Oh, to long for a simpler time. For a simple style, for simple history, and for a vintage feel that today has been replaced by ‘modern.’ North Carolina is brimming with history, but if you want an extra dose, these 10 places will do the trick.
1. Short Sugar's Pit Bar-B-Q, Reidsville
Not much has changed at Short Sugar's. The above picture is the experience you'll get today. Short Sugar's is one of the best BBQ joints in North Carolina, and it's the type of place that you'll want to make a tradition.
2. Eden Drive-In
Not too far from Short Sugar's, you'll find the Eden Drive-In. It gives you all the nostalgia from the drive-in days of your childhood and teenage years. The theatre is open April-October and shows double features on Friday and Saturday nights.
3. Rocky’s Grill and Soda Shop, Brevard
Rocky's will make you feel like you should have brought that vintage poodle skirt with you. With a genuine soda shop atmosphere, Rocky's is a must stop for your next Coke float and fries.
4. Raleigh Road Outdoor Theatre
As North Carolina's oldest drive-in theatre, Raleigh Road Theatre was once named the Moon-Glo, which opened July 15th 1949.
5. Snappy Lunch, Mt. Airy
Snappy Lunch is a Mayberry classic that's been in business since 1923 (and not much has changed). It's the perfect place to grab a burger or a famous pork chop sandwich.
6. Yana's, Swansboro
On your next trip to the beach, you have to stop by Yana's for fried fritters and a retro atmosphere. Marilyn and Elvis adorn the wall, and they even greet you when you go to the bathroom. The food at Yana's is delicious and the vibe is one of a kind.
7. The Last Shell Clamshell Station, Winston-Salem
This quirky idea faded into oblivion is the last of its kind. It operated as a 'clamshell' gas station in the 1930s, a lawnmower store till the '80s, and today serves as a museum to commemorate the idea of the 'clamshell gas station.'
8. Mary's Gone Wild, Holden Beach
Sure, Mary's has made a few of my 'strangely awesome' lists, but it's easy to see there's nothing like Mary's in North Carolina. This museum functions to show all of Mary's amazing creations, from glass bottle art to a doll baby collection. You must visit at least once.
9. Bar-B-Q King Drive In, Charlotte
This Charlotte classic opened in 1959 and brings back all of the drive-in nostalgia. It was even featured on the TV show Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.
10. Land of Oz Theme Park, Beech Mountain
While the park remains closed the majority of the year (seriously, no trespassing) it opens once a year for the Autumn in Oz event. Come October, the yellow brick road fills with life and you'll get to experience the Land of Oz like it was still in its glory days.
These 10 places are really brimming with a feeling of another time. Nostalgic, retro, even strangely awesome. There’s so much to explore in North Carolina, and so many places that give you that feeling…which ones would you add to the list?