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City Cast Houston
City Cast Houston
City Cast

Food, culture, news and nature in the sweaty Bayou City. Join Host Lisa Gray and the City Cast Houston team as we... more

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Episodes

The Super Weird Fish That Live in Buffalo Bayou

The Buffalo Bayou is a 52-mile river that flows through the heart of our city. It’s home to some of... more

01 Feb 2023 · 21 minutes
Houston Is One Step Closer to Ending Homelessness

The epidemic of people experiencing homelessness has been a problem all over America, but after being praised by The New York Times for... more

31 Jan 2023 · 18 minutes
Is Houston's Population Actually SHRINKING?

We all talk about how traffic has gotten so much worse in our city and most of the time people... more

30 Jan 2023 · 17 minutes
Houston Named "America's Dirtiest City," Tornado Damage, and Baby Genius

What happened this week in Houston? Here to talk all about it are Producer Carlignon Jones, producer AK AL-Moumen and... more

27 Jan 2023 · 37 minutes
How Htown Got Its Halal Food Scene

Houston does food right, there’s no debate there. But did you know it’s also crowned for having one of the... more

26 Jan 2023 · 31 minutes
How Shopping on Harwin Drive Has Changed in 30 Years

Harwin Drive is the place many say you can find almost anything your heart desires. No matter if its clothing,... more

25 Jan 2023 · 19 minutes
The Secret History of Houston Roads

City Cast contributor Jaime González explains the deep history and surprising substrates of our daily commutes. Interested in being the new... more

24 Jan 2023 · 17 minutes
Meet the Man Who Gives Away Bikes

Houston is famous for its big-hearted philanthropists. But not all of them have big money: Today we’re talking with truck... more

23 Jan 2023 · 17 minutes
Miss Universe, Texas’ TikTok Ban, and Troy Nehls’ Cigar

What happened this week in Houston? Podcaster Mohammad Usman Aijaz and producer Carlignon Jones join host Lisa Gray for her... more

20 Jan 2023 · 22 minutes
Lisa Gray’s Goodbye — and Her Favorite City Cast Shows

It’s Lisa Gray’s last week at City Cast Houston, so she and the City Cast crew revisit some of the... more

19 Jan 2023 · 21 minutes
Meet the Producer Drake Calls 'the Heartbeat of HTX Hip-Hop'

Legendary producer Sean 'Solo' Jemison was instrumental in defining Houston’s Hip-Hop sound in the '90s with countless hits under his... more

18 Jan 2023 · 16 minutes
Will Houston Get a Casino?

The Texas Legislature is awash in lobbyists pushing for Texas to expand legal gambling. So is this finally the year... more

17 Jan 2023 · 18 minutes
Republicans Challenge Harris County Elections, Jail Boss Resigns, & a Cold Front

Jen Rice, who covers Harris County for the Houston Chronicle, helps host Lisa Gray get her head around a wild... more

13 Jan 2023 · 20 minutes
What to Do on MLK Weekend in Houston

Yes, Houston has two MLK parades at the same time. The City Cast crew elaborates — and offers other ways... more

12 Jan 2023 · 25 minutes
How a Hip-Hop Club Turned Into a Grocery Store

Once upon a time, the nightclub District 1960 featured performers like Megan Thee Stallion and Slim Thug. Then the pandemic... more

11 Jan 2023 · 19 minutes
Brace Yourself! The Texas Legislature Is Back.

Every two years the Texas State Legislature convenes for a few frantic months of lawmaking. The last session brought extraordinary... more

10 Jan 2023 · 19 minutes
How Harper Watters Sashayed His Way to High-Heeled Stardom

Think ballet is boring? You haven’t seen Harper Watters strut his glam stuff on Instagram. For more check out Harper's website... more

09 Jan 2023 · 26 minutes
Florida vs. Texas, Houston Art Thrives, and Can We LUV Southwest Again?

It’s time to hash out the week’s news. Contributor Shiyam Galyon, producer AK Al-Moumen and host Lisa Gray discuss the... more

