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Bazaar, a restaurant, bar and cocktail lounge hybrid, has made its debut on The Square. Although it’s currently open to the public, Bazaar will have its grand opening on April 25 after further renovations and preparations are completed.

“Essentially, the rooms not complete,” Omar

Dawoud, Bazaar business partner and TXST alumnus said. “I'd say we're probably 90% complete. Same with our menu, both beverage and food. We still got a lot more to roll out… By the time we are around the grand opening, we will be fully ready and complete, but right now, we're still at a soft opening stage.”

Bazaar has been preparing to open since late 2023. The bar held soft openings for friends and family on March 19-20, followed by a sneak peek on March 21

and finally opened its doors to the public on March 22. Allison Meyer, the bar's general manager, said business has been great so far.

“It's obviously a very lively environment, and it's great to see everybody coming out to kind of check out what's been going on because there's been a little level of ambiguity,” Meyer said. “It's nice to see everyone pop in to get to see what's going on in here.”


New bar on The Square to have grand opening City prepares for safety ahead of total solar eclipse

San Marcos is gearing up for the total solar eclipse on April 8, as the moon will pass between the sun and earth, completely blocking the sun between noon and 3 p.m.

A shadow will cast across North America, causing total darkness for areas in its path, San Marcos will experience a partial eclipse with 97-99% coverage of the sun according to a NASA article.

City of San Marcos Emergency Coordinator Rob Fitch expects there will be people traveling to cities near or in the path of totality which will bring an estimated 50,000 to 500,000 people through San Marcos.

“Our big concern is when everybody comes back out of Fredericksburg, Wimberley or Dripping Springs, that’s when we're gonna have problems,” Fitch said. “It's just like a big football game— right afterward, everybody's trying to get out of town at the same time.”


Our big concern is when everybody comes back out of Fredericksburg, Wimberley or Dripping Springs, that’s when we're gonna have problems. It's just like a big football game— right afterward, everybody's trying to get out of town at the same time.”

of San Marcos emergency coordinator


Texas State readies for total solar eclipse

Preparations are underway at Texas State as the campus anticipates Texas's first visible total solar eclipse since 1878 on April 8.

The university suspended classes from noon to 2 p.m. on the day of the eclipse for both San Marcos and Round Rock campuses according to an email from Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Pranesh Aswath on March 19.

“We want to make sure most people on campus have the opportunity to experience this event because this for many of them is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see an eclipse of this magnitude here,” Aswath said.

Aswath said faculty can decide whether to hold in-person or online classes for the rest of the day, however, he encourages everyone to experience the eclipse as it will serve as a teachable opportunity.


fire hasn't died": Antoine reflects on 201 wins as women's basketball head

Texas State women’s basketball Head Coach Zenarae Antoine defines what a consistent and successful coach looks like in women's collegiate basketball through resilience.

Antoine received her first-ever head coaching position in San Marcos with the Bobcats in 2011.

Since the hiring of Antoine, or, as some call her, “Coach Z,” Texas State has achieved a total of 201 wins, five appearances in postseason tournaments and a regular-season Sun Belt Conference Championship.

Antoine achieved her 200th win for Texas State against the University of Ohio on Feb. 10 in the Sun Belt-Midwestern Athletic Conference Challenge. Coincidentally, Ohio is where she began her coaching career as a graduate assistant from 1999 to 2000. According to Antoine, achieving her 200th win against Ohio on the court where she began her coaching career was an incredible experience.

SMCISD releases renderings for new Mendez Elementary

The San Marcos Consolidated Independent School District (SMCISD) Board of Trustees approved artist renderings and designs for the replacement campus of Mendez Elementary at its March 18 meeting.

The project is part of an improvement plan for all 12 SMCISD campuses. Propositions B, C and D approved on the May 2023 ballot fund the project.

"The great thing about Prop B is that it impacts all 12 campuses and not one campus is being left out of the list of improvements," Andrew Fernandez, SMCISD chief of communications said.

The construction of a new campus next to the current Mendez Elementary is the largest project funded by the bonds. According to Fernandez, Mendez Elementary is currently the oldest of the 12 campuses.

Dam on San Marcos River could be restored or demolished

Cape's Dam on the San Marcos River may be repaired, demolished or transformed into rapids, depending on the city of San Marcos' feasibility study.

Cape's Dam is a historic landmark in San Marcos, built over 150 years ago for cotton milling and currently creates Mill Race, Mill Race Falls and Thompson's Island in Stokes Park. The dam sustained significant damage during severe floods in both 2013 and 2015, leading to destruction that has not been repaired.

As a result, both San Marcos City Council and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service voted to remove the structure rather than attempt restoration in March 2016.

However, multiple groups, including the Texas Historical Commission, fought against the demolition in

August 2016 mainly due to the dam's history, and succeeded in doing so which resulted in the wildlife service revoking its demolition funds.

“Where we are today is city council and Hays County have entered into an interlocal agreement to study some various components about feasibility on restoration of the dam structure,” San Marcos Parks & Recreation Director Jamie Lee Case said. “The evaluation will include historical significance, environmental impact, safety and potential recreation.”

According to Case, the city is in the process of issuing a request for proposals on either restoration or demolition to Cape's Dam. Case said the city drafted the proposal and its in the procurement department of Parks & Recreation ready to be issued in the next few months.

www.Universitystar com TUESDAY VOLUME 114 ISSUE 26 April 2, 2024
18, 2024,
PHOTO BY KOBE ARRIAGA Texas State Head Coach Zenarae Antoine coaches her team during a timeout during the game versus Troy,
at Strahan Arena.
PHOTO BY MEG BOLES The Thompson's Island's dam located in the Thompson's Island's section of Stokes Park. Friday, March 29, 2024.

"At Mendez, we've seen a lot of infrastructure issues over the past few years and we spent a lot of money to maintain the building," Fernandez said. "How much money we put into maintaining the building is just not cost-effective."

Perkins & Will, who previously designed parts of San Marcos High School, Rodriguez Elementary and Miller Middle School, planned the new Mendez Elementary campus. The firm currently estimates the total cost of developing the new Mendez campus to be $66.7 million, which is about 45% of Prop B's bond, while the cost of just construction is estimated to be around $57 million.

"We actually sent [the plan] out for a cost estimate," Koleman Uresti, the managing director and principal for Perkins & Will - Austin, said in the board meeting. "The independent cost estimators have it coming in at about $56 million, so we're a million dollars under budget currently."

The designs submitted by Perkins & Will include features such as distancing the play area from the road, separating the student pick-up and drop-off zones from walking paths, creating a distanced bus loading zone from the drop-off zone and preventing parents from parking on the road when picking up their children.

At Mendez, we've seen a lot of infrastructure issues over the past few years and we spent a lot of money to maintain the building. How much money we put into maintaining the building is just not cost-effective."

The designs also include two courtyards: one which Uresti refers to as the "academic wing" can be closed off at night, while the other will have public access to the library, gym and cafeteria.

The new Mendez campus will be constructed on an empty lot next to the current school. Students will continue to use the current school with no interruption for the first phase of the project, then move into the new building at which point the previous campus will be demolished.

SMCISD Board of Trustees President Ann Halsey said she liked the designs, but wished they included more environmentally friendly measures and made use of materials from the existing Mendez campus.

"When we did the new Rodriguez [Elementary] we were really conscious of the site and the environment and the river," Halsey said. "I think if we could look at ways to improve water retention to help with those courtyards... as well as anything we can do solar-wise with the spaces I would be really interested."


Tuesday, April 2, 2024

The SMCISD Board of Trustees unanimously agreed to move forward with the Mendez project as presented by Perkins & Will.

The presentation by Perkins & Will states the substantial completion of the new Mendez Elementary Campus is Oct. 31, 2025.

Other projects in the campus improvement plan include building additional classrooms at some campuses and a new swimming facility.

Fernandez said the safety improvements include the installation of additional cameras, standardized

"Once it is issued, various firms will be allowed to provide the proposals which will then be evaluated and selected," Lee said. "Once that firm is on board, they will serve as the project managers and report back to the city and Hays County on their progress... and conduct the studies that will show if it is possible to restore the dam."

San Marcos River Retreat Campground Owner Tom Goin said he is in favor of demolishing the dam and returning the river to its original state.

bell systems and door detection systems. The bonds are also funding the acquisition of new buses, brandnew air conditioning systems for some campuses and improvements to parking lots and drop-off zones for some schools.

Scan the QR code for more information on SMCISD propositions.

Olympian and Founder of San Marcos' Olympic Outdoor Center Ben Kvanli said he wants to restore the area below Cape's Dam, as the Olympic Center is located on the water between Cape's Dam and Thompson's Island.

Kvanli also said he believes the area around Cape's Dam and Thompson's Island has the potential to be bigger than Rio Vista Park.

"I am okay with [demolition] at this point because it's been so long," Goin said. "Let's just get rid of the rubble that was the old dam and return the river to its natural state. I certainly don't want anybody to rebuild just for the sake of having a dam."

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There is a potential for a 14-foot variation in water level with the repairing of Cape's Dam and its surrounding parks, while Rio Vista Park experiences a smaller six-foot change in water level according to Kvanli.

“We're preserving the history of what got us here, and we're creating some features that kids can explore and interact with,” Kvanli said. “We want to take it from what it is right now where we have broken features that are creating stagnant water, and we want to bring it back to being that clear, beautiful swimming hole that everybody loves.”

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There is no firm timeline on the city's decision for Cape's Dam but Case said scientific studies, like the one needed for the dam, can take anywhere between 12-18 months.

"So once we have the studies done, we will have a firm feasibility as to what is possible and we have no foregone conclusions on what those studies will show. It could show that it is possible to restore the dam, or that it is not," Case said. "So we really won't know until after that work is completed."

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Copyright: Copyright Tuesday, April 2, 2024. All copy, photographs and graphics appearing in The University Star are the exclusive property of The University Star and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the editor-in-chief.


Letters to the Editor or any contributed articles are due on Monday the week prior to publication.

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The San Marcos River flows through the Thompson's Island's section of Stokes Park. Friday, March 29, 2024.
PHOTO BY MEG BOLES The Thompsons Island's dam located in the Thompson's Island's section of Stokes Park. Friday, March 29, 2024. PHOTO BY MEG BOLES

Bazaar was built with the intention of being unique. This is visible through modern decorations, ambient blue lighting and unique in-house drinks and food items. Bazaar business owners Omar, Mike Dawoud and Jack Zimmerman said they wanted to bring something different to San Marcos that people can appreciate.

"We put a lot of effort into the concept as a whole... the interior design, the lighting, the cocktails and now the food," Zimmerman said. "We're really focusing hard before we do our grand launch in a few weeks. We put a lot of effort into all elements of the business. We want to be here a long time so we wanted to start things off right."

Initially intrigued by the bright neon green sign hanging outside the bar, Sara Smith, a San Marcos local, said she was excited to finally see the inside of Bazaar and experience the atmosphere for herself at the soft opening on March 20.

