SXSW 2017

Mar 13

As has become a tradition, we have a crazy good bunch of stuff coming up for families in Austin during South by Southwest this year.  Check it out, but note that everything is subject to change:

Family Music Meltdown – Wednesday 3/15 3-6:30

Pan Am Park, 2100 E. 3rd Street

Groundwork Music Orchestra

Red Yarn

The Deedle Deedle Dees

Ralph’s World

Riders Against the Storm


El Tule


Willie Is For Everyone – Friday 3/17 10-2:30

Austin Scottish Rite Theater, 207 W. 18th St.

Tickets available at the door; advance tickets sold out.  $3 adults, $1 kids, benefiting the theater.

Little Miss Ann

Barton Hills Choir + Ray Benson

Ralph’s World

Red Yarn

Que Pastas

Jon Langford


Beth Chrisman

Suzanna Choffel

Sugar Free Allstars

Rockaroni & Cheese

Lucky Diaz

The Deedle Deedle Dees


Rock + Read – Saturday 3/18 2:00-5:30

The Domain – Amy Donovan Plaza (by the iPic Theater)

Que Pastas

Riders Against the Storm

Lucky Diaz 

The Deedle Deedle Dees

Little Miss Ann

Joe McDermott

Sugar Free Allstars (IN) 


KUTX Live at the Four Seasons

Four Seasons Austin, 98 San Jacinto Blvd., Austin

$10 admission, benefits the Seton Shivers Cancer Center, includes a breakfast taco, a granola bar, and all the darn coffee you want

Main stage acts are listed here and include (on various days) Real Estate, Temples, Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears, Spoon, The Black Angels, and so many more.

Wednesday 3/15

8:30 Ralph’s World

9:30 Red Yarn


Thursday 3/16

8:30 The Que Pastas

9:30 Joe McDermott


Friday 3/17

8:30 Lucky Diaz

9:30 The Deedle Deedle Dees


Saturday 3/18

9:30 Little Miss Ann

10:30 Sugar Free Allstars

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Spare the Rock Live at the Academy of Music

Mar 13

Gosh, we had fun at the live recording of the show at the Academy of Music a few weeks ago.  We’ll be airing it over the next few weeks (starting on the 3/18-19 weekend), but you can listen to the whole darn thing here if you want.  It’s long!

Note: if you can’t see a “play” button, click to the left of the “00:00” below — it’ll work, really.

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HOLY SMOKES what a couple of months we have ahead of us

Feb 02

We’ve got a ton of stuff coming up.

  • Sunday, February 19Spare the Rock Live at the Academy of Music, part of Four Sundays in February!  We’re super excited to return to our original home of Northampton, Massachusetts, to do record an episode of the show live.  We’ll have Dan Zanes, Lloyd H. Miller of the Deedle Deedle Dees, The Stuntmen, Lord Russ, Abbie Morin, Katie Ha Ha Ha, Henning Ohlenbusch doing songs of Turkey Anders, Calvin the Really Big Puppet, a Yo Yo champion, the SHOW Circus Kids, and much more.  We’ll be celebrating the legacy of David Bowie, LGBTQ youth, and more.  Details and tickets at
  • Wednesday, March 15 through Saturday, March 18 – we’ll have a Spare the Rock Stage at KUTX Live at the Four Seasons…some amazing acts on our stage and on the main stage; we’ll announce more soon.
  • Wednesday, March 15 (rain date March 16) Family Music Meltdown at Pan Am Park, Austin, Texas (during SXSW).  We’ll have sets from Red Yarn, The Deedle Deedle Dees, Ralph’s World, Riders Against the Storm, Strumero, and El Tule…and more!  Free!
  • Friday, March 17Willie Is For Everyone at Scottish Rite Theater.  The lineup for this Willie Nelson tribute is still getting set, but it’ll include Little Miss Ann, the Barton Hills Choir with very special guest Ray Benson, Ralph’s World, Red Yarn, The Que Pastas, Beth Chrisman, Suzanna Choffel, Sugar Free Allstars, Rockaroni & Cheese, Lucky Diaz, and the Deedle Deedle Dees….and more TBA.  Proceeds to benefit the Scottish Rite Theater’s renovations.
  • Saturday, March 18 – Rock & Read at the Domain.  Finalizing the lineup for this too, but it’ll include Riders Against the Storm, Lucky Diaz, the Deedle Deedle Dees, Little Miss Ann, and Sugar Free Allstars.  Free!
  • Saturday, March 25 – The River’s Family Music Meltdown & Book Bash at Smith Voke in Northampton, Massachusetts.  What a lineup, both for authors and music.  Jeff Kinney, Mister G, Expandable Brass Band, Stacey Peasley Band, Tom Knight, The Deedle Deedle Dees, Keith Munslow, and much more.  Details at!  Free!
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How to have fun this summer in easy steps.

May 30

We are super excited to be partnering up with as part of the Austin Summer Fun Checklist.  Here’s how to have fun this summer — most importantly, come dance with Koo Koo Kanga Roo this saturday!

1. Print the 2016 Austin Summer Fun Checklist for Kids or pick up a copy of Austin Family Magazine and tear out the Checklist.


