Saxapahaw Day Trip

Back at the end of October we had our first visitor of a three-weekend hosting visitors spree. Patrick's mom visited then, my mom and Granny visited next, and finally my college friends came for UNC's Homecoming! What a whirlwind of fun activities.

Here's a brief recap of the first visitor: Marie!

She arrived late Friday evening and departed early Monday morning which means two full days of doing local NC things.

As with any weekend anywhere most special events with any organization happen on Saturday. We had a lot of options to choose from but ultimately chose to spend the day in Saxapahaw. Saxapahaw is about a 40 minute drive west of Durham. It's only a small incorporated area but boasts a winery, renovated mill with amphitheater and a music venue, and nice dining establishments. If this doesn't sound like a fun day trip then I don't know what does!

We started the morning with donuts from Durham's very own Rise Biscuit & Donuts, a breakfast shop featuring local ingredients. I try to introduce guests to this wonderful little shop. Rise is very popular... so popular I went to get donuts Friday afternoon otherwise we would've had a long wait at the store. And I knew we had things to do in Saxapahaw Saturday! We polished off our donuts with coffee and baked apple oatmeal (to be featured on the blog soon).

First up in Saxapahaw was the Third Annual Saxapahaw Antiques Festival at Roxy Farms Antique aka browsing things in a field. We enjoyed seeing the various items for sale.

Then we went across the Haw River to the restored Rivermill Village and had a tasty lunch at The Eddy Pub. The Eddy Pub has great expansive views of the river. 

After lunch we crossed back over the Haw River to Benjamin Vineyards & Winery. Here we had a wine tasting and relaxed under their porch with rocking chairs and a view of the vineyards. Their specialty is sweet muscadine wines but they do produce dry whites and reds.

You guessed it, we went back over the river one more time to hear live bluegrass music at the Haw River Ballroom for the Saxapahaw Oktoberfest celebration. The music was bluegrass-y as promised but as the sun set it became very cold and we weren't adequately prepared for the elements so we came home.

The NY Times even recommends you visit Saxapahaw; read their Travel article here.

On Sunday, per request of Marie, we headed over to the NC State Fair in Raleigh. Before we went to the fair we had brunch at 518 West Italian Cafe in Raleigh. Since we had a filling brunch we wouldn't be tempted with all of the fried fair food. At the fair we enjoyed the Heritage Circle and the Flower & Garden Show among other exhibits.

For dinner we came home and had a relaxing evening together. Soup and sandwiches are the perfect fall dinner. Patrick and I served Quick Italian Beef & Vegetable Soup with grilled cheese sandwiches. Pumpkin ice cream and molasses cookies (featured on the blog Wednesday) were the perfect dessert!

Marie has been visiting Patrick every fall since freshmen year when Duke hosted Parent's Weekend. I'm glad she's continuing the tradition even after he's married!

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