Winner: Brackenridge Park
3700 N. St. Mary's St., (210) 207-7275, brackenridgepark.org
Located just below the headwaters of the San Antonio River, the historic Brackenridge Park is a sprawling 343 acres and encompasses multiple attractions. The land was donated to the city in 1899 by George Washington Brackenridge, a leading citizen at the time and founder of what is now the San Antonio Express-News. A bronze statue of Brackenridge, who also donated land for the nearby Mahncke Park, stands at the Broadway entrance of the park. Loved by locals and tourists alike, the park is home to the San Antonio Botanical Gardens, Japanese Tea Gardens, the Witte Museum, Sunken Garden Theatre, San Antonio Zoo, the Eagle miniature train and the Brackenridge Park Golf Course. Visitors also enjoy jogging trails, public art, baseball fields, picnic tables and more. Attractions and amenities aside, the park is plenty special all on its own, with evidence of human occupation dating back 11,000 years ago as well as Native American artifacts as old as 9200 B.C. being found within the premises.
2. Hemisfair Park / Yanaguana Garden
434 S. Alamo St.
3. Phil Hardberger Park
13203 Blanco Road
Winner: Mission CrossFit SA
8842 Broadway, (210) 865-9348, missioncrossfitsa.com
Mission CrossFit is a premiere fitness facility dedicated to providing quality training and personalized workout routines for those looking to enhance their lives through strength and aerobics exercises. With a dedicated staff of professionals, Mission CrossFit provides members the chance to become stronger and healthier as they exercise in group or private environments tailored to their needs. Specialized sessions for women, children and athletes are offered as well, giving unsure guests a place to start. Although Mission CrossFit offers a variety of exercise plans and classes, the facility is not like most gyms. The trained staff at Mission CrossFit take the time to educate its members on nutrition and wellness through information sessions, while offering tenser guests a chance to relax through massage therapy appointments. The facility hosts 45 CrossFit classes a week, which can be attended by anyone who wishes to get acquainted with the program. Both beginners and seasoned trainers are welcome to join one of these classes or to find out more information about the competitive world of CrossFit tournaments.
2. Jones N4 Crossfit & Personal Training
3131 Thousand Oaks
3. Elite CrossFit
Winner: Phil Hardberger Park
13203 Blanco Road, (210) 492-7472, philhardbergerpark.org
While San Antonio has plenty of dog-friendly bars and restaurants (patios for days!), sometimes your pup just needs to get out and stretch their legs. Even then, your furry friends aren't always satisfied with accompanying you to the park if it means being on a leash. That's where dog parks come in – and where Phil Hardberger Park absolutely shines with two parks dedicated to man's best friend. One is for fun-sized furry friends, and the other is for more fabulously-sized breeds. Both are equipped with everything you need to make your dog's social time fun and safe. The fun side comes in with platforms and outcroppings for dogs to play on as well as dog-friendly water fountains to stay cool. The flip-side is that there's plenty of shade for those hot summer evenings and water so you and your pet can stay hydrated. Another safety perk is that the fenced parks also have features to keep those door-dashers safe from escaping into the rest of the park.
2. McAllister Park
13102 Jones Maltsberger Road
3. Tom Slick Park
7400 Texas 151 Access Road
Winner: A Night Out In Old San Antonio
227 S. Presa St., (210) 226-5188, niosa.org
Though Fiesta has plenty of diverse events throughout its 10-day run, A Night Out In Old San Antonio, better known as NIOSA (pronunciation is up to you), has remained a fan favorite through the years. Founded in 1924 as a one-night offering, the modern-day four-night festival takes over La Villita and brings more than 240 food, drink and atmosphere booths as well as live music and games. A can't-miss is the chicken-on-a-stick topped with a jalapeño, a NIOSA staple that is synonymous with Fiesta. Although (in)famous for booze-infused nights and running into everyone you know and their abuelita, the nighttime street fair celebrates San Antonio's diverse heritage throughout 15 cultural areas, from Sauerkraut Bend and Mission Trail to the French Quarter and Froggy Bottom. Billed as a "celebration for preservation," proceeds from NIOSA go toward protecting structures and landmarks throughout the city that bring tourists from all over the world to San Antonio.
2. King William Fair
122 Madison Street
3. Fiesta Flambeau Parade
Downtown San Antonio
Winner: Hair By Eileen
14615 Interstate 35 Frontage Road, Selma, (210) 710-4239,
Located in Selma, Hair By Eileen caters to those looking for quality hair-styling and all of their beauty needs. Hair artist and licensed cosmetology instructor Eileen Perez specializes in dimensional color and artistic design of all hair types for women, men and children. With high standards of styling and cutting, its no wonder that the salon has nothing but 5-star reviews on Yelp. Perhaps most important is she creates a healthy hair plan for every customer that considers your lifestyle, guaranteeing a look mindfully customized just for you. For those truly dedicated to self-care and who want to treat themselves, Perez is experienced with Brazilian blowouts and split-end correction. Hair By Eileen is a well-rounded beauty stop with additional services like eyebrow tinting and waxing. Trust the voters and take advantage of a free 15-minute consultation and book an appointment soon. Hair By Eileen is worth the wait and drive out to Selma.
