It’s less than three weeks until Spring Break and South by Southwest, and just over three weeks until the official end of winter and the start of spring! As the temperatures begin to climb, so do the number of fun things to do! Here’s our list of events you won’t want to miss this March:
Zilker Kite Festival – Sunday, March 1 (Rain date is March 8)
One of Austin’s most beloved outdoor activities is the annual Kite Festival, which takes place at Zilker Park. Make sure to read Catherine’s tips if you plan to go. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free.
Landmarks Public Art Tour – Sunday, March 1
Venture down the rabbit hole with Landmarks on a docent-led tour of public art on campus. Explore the nonsensical and the curious, and ponder some of the unanswerable questions surrounding contemporary works of art. The tour will conclude at the Harry Ransom Center where the exhibition Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland will be on view with a docent-led tour at noon. Meet at 11 a.m. at
Magdalena Abakanowicz’s Figure on a Trunk in front of Bass Concert Hall near 23rd Street and Robert Dedman Drive. Rain or shine. Free.
Free First Sundays: Texas Independence Day at the Bullock Museum – Sunday, March 1
Celebrate Texas’s storied past and exciting future through performances, live music, hands-on activities, food, and a Texas-sized attempt to set a world record! Discover more about famous Texas personalities as costumed interpreters stroll through the crowd telling stories, debunking myths and posing for photos. Come dressed like a Texas Hero and help set a World Record! Noon to 5 p.m. Free.
Community Art Sundays at the Center for Creative Action – Sunday, March 1
Free Fun in Austin is a proud sponsor of these monthly events, which feature active workshops, interactive art experiences and performances by professional artists that celebrate community through dance, music, food, gardening, parades and inventing. The theme for March’s event is food, and Creative Action is partnering with the Sustainable Food Center to offer activities for all ages including gardening, still life drawing and family recipes to celebrate the history and culture of our food. Oh, and there will be tastings and treats, too! 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Free.
Sunday-Fundays: Wildflower Paper – Sunday, March 1
Every first Sunday of the month the Neill-Cochran House Museum will be open to the public. Each Sunday will include an activity highlighting a theme that embodies both the history of Texas and the Neill-Cochran House Museum. Walk-through tours of the house will also be available. 1 to 4 p.m. Free.
WOOM Bikes Demo Day and Youth Bike Rides – Sunday, March 1
Join WoombikesUSA and the The Ghisallo Foundation on a group ride along the Mueller Hike and Bike Trail. Shorter and longer routes will be available for varying age levels; instructors and volunteers will assist along the ride. Parents and adults are more than welcome, and are encouraged to ride along with the group. WOOM Bikes and helmets are available for children ages 1.5 to 13 years old. 9:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. Free.
Planet Music: Texas Independence Day Celebration – Monday, March 2
Celebrate Texas Independence with live music at Brush Square Park. 1 to 4 p.m. Free.
Dual Language Dr. Seuss Storytime & Birthday Party – Monday, March 2
Seuss X Seuss West is a week-long celebration of Dr. Seuss at the Austin Public Library. Kick off a week of activities at the University Hills Branch with a dual language storytime and a party to celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday. Storytime starts at 6 p.m. and the Birthday Party begins at 6:45 p.m. Free.
B-Movies and Bad Cinema: The Alamo RSVP – Tuesday, March 3
Texas pride, lore, and legend seem to always be tied to the Battle of the Alamo, and that’s probably why this historical event has been featured in American film so many times over the years. Explore the historical facts and fiction of the quintessential Texas Hollywood story displayed on-screen at the Bullock Museum through several iterations of the Alamo saga. Texas historians and film experts will guide the crowd through several clips representing various eras of Alamo film history, complete with coonskin caps. 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. Free (RSVP required).
Cowboy Breakfast at the Long Center – Friday, March 6
The 2015 Star of Texas Fair and Rodeo kicks off with a free Cowboy Breakfast, which features fun for all ages, with western-themed entertainment, live music and two-stepping lessons! Rise and shine to enjoy a super-sized Texas breakfast of free pancakes, authentic chuck wagon biscuits and more! Check out our post for more information. Begins at 6 a.m. Free.
