Organized by the Austin Sports and Social Club, the community-oriented Downtown Dash TX unleashes teams on a race across the city rife with physical challenges, social interactions, and mental puzzles. The undefined course lets participants choose their own route, but with a catch: travel must be completed on foot or by public transportation, not on bicycles, rollerblades, or stolen emus. While following a clue sheet, teams attempt to topple up to a dozen challenges all while encountering some of Austin's most historic and renowned sites. Upon crossing the finish line, the top three teams receive a special prize, but everyone wins during a postrace party that stretches the day's festivities into the evening. There will also be random drawings in which every team has a chance to win. The race benefits the Austin Sunshine Camps.
Beyond the race, Austin Sports and Social Club offers a range of coed team sports leagues, including soccer, softball, dodgeball, bowling, and sand volleyball. Participants are able to socialize on the court and at team happy hours following games.
Though named for a fixture of a bygone era and reportedly haunted by its ghosts, Speakeasy lives in the present: its three floors fill with modern music each night. On the first floor, live music from local bands spills through Speakeasy Live, where hardwood accents, art-deco lamps, candle-lit tables, and exposed brick complement a Jazz Age atmosphere. On the Mezzanine level, a full bar, antique couches, and two vintage bowling lanes overlook the main stage. Lanes are open Tuesday through Sunday.
At the top of a 59-step staircase, patrons emerge onto Terrace59—a neon-lit rooftop lounge that offers panoramic views of downtown Austin. The terrace stays heated during the colder months, while a canopy allows the full bar to serve and lively music to play even in the event of inclement weather and cushions the fall of DJs who decided to parachute in. On each of the three floors, servers pour all kinds of drinks, many of which are named for people, places, and events associated with Prohibition.
Though big cities tend to offer a lot of activities for residents, the sheer volume of options can sometimes make it overwhelming to find something fitting. For residents of Austin, the Austin Clan of Everything Social (ACES) makes it easy to find a good time no matter your speed, with social leagues at watering holes and bowling alleys throughout town. On any given night, participants might gather to blow away their highest ping-pong score or grab a mic during a karaoke battle to show off their high note that only dogs can hear. Over the course of a season, members make new friends, bolstering the ACES community while battling for glory with their teammates.
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Sunset Bowling Lanes opened in 1959 with 24 solid-wood lanes and a stockpile of miniature pencils to keep track of spares and strikes. The alley has since upgraded to computerized scoring systems while also maintaining the charm of classic tenpin entertainment. In addition to its open bowling and league opportunities, Sunset Bowling Lanes hosts events such as college nights—which provide students with discounts so they can save up for books or exam mulligans—and keeps its patrons fueled for the eternal turkey hunt with burgers and drinks from the snack bar.