Still haven't made your plans or reservations for New Years? You're in luck! News and Observer's Restaurant Critic, Greg Cox, comes to the rescue with his hot list of local restaurants that most people probably have not thought of for their end of the year celebration. So if you hurry, you might be able to get your name on the books. Click here to view Greg Cox's New Years Eve Hot List.
The Carolina Inn wishes Chapel Hill community members and out-of-town guests a safe and happy new year!
The Carolina Inn Blog
Welcome to Your Carolina Inn. We wanted to give you a place to share your favorite Carolina Inn memory or experience in Chapel Hill. Read, post, share and become part of the community.
"New Years Eve for Procrastinators"
Still haven't made your plans or reservations for New Years? You're in luck! News and Observer's Restaurant Critic, Greg Cox, comes to the rescue with his hot list of local restaurants that most people probably have not thought of for their end of the year celebration. So if you hurry, you might be able to get your name on the books. Click here to view Greg Cox's New Years Eve Hot List.
Two Little Princesses Attending Children's Etiquette Luncheon
My daughter Hayley and her friend from next door Mason went to the Children’s Etiquette Luncheon with Cecilia Grimes at the Carolina Inn yesterday, which is just lovely during the holidays.
I grew up going to breakfast every Sunday morning at the Carolina Inn for many years with my parents and grandparents, which is why I was just as thrilled as the girls to be going to The Carolina Inn.
So the two little princesses got all dressed up and had just a fabulous time. Five course luncheon at a four star hotel for kids 8 to 12 years old to learn from an etiquette expert, so adorable! They felt like it was princess school and raved about it. They wandered all over the Inn looking at their 12 days of Christmas exhibits – even two live turtle doves in the lobby. Then I took them to the grounds at Gimghoul Castle to run around because all princesses have to visit the castle right?
~ Michelle Hillison ~ (12/22/09)
Fun @ Breakfast with Santa
Every year I bring my niece and nephew to the Breakfast with Santa event at the Inn. The food is always delicious, but this year was especially fun with all of the extra entertainment. The face painters were very talented and the magician was lots of fun for the adults, as well as the kids. Who doesn't love the look on a kids face when candy magically appears? This year we were even lucky enough to hear Santa read "The Night Before Christmas"! Thank you Carolina Inn for providing the community with such a great event the whole family can enjoy. Liz
7th Annual Gingerbread House Competition - And the Winners Are...
Every year, amateur and professional bakers from Chapel Hill and surrounding areas showcase their creativity and imagination with their edible masterpieces in the lobby of The Carolina Inn. This year we had 16 contestants enter elaborate and unique gingerbread houses, which will be on display through Sunday, December 27th. For one week, Carolina Inn guests and community members were encouraged to vote for their favorite entry in the adult and youth categories. The gingerbread houses are everyone's favorite part of our Twelve Days of Christmas display and we received an overwhelming amount of votes. Today, we are happy to announce the winners.
First Place : Laura Makay-Gondek and Paige Gondek, Stone Cottage
Second Place: Christina Perry, Pastel Summer Cottage
Runner-Up: Amalia Boliner, Traditional Gingerbread House
First Place: Brendan & Richard Haygood, Church & Parson Brown House
Second Place: Patrick Noonan, Chicken Coup
Runner-Up: Kendall & Kimberly Clark
Thank you to all our contestants for participating in this year's Gingerbread House Competition. We hope to see you again next year!
The Carolina Inn Named Top Holiday Retreat
The Carolina Inn was recently named one of the nation’s Top 8 Holiday Retreats by Grandparents.com. We do in fact "go all out, with Christmas trees everywhere, gingerbread galore, carols, and of course, Santa" during our "Twelve Days of Christmas" annual celebration. To view the full listing of the Top 8 Holiday Retreats click here.
UNC-TV recently aired a story on our Twelve Days of Christmas celebration on North Carolina Weekend. View the video here and see what our month of festivities is all about. The Daily Tar Heel describes it well in the article "The Carolian Inn exhalts Christmas."
If you have not had a chance to visit us this season, it's not too late! Our decorations will be up and holiday events in full swing through January 3rd. For more information and reservations visit our Twelve Days of Christmas page.
We also invite you to share your holiday pictures and videos on this blog. Tell us why you think Chapel Hill and The Carolina Inn are magical places to see during this time of year.
Santa is Ready to Ride!
Santa gets a clean bill of health for his trip around the world to see all boys and girls on Christmas eve. From his heart to his risk of diabetes, hear it from his own UNC physicians in Chapel Hill whether he's in shape and ready to ride. This video was produced by Courtney Potter with UNC Medical News Center Office.
Do you have a video or picture of your visit with Santa? Post it on our blog. We're looking for pictures depicting the holiday season in Chapel Hill.
It's not too late to schedule a visit with Santa before Christmas. Make your reservations today for Breakfast or Brunch with Santa at The Carolina Inn. Click here or call 919.918.2711 for more information and to reserve your seats. Don't forget to bring your wish list!
Tar Heel Wedding
Livi and Jeremy celebrated their wedding with us Carolina style. KA Studios Cinematography captured their special day on film. Click here to view their beautiful wedding video. It truly was a Tar Heel dream wedding. Congratulations Livi and Jeremy!
A large percentage of our brides and grooms are Carolina Alumni. Since The Carolina Inn is owned by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and located on the UNC campus, it is a Carolina girls' dream to walk down the aisle in our beautiful Hill Courtyard and celebrate the beginning of her new life in our elegant Old Well Room.
Carolina brides, tell us your Tar Heel wedding stories right here on our blog. How did you meet your loved one? How did he propose? What was your dream wedding like?
Chapel Hill - Voted Best Place to Raise Kids in NC
"In its current issue, BusinessWeek magazine has ranked the best places to raise kids in each of the 50 states and the winner in North Carolina...is not in the Triad.
Chapel Hill gets the nod, with the magazine touting its affordability, healthy lifestyle, cultural opportunities and highly educated population. Cary and Jacksonville were named runners up.
Last year, Jacksonville was first, with Greenville named runner up. The magazine offered no explanation what had changed in any of the cities named during the past year to change their rankings."
By Laurie Paolicelli - Executive Director of the Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau
"Chapel Hill is home to the University of North Carolina, part of the world-famous Research Triangle. It attracts residents who enjoy a healthy lifestyle, cultural and historic attractions, and an intellectual environment. The area is home to one of the most educated populations in the U.S., as reflected by the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools' three high schools, four middle schools and 10 elementary schools. The district has the state's highest average SAT score. And more than 90% of students go on to college."
To view BusinessWeek's current issue click here.
Composting Chefs at Crossroads Restaurant
As part of The Carolina Inn's commitment to the environment, our kitchen & banquet staff started a composting program this November. During the first 20 days of the program, 7,080 pounds of organic waste was composted. That is equivalent to the weight of a large SUV!
