keeping kids weird

Kid cool Austin activities For March: Dirt, space, academics and the good old rodeo

Kid cool Austin activities For March: Dirt, space, academics and the good old rodeo

Austin Photo Set: News_Roby_fun things to do March  2013_rodeo austin
Kid's Club at Rodeo Austin Courtesy of Rodeo Austin
Austin Photo Set: News_Roby_fun things to do March  2013_zilker park garden
Zilker Garden Festival Courtesy of
Austin Photo Set: News_Jessica Pages_kite festival_march 2012_k
Kite Festival at Zilker Park Photo by Jessica Pages
Austin Photo Set: News_Roby_fun things to do March  2013_rodeo austin
Austin Photo Set: News_Roby_fun things to do March  2013_zilker park garden
Austin Photo Set: News_Jessica Pages_kite festival_march 2012_k

If you feel like skipping this month’s list of activities... feel free. We’ll catch you in April. After all, with South By Southwest, Spring Break vacations, St. Patrick’s Day and Easter all squeezed into the month, parents have plenty on their plate.

However, this month’s Austin family-centric events offer some great reasons to stay out of the house, and none of them require an expensive badge or plane ticket. Consider this list the perfect complement to your busy March, featuring unique adventures that don't happen any other month. Choose wisely. 

March 2, Explore UT

It’s never too early to start thinking about college. Not the soul-crushing tuition debt, mind you, but the interests and studies your kids might be into. Pump up their college spirit at Explore UT, a campus-wide open house for prospective students, as well as adults and families with kids of any age.

This full day of events, performances, exhibits and activities encourages you to explore the academic possibilities. It’s a great way for young science, athletic or artistic kids to see where their dreams can take them. Parents, think of this as a head start for figuring out what scholarships to start tracking.

March 2, Hero Rush

Is it the boots, the big red truck or the trusty Dalmatian that draws kids to early aspirations of being a firefighter? Indulging in their fire fighting hero worship can be fun for them, and quite a workout for you.

Hero Rush is a five-mile obstacle course run created and inspired by firefighters. Adults will wander through smoke-filled hallways, climb ladders and get wet. The kid courses feature similar obstacles and are designed for ages 4 - 13. The day also features fire department demonstrations and fun activities on the Inferno Midway. 

March 3, Zilker Kite Festival 

The Austin lifestyle is great, but some areas of the city lack wide-open spaces. There’s not much room for the simple joy of flying a kite amid playscape- and playground-dominated landscapes.

The Zilker Kite Festival will inspire kids and parents to take to the skies on a regular basis. There are plenty of activities for kids to build their own kite, as well as watch pros work their magic in the air. The homemade kites built by frequent flyers will fire up your kids’ imagination. Go fly a kite, and it might be your new favorite weekend activity. 

March 8 - 23, Rodeo Austin

My kids were born in Texas and, sadly, have only been on a horse once. Though they'll never have a Texas drawl or play football, they should have some appreciation of their state's heritage.

If you’re in the same boat, then a trip to Rodeo Austin is fun way to show them their Texas roots and the competitive sport of rodeo. Spread out over 15 nights, watching bull riding, tie-down roping or bareback riding will give kids a new appreciation for "extreme sports". Kids 12 and under can tackle the Rodeo Rumble 1K Kid’s Fun Run. 

Canadian kids skate. Californian kids surf. Raising a Texas kid that can hang onto a 500 pound bull named Tornado is a kid who's got some bragging rights. 

March 19, Space Day At the Texas Capitol

Space. Still the final frontier, and a source of wonder for kids. Part of Space Week Texas, NASA's Space Day will feature vehicle mockups, exhibits and robotics demos. Chances are your child won’t be discovering new civilizations or stepping on the moon, but the exhibit will allow them touch a 4-billion-year-old moon rock. Letting your kids explore how NASA is changing space exploration can only help their curiosity for science grow. Engage. 

March 30, Zilker Garden Festival

Would your kids be more inclined to eat their veggies if they grew them themselves? The 55th Zilker Garden Festival is a colorful way to give your kids a green thumb.

Held at the Zilker Botanical Garden, kids will have their kids corner, where they can build a birdhouse or make a dinosaur mask or butterfly wings. Parents can learn from local gardening experts and browse vendors selling everything from succulents to vegetables. Plant the idea for a new healthy hobby as your kids dig into the dirt.