Honky-tonk culture lives on in Southwest Austin and more: 20 news and community updates from Central Texas

Last Chance Bar & Dancehall held its soft opening last August. After weathering the storm of COVID-19, it will celebrate a year in business with a grand opening in July. (Courtesy Last Chance Bar & Dancehall)
Last Chance Bar & Dancehall held its soft opening last August. After weathering the storm of COVID-19, it will celebrate a year in business with a grand opening in July. (Courtesy Last Chance Bar & Dancehall)

Last Chance Bar & Dancehall held its soft opening last August. After weathering the storm of COVID-19, it will celebrate a year in business with a grand opening in July. (Courtesy Last Chance Bar & Dancehall)

Read the latest business and community news from Central Texas here.

Last Chance Bar & Dancehall gives new life to a classic Texas space in Southwest Austin

A daughter of the country music industry, Teresa Parker grew up around classic Texas dance halls and honky-tonks. Now, she works to see that culture live on with Last Chance Bar & Dancehall, which she owns with her husband, Karl.

Bee Cave business owner launches fundraiser for the Austin Humane Society

Kim Ortiz Dog Portraits & Boutique located at 12700 Hill Country Blvd., Bee Cave, launched a pet calendar contest for Austin and Lake Travis-area residents. Since launching her portrait business, Kim Ortiz has raised more than $17,000 for local animal rescues. This year, funds will benefit the Austin Humane Society.

ACL Live announces socially distanced Fourth of July concert

Nine Austin performers spread out among five stages downtown will perform on the Fourth of July in a live music performance hosted by Austin City Limits Live at the Moody Theater.

Round Rock Christian Academy to open new 50,000-square-foot facility

Round Rock Christian Academy is set to open a new 50,000-square-foot facility in Round Rock in August, representatives from RRCA confirmed in a June 12 email to Community Impact Newspaper.

Gambuzzas Barbershop opens second location in Cedar Park

Gambuzza’s Barbershop opened its Cedar Park location June 15 at at 5001 Toll 183A, Ste. G400, Cedar Park.

This is the second-ever location for the joint venture between Frank Gambuzza, founder of Gambuzza's Barbershop in Tennessee, and Gordan Logan, the founder and CEO of Sport Clips Haircuts, according to a June 15 news release.

Curious Chords Music Studio continues with virtual lessons

Jenny Sandoval opened Curious Chords Music Studio as a home-based music studio in 2007 with 20 students and a love for music.

Now 13 years later, Curious Chords has music lessons for almost every music instrument, employs 15 music teachers and teaches more than 300 students.

Novita Spa on the Georgetown Square under new ownership

Novita Spa and Medical Rejuvenation Clinic on the Georgetown Square is now under new ownership. The business was taken over by Rich Ryan, who also owns Halina Spa in Round Rock, in early June.

New Braunfels' small-business grant program now accepting applications

New Braunfels’ small-business grant program is now accepting applications from businesses with fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees.

Amid bankruptcy filing 24 Hour Fitness permanently closing two Northwest Austin locations

Nationwide gym chain 24 Hour Fitness announced June 15 it is permanently closing more than 100 of its gyms nationwide as it files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, including two locations in Northwest Austin.

Previous owners of Pflugerville's Winners BBQ will open new restaurant in Bee Cave

Bee Cave will see the addition of a new barbecue restaurant this summer. Lone Star Jacks BBQ is gearing up for a tentative July 4 grand opening at 3620 S. RM 620, Bee Cave.

Center Pointe Pilates celebrates 5 years in business in Round Rock

Center Pointe Pilates celebrated five years in business June 1. Center Pointe Pilates offers private lessons and small group sessions focusing on the classical Pilates techniques that aim to increase strength, flexibility, balance and body awareness.

Binge Kitchen aims to promote health with its vegan eatery

When Yarnisha Lyons first opened Binge Kitchen in 2017, she was still a student at Texas State University balancing classes and managing her vegan eatery with the intent to promote health and wellness.

Three years later, she has a brick-and-mortar in San Marcos and has recently expanded her wellness mission into San Antonio.

New Braunfels cancels Fourth of July Parade, fireworks still planned

The Sophienburg Museum & Archives and the city of New Braunfels announced June 12 that the annual Fourth of July Parade was canceled.

RideAustin shuts down operations

Local ride-sharing nonprofit RideAustin will be discontinuing its operations, according to a June 12 email sent to users.

Cedar Park’s Fable Fest 2020 is canceled

The Cedar Park Public Library Foundation has canceled Fable Fest 2020, according to a June 12 news release from the Cedar Park Public Library Foundation.

Austin’s Fourth of July concert and fireworks canceled

The Austin Symphony Orchestra announced June 12 that the annual H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert & Fireworks event at Auditorium Shores has been canceled due to the coronavirus.

