Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Halloween Events at Disney Parks ~ 2014


The fall holidays are in full swing at both Disneyland & Walt Disney World with lots of fun Halloween events this year.  I never really considered how fun Halloween could be until I read about all that was planned. Just looking at this list of fun events that are happening at both parks makes me want to hop on a plane.  But how do I choose which park to go to?

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: Walt Disney World

From September 1 - October 31, on select nights, the park is open for a special party that features trick-or-treating, Mickey's Boo-to-You Halloween Parade, Villains Castle Show, and a special HalloWishes fireworks show.  The park is also "dressed-up" for the occasion with pumpkins, hay bales, and maybe a spooky character or two.  This special event requires a separate ticket and is quite suitable for children of all ages. Click here for dates and tickets

Villains’ Sinister Soiree: A Wicked Takeover of Cinderella Castle: Walt Disney World

The villains have taken over the castle and are hosting a special event during Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween party.  Join them for a decadent dessert party while mingling with some of Disney's most mischievous villains.  For more information, click here

By purchasing a ticket to both Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and the Villains’ Sinister Soiree: A Wicked Takeover of Cinderella Castle, you’ll receive preferred viewing for the 8:15 performance of Mickey’s “Boo-to-You” Halloween Parade, as well preferred viewing for the Happy HalloWishes Fireworks Spectacular.

Mickey's Halloween Party: Disneyland

Another year of special events take place during Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland. One select dates, the park is open for guests who have tickets to the party and they are invited to dress in costume to trick or treat with some of their favorite characters. A Halloween parade,  photo ops, dance parties and a special fireworks show, Halloween Screams are planned. I found this great article with tips if you are attending the party. For more information & tickets, click here. 

Haunted Mansion Holiday: Disneyland

Jack Skellington & his crew take over the Haunted Mansion each fall to create the infamous Haunted Mansion Holiday.  Dressing it up even spookier for the season, guests are invited to see the fun each day.  I got chills watching all the fun decor:


Disney's Happiest Haunts Tour: Disneyland

You can take a tour of both parks and hear great stories of Halloween, Disney's Villains, and a bit of Disney trivia.  The tour includes a few rides, fun Halloween trinkets and lasts about 3 hours.  Here's a great review of the tour.

Other Disney Parks Articles you may enjoy:

10 Unforgettable Epcot Experiences
Tips on a Multi-generational Disney Trip
5 Things to Know about the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
Melia Orlando Suite Hotel
5 Fun Shopping Experiences at Disneyland
Best Tips to Ride California Adventure's Radiator Springs Racers
Hyatt Regency Orange County ~ Anaheim, CA
A Visit from Tinkerbell at Disney World
Disney Character Dining Invitation
Best Disney Autograph Book
The Most Magical Christmastime Place: Disney World

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Top 7 Oktoberfest Celebrations in Texas ~ 2014


It always truly feels like Fall when Oktoberfest celebrations begin in Texas.  We may not actually cool down to true Oktoberfest weather, but Texans do know how to throw a good party.  So no matter where you are win Texas, here are a few Oktoberfest celebrations you won't want to miss.

Top 7 Oktoberfest Celebration in Texas ~ 2014

Addison Oktoberfest - September 18-21, 2014

For over 25 years, the most authentic Oktoberfest celebration outside of Munich has been held in Addison, Texas. This year, over 70,000 fans will come together September 18-21, 2014 to share a love of polka, German food and, of course, the same Paulaner Bier that will be served at Bavaria’s favorite festival. As a part of its award- winning tradition, Addison has timed their festival to coincide with the famed Munich Oktoberfest, and Addison Oktoberfest will also feature much of the same music, folk dancing, sing-a-longs plus great German food and entertainment.
Addison Oktoberfest website

Rahr & Sons Oktoberfest 5K - September 27, 2014

This 5K Run is held in Fort Worth and features German Polka and a Beer Garden after party.  All proceeds benefits the No Brother Fights Alone Foundation.

Oktoberfest in Fredericksburg ~ October 3-5, 2014

Oktoberfest is a colorful, festive celebration of Fredericksburg, Texas' German heritage & is a community event of family entertainment featuring four stages of continuous oompah music, local artisans, children's fun area ~ KinderPark, German Bier Tent, Oktoberfest Bier Tent and Oktoberfest Vineyard, OkTUBAfest, Hauptstrasse Chicken Dance , 42 (Domino) Tournament, delicious food and lots of cold drinks ... all weekend long!

