Old Salem Museums & Gardens whisks visitors to the cozy streets of a reconstructed 18th-century Moravian town that encompasses 100 restored and reclaimed buildings and expansive, pristine gardens. As they stroll through the 90-acre homage to early Americana, visitors can interact with hands-on activities, such as the German paper-cutting art of Scherenschnitte or the colonial tradition of libeling a governor with accusations of actually governing. Old Salem's horticultural marvels include the Miksch Garden—a living illustration of Moravian subsistence farming—and the Family Gardens of Salt Street, which demonstrate the innovative practice of seed saving. In addition to year-round attractions, special exhibits rotate through town, celebrating momentous occasions, notable people, and game-changing presidential pets. After traversing the grounds, visitors can peruse souvenirs at a number of gift shops or sidle into Winkler’s Bakery for a piece of renowned Moravian sugar cake.
Nestled behind the LJVM Coliseum—an arena that has hosted events ranging from the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship to Billy Joel concerts—stands The Annex Ice Rink. The ice rink hosts public ice-skating, hockey leagues, and events seven months out of the year. Visitors can strap on their own cleaver-healed boots or a pair of rentals and take to the ice for free-skate sessions, youth and adult hockey, or figure-skating lessons. A live DJ serenades skaters during Friday Night Ice Jam, providing a fun soundtrack as skaters loop the official-size rink. The skating center also opens for groups and special events such as birthdays and office-ditch days.
Amidst the painted pots and chalk drawings in the Children's Museum of Winston-Salem's Surprise Garden stands the Toshiko Horiuchi MacAdam's Kaleidoscape, reflecting the museum's motto, "where learning happens through play". Far from a hands-off installation, the multi-colored, crocheted structure is always covered with swinging, climbing kids. Clambering is an equally popular activity inside the nonprofit museum, whose lobby is full of wavy platforms and a beanstalk climber that stretches all the way to the second floor.
But climbing isn't the only way to stay busy at Children's Museum of Winston-Salem. At other exhibits, youngsters can pretend-steer a rowboat, man the conveyer belt inside a child-sized Krispy Kreme factory, and construct buildings with magnetized blocks. After full days of play, kids can unwind during staff-led story times in the museum library or gather with other children for programs such as teatimes.
A serene gem located in Winston-Salem, Heather Hills Golf Course has challenged and delighted players since 1973. The 18-hole executive course sports a short layout, appealing to both beginners and seasoned golfers wanting to improve their game. Open every day of the week, weather permitting, Heather Hills also refuels its visitors before and after rounds with an on-site caf? and tavern.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 60 course * Total length of 3,274 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 68.3 from the back tees * Course slope of 108 from the back tees
For families in Forsyth County, there's something happily missing from Bowl Northside: smoke and alcohol. Bowlers big and small can compete safely in this 24-lane paradise equipped with automatic bumpers that raise and lower for different players. Between bouts, guests can recharge and refuel by grabbing a bite in the Northside Grill, playing video games in the on-site arcade, or shooting pool. The alley strives to ensure that everyone feels welcome with leagues for all ages and abilities.
At Big Shotz Tavern, chefs celebrate American comfort food with a vast menu of pizzas, burgers, and barbecue. They season and marinate chicken wings in homemade rubs, and whip up sauces and dips from scratch.
A bustling, lively atmosphere prevails in the spacious dining room. Big-screen TVs hover above the wraparound bar, and, in the warmer months, musicians serenade adorable diners with spinach in their teeth on the outdoor brick patio. The restaurant also hosts a weekly trivia night.