People love bats, but it seems only in baseball or Gotham City. The real deal kinda freaks people out.
But it shouldn’t. Bats are actually one of the great critters on this planet. Without them, the environment and its many ecosystems would suffer greatly, and you and I would be awash in bugs. Bats provide pollination and seeding and are so vital to some ecosystems that the absence of bats in some parts of the world would cause entire plant species to die out. And bat guano is such a powerful fertilizer that many crops in many areas of the world would dry up if bats were not around.
Less freaked out? Good. Now you can check out the best place to bat-watch in Austin. The Congress Avenue Bridge, right downtown, is home to the largest urban bat…
Whether you’re app-happy or suffer from app-fatigue, there are some apps you just gotta have. The best apps are those that answer the daunting question: What do you want to do tonight?
Well, if you want some good answers on what to do in and around the capital area, check out these great mobile apps:
1. Happy Hours
Ducking out of work a little early? We won’t tell your bosses, but we can’t promise they won’t find you at the same happy hour they’re going to. Happy Hours, gives an exhaustive list of food and drink specials going on in most large U.S. cities, and that definitely includes Austin. Click through for a photo of the bar or restaurant and get details about the menu, hours, specials, and what people have to say. Vote up your favorite spots…
Austin is mostly famous for its youth-centered nightlife and college-age shenanigans. But there is a quieter, more contemplative, more family-oriented side of Austin, and one of the best examples of it is the Umlauf Sculpture Garden.
The garden is named for the great Austin-area sculptor and art teacher Charles Umlauf, who taught At UT-Austin for 40 years and in 1985 donated his home and grounds for use as a sculpture garden and repository. Being a former home, the Umlauf is big on promoting art and sculpture to families and children. The garden features Family Days, free and open to all, with hands-on programs designed for those with children ages four to ten. There are stories, garden yoga, demonstrations, and live music.
But the Umlauf offers…
Let’s just all acknowledge that being in Texas gives one a hankerin’ for really good barbecue. Fortunately, it also gives one access to really good barbecue. In fact, it may be harder to choose which BBQ joint to pick from the bevy of low-lying fruit.
Well, don’t say we’re not here to help. Check out a few of these top-notch BBQ places in the Austin area.
1. Franklin Barbecue
There is little that people agree on when it comes to any best-list rankings, but few who know Austin barbecue would not put Franklin Barbecue in the top spot. Everything, absolutely everything, from Aaron Franklin’s kitchen is the stuff only hyperbole could even try to make sense of. It’s so good that people with many other things to do spend as much as five hours in line…
Coffee. That’s usually all you have to say if you want to hear anyone say “Uh, yes, please.”
But where to get a great cup in a great atmosphere? Well, coffee joints are not just a 90s holdover, they’re still dynamite places to get in touch with your inner caffeine addict and get a mini-vacation without going too far away.
Just because a café is a chain, it doesn’t mean it’s not terrific. Between the vaunted Espresso Medici cappuccino and the precision with which the baristas make every cup ‒‒ seriously, they run every cup through a French press ‒‒ you’d have a hard time finding a mediocre drink here. Try a cup with a vegan energy bar, made by fellow Austin awesomeness purveyor, Bearded Brothers.
Over in East Austin,…
Austin is more than the capital of Texas, it’s the capital of the Texas craft beer world, which is (and we’re not just being biased here) cranking out some of the absolute best small-batch beers in the history of American beverages. And, Austin may be the best place in Texas to go for a pint, whether it’s brewed here or not. Here are some of the best places for a great beer in Austin, no matter what your taste.
1. Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden
On Rainey Street is the perpetually sunny amber glow of more than 100 on-tap beers, surrounded by roomy seating and some kind of entertainment on an almost-daily basis. You can’t not find a brew you like here, and if you’re into delicious cured meats, try their handmade game sausages. Oh yes.
When a hankering for a great beer (and maybe a burger, too) sets in, there’s little that can stop it. So why not indulge? Here are some of the best places for a great beer in Houston, no matter what your taste.
Kind of a newbie on the Houston beer scene, Underdogs boasts two things above all others: The passion of the two ex-bartenders who own it (so they know what you like) and the cheapest craft pints in the entire city. Their bottled brews are also pretty wide-ranging, including a few rare labels that will keep your taste buds on their toes.
Don’t let the comparatively short list of taps fool you. Down House is about quality over quantity, and you can be assured that the handful of taps contain only the best (usually…
There’s no night out quite like one with live music, and there’s no hotter place to catch a band than Austin. Check out these sound environments for the best audio pleasure Austin can bring you.
The Elephant Room
So maybe you don’t think “jazz” when you think about Austin, but you should. And when you do, think of it at the Elephant Room, a cozy basement of a club with brick walls, low ceilings, and perfect seating.
The White Horse
Prefer tattoos and rockabilly to jazz? You know Austin has you covered. The White Horse is unapologetically dark and unadorned, apart from the glowing ruby-colored stage. This is the hub of Austin’s country music scene, and any band that plays to what would consider itself a honky-tonk crowd. White Horse…
We’ve all heard the ol’ chestnut that failing to plan is planning to fail. Well, even if that’s annoying to hear for the umpteenth time, it’s true. Without a direction, without a set of goals to aim for, you’re going to wander through your business trying to figure out what to do next.
Get out a pen and notebook, open a note on your phone, send yourself an email, or fingerpaint it on the wall of your home office, just make sure you write down your goals. Goals you tell yourself about have a way of sliding off into the ether unless they are given concrete form. Write them down and, preferably,
copy what you write. And keep your goals list in a spot where you’ll see them. Don’t put it in your “miscellaneous” folder and never look in…