I Luv Video Is Austin’s Oldest and Largest Video Store

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Before the over abundance of Video on Demand, video stores were almost the only way to find most movies. Having vastly more of a selection than movie theaters, you could always discover older movies you had never heard of, or find goofy-awesome looking movies made for video.

Across the country, video rental is a dying business. But Austin loves its movie rental stores and these local businesses remain strong here. [Read more...]

Get a Leg Up on Austin Dog Park Etiquette

Austin Dog Off Leash Area

Guest article by Adrienne Purdue

There’s a protocol regarding acceptable human behaviors behind the gates of Austin’s dog parks. If you are new to town (or old to town and new to dog ownership), here’s what you need to know about Austin dog park etiquette.

The First Rule of Dog Park Is: We Do Not Talk About Dog Park

The second rule of Dog Park is [Read more...]

How to Dress Like an Austin Local

Guest article by Dawn Sarnecky

Every Austinite knows that dressing appropriately for the Texas weather is an absolutely necessary task each day. The trick is to be comfortable as the beads of sweat drip down during summer and to be cozy during the winter (a.k.a. fall?). If you to dress like an Austin local with wardrobe pieces no one else will have, skip the mall action and check out these local stores.

Tip of the Brim at Hatbox

Hatbox in Austin

Hatbox (Credit: Ashley Brinkman)

If you are looking to cover your dome from the severe sun with style, then look no further than

[Read more...]

4 Best Hiking Spots in Austin

Wild Basin Wildlife Preserve

Wild Basin Wildlife Preserve

Oddly enough, a hike on a warm day in Austin could be just what you need to feel revitalized. Nature is a refreshing change from melting asphalt parking lots and the sickly feeling you get after too much air conditioning.

When I ventured into a small hiking spot at Blunn Creek in a desperate attempt to become active again, I expected to feel overheated and – frankly – miserable. I was surprised when halfway through the hike, although my skin was slightly sticky from the thick air, I was overcome with a burst of energy and delight.

Although heat is a powerful deterrent to many people for most of the year, there are plenty of hiking trails in Austin that are primarily shaded and can provide you with the Vitamin D you’re missing out on by hiding inside. Venturing outdoors will also remind you of the natural wildlife teeming within and around the city. Below are a handful of what I think are the best hiking spots in Austin. [Read more...]

Austin Fashion Update: MOD Event and Ross Bennett

Lady Bird Johnson

Lady Bird Johnson, inspiration for MOD: A Modern Take on 60’s Fashion (Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons, Painting by Elizabeth Shoumatoff)

Guest article by Lisa Taylor

Fashion has left an indelible mark on our social conscience, whether we’re aware of it or not. If you were alive in the 80’s, you know what “Hammer” pants were and who they were associated with. Music and fashion have often melded into a unique expression of the artist, but it’s not just music that has brought fashion into our social stream of awareness.

Not surprisingly, fashion made its way into politics as well. One of our most photographed First Ladies was Jacqueline Kennedy, known for her fabulous sense of style. From her sheath dresses to her statement scarves or pillbox hats, she was always turned out impeccably. The same was true of Texas’ own, Lady Bird Johnson. And on September 12th at the LBJ Library [Read more...]

VeryShortStory Creates Austin Based Twitter Phenomenon

Five years and nearly 200,000 Twitter followers ago, Sean Hill created a Twitter account. He wanted to test out some of his improv skills in a burgeoning format, so @VeryShortStory was born.

At first, Sean tried to craft longer stories with other Twitter users writing back and forth, but it never quite flowed right. “So I started asking my followers to suggest a noun and I kept all of them in a file. I had a batch of nouns ready for whenever inspiration struck,” Sean Hill told me. Two or three nouns were more than sufficient to create a story within 140 characters that left a lasting impression. This was still the early days of Twitter, when a simple and elegant idea was enough to grow a massive following.

[Read more...]

Top 5 Unique Study Spots in Austin

Austin Public Library Carver Branch

Austin Public Library Carver Branch

Summer is behind us, football season is in front of us, and somewhere in between are books for studying. Labor Day not only marks the time when wearing white is “not permitted,” it also unofficially marks the start of school. But studying doesn’t have to be all work and no play. Whether you’re a Longhorn, Hilltopper or frequent the ACC, here are five unique study spots to get you through the semester. [Read more...]

Your Guide to Ditching the Car in Austin

Capital Metro Bus Austin

Credit: Van Sutherland via Flickr CC

Guest article by Adam Rosenfield

When you think Austin, you think of the outdoors. You remember walking from show to show at SXSW or standing for three days straight listening to bands at ACL. You think Barton Springs, and you think of the Whole Foods on Lamar. But do you think of walking to those places?

No matter what anyone says, Austin is like most other Texas cities, in that residents are very car-dependent. Live on Riverside, but work at the Arboretum? Heck, most residents think they can commute there in 10-15 minutes barring traffic.

Are you familiar with a transportation service called Capital Metro? Did you even know there were buses in Austin? Did you know there are vehicles in Austin other than buses that will A) Preserve the environment, but also B) Get you to your destination without wasting gas?

I’m here to demonstrate the litany of ways to get around Austin without a car, and discuss the most walkable neighborhoods in Austin. [Read more...]

South Congress Opens House on First Thursday

First Thursday Austin

Vintage First Thursday (Credit: David Ingram via Flickr CC)

I’m always excited to find our city supporting local artists, like you’ll find at 23rd Street Artists Market. It’s even cooler when it’s a whole neighborhood affair.

First Thursday Is About Community

For several years now, businesses of all sizes have been congregating on South Congress Ave. for a monthly event called First Thursday. You can probably guess when this event takes place. Yes, the first Thursday of every month.

It is a neighborhood affair. The businesses up and down South Congress stay open late, many until about 10 PM. The bars in the area are known to offer drink specials for the monthly gathering, and parking areas and lot spaces are opened for artists to set up tents and sell their wares. [Read more...]

SoCo’s Hotel San Jose Holds Charm for Austin Locals

Hotel San Jose Austin

Ivy-covered facade at Hotel San Jose (Credit: Bunkhouse Group)

You may be familiar with Hotel San Jose, or its big red Jeep parked out front, or the famous Jo’s coffee shop which sits in the hotel’s parking lot. But did you know you can listen to live music at the San Jose? Did you know you can have your tarot cards read at the San Jose? And most importantly, did you know you don’t have to be a guest to enjoy these events or to simply hang out in the lounge and bar area? Yes, you read that right. One of the best kept secrets in Austin is [Read more...]