The Orange County Solid Waste Department provides a complimentary waste pick-up service to local businesses. The Carolina Inn was approved for the program after a two-week intensive screening. This screening involved several interviews with our kitchen staff members to insure their strong commitment and adherence to the composting program. For more information about The Carolina Inn's green initiatives please visit our Destination Earth Page.
The Carolina Crossroads Restaurant is dedicated to following principles of sustainability. Check out the Carolina Crossroads Restaurant's Fall Menus, including our upcoming Thanksgiving Brunch Menu on our Dining Page. Executive Chef Jimmy Reale incorporates local ingredients from Chapel Hill and North Carolina in his seasonal dishes.
Why I am The Biggest FOFP Fan!
Mary Norton submitted this great video for our #1 FOFP Fan Contest. See why she's our biggest Fridays on the Front Porch Fan. Deadline for contest entries is today, Friday, November 13th at 5PM. Post your entry on this blog or our facebook wall. The Grand Prize winner will be announced tomorrow afternoon, between 12:30 - 3:30 pm, during our last Tailgate Party on the Front Porch of the season prior to the UNC vs. Miami home football game.
Mary owns "everything that's ever been made with the Front Porch logo" and all the CDs of our FOFP bands. She makes sure she doesn't miss any of our Friday celebrations. Her family has three generations of biggest FOFP fans and everyone knows their table on the porch! Thank you for your entry Mary. The Carolia Inn staff really enjoyed hearing your story!
Searching for a Home in the Tar Heel State
New York Post recently ran an article about the appeal of living in North Carolina. Author, Douglas Rogers, and his wife ran into the wonders of North Carolina while trying to find a place to live where they would both feel at home. During their stay at The Carolina Inn, the couple discovered that Chapel Hill was exactly what they were looking for. From the pianist playing jazz tunes and southern guests enjoying a leisurely afternoon tea service in the lobby to the bluegrass band playing music on the front porch of the Inn, the Rogers were "marveled at the easy community of it all".
UNC Homecoming Weekend in Chapel Hill
Carolina homecoming weekend is an exciting time to be in Chapel Hill. The town is taken over with Carolina blue and Tar Heel spirit, alumni come from all over the nation, and downtown is hopping with Tailgate parties at every street corner, including The Carolina Inn’s very own Tailgate Party on the Front Porch (party starts at 12:30 PM this Saturday, November 7th) with special appearances by Rameses and Carolina Cheerleaders.
For the Carolina Inn staff, it is always a pleasure to work on homecoming weekend to welcome returning UNC alumni and fans who stay with us every football season. It is like welcoming family members into your house. The inn has a distinct energy on home football weekends. Even if you’re not a football fan, that energy is contagious!
Two things in particular will make this year’s homecoming one you won’t want to miss! First, the Duke-Carolina rivalry continues as the Duke Blue Devils will visit Kenan Stadium. It's a rivalry that doesn't get nearly as much attention as these schools’ basketball teams, but it's a strong historic rivalry nonetheless. The Carolina-Duke game this Saturday will be much more intense than in the past because both of the teams’ seasons are kind of on the line - a win on Saturday will keep them moving towards bowl eligibility
Finally, UNC school leaders have decided to bring back an old tradition: homecoming parade! This will be the first homecoming parade at UNC in 16 years. The parade will start at 11 a.m. on Columbia Street (coming out of Swain Parking Lot on campus) towards Franklin Street. For the parade route click here
For those of you who will be participating in the homecoming or football game festivities, tell us all about it right here on our blog. If you're not a big football fan, we still want to hear your experience in Chapel Hill during this exciting time of the year. Go Heels!
Thanks Carolina Inn team!
We traveled to North Carolina for a wedding in Durham and stayed one night at Chapel Hill's Carolina Inn. We had a wonderful time! The staff was very friendly and the Inn was charming with a historic feel. We arrived on Friday afternoon just in time for Fridays On the Front Porch. We loved sitting outside listening to the live bluegrass band while our 2-year-old son ran around and danced to the music. We then enjoyed a delicious dinner at the Crossroads Bar. Even though the bar was crowded with a special event, the staff was friendly and the service was very prompt. The next day was a football game day, and the Inn had a tailgate party with more live music and an appearance from the UNC Cheerleaders to get everyone into the Tar Heels spirit. We're not UNC alumni, but our stay at The Carolina Inn made us wish we were!
-Isaac Gerstenzang, Corporate Director of eCommerce, Destination Hotels & Resorts
A Wonderful Wedding
I held my wedding at the Carolina Inn last May, and I'm still getting comments on how beautiful it was. Not to mention I haven't been able to pick out my pictures, because I begin to get teary-eyed everytime I try. The Carolina Inn made everything about our wedding so perfect and enjoyable, from start to finish, that we couldn't have wished for anything more. When my husband and I became engaged, we knew immediately that the Carolina Inn was THE place.
As former student athletes at UNC, we met early on in college, and felt that the Inn was the perfect setting to really begin our life together. We never once questioned that decision, as the staff made planning so easy and fun that I couldn't imagine doing it any other way! (Even when I was sick with the flu at the food tasting and could only have a few bites!) They literally took care of everything and worked so closely with you to really make the day YOURS. There was nothing to worry about the day of the wedding except enjoying yourself and remembering every moment. Although this is long overdue, I would really like to thank the whole Carolina Inn staff, and especially Julie McCay, for helping us to create the perfect wedding. It is a day that we will never forget and we will always have beautiful, happy memories of our wedding at the Carolina Inn (and pictures if I can ever get them picked out!).
Fabulous Fall Getaways in North Carolina
"Ready for a fabulous fall getaway, but not so ready to invest in a pricey plane ticket or gallon upon gallon of gasoline? Why trek out of the Tar Heel state when it’s got plenty of perfect vacation points to offer within its perimeters?"
Victoria Robinette with Charlotte Style Magazine has got you covered. She's profiled five top North Carolina destinations for those of you craving to getaway for a weekend. Click here to read full article.
Been to Chapel Hill yet? Tell us about your fall getaway in "The Southern Part of Heaven." What were the perks? What were your favorite spots in town? We want to hear all about it!
Thank You for a Successful Program!
I would like to thank the staff at The Carolina Inn for all the support that made our Regional Vice President Meeting so successful. I would like to recognize the Front Desk staff who were always helpful when I stormed out with various requests and the Banquet staff (Vincent Scichilone, Micheal Atif, Simon Mendrano, Fernandez Diaz, Pedro Saldana and all the others working behind the scenes). Also, I'd like to thank our Catering Manager, Alison D'Agostino, for developing the program in such a quick and timely manner and assisting us on-site with all the continuous changes as well as printing needs that kept flowing in. Lastly, thank you to the Executive Chef, Jimmy Reale, for coming up with all the 'healthy' choices that we needed to make our attendees happy! Thank-you again for a very successful program!
Event Management Consultant
MacNelly Painting Conservation - Before & After
This past January 2009, a long-lost painting of The Carolina Inn, by the late artist and renowned three-time Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist and alumnus Jeff MacNelly, was returned to the University. The Macnelly painting was sent to Ruth Cox, a professional painting conservator. After several months of meticulous hard work, Ms. Cox sent remarkable before and after pictures of the Inn's treasure.
