Valhalla Resort Hotel at Innsbruck in Helen is a luxury all-suite retreat that opened in mid-July. My husband and I were married in the North Georgia Mountains six years ago and come back every anniversary to visit the wineries and take in the mountains and fall foliage. For our recent 6-year anniversary, we were hosted by Valhalla and couldn’t have asked for a better weekend, with all the leaves bursting in color, luxurious accommodations, and an ideal location.
Grab some blankets to cozy up in the car with hot cocoa and go cruise around to some of the best local light shows. The first four on this list are FREE!!
From Nov. 30 through Dec. 23, tune your radio to 89.9FM and come witness an incredible 15-20-minute light show set to four songs at Christmas at Castille. More than 59,000 twinkling lights transform this home into a magical, festive attraction and this year will have even more lights and cool new effects! Frozen’s “Let it Go” makes the lineup again this year in addition to some new songs. You can catch the show Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings from 6-9 p.m. The neighborhood is gated, but the gate will be open during these hours. Visit Christmas in Castille’s Facebook page for any schedule updates.
Christmas in Castille is located at 4220 Tivoli Way in Alpharetta (Forsyth County). The light show is free, but donations will go to a local charity through West Forsyth DECA Club.
Here are the top spots in and around Cumming to grab a real Christmas tree this holiday season. Most are farms where you can cut down your own tree and they offer everything from visits with Santa to hayrides and hot cocoa! Take in the scent of freshly cut trees, strap one to the roof of your car and enjoy all the family activities and memories that come with the experience.
When I was 15, I took a driver’s ed program that was BORING. I didn’t learn a thing and it felt like a total waste of time. Fast forward to today and there is a driving academy out there that is actually glamorous and would have made me excited about taking a driving class as a teen.
NEVO Driving Academy does things differently. Tucked away off Shiloh Road in Forsyth County, this driving school caters to today’s teens, customizing a program where they will learn so much yet also have the freedom and independence they crave. They will leave with advanced driving skills that go beyond the basic instruction.
Here are 6 reasons why if you have a teen – or just want a driving refresher for yourself – you need to check out this driving academy.
There are several opportunities to get involved with local charitable organizations and help out right in your own backyard. Best of all, kids can be a part of the experience so you’ll be creating family memories while introducing your kids to the importance of community service and giving back to others. On 52 Forsyth, I try to highlight adventures your family can take all 52 weeks out of the year. One of the most memorable weekly adventures families can take is one serving others and this opportunity I’m going to share with you is one that is available year-round!
Fall in Cumming isn’t complete without a visit to the Cumming Country Fair & Festival at Cumming Fairgrounds every October. My daughter’s birthday falls over the fair dates so we love to do fun mini sessions at the fair around her birthday! Brandy Craig Photography captured these shots and offers mini sessions every year.
Whoosh down the towering slides, win a giant bear stuffed animal bigger than your child during a classic carnival game and choose from dozens of rides. Get ready for lots of sticky fingers and giggles as your kids relish in freshly spun cotton candy, fried dough and candy apples smeared all over their faces.Continue Reading
Sometimes, you just want to do a little Atlanta shopping, but your pint-sized partners need to stop for a rest. Here are some popular in-town shopping spots and corresponding places to stop for a quick snack and rest.
After you’ve walked around this Buckhead destination with 250 stores, specialty shops and boutiques, be sure to stop at Sprinkles Cupcakes on the Peachtree Road side of the mall. Direct from Beverly Hills, this popular stop’s cupcake flavors change daily but include chocolate marshmallow, red velvet and vanilla chocolate, all with a perfect amount of icing. Try the olive oil cupcake (available Sept. 28-Oct. 11) or a Sprinkles sundae with your choice flavor of ice cream between a split cupcake. Cookie sandwiches are also available, with one scoop of ice cream between two cookies or brownies. You might need to get a few samples.
The back to school hustle means evenings filled with homework, extracurricular activities and less time available to make family dinners. I wanted to share a week’s worth of some of my favorite, easy and delicious meals from my blog, Food Lovin’ Family, to help you with your fall meal planning. Hope y’all enjoy!
We rounded up the ultimate guide to places where kids eat free in Forsyth County! If you need a hard copy, this list appears in the September 2017 issue of Up in Cumming magazine.
Double the Deal
1175 Buford Highway Suite 100
Kids eat free from 5-10 p.m. every Tuesday and all day on Sunday.
Castleberry Ale House
5446 Bethelview Road Cumming GA
Valid all day on Tuesdays. Available for kids 10 and under.Continue Reading
Here are some of our favorite attractions in and around Forsyth County that introduce kids to animals.
Set in Canton not far from Cumming, this real family farm is ideal for animal lovers and your little artists in the making. We love coming here for fall playdates and are so excited for the barn to be back open for visits this fall! (In the meantime, they are still hosting birthday parties and field trips.) The kids love running around on the farm, and seeing all the animals, which include cows, donkeys, horses, sheep and even pigs! One of Farmer Sue’s new pigs even has its own Instagram account. Check it out at @georgiapigfromgeorgia.My kids love reading up on the pig’s adventures, like in this post: