Everything about Austin–Encyclopedia Style

Posted on June 1, 2008. Filed under: -- Austin Related, -- Moving?, -- Uncategorized, . More Resources For YOU! | Tags: , , , , |

Thought you’d really like this information.  This information is all provided by Wikipedia. Do you remember when people used to come door to door and try and sell encyclopedias? Or did that just happen in little rural Vermont towns like where I grew up? Hmmm…

Austin, Texas

Austin is the capital of the U.S. state of Texas, the county seat of Travis County, and home to the University of Texas at Austin. Situated in Central Texas, Austin is the fourth-largest city in Texas the 16th largest in the United States, and the 5th largest city in the South. According to the U.S Census Bureau, Austin has a population of 709,893, as of July 1, 2006. Residents of Austin are known as “Austinites,” and include a mix of university professors, students, politicians, lobbyists, musicians, state employees, high-tech workers, blue-collar workers, and white-collar workers. The city is home to enough large sites of major technology corporations to have earned it the nickname “Silicon Hills.” Austin’s official slogan promotes the city as “The Live Music Capital of the World”, a reference to its status as home to many musicians and music venues. In recent years, many Austinites have also adopted the unofficial slogan “Keep Austin Weird”; this refers partly to the eclectic and…more

Austin Economy

Thousands of graduates each year from the engineering and computer science programs at The University of Texas at Austin provide a steady source of young, talented, and driven employees that help to fuel Austin’s technology and defense industry sectors. The metro Austin area has much lower housing costs than Silicon Valley, but much higher housing costs than many parts of rural Texas. As a result of the relatively high concentration of high-tech companies in the region, Austin was strongly affected by the dot-com boom in the late 1990s and subsequent bust. The general consensus is that high-tech recovery is proceeding rapidly. Austin’s biggest employers include the State of Texas, The University of Texas, the SETON Healthcare Network, Dell, IBM and Freescale Semiconductor . Other high-tech companies in Austin include Apple Inc., Hewlett-Packard, Vignette, AMD, Applied Materials, Cirrus Logic, Hoover’s, Inc., Intel, Motive Inc, National Instruments, Samsung, Silicon Laboratories, Sun…more

Austin Companies

Austin Careers

Among the most common occupations in Austin are Management, professional, and related occupations, 41%. Sales and office occupations, 21%. and Service occupations, 14%. Approximately 70 percent of workers in Austin, Texas work for companies, 16 percent work for the government and 7 percent are self-employed.

Popular Austin Jobs

Austin Industries

The leading industries in Austin, Texas are Educational services, and health care, and social assistance, 18%; Professional, scientific, and management, and administrative and waste management services, 14%; and Retail trade, 9%. Simply Hired’s Austin job listings indicate that the following industries in Austin are hiring the most workers: Computer Equipment Mfg,Computer MakersSoftware MakersMisc Information Services and Photoelectric Cell Mfg.

Austin Job Salaries

According to government data, the average salary for jobs in Austin, Texas is $38,550, and the median income of households in Austin was $43,731.       


Average Salaries in Austin, TX








Austin, TX


Austin Unemployment Rate

Austin has an unemployment rate of 7.0%, compared the national average of 6.9%.
According to our Austin Trends data, the number of Austin, Texas jobs has decreased by 14% since November 2006.
Austin job trends

Austin Employment Statistics

Population of Austin
Total population 678,457
Male 51.26%
Female 48.74%
Median age 31.4
Austin Housing
Owner-occupied homes 48.1%
Median cost of a home $170,900
Median mortgage payment $992
Renter-occupied homes 51.9%
Vacant housing 8.8%
Median monthly rent $740
Average Income
Median for all workers $27,508
Median for all male full-time $41,206
Median for all female full-time $35,894
Household Income
Less than $10,000 10%
$10,000 to $14,999 6%
$15,000 to $24,999 12%
$25,000 to $34,999 12%
$35,000 to $49,999 17%
$50,000 to $74,999 17%
$75,000 to $99,999 10%
$100,000 to $149,999 11%
$150,000 to $199,999 3%
$200,000 or more 4%
Less than 9th grade 7%
9th to 12th grade, no diploma 8%
High school graduate 17%
Some college, no degree 19%
Associate’s degree 6%
Bachelor’s degree 28%
Graduate degree 16%
Marital Status
Never married 39%
Currently married 44%
Separated 2%
Widowed 3%
Divorced 11%
White 70%
Black or African American 9%
Asian 5%
Other 15%
Austin Commute
Carpool 10.8%
Public transportation 5.0%
Average travel time 22 minutes


