My Family Visit to @ncartmuseum in Black & White ~ an ode to the must see ANSEL ADAMS exhibition

Ansel Adams is one of my favorite artist and America’s most renowned photographers. His black and white photographs reveal the importance Adams placed on the awe-inspiring power and beauty of the natural world. When I heard that his Masterworks were on display thru May 7, 2017 at NCMA/North Carolina Museum of Art, I knew I wanted to plan a day for my family (fondly referred to as #HeighPartyof3) to visit Raleigh’s beloved art museum. All hands in, let’s get ready to explore!

I have been to the NCMA before to catch a special theater performance presented by Theatre Raleigh , but have never been during the day or with my husband and daughter. We moved here in 2015 and still are discovering places we love to go to as a family. This art museum along with its park is now one of our favorite places. Admission is always free (there is a charge for programs and special exhibitions), there are Weekend Family-Friendly tours and Free Public Tours, a restaurant on the premise, and an amazing museum park ! Before you even step inside of the buildings, there is art and the beauty of nature to behold.

The North Carolina Museum of Art is the crown jewel of the Southeast U.S. art world .It is comprised of two buildings, East and West and a Museum Park. This complex has an impressive collection of art and artifacts comparable to other first tier museums. Be sure to ask for special kids art exercisize booklets that the little ones can use while touring the museum. From ancient Egyptian artifacts to Monet watercolor paintings to Rodin sculptures, this museum is world class. We started in the WEST BUILDING ,which is home of NCMA’s permanent collection, it houses Iris Restaurant  and Iris Sip, the Museum store and the Southeast’s largest collection of sculpture by Auguste Rodin in the Rodin Court and Garden. As impressive as their permanent collections are, their special exhibits are just as amazing.

*Savvy Tip: if you are seeing the museum with your child/children ages 2-5, be sure to pick up a What’s in the Box? Activity Cards. We had fun exploring art through themes provided on the cards.

We needed a food break and lucky for us we scored a coveted reservation at the renowned Iris restaurant inside of the West Building. Most museum restaurants are known for high quality food and Iris did not disappoint. Their brunch menu was available and we took advantage of it. Uur 5 yr old enjoyed their all the fixins waffle. While I had their chicken salad and hubby ate the Huevos Rancheros. All inventive and filling without being too heavy.The airy atmosphere and all of the smartly dressed guests made it a pleasant lunch to remember.

*Here is where I take my break from getting my Ansel Adams black and white photography on to show you their delicious food in color! *

After Brunch, we headed over to the EAST BUILDING , which is where the exhibitions are, the North Carolina Gallery, the seasonal film series is held, contemporary galleries, the Art Reference Library, and the Membership and Box Office is located. Here is where we picked up our tickets for our time slot to see Ansel Adams Masterworks. No photography is allowed in the gallery and they do have family friendly guided tour times. 

As one of the most famous American photographers, Ansel Adams captured the natural wonders of the American west like no other. This exhibit had a plethora of original Adam prints taken over the course of his 5 decades behind the lens. The framed black and whites are placed at even eye level with the perfect overhead lighting. It was crowded but you could still freely gawk and ponder at all of his wonderful work.

I hope my family’s visit to the North Carolina Museum of Art (and my personal black and white photo tribute to Ansel Adams) has inspired you to plan to go with your family. There is something for all ages to enjoy! Follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @ncartmuseum or Check out ncartmuseum.org for tickets and more information !

North Carolina Museum of Art
2110 Blue Ridge Road  

Raleigh, NC 27607

919-839-NCMA     ncartmuseum.org

RECAP ~ #NuSoulRevivalTour let the #RaleighNC fans know #GoodMusicStillLives ! @DECRaleigh 

In celebration of drawing over 10,000 soul and R&B music lovers, from all over the U.S, to the largest annual Soul Music Festival in the SE region, the producers of the ATL Soul Life Music Festival are expanding on that successful concept. The 22-city NuSoul Revival Tour is boasting a lineup of some of the genres’ finest who have been quite busy in 2016. The tour kicked off last night in Raleigh, NC at the Duke Energy Center of the Performing Arts.