Narrow Street 512 now serving Korean classics in Northwest Austin

Korean eatery Narrow Street 512 opened March 23 at 11301 Lakeline Blvd., Austin, inside HMart. Narrow Street 512 serves barbecue, stir-fried udon noodles, cold noodles and other Korean cuisine staples.

Estes Audiology relocates Pflugerville office to Round Rock

Estes Audiology opened its new location at 1850 A.W. Grimes Blvd., Ste. 300, Round Rock, on June 8, Executive Administrative Assistant Rayleen Nelson confirmed.

Eye Level Pflugerville celebrates 5 years in business

Eye Level Pflugerville celebrated its five-year anniversary June 3, staff confirmed in a June 9 email to Community Impact Newspaper.

35 new jobs $1M in facility upgrades: Hubbell Lighting to open design facility in Round Rock

One of North America’s largest manufacturers of residential and commercial lighting, Hubbell Lighting, plans to open a design facility in Round Rock.

Evelin Garcia, Ali Linan, Lauren Canterberry, Jack Flagler, Iain Oldman, Olivia Aldridge, Brian Perdue, Kelsey Thompson, Taylor Girtman and Taylor Jackson Buchanan contributed to this report.


Campuses in Austin ISD will be closes to in-person learning the week after Thanksgiving break. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
All Austin ISD classes to be held online through Dec. 4

The district will also be providing free COVID-19 tests to staff and families Dec. 2-4.

Bicycles for public use are docked at a MetroBike station on Lake Austin Boulevard. Austin's $460 million Proposition B will include funding for additional bicycle lanes through the city. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Breaking down Austin's $460 million bond for bike lanes, trails, sidewalks and more

The bond will fun a bridge over Pleasant Valley Road connecting two ends of the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike trail, among other improvements.

There is no data to support whether homelessness has increased since March, according to Austin’s Ending Community Homelessness Coalition, but ECHO executive director Matt Mollica said anecdotally, he believes the pandemic, job loss and lack of federal rent relief has led to more people locally experiencing homelessness. (Olivia Aldridge/Community Impact Newspaper)
Nonprofits fighting to end homelessness in Austin say COVID-19 measures have created new challenges

Nonprofits have seen a greater need from Austin’s homeless community—for food, clothing, health care and hygiene resources—since March, and they are scrambling to fill those gaps.

Local health leaders are urging caution ahead of Thanksgiving. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Ahead of Thanksgiving, Travis County health officials urge caution

Austin Public Health leaders say gatherings with people outside one's household held indoors and without masks pose the greatest risk.

Sold sign
Central Austin continues trend of rising home prices in recent report

The monthly median housing price in October for Central Austin climbed to $625,000.

Harini Logan, 10, won the 66th annual Express-News Spelling Bee at the University of Texas at San Antonio downtown campus on March 17, 2019. For 2021, the event is slated to be held in March at the Brauntex Performing Arts Theatre in New Braunfels. (Photo by Jerry Lara, courtesy the San Antonio Express News)
New Braunfels to host regional spelling bee and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from Central Texas.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan for the state Nov. 23 for a vaccine he said could be available as soon as December. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announces COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan

The vaccine could start being distributed "as early as next month," according to a Nov. 23 news release.

P. Terry’s Burger Stand is expected to open its long-awaited Pflugerville location this January. (Courtesy P. Terry's Burger Stand)
P. Terry's to open in Pflugerville in January and more Central Texas news

Read the latest Central Texas business and community news.

The Bridge at Turtle Creek apartment complex will provide more than 300 affordable units upon completion in 2022. (Rendering courtesy Journeyman Group)
Austin development updates: Apartments could replace two Rainey Street bars, 307 affordable housing units coming to South First Street area

A 569-foot apartment complex could replace Javelina and Craft Bar. Meanwhile, development continues in the St. Elmo area.

Falafel—served in a pita or without one—is TLV's most ordered dish. (Courtesy TLV)
Still open for takeout, TLV is the lone restaurant operating in Fareground food hall

"We will make it through these tough times," said chef Berty Richter.

Trail of Lights (Nicholas Cicale/Community Impact Newspaper)
Holiday markets, strolls, tree lightings and Trail of Lights: 18 events in the Austin area in November and December

The Trail of Lights has gone drive-thru this year, while the Blue Genie Art Bazaar is taking free, ticketed reservations to adhere to social distancing requirements.

Austin voters approved a $7.1 billion public transit expansion Nov. 3 that will add bus and rail in Austin. (Design by Miranda Baker/Community Impact Newspaper)
After historic public transportation vote, here is what's next for Project Connect in Austin

Shovels won't be hitting the ground on the light rail and downtown tunnel for years, but work is getting started now after Austinites approved the $7.1 billion plan Nov. 3.