Tag Archives: Columbia

It’s a new year! What we’re pinning.

January 17, 2014

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One of the best ways to prepare for a visit to Columbia is to visit our profile on Pinterest. It gives us a great opportunity to show you just what you can expect during your time here using beautiful photos and fun links. For 2014, we’ll be using Pinterest a lot to curate amazing Columbia images ideas to help you make your experience in our destination the best it can be.

Here’s what we’ve been working on…

An entire board titled ‘A Columbia Holiday‘ to showcase that Columbia is cool in the winter.

We’ve added a lot of new pins to our ‘Discover the District‘ board. Get planning and visit one of Columbia’s main attractions!

Check out our new ‘Famous Columbians, Mizzou Fans and Alumni‘ board where you can check out who has ties to our great city!

Keep coming back to visit us on Pinterest throughout the year. We’re excited to share our favorite Columbia places, events and much more!

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New Year, New Eats in Columbia

January 14, 2014

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Columbia is well known for its outstanding dining experiences. From a quick sandwich to an upscale feast, Columbia offers visitors an array of choices for any occasion. The restaurant scene is also always changing here, so let’s get you up to speed on what’s new in town.

Günter Hans

Günter Hans Artisan Cafe is open in the former Pasta Factory location, tucked away off of Hitt Street in downtown Columbia. Serving up a small menu of bretzels, gelato and a great selection of beers, everything at Günter Hans is fresh and made from scratch everyday. They also offer up unique cheese boards and specialty drinks. This spot is a perfect fit in Columbia. As they say on their website, ‘our menu is unique and our style non-traditional, but so is Columbia! That’s one of the many reasons we’re excited to be here.’

Zaxby’s

Now that Columbia is officially in SEC country, it’s only right that it’s now home to two Zaxby’s locations. A southern stable since the 90s, Zaxby’s serves up chicken fingers, crinkle cut fries, signature sauces and lots of hospitality. Check them out at Highway 63/Stadium and off Providence Road south of Nifong.

Café Poland

A tiny space with hearty food, Café Poland on Locust in downtown Columbia will warm you up on these cold winter days. Sample their many types of pierogies and enjoy the welcoming owners. In the summer, their iced beverages will keep you cool as you roam around The District.

Cheerleader Pub & Grill

A great destination for food and fun, with a focus on the SEC, Cheerleader Pub & Grill is located at Highway 63 and Stadium, making it the perfect stop for a bite on game days. The menu features items named after your favorite SEC teams, there are televisions aplenty and over 40 beer taps!

Glenn’s Cafe

Around in some form for most years since 1939, Glenn’s Cafe isn’t new to Columbia, but its return is definitely worth celebrating. With its beloved neon sign now hanging proudly on 8th Street, Glenn’s is open for business in The Tiger Hotel. The menu at Glenn’s is rooted in Cajun and Creole flavors with fresh seafood, bold flavors and a gourmet touch.

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Ring in 2014 at Columbia Eve Fest!

December 27, 2013

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If you’re looking for a New Year’s Eve the entire family can enjoy, make your plans now to attend Columbia Eve Fest!

Here’s some information from the organizers:

We are excited to be going into the New Year with new beginnings as Columbia Eve Fest! We  have lots of fresh, fun festivity planned for your New Year’s Eve celebration in downtown Columbia, Missouri. We will continue to bring high quality local, regional and national entertainment to our stages. The festival continues as a not-for-profit, culturally diverse, non-alcohol, family friendly event for all ages.

MORE EXCITING CHANGES!! “The Footprint”

The footprint of Columbia Eve Fest will be slightly different from previous years as First Night Columbia. We will be compacting the festival into a “block party” location. We believe this will be safer and more participant friendly in regard to challenging weather conditions. Our popular 5K Run/Walk will continues to inspire our participants to start the new year off  with a healthy beginning at 4:00 p.m. in front of Cyclextreme.

The other venues will be located in the Missouri Theatre, Columbia Art League and the Missouri United Methodist Church (7 venues). We will also be closing off the block of 9th street located between Elm and Locust and utilizing the closed street as a convenient, safe path for participants. It will also be an outdoor venue featuring lots of fun activities, the Children’s Finale and the Grand Finale. If the weather is hazardous, we will be able to move the Children’s Finale into the Methodist Auditorium and the Grand Finale into the Missouri Theatre.

