Preparing for the NBA All-Star weekend festivities

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The NBA season is more than half way over and, in just a few months, the NBA and its teams have made their fair share of headlines (mostly from the Los Angeles Lakers). This weekend however, the league moves away from all those headlines, and showcases its best players during the 2013 All-Star Game weekend in Houston, TX from February 15-17.

There are plenty of great events taking place for fans heading to the festivities in Houston, including NBA Jam Session, where fans can participate in a slew of basketball activities, and the BBVA Rising Stars Game, which features the leagues best first- and second-year players. For me though, there are four events during the ASG weekend that I look forward to the most: the All-Star Celebrity Game, the Slam Dunk Contest, the 3-point Shootout, and the All-Star Game. Here is a look at each of these events:

All-Star Celebrity Game

The All-Star Celebrity game combines celebs from the world of music, movies, and television, with some legends from both men's and women's basketball. The game usually does not display the highest quality basketball, but it is definitely entertaining. I mean, where else are you going to see Justin Beiber crossover Common?

2013 Participants: Nick Cannon, Ne-Yo, Josh Hutcherson, Usain Bolt, etc.

Broadway Guide

My first experience with a Broadway show was a little… unique. My mom, grandma, aunt, and I were all going to see The Little Mermaid, but not before making a weekend of it shopping and dining around NYC.

The problem? We hadn’t planned. At all.

We knew our hotel was sort of in the vicinity of where the show was taking place, but it ended there. We did, however, know exactly how to make it to Central Park to take a completely unnecessary, but nonetheless fun, horse and carriage ride.

So imagine our surprise when we left to see the show and we found out the distance to the theater was quite the haul (particularly for my grandma!). We just kept thinking, "Well, it can’t be that much further, right?"

We also didn’t eat beforehand, so when the show got out late, we were hungry. We schlepped to a nearby restaurant, where the wait just to get in was an hour because everyone had the same idea as us. We were ravenous when we finally got to eat. But at least the show was amazing!

Thankfully for you, it’s possible to avoid the pitfalls of not-giving-a-thought-to-how-your-weekend-will-go; we just launched a comprehensive guide to Broadway theaters to help with travel and planning. No, seriously, it basically does everything but the actual traveling for you. (And if we could do that for you, we probably would.)

We’d like to think it comes at a pretty decent time, too. Although February is relatively quiet in terms of new Broadway productions, in just a few short weeks, its season will really begin to take off with Lucky Guy, starring Tom Hanks, kicking off the month of March with previews. From there, 14 other shows (by my count) will also go into previews, with five Broadway productions officially opening: Cinderella, Ann, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike (which is currently Off-Broadway and will be transferring), Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Hands on a Hardbody.

Have I mentioned this is all happening in March?

So now is the perfect time to snag tickets. But it might be a little helpful to peek at the Broadway guide beforehand, or even after purchasing tickets, to find out each theater’s location, a little about its history (so you can sound smart around your friends, duh), a link to nab directions, nearby restaurants and close places to stay.

Like any Disney production, The Little Mermaid was oh-my-gosh incredible; our complete lack of planning totally wasn’t.