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The Mizzou Tigers kick off this FRIDAY, 1:30 PM at Memorial Stadium against the Arkansas Razorbacks.

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The CoMo Connect public transit system offers gameday shuttles to and from the stadium! Check out information on schedules and routes .

Check out The Mizzou Store on campus for gameday gear and more. We love Mizzou gold but this week is the Blackout game, so be sure to wear black!

Have questions about MU’s tailgating rules? Need a great game day recipe? Find everything you need on the Mizzou Tailgating website or on our Pinterest boards: Gear Up for Game Day and Tiger Tailgating.


Below is a list of some other great activities going on this weekend! Check out our calendar of events to see more.

Deja Vu Comedy Club presents AJ Finney, 9 PM Friday and Saturday
Deja Vu, 405 Cherry St.

Columbia College Men’s Basketball vs. Avila University, 8 PM Friday
Columbia College, 1001 Rogers St.

Mojo’s presents The Flood Brothers and The Kay Brothers, 9 PM Friday
Mojo’s, 1013 Park Ave.

Columbia College Men’s Basketball vs. Culver Stockton, 3 PM Saturday
Columbia College, 1001 Rogers St.

The Bridge presents Quinn DeVeaux, Man in the Ring, and Two-Bit Steve, 8 PM Saturday
The Bridge, 1020 E. Walnut

Mojo’s presents Trampled Under Foot and Big House, 9 PM Saturday
Mojo’s, 1013 Park Ave.

Mizzou Women’s Basketball vs. Milwaukee, 2 PM Sunday
Mizzou Arena

Roxy’s presents Downphase, Devices for Survival, Running from Paris, and Madora 8 PM, Sunday
Roxy’s, 1025 E. Broadway

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
Regal Stadium 14 Theater, 2800 Goodwin Pointe Dr.
Goodrich Forum 8, 1209 Forum Katy Parkway

2014 Autumn Exhibition
PS:Gallery, 1025 E. Walnut St.


Below is a list of Columbia restaurants that will be open on Thanksgiving:

11 Eleven, open 6 AM – 10 PM
Located at The Broadway Hotel, 1111 E. Broadway

Applebee’s, 4 PM – close
2601 E Broadway, 2010 I-70 Dr. SW

Bob Evans, 8 AM -8 PM
3000 Clark Lane

Cheerleader Pub, 3 PM – 11 PM
1400 Cinnamon Ln.

Churchill’s Italiano, evening hours
Located at the Holiday Inn Executive Center, 2200 I-70 Dr. SW

Cracker Barrel, regular hours
3304 Clark Ln.

The Deuce Pub and Pit
3700 Monterey Dr.

Glenn’s Cafe, 3 PM – close
Located at The Tiger Hotel, 29 S. 8th St.

Golden Corral, 10:30 AM – 6 PM
3421 Clark Ln.

Grand Cru, 10 AM – 2 PM
2600 S. Providence Rd.

Garden Grille, 4 PM – 10 PM
Located at the Hilton Garden Inn, 3300 Vandiver Dr.

IHOP, regular hours
51 Conley Rd.

Jazz, A Louisiana Kitchen, evening hours
217 N. Stadium Blvd.

Lone Star, 11 AM – 8 PM
3220 Vandiver Dr.

McDonald’s, regular hours
415 Stadium Blvd, 3206 Clark Ln, 500 Nifong Blvd.

TFI Fridays, regular hours
3030 I-70 Dr. SE

Truman’s Bar and Grill, 2 PM – 1:30 AM
3304 W. Broadway Business Park Ct.

Happy Thanksgiving

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Friday Favorites

Today’s favorites come from Sarah Dresser, Program Specialist for the Office of Cultural Affairs. Everyone have a great weekend!

Place for a coffee break, low key lunch, pre-movie snack, or late night drink:
Uprise Bakery

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You’ve probably guessed that I frequent Uprise Bakery quite a bit. Possibly 3 or 4 times in one day! The good thing is that the atmosphere is always welcoming to my recurring visits. There is a wide array of unique soups and sandwiches as well as a great selection of craft brews. Plus you can take food and drinks with you into the neighboring Ragtag Cinema or enjoy on the patio if the weather is nice. Another perk is the staff’s great taste in music.

Outdoor happy hour:
Mojo’s Forrest Rose Park

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When the weather starts to warm up again in the spring, one of the first places on my list to go is Forrest Rose Park at Mojo’s for Friday afternoon happy hour. It is the perfect place to start the weekend and enjoy free live music on the patio or at a picnic table in the grass.

Event to make new friends:
True/False Film Fest


The light at the end tunnel each winter is True/False Film Fest. Between the documentary films, parties, parades, and busker musical showcases, you are bound to connect with some new people. Some of my best CoMo friendships were forged at True/False!

Place to see the unexpected:
Roots N Blues N BBQ

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I expect to see and hear great music at this festival. However, did I expect to see a roaming, glowing, larger-than-life winged caterpillar float overhead during the Avett Brothers concert? The answer is no. There are artsy surprises around every corner at this music festival in Stephens Lake Park. Hanging in the trees, wandering through the crowds, wherever you look there are art installations to intrigue and amazing you.

