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Why Did So Many Sixth Street Bars Close In Austin On The Weekend Of Texas Relays?

Seems like a strange coincidence.

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Even as Austin’s entertainment districts have taken on different identities (East Austin for hipsters, Rainey Street for college kids, Red River for people who want to hear live music), Sixth Street is still the go-to spot for tourists. Unless, of course, the tourists are in town for the Texas Relays, because last weekend a number of the bars in town opted out.

This isn’t a new trend, but no matter how much people talk about it—and they’ve talked about it a lot over the years—some Sixth Street bars lock their doors and give their staff the weekend off when high school and college track-and-field teams from around the state compete at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays. The Relays bring nearly 45,000 people to Austin, many of them African American, and whether by coincidence (as the bars seem to imply) or design (as history suggests), Sixth Street establishments are more willing to shut off the profit spigot during this particularly busy weekend than any other comparably crowded event.

This was thrown into sharp focus this past week by UT sociology professor Ben Carrington, who tweeted photos of a number of bars (as well as Palm Door on Sixth, an event venue that’s only open by reservation) that, curiously, were closed while Relays were in town.

Austin struggles to cater to black people the rest of the year—and the history of the city reacting poorly to the sudden influx of young black people looking to have a good time goes back a good ways. In 2009, the now-defunct Highland Mall closed during Relays weekend, leading the local NAACP to declare the mall’s management “incompetent.” Clubs have been closing on Sixth for years—but it’s still jarring to see venues that are normally vibrant shut down when there’s a larger-than-usual number of black people downtown.

It’s possible that a number of Austin clubs just happened to book private events the same weekend as the Relays, even if, according to Carrington, there didn’t appear to be any outward signs that there were private events happening inside. The owners of Blind Pig, Shakespeare’s Pub, Iron Cactus, and Four Horsemen didn’t respond to requests for comment by Texas Monthly, but we did find social media posts from some establishments that explained their closure.

blind pig

Dirty Dog manager Ben Davis, meanwhile, responded to our request for comment:

We had a flooring modification scheduled for this past weekend (leveling, refinish, texturing etc.) and had told the staff several weeks ago they would all have that weekend off due to such.  The refinishing was cancelled (by the vendor) just prior to SXSW and we felt it was unfair (with only 7 employees) to change whatever plans the staff had made for their vacations and force them to work.  We are a very busy bar during SXSW, so the break was well needed… also the opportunity to do such is limited throughout the year as we host hundreds of shows many in close succession.

In 2014, Old School Bar & Grill also redid its flooring during Relays weekend. And though “SXSW recovery” is a valid thing, it’s curious that both Blind Pig and Dirty Dog opted to offer that R&R opportunity two weekends after the festival closed.

The Relays crowd, like the SXSW crowd or the Austin City Limits crowd, likes to spend money while they’re in town. The Austin Business Journal noted in 2012 that the event pumps $8 million into the Austin economy, which is no small potatoes for a single weekend. (The Statesman Capitol 10K, which drew more than half as many people that year, generated less than a quarter of the economic impact.) Austin police note that crime numbers are no higher during Relays weekend than any other weekend of the year. In fact, when an APD officer was shot downtown this weekend, Police Chief Art Acevedo was quick to assure the public that the incident had nothing to do with the Relays.

If Sixth Street bar owners want to give employees a post-SXSW break or take the chance to redo their floors, that is their decision. But choosing the same weekend and leaving tons of money on the table year after year makes the bar closures seem like a strange coincidence.

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  • José

    Sad but not surprising. At least it’s not surprising to many members of ethnic minority groups, though a number of self-declared progressives remain ignorant of their latent prejudices.

    • VibezFlow

      The backflips that are being made to justify this should be surprising, but it’s not.

      • Christopher John Edwards


      • Jed

        austin doesn’t like to be called racist.

        usually they can’t hear it, all the way across town and all.

      • DirtyDogBar


  • DJPooleATX

    More propaganda to stoke the fires of racial injustice.

  • If you look for racism hard enough, like a self-fulfilling prophecy, you WILL find it. If you don’t find it, that just means you didn’t look hard enough!

    • José

      The converse is pretty obvious. People who live in relatively sheltered and homogeneous environments don’t see or experience prejudice. I reckon that it’s awfully easy to believe that racism doesn’t exist.

      • Darwin

        Exactly the willful ignorance and blindness of having never experienced overt and covert racism, yet still love to lecture black people and people of color about what is and isn’t racism. That’s a form of white supremacy in itself by believing they have the authority or superior intellect and understanding of the issue better than we do by telling us no you all are wrong, white is always right. gtfohwtbs is my position.

    • MsVet

      Don’t have to look for what’s there, it’s obvious! They don’t close any other weekends where all the drunks are out. Save it!

      • DirtyDogBar

        They do not close because people are buying drinks.

      • Do the bars also close on the weekend of the state basketball championships?

        I’m guessing most of the participants are black, and while the high school players are underage, that doesn’t mean all the fans are underage.

        If the bars stay open (which I’m guessing they do, since no one has made an issue of it), that kinda disproves the “racism” theory, doesn’t it?

  • Bill Anderson

    Did any contracts get broken?

  • Douglas Gray

    Let’s be perfectly honest: No Austin bars can/will ever close down for South By Southwest or ACL. Comparing those events to Texas Relays is useless and ineffective. Instead, ask the question of why bars close for Relays yet remain open for ROT Rally.

    Regardless, I think this has become a tired and overblown issue. I normally don’t spend too much time downtown during the relays, but I’ve been told by my friends who work in the bars that there’s been little to no issues the past couple years (same with ROT Rally).

  • DirtyDogBar

    #1 How do you know how much money is lost from the bars not opening? #2 It is slower that weekend because people in general do not go down to 6th that weekend.

    • Jess

      I don’t blame y’all one bit for being closed for whatever reason you please. It’s not like the people complaining about you being closed will EVER be patrons of DDB (or would be brave enough to go in, LOL!). Kung Fu Saloon is a horrible bar and has proven to be racist (in more than one location), yet people are going to pick on the few that chose to close on 6th Street after TX Relays?! Obviously the people that think ANY establishment should stay open to cater to TX Relays are the true source of racism; inflicting their own beliefs on other people. Have them come hang out at DDB next year during TX Relays; if they can stay till close and then walk to their car (if they haven’t been drinking) without getting scared or harassed by some druggie bum troll living under 35 (that APD does nothing about) or if they can manage to convince an Uber or Lyft driver to come get them (good luck with that) and can wholeheartedly encourage you to stay open for TX Relays 2018, then I’ll print this comment and eat it…but we all know that TM readers aren’t going to dirty 6th during Relays.

      • Christopher John Edwards

        Shorti C here. Ya’ll know me very well. I am a patron and friend I believe. We did a gig at Flamingo on the 1st. Packed the house and had no incidents. What are ya’ll talking about?

