Me and my husband toured the ACL Live venue a couple of days ago and we LOVED it! We got to see the photo galleries, the HUUGE stage, and go backstage! If you're in the Austin area, you must go on this tour. The tickets are really cheap and they let you take as many photos as you want. Check 'em out!
We are featuring multiple live stages with:
Live Acts (50+) artists include Spoonfed Tribe, Cas Haley and Woodbelly along with many, many others, Dee jays (60+), Live PA's, Performers, Interactive ARTS, Fire Performances, Games, Guest
Speakers, Workshops, Multi-Media Visual ARTs, Intelligent Lighting, Large Sound, Vendors,
Food & Bar, Dance Performances, Drum Circles, Poi Workshops, Yoga, Hoopers, Massage
Therapists, Healers, Eco Friendly Workshops, Mud Pit, Piercers, Tattoo Artists, and more...
There is a family camping area with entertainment in the KIDZ Village.
I have an obsession with having my nails done. I even paint my nails at work. My former colleagues know this too well and are use to it. I've been to many nail salons while living in Kuala Lumpur and there's only one place I trust to do a good job.
I've been to 2 places while in the US. One was in Plano and the most recent in Austin - Anna Nails, owned by a Vietnamese, just like most nail places in the US (I'm not being stereotypical). Having strong and hard nails, I never thought of doing anything else than the usual manicure and pedicure. This lady at Anna recommended I tried solar acrylic. I didn't know what that was and asked her. She spoke little English and showed another customer's nails to me. Said it lasts longer than the usual mani. Just what I needed I thought. I was gonna be back in Malaysia for 3 weeks. So, she cut my nails real short, got the plasticy nails, and stuck them onto my nail beds.
I just went on with the whole thing. She was very quick. While she was going about with working on my nails, I looked around the shop and saw multiple signs to remind the customers to tip. I had my nails done in under 2 hours plus drying. I think I'll do without the acrylic nails next time. I dunno why she asked me to do that in the first place seeing my nails were long and healthy. I may try the usual mani & pedi next time round.
I will always be finicky when it comes to nail services.
I was looking up for reviews and pictures for the past event but found very little information online. The admission fee was $15 for an adult. I thought it was a bit much and this made want to find out more about the festival. Why so much? Is the festival really that great and special? I took a shot and went anyway. This year, it was held on April 5, 2008 on a sunny Saturday.
I parked at the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum which was right across the street from the festival. Parking was $8 per entry. I didn't feel like walking too far and thought parking there was the way to go. Plus it's indoor.
Getting the tickets at the entrance was fairly easy. Bag check as you go in, and there... you're in the parking lot where the festival was. I expected the festival to be bigger and more elaborate. There were vendors all around and a few of them serving the same items. Crawfish was of course the highlight, with $7 a pound. I tried deep fried alligator meat. Weird for me, but hey... i just had to try that swamp thing. The cool thing about the festival was, there were bands performing. Lineup for that day on the website provided. Many brought their lawn chairs and hung out, listening to the music. The older folks loved it. I loved watching them dance to the music.
There were a few other stalls selling craft, jewelry, batiks, knick knacks. Sweepstakes... here and there, a petting zoo especially for the little ones too.
I'm personally not hot about the festival but I had a certain expectations.
The size of the festival was relatively small. I thought $5 for admission was good enough especially for the scale of the event.
When: Every 1st Sunday in March
Where: Zilker Park
Admission fee: Nah-uh, FREE.
What else is FREE: Music, parking and free shuttle rides that runs from 10am-5pm.
Traffic leading in to the location was slightly at a stand still. But the traffic controllers did an amazing job at easing it out. Ample parking space available and may require a little bit of walk to the park. Was a really windy day. Which is also why the kite fest is held this time of the year annually. For the ladies, you might wanna bring a hair band, rubber band and attire wise, be prepared for the merciless gushing wind. Every now and then you will get sand in your face when the wind blows. It's a really good time to have a picnic, be out with your family and friends, fly a kite, bring your pet dogs along (many people brought theirs). I didn't fly a kite. I was there to check it out and take some photos.
There weren't many big kites. Just a few, probably no more than 5.
But the scale of people flying their kites at the open park was quite a sight.
Vendors: Typical event sort. Lemonade, ice tea, hot dogs, corn dogs, etc. Not a wide spread of choices but I thought it was sufficient for the event.
I will be back. With or without a kite.
Dating from the 1890s, Hyde Park is one of the oldest residential neighborhoods in Austin. You can pick up a free self-guided tour brochure at the Austin visitor center. Hyde Park's great houses represent a variety of architectural styles, and residents are used to having people stand in front of their home to take pictures.
SXSW (South By South West)
Just like ACL has GREAT music. I again volunteered as a cashier for this one and well...got paid $100 a night, so it was even better! You get free food before they send you out to a club (since there's like 50 clubs hosting various bands throughout 4 nights) and being the cashier you're basically in charge of who gets in. So on a few occasions, things got kind of out of control when the show becomes a sell-out and the line starts to back up down the street. But it was still fun, I got the oppurtunity to meet Laura Flynn Boyle and hang out with Everclears lead singer Art Alexis. I know I don't give much info about SXSW, but just check out there website.
