The Flying Saucer, Charlotte NC

Do you ever watch movies or TV shows where the main character(s) have a spot they always meet to hang out? The staff know them all by name and they sit in the same place every time? On Friends it was Central Perk. Gilmore Girls had Lukes Diner, Cheers had, well Cheers. Well folks, we have found "our place". The Flying Saucer.

The Flying Saucer was founded in 1995 and is a largely Texan based franchise. We are lucky enough to have one in our home town of Charlotte, NC. A unique taproom with over 200+ beers at any given time available for the drinking, they also have a great bar food menu selection (the cheese fries surprise and the San Miguel burger? To. Die. For.) The bar itself is unique and cozy, the waitresses all rock, and they have a killer beer club, but more on that in a minute.  

UNC- Charlotte, my alma mater (go 49ers), is conveniently located across the street, as is my former employer, a local hospital. I could often be found grabbing an after work beer at The Flying Saucer with a group of work friends after a particularity rough shift in the ED. This was back before my beer tasting palate had been truly refined, I stuck with my Bud Light and called it a night. After college and a new career, I forgot about my good friend Saucer. Fast forward a few years (more like 8) and mine and Mias hubby venture in one day after work and are talked into joining the UFO club (and subsequently roping us in along as well).  

"The UFO Club?!" you say?

The UFO Club.

For the low, low price of $18.00 you are gifted with your very own membership card and a Flying Saucer shirt. Swipe your card at the computer kiosk each time you come it, choose and print 3 chits for 3 different brews. Drink said brews during your visit, turning in your chits to your waitress. Once you have sampled 200 different types of beers your name is forever immortalized on a large round saucer displayed proudly on the walls of the bar. The fine print: You may only add THREE beers to your tally per day. Drink as many as you want when you come in, but only three count towards your total per day. All 200 beers must be completely different from one another. As a way to keep you encouraged throughout your beer drinking challenge, you are gifted for each 50 beer milestone with a free $10 towards your purchase, a t-shirt, a hat, and finally...Drum roll please.... $100 towards your plate party to spend on drinks and food.

Plate Party?

Plate Party!


NEED BEER MUGS? gotcha covered....


Once you have completed the arduous task of drinking all 200 beers, The Flying Saucer wants to celebrate! Tables are reserved in your honor for yourself and 15 of your nearest and dearest to unveil your plate on the wall. Choose a quote to personalize your plate and when the time comes, the manager will announce your amazing feat to the entire bar, while standing on a chair, ringing a loud bell, and have you ceremoniously unveil your accomplishment. Cue the applause and order another drink! 

Now I'm not so good at math but let's break it down. 3 beers allowed per day divided by 200 beers needed for a plate equals roughly 66-67 actual visits to saucer until you achieve plate status. After visiting 66-67 times you get to know the waitresses pretty well. They know you by name, they know what's going on at work, they've met your kids (don't judge! It's very family friendly for lunch!), they are there to share in exciting news like buying a home or passing a stressful license exam for work. They sit and have a beer with you after their shift, they are a huge part of what makes The Flying Saucer such a great place to hang out. 

Our hubbies are working on their third plate right now (THIRD?! Yes you can circle back through once you drink your first 200 and go round the merry-go again! Each lap around the beer drinking track gets you a different, distinct plate color and you can even bring home your previous plate to adorn the walls of your man cave, or dining room, whateves). Sadly Mia and I are only a forth of the way through on the way to our first plate, but have no fear, we aren't quitters, we will have our plate and drink it too! In true nerd girl fashion, we also have the perfect Harry Potter inspired quotes picked out and ready to go!

If you are in the Charlotte area, do yourself a favor and check out The Flying Saucer. I promise you won't be disappointed! 

Coco

Treasure hunting at Market Station Antiques

I've had an obsession with antiques, old artifacts, and things that others might deem as junk. I absolutely LOVE going what I call treasure hunting, to flea markets and antique stores. That being said, I was stoked when I found out about the opening of Market Station Antiques, in Albemarle, NC. Just a short drive northeast of Charlotte, Market Station Antiques is the place you want to go on a weekend, to browse and shop for the perfect piece.  