SobeSavvy was lucky enough to witness this great event. I was joined by my cousin who admitted, ” I came for Musiq SouldChild” ! Although I love ALL of the artists on this tour roster, I also could not wait for the headliner Musiq Soulchild to do his set. But before we get to that let’s talk about who was up before him.

Opening up on stage was beloved Grammy Nominated and; Multi-Award Winning Artist, Avery*Sunshine whose loyal fan base includes music icons Aretha Franklin, Baby Face, Teddy Riley, Jazzy Jeff, and Patti LaBelle. Avery has the vocal chords and stage presence that any real music fan could appreciate. The crowd included hundreds of folk who came there just to see her. She.is.amazing.Whether bllads or uptempo james Avery is a force to be reckoned with !

“First Couple of Soul”, Kindred the Family Soul came out first.Since their debut with Surrender to Love which charted #29 on Billboard R&B and received a Soul Train Award and a BET Award nomination, Kindred the Family Soul continues to show fans why they are fondly known as the First Couple of Soul.  Their lead Single “Where Would I Be (The Question)” from their second album hit top 10 on urban AC radio and they celebrated critical success with the 2014-released, A Couple Friends.  “Their albums are filled with a level of substance rarely found in popular music, and they combine that with great grooves and vocals. It is for that reason Kindred has been one of the most important acts of the 21st Century.

I had been wanting to see this husband and wife duo for forever and they did not disappoint. ” Far Away” was my favorite song of theirs and it just took me back to when I first heard it with my husband many moons ago. They were so energetic and just plain uplifting. The love they share in their union definitely came through with the warm interactions they had with each other on the stage.

Chester Jermaine Jennings better known as Lyfe Jennings took the stage and the crowd {ladies}went wild.The cautionary tale spinner who is well-known for his superior lyricism and signature ballads -Lyfe Jennings – has been delighting his fans since his critically acclaimed platinum-selling debut album, Lyfe 268-192 Jennings continues to raise his own bar.  In 2013, he covered Michael Jackson’s classic hit, “Human Nature” exclusively for Grammy.com’s Reimagined series. And, in 2015, the raspy-voiced singer released Tree of Lyfe, which he has described as his most personal work to date.

His singing and acoustic guitar skills are a rare blend. I discovered my love of this artist some years back when I was mesmorized by his smash hit ” Must Be Nice” It’s now iconic music video which to date has over 44 million views stands as proof that he is a visual artist himself.. Judge for yourself below:

https://www.youtube.com%20/embed/GkpN3uiZ-Ew

When he sung Must Be Nice this arms were swaying and we all were harmonizing {some better than others} to the beat !

Finally, what alot of us had been waiting for..MUSIQ !! The man who has had two platinum albums, two gold albums, and seven hit singles, and continues to amass industry nods such as awards from Billboard, BET, ASCAP, BMI, and Soul Train.&nbsp was coming on stage.

He has also earned award nominations from MTV, the American Music Awards, the NAACP, and 11 Grammy nominations since arriving on the scene over 15 years ago. The singer who enjoys fusing soul, R&B, funk, jazz, and hip-hop has also enjoyed notable collaborations with Carlos Santana, Mary J. Blige, Ice Cube, tour mates Kindred the Family Soul, Ceelo, Bilal, Swizz Beatz, Estelle, and India Arie – perhaps some of them will make an appearance on the tour.

His appeareance last night followed an exciting 2016 which includes his seventh studio album, Life on Earth entering the US Billboard 200 at #27, his single “I Do” reaching #3 on Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, and performing in the highly anticipated musical adaptation of the cult classic, Love Jones.

Musiq took control of the audience and played a compilation of his many many hits. “So Beautiful” sounded so great. After so many years Musiq has not lost a step or a vocal chord. I simply loved it . Great night. Great company.Great Concert.