Hill Country      

Hill Country

Austin is located at 30°16′N 97°45′W [16] and is approximately 541 feet (165 m) above sea level. According to the 2000 census, the city has a total area of 258.4 square miles (669 km²). 251.5 square miles (651 km²) of it is land and 6.9 square miles (18 km²) (2.67%) is water.

Austin is situated on the Colorado River, with three man-made (artificial) lakes wholly within the city limits: Lady Bird LakeLake Austin, and Lake Walter E. Long. Additionally, the foot of Lake Travis, including Mansfield Dam, is located within the city’s limits. Lady Bird Lake, Lake Austin, and Lake Travis are each on the Colorado River. The city is also situated on the Balcones Fault, which, in much of Austin, runs roughly the same route as Loop 1(Mopac Expressway). The eastern part of the city is relatively flat, whereas the western part and western suburbs consist of scenic rolling hills on the edge of the Texas Hill Country. Because the hills to the west are primarily limestone rock with a thin covering of topsoil, portions of the city are frequently subjected to flash floods from the runoff caused by thunderstorms. To help control this runoff and to generate hydroelectric power, the Lower Colorado River Authority operates a series of dams that form the Texas Highland Lakes. The lakes also provide venues for boating, swimming, and other forms of recreation within several parks located on the lake shores.

Austin is located at the intersection of four major ecological regions and is consequently mostly a temperate-to-hot green oasis but has some characteristics of the desert, the tropics, and a wetter climate. It is very diverse ecologically/biologically and the home of a variety of beautiful animals and plants, notably the wildflowers that blossom throughout the year but especially in the spring, including the popular bluebonnets, some planted in an effort by Lady Bird Johnson.

The view from Mount Bonnell      

The view from Mount Bonnell

A popular point of prominence in Austin is Mount Bonnell. At about 780 feet (238 m) above sea level, it is a natural limestone formation overlooking Lake Austin on the Colorado River, about 200 feet (61 m) below its summit. From the observation deck, many homes are visible.

The soils of Austin range from shallow gravelly clay loams over limestone in the western outskirts to deep fine sandy loams, silty clay loams, silty clays or clays in the city’s eastern part. Some of the clays have pronounced shrink-swell properties and are difficult to work under most moisture conditions. Many of Austin’s soils, especially the clay-rich types, are slightly to moderately alkaline and have free calcium carbonate.

See also: List of Austin Neighborhoods
Downtown Austin from the summit of Mt. Bonnell      

Downtown Austin from the summit of Mt. Bonnell


Austin has a humid subtropical climate, characterized by hot summers and mild winters.[17] On average, Austin receives 33.6 inches (853.4 mm) of rain per year, with most of the precipitation in the spring, and a secondary maximum in the fall.[18] During springtime, severe thunderstorms sometimes occur, though tornadoes are rare in the city. Austin is usually at least partially sunny.

Austin summers are usually hot and humid, with average temperatures of approximately 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 Celsius) from June until September. Temperatures above 100 °F (38 °C) are common. The highest recorded temperature was 112 °F (44 °C) on September 52000.[17][19][20] For the entire year there is an average of 111 days above 90 °F (32 °C) and 198 days above 80 °F (27 °C).[17]

Winters in Austin are mild and dry. For the entire year, Austin averages 88 days below 45 °F (7 °C) and 24 days when the minimum temperature falls below freezing. The lowest recorded temperature was −2 °F (−19 °C) on January 311949.[17] Snowfall is rare in Austin, but approximately biannually Austin may suffer an ice storm that freezes roads over and shuts down much of the city for 24 to 48 hours.[17]