    • DirtyDogBar

      We have had shows many years back. We always worked with the Rough Riders. They had to stop doing shows because they could not make money at our Bar. There fore we closed because or regulars were not coming down to 6th that weekend and the relay crowd does not like our Metal(Raar Raar ) music. We have only been closed 3 years for relays. I would have been open this year, if it not been for trying to have my floors redone. DD will be open next year !

  • Duane Savage

    Maybe, they don’t want to have to deal with the teenagers.

  • howlwho

    Are we sure it doesn’t have more to do with the fact that a lot of those kids are under age, more of a hassle to deal with, and not very profitable for the bars? If it is a racism thing then shame on them, but the evidence sounds circumstantial to me.

  • Jose639

    Its about the protection of the staff, property, and patrons. No one I know wants to work relay weekend because it is usually more trouble than it’s worth. Your dealing with a massive influx of students on a fixed income who won’t tip, tip very little, or try to bargain for drinks. It isn’t racism; for the owner and everyone working down there the only color that matters is green

  • Khr

    Under aged kids, trying to get into bars, is never a good thing. if the drinking age were still 18, instead of 21, it might not be as much of a problem. But the bars leaving thousands of dollars, on the table? I’m sure the Texas Relays bring big money to the restaurants and hotels….but athletes in training, and their families that come to see them, are not going to be drinking it up at bars on sixth street anyway guys. But being closed, might help eliminate some of the temptation, for those that might.

  • Jess

    If TX Monthly had bothered to check with any of the service industry workers or APD, they would have found out that year after year during the Texas Relays, stupid incidents happen which make 6th street incredibly dangerous. (Remember Highland Mall, anyone?!) Why is everyone failing to remember that the track morons bring starting pistols and shoot them off starting human stampedes on a blocked street. When bars hear gun shots, they close their doors. When you hear guns on certain nights every year, why the hell not close doors on that weekend? When is Austin going to wake up up and realize that 6th street is a hive of problems that the city does not want to address because of the liquor revenue?!

    For reference: http://downtownaustinblog.org/2011/04/09/welcome-to-the-police-state-of-6ixth/

    • Bobby

      Probably should shut the bars down on St. Patrick’s day as well. After 8 or 9 Jameson’s those Irish bastards are ready to fight.

    • MsVet

      Miss me with the BS! SXSW is extra crowded. They are doing this for one reason only and we all know what that is, there are more black people, college kids, that weekend. Track morons really? You may as well call a thing a thing those morons are black, but for SXSW the red necks are out and about fighting, drunk and get a pass. These are businesses and when they close for this one weekend out of a year, it is obvious.

      • PhotoGuy

        The major difference is that people attending SXSW have already paid at least $800 for their badge and they are ready to spend more. Also during SXSW, most of the bars that were mentioned as being closed, are official SXSW venues so they are being paid quite handsomely. Palm Door isn’t a bar, its an event space, so I don’t know why it was even mentioned. And yeah it sucks that 5 or so REALLY popular bars were closed but come on, there are SO MANY other bars to go to.

      • DirtyDogBar

        Actually SXSW on Friday and Saturday was worse than Texas relays. I would bet that SXSW 2014 and earlier they had no instances of loud noises and stampedes that ensued. I do not care the color of a persons skin. If they are fighting arrest them. If they are hanging out in the streets drinking alcoholic beverages then ticket them. I do care about people that spend money in my business.

  • sam graves

    These bars are in the business of making money. If you think for one second that they’re closing just because they dont want black folks inside, you’re stupid. The patrons on that weekend are in town for high school relays and are overwhelmingly under the drinking age. They pack the streets and make things massively crowded, but aren’t old to be drinking. Most Austinites therefore opt to drink elsewhere in town that weekend. The culmination of the two makes it an easy decision for the bars to close. AGAIN, these bars are in the business of making money. If the pros of staying open outweighed the cons, their doors wouldn’t be locked on Saturday night.

    • MsVet

      Bullchit! SXSW is crowed for a whole week for spring break. Save it! More crap save it.

      • sam graves

        That’s SXSW. Are you really trying to compare the literal busiest week of the year to relay weekend? Get real.

      • soccermomx3

        You sound very ignorant regardless of your color.

        • Unkel Ruckus

          Let’s face it: integration is a complete failure for both Whites and Negroes. Everyone is unhappy with the results. Whites do not want to be anywhere around the Negro. Wealthy whites (liberals) voluntarily segregate from them because they are financially able. Other whites are forced to live among the negro because the government mandated it. Many people at the time of this policy change, knew this was a major mistake. It would not work. Yet they were forced to go along with this plan. Like communism, on paper to some, it seemed like a good idea. In practicality a disaster! Everyone says it in private, but is afraid to say it in public because of the Red Guard of political correctness.

          Even the great ‘white liberals’ feel this way. While they give lectures at universities, chit chat at bow tied cocktail parties, write books no one reads about the merits of multiculturalism, diversity and integration, behind the scenes they move into lily white areas, and send their kids to private schools, away from the Negro menace. The poor whites, Asians and others, are stuck and left behind have to pay the consequences of the hypocrisy of the liberal mindset. Their kids do not have a chance in hell to get a good education because of the lowing of scores and being immersed in the garbage culture of rap and hip hop that surrounds them. The Anti-education culture of the negro. They are too young to know the poison this culture is. To some it becomes their reality. They are lost to the world. They become wiggers. On the level of skid row bums.

          Without segregation the Negro has sunk even lower. Living without strict rules and regulations set up by the white man, they are unable to cope with modern society. Hence look at their neighborhoods, their crime rates, and their malfunction as functioning members of a civilized society. They have no capacity to govern themselves. This was stated hundreds of years ago by the founding fathers. Nothing has changed!

          We must re-segregate. Whites and Asians on one side, and Negroes on the other. I know many liberal whites are thinking: what kind of crazy racist post is this. But deep down you know that a world without the Negro, is a much better place to be. Think of New York with the Negro menace. One variable: the train stations. Think how different they would be without the negro criminal waiting to strike. The crime, the degradation and disintegration of all communities they inhabit would be confined to their areas. There schools are a disaster whenever they are in the majority. Do you want your kids to become wiggers by osmosis learning about African bushboogies? Or do you want your children to become first rate scholars learned in the ideals of Western thought of science and logic. Why do liberals force the poor whites Asians in a world, they have no intention of living themselves! For example: The Clintons had no intention of sending their child to a Washington DC majority black school system. Yes they professed the merits of integration (just not for their child).

          Start thinking what is best for you, and your family, not what is best for social engineering plans concocted by people who have no intentions of living themselves!

          Plus, for the Negro this would be an ideal situation. You can have a world away from the White man and Asain corner stores, and live any way they want. You can have as much crime, as you like. Illegitimacy can be 100%. Rap can be your national culture. No white man looking over your shoulder shaking their head in disgust. A 75 IQ would be considered a genious. 40% would be a passing grade, Oprah would be the standard of beauty, no white woman to make negresses feel ugly. Free of White supremacy, Asian brain power, and Western thought. Become completely Afrocentric. Act anway you want. Elect 50 cent as your president. Your schools can teach the legends of great Negro dynasties where Christ, Moses, Mozart, Bach, Einstein, Freud, George Washington were Negroes. The Negroes built the pyramids, Europe, China, landed on the moon all the while the white man was living in caves. Teach your kids the negro invented the White man in laboratories. While the white man splits the atom you can split the watermellon. Everthing is equal of merit. Going to jail would give you more pride than going to medical school. You can have the world you desire. It is a win win situation for all.