The owner, Dr. Larry Bridge, let us peek through the store before the grand opening. Let me tell you folks, I felt like I was walking through heaven....antique heaven.  

First of all, the location is perfect. Market Station is a landmark in the city of Albemarle  making it super easy to find.  Market Station is in the downtown area of Albemarle, NC right off Main St. This beautifully restored train station is home to Stanley County Farmers Market which hosts many weddings and receptions throughout the year.  So, if you are in the area or attending an event, walk right across to this antique store and I promise, you won't be disappointed. 

 Just look at this! I could live here!

Just look at this! I could live here!

Ok, let me tell you about the amazing things we saw.  Walking through the aisles, it's important to remember to take your time! You don't want to miss out on the details of the decor and the smaller trinkets that are waiting to share their history with you.  Everything is for sale, so don't dismiss something just because it seems to be part of a display.  

There's a large selection of antique dressers, chairs, lamps, tables, mirrors, frames, doors, chandeliers, and amazing signs and other unique decorations.  

Dr. Bridge has passionately collected these wonderful pieces from estate sales and other auctions around the area and also all along the east coast. They are hand-picked and selected just for you. Each item has an incredible story behind it, and since they are hand picked, everything is high quality, and handled with care. Note that there are many items that are rare, and some that are very, very old...so when I said go treasure hunting in this place, I wasn't kidding.  

If you are into antiques and hard to find trinkets and decor, do yourself a favor and visit Market Station Antiques! Remember, Christmas is around the corner, and many of these artifacts can make the perfect gift or furnish a room like they were meant to do.

Also, visit and like their facebook page at @MarketStationAntiques AND their  instagram and Twitter accounts @AntiqueDecor_NC to see more pictures of their amazing selections!

Market Station Antiques and Decor 113 Railroad St. Albemarle, NC 28001

Dance Fusion of Harrisburg, a great place for your little star!

When my daughter was only five, she (and her cousin) showed interest in taking ballet classes.  After days of research and a lot of calling around for questions that only moms think about, Coco and I decided to pay a visit to Dance Fusion in Harrisburg, NC.  They had an open house right before classes started in August, which was pretty convenient for us to stop by after work.  

When we first met Ms. Lauren Hinson, I didn't realize she was the owner of this fantastic studio.  She charmingly gave us a tour of the facility.  A cozy two studio dance school, equipped to teach little ones as young as 2 years old, as well as rising dancers in the art of ballet, jazz, tap, hip hop, contemporary, and acrobatics. We were in love with the place, the location, affordability, and the very convenient schedule of classes.  

Then, I noticed something.  Trophies displayed in the lobby area, showcasing the talent that has emerged and continues to emerge from their instructions. It was then when I realized that, besides recreational students, they also have a competitive team of amazing kids which compete each year in several regional competitions.

Dance Fusion was founded in 2009 by Ms. Lauren, a Fayetteville, NC native. She told us about how she always had a passion for dance and opening a studio had always been her dream. A graduate from UNCC with a degree in dance, Ms. Lauren perfectly combined a small studio with a big heart and love for the art of dance.     

Being a locally owned business, Dance Fusion of Harrisburg is very family oriented, and their dedication to their community as well as their passion for the arts shows in every event in which they participate. Dance Fusion dancers participate in Christmas Shows at Harrisburg Town Center, Fourth of July parades, Harrisburg art walk, and other yearly events.

Commitment to our community

When we reached out to business in our area about our very first book drive to benefit a local clinic, Ms. Lauren did not hesitate in helping. In fact, she went above and beyond what we expected. Thanks to our community and especially Ms. Lauren and Dance Fusion moms, we were able to collect 645 books in one week!!. 

RELATED: SMART START: REACH OUT AND READ

It is a pleasure to work with amazing, dedicated people like the instructors of Dance Fusion. Our daughters have learned so much, not only about dance, but about being a good, community involved person.  

If you are looking for a great extra curricular activity for your kids (boys and girls) consider dance; and if you are in our area, consider visiting Dance Fusion. I promise, you will love it as much as your kids.  

For more information visit http://www.dancefusionnc.com/