The Art of Austin Texas is Unique and Full of Local Flavor

When you think of Austin, Texas, you don’t necessarily associate it with art. However, it’s home to one of the richest and most diverse artistic communities in the nation. It’s strongly represented in areas of music, film, and fine art.

Music in Austin Texas

Austin is known as the live music capital of the world because it has the most live music venues per capita in the entire country. Austin’s residents claim you can see a show any day of the week at almost any time of the day. It has more than 200 music venues and literally thousands of musicians. It’s also home to the memorial of Stevie Ray Vaughn, arguably the best blues guitarist the world has ever seen. Aside from the popular Austin City Limits television show, there’s an Austin City Limits music festival that lasts for three days with over 100 bands on eight stages.

Film in Austin

Austin is considered to be the very best location in the country to shoot a film. In part, due to its diverse landmasses and rich culture, but also because of its weather, allowing film crews to shoot all year round. In fact, well over a hundred movies and television shows have been shot in Austin. Some of the more popular ones include Friday Night Lights, Secondhand Lions, Dazed and Confused, and Varsity Blues. Maybe if you’re lucky you’ll run into a movie star in a Austin Hotel lobby.

The Fine Art of Austin Texas

Whether you’re interested in design, paintings, or sculptures, Austin has all of them. The newest addition to the community is the University Of Texas’s Blanton fine-art museum. It’s also home to the Mexic-Arte Museum, which is a huge tourist attraction, representing Mexican and Latin American art. The museum has a strong educational drive, and it holds at least one major event a month. Austin is also home to the rather incredible Zilker Botanical Garden. It has 30 acres of gardens with streams, ponds, and waterfalls throughout. They call the Zilker Botanical Garden the “Jewel in the Heart of Austin.” For fine-art aficionados Austin, Texas is a great place to visit.

Regardless of any specific artistic interest, Austin, Texas has more than anybody could ask for. It has a large and diverse art scene that can be both educational and fun. Don’t delay, book your Austin TX hotel room today and visit Austin!

The Community of Buda, Texas

Buda is a thriving small community southwest of Austin in the Texas Hill country. Buda was settled in 1881, and originally named Du Pre, but in 1887, the town changed its name when the residents realized there was another Du Pre, Texas. The town was founded on the route of the International-Great Northern Railroad, which traversed a route from Austin to San Antonio in the 1800s, and the town’s early residents named the streets either for well known types of trees or local cities, such as San Marcos and Austin.

The population of Buda was reported to be just over 2,400 inhabitants at the time of the 2,000 census, although it is estimated that the population has doubled since then. The area of Buda is 2.4 square miles, with just 0.41 of the area being water, and the city is situated 13 miles southwest of Austin and 60 miles northeast of San Antonio, with an elevation of 702 feet. Onion Creek is a scenic creek which meanders through the small community, and cotton production, dairy farming, and raising cattle were the occupations of the earliest residents, as well as railroad work.

One of the first businesses in the area was a hotel named the Carrington, which was later renamed the Du Pre, and the hotel was well known for serving good meals to railroad employees. An interesting bit of trivia is the story of an early bandit, referred to as the “flapper bandit”, who robbed the bank in 1926 on the pretext of using a typewriter; the bandit was a young, female college student, thus the reference to a flapper.

Since Buda is so close in proximity to Austin, but so scenic and close to the hill country, it is fast becoming a refuge for Austinites who prefer rural living, and the population is growing rapidly as a result of the influx of city dwellers who prefer the peace and quiet of country living. Using information gathered by utility companies, the population of Buda is expected to currently be in the range of 5,000 residents, with a majority of Caucasian ancestry, at 81%, and the remaining inhabitants being comprised of various diverse racial backgrounds.

The age of the residents spans the gamut pretty evenly, and the property values in the community are well above average. In a survey of 14 central Texas cities, the per capita property values in Buda were around $85,000, on average, much higher than the other cities surveyed. Buda is a home rule community, with a council-manager form of government, and the change from general law to home rule was made in 2007 after the residents approved a home-rule charter which was accepted by 77% of the residents.

Today, there are many choices for entertainment, recreation, dining out, and lodging in the area, including lodging choices such as Marks Overlook Lodge, a bed and breakfast on the waters of Onion Creek, and the Hampton Inn for business travelers or others wanting to stay in town, as well as eateries including Chavelos Mexican Food, Constantine’s Pizzeria and Coffeenut Bookshop for snacks and live music, and the nearby Salt Lick for barbecue.