          Have a nice day!

    • Casey Clemmons

      The high school relays took place in Fort Worth this year. Only the college relays occurred in Austin.

      • soccermomx3

        Plenty of college students under legal drinking age.

      • Shylimar

        You are incorrect. High school relays did take place here in Austin. Several of my high school employees were apart of that event.

    • Tiffany Tillett

      Actually, the relays are for high school, college and professional athletes. And many non-athletes come into town for the relays specifically. There are plenty of people looking to go out who are above the drinking age.

      • Darwin

        Exactly and included in that demographic are both middle aged white and black parents and coaches who participate. The Urban Music Festival has occurs in conjunction with Texas Relays at auditorium shores downtown for the past decade without any incidents of violence. Most of the people who attend are adults who come from other cities. It’s over by 10:30pm and many of them are still looking for a place to go afterward.

    • Jed

      so you’re saying it’s the other potential *customers* who are racist, not the businesses.

      we are talking about 6th street, so there might be something to that.

    • Unwound
    • black _developer

      Nice try man – More underage kids were downtown for SXSW by a long shot.

    • Did you not read the part of the article that mentions the economic impact of Texas Relays:

      “The Relays crowd, like the SXSW crowd or the Austin City Limits crowd, likes to spend money while they’re in town. The Austin Business Journal noted in 2012 that the event pumps $8 million into the Austin economy, which is no small potatoes for a single weekend. (The Statesman Capitol 10K, which drew more than half as many people that year, generated less than a quarter of the economic impact.”

      As Tiffany noted, and if you’ve ever been, you’d know that Texas Relays includes college and professional athletes from around the world. Coaches. Scouts. Media. Fans. Police and media are on record stating the Relays are a “walk in the park” compared to the 6th Street pandemonium during SXSW.

      We all know the real reason they bars closed. See Kevin Curtin’s Austin Chronicle article wherein a 6th Street bar owner cites the reason, not realizing he is a reporter, then threatens to sue when he finds out he maybe quoted: http://www.austinchronicle.com/music/2016-04-08/playback-welcome-to-terrordome-sixth-street-during-sxsw/

  • Terra G

    There is a lot more here than people think. From under age drinking that is horribly out of control to the fact that no one really goes into these bars during that time. Most of these bars don’t get the rest the week or 2 after SXSW so if it just so happens that they can do it during relays then why not. TABC doesn’t take into consideration it’s Relay weekend and there isn’t a No Refusal put in place so how is the city protecting us, the bar or Venus employee…… They’re not!

  • DewDew

    If sixth street bars closed during a weekend where they expected a lot of black people, are they racist?

    Is this a perfect example of the fallacy of racial egalitarianism?

    Let’s make an observation. When I went to McDonald’s during relay weekend, I noticed it was largely filled with black people. So here I am thinking, all these people are here from out of state for the weekend, and out of all places to eat in Austin they don’t try Torchys tacos, home slice, hopdoddy’s or any food truck, but McDonald’s. Why? Because black people are poor.

    Now picture these very same people downtown at the bars on sixth street. How are the bars going to make money when people can barely afford a $5 meal? They can’t support the business by spending money. They just wanna hang out. Also consider the fact that most black people do not believe in tipping, regardless of socioeconomic status (Just google it, there’s a famous study by Cornell). So the bartenders aren’t gonna wanna work that weekend so the bars have to close.

    Also consider on the other hand, apart from whether or not blacks bring money to the bars, there is a difference in culture between most blacks and whites. This is easy to see by going into any bar/club filled with blacks compared to one filled with whites. It’s simply a difference in atmosphere. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with it. It’s just different.

    A lot of white people aren’t interested in that sort of atmosphere of predominately blacks. You can clearly see this on any weekend of the year by looking at the east side of sixth vs the west side. The further east you get, the more blacks you see congregating in the streets. On a weekend night, you will see many black people hanging around the Wendy’s on the other side of 35. If you walk around there you will feel a different atmosphere than when you walk around 6th and congress. Blacks don’t like to go to the west side of sixth because it seems too boring. Likewise, whites have their own preferences.

    I say all that to say this. When you have an influx of blacks come from out of town, the rich white people who normally go to sixth street to throw money around chose to stay at home. Why? Because they know the atmosphere will be different. Is that racist? No. It’s just their preference. So with the rich white people gone, the bars don’t find it worth it to stay open. Makes sense to me, but the author of this article would have you believe it’s due to racist bigotry.

    I suggest the author goes to sixth street and go talk to a black bartender. He will tell you the exact same thing I have said here.

    • Christopher John Edwards

      Really wack man. I made money.

    • MsVet

      Maybe because they didn’t drive here idiot. Young people eat at McDonald’s is that against the law? You have a picture but is that you? You sound very ignorant if you are black. You are all over the place sounding stupid and racist yourself. Austin is getting whiter and whiter just like they like it.

      • DewDew

        The McDonald’s was not within walking distance of downtown or Ut Austin.

        Why are you asking about the legality of going to McDonald’s. Did you try to understand my perspective or do you just seek to dismiss it?

    • soccermomx3

      Seems like a well-thought out reply to me and I appreciate the perspective. There was an event in Galveston for years – I can’t remember the name of it – but it brought MANY young people from out-of-town and I remember the flak about it when a lot of restaurants and other establishments chose too close rather than deal with the chaos that ensued.

      • Happytoshare

        Kapa weekend.

        • soccermomx3

          It wasn’t called beach party weekend? I never paid much attention because I don’t live on the island but I remember my BIL grumbling about the traffic problems it caused.

    • Darwin

      You sir are either very young and naive to matters of overt and covert racism or have obviously been acculturated and assimilated to not identify as a member of your race because what you’re saying is evidence of that. It’s what is commonly referred to as Coon/House Negro talk, in that you relish to talk down on your very own people and prefer to protect, honor and defend white people over them. You love white people more than you love yourself and your black parents. I suspect you’ve been raised by black bourgious parents in the burbs or on the westside somewhere or you’re totally not originally from Austin at all.

      • DewDew

        Notice that out of all you said, not once did you address the merits of my argument. I suspect that’d be too difficult of a task.

        • Darwin

          Okay I’ll address it. Much of what you said so eloquently are in fact racial generalizations and stereotypes period. “Blacks are poor” Blacks dont tip” When white people avoid black people these are implicit race bias micro aggressions, for example when your white coworker or classmate pretend they don’t see you or hear you when you say hello in public outside of work or school. The reason blacks and hispanics prefer to hang out on the eastside vs the westside can be traced back historically because Austin was segregated on purpose by city council policy called the 1928 master plan that designated east of I-35 the negro district and later in the 1950s Hispanics predominently lived south of E 7th through 1st streets so the eastside has been people of color’s community and the westside being the white community thereafter. 6th St was also once a black community called Masontown. All of what I’ve said can be fact checked if you want to know more.

