Discover: Fairy Alley

By Chelsea Bucklew – November 1, 2017
Photo by Brian Fitzsimmons

When you think of Austin, you think weird, eclectic vibes and tie-dye t-shirts—fairies aren’t the first thing that come to mind. But tucked away behind the Lamar Union complex lies Fairy Alley, a mythical road of glitter and glitz just waiting to be found. Suvi Aika—the primary caretaker of the fairies she says are responsible for this wondrous spot—describes it as a city-approved space where people and their kids can go to enjoy a bit of nature, art, and magic in an urban setting. Fairy Alley is an otherworldly place to wander about while passing through the neighborhood. Previously overgrown, and occupied by drug users, Aika was inspired to reform her residential area to be a safer place for her young son. Now, Fairy Alley is a safe haven for all.

Aside from being open year-round for the public to enjoy, Aika also decorates for holidays such as Halloween, Christmas, and Easter. After gaining the city's approval and fundraising from private donors, Aika turned a once dilapidated walkway into a beautiful work of art. But due to the growth in Austin’s population over the years, the alley has been added to Google Maps as a city road, which has led to excess traffic and wear and tear. Aika has now re-painted the alley several times, but each time it gets harder for her to keep people from disrupting the wet paint in the process. She hopes to preserve the alley with the help of the Transportation Department—given they grant her an official road closure. Fairy Alley helps maintain the weird in Austin and continues to provide a great spot for people of all ages to enjoy—it wouldn’t exist without the work of the fairies, after all.


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