Posts tagged with "San Antonio"

Illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 MAGAZINE

Iconic Texas Auto Group Goes Green

Cavender Auto Group is the first auto dealer group in San Antonio to install solar carports by partnering with local company, Big Sun Solar. The iconic auto company tapped Big Sun Solar to build and install solar carports at five of its San Antonio-area dealerships and its recently-announced Cavender Collision Center at Wetmore Road. The carports will provide Cavender’s inventory of vehicles with protection from inclement South Texas weather while providing valuable renewable energy savings on their electric bills.

Cavender has been working to incorporate sustainability initiatives into its operations, and determined investing in solar energy was its next step. The decision greatly enhances the customer experience for Cavender car buyers by providing shade and decreasing the interior temperature of the vehicles during the summer months.

Installation of the solar carports is nearly complete at Cavender Buick GMC West Loop 1604 at Culebra Road. Cavender Cadillac and Land Rover San Antonio are underway, and the remaining San Antonio-area locations will follow.

The locations include:

– Cavender Buick GMC West — 7400 West Loop 1604

– Cavender Cadillac — 7625 North Loop 1604

– Cavender Chevrolet — 30700 IH-10, Boerne, TX

– Land Rover of San Antonio –13660 West Interstate 10

– Cavender Buick GMC North — 17811 San Pedro Avenue

– Cavender Collision Center —  Wetmore Road (opening Fall 2021)

– Cavender Grande Ford — 4562 IH-10 East (opening TBD)

Big Sun Solar, formerly known as Go Smart Solar, has expanded rapidly since its founding in 2016 and has built more solar carports than any other company in Texas, indicating the region’s increasing demand for clean energy.

Cavender Auto Group President, Bobby Cavender, expressed his excitement about the company’s investment in sustainability.

“Solar carports make perfect sense for Cavender Auto Group. Their energy lowers our electric bills, they provide shade for our customers and protection from damaging hail storms,” said Cavender. “We are thrilled to be the first auto group in San Antonio to embrace solar carports and we are grateful to Big Sun Solar for making it happen.”

Robert Miggins, CEO and Co-Founder of Big Sun Solar, expressed his excitement and gratitude to the San Antonio businesses investing in a more sustainable community.

“The momentum to build a more green city is growing,” said Miggins. “Solar has been available for many years, but with recent innovations, it has become more accessible for more people. Cavender Auto Group is one of the many businesses that are taking another step toward reducing their carbon footprint and improving the customer experience. San Antonio is a top-10 city in the United States for solar energy because its residents and corporate citizens value sound financial investments that also produce clean energy. Cavender is a shining example of this philosophy.”

About Big Sun Solar

Trusted by leading brands such as Cavender, Baywood Hotels, and Rush Enterprises, Big Sun Solar is #1 in customer service for Texas businesses. While every project is designed for maximum financial returns for their clients, it’s Big Sun’s Net Promoter Score of 88 that sets them apart as an industry leader. They have over 45 years of combined experience in rooftop, carport, and ground-mount solar systems coupled with experience from partnering directly with CPS Energy to build 5 megawatts (MW) of community-owned solar power. For more information on the company or to inquire about solar ownership, visit their website

Art in the Garden illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Calling All Art-Fanatics!

Calling All Art-Fanatics: 18 Exciting Art Happenings Across the Country

Destinations News:

California

  • Presidio “My Park Moment” Photo Contest: The Presidio in San Francisco has launched “My Park Moment” photo contest, where the public can submit a photo of their favorite park memory through May 28—a family picnic, a camping trip, their last hike in the Presidio or anything else they love to do in their favorite park. This fall, approximately 400 photos will be selected for a free and family-friendly outdoor photo show at the future home of the Presidio Tunnel Tops. Debuting in spring 2022, the Presidio Tunnel Tops project, comprising 14 acres of new national park land—will be an iconic “must see” San Francisco destination. 
  • LACMA Partners with Snapchat: Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and Snapchat recently debuted the “Monumental Perspectives” experience, which brings together artists and technologists to create virtual monuments that explore some of the histories of local communities in an effort to highlight perspectives from across the region. Visitors can experience the augmented reality monuments online or at site-specific locations across Los Angeles including LACMA’s Wilshire Boulevard campus, Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and more. 
  • Napa Wrap Art and Art Walk: Napa Wrap Art is a new outdoor public art project debuting this spring, featuring transformed utility boxes into works of art around Downtown Napa. Thirteen regional artists were selected to create diverse designs that provide an opportunity to turn ordinary objects into something special that both locals and visitors can enjoy. Later this summer, Downtown Napa will welcome a new rotation of the Napa Art Walk sculptures – a true outdoor treasure hunt for art that is a perfect activity for kids of all ages. 
  • Desert X: The third installment of the internationally acclaimed biennial desert art exhibition returned in 2021 through May 16. The 2021 Desert X artist lineup includes a diverse group of 13 artists ranging from locals like Kim Stringfellow to international representatives like Zahrah Alghamdi. Visitors can explore new outdoor art installations across the desert region for an exciting socially distant experience.

