- September 19, 2014

10 Fun Stops on Austin Museum Day

Sunday, September 21, 2014 is the 17th annual Austin Museum Day, when not only is admission to 35 local institutions free, but so are the special activities planned for Austin families to enjoy!

We’ve selected ten fun options for your Austin Museum Day adventure. For details and weather updates on outdoor events, please click on the links below:

1. Thinkery10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Join the first Austin Museum Day at the Thinkery and explore exhibit galleries focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM). There will also be special activities all day in Innovators’ Workshop, Spark Shop, & Kitchen Lab. Please note: Historically, Museum Day was one of Austin Children’s Museum’s busiest days of the year, and a similar response at the Thinkery is expected. There will be no advance tickets. 1830 Simond Ave., Austin.

2. O. Henry & Susanna Dickinson & Austin Fire Museums at Brush Square1 – 3 p.m. Come to a free celebration of Austin Museum Day at the Brush Square Museums. There will be live music from the Austin Banjo Club from 1-1:30 p.m. and 2-2:30 p.m. The Fun Fun Fun Fest Taco Cannon will fire off bean and cheese tacos at 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. as part of a promotion for the November exhibit honoring the 200th birthday of Susanna Dickinson and featuring the Come and Take It Cannon. This will also be an opportunity to catch the final days of the exhibit “As Others See Us: O. Henry’s Unpublished Manuscript” at the O. Henry Museum.

Also, visitors can preview a forthcoming oral history project at the Susanna Dickinson Museum exploring the different ethnicities of Austin, while also enjoying an exhibit of historical watercolors of Austin by Mary L. Curtis. 

And, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Austin Fire Museum, 91-year-old WWII veteran Ret. Capt. Emmet Glosson and Ret. Lt. David J. Wilkins will speak in conjunction with a display exploring Austin firefighters who served in WWII. 401 & 409 & 411 E. 5th Street, Austin.

3. LBJ Presidential Library9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Experience the 1960s at the LBJ Library’s exhibit Sixty from the ’60s. See original lyrics written by Bob Dylan, a satellite, astronaut Buzz Aldrin’s headset, an original Peanuts comic strip, and more. At 2 p.m., enjoy a performance by the Pollyanna Theatre Company: Liberty! Equality! And Fireworks! And at 3 p.m., free gelato for each visitor. Free parking is available in Lot 38 at Red River and Interstate 35. Plan your visit here. 2313 Red River, Austin. (Review)

4. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center – 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Come enjoy Austin Museum Day at the new Luci and Ian Family Garden. Discover nature art, hear a story, and go on a scavenger hunt. Enjoy a big Tic­Tac­Toe game, along with bubbles and Hula Hoops on the play lawn.

All Day Events (9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)

  • Activity/Craft/Coloring Sheets – Little House 
  • Scavenger Hunt in the Family Garden
  • Giant Tic-Tac-Toe game along with bubbles and Hula Hoops in the Play Lawn
  • Discovery Carts in the Pavilion

Timed Events

  • 10:00 a.m. – Garden tour – Meet at Courtyard (should last 30-45 minutes)
  • 11:00 a.m. – Story Time in the Cedar Elm Outdoor Classroom
  • 12:00 p.m. – Garden tour – Meet in Courtyard (should last 30-45 minutes)
  • 1:00 p.m. – Planting Demo
  • 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. – Divya Srinivasan signs the new Little Owl’s Day
  • 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. – Meet artist Barbara Attwell, creator of the felted sculptures in the McDermott Learning Center. 
  • 3:00 p.m. – Planting Demo

 Free admission. 4801 La Crosse Ave., Austin.

5. Save Austin’s Cemeteries9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Meet historic Austin residents and hear their fascinating stories at Oakwood Cemetery which dates to 1839. Save Austin’s Cemeteries volunteers will conduct tours at 9 a.m., 10 a.m., and 11 a.m. and answer questions. Come and learn how Oakwood preserves the living history of our community. Oakwood Cemetery, 1601 Navasota St., Austin. (Review)

6. Elisabet Ney Museum Noon – 5 p.m. The historic Elisabet Ney Museum will host Portraiture in the Park! Get a free caricature, make a cyanotype portrait, create masks of your friends and family, have a portrait bust made of yourself in a photo booth, write word portraits, watch stone portrait carving, and much more. Feel free to picnic. Food and dessert trucks will be on site. 304 E 44th St., Austin. (Review)

7. Blanton Museum of Art – 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. It’s raining cats and dogs at the Blanton Museum of Art! View the special exhibition In The Company of Cats and Dogs to see how artists have created images of these furry companions for ages, spanning from ancient Egypt to the present. Participate in special art­making and looking activities designed to spark your creativity. Admissions and all activities are free. 200 E Martin Luther King Jr Blvd., Austin. (Review)

8. Bullock Texas State History Museum – 12 -­ 6 p.m. Did you know that Texas has a state vegetable and a state flying mammal? At the Bullock Museum, discover the wide variety of symbols that represent the state with hands­-on activities perfect for ages 5 and up, including art making, performances, and more:

  • Meet the official Texas state dog, the Blue Lacy, with many members on hand from the Texas Lacy Game Dog Association.
  • Get up close and personal with the official state small mammal, the nine-banded armadillo, and other native Texas animals courtesy of Wild Times Edutainment.
  • Seek out state symbols in the museum exhibits with a scavenger hunt, and retrieve an awesome prize when you finish.
  • Interact with true Texas characters as costumed living history interpreters roam all three floors of museum exhibits.
  • Discover the state sport and state fiber at special stations within the exhibits.
  • For our tiniest Texans, attend Family Story Time at 2 p.m. to hear tales of famous state symbols, and make your own to take home.
  • Plus, create your own state symbol at art-making stations, vote on your favorite symbol, and more!

1800 N. Congress Ave., Austin. (Review)

9. Public Art Crawl with Art in Public Places & Landmarks – 10 a.m. -­ noon. Discover new public art downtown! The crawl starts at City Hall and showcases new artworks along 2nd Street from the Art in Public Places collection. Meet on the southwest side of City Hall Plaza at 10 a.m. for a guided walking tour. 301 W. 2nd Street, Austin.

10. Texas State Capitol – 12 -­ 3:30 p.m. The Texas Capitol features free guided tours of the statehouse throughout the afternoon. In addition, at 12:30 you can participate in the Women in Texas History Tour and hear the stories of trailblazing Texans whose stories are connected to the Capitol. At 2:30, join the Heroes of the Texas Revolution Tour and discover who helped Texas achieve independence. 1100 N. Congress, Austin. (Review)

For more information, visit the Austin Museum Day website. You can find the mobile guide hereYou may also like to use this map of participating museums!