“I was really impressed,” Smith said. “I really appreciated the way they designed everything. It's very atmospheric and aesthetic and it definitely sets a vibe when you're there. I thought it was really unique and the menu offerings were unique and pretty good."

More than anything, Smith was drawn to the ability of the space to cater to a wide audience. As a 32-year-old woman, she sees the versatility of Bazaar and said she feels comfortable bringing her younger friends or her dad to the bar.

“From my perspective as somebody who is older, but still wants to go out and explore downtown San Marcos, it's nice to have places that cater to a more elevated experience or something that I would want to take a group of my peers to,” Smith said.

As Texas State alumni, Omar and Zimmerman saw the opportunity to bring something new to San Marcos. Zimmerman is most excited to see how the space is used by the public because of its unique characteristics.

“The school has grown so much [and San Marcos] has grown,” Zimmerman said. “Omar and I both went to Texas State, and we thought that there was an opportunity to do something that can get people excited. We introduced cocktails and a fun, vibrant environment and some great food.”

According to their website Bazaar is open from 5 p.m. to late Tuesday through Saturday. The cut-off for food is 10 p.m. In the future, Bazaar is looking to offer brunch as well.

“Come in, have fun and check out what we're doing. We're trying to do something a little bit different from everybody else,” Meyer said. “I think there's room for us to be here, and we're not trying to negate anything that anybody else is doing. We're just trying to have a different offering.”

For more information follow Bazaar on Instagram @bazaarsmtx.

In her footsteps: The mothers and daughters of TXST

to mothers and daughters of Texas State to hear their stories and experiences while attending the university.

Ann Marie Quaid studied and lived in San Marcos from 1988 to 1993. She met her husband, a Texas State ROTC student, and had a son and daughter who eventually became Bobcats as well.

On campus Ann Marie volunteered at the Child Development Center, the Family & Child Development Association and the Gamma Phi Beta sorority. Her time was centered around Greek life and social events. Although they attended the same school, she believes her time at Texas State differs from her daughters.

“I do wish that there was still some of the old [Southwest Texas State] mentality and activities," Ann Marie said. "There was something going on all the time and everyone was part of it. Technology has taken some of that away.”

Bella Quaid, a sound recording technology junior, wasn’t initially interested in TXST until she was introduced to

Originally from Dallas, Cherissa Young decided San Marcos was her permanent home while in undergraduate school. In San Marcos, she raised her family and used her two degrees to operate Small Fries Child Care for 18 years.

“I never wanted to go back to Dallas," Cherissa said. "I went back for one summer and then [returned]. I worked two or three jobs just to get through school. I ended up marrying someone local here, we started dating in 1987. Part of that was why I never left too, but it's a great town [nonetheless].”

Baylee Young attributes her decision to be a Bobcat to the comfortability of being a San Marcos local. She said the big difference between her and her mother’s experiences was largely because of the curriculum changes due to COVID-19.

the sound recording technology program by her percussion teacher in high school, leading her to audition.

Bella's social life revolves around her future career. The tight-knit and demanding nature of the program makes students bond very quickly.

“Our classes end at 9 p.m. most days and then on top of that, we're highly encouraged to go get gigs," Bella said. "A lot of it is, ‘Go out and go to this bar, hang out, talk to the sound engineer and market yourself.' "We mostly hang out at our jobs or at the recording studio.”

Though the pair have had different learning structures and experiences, they bond over a shared love of The Devil’s Backbone and Cheatham Street Warehouse.

Ann Marie owns The Childhood Center Preschool in Houston. After graduating, Bella hopes to pursue a master’s degree in Jazz Performance at Texas State.

“At least two and a half years of my degree were online," Baylee said. "The only time I would go to campus was for work or for Lambda Alpha Epsilon [events]. My undergrad was a little bit of a blur because of [COVID-19] and everything.”

Cherissa graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Finance in 1991 and a master’s in Business Administration in 2001. Baylee graduated with a bachelor’s in Psychology and Criminal Justice in 2021 and completed her master’s degree in Legal Studies in summer 2023. Baylee hopes to pursue a doctorate degree at Texas State, and Cherissa is considering returning to campus to explore what's new in business.

Cherissa said she could not be more proud of Baylee for following in her footsteps through undergraduate and graduate studies at Texas State.

From Deborah Ables, her brother, his children and her daughter Leslie Adamson, Ables' connection to Texas State runs strong.

“I was the first one to attend, and I wanted to get my degree in teaching and education, so that's why I enrolled," Ables said. "Later on, the rest of the family followed.”

Originally from Spain, Ables spent most of her time at Texas State in the language department or working part-time in San Antonio as a student teacher at Judson School District who hired her afterward in the elementary program. Adamson mirrors her mother, except while Ables focused on English language certification, she earned a bachelor's degree in Exercise and Sports Science in 2013

with a teacher’s certification and a master’s degree in education.

"When I first started at Texas State, I was pre-med and then…I switched to Exercise Sports Science because I love coaching, I loved athletics," Adamson said. “In the end I followed in her footsteps and [opened] so many more doors for me. I wouldn't have these opportunities that I’ve had and wouldn't be as successful as I am. She knew that education would open those doors for me."

Ables received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Education in 1980 and 1986. Adamson is local to San Marcos and earned the title of Physical Education Coordinator for San Marcos CISD, health teacher at Miller Middle School, and Track and Field Coach. Ables has been retired since 2012, but proudly looks on at the legacy her daughter carries on.

