The dog days of summer can hang on for a long time in Austin. If you’re struggling through these last lingering weeks of heat and humidity in the city, try adding one of the following fun events to your calendar. You can catch fascinating film screenings, snag a seat for top-notch live performances, or stroll the streets enjoying the season’s top local festivals.
1. Bat Fest
Congress Ave Bridge, 100 S Congress Ave
August 20 from 4 p.m. to midnight
Bat Fest celebrates the world’s largest urban bat colony — 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats live under Ann Richard’s Congress Street Bridge. This year marks the 12th annual festival for these nocturnal creatures, which features more than 65 arts and crafts vendors, ample food and drink, live music, and themed activities for children. At dusk, you’ll be able to watch as the bats take flight in a stunning display. Admission is $25.
2. The Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival
Fiesta Gardens, 2101 Jesse E Segovia St
August 21 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
If you like things hot, you’ll love the Hot Sauce Festival. You’ll enjoy live music and spicy bites from local restaurants including Curra’s Grill, Kesos Taco House, Kebabalicious, and more. Join the 8-minute Pluckers Wing King Competition for a chance to win a $1,000 cash prize (to prequalify, you must eat 10 wings in three minutes or less). For admission to the Hot Sauce Festival, bring a $5 donation for the Central Texas Food Bank or three non-perishable food items.
3. Capital City Black Film Festival
Austin Convention Center, 500 E Cesar Chavez St
The Capital City Black Film Festival features four days of film screenings, workshops, and panels. Explore film distribution strategies, hone your screenwriting skills, or attend a discussion of how the Black Panther impacted the Marvel universe. Saturday night’s red carpet networking offers the ideal opportunity to meet and mingle with influential professionals in the field, while the weekend film screenings provide an intriguing look at the latest works from African American filmmakers.
4. Out of Bounds Comedy Festival
August 30-September 5
The Out of Bounds Comedy Festival is your chance to catch some of the best stand-up, improv, and sketch comedians from around the world. The event takes place on seven stages over seven days, and will feature 180 acts and 500 performers. The schedule is packed with diverse options, so you’re sure to find something that will tickle your funny bone.
How will you spend the dog days of summer in the Austin area? Share your favorite events with us in the comments section below!