Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Rosie Is Planning A Road Trip!

Attention dear Readers! I wrote this April 6: I'm actually getting excited. I just started the beginnings of planning (Would that be the pre-planning stage, Sandra?) a Spring Road Trip for me and the Mister - as in I booked hotel rooms today in the Western Parts of North Carolina for 3 nights in May. If you've been with me for the past few years, you know that The Hawthornes have taken wonderfully enjoyable trips in the fall down the Skyline Drive and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC, is magnificent in the fall. See here. And here. And here. We've been to Monticello. We've been to Luray Caverns. We've been to Toxaway Falls. We've been to the spectacular Whitewater Falls. Now, we're going back to Biltmore in the SPRING! For the Biltmore Estate Festival of Flowers. 2010 is the 25th Anniversary of this event. Last time we went to Biltmore, it was in the fall and they were having fall festivals all over Western North Carolina. There were no hotels anywhere. Except this charming location which took us two hours to find. So, I'm on the ball, a month early for the Flower Festival. Checking out locations. Sorry about all the links, but if you have time, there are some lovely pictures in those links. Anyways, I'm planning our trip. I want to go to the Biltmore Festival of Flowers. This year, the dates of the festival are from April 3 - May 16. Since my tulips are just starting to bloom and I live in a totally warmer zone, I'm hoping the peak for the mountains of Western, NC, will be on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, May 4, 5, and 6. It absolutely must be. Since I just made reservations for those days. Tonight, I started making this a reality. As I've told you before, one of the best perks of having a blog is making friends. Ticky, Mar, Lori, Mary, Deb, Zzzadig, I'm talking about you. And my friends share recipes and restaurants and esoteric foodie stuff with me, in addition to being wonderful sounding boards. Bear with me. I'm going somewhere with this. So far this evening, I made my first reservation for Monday, May 3, in Marion, NC. Why Marion? Because Deb recommended the Jalapeno Grill in Marion. I believe she told me the former chef of the Mexican Embassy is the owner there. She also mentioned Bruce's Fab Foods. Thanks, Deb. We'll be checking both out. And checking out of the motel on the morning of Tuesday, May 4. On the afternoon of Tuesday, May 4, we'll be checking into our motel in Asheville, exploring Biltmore, no doubt going to the NC Arboretum, doing mo' stuff on Wednesday, and leaving Thursday, May 6. Here are links to our previous NC Arboretum trip: #1 #2 #3 #4 Now, back to my planning efforts. Last fall, when we went Asheville, the first day of driving we got as far as Morganton. We drove all day and just got to Morganton. The Morganton hotel we stayed at was the only place I had trouble trying to operate a damn shower. Anyways, our first night on this trip is planned for Marion, NC. Last fall, we drove all day to get to Morganton. And Marion is westier than Morganton. So's, this gets me to thinking. I'm thinking we should leave on Sunday, May 2, and split the trip up. Maybe go as far as Asheboro, a lovely town, and stay there the first night. Maybe even go to the zoo. Then travel on to Marion and eat at Jalapenos that afternoon, and maybe Bruce's that evening. Sounds like a plan! Did I mention I'm getting excited? The Hawthornes are leaving on Sunday, May 2. If anyone wants us to check out something en route, please comment or email me at rosiehawthorne@aim.com. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to consider them for our trip. That's an awesome idea. You can live vicariously through me and I can live vicariously through you. Think about it. It's a win-win. Ladies and gentlemen, take out your atlases and road maps and look at our route from the Outer Banks to Asheville, NC., and back again. If you have any ideas for places along our way you'd like us to check out, please let me know. I'll try to work it into our little jaunt. Thanks! ETA: Perhaps we can make a stop in Winston Salem on the way home: Historic Bethabara Park Old Salem Tavern Old Salem Museum and Gardens Moravian Cookies Thanks, Mary, for the suggestions.

3 comments:

Kathy said...

Ooooh, the possibilities. I'm running to the googles now.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Kathy, ye of the maps, find me some lovely places. I'm thinkin' Moravian/Winston Salem. Mary! Help again. I saved your email. Must go find it.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Already getting responses. Thanks, everyone.

"Rosie.....just read the travel blog...you may have to change a plan . Bruces is only open for lunch...he closes at 3...so you may have to do Jalepeno Grill for dinner (which is fine also), there is a little wine place next to Bruces I haven't tried yet called Wine Rules..and on the corner of Main St is a Carolina Chocolatier...they may have some neat candies/truffles haven't been there yet either..

I don't know if I told you about a Mediterranean restaurant my sister and I went to in Asheville called Rezaz...she loved it but me ...eh....but then again I eat meat and she doesn't so she loved the hummus etc. that vegetarians get off on...

Have a great trip... Deb"

and

"Hey Rosie,

For some reason I can never post a reply to your blog, so will reply here. If you can't find the email, I'll be glad to repeat any information you might want. In addition to the Moravian/Old Salem angle, there is also Reynolda House and Gardens. Old Salem has lovely heirloom gardens, many of which are open to the public, and others which are tucked behind privately owned homes. Reynolda House has rotating art exhibits as well as formal gardens and green houses.....also lots of interesting shops. The property was once a self farm owned by the Reynolds tobacco company founders.

www.oldsalem.org

www.reynoldahouse.org

After hearing about your experience with dining out, I hesitate to mention any eating establishments, but will go ahead and give you links to a few of my favorites.

www.theoldfourthstreetfillingstation.com

www.oldsalemtavern.com

www.bibsdowntown.com

Let me know if there's anything else you want to know.

Mary"