Buda is a great choice for a day trip, or to settle down in a rural yet cosmopolitan community, so when in the hill country, stop in and sample the antique stores, have a bite to eat, or just enjoy the majestic scenery and peace of hill country living!

The Village of Salado

The village of Salado, between Austin and Waco on Interstate 35, is a very historic community that emphasizes an interest in the arts, education, natural beauty and scenic attractions. The longest continually operating hotel in Texas, the Stagecoach Inn, is in Salado, and the hotel is known for its excellent restaurant and historic setting. Salado is also proud to have eighteen of its oldest buildings included on the National Register of Historical Places and twenty-three Texas Historical Markers.

Salado was not incorporated until the year 2003, and the town boasts a population of just under 5,000 residents. Salado was founded in 1859 on the Old Military Road crossing of Salado Creek, and was originally an agricultural and industrial center. Salado College operated in the community until 1895, and was considered a very prestigious school at the time. However, when the railroad built tracks to the east and north of the town after the decline of the cattle trade, which was a thriving industry in Salado since the Chisholm Trail ran directly through Salado, the population began to decline.

In the mid-1900s, a revitalization of the city began, when Salado Creek was designated the first recorded Texas Natural Landmark in 1966, and the city developed an interest in an arts community based on historic businesses and homes. Two of these businesses were the Central Texas Area Museum, constructed in 1959, and the Stagecoach Inn and its famous dining room, which had always retained a following of loyal customers.

Salado, which is currently known as the Best Art Town in Texas, began the incorporation process around the year 2000, when the residents of the town became concerned about annexation from nearby Belton. Incorporation of the city ended 120 years of local history with no official town government, during which time the town flourished by catering to the tourist trade and affiliated businesses, which included 2 hotels, 2 blacksmiths, 7 churches, and 14 stores, along with a Masonic Lodge, in 1884.

Today, Salado has about 130 small businesses, many of which are art-related, and is also known for its UIL academics in the public schools, which are administered by the Salado Independent School District. Salado is the home of the academic team named the Salado Eagles, which won a five year streak of academic titles, and is also proud of their excellent sports program which includes the Salado Baseball Team, which won the State Championship in 2008, as well as Salado High School’s 2008 victory in the Lone Star Cup.

Salado has been home to many notable residents over the years, including authors Liz Carpenter and A.C. Green, and Texas governors James Ferguson and Miriam “Ma” Ferguson, among others, including the infamous outlaw Sam Bass.

Today, Salado offers residents and visitors many choices for lodging, including hotels, bed and breakfast inns, and R.V. campgrounds, including the Stagecoach Inn, a Residence Inn by Marriott, a La Quinta Hotel and a Holiday Inn Express. Some of the amenities of the historic Stagecoach Inn include 82 guest rooms and four town homes at Mill Creek Golf Course, and the award-winning restaurant, which specializes in prime rib and other delicacies. Other choices for diners in Salado include the Ambrosia Tea Room and Browning’s Courtyard Café, and the Range at Barton House, among many others.

With its unparallel historic pedigree and natural beauty, as well as its numerous amenities and opportunities for shopping or just strolling down Main Street, Salado is a sure-fire place to visit!

Vacation Anywhere in an RV

Americans love to go camping and taking vacations. As part of their recreational activities a number of people enjoy camping out in an RV. Austin residents that enjoy spending their free time in the great outdoors can appreciate the advantages that are offered by an enclosed trailer that allows them to easily set up camp anywhere that they happen to be. Saving money on airfare and going wherever the road takes them a number of people are enjoying their vacations as they take their RV with them.

It has been said that life is a journey and while the destination is important, so too is the journey that is taken through life. For those that have discovered the joys of the journey with an RV Austin is only a starting point. Taking their travels out and away from the city and venturing wherever they are willing to go, the people that have an RV can travel any distance long or short and make the most of their travels as the journey they are on becomes more important than the destination.

For people that have been camping out hunting or who simply want to enjoy spending their time outdoors, the addition of an RV can greatly enhance their family vacations. Being able to pull off the road and set up their trailer for an overnight stay or a weeklong distraction can find that everything they need can be taken with them on their journey through life. Even if the end of their road leads them to a specific tourist attraction they can save money on a hotel and the rising costs of air travel by packing up the RV.

