Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen

Established in 1978, Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen has award-winning biscuits and its drive-thru only location on East Franklin Street makes it a convenient spot for breakfast or lunch. Their biscuit recipe is based on their Grandmother’s recipe and they claim that it is the biscuits that gave her “the stamina to birth 17 children and live to almost 100”.

With biscuits including chicken, BLT, sausage, bacon, cheese, pork, egg, plain and buttered, they have something for everyone. They also have cinnamon roles and sweet tea that is must for every visit.

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My first visit to Sunrise was nothing short of a magical experience. This may sound a bit dramatic, but the chicken biscuit was really unlike any that I have had before. I would highly recommend that everyone experience Sunrise at some point to see why it is a Chapel Hill favorite!

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Sugarland

One of North Carolina’s most famous bakery’s, Sugarland creates amazing cakes, pastries, gelato and even frozen martinis, all using fresh and local ingredients! Located on Franklin Street, as well as on Cameron Street in Raleigh, Sugarland is a convenient spot to get an after class or work treat.

All of their treats are made fresh and from scratch daily. They hand-spin 24 different flavors of gelato every day that cover a variety flavors, so there is sure to be something for everyone! Most of their fruit flavors only include three ingredients: fruit, water and sugar!

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They also brew their own blend of coffee from Oak City Roasters which has hints of chocolate, caramel and nuts. Sugarland is also the only bakery in North Carolina with a full bar! They serve frozen martinis made with their gelato in a wide array of combinations. I tried the strawberry-lemondade martini and it was both delicious and refreshing.

Some other great martinis that they make include Chocolate, Lemon Drop, Passion Fruit, Nutty Irishman, and Blood Orange – but I don’t think you can go wrong with any of the flavors! Sugarland is definitely worth a visit and regardless of what you get, you can be sure that it will not disappoint.

The Old Well: 5 Things You May Not Know

Located in the heart of campus, the Old Well is perhaps one of the most iconic images associated with The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Here are 5 things that you may not know about this beautiful and historic landmark.

  1. The current form of The Old Well was completed in 1897 and modeled after the Temple of Love in the Garden of Versailles.
  2. The Old Well served as the sole source of water for the entire campus for many years.
  3. The Old Well wasn’t always called “The Old Well”, when it was first built it was called “The New Well” because it was the newest well within 50 miles.
  4. Campus tradition dictates that if students drink from The Old Well on the first day of the semester that they will receive straight A’s.
  5. The Old Well is recognized as a National Landmark for Outstanding Architecture by the American Society of Landscape Architects.IMG_0147

Carolina Theatre

The Carolina Theatre, which has been in operation since 1926, is one of the most established arts organizations in downtown Durham, and attracts more than 150,000 people downtown every year. It has a distinct personality and atmosphere that can only be found in Durham and provides a unique experience every time that you go.

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The Carolina Theatre shows movies but also holds concerts and dance performances. Some of the live concerts that they have coming up include: Sam Bush, who is a Grammy award winning multi-instrumentalist, Terence Blanchard who is a top-tier jazz player and composer, and Chris Botti who is the largest selling American instrumental artist!

I have been to movies as well as live performances at the Carolina Theatre and have loved all of them. The atmosphere is authentic and truly an amazing place to see a great show!IMG_0894

Bull City Burger and Brewery

Located in the heart of downtown Durham, Bull City Burger and Brewery is a locally owned and independent restaruant and craft brewery, and has some of the best burgers around.

 

Step 1: Order your custom burger (both NC sourced and pasture raised with no hormones or antibiotics) or hotdog. I like to get gruyere cheese, lettuce, tomato, relish, and aioli on mine. Don’t forget to add “dirty fries” or “duck fries” to your order!

Step 2: Choose a drink. Bull City Brewery has a wide selection of craft beers that they make in house, including: Parrish Street Pale Ale, Starlite Black Lager, 27701 Durham Mild Ale. They also offer Brewery Tours every Saturday at 4:00pm! Five dollars gets you a tour, as well as tasting of all of the beers on tap!

Step 3: Find a seat either indoors at the communal tables, outside on the patio or at the bar.

Step 4: Enjoy your delicious burger with homemade bun.

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Step 5: Don’t leave without a Bull City Burger and Brewery T-Shirt! On Tuesday’s if you wear the shirt to Bull City Burger then you will get free order of duck fries with your burger!

Extreme Bull City Burger Fans can get a tattoo of the BCBB logo for 26% off their BCBB meal for life!

 

The Best Seats on Campus

I am always looking for new and interesting places around UNC’s campus to sit, study and relax. The best spots that I have found are:

  1. The steps of the Morehead-Patterson Bell Tower. Sitting on these steps, especially at night, is a beautiful and serene experience. I love being able to look up at the Carolina Blue tiles seeing a monument and icon that thousands of students before me have been able to enjoy.
  2. The Eve Carson Memorial Butterfly Bench. This is one of my favorite benches on campus because not only is it beautiful and comfortable, but it is also the perfect place to view the entire lower quad, which is gorgeous in the spring time!IMG_0826
  3. The Unsung Founders Memorial. Located in the middle of McCorkle Place in front of the Alumni Building, the Unsung Founders Memorial is in the heart of campus. It honors the men and women of color who helped to build Carolina. The memorial is a table made of black granite that is supported by 300 bronze figurines and surrounded by five stone seats and gives a quiet spot to reflect.IMG_0847
  4. The Millholland Azalea Garden. One of the most beautiful places that I have found to quietly read and relax between classes, the Millholland Azalea Garden is located right beside the UNC School of Media and Journalism. It is made up of Azalea’s and several wooden benches that are tucked away behind the flowers which are in full bloom in the spring.

