Auditorium Shores

Mary Mang/KUTX

Transmission Events announced their annual Fun Fun Fun Fest will stay at Auditorium Shores this year, despite the city's ongoing renovation of the park that initially put the fest's location up in the air. 

The ninth annual fest will be held Nov. 7 to Nov. 9 this year.  

A rendering of upcoming changes to Auditorium Shores.
City of Austin

In its final meeting of the year, the Austin City Council approved a full slate of items.

Among the measures passed was a decision restricting where dogs are permitted at Auditorium Shores. More than a dozen speakers took to the council floor to argue against the change, which would prohibit dogs from lingering on the so-called "Event Lawn" on the east end of Auditorium Shores.

Parks and Recreation Director Sara Hensely said the department took community suggestions under advisement when revising the $3.5 million plan for the parkland. But under a new amendment, dogs are only allowed on the event lawn when traveling from a parking lot to the neighboring areas where dogs are allowed. (No one on Parks staff or the City Council bothered to explain just how that would be enforced.)

Austinites gathered at the Homeless Memorial and Tree of Remembrance at Auditorium Shores on Sunday to pay tribute to people in the city's homeless community who have died over the past year.

Organizers of the 21st annual House the Homeless Sunrise Memorial Service read the names of 146 people. They placed a small star for each name on the Tree of Remembrance next to the memorial.

KUT's Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon was at the service and put together this video:

Credit Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon, KUT News

Fun Fun Fun Fest kicks off as at Auditorium Shores starting today.

The festival began eight years ago as a small music showcase in downtown Austin. Since then, it’s become one of the top independent festivals for music lovers. Known for its relaxed and creative atmosphere, the festival now includes comedy, action sports and flying tacos.

Given all it takes to put on a music festival, you wouldn’t expect as much laughter and humor from festival organizers, Transmission Events, this close to their event. But the vibe over at the temporary small east Austin office was anything but serious. It’s clear that fest creators like to have, well, fun.

“We had half-pipe diaper changing stations last year,” says Transmission and Fun Fun Fun Fest co-founder, James Moody. “They are all miniature half pipes. One time we tried to run the stats about how many black t-shirts are at our fest. I would say it’s 65 percent more than that of ACL Fest. I don’t know what it means but I know it’s true [laughing]. So, we could sit here for an hour and talk about all those little differences – it’s one big difference if you roll them all up.

Jorge Corona for KUT News

Proposed changes to Auditorium Shores – and specifically, changes to the area available to dogs and their owners – have people talking.

As part of a $3.5 million renovation, the city’s proposed moving the off-leash dog area closer to the Lady Bird Lake shoreline – and away from joggers and cyclists using the trail. And while the change would shrink the current off-leash area, it would also restrict dogs entirely from the largest portion of Auditorium Shores – the so-called “Event Lawn.” (See a map of the proposed changes in the slideshow above.)

Update: A final public meeting on proposed changes to Auditorium Shores takes place tonight. And the plans have some dog lovers howling.

With a $3.5 million donation, the city plans to realign the hike and bike trail, put in new turf grass and redesign the off-leash area for dogs – moving it along the shoreline and adding a series of “dog launches” into Lady Bird Lake, but shrinking it in the process.

The donation comes from C3 Presents, the entertainment company that puts on the ACL Music Festival and the Austin Food and Wine Festival. (Its 2012 edition of the Food and Wine Fest, held at Auditorium Shores, was marred by dust.)

HR Booking

After a month of leaks and guessing games, the official music lineup in out. This year’s Fun Fun Fun Fest headliners are: M.I.A., Slayer, MGMT, Jurassic 5, Snoop Dogg, Descendents, Ice-T, Television, and FLAG.

The official release is Wednesday morning when weekend passes go on sale, but the full music lineup was revealed Tuesday night at a Fun Fun Fun Fest sponsored screening of the documentary, Vannin’, in Austin.

Photo by Daniel Reese for KUT News

City Council's got a full plate today, with everything from parking, rental registries, ride-shares, a possible closure of Auditorium Shores and a measure that could make Austin the first city to offer paid parental leave for city employees. 