Be sure to check out the schedule for all of the entertainment information and you can purchase your passes at the ARC as well as all Gerbes Supermarkets. Spend a fun, safe and musical New Year’s Eve in The District. Happy New Year!

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Finish Your Holiday Shopping in Columbia! One Day, Twelve Ways

December 10, 2013

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‘Tis the season…to panic about holiday shopping! Lists of friends, relatives and co-workers are piling up and making you wonder if you’ll ever get all your gifts bought. Never fear, Columbia is here! We’ve assembled another festive list (one you can even sing along with) that can help you knock out those presents in a snap. Spend one day in CoMo then put your feet up to revel in having your shopping done.

On my CoMo holiday shopping trip, I bought on my spree…

Twelve Velvet Cupcakes

Pick up a dozen of the most delectable, unique treats you’ll come across this season. The cupcake menu at The Velvet Cupcake changes daily, but the guests at your holiday party or your aunt with the sweet tooth will be delighted no matter which flavor you choose.

Eleven Painting Classes

Grab your ten closest friends and have a night out at The Canvas on Broadway. At the Canvas, art is for everyone, and you’ll leave with your very own piece of art and great holiday memories. They also have a bar, so your creativity will undoubtedly be heightened.

Ten Terrific Tootsies

Some days, there’s nothing more relaxing than a nice spa pedicure. For the person in your life who could use some pampering, pick up the gift of relaxation in the form of a gift card for one of Columbia’s many spas. A couple of Columbia favorites, Riversong and Salon Adair, will always be winners.

Nine Gunther’s Tokens

Have someone who always wants the highest score? Gunther’s Games is back in downtown Columbia! Offering classic games as well as new titles, Gunther’s is a great place for your favorite kid or kid at heart.

Eight Tiger Goodies

You’ve probably heard that Mizzou has had a pretty fantastic year sports-wise. Show your favorite fans you care with some Tiger gear from Rally House or Tiger Spirit. From coffee mugs to keychains, pom-poms to Tiger ears, the Mizzou fans in your life will go crazy for your black and gold gift.

Seven Stocking Stuffers

Everyone likes to find a little something special in their stocking! Check out Calhoun’s for fun little gifts ranging from unique jewelry to fun home decor and items for kids. Calhoun’s really is a one-stop-shop for that something extra special for anyone on your list!

Six Local Art Pieces

If there’s one thing Columbia really knows how to do, it’s art! Explore spots like Artlandish, PS:Gallery, Bluestem Missouri Crafts and the Columbia Art League Gallery for pieces with a local flavor at all price points. Whether you’re looking for a small work or a statement piece to last a lifetime, Columbia’s galleries offer some of the most beautiful work around.

Fiiiiiive Flower Arrangements

Everyone needs a centerpiece for the big holiday meal, right? Volunteer to take care of that this year and get rave reviews with an arrangement from Kent’s Floral Gallery on Broadway. Just stepping inside Kent’s during the holidays is an experience. Kent and his team will make your holiday shine with an arrangement that’s ready to go or customize it to your preference.

Four Pints of Sparkys

You can also be the star of the holiday by showing up with dessert! Allow us to recommend stopping by Sparky’s Homemade Ice Cream to pick up an array of flavors. You can choose from the ready-to-go freezers or have them pack up any of their available flavors as well. You can go as traditional or outlandish on your choices as you want…Sparky’s has something for everyone!

Three Bags of Coffee

Another thing Columbia does well is coffee. With three colleges and a population of hard-workers, there’s never a short demand for caffeine. Explore the different roasts and local shops like Lakota, Coffee Zone and Kaldi’s to get the java lover in your life something new for their mornings.

Two True/False Passes

The True/False Film Fest is one of the hallmark weekends in Columbia. What started as a small event 11 years ago is now one of the world’s most respected documentary film festivals. Throw in a parade, music showcases, a game show and nightly parties and you have pretty much the most fun someone could have in four days. Passes are on sale now!

And a Gift Certificate Just For You From Me!

Need a gift for that one person who has everything? Let them explore Columbia for themselves! A gift certificate to The District will get that special someone into restaurants, shops and more!