[hide]Weather averages for Camp Mabry, Austin, Texas, USA
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 90 (32) 99 (37) 98 (37) 99 (37) 104 (40) 108 (42) 108 (42) 110 (43) 112 (44) 100 (38) 91 (33) 90 (32) 112 (44)
Average high °F (°C) 60 (16) 65 (18) 73 (23) 79 (26) 85 (29) 91 (33) 95 (35) 96 (36) 90 (32) 81 (27) 70 (21) 62 (17) 79 (26)
Average low °F (°C) 40 (4) 44 (7) 51 (11) 58 (14) 65 (18) 71 (22) 73 (23) 73 (23) 69 (21) 60 (16) 49 (9) 42 (6) 58 (14)
Record low °F (°C) -2 (-19) -1 (-18) 18 (-8) 30 (-1) 40 (4) 51 (11) 57 (14) 58 (14) 41 (5) 30 (-1) 20 (-7) 4 (-16) -2 (-19)
Precipitation inches (mm) 1.89 (48) 1.99 (50.5) 2.14 (54.4) 2.51 (63.8) 5.03 (127.8) 3.81 (96.8) 1.97 (50) 2.31 (58.7) 2.91 (73.9) 3.97 (100.8) 2.68 (68.1) 2.44 (62) 33.6 (853.4)
Source: NOAA [18]
Source #2: weather.com [20]
Table Note: Averages are from the 30 year average from 1971–2000 at Camp Mabry, and records are from Camp Mabry and from previous climate sites, spanning from 1897 to present.[18][20]

[edit]Government and politics

[edit]Law and government

View of Downtown Austin and Texas State Capitol from south Congress Avenue      

View of Downtown Austin and Texas State Capitol from southCongress Avenue

Austin is administered by a city council of seven members, each of them elected by the entire city. The council is composed of six council members, and by an elected mayor, accompanied by a hired city manager under the manager-council system of municipal governance. Council and mayoral elections are non-partisan, with a runoff in case there is no majority winner. Austin remains an anomaly among large Texas cities in that council members are elected on an “at large” basis by all voters, as opposed to elections by districts.

The current mayor of Austin is Will Wynn. His second term ends in 2009.

Austin is located in Travis County, Texas.

See also: List of current and former capital cities in the United States


The main political actors in Austin city politics are interest groups such as the pro-environmental Save Our Springs Alliance, Save Barton Creek Association, Equality TX, the Austin Police Association, and the Austin Business Council.[citation needed] Texas Democrats are very active here.

The controversy that dominated Austin politics during the 1990s was the conflict between environmentalists, strong in the city center, and advocates of urban growth, who tend to live in the outlying areas. The city council has in the past tried to mitigate the controversy by advocating smart growth, but growth and environmental protection are still the most divisive issues in city politics. Today conservatives in Austin argue that the city’s various highway traffic problems are rooted in the denial of past highway/infrastructure development by political action committees who do not support highway expansion. Environmentalists counter that their efforts contributed to the city’s large green spaces, which many Austinites enjoy. Progressives also maintain that unlike several other cities in Texas, Austin’s smart growth policies have contributed to a rapidly-increasing population density in and around the downtown area.

Austin is well known as a center for liberal politics in a generally conservative state. Suburban neighborhoods in Austin, especially to the west and north, and several satellite municipalities, however, tend toward political conservatism.

As a result of the major party realignment that began in the 1970s, central Austin became a stronghold of the Democratic Party while the suburbs tend to vote Republican. One consequence of this is that in the most recent redistricting plan, formulated by former U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay and enacted by the Republican-majority legislature, the central city has been split among multiple, sprawling districts. Opponents characterized the resulting districting layout as excessively partisan gerrymandering, and the plan was challenged in court on this basis by Democratic and minority activists; of note, the Supreme Court of the United States has never struck down a redistricting plan for being excessively partisan. The plan was subsequently upheld by a three-judge federal panel in late 2003, and on June 282006, the matter was largely settled when the Supreme Court in a 7-2 decision upheld the entire congressional redistricting plan with the exception of a Hispanic-majority district in southwest Texas. This may later affect Austin’s districting, as U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett‘s district was found not to be sufficiently compact to compensate for the reduced minority influence in the southwest district.[21]