Runner up in this category: True/False’s March March

True False parade1 2014 Photos-3 -Elise

 (Photo courtesy of Missouri Division of Tourism)

Ride to Rocheport:
Boone Dawdle

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My favorite way to ride to Rocheport is to dawdle – that is to Boone Dawdle. This annual event (also a fundraiser for True/False) is the perfect combination of all of my favorite things – fun with friends biking on the Katy Trail, live music along the way, trailside surprises, documentary film, great food, spectacular views of the Missouri River, and more!

Place to re-balance:
alleyCat Yoga

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(Photo from Facebook)

At least once a week, I need to take an hour or two to step away from all the hustle and bustle of Columbia and focus inward. alleyCat Yoga is my favorite place to quiet the mind as well as practice my favorite yoga poses. I’ve enjoyed many different classes, which are offered in a range of styles for students of all ages and all levels of experience.

Food truck:
Ozark Mountain Biscuit Co.

ozark biscuit

(Photo from Facebook)

I love that Columbia has embraced the food truck culture! Throughout the week, I will track on social media where to locate the trucks. My favorite has to be the biscuit truck. I enjoy the Souie Pig, smoked pulled pork piled on a biscuit and drenched in tangy arkan-sauce topped with vinegar cabbage slaw. Yum!

Theatre experience:
GreenHouse Theatre Project

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(Photo from Facebook)

A theatre experience like no other in Columbia! GreenHouse Theatre Project’s motto is “innovative theatre in unexpected places.” You will see classical, new works, and experimental theatre productions at a variety of venues (think: art galleries, yoga studios, and even rooftops).

Place to mingle:
PS Gallery

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(Photo credit Chelsea Myers)

I’m always looking for an excuse to dress up and mingle with downtown. Even better in the presence of new and thought-provoking art. PS Gallery is the perfect location to mingle, with bi-monthly rotating exhibits that feature local, regional, and national artists. Opening receptions feature tasty bites from local eateries as well as the opportunity to chat with the exhibiting artists, see your friends and make new ones.

Cool thing to tell people about Columbia:
Public Art

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“Look Out Point” by Carol Fleming

Columbia has an unbelievable collection of public art! Look around and you will see art along the street, on parking garages, outside city hall, in front of the library, on traffic signal boxes, and the list goes on. One of the best aspects of my job with the Office of Cultural Affairs is to spread the awareness of the diversity of public art in the city. OCA has a hard copy and online Public Art Guide, and a new mobile app for iPhone was just launched with Otocast. Take a self-guided tour with one of the guides and learn more about Columbia’s rich cultural landscape!

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Friday Favorites

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Friday! Emily Lorenz from Show-Me State Games has shared some of her CoMo favorites with us:

I am excited to be able to share my Friday Favorites. I am the Marketing Coordinator for the Show-Me State Games, and have lived in Columbia for 12 years. Many of my favorites have changed a bit over the years, from when I started college to now, a married mom of two. But that is one of my favorite things about living here – there are shops, restaurants, and things to do, no matter your age.

Favorite Park: Philips Lake Park

Philips Lake 2

This is such a hard one to pick because there are so many I visit on a frequent basis. I took walks at Stephens on almost a daily basis as an undergrad and now love bringing my kids to play at Bethel and Flat Branch. However, one of my new favorites is Philips Lake Park. It is absolutely gorgeous, quiet, and has such a nice trail. The Show-Me State Games hosts our triathlon there as well as a Pumpkin Fun Run for kids, and it’s such a great park.

Favorite Patio: Las MargaritasLas Margaritas Patio

(Las Margaritas Patio, Las Margaritas on Corporate Lake Facebook)

The space now occupied by Las Margaritas has had many different names over the years. It was walking distance from the first apartment my husband and I lived in together and we walked there many nights.  I love how the patio overlooks the lake and gets both shade and sun. It’s great for a date or family night.  And one of the best parts is that Las Margaritas food (not to mention margaritas…) is delicious, its clean and has great service.

Best Kept Secret: The Groom Room

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Well, it’s not exactly a secret, as the owner is very busy, but it’s a hidden little gem, great for kid’s haircuts, men’s grooming services, and select spa services for ladies. It is perfect for toddler haircuts since there is a fun little car, movies, and snacks to keep kids happy! She also does mom-daughter pedicures which I am so excited to do with my little girl.

Local shop: Lizzi and Rocco’s

Lizzi and Rocco's Natural Pet Market

(Photo From Lizzi & Rocco’s Natural Pet Market Facebook page: Kyle, Jessica, and the bosses – Rocco, left, and Lizzi)

Five years ago we adopted a dog from Second Chance Columbia. She’s been a part of our family ever since, and whenever we feel like treating her, Lizzi and Rocco’s is our choice. They have tons of healthy and delicious treats for our furry friend and they also host a lot of events. My kids love going, too, because they always get to make new doggie friends!