I've opted to go to New Orleans in March this year instead of volunteering, but it still should be a great year.
TONS of people here. You and 70,000 (!) other people can enjoy over 100 bands throughout three days. This picture is just 1/3 of all the bikes that I saw - I have never, ever, seen so many bikes at once. This year was the third year for the festival, and the most crowded. There were even people here from Canada. It's being compared to Woodstock even, by some. Yes, there were people doing drugs but it's totally acceptable as a family place during the day. They even have a little section just for kids with music, face painting, a big 'sandbox,' etc.
While in Austin, renting canoes or Kayaks on Barton Creek is worth a couple hours of your time. Being on the river is a different change of scenery from the hike & bike trail. Make sure to keep a watch for the two black swans who have recently made Barton Creek their home. Bring a hat, sunscreen and water if you go in the summer months. When you are done boating, head over to the Barton Springs for a swim or catch the little train ride that goes through Zilker Park.
BookPeople is a two story book store on Lamar that is a center for cultural activity in Austin Texas. The staircase going from the first to second floor has photos of scores of famous authors who have participated in book signings at the store. The store probably has one of the most diverse reading selections of any book store I have ever been to.
Austin Reggae Festival is on Auditorium Shores in South Austin. It is a 2 day event held annually in April with Reggae bands from all over the state and sometimes all over the USA. The tickets cos t 15 dollars at the door and people are asked to bring two cans of food to give to the Capital Area Texas Foodbank. The foodbank helps families in need.
This huge center is home to Texas Longhorns basketball but also to many varied performances of all kinds.
I have included photos that a friend snapped of a performance there by the Trans Siberian Orchestra.
Broken Spoke is a famous Austin landmark. The food has won awards, the bar serves cold beer, and the dancehall is movin' all night long.
My experience, however, was not anything like what I've read.
It was more difficult to find then I thought. I expected a huge amount of parking in the front, but it definitely was a small opening. The massive parking lot is hidden from the front of the street. Walking across the unpaved lot made my heart start beating in anticipation though. I have to admit it.
When I walked in I was kind of confused. The eating area was small, and there wasn't much going on. No one really was there to tell us what to do. My aunt and I just kinda stood there and a minute later took a seat. A waitress (the only one) confirmed we are just to pick a spot. She was pretty rude and acted like we were bothering her. She kind of ran by and gave us two menus. The menu had greasy food like burgers, steak, and chicken fried steak. It said that Statesmen Magazine named it the Best Chicken Fried Steak but it was nasty. All of the food was just microwaved. No real cooking going on in that place.
Of course, not many people go for the food. They go for the legendary atmosphere and the dancin'. When we arrived they were giving free lessons. You must walk through a small area past the bar to get to the dance hall. However, it cost about $8 to get back there. Neither me or my aunt could dance so we decided to stay in the dining area. We finished our meal and waited for the ticket. We were out of (a can of) beer so we headed to the bar because things were starting to get busy and we lost the waitress to the bar. My aunt and I took the check to the bar, and no joke, we waited more than 30 minutes to pay our bill. There was a male bartender helping the dancing side and two women. The women were very rude. I would describe them harsher but they were busy and this is a family show. :)
The only good thing was that in that 30 minutes we got to watch a lot of people coming through to dance. I can't believe how many different kinds of people were there. Young and old. Dressed up and down. Tatooed rockers and Stepford wives. It was so funny. The dance floor was packed! And the line at the bar was loooooooong.
Overall, way crowded but way fun. It's like the lines at Disneyworld, I suppose. Only with cowboy boots and alcohol!
Free Capitol tours are conducted daily beginning in the Capitol South Foyer and concluding in the Capitol Extension.
Tours are generally 45 minutes in length
Monday - Friday, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Saturday, 9:30 am - 3:30 pm
Sunday, Noon - 3:30 pm
Have a great trip to Austin...if you need any other tips, just let me know.
Tall trees guard the sheltered lawns of the Bremond Block where graceful Victorian style homes can be viewed in the state capital. Two families, the Bremonds and the Robinsons, created this enclave that attracts many, but is not open to the public.
We strolled about the shady streets, reading the historic plaques and snapping photos of these striking buildings that are mostly businesses and a few remaining residences.
Opening photo is the Beaux Arts style home of John Bremond, Jr., constructed in 1886 at 700 Guadeloupe Avenue.
(pic #2) The Eugene Bremond Italianate style home, constructed in 1874 at 404 W. 7th street.
(pic #3) North-Evans Chateau, 1874 at 708 San Antonio Street
(pic # 4) North Flatts Howson, 1879 at 700 San Antonio Street
(pic #5) Pierre Bremond's Queen Anne style home at 402 W. 7th Street
Due to a number of one way streets, you may have to work a bit to arrive at Guadeloupe and San Antonio Streets, but it's definitely worth your effort!
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