Overall, the city is a blend of downtown liberalism and suburban conservatism, but leans strongly to the political left. In 2003, the city adopted a resolution against the USA PATRIOT actwhich reaffirmed constitutionally guaranteed rights. In the 2004 presidential election, Senator John Kerry won a substantial majority of the votes in Travis County as illustrated in thispictorial of votes by county. Of Austin’s six state legislative districts, three are strongly Democratic and three are swing districts all of which are held by Democrats. However, two of its three congressional districts are presently held by Republicans; this is largely due to the 2003 redistricting, which left downtown Austin without an exclusive congressional seat of its own. Travis County was also the only county in Texas to reject Texas Constitutional Amendment Proposition 2 — effectively outlawing gay marriage and status equal or similar to it — and did so by a wide margin (40% for, 60% against).

Vista of Austin's riverfront from Auditorium Shores Park.      

Vista of Austin’s riverfront from Auditorium Shores Park.

Austin is also an active area for the Libertarian Party. Although the Libertarians remain a third party, they occasionally garner substantial votes, and one of the past Libertarian presidential candidates, Michael Badnarik comes from Austin, while another, Ron Paul who ran for the 1988 presidential election as the Libertarian nominee, and for the Republican Party presidential nomination in 2008, and represented a congressional district that includes part of the greater Austin area.

Two of the candidates for President in the 2004 race call Austin home. Michael Badnarik, mentioned above as the Libertarian Party candidate, and David Cobb of the Green Party both have lived in Austin. During the run up to the election in November, a presidential debate was held at the University of Texas student union involving the two minor party candidates. While theCommission on Presidential Debates only invites Democrats and Republicans to participate in televised debates, the debate at UT was open to all presidential candidates.


Southward view of downtown Austin from The Capitol Grounds on 11th Street.      

Southward view of downtown Austin from The Capitol Grounds on 11th Street.

Thousands of graduates each year from the engineering and computer science programs at The University of Texas at Austin provide a steady source of employees that help to fuel Austin’s technology and defense industry sectors. The metro Austin area has much lower housing costs than Silicon Valley, but much higher housing costs than many parts of rural Texas. As a result of the relatively high concentration of high-tech companies in the region, Austin was strongly affected by the dot-com boom in the late 1990s and subsequent bust. The general consensus is that high-tech recovery is proceeding rapidly. Austin’s biggest employers include the State of Texas, The University of Texas, the Seton Healthcare Network, DellIBM andFreescale Semiconductor (spun off from Motorola in 2004). Other high-tech companies with operations in Austin include 3M CompanyApple Inc.,Hewlett-PackardAMDApplied MaterialsCirrus LogicCiscoeBay/PayPalGoogleHoover’s, Inc.IntelNational InstrumentsSamsungSilicon LaboratoriesSun Microsystems and United Devices. The proliferation of technology companies has led to the region’s nickname, “the Silicon Hills,” and spurred development that greatly expanded the city to the north, south, east, and west.

In addition to global companies, Austin features a strong network of independent, locally-owned firms and organizations such as the Austin Independent Business Alliance. The success of these businesses reflects the high level of commitment by the citizens of Austin to preserving the unique spirit of the city, and has been tied to the “Keep Austin Weird” campaign. Small businesses from restaurants to clothing shops to salons to arts companies in Austin enjoy a lively existence gained by direct competition with large national and global rivals. The state government, non-profits, and schools (the university and colleges, preschool-12th grade) also provide many jobs. Whole Foods, a market/grocery store specializing in organic, local, and natural foods and other goods (now a corporation) started in and is based in Austin, and work in the food industry/farming/culinary arts also provides a surprisingly high amount of employment/income for many people.


As of the census[5] of 2000, there were 656,562 people, 265,649 households, and 141,590 families residing in the city (roughly comparable in size to San FranciscoMemphis, andColumbus). The population density was 2,610.4 people per square mile (1,007.9/km²). There were 276,842 housing units at an average density of 1,100.7/sq mi (425.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 65.36% White, 10.05% Black or African American, 4.72% Asian, 0.59% Native American, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 16.23% from other races. 2.99% were from two or more races. 30.55% of the population were Hispanic or Latino, who can be of any race. 52.94% of the population were Whites of non-Hispanic ancestry.

