For more than 130 years, the YMCA has worked to facilitate growth for individuals as well as communities by providing social-enrichment programs that promote honesty, respect, and responsibility. YMCA of Greater San Antonio, which features locations throughout the metropolitan area, helps people improve their lives with healthy living programs that offer inclusive training classes as well as lifelong learning classes. Youth development initiatives and childcare services allow children as well as teens to develop positive behaviors while exploring their interests in a safe, supportive environment. The centers also encourage social responsibility by providing opportunities to support local communities through volunteerism and charitable giving.
As the Spanish translation of Raices de Arte Espanol attests, owners Carmen and Jose Linares each have strong roots in the arts. Born in Spain, Jose began playing guitar professionally at 12 years old, traveling the world to perform for icons such as President John F. Kennedy and Princess Grace of Monaco. Dancing by age 3, Puerto Rican–born Carmen trained in New York with the American Ballet Theatre, toured with the ballet companies of Philadelphia and San Juan, and began teaching flamenco in San Antonio in the 1970s. Today, the couple shares the art of flamenco with others at their studio, where students apply their own expressive twists to footwork and even wield castanets to clack out rhythms or Morse-code messages to one another as they dance.
Alamo Bike Shop provides bike rentals, repairs, and parts to get tourists and locals alike cycling merrily through the streets of San Antonio. Rentals allow explorers to choose from an inventory of quality comfort cruisers and K2 mountain bikes. To keep cyclists' heads safe, Alamo Bike Shop outfits renters with helmets as well as locks to prevent cycles from sneaking off to go hunting for armadillos. Kids 10 years and older can also get a bike rental suited to their smaller size; Alamo Bike Shop requires all riders under 18 don helmets to protect developing noggins. Check the shop's site for a list of San Antonio attractions to explore on rented wheels, including the San Antonio Museum of Art, Brackenridge Park, or that great trash can on Elmira Street.
As you approach the gleaming silver letters on the art deco–style sign of Deco Pizzeria, you also step into a cloud of aromas of foods from across the country. The casual eatery infuses pizzas, calzones, and sandwiches with flavors representing the East and West Coasts, as well as the South. Chefs hand-craft the dough for Italian-inspired pizzas before dressing them in 30 toppings such as pepperoni and sausage or cream-sauce-drizzled crawfish. A small selection of sandwiches includes philly cheesesteaks and shrimp po' boys. Alternatively, the kitchen takes requests for its pasta dishes, which can be prepared with five styles of sauce and three meat toppings. To complement these dishes, Deco Pizzeria curates a list of local Texas brews and imported beers and wines. For brunch, they offer chicken and waffles and grits served with homemade English muffins; San Anto pizza topped with barbacoa, avocado, and pico de gallo; and a build-your-own breakfast calzone.
For more than 20 years, Alamo Area Mutual Housing Association's mission has been to develop and manage affordable housing in San Antonio and Bexar County. Now, as a way to give back and further support the community, its House Our Heroes 5K helps provide safe and stable housing to veterans who have experienced homelessness; proceeds from the race also supply them with financial assistance and an extensive roster of services and support. While being cheered on by volunteers and local celebrities, runners circle Woodlawn Lake Park, an 100-year-old natural oasis in San Antonio.
The inspiring trainers at each MetaBody location lead troops of workouteers in results-oriented workouts several times weekly. Sweat sessions utilize a variety of exercises and disciplines to produce full-body results in a supportive environment, ideal for beginners and hard-core core-hardeners alike. During any class, motivational instructors will use the instinctual distrust of routine to their advantage. Begin a day of litigating with a refreshing early-morning boot-camp session, or wind down by burning evidence and pounds with a late-evening yoga class. Muscles are kept guessing with new and challenging moves during each session, so participants never fall into a boring, ineffective routine, such as regular teeth brushing. In addition to the fitness classes, students receive a success guide to help prepare for imminent pound loss, a nutrition guide, and a $100 gift certificate for individual coaching. Because the pass sets a 10-class cap at any given location, roving fitness mavens can further shake up their workout regimens by vetting a series of classes or instructors that work best for them.