Five Ways to Spend the Holidays With Family Without Talking to Them

Have a Silent Night


Christmas is a time for family, and that inevitably means at some point you'll be eyeing the door before another relative tries to bore you with some deathly anecdote. Fear not, as we supply you with five ways to be antisocial while making it seem like you're part of the pack.

Zach Theatre’s A Christmas Carol

What's Christmas without a bit of Dickens? In Austin, make that Dickens and Dave Steakley's raucous musical recounting of the story of Scrooge and the three spirits who encourage him to be a better man. After eight years, it's a veritable institution, and no one will be talking over its jukebox musical joys.

The Topfer Stage, 209 S. Lamar, 512/476-0541.


Preemptively fight off some of those leftovers by suggesting a few circuits of Austin's 3.1-mile outdoor track for bicycles and in-line skates. Remember, if your relatives can't keep up, you can wave when you lap them.

Dawn to dusk. 4900 La Crosse.

Fantasia at AFS Cinema

Everyone knows not to talk in the cinema, but doubly so at Austin's home to arthouse – especially when they're screening one of the true masterpieces of 20th-century animation. Walt Disney's 1940 experiment in sound and vision remains a jaw-dropping collection, a place where Tchaikovsky and dancing crocodiles cavort joyfully.

6406 N. I-35 #3100.

2nd Street District Holiday Window Walk

The stores will be closed, but that means you'll have an uninterrupted view of another holiday tradition: the creatively decorated windows of stores in the 2nd Street District. Socially distance in front of stores like Bonobos, Luxe Apothetique, and Sneaker Politics, who have opened their spaces for seasonal installations by artists including collagist Sara Cardona, painter Audrianna Woods, and cutout creator Freemindxart.

Participating stores on West Second.

Driskill Lobby Tree

Col. Jesse Lincoln Driskill's hotel, built in 1886, remains one of Austin's grandest structures, and the shimmering delights of its giant Christmas tree make it even more of a destination for quiet oohs and aahs (remember, you're in a hotel, even if you plan for a warming beverage at the oaked and leathered Driskill Bar). Plus, if your family is driving you completely batty, you could always just book yourself a room.

604 Brazos.

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Five Things, The Driskill, Veloway, 2nd Street District, Zach Theatre, The Topfer, AFS Cinema, Fantasia, A Christmas Carol

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