Weekend Top 10 FREE Events: May 12-14, 2017

This Mother’s Day weekend has more FREE family fun that you can fit into three days (almost)! Celebrate 70 years of Barton Springs, see the punniest contest in town, explore the new and long-awaited teaching hospital at UT, and indulge yourself in an absolute abundance of art. We certainly didn’t forget about you, Moms! Check out our Free Mother’s Day Events in Austin post for more ways to celebrate your special day!

Weekend Top 10 Free Events - Free Fun in Austin

Weekend Top 10 Free Events in Austin:

  1. KUTX Live at MuellerFriday at 7:00 p.m. Food trucks, fun, and live music on the lake! It’s the last night of KUTX Live at Mueller this spring– don’t miss it! First, enjoy music by kid-friendly act Yes Ma’am Brass Band followed by Night Drive performing rock-and-roll for the grown-ups. The music begins at 7:00 p.m., but face painting for the kids, giveaways, and food trucks will be available before the show starts. View parking and transportation information here. FREE! Mueller Lake Park, 4550 Mueller Blvd, Austin.
  2. 70th Birthday Splash: Parade and Plunge in Barton SpringsSaturday from 9-11:00 a.m. Join Barton Springs Conservancy in celebrating the historic Barton Springs Bathhouse, Honorary Chair Luci Baines Johnson, and Dear Friends for their 70th birthdays. Austinites young and old are invited to march in a fun and family-friendly parade that will end in a celebratory plunge into Barton Springs. Attendees are encouraged to wear festive shades of blue and bring any flair or panache to the celebration. Meet at the South Entrance of Barton Springs by 9:00 a.m. for delicious HEB Birthday Cake. FREE! Barton Springs Pool, 2201 Barton Springs Rd, Austin.
  3. 40th Annual O. Henry Museum Pun-Off World ChampionshipsSaturday from 11:00 a.m to 7:00 p.m. The 40th Pun-Off will feature food trucks, a used-book sale, live music from Shinyribs from 11:00 a.m. to noon, and lots of zany, groan-inducing wordplay. FREE! O. Henry Museum, 409 E 5th St, Austin.
  4. Second Saturdays at Laguna Gloria: Recycled Robots (RSVP) – Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Put everyday materials together to form a robotic work of art, then stop by the animation station to bring your metallic creation to life. Recommended for ages 2–11. Reservations are requested for family art-making workshops; please reserve your spot here. FREE! Contemporary Austin at Laguna Gloria, 3809 W 35th St, Austin.
  5. West Austin Studio TourSaturday and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Big Medium’s West Austin Studio Tour (WEST) is an annual self-guided art event spanning two weekends in May. The 6th edition of WEST provides opportunities for the public to meet the artists and artisans of Austin in their creative spaces. The 2017 tour includes 331 participants: 172 Artist Studios, 45 Galleries, 92 Temporary Exhibitions, 11 Happenings, 6 Libraries, and 5 Schools. FREE! Multiple venues in Austin.
  6. Open House: Dell Seton Medical CenterSaturday from 1-5:00 p.m. Seton Healthcare Family and Ascension invite the community to preview its new teaching hospital, Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas. The open house includes behind-the-scene tours, simulations, Austin-style family activities, live music, refreshments, and concessions. FREE! Dell Seton Medical Center at the University of Texas, 1500 Red River St, Austin.
  7. Bookspring Into Summer: A Celebration of ReadersSaturday from 2-4:00 p.m. Celebrate readers of all ages and get ready for the summer with this fun family event featuring entertainment from family favorites The Biscuit Brothers. Admission is FREE and tickets for food and activities will be available for purchase at the event. Donate three books for ONE free activity or food ticket (limit 3 per person). The Arboretum, 10000 Research Blvd, Austin.
  8. Off the Wall: Dance and Music Saturday and Sunday at 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Enjoy an unconventional concert of dance and percussive music performed in the deep bowl of Austin BMX Skatepark. Influenced by the rebounding sounds of wheels, Dance Waterloo, Tetractys, and The Kraken Quartet have collaborated to produce a performance for audiences of all ages. Sit along the edges of the deep bowl and experience the dance by looking below. This is a pay-what-you-can performance. Bowl seating tickets can be reserved in advance here. Heath Eiland & Morgan Moss BMX Skate Park, 1213 Shoal Creek Blvd, Austin.
  9. UMLAUF Family DaySunday from noon to 4:00 p.m. This Mother’s Day, celebrate with family-friendly arts activities all day. There will be a Kimono Fashion Show hosted by the Japan America Society of Greater Austin and the UMLAUF welcomes visitors to dress in their choice of festive attire, whether Mother’s Day dress, casual, or kimono. Bring your kids for children’s yoga, a puppet show, sing-a-long, story time, and more. FREE! UMLAUF Sculpture Garden & Museum, 605 Robert E Lee Rd, Austin.
  10. Family Day: The Art & Geometry of Sebastián’s TransformablesSunday from 1-4:00 p.m. Mexic-Arte Museum invites parents, children, and members of the community to a FREE Family Day educational activity inspired by world-renowned sculptor Sebastián. Visitors will be guided through a paper-folding activity based on the artist’s impressive series of Transformables. Discover how the two-dimensional paper can be transformed into three-dimensional objects in the form of magic cubes that change shape. FREE! Mexic-Arte Museum, 419 Congress Ave, Austin.

Bonus Nearly Free Fun:

  • Touch-a-Truck 2017Saturday from 10:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m. Touch-A-Truck is a family friendly event that benefits SAFE programs on the Austin Children’s Shelter Campus. This event hosts a wide variety of vehicles for kids of all ages to play on while learning about the automobiles and how they help serve their communities. This year’s Touch-A-Truck will also feature live music, plenty of food trucks, and a Kid Zone complete with a petting zoo, face painting, barrel-train rides, and much more. Tickets are $5 and are available here. Camp Mabry, 2200 W 35th St, Austin.

More Events Beyond Austin:

  • Nature Day at Baker Sanctuary (Leander)Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Get up close with Central Texas wildlife at Nature Day at Travis Audubon’s Baker Sanctuary. Join in fun activities for the whole family including nature walks and live bird demonstrations. Picnicking is welcome. Please bring your own water bottle that can be refilled on site. Open to the public for one day only. FREE! Baker Sanctuary, 12308 Lime Creek Rd, Leander.
  • Dia de las Madres (Round Rock)Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. This festival honors the mothers in the community for all their hard work and dedication to their families. Bring your family to enjoy live music and performances, photos with mom, prizes, and arts & crafts for the kids. Plus, the first 200 moms will receive a free carnation. FREE! Prete Main Street Plaza, 221 E Main St, Round Rock.
  • Hands on History (Georgetown)Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Celebrate Mother’s Day on the South Lawn of the Historic Williamson County Courthouse where children of all ages can make a mother’s day springtime craft. FREE! Williamson County Courthouse, 710 S Main St, Georgetown.
  • Mother’s Day Maifest (Del Valle)Sunday from 1-6:00 p.m. Live music, a petting zoo and fun for the whole family! FREE for everyone. Food from Kick Drum Burgers will be available for purchase. Live Oak Brewery, 1615 Crozier Ln, Del Valle.

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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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