Amazing Vacation Destination: Austin

With diversity being another name of this city, finding something fun for you is certainly guaranteed. Austin is where you can seek live entertainment every minute of every hour, given its high status as being the ‘live music capital of the world.’ Therefore, the city receives visitors in large numbers from across the country and around the world. Finding a cheap flight to Austin is no big task at all then, given the fact that every major air carrier connects the city.

Appealing to every visitor, be it a family vacationer or a lone budget traveler, a young couple or an old one, a group of friends on a backpacking trip or students, this vibrant city’s sea of attractions and a treasure trove of pleasant experiences certainly satisfies you from head to toe. Another aspect that forms the highlight of tourism in Austin apart from the fact that the city lives, eats and drinks music is its great outdoor culture. Given the vistas of the Hill Country outside the city and Lady Bird Lake in the center of town, tourists really love to come out and play as often as possible. You get to enjoy miles and miles of hiking and biking trails, two-hands-full of scenic parks and gardens to have those interesting family picnics or soak in the beauty of nature in, more than 250 days of sunshine, and have a leisure time strolling the vineyards and wineries, Austin leaves no stone unturned to evoke your fancy.

There are several things apart from the thoroughly gratifying outdoors. Replete with sightseeing options of vast and varied kind, you are most likely to have an eventful daytime in Austin. Intimate gallery settings, public exhibitions centers, America’s largest university-owned museum, memorials and monuments, performing arts venues, points of ethnic interest, cultural and heritage centers and many other places of artistic interest, intellectual stimulation abounds in the city. Succeeding your highly eventful daytime in the city, Austin’s nightlife is as much thrilling and lively. Equipped with fancy restaurants, cool pubs and neighborhoods bars, cozy cafes and roof-top party places, dazzling discotheques, elegant lounges and more, you can have any kind and type of fun that you like after the sun goes down.

Austin Profiles – 2nd Street

The 2nd Street District in downtown Austin has grown rapidly. Besides the nightlife bar scene of 6th Street, and a smattering of shops on Congress Avenue, downtown Austin lacked a hub for shopping, eating, and entertainment that the 2nd Street District is now providing.

Cashing in on Austinites’ love for being outdoors, and its close proximity to the Zilker hike and bike trail, the 2nd Street District is pedestrian oriented, with wide sidewalks, and open air store fronts and outdoor seating at many of the restaurants. The 2nd Street District has also concentrated on having more daytime activities compared to 6th street which has more bars and late night entertainment.

Established local eateries, such as Austin Java Café and Jo’s Coffee, mix and mingle with a few fun chains and other local establishments, to suit any taste bud. People-watching from an outside table provides limitless entertainment before heading to the next shop.

Several home furnishings and décor shops line the street. Austin’s branch of Design Within Reach carries licensed mid-century classics, while Finch is filled with beautiful homey items for the Dwell Magazine lover. IF + D brings flooring, furniture, and more from international designers such as Tord Bjoonte, as well as equally beautiful pieces from local creative craftsmen Brian David Johnson, Holly Everett, and Fisterra Studios.

The emergence of more downtown attractions has affected parts of the Austin real estate market, which provide proximity to downtown. The first part of the market affected is the downtown Austin condos which have been popping up in recent years. Also several downtown Austin neighborhoods like Clarksville and Barton Hills which are in biking distance to downtown have also seen more interest from buyers due to their proximity to downtown.

Austin was recently listed as the 7th most dog friendly city in the country by Men’s Health magazine, so man’s best friend was included in the 2nd Street District’s design. For the past two years, 30 of Austin’s best architects, builders, and designers gather on 2nd street for what’s become known as Barkitecture. The talented group comes together to create innovative, and amazingly designed, dog houses that are auctioned off, with proceeds going to local animal advocacy groups. Also, the Lofty Dog store caters to those canines living the downtown lifestyle.

Clothing boutiques dot the 2nd Street District. Many shops, like Girl Next Door and Shiki Style carry women’s fashion from up and coming clothing designers. Cowboy Cool puts a western twist on primarily contemporary men’s clothes. After a day of shopping in the sun, it’s nice to wind down at Sage Salon, or Milk and Honey Spa, with a relaxing couples massage.

With newly built condominium complexes springing up downtown, and more on the way, the 2nd Street District can now be just steps from the front door. Block 21, at the corner of Lavaca and 2nd Street, will soon house the new W Hotel and Residences, the new Austin City Limits taping studio, as well as additional retail space, which will surely only add to the excitement and continuing evolution of Austin’s 2nd Street District.