The Heart of Texas Regatta on Lady Bird Lake – March 7-8
The Heart of Texas, a USRowing Registered Regatta and Nationally Recognized Regatta, is one of the first sprint regattas of the spring. Austin Rowing Club has been host to the Heart of Texas Regatta since 1983 when the race was primarily for visiting college crews. Schedule TBD. Free.
Awesome Animal Mornings at Millie & Mox – Saturday, March 7
Every first Saturday of the month, kids can learn about many different kinds of animals and have the opportunity to meet them up close. Help Austin Pets Alive by donating a can of pet food. Free photo provided for each family. Complimentary coffee and juice provided. 10 to 11 a.m. Free.
Celebrate Urban Birds at the Austin Nature & Science Center – Saturday, March 7
Join Travis Audubon, Capital Area Master Naturalists, City of Austin Park Rangers, and the Austin Nature & Science Center to celebrate the birds of our City. Learn how important these birds are to our local ecology through family friendly hands-on activities, crafts, live bird demonstrations, kids’ bird drawing, a bird scavenger hunt and much more! 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Free.
Explore UT – Saturday, March 7
Explore UT, the annual open house at the University of Texas at Austin, allows students K-12 to take part in science and engineering experiments, plus art, history, communication, business, law, and other activities – nearly 400 in all – and expand their horizons about college and careers. No registration required for individuals. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free.
UT Women’s Soccer 8-on-8 Tournament at Myers Stadium – Sunday, March 8
The team will play St. Edward’s, Houston Baptist, Texas State, Texas Southern and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Free.
Free Family Fun at The Art Garage – Sunday, March 8
The Art Garage hosts a Free Family Fun event almost every month. This is a time that families are welcome to pop in and create crafts, get to know The Art Garage and enjoy in-studio discounts. Make some spring-inspired crafts during the Spring Into Art! event. 2 to 4 p.m. Free.
Chicken Big, A Puppet Show at the Hampton Branch at Oak Hill – Wednesday, March 11
Bawk! It’s an elephant! It’s an umbrella! No, it’s a … chicken?! Join Literature LIVE! to see how the chickens in this coop make room for a giant new friend in a less-than-traditional puppet show production of Austin author Keith Graves’ wonderful book Chicken Big! Meet the author after the show. 3:30-4:30 p.m. Free.
SXSW Create at the City Terrace of the Long Center – March 13 – 15
Doing creative and revolutionary things with new technologies embodies the spirit of the SXSW Interactive Festival, and nowhere is this more evident than the diverse mix of activities at SX Create. From 3D printing to drones to biohacking and much more, this community event showcases the disruptive solutions that are shaping our future. SX Create is open to the public with free Guest Pass wristbands, available in advance or onsite at the event. To learn how to get a guest pass, check out our post. SXSW Badge and Wristband holders do not need a Guest Pass to attend. From 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Free.
SXSW Gaming Expo at the Palmer Events Center – March 13 – 15
Drawing developers, manufacturers and fans from all facets of the community, the Gaming Expo is the epicenter for gaming culture at SXSW. This diverse range of events combines well-loved elements of geek culture with the cross-console video game world. The Gaming Expo is open to the public with free Guest Pass wristbands, available in advance or onsite at the event. To learn how to get a guest pass, check out our post. SXSW Badge and Wristband holders do not need a Guest Pass to attend. From noon until 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Free.
Rock the Lot – Friday, March 13 & Saturday, March 14
Rock the (Austin American-Statesman parking) Lot for music, food and good times during SXSW weekend. Rocking out in the shadow of the Congress Avenue bridge during SXSW weekend, food trucks and tents will be on site, locally brewed beer for sale in beverage tents plus iced cold sodas and water available for purchase. Gates open at 4 p.m. on Friday and music goes until 11 p.m. On Saturday, gates open at 2 p.m. and music runs until 11 p.m. Free, but entry is first-come, first-serve.
Rodeo Rumble Kid’s 1k – Saturday, March 14
Held in Luedecke Arena the first Saturday of the Fair and Rodeo, Rodeo Rumble offers kids 12 and under the chance to race on the dirt where the cowboys and cowgirls will compete each evening. Runners will receive a custom back number for the race and cowbell for finishing the course. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the first heat of runners takes off at 9:30 a.m. Check out our post for more information. Free.
