1. Beat the heat with what you eat! Check out these 14 cool dishes for the dog days of summer, and where to find them in Austin! http://atxne.ws/UFY15g

    Beat the heat with what you eat! Check out these 14 cool dishes for the dog days of summer, and where to find them in Austin! http://atxne.ws/UFY15g

  2. Looking for something to do this weekend, #ATX? Download the #Austin360App to find shows, food, events and more!

    Looking for something to do this weekend, #ATX? Download the #Austin360App to find shows, food, events and more!

  3. This is Quest. She is a great swimmer, easy to walk and super sweet. She’s a shelter dog at Austin Pets Alive.

    One of the most fulfilling things I’ve done in Austin this summer is join RuffTail Runners, a group that takes dogs from Austin Pets Alive, which is a no-kill shelter, on jogs to keep them active and socialized. I haven’t been able to participate as much as I’d like because of the temperature (they don’t let you take the dogs out for even a walk if the temperature is in the 90s, which it almost always is), but when I have spent time with the dogs, it’s been great.

    The program is great because it creates a sort of symbiotic relationship between the dogs and people. I’m not a hardcore runner like some of the people who are involved with the program and can talk casually about how they ran 18 miles straight, but I do like to go on jogs and stay active. I would be doing these activities anyway, and taking a dog with me makes me feel safe and it makes jogging more fun. The dogs at the shelter are so loving and well-behaved, it’s hard not to take them home when I’m done jogging with them. In return, the dogs get to spend time with people, get some exercise and get a little bit of behavioral training.

    If you have any interest in spending time outdoors with animals getting some exercise, I would sincerely recommend getting involved with RuffTail Runners. The initial fee to get into a training session is $20 and you have to RSVP because a lot of people want to get in, but all of that is completely worth it.

    Austin is a great place for many reasons, but I really appreciate how animal-friendly it is. It was named the best city for dogs in America, and people truly put effort into helping animals. I will be leaving Austin in a couple of weeks, and I’m really sad that Fort Worth doesn’t have a similar program. The program model is already reaching more cities, and hopefully someday it will be more common. Shelter animals deserve love, attention and exercise, not just a place to stay while they’re waiting to be adopted. Now all we have to do is find some way to keep cats entertained and socialized…

    - Chloe

  4. How are weeds and poison ivy being taken care of at the Umlauf Sculpture Garden? Goats.

    Mariah Hoffman, of Vagabond Land Management, uses her goats in a program in association with the Parks and Recreation department to rid Umlauf Sculpture Garden of poison ivy - and Barton Springs Pool is next on the list.

    Watch the full video!

  5. Check out our A-List photos from Hotter than Hell Burlesque at Stateside at the Paramount this weekend! http://atxne.ws/1nyZdDl

WARNING: This is Austin, but even so - some of these may be NSFW

    Check out our A-List photos from Hotter than Hell Burlesque at Stateside at the Paramount this weekend! http://atxne.ws/1nyZdDl

    WARNING: This is Austin, but even so - some of these may be NSFW

  6. On spring break this year, my friends and I decided to go to Hamilton Pool on a hot afternoon. Anyone who has actually been to Hamilton Pool knows that this was a naive, foolish decision, but having only heard of it and watched the movie Teeth (which, upon further Googling, I’m no longer certain was actually filmed at Hamilton Pool?), I thought this was ambitious but possible. I was wrong. The line to get in was so long that we weren’t even allowed to wait in line, we were just told to leave. We were pretty bummed, but on the bright side, I was about to spend the whole summer in Austin for my internship, so the opportunity would arise again.

    That fantasy became reality this Sunday when we got up at 8 a.m. to try to at least get in line this time. When we got there after a 45 minute drive, we were both lucky and unlucky to discover that swimming wasn’t allowed for the day. (No, I did not check the website before we left…) We were a little sad because it was blazing hot outside and we wanted to swim, but because apparently everyone else did check the website and see that they couldn’t swim, it wasn’t crowded at all. We didn’t even have to wait in line and we were able to hike and explore in relative peace.

    Hamilton Pool is a really beautiful place. Of course the pool itself is gorgeous, but the rest of the area is fantastic, too. The hiking trails are lush and shady, and the cypress trees along the trails are impressive. I think it would be worth the wait to go swimming there. The pool isn’t the only swimming area in the nature preserve, either. There is a (long, hot and sweaty) hiking trail to the Pedernales River, which I’m assuming is less crowded than the pool on days that swimming is allowed. On that trail, we heard a woman say something like, “at least it wasn’t a big snake,” after which my boyfriend saw a snake, freaked out and ran away  oh wait, it was just a lizard. That’s how natural this nature preserve is. Your hiking partners might think they’ve seen a snake and leave you for dead.

    I wish we had been able to swim, but who knows? Maybe someday I’ll go back and get a place in line and wait a few hours for that magical dip in Hamilton Pool. Until then, I’m just happy I finally got to see it.

    - Chloe

  7. I finally went to go see the famous Austin bats on Saturday night with fellow Statesman intern Caitlin Clark and some friends from out of town. We parked at the Statesman and walked down to the river where we stood on the grass for about half an hour while we waited for bats to make an appearance. I was shocked by the crowd. These bats emerge every night, but there were still hundreds of people all along both sides of the river, on the Congress bridge and on the water. I was a little nervous about going to see them because the bats are coming out later this year, which makes them harder to see, but they’re still drawing a great crowd anyway.

    While waiting, we could hear the bats under the bridge. They were making little chirping noises and sounded just like crickets. They started coming out slowly; one flew out, then a few trickled after it. Eventually hundreds of bats were emerging from underneath the bridge, and it was extraordinary. We stood watching them for at least 10 minutes and they just kept coming. The bat tour boats were shining lights underneath the bridge and we could see that there were still so many not yet flying. It was like nothing I’ve ever seen before. After seeing the bats, it’s no surprise to me that so many people gather around that bridge in the evenings to watch them.

    - Chloe

  8. Recipe of the week: Spinach Turkey Meatballs http://atxne.ws/1nNTBA9

    Recipe of the week: Spinach Turkey Meatballs http://atxne.ws/1nNTBA9

  9. Actor James Garner, whose whimsical style in the 1950s TV Western “Maverick” led to a stellar career in TV and films such as “The Rockford Files” and his Oscar-nominated “Murphy’s Romance,” has died at 86: http://atxne.ws/1tm2XZh

Photos of Garner through the years: http://atxne.ws/1nWTd7g

    Actor James Garner, whose whimsical style in the 1950s TV Western “Maverick” led to a stellar career in TV and films such as “The Rockford Files” and his Oscar-nominated “Murphy’s Romance,” has died at 86: http://atxne.ws/1tm2XZh

    Photos of Garner through the years: http://atxne.ws/1nWTd7g

  10. Inspired by the Statesman’s video of Springdale Farm’s produce art, I decided to drag my boyfriend to the farm’s Saturday market this weekend. It was a little hard to find  we originally passed it and got a little lost on all the one-way streets in the area  but when we finally got there and figured out where to park, I was impressed. There was an amazing variety of products, including fresh vegetables, jams and eggs, and they were all arranged beautifully.

    After we bought eggs (incredibly pricey eggs — $7 for a dozen!), we walked around the farm and looked at their chickens, which I wanted to steal because they were so cute. The grounds were surprisingly peaceful and beautiful for a farm in the middle of the city. I would definitely recommend a visit if you’re interested in urban farms and farmers markets.

    - Chloe