2013 #SXSWi Unofficial Party Guide

SXSW Interactive Conference boasts some of the best panels, events, and nightlife packed into what I refer to as “tech-uber intense” that is SXSW.  There are literally hundreds of events happening during the course of two weeks during the Interactive, Music, and Movie festivals, but we’ve nailed it down to just 25 or so.  These parties have the Blogging4Jobs seal of approval when it comes to fun, exciting, and never dull parties at SXSW.

For anyone in the technology, startup and social media space, SXSW is a must. The SXSW Conference is right around the corner. This year the national conference is being held from March 8-12th in Austin and if you haven’t registered yet, get over to SXSW.com and get on it!  Party information is listed below, but if you’d like to stay current with party reminders and new events as they surface, text SXSW to 55678.

SXSW has something for everyone from startups, PR, Marketing, developers, designers, dreamers, and even HR and recruiters.  As with anything, it’s the people you meet and the networking that goes on form being able to relate to people in a conference setting. A very important part of that are the conference parties and after hours events.

My secret to conferences including this year’s SXSW Interactive Media conference is simple.  I try to make it into my room just before 2:00 AM.  I’m not the first to go home from a night out among my friends, and I’m not the last.  I sleep five hours and am up by 7:00 AM and back into the conference folds by 8:30 AM.  I eat, attend sessions, demo products, and meet with new friends, contacts, and old ones.  I love doing this!

Around 4:00 PM I am dragging so I wait for my second wind except that it doesn’t happen.  I head back to the house we’re renting this year to grab a couple hours of sleep.  I’m recharged, refreshed, and just in time for dinner and the night life all over again.

Because of the sheer size of SXSW Conference (it’s 40,000+ attendees strong), there is a lot going on especially after hours.  Let me tell you those SXSW parties do not disappoint.


If you have a party, that is not included in this list, leave a comment, and I’ll consider updating the list if you are nice or have money to spend.  Make sure to include a link or phone number so folks know how to register and a location of where to go. Visit our Advertising Page to learn more of how we can help you build buzz at SXSW. We are planning a full on content media extravaganza here and on our sister site, Secrets of the Job Hunt.

Impromptu Events

  • SXSW Flashmob.  Date, time, and location is to be determined.  Since it launched 2 years ago, this event has gotten crazy media coverage.  Details here.

SXSWi Pre-Pre-Conference; Thursday, March 7th

  • SXSW Startup Crawl.  Hosted by Capital Factory. 5-10PM with shuttles running from 5-9:30PM. Crawl starts at Capital Factory (in the Omni Hotel) 701 Brazos.  Register. (No SXSW badge required for entry)
  • Big BASHH also known as the Big Ass Social Happy Hour). 7 PM-? at The Ranch 710 West 6th Street. Register here. (No SXSW badge required for entry)

SXSWi Pre-Conference; Friday, March 8th

  • Samsung Blogger’s Lounge. Hosted by TechSet offers networking, drinks & snacks. Opens at 1- 6PM on Friday and most days 9AM-6PM.  Inside the Austin Convention Center. Register. (Psst, it’s one of my must haves for SXSW attendees to connect with bloggers and social media influencers.)
  • Tech Career Expo.  Nothing like having a good time at SXSW & snagging a new job at the same time. Opens Friday at 11:00 AM to 5 PM & all day Saturday too.  Rivals Steakhouse 311 East 5th Street. Register here. (Look for our sister blog, Secrets of the Job Hunt to cover the event!)
  • Talent Net Live. A great recruiting conference 10:00 AM-8:30 PM and event held in Austin just before SXSW includes access to after party both at Iron Cactus 606 Trinity Street. Use discount code “B4JTNLi” to save $100 as a Blogging4Jobs reader. Register here. (affiliate link but I support this event!)
  • Talent Net Live Party. Just join the TNL folks for their awesome party during SXSW.  6-8:30 PM Use discount code “B4JTNLParty” to get $25 off the party as Blogging4Jobs reader. Iron Cactus 606 Trinity Street. Register here. (affiliate link but I support this event!)
  • SXSpredfast Bash. Hosted by spreadfast with drinks, dancing, and networking. Musical guest is The Good Nights. Speakeasy 412 Congress Avenue. 6-9 PM.
  • State of Now #140conf Party. Hosted by Jeff Pulver and history amazing 140 events.  7-9 PM. Catch up with him at Lanai 422 Congress Avenue. Register here. (No badge required for entry)

