Austin’s holiday season starts with events like Trail of Lights Fun Run

November 29, 2017

Article by: Ariana Auber,

1. Holiday Sing-Along and Downtown Stroll

5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 2. Free. Congress Avenue.

Celebrate the holiday season with the Downtown Austin Alliance’s annual family-friendly evening of merriment and music. Enjoy live music from Austin staples like Gina Chavez, Riders Against the Storm, Charlie Faye & the Fayettes, Jane Ellen Bryant and more. There will also be a special night market brought to you by the Sustainable Food Center and the lighting of the downtown Christmas tree. Stroll down Congress Avenue to partake in activities like face painting, ornament-making and gingerbread house decorating.

2. Beer Poking with Strange Land Brewery

6 to 9 p.m. Nov. 30. Free. Glass Half Full at Alamo Lakeline, 14028 N. Hwy. 183. Bldg. F.

It sounds like a downright strange concept: Alamo Drafthouse’s beer-focused bar at the Lakeline location is warming drinkers up by plunging smoldering fireplace pokers into their pints of ice cold beer. (The poker won’t stay in the beer while you drink it, of course.) Beer poking is a tradition of colder climates, but Strange Land Brewery has introduced the concept to Austin and will show it off once again with pints of its Headless Gentleman Imperial Bourbon Pumpkin Porter.

3. The Austin Playhouse’s “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley”

Opens Dec. 1. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, 5 p.m. Sunday through Dec. 23. $16-$36. 6001 Airport Blvd.

How about a Jane Austin Christmas? The Austin Playhouse takes on a charmingly imagined sequel to Austen’s beloved literary romance “Pride and Prejudice” to tell the story of the oft-overlooked, bookish middle sister Mary. She has come into her own as a confident woman — ready for love at last when the family reunites for Christmas at Pemberley. That’s where Mr. Darcy’s aristocratic but socially bumbling bookworm cousin turns up unexpectedly, sparking her hopes.

4. The Austin Trail of Lights’ Annual Fun Run

6:30 and 8 p.m. Dec. 2. $12-$75. Zilker Park, 2100 Barton Springs Road.

Just over 2 miles in length, the Fun Run will double as a way to see this year’s Trail of Lights — one of Austin’s most quintessential holiday happenings — and a means of getting fit just in time for all the holiday indulgence ahead. Participants will start at the iconic Zilker Tree, run through the colorful trail and finish near the Trail of Lights’ historic Yule Log to enjoy the Finish Line Festival. The fest will have a DJ dance party, a fitness expo and other activities.

5. Chef Hugh Acheson at Whole Foods Market

12 to 2 p.m. Dec. 3. Free. 525 N. Lamar Blvd.

The award-winning chef is making a stop in Austin during a tour launching his cookbook “The Chef & The Slow Cooker,” which aims to prove the slow cooker is more than a fusty old pot roast machine. He’ll host an interactive taco-making demonstration, and Beer Braised Pork Tacos, a dish in his book, will be sold to benefit Seed Life Skills, a nonprofit that Acheson started to help get kids cooking. He’ll also sign copies of the book and answer all manner of slow cooker questions.

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