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13 Things to do in Columbia, MO before the end of 2013

November 18, 2013

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Blog11.15.13

Somehow we’ve already made it to November this year! With only a few weeks left in 2013, here are a few Columbia experiences to check off your list before you ring in the new year. Of course, if you wait a little longer, we won’t tell.

13. Peruse a Gallery
Looking for a little inspiration? Wander through some of Columbia’s impressive art galleries for all mediums of art created by artists from across the country. 
12. Explore Campus
There’s not much more beautiful than freshly fallen snow on the University of Missouri campus. Both the historic buildings and majestic trees look even more amazing than usual under a blanket of white. 
11. Take in a Movie

Spend a few hours in another world with the incredible films showing daily at Ragtag Cinema. With a calendar full of documentaries, acclaimed films from other countries and features made by locals, your Ragtag experience will be both relaxing and enlightening.

10. Grab Some Hot Chocolate

Whether you’re cold, thirsty or your hands are just freezing, take time to explore all of Columbia’s wonderful coffee shops. If you need something with a little more pick-me-up, we love the Rocket Fuel at Coffee Zone.

9. Make Your Own Art

Even if you say you don’t have an artistic bone in your body, try your hand at painting with an evening of art at the Canvas on Broadway or Paint the Town Columbia. Both spots have fun projects to sign up for, helpful instructors and a bar!

8. Sip a Drink
If you’re looking for something a little different, head to Bleu to try out some of their seasonal custom cocktails. House-made mixes, syrups and spirits mean you can imbibe in a Red October, a Giggle Water or a Cat on a Hot Gin Roof, all created just for you.
7. Walk on a Trail

Columbia is home to more than 50 miles of trails! Whether you’re a hiker, biker or leisurely stroller, Columbia’s trails are a great escape from the holiday bustle.

6. Get Tiger Gear and Give a Cheer

Time to get some new black and gold gear for the winter season! Rally HouseTiger Spirit and Alumni Hall are great one-stop shops for all your Tiger best. Of course, you’ll want to sport your new clothes at a Tiger sporting event, so make sure to get some tickets too.

5. Attend Living Windows
As the weather turns colder, shopkeepers throughout The District begin planning for the annual Living Windows Festival. On the first Friday in December,from 6 to 8 p.m., shopkeepers move all the merchandise, out of their front windows and stage live holiday performances for onlookers. 
4. Sample Some Sparky’s
Though some may disagree, ice cream is just as amazing in the winter. So amazing, in fact, that Sparky’s Homemade Ice Cream is finally going to be open year-round! Those who used to mourn their cold weather closing will be enjoying their incredible range of flavors 365 days a year. 
3. Check Out the UCS
Make the University Concert Series your new holiday tradition. Family-friendly performances including The NutcrackerA Christmas Carol and a Tribute to Trans-Siberian Orchestra go on stage in the historic venues of Jesse Hall and the Missouri Theatre.
2. Buy Your True/False Passes
The True/False Film Festival has become one of the most renowned documentary festivals in the entire world. Get your passes now to experience the films, music, parties and general revelry that True/False brings year after year.
1. Visit the Magic Tree

There’s no better way to end the year than to load up the car and visit Columbia’s Magic Tree. This tradition started in the front yard of a south Columbia home and is now located in the Village of Cherry Hill, where thousands of people stand in awe at the over 40,000 lights on one tree.

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Columbia Snapshot: Autumn Arrives

November 15, 2013

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FallLeaves

Columbia’s trees are really showing off their colors this fall! These are just a few views from near the office of the Convention and Visitors Bureau, so our staff is lucky enough to enjoy these every day. We’re also next to the beginning trail head of the MKT Trail, so it’s a great place to start a fall foliage stroll. Be sure to take lots of pictures (and share them with us on Facebook!) before the leaves all fall!

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Missouri Contemporary Ballet presents CRAVE

November 13, 2013

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Missouri Contemporary Ballet (MCB) is proud to present its eighth annual fall production of ‘CRAVE,’ sponsored by American Airlines. This production will be held at Missouri Theatre Center for the Arts on Thursday, November 14th  and Friday, November 15th at 7:30pm.

mcb_crave_final

This production will feature six works, three of which are world premieres. The first piece is an original by MCB Artistic/Executive Director, Karen Mareck Grundy. Don’t Tell features the entire 10-dancer company and was inspired by the headline news of Russia’s persecution of the LGBTQ community. “I am an adamant supporter of LGBTQ human rights and wanted to translate my feelings on the subject into movement. This is my personal reaction to every type of oppression taking place,” explains Grundy.

