Fanny Kerwich, Lone Star Circus’s founder and current creative director, was born with the circus in her blood. An eighth-generation member of a renowned French circus family, she has been performing since age 6, delighting international audiences at Paris’s Lido and Moulin Rouge, Germany’s Circus Roncalli, and San Francisco’s Teatro ZinZanni.
Fanny’s performing experience and artistic vision now guide the nonprofit Lone Star Circus, which is a two-branched operation. Its performance troupe’s grace and athleticism shine during shows such as the upcoming winter spectacle, Cirque Banquisté. The circus’s school hosts classes for youngsters and adults, teaching them how to swing from trapezes, scale silks, and contort their frames so they can more accurately pantomime what Gumby would look like during a high-speed car chase.
Imagine the moment when a shy, introverted young girl steps in front of a room full of people for the first time and speaks with confidence and clarity. This is a regular occurrence at Drama Kids International, where experienced teachers use a unique, copyrighted curriculum to help shape and focus outgoing children or draw shy children out of their shells. Classes for kids as young as 3 refine speech techniques, dramatic movement, and imagination, giving them the confidence to perform in front of an audience or finally ask their parents to change their names to Thespis. For older kids, aged 12–18, Drama Kids International offers the DKI Acting Academy, where serious theater kids can expand their speaking, acting, and auditioning skills through exercises and performances.
From its first days as a converted parking garage to its time as a host for Quentin Tarantino's five-day movie marathons, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has ushered film-lovers of all breeds into its atypical auditoriums. The theaters subvert the industry standard by offering locally brewed beer and fine wines, a rotating menu of handcrafted snacks and desserts, and an advertisement-free experience. A long table stretches in front of every row of seats, enabling waiters to unobtrusively pick up written food orders throughout the night.
An even more refreshing break from the standard moviegoing experience is the strict no-talking, no-texting policy enforced by Alamo Drafthouse staff and an enormous shepherd's crook—with a few notable exceptions. For example, fan-centric Quote-Along and Sing-Along nights encourage guests to shout their favorite lines, and appearances by actors, directors, and other film celebrities append screenings with in-depth discussions. These exclusive events have helped build Alamo Drafthouse's reputation among cinephiles across the country, leading to nods from 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."
Alamo Drafthouse's schedule balances first-run blockbusters with silver-screen classics, projecting them in crisp 35-millimeter or digital format. Surround sound submerges audiences in the cinematic landscape, whether they're seated in one of the intimate theaters reserved for indie screenings or the more expansive spaces afforded to Hollywood epics.
One might assume that 40 acres of meadowland in Parker, Texas, carries a certain tranquility and peacefulness. That is, unless, that chunk of land has been transformed into a gigantic battleground for paintball wars. Fort Paintball has done just that, divvying up its real estate into nine fields, highlighted by 5- and 10-man Lego fields and a Big Game field. On the expansive fields, competitors duck behind oil barrels and massive spools, dodging shots and acorns launched by squirrels who want to get in on the action. Players can either strap on their own gear or utilize rental packages that include guns, rounds, and masks.