LIFE & ARTS Marisa Nuñez | Life and Arts Editor | starlifeandarts@txstate.edu 3 | DEFENDING THE FIRST AMENDMENT SINCE 1911 Tuesday, April 2, 2024
Front of house worker Caitlyn Crockett pours a drink at Bazaar, Friday, March 29, 2024, in San Marcos. Sound recording technology junior Bella Quaid (Left) and her mom Ann Marie (Right) pose at a concert. FROM FRONT FOOD AND DRINK The University Star reached out Ann Marie and Bella Quaid Cherissa and Baylee Young Deborah Ables and Leslie Adamson Deborah Ables (Left) and Leslie Adamson (Right) pose at commencement in 2013. Alumnus Baylee Young (Left) and her mom Cherissa (Right) pose for a photo. PHOTO COURTESY OF CHERISSA YOUNG PHOTO COURTESY OF DEBORAH ABLES PHOTO COURTESY OF BELLA QUAID PHOTO BY MARISA NUÑEZ

Hot dog sales increased by over 600% on Dollar Dog Day, according to concessions

Imagine walking into a Texas State baseball or softball game with $12 in your pocket... two hot dogs later, you’re out of money!

That is the reality for most Texas State students, as concession prices at athletic events are high.

One of the highlights for many people who attend sporting events, not just at Texas State, but anywhere in the world is the food served at concession stands.

With baseball and softball season currently ongoing, Texas State offers a variety of food at its concession stands during home games such as nachos, pretzels, French fries, sodas and more. But the most notable item on the menu is hot dogs.

Hot dogs have been associated with the game of baseball since the 1890s when Chris von der Ahe, owner of the then St. Louis Browns, first introduced the food to the world. The two have been an iconic American duo ever since.

At Texas State, one hot dog costs $6 at baseball and softball games, which is pricey, especially for college students on tight budgets.

Madison Moffitt, a sophomore biology major, said she agrees Texas State's concession prices are too high.

“Most college students don’t have a lot of money to begin with,” Moffitt said. “A lot of [students] don’t want to spend that extra money on concessions.”

According to Marco Schadel, supervisor for concessions at Texas State, the food prices at sporting events are not set by the university, but rather by Chartwells. Chartwells is responsible for all food served at Texas State whether it be at sporting events, in dining halls or anywhere else on campus.

Every season, the Texas State athletic department incorporates a marketing promotion titled "Dollar Dog Day," which is when all hot dogs during a baseball and softball game cost $1 with no tax included.

The purpose behind this promotion is to increase attendance and make the experience more enjoyable for fans.

This season, Dollar Dog Day took place during the March 5 baseball game against the University of Texas A&M at Corpus Christi and the March 8 softball game against Pennsylvania State University.

“In order to do Dollar Dog Day, [concessions] work with [Texas State] athletics to get the hot dogs cheaper,” Schadel said.

On Dollar Dog Day, students can purchase six hot dogs for the price of what one hot dog typically costs at games, which speaks to how outrageous the standard prices are.

Dollar Dog Day was a marketing success, as attendance for both games increased. According to Texas State Athletics, the attendance for the softball game on Dollar Dog Day was 605. The attendance for the following home softball game against the same opponent with standard concession prices was 542, a nearly 12% decrease.

The attendance for the baseball game on Dollar Dog Day was 1,942 according to Texas State athletics. The following home game against Sam Houston State University had an attendance of 1,693, a nearly 15% decrease.

Students must learn to care about natural areas

As San Marcos enters the spring season, the natural environment has never looked more beautiful. Bluebonnets line the roads and walking trails, the San Marcos River is recovering from a stage four drought, migratory birds are making their appearances and the native wildlife is flourishing.

At this time of year, it's important for Texas State students to learn the significance of their position at the center of San Marcos’s natural ecosystems and embrace the power of environmental stewardship.

With the warmer weather, many students may find themselves frequenting places like Sewell Park, Purgatory Creek walking trails or the glass-bottom boats at the Meadows Center. What many students may not realize, however, is they are sharing the spaces with extremely special and unique wildlife.

Annabelle Bamberger, a music education junior and environmental interpreter at the Meadows Center, said she dedicates much of her time to becoming acquainted with San Marcos's wildlife, and she is an advocate for the native species that inhabit the river.

Although Bamberger gives glassbottom boat tours to Texas State students often, she said many of them do not realize how many different endangered species reside in San Marcos.

“They know that there are salamanders [in the river], because of signs at Sewell Park, but I don’t think they know about any of the other endangered fish and species besides the salamanders,” Bamberger said.

The San Marcos River is one of the most diverse aquatic ecosystems in the

southwestern United States. Besides the threatened San Marcos Salamander and the endangered Texas Blind Salamander, other endangered aquatic life found in the San Marcos River include Fountain Darters, Texas Wild Rice and the Comal Springs Riffle Beetle. All of these species heavily depend on steady spring flow and regular conservation work from the San Marcos community.

Not only is San Marcos unique in its aquatic ecosystems, but it is also home to the endangered Golden-Cheeked Warbler, the biggest population of White-Tailed Deer in Texas, Fox Squirrels, Bald-cypress trees and more. All of these species can be seen and admired at many of San Marcos’s parks, natural areas and walking trails.

Conservation and sustainability go hand in hand with San Marcos’s environmental magnificence. As students, we must evaluate our role in living more sustainably and utilizing environmental city programs.

Amy Thomaides, community enhancement initiatives manager of the San Marcos Neighborhood Enhancement Department, said the San Marcos community can become more involved in resource recovery through limiting the amount of waste that damages the environment.

“We have household hazardous waste drop-off facilities, a pharmaceutical drop-off at the police station and a reuse warehouse across from the big H-E-B where people can drop off or pick up household items for free,” Thomaides said.

