Top 10 FREE Weekend Events: June 16-18, 2017

Give Dad all the FREE fun he can handle this weekend! Is the dad in your life into machines? Take him to a car show or an RC airshow. Is he more of a book guy? We’ve got bookstore parties and storytime events for him to enjoy with the kids! There’s also a free outdoor movie, music at Zilker Park, and a bit of international culture. For even more ideas for Dad, check out Free Father’s Day Fun in Austin.

Weekend Top 10 Free Events in Austin

A big thanks to our sponsor Pogo Pass! The Pogo Pass is a one year membership, which includes free admission to the following fun venues in the Austin-Waco area: Austin Spurs, Urban Air, Austin’s Park n Pizza Experience, Quest ATX, EPiX LAN Center, ASA Rollerskating, Hawaiian Falls or Splashtown, Cameron Park Zoo, Texas Sports Hall of Fame, Skate World/Skate Country, Dr. Pepper Museum, Austin Rock Gym, Wonder World, iPlay Austin, Mayborn Museum, and Austin Aquarium! Free Fun in Austin readers can receive 60% off the purchase of a Pogo Pass by using the promo code AustinBargain here.

Weekend Top 10 Free Events in Austin:

  1. Community Cinema: Hidden Figures Friday at 7:30 p.m. Grab chairs and a blanket, bring family and friends, and enjoy a special screening of Hidden Figures. Arrive early to explore Community First! Village, pick your spot, and enjoy a family favorite on the big screen. Plus, stop by the Community Market to check out all the beautiful art and handcrafted products that Community First! residents make in the various micro-enterprise programs at the Village. Candy, popcorn, water, and sodas will be available for purchase (cash preferred). Concession sales and tips help Community First! friends who will be serving you to earn a modest living income. Movie begins around 8:30 p.m. Rated PG. Reserve your FREE tickets here. A donation of $5 is greatly appreciated. Community First! Village, 9301 Hog Eye Rd, Austin.
  2. 3rd Annual Ride the Lightning Electric AirshowSaturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Watch an incredible RC airshow featuring all types of electric powered planes, electric powered jets, multi-rotors, helicopters, and powered gliders. See some giant scale electric planes–with wingspans of 7 feet–fly, like the F4U Corsair, P38 Lightning, P51D Mustang and the civilian DeHavilland Beaver. Talk to some ARCA instructors about scheduling a free “discovery flight” for anyone 9 years or older. Concessions will be available for purchase from 11:00 am-3:00 pm. Admission and parking are FREE! Austin Radio Control Association, 8705 Lindell Ln, Austin.
  3. Juneteenth CelebrationSaturday from noon to 4:00 p.m. Juneteenth is a celebration of freedom commemorating June 19, 1865, when enslaved men and women in Texas learned they were free. This year’s celebration will feature two live music stages, Games2U mobile game arcade, Human Gyroscope, games, prizes, refreshments, crafts, character reenactments of Texas Slave Narratives, Juneteenth story time, and vendor marketplace. Admission is FREE! 1165 Angelina St, Austin.
  4. Barnes & Noble Father’s Day StorytimeSaturday at 11:00 a.m. Take your dad to read When Dads Don’t Grow Up at your local Barnes & Noble. Just in time for Father’s Day, this playful book follows four father-child pairs as they spend happy, silly times together, popping bubble wrap, watching cartoons, and taking part in shopping cart races. These dads may look like grown-ups on the outside, but underneath they’re kids just like you! Activities to follow. FREE! Your local Barnes & Noble. View locations here.
  5. Wizard of Oz Storytime & Summer Kick Off PartySaturday at 11:30 a.m. Summer is officially here – kick it off with prizes, costumes, and special guests! First, Zilker Theatre Productions will bring the cast of this year’s epic summer musical, The Wizard of Oz, to host a special storytime and judge an Oz-themed costume contest. Guests are encouraged to dress to impress in their favorite Wizard of Oz-themed outfits! There are some incredible prizes at stake—a walk-on role, reserved seating, and more! After storytime, AISD will help kick off summer reading season with the 5 Book Dive summer program. Along with AISD librarians and representatives from literacy nonprofit BookSpring, BookPeople will talk up some favorite books for summer and give you everything you need to take the 5 Book Dive Summer Challenge–including details about how to claim your reward. Austin Allies, a volunteer group for local families, will join the fun to talk about how families can support literacy and get involved with local nonprofits like BookSpring. FREE! BookPeople, 603 N Lamar Blvd, Austin.
  6. World Refugee Day at the Bullock MuseumSaturday from 11:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Join the Austin Refugee Roundtable and the Bullock Museum to commemorate the United Nations’ World Refugee Day with a naturalization ceremony, free samples of world cuisine, live music and performances, and activities for families with kids ages 6 and up. Learn about the cultures that continue to make Texas the diverse place it is today. Exhibit admission is not included. FREE! The Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 Congress Ave, Austin.
  7. Mr. Greenheart’s Treehouse Party & TV Show Premiere – Saturday at noon. Join Mr. Greenheart and the Circus Picnic as they welcome you into their Treehouse! There’ll be singing, dancing, juggling, and magic from the Treehouse Tribe, as well as hands on activities. Then, see the world premiere of the new kids show Mr. Greenheart’s Treehouse – a children’s TV program that amplifies a message of creativity, nature play, and wellness. Activities begin when doors open at noon. Performances on the Barrel O’ Fun stage start at 12:15 p.m. Screening of Mr. Greenheart’s Treehouse begins at 1:30 p.m. All ages are welcome, but recommended for 0-8 years. FREE! Barrel O’Fun at Alamo Drafthouse Mueller, 1911 Aldrich St, Ste 120B, Austin.
  8. International Day of YogaSaturday at 5:45 p.m. The Art of Living Austin presents this event for the 3rd year in a row, sponsored by Consulate General of India, Houston in collaboration with yoga studios, non-profits, and more organizations. Program includes 90-minute yoga asanas, peace meditation, live music, and more. Wear your cool white summer clothing. Bring along your yoga mat, water, friends, and family to celebrate this timeless tradition of Yoga unifying Austin communities. Family friendly and FREE! Texas State Capitol, 1100 Congress Ave, Austin.
  9. 17th Annual Father’s Day Antique Automobile ShowSunday from noon to 4:00 p.m. Bring your car-loving dad to check out antique automobiles and view the other vehicles on display. Admission is FREE! The Winters Building, 701 W 51st St, Austin.
  10. Father’s Day Concert in the ParkSunday at 7:30 p.m. Austin Symphonic Band celebrates Dad with this annual concert at the Zilker Hillside Theater. Marches, patriotic melodies, and other familiar works are the order of the day – selections that will have your Dad’s toe tappin’ – as well as your own! Bring a picnic basket and spread out a blanket under the pecan trees at the Hillside Theater. FREE! Zilker Hillside Theater, 2206 William Barton Dr, Austin.

