City of Oaks

So I know I have mentioned before in the blog how much I love Raleigh and how much it has changed over the years. See Raleigh Revolution (https://thewellredchef.wordpress.com/2014/10/14/raleigh-revolution/). Well, in honor of David Letterman’s last show, I thought it would be fun to have my own top ten list of reasons I love Raleigh.

  • Weather: How can you not love the weather here? I know the city shuts down once a year when we get flurries, but come on, everywhere does in the South. We actually have four distinct seasons here, unlike other places where it’s either hot or cold. It’s 85 and sunny now. Enough said.
  • People: Southern hospitality is definitely a thing. When you’re not in the South you definitely miss y’all and yes ma’am. People are genuinely friendly here, something a lot of places cannot say. Raleigh has a small town charm but the feel of an emerging and thriving city.
  • Sports: College sports are the king here obviously. As a State fan, I was born with a hatred of the Tarheels and Blue Devils. Built in rivalries are make college sports so intriguing. I can remember going to Reynolds Coliseum as a kid to watch State play Carolina; the place was electric. College football Saturdays in the South are amazing, much better than professional environment in my opinion. Add in the Bulls and the Mudcats, Nascar, and even the Panthers, it makes Raleigh a great area to go see live sports. Plus everyone in the South loves to tailgate.
  • It’s not Charlotte: Yeah, I don’t really like Charlotte. Either you are a Raleigh person or a Charlotte person. I lived and worked there for culinary school, but always had to get back to Raleigh. Just something about Charlotte that doesn’t have the same feel as Raleigh. It never really felt like home to me, rather a place I worked and went to school. Besides, I like how boring Raleigh is. Charlotte can keep the Panthers and their Uptown.
  • Entertainment: There is always something to do in Raleigh. In the summer, there are tons of places to see bands, and not just small local ones either. Between Red Hat, Walnut Creek, Koko Booth, Lincoln Theater, and The Cat’s Cradle we are privy to hundreds of awesome musicians from around the country. Even the Rolling Stones are limping into Raleigh to play at Carter-Finley. There are tons of festivals, food truck rodeos, Artsplosure, Hopscotch, Brewgaloo, World Beer Festival, etc. Yeah, it’s boring here. I’ll move to Charlotte.
  • Location: Being smack dab in the middle of the state definitely has its privileges. Only a short trip away from either the coast or the mountains makes Raleigh a super convenient place to live. I pretty much grew up on the Outer Banks during my summers as a kid. I love it there, it’s so beautiful and peaceful despite the invading Wings and other shitty beach stores. Sometimes you just need to get out the city and see water or the mountains, it puts everything in perspective.
  • Culture: There is such an interesting mix of people here because of the emerging job market, as well as the university system. I make fun of Cary as being the Containment Area of Relocated Yankees, but all the diverse people here make Raleigh a special place. The North Carolina Museum of Art, North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, and the North Carolina Museum of History are just a few of the places that you can explore the rich culture of North Carolina. Check out The State Fair in the fall if you want culture also; people watching at its finest.
  • Quality of life: It pretty much speaks for itself. Raleigh has everything that you could ask for in a city, and the cost of living is a fraction of what it is in much larger cities. Even living in the suburbs of Clayton, Apex, and Holly Springs you are close enough to take advantage of all Raleigh has to offer. There are tons of parks and greenways throughout the city as well. Maybe I should check one out sometime.
  • Food/Nightlife: Obviously I am a little biased in this category because of my occupation. Growing up here your options were pretty limited for places to eat and drink. Glenwood South was it. Now? Your options are limitless. We have a James Beard award winning chef in Raleigh. There are countless new bars and restaurants popping up every day. Food trucks have also become another great diverse food option. Barcades, craft cocktails, hell, we even have the first Mescaleria in North Carolina. Bida Manda, Garland, Poole’s, Kimbap, Angus Barn, Second Empire. The list keeps on going.
  • It’s home: I was born and raised here. It will always be my home. I moved away, but was drawn to come back. “If I die in Raleigh, at least I will die free.” I know I missed a few places, but oh well. Get out and enjoy Raleigh. Cheers Foodies!

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2 thoughts on “City of Oaks

  1. I love Raleigh too for all the wonderful reasons you’ve mentioned!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. And that’s why I created my “Lost Charlotte” blog – ’cause you left out one thing that Charlotte does that Raleigh doesn’t do and that’s tear down anything that smacks of old and historic…I love this “Top 10 list!”

    Liked by 1 person

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