Every Monday we bring you the Southern Living Hot List, a roundup of the five latest and greatest things to hit the South. Consider it your weekly update on our region’s most buzzworthy food, culture, and style news.
1. Music City Hot Chicken Festival. Forget the dogs and burgers this Independence Day; it’s all about hot chicken in the city that knows it best. This Friday, Nashville kicks off its eighth annual festival at East Park on Woodland Street. The festival opens with a parade beginning on the corner of 8th and Woodland streets at 10:30 a.m. At 11 a.m., get your beaks ready for some of Nashville’s best hot chicken, such as Hattie B’s and Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack. Yazoo Brewing Company will be providing ice cold beer to cool off with. Psst … the first 500 people receive free hot chicken samples.
2. Sneak peek of Andrew Gillespie’s Terminus City. Before Atlanta chef Kevin Gillespie spills the location deets on his upcoming Terminus City, he’s previewing parts of its menu at Gunshow, his flagship restaurant. This Friday and Saturday from noon to 8 p.m., Gunshow’s rolling carts will be filled to the brim with chopped, whole-hog barbecue, chicken-fried steak, country vegetable sides, and fried pies. Seating is first come, first serve.
3. Smithsonian Folklife Festival. Washington, D.C.’s ever-popular Folklife Festival, promoted by the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, celebrates traditions from all over the globe, and is focusing on China and Kenya this year. The five-day festival kicks off this Wednesday at the National Mall with more than 60 events per day. We’ve got our eyes on Thursday’s Sounds of the Southwestern Mountains. Full schedule here.
4. Austin Symphony Concert and Fireworks. One of Texas’ largest Fourth of July events features the entire Austin Symphony Orchestra and fireworks–all under the stars for free and open to the public. The concert takes place at the Circuit of Americas at 8:30 p.m., with fireworks to follow at 9:30 p.m. For more information on day-of children’s activities and parking, click here.
5. Charleston’s Sizzling Summer Celebration. For those in Charleston, South Carolina, who want something a bit more refined this Fourth, Circa 1886 offers a three-course meal and sparkling wine with views of fireworks at the Wentworth Mansion. Beginning at 6 p.m., drinks will be served alongside live music and lawn games. For dinner, a grill-inspired menu features dishes such as pickled shrimp, rib eye, and pineapple upside-down cake. For tickets, call 843/853-7828; $70 per person.