The Where I Live series aims to showcase our diverse city and region by spotlighting its many vibrant neighborhoods. Each week a local resident invites us over and lets us in on what makes their neighborhood special. Have we been to your neighborhood yet? Get in touch to share your story.

My father’s work in the Air Force was what first drew our family from Fort Walton Beach, Florida, to San Antonio 28 years ago. Before the move to Lackland Air Force Base, our family had lived all over the country and around the world, so my brother and I had been exposed to all sorts of communities and learned to adapt to our surroundings. It made us understanding of cultural differences and welcoming of different beliefs.

When we moved to San Antonio, the diversity of the city was exciting and comforting. Now having settled in and built a life for myself here, it’s that diversity that makes San Antonio such a great place to live. It could be due to the military installations, it could be because of the big companies like Toyota bringing jobs to the area. Whatever it is, I love it.

Being close to the downtown and Southtown areas made Lavaca the ultimate choice in deciding on a place for my family to live. The beautiful historic homes that surround our abode make it a joy to bicycle, walk, or jog through. And being moments from the San Antonio Missions, Blue Star Arts Complex, area eateries, and Hemisfair puts us in a prime spot for enjoying the city’s cultural offerings. It doesn’t get any better than being in the middle of it all.

My neighbors are all friendly, and we wave to each other as we check the mail or bring in trash and recycling bins. Though I am not part of a neighborhood association, I hope to eventually be part of the community gardening group that maintains the beautifully lush landscape on South Presa Street.

I am not a native of San Antonio, but there is no other area of the city that I’d prefer to call home. Here I’m able to live a very Norman Rockwell-type of life in a growing metropolitan setting. We have the best of both worlds: city life and historical charm. Judging by the single- and multifamily residences being built around us, I’m not alone in seeking this lifestyle.

Local businesses along South Alamo Street provide the Lavaca neighborhood many amenities within walking distance. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

Choosing to raise my three children (Taylor, 28; Kennedy, 22; and Cross, 19) in San Antonio was the best decision I could have made. Now they are young adults, and I could not be prouder of the young people they have become. My oldest two have given me grandchildren, and my role now as “Grandmommy” has given me a new perspective on life. Time with them is composed of area outings to places old and new. We love learning about the history of San Antonio, looking at local art, and exploring the city as it grows.

Here in Lavaca, we like to support our local businesses. A flourishing neighborhood comes from internal and external support. When residents frequent local businesses and tell others about them, word of mouth draws people from outside the area and helps these businesses and the surrounding community thrive.

Many seek to satisfy their appetites by choosing one of the many popular restaurants nearby. Some of my favorite restaurants in the area are Southtown Pizzeria, Azuca, and Battalion. I make my way through the drive-thru at Las Tapatias de Jalisco a few times a week, and Cross works at Cinnaholic, so that’s also a frequent stop.

Southtown 101 is one of Star's favorite restaurants. Where I Live: Lavaca by Star Workcuff. Photos taken on November 27, 2020.
Southtown 101 is a favorite local spot. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

To see so many family-owned businesses that make up Lavaca, Southtown, and the downtown area makes me proud to be part of it all. This past year has been a trial for the world globally. To see how San Antonio has weathered the pandemic has shown me how strong our community can be. And what I’ve seen is a community aligning to bring unity during a time of uncertainty. Through it all, it’s been refreshing to see that not only commercial chains are open, but mom-and-pop shops were able to re-establish themselves and keep their relevance in the community.

Though we haven’t been able to do much traveling this year, traveling is a big part of the Workcuff family culture. And as much as we love getting to know new places, we take comfort in knowing that there is no place like home. The weather and cost of living in San Antonio just can’t be beat, and I can honestly say that almost everyone I meet, I can consider a friend. Though our memories in Lavaca are just beginning, as we just moved in on Valentine’s Day, what is most important for my family right now is staying safe during this pandemic while maintaining our active lifestyle as best as we can.

Star Workcuff is a property manager for Internacional Realty, an instructor for the San Antonio Apartment Association, and a professional interior stager. Her ability to blend career and teachings into...