What’s Up? Weekly: December 17-21, 2018

Looking for things to do in Austin this week? What’s Up Weekly highlights some of the exciting Austin events featured on our Free Fun Calendar!

Have an event to add to the calendar? Submit it here.

Happening All Week

Harry Ransom Center Free Daily Exhibition Tours
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | at 12 p.m. | Harry Ransom Center, 300 W. 21st St.
Experience the Harry Ransom Center with free daily exhibition tours. Visitors have the opportunity to see some of the Ransom Center’s renowned holdings in literature, art, photography, film, and the performing arts. In addition to these holdings, the current exhibition “Ed Ruscha: Archaeology and Romance” gives an unprecedented look into the creative process of Ed Ruscha, one of today’s most influential artists. Always on view are the Center’s rare, complete copy of the Gutenberg Bible and the Niepce Heliograph, one of the earliest photographs taken in a camera. Tours meet daily at noon, Thursdays at 6 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. No reservations required. Check website to confirm holiday schedule.

Ice Skating on the Whole Foods Plaza ($10)
Monday through Friday, December 17-21  (open daily through January 15 – some closures) | from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. (call to confirm) | Whole Foods, Plaza Rooftop, 525 N. Lamar Blvd.
$10, includes skates. Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays are always open to the public, but please check the website or call Lamar Guest Services at (512) 476-1206 during the week to confirm public skating hours on weekdays.

Blue Genie Art Bazaar
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. | Blue Genie Art Bazaar, 6100 Airport Blvd.
Open annually Black Friday through Christmas Eve! FREE admission and parking.

Mozart’s Annual Light Show
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | from 6 to 11 p.m. |
Mozart’s Coffee Roasters, 3825 Lake Austin Blvd.
The 9th Annual Joyous Mozart’s Christmas Light Show is here and better than ever! This year is an on-going experience with over one million LED lights, a giant coffee mug, and more. New this year is the Cobalt Blue Piano that will be played by pianist all season long. They also have a German Market in the parking lot serving warm treats as you walk in. Whether you’ve been before or not, this is the year to add the Mozart’s Light Show to your calendar!

White Christmas Gingerbread Village
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | open 24 hours | Four Seasons, 98 San Jacinto Blvd.
Featuring 11 traditional meets modern houses named after some of Austin’s historic neighborhoods, the 2018 gingerbread village will boast a “White Christmas” theme. The 100 percent edible village will be centered around a house that resembles the architecture of City Hall. Scheduled to debut on Tuesday, November 20, the free holiday activity will be open 24 hours a day through December 25.

Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s (Round Rock & Buda)
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | Activities And Hours Vary | 200 Bass Pro Dr., Round Rock & 15570 S IH 35 Frontage Rd., Buda
Santa’s Wonderland is the ultimate free family Christmas event. Families are invited to enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering FREE 4×6 studio-quality photos with Santa and free family holiday activities, including fun crafts and games. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa using the free Bass Pass system. Visit the Bass Pass Ticket Depot located at the entrance of Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shops or Cabela’s to pick up a time-stamped pass. In addition, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s stores are designated toy drop-off stations for Toys for Tots. Families that bring a new toy to donate Saturday and Sunday, November 24-25, will receive a FREE premium photo package valued at $20. Check website for store location and hours.

Walkway of Lights (Marble Falls)
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | 6 to 10 p.m. | Lakeside Park, Buena Vista, Marble Falls
Walkway of Lights will be open nightly from 6 to 10 p.m., weather permitting. Celebrate the holidays with over two million lights, photos with Santa, and so much more! Make the Walkway of Lights your new family tradition, and experience the magic year after year! Admission is always free, yet donations are much appreciated! Don’t forget, concessions and Santa photos are fundraisers for local non-profit organizations.

Lights Spectacular (Johnson City)
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | times vary | Johnson City
The twinkliest town in the hill country celebrates its 29th annual Lights Spectacular.  See the schedule of special events. Free!

Christmas Towne (Round Rock)
Monday through Friday, December 17-21 | Times Vary | 3300 E. Palm Valley Blvd., Round Rock
Free! (tickets for carnival available for purchase)

Monday

Austin Trail Of Lights 
Monday, December 17 | from 7 to 10 p.m. | Zilker Park, 2400 Barton Springs Rd.
Admission is FREE from December 17 through December 19. Check the Austin Trail of Lights website for admission fees on other dates and event schedules. Children 11 and under are FREE every night! Parking passes and shuttle tickets are available online.

Elf Trivia
Monday, December 17 | from 7 to 9 p.m. | Growler USA, 609 West 29th St.
“The best way to spread Christmas Cheer, is singing loud for all to hear.” Does somebody need a hug? Don’t be a Cotton-Headed Ninnymuggins and miss Elf Trivia at Growler USA Austin on Monday, December 17 starting at 7 p.m.! FIVE unique and challenging rounds OH SANTA! on making ginger bread houses, eating cookie dough, going ice skating, and maybe even holding
hands. Reserve your table at Gimble’s Department store.

