May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so we’re sharing the history of an Austinite who has inspired countless people to check in on their loved ones with a quick, “Hi, how are you?”
Daniel Johnston wasn’t an Austinite by birth, but he settled in ATX in the 1980s after visiting the city as part of a traveling carnival. He liked Bat City so much, he stayed.
His lo-fi, homemade-sounding music grew a strong cult following. His most famous song, “True Love Will Find You in the End,” was eventually covered by stars like Beck and Wilco.
Notably, Kurt Cobain was a big fan of Daniel’s, praising him in interviews and wearing a t-shirt of Daniel’s “Jeremiah the Innocent” in 1992.
Jeremiah was just one of many cartoon-like characters invented by Daniel, who was also a talented visual artist and was honored by a Contemporary Austin exhibit last year.
Throughout his life, Daniel struggled with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. He shared his lived experiences, finding an outlet in his art until he died of natural causes in 2019.
Daniel is frequently remembered for his creation of Jeremiah the Innocent, a frog-like creature who stars in one of Austin’s most well-known murals alongside the words “Hi, How Are You.” Despite the recent demolition of the building he’s housed on, Jeremiah has been preserved.
Daniel and Jeremiah also inspired the creation of the Hi, How Are You Project, a local nonprofit dedicated to removing the stigma around mental health. The group offers training and hosts the annual Hi How Are You Day concert on Daniel’s birthday.
Currently, the nonprofit is running the Happy Habit-a-Thon, a month-long virtual event promoting “Happy Habits” like being grateful and practicing kindness. Last year, thousands of people across six continents and 30 countries participated.
Austin Greek Festival | Friday, May 26-Sunday, May 28 | Times vary | Transfiguration Greek Orthodox Church, 414 St. Stephens School Rd., Austin | $5 | Greek cuisine, wine, dance, and fun await at this annual festival.
Hot Luck Festival | Friday, May 26-Sunday, May 28 | 7-10 p.m. | Multiple locations | $15-$500 | This foodie festival brings together James Beard Award–winner Aaron Franklin’s favorite chefs and musicians nationwide.
Saturday, May 27
Gus Garcia Mural Unveiling Ceremony | Saturday, May 27 | 9 a.m. | Gus Garcia Recreation Center, 1201 E. Rundberg Ln., Austin | Free | Celebrate former Austin Mayor Gus Garcia at this mural unveiling.
2023 Woodland Faerie Trail Opening Day | Saturday, May 27 | 10 a.m.-2 p.m. | Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Rd., Austin | Free | Kick off the annual faerie trail with activity tables, a fairy storytime, and a Scottish country dance class.
2023 Lone Star Jam | Saturday, May 27-Sunday, May 28 | 12-11 p.m. | Round Rock Amp, 3701 N. IH-35, Round Rock | $50-$300 | See acts including Pat Green, Stoney Larue, and Randy Rogers Band at this weekend country music fest — one day tickets are available.
Sunday, May 28
The Austin Flea at Meanwhile Brewing | Sunday, May 28 | 12 p.m. | Meanwhile Brewing Co., 3901 Promontory Point Dr., Austin | Free | Shop for handmade and vintage goods at the south Austin brewery.
The Aquadolls | Sunday, May 28 | 7-11:59 p.m. | Mohawk Austin, 912 Red River St., Austin | $15 | See this girl-band trio live and in color.
Hands-On History: Butter Churning | Sunday, May 28-Monday, May 29 | Times vary | Jourdan-Bachman Pioneer Farms, 10621 Pioneer Farms Dr., Austin | Free | Learn a new — or should we say old — skill at this Memorial Day weekend tutorial.
Two new water reservoirs will be operational in south Austin by 2030. The projects are expected to cost $60 million, and will serve neighborhoods that were hit hardest by the 2021 Winter Storm Uri. (KXAN)
UT volleyball coach Jerritt Elliott was inducted into the USA Volleyball Hall of Fame this week, in addition to earning the organization’s All-Time Great Coach Award. Coach Elliott has been with UT since 2001, and in that time has helped Texas earn two NCAA championships. (Austin American-Statesman)
The Twin Oaks Shopping Center at 2315 S. Congress Ave. — which is currently housing a temporary H-E-B — may be redeveloped into mixed-use space, according to a permit filed this week. Changes are likely years in the future, however, as the 10-acre site will hold the grocery store until at least 2024. (Austin Towers)
Try coastal Greek and Mediterranean cuisine at the new family-owned restaurant Yamas, which will open in Highland Park on Saturday, June 10. Co-owners Roxie and Hristos Nikolakos’s menu offers dishes like fried feta, grilled octopus, and lobster thermidor. (Eater Austin)
West William Cannon Drive will have one fewer lane on each side between Menchaca Road and Woodhue Drive starting Tuesday, May 30. The half-mile stretch will be closed until November, as the city works to implement $4 million worth of improvements. (CBS Austin)
Did you know that in 1948, Texas passed a law banning the use of profane language on the telephone? This is just one of the Lone Star State’s many wacky laws — read about some more. (KUT)
Crews recently broke ground on Texas State University’s new $37 million football performance center. The facility will include an 8,000-sqft weight room, training room, player’s lounge, and conference rooms. (Community Impact Austin)
How does Going work? Sign up for free, follow up to five airports, and get notified when flights are 40-90% off. Bonus: You can browse deals immediately after signing up (like a ~$575 round trip to Fiji).*
Mammoth Cave National Park is less than 1.5-hours from downtown Louisville. | Photo by NPS
If you’re planning a party — be it a family reunion, a wedding, or just because — we’ve got an idea that’s a breath of fresh air. Why not give your guests a gorgeous view by hosting an event in a national park? Follow these guidelines to make party planning a walk in the park.