Random Fun Archives - Page 2 of 55 - 365 Things to Do in Austin, TX

Tiny is in! The concept of minimal living has taken off in recent years and now enthusiasts of the less-than lifestyle are coming together to learn from experts and one another. If you’ve contemplated purging your giant wedding Koozie collection and old pots and pans from college and going stylishly tiny, this is the event for you!

The Tiny House & Simple Living Jamboree is coming to Austin later this month and is the place where enthusiasts, lifestyle advocates,  and industry professionals will come together. Come celebrate the best that simple living has to offer: mindful practices, eco-friendly products and services, and of course, one-of-a-kind tiny houses and small living structures.

More than just a festival, the Jamboree aims to raise awareness about the small-living movement, re-address how we look at housing, educate about the latest developments across the nation, and serve as a platform to discuss issues such as affordability and attainability in the housing market.

If you’re totally committed or just a tiny bit curious—come check it all out for yourself.

When: August 23rd – 26th, 2018

Location:
Travis County Expo Center
7311 Decker Ln.
Austin, TX 78724

South Congress is a bustling street just below the river and Downtown Austin where you can spend an entire day without even hitting a side street. If you’re new in town or want to get an efficient taste of the city in one straight shot, here is a tried-and-true itinerary for this super-famous part of town …

Start with brunch at Perla’s. “A seafood restaurant for brunch?” you say, exasperated. Yes. You’ll see. Order the Crab Florentine, a twist on the classic eggs benedict, except, you know, with crab instead. Wash it down with a bloody mary, and yes, add a cocktail shrimp for a couple bucks extra, if only for the Instagram picture you’ll take.

Next, it’s time for some shopping. SoCo is home to a ton of vintage stores. Feathers is always a good bet. And check out Prototype Vintage where you may find that rare Iron Maiden tour T-shirt you’ve been looking for. Men of all ages flock to Stag, a heralded menswear boutique stocking everything from swim trunks and henleys to cologne and flasks. Need some cowboy boots? Allens. A Day of the Dead wedding cake topper? Tesoros. Your shopping needs are covered on just this one street.

After a long day of shopping, refuel at Jo’s coffee shop for an iced turbo, which is exactly what it sounds like: a cold drink that provides a big boost. Sit outside and people-watch; it’s a hallmark of South Congress. If you want to look like a tourist, take a picture in front of the “I Love You So Much” wall out back.

Hop right next door after you’re caffeinated to the Hotel San Jose’s outdoor patio. It’s time for a drink. Order a michelada with Modelo or a glass of rose and relax. If it’s time for another meal already, dinner at the legendary Guero’s Taco Bar is never a bad idea.

Whew. OK, you’re off to C-Boy’s Heart & Soul, a hip, double-decker bar near the intersection of Oltorf and South Congress. On any given night, a soul or blues band will be playing inside, and the outdoor patio is one of the best in town. Have an extra cocktail or beer, because the night is about to get pretty crazy.

Next stop, yes, is Ego’s.

Is it kind of a cluster? Is everyone inside very drunk? Is it located at the bottom of a parking garage? Yes, yes, and yes, but it’s also an Austin rite of passage to wobble into Ego’s for a late-night karaoke session. Tip the DJ if you want to sing your heart out to Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” before closing. You’ll be glad you did.

If you take a drive just 20-ish miles west on Highway 71 out of Austin, you’ll reach one of the most picturesque spots in the entire state: Hamilton Pool Preserve. The swimming hole has been a popular spot for Austin residents and tourists alike since the ’60s, but was actually formed thousands of years ago when the dome of an underground river collapsed.

Now part of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve, the preserve is home to many rare and endangered species of plant and animals, including the golden-cheeked warbler bird and plants like canyon mock-orange and the chatter-box orchid. Visitors to the park are asked to be mindful of the efforts to preserve this natural wonder.

The natural pool and creek are natural, left untreated and pure for your swimming pleasure. The swimming area is surrounded by a tiny beach at one end and a massive, horseshoe-shaped limestone cliff around the rest. There’s even a waterfall opposite the beach, a much Instagrammed locale at the preserve. Because everything is natural, swimming at Hamilton Pool is sometimes off-limits due to high levels of bacteria. Updates are available every morning at 9 a.m. by calling 512-264-2740.