-Faith Fabian is an English sophomore

While the attendance decline may not seem staggering, it is noticeable and fair to assume Dollar Dog Day played a big part in the increased attendance for these games, given the opponents for the games weren’t of the highest caliber.

Only games against renowned schools such as Texas, Texas A&M, TCU, Texas Tech and Baylor draw larger crowds than the crowds on Dollar Dog Day this season.

Moffitt attended the softball game against Penn State and said it was the first Texas State baseball or softball game she had ever been to. She said Dollar Dog Day was a big perk for attending the game.

Moffitt also said if concession prices were affordable, she and her friends would attend games more often.

Schadel said the concession sales on Dollar Dog Day drastically differ from those of other games.

“[On March 5] we went through almost 900 hot dogs; it was crazy,” Schadel said. “At the softball game, we went through just under 400 [hot dogs].”

According to Schadel, concessions sell approximately 20 hot dogs during softball games and 150 during baseball games when the price is $6.

Concessions lowering the prices of not just hot dogs, but all food, would likely increase fan attendance at games and entice students to purchase food because it’ll better fit their budgets. As a result, it will generate more income for the university and its staff.

Texas State Athletes deserve support and if events like Dollar Dog Day bring fans in because they won't buy concessions at a normal price, then a change needs to be made.

A hot dog should not cost $6 anywhere, especially at a sporting event. Though $1 at every game might not be feasible for Chartwells, a price closer to $3 is much more affordable for students.

-David Cuevas is a journalism senior

TXST needs better active shooter preparedness

It is safe to assume the majority of college students know what a school shooting drill is due to high school regulations. However, many would not know what to do if there was a real shooting on the Texas State campus.

Several college campuses, including TXST, UT and A&M have procedures set in case of shootings. While there are plans set in place, not many people know of them. Making sure students and professors are aware of proper plans should be a priority.

Students should be thoroughly educated on what to do in the case of an active shooting since the number of mass shootings throughout the country is higher than ever before.

In addition, the number of college campus shootings is growing each year. In 2023 alone, there were 13 campus shootings resulting in at least one death. One of these shootings occurred at Prairie View A&M University, which is only about 300 miles from Texas State, San Marcos.

While this number is much smaller than the number of school shootings in grades K-12, any number of lives lost due to gun violence is too many.

Along with statistics, it is important to note that Texas State is an open campus. This means anybody can be present on campus, whether they are a student or not. Because of this, there is always the potential danger of someone bringing a weapon to campus. According to the Texas Government Code Section 411.2031, anyone with a concealed carry license is allowed to

carry on campus. While requiring a license seems to be a good way to prevent just anyone from bringing a gun on campus, there is no effective way to ensure only the people who are licensed have a gun on campus at any time.

Dani Espinoza, an environmental studies sophomore, said she thinks establishing an emergency procedure during the first week of classes would be the most effective way to educate students on this matter.

“When it’s syllabus week, just go over [campus safety] so students have that information,” Espinoza said. “It doesn’t even have to be drills, just having that information and knowing where to go.”

Espinoza said she would feel safer on campus if this was required.

The Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) is a program at Texas State found in Encino Hall that provides active shooter training courses. These are not required for students or faculty.

Larry Balding, External Relations Director of ALERRT, said students should receive the information they need in case of an active shooter during New Student Orientation, to ensure they hear the information at least one time.

"I would say to the [University Police Department], 'Do you not think that it would be beneficial to have a drill at least once a year?'," Balding said. "I would do drills during freshman orientation. That would be a great time to tell freshman at least to make them aware of what to do. Hiding under your desk isn't going to do anything."

The university must take measures to educate its students and faculty to prepare them in case there is an active shooting on campus.

-Emma Hall is a journalism sophomore

The University Star

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“[My 200th win] happening at [Ohio University], a place I truly cherished in my time [there] both as a grad student and a coach, is awesome,” Antoine said.

Taking over a team that went 9-20 the year prior to her arrival, Antoine immediately led a turnaround in her first campaign at Texas State going 17-14 in the 2011-12 season, nearly doubling the previous year's win total.

Coaching can be an effective tool to help studentathletes grow in a variety of ways, and Antoine wants nothing more than to be a guide for the girls she coaches, she said.

“My goal initially when I got into [coaching] was truly to help young women, and for them to have the same feeling I had as a student-athlete, which was to find ways to keep pushing myself, have fun playing basketball and learn to evolve to learn the game better,” Antoine said.

Reflecting on her time at Texas State and on

campus, she said there has been nothing but enjoyment and appreciation.

“It's been really fun being here at Texas State. I tell people no doubt I would love for my kids to be Texas State Bobcats,” Antoine said. “This is a great place to live, grow and get a great education. There isn't a day that goes by where I'm not grateful and thankful for being the head coach here at Texas State.”

Approaching her 14th season in San Marcos with many records, Antoine said being resilient and knowing when her time is up are important factors in her career path.

“There are definitely times that I have failed, but what is important is that I get back up and I keep working and showing [the community] I'm working hard for them to make them proud,” Antoine said. “That’s important. When that fire dies then I know it's time to retire. That fire definitely hasn’t died.”

Women's basketball aims to bounce back following disappointing 2023-24 season

Texas State's women's basketball finished the 2023-24 season with a record of 4-14 in the Sun Belt Conference and 14-18 overall.

The Bobcats came off a strong 2022-23 season where they went 23-10 overall, 13-5 in conference play and made a run in the Sun Belt Conference Championship Tournament. However, they didn’t meet that bar this year.

Texas State started off the season showing ability while going 9-12 in non-conference games, but couldn’t keep the same energy once conference play started. Even as Ja’Niah Henson provided 14.7 points per game, the Bobcats struggled.

