Friday, October 26, 2012

Jerry Hingle's Guide to Halloween in Austin

Howdy folks,
This weekend is Halloweekend here in Austin and you know what that means...forget sleeping. You can sleep when you're dead! Now is the time to grab your costume that you've been working on all year (or all night) and show it off. I'm not sure what I'm going to be yet...I've got two costumes up my sleeve. I might just rock both of em on Friday and Saturday. And I'm not quite sure where I'm going yet...this is typical of Austinites. But if you're not a typical Austinite and don't want to just "wing it" when the time comes, follow my tricks and treats for having an awesome time in Austin on Halloween. Here's all the stuff you can do:

1. Dogtober Fest
This was last weekend, but it's good to take note for next year. This event keeps getting bigger and bigger as word spreads. Located in the Domain, this event is all about your canine friends. There are costume contests, booths, snacks, some dancing, and lots and lots of dog watching. This is heaven for those of you with a weakness for dressed up pups. Feast your eyes on the cutest canines as they gnaw at their costumes.

2. 6th Street Pub Crawl
6th street seems to be the biggest attraction on Halloween and Halloween weekend. Basically, thousands of people gather on 6th street and walk up and down to see different costumes, take pictures with costumes they like, and (if they can get in) sit at a bar and costume watch. It's become an unofficial Parade of Weirdos, you might say. Come down and people watch if you can, but you'll need to get here early if you expect to actually sit at a bar. Or, you can purchase tickets for drink specials..I'm not sure how it works, but visit Pub Crawl Austin for more info.

3. Halloween Balls Galore!
There are a ton of Halloween Balls popping up all around Austin as people begin to realize that 6th street is just not big enough for the whole town. Instead, people are resorting to awesome Dances and Balls where's there are guaranteed drinks, dancing, and costume watching.  Of course you have to pay admission, but believe me, after a few years of inching your way through 6th street, this is a great alternative.
Haunted Halloween Ball
Jared's Halloween Party
The Zombie Ball (An Austin favorite)
Hell: A Halloween Ball  
Austins Monster Ball 

4. Thriller Dance Party
Hosted by Ballet Austin, this is a really cool event where you learn how to dance Thriller. If you wear a costume, you get $12 bucks off! It's also hosted on Halloween night, so if you gotta work the next day (like most of us) then this is a good home by 10pm kinda party.

5. Vintage Circus Halloween Party 
Sounds creepy already. There's not too much info out there on this, but it's on Halloween night and it's located at the East Side Showroom. If you decide to go to this, let us know about it in the comments. I'd love to hear what it's about. 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Jerry Hingle's Tips for Austin City Limits

Hello good people of the internet,

Were you at ACL this past weekend? I was unable to attend this year, unfortunately, but I heard the shows were great. My facebook was filled with all sorts of posts from people at the fest...waiting in crowds, getting soaking wet, and then dancing their little bums off while the band played. Sounds like lots of fun. Especially the soaking wet part. Yes, it was raining hard this weekend and I felt sorry for all the people out in the middle of Zilker waiting for their favorite bands. Especially since all the ponchos in Austin were sold out...again. This seems to happen every year, and so for the fourth of fifth year in a row, several thousands of people were left without protection from the evil rain.

Yes, if unprepared, ACL can really stink. It's only until you hear your favorite band play their first chord that you realize it was all worth it. Here are my top tips for future Austin City Limit Festivals:

1. Come prepared!
Bring sun block, a poncho, lots of water, and lots of cash (for lunch and souvenirs). You never know if it will be raining or scorching hot. It's Austin, and in mid-October we're usually either really wet or really hot. So plan for both. The dough will come in handy when you get extra thirsty (you know what I mean) and really hungry. The food and drinks at the fest are hella expensive, so save your pennies and enjoy the grub.

2. Rent a place nearby
The ideal thing to do would be to rent a place near Zilker and be able to walk or bike to the fest. Biking would be your best option. But to do this, you need to plan ahead. Book your place before the lineup is out. With each passing year, ACL is becoming ever popular, drawing in crowds from all across the U.S. Book a place close by and save on time waiting for the bus, money on cabs, and money on parking. Because let me tell you guys, parking during the ACL fest is near impossible to find, and if you do, it's most likely $30-$75 a day. 

3. Bring a tarp and some cards  and WAIT
You're gonna be spending the majority of your time waiting in crowds for the band to play. Trust me. If you want an awesome spot for the show, you're gonna have to get there an hour or two in advance. Perhaps earlier depending on how much you want to see the band. So bring a tarp to sit on and some bicycle cards and just enjoy the weather (assuming it's nice) while you wait for your band. You might even discover an awesome band in the distance while you're waiting.

Alright folks, that's my piece. Jerry Hingle has been to his fair share of Austin City Limits Festivals, so trust me. Read this and you'll be set for next year's ACL!