One of our favorite Huntsville Haunts
Before moving to Huntsville, Ries and I did a bit of research on the city. We were both very reluctant to move from one Southern state to another Southern state, because from what we had seen of the region, we weren’t impressed. The list of places to go and things to do in Huntsville was endless, and unlike Augusta’s Top Ten Things to Do, the mall wasn’t on the list–though we do have a very nice mall.
I think the moment I knew that we would be okay in Alabama is when I searched, “Things to do in Huntsville,” and found an entire website dedicated to the on-goings of the city. The weekend we visited to find an apartment some of the weekend activities included a wine festival, a formal ball charity event held in caves at a state park, a festival celebrating other cultures, and the nation’s largest butterfly exhibit.
When we first moved to Huntsville, (before we found out we were pregnant and the inevitable exhaustion and food aversions began) we had a long list of places to check out. One of the first on the list was the Lowe Mill Open Air Market.
Lowe Mill, originally built in 1900 as a textile mill, was repurposed into artist studios and now hosts over 200 artists, making it the nation’s largest privately owned arts facility. There you can find artists of all kinds working and selling their art, as well as Huntsville small businesses where you can purchase all kinds of food from locally made tea to a peanut butter, banana, Nutella filled crepe. Other events include after school programs for children, painting lessons, open swing dance nights and lessons, lawn concerts during the warmer weather, and other charming seasonal events–this December they hosted a “Stranger Things” inspired Christmas party with free admission to anyone who dressed as the characters, a 1980’s costume, or rode a bike to the party.
The Open Air Market at Lowe Mill only began last year, but our first visit was one of the memories in Huntsville we cherish most. And while the Open Air Market season ended shortly after our arrival, Ries and I have continued to visit Lowe Mill for a Friday tradition of handmade popsicles, artisan chocolates, tea, and anything else that strikes our fancy. (See below for photos of our favorite places.)
After three years of dreading summers in the South, I can say this year, living in Huntsville, is the first time I have looked forward to the warmer weather and all of the markets, events, and activities it brings with it.
Below, I’ll share a few of our favorite businesses at Lowe Mill.
The first time we visited Lowe Mill happened to be the opening day for a new cafe, Alchemy. We haven’t spend nearly enough time here (mostly because our visits to Lowe Mill take place after 5pm nowadays) but we have plans to get fancy coffee again soon.
The flavor board at Suzy’s Pops…I’m trying to taste every flavor, but Ries is a Strawberry Cheesecake or Raspberry Cream type of guy. I can’t wait to try some of the “Lushy” pops once our little dude arrives.
Piper & Leaf is kind of my jam. I love it so much I’ve actually contemplated trying to get a part time job there, and the only reason I limit myself to once a week trips is because of the whole “don’t drink too much caffeine while you’re pregnant” thing. (The caffeine teas are really great too though, so I’m not sure how I keep myself away.) And aren’t those flowers beautiful? Ries got them for me at the Open Air Market the first time we went–when we moved to Huntsville he said one of his goals was to buy me more flowers. Swoon.
The last place worth mentioning (food wise) is Pizelle’s–an artisanal chocolate shop. One of Ries’ favorite things to get there are their made-from-scratch marshmallows. I’m not a marshmallow person, but even I have to try the seasonal flavors.
That’s all for now!