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AM Update: Memorial Day Roundup, Austin Planetarium Plans, Spurs' Streak Continues

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Memorial Day 2012 Events

Central Texans have several opportunities today to honor veterans for their service. Ceremonies are being held at the Texas State Cemeteryin Austin and at Veterans Memorial Plaza in Sun City in Georgetown.

The City of Austin is expecting between 2,500 and 3,000 runners to pound the pavement today for the Capital of Texas Triathlon. You might think you'll catch a break from traffic troubles because of lighter than usual holiday traffic, but the Triathlon is causing some downtown street closures until approximately 3 p.m.

Hitting the road or the water today? Make sure to take a look at our public safety tips and warnings this Memorial Day.

Austin Planetarium Reaching for the Stars

The driving forces behind the proposed Austin Planetarium say they're working with private sector development firm KUD International to bring a 157,000 square foot mixed-use facility to the museum district in Austin. Their plan calls for the largest planetarium in Texas, an interactive science museum, and technology center to be built near the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum and Blanton Museum of Art. The complex would also include a 47-story residential building, restaurants, retail space, and over 1,000 underground parking spaces.

"This partnership is the opportunity we have been working very long and hard to achieve," Planetarium Executive Director Torvald Hessel says in a statement. "By attracting a major international development firm, we have shown that, as a grassroots organization, we can do this."

Organizers say the project will cost $240 million. Planetarium promoters had been pushing for funding to be included in the city’s bond election this November, but the funds were not included in the most recent bond proposal, totaling $400 million.  

The next step: the Planetarium says it will continue fundraising while the state ponders the proposal to construct the complex at North Congress Avenue and Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard.

Spurs Take Game One in NBA Western Conference Finals

The San Antonio Spurs came from behind to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 101-98 in Game One of the NBA Western Conference Finals. Former Texas Longhorn Kevin Durant led the Thunder with 27 points. Game Two is Tuesday night. The Spurs have won 19 games in a row.

Jennifer Stayton is the local host for NPR's "Morning Edition" on KUT. Got a tip? Email her at Follow her on X @jenstayton.
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