Broadway Reach Launches Cultural, Creative Corridor

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biopicThe newest “reach” in San Antonio’s collection, the “Broadway Reach,” doesn’t follow the path of the San Antonio River like its Museum and Mission Reach counterparts.

Public and private institutions of culture and education along Broadway Street – north of Interstate 35 to Alamo Heights – have aligned their respective missions to create an accessible, affordable “corridor of creativity” to enhance the “spark of curiosity” they provide for our community, Mayor Juliàn Castro said late this morning at the official launch of the Broadway Reach.

Representatives from the Reach’s seven featured institutions, including the San Antonio ZooBotanical Garden, Museum of Art (SAMA), Children’s Museum (Broadway location opening in June 2015), Witte Museum, McNay Museum, and Brackenridge Park Conservancy gathered at Mahncke Park late this morning to announce a promotional pass for a Community Weekend, June 6-9 that will allow discounted access to the cultural institutions.

Children's Museum Director Vanessa Lacoss Hurd, Brackenridge Park Executive Director Leilah Powell, McNay Director Bill Chiego, Witte Museum President and CEO Marise McDermott, Mayor Juián Castro, SAMA Director Katie Luber, SABOT Executive Director Bob Brackman, and San Antonio Zoo Operations Manager Chris Vansaike pose for a photo at the Broadway Reach opening ceremony.

Children’s Museum Director Vanessa Lacoss Hurd, Brackenridge Park Executive Director Leilah Powell, McNay Director Bill Chiego, Witte Museum President and CEO Marise McDermott, Mayor Juián Castro, SAMA Director Katie Luber, SABOT Executive Director Bob Brackman, and San Antonio Zoo Operations Manager Chris Vansaike pose for a photo at the Broadway Reach opening ceremony.

Separate tickets for each venue would set visitors back $63 for adults and about $47 for children. The four-day pass grants access to all for $44 for adults and $22 for children.

Tickets are available online through the San Antonio Area Tourism Council‘s website (here) or can be purchased downtown at the Visitor Information Center.

Arty, McNay Museum mascot, poses for a photo with a discounted weekend pass to seven cultural institutions on the Broadway Reach. Photo by Iris Dimmick.

“Arty,” the McNay Museum mascot, poses for a photo with a discounted weekend pass to seven cultural institutions on the Broadway Reach. Follow him on Instagram @mcnayart. Photo by Iris Dimmick.

Each venue is hosting special programming throughout the weekend (a comprehensive calendar can be found at broadwayreach.org) to promote the pass and the new corridor.

The Broadway Reach designation and partnership is a natural by-product of the “spontaneous combustion” of institutions along Broadway, said Marisse McDermott, Witte Museum president and CEO. “Broadway Reach is a regional destination … uniting the educational, cultural, historical, entertaining places for our community.”

Coinciding with SA2020’s Arts and Culture proliferation goals, this designation promotes collaboration between these institutions, creates awareness of what they have to offer and increases the quality of life for residents, McDermott said, “and tourists, too.”

Combined, about 2.1 million people visit these institutions per year, she said.

The use of the term “reach” was, of course, inspired by the Museum and Mission Reach, said Leilah Powell, executive director of the Brackenridge Park Conservancy.

“We looked at other terminology like ‘district’ … and ‘corridor,'” Powell said after the press conference. “But ultimately, engineers use terms like that.  ‘Corridor’ is not a sexy word.”

Zoo Operations Manager Chris Vansaike poses for a photo with Cindi Lauper, an adult sun conure that resides at the Zoo. Photo by Iris Dimmick.

Zoo Operations Manager Chris Vansaike poses for a photo in Mahncke Park with Cindi Lauper, an adult sun conure parrot that resides at the Zoo. Photo by Iris Dimmick.

“Reach,” though originating as a synonym for an expanse of land, has taken on a unique definition of its own in San Antonio’s lexicon.

“It represents a destination … you can imagine telling your friends that you’re going to the Broadway Reach for dinner. We talked to the River Authority – they said, ‘Sure, imitation is the purest form of flattery, right?'” she said.

Much of the crowd gathered in Manchke Park, including Powell, also attended the SA2020 Indicator Report conference yesterday – so the ties from Broadway Reach to those societal goals were on the tip of many tongues.

“It also supports this area as a creative, vibrant neighborhood in the center city … another goal of SA2020,” Powell said, referring to both the Downtown Development and Neighborhoods Causes discussed at the conference. “Who wouldn’t want to be able to walk with their kids to the Zoo through the park and to a museum? It’s a real attraction for families.”

Mayor Castro was symbolically given the first weekend pass.

“Trust me, I’m going to use it with my daughter, Carina,” he said, smiling.

 

Iris Dimmick is managing editor of the Rivard Report. Follow her on Twitter @viviris or contact her at iris@rivardreport.com.

 

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