          • Shylimar

            Dew Dew… shut up… Ur getting ur ass kicked right about know.. lol

          • DewDew

            Generalizations are useful. Blacks are poor and blacks do not tip. That is a fact. Of course it doesn’t apply to all blacks but it’s certainly true for the average.

            And I don’t know what you’re talking about saying whites ignore me outside of work or school. They’re quite nice to me and love talking to me.

            The fact that Austin was historically segregated doesn’t address my point at all. My point is that when blacks
            congregate they create a unique atmosphere. Likewise white have their own unique atmosphere and they prefer to be amongst their own. Nothing wrong with that.

          • Clint Hyslop

            “Blacks are poor and blacks do not tip. That is a fact. Of course it doesn’t apply to all blacks but it’s certainly true for the average.”

            This may be one of the most idiotic ignorant things I have heard in a while. Do you actually know what a “fact” is? According to your twisted “logic”, segregation isn’t really that bad an idea because each race just always prefers its own kind anyway.

            I have been in the restaurant industry for 20 years, and I have been frustrated and infuriated by the whole “blacks don’t tip” fallacy for 19 years, 364 days and about 12 seconds. It has turned into a self-fulfilling prophecy among servers and bartenders because the vast majority of them have pre-judged the black people in their section or at their bar, and have given them really bad service as a result. Most people can tell when their server or bartender doesn’t really want them there, and by and large the size of the tip reflects the level of service. After all, if someone has willfully given me bad service and conveyed to me through his or her actions, glances, mannerisms, and tone of voice that I am not really welcome, why the hell would I reward that bigoted behavior with a financial reward. Is this always, 100% of the time true? No, like most things in life there are exceptions to every “rule”.

            And, just for the record, all of this is from the mouth of a southern raised white man.

          • waltereg0

            Actually it is a fact according to some university studies that have been done on it, including the one by Cornell that DewDew mentioned:
            It is true, on average, even when the customers are the same socioeconomic status, and even when the server is black, the server will be tipped less by black customers, and even when the quality of service is the same. If this was a racism problem, then why would black customers not tip black servers as much as white customers who are of the same economic status? When you compare customers who leave no tip at all, which is rare for both groups, that happens three times more often with black customers.

          • Neither of you actually read them, or you’d realize that what Clint Hyssop wrote is practically in 100% agreement with what both articles say.

            From the Washington Post: “Most notably, the observed black-white tipping difference has been linked to the delivery of relatively inferior service to black customers.
            In fact, in the previously cited national survey of restaurant servers,
            over half of the respondents admitted that they don’t always give their
            best effort when waiting on black customers.”

            Nothing says stupid more than including links that DISPROVE what you say in an attempt to disprove someone else’s post.

            In this case the stupidity burns, because they are articles on the same study quoting the same person throughout.

            Such laziness of mind betrays the real reason why you believe what you do. You’re unwilling to do read anything that contradicts what your gut instinct tells you to be the case.

          • DewDew

            “This may be one of the most idiotic ignorant things I have heard in a while.”
            Please reread your post and realize that not once did you actually argue against either one of my claims (blacks are poor and blacks don’t tip.) You tried to justify why blacks don’t tip, but you never addressed the truth of the matter. So do you admit that black people do not tip?

            As for segregation, the fact that people prefer their own kind does not justify segregation. Because when I say people prefer their own kind, it is a generalization. There are many blacks who like talking to whites and man whites who like talking to blacks. There rights should not be infringed upon.

            “I have been in the restaurant industry for 20 years…”
            You may have fooled someone else reading this but you certainly didn’t fool me with your carefully chosen words there. You deliberately did not say “i’m a server” or “I’m a bartender”, you said you work in the industry. For all I know you’ve been a bus boy, a hostess, cook, or a manager your entire life.
            As further evidence that you don’t have the experience you’re trying to come across as having, notice that out of all you said about black people tipping, not once did you make a reference to your own experience as a server, if you were one. Not once did you say “I treated black people perfectly nice and they tipped me just as well as my white customers”. The reason why you didn’t say that is because it never happened.

          • Whittany St Clair

            I hate to join this hateful conversation but just a tid bit…I have been a sever many times in myblife, and I have worked in many of different environments and honestly, I have never experienced any one in the resturaunts I have worked, treat any customer differently than the next due to their race, gender, sexual preference nor their religion. I have also had first have experience in the fact that you have people that tip great and people that tip very low. I have seen it from every race. Sometimes you don’t get a great tip, it’s the job. Working in the restaurant industry you are taught this. But to single out one person or another, or a set of people based on one thing and say they all do, well that’s incorrect. The truth is everyone has their moments and everyone has their own financial situation. I myself have desired to eat at a more expensive establishment and really coulndt afford it but I did and when the check came I explained to the waitress that it was all I had and that they did amazing and that I wished I could leave more. You don’t know anyone’s situation, but to analyze everything as if we’re stop the 50’s is inappropriate. I myself am white and I come from the great state of Texas and I also grew up in a town that is very southern but I can tell you that I have never heard of these supposed suppression tactics. I have never attended a meeting that was for talking to the white people about how to make everyone else’s life harder. I know that I can not speak for other people and I know that there is rasicim on every spectrum of the board. I am a 30 yr old white woman from South Texas and I know what it’s like to be judged for the color of my skin or where I came from or who my parents are, but the fact is not everyone is the same, and not everyone thinks like that. Yes Today’s society is very messed up, and yes there are injustices everyday, and no I am not trying to ignore history but it is just that..history.. You have to rise above and be better than that. I know that I do not understand what it is like to be of another race in today’s world I only know this, it takes so much more to be angry and mad then it does to Just rise above the situation. People that judge because of the color of your skin are ignorant plain and simple. Be better than that. Make a difference, don’t just get mad. Show those people what it is to be above it. Change lives and make differences in society and today. Just know that from my life I have yet to see, hear of, or attend a meeting where it was all about how to suppress anyone. They may exist but I am not sure they do. I don’t know..this may start a feeding frenzy but just know that not everyone is the same and no one is discounting history..just don’t categorize everyone together..isn’t that what the problem is?

          • How dare you try and use logic, reason and just plain common sense to prove his idiotic comments wrong. 🙂

      • Shylimar

        Damn. Darwin. U broke it down. Lol…

      • Darwin you might want to rethink your assumptions. 😉

        The person you replied to uses the nickname dewdew, which is a homonym or sound alike for doodoo a slang word for feces commonly used by children.

        For that reason alone it would be a big mistake to assume that the picture attached to the comment is his own.

        I mean who would want to be known as doodoo.

        Also perhaps you are confusing the discus system with the facebook plug in. You can use any image you like on discus.

        So if someone is a bigot who loathes Black people they can use a picture of a total stranger and tag it with an insulting nickname and pretend to be that person for obvious reasons and get their jollies everyone falls for their ruse.

