26, 2013

    Are Insecticide Trucks Coming to Your 'Hood? Obsessively Refresh These Websites to Find Out.

    Local officials talk a good game about killing mosquitoes this West Nile season, but are they doing enough to warn us before they unleash mosquito-killing insecticides in our neighborhoods? These are insecticides that, as we've covered, might not be so good for people to breathe in. City Hall's own ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 22, 2013

    Farmer Jones Eco Friendly Plants and Produce Defeats a Grasshopper Onslaught to Feed Us

    Rita Foust and Mel Jones make a good pair. She is a self-described perfectionist, which can be tough in the business of growing food. Luckily, Jones is laid-back and happy to go along with her ideas for what and where to plant vegetables on their farm. Together, they are the duo behind Farmer Jones ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 17, 2013

    One-Year-Old Child Dies After Being Left in Locked Car at Elementary School [Updated]

    A 1-year-old child died after being left in a locked car in the parking lot of Frank Guzick Elementary School in Pleasant Grove. The child's mother is a teacher at the school, according to a statement from Dallas ISD. A statement from the Dallas Police Department says that a witness observed the c ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 23, 2012

    In Pleasant Grove, Building A Playground and Bringing an Abandoned Church Back to Life

    At dawn yesterday, the lot behind the former New Revelation Missionary Baptist Church was mostly empty, save for dust, rocks and scrubby grass. Although the Pleasant Grove church still looks normal from the street, it too has been empty since going into foreclosure earlier this year. By April, the s ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2012

    Off-Duty Cop Arrested For Drunk Driving at Last Night's Shooting

    Dallas police sent out a bare-bones press release this morning announcing that officer Matthew Gaines, who has been with the department for two years, is on administrative leave after being arrested at about 5:30 a.m. It didn't give any additional details like where he was arrested. I had no luck fi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 13, 2012

    Feds Say Cartel Laundered Cash Through Horse Racing Operation. In Balch Springs of All Places

    Horse racing may be a dying sport,, but it's apparently enough of a going concern to be used by Mexico's most powerful cartel to launder millions in drug profits. According to an indictment unsealed yesterday, Los Zetas, the notoriously ruthless organization that effectively controls large swaths o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 29, 2012

    The Texas Honeybee Guild and their ZIP Code Honey Has Gotta Bee Real

    When the weather drops below 50, most honeybees cluster in the hive. So with winter (technically) upon us, there aren't a lot of bees buzzing around right now. But, when you meet with Brandon and Susan Pollard of the Texas Honeybee Guild, there's no telling what bees will do. The February day I met ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 10, 2012

    Vandals Attack a Local Bee Colony. Like Facing Extinction Wasn't Hard Enough.

    Vandalized bee hives at Eden's Organic.​Marie Tedei created Eden's Organic Garden Center and CSA farm for several reasons. One was self-fulfilling: She's a studied horticulturist and has a passion for living clean and healthy off the land. But the primary reason was to have a place where the l ... More >>

  • News

    December 1, 2011

    The Dallas Observer 2011 MasterMind Awards

    The winners of our second annual art awards delve into the past and personal loss to bring new visions to Dallas

  • Blogs

    July 15, 2011

    According to the Feds, the (Repetitive) Life and (Precarious) Times of a Coke Kingpin in Dallas

    An alleged coke trafficker used this Knox-Henderson-area apartment as his stash house.​If, by any chance, you spent the first few months of this year blowing lines in the bathroom of various clubs around town, there's a decent chance the source of your cocaine was Christian "Cri Cri" Ocana, wh ... More >>

  • News

    July 14, 2011

    Small-Town Muckraker Joey Dauben Will Run the World Some Day. Just Ask Him.

    In the little towns outside of Dallas, publisher and aspiring politician Joey Dauben is on a crusade to expose abuses of power, civic mischief and -- most of all -- himself.

  • Blogs

    July 13, 2011

    Following Arrests, Feds Outline Vast Cocaine, Heroin Ring Operating Out of Dallas, Fort Worth

    ‚ÄčThe U.S. Attorney's Office sends word: Federal authorities have rounded up dozens suspected of trafficking heroin and cocaine from Dallas to Atlanta to Baltimore to Philadelphia to Nashville and all points in between. Those arrested yesterday come from all over, including Dallas and Fort Worth an ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 21, 2011

    Five CSAs That Aren't Just For Earth Day

    ​Earth Day is this week's cause celebre. Everyone from food trucks and arts institutions to television networks and giants of industry has jumped on the green bandwagon. Come Monday, many will have forgotten the simple message of how each of us can do our part to protect our planet. One method ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 27, 2010

    All About the All About Uptown Fest

    Photos by Sam MertenMike Rhyner​Despite the rain early on Saturday, I found myself at the All About Uptown Festival for the third-straight year, and it wasn't until checking out the festival's website just now that I realized it's only the third year of its existence. Not a heckuva lot has cha ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 15, 2010