06 Jan 2023 · 31 minutes
Houston's Best Places to Take Your Enemies

Usually the City Cast crew talks about Houston’s greatest stuff, the places and experiences you want to share with people... more

05 Jan 2023 · 18 minutes
The Gulf Coast's Original Settlers Are Far from 'Extinct'

The Karankawa tribe was long thought to be extinct but Absolem Yetzirah, a Karankawa native and Council-member of the Five... more

04 Jan 2023 · 23 minutes
How to Fix Houston in 2023

What do we want out of Houston this year? City Cast guests and contributors offer suggestions — and a few predictions. Looking for... more

03 Jan 2023 · 14 minutes
The Astros Worlds Series Parade: The Celebration of a Lifetime

Houston rained victorious this year as the Astros took home the trophy for the World Series! With over 1 million... more

30 Dec 2022 · 10 minutes
ChopNBlok Brings HTX a Taste of Africa

Today, as we continue our celebration of 2022’s superlatives, we’re revisiting the show that made us hungriest. In September, Ope... more

29 Dec 2022 · 27 minutes
Is There a Houston Accent?

On today’s celebration of 2022 superlatives, we’ll hear from one of this year’s most entertaining guests — and also the... more

28 Dec 2022 · 22 minutes
The Dream of A Blimp Race Around the World

As we look back on 2022, we’re doing a week of superlatives! Today we give you the year’s biggest Houston... more

27 Dec 2022 · 18 minutes
Houston’s Best Moments 2022

The City Cast crew looks back on the year’s most Houston moment, the city’s hottest hotspot, and more. The Most Houston... more

22 Dec 2022 · 32 minutes
The Ancient Joy of Texas Tamales

For lots of Mexican-American families in Texas, Christmas is celebrated with tamales — often homemade ones. Adán Medrano, author of the... more

21 Dec 2022 · 20 minutes
Naughty or Nice? The HTX List

Which Houstonians delighted us this year? And which ones deserve coal in their stockings? Texas Monthly staff writer Michael Hardy... more

20 Dec 2022 · 22 minutes
The Amazing Nature Preserve in HTX’s Backyard

In the Houston area, winter is the best season to be outdoors. But if you want to immerse yourself in... more

19 Dec 2022 · 18 minutes
UH’s Defrocked Dean, Bun B’s Brick-and-Mortar, and Porn in the Courts

Time to recap the week’s Houston news! City Cast cultural contributor Antréchelle Dorsey joins producer Carlignon Jones and host Lisa... more

16 Dec 2022 · 28 minutes
Is Whataburger Overrated?

An out-of-state colleague recently tried Texans’ favorite fast-food chain and says that he can’t understand why it’s so popular. The... more

15 Dec 2022 · 29 minutes
Secrets of a Texas Santa

How do you get to be a Santa? Do you hang out with other Santas? Isn’t that suit hot? Santa... more

14 Dec 2022 · 23 minutes
Best Ways to Celebrate the Holidays in HTX

Hot chocolate, snowmen, and a crackling fire in the hearth? Bah, humbug: Here in subtropical Houston, the azaleas are blooming,... more

13 Dec 2022 · 15 minutes
What Went Wrong in Texas’ Deadliest Prison Escape

In May inmate Gonzalo Lopez, a former member of the Mexican mafia, hijacked a Texas prison bus on its way... more

12 Dec 2022 · 26 minutes
Brittney Griner, Guns N’ Roses, and Texas’ $27B Surplus

What happened this week in Houston? Lisa Gray, AK AL-Moumen, and Olivia Flores Alvarez process the week’s biggest stories. The Chron's... more

09 Dec 2022 · 21 minutes
Is H-E-B Really The Best Grocery Store in HTX?

The City Cast crew checks out Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and other worthy competitors. H-E-B. Central Market Houston locations. Trader Joe's Houston Locations. Whole... more

08 Dec 2022 · 28 minutes
A Coral Reef? Near HTX? Yes, Really.

Usually we think of coral reefs — the oceans’ most thrilling displays of life — near exotic vacation destinations, such... more

