It’s already way too hot in Austin to do anything but eat ice cream. So now we have the only festival that matters—the 12th Annual Austin Ice Cream Festival!
Coming Saturday, June 23, 2018 to Fiesta Gardens, this super sweet event has two parts, and two very different flavors. Here’s the scoop …
Part one is all about daytime fun for the whole family with samples from over a dozen local, regional, and national brands to tickle your taste buds. They’ll also have crazy contests, yard games, live music, rock wall climbing, and a dunk tank.
10 a.m. – 3 p.m. (ZIP ticket holders may enter early at 9 a.m.)
Children six and under receive free entry to the festival.
When it’s time for the kids to go home and eat a vegetable or two, the After Dark party will begin. Grown-up types can soak in summer under the stars with performances by Lee Fields & The Expressions, Tameca Jones, and DJ Mel—all while enjoying frozen treats, boozy frozen cocktails, savory eats from food trucks, and fun and games all night long!
6 – 10 p.m. for the general public (with ZIP guests entering early at 5:30 p.m.).
If you want that VIP treatment, purchase early. There is a limited number of ZIP passes!
Click here to learn more and get your tickets for either option. It’s an ice cream festival—what more could you possibly need to know?
Near the McKinney Roughs Nature Park and situated along the Colorado River, Hyatt Regency Lost Pines provides a wide variety of experiences to enjoy the Texas wilderness.
Throughout the summer months the resort will feature river activities including kayaking and rafting trips, as well as river float excursions and air boat rides that depart directly from the resort.
Guests can also enjoy the resort’s onsite Crooked River Water Park. The water park features everything from an active pool with a volleyball net and sandy beach for building sand castles to a lazy river, a two-story water slide, and a splash pad for children. It also includes an adults-only section with a relaxing pool and whirlpool. Throughout the summer, the Crooked River Water Park will feature family pool parties with a live DJ, pool games, and activities.
Guests also get the opportunity to meet and interact with its live-in mascots, including two Texas longhorns, miniature horses, and alpacas. There are also regular falconry shows by Sky Kings, an organization that is dedicated to the education and preservation of wildlife. The demonstrations feature free-flying birds such as hawks, owls, and falcons and wildlife expert discussing each bird’s traits and natural abilities.
Guests can also explore the Loblolly Pine region with guided horseback rides, explore more than 18-miles of hike and bike trails, or soar over the McKinney Roughs Nature Park with excursions to the Zip Lost Pines ziplining adventure.
Additionally, local residents can now enjoy “Daycation” opportunities to Hyatt Regency Lost Pines. The resort recently partnered with ResortPass.com to provide general, spa, and golf day pass options. The general day pass includes access to the resort’s water park, access to poolside food and drink service during the summer months, and complimentary Wi-Fi. Rates for the general day pass begin at $35 for adults and $18 for children.
Spa Django, named after the famed gypsy jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt, is also offering a spa day pass for locals. The passes get you full access to the spa’s facilities and amenities, including the spa’s outdoor pool and patio, which overlooks the resort’s pond and provides scenic views of the Wolfdancer Golf Course. You can also spend time in the spa’s eucalyptus steam rooms, dry saunas, hot tubs, relaxation lounges, and state-of-the-art fitness center. The spa passes are $40 per person.
The day passes to the resort’s Wolfdancer Golf Club are $75 and include a round of 18 holes as well as unlimited access to the full-scale practice facilities, which include a 13-acre driving range with target greens, a short game area, two chipping greens and bunkers, a practice putting green, a golf cart rental, and warm-up range balls.
Additionally, local residents have access to membership programs at Spa Django and Wolfdancer Golf Club. The golf club provides individual, family, and corporate membership opportunities in which locals can received special guest rates for tee times, complimentary guest passes, special rates on private golf instruction, as well as discounts at the resort’s food and beverage outlets and services and products at Spa Django. Memberships at Spa Django include unlimited access to the spa’s facilities during business hours, 24-hour access to the spa’s fitness center, monthly specials and promotions, discounts at the resort’s food and beverage outlets, and more.
The Zilker Summer Musical is a beloved Austin tradition, and this year the production is celebrating its 60th season! For a whopping 60 years, they’ve been putting on first-rate Broadway musicals at the park’s Hillside Theatre to audiences packed with families taking it all the magic for free. To celebrate this big anniversary, this summer the company is bringing us the Elvis-themed All Shook Up, which features the legendary singer’s top hits. The show opens on July 16, but if you can’t make the premiere, you’ll have 25 other chances this summer, every Thursday through Sunday until August 18.
Click here for all the details, including donor preview parties and insider access to the show.