Summer Activity:  Little Mates Cove

Little Mates Cove

This summer I discovered Little Mates Cove at Twin Lakes Park. My 1-year-old and 3-year-old both fell in love and it really has helped my daughter get more comfortable being in the water. It’s a fun, relaxing experience, and I only wish it was open longer…summer keeps me busy.

Columbia Event:  Show-Me State Games

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Speaking of keeping busy in the summer, I know it is cheating a bit, but the Show-Me State Games really is my favorite Columbia event. From watching the kids in the Parade of Athletes at the Opening Ceremonies to seeing seniors in their 80s competing, it is a very inspirational, rewarding experience, and I am proud to be a part of it.

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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! It sure is hot again today but we have a beautiful weekend in store! Today’s favorites come from Nate Brown, Manager of External Relations at the Reynolds Journalism Institute. You may also know him as @touristinresidence on Instagram – if not, check out his great CoMo photos! Today’s blog features his photos as well.

Polar Plunge

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Sure, it’s easy to accept an ice bucket challenge during a hot summer day. But would you run or dive into a frozen lake in winter? That pretty much describes Polar Plunge Columbia, a local fundraiser that benefits Special Olympics Missouri. Braver souls than me take the plunge every year at Stephens Lake. The next Polar Plunge is February 21, 2015.

Mizzou Volleyball

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No matter the final score, the women of Mizzou Volleyball are winners. Their home games at the Hearnes Center are family friendly, and include the opportunity for children to come down to the floor and give high-fives to the athletes during player introductions. A fan favorite: autograph sessions after select games. The players are most gracious during the meet-and-greets, and they wield their magic markers until the last person in line gets an autograph. I suspect some of the little girls who attend these games will some day wear the black and gold for Mizzou Volleyball. The 2014 season home opener is today.


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Where in Columbia can you flip through vinyl records, rent or buy a video, have a drink or a meal, and enjoy said nourishment while watching a big-screen movie — under one roof? The answer is Hittsville, the former Coca-Cola bottling plant on Hitt Street. Ragtag Cinema, Uprise Bakery, Ninth Street Video and Hitt Records share a roof — and their employees share a spirit of camaraderie — but they’re four separate entities. Speaking of movies, watching one at Ragtag is the closest thing to seeing a flick at home without having to clean up after your friends leave. Did I mention leather sofas? (They have upholstered seats as well.)

Historic brick streets

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There’s buried treasure in Columbia: the city’s original brick streets. Many are covered, including Broadway (between Aldeah Avenue and William Street), Ninth Street and Rollins Street. Fortunately, some of historic brick streets can still be seen and enjoyed, including Cherry Street (between Fourth and Seventh streets) and University Avenue (between College Avenue and William Street). Many of these streets are more than 100 years old and in good shape. In March, the City Council approved a policy to maintain and restore the brick streets (including removing the pavement from some of the covered blocks). This is a map of the city’s brick streets.

Shelter Gardens and Fountain

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After a busy day at work, it’s nice to stop at Shelter Gardens to see the waterfall, listen to the birds or sit a spell in the one-room schoolhouse. This oasis of calm behind Shelter Insurance is a nice respite before continuing your journey home. Afterwards, depending on the time of year, you also could stop by the fountain in front of Shelter Insurance and watch the sun set. The fountain is a popular destination after dark as well.

Peace Park

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Peace Park is one of the largest green spaces in the city center. Full of trees, walk paths and a stream, the park is a refuge for book-reading students, a rehearsal space for musicians and — if you bring a hammock — a place to catch a quick nap. I’ve also seen residents and preschoolers enjoying the former McAlester Park, which was renamed Peace Park after the 1970 shootings at Kent State.

Les Bourgeois Vineyards

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As long as the earth continues to rotate on its axis, the best sunset is at Les Bourgeois Vineyards, enjoyed with a picnic, a bottle of wine and good friends.

Quick bites

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I could live on ice cream (and I have the waistline to prove it). My favorite flavors in Columbia are Sparky’s Homemade Ice Cream’s honey lavender and Buck’s Ice Cream’s Tiger Stripe. And every couple of weeks I stop by Kaldi’s and treat myself to a slice of gooey butter cake.

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Friday Favorites

Today we’re switching things up a little bit so below are CVB staff’s favorite “recent discoveries.” Even CoMo pros learn something new every day!

Katy Trail State Park, Rocheport

(Photo courtesy of Missouri Division of Tourism)

Amy: After a couple of years dedicated to NOT exercising, I recently challenged myself to do the Roots N Blues N BBQ 10K. With that goal set, my next step was figuring out the best way to train. As it turns out, the answer was right outside my office window – Flat Branch Park and the MKT trail. I began on the part of the trail near my office, but I’ve started to use different parts of the trail for variety. It doesn’t matter where you start, each part of the trail is beautiful and you forget you’re in the middle of Columbia. AND let’s not forget McBaine, where you can get on the Katy Trail and run alongside the Missouri River.   That’s enough to get you “up and running!”

