Civics 101

Thursday 5

YMCA EARLY LEARNING READINESS PROGRAM A free community program for qualifying low-income families that focuses on preparing children ages 2-4 for school, while providing their caregivers with the tools to facilitate their child’s development. Classes are offered twice a week in English and Spanish and last one hour. English: Mondays & Wednesdays, 9am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30am. Spanish: Mondays & Wednesdays, 10:30am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9am. Online, 512/322-9622. Free. austinymca.org.

AUSTIN ISD REGISTRATION CLINICS Campuses will be open for students new to Austin ISD and current students who have either yet to register, moved, or transferred during the summer. Mon.-Thu., Aug. 2-5 Multiple locations. austinisd.org/enroll.

CITY COUNCIL BUDGET WORK SESSION Council members discuss the FY 2021-22 proposed budget and tax rate. 9am. City Hall, 301 W. Second; videoconference. austintexas.gov.

PARKS AND RECREATION BOARD SPECIAL CALLED MEETING The PARD Board gets down to some headline-worthy business, including the proposed 305 S. Congress Ave. “Statesman” PUD; the results of the Hancock Golf Survey; and more. 6pm. Videoconference. austintexas.gov.

Friday 6

WOOD RECLAMATION Looking for large logs for art projects or milling? The Austin Parks and Recreation Urban Forestry Unit has got you covered. 9am-2pm. John Treviño Jr. Metropolitan Park, 9501 FM 969. Free. austintexas.gov.

COLONY PARK BACK-TO-SCHOOL BASH Families may pick up free food, backpacks, and educational resources from the comfort of their cars. Distribution will be on a first-come, first-served basis and/or until supplies run out. 5:30-7:30pm. Turner-Roberts Recreation Center, 7201 Colony Loop Dr. Free. austintexas.gov.

TEXAS RALLY FOR VOTING RIGHTS Join Public Citizen Texas, Common Cause Texas, and other advocacy orgs on the final day of the Texas Legislature’s special session to rally in support of voting rights. Masks are strongly encouraged. 6-7:30pm. Texas State Capitol, 1100 Congress. citizen.org.

THE TEXAS RALLY FOR VOTING RIGHTS A rally for voting rights in Texas with high-profile speakers, including Democratic members of the Texas Legislature. 6-7:30pm. South steps of the Capitol, Congress & 11th. citizen.org.

Saturday 7

AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL REDISTRICTING PUBLIC FORUMS The Austin Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission will soon redraw the 10 City Council districts, and are holding public forums to gather input from each current district. Due to COVID-19, previously scheduled in-person forums will now be held online. Tuesdays & Saturdays through Aug. 17 Online via Zoom. redistrictatx.org.

AISD BACK-TO-SCHOOL SHOTS AND COVID-19 VACCINE CLINIC Free vaccines required by state law to attend school will be administered, in addition to the COVID-19 (which is not required to attend school). Masks are required to enter the site, and a parent or guardian must be present. See here for a schedule of free AISD shuttles running that day between the PAC and sites around town. 9am-1pm. AISD Performing Arts Center, 1500 Barbara Jordan Blvd.. Free. austinisd.org.

INDEPENDENT CITIZENS REDISTRICTING COMMISSION MEETING Provide public comment and feedback on Austin’s current City Council district map with the commission that’s tasked with redrawing the city’s 10 Council district boundaries. This meeting focuses specifically on District 3. 1pm. Videoconference. austintexas.gov/red.

Monday 9

YMCA EARLY LEARNING READINESS PROGRAM A free community program for qualifying low-income families that focuses on preparing children ages 2-4 for school, while providing their caregivers with the tools to facilitate their child’s development. Classes are offered twice a week in English and Spanish and last one hour. English: Mondays & Wednesdays, 9am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30am. Spanish: Mondays & Wednesdays, 10:30am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9am. Online. Free. austinymca.org.

AUSTIN ORGANIC GARDENERS CLUB MEETING John Dromgoole, founder of the Natural Gardener, will discuss why it's important now more than ever to grow our own food. He’ll explain the differences between a kitchen garden and a food garden, how to start a food garden, and ways to encourage others to do the same. Second Mondays, 7pm Online via Zoom. www.fb.com/austinorganicgardeners.

Tuesday 10

AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL REDISTRICTING PUBLIC FORUMS The Austin Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission will soon redraw the 10 City Council districts, and are holding public forums to gather input from each current district. Due to COVID-19, previously scheduled in-person forums will now be held online. Tuesdays & Saturdays through Aug. 17 Online via Zoom. redistrictatx.org.

YMCA EARLY LEARNING READINESS PROGRAM A free community program for qualifying low-income families that focuses on preparing children ages 2-4 for school, while providing their caregivers with the tools to facilitate their child’s development. Classes are offered twice a week in English and Spanish and last one hour. English: Mondays & Wednesdays, 9am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30am. Spanish: Mondays & Wednesdays, 10:30am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9am. Online. Free. austinymca.org.

