I lived in Austin for 12 years, and not only is SXSW my favorite thing that happens in Austin… it’s my favorite thing that happens period. If I were to somehow win a trip around the world on Wheel of Fortune or Jeopardy, and it was scheduled during SXSW, I’d have to say “naw, I’m good.”
The only year that there was any question if I was going to go or not was my Freshman year in college. I went to college at The University of Texas at Austin – just blocks away from the epicenter of SXSW. The organizers of the festival have wisely timed SXSW to coincide with the Texas colleges’ spring breaks, so I was left with the decision between South Padre Island and its infamous college kid debauchery – or a Multimedia/Film/Music festival I knew little about. (SXSW interactive was called “multimedia” at the time). I took a chance and decided to stay in Austin, even though it meant I’d have to sleep on a friend’s couch as the dorms were closed during spring break.