(Columbia Transit Facebook)

Beth: The Chamber of Commerce invited the CVB ladies on a CoMo Connect ride so that we could learn more about the new system. We learned so much! For instance, did you know kids ages 18 and under ride for free? And you can go to their website to watch for your bus and find out what time it will be at your stop. Super easy to use!

(Back Space Therapeutic Massage Facebook)

Billye: My recent discovery is a new massage therapist. I have been going to see Christopher Schiefer, the owner of BackSpace Therapeutic Massage since about 2011. I’ve been seeing him, and only him, for a few years now. However, Christopher recently had to have surgery on his shoulder and I was in desperate need for a massage. I reluctantly made an appointment with Ashley in his office. I am pleased to say that she did an equally wonderful job of massaging my stress away. I would see any therapist at BackSpace. It’s a wonderful, locally owned business, and they show that it’s more than just a business, they really care about you.

(Alumni Hall – Mizzou Facebook)

Julie: My mother-in-law bought a shirt for me from Alumni Hall, and I needed to exchange it. I had never been there before and was really impressed by their great selection! I didn’t have time to look through everything while I was there so I exchanged the shirt for a gift card. I can’t wait to go back and pick out my Mizzou gear!

Megan: Known to the SEC faithful for years, Zaxby’s serves up delicious southern favorites, which of course means most of them are fried. I’m very partial to the onion rings dipped in Zax sauce, but they also have salads, sandwiches, chicken in many forms and incredible sweet tea. You can either dine in or drive through, and their food is always fast and delicious. It’s good to be in SEC country!

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Rachel: A few weeks ago, I joined Missouri Division of Tourism on a FAM (familiarization) tour of some of Columbia’s restaurants. Room 38 was one of our stops, and they made a few dishes for us to photograph and sample. One of those dishes was their famous lobster mac n cheese. Let me just say, I HATE seafood, so I was thinking, “there is no way I’m going to like this.” But I tried it anyway and oh my gosh – I loved it. I think I have dreams about it.

(Photo by Madeline Beyer, Cafe 115 at Mizzou North Facebook)

Terra: The University Club recently opened Cafe 115 at Mizzou North, located in the Old Ellis Fischel Cancer Center, now the home of several University offices and the Museum of Art and Archaeology and Museum of Anthropology. Open from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., they serve breakfast and lunch featuring daily specials. Also, you can purchase a Cafe 115 tumbler for $7.00 and enjoy $1.00 fountain drinks, iced tea and coffee. It’s nice to have a new convenient spot for lunch on the north side of Columbia. I’m looking forward to trying it out soon.


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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! Today’s favorites come from Heather Cole, Assistant to the City Manager of Columbia and Columbia Tourism Ambassador.

Wow, I feel a little like that nun in the Sound of Music doing a little number about a few of my favorite things. Lucky for you this is just a blog – because I can’t sing, play guitar or rhyme. Okay, so I’m a 30-something with a BF and no Mini-Me’s, who has lived in CoMo for about 12 years now. I work downtown and I play downtown. If I could wiggle into a swanky loft downtown, I’d do that too. I love outside adventures, music, food and beer. So with that demographic in mind, these are a few of my favorite things. (C’mon…you can’t read that last line and not sing it Julie Andrew’s style!)

When the dog bites…
Best Park: Stephens Lake Park

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I love Columbia parks, but this one has to be my primo pick because of all it has to offer. Not only is this beautiful park great for a run, a swim or stop at the splash-park in the summertime, but it’s also great for sledding when Snowpocalypse hits in the winter too! It’s also host to great music events including the free concerts at the SLP amphitheater on Thursday evenings and of course, serves as the new home to the Roots & Blues BBQ! (The Avett Brothers are coming!! **Squeal!!**)

But what makes SLP even more unique than other parks? A fairy lives there. Before you stop reading and call some kind of hotline for assistance – hear me out. I stumbled upon a tiny little fairy door built into the base of a tree one day in SLP. Ppffft! OF COURSE I OPENED IT! Inside was a tiny tin painted with ivy. The tin contained a handwritten note from a fairy introducing herself as Willow, a tree fairy who just moved to the park and was trying to make new friends. The tin also contained a tiny pencil for people to leave messages back and forth. There were tons of messages on there – some questions and some welcoming messages. This was the CUTEST project I think I have ever stumbled upon. I mean…seriously? Her favorite meal is dandelion soup for crying out loud! That. Is. Awesome. We have some mega cool creative folks in this town. Am I right?

