If there were such a thing as being too awesome, you, our readers would be it. Your overwhelming show of support for the restaurants, bars, concert halls, beers, and stars of Dallas that you love brought the Blitzies to an official place at the table for the city’s “Best Of” issues. You cast your votes and spiritedly debated your choices on Twitter and Facebook – a few of you even yelled them in parking lots. We welcomed the votes of the Highland Park sushi connoisseur and the sloppy joe food snob, who lives in that apartment with the funny smell. Both the commuting sports talk radio listener and the barefoot music festivalgoer were an equally important part of this democratic process. You brought to us your huddled masses of readers who were tired of being relegated to the position of afterthought behind the opinions of so-called experts who think their picks matter more than yours. Shame on them. In these pages your choices get top billing – even when we don’t particularly agree with you. Yes, there were times when our minds were in one accord with the selections and others when your choices made us curse into pillows and heave anything unlucky enough to be sitting on our desks at the wall. But that was half the fun of it.
Your voting style was a representation of our great city: competitive, bold and at times opinionated, sincere, and when it wanted to be, completely unpredictable. So thank you for making this an astonishing year for the Blitzies. You showed us the way with every thumb tap on the iPhone, click of the mouse or index finger jab to the tablet. Take a bow and bask in your greatness.
This one is indeed for you.
C. Craig Patterson
Editor-in-Chief Blitz Magazine
2013 Blitzies – Sports Winners
Local Sports Fan Favorite – Dirk Nowitzki: No brainer here. Dallas’ native son since 1998 hopped aboard Mark Cuban’s train and in 2011 climbed the championship plane. Now a proud dad, a one-team player for life. This alone is good enough for us. May he enjoy his Maverick golden years.
Blitz Pick: Yu Darvish
Best Local Sports Radio Talk Show – The GBag Nation: Hear Ye Hear Ye. If Ye See Thee, Beer Thee. Gavin Dawson (The General) and Chris Arnold (The Sergeant) have got you covered. They used to rock it at night, now they’re serving the day-shift masses. Give them a listen from 10-2 p.m. on 105.3 The Fan. From sports, shorts and retorts of sorts. Mike Bacsik has joined them to add to the mayhem. They’re quickly becoming a growing force to reckon with.
Blitz Pick: The Morning Musers
Best Golf Course for the Money – Dallas Country Club: Founded in 1896 this societal spot has been place to be seen whether you like it or not. The course itself came to life in 1912 with 118 acres of prime real estate. You probably won’t ever be a member, (ask A-Rod) but if you’re lucky enough you could check it out as a guest.
Blitz Pick: Firewheel Golf Park
2013 Blitzies – Culture Winners
Best Live Music Venue – Granada Theater: The Granada Theater is hands-down the best venue in Dallas. Its intimate layout and epic sound system are an ode to concert enthusiasts, and truly make you feel like you’re discovering your favorite band for the first time all over again. The Granada crew consistently books the best indie and big-name acts, but tickets never get crazy expensive like they do at other venues. As if it couldn’t get any cooler, the owner bought the place next door and turned it into a delicious foodie refuge with live music every night of the week – for free.
Blitz Pick: Lola’s
Best Bar – Black Swan Saloon: We’ve definitely written about this one before. Every time we think of Black Swan Saloon we can just taste the sweet vanilla pecan infused whiskey. If you manage to locate this sign-less bar in Deep Ellum, you certainly won’t find yourself disappointed. The Black Swan Saloon has, hands down, some of the best drinks in Dallas. The fizzy, muddled strawberry concoction is an all-around crowd pleaser and their homemade infused vodkas and whiskeys are seriously awesome.
Blitz Pick: Union Bear
Best Festival – North Texas Beer Festival: Beer Garden? Check. Live music? Check. Not sweating into your pilsner in 110 degree heat because you’re cooling off inside? Check. Though it’s been called a “bullsh** move to skew demographics and drive up prices” after recently relocating to the distant convention center in Las Colinas, NTBF still remains a fan favorite. Regardless of your personal opinion, this fest offers a huge selection on great beers and tasty food. Yes, it’s a bit of a road trip…but the good news: Designated drivers get a 30% discount!
Blitz Pick: 35 Denton
Best Sports Bar – Christie’s Sports Bar: Stop by any bar during Sunday football and chances are you’ll find everyone sitting on the same side of the table peering over the shoulders of others just to see the screen. Do your group a favor and give Christie’s a try on game day. You will be hard-pressed to find any seat in the house that doesn’t directly face a big screen TV and there’s a seriously massive projector that drops down in the main room for added viewing pleasure. Added bonus: their drink specials do not disappoint.
Blitz Pick: The Londoner
Best Dive Bar – Time Out Tavern: Looking for a good dive bar without all the hipster nonsense? Near the corner of Lovers/Inwood, and next to a conspicuously shady gas station, is one of the best bars in town. Drop by this low-key joint to watch any game on one of the many screens, mooch off the impossibly cheap drinks, shoot pool or challenge that cute girl in the corner to a game of shuffleboard. You could drink like a rock star and still only spend 10 bucks.
Blitz Pick: Lee Harvey’s
Best Local Charity – Rebuilding Together Greater Dallas: If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, this local big-hearted charity is for you. You can volunteer to help teams of friendly volunteers reconstruct the home of a deserving veteran or hit the golf course in the name of charity to raise funds for the organization’s fall and spring rebuilds. Focused on rehabilitating homes in Dallas’ low-income areas, RTGD gives disabled, elderly and economically disadvantaged homeowners a second chance. This November, they’ll be handing a family with disabled veteran parents the keys to their new, universally friendly home.
Blitz Pick: ArtLoveMagic
Person of the Year – Big Tex: Big Tex was so hot this year mostly because he burnt to the ground. Now, like a resurrected Phoenix, he has risen from his ashes to reclaim his throne. It is suspected he may have spent his hiatus tanning and getting work done (this is Dallas right?), but nevertheless he’s back to ring in the yearly tradition. Here’s to Big Tex who, like the rest of us, needs to reinvent himself every once and a while. And, of course, here’s to shoving handfuls of fried foods in our pie holes.
Blitz Pick: Kidd Kraddick
Best Guilty Pleasure – Redneck Heaven: Chances are if you’re heading here you aren’t feeling guilty and you’re looking for a good time. Sure the “ABC parties” may be over but Redneck Heaven still has much to offer. From sports to food to attractive waitresses this little outfit has grown to three locations in the Metroplex and now has its own TV show. Don’t forget to have a minnow bomb while there.
Blitz Pick: Redneck Heaven