The annual statewide Lego convention, Brick Fiesta, rotated back to Austin last week. Since the last show held here in 2015 (so long ago now!), I have been dutifully dragging Bill to every Lego movie. Sometimes I spontaneously start singing Everything is Awesome. I search out Lego stores and am especially fond of the one in NYC’s Rockefeller Center. So I was pumped to see the latest Brick Fiesta exhibition. And I was not disappointed, even though I might have been the only adult visitor without children.Continue reading
The 2018 Texas Book Festival was bigger and better than ever. This free annual event benefits Texas libraries. The Festival was primarily held in the Texas State Capitol and under large tents in the surrounding streets. Some of the more popular sessions were located in the nearby Paramount Theater and First United Methodist Church. Once again, the CSPAN tent was set up on 12th Street with a view of the Capitol building in the background. The Children and Young Adult tents stretched southward on Congress Avenue for several blocks. The weekend weather was beautiful. The Festival was crowded on Saturday, but not so much on Sunday. Here’s who I saw at this year’s Texas Book Festival:
Dark rain clouds periodically surrounded the Austin City Limits Music Festival at various times on Sunday afternoon, but each threat passed by with just some sprinkles. The sun was shining for our only must-see performer of the day: Janelle Monáe. What a set! Bill and I also liked The Revolution (Prince’s band) and Phoenix.
On Saturday, Bill and I delayed our ACL Fest arrival until mid-afternoon—after a rainstorm had passed through and the UT-Oklahoma football game ended. The festival grounds didn’t seem crowded for a Saturday. We wondered if the continuing threat of rain had scared people away, or if folks had bought weekend tickets just to see Paul McCartney on Friday night. In any case, we were able to see more bands than we typically see on an ACL Saturday. My favorite acts were Brandi Carlile and Residente, but I was also impressed by Chvrches and St. Vincent.
The first weekend of the 2018 Austin City Limits Music Festival is underway! Fridays are always our favorite day of the festival. Since the crowds are smaller, food lines are shorter and it’s easier to get up close to the stages. The day’s forecasted rain never materialized, so the afternoon was surprisingly sunny and hot. Friday’s lineup was stellar, perhaps the best ever. Of course, Paul McCartney’s over-two-hours headliner set was our favorite, but David Byrne was a close second.
This year’s Texas Tribune Festival was moved from the UT campus to downtown Austin. I thought this new location worked out well. The venues were centered around the Texas Tribune’s new headquarters on Congress Avenue. Most of my sessions were in the Paramount Theatre—that wasn’t my original plan, but two separate rainstorms forced me to go with the driest options.
Sunday was the sunniest and hottest day during ACL Fest Weekend 1. Bill and I wanted to see the evening headliners, so we didn’t arrive at the festival until late afternoon. Over the years, we have learned that hot days really sap our energy. This later arrival strategy worked out well for us.