07 Dec 2022 · 16 minutes
HTX Avoids a “Tripledemic.” Here’s What You Need to Know.

What do the latest COVID numbers show? What’s the situation at Houston children’s hospitals? Houston Chronicle medical reporter Julian Gill... more

06 Dec 2022 · 14 minutes
An HTX Development That’s Walkable and Affordable? They’re Working on It.

The real-estate firm Concept Neighborhood aims to make The Plant/Second Ward, an area just east of downtown Houston, far more... more

05 Dec 2022 · 19 minutes
Water Warning, Vanessa Guillén, and Texas ‘Invasion’

What happened this week in Houston? Host Lisa Gray and University of Houston historian Raúl Ramos hash out the news. Conflict... more

02 Dec 2022 · 28 minutes
The Buc-ee’s Holiday Gift Challenge

Could you, in a pinch, buy your holiday gifts at Texas’ biggest, beaver-iest roadtrip stop? The City Cast crew gives... more

01 Dec 2022 · 28 minutes
How Montrose Got To Be Gay

Montrose — Houston’s most walkable neighborhood, full of interesting places to eat, drink, and hang out — remains the center of LGBTQ life in... more

30 Nov 2022 · 22 minutes
Buy Local! The Best Gifts from HTX Businesses

Why buy your holiday gifts from Amazon or big-box stores? You’ll find cooler stuff at locally owned businesses — and... more

29 Nov 2022 · 15 minutes
Is Houston Becoming a Black Hub?

Houston has one of the fastest-growing Black populations in the U.S., and it’s among the leading cities for Black businesses.... more

28 Nov 2022 · 22 minutes
Pop Go the Spices! Pondicheri Chef Reveals the Cooking Technique You Need

Anita Jaisinghani, the owner/chef behind Pondicheri, one of Houston’s favorite restaurants, has just published a cookbook: “Masala: Recipes from India,... more

23 Nov 2022 · 17 minutes
Free Concert at Discovery Green Highlights HTX's Underrated Gift to Music

From 1960s “brown-eyed soul” to present-day cumbia, Houston’s Chicano music reflects our Gulf Coast multicultural meltdown. Guests Nick Gaitan, Isaac... more

22 Nov 2022 · 20 minutes
Malls Are Dead? Hello, Black Friday at the Galleria.

For decades we’ve heard that shopping malls are withering away. So why is the Galleria packed? In this rebroadcast of... more

21 Nov 2022 · 20 minutes
Election Investigations, Robbers Gone Wild, and Jeremy Peña’s Temp Gig

Time to wrap up the week’s Houston news! Host Lisa Gray hashes it out with producer Carlignon Jones and cultural... more

18 Nov 2022 · 30 minutes
HTX's Best No-Cook Thanksgiving Options

The City Cast crew has your back. Plus, producer AK AL-Mouman asks what so many of Houston’s immigrants wonder: What’s... more

17 Nov 2022 · 27 minutes
Final Week of Speeding Ticket Amnesty: Time to Fix HTX’s Roads

Got overdue Houston speeding tickets? Through Saturday, you can pay them off at a discount, and without getting arrested. But... more

16 Nov 2022 · 17 minutes
At Ephemeral, Tattoos Are Made To Fade in About a Year

Ever thought about getting a tattoo, but the “permanent” part held you back? Ephemeral, a small chain that recently opened... more

15 Nov 2022 · 18 minutes
The Alley Theatre at 75: A Bright Future and a #MeToo Past

The Alley Theatre — Houston’s oldest and biggest theater — turned 75 this year. For several of those decades, the... more

14 Nov 2022 · 18 minutes
Beto Bombs, Lina’s Lucky, and Mattress Mack Bets Big

Yow, what a week for Houston news this has been! Scott Braddock, of the Quorum Report and Texas Take, joins... more

11 Nov 2022 · 25 minutes
Harris County Democrats Survived. Now What?

Though Republicans swept statewide offices (same as it ever was), Democrats overwhelmingly won in Harris County. Do those skinny margins... more