    From Farm to Table: Chef for Farmers Event
    To Boost Local Producers

    Photos by Robert BostickRandall Copeland, Bruno Davaillon, Janice Provost, Chad Houser, Nathan Tate and Matt McCallister​A unique twilight dinner has been scheduled at Eden's Garden Organic Garden Center and CSA Farm in Balch Springs that will pair seven chefs from five Dallas restaurants for ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 23, 2009

    Every Thursday Through May, Mockingbird Station's Opening Its Own Farmers Market

    At yesterday's farmers market set-up in Mockingbird Station, turnout was relatively small but nonetheless familiar. Brandon Pollard, a favorite at the downtown Dallas Farmers Market, wore his trademark honeybee costume, complete with wings and antennae. (See for yourself in our brief slideshow.) His ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 24, 2009

    Last Night: AC/DC at American Airlines Center

    AC/DC, The AnswerAmerican Airlines CenterJanuary 23, 2009 Better than: Watching Spinal Tap for the hundredth time while smoking crack in a trailer park in Balch Springs.   In front of a sold out crowd at the American Airlines Center, legendary hard rock icons AC/DC delivered nearly ... More >>

  • Dining

    September 25, 2008

    Un-Super Size Me: One Week of Eating Local

    One man’s attempt at slow food living in the Dallas metroplex

  • Blogs

    July 31, 2007

    Tom Leppert Bows to the Will of the People. No People We Know, But Still.

    I just spoke with Angela Hunt, who told me something quite stunning about the allegations of fraudulent signatures being leveled against the TrinityVote petition campaign. She said she had been informed that none of the allegedly suspicious signatures is among the 48,000-plus signatures that have be ... More >>

  • News

    January 25, 2007

    Goodbye, Groovy East Dallas

    How Jim Schutze forsook his hippie-dippy days and learned to love the snout house

  • News

    September 7, 2006

    Cruising With the Whore Cop

    Officer Terry Peters knows just about every hooker in town. And they love him--because he keeps them alive.

  • News

    June 29, 2006

    Sour Town

    You think Dallas City Council is nuts? Well, yeah, but look at Garland.

  • News

    January 23, 2003

    Beat the Rap

    Suburban cops to kids: Turn that rap stuff down

  • News

    November 15, 2001

    The Way of the Gun

    The untold story of why Lenell Geter was freed

  • News

    July 27, 2000

    Between heaven and hell

    A father robbed of his sons is caught between a cult and fear of another Waco

  • News

    December 23, 1999


    Art lovers; Justice at work

  • News

    December 16, 1999

    After the fall

    Heartbroken by the loss of his son on a DISD field trip, a father fights to prevent future tragedies

  • News

    March 18, 1999

    No place like home

    Thousands of Texans say they can do a better job teaching their children at home. But some local truant officers claim parents are using a massive loophole in Texas law to skip school altogether.

  • News

    February 25, 1999

    Bucking Crazy

    Want in on the dirt floor of rodeo's marquee event? A guy in Mansfield has your ride.

  • Dining

    January 28, 1999

    Poor man's prime

    Dunston's smokes out affordable steak

  • News

    January 7, 1999
  • News

    May 7, 1998

    Robbing 'em blind

    For burglar Carnell Johnson, willing fences, indifferent neighbors, and friendly dogs ame for an easy living

  • News

    April 23, 1998


    The Dallas bounty hunter's arsenal includes the pizza scam, the utility-clerk hustle, and the occasional M-1 rifle. Now who's the crook?

  • News

    January 22, 1998

    Flood money

    The Trinity River Plan's billion-dollar vision of levees, parks, and ponds has Mayor Ron Kirk--and most of Dallas--spellbound. But engineers warn it could lead to a flooding catastrophe and destroy the same poor neighborhoods it's designed to help.

  • News

    August 14, 1997

    Poor Relations

    Guess what happened when Cleo Sims and her felonious offspring took over a Dallas anti-poverty agency

  • News

    August 7, 1997

    Dumped On

    How greedy property owners and careless bureaucrats let a massive illegal landfill grow in the back yard of a black Dallas neighborhood

  • News

    June 26, 1997

    Talk to the animals

    Veterinarian Norman Ralston favors acupuncture, herbs, and homeopathy instead of traditional animal medicine. He says pets speak to him through a channeler, and he lets them prescribe their own treatment. It's no wonder state regulators are keeping a clos

  • Calendar

    July 25, 1996
  • News

    April 4, 1996

    Wish Woman

    She hasn't got money or connections. But straight-shooting Linda Terrell is helping dying grownups live their dreams.

  • News

    January 26, 1995

    Death Row Granny

    Bettie Beets killed two husbands. Now she's likely to become the first woman the state of Texas has ever executed

  • News

    November 3, 1994

    Power Ranger

    Candidate Richard Harvey and his tall tales