Lite + Brite Monthly: June

Hello, what’s up, and welcome to the June monthly edition of the Lite + Brite newsletter.

Summer has well and truly arrived, like it or not. (We do not like it. Too hot.) As is our wont, we have listed a few dozen upcoming events we think you should check out, and even if none of them are running back and forth in a sprinkler, they should still help us think about something more fun than the oppressive rays of the burning orb in the sky.

We’ve decided the world (i.e. you) needs a great playlist of Songs of the Summer. So we decided to compile a collective playlist to give us all a soundtrack for driving around doing our summer things. In a long line waiting to get ice cream? Put on the playlist. Driving to the lake? Put on the playlist. Floating a river? Put on the playlist. We need your help to put the “collective” in this playlist and make it truly great. Scroll down a few pixels for more info on that.

Hanging out with friends is also a good way to beat the heat, and if you don’t have any or would like to bolster the ranks of your friendship army, we would like to present Lite + Brite’s Guide to Making Friends in Austin. We’ve brainstormed a big ol’ list of activities that involve the least creepy ways we could come up with to interact with strangers (who could possibly end up being your new bestie who you can go swimming with all summer long).

If you’re not already a subscriber to this newsletter and you want to be, click here. We send out one email 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

Help Us Make a Summer Playlist

Now that the technology exists, and now that triple-digit days are here, we are assembling the Summer playlist to rule all Summer playlists. Every year there’s endless discussion of what the Song of the Summer is, but we figured instead of discussing, we could just combine forces + form a Voltron-like assemblage of all of the Songs of the Summer from all of the people who read this newsletter. Then we can all listen + defend the universe from anyone who doesn’t like assemblages.

So, what to pick? The main guideline here is that YOU think this is the Song of the Summer. It can be any genre, but it needs to not be super long. Five hours of relaxing fan noise is NOT the Song of the Summer. On the other hand, the song doesn’t need to be current, popular, or have “Summer” in the title. It just has to be something you want to listen to all Summer long in this, the Summer of 2024, until the weather starts to get cool again. In probably like January?

Here’s how it will work. Follow this link to the collective playlist on YouTube. Pick your Song of the Summer (one song per person, please), then find the song on YouTube. Click the “Save” icon to put the video into a playlist, and if you opened up the playlist with that link, you should see “L+B Collective Songs of the Summer” as one of your choices. Check that one and you’ve submitted it! Welcome to Voltron!

Looking Ahead to Upcoming Events 

Our weekly newsletters will include many more listings, but here are a handful of events that we know are planned for the next month. We’re giving you the heads up now in case you want to pre-buy tickets or block off the time.

  • June 7-8: Three Year Anniversary at Riches’ Art Gallery + on a boat
    Party w/art, buses, boats, DJs, + fashion shows
  • June 7-8: Video Games Soundtracks at Rosewood Neighborhood Park
    Local orchestra performs music from video game soundtracks outdoors
  • June 8: The Sound of Science at Bates Recital Hall
    Science-inspired performances of avant garde classical w/electronics
  • June 8: Freedom + Juneteenth at Pease Park
    Celebrate Juneteenth outdoors w/DJ, ballet, bbq, live music, activations
  • June 11-12: Blues on the Green at Zilker Park
    Local groups of many genres perform outdoors w/HEB activities
  • June 13: No Lights No Lycra at West China Tea
    Our very own dance party in the dark
  • June 14: Tiny Fest at the Lost Well
    Local LARP parlor raises funds w/live music, costumes, pickle eating contest
  • June 15: Juneteenth Parade and Festival at Rosewood Neighborhood Park
    Celebrate Juneteenth w/a proper parade w/marching bands + outdoor gathering
  • June 15: Vivid Parlor at Open House Austin
    Art + prompted activities intended to spark interaction among strangers
  • June 15: Yes, And at the Contemporary Austin
    Immersive performance art examining Black womanhood
  • June 15: Stay Black and Live at the Carver Museum
    Juneteenth cookout w/BBQ, DJs, games, vendors, + educational workshops
  • June 15: Smol Show at Highland Collective
    Art show where all art is no bigger than a standard piece of paper (8.5×11”)
  • June 15-16: Babestock at Cheer Up Charlie’s
    “All Femme + Gender-Expansive Electronic Music Festival”
  • June 19: Black History Social Ride + Block Party meeting at the State Capitol
    Explore the history of Austin’s Black community while cycling
  • June 20: Latino Moonlight Serenade at Texas Rowing Center
    Float on the river under moonlight listening to live Latino music
  • June 21: Art Island’s Solstice Soiree at Estelle’s
    Celebrate our buddy the Sun w/3 floors of DJs, costumed performers + vendors
  • June 22: Party at the People’s House at City Hall
    Celebrate diversity in Austin w/food, art activities, vendors, + live music
  • June 22: The Majestic Ball at the Paramount
    Ballroom + drag performers work the runway at a circus-themed party
  • June 22: Rolling Rave meeting at the State Capitol
    Cycle along through Austin’s streets w/wheeled DJs
  • June 26-30: Austin Asian American Film Festival at AFS
    Fest that “highlights new Asian and Asian American film”
  • June 28-30: Deep in the Heart of Derby at Travis County Expo Center
    Rollerderby athletes compete to ascend to their Global Championships
  • June 29: Austin African American Book Festival at the Carver Museum
    “Community gathering + cultural celebration of African American writers”
  • June 29: Vintage Shopping ART Bus Tour meeting at Almost Real Things HQ
    Take a tour of Austin’s thrift locales aboard the ART bus
  • June 29: Pride Picnic at Pease Park
    Outdoor Pride celebration w/DJs, vendors, + lots of different activities

Lite + Brite’s Guide to Making Friends in Austin

Here’s an inquiry we get a lot: “How can I meet new people without approaching strangers and trying not to seem creepy about it, and/or waiting for strangers to approach me, but then being creeped out when they do?” 

