Zilker Park’s 100th Anniversary Celebration Kicks Off With Free Day on April 9

–Proclamation Reading to Take Place During Zilker’s Caretaker Cottage Grand Opening at 9AM – 

In celebration of Zilker Park’s 100th anniversary, Austin Parks Foundation, along with a collaborative group of organizations that operate within the park, is excited to announce the first ever Free Day taking place on Sunday, April 9.

During this special Free Day celebration, Austinites and visitors will enjoy the park activities we know and love such as the Zilker Zephyr and Barton Springs Pool at no cost as well as several one-time-only activities, including special programming at Austin Nature and Science Center. To learn more about the free amenities and special events happening on Free Day, visitwww.zilker100.org/free.

Additionally, an interactive sculpture in honor of the centennial anniversary will debut. The sculpture, consisting of two zeros, will allow patrons of Zilker Park to pose as the number one, making for a fun photo opportunity. The sculpture will live by Rock Island at Zilker Park and will rotate around the park for special events.

Several restaurants on Barton Springs Road will take part in the special celebration by donating a percentage of the day’s sales to the Zilker 100 campaign, helping to fund future improvements in the park. Participating restaurants include JuiceLand, Sno-Beach, SquareRut Kava bar, and Juliet. Trudy’s trailer will also be participating by giving out free waters per purchase for guests to take along as they enjoy Free Day activities.

The Zilker 100 celebration will begin with a proclamation reading by Austin City Council during the Caretaker’s Cottage grand opening at 9 a.m. on Sunday, April 9, and Free Day activities will start as early as 5 a.m., when Barton Springs Pool opens, and vary throughout the day. The community is invited to celebrate this special anniversary and explore all Zilker Park has to offer by enjoying Free Day and posing with the Zilker 100 sculpture. Street teams will surprise park patrons throughout the day with Zilker 100 swag such as shirts, hats, and more.

Sunday, April 9

Zilker 100 proclamation reading by Austin City Council to take place at 9 a.m.

Hours vary for each activity

Throughout Zilker Park

Zilker 100 proclamation reading to take place at Caretaker’s Cottage

To see the full list of free amenities and special events happening on Free Day, visit www.zilker100.org/free.

 

Partners in the Zilker 100 Anniversary celebration include: Austin Parks Foundation, Austin Sunshine Camp, Barton Springs Conservancy, City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department, Hill Country Conservancy, Save Our Springs Alliance, The Trail Foundation, Trail of Lights, Umlauf Sculpture Garden and Museum, Zilker Botanical Garden Conservancy, ABC Kite Fest, and Zilker Theater Productions.

Trail of Lights Foundation Announces Ticket Sales for 2015 Event

The Trail of Lights Foundation announced on Wednesday that tickets are now available for purchase for the 2015 Trail of Lights. To help visitors plan their trip to the Trail of Lights and ensure an enjoyable holiday experience, the Trail of Lights Foundation suggests purchasing weekend gate tickets, parking tickets, shuttle passes or ZiP Fast Passes in advance of visiting the Trail.

“We are excited to kick off this year’s Trail of Lights celebration by inviting visitors to plan their trip in advance,” said Mario Espinoza, board president of the Trail of Lights Foundation. “The event is still free to attend during the first week, and the small gate fee charged during the latter half of the celebration will ensure that the event’s production can continue to thrive in coming years. We are very appreciative of the continued support from our community participants, as well as the visitors during the holiday’s festivities.”

While tickets are required to enter the Trail of Lights from Dec. 16-22 for those 12 and older, admission from Dec. 8-15 is free. All tickets are available for purchase online at www.AustinTrailofLights.org through Ticketbud. Gate tickets and shuttle passes will also be available for purchase at local H-E-B locations beginning Nov. 4. Gate tickets will also be available to purchase onsite at the Trail of Lights.

