Free Date Nights in Austin: February 16-19, 2017

This weekend, enjoy free date nights as you celebrate Mardi Gras, learn improv at The Rubber Room, and wear out your dancin’ boots cutting a rug with Two Hoots and a Holler!

Free Things to do in Austin at Night

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Two Hoots and a Holler at The Highball

Rick Broussard’s Two Hoots and a Holler has been entertaining crowded dance halls for over 20 years with their unique style of revved-up country and roots rock music. Drawing on influences from everyone from Buddy Holly and Johnny Cash to The Cramps and The Clash, the band can play a mean classic country tune but with a unique punk rock twist. As one of the best-known bands in Austin, they’ve won numerous Austin Music Awards for Best Roots Rock Band and have been nominated for the Austin Music Awards Hall of Fame! Throw on your dancin’ boots and check them out for yourself! Catch this legendary Austin musician for FREE at 8 p.m. (The Highball, 1120 South Lamar Blvd, Austin)

Delbert McClinton at Waterloo Records

The singers who last are blues bards, country music storytellers and true jazz vocalists that tell stories of real life: loss, longing, fulfillment, and the irrepressible determination to keep on keeping on. They also have a saving wit, like in the venerable blues lyric: “I’m gonna lay my head on the railroad track and when the train comes, I’m gonna yank it back.” Delbert McClinton embodies that spirit and is a brilliant storyteller. Enjoy his FREE show at 5 p.m. (Waterloo Records, 600A North Lamar Boulevard, Austin)

Beat the Rush: Panoramic Voices at The Blanton

Join Beat the Rush, the Blanton’s monthly series of FREE live music! This month, Panoramic Voices will premiere a new choral work by composer Travis Weller and conducted by Artistic Director Brent Baldwin. The music will feature 40 singers with line upon line percussion and members of the New Music Co-OP. Held in the Blanton’s atrium, the concert will enable audience members to move and experience the music from multiple perspectives and truly explore how “the world must be strange in other ways.” The show starts at 5:30 p.m. and at 6:30 p.m. artist Sonya Clark will talk about her portrait of Madam C.J. Walker, currently on view. (Blanton Museum of Art, 200 East Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, Austin)

Mardi Gras Hurrah with HONK!TX Brass Bands

Join 3Ten and the award-winning brass bands of HONK!TX for a special FREE Mardi Gras celebration and 2nd Line on 2nd Street before the funky METERS show at ACL Live. The decked-out musicians will number into the tens of dozens—a rainbow-colored brass and drum spectacle you will not want to miss! The 2nd Line will commence on the patio at 6 p.m. sharp. Follow the line around the 2nd Street block and back to 3TEN where the gaggle of brass & drums will blow up our stage before the funky METERS show upstairs. They’ll have drink specials and tons of beads to get you in the spirit. 2nd Street District businesses will also be handing out beads and will run Mardi Gras specials throughout the day. (3Ten, 310 Willie Nelson Blvd, Suite 1A, Austin)

Mentoring a Muse: Charles Umlauf and Farrah Fawcett Opening Reception 

Join Umlauf for this groundbreaking exploration of the lifelong artistic friendship between Charles Umlauf and his most famous student, Farrah Fawcett. This pioneering exhibition features never-before-seen work made by both artists from the UMLAUF, private collections, and a generous loan from the Blanton Museum of Art. Fawcett collected Umlauf’s work and continued to sculpt for her entire life. The actress sent plaster casts of her own sculptures to Umlauf, who then shipped them to his Italian foundry for casting in bronze. Mentoring a Muse: Charles Umlauf & Farrah Fawcett explores how the aesthetic influence traveled both directions: Umlauf made a tremendous impact on her style and remained, in Fawcett’s words, her “favorite teacher.” Likewise, she exerted a muse-like influence on his work. He created dozens of sketches and sculptures of Farrah Fawcett, both from life and memory. The FREE opening reception begins at 6 p.m. (Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum, 605 Robert E. Lee Road, Austin)

Friday, February 17, 2017

Dre Day 2017 at Hotel Vegas

Hey, hey! It’s Dre Day! That’s right, y’all, Cold Lampin’ Crew will be celebrating the infamous Dr. Dre’s continuous low ride around the globe with their annual Dre Day celebration. They’ll be spinning everything Dr. Dre, including, World Class Wrecking Crew, N.W.A., Eazy-E, D.O.C., Above The Law, Snoop, Eminem, 2pac, Xzibit, 50 Cent, Kendrick Lamar, and so, so much more.
Free Dre shwag will be handed out, take your own photo booth, and enjoy some good timez! The show is FREE and starts  at 10 p.m. (Hotel Vegas, 1502 East 6th Street, Austin)