Texas

  • San Antonio’s McNay Art Museum just opened Limitless! Five Women Reshape Contemporary Art, which includes an ever-popular infinity mirror room installation. San Antonio Museum of Art opened No Ocean Between Us, featuring art from Latin American artists of Asian descent, while the Briscoe Western Art Museum will open Still in the Saddle: A New History of the Hollywood Western in time for Memorial Day Weekend.
  • Designed by Steven Holl Architects, the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building at the Houston Museum of Fine Arts completes a decade-long campus redevelopment project. Opened to the public in late 2020, the building finishes a trio of spaces that make up one of the largest art museums in the country. On the first floor is a black-box gallery dedicated to immersive installations. Second-floor galleries highlight photography, decorative arts, prints and drawings, and the top floor features thematic exhibitions on art from the 1960s onward. Additionally, the space features a 215-seat theater and a fine dining restaurant. 
  • The Dallas Museum of Art recently unveiled Cubism in Color: The Still Lifes of Juan Gris, the first US exhibition in over 35 years dedicated to the Spanish artist Juan Gris, this exhibition reconsiders the legacy of this important yet underappreciated modernist master. Co-organized by the Dallas Museum of Art and the Baltimore Museum of Art, Cubism in Color: The Still Lifes of Juan Gris highlights the artist’s pioneering and revolutionary contributions to the Cubist movement by focusing on his fascination with subjects drawn from everyday life.

Rapid City, South Dakota

  • “Legends in Light” Laser Show at Crazy Horse Memorial – Beginning Memorial Day weekend and occurring nightly through Labor Day, the “Legends in Light” laser show at Crazy Horse Memorial turns the carved mountainside into a 500-foot remarkable display. Each night at 9:30 p.m., viewers can take in the story and rich heritage of Native Americans.The show presents colorful animations and features music with choreographed lasers and sound effects.  
  • Gift From Mother Earth Art Show – Every June, Crazy Horse Memorial hosts The Gift From Mother Earth Art Show – an exhibition that celebrates a blend of arts and crafts that represent Native American cultures and the New West. From Friday June 18th – Sunday June 20th, artists of custom-made clothing, jewelry and other similar items will showcase their pieces starting at 8 a.m. each day. 
  • Native POP: People of the Plains – Featuring original Native work by established and emerging Native American Artists, Native POP is a one-day fine art show located in Main Street Square in downtown Rapid City. This cultural celebration will take place on Tuesday, July 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 8 pm. and will feature Native culture bearers sharing their Native knowledge and artistry. Visitors to Rapid City can also experience Native American art, culture and history at Prairie Edge or Journey Museum and open-air murals painted by local artists at Art Alley throughout the summer. 

St. Pete/Clearwater, Florida

From museums devoted to big-name artists to incredible street murals adorning the buildings around St. Pete’s Central Avenue, art—and the cultures it celebrates—is all around in St. Pete/Clearwater. Spring/Summer 2021 is an exciting season for St. Pete art, with new exhibitions, venues, and events to explore. 

  • From Margins to Mainstays at Museum of Fine Arts St. Pete – This exhibition, on display April 24 – September 26, features masterworks from MFA’s photography collection that were made by artists whose careers and personal lives were sidelined, ignored, or impacted by their gender, race, sexuality, or nationality. From Margins to Mainstays illustrates how the canon of photography has changed since the medium first began being shown in museums in the 1940s, with particular emphasis on rectifying the small percentage of women and artists of color historically acquired by and displayed in public collections. The exhibition includes works by Berenice Abbott, Lotte Jacobi, Carrie Mae Weems, Lee Miller, Cornelius Marion Battey, James Van Der Zee, and Manuel Álvarez Bravo.
  • Fairgrounds St. Pete at The Factory – Art enthusiasts will fall in love with The Factory, an 8-warehouse St. Pete arts center spread over 6.5 acres in the heart of the Warehouse Arts District. Fairgrounds St. Pete, opening Spring 2021 at The Factory, is a 15,000 square foot artist-made environment. Fairgrounds functions as an immersive, choose-your-own-adventure experience where visitors are invited to explore a world of playful art and technology exhibits that highlight weird, wacky, and wonderful Florida. The inaugural installation gives 60+ local and nationally recognized artists a platform to showcase their work and experiment with the unexpected. Fairgrounds aims to compensate artists fairly for their contributions by paying not only for their work, but also a portion of the profits from ticket sales while their work is on view. Through exhibits, events, workshops, and creative education programs, Fairgrounds will be a leader for arts innovation and an economic engine for local artists and craftspeople.

Hotel/Attraction News:

Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa

Kicking off in May, Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa has partnered with local artists and galleries to create the “Art in the Garden” exhibit. The gallery spread out across the property’s 10 acres of gardens will be open to both guests and the local community, free of charge, and Estancia will be providing a guided art brochure that showcases the various pieces and maps them out across the property. Art pieces including murals, statues and galleries have been created and provided by locals including Channin Fulton, Stefanie Bales, Billy Pease, Thomas J. Galleries and more.

New Orleans – The National WWII Museum

The National WWII Museum’s newest special exhibit “SOLDIER | ARTIST: Trench Art in World War II” explores the unique military pastime of creating art, souvenirs and tools out of the discarded materials and waste of war. Featuring more than 150 artifacts, many of which have never been exhibited, the collection also includes a background on the creators, providing a rare glimpse into the circumstances of war and the ingenuity and resourcefulness of servicemembers in the field. Such items range from souvenirs, such as ashtrays and jewelry made by servicemembers for their loved ones at home, to forbidden items like radios and musical instruments made by prisoners of war. The exhibition will be open to the public through January 2, 2022.

