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Show Off Your New Home, the HCWFU Way!

This upcoming weekend is one of the best of the fall semester. I’d venture to say it is right up there with Homecoming Weekend, Hallo-weekend, and Mountain Weekend – it’s WFU Family Weekend! True, this weekend isn’t full of the craziest parties of the semester, but it’s honestly even better; we get to spend time with the people we love, eat delicious meals for free, and, best of all, show off the wonderful school and the city that has become our home away from home. Sorry to be a sentimental senior here, but I feel lucky to have such a beautiful campus and fun, exciting town to show off to my parents every time they visit. It’s possible some of you are really confused right now. You might be thinking, “Do I live in the same old boring Winston-Salem as this girl?,” or “Am I really supposed to ‘show off’ this shoe-box of a dorm room?”. So, in case you’re stumped as to what parts of Wake and Winston to flaunt to the ‘rents this weekend, just read on.
At Night

On either Friday or Saturday night (or both) you should definitely let your parents take you out to dinner, because you know they’ll want to! Be sure to ‘adopt’ any friends whose family couldn’t make it for the weekend, or join forces with a couple friends and their parents for a big group dinner. It’s always so much fun to meet your college friends’ parents – you learn so much about why they are the way they are (good or bad). My best advice is to go into downtown Winston-Salem for this; the best dinner places are a good ten to fifteen minutes outside the Wake bubble.

Have parents from up North? Take them to Mozelles Fresh Southern Bistro (mozelles.com), located on 4th Street in downtown Winston, for some traditional South-of-the-Mason-Dixon fare. The shrimp ‘n grits are to die for, and the whole restaurant has a homey feel that is very warm and social. You’ll have them saying y’all by dessert!

If you want a really unforgettable evening, and you think your fam is willing to pay a bit more, head to District Roof Top Bar and Grille (www.districtbarandgrille.com). Also downtown, on 770 North Liberty Street, this restaurant’s rooftop bar has a spectacular view of the whole city of Winston-Salem. Enjoy drinks and apps and snap a few family pics on the roof before heading to the downstairs restaurant and patio for a delicious meal. The food at District is really phenomenal, and I particularly recommend the rich, decadent lobster ravioli.
Daytime Activity

Saturday during the day is when you’ll have the bulk of your time spent with your family. My top recommendation is definitely to take them to the football game! My family has had so much fun cheering on the Deacs every single year, and I’ve always had them come out to the fraternity tailgates beforehand to show them a little bit of Wake’s true gameday atmosphere! If you think your parents wouldn’t love the fraternity tailgate scene, WFU always sets up a special Parents Tailgate with great food and fun before the game.

Your fam isn’t into sports? That’s totally ok; there are plenty of other things to do on Saturday instead! This year, we’re lucky to have the Dixie Classic Fair in town for Family Weekend! Spending a day with your parents at the fair will make you feel like a little kid again, and if you have younger siblings I guarantee they will love you forever for suggesting this activity! Try out the famous fried oreos and ride the ferris wheel to look out over all of W-S. You can see Wait Chapel from the top!


If your parents get here early enough on Friday (or if you have some downtime with them Saturday or Sunday), you’ll want to have a little activity planned so no one gets bored. In my opinion, it’s the downtime moments that are the most special. You get to really catch up with your parents and tell them all the cool things you’ve been doing at Wake. If you’re a freshman, this would be a great time to show your parents your new favorite spots around campus. This will be their first time on campus where you can actually be their guide, and trust me, they’ll appreciate it. Show them the best study spot in your dorm’s lounge, or take them on a walk through Reynolda Gardens. It’ll be a great way to show them how much you love your new school!

Upperclassmen living off-campus: this would be the perfect opportunity to entertain your parents in your new home. You and your roommates can clean up your house or apartment nicely, buy some fancy wine and cheese, and have a mature little get together with all of your parents. I promise it will make you feel very grown-up in the best way possible.
Sunday Brunch

Before your parents head back to your hometown, you have to send them off with a nice Sunday brunch. Once again, I recommend going downtown to get the best eats. One of my absolute favorites is The Old Fourth Street Filling Station (www.theoldfourthstreetfillingstation.com), on (you guessed it!) 4th Street right across from Mozelles. It’s a Winston-Salem staple, and their Sunday brunch menu is both affordable and delightful. My favorite is the Beef Tenderloin Eggs Benedict – it’s literally the best breakfast item I’ve ever eaten. Another good thing about the Filling Station is that it’s pretty huge, so you can accommodate large parties if you want all your friends to join.

For a more intimate setting, try 6th and Vine (www.6thandvine.com), located (once again, you guessed it!) at the corner of 6th Street and Vine Street downtown. This restaurant is tiny, very artsy, a little hipster, and a lot delicious. Their brunch lasts til 3PM, perfect for late risers, and the extensive menu includes a flavor-packed breakfast burrito that all my friends swear by.

So there you have it, plenty of ideas for a stellar Family Weekend. And if you run out of time to get to them all, don’t worry – you can always invite them back to help you pack up in May!

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