- February 20, 2015

Weekend Top 10 FREE Events (Feb 20-22, 2015)

  1. ABC Children’s Sale: A Big Consignment – Friday, February 20 from 9 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. and from 6-8:30 p.m and Saturday, February 21, from 9 a.m. – noon and from 12:30–3:30 p.m. The MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group at Austin Oaks Church in South Austin is hosting its fourth annual consignment sale. Quality kids, baby, and maternity items will be for sale. Receive a free raffle ticket when you bring a donation for the South Austin Pregnancy Resource Center (accepted items: baby formula, wipes, diapers sizes 3-6). Admission is FREE! Austin Oaks Church, 4220 Monterey Oaks Blvd, Austin.
  2. Chinatown Center Celebration – Saturday, February 21, from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Austin families are invited to celebrate the Chinese New Year with FREE face-painting, firecracker displays, Dragon and Lion Dance performances, and more! This event is rain or shineFREE! Chinatown Center, 10901 N. Lamar Blvd., Austin.
  3. Rockets to the Rescue – Saturday, February 21, from 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Local Austin AmeriCorps volunteers will host an event for National Youth Science Day called Rockets to the Rescue: How Technology Helps Texas Disaster Relief. Shoot rockets, see how parachutes help firefighters, design a flood-proof city and more! Check out FREE and fun activities that showcase how technology helps Central Texas in times of disaster, hosted by 4-H CAPITAL and partnered with the Thinkery, Girlstart, and Austin AmeriCorps Awareness!  FREE! Mueller Lake Park, 4550 Mueller Boulevard, Austin.
  4. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Saturday, February 21 and Sunday, February 22, from 12-5 p.m. The Ransom Center celebrates 150 years of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland with an exhibition for the curious and curiouser of all ages. Read Katey’s review hereFREE! Harry Ransom Center, 300 W 21st St, Austin.
  5. One by One Texas – Saturday, February 21 and Sunday, February 22, from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. One By One Texas is a statewide art show featuring mobile photography from local and international artists. The family-friendly event will feature work from 100 of Instagram’s most recognizable photographers. 50% of the proceeds from the art sales will be donated to Girlstart, a local nonprofit dedicated to empowering girls in science, technology, engineering, and math through educational programs. There will also be live music and lawn games. On Sunday, from 12-3 p.m., enjoy an Ice Cream Social with FREE ice cream from Lick Honest Ice Creams! FREE! Artpost Austin, 4704 East Cesar Chavez, Austin.
  6. ZACH Theatre Storytime – Saturday, February 21 at 11:30 a.m. Dive into the story of The Three Little Pigs as a teaching artist from ZACH Theatre leads drama activities around the story in connection to the theatre’s upcoming musical. BookPeople, 603 N Lamar, Austin.
  7. Kite Making Workshop – Saturday, February 21, from 1-3 p.m. Fly on by for an afternoon of fun, then enter your creation in the Kite Competition at the Zilker Kite Fest on March 1st! Get It Good will be providing music. This event is rain or shine. FREE! Northwest Recreation Center, 2913 Northland Drive, Austin.
  8. Celebrate Urban Birds – Saturday, February 21, from 1-4 p.m. Learn about our feathered friends, specifically those who also call cities home! As you’ll learn, it’s a much richer community than you may expect. More than grackles and pigeons, from warblers to hawks, many can be found in an afternoon at a Certified Wildlife Habitat like the one at the Ney. Join expert ornithologist Ed Fair as he leads us in an hourly bird count, part of a special program sponsored by Cornell University. Also, become your favorite bird at the face painting booth! Construct an elaborate bird house from recyclable materials! Create colorful feathers and clay bird feeders! FREE! Elizabet Ney Museum, 304 E. 44th Street.
  9. KUTX MapJam – Saturday, February 21, from 1-11 p.m., Nine Bands, Four Venues. Bringing the Austin Music Map To Life. FREE Shows. All Day. Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center, 600 River Street: 1 p.m. Leticia Rodriguez; 2 p.m. Clandestino All-Stars. French Legation Museum, 802 San Marcos Street: 3 p.m., Ruby Jane; 4 p.m., Walker Lukens Music. Oswaldo A. B. Cantu Pan American Recreation Center, 2100 E. 3rd Street: 5 p.m., Joel Laviolette & Rattletree Marimba; 6 p.m., The Golden Dawn Arkestra. Historic Scoot Inn, 1308 E. 4th Street: 8 p.m., Phranchyze; 9 p.m., SIP SIP; 10 p.m., Peligrosa. Attendees are encouraged to bicycle or walk between the stops. Parking will be extremely limited. Please be respectful of the neighborhood. 
  10. Austin Summer Camp FairSunday, February 22, from 12-4 p.m. More than 40 summer camps will showcase their offerings. Activities for children will be provided by select camps. Sign up for a spot in a FREE LEGO Event. There will also be raffles and giveaways. FREE admission, FREE parking and FREE childcare! Camp Sloop will be collecting donations for Austin Pets Alive! at the event. Norris Conference Center, 2525 W Anderson Ln, Austin.

