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ZACH Theatre uses grant money to make up lost employee wages from pandemic

Austin's ZACH Theatre is on the path to rebuilding as it plans to rehire and reimburse staff using its $2.6 million Shuttered Venue Operators Grant after reducing salaries during the pandemic.

The theatre, which has been a South Lamar staple since 1932, said they will reimburse the salaries for the 21 full-time employees after cutting them by 10-25% over the course of the pandemic. According to a press release, each employee will get their wages paid back to them.

The company, which normally hosts plays and musicals year round but was battered hard by the pandemic, is also looking to hire 56% of the staff that was let go during COVID.

After a very tough year for the entertainment industry, the SVOG grant was allocated $16 billion from Congress as venues similar to ZACH lost their customers due to COVID protocols. According to the Small Business Administration, $12.5 billion has been requested and so far $8.7 billion has been awarded so far.

An SBA report says about 90 venues have received funding so far, including ZACH Theatre, and more than 3,000 applications have been denied. SBA closed applications for the grant on Friday.

Though SVOG applications are closed, SBA said it "may reopen the portal or make other adjustments to its plan to best meet the needs of small businesses." The agency also said it will open applications for supplemental grants later, for those who have already received an initial grant later this month.

With new funds and new employees, ZACH Theatre recently announced its 2021-2022 season lineup as they look to bounce back. The season starts on September 29 with a performance of "Into the Woods."


Tito's releases (not so?) ugly sweater line for the holidays, profits to charity

Tito's Handmade Vodka

Show your love for Tito's and for the community this year with a wide selection of not that ugly, uglyish, ugly, uglier, and ugliest holiday sweaters.

There's lots choose from, and plenty of accessories like scarves and socks, plus gear for your dog, too.

All of the items can be purchased online or at the Love, Tito’s Retail Store in Austin, TX. 100% of all net proceeds from online or in-store purchases go to one of the nonprofits we’ve teamed up with.

Click here to see the entire collection in the Tito's store.

Mac and Cheese Fest and Free Art Exhibit
Waterloo Greenway, Good Vibrations Installation

🗓 All weekend

🎨 Creek Show Art Exhibit

Check out this highly anticipated art exhibition with illuminated art along Waller Creek. Tickets are free and the event includes food vendors, dazzling lights, live music, and hands-on activities

All weekend 6 p.m - 10 p.m | 📍Waterloo Park

✨ Mozart's Light Show

This iconic holiday tradition lights up for the first time this holiday season starting this weekend! Reserve your spot for an enchanting light and sound performance, delicious hot cocoa, sweet treats, and some overall fun with your friends or family. The show runs till January 6th.

6 p.m and 9 p.m | 📍Mozart's Coffee Roasters - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd, Austin, TX 78703

🗓 Saturday

🥊 Kickboxing in the Park

This fitness event is free and open to the public. Get your morning started right with a "Fitness in the park" class for kickboxing! The class will be led by certified instructors and is a great way to get a cardio workout in while also honing your self-defense skills.

10 a.m - 11 a.m | 📍 Metz Park

🛍 The Front Market

Support local LBGTQ+ and female artists at this outdoor market with over 150 vendors. Get your holiday shopping out of the way at this event, with vendors for food trucks, handmade goods, raffles, hands on workshops and activities, and more.

11 a.m - 5 p.m | 📍Ani's Day and Night - 7107 E Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78741

🗓 Sunday

🧀 Mac and Cheese Fest

Did someone say cheese?! If you're like me and always willing to get your hands on a bowl of mac and cheese, then this event is for you. Check out the Mac and Cheese festival happening this weekend to decide which vendor has. the best mac and cheese for yourself, and enjoy the bar with creative cocktails while you're at it. Tickets start at $45.

11 a.m - 3 p.m | 📍Lantana Place - 7415 Southwest Parkway