Hello, what’s up, and welcome to the October monthly edition of the Lite + Brite newsletter.
If you are a fan of creative, off-kilter, delightful events—which presumably you are, since otherwise why would you be subscribed to this newsletter?—then October is a top-tier month. It feels like everyone is out here crafting papier-mâché Winston Churchill costumes and inviting you to their haunted garden gnome mazes. What a dream!
Below we’ve rounded up some interesting-looking October events, some of which are Halloween-related and some of which just happen to take place during this, the artsiest of months. If you’re in the market for exclusively Halloween events, we’ve got you covered with our pride and joy, the annual Lite + Brite Halloween Spreadsheet. Our patrons get early access to it today, and the rest of our subscribers will get access next week. Is the spreadsheet “worth it,” you want to know? Is it “good”? Well, here’s last year’s to give a sense of what to expect. Really the only relevant question is: is it Halloween yet?
If you’re not already a subscriber to this newsletter and you want to be, click here. We do one newsletter a week, usually on Fridays, plus this bonus monthly edition around the start of each month. Please support us by contributing to our Patreon and by forwarding this email to your friends who enjoy things like listening to music and leaving the house sometimes.
Let’s do fun stuff!
—Leila + Brian
Looking Ahead to Upcoming Events
Our weekly newsletters will include many more listings, but here are a handful of events that we know will be coming up over the next month. We’re giving you the heads up now in case you want to pre-buy tickets or block off the time.
- October 7: Fortlandia Opening Day at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Annual interactive installation art exhibition w/a play fort theme
- October 7: The Austin Séance at Minx + Muse
Take part in a Victorian-style séance + learn about their history
- October 7: Moving Picture at the Museum of Human Achievement
“Experimental shorts, video art + non-narrative film” in a drive-in
- October 8: Viva Fest at the Brewtorium
Celebrate the life + art of Frida Kahlo w/live music, art, vendors, + costumes
- October 11: ATXplained at the Paramount
Learn all about our city in the medium of a live podcast taping
- October 12: No Lights No Lycra at West China Tea
Our very own dance party in the dark
- October 13: Tremble Staves at Laguna Gloria
Performance art, but also it’s underwater, or in the water
- October 14: Oktoberfest at the German Free School
October is not only about Halloween, it can also be about beer + lederhosen
- October 17 – 24: Flood of Spirits at the Driskill
An immersive theatrical performance depicting a real flood where 50 Austinites died
- October 21: Salvador Dali’s Naked Feast at the Vortex
“Graze from elegantly designed food art on naked bodies”
- October 21: Forest Bathing at Bull Creek District Park
Swim + meditate deep in the forest (could be the start of a horror film)
- October 21: Public Tour at Central Texas Pig Rescue
“A guided walking tour of the Enchanted Pig Forest”
- October 21: Community Art Bash at the Elisabet Ney Museum
“Artist interventions, theatrical performances, + musical expressions”
- October 21: Pinewood Derby at Buzz Mill Coffee
If you’ve never carved + raced a tiny wooden car have you even lived?
- October 21 – 22: Art from the Streets at Blue Genie
See + buy works by artists experiencing homelessness
- October 24: Free Bat Cruise on Lady Bird Lake
Watch bats, learn about bats + moths, and “bat-chat” w/experts
- October 26: An Extra-Dark No Lights No Lycra at West China Tea
Dance to Halloween-themed tunes in near-complete darkness
- October 26 – 29: Austin Séance at the Vortex
Take part in a Victorian-style séance + learn about their history
- October 26 – November 2: Austin Film Festival at various Austin venues
Our city’s dedicated festival for moving pictures + those who write them
- October 27: L’Inferno at Meanwhile Brewing
Watch a 1910s horror film w/re-envisioned live music soundtrack
- October 27: 10th Anniversary Night Bazaar at the Asian American Resource Center
Celebrate Austin’s Asian-American community w/nighttime food + vendors
- October 28: Viva la Vida at Mexic-Arte Museum
Do Día de los Muertos right w/parade, street fest, + vendors
- October 28: Party World Rasslin’: The Hauntening at Oskar Blues Brewery
Lost souls initiate some terrifying comedy wrestling
- October 28: Area 54: Halloween Alien Disco ay Distribution Hall
As we all know, aliens love disco, so this is the perfect pairing
- October 29: The Very ‘Rary at Laguna Gloria
“Experiences that play on illusion” w/aerialists, live music, + puppets
- October 29: Rolling Sculpture Car Show at the Hill Country Galleria
This is much better than uprooting statuary and rolling it down the street
- October 29: Goat Costume Party and Goat Pumpkin Painting at Suds Monkey
Goats will pose in costume for photos, or hang while you paint pumpkins
- November 1: Día de los Muertos at Moody Amphitheater
Celebrate Día de los Muertos w/traditional dance, DJ, mariachis, + food
What We’re Listening To
The witching month is upon us, and as a lover of creepy things and schlocky old horror movies, this is a great month. This song came out last year and made my year end list, but I haven’t brought it up here. It’s a collaboration between vaporwaver FM Attack and post-punks Vandal Moon, and the result is pure Cure-inspired goodness. I played it last week at No Lights No Lycra and this is the perfect season to put it on. Bonus: this video of the song is set to clips from “Night of the Demons,” a schlocky teen horror flick from the 80s. It’s risqué for work, just do some spiderweb dances as you listen and tell your boss you’re getting into the Halloween spirit.
