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November 23, 2009

Downtown Afternoon

I've been so busy preparing for Thanksgiving that I haven't had time to blog about anything else! But I spent a wonderful afternoon downtown with a friend a week or so ago, and wanted to tell you about a few fun places.

We had a great Indian weekday lunch buffet at a place called Gill's. I know, "Gill" sounds ethnic, doesn't it? I'm not one for curry, so I was a bit skeptical, but it was really yummy. Their buffet features tandoori chicken; a meat curry; two vegetables; a dal, or lentil, of the day; fruit; dessert; and naan daily. Their prices are super reasonable too. Click on the link above to see their full menu.

I actually enjoyed the Aloo Gobhi, cauliflower & potatoes sauteed with fresh tomatoes, ginger, and green chile. And the Indian version of rice pudding was yummy. I love fresh Raita and their Naan had olive oil and minced garlic on it.

With time to kill we walked a mini-tour of the Old Bank District, the loft area that is revitalizing the downtown area. I'd shot a few specific places but not really explored there. The architecture is truly unique as the idea is to preserve the historic character of the area while updating the interiors. I was wishing I'd had my camera, but the visit was impromptu, and, alas, I was without.

The best part of the day was wandering into the Museum of Neon Art! They're in a temporary home downtown, so their exhibit space is limited. But seeing so much tightly compacted really took my breath away! Donated signs include a diving lady, and a local public libarary sign, among many others. They had a great explanation of the mechanics of kinetic lighting. MONA also offers neon cruises on a scheduled basis, and neon art workshops that actually teach you how to make signs & sculptures! To check out MONA's website for more info, click on the brochure above.

Have you spent time exploring the downtown area? What are some of your favorite museums, restaurants, or architectural features there? If you have a treasured spot, or story to relate please leave a comment on the blog.

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