Want to see the area’s oldest and most unique buildings, and pick up some interesting factoids along the way? Swing by the Preservation Society of Chapel Hill and meet up with Ernest Dollar. As executive director he’ll show you around the place, but also point you in just about any direction for a guided or self-guided tour of the area’s unique history.
Carrboro Farmers Market:
Unlike some big-city farmer’s markets and their $5 lemons, this one has been going for quite a while and is a part of Carrboro’s self- reliant charm. The people around here take getting back to the earth very seriously, and you’ll find everything from goat’s milk soap (try the lavender) to roasted veggies.
Chapel Hill Creamery:
Flo Hawley and Portia McKnight sell their various cheeses at the Carrboro Farmer’s Market, but also do a brisk online business and welcome visitors to their dairy farm if you call ahead. In eight years they’ve grown their herd of Jersey cows to 24, and their output includes mozzarella, Camembert, feta, Farmer’s cheese, Hickory Grove and Calvander. If you go, be sure to meet Dakota; she’s a friendly sort and likes to be brushed.
Chapel Hill Main Drag:
OK, it’s a college town. But along Chapel Hill’s main thoroughfare through town you can find anything from hookah parlors to Indian, Mediterranean and other ethnic cuisines, fun shops and more. Plus nightclubs. Lots and lots of nightclubs. Not to mention all those … helpful … young students so eager to provide direction(s).
You’ve got to eat, and this is the place to do it. Small but mighty, Crook’s Corner is a local landmark that’s packed most every night of the week. The ever-changing menu reflects owner and chef Bill Smith’s tastes as well as what’s available on that particular day. (He’s a fixture at the Farmer’s Market.) Don’t miss the shrimp and grits, whatever you do, and if you go late enough and buy a cookbook, Bill might crack open a PBR and sit down for a visit. If he does, ask about where he gets his fresh persimmons.