    • cleverusername

      “A lot of white people aren’t interested in that sort of atmosphere of predominately blacks…but the author of this article would have you believe it’s due to racist bigotry.” What a ridiculous thing to conclude…? Nothing racist about not, uh, preferring the “atmosphere” of black people being there, right? What you said about tipping is correct though. There are studies showing it’s hard for restaurants in black neighborhoods have trouble retaining staff because of tipping practices, and the tipping disparity between ethnicity contributes to prejudicial service towards black people, contributing to “coincidences” like the 6th street closures. Regardless, it’s unacceptable for 6th street to try to avoid serving an ethnicity, as no individual should have to be turned away in some way because of the color of their skin.

      • Darcy Jackson

        Sounds like a good argument for getting rid of the typical poor excuse for a business model.

      • PARANOlD

        “A lot of white people aren’t interested in that sort of atmosphere of predominately blacks…but the author of this article would have you believe it’s due to racist bigotry.”

        Racism is far to broad of a term these days, people are entitled to their preferences. And bars are entitled to a post-SXSW cool down and/or taking their staff on vacation after all the cash they made. If it coincides with another event that isn’t particularly profitable, so what? There’s nothing to cry about here.

        By the way… this is what the last day of SXSW looks like, bars fully open:

        • cleverusername

          You do know SXSW has been over for weeks…? You know what. If you want to believe that it’s all a huge koinkidink that all these bars wait three weeks and closed the coincidentally on this event weekend, don’t let me prevent your from being gullible. You are free to unquestioningly take things at face value without thinking logically about them, if you so choose.

          P.S. I was actually there when that video was filmed. Please tell me more about what it looked like. What did you see when you were there?

          • PARANOlD

            Okay, you changed my mind, it’s clearly a huge racist conspiracy among bars. Derrrrrp.

          • cleverusername

            Nooo not at all. It’s just an incredibly unlikely coincidence…for all those bars…every single year… I mean, racism against black people, in the American south? That has never happened.

          • Unkel Ruckus

            How To Destory America by Governor Lamm

            I’m not sure how old this item is, it was sent to me by a correspondent in Britain who points out that the same applies to Britain, Europe and maybe even NZ too.

            Last week there was an immigration-overpopulation conference in Washington, DC, filled to capacity by many of American’s finest minds and leaders. A brilliant college professor named Victor Hansen Davis talked about his latest book, “Mexifornia,” explaining how immigration – both legal and illegal – was destroying the entire state of California. He said it would march across the country until it destroyed all vestiges of The American Dream.

            Moments later, former Colorado Governor Richard D. Lamm stood up and gave a stunning speech on how to destroy America. The audience sat spellbound as he described eight methods for the destruction of the United States.

            He said, “If you believe that America is too smug, too self-satisfied, too rich, then let’s destroy America. It is not that hard to do. No nation in history has survived the ravages of time. Arnold Toynbee observed that all great civilizations rise and fall and that ‘An autopsy of history would show that all great nations commit suicide.'”

            “Here is how they do it,” Lamm said: “Turn America into a bilingual or multi-lingual and bi-cultural country. History shows that no nation can survive the tension, conflict, and antagonism of two or more competing languages and cultures. It is a blessing for an individual to be bilingual; however, it is a curse for a society to be bilingual.

            “The historical scholar Seymour Lipset put it this way: ‘The histories of bilingual and bi-cultural societies that do not assimilate are histories of turmoil, tension, and tragedy.’ Canada (English vs. French), Belgium, Malyasia, Lebanon all face crises of national existence in which minorities press for autonomy, if not independence. Pakistan and Cyprus have divided.

            Nigeria suppressed an ethnic rebellion. France faces difficulties with Basques, Bretons, and Corsicans.” Lamm went on: “Invent ‘multi-culturalism’ and encourage immigrants to maintain their culture. I would make it an article of belief that all cultures are equal. That there are no cultural differences. I would make it an article of faith that the Black and Hispanic dropout rates are due to prejudice and discrimination by the majority. Every other explanation is out of bounds.

            “We could make the United States an ‘Hispanic Quebec’ without much effort. The key is to celebrate diversity rather than unity. As Benjamin Schwarz said in the Atlantic Monthly recently: ‘The apparent success of our own multi-ethnic and multi-cultural experiment might have been achieved not by tolerance but by hegemony. Without the dominance that once dictated ethnocentrically and what it meant to be an American, we are left with only tolerance and pluralism to hold us together.'”

            Lamm said, “I would encourage all immigrants to keep their own language and culture. I would replace the melting pot metaphor with the salad bowl metaphor. It is important to ensure that we have various cultural sub-groups living in America reinforcing their differences rather than as Americans, emphasizing their similarities.”

            “Fourth, I would make our fastest growing demographic group the least educated. I would add a second underclass, unassimilated, undereducated, and antagonistic to our population. I would have this second underclass have a 50% dropout rate from high school.”

            “My fifth point for destroying America would be to get big foundations and business to give these efforts lots of money. I would invest in ethnic identity, and I would establish the cult of ‘Victimology.’ I would get all minorities to think their lack of success was the fault of the majority.

            I would start a grievance industry blaming all minority failure on the majority population.”

            “My sixth plan for America’s downfall would include dual citizenship and promote divided loyalties. I would celebrate diversity over unity. I would stress differences rather than similarities. Diverse people worldwide are mostly engaged in hating each other – that is, when they are not killing each other.” “A diverse, peaceful, or stable society is against most historical precedent. People undervalue the unity it takes to keep a nation together. Look at the ancient Greeks. The Greeks believed that they belonged to the same race; they possessed a common language and literature; and they worshipped the same gods. All Greece took part in the Olympic games. A common enemy Persia threatened their liberty. Yet all these bonds were not strong enough to over come two factors: local patriotism and geographical conditions that nurtured political divisions. Greece fell. “E. Pluribus Unum” — From many, one. In that historical reality, if we put the emphasis on the ‘pluribus’ instead of the ‘unum,’ we can balkanize America as surely as Kosovo.”

            “Next to last, I would place all subjects off limits ~ make it taboo to talk about anything against the cult of ‘diversity.’ I would find a word similar to ‘heretic’ in the 16th century – that stopped discussion and paralyzed thinking. Words like ‘racist’ or ‘zenophobe’ halt discussion and debate.” “Having made America a bilingual/ bicultural country, having established multi-culturism, having the large foundations fund the doctrine of ‘Victimology,’ I would next make it impossible to enforce our immigration laws. I would develop a mantra: That because immigration has been good for America, it must always be good. I would make every individual immigrant sympatric and ignore the cumulative impact of millions of them.”

            In the last minute of his speech, Governor Lamm wiped his brow. Profound silence followed. Finally he said, “Lastly, I would censor Victor Hanson Davis’s book Mexifornia. His book is dangerous. It exposes the plan to destroy America. If you feel America deserves to be destroyed, don’t read that book.”