Community Easter Egg Hunt at Metz Recreation Center – Saturday, March 14
Everyone is invited to come and participate in Metz Recreation Center Community Easter Egg Hunt. Easter activities will take place from 10:00 a.m. until 11:15 a.m. and the egg hunt will begin at 11:15 a.m. Divisions will be age divisions 1-3, 4-6, 7-9 & 10-12. Prizes for 1st-3rd will be given in each division. Free.
Music by the Slice (MXTS) at Home Slice Pizza – March 14 – 15
The 9th Annual Charity Day Party, hosted in the Home Slice Pizza parking lot, starts at noon each day and runs until about 7:30 p.m. Free.
SXSW Eco Light Garden at Republic Square Park – March 15 – 21
Join SXSW Eco to celebrate the intersection between innovative lighting technology and interactive public art. This annual project provides a peaceful escape from the crowd and offers a chance to interact with the latest efficient LED technologies. This year, explore projects from Aerosol Warfare Studios, Barco, Crash Alchemy, Charles Gadeken, Gavvot Productions, Houndstooth, Ink Tank Art Collective, Lumenpulse, and Praxis Creatives. At dark each night. Free.
Hello Lamp Post: Austin – SXSW Public Event at Brush Square Museums – Tuesday, March 17
Hello Lamp Post: Austin, an official art project of SXSW 2015, is a city-wide platform for play that lets you talk to the city’s infrastructure, lamp posts, bus stops and more to share your stories using the text messaging function of your mobile phone. Sam Hill of Pan Studio, the project’s designers, will give a short presentation at 2 p.m. This event does not require a SXSW badge. 1:00 p.m. until 4 p.m. Free.
KGSR Live Broadcasts at the W Austin – March 18 – 21
Enjoy 4 hours of exclusive, live interviews and performances from featured SXSW artists, and the first 300 guests through the door each morning will receive a complimentary breakfast treat! Full lineup will be announced on Monday, March 2. 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Wednesday through Friday and 8 a.m. until noon on Saturday. $5 donation to Make-A-Wish Central & South Texas.
KUTX Music Broadcasts at Four Seasons Hotel Austin – March 18 – 21
Four Seasons Hotel Austin is once again teaming up with local radio station KUTX-FM 98.9 to present live morning broadcasts featuring music by – and interviews with – several of South-by-Southwest’s most anticipated performers. These broadcasts include intimate 25-minute sets by 16 artists, giving locals and out-of-towners alike unprecedented access to many of this year’s festival favorites. 7 a.m. until 11 a.m. each day. $10 donation to the Seton Shivers Cancer Center, with a breakfast taco and unlimited coffee as part of admission.
South X San Jose at Jo’s Coffee on South Congress – March 18 – 21
South By San Jose (SXSJ) is an annual 5-day festival concurrent with SXSW Music Festival which takes place in mid-March. The hotel parking lot is transformed into a live music venue with bands, local vendors and concessions. Music starts at noon. Free.
Waterloo Records SXSW 2015 Day Parties – March 18 – 21
Waterloo hosts bands in its parking lot for SXSW. See the lineup here. Music goes from noon until 7 p.m. Free.
Family Music Meltdown at the Pan Am Recreation Center – Wednesday, March 18
Produced by SparetheRock.com and OrangeWallCollective.com, the 2nd Annual Family Music Meltdown has quickly become an Austin tradition for families who like to rock together during spring break. This one-day music fest comes but once a year. And you know what they say…. Families who rock together stay together. Free Fun in Austin is a proud sponsor of this event. 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. Free.
Flatstock 48 at the Austin Convention Center – March 19-21
Presented by the American Poster Institute (API), Flatstock 48 will display the works of the world’s top gig poster artists. The show features posters of varying styles, colors and techniques for sale by the very artists who created them. Flatstock is open to the public with free Guest Pass wristbands, available in advance or onsite at the event. To learn how to get a guest pass, check out our post. SXSW Badge and Wristband holders do not need a Guest Pass to attend. From 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Free.
Pan Americana Festival at the Mexican American Cultural Center – March 20 & 21
Bellas Artes Alliances presents this two-day festival, featuring music from throughout Latin America. 5 p.m. until 11 p.m. both days. Free.
All-Latino Auditorium Shoes Showcase – Saturday, March 21
This year’s all-Latino Auditorium Shores showcase features three notable bands representing a wide variety of musical styles: Intocable, Bomba Estéreo and Compass. The showcases at Auditorium Shores are open to the public with free Guest Pass wristbands, available in advance or onsite at the event. To learn how to get a guest pass, check out our post. SXSW Badge and Wristband holders do not need a Guest Pass to attend. The music will start at 6:00 p.m.