"Ms. Cox did a fantastic job! The difference in the sky and the brightness of color in the before and after pictures of the painting are incredible. Ms. Cox skillfully repaired the "divet" in the canvas as she rebuilt the stretcher on the back" said the Inn's Historian, Dr. Kenneth Joel Zogry.
Ruth Cox is one of the best conservators in the country--she was trained in Old Masters and does work for the Metropolitan Museum in New York CIty, the North Carolina Museum of Art, the Ackland Museum in Chapel Hill, and the Nasher Museum in Durham.
Dr. Zogry says that with the new custom-made frame, the painting will look terrific hanging in the lobby. It will really be a centerpiece of the Inn's collection of historic furnishings and art.
Chapel Hill - One of America's Top 10 Coolest College Towns
Once again, Chapel Hill is in the news! This month’s issue of Travel + Leisure lists the 10 Coolest College Towns and Chapel Hill made the top 10 list. Click here to read the full article.
“There are notable distinctions between college towns and other American cities. In the student-centric spots, bicycles seem to outnumber cars. Affordable restaurants serve up authentic cuisines from all around the world. The streets are densely packed with businesses, making for a highly pedestrian-friendly environment. Nature is usually accentuated: the shimmering Lake Champlain, back dropped by a saw tooth silhouette of peaks, forms the western edge of Burlington. Madison, WI, is situated on an isthmus between two lakes that draw hordes of hikers and bikers. Boulder, CO, is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream.
And don’t forget the bars. Each of these locales offers plenty of opportunities for imbibing, many of them ideal for both people-watching and soaking in the scenery. It’s hard to beat sunset cocktails at Austin’s Oasis, where tiered decks jut from a 450-foot-high cliff over Lake Travis.
These attractions are mainly geared toward the students, naturally, but they can be readily enjoyed by those with no homework assignments or college connections. After all, few sports experiences can top the rafter-shaking raucousness in Chapel Hill, NC, during a Tar Heels basketball game. Many schools benefit from world-class art collections in glittering facilities designed by marquee architects; Chapel Hill’s Ackland Art Museum, featuring a wing by Polshek Partnership, tempts visitors with Warhols, Titians, and Dalís in a way that many university-less cities cannot.”
From September 2009 By C. J. Hughes Travel & Leisure
Our music enjoyment!
After we moved to Durham 2 years ago, I was searching for bluegrass music in the area. "Fridays on the Front Porch" was listed and we ventured to sample. We love it. The music isn't always bluegrass but we enjoy all of it. We are there almost every week. The buffet is also nice and I look forward to taking my daughter to a tea in the parlor. She lives in Illinois. Mike and I are true fans. We love the music and the atmosphere which is very relaxing. We also enjoy watching the dancers. The Carolina Inn is the best we have found for a southern atmosphere.
Stepping back in time
I grew up in Durham and spent four of the best years of my life in Chapel Hill, but unfortunately both of those took place a long time ago. I moved out of the state after I graduated from UNC in 1990, and have only made it back on occasion, which is why my inaugural stay at the Carolina Inn in August 2009 was so special. I was there for a high school reunion taking place on Franklin Street, but it seemed to me more like a trip back in time to my college days. That Sunday morning, waking up in my immaculate third-floor Inn room that majestically overlooked the corner of Columbia Street and Cameron Avenue, I decided to do something I seriously doubt I ever did during college; I took a walk around Franklin Street before 10 AM. It was a quiet, beautiful morning as the campus slowly awakened, and the sights, sounds ... even smells ... I experienced during my hour-long stroll around campus brought back so many fond memories. So thank you, Carolina Inn, not only for providing some of the most comfortable accommodations I've ever enjoyed, but for allowing me to truly step back in time. In fact, I believe my fellow Tar Heel alum Thomas Wolfe may have been mistaken... You really can go home again!
Prize-Worthy Evening at The Carolina Crossroads Restaurant
Roxann Larotonda from Raleigh was the lucky winner of a Gift Certificate for Dinner for Two at the Carolina Crossroads Restaurant after submitting her secret for the Signature Secret page featured in NC Signature Magazine by Our State Magazine. She shares her experience of what it's like to be a winner.
I can count on one hand the number of times I've won anything in my lifetime - and nothing more exciting than the centerpiece at a luncheon I had attended. But winning a meal at Crossroads Restaurant at The Carolina Inn for my Signature Secret submission was the best, by far.
My husband and I planned our trip to Chapel Hill during an especially hectic time in our lives. Our daughter was getting married in a month, and a family member was seriously ill. Each day, our emotions ranged from being happy to feeling sad, and dinner at Crossroads Restaurant was the respite we needed.
The Carolina Inn is located in the heart of the University of North Carolina campus, and, because it was mid-October, the streets bustled with students. We strolled into the historic Carolina Inn and stopped to admire several antique furnishings before heading to the bar. We sat in comfortable leather chairs as we sipped our drinks in the glow of the fireplace. If not for our dinner reservations, we would have stayed in that cozy room for a while longer. We then proceeded to Crossroads, a charming restaurant with pristine white tablecloths and blue-and-white-fabric-covered cushions on the chairs.
Executive Chef Jimmy Reale changes the menu at Crossroads seasonally. We made our choices from an autumn menu that included items like butternut squash risotto, broccoli rabe, and sweet potato spoon bread.
We began with the she-crab soup and, while my husband enjoyed a mixed green salad, I couldn't resist trying the port wine poached pear with arugula, spiced walnuts, goat cheese, and cranberry vinaigrette. With our after-dinner coffee, we shared a tiramisu, served in a crystal goblet that enhanced the surprising lightness of the dessert. Everything was delicious.
We had made our reservations for an evening during the week and were rewarded with a quiet, relaxing dinner in a cozy yet elegant atmosphere. The food was top-notch, and the service impeccable. We left Chapel Hill that Tuesday night, relaxed and ready for what tomorrow might bring our way.
Thank you, North Carolina Signature, for this memorable break from reality.
Roxann Larotonda, Raleigh. March/April Issue 2009.
Fridays on the Front Porch Fan Contest
Are you a Carolina Inn Fridays on the Front Porch Fan? Prove it! Tell us why you love FOFP and you could win a two month FOFP season package for you and four friends valued at over $1,000. Click "Read more..." for more information.
How To Post Your Entry
All you have to do to enter is tell us through photo, video, essay, haiku, etc. why YOU are #1 Fan of Fridays on the Front Porch. Post your stuff on this blog and use the title: "#1 FOFP FAN - Your Name".
What's the Grand Prize?
The Carolina Inn is awarding the #1 FOFP FAN:
- 2 months (8 Fridays) of FOFP buffet and drink tickets for you and four guest $1,040 value). Each Friday, you will receive: 10 drink tickets and 5 southern picnic buffet tickets
- Reserved, front row table seating for 5 (priceless!)
