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While it’s all about the courtside action during any NBA All-Star Weekend, the city of Houston provided a lot of pre- and post-game activities for the 2013 events. Most fans chose to start their adventures in the downtown area. It was once a place that shut down when the workday ended at 6 p.m., but has since evolved into a vibrant neighborhood around the clock. Next time your'e in Houston, try Discovery Green, a 12-acre urban park that offers everything from bocce ball courts and outdoor movies to a lake for kayaking and canoeing.
Exploring the Museum District is always a must — whether you’re into contemporary art, medical history or natural science, there’s a museum dedicated to it. Basketball fans chose among 19 museums within a mile-and-a-half radius. And even for culture consumers who don’t want to spend the whole day indoors, it’s worth walking around the neighborhood, which is home to the prestigious Rice University.
One of Houston’s best assets — and probably what it’s most famous for — is NASA’s Johnson Space Center, and the 2013 All-Star uniforms were inspired by the city’s aeronautical history. While you can’t exactly wander through NASA, you can take a tour at Space Center Houston. You’ll see everything from the historic Apollo Mission Control Center to astronauts training for upcoming missions.
Aside from parks and museums, Houston is also home to the Lone Star State’s oldest craft brewery, Saint Arnold Brewing Company. Tour the three-story building Monday through Saturday. You’ll get a souvenir glass and indulge in plenty of tastings. It’s the perfect way to wind down the weekend.