The second premiere, Welcome to the Men’s Room, is by MCB’s Resident Choreographer, Shannon Lee West. With a hint of whimsy mixed in with her signature extreme lines and off kilter-movement, West is creating a men’s trio that is based around how humans hear and perceive sound. With a focus more on exploratory movement and less on technique, West keeps her rock aesthetic while carving a new path for herself choreographically.

The third premiere is by Bryn Cohn, a guest choreographer based out of New York City. One on One is about how we experience the idea of ‘one;’ one with yourself, one with someone else, and one with a group. The work explores the idea of ‘one,’ both emotionally and structurally.

MCB will be bringing back The Current State of Life by Giordano Dance Chicago’s Joshua Blake Carter. Originally premiering in our 2011 show, EVOKE, this piece reflects on the ‘current state’ of our world. MCB will be performing another work from 2011, The Dirt Beneath by company member Alex J. Gordon. Gordon’s piece looks at the exterior ‘faces’ that people wear for their peers. The sixth work, Nigel and Marian…A story, by Karen Mareck Grundy premiered in 2009. The piece follows a young man who is guided by two opposing angels to meet his counterpart.

Tickets are $19-$29 for adults and $10-$15 for students and youth. Our Opening Night, November 14th is Student Night; Student and youth tickets are only $5-$8. Student and youth tickets are intended for currently enrolled college, K-12, and MCB students. Tickets can be purchased at the Missouri Theatre Center for the Arts box office, 573-882-3781, or at www.concertseries.org.

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Thanks to Joanne Sandorfi for guest blogging for this event.

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Unexpected Columbia: Fabulous Fall Dining

October 29, 2013

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Fall has finally arrived! Leaves all over town are turning brilliant shades of orange and red and menus all over town are also changing to meet the season. Columbia chefs are famous for bringing seasonal, local ingredients to the table and this fall is no exception. Here are a few places where you can find fall favorites. Check out one (or all of them) and let us know what you loved!

Flat Branch Pub and Brewing

A Columbia staple for locals and visitors, Flat Branch just flipped over to their fall menu. The Winter Brewhouse Salad is perfect for a chilly day and fall favorites including Bangers  & Mash and Shepherd’s pie make their return. Of course, washing it all down with a seasonal brew like a golden lager or smoked porter is all part of the experience.

Sycamore

On the corner of 8th and Broadway, Sycamore brings fresh, simple dishes to the table every day and always allows the ingredients to shine. Get started with some pork belly sliders (trust us) and then move on to one of their delicious entrees such as smoked duck breast or braised short ribs. The food is familiar and comforting but always presented beautifully and tastes out of this world.

Les Bourgeois Bistro

Located just 15 minutes west of Columbia at the top of a bluff overlooking the Missouri River, Les Bourgeois is one of the most beautiful dining settings in mid-Missouri. Not only are the views breathtaking, they also have food to match. Try the monthly salad (October’s features winter squash and toasted hazelnuts) and then give the house-made tagliatelle pasta or braised pork shoulder a try. For dessert, try their signature dessert. It’s a flourless chocolate cake called the Nemesis.

Wine Cellar and Bistro

If you’d like to dine surrounded by hundreds of bottles of wine, The Wine Cellar & Bistro is the place! Chef Craig Cyr is strongly committed to using local ingredients so the names of many local farms pop up on his menu every season. This fall, try their warm goat cheese truffles to start, then try their house-made ravioli filled with local chicken or a Missouri raised, grass-fed beef tenderloin. To go with your meal, Sarah Cyr serves as the restaurant’s sommelier and will recommend just the thing. The Wine Cellar and Bistro’s wine list has been awarded The Award of Excellence by The Wine Spectator Magazine every year since 2005.

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A Ghoulishly Good Time in Columbia

October 22, 2013

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If you’re visiting Columbia over Halloween, a hotel means you don’t have a neighborhood of doorbells to ring for your tricks and treats. Never fear! Columbia is home to plenty of family-friendly events for your little ghosts and princesses. Pick one (or a few) to get your spooky fix!

-Pet Costume Parade and Trick-or-Treating at Stephens College

Thursday, October 24th — 5:00-8:00 p.m.

