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The United Way of Denton County and the Greater Denton Arts Council won’t be staging a New Year’s Eve gala and casino night this year.

The two nonprofits staged “Lil D NYE” in 2016 and 2017. The event was the only major downtown New Year’s Eve event we can recall in our 20-plus years in Denton.

But fundraisers like this are a lot of work, and we won’t knock these local nonprofits for putting staff, volunteer and organizational energy toward different priorities.

No worries, though. You can find New Year’s Eve gatherings in local bars and venues.

Donna Trammell, a longtime Denton arts supporter and leader, heeded the call when North Texas resident and theater volunteer Terri Hagar Scherer needed a campaign tune. Trammell has written more parodies of familiar songs than we can number, and she changed up the words to the Village People’s “YMCA” in a tribute to Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke. The ditty cheers for O’Rourke, who has put in serious mileage in his campaign to unseat Republican Sen. Ted Cruz. At Marine Park in Fort Worth, a group of campaign volunteers and Beto-backers even spelled out the candidate’s name, a la the Village People. The video from the Marine Park performance went viral, made Fox News and even got conservative pundit Ben Shapiro to cringe.

We admit it. We were curious when we passed Denton County Commissioners Andy Eads and Hugh Coleman having a disagreement in the Denton County Transportation Authority parking lot last Thursday. Gentlemen, just remember that Ben Franklin said: “Critics are our friends, they show us our faults.”

Some local blue candidates went green on Saturday, participating in the University of North Texas homecoming parade, but no Republican candidates were in the mix. We spotted two local Democratic candidates in the parade — Linsey Fagan, running for the U.S. House of Representatives District 26, and Keri Anne Caruthers, who is running for Justice of the Peace Precinct 1 — plus a car with signs for Beto O’Rourke. We wonder if the Republicans were just already tailgating for the big game? Or have they erroneously bought into the cable news chant that anyone under 30 who is in college is a socialist?

Take note: If you want to see a mid-morning movie at Alamo Drafthouse on Election Day, change your plans. The cinema franchise will open for later afternoon screenings to give employees time to vote.

Our Daily Bread, Denton’s nonprofit soup kitchen, needs some help. The downtown outreach has a hygiene closet stocked with items for its clients. The nonprofit recently reported that it had run out of cough drops, deodorant, laundry detergent, safety razors, socks, toilet paper and vitamins. You can drop off these items at the soup kitchen, located on the first floor of St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 300 W. Oak St. Donations can be made between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Eight 30 Records, an Austin-based label, is working on The Messenger: A Tribute to Ray Wylie Hubbard. The tribute album has two tracks already recorded — Bobby Bare took on the unforgettable “Snake Farm” and Scott H. Biram covers “Chickens.” Hubbard, a UNT alumnus, is an iconic singer-songwriter who has a knack for spinning songs about familiar characters with the troubles (and the triumphs) we’ve all had ourselves.

Matt Grigsby, a Denton resident, was walking in North Lakes Park a week ago. He thought about taking a breather on a bench.

Too bad it was nearly submerged in water.

Parting shot

“Tell me a musician who’s got rich off digital sales. Apple’s doing pretty good though, right?”

— Prince, in 2015

Denton Dammit is an old-fashioned gossip column about people, places and things in and around Denton. Send your submissions to Lucinda Breeding at

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