Posted by: wheelywonka | October 24, 2011

Three Events in Downtown San Antonio that Make Me Love This City

D and I recently completed a move we’ve planned for many years.  This involved selling our large home in suburbia and moving to a downtown condo as soon as the last of our children headed off to college.  We’ve always loved the urban lifestyle, going back to the days when she went to graduate school in New Jersey and I worked at a bank on Wall Street.   I know not everyone shares this opinion, but I’m convinced man is a social being, and we reach our apogee as a species participating in the vibrant, flash mob events only found in our greatest cities.  In other words, we were not engineered to sit alone on a couch with 3D glasses on watching Shrek 15…  Well, San Antonio’s downtown has a long way to go to catch up with New York and London, but there’s a groundswell of energy and effort to make it more than just a collection of chain hotels and tacky tourist traps surrounding the Alamo.   We’ve been downtown full time for approximately three months now, and to celebrate, I’ll describe three events that occurred downtown this weekend that make me love this city more each passing day.  Each event occurred in and around HemisFair Park, which has some much potential to be the heart of the city, if they just added a little more green space to it (more on this in a later W2 blog).

A Run Along the Riverwalk

The first event was a 8 mile training ride I did on Saturday morning.  I still harbor ambitions of running the half in the San Antonio Rock and Roll Marathon coming up in November, although there are many distractions along the way (such as D renting a condo at the beach during race weekend…).  I left our building, ran past the fountains at the base of the Tower of the Americas and through the park, and then on to that gorgeous, peaceful section of the Riverwalk south of downtown that winds through King Williams to Blue Star.  At Blue Star, I got on the new Mission Reach, and ran past the old Lone Star Brewery into the heart of the South Side.  The recent rains have restored a green to the Riverbanks such that it almost feels like a second Spring.     At the 4 mile mark, I turned around and retraced my steps, watching the skyline of downtown become larger and larger the closer I got.  It was an incredible run, although I admit I did fade at the end and my legs felt like rubber for the rest of the day.

Route from my morning run along the Riverwalk captured by my Garmin

Light the Night

On Saturday night, I volunteered to be the event photographer for the volunteers from my company who were participating in the Light the Night event.  This event attacts 10,000 people to raise money and awareness for cancer research.  The illuminations along the route really emphasized the theme.

Walkers under the arch at the Light the Night event

Illuminated shapes at the base of the Tower

Dog dressed like Captain Jack Sparrow

Zombies at the Alamo

Finally, on Sunday night D and I were walking our dog when we stumbled across thousands of folks dressed as zombies marching from the HemisFair arch to Alamo plaza.  After D and the dog returned home, I hopped on my bike and pedaled through a sea of zombies for about an hour.  Lots of cheap fun, my friends!

Zombies at the Alamo!

Perfect slogan for our times

Great weekend to be downtown.  3 weeks until the Marathon!

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