Daxton Hotel – Birmingham, Michigan

Daxton Hotel has opened its doors in the affluent community of Birmingham, a city 30 minutes north of Detroit. The hotel features a minimalist-luxe design with more than 400 original pieces of cutting-edge art curated from around the world by renowned  Saatchi Art. The incredible collection of mixed media brings whimsical and energetic flair throughout as vibrant colors flood spaces throughout the hotel, featuring a chartreuse lobby, deep-burgundy guest rooms and lavender parlors, an ideal composition juxtaposed with the art collection, avant-garde architectural lighting and furniture in bold shapes. Daxton Hotel brings a blend of provocative yet sophisticated style, offering artistic freedom of expression throughout the use of light rays, shadows and reflections creating an ethereal mood. The hotel offers a Beauty + Bubbles event, where visitors get an intimate tour of the public art collection curated by Saatchi Art on the first Friday of every month. The tour features work from 160 artists representing nearly 40 countries. The artwork crosses multiple mediums including painting, photography, collage, drawing and sculpture of some of the best international, national and regional artists.

The MC Hotel – Montclair, NJ

Located just 45 minutes outside of NYC, the 159 room MC Hotel is at the intersection of culture and community in the heart of Montclair’s thriving artistic community. With art curated from established and up-and-coming artists in every room, the hotel is part art gallery, part meeting place. Currently on display are pieces from painters Ryan Chin and Siona Benjamin-Kruge as well as mixed-media artist Basia Goszczynska to name a few. At guest check-in travelers will be met by a sculpture of a flower from Karen Kimmel that stretches across two walls. The sculpture features textiles that were meticulously hand-punched then painted onsite. On the lobby wall of the bar guests will see a sculpture from Goszczynska which is made from salvaged oyster farming bags, marine rope and steel wire. He also continues this unique interpretation of upcycling to shelves of the bar which displays Rainbow Collections, a piece featuring crowdsourced microplastics and salvaged baby food jars.

Crossroads Hotel – Kansas City, MO

With 2,000 square foot dedicated to public art, local artists and artists with historic ties to Kansas City, Crossroads is not just community-driven but art-driven. The gallery program is a thoughtful effort to reflect and contribute to the surrounding art district. Exhibitions, artist commissions, performances and unexpected artist-driven experiences intimately connect visitors to the creative scene thriving in the area. Along with the public gallery and local creative contributions to the interiors, amenities and delicacies, Crossroads is thrilled to support an artist in residence program. Curated by Hesse McGraw (director at Contemporary Arts Museum Houston) and Kansas City’s el dorado inc., the hotel’s architecture firm, the program provides another meaningful way for Crossroads to contribute to and support the artistic, social and cultural flourishing happening in the city. Current artist in residence Nick Miller is showcasing Wild Stallion, is a sculptural installation representing unseen and unstoppable algorithmic forces of technological innovation done with duct tape. Previous exhibits have come from Peggy Noland whose car makeovers are nothing short legendary and Glyneisha Johnson whose Watering Place paidhomage to the plants as a source of refuge for Black, Brown and Indigenous people.

Hewing HotelMinneapolis, MN

Since opening its doors in 2016 the 124-room luxury lifestyle Hewing Hotel has provided an unmistakable all-Minnesotan experience in the bustling North Loop neighborhood of Minneapolis. The former farm implements showroom and warehouse built in 1897 has been reborn as a cultural center for the community retaining its original brick and timber rustic charm. Immersing guests in Minneapolis, the hotel offers unique experiences with Minnesotan flair such as a monthly music series, Alley KAT! Perkins Pop Up Concert in the adjacent alley with season 6 The Voice semi-finalist Kat Perkins. The visual art of the area is on display through regularly rotating installations of local artists. The current collection includes works from Minneapolis-based artists Roko and Toni Gallo reflecting the beauty and talent within the area.

Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, Don't Abandon the Mask

Texas and California Slow Reopening 

By Emmet McGewon

On March 27, a shadow, growing for weeks, reached monstrous proportions as Italy reached a grim milestone: 917 people passed away due to the novel coronavirus. The gloom pervaded for many more weeks as Italian streets emptied and hospitals overflowed. On the same day there were 5,906 new cases in the country. Yet, 2 months later dawn has broken the blackness and on Saturday, June 27, Italy reported only 8 new deaths and 175 new cases; the first time since the start of the outbreak that deaths were in single digits.Contrast this rapid recuperation with America’s two largest states: California and Texas. 

On the same day that Italy reported 175 new cases, California reported 27 times that number while Texas reported a case increase 33 times higher (4,810 and 5,747 respectively). Both states are betraying their namesake as California has not been golden in its response to the pandemic nor has Texas been a star. So why is it that Italy, the former epicenter of the outbreak, where shortages resulted in ventilators only being given to those under the age of 60, is in a recovery stage while the US suffocates under the weight of its caseload? 

“We are tired of not being able to buy the things that we need, go to the hairdressers, get our hair done. It’s time to open up.” These were the words of a middle-aged woman, sitting in her car, holding a makeshift American flag and pointing to the gray roots atop her head at a Michigan protest in mid-April. For many, this lady has become the embodiment of the entitled American who values her hairstyle over the potential loss of life that could occur from a rapid reopening. However, the uncomfortable reality is that she is not alone and that most, if not all Americans, are fatigued by the lockdown and eager to return to normality.

Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood, home to a vibrant Russian, Ukrainian, and LGBTQ+ scene was abuzz on Friday evening. Long lines traversed the hectic sidewalks as eager patrons queued to enter bustling bars. The thin trees, boasting splashes of purple among the leafy foliage, watched over the strip like solemn sentries as droves of people enjoyed Los Angeles’s convalescent club scene. The looseness of restrictions was matched only by the looseness of partygoers’ flimsy floral shirts which billowed softly in the California evening breeze. Nonchalance came to mind. It appeared, despite the scattered mask-wearing, that the pandemic was over. 

We feel guilty for wishing to return to regular life given that such a return could result in a spike of hospitalizations and deaths. Thus, we stifle our impatience and seek scapegoats. Indeed, many are under the illusion that the persistent nature of the virus in the US is due to conservatives like those who armed themselves and entered the Michigan State Capitol. Yet, the reality is that a wide and diverse cross-section of US society has ceased caring about the virus. Whether you’re a patriotic Michigander or a bored frequenter of the Hollywood Hills, the suspension of day-to-day life is disconcerting and infuriating. 

The combination of over 400 protests in all 50 states after the horrific murder of George Floyd has no doubt led to an increase in coronavirus cases, yet this is not the only reason. Bar reopening’s have acted as a catalyst for the spread of Covid-19. Indeed, California Governor, Gavin Newsom, issued an order on Sunday to close the bars in 7 California counties including LA county which has seen approximately 90,000 cases. His office also recommended, but did not order, they close in 8 others. Establishments that serve alcoholic beverages without serving food at the same time will no longer be allowed to open. Largely due to the nature of bars, it is close to impossible to maintain social distancing as well as contact tracing. People remove masks frequently to take drinks, talk louder (spreading more airborne particles), and mix with a large number of people meaning that were a case to be identified it would be very difficult to track and contain. “It is critical we take this step to limit the spread of the virus,” said Newsom.

In addition, in response to the surge of cases in Los Angeles, the LA County Board of Supervisors has decided to close all LA county beaches from July 3rd to July 6th. Those caught trespassing by local patrols could receive a $1000 fine. Furthermore, LA Mayor, Eric Garcetti, has placed a “hard pause” on movie theater reopening’s and has banned Fourth of July firework displays in an attempt to prevent the formation of crowds. 

Meanwhile, Texas has ordered the state’s four largest cities to stop offering elective surgeries in order to free up hospital space. Just a few days before Governor Abbott’s ban on elective surgeries, restrictions were eased on amusement parks and restaurants. The Lone Star state has, arguably, had the most aggressive reopening strategy with phase one commencing as early as May 1st – a month later allowing almost all businesses to operate at a 50% capacity. Abbott also issued an order to close bars on Friday, June 26th, also scaling back dine-in restaurants to 50% capacity. Previously, bars were allowed to operate at a 50% capacity and restaurants at a 75% capacity. More so, outdoor gatherings of over 100 people are now prohibited unless given explicit approval by local officials. 

Peter Hotez, a professor of virology at the Baylor School of Medicine in Houston, said that the pause in the reopening will be enough to maintain the status quo but that “the status quo is unacceptable,” and the Governor will soon have no choice but to “dial things back.” In San Antonio, ventilator availability dipped below 70% for the first time and in Houston, one hospital’s ICU reportedly was at 120% capacity, while another one was at 88%. On top of this, the Texas Medical Center in Houston said Tuesday that 97% of its ICU beds were occupied. These numbers are undoubtedly worrisome and only time will tell if more restrictions will be enacted.

Obviously, the crisis is not over, but from an outside perspective one is left wondering: does America even care? Our European counterparts appear to be coming out the other end of the pandemic while for the United States, there is no end in sight. 

FREDERICKSBURG

By Alexandria Baiz × Vaughn Lowery

Fredericksburg, Texas the destination of historical sites and culture welcomes us. With the hidden treasures of food, wine and goods the Texas Hill Country is a must-visit.

Beginning with a stay at the one and only Hanger Hotel. This hotel has a WWII hangar of the romantic 1940’s to it’s design with fine woods and custom carpets. Famous for the Observation Deck on the second floor with views adjacent to the airport to see the planes come and go from one end of the runway to the end.

Later a stop to the Pioneer Museum Complex preserved from the 19th century German Pioneer days. In the mid-1840s Germans faced every obstacle to come to Texas and create a unique German colony in the heart of the Texas Hill Country. The Museum strives to preserve and tell this story. With a combination museum and historical site, it reaches over 3.5 acres on Main Street in downtown Fredericksburg.

Dinner at Das Peach Haus that houses delicious jams, jellies and sauces made by Fischer and Wieser Speciality Foods. The Historic roadside fruit stand offers gourmet products with unique flavor combinations. The Tasting Room offers tastings from two Texas wineries, which change out every two months. Vintage wines are paired with international assortment of cured meats and cheeses. Fischer and Wieser include more than 70-award-winning products, which each inspire culinary adventures around the world by being able to purchase online.