10 Nov 2022 · 19 minutes
Election Results. Plus, Meet HTX's Young Republicans

Election update from host Lisa Gray. Plus, producer AK AL-Moumen interviews Rafael Struve and Eliot Carter about the GOP push to attract... more

09 Nov 2022 · 20 minutes
Joy, Pride, and Sweat at the Astros’ Victory Parade

Producers Carlignon Jones and AK AL-Moumen capture the sounds Astros’ World Series championship parade. Plus: City Cast Philly makes good... more

08 Nov 2022 · 10 minutes
Will Republicans Retake Harris County?

Politics contributor Evan Mintz and host Lisa Gray discuss tomorrow’s mid-term election. What do we know from early voting? How... more

07 Nov 2022 · 15 minutes
Low Voter Turnout, RIP Takeoff, and Go, Astros!

Political analyst Scott Braddock joins host Lisa Gray and producer AK AL-Moumen to unpack the week’s news. Want more Houston news?... more

04 Nov 2022 · 21 minutes
Best Food Trucks in H-Town

We're breaking down the best food trucks in Houston today with host Lisa Gray, and producers (and noted food truck... more

03 Nov 2022 · 21 minutes
Do HTX Parks Need a Glow-Up?

Sprawling, spread-out Houston is a different kind of city than Chicago or New York, so we need to think differently... more

02 Nov 2022 · 16 minutes
West U., a Sweet Small Town Inside Houston’s City Limits

Fall means that the weather perfect for exploring Houston neighborhoods. Today we’re revisiting one of our favorite “neighborhood guide” episodes.... more

01 Nov 2022 · 23 minutes
A Real-Life Ghost Story from The Woodlands

When playwright Brendan Bourque-Sheil was 18, he and his mom lived in an apartment in The Woodlands. One night, they... more

31 Oct 2022 · 13 minutes
Astros, Elections, and Our Bet with City Cast Philly

With the World Series about to start, City Cast Philly’s Trenae Nuri challenges host Lisa Gray to a bet that... more

28 Oct 2022 · 24 minutes
Houston vs. Dallas: Who's the Best?

Obviously Houston is better. But why? Dallas partisan Angelica “Jelly” Walker bravely makes the case for the wrong city. Host... more

27 Oct 2022 · 27 minutes
BBQ, Black History, and Gentrification in Independence Heights

Independence Heights, now in northwest Houston, was originally its own town — and in fact, was Texas’ first municipality registered... more

26 Oct 2022 · 15 minutes
Why Are Texans Still Fighting Over 1836?

What does Beto have to do with the Alamo? Why are people screaming at school boards? And what’s the deeper... more

25 Oct 2022 · 15 minutes
HTX Cyclists & the Culture Wars

When did bike paths become the stuff of attack ads? And was that Pride Ride hit-and-run an accident or an... more

24 Oct 2022 · 14 minutes
Who Made 50 Cent King!? Plus Elections & BBQ Fest

What happened this week in Houston? Host Lisa Gray, producer Carlignon Jones, and journalist and podcaster Donnie Houston recap it... more

21 Oct 2022 · 20 minutes
Why Halloween is Scary-Good in HTX

Outdoor horror movies, costume ideas, and other suggestions from the City Cast crew — host Lisa Gray, producers Carlignon Jones... more

20 Oct 2022 · 24 minutes
What Does a Poet Laureate Actually Do?

What does the poet laureate of Houston do? Can poetry be a day job? Emmanuel Outspoken Bean, Houston’s poet laureate, talks... more

19 Oct 2022 · 17 minutes
The Horrors of Harris County Jail

Standing sewage, gang extortion, and guards who carry knives to protect themselves: Keri Blakinger, of the Marshall Project, recently reported... more

18 Oct 2022 · 18 minutes
Does Biden’s pardon change anything about Texas cannabis law?

Last week Joe Biden pardoned people for federal marijuana possession. Does that change anything in Houston or Texas? What’s the... more

17 Oct 2022 · 13 minutes
Celebs for Beto; Uvalde Revelations; and Yordan’s Epic Homer

What happened this week in Houston? Scott Braddock, of “Texas Take” and “The Quorum Report,” joins host Lisa Gray and... more