Good question, fellow creep-avoiders! To provide an answer, we have pored over our years of Austin research and compiled a list of local activities that foster interaction.

If you’re an extrovert with no social anxiety, any show or fest can be an opportunity to make new friends, + that sounds very convenient for you! For the rest of us, this list focuses on spaces and events that have small-group socializing built into them—or, at the very least, spaces and events where the barrier to striking up conversation is lower than usual, and a topic of conversation is readily apparent.

Meeting people is hard, and it can be even harder for non-drinkers. We’ve included some intentionally sober socializing options here. Where we know that an event on this list happens in a place with alcohol, we called that out specifically. 

As we say about everything in our newsletter: This list is by no means exhaustive! If you know of something we missed, please email it over or share it on our Discord, and we’ll update our website accordingly. Here’s what we’ve got:

Make art. Collage + Connect is a chill collage-making workshop held at various art galleries and shops. Queer Craft Night is a bi-weekly gathering for queer creatives to work on art in community, held in coffee shops and bars. Make at Rosie is a creative makerspace where you can become a member and stop by on your own time, or attend public crafting workshops and supply swaps. Austin Creative Reuse is a community space offering tons of artsy workshops and volunteer opportunities.

Drink a nonalcoholic beverage. Sans Bar offers traditional bar activities like trivia, karaoke, + drag in a welcoming alcohol-free space with sophisticated NA cocktails. West China Tea—our home for No Lights No Lycra for the past five years—is a communal tea room where you can always sit down at a big table and join in on an ongoing conversation about tea or travel or tarot or who knows what.

Attend a creative networking event. Creative Mornings hosts a monthly meetup in which a local creative gives an inspiring talk, and then everyone chats over coffee and breakfast tacos. Future Front runs a variety of summertime community clubs, each based around a specific theme or intention. One of our subscribers runs the Austin Salon, which starts out with an expert’s talk about a social, political, and/or economic topic, followed by small-group conversations involving all the attendees. It’s held in a private home with free alcoholic and NA drinks available.

Read a book. One of our subscribers has just launched Paperback Pictures Club, which meets once a month to discuss a book and watch a film based on it. Another of our subscribers organizes Silent Book Club, where you bring and read your own book—silently, yes, but you have a built-in conversation starter with strangers. (i.e. “What are you reading?”) SBC generally meets at bars and breweries.

Move your body. We don’t run (except under duress), but if you do, there are many running clubs, including Northern-Southern’s Artist Run Club (visit an art gallery, then go for a run!) and Comedor Run Club (geared at folks in the service industry). There are also plenty of group bike rides, including those led by Team Snacks and Bikin’ Betties (both cycling clubs for people who identify as women, trans, femme, or NB), Sunday Morning Cruises, Critical Mass (on the last Friday of every month), and loads of rides through Social Cycling Austin. Our favorite is the Thursday Night Social Ride, which happens every single week and can attract a massive number of riders. Meanwhile Austin Sports + Social Club offers tons of team sports and Austin Community Soccer Association offers adult rec soccer teams at all levels, if you’re into ball-sports. Some of these games + bike rides conclude at a bar, but the events themselves are outside.

Play a game. Tiny Minotaur is an immersive space (+ also a bar) for LARPing and TTRPGs. Game stores are great places for this: Toy Joy runs Dungeons and Dragons games every Monday; Vigilante Bar (which, as the name suggests, is a bar) runs a “100+ person ongoing mega D+D campaign” on Mondays and Tuesdays; Tribe Comics + Games has open games nights every weeknight; Dragon’s Lair offers more games than I can keep track of; and you can find plenty of other local gaming opportunities on the Austin Role Players subreddit. There are even events specifically for geeks of the lady+ variety. Meanwhile, the Museum of Human Achievement hosts a monthly event called Games Y’all showcasing indie games and digital art projects from the local community.  

Take a class. Fallout, Hideout, and ColdTowne all offer classes in improv, sketch comedy, and standup. (I did improv classes at ColdTowne and met lots of interesting people!) Learn filmmaking skills in small group classes at Austin Film School. The Lumber Society (held at a combination coffee shop + bar) teaches skills that will be useful in the approaching apocalypse, like how to build a fire or purify water or other things that I personally do not know how to do. Plus they give out badges! 

Read the Lite + Brite newsletter. We list plenty of events with socializing opportunities. For example, if you looked through the June events above, you may have noticed a “creative immersion” designed to foster conversation and new connections, and a Tiny Minotaur fundraiser including PvP. (You could be one of those Ps, and perhaps a new friend could be the other!) And when we host events of our own, like BYOT, we try to make it easy and fun for attendees to meet one another. So, check the weekly editions of our newsletter for upcoming friend-making possibilities!

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.

  • Tiny Minotaur
    Drinking and costumed LARPing, Dungeonsynths performing in the dungeon w/lots of lore
  • 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 Bones Malones, Amy Hayes, Katie Green, Christina Jue, Colleen MB, Lilly Ettinger, Lena Long, Amalia Litsa, 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 found us watching brass bands at HONK!TX, watching the eclipse at Bobo’s Snack Bar, and watching dancing forklifts at The Way of Water at Onion Creek. 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!

About Us

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 stuff, 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 are Leila + Brian. We make this newsletter. We do our own events, most often No Lights No Lycra (every second and fourth Thursday of the month), + also BYOT, a party where we share very good YouTubes (here’s a playlist from the last one). We go very hard seeing bands at SxSW (here are playlists of our favorites from 2024). We once got called “local Austin couple” by KXAN. 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, and support us on Patreon if you like what we do.

See you next time, champions