Southlake Oktoberfest ~ October 3-5, 2014

The 13th anniversary of the Southlake Oktoberfest expects nearly 50,000 people to visit throughout the weekend festival! Attendance is completely free.  There will, however, be a wide range of food, beverages, and booth items available for sale! The kids will have a great time in the excitement-packed children's area!

Oktoberfest in Kemah ~ October 4 & 5, 2014

The 2nd annual Oktoberfest in Kemah boasts an 8,000 Sq. Foot Beer Tent for all to enjoy.  Hand crafted beers from Germany, Holland, Austria, and many more will be available.  The Kemah Oktoberfest will be held in the heart of Kemah, Texas, in the Lighthouse District  with great food, and terrific beer. Bring the family out for a great time in the beautiful Autumn weather.

Texas Renaissance Festival Oktoberfest Weekend ~ October 11 & 12, 2014

The first weekend of the Texas Ren Festival just happens to be Oktoberfest-themed weekend.   Journey to Bavaria and the Black Forest as the air echoes with traditional German music and dancing.  Dance a polka, feast on Bratwurst and sauerkraut, quench your thirst with a stein of beer and join in the fun by entering into one of the three German themed contests. 

Wurstfest ~ November 7-16, 2014

A 10 day sausage festival that has been around since the 1960's? Yes! Wurstfest in New Braunfels has to be the most unique Oktoberfest Texas has ever seen. This unique annual celebration is rich in German culture and full of Texas fun. Enjoy good food, music, dancing, exciting carnival rides and games, German, Texan and domestic beer, special events and the finest in Alpine and Bavarian Style Entertainment.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

3 Day Itinerary in Houston, TX {with kids!}


Houston, Texas is a big city with a ton of different things to do. When visiting, you can choose from cultural, historic and outdoor activities to name a few.  I recently visited and when it came to figuring out our 3 day itinerary, I had a hard time. But being that I was traveling with the kids, it was simple to plan out some "must-sees" while we were there.

The Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau hosted our stay and provided us with the Houston CityPass to get around.  Their website was a great starting place, as they have suggested itineraries, restaurants, shopping and more.

Here is our 3 Day Itinerary in Houston with the Kids

Day 1

We arrived in the afternoon and once settled into our hotel, we were ready to start exploring.  We stayed downtown at the Embassy Suites  which was a great, central location for the attractions we wanted to see.  The hotel itself was perfect for a family with 2 queen beds and a fold out couch.  We enjoyed their amazing full breakfast each morning and the happy hour snacks in the afternoon.


Discovery Green: That afternoon, we walked over to Discovery Green to check out their splash pad, model boats, and playground.  On some evenings, they host free concerts, movies on the lawn, yoga classes and more.  And in winter, they offer ice skating.  It's a fun green space smack dab in the middle of downtown and worth spending an afternoon or evening here.  They do have 2 restaurants, but we were excited to head to the Aquarium for dinner.

Discovery Green
1500 McKinney, Houston, TX 


Downtown Aquarium: Dinner at an Aquarium? Yes! The aquarium is a bit small, but does have a stingray tank where you can pet & feed the stingrays.  My kids found the real fun to be the rides outdoors, including the shark train - where you ride through a tank filled with sharks.  The Downtown Aquarium is also home to a seafood restaurant where the main attraction is the 150,000 gallon tank of beautiful fish.  My kids could barely take their eyes off it to eat their meal.

Downtown Aquarium
410 Bagby St, Houston, TX

Day 2


Space Center Houston: History & Science collide at Space Center Houston and it is definitely a must-do when visiting Houston. We had been here a few summers ago (see our 10 Tips to visit here), but we were happy to go back, as they have rotating, hands-on exhibits the my kids really enjoy.  We spent the entire morning here at the Mission to Mars (rotating exhibit being changed now), learning how to live on the Space Station, and taking a walk through history on the tram tour to Mission Control. Recently, they added the Space Shuttle Independence replica to the top of the actual Space Shuttle Aircraft they house in front of the building. You can easily spend an entire day here, but we found it was nice to choose what we all wanted to see and we were finished by lunch time.