            There was no applause. A chilling fear quietly rose like an ominous cloud above every attendee at the conference. Every American in that room knew that everything Lamm enumerated was proceeding methodically, quietly, darkly, yet pervasively across the United States today. Every discussion is being suppressed. Over 100 languages are ripping the foundation of our educational system and national cohesiveness. Barbaric cultures that practice female genital mutilation are growing as we celebrate ‘diversity.’

            American jobs are vanishing into the Third World as corporations create a Third World in America – take note of California and other states – to date, ten million illegal aliens and growing fast. It is reminiscent of George Orwell’s book “1984.” In that story, three slogans are engraved in the Ministry of Truth building: “War is peace,” “Freedom is slavery,” and “Ignorance is strength.”

            Governor Lamm, walked back to his seat. It dawned on everyone at the conference that our nation and the future of this great democracy is deeply in trouble and worsening fast. If we don’t get this immigration monster stopped within three years, it will rage like a California wildfire and destroy everything in its path, especially The American Dream.

        • Raccoon

          Yeah I’d close too. And I’d vanish like a set of rims at a Jay Z concert.

    • I stopped reading after “Because black people are poor”. I’ve seen way too many Fox News snippets to not know what’s coming next.

    • black _developer

      I stopped at “egalitarianism” – save all that for mid-terms homie

      • DewDew

        I forgot, within black culture, intellectual pursuits are looked down upon. Nevermind expanding your vocabulary, I should keep all the “big words” at school.

  • Mike

    Did you see the video from sxsw where all the little hoodlums in hoodies had guns and there were gun shots? This is why they shut this area down. Growing up in the hoodie…

    • DirtyDogBar


  • Skylar Smith

    I work at Iron cactus on 6th street, we hold a private event specifically for relays every year. As we did this year. This guy is just going around trying to barrow trouble

    • You spelled borrow wrong. Apologies, I can’t help being the grammar police. #ocd

      • Jed

        i figured it was an idiom.

    • black _developer

      who was at this private event? what was it for? and are there pictures?

  • I am become ignorant internet comments, the destroyer of worlds

  • Flowers Darrin

    They have the right to refuse service to anyone, get over it TM.

    • Nick Parker

      You obviously have never heard of the Federal Civil Rights Act
      of 1964, which prohibits discrimination by privately owned places of
      public accommodation on the basis of RACE, color, religion or national

  • Ori

    I’m sorry, but am I the only native Austinite reading this? Can I remind you of the skyrocket number of brawls, shootings, etc. that take place during Relays? Are we forgetting that Highland Mall was nearly destroyed the year prior to its decision to close during Relays? The fact of the matter is that the city goes all out of whack during Relays weekend much more so than any other busy, event filled week/weekend in Austin, whether the influx of people are black or not. I’m sure if ACL weekenders had nearly destroyed a mall, it would close the next year to prevent further damage, regardless of whether the people that caused such damage were black, white, blue or green. It’s so easy to criticize others’ decisions when you choose to forget the history behind them. Do your research please, or did you not go to your Journalism class the day they covered that topic?

    • Darwin

      Highland Mall being destroyed is/was the biggest exaggerated lie or myth that has ever been told. It was not bombed or set ablaze. There was a fight there and the footage is/was on youtube. Teens have been fighting in malls, schools, downtown at clubs for years.

      • Tim Williams

        Actually sir. I was there when highland mall got destroyed. You can watch your little YouTube videos. But I was there when the man pulled his pistol out and fired it inside the mall. I was there when one of his boys started throwing $20 bills out and cause and all out brawl between about 20 to 30 different people. I was there when the two mall employees had to be taken to the hospital after getting trampled. I got to witness all the kiosks get destroyed. The windows get busted out. Yes…I’m afraid so sir. Highland mall got destroyed. Ive worked on sixth street for a very long time. Tx relays I’ve been jumped twice. Stabbed one year. I dont give a damn what anybody says. The people that are down there during relays weekend. Are nothing but trash. I dont care what APD says. Its dangerous and way out ta control. Kinda hard for APD to say that crime doesn’t escalate during that weekend. When they’re hardly even down there during that weekend. The hell with the tx relays and the crowd it brings

        • Darwin

          Do you hold the same opinion of your white counterparts as a crowd of trash when they come for the ROT biker rally? The mall incident happened once out the past 87 year history of the Texas Relays so it’s actually an anomoly or outlier and not common at at all. White people also come to compete and participate in the relay events along with their middle age parents by the way. Are they trash too? I don’t live in fear because of isolated incidents that happen in this city or anywhere else for that matter. I’ve lived in Austin for 43 years and have been a victim of crime myself and I’m still not afraid to go anywhere so I’m sorry you feel that way buddy.

          • DirtyDogBar

            As for ROT there are all types of trashy people. But how much money is spent inside the bars on 6th during that time???? As I say people breaking the law no matter color should be arrested. Has there ever been a stampede during ROT. Also you do realize those bikes cost a lot of money. All types of bikes. The Rough Riders are down there too and never cause problems. Actually they help police the area.

          • Tim Williams

            Anomaly? In your last comment. It was just an “exaggerated lie”. And to answer your question. I didn’t put a color basis on “trash”. Good job with your race baiting tactics. I know that there are white people at the relays. As well as Hispanics etc etc. Yes sixth street is mostly black during relays but not 100%. But what is down there of all races for the most part is trash. Secondly. The ROT rally is no where near as bad as the tx relays. Yet it has become mostly black too. The difference? Those bikers black, white, blue, green, yellow. They have a code. Morals they live by. The young jackasses at relays dont. There for. They do as they please. Cause trouble all weekend. And raise completely hell for those that work down there.

          • Unkel Ruckus

            Youse hate facts. Here’s one

          • Darwin

            Nice try TROLL, meanwhile according to the very same site, white people lead in rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, arson, violent crime, property crime, other assaults, sex offenses, drug abuse etc. Need I go on? All for a nice grand total of 69% of crime committed in this country. Epic fail in your attempt to demonize black people.


          • Jason Brockdorf

            Whites are 72% of the population yet are attributed with 69% of arrests, and blacks are 12% of the population and are attributed with 27% of arrests. If you’re going to quote statistics, you should probably make sure those statistics really support your argument.

          • Darwin

            You’re butting into a discussion that you don’t know the context to. I was responding to a racist who’s comments have since been deleted, that posted a meme with false stats about black murder rates with reference to the same link. I’ve studied the stats from this site for a few years now and I’m well aware of what you’ve stated so no you are not correcting or elightening me. Thank you though.

          • Jason Brockdorf

            Look Darwin, I’m not butting into anything. if you’re having a private discussion on a public forum, you’re doing it wrong. I’m all in favor of discrediting those that spread misinformation though, so good for you, and you’re welcome.

  • Jason Brockdorf

    I’ve worked downtown during relays. There is an overwhelmingly greater amount of “trouble” downtown during relays than any other event I’ve seen. And this is a trend I’ve noticed for years on end. I’ve heard some stories about similar issues with ROT rallies, but I’ve not experienced it personally. I don’t think it has anything to do with race, I think it has to do with establishments not wanting the hassle it brings dealing with the stupid YOUNG people, not BLACK people. Get over it. Not everything is racially motivated.

