Friday, July 31, 2009

An Evening in the Gardens

I think this year I accidentally came across one of the best ways to feel like an urban socialite without having to spend all the cash to accompany it. As a huge fan of Piedmont Park, and having visited the adjoining Botanical Gardens before, I had heard of and attended their "Cocktails in the Gardens" event once before. Held each Thursday in the summer, they have a new creative theme each month featuring the seasonal plant and the month's drink special - one of my favorites that I heard of last summer was "Boxwoods and Bloody Marys." The current one for July is "Passion Vine and Pina Coladas."

After paying for admission, you are treated to "light bites" from a different hot area restaurant each week - this is my favorite part! Recent places have included Craft (amazing!), Market, and the greek restaurant Zaya. These are restaurants that are out of my usual price range, but at the Cocktails event, they offer up a number of appetizers, almost enough for a light meal. Add to this the cash bar, live DJ, amazing plants, and cool scultpure exhibits like the current Moore one, and it instantly becomes quite the swank place to be on a Thursday evening in Atlanta for the young professional crowd.

The one downside of this event is that you have to pay for entrance if you are not a member. Being my curious self, I checked into the membership deal one day this spring - and it turns out, a Dual Membership pays itself off in only 2 visits, and lasts for a whole year! So that means you can attend these Cocktail events, and then come back in the fall for the next sculpture exhibit, and come at the holidays for the lights - all for free once you have visited two times. I highly recommend it, as do the few people that have come along with me as guests!