Space Center Houston
1601 NASA Pkwy, Houston, TX


Kemah Boardwalk: We spent the afternoon at Kemah Boardwalk, a 35-acre park with amusement rides, restaurants, & shopping. With the CityPass, you can get an all-day pass to ride most of the rides, including the Aviator, Pharaoh's Fury, and the Boardwalk Bullet.  Lines were short (due to it being midweek and August), so my kids rode ride after ride and really enjoyed themselves.  We got some great pictures! The boardwalk offers themed-restaurants including Landry's, Bubba Gump Shrimp & Saltgrass Steakhouse - you can easily do lunch or dinner here.  I liked the fact that we were right on Galveston Bay and were able to watch boats come in and out of the bay and catch a cool, salty breeze.

Kemah Boardwalk 
215 Kipp Ave, Kemah, TX


Jus' Mac for Dinner: This Houston favorite has been on my list to try for years, so despite it being all the way back north of downtown, we hunted it down.  And I'm so glad we did. Jus' Mac is gourmet macaroni and cheese - and not anything like what mom makes. There are a ton of creative varieties you can try from buffalo chicken, to cheeseburger to BBQ brisket. It is rich and delicious and a totally fun restaurant to take the kids to. It was very affordable and we left so very full.  Jus' Mac has 3 locations in town.

Jus' Mac 
2617 Yale Street, Houston, TX
106 Westheimer, Houston, TX
16525 Lexington Blvd, Sugarland, TX

Day 3


Children's Museum of Houston: One of my favorite children's museums I have ever been to, the Children's Museum of Houston is FANTASTIC.  Each of my 3 kids - 13, 11, and 5 - love this museum for different reasons.  The 5 year old is easy - so many hands on exhibits from making levers and launching balls, to climbing the multi-storied PowerPlay to making water flow outside at FlowWorks. My 11 year old son loves to go downstairs and create planes to make them fly or cars out of LEGOs to race - he could spend all day at Invention Convention.  Lastly, my 13 year old likes to go make as much money as she can at Kidtropolis - the shining star of the museum. Kids get to perform various jobs, earn money, deposit money, and then spend money.  It is one of the most popular exhibits, so they give everyone passes for various times to go in.  This is another "Must-do" while in Houston - and is great for all ages.

Children's Museum of Houston 
1500 Binz Ave Houston, TX 77004



Natachee's Supper 'n Punch: There is a great list of kid-friendly restaurants in Houston to try, but if I can recommend a fun one with a great kid's menu, it's Natachee's Supper 'n Punch. It's very close to the museum district, and worth stopping for the eclectic decor. They serve great comfort food - burgers, meatloaf, sandwiches, veggies - but our favorite was the kids meals served in lunch boxes!

Natachee's Supper 'n Punch 
3622 Main Street, Houston, TX

Houston Museum of Natural Science: We found one of the BEST dinosaur exhibits at the Houston Museum of Natural Science - the Hall of Palentology has over 450 fossils and fossil replicas.  This grand museum is also home to a butterfly exhibit, a sparkling hall of gems & minerals, and a planetarium.  There were a great deal of exhibits that sparked my kids minds and we really enjoyed the docents taking time to explain some of the exhibits with us. If you have the CityPass, this museum is worth stopping it for just a few hours.

Houston Museum of Natural Science
5555 Herman Park Dr., Houston, TX



The Chocolate Bar: We couldn't hit the road for home without a quick stop at the Chocolate Bar - a sugar-lover's dream store.  Along with some of the most unique-shaped chocolate bars, you can custom-make your own chocolate bark. They serve the most amazing chocolate cake and even make their own ice cream.  It's a fun, sweet afternoon stop.

The Chocolate Bar
2521 University Blvd, Houston, TX
1835 West Alabama, Houston, TX

So, yes there is a ton more to do in Houston - I haven't even scratched the surface. I would recommend a 3-day weekend trip with the family to Houston.  Grab a CityPass that includes all the big attractions we went to - it's a GREAT savings - and pick a few unique restaurants to try along the way.  We really enjoyed our 3 day trip and hope to go back to try a completely different itinerary next time!

