Kristy Owen - 2/378 - 365 Things to Do in Austin, TX

Kristy Owen

I am a realtor here in Austin, and clients are always asking for suggestions on what to do around town. So, I thought I would blog about my experiences, recommendations and what you have to do before you can call yourself a true Austinite.

Republic Square is excited to announce their first FREE fitness series at the square. The series kicked off May 7th with free classes every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday throughout the month. All classes begin at 6:30pm.

-Mondays: Find your inner wild with free yoga by Wild Heart Yoga! (May 7th, 14th, & 21st)

-Tuesdays: Show your strength with free rowing and circuit training by Rō Fitness! (May 8th, 15th, 22nd, & 29th)

-Wednesdays: Go Beyond the Barre with free classes by barre3! (May 9th, 16th, 23rd & 30th)

-Thursdays: Interval Training with Orange Theory Fitness 

May is National Physical Fitness month – help celebrate in Austin style. Child-friendly activities will be provided each night, and all classes are free. See you at the square!

Republic Square
422 Guadalupe Street
Austin, TX 78701


We’ve got your indoor fun for this rainy day right here. The Austin Record Convention is the best place to find all the good vinyl at amazing prices! Stock up on vinyl LPs and 45s, CDs, posters, T-shirts, and other music memorabilia! Come search for those hidden gems with your fellow audiophiles.

When: Today, May 20th

Cost: $5

Time: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Palmer Events Center
900 Barton Springs Rd.
Austin, Texas 78704

Get the whole family out of the house and enjoy the smells of some gorgeous blooms. Come to Fareground’s very first Flower Market and bring some of that beauty home. Featured florists are Petals, ink. and Succulent Native! Treat yourself or a loved one to a unique bunch of local flowers and succulents.

When: Today, May 19th

Time: noon – 2:00 p.m.

Fareground at One Eleven
111 Congress Avenue
Austin, Texas 78701

By Greg Ackerman
Photos courtesy of Mike Manewitz 

For the past nine years, Dallas has hosted a small-format live music festival called Homegrown Fest featuring top Texas acts. Last Saturday the tradition resumed at Main Street Garden park in the heart of Big D. Headliners Explosions in the Sky performed with neo-psychrock veterans, The Black Angels and one of that band’s inspiration, Roky Erickson.

Credit Mike Manewitz/@manewitz

Homegrown Festival was in danger of being cancelled due to poor ticket sales but an article that appeared in the Dallas Morning News seemed to have helped boost ticket sales. Organizers also elected to cut production costs, striking the second stage from the site plan and slashing the number of production and security personnel on hand. To their credit, the show ran on time all day in spite of that fact.

We arrived at the park as Denton’s Acid Carousel was preparing to kick off. The scraggly bunch of musicians looked like they’d been beamed in from another era, sporting 60’s vintage striped pants and bell-bottoms with rock star accessories as they worked through their set. The audience response was favorable from the handful of fans who showed up early to catch the group.

Credit Mike Manewitz/@manewitz

A hot, humid day in Dallas meant attendance ramped up slowly with only a handful of fans on hand to see local legends [DARYL] perform with an expanded lineup that included new and former members of the band. The extra guitars and keys filled the park with sound as fans drew closer to the stage to inspect the oddly configured “supergroup” of Dallas musicians.

Earlier in the day we were wowed by Fort Worth’s Duell who aggressively attacked their set list of hard rock songs. There was a lot of headbanging and hair flying (see photos). A five-piece with three guitars meant the group is capable of producing a “wall of sound” as mentioned in their Bandcamp bio. We think it’s an apt description. We also think a double bill of Duell and Austin’s The Well would be a dream lineup.

Credit Mike Manewitz/@manewitz

After Dallas act Vodi performed, axe-wielding Austin rockers Ume, fronted by all-around badass Lauren Larson took the stage to display their power-trio chops to the Homegrown crowd. The response was overwhelming. It was nice to see after Ume took a bit of a hiatus as Larson took a bit of a hiatus to start a family. Word is the group has a new record coming.

Roky Erickson and his band took the stage next hitting on all cylinders as Erickson played and sang seated while the rest of his band stood alongside the legendary musician. The band played classic 13th Floor Elevators’ songs “Two-Headed Dog” “Levitation” and “You’re Gonna Miss Me.” The performance was arguably the best Roky Erickson performance we’ve seen since the singer re-entered the music world following his battle with mental illness with the collaboration record he made with Okkerville River in 2010.

