Just off a straight stretch of the Trinity River, the sounds of laughter and victorious whooping grow louder. A curious look toward the hubbub yields a vision rarely seen in the city—helmet-clad athletes of all ages splash along the water's surface, launching their bodies in what looks like the offspring of water-skiing and snowboarding onto ramps, jumps, and railings that protrude from the water's surface like geometric islands. It's all part of a regular afternoon at Cowtown Wakepark, the watery brainchild of 20-year wakeboarding enthusiast Tommy Fambrough. During the course of three years, Tommy slowly formed the labyrinth of water-bound obstacles that visitors enjoy today, earning acclaim from the Trinity River Vision Authority's revitalization project for his riverside paradise's part in keeping the area an accessible and productive part of the community.
Each wakeboarding run begins when visitors strapped into their Liquid Force boards grab a cable and are pulled from the shore-side wooden platform across the water, cutting through the river's calm surface and pausing only to heckle passing fish. Spectators stick to the shore under covered tents and at picnic tables, or recline on the water's surface inside tented rafts. Onsite instructors can show first-timers the ropes, and also lead summer day camps to instill children aged 7–16 with wakeboarding, kneedboarding, and wakeskating basics.
Can plants help save the planet? That's a question the researchers at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas ask themselves every day. The institute has been around since 1987, and since that time it has become a center that uses conservation ideas and plant research for the greater good. Whether researchers are discovering new plant species or coming up with solutions to pollution using botanics, they stay curious about the plant world and then share their findings with the public. Visitors to the campus can also tour the super-efficient facility—built in 2011—and explore its herbarium, libraries, and expansive grounds.
Tours with Classic Carriages have been clip-clopping through the streets of Texas for more than 20 years, and charming excursionists with reliable animal chauffeurs and well-tended carriages. Nab up to three friends and troll around town inside of a luxurious open-air carriage. Wheel-riders can wave like parade princesses at jealous bipedaling compatriots as the cheerful driver steers his prancing team of elegant equines through Fort Worth's scenic downtown cityscape. If poor weather interrupts plans for a stormless sojourn, the top of the carriage can be pulled up, allowing looky-loos romantic views while leaving them undampened by rain or the drool of a hungry cloud.
As hosts of the world-renowned Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, the Van Cliburn Foundation has shown a commitment to classical music cultivation. From Bass Performance Hall's mezzanine or orchestra II seating (back right, left, or center orchestra section, typically in rows BBB–B), experience the euphoric euphony of award-winning mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, who makes her Dallas–Fort Worth debut, MacArthur Fellow Stephen Hough, or Olga Kern, the returning Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Gold Medalist.
Consider activities that take about an hour to complete: a trip to the grocery store, a relaxing massage, watching a favorite television show. Rarely, if ever, do haunted houses fall into this category—unless you're talking about Cutting Edge Haunted House in Fort Worth. In 2009, the attraction’s length caught the attention of Guinness World Records, which deemed Cutting Edge the longest walk-through haunted house in the world.
Looming in a section of the city dubbed “Hell’s Half Acre,” Cutting Edge populates an abandoned meatpacking plant that was originally built in the late 1920s. The plant’s equipment is still fully operational, and still resides inside—only today, it processes humans. To escape such a grisly fate, guests must grope through a multi-storied labyrinth replete with unthinkable horrors such as live monsters, realistic special effects, and salsas made in New York City. Cutting Edge is so terrifying, in fact, that it even earned the top spot on HauntedHouseRatings.com's list of the best haunted attractions in 2013.
Camp Fire USA’s mission is to build caring, confident youth and future leaders. Our purpose is to provide opportunities for all children and youth, and those who care for them, to realize their potential and become caring, self-directed individuals.