There were 265,649 households out of which 26.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.1% were married couples living together, 10.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.7% were non-families. 32.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 3.14.

In the city the population was spread out with 22.5% under the age of 18, 16.6% from 18 to 24, 37.1% from 25 to 44, 17.1% from 45 to 64, and 6.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females there were 105.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $42,689, and the median income for a family was $54,091. Males had a median income of $35,545 vs. $30,046 for females. The per capita income for the city was $24,163. About 9.1% of families and 14.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.5% of those under age 18 and 8.7% of those age 65 or over. From the year 2000 to 2005, the median house price in Austin grew 34 percent.

According to the US Census Bureau, as of July 2007 the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Area had 1,598,161 people. It is one of the top 5 fastest growing metro areas in the nation. If combined with the population of the San Antonio metropolitan area (over 70 miles (113 km) to the southwest) the region is home to about 3.6 million people.

Austin is consistently ranked among the three safest cities per capita of any size in many categories and for many reasons, especially because annually, per 100,000 people there are fewer than 5 people murdered.


The sights of Austin's nightlife on 6th Street.      

The sights of Austin’s nightlife on 6th Street.

As Austin’s official slogan is The Live Music Capital of the World,[1][2] the city has a vibrant live music scene with more music venues per capita than any other U.S. city. Austin’s music revolves around the many nightclubs on 6th Street and an annual film/music/multimedia festival known as South by Southwest. The city also has a burgeoning circle of live performance theater venues such as: Zachary Scott Theatre Center, Vortex Repertory Company, Salvage Vanguard Theater, Arts on Real, Scottish Rite Children’s Theater, Hyde Park Theatre, and Esther’s Follies, a comedy and magic show. The longest-running concert music program on American television, Austin City Limits, is videotaped on the University of Texas at Austincampus. Austin City Limits and Capital Sports & Entertainment run the Austin City Limits Music Festival, an annual music and art festival held at Zilker Park in Austin. The long-running outdoor musical, the Zilker Park Summer Musical, expects to celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2008. The Urban Music Festival is held during the Texas Relays weekend every April. Other annual events include Eeyore’s Birthday Party, Spamarama, and the Austin Reggae Festival in April and Carnaval in February. HalloweenSt Patrick’s DayIndependence Day, and Juneteenth (Emancipation Day) are all widely celebrated, in addition to two important Mexican holidays, May 5 (Cinco de Mayo) and September 16.

Austinites take pride in eccentricities and celebrate differences and being different (in lifestyle, character, beliefs, etc.). Austin is the only major Texas city that has no ordinance against women appearing topfree in public. “Keep Austin Weird” has become a local motto in recent years, featured on innumerable bumper stickers and t-shirts. This motto has not only been used in promoting Austin’s eccentricity and diversity, but is also meant to bolster support of local and independent businesses. The art that gave Austin its reputation for being weird is featured at the South Austin Museum of Popular Culture.

According to the Nielsen Company, adults in Austin read and contribute to blogs more than those in any other U.S. metropolitan area.[23]

Austin is also home to the O. Henry House Museum. O. Henry lived in a house built in Austin in 1891. The O. Henry House Museum hosts the annual O. Henry Pun Off, which is a pun contest where the contestants exhibit amazing wit.

Ballet Austin is the fourth largest ballet academy in the country.[24] Each year Ballet Austin’s twenty member professional company performs ballets from a wide variety of choreographers, including their international award winning artistic director, Stephen Mills. Ballet Austin has traveled around the world performing in Europe, the Kennedy Center (Washington D.C.), and New York City’s Joyce Theatre.

Nationally known Austinites include Willie NelsonLance ArmstrongMatthew McConaugheySandra BullockKevin CostnerRichard LinklaterRobert Rodriguez, and Michael Dell. Other well-known Austinites can be found in the List of Austinites.


2007Austin City Limits Music Festival with view of stages and Austin skyline.      

2007Austin City Limits Music Festival with view of stages and Austin skyline.

