Kristy Owen - 3/376 - 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.

After 20 years, Austin’s Irish Embassy, aka Fadó, will be closing at the end of this month. And what kind of self-respecting Irish pub would they be if they didn’t go all out for their last St. Patrick’s Day? Well we’re in luck—because they totally are.

For one last time they are closing down 4th Street and opening super early to throw Austin’s biggest and best St. Patrick’s Day party. So put on all your green and head downtown to party like a leprechaun.

When: Today, (St. Patrick’s Day!) March 17th

Time: 7 a.m. – 3 a.m. | $10 cover on the door starts at 9 a.m.| $20 cover starting at 2 p.m.| 21 and over after 4 p.m..

Fado Irish Pub & Restaurant
214 W 4th St.
Austin, Texas 78701

Photo via Fado’s Facebook page. 

Want to take a ride?  Check out Rowing Dock’s newest addition to their fleet, the SUPJet.  SUPJet is both a quality stand up paddle board as well as an electronically powered watercraft.  When you want an extra boost or just want to sit back and relax, you simply push a button and the built-in drive will move you along at 5 mph (8 km/h) for well over 1.5 hours. This paddle assisted SUP is great for beginners, parents with small kids, and experienced paddlers on windy days. 

Rowing Dock is the first to release this fully integrated electric powered SUP technology on Lady Bird Lake and they are open 7 days a week from 9am-8pm. Visit their website  for more information or head down to the dock to get your paddle on!

SXSW is a marathon, not a sprint. And there will be several times after a show when you will be starving, in a hurry, and waiting in snaking lines at a food truck court. This will feel like tortue. Don’t let this happen to you. Luckily, there is an app that takes you right to the front of the line and helps you get on to the next cool thing.

Partake, a technology platform enabling a seamless purchasing experience for the Sports and Entertainment Industry, has just announced that it will release the Partake App at
SXSW for attendees to pre-order, pay, and pickup food at nine (with more coming!) participating food truck vendors—which means long lines and wait times are part of your past.

The Partake App is totally free and available for immediate download for both Apple and Android devices. Participating food truck vendors this year are Belly Up, Burro Cheese Kitchen, Dee Dee’s Northern Thai, juice Austin, kebabalicious, mmmpanadas, Noble Sandwich Co., Ranch Hand, and Taco Flats.

Seriously, stop waiting in line. We are all better than this! Click here to learn more about Partake.

It’s mudbug time, people! Whisler’s Crawfish Boil, an Austin staple, is back just in time for SXSW. The little critters are brought in from Louisiana and the Boss Street Brass Band will play at 3 p.m. There will be drink specials, too! You know, whatever goes best with mudbugs.

When: Today, March 11th

Time: noon – 8:00 p.m.

1816 E 6th St.
Austin, Texas 78702

Meow Wolf Outside

What: Meow Wolf is coming to SXSW this year to present a never-seen-before, never-seeable-after immersive presentation we’re calling “MEOW WOLF OUTSIDE (sponsored by OpenMind).”  Music, virtual realities, and creatures and more.  We don’t know much but we know Austin’s own Shakey Grave’s in going to be part of the collab. 

When: March 9th-March 15

Location: TBD

More Info.

Washington State Wine Presents: SXSW Quesoff

What: What is better than Queso? Queso and wine! Enjoy queso by special guests Franklin Barbecue,Emmer & Rye, Mixtli, Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ,JuiceLand, Willigan’s Island as well as past Quesoff champs Frank, Cheesus & Austin Facial Hair Club. This Hot Luck pop-up is presented by Washington State Wine.

When: March 13th, 2pm

Location: Southbits Trailer Park, 604 Driskill Street, Austin, Texas 78701

The Block Party Presented by Pacifico

What: Relax next to the poolside with live music, food, and drinks all day Friday, March 16.

The Block Party presented by Pacifico is an extension of Cinderblock’s passion of music videos and sessions but with a really large party twist. Cinderblock will bring incredible talent from Dallas as well as featuring musicians from across the country. Already in the lineup is Rayland BaxterDavid RamirezSuzanna ChoffelMedicine Man RevivalMitchell Ferguson, and Matthew McNeal. Like any other Cinderblock hosted event, the entire party will be filmed by the Cinderblock video crew including – artists’ sets, event recaps, boomerangs and activations, sponsor promos, social, and more.

