In one of the biggest events-that-we-hadn't-known-about of our travels, we arrived in Austin for one of the first days of the 21st annual South X Southwest Interactive Festival. This Festival is described as: "An incubator of cutting-edge technologies and digital creativity,...showcasing the best new websites, video games and startup ideas the community has to offer. ...SXSW Interactive has become the place to preview the technology of tomorrow today."
So, while we had taken the Metrorail into Austin to be tourists in the downtown blocks, the majority of visitors, identified by their badges, were attending the programs at the Convention Center and nearby hotels.
We found 6th Street empty. Access to the street was blocked and city personnel, police, and businesses were preparing for the music portion of "South By" that would be in full swing in a couple of days. So, with tour guide of the downtown architecture in hand, we headed along 6th Street.
Quast Building, 1872 (right), one of the oldest stone buildings on 6th Street. Wrought ironwork and roof garden were recent additions.
Rhambo Building, c. 1870 (middle), served as a barbershop, furniture store, tailor shop, and now a bar.
Padgett-Warmoth Building, 1885 (right), the restored cast iron cornice with fleur-de-lis cutouts and star of David cap is one of East 6th Street's most photogenic facades.