Clear River Ice Cream and Bakery does things differently with hot-from-the-oven baked goods, homemade ice cream and house deli. Homemade ice cream with high-quality ingredients has been voted as the third best ice cream in Texas. For a bite to eat the deli and salad selection is notable with house favorites like the Chipotle Ranch Chicken Wrap. Fresh baked goods can satisfy any sweet tooth with an Apple Strudel, Peach Cobbler and everything in between.

Tour at the George H.W. Bush Gallery at The National Museum of the Pacific War dedicated exclusively to telling the story of the Pacific Theater in World War II. The Museum is noted for its historic materials with iconic elements of the Pacific War era. Guided tours debut the newly renovated Pacific Combat Zone, a realistic environment for a deep understanding of the momentous struggle between Allied Forces and Japanese forces.

For lunch we enjoy an Arts District Stroll through the Peach Tree Gift Gallery and Tea Room. With the Cottage style restaurant, you will find a combination of fresh, homemade breads, soups, salads, sandwiches and desserts. For over 39 years this family owned business has been a destination in Fredericksburg, because of the seasonal fruits and vegetables they use.

After lunch, we took an art tour through the streets of Fredericksburg to meet with the area’s top galleries. Insight Gallery represents the cities artists and sculptors that today work on landscape, figurative, impressionistic, still life, wildlife and western art. The Good ART Company is beautiful with a contemporary fusion in a restored 4,000+ square foot historical building with high ceilings and limestone walls. The gallery features an array of genres with some of the best regional, national, and international artists. Koch Gallery owned and operated by Bert E. Koch a trader/broker for traditional, contemporary and modern Native American Art. For over 30 years it continues its long tradition of providing important works of art from all major cultural regions in North America. Artisans Gallery makes your artistic dreams reality with unique pieces that come in every medium, size and price range. RS Hanna a jewel for fine arts with original works of acclaimed artists. Workings range from oil, watercolor, bronze and wood. Gallery 330 is the newest addition to the art scene representing contemporary established artists whose works include sculpture, painting and prints, serigraphs and watercolors.

The Holiday Wine Trail takes us to Texas’s countryside to travel along Wine Road 290 with visit to award winning wineries.

The trail begins at Stout’s Trattoria at Grape Creek Vineyards a 100-acre vineyard estate. With oaks and vines surrounding the tasting rooms there is a romantic Tuscan setting that is truly unforgettable. The Vineyards have won over 100 medals in the last two years for their wines.

In the heart of the Texas Hill Country, 4.0 Cellars offers a relaxing and elegant setting to discover the infamous Texas Wines. In a private tasting room we enjoy a wine and chocolate pairing. With four award-winning chocolate truffles from local chocolatier with four carefully selected dry red wines.

Dinner at August E’s, known for it’s organic produce and superb local suppliers. August E inspired by his Thai roots and years in various culinary pursuits throughout the world has created a Nouveau Texas Cuisine. Utilizing ingredients like: Niman ranch Natural Premium Aged Angus steaks and local farmers fruits and vegetables year round. Menu specials change seasonally based on the creative mood of Chef Leu like duck from Maple Leaf Farms and Sashimi Grade Fish.

A favorite in the Texas Hill, we enjoy dinner at Otto’s German Bistro. Menu changes weekly with the season so each visit is an exciting adventure. Dedicated to local, organic produce ingredients that are always fresh and the highest quality.

We enjoy breakfast at Java Ranch a locally owned coffee stop. The ranch serves the finest hot or iced coffee drinks anywhere including lattes, cappuccinos, Hill Country roasted brewed coffee, Americanos and mochas. To start the day off we dive in a breakfast taco or kolaches, house favorites.

We take a visit to the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park for a “Texas style” morning. During his administration, Johnson signed more education bills into law than any other president. In respect to that we see his first school where he signed the landmark Elementary and Secondary Education act of 1965. Other stops include the family cemetery and the LBJ Ranch Show.

In the afternoon we endow in lunch and a beer tasting at Altstadt Brewery Fredericksburg’s newest brewery an authentic Bavarian brewery. Dedicated to creating the purest drinking beers the 120-acre old world destination features a fine dining restaurant, brewery tours and a beautiful venue. Brewery exclusives include traditional brews like Schwarzbier, a traditional German “Black Beer.”

With over 150 specialty shops, shopping is one of the primary reasons visitors come to Fredericksburg. In store we see everything from clothing, upscale home accessories, to unique collectibles and more perfect items for holiday shopping. Blackchalk Home and Laundry originally an old laundromat had been transformed into an electric home goods store. The hip store features gifts, kitchen goods, and one of a kind rugs. The infamous Christmas Store open year round specializes in collectibles. For collectors, this store is paradise with Department 56 miniature villages and Christopher Radko blown glass ornaments. The Hill Country Outfitters and The Grasshopper offer products to fit the hill country lifestyle in downtown Fredericksburg. Brands like Ugg and The North Face are housed in the Outfitters. The Narrow Path Tasting Room inside is an intimate space with French cafe feelings in the air.

To continue the Holiday Wine Trail, a stop at Signor Vineyard in the rolling hills of Central Texas. Where the Pedernales River meets Grape Creek, established by a friendship spanning three generations of two Texas families. Their focus is growing premium varietal fruit with soulful wines reflective of the unique terroir.

Our stay is perfect timing for the Fredericksburg’s 61st Annual Holiday Home Tour. A self guided tour showcasing unique local homes decorated in their holiday finest. With more than 22 vendors each year selling personal gifts, homemade foods and holiday items.

