How Durham has become one of America’s most successful cities

For almost 57 years since the birth of the Research Triangle Park, the cornerstone of the Triangle’s success and affluence, Raleigh has been known to have taken the driver’s seat with Durham and Chapel Hill riding shotgun on the road to economic success. While much of RTP is physically located inside Durham County, it remained Raleigh’s car to drive.

For the most part, much of that sentiment in the 70s, 80s and the 90s could be corroborated with facts and figures surrounding Raleigh metro’s population growth, state government infrastructure and the size of commerce.

But in the last 10 years, the resurgence of Durham has been the story.

Finish reading this latest Economist piece that uses the Durham as the example of American success.


10 Untapped Beer Cities Poised to Blow up

With more than 4,100 breweries and brewpubs now operating in the US, our little country that could has finally joined the ranks of esteemed brewing powerhouses like Germany and Belgium. For years, hubs like San Diego and the Portlands have flooded the market with quality product, nobly inspiring their fellow Americans to choose better beer. But even though those meccas are undoubtedly responsible for America’s new baller status, there are new cities rising to meet them.

The brewers in these 10 cities represent the latest in a long line of ambitious, passionate, and community-minded entrepreneurs willing to throw caution and a ton of cash to wind in the name of great beer. Until now, though, they’ve been flying quietly under the radar, just waiting for some beer writer, frustrated with covering the same damn IPA release, to come along and blow up their spot. Well, (cue airhorn!), consider it blown.

Durham, NC

There are three things you need to know about North Carolina’s Research Triangle: college sports is its king, indie music is its queen, and craft beer is the gallant, youthful prince that brings it all together. Home to All About Beer Magazine’s annual World Beer Festival, Bull City has emerged from the Raleigh and Chapel shadow as a North Carolina craft beer hub second only to Asheville’s long-reigning dominance, with five production breweries and brewpubs leading the ever-growing roster.

Holding court as Durham’s oldest craft brewery, Triangle Brewing Company has been dishing out inspired Belgian- and American-style ales since 2007 (check out the Habanero Pale Ale). Fullsteam is the place to be come nightfall, when bands, sports fans, and food trucks take over the giant, hangar-like Rigsbee Ave taproom, which pours brews from the experimental, taproom-only R&D line or ultra-local selections from the Beautiful South series. And after merely two years, Ponysaurus Brewing Co. has boldly entered the fray with a rotating fleet of updated European classics like a tart weissbier, a nutty fig saison, and an herbal Biere de Garde.

Of course, no Durham adventure would be complete without a stop into the little beer store that started it all — Sam’s Quik Shop. Originally opened as an Esso gas station in 1949, it’s transitioned into a destination for rare and great bottles since owner John Boy took over in the ’90s. It looks like a standard convenience store. Except, with 1,500 bottles from around the world, it happens to be one of the beer shops in the country, and just another reason Durham should be a destination.  

Read the entire list HERE.

The Top 3 Affordable Cities for Millennial Entrepreneurs

(The American Tobacco Historic District in Durham, NC.)

It’s never been easier to start a business and become an entrepreneur. For millennials, access to technology and multiple social media platforms have made launching and growing your business more cost-effective than ever before.

Whether you are just launching your business or are a seasoned entrepreneur, cutting expenses will always be an important ingredient to your business’s longevity. One of the biggest costs in any budget is your living expenses. As an entrepreneur, being savvy about where you choose to live can not only help your business thrive but also give your wallet a bit of a reprieve.

Below are the top three affordable cities for millennial entrepreneurs to live and work.

Raleigh-Durham, NC

Not only is RaleighDurham a great college town, but it is also becoming a formidable force to be reckoned with for millennial entrepreneurs. Raleigh-Durham is home to an innovative tech hub, American Underground, which is one of just nine Google Tech Hubs in North America.

The American Underground has four locations around Raleigh-Durham and is jammed packed with all the goodies millennial entrepreneurs could ask for: co-working spaces, community events, flexible lease terms, conference rooms, and, of course, a complimentary coffee bar. Located in the Research Triangle, American Underground is helping to put Raleigh-Durham on the map for entrepreneurs

Coupled with the low cost of living that North Carolina offers, many millennial entrepreneurs are fleeing more expensive states like New York and California to have a chance to focus on the growth of their business and not the growth of their living expenses.