- Valet parking for 1 car for all 8 Fridays ($80 value)
- 5 FOFP t-shirts ($100 value)
How We Will Select the Lucky Winner
Our executive team will select the winner based on the creativity, originality and quality of the entry.
When Is The Deadline?
Deadline for entry is Monday, November 2, 2009 at 12PM.
The grand prize winner will be officially announced November 7, 2009 at the Tailgate Party on the Front Porch 3 hours prior to the UNC vs. Duke homecoming game.
Good luck Everyone, and Happy Uploading!
- To enter, users need to be Facebook FANS of The Carolina Inn.
- If you are a Carolina Inn employee, you may not participate in this competition.
- Winner will be contacted via a facebook message within 7 days after the competition end-date.
- Should the winner not respond to their Facebook communication within 3 days, the prize will be forfeited and given to the next runner-up.
- Winners should allow 30 days for prize delivery after winner announcement.
- FOFP tickets must be used by November 30, 2010.
- Prize is valid for 1 year! Tickets may be used for FOFP or Tailgate Party on the Front Porch.
- The Carolina Inn shall have the right to terminate the competition immediately and without notice. In the event of such termination, all participants agree to waive any rights that they may have in terms of this promotion and acknowledge that they will have no recourse against The Carolina Inn.
- Submissions must not contain material which is violent, pornographic or otherwise obscene, illegal or racially or otherwise morally offensive.
Entering this competition indicates acceptance of all the above rules.
For more information on our special events click here
View our FOFP 2009 Season Band Line-Up
Travel Discounts for the College Bound by MSNBC
Are you one of the 19 million students going to college this fall? Or are you a parent footing the high tuition bill? With education costs rising, we know you'll be spending a lot of cash this year, leaving little for traveling between home and campus. Today you're in luck! MSNBC's travel writer, Harriet Baskas has done some homework for you. View her article about travel deals for the college bound, which highlights The Carolina Inn's new 1924 Club exclusively for UNC parents. For more information about 1924 Club membership and benefits click here.
Chapel Hill Starts Football-Centric Economic Campaign - The Carolina Inn
The Carolina Inn's Tailgate Party on the Front Porch was featured on WRAL's coverage of UNC's first football weekend celebration. Click here to read the story on the WRAL site and watch the full video. Don't forget to capture your own experience at our FOFP or Tailgate Party on the Front Porch and post on our blog to be entered in our new #1 FOFP Fan contest. Click here to find more information about our contest.
Business organizers in Chapel Hill have started a campaign to bolster the community with economic activity and Tar Heel spirit on game-day weekends.
The goal of “Touch Downtown Chapel Hill” is to encourage football fans – locals and visitors – to come early and stay late after the games to enjoy local restaurants, specialty stores and other cultural attractions.
According to a recent economic impact study conducted by Dr. Nathan Tomasini of the VCU Center for Sports Leadership, the 2008 North Carolina-Notre Dame football game generated $6.4 million for the Chapel Hill and Orange County economies plus $325,000 in local and state tax revenue.
Chapel Hill hopes football will boost economy
With seven home games on the schedule for this year, the total economic impact could be more than $40 million and more than $2 million in local and state tax revenue, according to officials.
Managers said the campaign helped encourage people to stop by their business downtown on Saturday for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s season opener against The Citadel.
As part of the effort, local merchants and restaurants were encouraged to have employees where clothing with UNC logos and put UNC and Citadel flags in front of their businesses.
For the second year, the Carolina Inn hosted a tailgate party on its front porch.
“UNC football…it’s huge,” said Allal Kartaoui, assistant food beverage director for the Carolina Inn.
For the entire Labor Day weekend, managers at Carolina Inn say they're fully booked.
Peggy Fitzgerald traveled from Florida to join the party in Chapel Hill. Fitzgerald said there is a family rivalry – her cousin, Stokes Fishburne, is a graduate of Citadel.
“They rag on me all the time. I’m used to it,” Fishburne said.
Managers at restaurant and bar Top of the Hill hope the city’s marketing campaign attracts people days before the big games.
While the restaurant and bar has long played host to the game day crowd, manager Steven Torchio said they have felt the effects of the economy.
“Nobody is immune. I don’t think there’s any business or any place in this town,” Torchio said.
Reporter: Beau Minnick
Photographer: Geof Levine
Web Editor: Kathy Hanrahan
The Carolina Inn Named "Best of the South 2009" for Meetings
Chapel Hill's historic Carolina Inn made headlines this week when it was named by Meetings South Magazine as "Best of the South 2009" among the 50 hotels and resorts recognized in the trade publication's September issue. Only four other properties in North Carolina received this recognition. Click here to view the article by Carolina Newsire. Click here to read Carolina Business Connection's coverage.
Care Package for Your Tar Heel
Now that your children are off to college, what can you do to send them your love? The News and Observer staff writer, Andrea Weigl, suggests sending a care package with healthy treats. Her article "Sweet Gesture No Sugar Added" offers great tips on putting together the perfect care package for your child. Click here to view full article.
Live Bluegrass Music at The Carolina Inn - Ya'll Ought to Stop By
An article by Lucie Shelly in the Daily Tar Heel nicely highlights our popular front porch events: Fridays on the Front Porch and our new Tailgate Party on the Front Porch. Click "Read More" to view the full article.
Fellow FOFP fans make sure to check out our #1 FOFP Fan Contest on our facebook page. Post your entry by November 2nd and you'll get a chance to win a 2 month FOFP package for you and four friends valued at over $1,000.
View our FOFP and Tailgate Party band line-up on our event calendar page.
Bluegrass Comes to Carolina Inn on Fridays
by Lucie Shelly
Friday, September 4, 2009
When Fridays on the Front Porch began at the Carolina Inn in 2003, the free event quickly garnered popularity among bluegrass enthusiasts and those looking for outdoor summer music.
This season looks to be no exception, as the crowd is bigger than ever, said Laurence Bézy, marketing manager for the Carolina Inn.
With the advent of the 2009 football season, organizers have decided to continue Tailgate Party on the Front Porch, an event they began last year.
The tailgate program also features live music just as Fridays on the Front Porch does. But it takes place on home game days and begins three hours prior to each football game.
Both events offer food and beverages for purchase from the bar.
“If you like Fridays on the Front Porch, you will definitely like it,” Bezy said of the tailgate series.
The performances this season will feature mostly recognizable local bands, such as Big Fat Gap and the Gravy Boys.
The organizers also are looking to introduce a few new groups.
“Most of the bands are local, but we have two new bands from the Asheville area,” Bézy said.
But for regulars of the event who have picked their favorites, don’t fear: they will return.
“The ones that come back every year are the local bands, and they will be back again for this season,” she said.
Local favorites the Gravy Boys will perform at Saturday’s tailgate.
The band has been a staple at the Carolina Inn for the past two years.
Steve Celestini, the lead vocalist, said the series is one of the group’s absolute favorite events to play.
“From the three-year-olds kickin’ up dirt and dancing to college kids and local folks with a few years on them — it’s a great atmosphere,” he said.
