A Day Trip to Downtown Roanoke and The Taubman Museum

A couple of weeks ago The Oaks was full of Hokies for a football weekend. Everyone had checked in the night before so we had the whole day to do as we pleased. Didn’t have to worry about being home to check in new guests, YES! There was a new exhibit at The Taubman ,Toys Reimagined as Art, that we wanted to see. The Taubman is a great little art museum downtown Roanoke. Worth visiting for the building alone, the modern architectural design creates an amazing space. There are a few permanent exhibits, but most of the galleries change every few months.

I went onto Tripadvisor to look for an interesting restaurant in the area. They use some kind of crazy algorithm that sometimes puts a place with 4 stars above a place with 5 stars because of the number of reviews. Scrolling down at #44 of 370 was Bethlehem Restaurant and Grocery. They only have 21 reviews but 18 are excellent and 3 are very good making it 5 stars. We went there first because Bernie is always hungry. Great choice! It’s a little ethnic grocery with a walk-up counter and a few booths. The hummus was the best I have ever had, super creamy with a garnish of whole chick peas, garlic, pickled peppers and herbs. The tabbouleh had pomegranate seeds adding a deeper layer of flavor. Bernie had a gyro that was folded into a rectangle. It was a beautiful presentation and tasted as fabulous as it looked. Our bellies full, we got in the car and plugged the Taubman into the GPS. Turns out we were only a couple of blocks away.

Parking in the garage next to Orvis is free on Saturday until 4 pm so of course we took advantage of that. We walked around the Farmer’s Market for a bit then over to The Taubman.  The Toys Reimagined as Art was great. There were sculptures made from crayons, Legos and giant balls. Another gallery had flocks of butterflies made from tin cans, old records, knives, paper pulp etc. No trip to The Taubman is complete without a visit to the Judith Leiber handbag room. These little jewels are gorgeous and I’d love to own one. I drool over them every time I see them.There are more than 130 minaudières and pillboxes in the collection that rotate in and out of the display. Currently the theme is “Gardens and Flowers”.

We continue to Day Trip as much as possible looking for hidden and not so hidden gems and will let you know as we find them. We’d love it if you let us know about favorites that you have found too.

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