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.


Tents have become a common sight throughout Austin including along Cesar Chavez Street downtown, but with the passage of Proposition B the city may now consider moving unsheltered homeless individuals to designated sites. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin City Hall notebook: Designated campsites for the homeless are back on the table

City staff had previously dismissed developing official camping locations in 2019, but new directives from City Council this week could revive the concept in Austin.

The Highland Tech Center is an office complex that finished redevelopment in March. (Courtesy Aquila Commercial)
North Central Austin business news: Office complex opens in Highland, picnic meals offered in the parks and more

Mes Amis is an outdoor dining service that provides baskets with French-style cuisine for picnics. Two new fitness studios, Hive + Honey and Regymen, are also now open.

Stephanie Hayden-Howard will become an assistant city manager in Austin on May 10. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Role changes coming for health officials leading Austin-Travis County COVID-19 efforts

Dr. Desmar Walkes will take over as Austin's next medical director and local health authority as Dr. Mark Escott and Stephanie Hayden-Howard transition to new roles with the city.

Barton Springs Pool, shown here in March 2020, will require reservations for residents wishing to visit after 8 a.m. starting on May 17. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Barton Springs Pool will require reservations starting May 21

Visitors who want to visit the pool after 8 a.m. will have to make a reservation for a two-hour block of time.

Road closure stock image
TxDOT to demolish I-35 ramp in North Austin early Saturday morning

State crews will perform controlled implosions of the northbound I-35 to northbound US 183 flyover between 6-8 a.m. in the morning on May 8 and May 15.

A pilot Austin Police Department cadet class is now set to commence in June under an updated training regimen and with additional city and community oversight on the APD academy's culture and curriculum. (John Cox/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin City Council votes to restart APD cadet training in June, with framework for ongoing reviews of pilot academy

The Austin Police Department's 144th cadet class will now kick off training next month, with continued oversight of APD's instruction and culture throughout the 34-week academy process.

Holland Photo Imaging celebrates 40 years in business this year. (Courtesy Holland Photo Imaging)
The latest business news in South Central Austin

1. Holland Photo Imaging, located at 2125 Goodrich Ave., Ste. A, Austin, is celebrating its 40th anniversary in the community this year. Founded in 1981 by Pete Holland, the business has been owned by residents Brian and Morgan Morrison since 2006. Holland Photo Imaging offers film processing, printing, framing, photo restoration and archiving services. 512-442-4274. www.hollandphoto.com

A sign advertises a property for rent in Austin on May 6. Local eviction orders remain in place through August 1 protecting most tenants from eviction. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Local eviction moratoriums remain in effect despite federal judge’s decision

The May 5 ruling from a U.S. District Court judge striking down a federal moratorium does not affect orders in place in Austin or Travis County.

Q2 Stadium in North Austin
U.S. women’s national soccer team to debut Q2 Stadium next month

The USWNT takes on the Nigerian national team at Q2 Stadium ahead of the summer Olympic Games.

Juneau was adopted at Austin Animal Center in November 2019. (Amy Rae Dadamo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin Animal Center reaches critical capacity, opens doors to all adopters for first time since May 2020

Austin and Travis County’s animal shelter, Austin Animal Center, reached negative kennel space May 4, meaning there are more dogs than available kennels, according to a release from the city of Austin.