Axios Austin

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It's Good Friday.

🌤️ Today's weather: Partly sunny, with a high near 79. Temps will warm up even more through the weekend.

👔 Feels like: Paul Simon's excellent shirt-and-tie combo in this classic Letterman interview.

Today's newsletter is 889 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Wimberley weekend guide

The Blue Hole Regional Park is worth a visit even outside of swim season. Photo: Megan Stringer/Axios

Wimberley, a small town nestled on the Blanco River in the Texas Hill Country, has all the makings of a great weekend trip: beautiful nature, delicious food, unique cocktails and charming lodgings.

Why it matters: This town is worth an extended stay beyond the day trip from Austin.

Axios San Antonio's Megan Stringer stayed at the edge of town in a Getaway cabin — yes, that tiny cabin everyone seems to be getting an Instagram advertisement for lately.

a photo of a bed with a window in the background
You've probably seen this scene advertised on Instagram. Photo: Megan Stringer/Axios

The vibe: Really tiny, but well-designed and functional.

  • The cabins are spaced out across the property in a way that feels like a campsite.

The cost: Varies. April prices ran anywhere from $118 to $353 per night at last look — not including $466 the night of April 8, following the eclipse.

The bottom line: You can probably stay somewhere else with more space for the same price or less — but the novelty of the experience makes this worthwhile.

🍽️ Where to eat, drink

Longleaf Craft Kitchen and Bar: This cozy restaurant and bar feels like a trip to grandma's country ranch where you know you're getting high-quality comfort food.

  • Add some seriously good cocktails on top of that and you're showing grandma the door.
  • To eat: Eggplant Parmesan from the lunch menu.
  • To drink: Literally anything from the craft cocktail menu, but ask for the dessert cocktails. We loved the coffee cake old fashioned and the orange dream.
  • To finish: Butter rum budino trifle.

Creekhouse Kitchen & Bar: This restaurant offers a more contemporary atmosphere with seating available along Cypress Creek.

  • To eat: Blackened fish tacos and the spinach salad with salmon.
  • To drink: The Ole Tx Pecan Fashion is smooth and flavorful.

What to do in Wimberley

2. Mapped: Religious service attendance

Share of adults who say they never or rarely attend religious services
Data: Household Pulse Survey; Note: Adults who say they never attend or attend less than once a year; Map: Alice Feng/Axios

Easter is this weekend, and it's a safe bet a lot of Texans will be at church.

The big picture: Texans go to religious services more than people in most other states.

  • Among Texas adults, 40%, or more than 9 million people, say they never or seldom attend church or religious services. That's compared to the national average of 49%, according to a Household Pulse Survey conducted Feb. 6-March 4.
  • Other sunbelt states are largely in line with the Lone Star State, and Mississippi (32%), Alabama (36%) and Louisiana (37%) have the country's lowest share of adults who say they don't attend church.

Why it matters: More than three-quarters of Americans say religion's role in public life is shrinking, per a recent Pew Research Center survey — the highest level since the group first started tracking such sentiment in 2001.

Zoom out: Religious service attendance nationally has been dropping for decades, per Gallup, driven largely by "the increase in the percentage of Americans with no religious affiliation — 9% in 2000-2003 versus 21% in 2021-2023."

  • Vermont (75%), New Hampshire (66%) and Maine (66%) have the highest share of adults who say they never or seldom attend church or religious services.

Friction point: Nearly half of U.S. adults say they feel at least "some" tension between their religious beliefs and mainstream culture, Pew found.

  • That's up from 42% in 2020.

A separate Gallup survey published this week found that Latter-day Saints are the only religious group wherein a majority say they attend services weekly, at 54%.

  • 30% of Protestants say they attend services weekly, compared to 28% of Muslims, 23% of Catholics and 16% of Jews.

What we're watching: How many state politicians will post "He is risen" on social media.

3. 🤠 The Roundup: Wrangling the news

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🧍‍♂️ The city of Kyle is once again attempting to break a world record for the most people with the same first name gathered in one place at one time. This year's Gathering of the Kyles will be held May 18. (KVUE)

🌆 Ten downtown towers have at least 100,000 square feet of vacant office space, and three are completely empty, according to real estate firm Aquila Commercial LLC. (Austin Business Journal 🔒)

⚖️ A former Austin police lieutenant who filed a lawsuit alleging racial discrimination won $1.5 million in a jury verdict this week. (Austin American-Statesman 🔒)

4. Our Friday News Quiz

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

It's quiz day here at Axios Austin. Answer these three questions correctly and you could get a shoutout in our Monday newsletter.

  • Just hit reply to this email.
  1. Did more or less than 80% of flights depart on time from the Austin airport in December?
  2. Where will Willie Nelson host his Fourth of July picnic this year?
  3. Name the Texas politician who managed this week to avoid a felony securities fraud trial.

5. One bundt cake taste test to go

The classic is a classic for a reason. Photo: Gregory "Taste Tester" Castillo/Axios

Our Axios Texas social media guru put his sweet tooth to the test trying all of the flavors at Texas-based Nothing Bundt Cakes.

Why it matters: How else would we know which bundtlets to take to Easter brunch without his service?

How it works: Greg Castillo ordered the "Bundtlet Bundle" — 12 mini-cakes for $58.

  • This included all of the bakery's regular flavors. Plus, the bundle featured the spring flavor: Oreo.

What he found: Classic vanilla was the best. Despite being, well, vanilla, the cake was moist, with well-balanced flavor.

  • Some of the bundtlets, like the Oreo, lacked some of the crunch we expect from cookies and cream.

Go deeper: Check out Greg's full review on the Axios Texas Instagram.

The bottom line: We're still trying to wake him from his sugar coma.

Thanks to Chloe Gonzales for editing and Kate Sommers-Dawes and Yasmeen Altaji for copy editing this newsletter.

🛏️ Asher is toying with buying a Murphy bed.

ğŸŽ‰ Nicole is spending the weekend with her family.