RSVP and Tickets here

For The Foodie: South by Southwest’s SouthBites Female Led Chef’s Dinner

What: SouthBites presents a female-led culinary collaboration at Olamaie hosted by Williams-Sonoma. Ashley Christensen, Sarah Grueneberg, Alex Raij, Ashleigh Martin, and Christina Tosi will collaborate on the dinner menu while highlighting active change within today’s hospitality industry. Tickets include a cocktail hour with passed hor d’oeuvres, and a five-course dinner. Alongside the dinner, Alba Huerta and Carla Rza Betts will be on hand to offer cocktail and wine pairings throughout the evening.

When: March 12th, 1610 San Antonio St, Austin, TX 78701 

Location: Olamaie, 6pm cocktails, 7pm dinner

More Info.

Your Trivia Brain Could Win You $25,000 During SXSW

What: We know you were probably planning on spending a lot of money during SXSW on drinks, pedicabs, late-night food, Ubers, and more drinks—so we’re excited to tell you that you can actually make some money this year. And maybe even $25,000!

PROVEIT is the trivia app that lets players compete against their friends and random opponents in head-to-head trivia challenges for real cash. And they are making the most of this crazy week in Austin with a big presence around town and lots of chances for you to win.

When: March 8th- March 15th

Location: Austin, Texas

Learn More.

South By San Jose: Always & Forever Free

What: This is a SX staple. We stop by every year. It’s perfect for one of the days that you want something on the more chill side of things. It’s not right in the mix of everything but within walking distance. It’s a great day party to make sure is on your agenda. 

When: March 14th-March 18th

Location: Hotel San Jose

Learn More.

Waterloo Records Free Day Parties 

What: Waterloo Records is back with their legendary day parties. They offer four days of live music all day. Their parking lot is closed off and turned into a concert. It is  a great opportunity to see free live music and some the artists even post for photos and sign autographs! 

When: March 14th-March 17th 

Waterloo Records 

KGSR Live Morning Broadcast

What: Calling all you early risers. For a $5 donation to the Make-A-Wish Central & South Texas, you’ll enjoy 4-hours of exclusive, live interviews and performances from featured SXSW artists, early morning Bud Light beverage specials and $5 Cinco Vodka Bloody Marys (for guests 21+) and the first 300 guests through the door each morning will receive a complimentary breakfast treat!

When: March 14th-March17th 

Location: ACL Live 

More Info.

Sound + Color Presented by M&M’S

What: Check out this line-up. We repeat, check out this line-up. A full spectrum experience of interactive art and onstage music. Show up for the hands-on M&M’S experience and stay for the all-day lineup of fresh new musical acts.

When: March 16th & March 17th

Location: Lustre Pearl, 94 Rainey Street Austin, Texas 78701 


StubHub at Bangers 

What: These guys are back again and know how to party. No wristbands/badges required. So hit up that RSVP get ready to rumble. 

When: March 14th-March15th

Location: Banger’s, 79 Rainey Street Austin, Texas 78701 


The Fourth Annual Puppy Party 

What: If you have any gas in your tank left come March 18th. Go hang out with puppies because puppies are awesome. They will have tons of adoptable dogs from Austin Pets Alive! 

When: March 18th, noon-4pm

Location: Lustre Pearl, 94 Rainey Street Austin, Texas 78701


SXSW Film starts Friday (3/9). There will be hundreds of submissions, but these are the eight our writers are looking forward to seeing the most!

A Quiet Place (By Daniel Fullmer):

Photo Credit: Paramount Pictures© 2017 Paramount Pictures. All rights reserved.

A Quiet Place is a passion project created by the beloved John Krasinski, who is mostly known for his work on The Office. Barriers are ready to be broken as he continues to develop his skills behind-the-scenes as a director, writer and producer alongside his incredibly talented wife, Emily Blunt. Krasinski has always hoped for opportunities to work with Blunt on-screen and now they have their chance. The film’s trailer casts a wide net of thrills and chills that should leave viewers with a strong sense of unfettered terror. A film based completely around silence may end up being the most deafening thriller of the year.