Molly Burch at End of an Ear

Molly Burch was exposed to the arts at an early age. Growing up in Los Angeles with a writer/producer father and a casting director mother, Burch’s childhood was filled with old Hollywood musicals and the sounds of Patsy Cline, Billie Holiday and Nina Simone. Searching for a bigger pond, Burch moved to Austin, Texas in an effort to stand on her own two feet. There, Burch began to write her own music in earnest, with the lovelorn Everly Brothers and Sam Cooke as her songwriting guides. Check out her FREE performance at 6 p.m. (End of an Ear, 4304 Clawson Rad, Austin)

Conscious Comedy at Brave New Books

Are you tired of comics doing nothing but juvenile fart jokes? Then come to Conscious Comedy at Brave New Books. They feature comics talking about fighting the system, maaaan! They lampoon pop culture and the outdated political system. The show will start at 9 p.m. and is produced and hosted by Chad Fisher (New Orleans Comedy Festival, Zeitgeist Media Festival) and David Cole (A staple on the Austin comedy scene). This week they’ll have sets from Mikey Swenson (2 time Funniest Person in Austin semifinalist), Coy Hopper (too cool for festivals), Jesse Lopez (a comic’s comic) and more! The show is FREE, but donations appreciated- also, it’s BYOB! (Brave New Books, 1904 Guadalupe Street Suite B, Austin)

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Heartbyrne: A Talking Heads Tribute at Oskar Blues Brewing

HeartByrne captivates audiences with their high-energy homage to Talking Heads’ seminal concert film ‘Stop Making Sense’. What began as a ‘hoot night’, has now evolved into a powerhouse national touring act, with an uncompromising stage show made up of some of Austin, TX’s most talented musicians. This FREE show starts at 7 p.m. (Oskar Blues Brewery, 10420 Metric Boulevard, Austin)

Good Set Comedy at 4th Tap Brewing

Need a good laugh? Come check out the stand-up comedy showcase at 4th Tap Brewing Coop.  Hosted by Austen Silver and Blake Bowles. and featuring the best stand-ups from all around Austin and beyond. The show is totally FREE and starts at 8 p.m. (4th Tap Brewing, 10615 Metric Boulevard, Austin)

Old School Dance Party at Craftsman

Throw it back, waaaaay back as BEATSMODE continues the tradition of his Old School Dance Parties at Craftsman. Enjoy a set of Hip-Hop and R&B classics that you grew up with, paired with some of the best drinks in East Austin. The dance party is FREE and starts at 9 p.m. (Craftsman,

Positive Sounds with Sloe Your Roll, Kelly Hafner, Bogan Villa, a Tiger Lily

Positive Sounds is bringing together art, vendors, music, and compassion to benefit the HIV/AIDS Community. Project Transitions and some of the creative minds at Hippie House are coming together to invite local artists out to do live art, set up light displays, vendors and artists will be selling their work/crafts/jewelry/art, Lotus Joint will have their food truck parked out in the lot, and some really talented musicians including Sloe Your Roll, Kelly Hafner, Bogan Villa, and A Tiger Lily will perform.  Independence Brewing Co. will be donating a portion of their beer sales that day towards Project Transitions. The FREE event begins at 5 p.m. (Independence Brewing, 3913 Todd Lane, Austin)

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Rubber Room at The Institution Theatre

Would you find it crazy to join seasoned professionals at creating characters and making up stories on the spot? Is this the kind of crazy you find irresistible or are you looking for new outlets for the many voices in your head? The Rubber Room begins with a no-pressure jam session where anyone can join in the fun and is led by one of The Institution’s own teachers. A simple theme will guide each week’s jam, and the teacher will ensure everyone who wants to will have a time to play in a safe, welcoming environment. After the jam, stay for a 30-minute show put on by The Faculty, consisting of The Institution’s teachers. This is a FREE show and begins at 8 p.m. (Institution Theater,  3708 Woodbury Drive, Austin)

Celebrating the Rag: Austin’s Iconic Underground Newspaper

Fifty years ago, Austin gave birth to the highly influential underground newspaper The Rag. Noted for its unique blend of New Left politics and ‘60s alternative culture – presented with a hearty dose of irreverent Texas humor and psychedelic art — The Rag was one of the earliest and most influential of the 1960s-‘70s underground papers that spread across the country in what the New Yorker called “one of the most spontaneous and aggressive growths in publishing history.” To commemorate its birthday, The Rag, which lives on today as a blog and radio show, published a history of the newspaper and commissioned a documentary film by People’s History in Texas. There will be a FREE discussion with the book editors at 2 p.m. A book signing will follow the program and light refreshments will be served. (Austin History Center, 810 Guadalupe Street, Austin)