Austin has been the location for a number of motion pictures, partly due to the influence of The University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Radio-Television-Film. Films produced in Austin include Man of the HouseSecondhand LionsWaking LifeSpy KidsDazed and ConfusedOffice Space,The Life of David GaleMiss CongenialityDoubting ThomasSlackerIdiocracyRoad TripBlank CheckA Scanner Darkly,The Wendall Baker Storyand most recently, Grindhouse and How To Eat Fried Worms. In order to draw future film projects to the area, the Austin Film Society has converted several airplane hangars from the former Mueller Airport into filmmaking center Austin Studios. Projects that have used facilities at Austin Studios include music videos by The Flaming Lips and feature films such as 25th Hour and Sin City. Austin also hosted the MTV series, The Real World: Austinin 2005.

Austin’s main daily newspaper is the Austin American-StatesmanThe Austin Chronicle is Austin’s alternative weekly, while The Daily Texan is the student newspaper of the University of Texas. Austin also has smaller newspapers such as the Oak Hill Gazette, Austin Business Journal, and Texas Family Magazine. Texas Monthly, a major regional magazine, is also headquartered in Austin.

Austin hosts the annual Austin Film Festival, as well as the nationally acclaimed South by Southwest, which draw films of many different types from all over the world. In 2004 the city was first in Moviemaker Magazine’s annual top ten cities to live and make movies. The 2007 South by Southwest festival included Pete TownshendIggy PopTom Morello, and Rickie Lee Jones.

Austin also hosts the annual Austin City Limits Music Festival, based on its own Austin City Limits television show. The festival and television show alike attract musical artists from around the world.

Local businesses and artists produce a lot of interesting handmade indie-fashion and organic-and-eco-friendly fashion, as can be seen on the 32nd street artist market, at festivals, and in many shops. Independent film is prominent in the city.

For a more complete list of Austin’s various festivals, see the Wikitravel’s Austin Travel Guide’s Festivals list.


Austin also has a strong theater culture, with dozens of itinerant and resident companies producing a wide variety of work. From Esther’s Follies on East 6th Street to Zachary Scott on South Lamar Boulevard, live entertainment can be found around the city. Many, many other theater groups exist and often perform publicly, collaborating often with dance and music groups. Public art and performances of many kinds in the parts and on bridges is popular and it is easy to find a myriad of diverse and creative free productions.

The Paramount Theatre opened in downtown Austin in 1915. Managing to escape destruction throughout the years, it contributes not only to Austin’s theater culture, but also to its film culture, showing a variety of classic films throughout the summer. The summer program features a series of double features, often paired with vintage cartoons or serials to complete the retro feel. Gone With the Wind is always the last movie shown. The theater also hosts regional premieres, for films such as Miss Congeniality.[25]

In January 2007, Austin Lyric Opera hosted the American Premiere of the Philip Glass opera, Waiting for the Barbarians, an allegory of oppressor and oppressed based on the novel byJohn Maxwell Coetzee of South Africa. Coetzee, the Nobel Prize Winner for Literature in 2003, is a University of Texas at Austin graduate and former UT professor.


Austin is the largest city in the United States without a franchise in a major professional sports league.[26] However, many Austinites enthusiastically support the University of Texas Longhorns‘ sports programs. The University of Texas football and baseball teams each won their respective national championships during the 2005-2006 seasons. Minor-league professional sports came to Austin in 1996, when the Austin Ice Bats began playing at the Travis County Expo Center. Since then, they have been joined by many other teams.

Austin Area Minor-League professional sports teams
Club Sport Founded League Venue
Round Rock Express Baseball 1999 Pacific Coast League Dell Diamond
Texas Stars Ice Hockey 2009 American Hockey League Cedar Park Event Center
Austin Aztex U23s Football (Soccer) 2008 Premier Development League Dragon Stadium
Austin Aztex Football (Soccer) 2009 United Soccer Leagues First Division  
Austin Outlaws Football 2003 National Women’s Football Association House Park
Austin Wranglers Arena Football 2004 Arena Football League 2 Frank Erwin Center
Austin Toros Basketball 2005 NBA D-League Austin Convention Center
Austin's Deep Eddy Pool is the oldest man-made pool in Texas      