A few pro tips for the uninitiated: Get there a couple of hours early to secure your spot with a blanket and some low-backed chairs, then go for a swim in Barton Springs! You’ll be so glad you did. It’s like natural air conditioning that lasts throughout the show. And pack a big picnic—everyone gets snacky at this thing.
When: Thursdays – Sundays through August 18th
Time: 8:15 p.m. (There are two acts, with a quick intermission!)
Hat Creek Burger Company got its start in a food truck on 6th Street in Austin, TX, in 2008. Founder, Drew Gressett, never intended for the burger concept to turn into a family-friendly restaurant; however, as years passed, and he started a family of his own, his dream morphed into creating a place for the whole family to have fun. With 11 locations spread across both Austin and Dallas and 12 more planned for the next year in cities including San Marcos, Allen, Waco, Temple, Houston, and San Antonio, Hat Creek Burger Company aims to be the family-friendly restaurant for families across all of Texas.
What makes Hat Creek a family destination? For starters, each location has a unique playscape for the kids to run free. This is the perfect solution for parents looking for a place to enjoy a hot meal and not have to worry about keeping the kids entertained. The outdoor patio is the perfect place for parents to relax and have conversation while being able to keep an eye on their children. When starting the building process, Hat Creek’s first questions is always “where is the playground going to go?”
At its start, Hat Creek’s menu only featured burgers, but now the restaurant offers a wide variety of breakfast, lunch and dinner items. Opening at 7 am, customers can stop by or hit up the drive-thru to grab the breakfast of their choice. For those parents on-the-go, they have plenty of hot meals to help make those hectic mornings a little less stressful. Its breakfast tacos, platters and sandwiches are all “build it yourself.” Hat Creek’s breakfast, lunch and dinner menus are all made with integrity featuring ingredients from local suppliers.
All items are made-to-order, so mom and dad can custom order for those picky eaters or those with dietary restrictions. Hat Creek offers Paleo and gluten free options, as well. Hat Creek’s menu has something for everyone. Whether you’re in the mood for a juicy burger (they offer a Skinny version on lettuce instead of the bun, too), a salad, or a sandwich, their menu fits with a ton of lifestyles.
Sticking with its family-friendly promise, Hat Creek also offers half-off burgers every Tuesday for their Family Nights from 5 p.m. until close (9 p.m.). Every Thursday it also has $1 draft beer and wine for adults who might be looking to kick back and enjoy a cold one with friends or get an early start to their weekend.
At Hat Creek, each restaurant is built with mom, dad and child in mind. As a father, Drew’s vision for Hat Creek is to continue to provide a place for parents to have fun alongside their children, while providing fellowship and burgers to everyone who comes in contact with them. Whether it be breakfast, lunch or dinner, let Hat Creek handle dinner and do the dishes.
While planning a power-bonding group activity for my co-workers recently, I was struggling with the decidedly un-cool nature of the options. A pub on wheels? No thanks. A Segway tour? They’d never forgive me. Or trust falls? Oh God, no. I didn’t want to embarrass these people, I wanted to have a fun with them!
Thankfully, because of this very site, I came across Your Biker Gang, which bills itself as one of the funnest things to do in Austin. This company helps you create your own motorcycle gang, but subs in fat-tired electric minibikes for the motorcycles, which are so much safer and completely glee-inducing.
I can tell you now that when I surprised my beloved colleagues with this outing, I became, for that brief shining moment, the hero of our office. When we arrived at their headquarters in West Austin, our little gang of nine were outfitted with helmets and bandanas by our fearless leader and road captain, Cope. We also had what’s called a “sweeper,” a super nice guy who held up the tail end of the crew and kept us all very very safe.
After a quick tutorial and training on the bikes in a parking lot, we were out on the open road, with Cope blasting classic biker gang tunes from a giant speaker on his bike. I immediately wanted to buy one of these bikes and I still do. It’s a little intimidating at first, but once you learn to trust this speedy little machine and lean into your turns (top speed is 20 mph) you become one with the bike and basically feel like you can do anything. Anything! Like riding in Downtown Austin traffic.
As someone who has grown up in this city, and takes its beauty for granted on a daily basis, I can tell you that this is an amazing way to see Austin. As we biked over the pedestrian bridge on Lady Bird Lake, through Zilker Park, and along Waller Creek, I fell in love with this place all over again. The wind was blowing our hair back, people were looking at our crew with total envy, and Cope was doing stunts at the front like a badass. We were the happiest Hell’s Angels you ever did see.
If you need an activity to entertain a crew, whether they are family, friends, coworkers, or total strangers, Your Biker Gang will be a hit, I promise. They will customize the tour for your group so you can get history and trivia and see the big sights like murals, statues, the UT campus, and more. Or—if you are locals like us—you can just have a joyride and stop for tacos on the way. These bikes are easy to ride and the concept is as feel-good as it gets.
