The “River Walk” San Antonio,Texas.

The San Antonio River Walk(also known as Paseo del Reo) is a network of walkways along the banks of the San Antonio River one story beneath the streets of Downtown San Antonio,Texas,USA.Lined by bars,shops,and restaurants,the River Walk is an important part of the cities urban fabric and a tourist attraction in it’s own right.

Today the River Walk,one level down from the automobile street level,winds and loops under bridges as two parallel sidewalks lined with shops,restaraunts,connecting major tourist draws form the Alamo to Rivercenter mall.

You can take a tour on the canals themselves via barge or boat rides that they offer which wind around many turns and under bridges allowing you to view so many of the spectacular sites which are described to you by the boat operators who are quite knowledgable of the entire canal system.I will give you a brief background of how this all came to be and then give due attention to some famous people that I bet you all know or have heard of.Let’s go!

In September 1921,a disastrous flood along the San Antonio River took 50 lives.Plans were then developed for flood control of the river.Among the plans was to build an upstream dam(Olmos Dam) and bypass a prominent bend of the river in the downtown area and pave over it.Architect Robert Hugman then submitted his plans for what would become the River Walk.

Through the following decades the network has been improved and extended and currently provides tourist attractions and space for chain restaraunts and establishments flourishing to the point where City Hall in 2009 talked of limiting activity on the River Walk to maintain a distinctively local flair.Additions have been made to the total length of the canals to provide scenic views and also maintain flood control which has been quite successful.

Now for the people that I mentioned earlier.Alexander Murray Palmer “Alex” Haley(August 11,1921-February 10,1992) an american writer,wrote the 1976 book “Roots:The Saga of an American Family”.It turned into a TV mini series that was well received and had great influence on awareness in the United States of African- American history.Mr. Haley resided on the River Walk when this book was written.

The movie Selena which depicted the tragic death of Selena Quintanilla-Perez included one shot of the actress Jennifer Lopez standing on one of the bridges that traverse the River Walk canal system.I have not seen the movie itself but I’m sure many of you have.

I’m sure all of you has seen the movie Miss Congeniality starring Sandra Bullock.Some of this movie was shot in New York but the bulk of the filming was shot in Austin Texas and San Antonio Texas.There were scenes shot involving the Alamo and the River Walk as well.The unforgettable swim suit contest was filmed in one of the plush buildings along the banks of the River Walk-I tried to get a shot for you but could not(boo).

So there you go I hope you enjoyed it,there is much more to know and see about San Antonio(like the Spurs basketball team).Take a vacation some day and check it out!Bye for now.



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