When the bee stings…
Best Event: The Boone Dawdle

I HATE having to pick just one!!!! Maybe I can come up with a pseudonym and do another guest blog with a totally new list of awesome things in town. (If you see a blog in the near future from “Sue Perman”…it’ll be our little joke. Just laugh to yourself.) Back to biz-naz: The Boone Dawdle. This event meshes so many awesome things into one event. Films, music, biking, food and fun! This event takes place in August as a mid-year fundraiser for the True/False Film Festival. You bike from Flat Branch Park to Les Bourgeois Winery. There are plentiful fun stops along the way with bands, ice cream treats, silly activities and games. When you get to the Blufftop Bistro, you get amazing music, food, drinks, prizes and best of all….an outdoor screening of a great film on the blufftop overlooking the Missouri River. It even features special guests, like film Directors for Q&A time.

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Last year, we stopped for a photo opp on the moon. These were our best “no gravity” faces. Obviously. I also got solid advice from the mysterious “Advice Machine” which told me to sing to my cat in his native tongue to get him to stop meowing at me all the time. That’s solid stuff there. Solid.

When I’m feeling sad…
Favorite brews: Logboat Brewing Company

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This place is pretty new to CoMo and is already wildly popular. Not only do they have great brews on tap (try em all with the sampler flight!), but they also have an AWESOME yard with plenty of outdoor space for games or general outdoor laziness. “But I wish they served food” – said no one, because the food trucks frequent this place on a regular basis! Hit me with an Ozark Mountain Biscuit Company Haughty Hillbilly sandwich and a Logboat Lookout Pale Ale and I AM GOLDEN!!
Disclaimer: Those are not all for me. And if they were…don’t judge. But they weren’t.

I simply remember my favorite things…
Best BBQ Sauce: Sycamore Restaurant

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(Photo courtesy of Missouri Division of Tourism)

Yeah…it’s that good that it deserves its own “best of” category. The BBQ sauce they put on their pork sliders and meatloaf is so amazing that I could probably have an I.V. set up to pump this straight into my veins. (Yes, I know – that defeats the purpose of getting to taste it, but I think I need this BBQ sauce to live.) This place has great food, the bartenders make great drinks, it’s charming…AND they participate in Earth Hour by having a nice candlelight dinner hour every year. Who loves the Earth? Sycamore does.

And then I don’t feeeeeeeel…
Best Dessert on the face of the planet: U Knead Sweets

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(Tira Mizzou Cupcake)

You can’t go wrong with pretty much anything in this place but if you’re looking to really knock your sweet socks off – the Tira-Mizzou Cupcake is a must hog…I mean have. You’ll tell yourself that you’ll only eat half and save the other half for your boyfriend, but you won’t. You’ll eat the entire thing because you can’t stop yourself because it’s soooo good and then you’ll have to make up this wild story to tell your boyfriend about how you fell down on the sidewalk by the creek and the other half rolled away into the mouth of a crocodile and even though you wanted to get all “Romancing the Stone” on that croc and fight him for that cupcake, you decided to let that cake go because even crocs need good cupcakes. True story.

Sooo baaaaaad….
Best cat in town: My cat Simon of course.

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Just kidding (but not really), I mean CAT-TV! Columbia Access Television is an independent community media center that operates the public access tv channel for Columbia.  CAT-TV makes it possible for anyone in the community to get training, use equipment and have your own tv show! They have a fun and helpful staff that can take CAT members from no-experienced newbies, to producing and directing all stars. James Cameron got his start here. (that’s a lie, I’m just name-dropping now.)

But seriously…how cute is my cat?

Thanks for tuning in to hear about some of my CoMo top picks. I hope you get a chance to try them all out.

Cheers and a Happy Friday to all!

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Friday Favorites

Today’s favorites come from Columbia Tourism Ambassador, Carla Hunter.

When Alumni come back to CoMo, they look forward to visiting their favorite eating and drinking establishments from their days at the University of Missouri. When the friends I have known since college are visiting, they normally request going to the following traditional destinations:

The Heidelberg:

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Thank goodness The Heidelberg rebuilt after the fire that significantly damaged their building in 2003. This local landmark was voted “Best Happy Hour” in 2014 and features Buy One-Get One Free appetizers.  Popular sandwiches include their Reuben and their house made pork tenderloin, which is double the size of the bun. Convenient for Reunions, The Berg has a Brunch Buffet on Sundays and will reserve space for seating large parties.

Sub Shop:

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This locally-owned sandwich shop was a popular destination for Sunday dinner during my college years.  While the Sub Shop on campus was torn down when the Reynolds Alumni Center was built, the restaurant on 8th Street is located just a short distance away. The menu and their ordering system, which uses playing cards, are similar to the 1970’s when they first opened. And, fortunately, the bread they use when making their sandwiches still tastes the same.

Broadway Diner:

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While some can’t recollect the specifics about their times at Broadway Diner, this local relic is still fondly remembered as part of infamous weekend activities. Moved to a different location (from Broadway to 4th Street), the building itself is as unique as its signature dish, the Stretch.

Shakespeare’s Pizza:

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Decades before being voted by Good Morning America as the “Best College Hangout,” Shakespeare’s Pizza was a popular favorite of both students and locals. With two additional locations now in Columbia, it is somewhat easier to get a table on a busy weekend. The South and West locations also have large party rooms, which are convenient for Reunion get-togethers.