Tell me in the comments, what's your favorite thing to do in Houston? What did we miss?

Disclosure: We were invited to visit Houston by the Houston CVB and were provided with CityPasses and hotel stays.  I was not compensated for my article.  All opinions are my own. 

Other great articles on Houston:
Houston Zoo
Kemah Boardwalk
Houston Museum of Natural Science 
Children's Museum of Houston
Things to Do in Houston
Top 5 Things to Do in Houston


Tuesday, September 9, 2014

8 Family Museums to see on Austin Museum Day - {FREE ADMISSION} ~ September 21, 2014

The Austin Museum Partnership is proud to host the 17th annual Austin Museum Day on Sunday, September 21, 2014. Area museums open their doors to the public for FREE in an effort of re-discovery of all the amazing institutions we have here in Austin.

I love this initiative and wish it was a week-long, not just a day!!  Having only one day and so many museums to choose from, I wanted to provide you with a few ideas of what museums your family might enjoy best.

Here are 8 Family Museums to Visit for Free for Austin Museum Day:



Thinkery
Austin's Childrens Museum, Thinkery has been open for less than a year and has quickly become one of the best children's museums in Texas.  With tons of hands-on activities, like making your own airplane and flying it or creating music out of water, there is never a dull visit to this museum.  On Austin Museum Day, Thinkery will have all of its regular displays available as well as special activities all day in Innovators’ Workshop, Spark Shop, & Kitchen Lab. Here is our experience there.

Sunday Hours: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: 1830 Simond Ave. 


Bullock Texas State History Museum
One of our families' favorite Austin museums, the Bullock Texas State History Museum is a vast collection of rotating Texas artifacts.  Every time we visit, we see something new on display.  The museum also houses an IMAX theatre and an interactive theatre.  This Sunday, the museum will discover the wide variety of symbols that represent the state with hands-on activities perfect for ages 5 and up, art making, performances, and more!

Sunday Hours: 12:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Location: 1800 N Congress Ave.

Elisabet Nay Museum
The historic Elisabet Ney Museum is the former studio and portrait collection created by 19th century sculptor Elisabet Ney.  This Sunday, they will host Portraiture in the Park. Have a free caricature, make a cyanotype portrait, create masks of your friends and family, have a portrait bust made of you in the photo booth, write word portraits, watch stone portrait carving, and much more.  Feel free to picnic. Food and dessert trucks will be on site.


Sunday Hours: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: 304 E. 44th Street


Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Take a walk in the beautiful gardens the Wildflower Center has blooming. The new Luci and Ian Family Garden is now open for little ones as well. Discover nature art, hear a story, and go on a scavenger hunt. Enjoy a BIG Tic-Tac-Toe game along with bubbles and Hula Hoops in the play lawn.  Here is our experience there.

Sunday Hours: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: 4801 La Crosse Avenue



Jourdan-Bachman Pioneer Farms
Take a step back in time at the Jourdan-Bachman Pioneer Farms in Northeast Austin.  Five individual settlements with working docents provide families with hands-on experiences that really show what life was like in the past.   The living-history park and museum has new exhibits and displays, historical reenactments and family fun. On Sunday, there will be Artisans, food, much more.


Sunday Hours: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: 10621 Pioneer Farms Dr

Texas Department of Public Safety Historical Museum
This fun museum is a treasure trove of historical DPS vehicles and artifacts, one my son really enjoyed. It's not as well known as most of the museums in town, so I wanted to highlight it for Austin Museum Day.  Learn about the Four Alerts and how DPS locates, rescues, and identifies missing persons. Interact with Forensic Artists, crime lab scientists, law enforcement officers, communications officers and emergency managers. See current and retired DPS vehicles, police dogs and the new mounted patrol. They will also conduct an informational scavenger hunt.


Sunday Hours: 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Location: 5805 N Lamar


Texas Military Forces Museum
One of my son's favorite museums in town, the Texas Military Forces Museum is full of military history & vehicles.  He loves the collection of tanks. On this Sunday, they will have specialists on hand who will demonstrate leather working, Vietnam era weapons, Civil War uniforms and equipment and a plastic model activity. Here is our experience there. 

