Every Friday and Saturday night 6th street shuts down to road traffic and opens up as one of Austin’s premier locations to dance, drink and have a general good time. A fun little fact that I learned about last night was the Shia LaBeouf, the kid from the Transformers movies, was arrest on said street for having a few to many libations. I suppose people think 6th street one of Austins ‘things’. What people may not know is that the first weekend in May and last weekend in September the street shuts down during the day and is transformed into a sprawling array of vendors selling a variety of arts, crafts, food, and occasional scam vacation. Three different stages located on Trinity, Neches, and Red River aso play host to over 60 of Austin home grow musicians. The festival has been going on for more than 3 decades and attracts hundreds of artist who comes to sell their paint, chalk, steel, clay, leather, and every other kind of median you can think of. To purchase these crafts and have a good time, thousands of Austinites and others from surrounding cities flock to 6th street. The scene is crowded, but amazing. Th people come as varied as the crafts, some dressed in hippie attire, others in biker outfits. In many ways, it’s as much a cultural event as it is an arts bazaar.
So whats with the Pecan Street on 6th street? Well allow me to copy the answer from the festivals web site found here.
When Edwin Waller designed Austin’s street grid, he named north-south streets after Texas rivers and recommended numeric designations for east-west streets. Instead, they were named after trees. That decision was later reversed, and they were renamed with numbers. Though Pecan Street became Sixth Street, the festival honors its original name.
And in case someone is wondering… No I didn’t see a single Pecan.
The Train on the Rails
The Lady, being the smart one in the coupling, suggested that we take the Metro Rail down to the festival. It’s a 7 dollars round trip and saves us the headache of traffic and parking…sold! Joining us in our adventure was Curls and The Nerd. Both of whom had never taken the metro, excitement all around.
A 35 minute trip and all of us departed at the downtown metro station, followed by a short 3 block walk to Old Pecan Street(6th street). We walked over to the festival and were greet too well, the picture below.
In the center of the street, tents were lined side to side and back to back. Some sold the uninteresting, some sold the awesome. But all were fun to peek into.
We walk down the end of the tent line, were The Lady took the time to gush over a pair of kittens that Austin Pets Alive had. Which by the way is an amazing place, I got one of my two adopted cats there.
Just outside the Pets Alive booth, I saw the coolest dog I have even seen…
Reaching the end, we turned around and wonder back up the street. On this side the music stages could be seen, but only one had a band “playing”. After 15 minutes of sound checks, we decided that it wasn’t worth the wait
A little under three hours after we arrived, we headed back to the metro.
We all ended up having a great time. I bought a few Christmas gifts, and the others got some shirts and other knick-knacks. If your free the first weekend in May, drop by, you’ll enjoy it.
Thanks for reading!