Celestini described the music of the Gravy Boys as “acoustic Americana.”
With bluegrass infusions, twangs of country and covers of musicians such as Johnny Cash and Hank Williams, the Gravy Boys cater to a variety of tastes.
“We take a lot of pride in our crowd rapport and engaging in what the fans call shenanigans,” he said.
Today’s show will feature event-regulars Big Fat Gap, who play strictly Carolina bluegrass.
Lead singer Miles Andrews said that in recent years the concerts have become packed events.
“It’s such a great venue with a large lawn where you can sit up close for the music or hang around the back for socializing and soak it in,” he said.
If you go:
Fridays on the Front Porch: 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Fridays through Oct. 9.
Tailgate Party on the Front Porch: Saturdays of home football games, 3 hours before kickoff.
Click here for a link to the article.
Life on the Hill
Find out "why Chapel Hill, North Carolina, may be the South's most civilized town (except when it comes to basketball)," in this article published by Garden and Gun. Author, Nic Brown explains that he's "like the fool who can’t rid his head of memories of the girl he adored in eighth grade" but instead he cannot let go of his hometown, Chapel Hill. Click here to read full article.
Last summer, our daughter was married in Chapel Hill. The rehearsal dinner and "wedding eve celebration" which followed were held in the beautiful Hill Ballroom. We could not have asked for a more magnificent evening.
The entire staff was efficient, accommodating and courteous; and working with Julie McCay, Social Catering Manager, was an absolute joy! The wedding guests who stayed at the Inn were extremely complimentary of the facility and all of the amenities and continue to comment on the delightful staff. Many of our guests traveled from Spain for the wedding festivities and for most it was their first trip to the United States. They loved their time in Chapel Hill and at the Inn and had rave reviews for the friendly, helpful staff who were great ambassadors for our community and country. We sincerely appreciate the true professionalism of Julie McCay and the entire staff as well as the many kindnesses they extended to all of us. We also had the opportunity this spring to host a dinner in the Piedmont Room honoring our son and his fiancee and her family. What a pleasure it was to work with Lauren Joyner, Restaurant Coordinator! As before, the staff at the Inn orchestrated everything to perfection, and we all had a marvelous evening.
Triangle Chapter of NACE Celebrates Chapter of the Year Award
Angela Ray of The Herald Sun, writes about the recent August NACE gathering at The Carolina Inn. It was a special and happy occasion for The Triangle Chapter of NACE as they recently won the Chapter of the Year Award. The Carolina Inn's four Catering Managers and Catering Director, Terri Nier, are proud members of this professional organization.
The Triangle Chapter of the National Association of Catering Executives, NACE, held its monthly gathering at the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill Tuesday. This was a particularly special occasion as the Triangle chapter members recently returned from the national meeting of the organization, bringing home the Chapter of the Year Award.
NACE is the oldest and largest professional organization that encompasses all aspects of the catering industry. The NACE gathering on Tuesday was centered in the Old Wing of the hotel.
"Summertime at the Carolina Inn" was made up of four rooms styled and presented by members of the organization. One room featured a seven-layer wedding cake at its center anchored by decorations in each corner. The second room was designed more like a social gathering and featured a popcorn maker, a pool table and Dave Brown of Coastal Cigars making fresh cigars on the spot.
The main ballroom, where the meeting was held, prominently displayed colorful daybeds, a stage, two food stations and two bars. The final room, called the Ice Room, was put together by Sugarland bakery, and featured a gelato bar and a martini bar. Doc and Katrina Ryan, owners of Sugarland, served up samples of the chilled desserts.
The event was not all about food and style, though. Amy Greene, the special events coordinator for Spice Street Restaurant and active NACE member, was busy selling raffle tickets to benefit the organization's fundraising efforts. Suzanne Pesta stopped by the table to support the effort.
Each year, the Triangle chapter sponsors a community service fundraiser to benefit the Interfaith Food Shuttle's Backpack Buddies. Proceeds from the raffle, which included two tickets to see David Copperfield at the Durham Performing Arts Center, and a hot air balloon ride for two, will benefit the Backpack Buddies program. The drawing will be held next month.
At the beginning of the program, Triangle NACE President Mark Day addressed the crowd briefly before other members of the group made remarks. The program was short and then it was on to the music, provided by Mel Melton and the Wicked Mojos.
Brooke Fork and Alli Eidenmiller took in the music and fun together. Eidenmiller, who owns Sweet Memories Bakery, came to the event as a guest. Fork, on the other hand, is a new member of the organization, joining just two weeks earlier. Fork spoke highly of the group, stating it was a great organization.
Next up for the Triangle Chapter of NACE is its annual Top of the Table Design Challenge, which will be held Sept. 22 at Bay 7 on the campus of the American Tobacco Historic District.
The perfect Carolina wedding!
My husband and I met on UNC's south campus, had our first date at a restaurant on Franklin Street, and graduated at Kenan Stadium. There was no more perfect a place to marry than at The Carolina Inn on a warm July evening. The ceremony and reception were more beautiful than I could have imagined and I will never forget walking to the Old Well with my new husband. We had a great experience with all of the staff at The Carolina Inn which added to the perfect weekend in Chapel Hill!
Wonderful Wedding Reception
When my wife and I were planning our reception at the Carolina Inn, we knew that the location would be beautiful, the staff would be diligent, and the food would be delicious. But we couldn't have been prepared for just how well everything went off. The planner we worked with was extraordinarily professional and responsive, aiding us in carrying out all of our wedding day ambitions. The staff was very helpful during the reception; they accommodated every need, whether it was planned or came up on the spot. We couldn't have imagined a better-run reception. Thanks!
The Best Night of Our Lives
When we decided to tie the knot in Chapel Hill, The Carolina Inn was an easy choice. Our guests could stay at the Inn and it was a beautiful setting for both the wedding ceremony and reception. We had the ceremony (on a cold February evening) in the Bryan Courtyard, where we were able to stay warm with a tent, heaters, and flowers. It was the perfect sized space for about 120 guests and the ceremony was incredibly beautiful and intimate. The reception followed in the Old Well Ballroom -- where we watched a slide show, danced to a DJ, cut the cake, sang karaoke, and overall had the best night of our lives!
A Perfect Place for Our Wedding Day!
I could not have asked for a more perfect place to hold such a special event in my life. Being a two times Tarheel graduate, the Carolina Inn represents all of the wonderful aspects Chapel Hill has to offer. The planning and event staff were so wonderful to work with. I received so many compliments regarding the wonderful food and atmosphere from many out of town guests. Our day could not have been more perfect and I will always cherish that moment forever.
A Tar Heel Wedding
Check out this video by KA Studios cinematography on Livi and Jeremy's beautiful wedding day at The Carolina Inn. Livi recounts Jeremy's romantic and creative marriage proposal, one of the best I've heard.
To all our Carolina brides out there: Do you have an amazing or memorable wedding proposal story? Tell us how you got engaged! Post your story, pictures, or videos right here on our blog. We're looking for the best proposals of the year.
