The fact 75% of the posters on here are chronicle complainers, means half is pretty good. I take my 7 y.o. down to the river all the time. Mostly at Rio Vista. It's usually a good mix of local families, tourist and college kids. I'm either missing a lot of what ya'll are complaining or have been very lucky. There's not nearly the number of loud drunks as there was 10-20 years ago. I avoid the river from City Park to Rio Vista all the three big summer holiday weekends. I also avoid Sixth Street in Austin on Halloween and bars on New Years' Eve. But I think that's just common sense.