Lonestar Dance at Zilker Hillside Theater – Saturday, March 21 (Rain Date: March 22): Enjoy Matters of the Heart, performed by Lonestar Dance Center students. Bring your own blanket or chairs. The show starts at 7:30 p.m.
“Mr. Will” Dupuy Kids Show at Cherrywood Coffeehouse – Sunday, March 22
The son of a Grammy-nominated opera singer, “Mr. Will” began teaching music to pre-K students after answering a Help Wanted ad on Craigslist. Infectious melodies combined with upbeat lyrics make him beloved among preschoolers and early-elementary students, who clap, march, jump and dance along to their favorite songs. 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. Free.
Mad Tiger Festival 2015 at Mueller Lake Park Outdoor Amphitheater – Sunday, March 22
This family-friendly unofficial SXSW showcase features Peelander-Z, Mother Falcon and Koo Koo Kanga Roo. Starts at 1 p.m. Free with RSVP, but subject to capacity.
|HONK!TX photo by Tony V|
HONK!TX – March 27 – 29
HONK!TX is a nonprofit, community-driven festival that brings brass bands from around the country to perform in public spaces. Performing an array of genres, ranging from European Klezmer and Balkan, to New Orleans second-line brass music, spectacular bands will come from far and wide this year to transform everyday locations around Austin into organic stages, where the line between crowd and performers dissolves and music, mirth and mayhem are born. Lineup details will be released the week before the festival, but community shows will take place on Friday, March 27, followed by the official kickoff at Jo’s Coffee on South Congress at 6 p.m. Free.
Very Special Arts Festival at the Mexican American Cultural Center – Friday, March 27
VSA Texas and McBeth Recreation Center are hosting Art in the Park, an annual outdoor hands-on arts festival for kids of all ages and abilities. This inclusive festival provides arts and crafts activity booths for students and the public to enjoy a day of art making! 9:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. Free.
Enter a Woman, Pretty Enough – March 27 – April 3
The University of Texas at Austin Department of Theatre and Dance presents a new play by Diana Lynn Small. Enter A Woman, Pretty Enough performs the wild west’s past, present and future. Admission is free; Seating is limited. Reserve Seats.
Zilker Garden Festival – March 28-29
For over 50 years, the annual Zilker Garden Festival has been a one-stop, garden shopping destination when spring arrives in Austin and Central Texas. A family-friendly event, the garden festival offers something for everyone, including a flower show, live music, a kids’ corner and a food court. 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. both days. $8 adults (age 13+), $4 children (ages 4-12), under 4 free, $5 parking.
Big Don at Strange Brew – Saturday, March 28
Don Robinson is a hip-hop musician who is a member of the Austin Music Hall of Fame. 10 to 11 a.m. Free.
Search for the Lost Egg at Dittmar Recreation Center – Saturday, March 28
Enjoy the annual egg hunt, festival activities, and photos with the Easter Bunny. Intended for children ages 1-12. Crafts begin at 11 a.m. and the hunt begins at 1 p.m. Free.
Spring Pfling (Pflugerville) – Saturday, March 28
Activities will happen inside and outdoors at the Pflugerville Recreation Center this year instead of at Heritage Park, as in the past. Highlighting the city’s recreation programs, activities will include demonstrations of all classes, including performances on stage. The Equipment Round-Up will provide photo opportunities for parents and children. There will also be a free petting zoo, pony rides and food for sale on site! Noon until 4 p.m. Free.
Planet Music featuring Austin Samba at the Zilker Hillside Theater – Saturday, March 28
Enjoy the sights and sounds of Austin’s own Austin Samba School. 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Free.
Japanese Taiko Drumming at the Asian American Resource Center – Sunday, March 29
Enjoy Japanese Taiko Drumming featuring Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko Texas from 12-2 p.m. Free.
You may also be interested in Free Austin Festivals in 2015.
A recovering workaholic, Nicole Basham now spends her time rediscovering Austin through her 8-year-old son’s eyes. A soccer-playing mom, Nicole also enjoys tickling too close to bedtime, taking in some live music and being silly. You can also find her writing at LiveMom.