Booches Billiard Hall:

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There have been no noticeable changes at Booches over the last several decades. The menu features popular slider hamburgers served on pieces of wax paper. Long lines routinely extend out the door on busy weekends.

I recommend that Alumni try some additional CoMo restaurants that have opened since they graduated. These establishments reflect Columbia’s ever-changing personality. Each of these is also easy walking distance within The District.

Kui Korean BBQ:

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Columbia has a wide variety of ethnic restaurants. While it is hard to choose just one, I took a former college roommate to try Kui Korean BBQ on 9th Street last winter. With the flavorful food and friendly service, she now asks to go back each time she is in town. Their menu offerings are reasonably priced and include soup and salad. Their flavored teas are also a great addition to your meal.

Billiard’s on Broadway:

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If you want a delicious grilled burger, there is another popular option in CoMo. Located on Broadway near the western edge of the District is Billiard’s on Broadway. They have a large seating area and lengthy menu including hot dogs and house cut French fries. While waiting on your burger to be made according to your size and specifications, you can play a game of darts or pool.

Sparky’s Homemade Ice Cream:

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Sparky’s got national attention with their cicada-inspired ice cream several years ago. However, it is the flavors they create each day using local and seasonal ingredients that have gotten them outstanding recognition. Open 10 years, Sparky’s is always a fun stop along 9th Street. Upon request, their ice cream creators will also make a unique flavor for a special occasion like a college reunion.

Room 38:

Room 38 lobster mac 2opens IMAGE file Room 38 has a daily Happy Hour featuring specialty drinks and original appetizer creations. Their menu is described as modern global cuisine, with sharing plates such as edamame, seared dumplings, and prosciutto wrapped asparagus. Their lobster mac and cheese is simply too good to share.

Columbia has a wide range of restaurant options including the traditional spots that stand the test of time, as well as a newer selection that will provide a pleasant surprise. Have fun trying something new or returning to an old favorite.

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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! Today’s favorites come from Tourism Development Manager, Julie Ausmus –

It’s Friday in July, my favorite day of the work week and my favorite time of the year! Throw in a payday, and it doesn’t get much better. Before I leave on vacation to one of my favorite places with some of my favorite peeps, I’d like to share some of my other favorites:

Favorite summer activity in The District: Dog Days Sidewalk Sale

Dog Days - from The District FB

(Photo by The District)

I always look forward to the Dog Days of Summer Sidewalk Sales downtown. The sidewalks are full of merchandise – at special ‘dog days’ prices, and people are everywhere, shopping, eating lunch – there’s just always a good vibe in the air. I’m really not much of a shopper, but these sales somehow change that for just a little while. Some of my favorite places to check out are American Shoe, Calhoun’s, Tiger Spirit, Dryer’s, My Sister’s Circus and this year, now that I have a grandbaby, I couldn’t resist checking out Little Owl Boutique. (That was probably a big mistake!) It’s just fun shopping outside on the sidewalk, and I am ALL about finding a great bargain!

Favorite summer event: The Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair from FB page

(Photo from Boone County Fair Facebook page)

Along with the “Dogs Days” of summer comes the Boone County Fair. I was raised in Boone County and enjoyed the fair in my small hometown, Centralia. So when my three kids were younger we always made it a point to go to the fair. They just wanted to spend time on all the rides and eat funnel cakes and cotton candy, but I’ve always enjoyed walking through the multipurpose building and checking out all the 4H projects the kids have worked so hard on these past several months. I was in 4H as a youngster and vaguely remember sewing an apron or something lame, but the kids nowadays really impress me with some of their projects – all deserving of blue ribbons I think. And you can’t go to the Fair without checking out the animals! The amount of time, devotion, dedication, and love the kids put into raising their animals is amazing. I’ve always wanted a cute little lamb to take home with me.

Favorite place for live music: 9th Street Summerfest

Julie and Randy Houser - 9th St. Summerfest

(Julie and Randy Houser from 9th Street Summerfest!)

Summerfest on Ninth Street, of course! I’ve been to several of these concerts, and year after year the entertainment keeps getting better. The ticket prices are always reasonable, the crowds are big (but not overwhelming), and the beer is cold. I just love the atmosphere, and there’s never a “bad seat” in the house.

Favorite lunch: International Cafe

International Cafe

(International Cafe menu – find it on their website)

This favorite I owe to my co-workers. They are always introducing me to new things and pushing me out of my comfort zone – for my own good. Until a few years ago, I had never been near or inside the International Café. I don’t know if it’s because it was “hidden” for years on Hitt Street (it’s now on 9th Street) or if I was just being Judgey McJudgerson thinking that “international” food would be awful – after all I’m all about burgers and fries. So when I was introduced to gyros, hummus and taziki, I was hooked! My favorite is the Greek Salad or chicken kabob sandwich with taziki. Whenever someone in the office says “I’m hungry, what should we have for lunch?” I’m the first to yell “International!” (Editor’s note – this actually happened in the office today)

Favorite local landmark: The Columns

8thStCir 3 92111opens IMAGE file

(Photo courtesy of the Mizzou Botanic Garden)

I graduated from Mizzou back in the 80s. I worked part time as a student in the Arts and Science Dean’s Office so I spent a great deal of time walking all over campus delivering packets of “timely” information to department heads (this was before we had email – hard to imagine, right?!) I always enjoyed the beauty of the campus and the history that came with it. I spent a majority of my work breaks sitting on the columns and enjoying the view. At that time the columns were 90 years old and I was always in awe of their massive size and history. I still enjoy taking a work break and walking to the columns. They are still a beautiful sight with great history and they bring back some of my favorite college memories!