2. Studio 27 Hair Salon
15737 San Pedro Ave.
3. Hair Candy SA
742 NW Loop 410
Winner: I Love Tacos So Much
109 W. Grayson St.
A play on Austin's "I Love You So Much" mural on South Congress, San Antonio's playful replica proves that the 2-1-0 is truly the taco capital of Texas. When the mural was first unveiled in 2015, local producer/director Luiz Muñoz said he was inspired by the friendly taco rivalry between San Antonio and Austin, but wanted to be clear that the Alamo City will always be the clear winner here. Rivalry aside, the mural has become a must-visit site for selfies or that puro San Anto 'gram that proves you've seen the Alamo City. Due to its visibility, the mural has also been subject to not-so-friendly visitors who have vandalized it plenty of times. Still, it's allowed San Antonio to show love to another Texas city. Last year, the mural was temporarily revamped to read "I Love Houston So Much" following the devastating Hurricane Harvey. San Antonians and visiting taco-lovers alike can find Muñoz's ode to tacos at Viva Tacoland near The Pearl Brewery.
2. Selena Mural
4913 S. Flores St.
3. Viva Fiesta
2611 Broadway St.
Winner: The Witte Museum
3801 Broadway St., (210) 357-1900, wittemuseum.org
Ellen Schultz, a botanist and teacher, had a goal to start a museum as San Antonio was growing back in 1923. She held a fundraiser to acquire a natural history collection, selling bluebonnets and cakes. That same year, the collection was unveiled at Main Avenue High School, and began what is now known as the Witte Museum. Nestled in Brackenridge Park, the museum opened in 1926 and grew rapidly as paintings, historical artifacts and additional historic structures were added. During this time the museum became a gathering place for artists, researchers and scholars, but was welcoming to all in the community. The beloved museum celebrates the Lone Star State with visiting exhibitions, signature programs and permanent collections. Last year, the "New Witte" was unveiled, including a Dinosaur Hall, a People of the Pecos Gallery, an Acequia Garden and more where visitors can experience Texas through time. From the time of dinosaurs to Texas' rich cultural history of cattle kings and vaqueros, the Witte Museum is the perfect spot to learn more about what makes Texas great.
2. McNay Art Museum
6000 N. New Braunfels Ave.
3. The DoSeum
2800 Broadway St.
While San Antonians consistently get a bad rap for being inactive, the undulating popularity of Síclovía proves this notion wrong. The free festival is a bi-annual event (though it has inspired spinoffs and special edition events) thrown by the YMCA of Greater San Antonio that converts main roads in Southtown into moveable car-free spaces that encourage people (some of whom choose to dress up in whacky costumes) and even their furry friends to take exercise classes, ride their bikes, rollerblade, run, play and even Zumba in the streets. It's great for entire families because everyone can decide what they want to participate in. There are usually treats for your pets, food trucks, live music and activities for kids. The family-friendly event also spotlights local businesses and connects residents with community organizations. Whether you're a Siclovia veteran or still meaning to take part, be sure to pencil in the next Síclovía, scheduled for September 30.
2. Out In The Park
17000 IH-10 West
3. Alamo Aloha Fiestaval
9333 SW Loop 410
Winner: La Gloria
Multiple locations, chefjohnnyhernandez.com
La Gloria is a shining gem of the San Antonio culinary experience. The upscale, yet homey, restaurant showcases the genius of Chef Johnny Hernandez as he's brought traditional Mexican street food to the city and made it hip. La Gloria maintains the authenticity of its influences while expanding on the formula to provide delicious food at affordable prices served in an atmosphere that mixes the best of Mexican and American culture. Guests who visit one of La Gloria's three Alamo City locations can enjoy food straight from Oaxaca, Mexico City and Veracruz while watching a Spurs game or taking a break from shopping at the local farmers market. La Gloria offers a hometown experience while serving Hernandez's tasty twists on tacos al pastor and cocteles de mariscos, tastes that originated from the chef's memories of Mexican vendors mixed with his own personal tastes. Bar enthusiasts will also be happy to find that although the restaurant is family-friendly, the bar is always stocked with a variety of wines, cocktails and margaritas, perfect for an after-work treat or a night out with friends. So grab a drink and set up on the patio that we just can't get enough of.
2. The Rustic
17619 La Cantera Pkwy., Suite 204
3. Burleson Yard Beer Garden
430 Austin St.