Unfortunately, as is customary, the “secret” of Hamilton Pool was unearthed in recent years, correlating with both the large growth in population and the influx of tourism as a result of the innumerable festivals and conferences inside city limits. Wait times to even enter the park reached into multiple-hours on weekends and particularly nice days, with a large majority of late-arrivers being turned away because the preserve had hit capacity.

To combat this, a couple of years ago the Travis County Parks Department implemented a reservation system for the busy season. A reservation is required if you want to visit the pool between now and October 31, 2018—and that goes for each and every day of the week.

To make your reservation, click here. But before you do, please note the following super important fine print:

“You make your reservation online by paying $11 with a credit card. You will also pay $15 per vehicle in cash for an entrance permit when you arrive at the preserve.  Credit cards are not accepted when you arrive at the preserve. Bring cash.

You can bring only one vehicle with each reservation. You can bring no more than 8 people with each reservation.

Your reservation receipt will be emailed to you very shortly after you make the reservation.

Reservation Periods: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.

No entry after 12:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. All recreational activities end at 12:30 pm and 5:30 p.m.

All fees are non-refundable once you have paid them. The deadline to reschedule a reservation is midnight before your reservation. You cannot reschedule on the same date as your reservation.

Swimming is sometimes not allowed due to high bacteria. Swimming is NOT guaranteed with your reservation.”

Got all that? It may sound like a hassle, but we promise it’s all worth it! Get yourself a rezzy and make the most of this amazing spot.

In honor of National Tequila Day, we put together a list of the places you would most likely be able to find us celebrating this important holiday. Frozen or rocks, chile-salted rims, or no salt at all; here are our favorite spots in Austin for margaritas in 2018.

 

 

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12. Polvo’s

The cult favorite restaurant just opened its third location downtown at the base of the 360 building. All three restaurants offer the various margarita options that made them famous.

11. El Alma

When we want options, we go sit up on the roof at El Alma. Their drink menu offers ELEVEN types of margaritas.

10. Hula Hut

Because sometimes the ambiance of where you’re drinking your margarita is just as important as the taste. Nothing beats a Hula Hut margarita after a long day on the lake… or at the office.

9. Matt’s El Rancho

This South Austin institution pumps margs out by the hundred. Frozen, rocks, or premium, you can’t really go wrong here.

8. Vivo

We loved the original Vivo location on Manor road, but while the location has changed, their consistently delicious margaritas have not.

7. Fonda San Miguel

Photo by Ashlyn Allison

Deemed the mecca of Mexican Food in Austin, they also have really great margaritas. Try the Silvercoin, Watermelon infused with Patron Silver, Cointreau, and fresh lime juice.

6. Trudy’s

We typically go all-in and just order Mexican Martinis (sans glass), but they offer swirls, dots, and other fun combos of frozen drinks as well.

5. Curra’s

Photo by Melody Fury

The most unique margarita in Austin can be found off Oltorf. The Avocado Margarita isn’t just a gimmick, it’s delicious as well.

4. Ranch 616

Photo by Julia Keim

The West 6th Street hotspot offers several margarita variations, but the true star of the show at 616 is the Ranch Water. A concentrated, boozy version of a margarita topped with Topo Chico.

3. Licha’s

Three words: $5 Happy Hour (four words?) Combier finished margaritas and hearty snacks for five bucks a pop.

2. Fresa’s 

Our biggest struggle is whether to order frozen or on the rocks, and then to drink them inside at the bar or outside on the patio.

1. La Condesa

Polls have been conducted, and the margs here typically finish top of class. If a $10 margarita is out of your acceptable price range, check them out for happy hour in their bar area M-F from 5-7pm.

Cover Photo by Melody Fury

 

It’s national ice cream day and it’s hot as blazes outside! Come on out to this amazing celebration of the good stuff, with a bunch of fun local vendors and the perfect, sweetest way to cool off.  NadaMoo! is the tasty dairy-free ice cream alternative made with coconut milk

 

When: Today, July 15th

Time: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Location:
1701 S Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX 78704-3325, United States

Tonight, come take a night dip at the iconic Austin Motel pool on South Congress! They are having Night Swim Tuesday nights in July and August. Grab a drink and do yourself right with this idyllic Austin summer activity. Passes are $20 and can be purchased at the front desk.

When: Tuesdays this July & August 

Time: 6 – 10 p.m.

Location:
Austin Motel
1220 S Congress Ave.
Austin, Texas 78704

Come explore one of Austin’s most beautiful treasures with your best friend! It’s Dog Day at Zilker Botanical Garden! The Garden is actually dog friendly every day, but this is an extra special day where the Garden is all about pups! Well-socialized, well-behaved dogs on leash are welcome, but they must remain on leash at all times. And, of course, dog owners are responsible for their dogs’ behavior… and for scooping up after them.