The median earnings in Raleigh/Durham are $47,618 and the city also enjoys a low unemployment rate of 4.6%, ranking it 16th in Best Cities for Young Entrepreneurs, according to NerdWallet.

Read the entire story HERE.


‘Bull Durham’ headed for Broadway

“The world I know, Minor League Baseball, there is a certain feel that I think you have to get right,” said former Baltimore Orioles farmhand Ron Shelton.

Of course, a career .253 hitter over five seasons at all levels of the minors, Shelton is familiar with the minor leagues – definitely more so than most of his Hollywood colleagues.

The 70-year-old writer and director has long traded the name on the back of a jersey for one on the back of a chair. Shelton’s Tin Cup, White Men Can’t Jump, Blue Chips and Cobb stand out for sports movie aficionados of the early and mid-1990s. But it is Bull Durham that takes the stage alone for many sports movie cultists.

And wouldn’t you know it, the stage is exactly where Bull Durham is headed – presumably.

“I think (the labs) went extremely well and we’re getting indication that it’s moving forward,” Shelton said.

Bull Durham the musical appears to be headed for Broadway after going through a series of test runs in New York and a developmental production set in Atlanta.


“There was a look we were going for to capture the minors and say ‘this is not the major leagues,’” Shelton said of the film. “Structurally, a Broadway musical is different than a movie. It is kind of a high-count; scenes have to play out quicker and in shorter version.”

Yes, that means the rustically romantic film framed around a baseball diamond will now feature singing and dancing.

So how does one recreate the low-lit, ragged look of 1980s minor league baseball while positioning oneself under the bright lights of Broadway – and staying true to the classic story that is, of course? It’s a bit of a juggling act.

“We are trying to balance a lot of things,” Shelton said. “Romance, earthiness, bodyness, sexiness, silliness. That’s a lot of plates to keep in the air.”

But make no mistake, even with the song and dance that define a musical, Crash Davis will still be Crash Davis, Ebby Calvin LaLoosh will still be “Nuke” and Annie Savoy will still be true to her character. And yes, the famed bull in the “D” logo will remain.

“We have worked hard so the woman’s voice is strong and the men are men – it’s like the movie,” Shelton said. “There is certainly testosterone in the air, but the women are powerful too.”

Read more at WRAL Sports Fan.

‘Bull Durham’ headed for BroadwayMORE INFO

Become the Ultimate Durhamite With This Impressive Checklist

Walk or bike the American Tobacco Trail.

Have breakfast at Elmo’s Diner and/or Rick’s Diner.

Buy a bottle of wine from Wine AuthoritiesHope Valley Bottle ShopTotal Wineand/or Cave Taureau.

Go to a Broadway show at the Durham Performing Arts Center.

See a concert, stand-up comedy or even just a movie at The Carolina Theatre.

Meet local artisans and find beautifully crafted pottery, jewelry, illustrations, woodwork and more at the weekly Durham Craft Market and monthly Durham Patchwork Market.

Take your rambunctious youngsters to Durham’s most central playground: Mount Merrill.


Photo by Emily Toth.

Spend a morning volunteering with the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina.

Have lunch and a pastry at Mad Hatter’s Cafe and Bakeshop.

10 Go on a shopping spree to Fifi’sMagpieJo’s BoutiqueExotiqueJackSmitten,BanoIndioCotton Creek and Vert & Vogue.

11 See a play at Manbites Dog Theater.

12 Purchase fine art and crafts during one of the two Durham Art Walks held each year.

13 Tour the early home, factories and farm where Washington Duke first grew and processed tobacco at Duke Homestead.

14 Go on a gourmet culinary tour led by Taste Carolina.

15 Rock out at The Pinhook and/or Motorco Music Hall.

16 Visit the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University.

17 Head to one of two Durham Farmers’ Markets on a Saturday morning.

18 Sample more than 250 beers from closte to 100 different breweries at the World Beer Festival.

19 Meet a favorite author at The Regulator Bookshop.

20 Check out the art museum at N.C. Central University.

CLICK HERE to see the remaining list.


