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May Curated: Austin’s Top 10 Events This Month

Plan a memorable month of May with art openings, ballet, wine tastings, spring markets, and legendary musicians in concert

Paramout Theatre (photo courtesy of Birdsong Imaging)

May is buzzing with excitement in Austin! With spring markets, art events, ballet, BBQ, concerts with legendary artists, and ways to celebrate Mom, here’s our list of top events to add to your calendar.

The World of Hunt Slonem Art Exhibition

West Chelsea Contemporary
now through May 26

The WCC gallery presents an immersive exploration of Hunt Slonem’s art. With over 100 works across media — from oil paintings and glowboxes to neon and blown glass — The World of Hunt Slonem is the most comprehensive display of the artist’s works in the United States. Slonem is best known for his neo-expressionist paintings of wildlife exotica — most famously bunnies, tropical birds, and butterflies — often suspended in antique frames. Learn more here or book a private appointment here.

“The World of Hunt Slonem’ exhibit at West Chelsea Contemporary (photo courtesy of WCC)

Blue Genie May Market

6100 Airport Blvd.
now through May 27

The May Market is a free, family-friendly experience showcasing the work of nearly 200 artists and artisans under one roof, offering an ideal place to shop for one-of-a-kind gifts for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, graduations, anniversaries, weddings and more. The Market will be open every Friday through Sunday, 10 a.m.- 8 p.m. through Memorial Day, May 27.

Blue Genie May Market (photo courtesy of Blue Genie)

Pecan Street Festival

Sixth Street between Brazos Street and Interstate 35
May 4 & 5

One of the largest and longest-running arts, crafts, and music festivals in the nation, the Pecan Street Spring Arts Festival features more than 300 craft artisans amidst a weekend-long celebration of art, music, and food this May in Austin. View the full schedule and lineup.

(photo courtesy of Pecan Street Festival)

Wine & Food Foundation Presents Toast of Texas 2024

Springdale Station
May 5

Toast of Texas is bringing together over 20 wineries at this sip n’ stroll style event complete with Texas BBQ and paella, plus some incredible silent auction packages. Events like Toast of Texas help Wine & Food Foundation to raise money for its various philanthropic partners like Sustainable Food Center, Keep Austin Fed, and others. More info and tickets here.

Toast of Texas (photo courtesy of the Wine and Food Foundation)

Ballet Austin presents The Sleeping Beauty

Long Center
May 10 – 12, several performance times

A perfect opportunity to treat all moms during Mother’s Day weekend, The Sleeping Beauty provides a timeless tale featuring fairy godmothers, true love’s kiss, glittering costumes, magnificent sets, and Tchaikovsky’s fabulous score performed live by the Austin Symphony Orchestra. Choose from four performances of the this classical ballet.

Ballet Austin’s The Sleeping Beauty (Photo by Tony Spielberg)

Paramount Gala with Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

Paramount Theatre
May 11

Legend Joan Jett and The Blackhearts are headlining the Paramount’s Anniversary Gala to celebrate 109 years of the Paramount and 89 years of the State. The party starts under the iconic marquee with an all-vinyl set from DJ Billie Buck and DJ Sue. Inside the Paramount, enjoy an unforgettable show by Joan Jett & The Blackhearts. The night continues down Congress Avenue to dine, dance, and party over two blocks of Austin’s main street. Ticket info here.

(photo courtesy of Joan Jett and the Blackhearts)

Affordable Art Fair

Palmer Events Center
May 16 -19

With 60 local, national, and international galleries all under one roof at the Affordable Art Fair, prepare to experience original artworks by a whole host of established and emerging artists. Artworks are priced between $100 and $10,000. There are plenty of special activities during the Art Fair, include a VIP night on Thursday, a Friday night party with friends, and family activities on Saturday morning, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Learn more about the schedule and ticket options.

(photo courtesy of Affordable Art Fair Austin)

Hot Luck Festival

Various locations
May 23 – 26

This food and music festival is an eat-with-your-fingers picnic and party that highlights open-pit feats of culinary know-how, plus live music that is as thoughtfully created as the food on your plate. Hot Luck Festival is one of the hottest tickets in town this month — for great reason. More info & tickets here.

Hot Luck 2023 (Photo by Alison Narro)

The Drop-In

Long Center
May 23 – August 15

As part of its mission to fuel community through creativity, the Long Center along with partner ACL Radio will once again host their FREE summer concert series, The Drop-In every Thursday night all summer long, starting on May 23. Kick back on the lawn and enjoy some of Austin’s best artists on their one-of-a-kind 3D-printed stage set against stunning views of downtown. The family (and dog) friendly series will also feature a weekly DJ, full bar, lawn games, photo ops and more.  Learn more.

Long center (photo credit: Brynn Osborn)

Robert Rodriguez Star Ceremony

Paramount Theatre
May 25

As part of the Paramount’s kickoff weekend of their 50th annual Summer Classic Film series, they will be inducting Robert Rodriguez into their Avenue of Paramount Stars, honoring and commemorating his achievements with a permanent star on Congress Avenue. The public star unveiling will start at 5 p.m. with special guest Alexis Bledel, which is free and open to all with an RSVP here. After the ceremony, there will be a ticketed 7:30 p.m. screening of SIN CITY, to be followed by a Q&A with Robert and Alexis. More info and tickets here.

Robert Rodriguez at Paramount Theatre (photo by Rachel Parker)

Bonus Event Outside of Austin:
Willie Nelson & Family in Concert with Robert Earl Keen

Whitewater Amphitheater (New Braunfels)
May 11

With a seven-decade career, Willie Nelson has earned every award as a musician and amassed reputable credentials as an author, actor, and activist. He continues to thrive as a relevant and progressive musical and cultural force. See him live in concert just a short drive south of Austin for an unforgettable experience. More info and tickets here.

Willie Nelson at the 2024 Luck Reunion (photo by Alana Swaringen)

Much More to Explore this Month

Of course, there are far more than ten amazing events to enjoy this month, and you can browse our online events calendar for even more ideas on things to see and do this May in Austin. Also be sure to check out: