What’s Up? Weekly: December 4-8, 2017

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

Mozart’s Christmas Light Show
Mon-Fri, Dec. 4-8 | from 6 to 10 p.m. | Mozart’s Coffee Roasters, 3825 Lake Austin Blvd
Thousands of dazzling lights have been sculpted into giant iconic objects, custom-made in Greece, that evoke Austin’s culture and the Christmas season, including a dozen guitars, the State Capitol, and a tree filled with presents, plus, an audio-activated wall of lights. Thousands of other lights will be imaginatively strung in the trees, facades, and rooflines. All will be placed around Mozart’s lakeside deck. For refreshment, Mozart’s acclaimed coffee and hot chocolate can be purchased inside the coffee house and at kiosks outdoors. Special holiday goodies from Mozart’s bakery will also be available. High Points of the Show/Timing: The exhilarating high points of the show, super light-ups and live choral singing, will be spaced throughout the entire evening. Families can relax and arrive at any time to get their over-the-top dose of Christmas magic. Show is FREE!

Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shop (Round Rock)
Mon-Fri, Dec. 4-8 | from 5-8 p.m. | Bass Pro Shop, 200 Bass Pro Drive, Round Rock
Get a FREE photo with Santa (additional photos available to purchase), photo frame, crafts, activities and more! FREE!

Blue Genie Art Bazaar 2017
Mon-Fri, Dec. 4-8 | from 10 a.m to 10 p.m. | Blue Genie Art Bazaar, 6100 Airport Blvd.
The Blue Genie Art Bazaar is a fixture of the Austin holiday shopping season. Open every year from Black Friday to Christmas Eve. The Bazaar features unique work from over 200 local & regional artists – with a portion of proceeds going to Make-A-Wish®. Parking and admission are always FREE of charge.

5th Annual Holiday Model Train Show (Round Rock)
Wed-Fri, Dec. 6-8 | from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. | ArtSpace, 231 E Main St, Round Rock
Visit a dynamic train display replete with a Harry Potter scene, a 1950s city with a trolley weaving through its downtown that is filled with vintage cars, a farm, amusement park, mountain range where Boy Scouts are on an outing, an old train depot, and even a water tower, just like Round Rock! For a donation to the Tinplate Trackers, you can be a “junior engineer” and operate the train controls, many of which have different speeds and audio components (bells, engineer’s commands, etc). Additionally, raffle tickets are available for purchase to enter to win a Thomas the Train set. To add an interactive component for children and families, they are also offering “ArtSpace Activity Booklets,” containing the ever popular scavenger hunt. FREE!

Monday

Baby Bloomers: Winter Wonders!
Monday, December 4 | from 9:00 a.m. to noon | The Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave
Winter is here, and we’re ready to celebrate! This December, you can explore all things winter during Baby Bloomers. You’ll create snowflakes, practice sock “skating,” and investigate winter wonders all month long! Cost: Members $3 each / Non-Members $5 each. All people attending, regardless of age, must purchase a ticket. Purchase a ticket online as limited walk-up tickets will be available.

Storytime with Mrs. Claus
Monday, December 4 at 10 a.m. | The The Arboretum at Great Hills, 10000 Research Blvd
Welcome Mrs. Claus from the North Pole to The Arboretum for a morning kid-friendly storytime near the fireplace! FREE!

Literature Live: The Elves and the Shoemaker
Monday, Dec. 4 | at 3:30 p.m. | APL – Spicewood Springs Branch,8637 Spicewood Springs Rd
A cold, lonely winter seems the fate of a poor shoemaker and his wife until the magic of the season intervenes. Join the Austin Public Library’s Literature Live! for happy surprises and fun in this traditional puppet show. Recommended for ages 5 and up. FREE!

Bow Wow Readers (Cedar Park)
Monday, Dec. 4 | at 4:30 p.m. | Cedar Park Public Library, 550 Discovery Blvd, Cedar Park
Kids in grades K-3 are invited to read to a certified Bow Wow Reading Dog. Practice your reading skills with Tex and read to him for 10-15 minutes. Registration starts at 3:30 p.m. on the day of the program. FREE!

Gingerbread Village / Holiday Open House at the Four Seasons
Monday, December 4 | from 5 to 6 p.m. | Four Seasons Hotel Austin Lobby, 98 San Jacinto Blvd
A beloved tradition, the Open Houses invite locals and visitors to ooh and ahh over the Gingerbread Village in the Lobby, all while enjoying complimentary hot apple cider and festive cookies. The talented pastry chefs behind this year’s Monopoly-inspired Village – along with special guest, Santa – will also be on hand for photo opportunities and to answer questions about the houses, which will be on display from November 21 through December 28, 2017.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Tuesday

Whole Foods Kids Club
Tuesday, Dec. 5 | at 9:30 a.m. | Whole Foods Domain, 11920 Domain Dr
Kids ages 2-5 will enjoy snacks and a special storytime. Parental supervision is requested. FREE!

Free Admission to Laguna Gloria
Tuesday, Dec. 5 | from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. | The Contemporary Austin, Laguna Gloria, 3809 W 35th St
FREE!

