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Caroline C. Kilgore

Caroline C. Kilgore is a native Atlantan, who grew up playing in Orme Park and eating at George’s in Virginia Highlands and remembers waving to bicycle shorts man every week from the back of her mom’s mini van en route to soccer practice (while her carpool friends giggled). An accomplished photographer, Kilgore studied photojournalism at the University of Georgia. She joined the magazine in 2008 and spends her days working with freelance photographers and shooting for the magazine. She enjoys bodysuits, Robyn, and all things cat-related.

Destination: Durham, North Carolina

Durham, North Carolina
Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Photograph by Orla Swift

Sometimes overshadowed by nearby Raleigh, Durham is a hip, energetic destination—whether or not you cheer for the Duke Blue Devils. Repurposed commercial buildings and factories like the Golden Belt, a former textile mill that now houses artist studios and galleries, make the city feel like a mini Brooklyn.

Where to eat
Eat pie for breakfast at Scratch Bakery, or try the whiskey praline doughnut at Monuts—it’s worth the wait. On Fridays, Counter Culture Coffee offers tastings and tours of its roastery. At South American–inspired Luna, don’t miss the spicy bacon collards. Have dinner at 21c Museum Hotel’s Counting House, where contemporary art will give you plenty to talk about over locally sourced cuisine.

Durham, North Carolina
Fullsteam Brewery

Photograph by Micah Johnson

Where to drink
The Federal is a favorite dive bar—and score, it has great nachos! Or unwind at Fullsteam Brewery with a pint and bar games galore. Walk across the street to Motorco for live music, or just to hang out on the patio.

What to do
To get the lay of the land, rent a bike from Durham Cycles and cruise along the American Tobacco Trail, a 22-mile route that starts downtown and heads out to the country. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, roam the Durham Farmers Market in Central Park, where every Saturday you’ll find what seems like the entire city loading up on local produce, honey, and craft products like yarn or soap.

The Sarah P. Duke Gardens, founded in 1934, is a must-see, especially this month when the azaleas and dogwoods are in bloom. Watch fat koi weave through giant lily pads at the Terrace Gardens Fish Pool.

The Durham Bulls are arguably the most recognizable minor league baseball team, thanks to the 1988 movie Bull Durham.

Durham, North Carolina
Durham Hotel

Photograph by Spencer Loewll

Where to stay
The new 53-room Durham Hotel, located downtown in a former bank building, mixes midcentury modern decor with updated indulgences. Rooms are stocked with chocolate, coffee, bath products, and even linens from local makers. Don’t miss the rooftop bar, where you can sip a Rob Roy over the city’s best view.

This article originally appeared in our April 2016 issue.

TomorrowWorld 2015’s festival style

At last weekend’s rain-drenched TomorrowWorld music festival in Chattahoochee Hills, most attendees were more worried about staying dry than turning heads. But a few brave souls ditched their ponchos to show off their festival fashion.

Destination: Rosemary Beach, Florida

The view from the cabana above the Pearl’s pool, overlooking the rooftop bar
The view from the cabana above the Pearl’s pool, overlooking the rooftop bar

Photograph by Caroline C. Kilgore

Don’t be fooled by the cobblestone streets, quaint town square, and Spanish–and West Indies–inspired cottages; Rosemary Beach was developed just 20 years ago. It was designed to be charming and walkable, but indulge in its luxury and it’s easy to conclude that authenticity is overrated. Shop for a designer swimsuit at Bombora Sun & Surf, help yourself to the Bloody Mary bar during brunch at the Pearl hotel’s Havana Beach Bar and Grill, or sample Spanish treats at La Crema Tapas & Chocolate. And that’s all before you head across the boardwalk to South Walton County’s famous sugar-white beaches.

Rosemary is the easternmost in a string of communities along 30A, the scenic highway between Destin and Panama City Beach. Stroll the whole town in under an hour, or rent a cruiser from Bamboo Bicycle Company and ride to picturesque nearby developments such as Alys Beach, WaterColor, and Seaside.

The beach is a short walk from the Pearl
The beach is a short walk from the Pearl

Photograph by Caroline C. Kilgore

Where to stay
The Pearl
, which opened in 2013, is the crown jewel of Rosemary. The posh 55-room boutique hotel and spa caters to adults, which is good to know during spring break, when teens flood the Panhandle. The pool, in a courtyard surrounded by private terraces and curtained cabanas, is restricted to guests 21 and up. Request a room on the southwest side for a balcony with ocean views, and catch a sunset from the colorful rooftop bar. From $379


Photograph courtesy of Edward's

Where to eat
Across the street from the Pearl is Edward’s, a white-­tablecloth cafe that’s like a French bistro with a coastal Southern accent. Chef Ed Reese worked with James Beard Award–winning chef Frank Stitt in Birmingham before opening Edward’s in 2012. Enjoy live music on the patio most nights, and—if available—order the fish fingers appetizer. Nothing like the freezer-aisle variety, these are big, crispy, and flaky.