Credit Mike Manewitz/@manewitz

The festival changed it up for a set following Erickson with Toronto’s Alvvays. The indie-popsters are touring in support of their sophomore album, Antisocialites. Although the Canadians may have appeared a bit out of place among the Texas acts sharing the stage with them, we found the group’s 12-song performance a nice change of pace. The shoegazey, indie-rock songs lightened the mood a bit. We saw a number of fans dancing and singing along to singer/guitarist Molly Rankin’s sweet voice.

Austin’s lords of psychedelic rock, The Black Angels took the stage next for a superlative sunset performance that made up for the sound issues that plagued the band at LEVITATION last month. That’s not to say the performance went perfectly. Sound issues at the beginning of the set required an amp swap that fixed the issue. TBA’s light man, Bob Mustachio had to wait until the sun went down 40 minutes into the band’s set for fans to be able to see his eye-popping projections. Then flood lights automatically came on that washed out half the screen behind the band. Eventually organizers shut off the floodlights just before the set ended.

Credit Mike Manewitz/@manewitz

The Black Angels’ music sounded great though. Set highlights included fan favorite, “Bad Vibrations.” early on. Other deep cuts such as 2006’s “Black Grease” off debut album, Passover was particularly good as were tracks from their latest record, Death Song. We enjoyed the fact that the band offered up new material but kept the setlist interesting by including cuts from their back catalog.

By the time headliners, Explosions in the Sky took the stage nightfall had come. The space between the sound board tent in the middle of the park and the stage had completely filled in with fans eager to have their minds blown by Austin’s most successful post-rock act.

Credit Mike Manewitz/@manewitz

The slow, then loud trademark sound transported the audience to a surreal soundscape. Along with a simple but effective lighting scheme, the band delivered an impassioned performance. Guitarist Munaf Rayani was particularly entertaining to watch. Rayani’s performance style is fun to watch. At one point, he grabbed his Fender with one hand by the neck and swung his axe in a large arc brushing the stage floor with the body of guitar. We’re certain his guitar tech works overtime after watching the man beat up his instrument.

View the complete EITS Homegrown Fest setlist here. If you were one of the few who witnessed the set, consider yourself lucky. The band’s only other tour date listed this year is May 26 at Sasquatch Festival in George, Washington according to their website.

If you still need a great plan to honor the mom in your life, here it is: The Austin Symphonic Band is giving a free Mother’s Day concert at the State Capitol! The band will perform a selection of festive tunes with a cajun flair, including works by Frank Ticheli and John Philip Sousa.

Pack a picnic with her favorite foods and get there early to spread out a blanket or grab one of our limited audience chairs in the front row.

When: Today, May 13th

Time: 7-8 p.m.

Texas State Capitol South Steps
1100 Congress Ave.
Austin, Texas 78701

There’s free street parking on Sundays, or park in the Texas State Capitol Visitor’s Garage.

By: Greg Ackerman

If you’re a regular reader of our live music coverage, then you know we’re huge local music fans. What happens when some cool folks in Dallas produce a small-format festival in the heart of Dallas with a lineup that features some of our most beloved Austin acts? We head north for the ninth version of a tidy little one-day fest called Homegrown. The roster looks like an extension of LEVATION festival with post-rock heroes, Explosions in the Sky headlining. Neo-psych rock gods The Black Angels, Psychedelic music pioneer Roky Erickson and hard-rocking power trio Ume join their ATX brethren at Main Street Garden Park this Saturday, May 12.

We want one of you lucky readers to join us at the park. Head to our Twitter page and retweet our post with this article in the link. Don’t forget to @ mention a friend and use the hashtag #HG9 to enter. The winner will be chosen randomly and announced via Twitter at 5pm Friday.

There are several appealing facets of Homegrown Festival. With limited space for two big stages at opposite ends of the park, no set overlaps another. Ticket buyers could conceivably watch each and every performance. An opportunity that is not often presented at any music festival, let alone one with such a good bill.

Since we’re talking about the lineup again, let’s talk about the rest of this exemplary list of bands. Canandian indie-pop act Alvvays bring a shoe-gazey, dream pop sensibility to the festival. Their 2014 eponymous debut hit number one on U.S. college radio charts. We’re looking forward to catching their set as the group skipped SXSW in favor of an European tour.

