Despite a few (okay, more than a few) “Are we there yet?” questions, the first couple of days of the Coleman family road trip have been great. We stopped at my sister’s house in VA last night and slept there. This morning and afternoon was spent with my family in Virginia. My family is very funny and encouraging, so it was great to have the boys spend time with their aunt, uncle, cousins and grandparents. Since it was a Friday, I thought that I would only have lunch with my mom, but (to my pleasant surprise) my father, his wife and her grandkids, one of my sisters, one of my brothers, two of my nieces and one of my nephews joined us also. It’s so backwards, but I miss my family most after just seeing them, so I’m missing them right about now.
After the family lunch, we drove down to Greater Raleigh, NC. The Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau is sponsoring our family trip for the weekend. We will be checking out why Raleigh is a great place for families to visit and we will be exploring more of the city on Saturday and Sunday. For tonight, we just checked into our hotel, the Raleigh Marriott City Center. It’s a business class hotel, but there are plenty of families staying here. If you are driving, valet parking is $18 a day. As another option, you can park around the corner at the parking garage for $12 day plus an additional $3 fee for every time that you take the car out of the garage. Fortunately, most places in Downtown Raleigh are within easy walking distance. Another traveler’s note: Downtown Raleigh offers FREE Wi-Fi. If you need a secure network, you might want to just purchase it at your hotel though.
Anyway, at around 7pm, we walked around the area a bit to look for a nearby place to pick up some food for dinner. Since we live in NYC, we expect restaurants to be open late. However, many of them close at around 6pm here in Raleigh. That is fine though, because one spot that was open was Dickey’s Barbecue Pit. Oh my goodness…talk about southern hospitality. The staff was so warm and friendly and the food was great. We had the pulled pork sandwiches, waffle fries, macaroni and cheese, rolls and chicken fingers (Sean!). For the drinks, I just had to get me some good old southern sweet tea. Everything was great, but the sides were exceptional. The seasoning on their waffle fries upgraded them to the “best waffle fries ever” according to the Coleman family jury. The macaroni and cheese was also outstanding…almost as good as my homemade macaroni and cheese !
Have you ever been to the Greater Raleigh area? If so, what should I make a point of visiting? If not, you can learn more about the area on the Visit Raleigh website, Twitter stream or Facebook page. (Of course, I will also be sharing my thoughts on this blog as we go, so keep checking back!)
In any event, here are my photos from Friday…