Councilman Roberto Treviño of District 1 does not do things halfway– especially when it comes to “Star Wars.”
Several years ago, he created a full Han Solo costume, down to the red trim down the sides of his trousers and a blaster that he made himself.
“(The blaster is) complemented by a full leather holster that I made also, that I’m very proud of. It just feels right, you know? It feels good,” he said.
Treviño was in full getup to greet the Boys and Girls Club of San Antonio, during a special District 1 event on Tuesday. About 250 children, all members of the Boys and Girls Clubs, filed into the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema at 410 and Blanco for a special screening of “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens,” which opened over the weekend. The District 1 office enlisted more than a half-dozen partners, including Walt Disney Studios, to help with the screening.
Though Treviño and his staff are often ambitious in their projects, this event was clearly of special importance for the Councilman.
Treviño came up with the idea several months ago while talking with aids about the new “Star Wars” film release.
“It reminded me of when I was a kid,” he said. The first movie premiered in 1977, when he was six years old. “I was a member of the Boys and Girls Club then.”
He told his staffers how difficult it was to get to see a movie during opening week, because his family often didn’t have the money.
“I got to see Star Wars six months later when it was at the twenty-five-cent cinema, and I was really happy about that,” Treviño said. “And then it dawned on me — why don’t I just ask (Alamo) Drafthouse?”
So they did. After they requested one theater for a free showing of the movie, the Drafthouse surprised them by offering two. More sponsors stepped in to help after that, and this morning children from 11 different Boys and Girls Club chapters from across the city walked down a red carpet bracketed by velvet ropes. They high-fived a cast of characters—Treviño was there as Han Solo, of course, but so was the Spurs Coyote in a Jedi costume and heroes and villains running the gamut from stormtrooper to Batgirl. The characters are all members of the Champions of San Antonio. For this event, many of them donned superhero capes as well as lightsabers.
“They’re a league that usually dresses up as superheroes, but they’re doing some crossover for us,” said Desiree Luckey, a District 1 council aide who manages most of the office’s big events. “They’re doing the whole Star Wars thing for us today.”
Other organizations did the “Star Wars thing,” too. After the kids stepped off the red carpet, they received Star Wars glowsticks courtesy of SAWS and breakfast tacos and orange juice from Taco Cabana. Council aide Fred Chapa even convinced Disney to ship in a box filled with 300 Star Wars posters, enough for each kid to take one home. Every child wore their own VIP badge.
“Originally, like any movie, we were just going to do a ticket that the kids could have, do it really nice so that it (would be) a commemorative ticket,” explained Luckey. But, taking a cue from their detail-oriented boss, the District 1 staff decided a VIP badge would be even more special. They worked with CPS Energy to create the custom laminated badges that each child wore into the screening.
“I’m glad the kids really like it,” Luckey said.
Once they picked up their tacos and their merchandise, the children sat down in the two movie theaters donated by Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas to one more surprise. Treviño and his staff created a special welcome video featuring Trevino and Chapa (as Han Solo and Chewbacca, of course) in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon.
Check out District 1’s “Star Wars” video below:
*Top image: Councilman Roberto “Han Solo” Treviño (D1) greets children at Alamo Drafthouse. Photo by Abbey Francis.