Plus, the Barton Springs Pool bathhouse is getting a little TLC.
February 7, 2024 6AM-Top banner logo-small.png


Today’s Forecast

70º | Partly cloudy | 0% chance of rain | Sunrise 7:18 a.m. | Sunset 6:12 p.m.

🗳 Here we go again
Current Mayor Kirk Watson has yet to formally announce his plans to run for mayor again. | Photo provided by Workforce Solutions Capital Area
With a jam-packed election year on the horizon and candidates for Austin’s November mayoral election announcing their intentions to run, you may find yourself asking, “Wasn’t there just a mayoral election in 2022?”

You’re not having déjà vu — there was a mayoral race just two years ago and mayoral terms usually last four years, so what gives? Let’s break it down.

Why is there a mayoral election in 2024 if there was one in 2022?

In short, it’s to line up the mayoral race with the presidential race.

In 2021, Austinites voted yes on Proposition D, which aligned mayoral elections with presidential elections, starting in 2024. Previously, mayoral elections were aligned with gubernatorial elections.

The idea behind Prop D was to increase voter turnout, but passing it also meant that the mayor elected in 2022 would serve two years instead of four.

Who is running this year?

According to the City of Austin, the 2024 Candidate Packet will not be released until Thursday, May 2. Incumbent Mayor Kirk Watson has yet to make a formal announcement in the race, but has previously stated that he plans to run again.

Others who have officially announced their candidacy are former City Council Member Kathie Tovo, Go! Austin/Vamos! Austin Executive Director Carmen Llanes Pulido, and Interfaith organizer Doug Greco.

What else is on the local ballot in 2024?

Aside from mayor, the following positions will be on the ballot:
  • District 2
  • District 4
  • District 6
  • District 7
  • District 10
You can keep up with the 2024 local election on this page.
Wednesday, Feb. 7
  • Plumpjack Wine Dinner | Wednesday, Feb. 7 | 6:30 p.m. | Commodore Perry Estate, 4100 Red River St., Austin | $175 | Winemaker Aaron Miller will guide guests through four courses of dinner and five courses of wine.
  • “Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812" | Now-Sunday, March 3 | Times vary | ZACH Theatre, 202 S. Lamar Blvd., Austin | $24-$73 | This Tony Award-winning electro-pop opera is a new twist on Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.”
Thursday, Feb. 8
  • Austin Oddities Market | Thursday, Feb. 8 | 9 p.m. | Elysium, 705 Red River St., Austin | $10 | Explore some odd — and potentially creepy — gifts while tuning into local live music.
Friday, Feb. 9
Saturday, Feb. 10
  • Nagavalli | Saturday, Feb. 10 | 8 p.m. | The State Theatre, 713 Congress Ave., Austin | $35 | Enjoy some indo-fusion music at Nagavalli’s return to the State Theatre, after selling out in 2023.
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News Notes
  • Austin Community College and Foundation Communities partnered for the first time this year to offer tax preparation services at the ACC Highland campus. Individuals earning up to $60,000 and households earning up to $85,000 annually qualify — learn more.
  • A renovation project on the bathhouse at Barton Springs Pool will begin on Thursday, Feb. 15 and continue through spring 2025. Throughout construction, northern restrooms, showers, the parking lot, and the pool entrance will be closed.
  • The shuttered Luby’s Cafeteria at 8176 N. MoPac Expy., which has been closed since 2021, could soon be demolished to make room for a new affordable housing complex with ~275 units. Demolition permits were filed earlier week by architecture firm Ardent Residential. (Austin Towers)
  • It’s Free Cheese Week at Antonelli’s Cheese Shop, meaning the first 75 people in line at 4220 Duval St. from now until Friday, Feb. 9 will take home a free wedge. The shop opens daily at 11 a.m. — you can thank us later.
  • Hair salon Urban Betty will celebrate the opening of its third location, this time in Round Rock. Located at 3001 Joe DiMaggio Blvd., Ste. #1350, the new salon will host a grand opening 6-8 p.m. tomorrow, complete with giveaways and cocktails.
  • Cirque du Soleil’s first-ever show on ice, called “Crystal,” is coming to Cedar Park. The show will feature its signature acrobatics, this time with performers dancing on ice skates. Catch the performances from Wednesday, Feb. 21 through Sunday, Feb. 25 at the H-E-B Center at Cedar Park.
  • There’s no place like H-E-B. The Texas grocery store tied for best in the US, sharing a spot with Costco and Publix, in the American Customer Satisfaction Index with 85 points. Meanwhile, Austin-based health foods store Whole Foods tied for fourth place with 82 points.
  • Get trusted financial advice with Money Pickle, the service that connects you directly with experienced financial advisors to help with your investment + retirement planning needs (all through a complimentary video meeting). Take control of your financial future in 2024 by scheduling a free consultation.*
💐 Coming up orchids
a gif slideshow of water marbled orchids .gif
Flowersmith can color its orchids according to six color schemes, two seasonal color schemes, or custom colors. | Photos courtesy Rachel Thomas
Someone in your life deserves a bouquet of orchids and we know just where to get them.

The painted petals from Flowersmith ATX are the perfect way to tell that special someone you love them. Owner Rachel Thomas, a lifelong lover of flowers, paints the flowers by hand through a marbling process.

“When you paint (the flowers), they take on this whole different personality, they draw you in,” Thomas said. “It’s a fun process and they surprise me every time.”

In addition to six distinct colorways (Thomas’ favorite is the Desert Sunset) for painted stems or live orchids — plus the option for custom colors — the local flower studio offers wearable flowers and small bouquets.

Customers who order before Sunday, Feb. 11 will have access to two Valentine’s Day colorways, Be Mine and Mi Amor. Valentine’s specials start at $45 for painted stems and $95 for painted orchids.
The Buy
A Curry Up Broth Bomb, which will flavor five to eight portions of soup, beans, chili, or whatever you want to cook. Hello healthy, yummy dinner.
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The Wrap
City Editor Figi poses with an adorable goat. Today’s edition by:
From the editor
It’s official: City Editor London and I will be at SXSW this year and we are thrilled. Personally, I’m most excited to take full advantage of the film festival and find out the results of ICON’s Initiative 99.
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