For dinner we dine at Navajo Grill, which encompasses an unusual blend of Hill Country craftsman design. Enjoying Southern cuisine composed with old and New Mexican flavors with a touch of Creole & Caribbean influences. Specialties like the Sunday Chicken Fried Steak dinner are served with housemade sauces and dressings.

After dinner drinks at Elk Store Winery & Distillery. Since 1895 the business has carried a family tradition that pays homage to the spirit of realizing the American Dream. In the footsteps of their great grandfather Todd Smajstrla along with Scott Hladky, produced moonshine, gin, rum, and whiskey. Since then, the business serves Incredible wines from all over the world. Along with small batches of handmade liquors by the bottle or cocktails.

Dinner at Rathskeller a full-service breakfast, lunch and dinner spot in downtown Fredericksburg. The menu selection is extremely versatile featuring German dishes and daily specials. On Friday and Saturday nights enjoy live music that house the restaurant.

Nothing better than the taste of handmade tortillas for breakfast at Hilda’s Tortillas. Hilda’s is a small family owned and operated business. Specializing in authentic Mexican fare their breakfast tacos and burritos are a must try. Twice a week 300 or more pounds of tortilla chips are produced within the restaurant.

For some fresh air we bike the quiet country backroads with Jack and Adams Bicycles. At Jack and Adams you can rent out Road, Tri-bike, Cruisers and even kid bicycles and accessories from a variety of brands. The Hill Country scenes with its rolling hills and panoramic views, is considered the cycling capital of Texas.

In addition to the speciality shops we visited above there is a collection of shops specializing in different festive treats. Emma + Ollie bakeshop takes classic treats we grew up loving and elevated them. The shop prides themselves on using only fresh ingredients; no processed foods, no artificial sweeteners, just pure dessert. The founder Rebecca Rather wanted the shop to feel as if customers stepped into an upscaled version of their own grandma’s kitchen. Chocolat store creator, Lecia Duke, was the first to introduce European-Style, liquid centered chocolate in the U.S. The truffle chocolates are of course a house favorite as the delicate shell gives way to the pure liquid flavor casades in your mouth. In addition there is also colette’s, creams, silk fudges, nut clusters, barks, and caramels. Fredericksburg Pecan Company provides fine quality of pecan products grown in the Texas Hill Country. Owners are dedicated to providing excellent quality pecans available for online order at reasonable prices with the best customer service. Pecans are flavored and glossed in everything from pecan brittle to pecan coffee.

Rustlin Rob’s Texas Gourmet Food is not your ordinary gourmet food, not limited to people who cook but to “foodies” of all ages. The store is enjoyable because it caters to anyone who loves to eat. With over 350 gourmet foods we can sample from ranging from peanut butters, mustards, bread mixes, and some 5 Alarm hot sauces.

Fredericksburg Pie Company mission is to serve pie that is as good as, or better than your mothers or grandmothers made. In store pies are made from scratch and selections change daily with up to 20 kinds of pie. While here, we enjoy an option of coffee, milk, and more with our slice of pie and even a book selection. Sugar free pies are also available with a call in a day before.

Lunch at the Farm Haus Bistro in the Fredericksburg Herb Farm, with an American menu with French and Italian influences. Owners Dick and Rosemary Estenson take us on a tour of the B&B Cottages based upon the design of the early historic Fredericksburg “Sunday Houses. These houses are inspired by German settlers who built these small “city houses” to use on the weekends to buy provisions and attend Sunday church. We also visit the Nature Spa area dedicated to a truly unique relaxing experience.

Exploring Main Street is incredible when we can enjoy Eisban, an outdoor ice skating on real ice. Alongside Marketplace and the Christmas Pyramid. Afterwards a trip to Luckenbach, Texas made famous by Waylon Jennings’ and Willie Nelson’s 1976 classic country hit.

For our last destination Dinner and wine pairing at local Cabernet Grill Texas Wine Country Restaurant. Chef/Owner Ross Burtwell’s wish is to create a lasting impression of culinary craft where guest feel at home. Known for his speciality in preparing the freshest seafood, Certified Angus Beef, wild game and ranch fare. The wine selection is also superb with over 75 selections from around the State of Texas. Tripadvisor has ranked the restaurant Top 10 in the nation and we know why.

The good art company, gallery, art, Fredericksburg Texas, 360 MAGAZINE

August E's, 360 MAGAZINE, Fredericksburg Texas

War museum, Fredericksburg Texas, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Altstadt Brewery, Fredericksburg Texas, 360, 360 MAGAZINE, Vaughn Lowery

Chocolat, lecia Duke, 360 MAGAZINE, Fredericksburg, Vaughn Lowery

Origins of Frozen Margarita

A Dallas restaurant owner blended tequila, ice and automation. America has been hungover ever since.

Source: Smithsonian.com

The way Mariano Martinez tells it, accounts of the margarita’s beginnings should be taken with a grain of salt—and a wedge of lime. Martinez is the creator of what is arguably the 20th century’s most epochal invention—the frozen margarita machine—and, at the age of 73, the Dallas restaurateur is an indisputable authority on the cocktail in the salt-rimmed glass.

