Plus, where to visit James Beard Award-winning eateries.
 
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6AM City In-house

Today’s Forecast

91º | 50% chance of rain | Sunrise 6:28 a.m. | Sunset 8:33 p.m. | Full Weather Report | Traffic Report

 
🚆 A one-track mind
A blue locomotive engine trailing rainbow cars filled with waving people in the back on the tracks.
And yes, adults can also ride the train. | Photo courtesy Austin Parks Foundation
All aboard the Zilker Eagle — the long-awaited mini-train will reopen just in time for summer.

The new locomotive will depart at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, June 10 from the Train Depot at 2131 1/2 William Barton Dr. After its grand opening ceremony, the train will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Presented in partnership between Austin Parks Foundation and CapMetro, the Zilker Eagle has a storied history. Zilker Park had a mini-train running almost continuously (outside of a change in management) from 1961 to 2019, when the relationship between train’s operating company and the city came to an end. APF has been working to resurrect the Zilker Eagle since 2020.

The Zilker Eagle in a vintage, black and white photo with a visible skyline.

Just take a look at that vintage skyline.

|

Photo by E.P. Haddon via The Portal to Texas History, crediting Austin History Center and Austin Public Library.

Here’s what to expect with this new iteration of the Zilker Eagle mini-train:
  • A new turnaround on the route at Lou Neff Point
  • ADA accessibility on the train and at the station
  • A newly renovated train depot
Plus, every third Wednesday of the month, train rides will be free from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Tickets will be $6, and a portion will benefit local parks, so go make some new memories.
 
Asked
 
What was the original name of Zilker Park’s mini-train?

A. The Zilker Zebra
B. The Zilker Zephyr
C. The Zilker Eagle
D. The Zilker Zenith
 
 
Events
 
Tuesday, June 11
  • “Frozen” The Musical | Now-Sunday, June 16 | Times vary | Bass Concert Hall, 2350 Robert Dedman Dr., Austin | $35-$159 | Experience the award-winning Disney feature on the stage with an expanded score and a dozen new songs.
  • Mitch Watkins Trio | Tuesday, June 11 | Times vary | Elephant Room, Swift Building, 315 Congress Ave., Austin | Free | The namesake of this jazzy trio began his musical journey playing guitar at age 13 with a surf band in McAllen, TX, followed by world tours with Leonard Cohen.
Wednesday, June 12
  • Summer Movie Series: “Moonrise Kingdom” | Wednesday, June 12 | 8 p.m. | Meanwhile Brewing Co., 3901 Promontory Point Dr., Austin | Free | Watch this heartwarming Wes Anderson film about two kids who run away together on the big screen.
Thursday, June 13
  • “How the Other Half Loves” | Thursday, June 13-Sunday, June 23 | Times vary | Genesis Creative Collective, 1507 Wilshire Blvd., Austin | $15-$25 | This comedic play follows three married couples as they attempt to cover up their affairs at a dinner party.
Friday, June 14
  • Texas Ranchers MLP Watch Party | Friday, June 14 | 4-7 p.m. | Skinny’s Off Track Bar, 1806 E. 12th St., Austin | Free | Austin’s own Texas Ranchers dream team will take on the D.C. Pickleball Team, so watch with a ranch water in-hand.
  • Music Under the Star | Friday, June 14 | 6-9 p.m. | Bullock Texas State History Museum, 1800 Congress Ave., Austin | Free | Kamica King and The Peterson Brothers will bring their mesmerizing riffs to Downtown for this summertime concert.
Click here to have your event featured.
 
 
News Notes
 
Civic
  • The city is giving out heat preparedness supplies including solar power banks, low-flow shower heads, reusable shopping bags, and compostable bags from 8 to 11 a.m. at certain locations today, tomorrow, and Thursday. View the schedule. (KXAN)
Real Estate
  • Austin is the No. 4 best city for renters in the US, thanks to a substantial decrease in rental prices, high unit availability, and amenities. The Capital City scored 94 out of 100, and was the highest Texas city on the list, followed by San Antonio at No. 11 and Dallas at No. 24. (Forbes)
Sports
  • Get those horn up. Texas athletics took home the Learfield Directors’ Cup for the second year in a row and third time in four years. The department hooked a host of accolades this season, including national titles for volleyball + rowing, and national runner-up in softball. (Austin American-Statesman)
Announced
  • A new mini golf and entertainment venue is in the works at Parmer Austin, 13011 McCallen Pass. PopStroke at The Pitch — slated to open in spring 2025 — will feature two 18-hole courses, quick-service dining, a full bar, and an ice cream shop.
Community
  • Time to take a dip, because Austin’s seasonal pools are now open. The city’s remaining six pools opened yesterday, alongside a temporary bathhouse at Barton Springs Pool. Find a place to swim near you.
Answered
  • According to our calculations — aka a poll asking folks to check off all the taco restaurants they’ve visited from our guide — Fresa’s Chicken Al Carbon, Veracruz All Natural, and Güero’s Taco Bar were the most popular among our readers.
Listen
  • Which players will rejoin the Texans after the team’s mandatory minicamp? Get the biggest stories every day from the local experts of the Houston Texans with Locked On’s daily podcasts.
    Finance
    • Expert tip: During economic times like these, balance transfers can really make a difference. By simply transferring your existing credit card balances to this card, you’ll give yourself 18 months to pay it off — without interest. (Bonus: Earn 2% cash back on everyday purchases while you’re at it.)*
    Wellness
    • Looking for a game-changing night of sleep? Fall asleep + wake up rested with Cornbread Hemp’s CBD Sleep Gummies. Get 30% off a $55 minimum purchase with code CBDSLEEP30.*
     
     
    Food
     
    🍝 Here’s to next year’s James Beard Awards
    A close-up photo of pasta on a white plate, sprinkled with green leaves and lemon zest.
    Tracy Malechek-Ezekiel of Birdie’s may not have won, but she’s a winner in our hearts. | Photo by @mksrn
    Last night’s James Beard Foundation Award ceremony marked the end of the season for the Oscars of food, and although no Austinites took home the big award, we’re celebrating them anyway.

    The James Beard season started with eight local chefs + restaurants in the running, but Tracy Malechek-Ezekiel of Birdie’s was the only one to advance to the finals.

    A nomination is still an achievement in our books, so we wanted to remind everyone that Austin is home to six James Beard Award winners, and dozens of nominees.

    Check out the past winners that call Austin home.

    Winners

     
    The Buy
     
    A cute swimsuit cover that combines the classic look of a button down shirt with extra length so everything’s covered.
     
     
    The Wrap
     
    City Editor Figi poses with an adorable goat. Today’s edition by:
    Figi
    From the editor
    When I was interning at a local radio station in college, I worked a show where the Peterson Brothers were playing and ended up sitting next to their mom the whole time. Not only are they immensely talented, they’re also just a really nice family, so you can bet I’ll be at their show this week.
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