Ever wonder what a Chef cooks at home?
The Carolina Inn has been a Chapel Hill landmark for more than eight decades. Slightly newer to the scene is Jimmy Reale, who has been offering unique blends of progressive American cuisine for a little more than two years as its executive chef. Reale (pronounced Ree-al-ee) is a bit of a unique blend himself, with a combination of Lebanese and Italian heritage that made for good cuisine. "My mother was always making huge meals for our family, whether it was falafel and tabouli or spaghetti and meatballs, and we tasted a lot of different foods in our house," Reale says. "I think it really infl uenced how I like to experiment with flavors now."
Read more about Jimmy Reale in Chapel Hill Magazine's article by Zeke Smith in the July/August Issue.
Crossroads Bar does! I am very excited to announce the debut of Sushi Wednesdays starting this August 19th from 5 to 9 PM. Celebrate the middle of the work week in our cozy bar and try out my new sushi creations with a southern flair. Let me know what you think of The Carolina Inn Roll with Southern Shrimp, Fried Green Tomatoes and Spicy Buttermilk Dipping Sauce and the Down South Wontons with Shredded Pork. I promise you won't be disappointed.
Click here to view our sushi menu.
See you on Wednesday,
The best experience I have ever had at a hotel!!!
The staff was super friendly and the maid service very attentive. I very muched enjoyed the Friday night live bands and southern dinner. The bartenders were also very friendly and attentive. One by the name of Phillip knew I was from up north and struck a very pleasant conversation and knew right off the bat the drinks I wanted him to make. Top notch! Thank you, we will be back many times to come!!!
Tripadvisor Review - July 20, 2009
A Light on The Hill
Missy Julian Fox, Director of UNC's Visitor Center, offers a "Chapel Hill 101" itinerary in the most recent July 2009 issue of Southern Neighbor. She highlights the treats and treasures that Chapel Hill has to offer both our community and its out of town visitors. So fellow Tar Heels, if you can't get away for vacation this summer, it's ok there is lots to do in your own backyard. Click here to view the July 2009 issue and view Missy's article on page 16.
Things to Do in Chapel Hill This Summer
There is more to Chapel Hill than just the campus of The University of North Carolina. When planning a summer visit to this charming southern town, there is an endless list of activities to choose from for people of all ages. Below are just a couple of my suggestions - great for families with children. For more information on things to do in the area we suggest visiting The Town of Chapel Hill's official website or the Chapel Hill Orange County Visitor Bureau's website.
Sit Back, Relax and Enjoy an Outdoor Concert or Movie
Fridays on the Front Porch at The Carolina Inn. Every Friday from 5-8 PM through October 16, 2009 with live bluegrass music, great food and drink specials. On the porch overlooking the inn's tree-shaded north lawn. No cover charge or reservations required. View band schedule. View Southern Picnic Buffet Menu.
"Locally Grown" sponsored by The Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership and the Town of Chapel Hill. A free nine-week series of live concerts and outdoor movies featuring local entertainers and family-friendly activities in downtown Chapel Hill. Presented every Thursday on the Wallace Plaza, an urban park atop the Wallace Parking Deck at 150 East Rosemary Street. Click here for more info.
300 East Main Summer Concert Series hosted by Cats Cradle, The ArtsCenter and Musical Roots Productions. Every 4th Thursday, June through September in the parking lot at 300 East Main Street, Carrboro. Gates open at 4:30. All ages are welcome. Admission is free. Vendors include Q Shack, Amante Gourmet Pizza and Carolina Brewery. Click here for more information.
Cool Off at One of Our Acquatic Centers
With the warm weather finally here, visit one of the best kept secrets of Chapel Hill the outdoor & A.D. Clark pool at the Hargraves Center. Chapel Hill also has two public indoor pools the recently renovated (2007) Community Center pool, or jump in at the bran new Homestead Aquatic Center for swimming and aquatic fun.
View the local pool schedules for lap, open swim, and senior swim times. View General Pool Information
Pack a Picnic and Your Hiking Shoes and Explore North Carolina's Natural Beauty
Jordan Lake A 13,900-acre reservoir with 150 miles of shoreline and off U.S. 64, west of Apex. Jordan Lake State Park offers nine recreation areas with facilities for hiking, fishing, boating, swimming, sailing, picnicking, and camping. Order a lunch to go at the Carolina Crossroads Restaurant, rent a boat from Crosswinds Marina and spend a day at the lake!
Eno River State Park Minutes from Durham, Hillsborough, and Chapel Hill the Eno River State Park , with more than 3,900 acres of natural resources, offers secluded wilderness trails along the clear river, passing historic mill sites and fords used by early settlers. The River runs from northwest Orange County into Durham County for 33 miles where it joins the Flat River. This is a great place for canoeing, hiking, fishing, and picknicking.
Too Hot for the Outdoors? Discover our Unique Local Museums
Kidzu Museum on Franklin Street, just one block away from The Carolina Inn. A hands-on museum in the heart of downtown Chapel Hill where children 0-8 years old and the adults in their lives can safely discover, pretend, and play to their heart's content. Open Tuesday-Saturday 10 am - 5 pm and Sunday 1-5 pm. View Kidzu's July 2009 Special Event Calendar.
Morehead Planetarium and Science Center on UNC campus, just steps away from The Carolina Inn. Morehead offers dazzling multimedia star shows, interactive exhibits featuring current science research and an array of classes, lectures, and other special events year-round.
Carolina Basketball Museum. This new 8,000-sq.ft. state-of-the-art museum honors the rich tradition of Carolina Basketball. The museum features a Game Day theme where visitors enter a theater for pre-game build-up, then into the main museum space where they can visit interactive displays and view memorabilia from Carolina's storied program on the UNC court. Open Tue-Fri 10am-4pm, Sat 9 am - 1 pm.
Tour & Drive Through Chapel Hill, Durham and Surroundings with a Local Connoisseur
Tours n Tales. Never let the truth get in the way of a good story. Charlie Delmar came to Chapel Hill in 1968, back when everyone knew one another and he learned his many colorful tales from the best teachers available: professors at all the local universities and colleges. See more, do more and learn more about our beautiful area than you could possibly do on your own. Private and mixed tours available in Chapel Hill and Durham. Call 919.656.2595 or e-mail email@example.com for reservations.
Looking for a Refreshing Afternoon Snack? I Scream for Ice Cream!
Maple View Farm - a family dairy farm located in Orange County, North Carolina, just northwest of Chapel Hill. The farm has a very popular ice cream store within sight of the farm at the intersection of Dairyland and Rocky Ridge roads. With plenty of flavors to choose from, enjoy your ice cream cone one their front porch rocking chairs with a great view of the rolling countryside. Open 12- 10PM Sunday - Saturday
Loco Pops - Serving gourmet frozen pops with a variety of great flavors daily from 12 - 9 PM. 2 locations in Chapel Hill ? 128 E. Franklin St. and 231 South Elliott Road. A refreshing mid-day snack.
