Nine things to do in Central Austin in December and January


Your ultimate local guide for events, meetings and more in the months of December and January.

Dec. 31
Celebrate the new year with your neighbors

The city hosts a family-friendly and alcohol-free New Year’s Eve bash with music, art, food trucks and fireworks. The headliner is Austin-based Columbian funk band Superfonicos. 3-10 p.m. Free. Auditorium Shores, 900 W. Riverside Drive, Austin.

Dec. 31
Watch the ball(oons) drop

Thinkery hosts its third annual New Year’s Eve balloon drop and bubble wrap stomp. Guests enjoy music, winter crafts and kid-mosas. 9 a.m.-noon and 1-4 p.m. $18 (members), $20 (non-members). Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave., Austin.

Jan. 4-6
Attend a boat showcase

Boats and RVs are on display at the annual Austin Boat & Travel Trailer Show, which hosted its first event in 1972. 1-9 p.m. (Fri.), 10 a.m.-9 p.m. (Sat.), 10 a.m.-5 p.m. (Sun.). $10. Austin Convention Center, 500 E. Cesar Chavez St., Austin.

Jan. 5-6
Plan your dream wedding

The Austin Bridal Extravaganza brings together hundreds of wedding industry professionals and offers free food samples and a chance to win grand prizes. Noon-5 p.m. $15; free for brides with a promo code. Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Road, Austin.

Jan. 6
Catch an exhibit’s last day

The Harry Ransom Center curated its first major exhibition drawn from its Edward Ruscha Papers and Art Collection, which has been on display since August and focuses on the artist’s use of American pop culture. Noon-5 p.m. Free. Harry Ransom Center, 300 W. 21st St., Austin.

Jan. 13
Mix up your fitness routine

Ballet Austin hosts its annual free day of fitness, offering conditioning classes, the chance to try a Pilates reformer machine, health food samples and presentations from experts. 1-4:30 p.m. Free. Butler Center for Dance & Fitness, 501 W. Third St., Austin. 512-501-8704

Jan. 16
Give meditation a try

The Austin Public Library hosts a meditation session followed by a reading and group discussion focused on how to practice mindfulness in one’s daily life. No experience is necessary. Noon-1 p.m. Free. Central Library, 710 W. Cesar Chavez St., Austin. 512-974-7400.

Jan. 20
Run a half-marathon

More than 7,000 runners participate in the 3M Half Marathon, which boasts one of the country’s fastest courses—it is mostly downhill. A festival and beer garden await at the finish line. 7:30-11:30 a.m. $115. Stonelake and York boulevards (start), Texas Capitol (finish).

Jan. 21
Honor Martin Luther King

The Austin Area Heritage Council hosts its annual march and festival. 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Free, with a suggested donation to the Central Texas Food Bank. MLK statue on the UT campus, 23rd Street and Speedway, Austin. 512-657-3064.

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Emma Freer
Emma Freer began covering Central Austin for Community Impact Newspaper in 2017. Her beat includes the Travis County Commissioners Court and local business news. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School in 2017.
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