2015 Readers’ Choice Awards
BEST NEW BUSINESS
Started by Carrie and Will Robinson the community has shown their support by buying their kitchenware as well as taking part in cooking classes. Will Robinson may very well be the best shopkeeper in Macon. It’s rare to find someone as knowledegable and helpful as he is when you are shopping.
BEST PLACE TO WORK OUT
Truly, they are everywhere and when they moved into the Dannenberg Lofts, it made living there that much better. Kinetix really works to support the businesses and events in the community and work each day to keep their members fit.
BEST LOCAL ANNUAL EVENT
BRAGG JAM (SAVE THE DATE JULY 25)
Bragg Jam finally stole this award from the Cherry Blossom Festival. The last Saturday of July is Macon’s ultimate summer music festival where, rain or shine, bands spanning all genres take on a variety of stages across the city and put on one unforgettable show after another in a jam-packed, rock, blues, and soul-infused night. But the Bragg Jam Festival isn’t just for live-music lovin’ night owls. During the day, Bragg Jam’s Arts & Kids’ Fest hosts a free daytime event where families are invited to create, perform and play in the heart of the city. The event features fun activities, art, food and beverage vendors, live music and community performances. As the sun goes down, Bragg Jam’s signature Concert Crawl is already geared up, featuring live music performances at a variety of Macon hotspots, with free shuttle service throughout the night. In addition to bars, there are all-ages performance venues that are smoke-free and family friendly.
COLLEGE HILL CORRIDOR
Working diligently for the past few years to bring this InTown neighborhood into the spotlight, College Hill has done its best to make sure people have a great place to live downtown. Bolstered by Knight Neighborhood Challenge grants that addressed everything from safety to beautification, College Hills shows what happens when neighbors work together for the good of their ‘hood.
FAVORITE LOCAL BLOGGER
This is their second win in a row and what a better demonstration of what the city of Macon is about than a music blog that has a national reach that started right here! The Blue Indian has kept Macon up to date on the indie music scene but still never misses a beat in trying to bring the most interesting bands back to the area.
BEST LOCAL BOUTIQUE
Stephanie Folsom opened Fabrik with the idea of offering High style without the price tag. Except for an extensive denim collection, everything is Under $100. That’s a concept that people in Macon have grown to love!
From highlights to haircuts, this salon has you covered, but more than that, they are part of the community they serve. Whether they are part of your evening out crew or become so much a part of your life you invite them to be your godparents, you’ll love how you’re treated like family.
BEST PLACE TO SEE AN ART EXHIBIT
MACON ARTS GALLERY
It’s easy to see why, why innovative new shows every month, and easy space to get to, and being next to a growler spot, that Macon Arts comes out on top as your art exhibit destination. The hard work of the artists and curator pays off with elegant placement for fantastic pieces.
FAVORITE LOCAL ARTIST
He’s been killing it with his designs, from creating logos and posters for a few of our favorite local events, like Bragg Jam, to designing posters for a few well named acts, Jason Frost’s award is well deserved. You can find examples of his work at moderngiant.com.
FAVORITE LOCAL PHOTOGRAPHER
Recently featured in the Native/New column of the 11th Hour, Odom has long had a reputation outside of Macon for the quality of his photographic work. It’s about time Macon has come to see what a gem they posses in Matt Odom. He regularly shoots for Mercer Athletics and Macon Magazine.
BEST NEW RESTAURANT IN MACON
I mean, just because a restaurant has been around for a while doesn’t mean the city has “discovered” it. They just opened up after our Readers Choice Awards last year. Dozens of fresh ingredients and spices cooked in front of your eyes over an open flame, over 500,000 combinations!
BEST MEXICAN CUISINE
Their menu is extensive and good, their beer collection is one of the best in Macon, and who wouldn’t want to partake in the sports environment they have their. Get the fish tacos. So good!
WILD WING CAFE
Because hot waitstaff makes the food better. Or is that…
MACON’S BEST WAITSTAFF
Proving that service and good food go together, the masses have spoken and they love the quality of service that they get at Natalia’s. Keep up the good work!