The origin stories date to the ’30s and tend to feature a Mexican showgirl or a Texas socialite and a bartender determined to impress her. One of Martinez’s favorites involves a teenage dancer named Margarita Carmen Cansino who performed at nightclubs in Tijuana. “After Margarita got a contract from a Hollywood studio, she changed her name to Rita Hayworth,” he says. “Supposedly, the drink was named in her honor.”

When it comes to margarita lore, about the only thing for certain is that on May 11, 1971, Martinez pulled the lever on a repurposed soft-serve ice cream dispenser and filled a glass with a coil of pale green sherbet—history’s first prefab frozen margarita. The beverage was teeth-chatteringly cold with a proper tequila face-slap. Happy hour (and hangovers) would never be the same.

By adapting mass-production methods to blender drinks, Martinez elevated the frozen margarita from a border-cantina curiosity to America’s most popular cocktail. The innovation forever changed the Tex-Mex restaurant business (placing bars front and center) and triggered the craze for Tex-Mex food.

Befitting a musician who once recorded three versions of “La Bamba” on an EP titled Lotta Bamba, the convivial Martinez has a fresh, boyish manner and a beaming smile. He grew up in East Dallas, where at age 9 he started bussing tables at El Charo, his father’s Mexican eatery. “The customers were mostly Anglos who often had no idea what tequila was,” he recalls. “They’d show up with a souvenir bottle a friend had brought back from a vacation in Mexico, and ask my dad, ‘What do we do with this?’”

Though at the time liquor couldn’t be sold by the drink in Texas restaurants, the elder Martinez occasionally would whip up frozen margaritas in a blender for his patrons. (Introduced at a 1937 restaurant show in Chicago and bankrolled by bandleader Fred Waring, the humble Waring Blendor revolutionized bar drinks.) The elder Martinez used a recipe gleaned while working at a San Antonio speak-easy in 1938: ice, triple sec, hand-muddled limes and 100 percent blue agave tequila. The secret ingredient was a splash of simple syrup.

In 1970 an amendment to the state constitution made liquor by the drink legal, in cities or counties when approved in local-option elections. Shortly after Dallas voted yes, the younger Martinez launched Mariano’s Mexican Cuisine in a shopping center near the campus of Southern Methodist University. On opening night, the amiable owner appeared in a bandido costume. And customers, serenaded by a mariachi band, were encouraged to order margaritas made from the old family recipe. Libations were poured faster than you could say “One more round.” The second night wasn’t quite as successful: A barfly cornered Martinez and asked, “Do you know how to make frozen margaritas?”

“Oh, sure, sir, the best,” he answered.

“Well, you’d better speak to your bartender. The ones he’s making are terrible.”

As it turned out, the barman was so overwhelmed by the sheer volume of margarita orders that he was tossing ingredients into the blender without measuring them. Tired of slicing limes, he threatened to quit and return to his former job at a Steak and Ale, where the most complicated cocktail was a bourbon and Coke. “I saw my dream evaporating,” Martinez says. “I thought, ‘My restaurant will go bust and I’ve screwed up Dad’s formula.’”

The next morning while making a pit stop at a 7-Eleven, Martinez had a eureka moment: “For better consistency, I’d premix margaritas in a Slurpee machine. All the bartender had to do was open the spigot.’” But 7-Eleven’s parent company refused to sell him the contraption. “Besides,” Martinez was told, “everyone knows alcohol won’t freeze.”

Instead of wasting away in Margaritaville, he bought a secondhand soft-serve ice cream machine and tinkered with Dad’s recipe. Diluting the solution with water made the booze taste too weak, but adding sugar produced a uniform slush. Martinez had struck gold. “Cuervo Gold!” he cracks. The sweet, viscous hooch was such a hit that when Bob Hope performed at SMU in the ’70s, he joked about the margarita he’d just ordered at Mariano’s: “I won’t say how big it was, but the glass they serve it in had a diving board on it. And they salt the edge of the glass with a paint roller.”

Martinez’s original machine cranked out ’ritas for a decade before sputtering to a halt. Though he never received a patent or trademark for the device, it has a place in his heart and, since 2005, in the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. “The credit belongs to heritage and technology,” he says. “The golden ratio was two parts of the past and one of the present.”

Origins of Frozen Margarita

A Dallas restaurant owner blended tequila, ice and automation. America has been hungover ever since.

Source: Smithsonian.com

The way Mariano Martinez tells it, accounts of the margarita’s beginnings should be taken with a grain of salt—and a wedge of lime. Martinez is the creator of what is arguably the 20th century’s most epochal invention—the frozen margarita machine—and, at the age of 73, the Dallas restaurateur is an indisputable authority on the cocktail in the salt-rimmed glass.

The origin stories date to the ’30s and tend to feature a Mexican showgirl or a Texas socialite and a bartender determined to impress her. One of Martinez’s favorites involves a teenage dancer named Margarita Carmen Cansino who performed at nightclubs in Tijuana. “After Margarita got a contract from a Hollywood studio, she changed her name to Rita Hayworth,” he says. “Supposedly, the drink was named in her honor.”

When it comes to margarita lore, about the only thing for certain is that on May 11, 1971, Martinez pulled the lever on a repurposed soft-serve ice cream dispenser and filled a glass with a coil of pale green sherbet—history’s first prefab frozen margarita. The beverage was teeth-chatteringly cold with a proper tequila face-slap. Happy hour (and hangovers) would never be the same.

