Much like many, many, many other Texans, I went through polar storm Uri hunkering down at home and making do with what we could. I was fortunate enough to have roommates, supplies, and power – even though we lost water.
The snow was a novelty at first, but became old really quickly. I took some photographs to document this freakishly extreme natural weather event. Our neighborhood was snowed in like many others, and nearby major streets became post-apocalyptic stuck car graveyards.
I decided to participate in the [RE]verse Pitch Competition which I originally heard about in 2019. It’s an entrepreneurial competition like Shark Tank, only the difference is that materials are pitched in reverse to the entrepreneurs. This competition is sponsored by the City of Austin, nonprofits, and other corporate sponsors.
I was planning on pursuing vermicomposting bags made from Austin Eastcider’s excess sugar Supersacks. All in all, I would reattempt this experience with the same or similar idea, a potential mid-size municipal vermicomposting center for the city of Austin.
Entrepreneurs are used to pitching their business idea to investors, partners, and anyone they might share an elevator ride with. In this competition, the tables turn. The [RE]verse Pitch Competition helps turn valuable raw materials that are currently leaving local businesses, non-profits, and institutions as waste into the raw materials for new or expanding social enterprises.
I had a festive holiday season, which included a trip home to see family and friends! I met friends for Christmas lights, went with the girlfriend to an Austin art bazaar, and a Christmas music-timed lightshow at an Austin lakeside coffee bar.
Trail of Lights – Addison, TX
I met up with a group of friends I made while I was living in Dallas, before I moved to Austin. We all went out to Vitruvian Park in Addison, Texas to the Trail of Lights, a sea of lighting that encompasses all the trees immediately in and around the complex walking path. I also worked for a few years in the lower building complex with the HCK2 Partners marketing and communications agency.
The San Antonio Aquarium was a fun, educational, and mainly hands-on experiential aquarium. I really thought this was a well done style of engagement for an aquarium. The aquarium featured interaction experiences and feedings in a pay-to-play, tokens-for-experiences style format. Which made sense, but quickly added up for a pricey day.
The front of the aquarium were the alligator feedings, marsupial and lemur experiences, as well as other feedings for smaller mammals. In back of the aquarium was the aviary rooms and parrot area. The aviary rooms gave you seeds to feed the birds in the designated space.
My girlfriend wanted to spend the weekend in San Antonio for a getaway. So naturally I wanted to see some gardens with her while we were in town! Our stops included the 33-acre San Antonio Botanical Gardens non-profit complex, as well as the San Antonio Japanese Tea Garden, or Sunken Gardens in Brackenridge Park.
My girlfriend planned a few fun dates for us around Austin! The first of these dates was exploring Wonderspace Austin, an interactive art exhibit in a commercial warehouse. This was a fun art exhibit to walk through, but slightly disappointing compared to how this exhibit was advertised on social media ads. Overall it was very interesting! I liked how interactive the exhibits were, especially the human piano and interactive VR dinner experience.