Monday, May 27, 2013

Texas Linux Fest 2013 is May31-June1, 2013

Okay, so things have been a little hectic around here lately, with a new position at my full time job and all. However, I think we are about ready to start getting in the swing of things here at 2TourAustin.  One of the upcoming events that looks really interesting is the Texas Linux Fest 2013.
Texas Linux Fest is an annual event, that started in 2010. It is the first state-wide, annual, community-run conference for Linux and open source software users and enthusiasts from around the Lone Star State. Similar to SCALE in Los Angeles, Ohio Linux Fest in Columbus, and Linux Fest Northwest -- and the growing list of successful regional shows -- Texas Linux Fest is a weekend event geared towards individual users, rather than the expensive multi-workday expos that tend to cater primarily to sponsored attendees.
The event looks like it would be interesting. Especially, since I have been thinking about switching to Linux and getting rid of the Windows Operating System. Which in turn would help me fight virus intrusions, as every single download would require my approval and password before it could download. Making my computer more safe then it is with the windows based system.
photo from
"7 reasons why you should
switch to ubuntu 10.04 from windows"

Friday May 31, 2013
8A.M. - 5 P.M.
Saturday June 1, 2013
9 A.M. - 7 P.M.

Enthusiast $25.00
Supporter $55.00


Handicapped Accessibility:
The Conference Center is accessible to persons with mobility issues.

AT&T Conference Center
1900 University Ave
Austin, TX

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The AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center has limited parking beneath it.

Other Garages nearby:

  • Central Parking (next to AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center)

  • Brazos Garage (MLK and Brazos Street)

  • Guadalupe Garage (17th and San Antonio St)

  • Trinity Garage (MLK and Trinity St)

  • San Jacinto Garage (San Jacinto and Dean Keaton)

  • 27th Street Garage (27th Street and University Ave)

    What do think about this event? We would love to hear your thoughts on this event.
  • Monday, May 13, 2013

    North Oaks Park

    photo by Kevin Surbaugh

    For the most part this park is a playground. There is a hike and bike trail here, but not much else.
    Hike and Bike Trail

    photo by Kevin Surbaugh

    Handicapped Accessibility:
    For the most part this park is accessible. At least as accessible as an outdoor venue can be.  Of course the playground isn't very friendly to persons with mobility issues. The Austin Parks Departments own website says the Hike and Bike Trail here at this location is not ADA.
    900 Plaza drive
    Austin, TX 78753

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    What do think about this attraction?

    Wednesday, May 8, 2013

    Gus Garcia Park and Recreation Center

    According to the City of Austin's website, the Gus Garcia Recreation Center held its Grand Opening on April 26, 2008, an event that was long anticipated by North/Northeast Austin. The Gus Garcia Recreation Center and park were chosen as part of the 1998 bond election package to develop Austin’s parks and greenbelts. Construction was due to begin in 2001, but a downturn in the local economy forced delays. The City put the Gus Garcia Park and Recreation center back on the list of budgeted projects in 2005, the original amount for funding was $5.5 million. The building was completed in March 2008. The center is named in honor of Gustavo “Gus” Garcia who dedicated more than three decades of his life to public service. He served as President of the Board of the Austin Independent School District, as a member of the Austin City Council, as Mayor Pro Tem and in 2001, was elected as Austin’s first Hispanic Mayor.

    When the wife and I were there to take these photographs it appeared that some construction on the park was underway.

    photo by Kevin Surbaugh

    photo by Kevin Surbaugh

    Handicapped Accessibility:
    The recreation center is handicapped accessible and the park is accessible as an outdoor venue like a park can be.The Hike and Bike trail at this location is not ADA.

    photo by Kevin Surbaugh

    1201 E. Rundberg Lane
    Austin, TX 78753
    Open Hours:
    • Monday - Thursday 9:00am - 9:00pm
    • Friday 9:00am - 6:00pm; Saturday 9:00am - 4:00pm
    • Sunday closed

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    What do think about this attraction?

    Monday, May 6, 2013

    Clay Pit Bucket Tower

    Whether you call it Lady bird Lake or Town Lake, the Colorado River is a recreational site for people today. However, in the past the shores of the river shores were the home of industry. One might be hardly able to recognize the shores of the "River City" at the turn of the century.

    On what is now known as the Town Lake hike and bike trail there exists a relic of one of the industries that resided there. That being the brick plant that resided there in the early 1900's. Bricks were made from clay that was mined on the south shore of the Colorado River. Those clay pits resided on land that is now part of what is known as Zilker Park.