TRAVIS COUNTY COMMISSIONERS COURT VOTING SESSION See agenda for details. 9am. Online. traviscountytx.gov/commissioners-court.

ZILKER PARK VISION PLAN COMMUNITY MEETING This meeting will focus on potential programs, including enhancements, amenities, activities, events, traffic, and parking, to generate ideas for the park’s future. 6pm. Online. austintexas.gov/zilkervision.

INDEPENDENT CITIZENS REDISTRICTING COMMISSION MEETING Provide public comment and feedback on Austin’s current City Council district map with the commission that’s tasked with redrawing the city’s 10 Council district boundaries. This meeting focuses specifically on District 2. 6-8pm. Mendez Middle School, 5106 Village Square. austintexas.gov.

COMPOSTING CLASS Learn how you can turn your food scraps and lawn clippings into plant fertilizer by using a home composting system. 6-7pm. Online. Free (registration required). austintexas.gov.

Wednesday 11

YMCA EARLY LEARNING READINESS PROGRAM A free community program for qualifying low-income families that focuses on preparing children ages 2-4 for school, while providing their caregivers with the tools to facilitate their child’s development. Classes are offered twice a week in English and Spanish and last one hour. English: Mondays & Wednesdays, 9am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30am. Spanish: Mondays & Wednesdays, 10:30am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9am. Online. Free. austinymca.org.

CITY COUNCIL BUDGET ADOPTION MEETING Council will conduct a public hearing on the city’s FY 2021-22 proposed budget and tax rate. 10am. City Hall, 301 W. Second; videoconference. austintexas.gov.

AISD COVID-19 VACCINE CLINIC This is a second dose vaccine clinic for AISD community members 12 years of age and older. Walk-ins welcome, no appointment required. 5-8pm. Langford Elementary School, 2206 Blue Meadow Dr... austinisd.org.

ATX WALK BIKE ROLL Learn more about how Austin Public Works and Austin Transportation will update the city’s sidewalks, urban trails, and bicycle plans. Got questions? Email them before the meeting. 7-8pm. Facebook Live. ATXwalkbikeroll@austintexas.gov, austintexas.gov/department/atx-walk-bike-roll.

Thursday 12

YMCA EARLY LEARNING READINESS PROGRAM A free community program for qualifying low-income families that focuses on preparing children ages 2-4 for school, while providing their caregivers with the tools to facilitate their child’s development. Classes are offered twice a week in English and Spanish and last one hour. English: Mondays & Wednesdays, 9am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30am. Spanish: Mondays & Wednesdays, 10:30am; Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9am. Online. Free. austinymca.org.

AISD COVID-19 VACCINE CLINIC Second-dose vaccines are available for all AISD community members 12 years of age and older. Pre-registration available; walk-ins welcome (see here for registration link). 3-7pm. LBJ High School, 7309 Lazy Creek Dr.. Free. austinisd.org/student-health/covid-19/vaccine.

AISD BOARD OF TRUSTEES INFORMATION SESSION Before the start of the new school year (Aug. 17), the board will receive an important update from district staff on AISD’s “Safe Return to In-person Instruction Plan.” The meeting will stream live on AISD.TV and the Austin ISD Facebook page. 5:30pm. Videoconference. austinisd.org/board.

SPECIAL SESSION STRATEGIES In preparation for the second special session of the 87th Texas Legislature, Equality Texas hosts an updated messaging and testimony training session for advocates and organizers. 6:30-8:30pm. Online. Free (registration required). fb.com/equalitytexas.

Ongoing

DRIVE-THROUGH VACCINE CLINIC VOLUNTEERS If you're interested in volunteering at Travis County's drive-through vaccine clinic at COTA, sign up here. Clinic open: Fridays-Sundays Travis County Expo Center, 7311 Decker. centraltxvaccs.org.

PALM DISTRICT PLANNING SURVEY Austin’s Palm District is located on the eastern edge of Downtown between I-35 and Trinity St., running from Rainey St. to 15th St. The city's Housing and Planning Department seeks public input on the future of the area as it develops the final Palm District Small Area Plan. Explore the area, take a survey, and ask questions on the city’s project website. Ongoing Online. palmdistrictplanning@austintexas.gov, www.speakupaustin.org/palmdistrict.

YWCA GREATER AUSTIN WARMLINE Call 512/548-9922 for support amidst the isolation of the COVID-19 pandemic. Mondays-Thursdays, 9am-8pm; Fridays, 9-5pm; Saturdays, noon-4pm Citywide. ywcaaustin.org.

ARC OF THE CAPITAL AREA WILDFLOWER PROGRAM In collaboration with Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, The Arc offers classes for adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities focusing on social-emotional growth, vocational studies, life skills, active recreation, and Texas nature. Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9am-2pm Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse. $150-300 per month. arcaustin.org/wildflower.

SUMMER LUNCH FOR TEENS AND KIDS Central Health is providing children ages 18 and under with free weekly meal packs that include breakfast and lunch for the entire week. Through Aug. 12. Thursdays, noon-2pm Central Health Southeast Health & Wellness Center, 2901 Montopolis Dr.. Free. fb.com/southeasthealthandwellnesscenter.