OK, which of our Elder Millennial subscribers were at the Postal Service / Death Cab for Cutie show this past weekend? I was! I saw the Postal Service in Boston in 2003 and in Brooklyn in 2013, and now I’ve seen them in Austin in 2023, and I hope to go on seeing them every decade forever.
All-the-Time Austin Artsy Fun
Our weekly newsletter features upcoming events, but sometimes the activity you’re looking for isn’t an event at all—it’s a place that’s always there. Next time you find yourself on an afternoon when nothing special seems to be going on, you could consider checking out one of these evergreen options.
- The Eureka Room
Uniquely goofy, silly, + fun immersive games you play with a group. No spoilers!
- Escape the Box on South Congress
So you think you can escape boxes. Sure, but what about time traveling boxes?
- We Luv Video
The Alexandria Library of video rental. It’s community-run, you can rent movies or watch them in a cinema while literally surrounded by VHS tapes and DVDs.
- The Goats at Jester King Brewery
More a theme park geared towards folks who like refermented cherries in their beer (me) than a brewery. I have not experienced the Goat Experience, but I have seen their goats, and I approve.
- Cathedral of Junk
A towering achievement to collecting weird old stuff that will spark nostalgia and cause you to wonder at your last tetanus shot timing
- West China Tea House
In addition to their events, West China is a wonderful place just to chat with interesting and welcoming people and drink some delicious tea
- Mayfield Park and Nature Preserve
A lovely park + nature walk that is protected by a crack corps of dedicated peacocks and peahens. Good luck escaping without some flashy, feathery displays.
- Laguna Gloria
The Contemporary Austin’s outdoor sculpture garden. Culture + Nature = Profit.
- Austin Creative Reuse Center
A nonprofit shop where you can get any art, craft, or office supplies you can imagine for literal pennies. Eat your heart out, Office Despot.
- Museum of the Weird
It’s right there on Dirty 6th but worth a visit. From famous fake paleontology to recreations of horror film sets, there’s lots to see.
- James Turrell’s Skyspace
Like Turrell’s best works, this is an art experience which unfolds slowly over time. Watch as the changing colors of sunset remake the space.
Thanks to our Patreon subscribers
A huge thank-you to our Patreon subscribers Lena Long, Amalia Litsa, Jacob Rosenberg, Alexander Freed, Spencer, Kristen Backor, Timon A., Kate Murray, and Amy Wilde. We’re deeply grateful for your support, which allows us to do things like “pay our Mailchimp fee” and “spend hours researching Austin events when technically we should be working.”
If you’d like to support us on Patreon and get access to exclusive member-only benefits, you may do so here.
Recent weeks brought us to a Round Rock parking lot to observe a flock of Purple Martins; the Mesmerize workshop to help build out their Creek Show creation; and the Eureka Room for a closing party. Follow Lite + Brite on Instagram to keep up with our adventures. And come chat with us and the rest of the L+B community on our Discord server!
How do we choose which events to feature?
Honestly, it’s pretty random. We might include anything in Austin that we, personally, would conceivably want to go to, generally excluding normal concerts, comedy shows, and movie showtimes because there are many other good resources for finding those. (We especially recommend Showlist for live music, The Darker Side of Austin for goth and metal suff, and the 60+ Weirdest Things in Austin for exactly what it sounds like). This list is by no means exhaustive; it’s just stuff that caught our eye this week. If you have an event that you want us to consider including, send it over.
Who are we?
We make this newsletter. We put on No Lights No Lycra every second and fourth Thursday of the month. We do some other stuff here and there. We love going out to creative events in Austin, and we want you to join us. Visit us at liteandbriteatx.com, and support us on Patreon if you like what we do.