Valentine's with KEM
Nashville native and Platinum-selling singer/songwriter KEM returns for a very special one-night-only Valentine’s engagement at the Schermerhorn on Monday, February
The fertile plain of the Mississippi Delta is a tapestry of extremes: culturally rich and visually stunning, where tradition and wealth dance in juxtaposition with the extreme poverty of the region. Historian James Cobb once referred to it as the “most southern place on earth.” And, perhaps, no city is more deserving of that description than Greenwood.
For Greenwood native and Viking Range founder, Fred Carl, Jr., this beloved town was the logical place to set up manufacturing for his high-end stoves and cooktops. As demand grew, an increasing number of distributors traveled to the area for product unveilings and training, presenting a need for suitable lodging. Viking set its sights on the historic Irving Hotel, a once-glamorous destination in the ’40s that fell into complete disrepair as big cotton declined. After two years of extensive renovations, the 50-room, luxury hotel opened its doors not only to business travelers, but also to tourists from around the globe who are eager to experience the mystery of the Deep South.
The Alluvian, like most things in the Delta, feels wholly authentic. It offers cosmopolitan four-star accommodations that would be at home in any large city, yet exudes Southern hospitality at every turn. Modern furnishings in rich jewel tones are balanced by local art, and coffee is served in proper china, alongside shelves of well-loved books by Southern authors. The hotel’s daily happy hour offers a gathering place for residents and visitors alike, where lively tales of the town often ensue.
With amenities that include a spa, state-of-the-art cooking school (thanks to the Viking connection), library, yoga studio, and award-winning restaurant, it’s a space that allows you to succumb to the notably slower pace. From the complimentary, gourmet breakfast served in the hotel’s Terrace Room, to fine dining in the privacy of the curtained booths at Giardina’s, guests can enjoy exceptional regional cuisine without ever leaving the confines of the hotel.
Viking’s transformation of the once-neglected corner on Howard Street has also led to a slow revitalization of downtown, breathing life back into the deserted streets. There’s plenty for curious guests to explore, and the locals are a significant part of the community’s charms. Along with an extensive selection of books, including an impressive collection of signed first editions, Turnrow Book Co. boasts a full-service café and brewery and plays host to authors and musicians throughout the year. It’s a perfect place to curl up with a latte or beer and catch up on your reading.
Around the corner, James Beard-nominated chef Taylor Bowen Ricketts opened Fan & Johnny’s on Main Street. Dishes, like tortilla soup with alligator, Andouille and avocado, and catfish smothered with Creole peppers and onions over pimento-cheese hash browns, demonstrate her penchant for marrying global and Southern influences with local ingredients. Recommendations abound for “any of her specials.”
And, should you find yourself arriving in Greenwood on Sunday evening with an empty stomach only to find the streets eerily quiet, summon the Alluvian shuttle and make your way to The Crystal Grill. This Greenwood institution is the only game in town on a Sunday night. While regulars line up curbside to receive carefully boxed to-go orders, the inside is abuzz with platters of fried crab claws, raw oysters, thick-cut steaks, and overstuffed po’ boys streaming from the kitchen, as families gather at large tables in their Sunday best for the final meal of the week.