    These are only a few of the beautiful and serene places on UNC’s campus, which is full of hidden gems just waiting to be found!

 

 

Morehead Planetarium

I may be biased after having worked at the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center  for two years, but I believe that it is one of the best places in Chapel Hill. Morehead Planetarium was built in 1949 and was the first planetarium to be built in the South and the sixth built in the United States. Ten years after it was built, between 1959 and 1975, nearly every astronaut trained at Morehead Planetarium, making Carolina the only University in the world that can claim all astronauts as alumni! Today, Morehead has expanded its mission be a gateway to the stars but also to all the sciences.

Visitors can take advantage of Planetarium shows such as: Carolina Skies, Dynamic Earth, Back to the Moon, Wildest Weather in the Solar System and Take Flight, to name a few. Morehead also hosts after school programs and summer camps which are both enriching and exciting for young students.

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Watching a star show in the Planetarium is an experience like none other and one that I would recommend to everyone, regardless of age and interests. Carolina Skies is one of my favorites, and is also one of the original shows at Morehead. It is an interesting show because it shows the sky as it appears on the particular night above North Carolina, so it is never the same twice! You can find out more about the shows that Morehead has to offer on their website, as well as how you can become a member to give your support.

Five Must See Places in NC

I am constantly amazed at all of the beauty that I see around me in my home state of North Carolina, however I am always looking for more interesting and beautiful places to go. After doing some research I have decided that these are the five must see places in North Carolina and ones that I will certainly be going to visit (or re-visit)!

1.Linville Falls: Located on the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Falls drops 90 feet into the 12-mile long Linville Gorge and is the most photographed waterfall in North Carolina. You can hike to five different viewpoints on various trails, and the park also hosts a campground and picnic area.

2.Sliding Rock: This natural mountain waterfall which is located near Brevard in the Pisgah National Forest is a destination like no other! The 60-foot, flat boulder makes the perfect slide which leads into an eight foot deep pool at the bottom!

3.Craggy Gardens: Just north of Asheville, the Blue Ridge Parkway passes through an area of exposed rock and high peaks which makes a beautiful destination year-round for hiking, picnicking and enjoying the breath taking views.

4.Shackleford Banks: A truly unique and beautiful part of the Cape Lookout National Seashore, where wild horses have roamed free for more than 400 years! You can take a ferry over to the southernmost part of the Outer Banks to see the horses that are the only inhabitants of the banks.

5.Oak Island: Part of North Carolin’s Brunswick Islands with ten miles of pristine beaches, Oak Island is charming and truly magnificent at night when all the houses along the beach turn off their lights to allow for a perfect view of the starry night sky.

Tar Heel State

North Carolina has been my home for 17 years and its rich history, culture and natural beauty never ceases to amaze me. Here are some fun facts about the Tar Heel State that you may not have known!

1.North Carolina has one of the most diverse landscapes in the country.

2.The first known miniature golf course was built in Fayetteville, NC.

3.Cabarrus County, North Carolina, was the site of America’s first gold rush.

4. The first Pepsi was created and served in New Bern, North Carolina in 1898.

5. Jockey’s Ridge is the tallest natural sand dune system in the Eastern United States. Depending on the weather, its height can range from 80 to 100 feet!

6. Mount Mitchell is the tallest mountain in the Eastern United States.

7.The Biltmore Estate in Asheville is the largest private estate in world, it has 250 rooms!

8. Grandfather Mountain is home to the nations highest swinging bridge at one-mile high.

9. The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is the tallest lighthouse in the United States.

10.North Carolina is the largest producer of sweet potatoes in the Nation.

Coker Arboretum

The weather has finally been warm enough to where I actually enjoy walking to class. I am lucky that my walk to classes on campus takes me through the beautiful Coker Arboretum and it has become one of my favorite spots to not only walk through but also to just sit and relax. The Coker Arboretum is managed by the North Carolina Botanical Garden and is one of the Garden’s oldest tracts!

I have gone here countless times when I just want to reflect on my day, practice mindfulness or read a good book. It is peaceful, beautiful and serene and everyone who comes in to the Arboretum appreciates it for these reasons and respects the area. The Arboretum is open from dawn to dusk every day, as well as year-round but is especially beautiful now in the Spring when everything is in bloom.

The Coker Arboretum is a Haven in the Heart of Chapel Hill and one that is well worth finding. On the 100th anniversary of the Arboretum, the curator Dan Stern, wrote a tribute to the first 100 years of the Arboretum, which was founded in 1903. I have been able to enjoy the Arboretum for several years and I know that I will continue to come back to visit and enjoy it long after I have graduated from UNC and hope that others will do the same.