Under the new management of Tom Lawless, the 2011 Hooks—the Double-A affiliate of the Houston Astros—look to proclaim bat-swinging dominance in the Texas League. Baseball supporters can claim seats at Whataburger Field, which is built to reflect the feel of a classic ballpark and can hold about 7,000 Hooks fans and three times as many foam fingers. Two wristbands adorn arms and grant access to extracurricular excursions in the Driscoll Children's Hospital Kids Zone, featuring a rock-climbing wall and a chimp-free jungle gym. Along with being able to see the USS Lexington and the Texas State Aquarium from inside the park, fans can enjoy breath-robbing views of the Harbor Bridge and mascots removing their comically oversize heads to observe the National Anthem. After the game, fans can trade their baseball caps for 10-gallon hats as they take in a concert by Tejano rockers Texas Tornados or Green River Ordinance, a quintet of aspiring environmental attorneys moonlighting as talented musicians.
Kicking off the 2012 season, both the men's and women's teams at Texas A&M University–Corpus Christi storm lanes and drain buckets as they face off against the rest of the Southland Conference. Head Coach Robert Robinson plans to help his women's squad rebound from last year's setbacks and return them to 2010's deep run to the conference-tournament final. Junior guard Jessica Jammer paces her sneakered mates by dropping points that frequently total double digits, helping expand both the dreams and counting skills of aspiring athletes in the stands.
Stocked with a roster of talented young puck manipulators, the IceRays are taking on their fellow South Division skaters from Wichita Falls as they fight for a chance to victoriously hoist the Robertson Cup and dump ice water on head coach Brent Hughes. Fans can also enjoy special half-priced domestic drafts while enjoying excellent views of the NAHL action in the horseshoe-shaped arena.
Formerly located in Tulsa, the Talons relocated their roost to San Antonio’s Alamodome for the 2012 season and soon commanded the skies, placing first in the AFL’s National Conference during their first regular season in Texas. As the players tackle opponents and lob passes on the 50-yard field, the Talons’ mascot, Swoop, pumps up fans while anxiously hoping they don’t crack the eggs incubating under their seats.
Elton John. Dolly Parton. Dave Matthews Band. Harlem Globetrotters. These are just a handful of celebrated acts that have descended upon Winston-Salem Entertainment Sports Complex over the years. The sprawling event center remains a go-to destination for visitors who want to catch a first-rate concert, root for their favorite sports team, or get an autography from their favorite gym towel.