This tour is also a party for a cause , per their press release…The NuSoul Revival Tour seeks to send the message that “Good Music Still Lives! “while continuing to support artists whose music is the soundtrack, and in some cases, a blueprint of areas of our lives.  It also seeks to raise awareness for Alzheimer’s disease which affects over five million individuals in the United States.

Here is a short video clip from last night’s concert in Raleigh of Kindred the Family Soul singing one of my favorite songs “Far Away”

https://www.instagram.com/p/BQEqjncDLxK/

 

 

To the NuSoul Revival Tour, style:initial;vertical-align:baseline;font-weight:bold;font-size:13px;line-height:normal;font-family:"color:rgb(70,70,70);text-align:justify;”> 

#NuSoulRevivalTour     #GoodMusicStillLives

Coming to a city near you!

 

#RudolphTheMusical goes down in history thru 12/24 @DECRaleigh @BroadwaySouth

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen

Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen

But do you recall

The most famous reindeer of all?
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer..

We all know and love the song that goes along with the animated television story of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” ! Now is your chance to fall in love all over again with Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer The Musical, now playing at Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts as part of Broadway Series South. My lil one wore her antlers gleefully and we were on our way to A.J.Fletcher Opera Theater to see this all time favorite holiday classic brought to life on stage! 

Before the show, we checked the adorable gifts and plush toys that were for sale and also took the opportunity to take photos with the larger than life characters from the special including Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, and, of course, Rudolph!

We all grew up watching this all time favorite cartoon special every single year at Christmas time. Now you can experience it live on stage ! This broadway caliber performance transported the audience all the way to the North Pole to Santa’s workshop . This is where all the drama on stage takes place. Kids of all ages were in the audience this afternoon to experience the wonder that this story truly is.

There was plenty of dancing and singing. All of your favorite characters from the cartoon were there. From the abominable snowman to the Elf who wants to be dentist were well represented ! This musical truly brought the cartoon to life. My 5 yr old laughed with delight every single time Rudolph’s nose lit up crimson red ! The show was 75 min with a 10 min intermission. My favorite scene was on the island of misfit toys. It had a deeper message that there is no such things as misfits, there are just some people that are just different than others.

The play hit a crescendo when it appeared that due to dangerous weather conditions, Santa was gong to have to cancel Christmas..but you know the rest !!

The last scene actually had REAL snow falling on the audience and suffice to say,my little girl LOVED,LOVED, LOVED that special effect.

Grab mom, grab Grandma {Or Nana} and ALL the kids and adults and buy your tickets now to Rudolph The Musical. It is the absolute must do for this holiday season !!

Now thru Dec 24, grab your family, young and old to see the greatest Christmas tale ever told ! Come dressed in your holiday pjs or wear a Santa’s hat to this family fun show filled with singing, dancing and great acting! Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius and Rudolph all came to life !

#FamilyFun with #OutandAboutAva at @UniverSoulCircus @WalnutCreekAmp #BestCircusEver #UniverSoulcircus in #Raleigh

image

Looking for some family fun to have with your little ones?
Well, UniverSoul Circus aka “Best Circus Ever” is here in Raleigh until March 13th at the Walnut Creek Amphitheatre! Tickets are on sale now via Ticketmaster.Com or 1-800-745-3000.

UniverSoul Circus has been ranked among Ticketmaster’s Top 25 Most Requested Family Events for its highly interactive combination of circus arts, acrobatic stunts, dance, and comedy set to popular music that spans genres. Fans of all ages are invited to go on an unforgettable journey of light, sound and soul. Get ready for electrifying, edge-of-your-seat performances, including extreme motorsports, back-flipping canines, backwards bicycles, disco-dancing pachyderms, free-flying aerial acts and much much more!

Rated as one of the top three circuses in America, UniverSoul Circus has globally sourced performers, whom hail from locales as diverse as Colombia, South Africa, Russia, and Trinidad and Tobago. This family fun event is truly bridging cultures from around the world –
1 Smile, 1 Thrill and 1 Song at a time!

