BBQ and Softball Tournament

From the SXSW 2015 Closing Barbecue. Photo by Greg Sells.

Sponsored by Majestic Athletic

The annual South By Southwest Closing Barbecue and Softball Tournament, the traditional closing social event of the SXSW week, runs from 12:30-5:30pm on Sunday, March 20.

Free for all SXSW Music and Platinum registrants! The 2016 South By Southwest Closing Barbecue and Softball Tournament is sponsored by Majestic Athletic.

Sunday, March 20: Schedule

11:45amFirst shuttle buses leave hotels
Noon-1:00pmPlayer check-in and warmup
12:30pmBarbecue & beer service begins
1:00pmFirst round games begin
2:30pmSemifinals (fields available for pick-up games)
4:00pmChampionship game

Food available while it lasts - usually until about 3:30-3:45pm

Eat and Drink

The SXSW Barbecue is an authentic Texas spread, with all the trimmings (vegetarian options as well), prepared by Austin’s own Ruby’s BBQ, plus beer, water, and soft drinks.

Menu: Beef brisket, chopped beef, pork spare ribs, smoked chicken, sausage, vegetarian jambalaya, potato salad, beans, 2 varieties of coleslaw, bread, butter, pickles, onions, sauce, and a variety of cookies.

Drinks: Beer, water, and iced tea.

It’s free for all music and platinum registrants (one meal per badge; you MUST bring your badge), but the area is also open to the general public, with food and soft drink tickets available for sale.

Showcasing Artists: If you choose the registration packet, your artist packet envelope gets you one free barbecue meal.

Note: For insurance reasons, we cannot sell beer to non-registrants; however, you’re welcome to bring your own (no glass containers, please).

There’s plenty of bleacher seating, three rounds of usually entertaining softball to watch, and a great chance to catch up with other registrants in a relaxed setting to make plans for Sunday night’s closing showcases.

Play in the Softball Tournament

Any SXSW Music or Platinum registrant can sign up to play in the SXSW Softball Tournament. Performing artists with performing artist wristbands can sign up and play as well; one player per band, please. There are three rounds of games: quarterfinals, semifinals, and a final that starts at 4:00pm, with live announcers and a rendition of “Take Me Out To The Ball Game.”

We recommend you bring your own glove, if you have one, but we have a lot of loaners as well, which you can sign out with proper ID.


Email with your preference of team:

Print Media
Mixed Media
Record Companies
Clubs/Talent Buyers
(SXSW staff and SXSW volunteer teams will be filled from within)

Our tournament staff will reconfirm with you closer to the event, and is available to answer any questions you may have. In addition, there will be a Player Registration Table on the 4th floor of the Austin Convention Center, 1-5pm on Thursday and Friday during the Music Conference.

More Rules for Players


Krieg Fields are located at 517 Pleasant Valley, about a 10-minute drive from downtown, and about 15 minutes from Austin-Bergstrom airport. SXSW will run a van shuttle between the fields and the Hilton and JW Marriott downtown hotels, beginning around 11:45am, and running every 20 minutes or so. With advance notice, we can also take you directly to the airport from the field; please notify the softball table at the convention center if you’re going to need that.

Driving directions: From downtown, south of the river, take Riverside Drive east. Turn left on Lakeshore Blvd., a couple of blocks past I-35. Make another left on Pleasant Valley when Lakeshore dead ends, and then take the first right, at the traffic light, into the first parking lot for the Krieg Softball Complex. Follow the park road around until you can’t go any further.

Rain plan: Barbecue will be served 1-4pm, or until it runs out, at the Fiesta Gardens Pavilion on Bergman Street and Lady Bird Lake. (From the Convention Center head east on Cesar Chavez Street about 10 blocks. Turn right on Chicon and the Fiesta Gardens Pavilion is on your left two blocks before Chicon dead-ends at Lady Bird Lake.) If the weather looks iffy on Sunday morning, call the SXSW Softball Hotline, (512) 467-7979, to find out whether the game is on or not.

Have questions? Email

Photo by Greg Sells