14 Oct 2022 · 21 minutes
Who Would Be on Houston's Mt. Rushmore?

If you could designate four great people who represent this city, who would they be? Barbara Jordan? Beyoncé? The City... more

13 Oct 2022 · 30 minutes
When Houston Starred as Detroit in 'Robocop 2'

Why was Houston picked to play a dystopian, crime-ridden Detroit in “RoboCop 2”? What did that wretched movie have to say... more

12 Oct 2022 · 19 minutes
Republicans’ Last Chance to Hold Harris County

In Harris County, early voting starts October 23. What’s at stake this year? Will Beto have coattails? How is a... more

11 Oct 2022 · 18 minutes
Astros, Jail Deaths, and the Ear Biter on Main Street

Can the Astros win the World Series? What do roller-coaster oil prices mean for Houston’s economy? And can police find... more

07 Oct 2022 · 26 minutes
It’s Fall! HTX’s Best Places to Be Outdoors

How should we savor this glorious weather? The City Cast crew — Lisa Gray, Carlignon Jones and Brooke Lewis — weigh... more

06 Oct 2022 · 22 minutes
HTX Rodeo Goat: Diversity, Inclusion & an Excellent Burger

Rodeo Goat, in EaDo, serves great burgers. But what really wows its guest is the welcoming spirit and the wildly... more

05 Oct 2022 · 17 minutes
Can Houston Go Green? Our Mayor Says Yes

The City of Houston already buys more renewable energy “than any other place,” Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner told us when... more

04 Oct 2022 · 20 minutes
Hurricane Refresher Course with Eric Berger

In the wake of Hurricane Ian, we thought you might be wondering: How do hurricanes work? And what's the best... more

03 Oct 2022 · 16 minutes
Harris County Jail Crisis, Cooler Weather & Spaghetti Western

It’s that time of the week y’all! We’re diving into a weeks worth of news from around Houston with producer... more

30 Sep 2022 · 28 minutes
Best HTX Places to Relax & Drink with Friends?

What are this city’s best places to relax with friends? To meet them for a night of drinks? Or after... more

29 Sep 2022 · 28 minutes
How Chemical Salesman Ope Amosu Became One of Htx’s Hottest Chefs

ChopnBlok serves up smoky jollof rice with a side of West African culture, and in less than a year, it’s... more

28 Sep 2022 · 26 minutes
Houston Isn't Really Houston Without Hispanic Culture

Houston is the most diverse city in America, but one thing that makes us even more unique is the deep... more

27 Sep 2022 · 18 minutes
How Hispanic Voters Might Sway Upcoming Elections

Hispanics, Latinos, Latinx people. However you define this overlapping set of groups, whatever you call it. It is clearly the... more

26 Sep 2022 · 16 minutes
Banned Books, Trans Discrimination, & Hungry Howies Expands

It’s been a long week, which means we have a lot of news to roundup! Don’t worry, Lead Producer Dina... more

23 Sep 2022 · 30 minutes
Must See Museums in HTX

Today the team chats all things museums in Houston. In addition to producer Carlignon Jones and newsletter writer Brooke Lewis,... more

22 Sep 2022 · 31 minutes
Exploring Third Ward, Where Black History Meets Gentrification

Houston Chronicle columnist Joy Sewing grew up in Third Ward and is raising her own kids there now. Today she... more

21 Sep 2022 · 18 minutes
Finally, It’s Cool Enough to Garden. Time to Plant that Jurassic-Style Kale.

With cooler temperatures on the horizon, City Cast contributor Evan Mintz can’t wait for Houston’s best season to grow veggies. Year-Round... more

20 Sep 2022 · 18 minutes
The Grandmother of the Transgender Legal Rights Movement

Today, host Lisa Gray sits down with Phyllis Frye. She's dubbed the grandmother of transgender rights who pioneered transgender law.... more

19 Sep 2022 · 15 minutes
Astros, Little Mermaid & Lady Gaga

It’s that time of the week y’all where we dive into a weeks worth of news. Today, producer Carlignon Jones is... more