Come to the Summer Fun Launch Party on June 4th, from 9 am to noon, at Whole Foods Market Lamar to pick up a copy of the checklist. Koo Koo Kanga Roo will perform at 10am and there will be free breakfast tacos from Hat Creek Burger Co., free KIND Bars and Chameleon Cold Brew Coffee, activities and prizes! Tickets are just $5 for adults, free for kids with all proceeds benefiting Whole Kids Foundation.

_Summer Fun Checklist_2016_FINAL

2. Pick an activity or two or three to do.

3. Do activity.

4. Check it off the list.

5. Once you’ve done at least three activities on the checklist, you can earn prizes for even more Summer Fun!

6. Upload photos of you and your kids doing activities on the Summer Fun Checklist for a chance to win prizes including a two-night stay at Omni Barton Creek, Chaparral Ice Skating Passes, free museum admission to the Bullock Museum, season passes to Hawaiian Falls, Terra Toys gift certificates, and free admission to the Hill Country Science Mill. Use #AustinSummerFun as the hashtag. Read more details about the weekly prize giveaways here.

We’ve mapped out all of the details for the activities on the 2016 Summer Fun Checklist for Kids in the 2016 Summer Fun Guide. Read about the different activities and events, including details on places to visit on your day trips, event dates to save on your calendar.

Check back here all summer long for more in-depth articles about our 2016 sponsors and activities.

Anytime Fun Includes:

  • Slide Down a Water Slide
  • Dig in the Sand
  • Take a Break from the Hear at Chaparral Ice
  • Find Art in Public Places
  • Watch the Bats Emerge at Dusk
  • Play a New Board Game
  • Rock Climb
  • Listen to Live Music
  • Star Gaze
  • Jump on a Trampoline at Springfree Trampoline
  • Take a Hike or Ride a Bike
  • Drink a Milkshake
  • Explore Science at the Hill Country Science Mill
  • Go Rollerskating or Skateboarding
  • Ride a Train
  • Go Bowling
  • Play Indoors at Catch Air
  • Visit a Farmer’s Market
  • Dive Into a Swimming Pool
  • Romp in a Splash Pad
  • Catch a Flick
  • Take a Picture in Front of a Mural
  • Kayak/Canoe/Paddle on your Favorite Waterway
  • Go Caving
  • Play Putt-Putt Golf
  • Sip a Smoothie
  • Play at a Park
  • Visit an Austin Museum

Or you can go to a few awesome Austin events this summer including:

  • Second Saturdays Are for Families at The Contemporary Austin
  • Mr. Will at Whole Foods Market, Bee Cave
  • Unplugged at the Grove
  • Children’s Day Art Park
  • Blues on the Green
  • Shrek the Musical at Zilker Hillside Theater
  • Live Music Sundays at Whole Foods Market, Domain
  • Summer Free Family Film Series at the Bullock Museum
  • Summer Fun Launch party at Whole Foods Market, Lamar
  • Pollyanna Theatre’s Cowboy in the Kitchen
  • Taste North Austin at The Domain
  • Family Eldercare’s Summer Fan Drive
  • Juneteenth Celebration
  • Pollyanna Theatre’s Trouble on the Double
  • 4th of July Fireworks
  • Back to School Bash at Creative Action
  • Austin Summer Musical’s Big Bad Musical

How about a day trip to explore other places that are still close to home?

  • Johnson City
  • Waco
  • Wimberley
  • San Marcos
  • New Braunfels
  • Fredericksburg
  • LaGrange
  • Cedar Creek
  • Texas State Parks Close to Austin
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All The Children Boogie: The Videos

Mar 21

I hope to gather the energy to do a full SXSW wrap-up post soon, because it was seriously one of the most amazing musical weeks I’ve had, but I wanted to quick get the videos from our Bowie tribute, presented with the Scottish Rite Theater and, up soon.  Here’s the whole playlist, and you really should watch it all because the performances were so very wonderful:


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Family Music Meltdown during SXSW — All the Details

Feb 28

Win a VIP bag for your family at the 3rd Annual Family Music Meltdown happening at Pan Am Park on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 from 3-7 pm.


This very special annual music event is a favorite with Austin families! Now in its third year, Family Music Meltdown won’t disappoint with an amazing lineup, including TWO Latin Grammy winners (Mister G and Lucky Diaz) along with the 2015 Austin Chronicle Musician of the Year, Gina Chavez!Advertisement

Activities include:

  • Hands-on science activities with the Thinkery
  • Trampolines courtesy of Springfree Trampoline
  • Austin Humane Society will be doing crafts with the kids (and they’ll be bringing some dogs who are adoptable)
  • Craft stations

Food and drinks will be available from Emoji’s Grilled Cheese Rosarito’s Food Truck and Uncle Louie G’s. Blankets, picnics, and lawn chairs are welcome!

What: Family Music Meltdown

When: Wednesday, March 16, from 3 – 7 pm

Where: Pan Am Park’s Hillside Theater, 2100 E. Third Street, Austin

Cost: FREE!

Register to win a VIP bag stocked with swag and snacks!

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