What else to do
For outdoor activities (other than reclining on the Pearl’s beach chairs), the hotel provides complimentary bikes and kayaks, as well as access to a racquet club and two nearby private golf courses, Camp Creek and Shark’s Tooth. Or spend the day at Grayton Beach State Park—just a 20-minute drive down the highway—where you can walk tree-lined trails full of wildlife, kayak on a serene lake, and ogle the impressively large dunes. Stay for dinner at the Red Bar, a quirky beach shack that serves strong drinks and large helpings of seafood specials under red lights. Hear live jazz Tuesday through Saturday.

Grayton Beach
Grayton Beach

Photograph by Caroline C. Kilgore

Fishing fix
Need frozen squid at 4 a.m.? No problem! Yellowfin Ocean Sports in Seagrove Beach (five miles down 30A) has a bait vending machine on the front porch so fishermen can get equipped 24/7.

For the Treasure Hunter
The Gulf’s shorelines are known for having some of the best shell hunting in North America. Rosemary’s quiet white sands make it easy to spot good ones, like colorful scallops, moon shells, and conchs. Get up early for the best finds.

This article originally appeared in our April 2015 issue.

2014 in Atlanta, as told by 14 #weloveATL Instagram photos

There’s more to cellphone snaps than selfies and documentation of everyone’s dinner. In 2012, photographers Brandon Barr, Aaron Coury, and Tim Moxley created the hashtag #weloveATL to curate Instagram shots for a gallery show. The label has become a badge of civic pride, with Atlantans tagging more than 100,000 photos. “We have been surprised from the beginning how much it has resonated,” says Barr. “I think it’s because we bring together a variety of people who don’t always get to interact—and empower ordinary citizens to tell compelling stories of their love of the city.” We asked the trio to select 14 images that represented this year.

1214_instagram02_oneuseonlyAndrea Corrona Jenkins @hulaseventy
Living Walls celebrated its fifth year of murals around the city. But civic art is nothing if not controversial . . .

1214_instagram03_oneuseonlyAmy Bley @amymbley
. . . just look at the Krog Street tunnel, painted over in October by artists objecting to a for-profit party there.

1214_instagram01_oneuseonlyJamie Allen @jameswilliamallen
Ponce City Market, we have witnessed your transformation and eagerly await your opening. 2015, promise?

1214_instagram07_oneuseonlyBrea Kellam @BREAmusic
Georgia State licensed the (daytime) signal of its iconic station WRAS 88.5 to GPB, prompting music biz outcry.

1214_instagram05_oneuseonlyPatrick Duffy @patrickduffy88
Get your Turner Field memories in now. Only two seasons left before the team decamps for Cobb.

1214_instagram011_oneuseonlyMaggie White @bittyfats
At over $100 million, midterm election spending set a record in Georgia this year—as did early voting.

1214_instagram014_oneuseonlyJorge Sigara @_sig_
In late summer, illegal dirt bike and ATV riders took to the Atlanta streets in group rides.


Jennifer Bhagia @littlebrownjen
Janelle Monáe was just one artist who opened for Outkast during a three-night homecoming stand.

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Tim Lampe @timlampe
For those not stuck in their cars, Snowpocalypse was a chance to do some Northeastern-type sledding.


Aaron Rich @aaronarich
Red sky at night? Nighttime rainbows? What’s going on here? June 5 was bizarre. And beautiful.


Kristen Buckley @maiownhero
On October 11, Atlantans (and everyone else) took to the streets for the 2014 Pride Parade.


Lucie Canfield @redbud
September 20 was a bad day for Zesto’s fans. The Ponce de Leon location shut down.


Jason Hales @jasonhalesphotography
The BeltLine’s annual Lantern Parade drew a record 20,000 marchers and spectators in 2014.

Yoyo Ferro @yoyoferro
King Kong didn’t attack downtown, but creative people of all stripes continue to move intown.

This article originally appeared in our December 2014 issue.

Dragon Con 2014 Parade

We checked out the Dragon Con parade down Peachtree Street this morning.  Here are a few of our favorite shots.

Hear: The surprising Big Boi, Game of Thrones mashup

Big Boi just released “Mother of Dragons,” a track inspired by The Game of Thrones character Khaleesi. It is the first song released from Catch the Throne, a Thrones-themed hip-hop mixtape. We’ve listened to the track multiple times and have concluded that the experience is only complete if you watch these GIFs while listening. #teamKhaleesi

Listen to the song at Pitchfork.


