February is half over, but don’t let that slow you down! There’s more than enough excitement to keep the hardiest of souls wondering which way to go for their weekend celebrations….and I’m here to help you stay on top of the events planned by the local event companies.
First on the list is Saturday, March 20th, with three city-wide events that are sure to please. Carnival Brasileiro is at the Palmer Events Center near downtown Austin. With live samba music, conga lines, costumes and wild abandon filling the air, you’ll need to dress for this occasion. This is one of the largest Carnaval celebrations outside of Brazil and if you haven’t been to this one, it’s the next best thing to making a trip to Rio! Go to sambaparty.com for the particulars.
Next up on Saturday night is the celebration for Chinese New Year at the located at Austin first and only Chinatown Center at 10901 N. Lamar Blvd. at the intersection of N. Lamar and Kramer. The annual celebration in North Austin carries on for two days showcasing Austin’s very own incredible talents and a grand time for the entire family. Events start at 11 a.m. each day with a feature at noon on Sunday with the Texas Dragon and Lion Dance Team complemented with fireworks and fun!
And finally, on Saturday, Huston-Tillotson University celebrates African-American Community Heritage Festival from 1 to 5 p.m. at 900 Chicon in East Austin. It’s a celebration of arts, culture and community and is Free and open to everyone. There will be vendors, children’s activities, bands, singing, poetry, and dance from some of Austin’s premiere talent. The event is in its eleventh year and you can find more information at austinheritagefestival.com.
On Thursday, the 26th of February, you can learn all you ever wanted to know about juggling and unicycling at JuggleFest. The event is three days of fun held on the University of Texas campus at Bellmont Hall, Rooms 528 (juggling) and 302 (unicycling) Times are :Friday, February 26; 5 pm – 10 pm; Saturday, February 27; 10 am – 6 pm; and Sunday, February 28; 10 am – 6 pm. They will be showcasing performers from Austin and all over the world demonstrating their skills in the circus arts. Unicycles, yo-yos, diabolos, poi, juggling – there’s no telling what’s going to happen next. $10 Admission – Covers all three days!
If you have a sweet tooth that needs a fix, pay a visit to the sugar art show and cake competition on Saturday and Sunday at the Crockett Center at 10601 N. Lamar in north Austin. Show hours are Saturday from 10:30 to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 9 to 5 p.m. The 2010 Cake Odyssey includes mini-classes, cake decorating competition and vendors for those hard to find utensils that every cake decorator needs to make beautiful confections! Price is $8 per day and you can bring a can for the Capital Area Food Bank and get $1 off.
Close out February with the spring 2010 installment of Austin Restaurant Week. The event runs from February 28th – March 3rd and March 7th – 10th, and will allow participants to dine at the finest establishments throughout the city for fixed prices, ranging from $10 – $15 for lunch and $25 – $35 for dinner. The list of over 50 restaurants includes Jeffrey’s, Hudson on the Bend, Eddie V’s, Aquarelle, Sullivan’s, Siena, Roaring Fork, Flemings, Driskill Grill, Gumbo’s, and Shoreline Grill… plus many more! Treat yourself you a night on the town at any of these top restaurants…and save yourself some $$$. Pick up a map at participating restaurants and remember that 5% of Restaurant Week sales will be going to the Sustainable Food Center of Austin