Word on the Street

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By Abigail Jurk (Photo/Abigail Jurk)

The summer is drawing to a close, but that doesn’t mean your social life should suffer. If you are looking for some fun new ideas for things to do around Alexandria, here are some new places to consider:

WHAT’S NEW: Located at 703 King St., Magnolia’s On King is the newest addition to the Old Town dining scene. The independently owned restaurant describes its cuisine by chef Brian Rowe as “Southern Immersion,” meaning the menu includes many modernized versions of Southern favorites. The menu also focuses on fresh, local and sustainably sourced ingredients, so patrons can look forward to the menu changing with the seasons. Currently, the spicy crab dip appetizer is among the most popular dishes.

The ambience at Magnolia’s is welcoming yet elegant. The decor strives to showcase the building’s historic nature while still making patrons feel comfortable and at home. For those who are not in the mood for an entire meal, Magnolia’s also features a lounge area.

The lounge features craft cocktails with the same ethos as the rest of the restaurant: fresh ingredients and beverages that change periodically. From the lounge, patrons can look out over King Street or simply relax in an armchair by the fireplace.

Magnolia’s On King is open 6 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Reservations are recommended, though not required.

WHAT’S HAPPENING: Artbot Gallery is a new local art gallery that opened earlier this month. Located at 1314 King St., Artbot Gallery is not a typical gallery. Featuring work from more than 20 different artists, this venue specializes in what owner James Marlowe calls “popsurrealism.”

Many of the pieces evoke pop culture, but carry a somewhat dark theme. Marlowe says the point of most of the pieces is to be “weird … but still humorous.” All of the pieces on the walls are for sale and the gallery also offers novelty items, prints, and even jewelry available for purchase.

Starting next month, Artbot will introduce art shows featuring individual artists, where guests will be able to discuss works with their creators over a glass of wine. And in the future, the gallery hopes to add tattoo and piercing services to their repertoire.

Marlowe said in opening Artbot he hopes to add something different and out of the ordinary to Old Town, and so far, he seems to be achieving that goal.

Artbot is open noon to 6 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, noon to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays.

To request a place, event or special be featured in Word on the Street, contact Abigail Jurk at ajurk@alextimes.com.

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