I desperately want to get up to the Great Lakes area while we’re living in the Midwest but we’ve been spoiled having such a big lake right outside of Bloomington down the road. I had a sweet taste of summer over the weekend with my first boat float of the season on Lake Monroe. It was a little windy but once we found the perfect cove to hang out in the afternoon was perfection. May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month and the summer sun is just getting started so I wanted to share a few tips to keep your skin safe this summer. READ MORE
It’s a chilly Cinco de Mayo here in Bloomington, Indiana… I’d much rather be on the beach somewhere soaking up some sun and sipping on a salty margarita. Since I’m bundled up in a sweater and jeans drinking hot coffee, I thought I’d share some of my favorite cantinas with excellent margaritas around the country.
Photo: Ben Galland for Bubba Garcias
I prefer my margarita on the rocks with salt. You?
Social media is amazing for connecting with other bloggers and influencers and sharing ideas. Even better when you get a chance to meet these people in real life. Through my blog and social media work I’ve met many interesting and creative individuals from all over the country with unique perspectives on the cities in which they live. Cue my new blog series, Local’s Guide To… Each month I’ll chat with a new local expert about where they call home and the places you must check out when you visit. First up is the..
Local’s Guide to Indianapolis with Raina Regan
I first met Raina at the National Preservation Conference in Indy back in 2013. I was brand new to the Midwest and she instantly introduced herself at a social media meetup during the conference and we’ve kept in touch ever since.
How long have you lived in Indy? What do you do here?
I moved to Indy almost six years ago after graduating from Ball State. Although I moved here without a job, I lucked out and landed my first job less than a month later. Currently, I work for Indiana Landmarks as a Community Preservation Specialist advocating for preservation in Central Indiana. I’m also involved with our local instagram community, @igersindy, and a young preservationists group, Preserve Greater Indy.
What makes Indy unique?
Next week I’ll be Charleston bound for The Southern C Summit. I’m a notorious procrastinator when it comes to packing so I’m getting a head start for once.
In addition to procrastinating, I’m also an over packer. One day I’ll master getting down to one carryon but I like to have lots of options. READ MORE
It’s no secret I love brunch.
The weekend comes a long and if I’m not traveling, my weekend agenda is simple… get outside with my hubs and pups and go to brunch with friends. I get up to Indianapolis fairly often to explore the city and try out new restaurants. One of the city’s finest, Milktooth is possibly my favorite destination for brunch. Yes you have to wait a long time; I promise it is worth it. READ MORE
This time last year I was on a week long road trip for my day job (communications manager for Upland Brewing Co) documenting some beer collaborations with Yazoo Brewing Co. in Nashville, Tennessee and Great Raft Brewing in Shreveport, Louisiana. My coworker and I decided we might as well keep driving south after our work was done and spend the weekend in New Orleans.
To my surprise one of my best friends from graduate school and fellow blogger, Claire Cothren of Blue Prints & Backpacks, had the weekend free and joined me in the Big Easy for the weekend. I had only been there once before so I was determined to eat as much creole and cajun fare as possible before having to drive back to Indiana.
Hopefully you’re aware of Cafe Du Monde & beignets but just in case…
If you have the chance to visit Nola with a good friend, go! No agenda needed. Seriously, we had no plans other than eating some delicious food and drool over the architecture in the garden district. READ MORE
Everyone needs a weekend getaway every now and then… If you follow me on Instagram (emsontheroad) or snapchat (emsontheroad), it’s likely you saw me running around Cincinnati recently with Ryan and our good friends Celia and Toby. We spent most of the weekend exploring the Over the Rhine neighborhood checking out breweries, the market and other historic buildings, but the highlight of the weekend was our hotel, 21c Cincinnati.
If you remember from my visit to the 21c in Louisville, the concept of this hotel group is quite unique: integrating contemporary art into everyday life while reusing historic buildings. Their properties create such unique juxtaposition seen in the careful preservation of the distinguished exterior and the modern mix of minimal furniture and colorful art on the interior. The art galleries are the main attraction and are open 24-7 and free. Genius.
The 21c Hotel in Cincy was originally home to the swanky Metropole Hotel that was completed in 1912 with an addition in 1924. The hotel fell into decline in the 1970s and in 2011 the 21c brand stepped in to breathe life back into this historic hotel. The Neoclassical building is still a gorgeous red terracotta, standing tall in the heart of downtown Cincinnati and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Via Cincinnati Views
There is so much pressure to do something on Valentine’s Day. Like most holidays the blogosphere pushes countless gift guides, travel agendas, romantic date night ideas, and outfit inspiration to help us get ready. I usually participate with a gift guide of locally made goodies but this Valentine’s Day I’m keeping it simple. For me there will be copious amounts of chocolate consumed and likely some bubbly. Bottom line – treat yourself and spend time with people you care about.
But if you do need some ideas to celebrate the Valentine’s Day…
Send a card (in the mail).
I still can’t believe 2015 has come and gone! One of my standing new year’s resolutions is to travel more and somewhere new; which I did a few times in 2015. Since this is the time of year we think about the year ahead and the trips we hope to take, I wanted to share a few of my travel highlights of 2015.
Charleston, South Carolina
This city isn’t new to me but with every visit I discover something new. There are countless restaurants and shops to visit, not to mention gorgeous architecture at every turn. READ MORE
Photo: Ryan Hines
Christmas may be in two days but I’m still trying to decide on New Years Eve plans… Currently craving all of these getaways!
New Years Eve at the Alexander Hotel
- Overnight stay in an art-centric deluxe guest room
- $50 credit in Plat 99
- Prosecco and chocolate covered strawberries
- Brunch for two in Market Table
- Valet Parking
- Late check out at 1pm
Click here for more details
21c Hotel Louisville New Years Eve Party
The red penguins are ready to party in Louisville! Four course dinner at Proof on Main, dance party in the hotel Atrium, and late check out in the morning? Yes please.
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Shaker Village New Years Eve Package
Leave the holiday madness behind for a relaxing New Year’s evening at Shaker Village. Package includes overnight accommodations in The Inn, hot breakfast buffet at The Trustees’ Table, 10 percent off retail purchases in The Shops and complimentary village admission.
Click for details
New Years Eve at Jekyll Island Club Hotel
- Accommodations for Three nights with King, Queen, or two Double Beds
- Breakfast Buffet for two each morning in the Grand Dining Room
- New Year’s Eve Dinner for two; your choice of early or late seating in the Grand Dining Room
- Admission to After Dinner Party at the Morgan Center with DJ and Dancing with food stations.
- Party favors and champagne toast at midnight
- New Year’s Day upgraded Breakfast Buffet in the Grand Dining Room ~ features Collard Greens and Hoppin’ John, Crepes Station, Omelet Station, Eggs Benedict and more
Click here for full details
If you don’t feel like traveling for New Years, check out local restaurants for a special dinner menu. Here are a couple of Bloomington NYE dinners happening…
New Years Eve Dinner at Restaurant Tallent
One of my favorite restaurants in Bloomington is hosting their finale dinner on New Year’s Eve. 4 courses of made from scratch Italian fare.
Click for the full menu
Topo’s 403 New Years Eve
Three course Mediterranean dinner with live music.
Click for menu details
How will you ring in the new year?