SXSWi Day 1; Saturday, March 9th

  • Beauty Bar X. Hosted by ReThink Media has a ladies only pop up beauty & manicure center with free drinks & avatar pictures for your social profiles.  10AM-4PM. Vince Young Steakhouse at 301 San Jacinto Boulevard. Register. (Email BBX@RETHINK7.com for VIP blogger code for additional perks and tell them I sent you)
  • Community Manager High Five Flash Mob. Join in the fun either IRL or via Twitter with the #CMAD hash tag. Just chill and action casual. Register.
  • Social Siesta. Hosted by Blogging4Jobs & Reputation Capital Media with bar provided by ExtendMyStaff.  1PM-3PM. Malverde 400A West 2nd Street. Register. (Space is limited for our personal and private event & no SXSW badge required)
  • Rachel Ray SXSW Party.  I’m a foodie for sure which is why I’m excited about this event. Performance by the Eastside Panther Band with the fun starting at 10 AM – 4PM. Stubb’s BBQ 801 Red River.  Register here.
  • SXSW Awesome Journalism Party.  Looking to rub elbows with reporters and freelancers in media organized by Hacks/Hackers? Me too. 5:00 PM-8:00 PM. Palm Door 401 Sabine Street. Register here.
  • Tech Cocktail Party. As I’m working on relocating to the Bay area, I’m immersing myself in #startuplife events like this. 7:00 PM at The Stage on Sixth 508 East 6th Street. Register here.

SXSWi Day 2; Sunday, March 10th

  • #VegasTech Lounge.  Vegas is out in full force at SXSW. Check out their lounge from 6:00-9:00 PM. 2nd floor of 222 East 6th Street. Register here.
  • Mashable House.  One of my favorite parties every year at SXSW. 9:00 PM-2:00 AM. Speakeasy 412 Congress Avenue. Register here.
  • The Social Media Monthly Party. Get your wine tasting on with Naked Wines. 6:00 PM-10:00 PM. The Karma Lounge 105 East 5th Street. Register here. (This party is now BOTH Sunday and Monday nights)
  • Blind Pig Crawfish Boil. Get your crawfish fix at 317 E 6th St. Eats and live music starts at 2:00 PM. More information. (No badge required for entry)

SXSWi Day 3; Monday, March 11th

  • SoDa Happy Hour.  Hosted by the Global Society of Marketing Innovators and is invite only.  5-8PM. 716 W. 6th Street. Request Invite.
  • Mobile Monday. Hosted by The Mobile Monday Austin with free beer. 6:00-? PM. Fogo de Chao 309 E. 3rd Street. Register.
  • #Vegas Tech.  Hosted by the Vegas Tech Community, it’s sure to be a party you’ll either never forget or want to. The fun starts at 8 PM. Red 7 611 E. 7th Street. Register.
  • The Social Media Monthly Party. Get your wine tasting on with Naked Wines. 6:00 PM-10:00 PM. The Karma Lounge 105 East 5th Street. Register here. (This party is now BOTH Sunday and Monday nights)

SXSWi Day 4; Tuesday March 12th

  • The Great British Breakfast.  This is my favorite event every single year at SXSW. Hosted by UK Trade & Investment from 10:30 AM-1:00 PM at Old School Bar and Grill 401 E. 6th Street. Register here.
  • Hipstamatic Brunch. Hosted by Hipstamatic. 11:00 AM-4:00 PM at the Haus of Hipstamatic 509 Brushy Street. Register here.

Most importantly plan to have fun, meet great people from all walks of life and business. Don’t forget to grab a handful of business cards, a mobile charge, and, of course, your most comfortable and stylish walking shoes. Stop by and see my friends at Tech Hustlers in the Expo Hall.  Contact them by clicking here to get interviewed. SXSW Conference parties are not to be missed which is why I’m here to help, text SXSW to 55678 and I’ll send you new party information as they surface and remind you of the upcoming events & the address 30 minutes before they happen.

*We are not affiliated with SXSW. Check out our disclaimer

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.

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