Ready, set, fest! Today we announced the program and speakers for the 2019 Texas Tribune Festival — Sept. 26-28 in downtown Austin. It’s our ninth annual ideas weekend, our biggest by a mile and absolutely our most ambitious yet.
How big? We have more than 420 participants in panel discussions and one-on-one interviews. (A taste: Ted Cruz, Julián Castro, Amy Klobuchar, Susan Rice, Michael Beschloss, Jim Jordan, Mark Meadows, Chip Roy, Cecile Richards, William McRaven, Betsy Price, Piper Kerman, Anthony Scaramucci, Nate Silver, George Will, Wendy Davis, Will Hurd, Sylvia Garcia, Mike Morath, Samantha Power and George P. Bush.) We have more than 120 hourlong sessions across a mix of indoor and outdoor venues over three carefully and enthusiastically curated days. On both counts, these are massive increases over last year, which had been our biggest fest year to date.
How ambitious? Programing that runs the gamut from education to health care, immigration to criminal justice, the economy to the environment, energy to transportation. A look back at the 86th Texas Legislature. A look ahead to the 2020 election cycle, including and especially the presidential campaign. An entire swath of the schedule devoted to the future of rural Texas and another devoted to the future of urban Texas. Discussions of national and global importance on everything from homeland security and the T-boning of technology and democracy to the role, responsibility and sustainability of the press. Podcasts — lots and lots of podcasts — recorded before what we know will be rapt audiences.
And — once again, and with even more sweep and gusto than ever before — an array of media, academic and nonprofit partnerships that resulted in truly transformational programming. Among our collaborators this year: The New York Times, The Washington Post, TIME, Lawfare, Chalkbeat, the Urban Lab at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and the Center for Media and Citizenship at the University of Virginia. We are particularly excited to welcome our dear old friends at POLITICO, the University of Texas, Texas 2036 and Texas Monthly to Congress Avenue for our free Open Congress activation. Yes, free. You won’t have to pay a penny to see the game-changing conversations and compelling personalities from the worlds of politics and policy inside their branded tents.
Of course, we’d rather you pay! By registering for the Tribune Festival, you support The Texas Tribune’s public service mission: to provide the kind of robust reporting, data and events that make Texas better by making Texans more informed and more engaged. We’ve been at this for going on 10 years now. We know that events like the Tribune Festival are a big part of our ability to bring millions of our neighbors into a persistent conversation about our shared priorities, and we can’t do it without you.
To sign up — and to see all the amazing things we have planned — go to festival.texastribune.org. Can’t wait to see you in a few weeks.