The halfway point between the beginning of the week and the weekend, Wednesday is kind of a glass-half-full sort of day. On one hand, you’ve already gotten through half the work week and you could argue that the worst is over. But on the other hand, you’ve still got two more days to go until you reach the sweet freedom of Saturday. Luckily, if you’re in Austin there are plenty of places you can go to shake things up mid-work week and blow off some steam before you power through to Friday. So if you’re looking for something different to try on a Wednesday night, why not fill your glass with fun and try these 8 fantastic events in Austin that will keep your mid-week drive alive.
Jimmy Eat Wednesday at Barbarella
Located in the heart of downtown Austin, Barbarella is a well-known night club and bar that is popular among millennials and post-modern punk rockers of Austin. This rebellious night spot has a whole host of off-the-wall events that include Tuezgayz Tuesdays, Grits and Gravy Thursdays, 80’s Night Fridays and New Noise Saturdays. Each night brings a different selection of music and DJ’s that transcend genres and light up the dance floor. But the most buzz worthy weekly happening at Barbarella that just about everyone has heard of is Jimmy Eat Wednesday. Brought to you by the ATX Emo Club, this wild dance party is filled with rowdy alternative punk rockers and head banging DJ’s spinning pop, punk and emo all night long. If you’re not a fan of pop/punk then this rockin night might not be for you.
Dreadneck Night at Flamingo Cantina
Perched off infamous east 6th Street, Flamingo Cantina is an eclectic dive bar and lounge that offers strong drinks and bumpin live music that spans all genres. From latin and reggae to rock and hip hop, you can find a fantastic array of “good vibes music” at Flamingo any night of the week. This groovy bar is decked out in Jamaica’s colors of gold and green to show off their Reggae pride, and both the locals and the artists love the intimate and inviting performance space that begs you to stay a while. On Wednesday nights, Flamingo Cantina welcomes Reggae fans of all types to come and enjoy Dreadneck Wednesdays. This Rastafarian event features chill Reggae jams from local artist the Mau Mau Chaplains, as well as Red Stripe brews on ice and delicious Caribbean fare from Winston’s Kitchen. So put on your gold and green and get ready to move and groove the night away.
Open Mic Night at Gourdough’s Public House
When you’re craving a cold beer and a ridiculously decadent burger in Austin, you go to Gourdough’s. This local food legend is know for their larger-than-life burgers served on a hot homemade donut. That’s right. A burger in a donut. And it’s probably one of the best things you’re ever going to try! These belly bursting bad boys come in several saucy varieties like the Nacho Libre with chili and Double D’s with fried egg and bacon. Stop by the Gourdough’s food truck for a quick pick me up or head over to the Public House on south Lamar for one of their special weekly events like the Crafts and Drafts sip and paint party on Thursday or Gourdough’s popular Open Mic Night every Wednesday. This free weekly talent show is full of music, drinks specials including $4 Deep Eddy vodka drinks and, of course, donuts. Entrants sign up and 6PM with their instruments in hand and the fun starts at 7PM when they stand up and show us what they got!
Trivia Night at Radio Coffee and Beer
Tucked away in suburban south Austin, Radio Coffee and Beer is quickly becoming one of the city’s best beer bars. Recently named best coffee shop two years in a row by Austin Chronicle, This low-key cafe dishes out superb coffees and espressos along with pastries and a handful of wines. You can even buy an original piece of local art while you’re there. The staggering selection of fantastic beers on tap range from pale ales to dark lagers from local brewers like Karbach, Hops and Grain, Live Oak and Eastciders. You can also grab one of the best tacos in Austin outside the cafe at Veracruz all Natural taco truck. Along with offering a comprehensive list of beverages to sip while you socialize, Radio Coffee also hosts a slew of entertaining live shows and weekly events such as Bluegrass Mondays, Comedy Tuesdays and Karaoke Night. But if you’re looking for a wildly fun and interactive way to blow off some mid-week steam, check out Radio Coffee’s Trivia Night. Hosted by Amy Rosalyn and Nolan, English, this super difficult trivia challenge is open to anyone. Just pick up an answer sheet and, if you think you know your trivia, you may just win and get your tab picked up by the bar!
