City orders Fort Worth Botanic Garden to permit controversial group to use venue

After the Fort Worth Botanic Garden had denied the True Texas Project use of venue to celebrate group’s 15th birthday, the City of Fort Worth reinstated the event for July 12.

In a letter written Friday by city attorney Leann Guzman, the garden was ordered to reverse the cancellation of the event, stating that the city owns the garden.

The event will be scheduled for its original dates, July 12 to July 13.

“Bet those 3 speakers who were shaking in their boots and canceled feel stupid now,” said Julie McCarty, CEO and founder of the True Texas Project, in a Facebook post Friday. “We will easily replace them, and the ticket sales are steady as ever.”

When the True Texas Project initially publicized celebrating the organization’s birthday at the venue, the garden took to Facebook stating the event would not be held there.

The Garden “celebrates the diversity of our community and rejects all forms of hate speech, discrimination, or bigotry,” its post read.

The garden’s decision followed a story posted Tuesday morning by the Texas Tribune that outlined the event’s agenda, which included sessions on “Multiculturalism & The War On White America” and “Great Replacement Theory.”

Formally the NE Tarrant Tea Party, The True Texas Project was added to a national list of extremist groups in 2022.

The Texas Tribune also reported that Don Huffines, who runs the conservative think tank Huffines Liberty Foundation and was briefly listed on the page for the event, pulled out following its report.

True Texas Project has previously hosted Tarrant County leaders at events including last year, when County Judge Tim O’Hare, District Attorney Phil Sorrells and Sheriff Bill Waybourn talked about the election integrity unit at a North Richland Hills church.