Powerful crafts careen over the water at breakneck speeds as Marble Falls Lakefest celebrates its 20th anniversary with an adrenaline-infused lineup of drag-boat races. More than 120 boats will showcase their hefty seahorsepower, with some skimming the lake at more than 270 miles per hour and covering a quarter mile in fewer than five seconds—rattling the chests of spectators and encouraging rampant UFO conspiracy theories among fish. A carnival atmosphere replete with food, souvenirs, impromptu contests, and a rowboat support group satisfies spectators between races, and Friday and Saturday evenings complement the drag-race ruckus with live music performances. Once the last vessel has churned up its last flaming wake-trail across the water, attendees can take in the surrounding hill country, which brims with parks, wineries, and historical sites.
As the AHL affiliate of their big-league Dallas namesake, the Texas Stars spared no time claiming their birthright. In its very first season—2009–10—the team conquered the Western Conference, hoisting the Robert W. Clarke Trophy and earning a place in the Calder Cup finals. Since every faceoff was past the newborn Stars’ bedtime, they ultimately fell short of the league championship, but they continue to entertain crowds of up to 6,800 at the Cedar Park Center.
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The Social City Dash puts smart phones to good use during its urban adventure race. Teams of two turn to Twitter and Facebook to solve clues and complete tasks, harnessing the power of their social networks to tackle challenges that take them all over the city. As they race to beat the clock, participants learn new facts about their town and also raise money to support a local charity.
Since its origins as a converted parking garage, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has ushered film-lovers of all breeds into its auditoriums, even gaining a following among Hollywood legends; Quentin Tarantino has been known to host five-day movie marathons at Alamo. The theater has earned that reputation by making moviegoing a personal experience, from the menu of handcrafted snacks and locally brewed beer to the completely ad-free presentations before shows. Alamo?s ninja servers pick up written food and drink orders throughout the movie and serve moviegoers directly at their seat. The staff enforces a strict no-talking, no-texting policy by kicking out any offenders, falling just short of yanking them from their seats with a giant's shepherd's crook.
Both first-run blockbusters and classics are projected onto Alamo's silver screens in crisp 35-millimeter or digital format. Meanwhile, surround speakers immerse audiences in the cinematic soundscape, whether they're seated in one of the expansive theaters afforded to blockbuster reels or the more intimate spaces reserved for indie films wound around tiny bobbins. Despite Alamo's vow of silence, fan-centric Quote-Along and Sing-Along nights encourage guests to shout their favorite lines, and actors, directors, and other celebrities often attend special screenings to lead in-depth discussions. These exclusive events have led to acclaim for Alamo from publications such as Entertainment Weekly, which called it ?one of America's most fanatically unique moviegoing experiences,? and Wired, which opined that it "might just be the coolest movie theater in the world."