The top four free things to do in Austin this summer

Liliana Hall

The weather may be making it feel like it is time for summer vacation, but your finals schedule says otherwise. However, with summer right around the corner, there are a handful of free events to take advantage of before moving back in with your parents or breaking the bank by backpacking Europe. To help ease the pain, The Daily Texan has compiled a list of free events to help commemorate the end of the semester.

Austin Shakespeare Presents The Merry Wives of Windsor

  • Where: Beverly S. Sheffield Zilker Hillside Theatre
  • When: May 3-28 (Thurs-Sun) at 8 p.m.
  • Admissions: Free

Grab a blanket and fill a cooler with your favorite drinks for a night hillside with Austin Shakespeare as they present “The Merry Wives of Windsor” for their 34th year of free Shakespeare in the park. Co-directed by the artistic director Ann Ciccolella and Gwendolyn Kelso, the play puts a ‘50s sitcom spin to a comedy created by William Shakespeare in which the legendary Falstaff seduces two wealthy “merry wives” played by Austin Shakespeare regulars Gwendolyn Kelso and Babs George.

KGSR’s Blues on the Green

  • Where: Zilker Park
  • When: Various dates
  • Admissions: Free
  • One of Austin’s best summer traditions is back at Zilker for a summer filled with good tunes. If you’re still recovering from dropping $250 on ACL tickets, Blues on the Green is the largest free music event in the city to date. The lineup has not been released, but the Black Angels and Night Glitter will be present for one night of free music in collaboration with the Austin Parks and Recreation Department on May 23, June 13, July 18 and Aug. 8.

Violet Crown Festival

  • Where: Brentwood Park    
  • When: May 5 at 10 a.m.
  • Admissions: Free
  • The Violet Crown Festival is a project of Violet Crown Community Works, a nonprofit organization helping to build and sustain the Brentwood & Crestview neighborhoods by supporting neighborhood enrichment projects. This art-filled festival takes over Brentwood Park for an afternoon filled with local music, art and craft vendors, food and community resources. There will be over 50 local art vendors to shower Austin with their creativity as well as live music from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.. It isn’t just a walk in the park at Brentwood because some of the proceeds go back to supporting the community.

Pecan Street Festival

  • Where: 6th Street
  • When: May 5-6
  • Admissions: Free

The 41st annual Spring Pecan Street Festival is back for two days of art across all mediums along Austin’s Sixth Street Historic District between Lavaca Street and Interstate 35. It is called the Pecan Street Festival because the first mayor of Austin, designed the downtown grid and originally named Sixth Street, Pecan Street. So no, an abundance of pecans will not be for sale. However, there will be 30 food vendors, hundreds of local artisans and nearly 50 musical performances that will take place at one of the three stages located on Neches, Red River and Trinity streets.