There's a lot to consider when naming the best news anchor, but in the end, it always comes down to that indescribable "it" factor that radiates from the tube, and that's exactly what has us tuning in to Fox 4 on a nightly basis to watch Heather Hays ply her craft. Sure, it helps that she's easier on the eyes than John McCaa and his creepy mustache (after all, she was crowned Miss Hawaii USA in 1992), but she is silky smooth while segueing from soft to hard news and has a voice and face you can trust. She's also relaxed enough to joke around with co-anchor Steve Eager, and has proven to be quite a football prognosticator, as she regularly outperforms Mike Doocy and the sports crew when picking weekly winners for each NFL game.

Hunt is the only real biko on the council—determined to see Dallas transform itself from a generic regional car-centric Blah-ville to a unique, truly cool Biko-City that will draw creative, productive, entrepreneurial people from around the world. But don't trust us on that. Let her explain in her own words. On her website, Hunt says: "Policymakers and city staff will only be persuaded to create real complete streets with real bicycle infrastructure in Dallas (and not a failed, faux version) if they 1) learn how other cities have successfully made the transition from car-centric streets to ones that are bike- and ped-friendly, 2) understand how important complete streets are to our city's future economic development (attracting the "creative class" and thus the companies that want to hire them), and 3) hear the public express a real interest in redefining our city to make it more livable."

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Karen+Almond
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We haven't decided if we're totally happy with the Wyly as an audience-friendly theater space (those hard green chairs are enemies of spines), but we're certain there's no other local theater company so fine and so deep-benched with talent as Dallas Theater Center's Brierley Resident Acting Company, which calls the Wyly Theatre home base. Just look at the list of company members: Cedric Neal, Liz Mikel, Sally Nystuen Vahle, Matthew Gray, Lee Trull, Abbey Siegworth, Hassan El-Amin, Chamblee Ferguson, Christie Vela and Joel Ferrell. They include veteran classical actors, comedic talents, dynamic singers and dancers, interpreters of the avant garde, double-duty director-actors and some just downright gorgeous leading ladies and men. DTC's artistic director Kevin Moriarty eschews typecasting, which means plenty of diversity (in age, gender and ethnicity) in his shows. What we like best about the resident company concept, however, is that it keeps these fine actors paid for their work year-round. That makes them part of our arts community that much longer.

Founded in Dallas by PR guy Cooper Smith Koch, Gay List Daily is a slick, free e-publication blasted out via e-mail every morning to thousands of inboxes. Dedicated to all things trendy and gay, it's fashioned after Daily Candy, offering tips and reviews of culture and couture, food and frivolity and whatever else is striking the editors' fancy on a particular day. The writing is crisp, witty and appropriately (though only slightly) bitchy. The company's just getting into the group coupon biz, too, and has expanded its daily e-blasts to New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta. Whether you're stag, hag or drag, this informative e-pub will put a little gay in your day.

The Kessler Theater
Mike Brooks

The backstage area at Oak Cliff's newly restored Kessler Theater has everything a band could want on show night and more. Lots of free parking directly behind the venue? Check. A convenient backstage door for pre- and post-show smoke breaks? Check. Plenty of room for stowing gear? Check. Upstairs lounge for setlist writing, beer drinking and groupie courting? Check. And finally, your own bathroom complete with shower? Ding, ding, ding—we have a winner. Owner Edwin Cabaniss and artistic director Jeff Liles clearly put as much thought into this space as they did into the actual show room—easily the best listening room in town—so it's no surprise to see local bands begging for another show as soon as they get off the stage.

GrapeFest in Grapevine
1310 The Ticket

There was a time not long ago when a decent playlist on the radio could only be found via satellite. With some local radio stations stuck in the '90s and others on a steady rotation of Black Eyed Peas and, umm, more Black Eyed Peas, the best music on the airwaves actually came from a sports talk radio station. But thanks to the fine folks over at KKXT-FM 91.7 and their public supporters (it's easy to become one on their website), you can hear from Wilco, Ariel Pink, The Rolling Stones and Beach House all in the same half-hour. Judging by the wide range of folk, blues, classic rock and indie rock, their "Music To The Core" motto is more of a manifesto. And, though they encourage membership from listeners, there's plenty of room for public radio freeloaders, too.

Patrick Kennedy's cause is a daunting one: winning over truck-loving locals to the car-free lifestyle, and hoping those building this city proceed with an eye on livability. And yet, something about the 31-year-old blogger and design consultant recalls a guy voted "Most Likely To Succeed" back in high school. Well-spoken, opinionated and lively, his blog posts sometimes take on the look of academic white papers. Like plenty of other successful bloggers before him, Kennedy's audience has snowballed as a series of profiles and guest-columnist invitations have put his ideas about the future of Dallas in front of more influential and less sympathetic readers. Melding urban planning theory with minutiae of Dallas history, Kennedy's ideas for promoting walkability and sustainability—at the expense of those who'd build more highways—start to make a lot of sense. Then again, he may just have us distracted with all the big words.

The Sixth Floor Museum

The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza has become a serious international repository of documents, films, periodicals and research dealing with the Kennedy assassination, much of which the museum is now making available to the public in a sunny reading room staffed by a full-time academic research librarian. You do have to call ahead for an appointment, but the reading room is designed to be open and welcoming to all interested persons, according to Nicola Longford, executive director of the Sixth Floor Museum. The full collection amounts to more than 35,000 items, all of it indexed with the latest software and accessible through touch-screen monitors at small work stations. But instead of carrels in musty stacks, these work stations are desks next to big open windows looking out on the site of the event. Opened June 29, the reading room is an exciting addition to the life of the city.

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