Sunday Hours: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Location: 2200 W. 35th Street

LBJ Presidential Library
At the LBJ Presidential Library you can experience the 1960s with Sixty from the’60s, featuring 60 icons of that era. See original lyrics written by Bob Dylan, a Telstar satellite, a dress worn by Jacqueline Kennedy, Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin’s communications headset, a boxing glove worn and signed by Muhammad Ali, and an original Peanuts comic strip – just to name a few items. Special activities and refreshments from 2-4 p.m., including free gelato for each visitor!

Sunday Hours: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: 2313 Red River

There are so much more than just these 8 - I wish it lasted for a full week.  Check out many of the historical walking tours, such as the Capitol, the grounds of University of Texas, and the Oakwood Cemetery.  For a full listing of all the Museums participating in Austin Museum Day, click here

And here's something cool for those on Instagram: Participate in the Austin Museum Day Instagram contest for a chance to win great prizes. The contest is open 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. on Sunday, September 21.
To play:
1. Follow @TxHistComm and @austinmuseums on Instagram (link below)
2. Take a photograph at one of the participating Austin Museum Day institutions
3. Post it to your Instagram (make sure your profile is public!)
4. Tag the participating institution and #museumday2014
Multiple submissions are allowed. Contest closes at 9 p.m. on Sunday, September 21; submissions posted after 9 p.m. will not be included.

A total of 3 winners – 1st through 3rd places—will be selected by a panel of judges that include staff from Texas Historical Commission and Austin Museum Partnership. Prizes to be announced.

Monday, September 8, 2014

10 Cool Experiences at EPCOT ~ Walt Disney World, FL


Each time we visit Walt Disney World, we always walk away with a new-found love of one of the four parks.  Once it was Animal Kingdom because we had an amazing day filled learning about animals. Another time, we really loved Magic Kingdom because the kids were young and were absolutely star-struck by all the character interactions they had.

This trip was all about EPCOT.

I have always liked EPCOT but never really gave it much time other than to ride Soarin’ and Test Track.  And while those rides are incredible and worth the wait to ride them, there is SO MUCH more to see and do when you are at EPCOT.  We discovered some fun things that do not get as much attention on our trip in May.

10 Cool Experiences at EPCOT


Save the World with Agent P ‘s World Showcase Adventure: This is a MUST DO for kids ages 7-12. We took the time to do the experience in United Kingdom and had a ton of fun with it.  You are given a “phone” that transmits clues that takes you to certain places within UK.  Within the scavenger hunt, things “come to life” which really makes it worth the time.


Have lunch in the World Showcase: It was about 2 pm and we were just entering the World Showcase.  So instead of waiting in a very long line in the bakery in France, we opted to try Chefs de France.  We were sat immediately as it wasn’t prime mealtime.  We ended up having the best time learning all about France from our waiter, trying new foods and getting a lesson in French dessert making.  Our experience was so much more than just a meal – it was one of the most memorable of our trip!


Take advantage of KidCot:  Each country within the World Showcase features a Kidcot booth. Designed to provide an activity for your child,  it gives parents an opportunity to rest in a shaded area.  I encourage you to take the time to talk to the cast members & ask them questions about their country. We tried to get our name written in each language we encountered one year! Kidcot is so much more than just getting a stamp!


See the Trains in Germany: There is a charming miniature train within Germany in the World Showcase.  Kids love to watch them go round and round.

Make your own roller coaster ride at Sum of All Thrills: Located in Innovations, you can design your own roller coaster ride, then sit in a simulator (this cool arm) and experience it.  My kids LOVED each designing one and getting to try each of them.


Catch a World Showcase Street Performance: Try to catch a few street performances within the different countries while in the World Showcase.  We have never been disappointed in the free entertainment.  This visit, we were fascinated with this chair-balancing acrobatics in France!


Try Beverly at Club Cool: For a cool treat, head to Club Cool to taste various Coca-Cola products that are popular around the world.  We always love the pineapple fanta but definitely NOT the Beverly!


Watch the Water Show:  You don;t have to wait for IllumiNations each evening to see a great show! The big fountain outside of Innovations East & West puts on an incredible water show.  We grabbed a snack from the kiosk within the plaza and took a break while watching the show.

Listen to some Great Music in the World Showcase: Each country within the World Showcase has great bands – look at the schedule, grab a snack from that country and enjoy! Our favorites are Off Kilter in Canada and the British Invasion in UK.