With key players graduating this spring like graduate guards Henson, Gara Beth Self and Timia Jefferson, the Bobcats look to try and rebuild this offseason around players like junior forward Jaylin Foster, who averaged 9.4 points per game this season while starting in all 32.

The Bobcats will begin the team rebuild with incoming recruits. Texas State currently has three commits in its 2024-25 recruiting class. The class is headlined by Saniya Burks, a 5-foot 8-inch guard from Rice High School.

As a senior, Burks built an impressive resume being nominated for 2022-23 Miss Texas Basketball and 2022-23 Texas Gatorade Player of the Year. Among other accolades, she was also named to the 2023 Small Town All-America First Team.

Burks also made headlines for a game this past season

in which she scored 75 points, pulled down 19 rebounds and had 15 steals.

"Saniya is the product of two parents that played Division One Basketball," Texas State Head Coach Zenarae Antoine said. "She is a winner and a competitor in everything that she does. Her ability to score the basketball is special and fits our guard play. A huge separator in her game is her competitive spirit."

Burks’ ability to score combined with the departure of three guards who played key minutes will provide her the opportunity to see the court immediately next season. The other two members of the recruiting class are Heather Baymon, a 5-foot 8-inch guard from Mexia, Texas, and Takeria Rainey, a 5-foot 7-inch guard from Stafford, Virginia.

per game, respectively, will have to step their games up and mold further into role model positions if the team aims for a better record next year.

Having three incoming guards will help the Bobcats replace the production of the three graduate student guards leaving the program. Antoine and her coaching staff will likely add another player or two from the transfer portal during the offseason to help fill out next season's roster.

Next season, the Bobcats will be looking to rely on more players to lead their offense and improve their record from this season.

Players like junior guard Crystal Smith and junior forward Tiffany Tullis who averaged 4.1 and 7.5 points

Other returning players for Texas State include freshman forward Julia Coleman and sophomore guard Kennedy Claybrooks, who averaged 5.9 and three points per game, respectively.

There is no current news on whether senior Bobcats like Henson, Self and senior guard Sierra Dickson will remain Bobcats, or move on to their next chapter.

As of now, the Bobcats are in a rebuilding era, and look to come back stronger with a deeper vision and a bigger impact for next season.

Unexpected pitching trio lead baseball to winning record

If someone told you in January that Texas State’s (15-12, 4-4 Sun Belt Conference) weekend rotation will include redshirt junior Austin Eaton, sophomore Sam Hall and senior Drayton Brown, you may have given them a funny look. However, that is the exact trio of pitchers Head Coach Steven Trout has counted on to perform every weekend.

Many expected senior pitcher Tony Robie to play a big part of the weekend rotation this season, considering he pitched the most innings besides now-Orioles prospect Levi Wells and led regular starters in ERA with 4.33 in 2023. This hasn’t been the case, as Trout has been primarily using Robie as a weekday starter and having him come out of the bullpen on weekends.

Additionally, senior pitcher Jack Stroud and senior pitcher Peyton Zabel are other pitchers who were expected to have more of an impact on weekends, but haven’t.

Stroud started the season in the weekend rotation, making three starts before relieving in two games before suffering an in-game injury. Zabel started games in the opening series against Youngstown State University (3-23, 2-7 Horizon League) on Feb. 18 and against Washington State (16-10, 6-5 PAC-12) on Feb. 25 in the Karbach Round Rock Classic before being pushed to a bullpen/weekday-starter role.

Even though the current makeup of the weekend rotation is surprising, Trout set it this way for a reason.

Here are the current weekend starting pitchers and a deep dive into why they earned their roles:

Austin Eaton

Eaton transferred to Texas State from Navarro Community College this season. In three seasons with the Bulldogs, Eaton starred as a hitter and didn’t pitch until his final season, in which he posted an impressive 2.12 ERA with 69 strikeouts in 68 innings.

Eaton is the only Bobcat pitcher who has started a game every weekend this season. He has shown the world he deserves to be a Division One player, posting a 3.94 ERA and a 24/12 strikeout/walk ratio in 32 innings.

Eaton earned the victory in the Bobcat’s first conference game of the season, allowing one run in seven innings against Appalachian State University (16-8, 4-4 Sun Belt Conference) on Mar. 15. Trout said it was Eaton’s best game in a Bobcat uniform.

“[Eaton] was just pounding the strike zone, and he found his slider again,” Trout said. “I thought the last couple outings he hadn’t really had his dominant slider like he had in the fall and [last] spring, so they went back to work on it, and tonight he had it.”

Sam Hall

Hall transferred to Texas State from Panola College this season. In one season with the Ponies, Hall posted a 3.95 ERA and 57 strikeouts in 57 innings. In 2024, Hall has a 4.71 ERA and 23 strikeouts in 28 ⅔ innings.

Trout clearly has confidence in Hall, as his first start on the mound came against the defending national champions, Louisiana State University (20-8, 2-6 SEC West) on March 3. Hall struggled against the Tigers but bounced back with three straight starts in which he allowed only three runs in 19 ⅔ innings, including a complete game against James Madison University (16-11, 3-5 Sun Belt Conference) on March 23.

“They were getting out early in the counts, so I didn’t feel like I had to do too much,” Hall said after his complete game shutout against James Madison. “Not easy, but I got the job done.”

Hall most recently had a rough outing on Mar. 29 against a very tough Louisiana-Lafayette (19-8, 7-1 Sun Belt Conference) offense, but the 20-year-old righthander has shown promise regardless.