BEST LUNCH SPOT
Open longer than most lunch spots with dedicated staff ready to serve good food fast and daily specials that fairly makes the mouth water, it is easy to see why the golden record goes to The Rookery.
BEST ETHNIC FOOD
Cubanos, Cuban coffee, carnitas. The people have spoken.
The option to get free range, locally sourced beef is what puts these burgers over the edge. The regular burgers are great in their own right, but having the choice is just the beginning. And the choice of toppings are unique and delicious. Worthy of the best burger award.
INGLESIDE VILLAGE PIZZA
Duh! IVP had some good competition, even some who were not nominated, but they proved that their delicious pizza, awesome beer selection, and amazing staff bring the votes to the ‘net. Great pizza is great.
Their website claims they have had the best pulled pork for 75 years. Macon agrees. So juicy, so succulent, so good. And the burgers should definitely be tried.
BEST HOT WINGS
WILD WING CAFE
Who doesn’t like lots of wings surrounded by large televisions? Macon has spoken and wings must be got at Wild Wings.
BEST OVERALL DINING EXPERIENCE
Boy, was that competition stiff. Some of the best restaurants in Macon were on that list and Dovetail climbed right to the top. Of course creative re-imaginings of southern dishes, interesting mixed drinks, and some great wines, liquors, and beers on tap makes this place a great overall restaurant.
BEST HAPPY HOUR SCENE
RIVALRY’S SPORT BAR
Great drink prices, good staff, pool, darts… what more do you want in a Happy Hour, especially if that’s also where you find the rest of your friends?
BEST PLACE TO DANCE
THE CRAZY BULL
With the biggest dance floor in the city (at least of current clubs), there is plenty of space to move around when you want to dance. And for those of you who need a little liquid encouragement to shake your groove thang, the bar makes it easy to get in and get back on the dance floor.
FAVORITE COLLEGE HANGOUT
Professional and College sports as often as you want, classmates behind the bar, decent food decently priced… all a college student’s dream.
BEST BAR EXPERIENCE
THE HUMMINGBIRD STAGE & TAPROOM
Happy Hour specials, Monday night’s $1 wells, Wednesday night trivia where you can get your think on while you get your drink on, and music, music, music. Awesome bartenders, dedicated patrons, and yes, overall, the best bar experience.
BEST RESTAURANT WITH A BAR SCENE
They’ve had a hard road with being dedicated to non-smoking, even after food is done being served. But with specials like their Tuesday and Wednesday night Two Hour Tower of Power AKA half priced wells from 10 – 12 on those night, as well as having a great beer selection and knowledgeable, fun bartenders, there’s no reason not to enjoy a meal and then stay afterwards for a drink.
BAR OFF THE BEATEN PATH
Hell yeah, it is! Great prices on drinks, punk and metal shows, a stripper pole for dancing, and karaoke with some of the best characters in Macon.
BEST PLACE FOR KARAOKE
And why wouldn’t it? Brandon McGouirk, AKA Stick, runs a smooth karaoke ship. Great song choices (there is more than one Pantera song), the desire to play anything someone could ask for off book, and the encouragement to bring every singer back for another song makes any karaoke night at Back Porch Lounge party fun times.
RYAN SMITH OF DOVETAIL
If you see a lanky, young guy with grey hair sitting at the end of the bar drinking a bourbon neat, you’ll think two things: 1) That’s a guy who knows about alcohol and 2) pretty snazzy mustache, dude. Wednesday night is his night. Show up for half priced whiskey tastings and learn more (even a little too much) about your favorite bourbons.
FAVORITE LOCAL BOUNCER
NICK AT CRAZY BULL
That just means you ain’t getting past him without ID and if you cause a ruckus, you will get shut down. He’s pretty popular, that one.
BEST PLACE TO SHOOT POOL
With nine tables, a beautiful copper top bar, cozy lounge seating and an outdoor patio, BJ’s on MLK Jr. Blvd. has a little something for everyone.