Dine with the Princesses in Norway: One year, we couldn’t get into a Princess meal at Cinderella’s Castle, so we opted for the dining experience at Askershus Royal Banquet Hall in Norway.  It ended up being such a great experience for both my kids.  We had ample time with all the princesses and were able to sample Norwegian food.

There is so much to do at EPCOT, I haven’t even scratched the surface with these 10 experiences.  I really encourage you to take your time, and enjoy what you can get to.  If you have the time for it, you could go for more than one day and not see the same things.  In doing a bit of research for this article, I even found more things we haven’t seen yet.  Guess it’s time for another trip!

Other Disney Parks Articles you may enjoy:

Tips on a Multi-generational Disney Trip
5 Things to Know about the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
Melia Orlando Suite Hotel
5 Fun Shopping Experiences at Disneyland
Best Tips to Ride California Adventure's Radiator Springs Racers
Hyatt Regency Orange County ~ Anaheim, CA
A Visit from Tinkerbell at Disney World
Disney Character Dining Invitation
Best Disney Autograph Book
The Most Magical Christmastime Place: Disney World

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

2014 Round Rock Chalk Walk & Arts Festival ~ October 3 & 4, 2014

One of our favorite fall events in the Central Texas area is the Round Rock Chalk Walk and Arts Festival.  It's a fun weekend of amazing art that is created right in front of your eyes.  This year's festival will be held in a new location in downtown Round Rock – Centennial Park – on October 3 and 4.

Imagine getting to show your children how calk art can be created - it's as if you were strolling down a plaza in Italy. The family-friendly event is FREE and open to the public, and will feature art activities for all ages, including musical performances on multiple stages, food vendors, area businesses, and artists. But the best part of the whole event is to see professional fine artists create their works on the streets of downtown Round Rock. And you can even have the chance to make your own chalk art -  buy a square of asphalt for the weekend as an individual, family or just for your kids.  It's fun to see the creativity that comes from it.


On Friday night, the festival will present an evening of “Blues, Brews and BBQ,” with barbeque and live music from Texas great John Blondell (who has performed with the likes of Buddy Guy, Carlos Santana, Willie Nelson and countless others) on the main stage. We like to go on friday night to see the artists starting their artwork along the streets of the festival grounds. It's really cool to see it come to life and talk with the artists.


On Saturday, The Atlantics and The Biscuit Brothers will be the featured artists on the main stage. The day’s festivities will include chalk artists, local musicians on three stages, visual artists, crafters, food trucks, jugglers, pony rides, a petting zoo, a train, street performers, and special activity areas for children and families. There will also be a performance by Round Rock Ballet Folklorico and activities inside of the Allen R. Baca Center for Senior and Community Activities.


We are excited to see a special event added this year - the first annual donut-eating contest, pitting the Round Rock Police Department against the Round Rock Fire Department, with donuts provided by Round Rock Donuts.


You can buy a piece of the art at the Saturday Art Auction, to which selected artists, school art programs, teachers, individuals and businesses will submit a work of chalk art (created during the festival on ampersand boards) to be auctioned off for art program funding. Each item will judged and has a chance to win a cash award.  Festival attendees are invited to start placing their bids at 6:00 PM on Saturday.



Bring the whole family for a fun day of art in Downtown Round Rock!

5th Annual Chalk Walk & Arts Festival in downtown Round Rock
Friday, October 3, 2014 - 5:00 – 9:00 PM 
Saturday, October 4, 2014 - 10:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Centennial Plaza, 301 W. Bagdad, Round Rock

25 Fun Things to do in Austin this Fall ~ 2014


I love when fall comes to Central Texas there are so many fun things there are to do here in Austin!!

Here are 25 Things to Do in Central Texas this Fall (2014)

UT Football Game - September 6 - November 27 - UT football is great fun for the whole family - even if you just go down to tailgate and don't even go into the game, it's great fun. Here's 10 Tips to going to a game with kids.


The King & I at ZACH Theatre - September 17 - October 19 - I love the musicals ZACH Theatre brings to Austin, and the King & I will be a great show!  Click here for tickets.