Sugarland - Serving artisan gelato as well as cupcakes and desserts. In the heart of downtown Franklin Street. Open daily from 9 am - Midnight.
What is your favorite thing to do in Chapel Hill in the summer? We want to know! - add to our list.
We stayed for two nights while attending new student orientation at UNC - the room was perfect, staff friendly and helpful. The breakfast was wonderful - fresh fruit, yummy oatmeal, as well as eggs, breakfasts meats, etc. This has quickly become my favorite hotel. June 2009 TripAdvisor Review
"36 Hours in Research Triangle, NC"
Click here to read a recent article featured in the travel section of The New York Times on Sunday, June 14th. J.J. Goode highlights fun cultural things to do and a variety of dining and lodging options in the Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill area, including a highlight on The Carolina Inn. Goode refers to RTP as "a place marked by more than college bars and hoops fans." Visitors aren't just bound to our universities.
Bolshoi Ballet Performs in Chapel Hill
The Bolshoi Ballet, one of the worlds' most renowned dance companies, is in town performing Swan Lake and Don Quixote with the NC Symphony June 10th-14th at Memorial Hall. This ballet company rarely tours: in the past two years they've appeared only in London, Paris and Amsterdam and their tour this summer only includes three stops in the United States: Memorial Hall in Chapel Hill, NC, the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and UC Berkeley in California.
Memorial Hall is only steps away from the Carolina Inn and has hosted world-class performers since its opening in 1931. Emil Kang, Executive Director of the Arts, explains what it means to Carolina to have the Bolshoi Ballet performing in Chapel Hill for the first time. It is evident that Chapel Hill is part of a vibrant, cultural area and has become a leading place in the state to showcase international and national cultural events.
Dessert Recipe from the Garden
Seasonal fresh berries from the garden provide the perfect flavors for a summer dessert. I'd like to share one of my favorite summer recipes, a refreshingly cool and sweet dessert, which was recently featured in Summer 2009 Issue of the Triangle Gardener.
Coeur a la Crème with Chambord "Spiked" Berries
12 oz. cream cheese
¾ c. confectioner's sugar
4 oz. cottage cheese
Zest of 1 lemon
2/3 c. whipping cream - whip until stiff peaks
Cream cream cheese and sugar in mixer until smooth. Add cottage cheese and lemon zest. Fold in whipped cream until all ingredients are incorporated.
Line molds* with cheesecloth. Spoon mixture into molds and fold top of cheesecloth over mold. Let sit overnight. This will let any excess moisture drain out. Take out of mold and remove cheesecloth. Serve with berries.
Makes 4-6 servings. * Coeur a la crème molds can be found at reputable kitchen stores.
Chambord "Spiked" Berries
½ pt. strawberries
½ pt. blueberries
½ pt. blackberries
½ c. sugar
2Tbls. Chambord liqueur
Toss together all ingredients. Let sit 30 minutes. Serve over Coeur a la crème.
The Carolina Inn always delivers more than is expected!
I want to take a moment to thank you for helping us make our annual employee business meeting a resounding success. Not only did the Carolina Inn graciously host our out-of-town employees, but the All-Employee Dinner on Thursday night was the crown event of the two-day meeting. I have worked with you on a number of events over the years, and the Carolina Inn team has consistently proven their dependability, always delivering more than was expected.
Campbell employees, who travel in for the meeting, look forward to their stay at the Carolina Inn. As seasoned business travelers, most of these people stay at countless hotels over the course of a year. Even among these "road-warriors," the Carolina Inn is recognized as being special. After a day of intense business meetings, the quiet ambiance, elegant decor, and many amenities of the Inn help people shift quickly into a relaxed state of mind, setting the stage for the equally important social portion of the meeting.
The dinner itself was a great success. Allison and the restaurant team excelled at making the planning stage of the dinner easy. The food and wine recommendations were exactly as expected, the dining room looked beautiful, and the dinner service was excellent. Your team did all the work, and I got the compliments!
With the increased need to justify the costs associated with meetings, I can say with conviction that our leadership team made a prudent business decision by allowing us to partner with the Carolina Inn for this meeting. We have high performance standards for our employees, and they consistently deliver for us. Providinq them with a great meal in a memorable environment helps us demonstrate our respect and appreciation for all they do. The Carolina Inn team supports our efforts to provide this reward.
Thank you again for your assistance in delivering another great Campbell event. We look forward to working with you again in the near future.
Regards, Jana Fransen
Senior Manager, Human Resources
Supporting Local Farmers
I've always felt strongly about the use of local organic and sustainable products and we're lucky to be surrounded by a wide variety of dedicated local farmers. I fully support buying local not just because it's the right thing to do but because it tastes better.
If anyone wants to experience the strong connection between Orange County's local cooks and farmers first hand, I strongly recommend attending Farm to Fork 2009 Picnic, coming up this June 14.
It will be Carolina Crossroads Restaurant's second time participating in this annual celebration. Some of the regions' best cooks, including our very own Chef de Cuisine, Jeremy Blankenship, and Sous Chef, Beth Littlejohn, and Piedmont farmers will be paired together to prepare a picnic-style feast sourced almost entirely from the partner's farm.
This all in support of growing new farms and farmers in North Carolina. We hope to see you there!
For more information on Farm to Fork Picnic visit http://www.farmtoforknc.com/
New Years Eve - The Perfect Date for a Wedding at The Inn
What about a New Years wedding to ring in the upcoming year? Our Catering Director, Terri Nier, says December 31st is one of our most popular dates for wedding receptions. The possibilities are endless and it makes this special day even more memorable.
Linda Trevor and Tony Gilliam's wedding held last December 2008 was recently featured in the Summer/Fall 2009 issue of Southern Bride and Groom.
Since their first date had been on a New Year's Eve, Linda Trevor and Tony Gilliam decided that December 31st would be the perfect date for their wedding. The couple chose The Carolina Inn as the ideal venue for their elegant celebration. Linda, a local realtor, and Tony, a UNC radio announcer, both busy professionals who wanted help with wedding details, contacted Adams and Events for assistance.
The couple decided on a themed event entirely in black and white, from the décor and florals to the wedding party and guests' attire. The cool winter evening was warmed by an abundance of candles inside and outside HillSong Church, and the ceremony was one of faith, fellowship and love, with many friends and family members participating. The reception was held in the Old Well wing of The Carolina Inn, where Linda and Tony's 250 guests were invited to enjoy heavy hors d'oeuvres, mingle about in several rooms, and even to participate in karaoke. Noisemakers, hats and feather boas were distributed to all to help ring in the New Year, following a stroke-of-midnight toast by the Groom. As the enchanted evening drew to a close, guests showered Linda and Tony with black and white feathers. The couple hosted a hearty Carolina Inn brunch on New Year's Day before departing on their honeymoon.
Benefits of Booking State College Hotels and Conference Centers - Plan Your Meetings, April 28, 2009
To all meeting and conference planners out there - "If you think you can't afford meetings in this economy, maybe you should give it that old college try. When meeting planners take their meetings and events on campus, they usually get more than they pay for."
