When Kendra Thornton first emailed me about teaming up on a blog post about our hometowns, I was a little hesitant at first. Me a writer? Yeah right! I like to hide behind my camera! But then I got to thinking here is a good opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and write a blog post about my hometown of which I really truly love!
Tallahassee, Florida has a lot of golden gems. First off, we are the hometown of the Florida State Seminoles! Our football team is ranked nationally every year and this town really comes alive during football season! Although I only get to attend roughly one game a year (because I am a wedding photographer), I am always rooting on my Seminoles! Go Noles!
Our skyline may be minimal, but I do love to watch a sunset from the roof top of Hotel Duval at Level 8 Bar and Lounge. When out on the balcony to your left you can see downtown Tallahassee. To your right you can follow the stop lights through a sea of gorgeous oak trees. Speaking of oak trees, our spanish moss is like nothing you have ever seen! It is one of my favorite backdrops when shooting portraits! It lights up so beautifuly during the golden hour of the evening!
Looking for a southern plantation or a gorgeous park? Tallahassee has plenty of those! From GoodWood Plantation, to SouthWood Plantation, to the gorgeous MaClay Gardens, every week you can find me chasing little ones with my camera on Tallahassee’s finest properties.
Another hidden gem and one of my favorite places to photograph is RailRoad Square Art District. If you are looking for fun and funky, then this is your place! Picture colorful graffiti painted warehouses, mixed with a beer garden, delicious treats, and art everywhere. YEP that is why I love RailRoad Square.
I absolutely love everything about Tallahassee! Being a new mother myself I am so excited about my son growing up and enjoying this small but yet not that small of a town!
Now let me introduce Kendra Thornton and her fabulous post about her favorite things in Chicago!
A Few of My Favorite Things in Chicago
So many things to do and so little time. It is the way I always feel when visiting any city, and Chicago is no different even though it is my hometown. Chicago is filled with many exciting things to see and do, and there is never a dull moment in this Midwest city! Below I have highlighted a few of my personal favorites, and I hope you someday enjoy them as well!
If you are a shopping aficionado…
Chicago is well-known for its shopping along the Magnificent Mile on Michigan Avenue but why not take a walk off the beaten path? If you go just one block north up Michigan Avenue, you will stumble across one of my favorite shopping areas, Oak Street. On Oak Street the quaint boutiques are nestled inside historic town homes and brownstones. This charming area of Chicago will give you a sense of the city and its history that is hard to discover elsewhere. Also, the shopping here is phenomenal with such high-end stores as Kate Spade, Barney’s and Jimmy Choo. History and shoes, it does not get much better than this!
Under the Sea
One of Chicago’s most popular tourist attractions is the Shedd Aquarium. It is also one of my favorite places to visit, and I highly recommend putting it on your agenda. This aquarium is located on the shore of Lake Michigan. Here, visitors will have the opportunity to view more than 32,500 animals from a variety of more than 1,500 different species. The aquarium is conveniently arranged by exhibit of various regions with enticing names such as Polar Play Zone and Caribbean Reef. After strolling through a rainbow of fish and undersea life, take some time to research how October is National (Sustainable) Seafood Month! The Shedd Aquarium is a big supporter of researching sustainable ways to feed both the earth’s growing population and allow their beloved marine creatures to continue to thrive, and promoting the sustainable ways is their way of finding a happy medium.
Hanging Out at the Spa
When visiting a city, choosing a place to stay is almost as important as deciding what to do. One of my favorite places to spend time in Chicago is at the dana Hotel and Spa. They have an amazing restaurant with an outstanding menu and a spa that I could visit everyday if I had the chance. This hotel is located in a great area of the city in Chicago’s River North neighborhood. You can use the site gogobot to find hotels in the city, and can research what to do in the area as well. If you are looking to spend a day away or an entire weekend with the girls, River North is home to the most art galleries in the US (outside on Manhattan).
Chicago Knows Good Food
If you are hungry, Chicago is a great town to be in. From deep dish pizza and hot dogs to upscale dining, Chicago has something for everyone. Me? Well, breakfast is one of my favorite meals and no one does breakfast like a diner. Lou Mitchell’s is one of Chicago’s most historic and appealing diners with scrumptious food. It’s a great place for the entire family to enjoy delicious food at fair prices. Every woman and child that enters Lou Mitchell’s receives Milk Duds. Milk Duds, you ask? Yes, Milk Duds were created in Chicago (take that Trivial Pursuit) and the owner was a friend of Lou’s.