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Melissa Gaskill


An independent journalist for 17 years, Melissa has degrees in Zoology and Journalism and specializes in science, nature, and outdoor-oriented travel. She grew up in Texas, raised three children in Austin, and enjoys camping, hiking, kayaking and scuba diving. Her work has appeared in American Way, Family Fun, Men's Journal, Wildflower, Smithsonian, Texas Highways, Texas Parks & Wildlife, Texas Co-op Power, the Austin American Statesman and many other publications. She is the author of Best Hikes with Dogs: Texas Hill Country and Gulf Coast, now in its second printing, and often gives talks on hiking with dogs.

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Secret Menu Items

10 top-secret menu items from Austin's best restaurants

By Melissa Gaskill

Even at your old favorite restaurant or the hottest new place in town, sometimes nothing on the menu quite hits the spot. Or, maybe you want something special to commemorate ...

Killer Views

These 10 hot spots boast the most breathtaking views in Austin

By Melissa Gaskill

Who wouldn’t want to have lunch, dinner or a refreshing drink at a hot spot overlooking water? Austin boasts a wealth of lakes, rivers and creeks, and most of ...

Culinary Coup

Austin chef wows New York City with fresh farmhouse fare

By Melissa Gaskill

For the second year in a row, Chef Harold Marmulstein of Austin’s Salty Sow wowed the James Beard House in New York City with a special dinner. He presented ...

Good Eats

Kerbey Lane Cafe celebrates 35 years as an Austin institution

By Melissa Gaskill

Thirty-five years is a long time for anything to last these days, but it represents particular longevity for a local restaurant. Patricia and David Ayer opened Kerbey Lane Cafe in ...

Make Your Reservations Now

9 Austin restaurants featuring special Easter brunch menus

By Melissa Gaskill

When you’re too old for an egg hunt, brunch becomes the highlight of Easter celebrations (apart from the stop at church, of course). And what an improvement — no one ...

Sip on a Classic

The 5 Austin cocktails you should be sipping right now

By Melissa Gaskill

Blame it on the TV show Mad Men. Or perhaps credit goes to the rise of premium craft liquors, pent-up creativity or just boredom with “the usual.” Whatever the reason ...

The Lamb Master

Lamb Jam lands in Austin for the first time ever

By Melissa Gaskill

A new multi-city cook-off is headed to Austin for the first time. In February, 16 local chefs will compete to create the tastiest lamb dish in the land at Lamb ...

Busy Bees

New Hill Country eatery Apis Restaurant & Apiary buzzes with inspiration

By Melissa Gaskill

The folks behind the new Apis Restaurant and Apiary have been busy bees. When delays pushed back the eatery’s opening, they launched a series of pop-up supper clubs as ...

Ladies Night

East Austin hot spot caters to the ladies with weekly supper special

By Melissa Gaskill

Most of the tables were occupied at Dai Due on a recent Tuesday night, the sound of lively conversation backed by music filling the cozy, well-lit supper club space. Two ...

Deck The Halls

Must-see holiday light displays just a road trip away from Austin

By Melissa Gaskill

What says Christmas holidays better than lots and lots of lights? Texas abounds in festive light displays, many of which are just a short road trip away from Austin. These ...

Wild Austin

How to handle Austin's growing coyote conflict

By Melissa Gaskill

On November 20, Austin City Council approved a resolution directing the city manager to adopt a coyote conflict management strategy that emphasizes education and humane, non-lethal measures. The new policy ...

Thanksgiving with The Family

Family-friendly Thanksgiving events that go beyond the table

By Melissa Gaskill

Most holidays revolve around food or drink in some fashion, and Thanksgiving these days pretty much is food and drink. If you want to expand your holiday horizons rather than ...

Escape The Cold

Escape the cold: 6 warm weather destinations just a hop, skip and a sail away

By Melissa Gaskill

The first real cold front of the year recently hit Austin, sending most of us scrambling for coats and sweaters packed away since last winter. Layering those on is fun ...

Thanksgiving Dinner

Where to eat Thanksgiving dinner in Austin: Brunches, buffets and more

By Melissa Gaskill

Forget trying to thaw a turkey in four hours, chopping tons of celery, arguing over what kind of dressing to make — and all of those dishes. Make this Thanksgiving a ...

Spooktacular Fun

Celebrate Halloween around Austin with these 5 unique, family-friendly events

By Melissa Gaskill

The heart of Halloween has long been costumed children running door-to-door collecting ridiculous amounts of candy. While this is certainly fun for the kids, it's perhaps not so much ...

Friendly Food

5 Earth-friendly ways to eat better in Austin

By Melissa Gaskill

You can make your dining more earth-friendly without turning into a forager, giving up meat or doing anything else drastic. A few small changes here and there are all it ...

Cooling Off

Gimmick or genius? Ice ball cocktails could be the next cool thing

By Melissa Gaskill

In Austin’s crowded and competitive bar scene, establishments continually seek the next cool thing — something to draw customers in and, ideally, keep them coming back. Swift’s Attic bar ...

Housing the Homeless

Innovative new East Austin micro-village will rent to homeless for $210 a month

By Melissa Gaskill

On Wednesday, an overflow crowd gathered at a groundbreaking for an innovative concept to take homeless people off of Austin streets. Alan Graham, president and CEO of Mobile Loaves & Fishes ...

Dog-Friendly Fun

Celebrate the dog days with these Austin activities perfect for pooches

By Melissa Gaskill

The ancient Romans first applied the term “dog days” to the hot period from the end of July to late August when Sirius, the brightest star in the sky (also ...

The Stars at Night

Dark skies in Dripping Springs offer stargazing like nowhere else in Texas

By Melissa Gaskill

Just a few miles down the road from the bright lights of Austin, Dripping Springs holds on to its natural nights. The community’s efforts to practice better night lighting ...

All articles by this author.  82 Results. Showing 1 to 20
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