    Zilker park is named for Andrew Jackson Zilker, who owned much of the land around Zilker Park, including Barton Springs. It was Mr. Zilker who built the conveyor system and owned the land from which the clay was mined. Zilker sold some of his land around Barton Springs to the city in 1917 for $100,000. In 1932 Zilker donated an additional 300 acres that formed the nucleus of Zilker Park today.

    That brickmaking plant that used the clay resided on the north shore of the Colorado River on a bluff overlooking present day Austin High School. Before Austin had multiple bridges to choose from getting to the opposite bank where the clay resided was a problem. The solution was to create a cable conveyor system over the river, which was done in 1902, if not before.

    To support the cables, there were three (3) concrete and steel towers constructed. Buckets attached to the cables carried the clay across the river, but they sometimes carried other payload too. Workers, for example, found the buckets a convenient way for them to cross the river. The system was in operation through 1942 when World War II helped close the brick plant down. Wartime price controls were deemed to make it unprofitable to continue operations so the Butler Brick Company closed it down.

    Only one of those towers remains today, east of MoPac near Austin High School. Located right next door to a rowing house, it includes an Austin Landmarks plaque providing a very brief history about the structure.
    Side Note: If anyone has access to photos or drawings of the towers when they were in operation we here at 2TourAustin would love love to see them.

    Austin Explorer
    Austin Active Kids

    This tower and two others supported a cable conveyor that brought clay from pits south of the Colorado river to a brick making facility nearby. A. J. Zilker installed the system in 1902. In 1912, the Butler Brick Company leased his plant, operating the tower system until 1942.
    ?? by the City of Austin Landmark
    Handicapped Accessibility:

    1541 W Cesar Chavez St
    Austin TX 78703
    The marker is located on the north shore of Lady Bird Lake, at the Texas Rowing Center, near Austin High School. The marker is visible from Lady Bird Lake trail.
    What do you think about this attraction?

    Evangelical Lutheran Church of Dessau

    photography by Kevin Surbaugh

    The community of Dessau was founded in 1854 by German immigrants, including the Wieland, Nauert, Nehring, Grosskopf, Krueger, Goerlitz, and Hennig families. The pioneers worshiped in private homes until this sanctuary was built about 1876. Labor and materials used in its construction were supplied by members of the community. Worship services were conducted in the German language until the mid-1900s. The church building and adjoining cemetery stand as reminders of the area’s pioneer German heritage.
    photography by Kevin Surbaugh


    Handicapped Accessibility:
    Not very accessible. The driveway is gravel, making the parking lot hard to navigate, then the sidewalk is a series of small steps up. The only accessible way to get to the historical marker is the grassy incline, which for some would be hard to traverse. 

    photography by Kevin Surbaugh

    13300 Dessau Rd, Austin TX 78753
    As you can see in the picture above, the marker is to the right of the front door. To find the church itself, turn in the driveway for the Cornerstone Baptist Church. The historical building will be found to the left of the more modern building. You will also find the old cemetery there in front of the old building. No idea if it is currently in use for anything. 

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    What do think about this attraction?

    Wednesday, May 1, 2013

    Austin Mini Maker Faire

    Coming up this Sunday May 5, 2013 is what appears to be one of the funnest events in Austin. No I'm not talking SxSw. I am talking about the event that allows you to see great things other people have made and also allow you to tinker at different things yourself. According to the events website,
    The Tinkering OpenShop will be an area where you’ll enjoy the freedom to wander through a world of “Sure! We can totally do that!” as opposed to “Gee, I don’t know that sounds impossible…” You’ll get some real tools, real materials, and a helping hand to make sure your adventure is safe and fun. I promise y’all (all ages welcome) will love ripping some old stuff to shreds and then re-using it to make something for yourself!
    This is in fact the best DIY event, and we aren't talking home improvements here. No we are talking creativity like items operated by a single-board microcontroller to Robots. Sinply put it is the biggest "Show and Tell" in Austin for people of all ages. Best of all it's family friendly.
    Makers range from tech enthusiasts to crafters to homesteaders to scientists to garage tinkerers. They are of all ages and backgrounds. The aim of Maker Faire is to entertain, inform, connect and grow this community.
    Sunday May 5, 2013
    10 AM - 6 PM
    Advance Tickets: $7/Child $10/Adult
    At the Door: $10/Child $15/Adult
    Handicapped Accessibility:
    Palmer Events Center is fully accessible to persons with mobility issues.
    Palmer Events Center
    900 Barton Springs Road
    Austin, Texas 78704

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    What do think? Will you be there? Have you been in the past?