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With 2020 almost behind us, Austinites are in need of a dream come true. That will all be possible with the arrival of Dreamland Dripping Springs, an outdoor entertainment and arts venue.
Dreamland will be opening its doors early next year. The venue will have an 18-hole miniature golf course with three difficulty levels, so even if you're not a pro at the sport you will be able to have fun. Along with miniature golf, the establishment will offer four premium pickleball courts, two stages for live music and events, a full bar with three different menus, a beer garden and a worldly art experience throughout the grounds.
The bar will offer 90 self pour taps on location featuring 50 local beers, ciders and kombucha, as well as 40 Central Texas wines. The menu at Dreamland is still under consideration by a team of chefs but will include three different food stations and one rotating menu to circulate the venue.
Jen Bland, Dreamland's bar manager, said she is excited to see people come out and be able to enjoy Dreamland.
Dreamland is the dream place for an evening of fun and drinks, but the venue also wants to contribute to all ages having fun. Bland said the venue will host a "kids' day" on the first Saturday of each month.
Otherwise, the venue will be open until 2 a.m. and will only allow guests who are 21 years of age and older after a certain time. Although the venue is in a remote location, Bland said it working to provide more car services so as to discourage drinking and driving.
In addition to providing affordable fun, Dreamland is also focused on sustainability.
The venue runs solely on solar power and has a rainwater collection system that will provide the majority of its water.
The venue has also converted its on-site rainwater tanks into an art exhibition, where locals and artists from around the world have contributed to the art.
Steve Kuhn, the owner of Dreamland, is also the founder of the nonprofit IDEAL Immigration and an advocate for immigration reform. The involvement of international artists and foods at the venue is a subtle way of illustrating one of the core beliefs at Dreamland: inclusivity.
"The art experience, the venue, it's all free," Bland said. "We just want it to be a place where people can relax and have fun, so people can come on site and enjoy themselves."
Dreamland is also a fan of Austin FC and is developing soccer fields for supporters and amateur players to enjoy.
"We want to provide a space for fun stuff to happen," Bland said. "We also want to encourage open conversations and ideas."
Dreamland has not yet released its opening date, but you can keep up with the venue's plans here.
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Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Monday that Texas will opt out of further federal unemployment benefits related to the pandemic effective June 26, citing the number of current job openings and concern about potentially fraudulent unemployment claims. The benefits include a $300 weekly supplement.
"The Texas economy is booming and employers are hiring communities across the state," Abbott said in a statement. "According to the Texas Workforce Commission, the number of job openings in Texas is almost identical to the number of Texans who are receiving unemployment jobs."
TWC listed 837,273 job openings as of Monday afternoon compared to 226,849 unemployment insurance claims filed statewide between March 31 and May 1. An estimated 1 million Texans were unemployed as of March, according to latest estimates released by the state agency.
Some local business owners, including Doc's Backyard Grill owner Charles Milligan, suspect unemployment benefits are deterring Austinites from returning to work. But others agree with economists who say multiple factors are at play, including health concerns and child care availability.
We're seeing lots of posts about how nobody wants to work right now. Just wanted to share our experience.
We received over 60 resumes for a taproom bartender position we posted last week. Every applicant we've set up an interview with has shown up.
People want 𝘨𝘰𝘰𝘥 work.
— Austin Beerworks (@AustinBeerworks) May 11, 2021
Abbott also cited fraudulent unemployment claims. Between March 2020 and April 2021, TWC received 4.48 million unemployment benefit applications, 611,000 or around 14% of which were tagged as suspicious. Most of those tagged were blocked before any benefits were paid out, according to an April 29 press release.
Federal law requires the effective date of such benefits change to be at least 30 days after the U.S. Department of Labor is notified.
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