    • Unwound

      “There is an overwhelmingly greater amount of “trouble” downtown during relays than any other event I’ve seen”

      not according to the APD

      • Jason Brockdorf

        Meaning? Just because there’s no arrest or reported crime doesn’t mean it’s not happening. We didn’t file police reports for underage drinking, fighting, or drugs, we just kicked them out. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t happening. Do you have facts to support your statement or are you arguing for the sake of argument?

    • Darwin

      Have you taken a look at this article? We don’t have to make this stuff up. Many like to willfully deny, ignore, excuse, deflect or be apologist for both overt and covert racism. Read the quote by one of the 6th Stn bar owners who didn’t know and want to be on the record.

      • Jason Brockdorf

        Yes, I read it. I’m not saying that the racism isn’t there, but to attribute closing bars to racism is really illogical. Obviously the guy doesn’t like blacks, but he didn’t close his bar, did he? No, he’s in business to make money.

        • Darwin

          We don’t know that he and others that share his sentiments and ideology don’t close every year for Texas Relays as this article was mainly a comparative analysis OpEd of crime during SXSW with other events that take place on 6th St. Yeah I’m sure he had to bite his tongue and swallow his racist pride and keep his doors open to all races and ethnicities from all over the during one of biggest international festivals in the country. So yes I’ll agree with you there because he’d be a damn fool not to be open. And no it’s not illogical because we’ve seen a pattern of this for the past several years now and therefore covert racsim cannot be ruled out or wished away because some are tired of hearing it or don’t like talking about it, which is part of the problem called avoidance.

          • Jason Brockdorf

            <– Guilty as charged, I prefer to avoid problems. Hypothetically, let's assume that it is the case that they closed in disrespect to blacks, what would you propose be done about it? Also: what would you do about if you had absolute authority?

          • Darwin

            Personally I would tell my community to stop looking for acceptence and never give any of those places a dime of my money on any occasion. I’m going to beg an establishment to take my money that clearly doesn’t want me there. On a policy level though, in my opinion businesses who practice discrimination need to be fined and listed on all local Chamber of Commerce chapters as businesses that are hostile toward African Americans since this was supposed have been settled 50 years ago with the signing of the Civil Rights Act.

          • Jason Brockdorf

            I’m with you on the not giving them my money, and it’s easy for me for me to say what I would do since I’m white. Unfortunately we’re seeing a resurgence of discrimination in this country and it’s not just limited to race. I don’t understand what makes people think it’s ok to exclude, disrespect, or outright hate someone for something that’s so superficial and not even relevant. I don’t know if there is a cure, in my heart I feel that (unfortunately) it’s always going to be a problem for mankind. Maybe your solutions would work, but the problem I foresee with this is that any evidence would likely be circumstantial or hearsay (in other words, good luck trying to prove a case in court). I believe that if you want to hurt a business, you hurt them where it counts, by affecting their income. Boycotts have worked wonders in the past, the biggest struggle with that is getting people on board.

  • prohibitedweapon

    A little late to the party TX Monthly. Anyone remember Galveston hotels and businesses closing down during the final few years of Kappa Weekend?

  • Mike Van Summern

    Interesting information.. and a bit troubling to say the least. However I’m not sure THE IRON CACTUS should be included in your critique. I was downtown with my family on Saturday (about 5pm) and they were indeed closed for a private event. I think it was some sort of motorcycle group (lots of cool bikes parked outside.) Anyway, it was completely packed and it appeared that the majority of the people in there were African American. I didn’t get the sense that there was any discrimination going on and everyone seemed to be mingling and having a good time together.

  • WhatevaMan

    Happens every year… these same bars also turn away blacks for “dress code” violations which are arbitrarily enforced. I’ve lived in Austin for 15 yrs and that is what this place is… same crap happens in Houston and Dallas too. Only difference is there are black clubs in Houston and Dallas that cater to that crowd.

    To people that think black people don’t tip… maybe your service sucks.

  • Black

    IMHO, there needs to be legislation drawn up immediately to keep these bars open 24/7. I’m setting up a gofundme kickstarter for it now, will post link later.

  • Veratus Maximus

    If you’ve ever been a waiter you know that very young black people inhabit the worst two demographic categories for leaving tips. Let the waitstaff go have a nice weekend. Closing shows a lot of loyalty by owners to the waitstaff.

  • lyssapatrice

    I wrote part of my undergrad thesis @ UT on this exact subject, comparing the reality of being black & in attendance at various events the city hosts. As a black female student at UT, I went to SXSW, ACL, ROT & Relays weekend… also caught a metal show at Dirty Dog as a part of my internship w/ AMF. So please forgive me if I’m not swayed by someone telling me I don’t know what I’m talking about. Don’t get me wrong, I had a great time often, but it was often weird & uncomfortable & unwelcoming vibes, like I didn’t belong.

    The reality is that if you’re a POC in Austin, the experience is highly alienating.
    Please remember that the black student populace of UT is STILL sitting at about 4-5%. I think the overall black population in the city is about 8-9%.

    Austin was never designed to be particularly friendly to black folks, dating back to the referenced 1928 plan redlining housing districts in East Austin exclusively for black people & providing lenders with incentives to not offer mortgages to black families seeking residence in other parts of the city.

    So the history of the city still stands & it’s now 2016 & white people, even the ones who’ve crept into & taken over historically marginalized parts of the city & brought in a little gentrification magic, are still uncomfortable with letting black people in “their” spaces.

    Whether or not you call it racism (which is what I would call it), that’s what it boils down too. Some of those proprietors are so uncomfortable with the idea of “scary, loud, obnoxious, etc. [insert PC code word to describe minorities]” in their bars they pass on the money & opt to give their staff the night off. Which is ok, but let’s call a spade a spade.

    Also, please give me a break on the “someone pulled a gun at Highland Mall that one year” deal. I’m not saying it was right, but it is so odd to me when white people express such terror about black people with guns when you could literally throw a rock in a crowd in Texas and hit someone carrying a firearm… who may return the favor with actual bullets instead of rocks. Brown people with guns is MUCH scarier than white people… excuse me… heroes with guns.

    • JokeznSmoke

      Eloquent response my sister, for folks to tout Austin as the Most Liberal city in Texas it’s still in TEXAS, I for one don’t ever get that confused!!!

    • BldyHell

      There’s a hell of a big difference between carrying a gun and pulling it. And there’s also a hell of a big difference between discriminating against people because they are unruly and discriminating against people because of the color of their skin. I don’t doubt that there are plenty of folks who do the latter (and they should be criticized for it), but that fact shouldn’t prohibit people from doing the former.

