Send off the old year and welcome the new with a weekend full of adventures! Here’s the scoop on free fun in Austin this weekend.
Weekend Top 10 Free Events in Austin:
- Mozart’s Annual Light Show – Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Starts at 6:00 p.m. each evening and replays at the top of every hour until 11:00 p.m. Enjoy dazzling lights set to music. See photos here. FREE! Mozart’s Coffee Roasters, 3825 Lake Austin Blvd., Austin.
- Zilker Holiday Tree – Friday and Saturday from 6:00 p.m. to midnight. Take a spin under the the 155-foot tall Zilker Tree, created around the Moonlight Tower. FREE! Zilker Park, 2100 Barton Springs Rd, Austin.
- Kwanzaa Celebration (RSVP) – Friday from 6:30-8:00 p.m. The principal of Nia (nee-AH) is purpose. Join in a recommitment to purpose in our community, featuring performances by Elizabeth Kahura. FREE with RSVP to (512)974-4926. George Washington Carver Museum, 1165 Angelina St, Austin.
- Black Eyed Pea Run (RSVP) – Saturday from 6-10:00 a.m. Bid farewell to 2016 in the best way: with a long run, great people, and plenty of post-run festivities. The Black Eyed Pea Run is a true Austin tradition, and as always it is FREE and everyone is welcome to join. There are plenty of route options to choose from, each with a map and water stops provided along the way. Guests should pick their start time based on how far they would like to run: 6 a.m. start: up to 24 miles; 7 a.m. start: up to 14 miles. RSVP is requested here so they’ll have enough refreshments for all. Rogue Running, 410 Pressler St, Austin.
- Jump into the New Year (RSVP) – Saturday from 10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Let your little ones jump into the new year with Springfree. There will be jumping, crafts, a guest appearance by Princess Elsa, and a countdown to noon. FREE! Springfree Trampoline Austin, 3220 Amy Donovan Plaza #116, Austin.
- Noon Year’s Eve Party – Saturday from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Can’t stay awake for the midnight hour? Then celebrate the new year at noon. Make hats and noise makers starting at 11:00 am, children’s musician Joe McDermott will perform at 11:30 am, then everyone will snack on goodies and toast to the 12 o’clock hour. Happy Noon Year! FREE! Lake Travis Community Library, 1938 Lohmans Crossing, Austin.
- Noon Year’s Eve Storytime – Saturday at 11:30 a.m. Count down to noon in celebration of the New Year at this special storytime party. FREE! Westbank Library, 1309 Westbank Dr, Austin.
- Austin’s New Year 2017 – Saturday from 3-10:30 p.m. Bring in the New Year with a fun and family-friendly celebration. Austin’s New Year will transform Vic Mathias Shores into a wonderland of music, art, and special performances. Capping off the festive evening, the traditional fireworks finale will start at 10:00 p.m. View the full schedule of events here. FREE! Vic Mathias Shores, 800 West Riverside Dr, Austin.
- Barton Springs Polar Bear Splash – Sunday from 9:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Bring your friends and family to enjoy the inviting 68 degree water and ring in the new year with the rejuvenating power of Barton Springs. Group costumes and plunges are always fun. Save Our Springs will be set up with commemorative shirts for sale and FREE coffee and donuts (first come, first serve). Admission to the pool is FREE! Please note that no lifeguards will be on duty during this event. Barton Springs Pool, 2201 Barton Springs Rd, Austin.
- TuneBugz! Demo Classes (RSVP) – Monday at various times. Children ages 0-4 and their caregivers are invited to sing, dance, bounce, and play with TuneBugz! View locations, schedule, and reserve your child’s FREE spot here.
More Events Beyond Austin:
- Kids’ New Year’s Eve Eve Party (Pflugerville) – Friday at 11:00 a.m. Children up to age 12 are invited to celebrate the New Year with fun, dancing, and a countdown to Noon. FREE! Pflugerville Public Library, 1008 W Pfluger St, Pflugerville.
- Noon Year’s Eve (Pflugerville) – Saturday from Noon to 6:00 p.m. A kids NYE celebration extravaganza with face painting, two balloon drops (2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.), NYE activities, and plenty of sparkling, kid-friendly beverages. Bring your kids for an afternoon of revelry before your festivities begin. Participation in the event is FREE of charge. Austin’s Park N Pizza, 16231 I-35 Frontage Rd, Pflugerville.
- Movie Matinee: Kubo and the Two Strings (Pflugerville) – Saturday at 1:15 p.m. Enjoy a FREE movie screening. Snacks and drinks will be provided while they last. Rated PG. Pflugerville Public Library, 1008 W Pfluger St, Pflugerville.
- Pfreeze Pflop (Pflugerville) – Sunday at 10:00 a.m. Are you brave enough to slide into pfrigid water to kick off your new year? Arrive early so you don’t miss out–the first 50 people will get a new, long-sleeved t-shirt. No, the pool isn’t heated. Admission is FREE with donation of a canned food item given to benefit local pfood banks. Scott Mentzer Pool, 901 Old Austin Hutto Rd, Pflugerville.
- 13th Annual Polar Bear Splash (Kyle) – Sunday at 1:00 p.m. Take part in the Kyle tradition and make a splash on January 1st. Pool gates open at 1:00 p.m. and splash begins at 1:30 p.m. FREE! Kyle Pool, 1300 W Center St, Kyle.
- First Day Hike (Lockhart) ($3) – Sunday at 1:00 p.m. Start your new year off right by taking a walk to search for the amazing wildlife that call Lockhart State Park home. Train your eyes and ears to find snakes, mammals, and more in this fun and informative, easy-to-moderate ¾-mile hike. All ages welcome. Regular park entrance fees apply ($3/adult, free for children 12 & under). Lockhart State Park, 2012 State Park Rd, Lockhart.