Wanna Soak Up The Sun?
I can see clearly now, the rain/snow/sleet is gone.
It’s sunny, y’all. And unlike the guy pictured above, we are not mad about it. The combination of rain, snow, and sleet that plagued Nashville for probably 5 weeks too long was like a Nicolas Cage film: not wholly unpleasant, but it felt never-ending and there was a lot of dramatic fog. We don’t know if this sunshine is here to stay (Nashville Severe Weather says we might be in for another winter storm in the next week), but we are going to pretend it is. There’s nothing on earth like a Nashville spring, and we are going to ride into the warmer months in style (with our windows down blasting Otis Redding and drinking iced coffee). It’s the Music City way. So here we go, y’all… the best warmish-weather Nashville activities for:
The Celestially Curious:
Star-Gazing at Dyer Observatory
Twinkle, twinkle, really big star.
IF YOU LIKE:
Science, re-runs of the Magic School Bus, guided tours, inquisitive people, books that talk about the universe, pretty lights, existential questions, that scene in A Walk To Remember where he buys her the star
Where the Nashville skyline can’t obstruct your view – the lovely Brentwood!
When the sky is overcast and you’re bundled up inside, it can feel like you, your Netflix queue, and your glass of wine are the only things that exist in the world. This is how to remind yourself that we are a part of something beautiful and much, much bigger than our day-to-day tasks. Nashvillians have been star-gazin’ at Dyer Observatory since 1953, and it is a Music City tradition that we absolutely love. For just $6.27 a person (starting in March), you can come to telescope night and observe the following: the rings of Saturn, the craters of the moon, the clouds on Jupiter. Crazy, wonderful stuff. You don’t even have to be super into science to appreciate it! Near the Star Chamber, the observatory hosts music nights: Bluebird on the Mountain, Opera on the Mountain, and Music on the Mountain. Tunes, sunsets, and celestial bodies? Count us in! Make sure you make a reservation. They don’t sell tickets at the door. AND, if you have any little ones at home that might be interested, take a look at Dyer’s summer camps!
The ‘Grammable Moment:
The Quaintest Picnic Ever At Arrington Vineyards
Ain’t no picnic like an Arrington picnic.
IF YOU LIKE:
Wine, sitting on the grass, slightly-longer-than-normal drives, rolling hills, taking some enviable Instagrams, hashtagging #nofilter, artisan food, any Meryl Streep movie ever
Arrington, TN – about 25 minutes outside the city!
Arrington is for lovers…of wine. And lovers, of course. This is a GREAT place to take a date or a small group of friends, and it is especially impressive in the warmer months. Impress your fellow adventurers with your sandwich-making skillz and pack an expertly-made picnic for your day out! If food-prepping isn’t your style, you can cheat a bit: Arrington has a partnership with “Simply Living Life” that allows you to sign up for a ready-to-eat picnic you can pick up when you arrive. And the pre-made picnic offerings sound uh-mazing. Like, really. The Tuscan picnic is $30/person and includes buffalo mozzarella wiht fresh basil and balsamic vinegar. The Village picnic features a peppered pork loin. We’re going to stop describing it (see the full menu here), or we will accidentally ditch our Tuesday responsibilities and go eat some fancy cheese on a hill. YOLO? Also, if you’re getting really crazy, Arrington offers hot air balloon rides. The most beautiful way to spend an afternoon. For wine (they have free tastings all day), we suggest getting the KB reserve or the Red Fox Red if you’re going to get a bottle. Which you should.
The Fellowship Junkie:
Porch Hangs & Iced Drinks
Break out your light cardis!
IF YOU LIKE:.
Christmas lights strung from barn wood, long conversations, giggling, ambient music, looking super cool in Ray Bans, bushwackers, iced drinks
All over the ‘ville. You can’t go a half a mile in Music City without encountering a quality porch.
Yeah, we’ll say it: Nashville is the number ONE market in the USA for some vibe-y porches. Just the perfect amount of twinkly lights & reclaimed wood, because we’re classy like that. Round up your friends by sending out a group text with a lot of sunshine emojis and head to one of the best patios in Nashville. We suggest:
If you’re hungry: Edley’s East or Edley’s BBQ in 12 South. Order a bushwacker. No regrets. If you’re in the mood for a burger or something lighter, check out Tavern in Midtown (and if you’re down for a pre-happy hour happy hour, try the red sangria).
If you’re thirsty: Crema’s porch has arguably the best view of Nashville in the city. Take in the sights – the pedestrian bridge, the batman building, LP field – while you sip on an iced cuban. If you wanna stick to 12 South, you can’t go wrong with a fruit tea at Frothy Monkey – it tastes like spring.
The Majestic Adventurer:
Yeah, that’s an actual waterfall. In Tennessee.
IF YOU LIKE:
Homeward Bound, water adventures, climbing on stuff, nature photography, anything ever pinned on a “travel” board on Pinterest, spring water, Man v. Wild, the scene in The Notebook where Allie jumps into the watering hole (yes, we are on a roll with the Nicholas Sparks movie references – hold your applause).
On the Blackburn Fork State Scenic River (say that ten times fast) in Jackson County!
We have never had a more magical adventure than our trek through Cummins Falls. A huge expanse of land and water, this place has it all. Winding trails, creeks to hike across, and OH YEAH – a breathtaking waterfall and swimming hole. The water still may be a little too cold, but as soon as it warms up this is our number one warm weather adventure for those who like a little bit of outdoor action. Make sure you bring water shoes – the only down side to having to climb through the creek to get to the waterfall is the pain of walking on rocks. Bring along your friends who are willing to get a little dirty, and dress as casual as possible. Bring your bathing suit and a waterproof case to pack your phone/camera in, because you’re going to want to get pictures. Seriously, this place is a dream and you have to go.
The Exercising Explorer:
Bike Ride On Natchez Trace Parkway
Hit the road, Jack.
IF YOU LIKE:
Greenery, Lance Armstrong before all that stuff happened, lycra, jammin’ playlists, Nike commercials from the 1990s, killer views, shopping at Academy
Near Loveless Cafe, but the Parkway itself spans multiple states!
Just do it. You’ll feel like you’re in your own active wear commercial when you rent a bike (the shop is less than a mile from Loveless) for a jaunt down part of the Natchez Trace Parkway (that is, unless you want to go all the way to Mississippi and beyond, but we’re assuming this isn’t a Forrest Gump situation). This is a great thing to do with an equally motivated friend OR – call us crazy – by yourself. There’s something about catchin’ some rays and getting some alone time to think. The Natchez Trace Parkway is gorgeous and has tons of great historical stops along the way that you don’t want to miss. And, to reward yourself for picking the most physically taxing activity on the list, you should grab some biscuits and jam from Loveless Cafe when you’re done. You deserve it.
So, there you have it. Live by the wise words of Sheryl Crow, Nashville, and soak up that sun. We’ll be out and about finding all the outdoor Nashville fun that your heart could desire. Make sure you have Wannado so we can keep you in the loop! See you out there, y’all.
– Your local guide.