January Festivals: Top 10 Texas events this month

By: Mauri Elbel
January, 2022

The holidays might be over, but 2022 still shines bright with everything from rodeos to Renaissance festivals. Here are 10 Texas towns worth traveling to this January.  

Soak in sparkling sights and festive fun through Jan. 30 at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center’s Luminations. Credit Ann Alva Wieding

Austin 

Now-Jan. 30: Enjoy the sparkling sights and scenes found at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, which features thousands of luminarias, seasonal food and drinks, and the light-splashed forts of Fortlandia from 6 to 9 p.m. every Thursday through Sunday now through Jan. 30. This year’s celebration features s’more kits, spiked hot chocolate, food trucks and a plethora of glowing photo ops. The event will have limited nightly capacity and reservations are strongly encouraged. Ages 0-4 are free, ages 5-17 are $15/$10 members and ages 18+ are $25/$20 members. More at www.wildflower.org/luminations

Taste chili and sip beer at Galveston Island this month. Photo by Jesse Solis

Galveston

Jan. 14-15: Calling all chili and beer lovers: Come taste what Galveston has to offer at the 13th annual Chili Quest and Beer Fest taking place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days. Expect about 40 teams competing in the chili cook-off, chili tastings, a beer fest brimming with craft beers from across the country, a Beerfooter 5K fun run, a cornhole tournament, a Patron margarita contest and more taking place at the Historic Strand District at the intersection of 23rd Street and Strand Street. A chili tasting ticket is $12, a beer tasting ticket is $30 and a combo ticket is $39. More at www.yagaschiliquest.com.

RELATED: Galveston’s FeatherFest

Saddle up for the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo. Contributed

Fort Worth 

Jan. 14-Feb. 5: Saddle up for the legendary Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo – 23 days of western fun in the form of rodeo action and competitions, livestock and horse shows, kid-friendly activities and exhibits, live music concerts, a carnival midway, shopping, food and more unfolding in the new Dickies Arena. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.fwssr.com.

Luckenbach 

Jan. 15: Head to Luckenbach for the 15th Annual Blues Festival. This year’s music lineup includes John Bardy, the Ben Beckendorf Band, Anthony Wright, Jeff Plankenhorn and Marcia Ball. The outdoor show takes place from noon to 7 p.m. and tickets are $30. More at www.luckenbachtexas.com

Fredericksburg

Jan. 15-16: Rock enthusiasts should roll on down to Fredericksburg for the 53rd annual Hill Country Gem and Mineral Show. Taking place at the Pioneer Pavilion at Lady Bird Johnson Municipal Park, the Fredericksburg Rockhounds bring you artifacts, exhibits, demonstrations, jewelry, minerals, fossils and more. Need help identifying your mystery rocks? Geologists are on site to assist. More at www.fredericksburgrockhounds.org

RELATED: Falling for Fredericksburg

San Antonio

Jan. 17: On Monday, Jan. 17, the City of San Antonio’s Martin Luther King  Jr. Commission will commemorate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the in-person 35th Annual MLK March and Legacy Celebration. The commission will prioritize the health and safety of the community and visitors while honoring one of the nation’s most revered civil rights leaders. The march begins at 10 a.m. at the MLK Academy (3501 MLK Drive). The free community event has been going on since 1987 and is the largest march in the nation, with approximately 300,000 participants. Sign up to march! and find more at www.sanantonio.gov/MLK

Head to tiny Round Top for big time antique shopping. Contributed

Round Top

Jan. 21-22: Shop for quality antiques and vintage finds at Round Top’s annual Winter Antique Show. The town with a population of just 90 residents puts on a big show at the Big Red Barn Event Center from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days. Tickets are $7 for a single day. More at www.roundtoptexasantiques.com.

The Denton Black Film Festival is held annually in January. Credit Beatrice McBride

Denton

Jan. 26-30: The Denton Black Film Festival is a five-day event that showcases some of the best in Black cinema, music, spoken word, comedy, art, food and fashion and more. Each festival, held annually in January, shares stories of the Black community – its traditions, ideas and experiences – in a multitude of ways. This year, there are five ways to see the festival, including both in person (Jan. 26 -30) and virtual experiences (Jan. 26 – Feb. 6). More at www.dentonbff.com

This 3-day inclusive dance and music festival features dance workshops from multiple genres. Contributed

Round Rock

Jan. 28-30: The annual Migrations Dance Festival brings together dance and music from around the globe to the heart of Texas. Held every January by the Austin Tribal Collective, instructors will be offering workshops in a wide range of dance and musical styles from around the world including Spain, India, West African, Polynesia, Egypt, and more. Find more information about the 3-day inclusive dance and music festival that features dance workshops from multiple genres for beginner to advanced dancers, and purchase tickets at www.migrationsaustin.com

Lords and Ladies, knights and knaves can travel back in time at the Kerrville Renaissance Festival. Credit OliveImage Photography

Kerrville

Jan. 28-30 & Feb. 5-6: Travel back in time at the Kerrville Renaissance Festival, taking place over two weekends from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For the fifth year, Lords and Ladies, knights and knaves will stroll the grounds of the River Star Arts and Events Park for two weekends of shopping, entertainment, stage shows, live music, games, food and participatory revelry inspired by the days of the Renaissance. Expect seven stages of entertainment, including the Last Chance Forever Birds of Prey show, Marty the Juggler, Belly Dance Troupes and more. Renaissance era clothing and attitude encouraged. Tickets are $14.95 for adults, $9.95 for children 5-12 and free for children under 4. More at www.KerrvilleRenFest.com.   

If You Go

Getting there:

Galveston is 3.5 hours from Austin.

Fort Worth is 2.5 hours from Austin.

Luckenbach is 1.5 hours from Austin.

Fredericksburg is 1.5 hours from Austin.

San Antonio is 1.5 hours from Austin.

Round Top is 1 hour, 15 minutes from Austin.

Denton is 3.5 hours from Austin.

Round Rock is 25 minutes from Austin.

Kerrville is 2 hours from Austin.

 

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