North Carolina January 05, 2017
This Overlooked Small Town Is Hiding Some Of The Best BBQ In North Carolina
Halfway between Charlotte and Asheville is a small town that is hiding art, museums, history, and amazing BBQ. Shelby, located in Cleveland County, has a population of around 20,000. Located amidst the rolling foothills of the Blue Ridge, it has been deemed the “City of Pleasant Living,” which is indeed true.
Built in 1907, the central figure of the town is the historic Courthouse, which today has been transformed to celebrate another central figure of Shelby, Earl Scruggs. The bluegrass legend is a Shelby native and today, the Courthouse is the The Earl Scruggs Center: Music and Stories from the American South.
The museum attracts bluegrass fans from across the state. Celebrating the life and music of Earl Scruggs, as well as the three finger pickin' banjo technique. It's also host to various exhibitions to learn about music in the American south.
Shelby even has its own carousel in the city park! Built in 1919, it's one of the last year-round carousels found in a park setting, so it brings something extra special for kids and even adults. Plus, it's pretty to cool to stumble upon a carousel.
The Banker's House is a true landmark of the city. Built in 1875, it is a breathtaking example of Second Empire Style.
60 years is certainly a long time to perfect any craft, but in North Carolina 60 years means that you've learned to turn BBQ into pure art. More than likely, you won't need GPS to find Red Bridges BBQ. Just let the smell lead the way.
As classic as it comes, Red Bridges has been pit cookin' since the start. Red and Lyttle Bridges first got into the BBQ biz with Dedmond's Barbecue in 1946. In 1949 it was moved to Uptown Shelby and renamed to today's namesake. In 1953 it moved to its first located and retains all of the retro touches. Today, Red Bridges is owned by the Bridges' daughter and her two children...it's stayed in the family and stayed the same.
12 hours over smoked hickory gets you some of the most flavorful barbecue.
Carousel rides, BBQ, music, history, a quaint main street lined in oaks, and gorgeous sights all around - Shelby is truly a hidden gem.
Shelby really is such a cool place! Have you visited here before?
For another place that’s more modern but has one classic dish that could perhaps be the best in the state,
check out this delicious diner.