Get away to Oahu

Last winter I was so sick of holing up in my house, hiding from Atlanta’s dreary, cold weather, that I found myself daydreaming about a warm, tropical vacation. On a whim, I checked ticket prices to Hawaii and was shocked to find round-trip fares to Honolulu for $600. My boyfriend, Kyle Howser, and I bought tickets for May. That didn’t get me out of my hole as soon as I’d hoped, but just having a countdown made the frosty temps easier to bear.

We made a pact to squeeze in as many adventures as we could. We didn’t want to fly halfway across the world just to sit on the beach. We also focused on one island since we were only going to be there a week.

Oahu’s North Shore is a mecca for outdoor activities. Known as the most touristy of the Hawaiian Islands, Oahu is only 597 square miles. Its bad rep is unfortunate, though, because Waikiki is really the only tacky commercial area. There is plenty of unsullied landscape to explore. We set out on foot, flipper, board, bike, and wing. Some highlights of our trip:

Check out my view from the 2012 Triumph Bonneville we rented in Waikiki. We drove up the windward side of the island to the North Shore—along the Kamehameha Highway. Riding in the open air with the Pacific on our right and lush greenery on the left was a much cooler way to arrive than in a rental car.

Catering to thrill-seekers, Turtle Bay is the only resort on the North Shore. It offers a surf center, horseback riding, kayak tours, stand-up paddleboarding, snorkel equipment, and more. When we pulled up on our bike, the valets admired our ride: “Sick!” “Sweet!” “Awesome!” We’re sure they were local surfer dudes.

Photographs by Caroline C. KilgoreThe movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall was filmed at Turtle Bay, and it looks just as spectacular in person as it does on film (our one celebrity sighting: Demetri Martin). We could watch surfers from our room’s oceanfront balcony. And though we’re not usually into fruity drinks, we decided “when in Rome” and ordered cocktails at the pool bar. We later discovered even the locals drive up to Turtle Bay just for the Mai Tais.

We rented SUPs from Surf n Sea—a retro-looking, wood-paneled building with a surfboard-crammed porch. The outfitter offers two options for SUP renters: the bay directly behind the shop (where you might catch some waves) or the calmer Anahula River. Since we were beginners, the staff suggested the river. Balancing on the board was surprisingly easy. A few minutes in, it felt like we had the island to ourselves. We could watch turtles and colorful fish through crystal-clear water.

Waimea Valley is just up the Kamehameha Highway from the resort and across from the famous Waimea Bay (celebrated in the Beach Boys hit “Surfin’ USA”). The valley has an easy, well-maintained path that leads to a forty-five-foot waterfall where you can swim. The whole trail is surrounded by towering trees, winding roots, colorful birds, and historic plaques (including tales of Captain Cook).

The best food of the trip was in the small town of Haleiwa. We had breakfast at Cafe Haleiwa, a tiny place with laminated menus and a bathroom that you have to walk outside to reach. Don’t let the dive vibe fool you, though. We filled up on hearty egg dishes and savored being the only tourists among locals and pro surfers. In the afternoon we stopped at a roadside stand called Haleiwa Bowls. Their acai bowl (a blend of frozen acai, berries, bananas, and rice milk, topped with granola, apples, bananas, and coconut, all drizzled with honey) was to die for!

On one of our last days, we drove back down the coast for a sunrise hike. The Lanikai Trail is along a ridge, famous for a couple of World War II bunkers called pillboxes. We climbed up on one of the graffiti-covered structures and watched two SUP riders paddle to a pair of nearby islands called the Mokes. To the west we could see Kailua, where President Obama stays when he visits.

Photographs by Caroline C. Kilgore.

This article originally appeared in our January 2014 issue.

38. Snap a selfie at…

Grab your camera and head off to:

Stone Mountain
Where to take a selfie in Atlanta

Krog Street Tunnel
Where to take a selfie in Atlanta

Jackson Street Bridge
Where to take a selfie in Atlanta

CNN Center
Where to take a selfie in Atlanta

A Peachtree and Peachtree intersection
Where to take a selfie in Atlanta

Have fun!

Photographs by Caroline C. Kilgore

Back to 50 Best Things to Do

This article originally appeared in our April 2013 issue.

7. Feel the blues at Blind Willie’s

Atlanta’s venerable blues joint is named for one legend (Blind Willie McTell) and is the best place to see another: Francine Reed, whose soulful voice, feisty wisecracks, and dance-inducing songs mesh perfectly with the intimate dive bar’s New Orleans–inspired atmosphere. Make sure to get there early (so you aren’t forced to wait outside to comply with fire codes) and stay late—you don’t want to miss Reed’s notorious version of “Wild Women (Don’t Get the Blues).” blindwilliesblues.com

This article originally appeared in our April 2013 issue.

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