Bonus Fun for a Good Cause:

  • Shiner Backyard Chili Cook-off – Saturday from 4-8:00 p.m. Give back to the men and women that have fought for our freedom at the First Ever Shiner Backyard Chili Cook-off at Doc’s Backyard brought to you by Shiner Beer, KOKE FM, and Sunset Valley. A percentage of proceeds will benefit the Boot Campaign, a non-profit that focuses on the challenges service members face during and post-service. Bring your family, pup and friends to enjoy a beautiful day on the open preserve, with live music from Drew Womack & One Ton Country, a chance to win a custom Shiner grill, chili tastings from 20 different teams, and local Texas vendors with great gifts and goods to shop. BYOC (bring your own chair or blankets) Admission, live music, and chili tastings are FREE! Other food and beverages will be available to purchase. The Preserve at Doc’s Backyard (behind the patio), 5207 Brodie Ln #100, Sunset Valley.
  • Laugh Away Hunger Improv Event – Saturday at 6:00 p.m. Enjoy a great night of laughter and honoring Dads with games, music, and a silent auction before the improv show begins at 7:00 p.m. Emoji’s Grilled Cheese Sandwiches will be available for purchase. Family friendly ages 7+. No child care provided. FREE with donation of two non-perishable food items for the pantry or HEB gift cards. Gateway Church, 7104 McNeil Dr, Austin.