Visit universoulcircus.com/raleigh for tickets and details and be sure to follow:
www.facebook.com/universoulcircus
www.instagram.com/universoulcircus
www.universoulcircus.com

Congratulations again to Paris W. , winner of the #SobeSavvyGiveaway for a family 4 pack of tickets. Thanks for sharing this picture of you and yours at Universal Circus!
image

Although my daughter was not a big fan of the clowns, #OutandaboutAva enjoyed her first UniverSoul Circus!
The music, the magic, the memories made are just a few of the many reasons to go see the show under the Big Top next time they make a stop in a city near you!

Here are some fun pictures and video from last night’s show:
image

image

image

image

image

image

image

View this post on Instagram

Get low! #universoulcircus #bestcircusever

A post shared by Lovely Leslie (@ijust_lovethis) on

#OutandaboutAva Creates #kidsart at #Mommyandme #Art Class @Artopia_Raleigh #Artopia #FamilyFun #Raleigh~#soNCsavvy Recap

image

My daughter loves art. All kinds of art. I told my husband I wanted to take our little one to a real art studio so she could experience art in a classic but fun age oriented atmosphere. I live near a place called Artopia in North Raleigh.http://www.artopia-raleigh.com/. They offer all sorts of art classes for all age groups. Summer art camp programs and adult oriented art programs in the evenings.

I always would drive by and see the different programs they have highlighted on their billboard. One day I saw they had a “Mommy and Me Class” on Fridays between 9:30-10:30am http://www.artopia-raleigh.com/Programs/mommy-and-me/. It just so happened to be Ava’s birthday weekend so this was perfect. So we attended Friday’s Mommy and Me Art Class. It was a great way to have some mommy and me fun with her and we got to take home a frame-able piece of art that both her and I created. We call the project “Ava’s Autumn”. All the material used are non toxic and safe for children so that was a plus.

Their website states “.. Projects will include finger painting, chalk art, arts and crafts, and much more! You will go home with a frame-able piece of art that both you and your child created. It is held on Fridays from 9:30-10:30 am \ Ages 0-4 Sign up now and enjoy a great experience of art and connection”

We were greeted by their pleasant staff and led to the space where the class was held. It was bright, airy and loft like. The project of the day was to do a painting to represent the fall season. The instructor gave us a myriad of fall like color choices to be used.

They supplied all the materials and direction. Ava {with a little help from me !}used brown, orange, reds and whites to make falling leaves, barren trees and soil.

The instructor quizzed Ava on her knowledge of primary colors and she passed {with flying colors !}. The instructor/student interaction was lovely and engaging. The finished product ended up on Ava’s bedroom wall where she proudly shows it off to any visitors. Mommy and me gets two hands up !

Artopia is a great space for kids birthday parties and events. Call them at (919) 307-8144 for details and plan your party today.

Here are some pictures from our day at Artopia !

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

Hey #Raleigh! Eat,Drink,Play & Get on my Level at @LevelUpNC ~ A #soNCsavvy review now on SobeSavvy.com

image

Look up in the sky ..it’s a bar..it’s a restaurant..it’s an arcade..it’s Level Up !

Level Up is a unique place..Is it a bar? Is it a restaurant ? Is it a old school video arcade ? It is all three ! The atmosphere will transport you back to the 80’s but the food/drinks will take you back to the future! Located downtown Raleigh, this place is a fun place to hang, play your favorite 1980’s arcade games, watch sports on one of the many flat screens or see one of the classic 80’s movies. Now that we ‘ve established that one can be entertained..let’s talk about the food and drink.
I met the mixologist extradornaire, Johnny who was very polite and passionate about his craft cocktails. He is the main cocktail curator. Johnny advised that it’s a seasonal cocktail menu and it will change somewhat when the weather changes.