Austin’s Deep Eddy Pool is the oldest man-made pool in Texas

In addition to team sports, Austin is generally known for its active outdoor culture. Austin is home to many runners, rock-climbers, swimmers, divers, snorkelers, mountain bikers, cyclists, and more. Natural features like the bicycle-friendly Texas Hill Country, limestone rock formations, and generally mild climate work with the centrally-located Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail, and local pools like Barton Springs to make Austin the home of several endurance and multi-sport races and communities. The Capitol 10,000 is the largest 10 K race in Texas, and approximately fifth largest in the nation. The Austin Marathon has been run in the city every year since 1992. The Austin-founded American Swimming Association hosts an open water swimming event, the Cap 2 K, and other closed-course, open water, and cable swim races around town. Austin is also the hometown of several cycling groups and the champion cyclist Lance Armstrong, as well as environmentally- and economically-minded bicycle commuters. Combining these three disciplines is a growing crop of triathlons, including the Capital of Texas Triathlon held every Memorial Day on and around Lady Bird LakeAuditorium Shores, and Downtown Austin.

[edit]Tourist attractions

Many of the tourists that visit Austin come for its vibrant nightlife; however, there are many other attractions in Austin, including the Texas Memorial Museum, the Blanton Museum of Art (opened in 2006), the galleries at the Harry Ransom Center, and the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museumacross the street (which opened in 2000). The Texas State Capitol itself is also a major tourist attraction. The Driskill Hotel built in 1886, located at 6th and Brazos, was finished just before the construction of the Capitol building. Sixth Street is a musical hub for the city but also includes annual festivals such as the Pecan Street Festival and Halloween night. A very strange and eccentric, unique Austin haven for weird arts such as fire-dancing and circus-like-acts is the Enchanted Forest, which hosts many outdoor art and performance events. The Austin City Limits Music Festival also brings many tourists from around the nation.

The Ann W. Richards Congress Avenue Bridge houses the world’s largest urban population of Mexican free-tailed bats. Starting in late February, up to 1.5 million bats take up residence inside the bridge’s expansion and contraction zones as well as in long horizontal grooves running the length of the bridge’s underside, an environment ideally suited for raising their young. Every evening around sunset, the bats emerge in search of insects, an exit visible on weather radar. Watching the bat emergence is an event that is popular with locals and tourists, with more than 100,000 viewers per year. The bats migrate to Mexico each winter.

Considering Austin’s “Earth-friendly” persona, it is appropriate that the Austin Zoo, located in the Oak Hill neighborhood just north of US 290, is a rescue zoo that provides sanctuary to displaced animals from a variety of unfortunate and often neglectful situations.

Austin also has several well-known swimming locations. These include Deep Eddy Pool, Texas’ oldest man-made swimming pool, and Barton Springs Pool, the nation’s largest natural swimming pool in an urban area. Both are spring-fed and maintain a constant temperature of 69 degrees year-round — swimming in Barton Springs at Christmas is an annual tradition for many Austinites. Hippie Hollow, a county park situated along Lake Travis, is the only officially sanctioned clothing-optional public park in Texas. Activities include rockclimbing, kayaking, swimming, exploring, and hiking along the greenbelt, a green, lush, long-spanning area that runs through the city. Hamilton Pool is a gorgeous and cool (temperature-wise) pool and wildlife park located about 30 minutes from the city and is strongly recommended by many locals.

Farmers markets are popular attractions, providing a variety of locally grown and often organic goods.

Click here to go to Wikipedia!!


One Response to “Everything about Austin–Encyclopedia Style”

RSS Feed for Because When It Comes To Planning The Future, Being Well-Informed Is Always The Smartest Path… Comments RSS Feed

this page provide good information about the Austin city. But there is nothing like experiencing it on your own. So take some time off and visit Austin.

Comments are closed.

  • Blog Stats

    • 334,165 hits
  • I'm glad you found my blog. I hope you enjoy it!

  • Flickr Photos

  • Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • June 2008
    M T W T F S S
        Jul »

Liked it here?
Why not try sites on the blogroll...

%d bloggers like this: