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Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days.

1. San Antonio's Pearl district announces dazzling Día De Los Muertos programming for the whole family. Free, family-friendly festivities will light up the Pearl from 5 to 9 pm on Wednesday, November 2.

2. Kimpton Hotels breaks ground on first-ever San Antonio property. The hotel broke ground on October 12 and is slated for completion in late 2024.

3. San Antonio's newest food festival, Tasting Texas, promises a feast of culinary events. The brand-new food festival will be held in multiple locations around the city from October 27-30.

4. Upscale Latin-inspired seafood restaurant splashes into San Antonio's Stone Oak area. Arenas Marisqueria and Lounge is slated to open in November.

5. San Antonio neighbor nabs No. 1 ranking among best Texas suburbs. Hondo is the best suburb in Texas, according to SmartAsset.

Photo by skynesher/Getty Images

San Antonio high school sits at head of the class, plus more top stories

Hot Headlines

Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are the top five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days in San Antonio.

1. San Antonio high school sits at head of the class among Texas' best in 2022. BASIS Texas Charter Schools ranked No. 4 among school districts, while Keystone School came in at No. 9 among private high schools.

2. Revered River Walk hotel reveals new executive chef and revamped menus. Michael Collins is the new executive chef at Hotel Contessa.

3. Texas icon Ray Benson auctions off custom guitars, classic cars, and more music memorabilia. Benson's collection includes everything from posters to cars to several unique guitars.

4. Monarch Butterfly Festival flies into San Antonio's Brackenridge Park this weekend. The 2022 Monarch Butterfly & Pollinator Festival is a free, family-friendly event on Saturday, October 8.

5. 7 significant art shows shine in San Antonio this October. For variety and diversity, you can’t beat the San Antonio art offerings this month.

Photo courtesy of Rosario's

Iconic Southtown restaurant relocates with artistic new look, plus more popular stories

Hot Headlines

Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are the top five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days in San Antonio.

1. Iconic Southtown restaurant relocates and taps internationally acclaimed artist for new look. Longtime restaurant Rosario's is moving down the street and will soon sport a brand-new mural from an internationally acclaimed artist.

2. Popular Great Wolf Lodge breaks ground on massive new indoor water park resort in Texas. The popular resort is coming to the Gulf Coast in 2024.

3. How a Mexican candy brand used San Antonio as a gateway to the U.S. Tamalitoz is taking over Texas — and the world.

4. Whataburger lands at last at San Antonio International Airport. The homegrown chain is now grilling up at SAT.

5. NFL legend Terry Bradshaw's ranch at Texas-Oklahoma border listed for $22.5 million. The home was also the set of a reality TV series, The Bradshaw Bunch.

Courtesy of Bakery Lorraine

San Antonio bakery heads for the hills with first Boerne location, plus more top stories

Hot Headlines

Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days.

1. Favorite San Antonio bakery heads for the hills with first Boerne location. Bakery Lorraine recently announced its newest location coming to Boerne in October 2022.

2. Stunning River Walk property books opening date for first of 2 new hotels. AC by Marriott is slated to open on October 6, with the Element by Westin soon to follow.

3. San Antonio resort splashes onto list of best hotels with water parks. The JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort and Spa made a recent list of the 22 best hotels with water parks.

4. San Antonio's Hemisfair Park unveils first look at highly anticipated hotel. The 200-room hotel will be mere steps from key cultural attractions in downtown San Antonio.

5. San Antonio shop lands on new list of Latinx-owned businesses to watch. A new list from Yelp puts the spotlight on Rancho Diaz.

Courtesy of Flat Creek Winery

Hill Country winery harvests new restaurant with star chef, plus more top stories

Hot Headlines

Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days.

1. Hill Country winery harvests new Italian restaurant with star chef. Flat Creek Estate winery makes a strong case for Texans to head to the hills.

2. Gruene Music and Wine Fest brings more good times to a historic venue. The Gruene Music and Wine Fest is back at Gruene Hall and The Grapevine for its 36th year.

3. 3 choose-your-own-adventure San Antonio staycations to book this fall. These luxurious getaways will have guests forgetting they're still in San Antonio.

4. 3 San Antonio companies among best large employers in Texas, says Forbes. H-E-B ranked No. 9 among the Lone Star State's best large employers.

5. 6 perfect weekend getaways to plan in Texas this fall. Find miles of hiking trails at Canyon of the Eagles, Inks Lake State Park, and beyond.

Beloved San Antonio burger chain flips into the suburbs, plus more top stories

Hot Headlines

Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days.

1. Beloved San Antonio burger chain flips into the suburbs with new location. Burger Boy’s sixth location — and first outside of the city limits — opened on August 31.

2. H-E-B crowns big winners in annual Quest for Texas Best competition. McAllen-based sugar-free I Love Chamoy was the grand-prize winner.

3. Austin-San Antonio is the ‘next great U.S. metroplex,’ says Austin mayor. Austin Mayor Steve Adler forecasts the potential evolution of Austin-San Antonio into a mega-region rivaling Dallas-Fort Worth.

4. 7 things to know in San Antonio food right now: Cult-favorite salad chain sprouts in the Quarry. Vibey Los Angeles-based salad chain Sweetgreen is digging into the Quarry.

5. Drought uncovers ancient dinosaur tracks at famous Texas park. Actual dinosaur tracks were uncovered in the dried-out river bed.

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San Antonio Missions hit home run with new owners, plus more top stories

Hot Headlines

Editor’s note: It’s that time again — time to check in with our top stories. Here are five articles that captured our collective attention over the past seven days.

1. San Antonio's minor league baseball team scores new owners, including Texas sports legends. San Antonio's minor league baseball team is back to being locally owned — by some big names.

2. H-E-B unveils new line of merchandise for super fans, available exclusively at this store. Kerrville was chosen to launch the company's new line of H-E-B-branded merchandise, in celebration of its 117th anniversary and in honor of its first store.

3. San Antonio market continues to see prices going up and sales going down. San Antonio home sales dropped 19 percent from October 2021.

4. San Antonio Rodeo wrangles even more musical acts for star-studded 2023. Turnpike Troubadours joined the already impressive lineup for the 2023 San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo.

5. San Antonio children's theater adapts timeless children's book for the holidays. Magik Theatre celebrates The Velveteen Rabbit as a Christmas story, with inclusive special performances.

Steven Spielberg opens up personal history in The Fabelmans

Movie Review

For over 40 years, director Steven Spielberg has been delivering some of the most popular blockbuster movies of all time as well as a bevy of Oscar-quality dramas, a combination that’s unique to him. For his latest, The Fabelmans, he’s decided to go more personal than ever, telling a thinly-veiled version of his own childhood.

Sammy (played mostly by Gabriel LaBelle) is one of four children – and the only son – of Mitzi (Michelle Williams), a concert pianist, and Burt Fabelman (Paul Dano), a computer engineer. From an early age, Sammy is enthralled by the art of filmmaking, first remaking a train crash sequence from The Greatest Show on Earth, and gradually moving on to more adventurous stories.

Burt’s advancing career, which moves the family from New Jersey to Arizona to California, causes stress for various members of the family, most notably Sammy and Mitzi. Sammy must deal with anti-Semitic bullies, while Mitzi falls deeper into a mental health crisis. Sammy’s movies continually offer a respite for the family, though, giving him a creative outlet and the rest of them a chance to forget their troubles for a while.

Written by Spielberg – his first writing effort since 2001’s A.I. Artificial Intelligence – and Tony Kushner, the film is heavy on emotions but presented in a way that those feelings don’t always translate. Spielberg is no stranger to depicting fraught family situations in his long career, but in showing ones from his own family, it feels like he pulled back, not wanting the scenes to be overwrought or schmaltzy.

The result is a story that isn’t as universal as some of his other films. As the film is told from Sammy’s perspective, it’s easy to get caught up in his pursuits and various discoveries as he gets older. The mindsets of the rest of the family are less clear, even though his parents and sisters are ever-present. Mitzi’s state of mind is a concern from the start, but it’s not always treated as such by other important characters.

Just as Sammy’s movies are an escape for his family, so too are they some of the best parts of the film. Sammy figuring out the process and secrets of filmmaking is informative and often thrilling, especially if you’re a cinephile. Spielberg has been considered a master for so long that watching him revisit the days when he was learning as he went is catnip for movie lovers.

In addition to being a dead ringer for a teenage Spielberg, LaBelle is a fantastic actor. It’s no easy feat to carry a movie on your shoulders, and LaBelle makes the assignment look easy. Williams’ performance will likely be more polarizing; she employs a very mannered speech pattern that works in some situations, but not all. The film also includes memorable short appearances by Seth Rogen, Judd Hirsch, and David Lynch.

Spielberg has provided the moviegoing public with such pleasure over the years that he deserves to have a movie that’s mostly for him. The initial viewing of The Fabelmans left this critic wanting, but perhaps it will gain more traction on a second screening.

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The Fabelmans is now playing in theaters.

Photo by Merie Weismuller Wallace/Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment

Gabriel LaBelle in The Fabelmans

New self-guided tour showcases iconic Fort Worth Stockyards' many Hollywood ties

Tinseltown in Cowtown

A new self-guided tour showcasing the Fort Worth Stockyards’ many star-studded appearances in cinema throughout the years recently debuted in time for the 16th annual Lone Star Film Festival, which took place earlier this month in the Stockyards for the first time.

Called Stars of the Stockyards, the eight-stop, go-at-your-own pace walking tour guides folks to famous film sites where celebrities have stepped foot in front of Hollywood cameras. Visitors to the Stockyards can access the PDF tour map on their smart phones via QR codes (no app required) posted throughout the district, namely at hotels and tour kiosks.

"The Stockyards is a historic and celebrated destination for many reasons, but one that may be lesser known is its popularity as a filming location for some of our favorite movies and TV series," said Ethan Cartwright, VP of marketing for Stockyards Heritage Development Co.

The tour and corresponding QR codes are a permanent addition to the district, he said.

Stops on the map include the iconic White Elephant Saloon, a hotbed for Hollywood performances including several by legendary actor and martial artist Chuck Norris in the longtime TV series, Walker, Texas Ranger when the watering hole was portrayed as the fictional CD Bar. The White Elephant was also graced by country music superstar Tim McGraw and Academy Award-winning actor Billy Bob Thornton for their appearances in Paramount Plus’ hit series 1883.

Also in 1883 and featured on the tour is Hookers Grill, hidden in the less flashy West side of Exchange Ave. The burger shack transformed into a gambling den in the show called The Texas House of Liquor & Sport. It’s the only building in the Stockyards that preserved the façade constructed by 1883’s production team. During operating hours, customers can order at the outdoor burger window and dine at patio tables within the two-story structure.

Cowtown Coliseum is marked on the map for its appearances in the 1983 film Tough Enough, where actor Dennis Quaid played an amateur boxer. It’s also the home of the final rodeo scene in the 1992 movie Pure Country starring country music legend George Strait.

Billy Bob’s Texas, the Stockyards Hotel, and even unassuming historic cattle pens also make the list on the tour, along with notations for the Texas Trail of Fame, which features more than 240 bronze markers honoring contributors for preserving and perpetuating the Western way of life.

Veteran actors Sam Elliot and Robert Duvall, both stars in the megahit TV series Yellowstone, are among the most recent Texas Trail of Fame inductees.

For more information and to get started on the tour, go here.