ACA SPECIAL ENROLLMENT DEADLINE Sunday, Aug. 15, is the deadline to sign up for health insurance through the federal Health Insurance Marketplace. Enroll online, via phone, or find local certified help in your area at localhelp.healthcare.gov. Deadline: Sun., Aug. 15 800/318-2596. healthcare.gov.

I-35 CAPITAL EXPRESS CENTRAL PROJECT FEEDBACK Review the Texas Department of Transportation’s $4.9 billion project by Sept. 24. TxDOT proposes to add two HOV lanes in each direction along I-35 from U.S. 290 E. to Hwy. 71/Ben White Blvd. Extended Deadline: Sept. 24 Online. my35capex.com.

CENTRAL HEALTH 2022 BUDGET ENGAGEMENT Submit your questions or comments on Central Health’s proposed FY 2022 budget and a member of Central Health’s staff will get in touch. Ongoing Online. participate.centralhealth.net/2022budget.

LEGALLINE Call 512/472-8303 for free legal advice concerning family law, criminal matters, traffic problems, consumer issues, landlord/tenant issues, and employment law. Attorneys who are bilingual (English/Spanish) are also available. First Tuesdays, 5:30-7:30pm 512/472-8303. Free. referrals@austinlrs.org, austinlrs.org.

ZILKER PARK VISION PLAN COMMUNITY SURVEY As part of the engagement process for the first-ever Zilker Park Vision Plan – the guiding framework for the park’s restoration and future development – community members are invited to share their thoughts on the park’s programming. Deadline: Sept. 30 Online. austintexas.gov/zilkervision.

ACL ZILKER PARK ACCESS Beginning Sept. 20, the Parks and Recreation Department will close Zilker Park and select roads and street lanes in preparation for the Austin City Limits Music Festival (Oct. 1-3 & 8-10). View the city’s interactive map for more details and a schedule of park and road closures. Sept. 20-Oct. 17 Zilker Park, 2100 Barton Springs Rd.. austintexas.gov/page/pard-facilities-closures.

SOUTH PLEASANT VALLEY ROAD IMPROVEMENTS SURVEY The city is gathering comments from residents about how they currently use South Pleasant Valley Road between St. Elmo Road and Onion Creek Park and how they would like to use the road to help guide future changes to the corridor. Deadline: Oct. 10 Online. data.austintexas.gov/stories/s/South-Pleasant-Valley-Road/b375-n8jt/.

DRIVE SAFE 2 SAVE COMPETITION Safe 2 Save, in partnership with Austin Transportation’s Vision Zero program, is hosting a competition to find Austin’s “safest driver” to discourage distracted driving and phone use. The competition features weekly cash prizes of $500, with the top three winners receiving prizes at the end. Through Oct. 15 safe2save.org/greater-austin-safe-driving-competition/.

TRANSPORTATION CRITERIA MANUAL UPDATE The TCM defines the rules, requirements, and technical guidelines for building mobility infrastructure in Austin. The city’s Transportation Department has worked to update the manual over the past two years; the current draft of the revised TCM is available for public review now through Nov. 1. Deadline: Nov. 1 Online. austintexas.gov/street-design.

AUSTIN STRATEGIC MOBILITY PLAN SURVEY Austin Transportation Department seeks community members’ feedback on three new policy changes to the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan, the city’s first comprehensive, multimodal transportation plan. Ongoing Online. austintexas.gov/asmp.

TPWD COMMUNITY OUTDOOR OUTREACH PROGRAM GRANT TPWD’s CO-OP grants provide funding to tax-exempt organizations for programming that engages under-served populations in TPWD mission-oriented outdoor recreation, conservation, and environmental education activities. Deadline: Nov. 1 Online. tpwd.texas.gov.

FORD BUILD TO CONNECT This multiday outdoor event includes displays of Ford’s all-electric F-150 Lightning truck and Mustang Mach-E SUV models. Oct. 15-24. Mon.-Fri., noon-9pm; Sat.-Sun., 9am-8pm Republic Square, 422 Guadalupe, 512/381-1147. Free. fordautoshows.com/built-to-connect.

AUSTIN LGBT CHAMBER HOLIDAY TOY DRIVE Austin’s queer business chamber hosts its annual drive for new (and unwrapped) toys, clothing, and shoes for local children. Donations will go to children and families enrolled in LifeWorks programs and CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) of Travis County programs. See here for a list of drop-off locations and suggested donations. Through Dec. 10 Multiple locations. austinlgbtchamber.com/toydrive.

PRIMARY ELECTION DAY WORKER Over 600 spots need to be filled at polling locations for the March 1 primaries; this is a paid position through Travis County. traviscountydemocrats.org.

WIC MOBILE UNIT Resources and info about Austin Public Health’s Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) supplemental nutrition program for qualifying pregnant women, new mothers, and young children. Check online for current schedule Various locations. Free. austintexas.gov/wic.

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