“We Need a Little Christmas” Winter Concert with Austin Handbell Ensemble ($5 – 10)
Monday, December 17 | from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. | St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, 14311 Wells Port Dr.
Tickets are $5 for children/ students and $10 for adults.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Tuesday

Austin Trail Of Lights 
Tuesday, December 18 | from 7 to 10 p.m. | Zilker Park, 2400 Barton Springs Rd.
Admission is FREE from December 17 through December 19. Check the Austin Trail of Lights website for admission fees on other dates and event schedules. Children 11 and under are FREE every night! Parking passes and shuttle tickets are available online.

Pfestive Pfarmers Market (Pflugerville)
Tuesday, December 18 | from 3 to 7 p.m. | Heritage Park, 901 Old Austin Hutto Rd., Pflugerville
Visit the Pflugerville Pfarmers Market for extra shopping for your holiday meals and gifts. The market brings fresh, locally grown and prepared foods to the Pflugerville community. Vendors sell a variety of produce, artisan baked goods, free-range meats, jarred salsas, crafts and more. Remember, when you shop at the Pflugerville Pfarmers Market, you are supporting local farms and small businesses.

“We Need a Little Christmas” Winter Concert with Austin Handbell Ensemble ($5 – 10/  Georgetown)
Tuesday, December 18 | from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. | San Gabriel Presbyterian Church, 5404 Williams Dr., Georgetown
Tickets are $5 for children/ students and $10 for adults.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Wednesday

Austin Trail Of Lights 
Wednesday, December 19 | from 7 to 10 p.m. | Zilker Park, 2400 Barton Springs Rd.
Admission is FREE from December 17 through December 19. Check the Austin Trail of Lights website for admission fees on other dates and event schedules. Children 11 and under are FREE every night! Parking passes and shuttle tickets are available online.

Wednesday Farmers’ Market at Mueller
Wednesday, December 19 | from 5 to 8 p.m. | Texas Farmer’s Market at Mueller, 4209 Airport Blvd. at the Browning Hangar
Make Mueller on Wednesdays your fave hang spot with friends or the fam. Perfect for an after work or after school wind down, TFM Mueller on Wed features 50 local food artisans, sustainable farmers and ranchers and craft beverages. Pack a blanket and picnic lakeside! Sip and stroll along Mueller Lake park under the shady trees beside the historic Browning Hangar. Take the kiddos for independent play in our play area, pony rides and other great family fun.

Christmas in the Community with Austin Symphony
Wednesday, December 19 | at 11 a.m. | Asian American Resource Center, 8401 Cameron Rd.
The Austin Symphony is once again bringing FREE music to all Austinites this holiday season. “Christmas in the Community” is a series of twelve concerts held throughout the city of Austin featuring different ensembles of the orchestra playing familiar holiday music. The program kicks off on December 1st with woodwinds at the Macy’s at Barton Creek Mall and concludes December 20th with big band music at the Austin Public Library downtown. All twelve dates, times, and locations are listed here.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Thursday

Austin Trail Of Lights 
Thursday, December 20 | from 7 to 10 p.m. | Zilker Park, 2400 Barton Springs Rd.
Admission is FREE from December 17 through December 19. Check the Austin Trail of Lights website for admission fees on other dates and event schedules. Children 11 and under are FREE every night! Parking passes and shuttle tickets are available online.

Christmas in the Community with Austin Symphony
Thursday, December 20 | at 7 p.m. | Pan American Recreation Center, 2100 E. 3rd St.
The Austin Symphony is once again bringing FREE music to all Austinites this holiday season. “Christmas in the Community” is a series of twelve concerts held throughout the city of Austin featuring different ensembles of the orchestra playing familiar holiday music. The program kicks off on December 1st with woodwinds at the Macy’s at Barton Creek Mall and concludes December 20th with big band music at the Austin Public Library downtown. All twelve dates, times, and locations are listed here.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Friday

TUBACHRISTMAS
Friday, December 21 | Noon | Texas State Capitol Building (South Steps), 1100 Congress Ave.
2018 is the 45th anniversary for TUBACHRISTMAS concerts/events which are presented throughout the world. TUBACHRISTMAS was conceived in 1974 by Harvey Phillips as a tribute to his teacher and mentor William J. Bell, born on Christmas Day, 1902. Free!

Hot Cocoa With Santa
Friday, December 21 | from 1 to 3 p.m. | Central Health Southeast Health & Wellness, 2901 Montopolis Dr.
Join for hot cocoa and get a free photo with Santa. They will have community resources, games, and a chance to win a free turkey dinner.

Winter Solstice Lantern Party
Friday, December 21 | from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. | Mueller Lake Park, 4550 Mueller Blvd.
Celebrate the longest night of the year at Minor Mishap’s annual Winter Solstice Lantern Parade! On Friday, Dec. 21, attendees can enjoy a night of music, community and creativity as hundreds of lanterns come together under the night sky at Mueller Lake Park. Participants can also look forward to a special performance by Minor Mishap Marching Band, a 25-piece brass band. This event is free, but please be sure to RSVP if you plan to attend!

Check out the Free Fun Calendar for even more ways to fill your week with fun Austin events.

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About the Author

Dani Dudek
Dani Dudek is an Emmy-winning marketer who has been active professionally in the entertainment industry for two decades. She has mastered the art of celebrity spotting across the country, but does so best in Austin, where she runs the website ATXGossip.com. With a special eye for even the most minor of celebs, she is basically Shazam and IMDB together in human form.
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