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Texas, Oklahoma Governors Set Stakes on Red River Rivalry

The beneficiary of the traditional wager on the outcome of the UT/OU game will be a food bank in the winning state.

Texas barbecue.

There is a lot at “steak” for this year’s Red River Rivalry.

Gov. Greg Abbott bet Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin that the University of Texas would beat the University of Oklahoma in their annual football showdown. The wager? Barbecue.

The losing state will donate barbecue to a food bank in the winning state. 

If the Longhorns lose, Abbott has opted to donate food from Railhead Smokehouse BBQ in Fort Worth — which is owned by state Rep. Charlie Geren, R-Fort Worth — to City Rescue Mission in Oklahoma, a partner of the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma. If the Sooners lose, Fallin will supply 600 meals from Head Country Bar-B-Q to the Capital Area Food Bank in Austin.

Despite the absence of UT’s mascot, Bevo, at Saturday’s game, Abbott is confident UT will come out on top.

“The friendly rivalry between the State of Texas and the State of Oklahoma runs deep, especially when it comes to football,” Abbott said in a press release. “In the history of the Red River Rivalry, the Texas Longhorns have come away with more victories than Oklahoma ever has, and I expect this Saturday to be no different. In the unfortunate event the Sooners pull off a win, the Oklahoma City Rescue Mission will receive some of the finest barbecue Texas has to offer — a prize valued far more than any trophy.”

Fallin believes otherwise. 

“I felt a little bad about accepting this bet because UT doesn’t stand a chance,” Fallin said in the release. “The Sooners are going to bring home a win, and a lot of barbecue from Texas for the City Rescue Mission.”

The wager will be settled on the field Saturday, in the Cotton Bowl at Fair Park.

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The Texas Center for the Book will move to the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building in Austin. The Texas Center for the Book was established by the Dallas Public Library in 1987 to promote public interest in reading.

“We are very excited at the prospect of using the Center for the Book as a statewide platform to inform the public of the importance of books and reading and to urge Texans to take advantage of the huge resource for education, lifelong learning, and cultural enrichment offered at their local libraries and archives,” said Mark Smith, director of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, in a statement.

“We thank the Dallas Public Library for their excellent work with the Center since its inception and look forward to maintaining the tradition of excellence that they have established.”

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The Texas General Land Office launched a new website Tuesday featuring updated graphics, a mobile-friendly layout and less photos to improve speed.  

“At the General Land Office we work hard everyday to serve Texas veterans, protect our state’s rich history, defend the coast and maximize revenue sources to ensure we’re serving future generations of Texans through the Permanent School Fund," said Land Commissioner George P. Bush in a statement. "Now, you can see how and what we’re doing in real time, all the time.”

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The BLM is holding a series of public workshops next week seeking input on “draft alternatives” for a Resource Management Plan it’s updating for Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas — designating how public lands will be used for the next 15 to 20 years. This includes 90,000 Red River acres that the agency claims but that some Texas families have laid claim to for themselves.

One of the workshops is Oct. 13 in Fort Worth, the agency announced Thursday. 

The meeting is just the latest step in a drawn out process expected to last until 2018, but an agency spokesman calls it important and expects it will draw plenty of concerned Red River-area landowners to Fort Worth.

“This process is still going and public involvement is a critical part of it,” Paul McGuire, the spokesman, told The Blast. 

The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at the Fort Worth Library’s Ella Mae Shamblee branch. It’s expected to last roughly 2 hours.

Disclosure: The University of Texas at Austin is a corporate sponsor of The Texas Tribune. A complete list of Tribune donors and sponsors can be viewed here.

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