Here’s what you can expect:
• An adorable photo op with your dog,
• Learn about dog-friendly opportunities in Austin Parks and responsible pet etiquette that helps keep our Parks safe for all!
• Doggedly good amenities and things to dig into!

Dog bowls and cooling off stations will be available around the Garden and anyone with a dog will receive a doggie bag with a dog treat, pooper scooper bag, and a stylish bandana for your favorite canine!

When: Today, July 7th

Time: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Location:
Zilker Botanical Garden
Austin, Texas 78746

It’s time again for that festival that combines three of our greatest passions—slow smoked meat and vino—along with amazing live music into a giant Texas Party.

Come out to Spicewood Vineyards for the BBQ & Wine Festival. Watch the recap video of last year’s epic experience here to get a good idea of what you are in for. This year none other than The Cory Morrow Band will be headlining a lineup that also includes Django Walker, Drew Womack, and Barnhill!

Get your advance tickets now for just $59, which get you unlimited BBQ from the greats below and free wine tastings to wet your whistle from 4-6 p.m. (or until the wineries run out!).

The event will most definitely sell out, so don’t think about it too long. You can buy your tickets right here

BBQ Vendors include:

  • Salt Lick BBQ
  • Opie’s BBQ
  • Lambert’s
  • Kreuz Market BBQ
  • Schmidt Family Barbecue
  • It’s All Good
  • And more!

Bring your chairs and blankets to the festival, but outside food and drink will not be allowed in.

When: Saturday, July 21st

Time: 4-10 p.m.

Location:
Spicewood Vineyards
1419 Co Rd 409
Spicewood, TX 78669

Float On, Austin’s highest boat rental company, is giving service industry pros a chance to live it up like only they know how this summer. During the week (Monday through Thursday), you can get the fourth hour of your party on the lake totally free, and they’ll throw in a YETI cooler filled with ice and water. That’s 30% less than you would normally pay.

Cruise on Lake Austin or Lake Travis and take advantage of the fact that the rest of the city is working away at an office somewhere.

Here’s the whole deal:

12 Passenger Pontoon
Highly rated FloatOn Captain
Aqua Lily Pad
Free YETI package ($50 Value)

This is all for only $350. Call your work pals and get something fun on the calendar! Just mention this post and where you work to get the discount.

Dear cat people, we know dog people get a lot of attention in ATX, but let’s not worry about them today—because here’s an event that’s all about YOU! And your cat, of course. Because you really really love your cat. POP Cats is a two-day convention celebrating adorable felines, art, and pop culture and it’s heading our way Aug. 25 – 26. Mark your calendars, buy your tickets, tell your cat. Do what you need to do. POP Cats debuted last year at the Miami Airport Convention Center and the city was never the same.

After a successful inaugural event, the founders decided to expand the event to two days and explored the country for a perfect POP Cats 2018 location. They ultimately chose Austin because of the city’s adoration of its pet population and its vibrant creative community.

The meow-tastic press release describes the event as a “fun, immersive feline universe where humans can shop, learn, adopt, play, and connect with the spirited cat community.” What could possibly be better?

They’ll be music, entertainment, a play space for cats and their owners, and a curated line-up of feline experts and influencers. Plus cat-loving artists and vendors from Texas and around the world. They are all coming together to celebrate the splendor of cats and the humans that love them.

Austin Humane Society will be there with adorable kitties looking for their forever home. Austin’s own internet-famous tuxie cat, Turbo-Two Legs will be onsite with his mom, Chelsey Schmidt, to highlight the benefits of adopting disabled and special needs kitties.

 

Buy your tickets here!Onsite food, refreshments, and “cat-tails” will be available. Onsite parking is $8.

Cost:
Adult $20 | Child $10 | 10+ Groups $16
2-Day Tickets: Adult $32 | Child $16 | 10+ Groups $25.60

Can I bring my cat?
Yes! Cats are totally welcome! They must be current on their vaccinations (bring their records!). The also have to be on a harness or in a crate while walking the event. Only one cat allowed per group. Dogs are not allowed for obvious reasons—no exceptions.

When: Sat., Aug. 25 – 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. & Sun., Aug. 26 – 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Location:
Palmer Events Center
900 Barton Springs Rd. Austin, TX 78704