Happy Friday! Today we’re introducing a new weekly blog post called Friday Favorites, which will just be a collection of a local’s favorite places/things around town. Starting it off will be CVB marketing coordinator, Rachel (me!), so check out my favorites below:
Favorite Pizza: G&D Pizzaria
Not only is this my favorite pizza, it’s also my favorite restaurant. My mom has been going since she was in high school so I guess I was just born to love G&D. They offer DELICIOUS pizza, steaks, Greek specialties, and more. I’ve been told they even have a gluten-free pizza option! G&D is a local favorite, and I hope that you’ll stop by if you’ve never been! (Mizzou football head coach, Gary Pinkel, is constantly spotted there, too!)
2101 W. Broadway
Favorite Columbia trail: Forum Nature Area
It’s not as popular as trails like the MKT or Hinkson Creek, and that’s partly why I love the trail at Forum Nature Area. And nature area it is – I constantly spot wildlife when I’m there. I’ve had turtles and rabbits cross my path, deer watch me as I struggle to run and then give up to walk, ducks and geese and even swans hang out on the lake… The MKT also has a trail head here so maybe that’s why it is overlooked. There are no bicycles allowed but I’ve seen many a dog on a leash, and it’s the perfect place for a long walk.
2701 Forum Blvd.
Favorite Columbia gift: Chocolates from The Candy Factory
I received these truffles for Christmas, and they really must have known who they were dealing with because I LOVE chocolate. The Candy Factory always has the coolest gifts, including unique gift baskets, sugar free chocolate, and chocolate-covered potato chips.
701 Cherry St.
Favorite place for family fun: Going Bonkers
My niece and nephew (and every other kid) love this place, and I love it because I get to climb around with them. Adults love giant play-places, too! There’s also arcade games, food, and a quiet room for the parents to watch their kids from. It’s the perfect place for a rainy day!
3812 Buttonwood Dr.
Favorite local team: Mizzou Tigers football team
I grew up tailgating and going to the Mizzou football games, and of COURSE I chose the University of Missouri after graduating from high school. There’s something about the sea of black and gold that just fills my heart with pride, and I always love the Tigers, win or lose! People from all over the country flock to Columbia for game days, especially after joining the SEC. I actually love talking to visitors who are here to cheer for the opposing team (and not just because it’s part of my job!). It’s great seeing how much people love Columbia whether their team wins or loses, and I hope that my fellow locals feel the same way!
Favorite diner: 63 Diner
Another favorite from my childhood, and sometimes (okay, most of the time) I even order my childhood meal: grilled cheese with fries and a chocolate milkshake. The whole diner is covered floor to ceiling with typical 50’s decor, including a statue of Elvis. Oldies play over the speakers and the servers wear poodle skirts. What’s better than that?
5801 Hwy 763 N
Favorite park: Rock Bridge Memorial State Park
(Photo courtesy of Missouri Division of Tourism)
I’ve been making trips to Rock Bridge for years and never get sick of it, although I do miss not getting tired from all the steps on the Devil’s Icebox trail. I’m constantly taking pictures of wildlife or unique flowers, and I love exploring all the trails. I’ve never met a person who doesn’t think Connor’s Cave is awesome! If you would like to have a guided tour of Devil’s Icebox, just give them a call to set it up. Definitely a highly recommended place to see in Columbia.
5901 S. Hwy 163
Favorite dessert in The District: yogoluv
All I really have to say about yogoluv is that it never disappoints. Fill your cup with one of many flavors and cover it with your choice of toppings – fruit, syrups, candy and cookies, etc. I could lie and say I go for the healthy choice and get fruit but let’s be honest: I head straight to the cookie dough, Oreos, and Butterfingers. Prices depend on the weight of your masterpiece, so I sometimes I have force myself to go easy on the toppings.
201 S. 9th St.
Favorite season in Columbia: Autumn/Fall
(Photo of Flat Branch Park)
Some people may not realize it but Missouri has great scenery, and I’d have to say it’s best in the fall. Fall also means Mizzou football, beautiful weather (well, for the most part, it is Missouri after all), and great Columbia festivals. It’s the perfect time to check out some of our beautiful parks and trails or enjoy the patio of your favorite restaurant.
What do you think? Let us know if you check out any of my favorites, and keep your eye out for a new “Friday Favorites” next week!