  • Kellance Young

    Actually, i tip all the time 20%, but this happens around the country and if the bars have been closing 4 yrs i wouldnt spend my money in them anyway if they were open

  • Unwound

    for those of you who are genuinely stupid enough to believe this has nothing to do with racism, or that racism doesnt exist, or that TM is just trying to gin up an issue where there is none, have a look at this chronicle article


    • Darwin

      They won’t read it and when they do they’ll still deflect and say it’s not about race.

      • Jason Brockdorf

        I read it, I don’t think the article said anything about the guy closing his bar. Obviously the color green means more to him than the color of your skin, seeing as how he was quick to issues threats if he’s quoted. I’m not saying that anything isn’t about race in particular, and certainly it does exist and it is problematic, but if you’re looking for something, you’re going to find it. It’s called confirmation bias. Discrimination isn’t limited solely to racial lines, and I’m sure we’ve all been subjected to it at one time or another. For those of you that seem to have trouble differentiating reality from your misconceptions, it’s best to apply Occam’s Razor. Which is more likely? That a bunch of business owners who own for-profit businesses all got together and hatched some grand conspiracy against black people? Or that a bunch of people that run for-profit businesses made a business decision based on past and projected profit? You’ll find throughout your experiences in life that many people will take your money, even if it’s against their principles. There surfaces the failure in logic. Even if these bastards are racist, they’re not going to close if it means less profit, money is green regardless of who gives it to you.

  • Natalie Phillips

    Does the article not say the relays are HIGH SCHOOL AND COLLEGE? PERHAPS part of the reason is that bars don’t want to have to deal with minors or that competitive athletes don’t go bar hopping while they are in the midst of important competition?

  • Whittany St Clair

    You know honestly the first thought when I started reading this article, I thought well that’s super smart being as this is not only an occasion when there is a flooding of high school age kids but also an event that, I guess you could say implores, a more than healthier lifestyle ( being as it is a track and field event). The last thing these kids and adults needs is to be hung over when competing in an event that needs great amounts of hydration. Also, what do you think the chances of kids using fake id’s and trying to sneak into the bars? I am not sure if this is an issue so much nowadays or not but I feel it would be a genuine fear for me. When I continued reading more of the article though, I was stunned to see such a provoking comment but such an educated man. I just don’t understand why that is the first thing you think of when this happened. I don’t think that that is a very fair analysis of the situation. It is easy so very easy to judge and point fingers these days. Honestly, what does it really matter. These businesses serve all races year round and if they choose to close during a TRACK AND FEILD EVENT and “lose money”, that is their right. Are these establishments only employing white people? Probably not! Don’t you think if there was a racist undertone to the closing, that the employees ( all with what I assume to have upbeat ways of thinking) be the first ones to post and send out messages about the incident? To the Professor that is trying to start a war, grow up and find another outlet for your anger. It is sad to think that a teacher with these scruples is teaching our young people at such a renowned institution! Shame on you sir!

  • kittysmom

    Could it be that these bars shut down during this particular weekend because the city would be flooded with minors away from home and testing boundaries? Minors of any and all colors?

    I was a bartender longer than I care to think about and I can assure one and all that I would not want to deal with the tricks and legal repercussions associated with trying to keep under-age drinkers out of my way as I worked extremely hard to earn a living.

    I think these closures are good business sense. I’d do the same. I think the people making it a racial problem are people who’ve never owned or worked in bars and never faced the legal and criminal consequences of somebody else’s drunk kids.

  • Cristina

    It is more than likely a risk/benefit decision. A large number of the high school students who come in to town possess fake ID’s and act as though, because they are from out of town, their actions lack consequences. While crime may remain the same (statistically), minors illegally drinking in droves and trying to blow off some steam with rival teams require high levels of babysitting. Because there are a lot of minors who consume alcohol, either pregame booze in their hotel or using a fake ID, each bar runs the risk of TABC violations if these visitors get into a fight and are actually drunk and underage. It’s been my experience (working sixth for 7 years in a row) that most of that money is spent by families on hotel accommodations, dinners, tourism and not spent in the bars. Most years, the bars are basically deserted while the streets are packed with minors who can’t get into the bars in the first place. At the end of the day, babysitting school kids and requiring your entire staff to be on high alert to avoid TABC violations while generating less revenue than any average weekend simply isn’t worth it. Considering SXSW profits are still being counted, it’s the best time of the year to offer a reward to employees who probably worked 100 hour sxsw weeks and won’t take a vacation for the rest of the year. Every year, there is some local rag slinging mud to add just enough sensationalism to sell an extra copy. It’s become more predictable than a recent transplant complaining about the tourists. These vulgar, thinly veiled, accusations are more than innocent gossip. Calling local business owners and their respective staff racist is libelous at best and the equivalent of a playground bully spreading rumors about someone else just to feel better about himself.

  • Quantravious Smith

    Hey, we all know what blacks bring with them… violence, crime, drugs… If they stay long enough you can add poverty, gloom, despair… Heck, I’d close up shop too, nothing wrong with that…

  • Scotty-dog


    When was the last time any one of you folks were on 6th street the evening of the Relays that are discussing this? Were you here Carrington? Anyone else?

    Tell me, how old are these people running track? 18, 19, 20, 21. What is the legal drinking age in Texas? It is 21. So you end up with thousands of underage kids trying to get in all the bars and it puts bar owners to risk with the TABC. And many have fake IDs. Why risk your business on a weekend like this? There is no reason to. They need to move this away.

    And all you folks want to make it into a “black” thing? How shallow are you folks?

    • black _developer

      How old are kids that skateboard x games weekend? bars open, YES

      • Scotty-dog

        They set that up on Congress not 6th between 9th and 10th.

        Did any of you talk to any bar owners before you decided to speak for them? Did you ask them why they closed?

  • Scott Carter

    I’m sure there would NEVER be any fighting, stealing, groping, raucous behavior, loud music blaring, disrespecting, rioting, looting, underage drinking, speeding, property destruction, sexual assault, low-tipping, screaming, yelling, stabbing, SHOOTING or any other types of chaos or general mayhem during one of these concentrated collections of youths. Seems like these folks who want to shut down for the event really ARE just a bunch of racists.
    Keep Austin Weird!

  • Unkel Ruckus

    I think this would be a wonderful opportunity to pause for a moment and give thanks for the many great contributions of the Black community and their culture to our society. Their peaceful and generous nature makes them ideal neighbors, lending testimony to their exceptional family values and parenting skills unrivaled by any other culture.

    Their commitment to academic excellence enriches our schools and serves as an example to all who hope to achieve prominence as a people. Real Estate values are fueled by the influx of African Americans into an area due to their caring and respectful nurturing of these communities, an example of all they have achieved by their enthusiasm for self-improvement through hard work and a self-reliant can-do nature. Without their industrious and creative drive, we would be poorer as a nation.

  • Kihafidhina1776

    About 10 years ago a hip hop bar opened up in North Scottsdale, AZ. On Friday & Saturday nights the corner of Scottsdale Rd & Shea Blvd turned into a war zone. Fights, shooting, vandalism, car accidents all skyrocketed. After 14 months the bar closed and the fights, shooting, vandalism, car accidents.

    What conclusion can be reached from this story?