By adapting mass-production methods to blender drinks, Martinez elevated the frozen margarita from a border-cantina curiosity to America’s most popular cocktail. The innovation forever changed the Tex-Mex restaurant business (placing bars front and center) and triggered the craze for Tex-Mex food.

Befitting a musician who once recorded three versions of “La Bamba” on an EP titled Lotta Bamba, the convivial Martinez has a fresh, boyish manner and a beaming smile. He grew up in East Dallas, where at age 9 he started bussing tables at El Charo, his father’s Mexican eatery. “The customers were mostly Anglos who often had no idea what tequila was,” he recalls. “They’d show up with a souvenir bottle a friend had brought back from a vacation in Mexico, and ask my dad, ‘What do we do with this?’”

Though at the time liquor couldn’t be sold by the drink in Texas restaurants, the elder Martinez occasionally would whip up frozen margaritas in a blender for his patrons. (Introduced at a 1937 restaurant show in Chicago and bankrolled by bandleader Fred Waring, the humble Waring Blendor revolutionized bar drinks.) The elder Martinez used a recipe gleaned while working at a San Antonio speak-easy in 1938: ice, triple sec, hand-muddled limes and 100 percent blue agave tequila. The secret ingredient was a splash of simple syrup.

In 1970 an amendment to the state constitution made liquor by the drink legal, in cities or counties when approved in local-option elections. Shortly after Dallas voted yes, the younger Martinez launched Mariano’s Mexican Cuisine in a shopping center near the campus of Southern Methodist University. On opening night, the amiable owner appeared in a bandido costume. And customers, serenaded by a mariachi band, were encouraged to order margaritas made from the old family recipe. Libations were poured faster than you could say “One more round.” The second night wasn’t quite as successful: A barfly cornered Martinez and asked, “Do you know how to make frozen margaritas?”

“Oh, sure, sir, the best,” he answered.

“Well, you’d better speak to your bartender. The ones he’s making are terrible.”

As it turned out, the barman was so overwhelmed by the sheer volume of margarita orders that he was tossing ingredients into the blender without measuring them. Tired of slicing limes, he threatened to quit and return to his former job at a Steak and Ale, where the most complicated cocktail was a bourbon and Coke. “I saw my dream evaporating,” Martinez says. “I thought, ‘My restaurant will go bust and I’ve screwed up Dad’s formula.’”

The next morning while making a pit stop at a 7-Eleven, Martinez had a eureka moment: “For better consistency, I’d premix margaritas in a Slurpee machine. All the bartender had to do was open the spigot.’” But 7-Eleven’s parent company refused to sell him the contraption. “Besides,” Martinez was told, “everyone knows alcohol won’t freeze.”

Instead of wasting away in Margaritaville, he bought a secondhand soft-serve ice cream machine and tinkered with Dad’s recipe. Diluting the solution with water made the booze taste too weak, but adding sugar produced a uniform slush. Martinez had struck gold. “Cuervo Gold!” he cracks. The sweet, viscous hooch was such a hit that when Bob Hope performed at SMU in the ’70s, he joked about the margarita he’d just ordered at Mariano’s: “I won’t say how big it was, but the glass they serve it in had a diving board on it. And they salt the edge of the glass with a paint roller.”

Martinez’s original machine cranked out ’ritas for a decade before sputtering to a halt. Though he never received a patent or trademark for the device, it has a place in his heart and, since 2005, in the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. “The credit belongs to heritage and technology,” he says. “The golden ratio was two parts of the past and one of the present.”

NINE INCH NAILS

Nine Inch Nails God Break Down the Door heard on Beats 1 this morning is now available everywhere. Download / stream the track HERE or view the visualizer HERE. Listen to Trent Reznor’s conversation with Zane Lowe HERE.

The song is from Bad Witch, the final volume in the trilogy that began with 2016 Not The Actual Events and2017 ADD VIOLENCE. Set for release on June 22, Bad Witch is now available for preorder HERE. Fans who pre-order the record in digital format, or from NIN.COM, will instantly receive God Break Down the Door.

Nine Inch Nails will bring their “musical, visual, emotional sensory onslaught as hailed by The New York Times, to some of the most iconic venues in the USA this fall. As previously announced, The Jesus and Mary Chain will provide direct support. Today, Nine Inch Nails revealed the openers for COLD AND BLACK AND INFINITE NORTH AMERICA 2018. Opening acts will vary as the tour moves across the country, and include TOBACCO, Kite Base, Daniel Avery, Gabe Gurnsey (Factory Floor), Death in Vegas and HMLTD. See below for details.

To encourage fans to explore the music of each opening act, Reznor has curated a playlist of their songs. Listen HERE.

In what Reznor describes as part of the experience tickets for the fall run go on sale this weekend, in person only. All seats (including the best seats) to COLD AND BLACK AND INFINTE NORTH AMERCA 2018 will be available at The Physical World presale events, taking place May 19th at each venue’s box office, with the exception of Red Rocks for which the presale will take place on May 20th at the Denver Coliseum Box Office.

Fans can purchase up to four tickets per show. Visit nin.com/tickets2018 for a complete list of box office locations and further information. Limited quantities of tickets may be released via additional ticketing channels, subject to availability, at a later date to be announced. Ticket inventory available via phone and online channels will include ADA tickets.