Gate Admission Dec. 16-22

  • $3 for ages 12 and older
  • Available for purchase online at www.AustinTrailofLights.org, at Austin-area H-E-B locations beginning Nov. 4, and onsite at the Trail of Lights
  • Parking must be purchased separately
  • Those who purchase a weekend shuttle pass do not need to purchase a weekend gate admission

Parking Pass

 Shuttle Pass

  • $5 per person
  • Shuttle passes also provide gate access on December 16 – 22.
  • Available for purchase online at www.AustinTrailofLights.org and at Austin-area H-E-B locations beginning Nov. 4
  • Shuttles begin running at 5:30 p.m. from each pickup location
  • A limited number of tickets will be available each night depending on capacity, so space is not guaranteed upon late arrival
  • Lap children ride free
  • Last shuttle pickup from designated parking locations is at 8:30 p.m pending capacity
  • The last shuttle leaves Zilker Park at 10:30 p.m. to take visitors back to parking locations
  • Shuttle pickup locations may be found online at www.AustinTrailofLights.org

ZiP Fast Pass

  • $15 per person for ages 6 and over
  • Available for purchase online only at www.AustinTrailofLights.org
  • Must be purchased in advance for a specific night
  • Guarantees front-of-line event access via a ZiP gate that opens 45 minutes early at 6:00 p.m. and access to the ZiP Lounge for food, drinks, heated bathrooms, seating and heaters
  • On nights a gate ticket is required for entry, a ZiP ticket serves as entry ticket

Platinum Passes

  • Platinum packages provide back-gate valet parking, early back-gate entry at 6:00 pm, drink tickets, and Ferris wheel or carousel rides
  • Four pack: $225
  • Two pack: $150
  • Single: $75

For more information on schedules and to stay updated with the latest news, including the 15-day activity and entertainment lineup, location of shuttles, and online sale of parking tickets, ZiP passes and Platinum passes, sign up for the Trail of Lights newsletter at AustinTrailofLights.org, follow the @ATXLights Twitter feed or like the Facebook page at facebook.com/AustinTrailofLights.

Austin-based Riverside Homes Revealed as Builder of HGTV Smart Home 2015

New community in Zilker Park neighborhood to be the new home of one fortunate HGTV winner

One very fortunate winner will become the owner of the HGTV® Smart Home 2015, built by Scott Turner, Austin-based founder of Riverside Homes.

Front Yard (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  With clean modern lines, drought-tolerant plants and a gorgeous pecan tree, this front yard is overflowing with curb appeal.

Front Yard (Photography courtesy of HGTV). With clean modern lines, drought-tolerant plants and a gorgeous pecan tree, this front yard is overflowing with curb appeal.

The modern Austin farmhouse is in keeping with the city’s “Imagine Austin” development plan and the McMansion ordinance that limits the size and configuration of new homes in central Austin. The HGTV Smart Home is the first of a collection of six custom homes on almost an acre with a common courtyard in between.

Master Bedroom (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  With soaring ceilings, high-tech skylights and a fabulous walk-in closet, this cozy master bedroom has all the best amenities.

Master Bedroom (Photography courtesy of HGTV). With soaring ceilings, high-tech skylights and a fabulous walk-in closet, this cozy master bedroom has all the best amenities.

“The partnership with HGTV really came together last summer when Jack Thomasson, HGTV Smart Home 2015 house planner, was in Austin, searching for the perfect site and local builder for the 2015 Austin-based home,” said Turner.

“When we looked for this year’s HGTV Smart Home location, Austin was at the top of our list. You can’t find a city with a better combination of emerging technologies, exciting nightlife, great food and a welcoming culture that attracts more and more people each year,” said Thomasson. “Building this new home in a thriving neighborhood close to downtown Austin put it in the center of everything ‘smart’ that the city has to offer.”

Kitchen (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  With a functional triangle layout, beautiful modern cabinetry and some luxurious add-ons, this neutral kitchen is one of the best rooms in the house.

Kitchen (Photography courtesy of HGTV). With a functional triangle layout, beautiful modern cabinetry and some luxurious add-ons, this neutral kitchen is one of the best rooms in the house.

“Turner brought the best of both worlds – a perfectly appointed home site in the historic Zilker Park neighborhood and a contemporary green builder acumen that fit the HGTV style profile while remaining distinctly Austin,” said Thomasson.

Located in Austin’s historic Zilker Park neighborhood, the HGTV Smart Home 2015 is a two-level, approximately 2,300-square-foot “modern Austin farmhouse” designed with a transitional urban feel. This new home in South Austin’s famous 78704 zip code by Turner and his team at Riverside Homes features open living and kitchen spaces surrounded by large, bright windows outfitted with smart shades that can reduce glare on demand. This area makes for great entertaining and shares the balance of the main floor with a bedroom and a universal design bath.

Loft (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  A carpeted media loft with a 80-inch television, surround sound and plush sectional seating lends the ultimate movie night experience.