The pet parade (adorable!) starts at 5 p.m. on Journey Plaza, the quad south of Walnut Street. The parade will wind through campus, across the College and Broadway bridges and back to Lela Raney Wood Hall, where the trick-or-treating event will begin. Between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., members of Mortar Board and other campus clubs will be stationed around the Kimball Ballroom, passing out candy and overseeing activities for children.

-Halloweenie in The District

Friday, October 25th — 4:00-6:00 p.m.

Are you teeny? Then come to Halloweenie! A safe and fun time for the little ones, come down to The District and trick-or-treat at your favorite stores and restaurants. Everyone starts handing out candy at 4 pm and the festivities are usually over by 6 pm.

-The Haunted Tour at Maplewood

Friday, October 25th and Saturday, October 26th

The Boone County Historical Society and Maplewood Barn Theatre are bringing you “Halloween at Maplewood and Boone Village.” Watch Halloween come alive at Boone Village as re-enactors from Maplewood Barn Theatre bring the ghosts of Columbia to life. It will begin at the Boone County Museum with a walk through Boone Village and its buildings where you will be greeted by ghosts and ghouls, some from Columbia history and some not! The walk will continue through a “graveyard” which will be haunted by Lenoir and Nifong family members as well as other inhuman ghouls! The walk will end up at the Maplewood House where zombie like neighbors from the past have taken over the house ! The tours will be presented on Friday, October 25th and Saturday, October 26th at dusk. The ticket price is $5.00. NOTE: May not be appropriate for small children.

-Bring Your Own Big Wheel: Track or Treat!

Saturday, October 26th — 9:00-10:30 a.m.

Riders can bring their fanciest Big Wheel, tricycle, or other pedal powered vehicle and cruise the ARC Track. Halloween props will be set up for an exciting haunted ride and great photo ops for parents! Tons of prizes and awards will be given to all riders and mileage will be recorded. All equipment must be clean and approved by event staff before entering the track surface.  Absolutely no bicycles! Track is closed to walkers/joggers during event. Don’t forget the costume!

-Trick or Treat Through Missouri History at the State Historical Society

Tuesday, October 29th

Come in costume to this fun, educational family event. In addition to other activities, we have crafts; information about Missouri’s ghosts, pumpkins and bats; a display on the history of Halloween costumes; and a gallery tour, guided by the spirit of Eliza Bingham, wife of Missouri’s famed painter, George Caleb Bingham. Candy is available at each station. Brave visitors can explore the Kids Cave and the Ghostly Gallery.

-Spooktacular! at the Central Missouri Events Center

Thursday, October 31st — 6:00-8:00 p.m.

New place, new name, same great Halloween event! Come out for an evening filled with activities, games and treats for kids ages 12 and under. A fun alternative to door-to-door trick or treating!

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Unexpected Columbia: Ozark Mountain Biscuit Co.

October 10, 2013

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I had heard the rumblings online about it. I read tweets from people raving about something called the Sooie Pig. I saw pictures of golden biscuits wrapped around mouth watering items like bacon and pulled pork and others of those biscuits smothered in gravy. I knew…I had to find this wonderful place.

It wasn’t until a few weeks after I’d started following them on Twitter (@biscuit_truck) before I finally tracked down the Ozark Mountain Biscuit Company at the Roots ‘n Blues ‘n BBQ Festival in September. Greeted with an array of choices, I went with the choice I’d heard about the most, the Haughty Hillbilly. It was knowing that there was homemade pimento cheese involved that sold me. In moments, I had my biscuit.

Biscuit

It was pretty much as perfect as I’d heard it described. The fried green tomato was perfectly fried and juicy, the bacon crispy, the arugula was fresh and the cheese was incredibly flavorful. And the biscuit…it was flaky, buttery, everything you want in a biscuit.

The sandwich was gone all too soon, but I know I’ll be back. I still have the chicken fried chicken biscuit and the biscuit with sweet cream and homemade preserves to try.

Want to know where to find the Ozark Mountain Biscuit Company during your next Columbia visit? Be sure to follow them on Twitter (@biscuit_truck) for updates on where they’ll be and visit their site to check out their entire menu and get a weekly schedule. Tracking them down is well worth the effort. Your taste buds will thank you!

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