There are some variations of all time favorites and also some very unique choices. I enjoyed the Code Blue and Skywalker. Made with top notch ingredients and real fresh fruit. Both were awesome cocktails.Because it was my first time, I polled the staff on what we’re some of the menu faves. Hands down..the Yoshi eggs came highly recommended and did not disappoint. These are not your basic deviled eggs..definitely a level above the rest.

They also elevate tator tots with 4 dipping sauce choices. Their gourmet tacos were out of this world good. The Ahi Tuna was a nice surprise that worked well. The Pork ribs are dusted with sesame seeds and served with house made slaw using brussel sprouts. A knockout ! As the pictures below can attest this is not ordinary “bar” food. All ingredients are fresh wonderful flavors and tasty. I ordered a variety of other things and definitely will be returning with friends ! So if you ever wondered want a great time with good food and fun than elevate your bar scene to another level. Level up.IMG_3538

IMG_3541

IMG_3542

IMG_3543

IMG_3545

IMG_3548

IMG_3552

IMG_3558

20150706_182012

20150706_182120

20150706_185534

20150706_175607

20150706_180004

20150706_174924

IMG_3562

IMG_3567

IMG_3571

IMG_3573

IMG_3574

IMG_3577

IMG_3578

image

Check out my photo slideshow from my visit : https://instagram.com/p/40RZuNiXET/

Win 2 Tix to @raleighfoodwine Tasting Celebration on Sun 6/28 @eatdrinkBabylon #DowntownRaleigh – #soNCsavvy #Giveaway #RFWF #raleighevents #rdu #triangle #NC

image
 

 

Enter Now to Win 2 general admission tickets for the inaugural Raleigh Food and Wine Festival – taking place in Downtown Raleigh at Babylon Restaurant . Join SobeSavvy.com for a spectacular taste of Raleigh on Sunday, June 28,2015 from 1:00 pm to 5:00pm !

The Raleigh Food and Wine Festival is an innovative event that showcases the new, evolving culinary traditions of Raleigh, comprised of multiple events taking place at different participating restaurants, wine shops, patisseries and bakeries – featuring wine dinners and guest chefs.
The four-day program wraps up with a food and beverage tasting celebration at the historical Melrose Knitting Mill and Babylon in Downtown Raleigh. Get your tickets HERE : for the Sunday tasting celebration! Only 100 VIP tickets are available and will sell out quickly.

$1.00 from every general admission sold and $2.00 from every VIP ticket will be donated to Band Together, which has raised more than $3.5 million to benefit the Triangle community since its 2001 inception. The group exists to help change lives and have fun along the way. Click here to learn more about Band Together !

The Raleigh Food and Wine Festival is a four-day event highlighting of some of the most unique offerings in food and beverage in Raleigh, NC. The 2015 Festival takes place Thursday, June 25, 2015 through Sunday, June 28, 2015

Thursday through Saturday, explore a growing list of events held around town – including wine dinners and cooking classes put on by participating businesses. RSVP requirements and other details are provided on each event listing. One event in particular that caught my interest is Friday nights’ Latin Jazz & Dinner at Latin Quarters !

On Sunday, all of the festival participants gather at the historic Melrose Knitting Mill and Babylon restaurant in downtown Raleigh to host a half-day “tasting celebration”, where ticket holders can sample food and beverages from local restaurants, brands, breweries, and more.Tickets are required for this event and must be purchased in advance online.

PLEASE NOTE: All attendees MUST be 21 years of age or older by Sunday, June 28, 2015. Refunds will not be made at the door if tickets are purchased for anyone under 21 years old!

Parking is limited on-site, but there are several nearby decks, including the State Government Parking Deck at 329 N. McDowell Street. View all available parking at http://www.godowntownraleigh.com/get-around/parking.

TO WIN 2 General Admission TIX to Sunday’s Tasting Event, Leave a comment on the blog that says “entered” and Fill out my Wufoo Form Here

One winner will be randomly selected on Tuesday, 6/23/15.

Check back here on SobeSavvy.com for this #soNCsavvy event recap! 

Good Luck!