BBQ and Softball Tournament

Saturday, March 16, 2024

The annual SXSW Closing Barbecue and Softball Tournament is the traditional closing social event of SXSW. Wrap up your SXSW with a friendly game and some delicious bites!

Closing BBQ and Softball Tournament – Photo by Ziv Kruger



The SXSW Closing Barbecue and Softball Tournament is free to all SXSW Platinum and Music Badges. The general public are welcome to attend and BBQ tickets are available for purchase.

Barbecue & Cold Drinks

Enjoy an authentic Texas barbecue spread with all the trimmings (vegetarian options as well). Platinum and Music registrants can claim one free meal and receive free sponsor beverages (alcoholic and non-alcoholic options), but you MUST bring your Platinum or Music Badge to claim your meal and free beverages.

Film Badges, Interactive Badges, and general public guests can purchase a $20 BBQ plate. Note: For insurance reasons, we cannot sell beer to non-registrants; however, you’re welcome to bring your own (no glass containers, please).

Play in the Softball Tournament

Any SXSW Platinum or Music registrant can sign up to play in the SXSW Softball Tournament. Performing artists can sign up and play as well. One player per band, please.

There are two rounds of games: semifinals at 1:30pm and a final that starts at 3pm, 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. Loaner gloves can be borrowed at the field with an ID.

Sign up here if you’re interested in playing on a team and would like to receive more information as we get closer to the event.

Be sure to explore our Softball Rules including play check-in information below.

More Rules for Players


The Barbecue and Softball Tournament will be at Krieg Fields (517 S Pleasant Valley Rd), about a 10-minute drive from downtown and 15 minutes from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

SXSW will run a shuttle van between the fields and the Hilton, Fairmont, and JW Marriott downtown hotels. The shuttle runs every 20 minutes or so. With advance notice, we can also take you directly to the airport from the field. Check in with the crew at Player Check-in upon arrival at the field.

Rain Plan

If the weather looks "iffy" on Saturday morning, call the SXSW Softball Hotline, (512) 467-7979, to find out whether the game is on or not.

If there is rain, barbecue will be served 1-4pm or until it runs out, at the Fiesta Gardens Pavilion (2101 Bergman).



Softball for a Good Cause


Softball Sunday 2023 - RBI Austin Logo

RBI Austin, an affiliate of Major League Baseball’s Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities program, is a nonprofit organization in Austin, Texas providing baseball and softball leagues, clinics, family benevolence support, and Christian-based mentoring to underserved youth and communities.

RBI Austin began as a grassroots summer baseball team of 15 East Austin kids in 2009 and has grown to 1,577 kids ages 4-18 in 2022.

Over the years and with a growing number of kids and families involved, the mission remains the same: to engage and develop inner-city Austin youth athletically, academically, and spiritually, empowering them to lead the transformation of their communities.

Donate Now

Tournament Rules


Getting On a Team

Sign up here to receive more information about team sign ups as we get closer to the event.

Our tournament staff will reconfirm with you closer to the event and answer any questions you may have. After sign up closes on Friday, March 15, if you are still interested in playing you will need to arrive at Krieg Field (517 S Pleasant Valley Rd) on Saturday, March 16 at noon and get in the standby line to join a team if space permits.

Teams are divided by industry type. To improve competitive balance, we've compressed the field to four teams:

  • Music Makers (was formerly Musicians and Record Labels)
  • Music Biz (was formerly Agents/Managers and Clubs/Talent Buyers)
  • Mixed Media Mongrels (was formerly Print Media and Mixed Media)
  • SXSW (was formerly SXSW Staff and Volunteers)

Player Check-in Saturday, March 16 starting at 12:30PM

On tournament day, players need to check in at Krieg Fields at the player check-in tent. Players will sign a waiver and receive their team jersey and cap. If players do not check in by 1pm, teams will be filled with standby players.

Game Time Length

  • First round games are 55 minutes; no inning starts after the 55th minute. First round games start at 1:30pm. Championship round starts at 3pm and runs 7 innings, no time limit.
  • Championship game runs 7 innings, no time limit, but with a 10-run mercy rule after the 4th inning Extra innings, if needed, will start with a runner (the last batter from the previous inning) on second base.

Full Roster Must Play

Teams are co-ed with no set requirements other than 9 players minimum per team. Every player on the roster must play. No designated benchwarmers!

Mercy Rule

No mercy rule in 1st and 2nd rounds. For the championship game only, there is a 10-run mercy rule after 4 innings—that is, the game ends if either team is ahead by 10 or more runs at the end of the 4th, 5th, or 6th inning.

Balls & Strikes

Each batter starts with a 1-1 count. A batter with two strikes is allowed one foul ball. The second foul ball is strike three.


Mild swearing is okay, as long as it’s not directed at another player. Be aware that some of the umps take the profanity issue seriously so please try to keep the trash talk on the clean side.

Other Rules

In general, games are played under standard city-league softball rules, as applied by the assigned umpires. The umpires are always right.

Stats & Standings


SXSW Championship Game History

2023 Mixed Media 11, SXSW Staff/Volunteers 1
2022 SXSW Staff 14, Mixed Media 5
2021 Online event only, no softball
2020 Canceled
2019 SXSW Staff 13, Print Media 2
2018 SXSW Staff 14, Volunteers 4
2017 SXSW Staff 12, Volunteers 7
2016 SXSW Volunteers 12, SXSW Staff 10
2014 Records 20, Print Media 14
2013 Records 21, SXSW Staff 11
2012 Print Media 11, Clubs/Buyers 10
2011 Clubs/Buyers 14, SXSW Staff 7
2010 SXSW Staff 21, Print Media 10
2009 Print Media 17, SXSW Staff 6
2008 Clubs/Buyers 17, Mixed Media 16
2007 Print Media 26, Clubs/Buyers 0
2005 Print Media 14, Clubs/Buyers 3
2004 Clubs/Buyers 4, Print Media 2
2003 Print Media 17, Clubs/Buyers 11
2002 Clubs/Buyers 10, Print Media 4
2000 Print Media 21, Clubs/Buyers 4
1999 Clubs/Buyers 10, Print Media 0
1998 Clubs/Buyers 16, Print Media 12
1996 Records 15, Clubs/Buyers 0
1995 Clubs/Buyers 17, Radio 14
1994 Records 20, Clubs/Buyers 10
1993 Records 16, Agents/Managers 7
1992 Records 24, Mixed Media 3
1991 Club/Buyers 29, Records 12
1990 Clubs/Buyers 15, Print Media 10
1989 Clubs/Buyers 10, Print Media 6
1988 Records 9, Mixed Media 8
1987 Mixed Media 12, Records 3

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