On July 25, 2008 ,I celebrated my 50th Birthday at the Carolina Inn with my family and a friend who moved to the area. I had not seen this friend for a few years. It was great getting back together with her and her daughters. What better place to spend it having dinner at your wonderful restaurant. It was also during my daughter's orientation weekend at UNC. We plan on visitng Carolina frequently and hope we will be able to secure reservations for our daughter's graduation from UNC in 2012.
Delightful in every way
My wife and I brought our 4 young children for a mid-week getaway to Chapel Hill earlier this month. The staff, especially in the restaurant, could not have been more friendly or inviting. The breakfast buffet was fantastic and our dinner equally so. Thank you for making our visit a memorable one. TD
See You At the Front Porch This Friday
80 degree weather is finally here and so is Fridays on the Front Porch! The first event of the season is always the most fun - spring and warmer weather have arrived and everyone is eager to enjoy the outdoors and relax after a long work-week. The crowd-pleasing and my favorite, Big Fat Gap will kick off our FOFP 2009 Season, With the end of school year come all the concerts, bbq's and moat parties at our neighboring fraternity houses, turning Columbia Street into a battle of the bands. The energy is great and it is something I think all Chapel Hillers and visitors need to experience. Hope to see you all there!
Thank You NC Artists!
I'd like to thank the 16 local North Carolina artists who participated in our 8th Annual Birdhouses on Parade. We had a total of 84 beautiful and unique birdhouses on display in our lobby this March and April. It was great to hear nice comments about the artwork coming from guests strolling through our hallways, impressed with the spring decor. I was glad to be able to mark "sold" on a handful of the birdhouses, one of which I bought for my mother as a mothers' day gift. Thank you for being a part of our spring celebration.
Sunday April 5,2009 at 11am brunch will long be remembered as the best food and service I've ever shared in my 64 years. My compliments to all who helped make that sunday a most memoriable one. Thank you!
Fridays on the Front Porch
While in Chapel Hill on business, I was lucky enough to stay at the Inn and even luckier in that my college best friend had moved to the area. While we did not attend UNC, it was so much fun to have her (and her 4 year old son) come stay at the Inn with me one night and "re-live" our college days (a bit more grown-up) first with the festivities on the Inn's Front Porch and then along Franklin Street. Great memories I can't wait to return.
A Fun Night at Crossroads Restaurant
The Carolina Crossroads Restaurant recently hosted a March Madness Beer Dinner, the first in an ongoing seasonal series, in collaboration with Carolina Brewery. Everyone had a great time and raved about the food and beer pairings. Kathy and Fletcher Newbern, prolific freelancers, joined us for the event and would like to share their memorable experience.
Read what Fletcher and Kathy have to say by clicking Read More.
"What a fun night.We've been to a ton of wine dinners, but never a beer dinner. What a surprise.
The food and beer were great, the pairings delightful, and our table guests a blast. And Executive Chef Jimmy Reale had it all right on target.His food is wonderful.
The Inn was also a treat - from the wine and cookies upon check in to the suite itself. We were so happy not to have to worry about driving home to Raleigh. I can't remember the last time I had so much beer."
"What a fab dinner - really teriffic. A smashing success we thought. We had a wonderful stay. The junior suite was perfect for post dinner crashing."
Marketing Manager, The Carolina Inn
Return Visit to The Inn - Sixty Years Later
Dear Mark, We wish to express to to you our genuine heartfelt thanks for your most gracious hospitality extended to us in the celebration of our 60th Wedding Anniversary on September 8th, 2008. The elegant and beautifully appointed King Suite, the great refreshment tray you sent by room service, the delicious dinner prepared by the Executive Chef and the book - The History of The Carolina Inn has made our celebration such a memorable occasion. Thank you for all the details you took care of. What a joy to meet you! You made so much of your time available to us, never hurried, you made us feel like royalty! All the staff made us feel so welcomed and so special. The return to The Carolina Inn for our 60th Anniversary was indeed a highlight of our 60 years together. We shall not soon forget the part you had in making it an Anniversary to remember and we are eternally grateful to you. Our Sincere Appreciation, John and Clara Privott Rocky Mount, NC
September 5, 1948
Dear Manager: My wife and I were married on September 5th, 1948 and spent our honeymoon night at The Carolina Inn. I was a student and worked in the cafeteria. When we arrived - we checked in and made our way to our assigned room, we opened the door and were shocked to see two twin beds. So you know what happened next? My wife sent me back to the desk and the clerk was very understanding and immediately changed rooms for us. We want to come back to the Inn on September 5th, 2008 - to spend the night sixty years later. I'm enclosing a copy of the original paid bill of $7.00 and I'm wondering whether or not you would let us have a room for $7.00 - the price we paid sixty years ago. Please let me hear from you by return mail. Sincerely, John W. Privott PS: A copy of the 1948 bill is enclosed
The Perfect Place
The Carolina Inn has always been a favorite meeting place for my friends and family, whether it is for a long football weekend or just having a few drinks on the porch. With so many fun and happy memories there, my husband and I were so thrilled that it worked out to be the site of our wedding reception. The Inn provided the perfect place for all our guests to stay for a big wedding weekend. We both look forward to many return trips to The Carolina Inn!
I recall vividly that coming to Chapel Hill for a football game was not complete for this young boy without having breakfast or lunch at the Carolina Inn cafeteria. It amazed me how much food there was, and how grown-up it made me feel to walk down the line with my tray full of food and drink.
Imagine Chapel Hill in October 1968 -- falls colors and warm days. It was a Saturday and I had an early class. I lived in whitehead dorm next door and often ate breakfast in the Carolina Inn cafeteria. That Saturday, I proceeded through the line and was stopped by an old guy -- must have been at least 30 - who asked if I was "anti-social." I responded "Well, no." And he asked to sit with me. Remember at that time, the campus was full of long-haired hippies and war protesters. This old guy was clean shaven, had a short haircut, and our conversation was about travel and the usual get-acquainted topics. I learned that he was at Fort Bragg and in the Special Forces -- whatever that was. At first, I did not figure out that that meant "Army - Green Beret." He was taking a course on Saturdays and had driven up to attend class. We made an agreement to meet the next Saturday, same time, same place. The rest is -- as they say -- history. We married in January 1970 and one year later, he spent another tour in Vietnam. Retiring in 1977, we returned to Chapel Hill and busied ourselves working and building a second career for him -- eventually as a programmer analyst at the UNC Dental School. I worked at RTP for various EPA contractors as a technical writer/editor and put that English degree to good use. Both of us are retired now and travel often in our motorhome. When we pass the Carolina Inn, we often comment about that fateful meeting.
America's Foodiest Small Town - Bon Appetite Magazine - October, 2008
Imagine a place where foodies not only have a favorite chef, but also a favorite farmer; a place where the distance between the organic farm and the award-winning restaurant is mere miles; a place where a sustainable future is foreseeable. It's all a reality in Durham-Chapel Hill.