Headliners Explosions in the Sky are a true Austin success story. Although the group has performed in Austin since their main stage appearance at Primavera Sound Festival in 2016, we’ve only seen the post-rock giants perform once since. The thought of seeing EITS in a more intimate setting, like their incredible 2015 appearance at the limited-attendance Utopiafest makes us giddy. We’re expecting a similarly impressive light show. Side note: This show is one of only two dates listed on the EITS tour schedule so far this year.

The Mustachio Light Show that comes with The Black Angels’ performances is perhaps more impressive as Bob Mustachio employs an array of film, video and projection lighting into the production. His work is really a technology-fueled expansion on the traditional light projector gel visuals used in when the wave psych rock innovators led by the Grateful Dead, Pink Floyd and Texas’ own Roky Erickson began using visuals for the fans using LSD to trip during shows.

Our fingers are crossed TBA guitarist Christian Bland avoids sound issues that plagued his LEVITATION set two weeks ago. Despite the unusual sound issues the band found a way to work around the technical problems. Drummer Stephanie Bailey who was next to Bland on stage did a particularly good job of picking up the slack as did guitarist, Jake Garcia. An act as experienced as The Black Angels have surely worked out the kinks since then.

Tickets are still available for advance purchase at the Homegrown Festival website. Low ticket prices ($42 & $125) gives a lot of bang for your buck. Eleven bands at that price work out to less than $4 an act. Grabbing a ticket for that kind of value is a no-brainer for people who like good music.

This month Austin Shakespeare is transforming the Zilker Hillside Theater into the world of a classic 1950s sitcom for their fresh take on The Merry Wives of Windsor. Imagine the Bard meets I Love Lucy. Now in its 34th year, Shakespeare in the Park is a treat for the whole family. If you haven’t seen a production in this amazing venue yet, we highly recommend it. Pro tip: Take a dip in Barton Springs before the show and you’ll stay cool throughout the night.

The audience is encouraged to bring blankets, low chairs, and a picnic to enjoy their evening under the stars. Some chairs are available. The Zilker Hillside Theater has an accessible area for all audience members in front of the stage.

When: May 3-27, 2018, Thursday-Sunday
*Preview on Wednesday, May 2

Time: All shows start at 8:00 p.m.

Beverly S. Sheffield Zilker Hillside Theater
2206 William Barton Dr., Austin, TX 78704


Get out and about today and check out a festival that’s been a part of Austin for decades. The Pecan Street Festival features 300 juried vendors, food concessions, three stages of music, kids rides and petting zoo, and so much more. It’s an oldie and a goodie!

The festival attracts hundreds of local and national artisans offering original handcrafted creations in a variety of mediums, from metal, wood, fiber, clay, leather, glass and stone to repurposed materials of all kinds.

When: Today, May 6th

Time: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.



It’s an all day party to celebrate this all-important Star Wars Holiday. And what better place for us all to gather than Star Bar? Whether you are Rebel Alliance or Imperial Army, dress in your finest StarWars garb and win a prize for the best costume!
Dark beers on one side vs. light beers on the other and May the 4th Shirts available while supplies last!

When: Today, May 4th

Time: 11 a.m. – midnight

Star Bar
600 W 6th St.
Austin, Texas 78701

Why eat on land when you can have brunch party on the water!?!

We’ve teamed up with Capital Cruises and Austin Tour Company again to bring you The Brunch Boat!  A brunch time party cruise on Town Lake (or Lady Bird Lake as it’s now known). Enjoy great music, food, and beverages aboard a fabulous boat with air conditioning, bathrooms, and a gorgeous roof deck. We’ll have different themes throughout the year too for added fun!  Get great pictures and views of the Austin skyline from the boat roof deck!

Here are the details…

SPECIAL UPDATE: We’re excited to announce that ATC guests who head to the YETI store after we dock will receive a free beverage with the purchase of $20 or more of YETI products (must show your wristband to get the beverage so keep it on)!

  • This Event is 21+ Only 
  • You do not need a printed confirmation, we will check you in electronically once you arrive.
  • Full trip details are sent out via email the Friday before your cruise.
  • HAVE FUN, and drink responsibly
  • GREAT for birthday parties, corporate outings and special events.  Invite your CREW! 

*We have a variety of local food and beverages on board which are complimentary for our guests (quantities are limited to ensure responsible consumption and safety).  We provide enough for each guest to have two to three cocktails, a breakfast taco and two slices of pizza. In addition to that we offer chips and salsa, fresh fruit, beer, sparkling cocktails, coffee, still and sparkling water. Food, beverage and entertainment vendors may vary for each cruise.