Drayton Brown

Brown is a transfer pitcher who seemingly came out of nowhere and has made an immediate positive impact on the team. In three seasons with Northwestern State University, Brown posted a 4.41 ERA with 179 strike -

outs and a .221 batting average against, good enough to earn a spot on the Bobcats.

Brown started the season as a bullpen arm for Texas State but impressed to the point of snatching the final weekend rotation spot. Although he has a shorter leash compared to other starting pitchers on the roster, Brown has turned heads with his performance this season, posting a 3.18 ERA in 17 innings, highlighted by a strong start against Sam Houston State (17-11, 3-5 Conference USA) on March 10 in which he allowed two runs in five innings.

“[Brown] throws strikes [and] mixes speeds,” Trout said. “[He] keeps [opposing batters] off balance and keeps you in the game.”

In an up-and-down season for Texas State, these three starting pitchers have been a bright spot on the team, leading them to a winning record. Trout will most likely keep riding with the Eaton, Hall, and Brown trio, with Robie, Zabel, Stroud and others available to start if needed.

SPORTS David Cuevas | Sports Editor | starsports@txstate.edu DEFENDING THE FIRST AMENDMENT SINCE 1911 | 5 Tuesday, April 2, 2024
Texas State sophomore right-hand pitcher Sam Hall (36) throws the ball during the game against the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, Friday, March 29, 2024, at Bobcat Ballpark. The Texas State women's basketball team huddles up during the game against Marshall, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024, at Strahan Arena.
Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023, at
Texas State women's basketball head coach Zenarae Antoine gets recognition for becoming the winningest coach in program history after a victory against Georgia State,


Fitch said the emergency department recommends residents avoid leaving their house that Monday and instead go out the weekend before for anything they may need.

“We’re encouraging people not come to work if they can work from home and to make sure their vehicles are gassed up, because people will be stopping at the gas and charging stations,” Fitch said.

Hays County Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Brayden Watson recommended mitigating unsafe situations before and after the eclipse, citing concerns about the influx of visitors potentially leading to hazardous road conditions.

“If you don’t need to be on the roads, don’t be, and if you are going to be on the roads, make sure to park in a legal area,” Watson said.

Watson said residents should have a 72-hour emergency preparedness kit, which has a three-day supply of food, water, medicine and other necessities. Watson also recommends stocking up on groceries the weekend before the eclipse to avoid travel the day of.

During an eclipse, looking directly at the sun can harm the observer’s eyes. The Hays County Office of Emergency Service (OES), city of San Marcos Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce strongly recommend avoiding looking up without the proper protective eyewear when watching this event.

According to Fitch, Hays County and San Marcos plan to put out road signs to direct traffic and inform motorists of closures or alternate routes. The Texas Department of Transportation and the city of San Marcos will have a pause on road construction and maintenance work on major corridors in the path of the eclipse.

“We're not going to detour anybody around the city,” Fitch said. “We are going to keep all our roads open so

people will have multitudes of exits when they do leave. The fire department and police will be working the regular schedule but with a few extra crews or officers in case of emergency.”

The county and city are also preparing tow trucks for standby. In case of roadside hazards, the Hays County OES are creating roadmaps of hightraffic areas for first responders and will put emergency information on the road signs, according to Watson.

According to Page Michel, president and chief executive officer of the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce, estimating traffic around businesses is difficult because a gridlock could stop circulation, but a doubled or tripled traffic flow could be possible as well.

According to the city's website, businesses should plan ahead for potential Wi-Fi or cellular service disruptions during the eclipse due to communication infrastructure possibly being at or over capacity.

“If you are a business and your entire point of sale and checking out customers is all web-based, you should be prepared that afternoon to take cash, make change [and] to make sure servers and employees know how to take a credit card with non-electronic means,” Michel said.

Fitch said the San Marcos OEM has been actively preparing for the April 8 eclipse since the annual solar eclipse in October 2023, highlighting similarities in their preparation efforts for the eclipse and the upcoming presidential debate in September.

“The only difference is the city chose not to hold any events in San Marcos during the eclipse... for the debate, we’re working with the federal government, so it’s the same thing, but [the debate is] on a much bigger scale,” Fitch said.

Michel said because the promotion of this event began in October, hotels in San Marcos and surrounding areas have been booked for months.

“This is a shared experience as part of your college and you're not going to see this for a long time to come,” Aswath said. “So, enjoy it and take advantage of that opportunity.”

Secretary of the Texas State Astronomy Club Porter Hasha said a total solar eclipse occurs when the moon blocks the sun, casting a shadow on Earth and causing temporary darkness.

“For people in the path of totality, it’s going to get pretty much completely dark, unfortunately, San Marcos is not exactly all the way in the path of totality,” Hasha said.

Due to the eclipse's rarity, an influx of visitors are expected in San Marcos before and during the event, potentially causing heavy traffic or temporary road closures.

and do grocery shopping before the eclipse.”

Aswath said transportation services such as Bobcat Shuttle will be available during the day, however delays are to be expected due to heavy traffic.

“We have a beautiful campus, beautiful spots on our campus that you can actually see the eclipse from,” Aswath said. “So why not take advantage of that and take the opportunity to stay on campus, as opposed to trying to get stuck on I-35 trying to go somewhere to get to an ideal location.”

We want to make sure most people on campus have the opportunity to experience this event because this for many of them is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see an eclipse of this magnitude here,”

Students like Kanin Okumu, a dance education freshman, are proactively planning to navigate these disruptions.

Okumu said her intention is to plan ahead for the eclipse to avoid traffic congestion and instead enjoy the experience with those around her.