Loft (Photography courtesy of HGTV). A carpeted media loft with a 80-inch television, surround sound and plush sectional seating lends the ultimate movie night experience.

The second floor features a vaulted media loft that serves as a second living area, flanked on opposite ends by the master bedroom and a third bedroom, both with an en suite bath. Vaulted ceilings, well-placed windows and solar-powered skylights make the space feel light and airy. This part of the home also boasts smart features like the 85” ultra-high definition, 4K big screen TV, remote controlled LED lighting and even a bathroom window with glass that turns opaque with the touch of a button.

Living Room (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  As beautiful as it is practical, this stylish living room can also double as a guest room in a house that is sure to have plenty of visitors.

Living Room (Photography courtesy of HGTV). As beautiful as it is practical, this stylish living room can also double as a guest room in a house that is sure to have plenty of visitors.

Smooth Dining Room to Living Room Transition (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  Open to both the kitchen, entryway and living room, the dining room offers comfortable seating and a charming, farmhouse-style table.

Smooth Dining Room to Living Room Transition (Photography courtesy of HGTV). Open to both the kitchen, entryway and living room, the dining room offers comfortable seating and a charming, farmhouse-style table.

The HGTV Smart Home 2015 has multiple outdoor living areas, including a screened-in porch and a pergola-shaded dining area with barbeque grill connected to the home by large sliding doors that can remain open much of the year, adding extra living space to the open floor plan. All of the homes in the community were designed to preserve the many mature, protected trees on site, including the large pecan tree providing a canopy of shade over the HGTV Smart Home 2015.

Guest Bathroom (Photography courtesy of HGTV).  A universal design bathroom caters to the first floor, offering smart storage and a spa-inspired experience.

Guest Bathroom (Photography courtesy of HGTV). A universal design bathroom caters to the first floor, offering smart storage and a spa-inspired experience.

How to enter for a chance to win the HGTV Smart Home 2015 or build another with Riverside Homes:

During the giveaway period for the HGTV Smart Home 2015, which began April 15 and runs through June 2, 2015 at 5 p.m. ET, eligible viewers can enter twice per day on HGTV.com and can sign up for daily email reminders. HGTV Facebook and Twitter fans (#HGTVSmart) can check in for ongoing updates and new details. Check out hgtv.com/smart for official rules.

The HGTV Smart Home 2015 Grand Prize winner will receive the home, a 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class, $100,000 provided by national mortgage lender Quicken Loans, as well as all furnishings, tech appliances, and artwork throughout the home.

For those who don’t win the home, but would like something similar in architecture, location and style, Riverside Homes has two homes available in the community and more nearby at Copeland Court, a development of 18 homes in the same Zilker neighborhood.

10 Quintessentially Austin Things To Do This Summer That Are Totally Free

Beautiful Austin Skyline

As we celebrate All Things Summer with our current Issue of InFluential Magazine, we’re pleased others are thrilled about summer as well.

Arden Ward has published an awesome list in Culture Map that speaks to all of the free, yes you read it correctly, free things to do which are quintessentially Austin.  From a sunset atop Mount Bonnell to listening to music at Zilker Park, the choices are varied and pretty kewl.

Read Arden’s list of 10 Quintessentially Austin Things To Do This Summer That Are Totally Free and add a little spice to your summer.

The Austin City Limits Festival 2013 Lineup is Announced

We’re thrilled to help put an end to the guessing game.  The official Austin City Limits Festival 2013 lineup was announced early Tuesday morning. 

Depeche Mode, The Cure, Muse — this year’s expanded Austin City Limits Festival will feature something of a European invasion with five of eight headliners at least partially coming from across the Atlantic Ocean. 

Also among the list of headlining performers are Atoms For Peace, Lionel Richie (yes, we said Lionel Ritchie) and Wilco.  Audiences will take in Vampire Weekend, The National, Eric Church, Kings of Leon, Franz Ferdinand and Neko Case. 

The popular Austin, Texas festival expands to two weekends this year, Oct. 4-6 and 11-13, at Zilker Park. Three-day passes go on sale Tuesday. 

D’Angelo, Queens of the Stone Age and Kendrick Lamar also are on the schedule, along with a selection of Austin bands that includes The Black Angels and Court Yard Hounds. 

Peruse here for the complete list of ACL performers.