Greek immigrant Louis Santikos founded his first movie theater in San Antonio in 1911, when silent moving pictures of train robberies and slapstick comedy were an exciting novelty. Today, the thriving regional theater empire continues the family tradition of dazzling audiences with attractions such as IMAX sensory journeys.
Santikos's expansive theaters house up to 19 screens of first-run cinematic entertainment at some locations. Equipped with popcorn and sodas, moviegoers can nervously munch and sip their way through every pulse-pounding car chase, tragic missed connection, or gripping montage of drying paint. Screenings in 3-D of select films are brought to life by the gloriously immersive illuminations of Xpand 3-D projectors.
Since sprouting into existence in 2006, Ideal Tennis Academy has fostered future stars by offering training programs throughout the year for all ages and skill levels. The toddler program, for instance, puts rackets in the hands of kids as young as aged two-and-a-half years and strives to develop important motor skills on miniature courts. The academy provides a junior-varsity program for adolescent players, which preps teens and preteens for higher levels of competition. Aside from offering programs at its facility, Ideal Tennis Academy hits the road with Tennis Delivery, a mobile program that teaches tennis by launching coaches from high-powered ball machines to locations across San Antonio.
Most camp counselors can teach children how to tie-dye a t-shirt or braid a friendship bracelet. Very few, however, have experienced the exhilaration of vaulting into the end zone for a goal-line touchdown or intercepting a game-winning pass in front of thousands of rabid football fans. Across the country, Sports International Football Camps grant participants the opportunity to learn firsthand from professional athletes, whose gridiron battle scars have been forged by bell-ringing collisions with fearless opponents and reckless mascots on motorcycles.
Since 1983, the organization has partnered with veteran high-school coaches and pros, such as three-time Pro Bowl running back Priest Holmes, All-Pro linebacker Brian Cushing, and Super Bowl champion–cornerback Terrell Thomas. In those years, the camp has schooled some 91,000 alumni, including current NFL quarterback Byron Leftwich. Coaches break campers into groups by age, position, and ability and run practices that are competitive yet fun and supportive. For in-depth focus on the specific techniques of skill-position players, the camp also offers special academies for passing and receiving as well as kicking, punting, long snapping, and cooler lifting for Gatorade victory showers.
Far from the typical movie theater, Alamo Drafthouse subverts the industry standard by offering locally brewed beverages, a rotating snack menu, and an advertisement-free experience. Theater-goers can sip on wine and themed specialty cocktails while enjoying the custom shows that run before the feature in place of ads. Alamo Drafthouse projects first-run blockbusters and cult classics from crisp 35mm or digital film onto the silver screen, as surround sound submerges audiences in the cinematic experience. The theater's enormous shepherd's crook enforces a strict no-talking, no-texting policy, with the notable exception of fan-centric Quote-Along nights.
At Elite Pilates Reformer Studio, owner and instructor Luisa Parker leans on a career of more than 29 years as a dance instructor, a certified personal trainer, and a red/black belt in karate to lead high-energy Pilates Reformer sessions. Working with Luisa, you’ll build strength without bulking up, improve posture, balance, and flexibility, and excel in sports and exercise.
Since 1908, Anhalt Dance Hall has drawn crowds to two-step and do-si-do to traditional Texas tunes on a sprawling wooden dance floor. In December, the club will host Rocky King & Dance Hall Cowboys, who follow in the bootsteps of such Texas greats as Ray Price and Western swing forefather Bob Wills. The energetic strains of twin fiddles and steel guitar lure audiences to twirl around the 103-year-old dance floor, showcasing their shuffle-step and triple axel. Dancers can refuel with BYO snacks or stop by the bar for a cold beer or wine cooler (not included).