Milly McSilly Storytime
Tuesday, Dec. 5 | at 10:30 a.m. | Book People, 603 N Lamar Blvd
It’s another storytime with crowd favorite Milly McSilly! Milly’s a bit unpredictable, so if you love bubbles, balloons, and all-around SILLINESS, this is the storytime for you! FREE!

Literature Live: The Elves and the Shoemaker
Tuesday, Dec. 5 | at 10:30 a.m. | APL – Terrazas Branch,1105 East César Chávez St
A cold, lonely winter seems the fate of a poor shoemaker and his wife until the magic of the season intervenes. Join the Austin Public Library’s Literature Live! for happy surprises and fun in this traditional puppet show. Recommended for ages 5 and up. FREE!

Gingerbread Village / Holiday Open House at the Four Seasons
Tuesday, December 5 | from 5 to 6 p.m. | Four Seasons Hotel Austin Lobby, 98 San Jacinto Blvd
A beloved tradition, the Open Houses invite locals and visitors to ooh and ahh over the Gingerbread Village in the Lobby, all while enjoying complimentary hot apple cider and festive cookies. The talented pastry chefs behind this year’s Monopoly-inspired Village – along with special guest, Santa – will also be on hand for photo opportunities and to answer questions about the houses, which will be on display from November 21 through December 28, 2017.

Carriage Rides at The Arboretum
Tuesday, December 5 | from 5 to 9 p.m. | The Arboretum at Great Hills, 10000 Research Blvd
Enjoy a FREE carriage ride around The Arboretum and take in the holiday sights and sounds! Rides will be available every Tuesday and Thursday in December from 5 to 9 p.m. Rides start near Amy’s Ice Creams and last around 10 minutes.

12th Annual Tower Lighting
Tuesday, December 5 | at 5:30 p.m. | John Gaines Park, 2708 Sorin St
It’s one of Mueller’s most beloved traditions, the 12th Annual Tower Lighting. The Reagan High School Drumline and Boss Street Band will provide entertaiment for the entire family. Free coffee, kettle corn and cookies will be available while supplies last! Food trucks will be on-site with food for purchase during the event. Event is FREE!

Dickens Day Celebration (Pflugerville)
Tuesday, December 5 | at 6:30 p.m. | Pflugerville Public Library, 1008 Pfluger St W
Bah! Humbug! The storyteller Gary Whitaker will bring the words of Charles Dickens to life in a retelling of the classic tale, A Christmas Carol. Enjoy hot cocoa and cookies before the story begins at 6:30 pm. All ages welcome. FREE!

A Very Special Project_Trio Jazz
Tuesday, December 5 | from 7 to 9 p.m. | in.gredients, 2610 Manor Rd
Enjoy Jazz on the porch! It’s a very special Project_Trio Jazz. It’s Marco’s birthday and he’ll be bringing up several special guests to jam! Marco Antonio Santos (guitar), Don Gozzard (Drums) and Will Baroni (Upright Bass) are part of Project_Trio. All members are current students at the UT Jazz Program. The trio presents original music and rearrangements of Jazz standards in a contemporary vision. Improvisation, grooves, interaction, jazz, rock, Samba, guitar effects and a lot of energy: all are part of Project_Trio. Show is FREE!

UMLAUF After Dark
Tuesday, Dec. 5 | from 6 to 8 p.m. | UMLAUF Sculpture Garden & Museum, 605 Robert E Lee Rd
UMLAUF After Dark happens every first Tuesday of the month, offering UMLAUF visitors a chance to experience the special evening environment of the sculpture garden and in featured gallery exhibitions, in addition to the activities and entertainment. UMLAUF After Dark is the perfect way to enjoy this gorgeous fall weather while taking in the incredible sights and sounds of nature. This event is FREE and open to everyone, and is a perfect opportunity to see the current exhibition Grackle Actions by UMLAUF Prize 2017 Winner Bucky Miller.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Wednesday

Kids Club
Wednesday, Dec. 6 | at 9:30 a.m. | Whole Foods, 525 N Lamar Blvd
Kids of all ages will enjoy snacks, storytime, crafts, and more. Parental supervision is requested. FREE!

Carrying Hope Storytime
Wednesday, Dec. 6 | at 10:30 a.m. | Book People, 603 N Lamar Blvd
Carrying Hope is a nonprofit that creates care packages for foster children in Central Texas. As part of our Giving Tree program, you’re able to donate books from their wish list right here at BookPeople! Pick up a snowflake tag and a book and take it to the registers. At the storytime, you will be reading a few of their favorite picks like The Lion & the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney. They also have fun activities planned for you– and a special visitor! FREE!

Community Night at The Thinkery
Wednesday, Dec. 6from 4 to 8 p.m. | The Thinkery, 1830 Simond Ave
Make and do together at Community Night. Every Wednesday, The Thinkery stays open late for families to discover new ideas and learn together. Enjoy the exhibits and educational programs facilitated by staff. Cost: Admission is by donation only, with a suggested $1 donation.

Krispy Kreme Family Night
Wednesday, Dec. 6 | from 6 to 8 p.m. | Krispy Kreme, 701 E Stassney Ln and 12586 Research Blvd
Kids can decorate one free doughnut each, plus fun activities and surprises. FREE!