Favorite place to shop: Columbia’s antique shops

Midway Antique Mall

 (Photo from Midway Antique Mall’s Facebook page)

As I get older I’ve come to realize that there are many things I really enjoy now that I did not enjoy when I was younger, and vice versa. As I kid, my friend and I would travel around Boone County with her parents to various flea markets and antique stores. I always thought they were just buying a bunch of junk, honestly. We always wished we were at the mall instead – or the Parkade Center as it was called in those days! J Now I’d much rather be at a flea market than in a mall! I don’t know what it is specifically but I just enjoy walking through Midway Antique Mall, Itchy’s Flea Market or Artichoke Annie’s looking for that special eclectic treasure. Or maybe it’s just because I like to see things that remind me of my Grandma Emma and Aunt Pearl. I usually come home with some type of miniature trinket, a book or a piece of furniture that is going to be my next big DIY project. (We all know how that goes – I have 4 projects in my basement that I’ve yet to start – darn Pinterest!) Anyway, like I said before I’m all about finding a great bargain and these flea markets usually have some of the best.

Thanks for allowing me to share some of my favorites.  Columbia has a lot to offer and even though I’m heading out of town for a favorite vacation spot, as next week comes to an end, I will look forward to coming home to my favorite – CoMo.

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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! (Don’t forget – it’s an Artrageous Friday!) Today’s favorites come from CVB Convention Services Manager, Terra Crane.

I absolutely LOVE all that Columbia has to offer, and I’ll always be a country girl at heart so my Friday favorites feature outdoor activities. Some go a little beyond Columbia’s city limits.

Favorite Adventure: Exploring at Rock Bridge Memorial State Park

Rock Bridge State Parkopens IMAGE file

My husband and I love to take our kids hiking and exploring at Rock Bridge State Park. This beautiful park is covered with magnificent wonders of nature. From throwing rocks in the creek to finding and following animal tracks, there’s never a dull moment. We can walk for miles and miles, and no one adventure is ever the same.

Favorite Girl Time: Enjoying a glass of wine at Les Bourgeois A-Frame

Les Bougopens IMAGE file

(Photo courtesy of Les Bourgeois) 

Having a house full of boys, it’s always nice to find some time for getting together with just the girls. The A-Frame is the perfect location to unwind with sisters and gal pals. It’s a great place to appreciate each other’s company and sip on a glass (or bottle) of Riverboat Red, all while enjoying the breathtaking view of the Missouri River.

Favorite Tour: University of Missouri’s Bradford Research and Extension Center

Bradfordopens IMAGE file

There is so much to see and learn about in the world of agriculture today, and I get my fix by listening to the staff at Bradford. Bradford is a great place to learn about new research methods in crop, soils, entomology, pathology, turf and other disciplines. Tours are given by tractor-pulled bleacher wagons around the farm. I am always amazed by how many different varieties there are of tomatoes, corn, peppers, pumpkins, flowers and more. This farm also raises and harvests fresh water prawn and makes its very own corn maze. It’s abundant with educational opportunities!

Favorite Family Fun Spot: Smiley Lane Park and Smithton Park

Smiley Lane Parkopens IMAGE file

If you’re looking for great playgrounds that aren’t too crowded but still have plenty of equipment, look no further. There are so many little known parks in the Columbia and these are just a couple. Race down the double slides or relax on the swings. The kids will be glad you took them to a playground all of their own.

Favorite Party: Pool party at Lake of the Woods Pool

To be honest, I’m not the biggest fan of swimming, but I do really like getting together with friends and family to have a pool party. Lake of the Woods Pool is a little off of the beaten path, and it has just enough things to do to make a big splash! The pool can be reserved for after-hours parties at a minimal cost, and food and drinks (non-alcoholic) can be brought in for private rentals.

Favorite Happy Hour:  Hanging with Friends on Shiloh’s patio

Shilohopens IMAGE file

Right in the heart of downtown Columbia, Shiloh’s exciting atmosphere is the place to be for drinks and appetizers after a long day’s work. My friends and I have been known to gather here for a beer or cocktail and some good food, although we tend to linger a while longer than “Happy Hour.”

