Kick August off to a strong start with this weekend’s FREE events! You can watch a movie or two, build a truck, cheer on 15,000 racing rubber ducks, spend an afternoon rediscovering your favorite old school video games, and more. There are even some chances to get a head start on Back to School festivities!
Free Fun In Austin continues to highlight Austin area locations and activities that may not be available at this time. We encourage you to take all safety measures to keep yourself and your neighbors safe. It is our hope that the stories and features on this site will help inform your plans in the future.
A big thanks to our sponsor Austin Emergency Center! AEC offers fast, concierge-level care, when minutes count. This Saturday, August 5 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m, you’re invited to wrap-up a fun-filled summer at Austin Emergency Center’s FREE annual Back to School Bash! All ages are welcome to enjoy pizza, snowcones, a petting zoo, balloon animals, prizes and giveaways, and ER tours at AEC’s Far West location.
Weekend Top 10 Free Events in Austin:
- Community Cinema: Beauty & The Beast – Friday at 7:30 p.m. Grab chairs and a blanket, bring family and friends, and enjoy a special screening of the animated classic Beauty & The Beast. 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 at sundown. Reserve your FREE tickets here. A donation of $5 is greatly appreciated. Community First! Village, 9301 Hog Eye Rd, Austin.
- Kids Workshop: Penske Truck (RSVP) – Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Join a FREE hands-on workshop where you and your child can build a wooden Penske truck to roll some fun into August. Once the project is complete, your child can personalize their truck with stickers and paint. All kids get to keep their craft, receive a certificate of achievement, a workshop apron, and a commemorative pin while supplies last. Children must be present at the store to participate in the workshop and receive the kit, apron and pin. Your local Home Depot store.
- Back to School STEM Saturday at Girlstart (RSVP) – Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to noon. Kick off the school year and get excited about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) with hands-on activities for the whole family. All of Girlstart’s labs will be open with live demos and hands-on STEM including: satellite launchers, ooey gooey slime, balloon boats, stomp rockets, gravity planes, virtual and augmented reality experiences, mini-planetarium star shows, and more. Additionally, all attendees will receive a FREE solar viewer to watch the solar eclipse on August 21st. Please note: Chaperones are required. Adults must stay with their children throughout the event. FREE with RSVP! Girlstart, 1400 W Anderson Ln, Austin.
- NORTHSIDEkids See Ya, Summer! Series – Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to noon. Gather on the NORTHSIDE Lawn for a morning of fun with Coldtowne. Suggested ages are 2-12 years. A parent or guardian must be present for the entirety of the event. First come, first served. FREE! Domain Northside, 11700 Domain Blvd, Austin.
- Back to School Bash at Austin Emergency Center – Saturday from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Wrap-up a fun-filled summer with pizza, snowcones, a petting zoo, balloon animals, prizes and giveaways, and ER tours. All ages are welcome. FREE! Austin Emergency Center (Far West), 3563 Far West Blvd, Ste 110, Austin.
- Austin Duck Derby – Saturday from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Bring your family and watch 15,000 yellow adopted rubber ducks drop into Lady Bird Lake. Root the duckies on at 11:30 a.m. as they race to the finish line, winning exciting prizes for their lucky winners. Festivities will include family fun, music, and activities. All activities, giveaways, and entertainment are FREE! It’s $5.00 to adopt a duck to enter the race. Ann Richards Congress Avenue Bridge/Austin American-Statesman parking lot, 305 S Congress Ave, Austin.
- Texas Independent Bookstore Day @ BookPeople – Saturday at 11:30 a.m. BookPeople is celebrating the first ever Texas Independent Bookstore Day. This party is a “thank you” for you, the customers, for shopping all year round, and they’ll have some activities, prizes, and giveaways. Things will kick off with storytime at 11:30 a.m., a summer reading wrap up party featuring BookSpring and Austin Allies. The fun will continue into the afternoon with a scavenger hunt throughout the store, customer-favorite “Book Pong,” and a contest to guess how many books are on the shelves. Plus, what’s a party without some cake?! FREE! BookPeople, 603 N Lamar Blvd, Austin.
Summer Kids Series with Austin Wildlife Rescue (RSVP) – Saturday at 1:00 p.m. Central Texas is brimming with wildlife. Who better to help your kids explore than friends from the Austin Wildlife Rescue? They’re bringing the wild to you! Your young explorers will learn all about baby animals, what to do if you see them, and how they live in the wild. Plus, there will be a special guest on hand…Tito the the Tortoise. FREE with RSVP. Austin Humane Society, 124 W Anderson Ln, Austin.Update: This event has reached capacity.
- Summer FREE Family Film Series: Secret of Kells – Saturday at 2:00 p.m. Join the Bullock Museum for their summer film series. Attendance is FREE, no ticket is required. Simply show up for line queuing outside of the Spirit Theater on the second floor of the museum (NOT the IMAX theater). Bullock members will have priority seating beginning at 1:30 p.m. Members must present their membership card at the theater for early access. All other guests will begin seating at 1:40 p.m. Concessions from the IMAX lobby will be allowed in the theater. Please note: Parental guidance suggested due to frightening and intense scenes. Recommended for children 8+. The Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 Congress Ave, Austin.
- H-E-B Free First Sunday at the Bullock Museum: Game On – Sunday from noon to 5:00 p.m. What makes a great game? Join August’s H-E-B Free First Sunday at the Bullock Museum to re-discover timeless games that don’t require batteries or a controller, then visit the new exhibition Pong to Pokemon: The Evolution of Electronic Gaming and test your skills at various video games. Families can explore the Story of Texas through three floors of exhibitions that showcase artifacts from around the state. Special family programs from 12-3:00 p.m. combine art creation, exploration stations, and gallery activities. FREE! The Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 Congress Ave, Austin.
Bonus Nearly Free Fun:
- Woodland Faerie Trail – Final Weekend! – Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Don’t miss the final weekend to view the award-winning, 5th annual Woodland Faerie Trail featuring 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 here. Please note, final garden entry is at 5:30 p.m. daily. FREE with Garden admission, which is $1-3 for Austin residents (ages 3+). Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Rd, Austin.
- Deep Eddy Movie Night: Moana – Saturday at 8:00 p.m. Watch a movie while you cool off in the 72-degree water or picnic on the hill. Movie begins at dusk. The movie and pool access are included in the regular admission fees ($1-3 for Austin residents). Deep Eddy Pool, 401 Deep Eddy Ave, Austin.
More Fun Beyond Austin:
- Back to School Bash at Wolf Ranch Town Center (Georgetown) – Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Visit Wolf Ranch Town Center for a fun filled day with FREE bounce houses, face painting, and a meet and greet with Spider Man and Wonder Woman. FREE! Wolf Ranch Town Center, 1015 W University Ave, Georgetown.
- Midsummer Carnival: Family Fun Day at Spring Lake (San Marcos) – Saturday from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. This family-friendly event will feature a photo booth, environmental activities, games, crafts, and fun for all ages. Open to the public and FREE! The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, 201 San Marcos Springs Dr, San Marcos.
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