Located just minutes north of Atlanta, Dunwoody is a little bit new, a little bit old, a little bit metropolitan and a little bit family-focused.
Published: December 1, 2017
By: Carol Muse Evans
Chances are you may not even know where Dunwoody is, but you may have seen a sign or two when traveling through Atlanta. It’s time you followed the signs, and exit to Dunwoody, a place that really delivers family fun.
After a recent trip to Dunwoody, Georgia, I am certain it should become a family destination. Whether you plan it along with a trip to see the sites in Atlanta (Dunwoody is a suburb) or as a standalone, Dunwoody offers fun for the whole family in some unique ways.
Located just minutes north of Atlanta, Dunwoody is a little bit new, a little bit old, a little bit metropolitan and a little bit family-focused. You may feel like you are in a small town, though you are right outside one of the largest cities in the south.
Love to shop? Dunwoody is home to the second largest mall in the Southeast, Perimeter Mall (www.perimetermall.com), so you won’t have trouble finding the store you want, or even the local specialty gift.
Love to eat? Dunwoody is loaded with great chain restaurants, local flavors and the specialty eateries that families are going to love like Village Burger (www.villageburger.com), Vintage Pizzeria (www.vintagepizzeria.com/dunwoody), Da Vinci’s Donuts (www.davincisdonuts.com), Cafe Intermezzo (www.cafeintermezzo.com) and more.
Love the outdoors? Dunwoody has it, from the Dunwoody Nature Center (www.dunwoodynature.com) where you can take a self-guided tour, go hiking on the trails, visit Wildcat Creek and a playground in the woods. They’ve got a great Native American teepee, and be sure to at least try out the hammock garden. There’s a birds of prey show and even a petting zoo. If you’re a little more adventurous, try out Treetop Quest (www.treetopquest.com). This series of rope courses and zip line run has courses available for children as young as ages 4-6 with the Kiddie Quest course, several levels of obstacle difficulty for the beginner to the experienced zip liner, and those in between. This is a seasonal option, so check ahead and make a reservation.
Want to teach the kids about things that matter? Visit The Packaged Good in Dunwoody (www.thepackagedgood.org). “Empowering kids to do good while inspiring the next generation of giving,” The Packaged Good, a non-profit, is a storefront where kids and families can come in and put together personalized care packages for various packages and learn about “doing good.” Founder Sally Mundell created The Packaged Good after reflecting with her late husband at the end of his life about what matters. She wanted to do something in his memory that would live on, while instilling in their daughters how to help others.
How about your creative side? For a taste of great local art, visit the Spruill Center (www.spruillarts.org), right in the center of all the Dunwoody action, where you’ll see their big, famous mural right outside, “Everything Will Be Ok.” The Gallery offers great exhibits with emerging artists, items for purchase and one of the best locally-made artist gift shops in metro Atlanta. But if you can, you must take an art class at the neighboring Spruill Center for the Arts. The Spruill Center offers more than 800 visual arts classes to more than 5,000 students of all ages and skill levels every year, and not every student is local. On my visit I did glass blowing, and it was such fun. There are classes in ceramics, decorative arts, drawing, jewelry, blacksmithing, and even welding. Classes should be booked in advance, and be sure to pack closed-toe shoes.
For more information, visit www.CVBDunwoody.com.
Carol Muse Evans is publisher of Birmingham Parent, and visited Dunwoody for the first time in late July.
Dunwoody This December
Holiday Artists Market at the Spruill Gallery
Now through Dec. 23
For more than 20 years, the Spruill Center for the Arts has hosted the Holiday Artists Market at the Spruill Gallery, featuring more than 100 local artists with a wide variety of artisan gifts and home décor. www.spruillarts.org/holidayartistsmarket
WHERE TO STAY:
The Hampton Inn and Suites Atlanta Perimeter Dunwoody
4565 Ashford Dunwoody Road, Atlanta, GA 30346
This is a great location, right in the center of all the action in Dunwoody and within walking distance to the Perimeter Mall, numerous shops and restaurants and even the Spruill Gallery. The rooms are new, spacious, modern and excellent for those who may need to work a little as well. Of course, breakfast is included.