Go skating at the Omni Barton Creek Resort or Chaparral Ice

Yes, it’s cooler in Austin, but let’s be honest with ourselves; Austin winters aren’t real. As someone who’s lived here my whole life, I can honestly say I’ve never been in weather less than maybe 20 degrees. Mind you, 20 degrees is literally below freezing, but that’s still nothing compared to what the people up north have to deal with. Of course, without real winters there are a lot of things Austinites miss out on, one of those things being ice-skating.

Omni Barton Creek Resort
Barton Creek Resort sets up a great ice rink and proceeds benefit the Make-A-Wish Central & South Texas Foundation. They have skating, s’mores, lights and more fun!

When: now – January 6th
Where: Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa 8212 Barton Club Drive Austin, Texas 78735
Cost: $25

Chaparral Ice
The chances of a body of water freezing over here are slim to none, so do the next best thing and go spend an afternoon over at Chaparral Ice. Unlike other ice skating rinks in town, Chaparral is open all year long… so you can keep going back after the holidays are over.

When: Schedule
Where: Northcross Mall, 2525 W Anderson Ln
Cost: $10 for admission and skate rental

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Get the best, cheap massage in town

Today when I was thinking of everything I have to do leading up to and through the holidays I found myself thinking, “Damn. Is it January yet?” Unfortunately the nerds at NASA haven’t figured out the whole time-travel thing yet, so I guess I’ll just deal. One of my favorite ways is to get an acupressure massage, and my favorite place in Austin to get one is Foot Relax.  For $30 I can get a 45 minutes of their signature massage. So I’m in, I’m out, and I’m feeling a whole lot better without blowing my Holiday budget.

When: Daily, 10am-9pm
Where: Chinatown Center, 10901 N Lamar Blvd C301, or
Techridge, 13000 North I35, building 11, suite 101
Cost: $20-$110


See all the bands you’ve been meaning to check out during Free Week

For 10 days in January, Austin bands and venues give back to the locals by participating in one of the most anticipated events of the year: Free Week. This year, over 125 local and touring bands will perform at your favorite locations a gratis. This year, big names like Surfer Blood, Sweet Spirit, and Ringo Deathstarr make the headlines, which brings the hoards out to discover new and up-and-coming bands like my personal favorite, locals Moving Panoramas. If you find the line to one show too long, this is the time to mosey to unknown spots so you can start the New Year knowing Austin and its bands a little better.

When: January 1st through the 10th
Where: Various locations; Check out Transmission Events and Showlist Austin
Cost: Free!


barbsSource: Ilsun P. Yelp user

Sweat out your inner emo kid at Jimmy Eat Wednesdays

So you cut your hair, got a job, and finally threw out those Vans you wore to ribbons. These are all good things. Another good thing is going stupid crazy on the Barbarella dance floor to all your favorite pop-punk songs from the late 90s and early 00s. At Jimmy Eat Wednesday, that’s what they’re serving up. Is Thursday morning going to hurt? Most definitely. But what is a little neck pain for a night reliving your stupid youth?

When: Wednedays 10pm
Where: Barbarella
Cover: FREE

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highballSource: Amy D. Yelp User

Check out Tittie Bingo at The Highball

Not your grandmother’s Bingo night, Tittie Bingo is the kind of activity only the wild weirdoes of Austin can enjoy. Tuesday nights at The Highball, join a group of raucous parlor players for the lewdest night of bingo you’ve ever experienced. “Porn without sex. Bingo without the grandmas. You do the math,” is their all too accurate slogan. The last round of the night is especially entertaining as they project edited porn parody onto the Highball screen. And if you find yourself screaming “TITTIE BINGO” for the win, prepare to be dragged on stage for a “very special activity.” Hey, we never said it was for the faint of heart.

When: Tuesdays
Where: The Highball
Cost: FREE!


Be thankful it’s bulky sweater season after Gospel Brunch at Threadgill’s

Now is the time of year to fill up on Southern favorites like biscuits and gravy, chicken fried steak, and butter beans. Why not do it at an Austin institution with the soothing sounds of country and bluegrass gospel? As far as gospel brunches go, Threadgill’s is our favorite one in town. Their all-you-can-eat buffet showcases menu staples and seasonal favorites—but be sure to fill up on their amazing selection of sides and veggies. Check out their upcoming acts here.

When: Sundays, 10am-1pm
Where: Threadgill’s North, 6416 North Lamar, Austin, TX  78752
Threadgill’s South, 301 West Riverside Dr. Austin, TX  78704
Cost: FREE

carnSource: Carnaval Brasileiro Facebook Page

Get tickets to Carnaval Brasileiro

Someday you’ll make it to Rio, but until then enjoy one of the world’s best parties right here in Austin. With a long and storied origin, this event brings people from all over the state in their wildest costumes ready to samba the night away. Featuring authentic music from Susanna Sharpe and Samba Police and Austin’s Acadêmicos da Opera, be prepared to feel the rhythm of the holiday in your bones. Get your tickets now and start planning your costume. Ask those who have been before… if you’ve been looking for a wild night to go down in your memoirs, this isn’t a bad place to start.

When:  Saturday February 27th
Where: Palmer Events Center
Cost: $38 in advance; Find out more here

 mohawkSource: The Mohawk Facebook Page

Bring your own vinyl to The Mohawk

The only thing that can make a Happy Hour happier is better music. Iconic Red River venue The Mohawk has solved this problem with their Tuesday night BYO Vinyl Happy Hour. From 5 til 8 you can bring your pride and joy LPs, EPs, and 78s and they’ll spin them. Meanwhile, enjoy their custom drink specials and chat along with other Austin music enthusiasts.

When:  Tuesdays
Where: The Mohawk, 912 Red River St, Austin, TX 78701
Cost: Free

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