The charming city of Avondale Estates sits just east of Decatur. Established in 1924, town founders enjoyed a trip to England so much they emulated the Tudor-Revival style in the downtown buildings of the town. These downtown buildings are still standing and add character to the streetscape. Visit Avondale for unique food, coffee, shopping, and greenspace.

1. Though the downtown area is small, Avondale Estates has a fierce selection of local spots for delicious food. Our Way Café serves up delicious, Southern-style eats; the meatloaf, mac and cheese, and broccoli casserole are favorites. My Parents’ Basement is a great burger and board game place. Savage Pizza has a location packed with comic books. Venture downtown into Tudor Village for old-fashioned delights at Palookaville Fine Foods. Yet more good stuff can be found at Rising Son and Arepa Mia. Rising Son is known for its inventive breakfast dishes and supper items including NY Strip, chicken and succotash, and trout. Get Venezuelan fare in a casual, family-friendly environment at the delicious Arepa Mia.

2. Tour the original Waffle House. It should be noted that here, right outside of Atlanta, is where yet another iconic American name was created. The Waffle House Museum is the site of the original restaurant and has been converted into a museum, preserving the 1950s look. Insider tip: Call in advance to schedule a tour, as they are limited and fill up quickly. Additionally, look out for the Waffle House Museum Open House which occurs periodically throughout the year.

3. Get your coffee and pastry fix. Banjo Cold Brew Coffee serves up cold brew coffee, snacks, and other beverages. A favorite at Banjo Coffee is the “sweetly tuned” cold brew coffee, sweet but not too sweet.  Good Karma Coffee Shop has great gluten- and dairy-free treats to pair with your coffee. Visit the Sweets Boutique of Icing Cake Designs or Southern Sweets Bakery for a sugar fix. You can also grab a delicious breakfast or lunch at Southern Sweets; then enjoy dessert!

4. Enjoy the trail around Lake Avondale and the newly renovated Willis Park. Willis Park has new playground equipment, a pavilion and a fun walking trail around the park. There is plenty of greenspace to throw a football or frisbee as well. Lake Avondale has a walking trail around the perimeter of the lake with beautiful landscaped trees and other foliage.

5. Listen to Music at Towne Cinema. The building that houses Towne Cinema, which was originally constructed in 1924, was renovated in 2015 and opened as a local performing arts venue. Towne Cinema has witnessed everything from vaudeville to Elvis Presley. Today, the folks at Town Cinema host events from concerts and plays to a weekly game night.

6. Get Fresh Produce. Avondale Estates Farmers Market takes place seasonally on Sundays (locations vary). Additionally, it’s a short trek to the DeKalb Farmer’s Market, a bustling site of foods and customers from all over the globe.

7. Secondhand Heaven in Avondale Estates. Consignment shops are sprinkled throughout Avondale Estates. Try Finders Keepers Consignments or Jack and Jill (children and maternity) to secure a bargain. Check off philanthropy and shopping when you stop at Second Life –proceeds from this consignment shop benefit homeless animals.

– Shelly Gable

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