Generally, we Austinites don’t dislike South By as a whole, either. We like the international attention, we like meeting new people, we like seeing great bands and film premiers and hearing from tech innovators, and we like all the tourist money. It’s just that, when you can hardly drive anywhere (even by Austin standards) and your favorite bar is filled to the door and suddenly 20 percent more expensive it can be a little annoying.
This love/hate sentiment is common to all tourist destinations. In the New England tourist towns that I know, the beaches and ocean views and fresh-catch seafood restaurants are at their best just when the area becomes crowded. People who live there are proud of the beauty of their town, and happy to play host (and be paid to do it) but whenever a resident spies another resident in the crowd, there is a feeling of camaraderie.
Enjoy that this week.
A Texas couple’s piñata store was demolished in order to provide parking spaces for a tech industry event, prompting an online boycott and a push for new legislation,Latina magazine reported.
The March 14 party, timed to coincide with the annual South by Southwest festival (SXSW), was scheduled to be held in a building adjacent to the site of Sergio and Monica Lejarazu’s business, Jumpolin. F&F Real Estate Ventures, which owns the property, obtained a permit to demolish it in January, but reportedly did not inform the couple of their intentions. Instead, Jumpolin was torn down last month with inventory and cash registers still inside.
Meanwhile, in North Austin, the reminder that Neighborhood Watches in North, Northeast and Northwest need be extra vigilant during SxSW is paying off. The University Hills Watch just helped police catch a criminal in the act. Please remember that the City no longer has enough cops to run large events and still effectively patrol neighborhoods anymore, so stay alert and call 911 if you see anything suspicious.