By now, you’re hopefully looking forward to reading our #SoAustin News recaps every month, but in case you’re new to the column, this is where we share our favorite weird monthly news stories.

Our first #SoAustin piece focused on the many strange characters, critters, and crime sprees that Austin saw in February 2016, while our second installment reviewed the stunning resolution of the Great and Terrible Taco War between Austin and San Antonio, plus SXSW craziness, including Obama’s historic visit, which effectively locked down the city despite Mayor Steve Adler’s best efforts.

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SXSW might be over, but that doesn’t mean things got any less weird this April — and we’re prepared to prove it! Behold…

Austin dogs pawsitively dominated the news

Everyone’s talking about the car wreck that happened at Barton Springs and Riverside on April 26, but not because of the accident itself — it’s because of the dog who fled the scene and was hit by another car blocks away. Happily, locals quickly moved the badly injured dog to safety until his owner (also bleeding) could arrive. Plus, AFD’s uniforms were total heroes in the way they handled the situation to get both owner and pup timely medical care.

That same day, Justin Theroux gave his fans even more reasons to love him when he posted a photo of a pit bull under the care of Austin Pets Alive! to his Instagram profile. 12 year-old Izzy was having trouble getting adopted, so Theroux gave her some facetime and encouraged his followers to consider adopting her. “Old pitties need homes too,” he wrote in the image caption. Love!


Earlier in April, Austin Humane Society found a black dachshund named “Tank” and was able to reunite him with his owner, Barbara McFarland. Apparently, the little guy bolted during a supervised front yard bathroom break in Fort Worth after watching McFarland leave for a trip. Somehow, he turned up in ATX not one but three friggin’ years later. Crazy!

And that wasn’t the only touching pet reunion we witnessed in Austin this month. There was also some strange business involving a lost pet pot-bellied pig! Austinites took to social media — specifically the Austin Lost and Found Pets Page on Facebook — to locate Hammy’s owner when the pig was found wandering around a neighborhood along South 1st Street after a big thunderstorm. We’re so glad that Hammy is safe at home now!

This month, we cried and laughed

https://www.facebook.com/WillieNelson/photos/a.131673688452.129603.12597103452/10154185689748453/?type=3&theater

Back in January, we all mourned when rock legend David Bowie died — some among us were so moved, in fact, that they erected a technically-illegal street sign memorial in his honor. Well, the legendary Prince passed away this month and Austin literally rained purple for at least a week. We also lost another notable musician this month; Merle Haggard, country singer-songwriter and longtime friend of our very own Willie Nelson, ended this leg of his journey too.

Prince performing “Purple Rain” in Austin

Merle Haggard live from Austin, Texas

However, we were able to take comfort in a piece of wonderful news. Willie Nelson just celebrated his 83rd birthday! You may remember that Nelson marked his 81st birthday by earning a fifth-degree black belt in Gongkwon Yusul at Master Martial Arts. Well, apparently he’s still feeling great and those are glad tidings. Happy birthday, Willie!

We saw some pretty genius April Fools Day jokes

The second report doesn’t necessarily represent set-in-stone facts, but it does hint at possible awesomeness that could be heading in our direction. According to The Austin Chronicle, the Obamas are mulling over a move to Austin after Barack steps out of office. Granted, they published the story on April Fools Day, so it’s probably just a hoax… but since no one official has really stepped up to discredit the claim, we’re choosing to dream!

And there’s also the matter of the Texas Rangers relocating to ATX… wait, that was a joke too. Oh well!

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