Buzzkill Comedy at Buzz Mill
Set up in eccentric east Riverside, Buzz Mill is a 24 hour full service bar and coffee shop that serves a selection of quality coffees, craft cocktails and infused “elixirs” that will knock your socks off. Some of their indulgent speciality cocktails include the Apple Jack with blackberry infused gin and elderberry tonic, the Springboard with almond vanilla infused whiskey and the dreamy Creamsicle with orange infused vodka and vanilla simple syrup. Buzz Mill also prides itself on supporting Austin’s local talent and artists by hosting regular live shows at both their Austin and San Marcos locations. Tuegrass Tuesdays are full of soulful folk and Americana music, and Fort to Famous is a chance to show what you got in the form of poetry, comedy, music or all three. But if you want a side splitting way to spend your Wednesday, check out Buzz Mill’s outrageous Buzzkill Comedy night hosted by the intoxicating Alison O’Connor and Devon Walker.
Not yo Mama’s Game Night at Barrel o’ Fun
Built inside the acclaimed Alamo Drafthouse on Mueller, Barrel o’ Fun is an off the wall carnival themed event space that is all ages by day and adults only by night. Kids and parents love the old fashioned boardwalk feel of the interior, and there are plenty of family friendly events to keep you coming back from bring the sing karaoke to anime afternoons. But once the sun sets, Barrel o’ Fun becomes a whimsical nightspot for adults looking for some unusual after hours entertainment. Order a house made Highball or specialty barrel aged cocktail like the Bamboo Cobbler with sherry and dry vermouth and the Rosita with Reposado tequila. Then settle in and enjoy a tongue-in-cheek show like Geeks who Drink Trivia or Die Felicia, a wild hybrid drag show/Trivia quiz/movie night that will leave you in stitches. For a sexy salacious twist on the average Trivia night, try Barrel o’ Fun’s scintillatingly scandalous Not Yo Mama’s Game Night. This hilariously naughty game night includes free “nerdy trivia” and Bingo Bango that covers all the super uncomfortable sex-ed subjects that we all had to endure in grade school. Co-hosted by the Southwest Sexual Health Alliance, this game night helps to promote productive conversations about sexual health and, also, it’s a riot! So put your sexual anatomy knowledge to the test for a chance to win some crazy thematic prizes and embarrass the hell out of yourself in the process!
Hump Day Dancin’ at White Horse
Hidden begins the facade of a traditional dive bar, the White Horse is one of east Austin’s longtime beloved live music venues and watering hole. This country style honky tonk hosts some of the most talented local country music acts in Texas, and folks at The White Horse aren’t shy about strappin on their dancin shoes and gettin down on the dance floor! The White Horse has great cheap drink specials, a kicked back Austin vibe and some seriously good “Bomb” tacos that range from fish and bistec to pulled pork and bbq chicken. If you’re new to the two-stepping scene, then head over to the White Horse on Friday nights for their fun free Two Steppin lessons. Or turn your mid-week routine upside down and try the White Horse’s weekly Hump Day Dancin’ event with free swing dance lessons from Four on the Floor and live music from Thrift Set Orchestra. Even if you don’t know what you’re doing, the music instructor and the band will get you into the “swing” of things in no time!
Pintz and Pinz at Pinballz Arcade
Mixing two of our favorite things, drinking and games, Pinballz is a popular arcade bar with three locations in and around Austin. At the original location on Burnet, you can find a plethora of classic and new arcade games from Sega, Bally and Stern. And it goes without saying that Pinballz has all the pinging, ringing, light up pinball games you can get your hands on! This BYOB game spot is perfect for happy hour, unusual dates or a fun group outing. Chow down on some buffalo chicken sliders from Mikki’s Replay Cafe then grab your beers and head over to the arcade for hours of fun. If you’re a fan of local craft beers and pinball games, then check out Pinballz’s Pintz and Pinz Beer Tasting night, which features delicious beers from local tap masters Austin Beerworks. Everyone over 21 who goes gets a free beer, so what’s stopping you!?
Cover photo by Bustos photography