Chill out

Austin Ice Cream Festival gives scoop on hot events and cool new nighttime party

Austin Ice Cream Festival gives scoop on hot events and cool new party

Austin Ice Cream Festival
Austin Ice Cream Fest returns for another cool event. Austin Ice Cream Festival/ Facebook

Forget about SX, people. ACL Fest? Never heard of it. As Austin festivals go, there’s nothing sweeter than the Austin Ice Cream Festival.

Arriving at Fiesta Gardens on June 23 for one glorious, melty afternoon and evening, this year’s Austin Ice Cream Festival promises to be the best yet. Festival-goers will beat the summer heat with 20 frozen treat samplers offered by the likes of Amy’s Ice Creams, Snow Monster, GoodPop, and other frozen confectioners.

Daytime events are fun for all ages, and include water gun battles, rock climbing walls, and epically messy ice cream eating contests. If you think you’ve got what it takes to overcome some serious brain freeze, you can take on the Half Gallon Challenge. If you’re really ambitious, reach for the brass ring and try to beat the record set in 2010 by World Eating Champion Joey Chestnut, who ate 1.25 gallons of ice cream in five minutes.

After a day of family events, ride your sugar buzz into an evening filled with grown-up frozen treats, food trucks, and more live music. Headliners this year include Austin’s own Tameca Jones; “Obama’s DJ,” DJ Mel; and the legendary classic soul sounds of Lee Fields & the Expressions.

“What better way to celebrate summer than by enjoying some of the best ice cream in Texas,” said Leslie Sweet, H-E-B's director of public affairs, in a release. “H-E-B is proud to join thousands of ice cream lovers as they come together at one of Austin’s most popular festivals to sample more than 1.5 tons of frozen treats.” (Also, there hasn’t been a more appropriately named brand spokesperson than Leslie Sweet since Tito Beveridge started hawking his vodka years ago.)

If you want in on the more than 1.5 tons of ice cream that will be consumed, tickets for both the daytime and evening portions of the Austin Ice Cream Festival go on sale Wednesday, May 16. For more information, or to purchase tickets, visit