Bonus fun in the ‘burbs:

  • ACC Star Party (Round Rock) – Friday, February 20, from 5:30-9:30 p.m. Enjoy hands-on science exhibits for kids and planetarium shows in Austin Planetarium’s Discovery Dome. FREE! ACC’s Round Rock Campus, 4400 College Park Drive, Round Rock.
  • Star Party (Sunset Valley) – Friday, February 20, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Take a tour of the night sky, hear star lore stories, and learn how to use star charts. There will be activities inside City Hall as well. If you have telescopes or binoculars bring them along for a great evening. FREE! For more information, call 512-891-9103. Sunset Valley City Hall, 3205 Jones Road, Sunset Valley.

A few fun events that are free for select ages only:

  • Enchanted “Rock Star” Festival (Fredericksburg) – Saturday, February 21, from 7 a.m. – 10 p.m. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area has been designated by the International Dark Sky Association as a Gold Tier International Dark Sky Park. To celebrate the efforts made by staff and volunteers to earn that special status, Friends of Enchanted Rock will be holding an all-day event for the public. This will be a full day event that begins as the darkness turns to morning light with a sunrise program and ends with a Star Party chock full of telescopes and a constellation tour by McDonald Observatory’s own Bill Wren. Throughout the day there will be activities for children and the young at heart. Check out the schedule. You can also read the Enchanted Rock newsletter here. Please note that large sections of the parking lot by the viewing area will be closed after 4 p.m. to keep headlights from disturbing the night programming. Also, it is always best to arrive at Enchanted Rock early on weekends as the lot does fill to capacity. Regular park admission applies and includes access to all activities. Entrance to Enchanted Rock State Natural Area is $7 for visitors age 13 and up; FREE for kids 12 and under. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, 16710 Ranch Rd. 965, Fredericksburg.
  • Engineers Day at Thinkery – Saturday, February 21, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., The first 400 children to arrive will get in FREE. (Adults pay regular admission, which is $9.) Kids of all ages will be encouraged to participate in several engineering-themed activities alongside knowledgeable volunteers from local companies and organizations. Engineers Day is sponsored by the Austin Branch of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Austin Intellectual Property Law Association, Greater Austin Contractors & Engineers Association, Hayward Baker, MWM Design Group and SAM Inc. Thinkery, 1830 Simond Avenue, Austin.
  • Jugglefest – Saturday, February 21 at 7:30 p.m. Performers from Austin and all over the world will be featured as they demonstrate their skills in the circus arts. Come on down and check out the best family friendly show in Austin! $10 Admission (FREE for 5 and under!). Texas School for the Deaf – Davis Auditorium, 1102 South Congress Avenue, Austin.
  • Seuss-tastic Purim Festival – Sunday, February 22, from 2-6 p.m. Chabad of Austin invites you to celebrate and explore the Jewish holiday of Purim at a carnival benefiting the Hebrew Preparatory School. Admission for adults and infants is FREE. For $5, kids age 2 and up can enjoy unlimited carnival games, activities and prizes. Chabad Center for Jewish Living, 4413 Spicewood Springs Rd #106, Austin.
And a free fundraiser:
  • 2nd Annual Illuminate Austin – Saturday, February 21, from 5-8 p.m. Illuminate Austin is an evening walk in Mueller Lake Park, along a path lined with luminarias. This fun, family-friendly event benefits SafePlace, which provides shelter and essential services to survivors of domestic and sexual violence in Austin. Kids’ activities start at 5 and the walk starts at 6 p.m. It’s FREE to walk, but donations are appreciated. Read more about Illuminate Austin here. Mueller Lake Park and Hangar, 4550 Mueller Lake Blvd, Austin.

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