Every year, the museum inducts former college players and coaches into its pantheon of stellar veterans of the sport, including luminaries who went on to acclaimed professional careers such as Jackie Robinson, Branch Rickey, and Jim Abbott. The 2011 inductees, chosen by a committee of baseball experts who all claim to have invented the curve ball, include Terry Francona, a Golden Spikes award winner at Arizona and current general manager of the Boston Red Sox, and Dick Groat, former Duke shortstop, MVP of the National League, and member of the 1960 world-champion Pittsburgh Pirates.
Since 1965, the devoted team at The Colony Frame and Gallery has helped locals protect and artfully display their most precious photographs, paintings, prints, and more. Two certified picture framers administer the shop's framing services, using their extensive experience to find the most ideal ends to each client's distinctive framing endeavors. Launch the personalized process by stopping in the store with project ideas, questions, gravy, or other enclosure-seeking substances tucked inside your fedora. Clients can peruse an extensive stock of mounting materials for inspiration or talk with a knowledgeable employee about a custom-designed and handcrafted frame for hard-earned diplomas or prized chat-room transcripts.
“It’s the rare visitor who won't discover here that his or her ethnic group has contributed to the history of Texas,” noted the New York Times in its description of the Institute of Texan Cultures. The 26 different ethnic and cultural groups represented at the educational center incline one to agree with the Times. The article went on to list the institute as a top San Antonio attraction due to its “imaginative, hands-on displays” and kid-friendly features, including an adobe home and one-room schoolhouse. Along with heritage festivals and other events, the institute features both long-term and rotating exhibits, as well as a photo archive with more than three million images.
An autumn harvest fair. A Memorial Day celebration, punctuated by a 21-gun salute. A kids' summer camp complete with archery, swimming, and a meet-and-greet with a friendly raccoon mascot. These are just a few of the events hosted by Grand Prairie Parks & Rec, a department that has garnered a Gold Medal from the National Recreation and Parks Association. Its recreational facilities––including a pool with an aquatic climbing wall––and frequent social events bring the city together year round. Under the bright sun or starry skies, visitors can dance at a concert in the park, rather than just dancing to the rhythmic creak of a swing set. For longer excursions, the 791 lakeside acres of Loyd Park feature 221 campsites replete with cabins, picnic areas, and trails. There, visitors can paddle out on the water in a rented kayak, play a game of volleyball, or sleep overnight under the stars.
It's a scene you'd expect to find on a private island. A canopy shades a beach party, where guests pull cold beverages from a cooler and munch grilled meats prepared over open charcoals by cooks. Just off the shore, a boat blasts music, giving a soundtrack to the festivities and making nearby pirates regret canceling their satellite radio subscription.
North Texas Lake Charters' crew creates this oasis at Lake Ray Robert's party cove. Another one of their boats ferries party guests to and from the ramp at Isle Du Bois State Park. From this launch point, the company's captains take passengers on various aquatic adventures. Speedboats pull wake boarders and water-skiers, while fishing boats carry anglers out in search of a prized catch.
Since opening in 1996, the South Texas Botanical Gardens & Nature Center has grown like a weed, from 1 to 182 acres, providing a home for thousands of birds, butterflies, and blossoming plants. Their gardens, greenhouses, trails, and boardwalks are set into the landscape of the Oso Creek, allowing guests to observe species in their natural habitat without provoking the ire of territorial snapdragons. Following a mission to advance knowledge and appreciation of the environment, the organization also hosts classes and workshops on topics such as orchidology and cooking cactus for dinner. Members’ annual contributions help to sustain the nonprofit organization and garner them unlimited admission, discounts at Nature's Boutique, and invitations to members-only events, such as the annual member-plant dance.
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