Infectiously Happy

I am not ashamed to say I LOVE CHARLOTTE!

It sometimes seems like I am always trying to leave home. I mean this IS a travel blog, right? For me to tell you how great or not great a place is I have to go places. I plan, I prepare, I will even take days off but in the end if the weather, the flights, the accommodations just didn’t seem to work out, I have to stay home. Sometimes I am minimally devastated, but you must always remember that your happiness can’t be determined by your circumstances, so I just often make a vacation of staying home. A staycation is defined as a vacation spent at home or nearby. I live in a really wonderful and often underrated place, so why not tell you what to do and not do, eat and eat more of in the Queen City! If you would like to be on my bad side talk bad about Charlotte. I usually encounter two kinds of people, the ones who have lived here for twenty years but hate it mainly because they don’t ever do anything interesting and blame the city for their boredom and then the ones who just got here and are listening to the ones I just mentioned. So whether you live here, or think you want to live here, or are planning a visit here’s what you might miss in Charlotte, but definitely deserves your attention…

Explore our Local food scene. There is more than enough delicious food in Charlotte. I love to eat and I know I don’t have to leave town to eat something fantastic.

My favorites:

Bite Your Tongue
Luna’s Living Kitchen
Cantina 1511

#vegan #vegetarian #lunas
My Favorite breakfast from Luna’s… A Buckwheat Blaster

There is this “new” event every Friday in Southend called “Food Truck Friday”. I jokingly say new because it has been going on for a while but is growing in popularity, and rightfully so. Anywhere from 5 -10 gourmet food trucks gather at the corner of Camden and Park in Southend providing a cool way to eat some delicious food outside with all the cool kids. It’s not far from where I actually “work” so I love walking down to catch dinner for myself and Frenchie. For more info click here.

We all do it. We have our favorite places, the ones most convenient, where everybody knows your name, but why not go to another part of town and try the new place you heard about at work or on FB? In your own neighborhood there is probably some really delicious food that you keep overlooking on your way to work or school or whatever. My point is find something new to try, especially before you tell me you can’t find any new places to try!

My favorite museum is free every Tuesday. Yes I am serious. From 5pm until closing the Mint Museum is free and when I am in town I am easily found frolicking about the galleries of the Uptown location with Frenchie. You can stay for a while and see each gallery or do a thirty minute visit, saving something for another Tuesday. You didn’t pay to come in and most Tuesdays they have some fun activity, movie or performance going on in the atrium. Their calendar boasts a list of upcoming activities, including a free salsa dancing night once a month with lessons included.

Current exhibit at the Mint Uptown… Portraits by Beverly McIver
"mint muesum uptown"
I am finishing up a “recycled flower” at the Mint on a free Tuesday

In addition to the Mint, please take time to visit two exhibits in Charlotte that are exceptional and educational but only here until the end of the year.

Without Sanctuary at the Levine Museum of the New South

America I Am at the Harvey Gantt Center for African American Arts.

Party to the beat of a different drum. Every city has parties. I don’t look forward to standing in a crowded club while Lil’ Wayne yells vulgarities and Nikki Minaj sing-raps all night. So when you visit/live here and you want to dance and be around people who just came to dance and have fun I suggest you not miss Su Casa at Dharma lounge. You can grab your tambourine and groove to soul, house and afrobeat, get your face painted by Catherine and have a genuinely good time in a lively atmosphere.

Face painted and chilling with “Su Casa” creator Jasiatic
Catherine had my face beautifully painted for the latest Su Casa!

Shop Locally, because the mall is the same pretty much everywhere. We have some decent shopping at our malls, but there are several local boutiques that deserve your business, especially if you want something unique and beautiful. The keep saying on the news supporting local is going to make the economy better, so do your part! Check out:

Blank Canvas
Vivian B
Scout & Molly’s

5 things to remember when in Charlotte:

1. Every First Friday there are two gallery crawls worth interest. One in NoDa and one in Southend. Park, walk around, grab some food and check out what’s going on locally in the artist community

2. This is NOT Atlanta. We are constantly compared. I hate that.

3. The natives are friendly so say hello!

4. The Epicentre is not the center of uptown life, so use your fancy internet, my list, all available resources and try something different

5. While Charlotte may be “a small town masquerading as a city” to some, it is a growing place with plenty to offer if you just give it a chance!

Who said you have to leave home to see something new, do something exciting or make new memories? I don’t. I hope I gave you a few things to check out in the Queen City. I am lucky to call it home. We may not be able to win any sporting events, but I am still a proud Charlottean!

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12 thoughts on “I am not ashamed to say I LOVE CHARLOTTE!

  1. I love Charlotte too! I’ve met some amazing people (like yourself) and I guess that’s why I can’t stay away too long…..I’ll be back soon!!

  2. Love it Kelz!! I am so tired of people who live here and don’t like it!! It’s so much to do!! You just have to be creative and think outside the rectangle!! lol 😉

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