Favorite Summer Tradition: Boone County Fair and the Ham Breakfast

BCF Ham Breakfast - BCF fb

I’ve been going to the Boone County Fair for at least the past 20 years. Here you can find fun for all ages.  Entertainment includes a Demolition Derby, Truck & Tractor Pull, Motocross Racing and more. My family and I especially enjoy the Children’s Barnyard and livestock shows. The fair kicks off with a parade and continues with experiences that build memories for a lifetime. I particularly look forward to the Boone County Fair Ham Breakfast every year as it is an annual date with my dad.

Have a great weekend!

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Friday Favorites

Hope everyone is having a great week! Today’s favorites come from CVB Senior Administrative Assistant, Billye Clemons.

Columbia is loaded with lots of free activities to do all the time. Having four kids, three still at home and one at the Naval Academy, I’m always watching our budget, so the more free stuff we can do the better, and Columbia has lots to offer! Here is a list of my favorites, complete with an insider tip on what to bring for each:

Fire in the Sky:

Fire in the Sky - P and R fb

(Photo courtesy of Columbia Parks and Recreation)

One of my favorite events! We spend our time before dark at Flat Branch Park enjoying the craft activities provided by Parks & Rec, which change a little bit each year, but have included temporary tattoos, making sparkling hats, wind socks, streamers and my 4-year-old’s favorite, the bounce house, all while listening to live music. We also stock up on the kettle corn – the wait in line is worth it. Then… dark comes.  Tune your radio to 102.3 BXR and listen to the patriotic music while you watch an AMAZING fireworks display that can be seen from almost anywhere downtown. Don’t forget to wear red, white and blue.

Salute to Veterans Air Show: 

The roar of the engines, the smell of the smoke, and the excitement of that one jet that always sneaks up behind you and scares you when you aren’t expecting it. I love a good air show. They have police dogs doing demonstrations, the US Army Parachute Team, The Golden Knights with their Black & Gold canopies and their impressive team aerodynamics… all these things make me feel patriotic. I love every minute of it. Don’t forget your sunblock!

Movies in the Park: 

Movies in the Park - P and R FB(Photo courtesy of Columbia Parks and Recreation)

The 2nd Friday of the month from May to August, Columbia P&R hosts Movies in the Park. We bring a comforter and our own popcorn in a brown paper bag like my mom used to when we went to the drive-in. Movies are displayed on a large blow up screen at Flat Branch Park. The movies are older and usually something we’ve already seen, but the experience of seeing them outside, on a blanket, under the stars is something all my kids love. Bring insect repellent, though!


Spraygrounds at Stephens - P and R FB

(Photo courtesy of Columbia Parks and Recreation)

Hot and humid outside? I take my kids to Stephens Lake Park spraygrounds. My four-year-old enjoys the spraygrounds with water shooting high in the sky, to tickle her toes or her nose. She also loves playing in the sand leading into the swimming beach, where my older kids love to swim. Don’t forget your beach toys and again, sun block.

Shelter Gardens: 

Shelter Insurance(Photo courtesy of the Missouri Division of Tourism)

A beautiful way to spend an afternoon (or morning if you are an early bird). Spend time walking along the path looking at beautiful flowers, bushes and trees.  Sunday evenings in June and July you can catch a local band playing in the cedar gazebo.  There is also a waterfall, rock garden, Vietnam Veterans memorial and other features to enjoy. You can take your time so if you are with someone with little legs who gets tired fast, there is no rush. Bring your camera!

9th Street Summerfests: 

Randy Houser - Blue Note Flickr(Photo from Randy Houser Summerfest courtesy of The Blue Note)

One place I don’t usually take my kids. I save this one for me, mostly. I did take my son to see Darius Rucker when he was here (I still might call him Hootie). Get there early if you want to be up close! It gets hot and crowded, but it’s a live show with bands that are great and unique. I always leave feeling like I’ve experienced music that I wouldn’t on my usual favorite radio channels. Bring a personal fan.

Family Fun Fests: 

FFF circusopens IMAGE file (Photo of “Circus” Family Fun Fest)

Held every third Wednesday of the summer months in Flat Branch Park, the Family Fun Fests feature different family-friendly activities. This month the theme is “Summer Fun.” Check it out for yourself on July 16th, 6 pm. Bring your bathing suit and let the kids hit the spraygrounds at Flat Branch Park while you’re there.

Rock Bridge Memorial State Park:

Rock Bridge State Park

(Photo courtesy of the Missouri Division of Tourism)

Along with the usual hiking and biking, every Saturday and Sunday through August 31st you can participate in 15 minute tours of Connor’s Cave. Show up between 1 and 4 PM, and park volunteers will assist you once you make it to the cave. Be sure to call ahead of time, though, since weather and a shortage of volunteers could interfere with the tours – 573-449-7400. Bring your sense of adventure.

Art in the Park:

A Columbia favorite since 1958! Stroll through Stephens Lake Park in early June and check out work by more than 100 artists. There is something for everyone.  Buy art to take home with you or let the kids make their own! The festival features entertainment, kid’s activities, and live music. Bring your wallet. This event is free, but there is cool stuff to buy.

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