16 Sep 2022 · 27 minutes
All Things Fall In HTX

Today, in our weekly team chat, we’re tackling our favorite things to do this Fall season. Lead producer Dina Kesbeh... more

15 Sep 2022 · 28 minutes
How this Teen Is Getting 2K More People to Vote

Joshua Martin is the Youngest SGA President in history at the University of Houston after winning his freshman year on... more

14 Sep 2022 · 13 minutes
Meet Donnie Houston: HTX's Hip Hop Historian

Today, DJ, producer, journalist, and podcast host Donnie Houston is here to chat with producer Carlignon Jones about how he... more

13 Sep 2022 · 19 minutes
Up Close & Personal With Alligators at Brazos Bend Park

American alligators, the kind that live in the Houston area came off the endangered species list in the 1990s. But... more

12 Sep 2022 · 18 minutes
Texas Elections Tighten, Inflation Whacks Gen Z, and a Missing Baby

It's that time of the week where we look back at a weeks worth of news! Today, you'll hear a... more

09 Sep 2022 · 27 minutes
Our Favorite HTX Celebs: From Beyoncé to Brené

Houston spawns talent. (You’re welcome, world.) Today lead producer Dina Kesbeh will rave about Mo Amer, producer Carlignon Jones talks... more

08 Sep 2022 · 25 minutes
The Slow Genius of DJ Screw

Today, we're bringing back one of our favorite episodes. The one where we talk about DJ Screw. In the early 90's,... more

07 Sep 2022 · 21 minutes
How Nature Can Heal Our Mental Health

Hurricanes, heat waves, droughts, and floods: Thinking about Houston's natural world can be stressful. But investing in nature not only... more

06 Sep 2022 · 15 minutes
NASA’s Big Plans, Napkin Poisoning & Serena Williams

It’s that time of the week where we dive into a weeks worth of news. Today, host Lisa Gray is... more

02 Sep 2022 · 22 minutes
Our Guide to Bargain Shopping in H-Town

If you’re looking to thrift on a budget or hunt for the latest designer items for half the cost, we’ve... more

01 Sep 2022 · 22 minutes
The Shamrock Hotel: A Wildcatter’s Dream of the Good Life

The iconic Shamrock hotel was torn down decades ago, but its presence still looms large in Houston legend. It was... more

31 Aug 2022 · 19 minutes
Why Houston Is a Great Place To Raise Honeybees

Today, Beekeeper Nicole Buergers, from Bee2Bee Honey Collective, responds to an episode we aired earlier this month called Why Houston’s... more

30 Aug 2022 · 13 minutes
Why is Finding the Right School in HTX so Hard?

Charter schools, private schools, public schools and more! Houston, has so many options when it comes to schooling.. possibly more... more

29 Aug 2022 · 19 minutes
Mo Amer, Katy ISD, and Student Loans

It’s that time of the week where we dive into a weeks worth of news from around Houston. Today host... more

26 Aug 2022 · 27 minutes
The Best Date Night Ideas in HTX

This week, we dive into the best date night spots from around the city. Producer Carlignon Jones is a thrill... more

25 Aug 2022 · 21 minutes
Neighborhood Guide: Alief, Where Immigrants Settle and Talent is Born

Lead producer Dina Kesbeh, who grew up in Alief, discusses the neighborhood with two of her high school classmates, Firas... more

24 Aug 2022 · 29 minutes
Houston, the Magnolia City

Magnolias are a symbol of the Old South — but they’re also so much more. Lisa Gray talks with City Cast... more

23 Aug 2022 · 17 minutes
Two Texas Teachers Explain Why They Quit

Texas teachers are leaving the profession in droves, and to get a grip on the problem, the governor has appointed... more

22 Aug 2022 · 23 minutes
City Cast Houston
Neighborhood Guide: Alief, Where Immigrants Settle and Talent is Born
City Cast Houston
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Description

Lead producer Dina Kesbeh, who grew up in Alief, discusses the neighborhood with two of her high school classmates, Firas Abulawi and... more