“I’m a little worried about the traffic because the roads here are awful,” Okumu said. “However, I will probably try to not drive unless necessary

Hasha stressed the importance of taking proper safety precautions when viewing the eclipse. Instead of regular eyewear, specialized eye protection like solar glasses or handheld solar viewers should be purchased to prevent severe eye damage. “Do not look straight into the sun with your bare eyes; and if you are trying to take a picture with your phone, be wary of that because the sun can still damage the phone's camera sensors,” Hasha said.

Texas has not witnessed a total solar eclipse in 176 years, with the next one expected to occur in 2044.

ECLIPSE Blake Leschber| News Editor | starnews@txstate.edu DEFENDING THE FIRST AMENDMENT SINCE 1911 | 6
April 2,
Scan the QR code for more information on San Marcos eclipse resources.

San Marcos to host celestial events for 2024 Solar Eclipse

On April 8, a total solar eclipse will be visible across North America, sending the city of San Marcos and Texas State University into daytime darkness. According to NASA, the solar eclipse area of totality will put certain Texas regions in complete darkness for up to 4 minutes and 27 seconds. This celestial event is a oncein-a-lifetime experience for some, as the next total solar eclipse is set to occur in 2044.

San Marcos is situated in the path of the solar eclipse offering students and the public a prime viewing opportunity. Many businesses and cities in Texas, including San Marcos, will offer spots to experience the solar eclipse.

Texas State Events

Chase Blount, a physics senior and president of the astronomy club, said the solar eclipse is a celestial event that no one should miss. The astronomy club plans to attend the Kerrville Eclipse Festival at Louise Hays Park.

"The astronomy club plans to bring four solar telescopes," Blount said. "Three of the telescopes will be for the public to view the eclipse, but one will be for us to take pictures of the eclipse once it starts all the way until it ends so we can merge them together and create a timelapse video of the eclipse."

The festival is free and open to the public. NASA will broadcast the eclipse live at the event.

Blount said the astronomy club plans to leave a solar telescope with Student Involvement for “Total Eclipse of the Heart of Campus” an event for students from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at George’s in the LBJ Student Center.

Campus Recreation is hosting a watch party at University Camp at 1000 University Road in Wimberley, Texas. In addition to a view of the eclipse, University

Camp offers use of the campsites and fire pits on a firstcome, first-served basis.

Viewers at University Camp do not have to be affiliated with Texas State University to watch the eclipse.

Sharing memories with those that are up there with us and capturing that moment that we probably won't see again in a while; that's kind of exciting."

Tanger Outlets

The Tanger Outlets is hosting a Solar Eclipse Viewing Party from noon to 2:00 p.m in front of H&M and Tommy Hilfiger.

The event includes complimentary space-themed arts and crafts, food trucks, yard games, giveaways and more. Eventgoers can receive a pair of certified solar eclipse glasses through donating a canned good, which will be given to Hays County Food Bank.

Additional sales will also be available at retailers including Old Navy, Sunglass Hut and more.

Roughhouse Brewing

Roughhouse Brewing will host a Total Eclipse Watch Party from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at 680 Oakwood Loop. The event is free and open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis.

Music by local band Kelany and the All-Nighters will play from noon to 3 p.m. Guests are encouraged to bring chairs or blankets. Free eclipse glasses will be given

to the first 100 people in attendance.

Middleton Brewing

Middleton Brewing opens at 10 a.m. on April 8 to host a free eclipse watch party at 101 Oakwood Loop.

The brewery will open its upstairs deck for attendees to view the eclipse but seating is limited to 50. Other outdoor areas at the brewery are also available.

The brewery offers complementary solar eclipse glasses and beer specials. Middleton Brewing encourages guests to bring their own seating.

Wonder World Cave and Adventure Park

Wonder World Cave and Adventure Park is selling tickets for its solar eclipse watch party from noon to 2 p.m. at 1000 Prospect St. The park will open its tower and observation deck to a limited number of viewers.

"We're opening up the tower and the observation deck... for a two-hour time slot; [guests] are welcome to bring [their] own food, beverages and chairs," Kristin Williams, the owner and operator of Wonder World Cave and Adventure Park said. "We'll have music going up there. The ticket includes solar eclipse glasses and a train through the wildlife park and the two-hour observation deck that [guests] can hang out at [their] own leisure."

Williams said she is excited to chime in on this opportunity to host an event to view the solar eclipse with guests.

"Sharing memories with those that are up there with us and capturing that moment that we probably won't see again in a while; that's kind of exciting," Williams said.

The park will sell 30 tickets. According to Williams, about 10 have already been sold.

ECLIPSE Marisa Nuñez | Life and Arts Editor | starlifeandarts@txstate.edu DEFENDING THE FIRST AMENDMENT SINCE 1911 | 7 Tuesday, April 2, 2024
STAR SNAPS Kobe Arriaga | Multimedia Editor | starmultimedia@txstate.edu 8 | DEFENDING THE FIRST AMENDMENT SINCE 1911 Tuesday, April 2, 2024
(Right) Computer science graduate Usha Dadi (right) recieves information about Texas State Campus Recreation from Marketing and Promotions coordinators Jessica Weiss (left) and Ronnie Polanco (Center), Wednesday, March 27, 2024, at the summer and off-campus job fair in LBJ Student Center Ballroom. PHOTO BY MEG BOLES (Above) Locals float and enjoy the river on a sunny day, Sunday, March 31, 2024, at Sewell Park.
Dean of Texas State Honors College Heather Galloway throws out the first pitch ahead of the baseball game versus the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, Saturday, March 30, 2024, at Bobcat Ballpark.
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