No Need To Drive To The Beach For Great Food And A Beach Atmosphere – It’s Here

Not everyone has an opportunity or cares that much about driving to the beach, wherever that is for you. Eating out at the local restaurants is part of the fun of going to the beach, however. What about off-season when you’re dying for some fresh shrimp or you love crab legs and seafood in general? Oh, my goodness, have I got a place for everyone in Rocky Mount with a great menu and that beach atmosphere.

TASTY CRAB HOUSE -1545 Benvenue Rd. Rocky Mount -252-210-2942

I went to Suddenlink at Cobbs Corner a few days ago and two doors down I noticed a sign in the window, Grand Opening. Turns out the Tasty Crab House opened last May but has been carry-out food until now when dining-in is finally available. After taking care of business, I went in afterward and discovered a space that is tasteful, smart looking, inviting, and am I glad I had this adventure. The dining area is eye appealing. The women’s bathroom is a high-end tiled area, new and clean, with friendly young people greeting, serving, making things pleasant. Cheating on my gluten-free life, I ordered a shrimp basket with a choice of fries. Lightly breaded, it was delicious!! AND, the sweet tea made this girl happy.

Though the storefront windows keep the interior a surprise until you are inside, take a look at the slide show above and you will see how far from ordinary the Tasty Crab House is. Of course, plenty of parking in the mall parking area. THE ONLY regret is that it isn’t in the historic downtown Main Street area. Main Street has great food, or coffee, wine, sandwich places that are setting a high bar downtown for reasons to come and enjoy these businesses. This is essential for the revitalization of Rocky Mount’s downtown. It gives out-of-town guests places to eat, and for the rest of us to come downtown to love the architecture, streetscape, preservation, restoration, and repurposing of the significant commercial buildings.

My daughter and I had lunch at the Smokehouse on Saturday. A huge tournament was going on at the Event Center. A full parking lot. I counted 24 people that came in as groups from the Center to eat on a break in their playing schedule. Those in addition to people already there like ourselves. We talked on the street with a man and his son from DELEWARE that had a daughter playing. The younger son was not allowed in so they were headed to walk through town. They’d been to Nabs for lunch. We gave directions because they wanted to see the Train Station etc. We got complimented on being tour guides and on our cheerleading. They were headed to Tap 1918 at the Mill for dinner after the tournament. The success of The Event Center is SO IMPORTANT to the stakeholders downtown who are creating a place for all of us to enjoy. Though not downtown, The Tasty Crab House is an amazing addition to the food scene of Rocky Mount along with other destinations beyond Main Street. The Tasty Crabhouse is something else to celebrate, support, and enjoy!

The Downtown Prophet – Vann Joines – Part 2

A writer of fiction, I know how essential a setting is to a novel, how important the opening lines of a story are. I have written a mini scene for you that takes place at the Prime Smokehouse on Thomas Street in Rocky Mount. Quiet jazz plays in the background. A man and woman are seated at a table, one having ordered from the menu food the other character, the athlete gone vegetarian, would never consider. Vann Joines drinks water, Stepheny, sips sweet tea, The opening dialogue is spoken by Joines. “Tennessee Williams once said, ‘There Are Only Three Great Cities in the U.S. – New York, San Francisco, and Washington. All the Rest Are Cleveland.’”

The purpose of writing the Prime Smokehouse scene is so you, my reader, can begin to share in the conversation Vann Joines and I had.  (More posts will follow in order to do that.) We began our visit with a key question. “What drives people to pick the places where they live?” One answer is that the cities that are thriving throughout the country are the ones that are promoting their unique history and story. Civic pride contributes to a strong sense of place which is what people are looking for. Entrepreneurs, like Vann, the Koi Pond Brewery folks, many others, have picked Rocky Mount to live and work. Why? Because they are drawn to the cultural content of the Mill, Railway and Tobacco stories, to name but a few.  The redevelopment of Rocky Mount is well under way; the architecture, the beautiful old Mill buildings, our downtown scene, the refurbished Train & Bus Stations, the Imperial Center, are significant renovations that set us apart from anywhere else.

Rocky Mount is a perfect place to pick when considering where to live.  We are a diverse, God fearing community, (an old fashion term, but a concept understood in this place.) People here learned from their parents what hard work is, responsibility to care for others, to persevere.  We are a community that cares about historic preservation, community redevelopment and social interaction. We have a unique story that will save us from being just another ‘Cleveland!’  While preserving the character of this place, we are creating a new future that meets the needs of the day. Do you doubt? Catch up with Vann Joines, one of the prophets that has come to town to show us the way.

This Main Street Rocky Mount blog honors the narrative of this place. Join me everyday in saying YES to Rocky Mount. Be proud of our historic and cultural context that makes us special. Let’s join Vann Joines, John Jesso, and others, who are on a mission to enhance and insure are uniqueness.

“This is the place of places and it is here.”
 Gertrude Stein