17 Signs You’re From Durham, North Carolina

Durham, North Carolina is unlike any other southern small town. A town of over 200,000 thousand somehow has a small town feel. From its little, crunchy downtown area full of independently owned restaurants and shops to its vast beautiful woodlands and fields, Durham, North Carolina is the place to live. Here are some signs that you’re from the Durham a.k.a the Bull City. 

1. You only wear one shade of blue; “Duke” blue or “UNC” blue.

2. You know all about the legendary Cameron Indoor Stadium and Cameron Crazies.

There are no “nose bleed” seats in Cameron and every seat is a great seat. And, you can always count on the Cameron Crazies, who are seated right up against the court, to keep the stadium very rowdy. 

CLICK HERE to see the remaining signs…


The best weekend getaways for Valentine’s Day romance, or family time

Next weekend packs a punch with two holidays in one – Valentine’s Day and President’s Day. To help you make the most of your three days off, Jacqui Gifford from Travel and Leisure magazine shares some of the best destinations, from a chic hotel in Durham, North Carolina, to a family-friendly resort in the Wisconsin Dells.

Watch the entire VIDEO SEGMENT from the TODAY show.


5 Under-the-Radar Vacation Alternatives to Tourist Favorites

If you’re looking for Southern charm, forget Charleston; try Durham instead.

That’s the message of Chicago lifestyle website Make It Better in its feature, “5 Under-the-Radar Vacation Alternatives to Tourist Favorites.”

These alternatives to tourist favorites offer experiences that are more affordable, less crowded, more intimate or less stressful,” writes the blog.

Durham’s food scene is particularly highlighted. Hotels and restaurants mentioned include the 21c Museum Hotel and its Counting House restaurant, The Durham hotel’s rooftop bar, Bull City Burger and Brewery, Piedmont, Pizzeria Toro, Pompieri Pizza, The Parlour, Durham Distillery and Alley Twenty Six.

“This rapidly growing city seems to be in a perpetual state of construction but now is the time to visit for a taste of small town charm before it gets any bigger,” says the blog about Durham.

Read the full article here.


The Rise of Global Startup Cities

Durham is No. 4 on a new global list of venture capital funding per capita, according to a report by the Martin Prosperity Instutute and urbanist/scholar Richard Florida.

The report looks at the 20 global metros with the most total funding, a list whose top five are San Francisco, San Jose, Boston, New York and Los Angeles.

When funding is analyzed on a per-capita basis, the top five metros are San Jose ($2,146 per capita), San Francisco ($1,415), Boston ($665), Durham ($475) and San Diego ($434).

Greensboro is No. 15 on the list, with $97 per capita.

Read the full report by the Martin Prosperity Instutute and urbanist/scholar Richard Florida.


Why Durham is the Perfect Place to Plant Some Roots

For newcomers, how would you describe our current real estate market?
Inventory right now is very tight. I think a lot of people are realizing what a great place Durham is to live, and they don’t want to move away. When a house does come on the market, it gets snapped up quickly. I think it speaks volumes about what a great town we live in. … If you look at the Triangle, Durham is still the most affordable – you get the most house for your money.

What’s the average turnaround time on the market right now?
The last study I saw said 2.9 months, meaning that at the rate that people are buying, if nothing new came on the market, we’d be out of things to sell in 2.9 months. That’s very low.

How did we develop such a strong market?
You look at what Durham has gone through during the past 10 years – the revitalization of downtown, which is now the happening place in the Triangle with the Durham Performing Arts Center, the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, the American Tobacco Campus, the central district with all the restaurants and the art spaces and the hotels – it’s just a wonderful place to spend time in. We’ve got great universities, like Duke University and North Carolina Central University. … You’ve got other areas like The Streets at Southpoint – that area was nothing 12 years ago, and look at all that’s there now with restaurants, shopping and things to do. Durham has become a destination. It’s no longer this sleepy little town.