Friday, November 15, 2013

I Love Athens Georgia

50 Things I Love About Athens

I have lived in Athens, Georgia for eight years now, making it the longest I have lived anywhere in my entire life.  Usually after a few years of residence, I start itching for a change of scenery.  However, against all odds, I have found myself feeling happily settled here in Athens.  Perhaps I shouldn't have been so surprised, considering there are so many wonderful and unique aspects of this great town.  After reflecting on these qualities, I feel compelled to share some of the reasons I love Athens so much.   

1.  Terrapin, our awesome award-winning brewery

2.  Fish tacos at Cali n Titos, best eaten in their outside patio

3.  Hair salons serve you beer and wine while you get your hair trimmed

4.  State Botanical Gardens of Georgia; the loveliest spot in Athens for a picnic and a stroll

5.  Miss Rebecca & her ukulele at the Athens-Clarke County Library

6.  The tastiest Margaritas, Chips, & Cheese Dip at Taqueria del Sol

7.  The beach and lake at Sandy Creek Park; who needs the ocean?

8.  The Golden Bowl at The Grit

10.  Brunch at Last Resort; the Spinach Feta Grill in particular

11.  The impressive local wildlife population of deer and hawks

12.  Jittery Joe's Coffee; it's what keeps our town moving

13.  North Campus; the best (and prettiest) spot in town to people watch

14.  The whole town's collective comradery on Game Day

15.  Mini cupcakes at Viva Argentina; seriously the most fabulous cupcakes ever

16.  Feeding the ducks at Memorial Park, while getting chased by the geese

17.  Lunch at White Tiger Gourmet: the hidden food gem of Athens

18. The wonderful woman that works in the bakery at Kroger on College Station that always has a cookie and a smile for my daughter

19. UGA's Arch; sit nearby and watch people in gowns (both wedding and graduation) being photographed in front of it, and underclassmen dodging around it for fear of the curse

20.  The Christmas lights downtown during December; it's like walking through a wonderland

21.  Mama's Boy, the hottest breakfast spot in town, for good reason

22.  The youthful energy that comes with living in a town where the average person is 20 years old

23.  The flowering of Five Points in Spring

24.  The ripening of fig trees at the end of summer all over town

25.  Bear Hollow Zoo; see the bears, smile at the alligators, give your regards to Gus the Groundhog for an accurate prediction of the upcoming spring

26.  The Rooftop Bar of the Georgia Theatre; hands down the best view of Athens while drinking a beer

27.   The vast beer menu at Trapeze Pub and the large wooden tables to drink them on

28.  Charcuterie at The Branded Butcher; the most adventurous dinner date in town

29.  The support and celebration of locally owned businesses

30.  The Grilled Pimento Cheese with Pepper Jelly at Em's Kitchen

31.  Our town's love of fitness; our sidewalks are full of people jogging, biking, roller skating, even unicycling

32.  Athens Farmer's Market; a celebration of locally grown produce, meats, and even pasta

33.  The sheer number of growlers, breweries, home brew shops, and beer selection in this town; Athens folks are serious about their craft beer

34.  The Splash Pad at East Athens Community Park; cool fun on sweltering days

35.  The Music Scene; every night is a vast array of bands playing, of all different genres

36.  North Oconee River Greenway, a paved path perfect for biking, running, and strolling through Athens

37.  Eating a unique burger at Clocked; peanut butter and bacon burger anyone?

38.  The nighttime downtown scene; bursting with energy and underage college students armed with fake IDs and short skirts, it's worth witnessing at least once

39.  The daytime downtown scene; shop at fun, eclectic stores; eat lunch sitting outside 

40.  The food diversity in our town and frequent shunning of chains: Vegan? Got it. Vegetarian? Check! Southern BBQ? Yup. Fancy BBQ? Of course.  Great sushi? Definitely.  Authentic Mexican/Italian/Thai? For Sure!

41.  The number of festivals and events happening nearly every weekend; from the Water Festival, Insect Festival, Twilight, AthFest, International Street Festival, Taste of Athens, Classic City Brew Fest, and so many more

42.  Cecilia's Cakes, the best tasting cakes in the world

43.  The great parks, playgrounds, and trails of Athens: Ben Burton, Memorial Park, World of Wonder Playground, Intermural Fields, Birchmore Trail, Sandy Creek Nature Center, and so many more

44.  Downtown during Halloween with the Wild Rumpus Parade and the huge mass of people in costume; Athens folks go all out!

45.  The fact that all our local celebrities are chefs and musicians

46.  No one blinks an eye at seeing somebody with an entire shopping cart of just booze...even if it's 9am on a Tuesday

47.  Five Points Bottle Shop; most knowledgeable booze store in the South

48.  We have not one, but TWO, late night cookie places...that deliver!

49.  Athen's embracement and celebration of individual expression

50.  Our City's pride; from bumper stickers to shirts to blog posts, our citizens are proud of our wonderful city and love to show it!  

Athens, I Love You!

So did I miss anything?  Add your favorite things about Athens in the comments!


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