The soft opening of Uncle Billy’s Brew & Que on Lake Travis felt more like a family dinner than a restaurant run-through – which, to this comfort-foodie, is a very good sign. After a friendly greeting and prompt seating, my dining partner and I could not decide on which of the 4 house-brewed beers to order. Our server’s solution was to bring out a sampler of each… bless him. We opted for the Amber and Pale Ales in the end, both perfect compliments to our starter of steaming fried pickles. Being something of a fried pickle connoisseur, these spears lived up to my high standards after a few necessary minutes of cooling. The hot sauce-spiked ranch dressing was a welcome surprise for a girl who always adds some heat to America’s favorite dipping sauce.
Did you know that Austin has the highest performing Kiva city lending team in the world—http://www.kiva.org/team/austin_texas. Yep we beat cities many times our size. As of March 14, 2010 the team has loaned almost $157,000. It was started by a “poor” graduate student…as she said last night at the AIR awards…she’s rich compared to the folks she loans to.
Join the Austin, Texas team or start your own at www.kiva.org–$25 lets you help an entrepreneur and the best part you’ll get it back to help the next entrepreneur. The Kiva, Austin, Texas members also meet periodically and participate in local charities.
Folks Entering downtown on 5th street frequently do a double-take at the El Arroyo sign. What smart ass comment did the famous (infamous?) Tex-Mex place put up today. Well now you can follow ‘em on Twitter at http://twitter.com/elarroyosign so you don’t miss a sign if you haven’t made it downtown lately.
I’m never really going to afford a private jet and am far to cheap to fly first class (heck I usually fly Southwest Airlines and there ain’t any first class seats). To make flying easier I look for Nonstop flights from Austin. You can fly to a surprising number of cities nonstop from Austin—Boston, Orlando, Washington, and my favorite during ski season Salt Lake City. ABIA’s website has been kind enough to list all the cities and airlines that offer Nonstop service from Austin at
We have several suggestions to give your family portrait that “Austin” feel. In the spring Bluebonnet shots are mandatory for Texans, aren’t they? Year-round there are several other options:
Try the park on the south-side of Riverside. There is a hill next to the Long Center that will give you a perfect view of the Austin Skyline and Lady Bird Lake, and at the same time the little-ones can check out the fountains and roll down the hill.
The water level in Lake Travis is so low right now that it is hard to go sailing or boating. Town Lake….I mean Lady Bird Lake, on the other hand, is a constant level lake with delightfully cool water. I’ve been curious about the kayaks and canoes on the lake so I decided to head down to the Rowing Dock to rent a kayak and get out on the lake on Labor Day.
It was so busy that we had to circle twice to get parking. However, the folks at the dock were efficient. Soon as we turned over our license and $15 (cash or check please) at the dock they got us in a kayak built for two. We headed to the “ritzy” part of town paralleling Stratford and gawked at the mansion. I’ve been to a party or two at those mansions but the view from the water side is amazing. Turning the kayak around at Red Bud Isle (lots of dogs playing in the water) we decided to cross under the Mopac bridge…it is LOUD under there. A short way down you get a spectacular view of downtown. I definitely need to bring my camera next time. We did manage to see turtles basking in the sun and a couple of herons catching there dinner.
All in all a nice way to spend the afternoon. Kayak rentals on Lady Bird Lake are offered by
2418 Stratford Dr
Austin, TX 78746
Texas Rowing Center
1541 West Cesar Chavez
Austin, TX 78703
Krause Springs, in Spicewood Texas, is one of Texas’ most beautiful swimming holes. It is located about 30 miles west of Austin. Krause Springs has many natural sites to explore. There are 32 springs
on the property, and several feed the manmade pool and the natural pool
which flows into Lake Travis.
I spend my days trying to figure out how to improve the productivity of the most valuable part of any organization–it’s people. I’m excited that we’re having a conference for like minded folks in Austin–usually I get to get on a plane and travel to these conferences. The elearning Symposium 2009 is on June 4, 2009 at the Holiday Inn, Northwest in Austin. Speakers include Jim Moshinskie from Baylor, Dr. McDonald from Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Tonia Dousay from Texas A&M, Hiram Kuykendall, Debby Kalk, and John Gillis. Dr. McDonald’s Pulse!! program is one of the most sophisticated e-learning programs in the world–a must see.
The symposium will focus on helping you create cost-effective e-learning programs that help make your folks more productive. So if you’re an instructional designer, trainer, or just someone your boss is bugging about implementing learning programs. Register early because there’s a significant early bird discount–and quite honestly this conference is likely to sell out.