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Weekend in Columbia

BREAKFAST: Located in the West Vista area, Cafe Strudel ( www.cafestrudel.com) is a hip and eclectic diner that offers a wide array of breakfast, brunch and lunch options. 9:00 A.M.: Now in its new location in the 1500 block of Main Street, Soda City ( www.stateplate.org) is an all-locals farmers market open 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays. Sample local coffee and sweet treats while picking out fresh, in-season fruits and vegetables. 10:00 A.M.: The Columbia Museum of Art ( www.columbiamuseum.org), 115 Main St., features European art from the Kress Collection and a variety of popular events and exhibitions.

LUNCH: A Five Points favorite, The Gourmet Shop ( www.thegourmetshop.net) is the ideal lunch spot during a day of sightseeing. This delicatessen and gift shop offers in-the-know visitors creative and freshly prepared menu items – as well as useful and fun kitchen gadgets, packaged goods and an extensive wine selection. 1:00 P.M.: Eddie, “the world’s largest child,” welcomes kids and kids at heart to EdVenture Children’s Museum ( www.edventure.org). This 40-foot interactive exhibit allows children and adults to crawl inside and learn about the inner workings of humans. Ranked one of the top children’s museums in the nation, EdVenture is constantly creating new and unique educational exhibits and programs. 3:00 P.M.: Next to EdVenture, the South Carolina State Museum ( www.museum.state.sc.us) features extensive exhibits that take guests on a journey to better understand the Palmetto State.

DINNER: Focusing on incorporating the freshest local ingredients available into his dishes, Terra ( www.terrasc.com) chef Mike Davis creates a menu filled with artful and unique spins on some of the South’s iconic dishes.

BREAKFAST: Downtown’s Motor Supply Co. ( www.motorsupplycobistro.com) is a great place to head for breakfast and Sunday brunch, including “Columbia’s Best Bloody Mary.” 11:00 A.M.: The South Carolina State House ( www.scstatehouse.gov) is the city’s most iconic landmark. Bronze stars scattered around the capitol building mark places hit by Gen. Sherman’s cannons in 1865.

LUNCH: With lines typically out the door, Doc’s Barbeque and Southern Buffet ( www.docsbarbeque.com) serves up pulled pork doused in the region’s traditional mustard-based sauce. This first-rate barbecue buffet also features mouth-watering fried chicken, corn casserole, macaroni and cheese, catfish bites, slaw, peach cobbler and more. 1 P.M.: Family friendly Riverbanks Zoo & Gardens ( www.riverbanks.org) boasts more than 2,000 animals in natural habitat exhibits and a 70-acre botanical garden devoted to woodlands, gardens, historic ruins, plant collections and a visitor facility. Recently, the zoo opened Sky High Safari, an interactive four-story ropes course that allows visitors to get a bird’s eye view of the entire zoo (kids of a certain height welcome).

DINNER: Overlooking the South Carolina State House, The Oak Table ( www.theoaktablesc.com) is the newest addition to Columbia’s downtown dining scene. It’s inspired by sister restaurants Oak Steakhouse and The Macintosh in Charleston.

WRAP UP: For more than 30 years, The Nickelodeon ( www.nickelodeon.org) has shown a range of independent and documentary films. Now in sparkling new digs at 1607 Main St., there are movies virtually every night, as well as many matinees and lots of special events . There’s a Mast General Store ( www.mastgeneralstore.com) outpost next door for pre-film shopping.

Lynn Seldon

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