Bonus Nearly Free Fun:

  • Woodland Faerie TrailSaturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The award-winning, 5th annual Woodland Faerie Trail features faerie homes and gardens created by Austin area gardeners, architects, artisans, businesses, clubs, families, and school groups. Explore the abodes of the faeries and gnomes along the Woodland Faerie Trail through the escarpment pathway and see who is home. Read about Emily’s experience hereFREE with Garden admission, which is $1-3 (for ages 3+). Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Rd, Austin.
  • Alamo Kids Camp Movies: Sing, Zathura: A Space Adventure, and The Pirates! Band of MisfitsFriday, Saturday and Sunday, various days and times. Alamo Kids Camp now has a “choose-your-own-ticket price” model ranging from $1-$5 per person – you choose the amount. This new model not only allows for tickets to be purchased online, in advance with reserved seating, but also 100% of ticket sales will be donated to local nonprofits helping families. Now, while you’re enjoying some summer movie fun, you’re also helping your local community. Confirm showtimes and reserve your tickets here. All ages will be admitted to this show but families with loud children will be asked to leave. Alamo Drafthouse, various locations.

More Fun Beyond Austin:

  • Music in the Park: Cody Wayne Band (Pflugerville) Friday from 7:30-9:30 p.m. Music In The Park provides a variety of entertainment for any music-loving dad. Bring lawn chairs, blankets, picnic baskets, friends, and neighbors for a FREE evening of music, entertainment, and relaxation and see the Cody Wayne Band. Pfluger Park, 515 City Park Rd, Pflugerville.
  • Juneteenth Rhythm and Ribs Festival (Round Rock)Friday from 7:30-11:30 p.m. and Saturday from 2:00 p.m. to midnight. What dad doesn’t love ribs? Bring him to the 8th annual Round Rock Juneteenth Rhythm and Ribs Festival! There will be live music, a barbecue cook-off, health fair, moonwalks, clowns, games, food, retail vendors, and much, much more. Admission and parking are FREE! Old Settlers Park, 3300 E Palm Valley Blvd, Round Rock.
  • Around the World in 80 Days (Round Rock) Friday and Saturday at 8:00 p.m. This hilariously fresh take on the classic novel follows the fearless adventurer Phileas Fogg, who agrees to an outrageous wager that puts his life and fortune at risk. Danger, romance and comic surprises abound in a dramatic race against time. No reservations required. FREE! Round Rock Amphitheatre, 301 W Bagdad Ave, Round Rock.
  • Gone Fishing Catch and Release (Round Rock)Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4:00 p.m. Kick this summer off with the Gone Fishing Event featuring catch and release, pond seminars, and free photo downloads. First 100 customers to visit the pond receive a “Gone Fishing” door hanger. Get ready, set, FISH! FREE! Bass Pro Shops, 200 Bass Pro Dr, Round Rock.
  • 8th Annual Wine & Cheese Art Festival (Round Rock)Saturday from 6:00-8:30 p.m. This family friendly event features guest artist and speaker Max Rightmer who has been commissioned by the city of Hutto for a painting of the downtown Hutto Cotton Gin. Over 30 artists will be displaying their work. Wine and non-alcoholic beverages, cheese, cookies, and baked items will be available for purchase. Don’t miss door prizes, a silent auction, and music. FREE! Allen R. Baca Center, 301 W Bagdad Ave # 2, Round Rock.
  • Fathers Day Dads Gone Wild Car & Motorcycle Show (Leander)Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. This is not your ordinary Father’s Day. Enjoy live music, prizes, inflatables, and food trucks, vote for your favorite car/motorcycle/off-road vehicle, and every man in attendance gets a free t-shirt!  For the adventurous, helicopter rides will be available to purchase.  Event is FREE! RockPointe Church, 1070 CR-177, Leander.

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About the Author

Jaelyn Penner
Jaelyn was born and raised in Kansas, but she got to Texas as soon as she could! After a few years of youthful fun in Dallas, Jaelyn decided to make her passion her career and headed to west Texas to make it happen. There, she honed her musical chops while studying Commercial Music, and then headed straight for Austin to help keep it weird. Once here, she unexpectedly found her soul mate, and loves that her husband and two boys are now her biggest fans! Besides being a musician, Jaelyn also works as a corporate event planner, is a self-proclaimed “celebratory expert” and a long-time foodie. She doesn’t feel complete unless she is keeping up with all the cool stuff Austin has to offer.
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