The Hitchhiker's Guide to (the) GalaxZ

We’re so glad you made it to GalaxZ 16! It will be a busy but exciting three days and we welcome you to Austin!

When you aren’t attending panels or meeting other conference-goers, we figure you may be looking to get out and explore the vibrant boomtown of Austin, Texas. So in your short stay here, here are a few must-do experiences or for your next visit to ATX. We might suggest:

  • Attend a live music event. Nothing symbolizes Austin more. This is what made the town famous, in the 1970s. There are more live music performances today in restaurants, bars, and clubs here than in any other city in the nation. And so much of it is walkable from the JW Marriott, whether it’s jazz in the Elephant Room, an indie rock act in the Jackalope or the Mohawk, DJs spinning in the Parish, or blues or singer-songwriter performances in The Continental Club and Stubb’s.


  •  Eat authentic Central Texas barbeque at a top location. Next to live music, this is the next biggest must-do in Austin. Lambert’s, La Barbecue, and Franklin’s are nearby, and won’t disappoint. Brisket smoked with post-oak, not mesquite or hickory—this is what we’re talking about!
  • Take a stroll south. Here’s your opportunity to walk the Town Lake trail, pay your respects to the Stevie Ray Vaughn memorial statue, and cross Town Lake on one of its three bridges. If you do this, you can easily knock out #4.
  • Experience the South Congress Avenue strip. SoCo is as famous as Sixth Street, but it’s less rowdy and better captures the unique spirit of the city. You can eat at Home Slice Pizza, Hopdoddy Burger Bar, Vespaio, or Lucky Robot. Or lounge with a cocktail on the patio at the Hotel San Jose, a converted 1930s motor lodge. Or people-watch at Jo’s Coffee or the front patio at Guero’s.


  • Saddle up to the bar at the Driskill Hotel. On Sixth Street, a few hundred feet east of Congress Avenue, stands this opulent 1886 hotel. It’s mostly known for being haunted. And the rendezvous point for Texas Rangers in 1934 before they ambushed Bonnie and Clyde. And the sight of LBJ and Lady Bird Johnson’s first date. But its bar is equally worth mentioning. The Austin Chronicle awarded it the Best Cocktail Bar title in 2015 for a reason. Antique firearms and brands from hundreds of Texas ranches adorn the walls and columns. Relax on one of the cowhide couches after you get your beverage.
  • Take a ride in a pedicab. Whether or not your feet get tired from exploring, hail a pedicab and sightsee for a bit while someone else takes up the slack. There are scores of these pedicabs downtown. In addition, you’re helping the local economy!

We hope you have a fantastic conference. If your business or personal travel brings you back this way sooner than later, stop by Zenoss to say hello.

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