Texas Radio Live: 6th Anniversary Show!
Wednesday, Dec. 6 | from 6 to 8 p.m. | Guero’s Oak Garden, 1412 S Congress Ave
Texas Radio Live brings you the very best Texas music with performances from Texas musicians. This week hear performances from Austin Lounge Lizards. FREE but donations to support the Sun Radio Foundation are appreciated. Read about Catherine’s experience here.

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Thursday

Free Admission at The Blanton
Thursday, Dec. 7 | from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. | Blanton Museum of Art, 200 E Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Austin
FREE!

Literature Live: The Elves and the Shoemaker
Thursday, Dec. 7 | at 10:15 a.m. | APL – Windsor Park Branch, 5833 Westminster Dr
A cold, lonely winter seems the fate of a poor shoemaker and his wife until the magic of the season intervenes. Join the Austin Public Library’s Literature Live! for happy surprises and fun in this traditional puppet show. Recommended for ages 5 and up. FREE!

¡Hola, Hola! Spanish Camp
Thursday, Dec. 7 | at 10:30 a.m. | Westbank Library, 1309 Westbank Dr
¡Hola, Hola! Spanish Camp for All Ages is designed to empower parents to read simple Spanish books at home and foster a love of Spanish language and Hispanic culture through singing, traditional circle games, rhythm instruments, puppets, and stories. You do not need to have any Spanish language skills to participate. All skill levels are welcome. Arrive early or stay after class to enjoy the beautiful playground and picnic area just outside the door and make new amigos. FREE!

Free Noon Concert
Thursday, Dec. 7 | at noon | Central Presbyterian Church, 200 E 8th St
Take a 30-minute lunchtime break to hear live music. This week: Austin Handbells! FREE!

Johnny Nicholas FREE In-Store Performance
Thursday, Dec. 7 | at 5 p.m. | Waterloo Records, 600A N. Lamar
Shiner Beer Presents blues master Johnny Nicholas! Johnny will perform a 30 minute set with a signing afterward. FREE!

Carriage Rides at The Arboretum
Thursday, Dec. 7 | from 5 to 9 p.m. | The Arboretum at Great Hills, 10000 Research Blvd
Enjoy a FREE carriage ride around The Arboretum and take in the holiday sights and sounds! Rides will be available every Tuesday and Thursday in December from 5-9pm. Rides start near Amy’s Ice Creams and last around 10 minutes.

Starry Nights: Inuit Star Lore
Thursday, Dec. 7 | from 5:30 to 7 p.m. | Girlstart STEM Center, 1400 W Anderson Ln. Austin
Girlstart’s STEM Studio and Mini-Planetarium is a unique space for families to explore astronomy. Starry Nights are held the 1st Thursday of every month (except January, June, July, and August), with each month featuring a new astronomy experience and related hands-on activities. This month, you can engineer mini marshmallow igloo structures, make Inuit snow goggles, explore polar bear adaptations, and design and decorate your own unique snowflake! All ages are welcome to stop by any time between 5:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. RSVP is recommended but not required to attend. FREE!

Hit ‘next’ for more Austin events!

Friday

Literature Live: The Elves and the Shoemaker
Friday, Dec. 8 | at 3:30 p.m. | APL – Howson Branch,2500 Exposition Blvd
A cold, lonely winter seems the fate of a poor shoemaker and his wife until the magic of the season intervenes. Join the Austin Public Library’s Literature Live! for happy surprises and fun in this traditional puppet show. Recommended for ages 5 and up. FREE!

Community First! Village of Lights and Outdoor Movie: Angels Sing
Friday, Dec. 8 | from 5 to 9 p.m. | Community First! Village, 9301 Hog Eye Rd
With more than 200,000 lights choreographed to holiday music, the Community First! Village of Lights is one of the biggest Christmas light displays in Central Texas! Be sure to include a stop at the Advent Market to shop for unique, handcrafted gifts made by formerly homeless craftsmen and artisans who live at the Village. Your purchase of gifts and concessions during the event helps our Community First! neighbors earn a dignified income. The event is FREE! RSVP here. Donations are always accepted and appreciated.

Friday Family Movies @ Ski Shores Cafe
Friday, December 8 | at 5:30 p.m. | Ski Shores Cafe, 2905 Pearce Rd
Bring the clan and head over to Ski Shores Cafe for Friday Family Movie nights! The film will start at dusk and you can have FREE s’mores by the fire! What better way to celebrate the end of your work week than an evening by the lake with loved ones, movies, food and beverages? This week: Mighty Ducks 3. *Note: Ski Shores will be open on days when it is above 60 degrees and dry (closed otherwise).

Holiday Family Movie Nights
Friday, December 8 | at 6:30 p.m. | The Arboretum at Great Hills, 10000 Research Blvd
Enjoy a holiday movie night under the stars at The Arboretum. For 3 Friday nights in December, bring your blankets and pillows and grab some ice cream from Amy’s Ice Creams and catch a movie by the fireplace! Movie starts at 6:30pm. This week: Elf. FREE!

 

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

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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