12 things to do around Central Austin this summer


Editor’s Note: The 2019 Float Fest appeared in this guide as part of the Central Austin print edition. That event has been removed after organizers announced the event’s cancellation due to construction delays. 

June 27
See a new art exhibit

BossBabes ATX, a local nonprofit that amplifies and connects women and nonbinary creatives, hosts an opening reception for abstract photographer Maribel Falcon, whose work will be exhibited at the Elisabet Ney Museum for two weeks. 6:30 p.m. Free. Elisabet Ney Museum, 304 E. 44th St. www.bossbabes.org

June 29th – 30th
Attend a traditional dance performance at the MACC

“Sacred Earth Stories” is a production featuring traditional Indian dance, along with live music and spoken commentary. The story centers around protecting the Earth’s resources for future generations. 7 p.m. (Sat.), 2 p.m. (Sun.). $15-$20. Emma Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center, 600 River St. www.austindanceindia.com

July 30th – July 1st
Celebrate National Pride Month at a film screening

Austin Film Society hosts two screenings of “Sorry Angel,” a film that follows a love story set against the backdrop of the AIDS epidemic in Paris. Sun. 2 p.m. (Sun.), 7 p.m. (Mon.). $11.25. Austin Film Society, 6406 N. I-35, Ste. 3100. 512-322-0145. www.austinfilm.org

July 4th
See fireworks on the fourth

The 42nd annual H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert and Fireworks is the largest Independence Day celebration in Texas. Fireworks will follow a symphony performance. 8:30 p.m. Free. Vic Mathias Shores, 900 W. Riverside Drive. 512-476-6064. www.austinsymphony.org

July 4th
Visit the LBJ Presidential Library for free

Admission is free July 4 and includes access to the temporary exhibition “Motown: The Sound of Young America,” a 60-year retrospective of Motown Records. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. LBJ Presidential Library, 2313 Red River St.
512-721-0200. www.lbjlibrary.org

July 4th
Picnic with Willie Nelson

Nelson’s Fourth of July Picnic returns to Circuit of The Americas for its fifth year. Performers include Luke Combs, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, and Alison Krauss. Fireworks close out the night. 11 a.m. $45-$399.50. 9201 Circuit of The Americas Blvd. 512-301-6600.

July 7th
Travel back to 1985

As part of its 44th annual Summer Classic Film Series, The Paramount Theatre hosts a screening of “The Goonies.” Other films being shown during the month of July include “Malcolm X,” “The Princess Bride” and “The Big Sleep.” 1 p.m. $6 (children age 12 and younger), $10 (adults). The Paramount Theatre, 713 Congress Ave. 512-474-1221. www.austintheatre.org

July 12th
Go to a pop-up dinosaur museum after dark

Austin Public Library hosts its quarterly After Dark event featuring a dinosaur pop-up museum, extended hours, snacks, adult drinks and music. It is open to adults age 21 and older. 7-9 p.m. $7. Austin Central Library, 710 W. Cesar Chavez St. 512-974-7400. www.library.austintexas.gov

July 12th
Dive ‘under the sea’

Zilker Theatre Productions celebrates its 61st season with a production of Disney’s “The Little Mermaid,” based on the Hans Christian Andersen tale. It runs through Aug. 17. 8:15 p.m, Thurs.-Sun. Free. Zilker Hillside Theatre, 2206 William Barton Drive. 512-479-9491. www.zilker.org

July 17th
Hear Blues on the Green

This Austin summer tradition continues at Zilker Park, where local bands perform for thousands of Austin residents, visitors and dogs. The concert series runs from May to August and features local restaurants and vendors. 8 p.m. Free. Zilker Park, 2100 Barton Springs Road. www.acl-radio.com/blues19

July 22nd
Celebrate army futures command’s first year

Army Futures Command will host a family-friendly event to thank the Austin community on the new command’s one-year anniversary in the city. The day will feature live music, a parachute demonstration, a climbing wall and more. 4-9 p.m. Free. Long Center for the Performing Arts, 701 W. Riverside Drive. www.armyfuturescommand.com

Worth the Trip

July 6th
Welcome back Spamarama

The festival and competitive cookoff revolving around canned meat product Spam returns this year for the first time since 2007. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Free (children age 12 and younger), $10-$15. Moontower Saloon, 10212 Manchaca Road. www.spamarama.net

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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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