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon, KUT

The Austin City Council is meeting in a work session today. They could talk about accepting a $3.5 million donation from event production company C3 Presents to make improvements to Auditorium Shores.

C3 Presents is a concert promotion and management company that puts on events such as the Austin Food and Wine Festival at the park. The city approved C3 Presents’ request for a second weekend for the popular Austin City Limits Festival in 2013 and later years.

Google Maps

Auditorium Shores is a step closer to closing for a year.

Today, the Austin Parks and Recreation Board voted to recommend that City Council approve a plan to upgrade the park with a $3.5 million donation from an Austin-based event planning company C3 Presents. You can watch that meeting online

KUT News

Popular park and festival spot Auditorium Shores could close for a whole year if the Austin City Council approves a proposal from the Parks and Recreation Department.

The changes include an improved irrigation system, new turf grass and an enhanced off-leash area for dogs. The cost would be shouldered via a $3.5 million donation from the Austin-based promoters C3 Presents. The company has worked out similar deals to improve the grounds at Zilker Park, which hosts C3’s Austin City Limits Festival.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

What's the Impact of All Those Events at Zilker & Auditorium Shores?

The Austin City Council is scheduled to discuss today a resolution that would direct the City Manager to study the impact of events at Zilker Park and Auditorium Shores.

Last week, council members approved expanding the Austin City Limits Music Festival to two weekends next year. The festival organizer, C3 Presents, promised to pay not only fees for the use of Zilker but also an unspecified sum of money to upgrade Auditorium Shores.

C3 Presents also organizes the Austin Food and Wine Festival at Auditorium Shores. Attendees at this year’s event complained the festival was “dusty” after grass was worn down to dirt from a previous event at the park.

Formula Fest has crashed for the time being. 

Organizers hoped a planned two-day concert would draw 50,000 people to Auditorium Shores in celebration of Austin's inaugural U.S. Grand Prix race in November. In recent weeks, Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell and additional City Council members had sponsored a resolution to allow the event on Nov. 16-18. 

But a red flag went up today from Austin’s Junior League, a group of more than 2,000 women who dedicate time to charitable causes. Rather than go head-on with the League, City Hall decided to nix the Formula Fest proposal, and pull it from this Thursday's council agenda.

The Junior League’s objection? A conflict with its annual charity event, a popular holiday craft show called A Christmas Affair.  The event has run for 36 straight years, all but one year at the Palmer Events Center, located next to Auditorium Shores.   

Photo courtesy

Austin goes to the dogs this weekend as the city attempts to break four canine-related Guinness World Records on Saturday at Auditorium Shores.

The 14th Annual Mighty Texas Dog Walk will try to break several records: the World’s Largest Dog Walk, the Biggest Hairball, the Most Dogs Wearing the Same Bandana, and the Most Dogs Sitting at Once.  The three-mile dog walk along Lady Bird Lake will include water stops for both pooches and people.  

11,256 dogs participated in the event in 2010, which was thought to be the record. According to the Guinness World Book of Records, the largest dog walk was held in Great Britain that same year.  That walk had 18,113 dogs with 178 types of breeds.  The organizers of the British event claim that record was broken yet again in 2011 with a tally of 22,742 dogs.  

Photo by sailingseas

Austin City Council gave the green light today for Fun Fun Fun Fest to continue through Sunday when it opens the festival gates this November at Auditorium Shores. The resolution directs city staff to do three things:

  • Give Fun Fun Fun Fest organizers an extra day
  • Find a way to accommodate other events displaced by the closure of Waterloo Park
  • Develop a policy for charging a “mitigation fee” to events for park maintenance and upkeep
Image by Erika Aguilar/KUT

New Year’s Eve 2011 will look a little different in downtown Austin tonight. The bar and club scene will be about the same. But there won’t be a “First Night Austin” celebration, as there has been in years past.

In fact, this will be the first New Year’s Eve in six years where there has been no “First Night Austin” celebration. Organizers announced at the end of September that they didn’t have the money to stage the family-friendly downtown party this year. They’re hoping to be back to ring in 2012.