image: The Long Center
It’s never not fascinating to step across the threshold into one of the creations dreamed by by Architects of Air, and this month, it’s possible again when the luminarium known as Miracoco comes through town. Due to the hypersensory experience’s popularity, advance tickets are only available to Long Center members; walk-up tickets are available to the public on site. Show up, step inside and watch time and space come to a serene and blissful halt as children romp through the chambers and adults meditate, stare up in wonder and snap many an Instagram photo — this visual feast is certainly something to capture.
Miracoco by Architects of Air
Jan 24-Feb 2: luminarium opens at 11 am weekdays, 10 am weekends
Long Center Lawn, 701 West Riverside Drive
Ticket prices: from $10 same day
Getting in shape is certainly a popular new year’s resolution around these parts, but for those who’ve long been sticking to their workout regimens, there’s the 2014 3M Half-Marathon. Tearing through town on Sunday, January 19, the annual event gives Austin’s fastest feet a chance to test their limits. Registration is $100; the event begins at 7 am with up to 8,000 participants, making it the largest in event history. Ready, get set, go…
Starting line on Stonelake Boulevard near Sam’s and Dave & Buster’s
image credit: LBJ Wildflower Center
Texans typically think of wildflowers as a springtime perk, but at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, there’s something to see all year round. This weekend in particular, the holiday spirit fills the center with songs and lights as Luminations fills the gardens with thousands of luminarias and twinkling lights. With live choral and instrumental music, savory kettle corn and free hugs for the kids from Frosty the Snowman himself, there’s much to celebrate this Saturday and Sunday evening. Admission is free with two canned goods, to be donated to the Capital Area Food Bank.
Saturday Dec 14 and Sunday Dec 15, 6 pm – 9 pm
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Avenue
Admission free with two canned goods (for donation)
Did you know you could take a one-day excursion through the grandeur of Texas Hill Country by steam train? Well, you can. This family-friendly activity is available year-round, but what better way to enjoy the crisp fall weather than to bundle up and hop on board the Austin Steam Train
for an old-fashioned trek through the natural wonders of Central Texas? Reservations are recommended, and you can choose between heated/air-conditioned excursion coach and first-class cars or the slightly more authentic (i.e., not climate controlled) standard coach cars. Tickets start at $20, and there’s a concession car with snacks on most rides.
Austin Steam Train
401 E. Whitestone Blvd., Ste A-103, Cedar Park
Tickets $20 and up, depending on car type
Ready to rock around the Christmas tree? You’re in luck! Partake in one of Austin’s favorite holiday traditions while enjoying the festive atmosphere of downtown on a Saturday night at the Holiday Sing-Along & Downtown Stroll. Starting at 6 pm on Saturday, December 7, local radio personality John Aielli leads the crowd in a grand holiday sing-along, after which everyone gets to enjoy the annual tree lighting and special performances by local artists. A special perk: downtown businesses stay open late for the special occasion, so you can get a little holiday shopping done while you’re enjoying the merriment. Supporting the local economy and taking part in an Austin tradition — most definitely a superb way to kick off the holiday season.