It’s time to jump on your electric hog and get lost for a while. Be a group-activity-planning hero for once. The road is calling!
One of the markers of any great city is its dedication to the arts—and on that score, Austin is pretty darn great. It’s a thriving art city and this annual event is your chance to see a ton of talent in once place.Art City Austin, a three-day art fair and festival will return for its 68th year April 13- 15 at the Palmer Event Center. Individual artists from across the country (120 to be exact) will showcase their work. A combination of street art and contemporary art from local and national artists will be on display.
The festival grounds will also feature multiple art installations created by local artists and commissioned specifically for the occasion by Art Alliance Austin. Noteworthy artists this year include international photographer Greg Davis, roadside landscape artist Rachel Dory, as well as international artists like Israeli painter Yoram Gal.
A selection of local food trucks, drinks, and fun activities for the whole family will be on the festival grounds. As always, Art City Austin 2018 will host a children’s section with hands-on, interactive activities meant to encourage creativity and appreciation of the arts for Austinites of all ages!
Tickets range from $10 for a single-day admission to $40 forthe VIP experience, which includes access to the Friday preview reception plus weekend access to the festival. Children 12 and under receive free admission. Parking will be available with at the Palmer Event Center Garage for $8. For more information and to purchase tickets, clickhere.
Here’s the full schedule:
Friday, April 13th Art City Austin Preview: Art in the Twilight 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Austin, the monumental last work by renowned American artist Ellsworth Kelly is finally complete and open to the public. The building is now a cornerstone work of art in the Blanton Museum’s permanent collection.The museum is closed on Mondays but you can still walk around and take in the gorgeous exterior or make plans to tour this week. Share your experience by using #KellyAtTheBlanton.
Blanton Museum of Art
200 East Martin Luther King Jr Blvd
Austin, TX 78701
It’s finally here: National Drink Wine Day! Not that we’ve been not drinkingwine on the other days, but still—it will be more fun and official today. How will you be honoring this momentous holiday? We’ve got four words for you people: ALL DAY HAPPY HOUR!
Has there ever been a town with as much love for animals as Austin has to give? We think not. Our rescue pets are family and we celebrate them at every opportunity. That’s why, of course, Austinites will finally get to celebrate Mardi Gras with their furry best friends, because Mardi Paws, the city’s first-ever dog Mardi Gras parade is upon us. Sponsored by the animal lovers at Grocery Pup, a company making insanely fresh and natural dog food right here in Austin, this parade is basically guaranteed to make you happy.
So what goes into a dog Mardi Gras parade, you might ask? Well everything. Just like the human version in NOLA, they’ll have a king, queen, and royal court who parade in little floats that are made from wagons. People and dogs in the parade will throw treats and beads to the crowd.
The theme for this inaugural year is “Saturday Bark Fever.” All floats will be disco-themed and attendees (of every species) are encouraged to dress like John Travolta walking into Studio 54.
Our king for the day will be Sebastian, who was rescued by Cutie PITooties and was fostered by Krista Allenby, owner of Ruff Adventures Dog Photography, at the end of September. When she first got Sebastian, he had severe mange and a skin infection. After just one month, he made a full recovery and was officially adopted by Krista. To celebrate his recovery and finding a new home filled with love, Sebastian has been crowned the King of Mardi Paws! Half of all proceeds from Mardi Paws will go to Cutie PITooties so they can rescue more pups like him.
Our original queen, Lil’ Kim, was rescued by Austin Dog Rescue in November from a shelter in Lockhart, and after multiple surgeries, she was close to being ready to be adopted. After appearing to be on the road to recovery, she developed a type of neurological disorder about a week ago, and her condition steadily worsened despite several visits to her veterinarian and the emergency room. With her passing on January 21, her furry foster brother and fellow Austin Dog Rescue pup, Kaxan, will ride in her honor as the Duke of Mardi Paws
All funds raised for Mardi Paws will be split 50/50 among the two organizations that rescued the king, queen and duke. Come out and have the time of your life for an incredibly worthy cause.
When: Saturday, February 10th
Time: 2 -6 p.m.
Lustre Pearl East
Can’t make it? Click here to donate to the cause and help spread the word on your social media pages.
The Annual Community March celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy while uplifting diversity and multi-culturalism in our city. The MLK Community March kicks off with a short program at the MLK Statue on The University of Texas campus.
We will then march to the south steps of the State Capitol for a short program and marchers will continue on to the historic Huston-Tillotson University, where exciting activities are planned. All businesses, non-profit organizations and individuals are invited to march and celebrate Dr. King’s legacy.