Austin Museum Day September 21 - The Austin Museum Partnership hosts a day of free admission to over 40 participating institutions.  Check out the details here.

Barton Hills Farm - Saturdays & Sundays September 27 - November 9 We love Barton Hill Farms - this amazing farm has a HUGE corn maze (Horns Themed this year), lawn games, food, and live music.

A Day Out with Thomas September 27 & 28 -  Everyone's favorite train is coming to Burnet for the weekend.  Head on out to catch a ride....your little one will love it! Here's our experience.

Old Pecan Street Festival - September 27 & 28 - Head on out to the largest arts & crafts festival in Central Texas.  Free admission, festival includes vendors, music, food, & fun.

Spend an evening out in Walburg - Weekends - Have some schnitzel with your Spaten by celebrating Oktoberfest at Walburg's gorgeous Biergarten.  They have some pretty great music too.

Round Rock Chalk Walk - October 3 & 4 - The streets of downtown Round Rock are turned into an Italian street painting festival where everyone is encouraged to create a chalk drawing for free.  Other activities, live music and food are offered at this annual event as well.

Oktoberfest in Fredricksburg - October 3 & 4- Chicken Dance down Main Street at Oktoberfest - Tons of family activities and lots of great food.

Austin City Limits - October 3-5, 10-12 - ACL is 2 weekends full of music and there's plenty to do with the whole family.  I have friends that take their kids each year!

Beauty & the Beast - October 7-12 - Bass Performance Hall presents this Broadway musical - fun for all ages - you can probably sing along!

LIBERTY! EQUALITY! AND FIREWORKS! - October 11 - October 19 - The Pollyanna Theatre Company presents this theatrical exploration of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s. Best for students grades 3 – 6 and their families.

Social City Dash - October 18 - We can't wait to try this new race around town using social media clues - great for families too!

Sweetberry Farm - Daily except Wednesdays - One of our favorite Central Texas Farms, Sweetberry features pumpkins, corn mazes, farm animals, rides, flower-picking, and more.

Boo at the Zoo - October 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, & 25 - The Austin Zoo's annual fundraiser features a unique way to see the animals - at night.  They also have a haunted train ride that is way fun!

Austin Celtic Festival - October 18 & 19- Join this 19th annual festival for food, dance, sports, music and more!

Shaping Sound at Long Center October 18 - This is some hard core dancing coming to Austin - check out the video here to see this amazing group.  Any dancers in your family would love this.

rePlay Symphony of Heroes at Long Center October 18 - Your heroes come to life with this amazing symphony concert.  See the heroes battle on the screen as you hear the music come to life.

UT Star Parties Wednesdays  - Every Wednesday night while UT is in session the astronomy department sponsors free public star parties on the top roof of Robert Lee Moore Hall. Fridays & Saturdays Every Friday and Saturday while UT is in session the Department of Astronomy hosts free viewing on the Painter Hall Telescope.

Texas Book Festival - October 25 & 26 A FREE family fun event featuring literary sessions, book signings, music, crafts, and more on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol. And don't miss the Teen Texas Book Festival held the weekend before - October 18.

Dia de los Muertos October 25- The Austin Day of the Dead Festival benefits Easter Seals of Central Texas.

Manor Ghost Town Daily - Right on the edge of Manor sits a complete "Ghost Town" for you to explore. Check out their calendar of events for movies, concerts, dinner, and more.

New Braunfels' WurstFest - November 7 - 16 - Enjoy the best sausage in Texas at this year's WurstFest in New Braunfels, TX Fun for all ages!

WWII Living History Reenactments - October 11 & 12November 8 & 9 - The Pacific War Museum in Fredricksburg hosts actual Pacific War combat reenactments.  They are fantastic and a great way to spend Veteran's Day.

Walking with Dinosaurs - November 14-16 - If you have a dinosaur fan in the house (and even if you don't), you are not going to want to miss this cool experience at the Cedar Park Center!

Thundercloud Sub's Turkey Trot - November 27 - Benefitting the Caritas of Austin, what better way to burn off that turkey and spend time with family than a fun run?? Click here to register.

Enjoy Austin in the Fall! - Daily - Now that the weather has cooled down a bit, take advantage of all the great outdoor fun we have - Here's a few ideas to get you started:
Happy Fall Y'all!