Why Austin Music Festivals Are Better Than Any Other

By Auston Matta,

Within the past decade, Austin has developed into a cultural hotspot attracting attention across the US and even the world. Today it is a both a hip city to live in along with a cool place to visit. The mantra of Keep Austin Weird is reflected in everything, including Austin’s music festivals. People come from all over the country and around the world to attend some of the best festivals of their kind, including these fun events.

Austin City Limits


Austin City Limits
Photo by Ryan Phillips CC BY
Austin City Limits is an annual music festival that takes place each October in Zilker Park. Located just south of downtown, this area is one of the best green spaces in Austin hosting artists from around the world during this six-day event. Musical performances take place throughout the park and you can find some of Austin’s best restaurants and food trucks on-site to satisfy your appetite.

South By Southwest


SXSW
Photo by Paul Hudsen CC BY

Austin has a diverse population, thanks in large part to the local university and the politicians who live and work there. This means that the city has a lot to offer in terms of nightlife, cultural spots, and history. The music scene developed from the background of its Mexican and German roots mixing in with folk, jazz, blues, rock, and country music styles. Since 1987, the South by Southwest conference brought the Austin music scene to center stage, finally linking its once isolated position with the rest of the international artist community. Eventually this successful music conference expanded into film and technology and now encompasses these as the three major aspects of this must attend 9-day event.


The Pecan Street Festival


Festival Scene in Austin Texas - The Pecan Street Festival
Photo by Tim Patterson
Austin’s Pecan Street Festival is not held once but twice each year, first in May and then again in September. This free two-day festival lasts is focused on handcrafted creations from local and national artists alike. More than just a crafts festival, it also offers musical acts from over 60 performers and food from more than 30 different merchants. This event is also family-friendly with fun activities for kids like the petting zoo, face painting and a variety of performers.

Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival


Festival Scene in Austin Texas - Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival
2014 marks the 24th year of the Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival, which also happens to be the largest in the world. The event also serves as an opportunity to raise funds for the Capital Area Food Bank of Texas, which provides meals around Austin. The event is free though there’s a suggested donation of three nonperishable food items or $5 for the fundraiser. The hot ticket is the hot sauce competition for individuals, restaurants, and commercial bottlers as well as a tasting tent with free samples. What once was a small hot sauce contest is now one of the best annual events in the state capital.
What festivals have you been to or would like to attend in Austin?
*Feature photo by Todd Dominey CC BY