2023 in stories
Austin's top entertainment stories of 2023: Celebrities, Formula 1, and good music
Editor's note: As 2023 comes to a close, we're looking back at the stories that defined Austin this year, and that includes entertainment around town. Austinites were most interested in celebrity buzz, Formula 1, and ways to listen to music. Here are the top 10 entertainment headlines of 2023.
1. Here are all the Hollywood celebrities we've spotted in Austin so far for SXSW. The stars were out in Austin during SXSW, from red carpets, to parties, to simply enjoying the scene.
2. No joke, these 7 famous comedians all live in Austin now. You're probably aware that Joe Rogan lives in Austin, but there are six more famously funny men and women you may spot around the city.
3. Annual Hill Country festival returning for its 34th year in the heart of Dripping Springs. A three-day weekend affair of family-friendly fun and music brings community members together year after year. If Austinites need any more reasons to escape Austin's hustle and bustle and visit the suburb, we've got 11 more fun places to visit straight from a Dripping Springs native. And you can't forget to visit Sunday Bookshop, which opened its doors to the public in June.
4. Here's why an F1 car flew through Austin by helicopter yesterday. Oracle Red Bull Racing flew in Max Verstappen's car to a special event to debut the custom-designed livery ahead of the upcoming United States Grand Prix weekend – via helicopter.
This is one way to make flying cars a reality. Photo by Chad Wadsworth / Red Bull Content Pool
5. Rock band The Killers surprise fans with Austin show ahead of F1 race. Iconic 2000s rock band The Killers tossed a new show onto their schedule, to appease "victims" who couldn't — or just wouldn't — shell out $600-plus to see the much anticipated F1 show.
6. New documentary explores Austin and San Antonio as an emerging mega-metro. The program focuses on the region's growth and the challenges that arise with such rapid expansion, like water scarcity, environmental impacts, and increasingly common transportation and traffic woes.
7. Boutique Austin hotel amplifies the vinyl bar scene with a moody new listening room. There’s no shortage of cool places in Austin to hear curated tunes, but a new effort by Hotel Magdalena amplifies the imagination beyond the laid-back trend.
Hotel Magdalena opened a chic listening room with speakeasy vibes, called Equipment Room. Photo by Nick Simonite
8. Austin suburb rocks out with grand opening of new park this weekend. To commemorate the grand opening of the long-awaited Lakeline Park, the City of Cedar Park Parks and Recreation Department planned a ‘90s concert with some indie rock legends.
9. Willie Nelson's famous 4th of July picnic returns to Q2 Stadium for special 50th anniversary. Anyone who pledges allegiance to Willie's red bandana will be excited to know they can count on their annual pilgrimage to celebrate the 4th of July with the Texas legend.
10. Toy Joy and Yummi Joy relocate to bigger play space on Burnet Road. This gave the collection tons of room to stretch out, going from a crowded strip mall squeeze to its own standalone building that's 50 percent bigger.