Free music festival kicks off Thursday in Red River Cultural District

After taking a pandemic-induced break in 2020, the Red River Cultural District’s annual music festival Hot Summer Nights, starts Thursday, Aug. 29, and runs through Sunday.

The festival is free, for all ages, and takes place in the heart of the district. More than 100 local bands will play across 11 stages - all within a six-block radius.

"We realized we have a responsibility for local musicians to keep them paid, and we have a responsibility for our local venue staff to make sure everyone can cover their rent," said Cody Cowan, executive director of RRCD. "And the reality is, in Austin people are wanting a good time, and we’re just living a part of history where we all have to start figuring out how to make it work."

Through a partnership with APH, a vaccine clinic will be hosted by Empire Control Room & Garage from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Thursday and Friday. Masks will be required when indoors.

Many of the artists that will be featured at the festival have also collaborated on a "Hot Summer Nights Mixtape." 100% of the proceeds will go toward "Banding Together ATX," an emergency relief fund launched by Red River Cultural District at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since March 2020, it has provided more than $225,000 to more than 3,000 recipients in the local music and service industry.
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