Ahhhh Saturday. The mere mention of the day conjures up lackadaisical feelings of schedule-free time to spend exactly as you please. Those truly dedicated to the spirit of a Saturday might even (dare we say it) put their mobile devices on ‘do not disturb’ and for a few precious hours set those vibrating and dinging distractions aside to truly live in the moment. After all, it is just one day – we can do that, right? We can and we should, especially if your Saturday is spent in Savannah, Georgia.
No matter the season, a Savannah Saturday morning beckons you to step outside, take in a cleansing breath of fresh air and let the day begin. Admittedly, Savannah does have days in the summer that are on the warmer side and a few days in the winter that can be a wee bit nippy, but on average you can safely describe Savannah’s weather like Goldilocks – just right! So go ahead, take a leisurely stroll, jump-start your circulation then stop in for some fresh-brewed percolation at The Coffee Fox. Located at 102 West Broughton Street, The Coffee Fox is a craft coffee house featuring the pour-over coffee brew method (which, I found out, results in a slower pour giving time for the water to pull out more flavor from the grounds – yes, please!). Pair your perfect brew with a deliciously tempting selection of fresh pastries and your Saturday is off to a great start.
But what if you’re not on Broughton? Then stop by a sister café to Coffee Fox, Foxy Loxy Café in the heart of Savannah’s midtown at 1919 Bull Street (where the adventurous of heart will want to try a taco with their espresso – really!). “We built our business around our specialty coffee program so I wouldn’t leave Foxy without trying our coffee,” recommended the café’s owner, Jennifer Jenkins. “Our Horchata latte is a crowd favorite and our Eye Opener is very unique – we add two shots of espresso to Left Hand Nitro Stout – caffeine fix along with beer, who knew!” Tacos? Coffee? Beer? Oh my! But you can be sure no matter what you order it will make your Savannah Saturday a one-of-a-kind experience. (Little side note – I know it’s still morning but if you find you’re in need of a Saturday evening spot, Foxy Loxy hosts a weekly Fire & Wine event every Saturday in their courtyard where they provide complimentary marshmallows along with half-off bottles of wine – you might want to pencil that in to be sure you don’t miss it!).
Now, back to Savannah ways to start your day. What if you want to enjoy your cup ‘o Joe with kids in tow? Then stop by Henny Penny Art Space & Café where they feature the same delicious brews and tasty treats of sister cafes Coffee Fox and Foxy Loxy in addition to $5 open studio art projects for children every Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm. Enjoying your coffee in peace is definitely worth $5!
All caffeinated and ready to go? Good! Ask any local who lives in Savannah’s downtown and they’ll likely tell you that Saturday mornings are all about the Farmer’s Market in Forsyth Park. Saturdays only, from 9 am until 1 pm, at the south end of Savannah’s famed-fountain green space, you can buy locally made and grown goodies that will make you feel good, too. That’s because the mission of the Forsyth Famers’ Market is to “promote understanding and participatio
n in a local food system that supports sustainable production and increases access to local products.” All vendors at the Forsyth Famers’ Market have to produce at least 75% of the products they sell so from coffees to jams, fruits to veggies, farm-fresh eggs to from-scratch breads and more, there may be nothing quite as ‘local’ as browsing and buying from this beloved Saturday-morning stop. (You can even meet the regular vendors – and preview what’s sold – by visiting forsythfarmersmarket.com).
Once you’ve made your locally grown selections, it’s always a good idea to sprawl out under a shady spot in the park, sample your purchases and soak in Savannah’s natural beauty. You might even find you’ve scored a field-side seat to a little-league soccer game, friendly rugby match or stunt-filled Frisbee toss tournament. That’s because Saturdays in Forsyth are all about community, fun and yes, even a bit of frolicking – that is, after all, what a good park experience is all about!
While Forsyth is a great way to experience the heart of Saturdays in Savannah, for those ready to expand your taste for all things local we suggest making your way to nearby Wilmington Island for the Wilmington Island Farmer’s Market (WIFM). Just a few minutes’ drive from downtown Savannah (and on the way to Savannah’s authentic beach town of Tybee Island), this island favorite features local farm-fresh produce, meats, handcrafted baked goods, and artisan creations including beauty products, jewelry, handcrafted toys and home decor. “The market is a relaxing environment where locals and visitors alike can experience the Mayberry-like feel of Savannah’s beautiful coastal areas and connect with resident artists, farmers and entrepreneurs,” said Lauren Ashley, Public Relations Coordinator with WIFM. Rain or shine, you can meander through the market’s vendors every Saturday from 9 am to 1 pm from March thru June and again September thru December. As for the best time of day to peruse this island marketplace, “some frequent shoppers arrive early so they will be guaranteed items from their favorite vendors but personally I love siting back and watching the market between 10:30 am and 11:30 am because story time and crafts are occurring in one area and the market is buzzing with activity,” advised Lauren. You can find WIFM at 170 Whitemarsh Island Road (which also happens to be Islands High School), or do some virtual exploration of the Wilmington Island Farmer’s Market ahead of your arrival by visiting wifarmersmarket.org.
Farmer’s markets are certainly one way to get a taste for local flair, but if your Savannah Saturday happens to be sometime in November, you’re in for a mind-blowing treat. Held each November, the Savannah Food and Wine Festival is a week-long
culinary cabaret that celebrates Savannah’s delicious side and culminates in a wildly popular finale on Saturday known as the “Taste of Savannah.” Heralded as ‘the main event,’ the 2017 Taste will be held at the Georgia State Railroad Museum on Saturday November 11 from 1 pm to 4:30 pm. This is a rare opportunity to savor hundreds of wines, spirits and craft beers along with access to a wide variety of cooking demonstrations, learning experiences and foodie delights from Savannah’s best restaurants. Whether you stay for an hour or your whole afternoon, there is quite possibly no more satisfying way to spend your Saturday than at the Taste of Savannah (we highly recommend you get your tickets early as this event is known to be a sell out – savannahfoodandwinefest.com).
Ok, so enough about food (though honestly, can we ever really get enough food while in Savannah?). In keeping with our quest of all things anti-routine, perhaps one of the best ways to saunter through Savannah on a Saturday is, well…aimlessly. With its grid of grassy squares, inspired architecture, unsuspecting hidden gardens, hole-in-the-wall watering holes, museums, galleries, riverfront, boutiques – – see where we’re going with this? Sometimes the best Saturdays in Savannah are when you grab a map and just wander (we would say use an App but we ditched your phone this morning, remember?). Around each corner, down brick-paved alleyways and up historically steep stone stairways, you’ll discover the best plan for spending Saturday in Savannah like a local is to have no plan at all. Go where your soul leads you. Try something new. Travel back in time. Just be. Remember the last time you did that? Still thinking? Then it’s high time to spend an unstructured yet unforgettable Saturday in Savannah.