Blockers (By Daniel Fullmer):

Credit: Universal Pictures

It’s time to prepare for an assault of raunchy comedy with Blockers! This film proposes a contemporary spin on the genre by focusing on a group of co-parents who face their worst fears when their daughter heads towards their worst nightmare – prom night. Featuring the meme-worthy king and WWE superstar, John Cena, and the comedic genius, Leslie Mann, we have the potential for a tidal wave of hilarious hijinks that will go just far enough to appease those with a twisted and honest sense of humor for parents and teenagers alike. Prepare for a galvanized look at kids growing up in the age of social media.  

6 Balloons (By Daniel Fullmer):

6 Balloons is a film about a woman attempting to manage a terribly uncomfortable situation. Her brother has relapsed into a heroin addiction and has a 2-year old daughter in his care who she is desperately trying to help. Directed by Marja-Lewis Ryan, this dramatic feature looks to deliver an impactful and affecting view of a family dealing with the woes of addiction and the continuing struggles that both remain and develop. Starring Abbi Jacobson and Dave Franco, this feature may be a power house of emotion full of subject matter that many can potentially relate to.

First Light (By Daniel Fullmer):

Credit: David Jones

After spending most of his career working in television, Director Jason Stone has created another film, First Light, which focuses on a high school senior who encounters a mysterious and life-altering “light” over her small town that grants her abilities she never dreamed of having. Without control and on the run, what options does she have and who else wants to gain her newfound abilities for themselves? Starring Stefani Scott, Kristin Booth and Saïd Taghmaoui, this film is sure to offer several thrills for anyone interested in the sci-fi genre with a twist.

All Square (By Matthew Fullmer):

Credit: Jordan Foley

All Square, John Hyams’s entry into this year’s narrative spotlight, appears to have no qualm in challenging our identification with man versus the heart of society. A dark line is crossed with an idea of the town bookie colluding with a little-leaguer within America’s pastime. It turns any sense of a buddy movie on it’s head, as the adolescent wingman bears the ultimate risk of becoming victim. Known for his polished character performances in House of Cards and Black Mirror, Michael Kelly is an intriguing choice to take the reigns as a lead. And baseball, recognized as a kid’s game and the pride of a community, stands to be an interesting template to showcase the dark repercussions when one tinkers with innocence or glory that we all cherish.  If you’ve ever participated in youth sports or dabbled in a gamble, how could you not want to see where this goes?

The World Before Your Feet (By Matthew Fullmer):

Credit: Michael Berman

The World Before Your Feet is a boldly personal documentary by Matt Green who looks to capture the sheer strangeness and bliss of what it is to wander the world in search of “who knows what.” No justification, no definition…simply walking and absorbing the labyrinth of boroughs and blocks we call New York City. It will be compelling to see Green’s own actions as a lone wanderer on display and how they illustrate the fascinations of exploration and human connection. The purpose you may ask? The purpose is ambiguous and the answers are all awaiting their chance to be revealed to anyone daring enough to walk alongside.

Take Your Pills (By Matthew Fullmer):

Alison Klayman’s Take Your Pills stands to be an insightful bearer of bad news as it sifts through the fallout of Adderall and other elixirs conveniently weaponized through modern society’s pressure upon the everyman. Her last film, 11/8/16, shed light upon the day of Donald Trump’s surprise win.  Now Klayman tackles pharmaceuticals and their game-changing ascendancy within modern society’s never-ending search for an edge.  Our constant quest to do better, feel better, BE better, can now be dealt through one simple swallow.  But at what price?

Don’t Leave Home (By Matthew Fullmer):

Credit: Wyatt Garfield

Michael Tully’s Don’t Leave Home, assembles a dark expedition into the source of myth and lore. Known for his past projects that focus upon nostalgic tours down memory lane including Septien and Ping Pong Summer, Tully’s new rendition braves the search into something more nefarious in its roots.  Stepping from the safety of home, where urban legends are only spoke of, what are the costs of engaging them head-on within the far-reaching realm of the unknown? As a nominee in the Visions section of the festival, this origins story is sure to examine just that, as well as challenge our desire for truth and one’s curiosity to know all.  

Danny and Matt are two brothers who spent a substantial part of their youth watching classics from the 1980s and beyond. As they have grown older, both brothers have continued to push each other to branch out as far as possible into any, and all, genres of film. Matt majored in film studies at the University of Santa Barbara and Danny has spent several years working as a film reviewer for international cinema. Both have an appreciation for the nostalgic memories granted to them by the films of their childhood and are always looking for more.

We know you were probably planning on spending a lot of money during SXSW on drinks, pedicabs, late-night food, Ubers, and more drinks—so we’re excited to tell you that you can actually make some money this year. And maybe even $25,000!

PROVEIT is the trivia app that lets players compete against their friends and random opponents in head-to-head trivia challenges for real cash. And they are making the most of this crazy week in Austin with a big presence around town and lots of chances for you to win. Starting tomorrow, March 8th at 6:00 p.m., test your knowledge of random trivia in their Austin Trivia Contest.

When: Thursday, March 8th @ 6:00 p.m. – Thursday, March 15th @6:00 p.m.

Here’s how to play:
1. Download PROVEIT and create an account
2. Make a deposit with a CC or Apple Pay
3. Add a profile pic
4. Play head-to-head trivia challenges to move up the Austin leaderboard (positions are
based on average score/game +2 points per win)
5. 1st place at the end of the week wins $25,000 (2nd wins $2,500, 3rd wins $1,000, and the
Next 97 also win smaller cash prizes)

In addition to the challenges on the app, there are three other ways to boost your luck and cash flow. While you are out and about enjoying the fest, look for these chances to win bigger:

Golden Ticket
PROVEIT is giving away Golden Ticket promo codes to all new users who sign up via an online marketing partner or a street team encounter. Promo codes will boost a user’s initial deposit by $1- $1,000 in cash. The user must make initial minimum deposit to discover the secret value of the code.

Street Team
Find PROVEIT’s Street Team to charge up your phone and play in-person trivia to win even more cash. You’ll find them roaming the streets or hanging out at their physical locations (Red River and 4th behind the Convention Center and East 6th across from the Vegas Hotel). 

PROVEIT Cash Truck
The Cash Truck will be in Austin all week and two definite spots will be the physical locations above. Players who take a selfie with the Cash Truck and publicly post it to social with #thisismoney and tag @playproveit will have a chance  to wine even more cash. The funniest selfie of the week wins $500! 

Follow along on Instagram @playproveit for secret Cash Truck stop announcements!

We want to give you $150 to play! Learn more here

It is truly the end of an era, the Torchy’s Trailer on South First is closing up shop. In true Torchy’s fashion they’re ending things in style with a Block Party with FREE queso and tacos! 

Tonight from 5pm – 9pm, they’ll be giving away their four original tacos and award-winning Green Chile Queso for FREE.

They’ll be donating $1 to the Texas School for the Deaf for each taco given away!

When: today, March 7th

Time: 5pm-7pm

Torchy’s Tacos Trailer South First
1311 South First Street
Austin, Texas 78704

Waterloo Records is famous for in store performances by great bands. Tonight they’re having local favorite, Wild Child for an in store performance. Drinks will be provided by Shiner Beer. 

Speaking of Waterloo Records here is their SXSW Day Party Line-Up! Remember their shows are FREE and open to the public. Here is a quick look at the schedule so you can start planning your SXSW.

When: today, March 5th

Time: 5 pm

Waterloo Records
600A North Lamar Blvd.
Austin, Texas 78703

Bottomless mimosas you say? Challenge accepted! Spend your Saturday at this charming waterfront spot—where $10 gets you all the breakfast drinks you could ever want.

The weather is beyond gorgeous, so why not grab some friends and post up at a table on the lake for a few hours?

When: Today, March 3rd

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Alta’s Cafe
74 Trinity St.
Austin, Texas 78701