Indulge Your Senses in Historic Covington

The Three Rivers Art Festivals is a popular event in Historic Covington, LA

In the south, the “fall”—you know, that time of year where the air cools and crisps and it’s appropriate to order pumpkin spice lattes—doesn’t really kick off until mid-to-late October (it’s true … we never know if we should break out scarves and coats or flip flips and tank tops to wear when our kids go trick-or-treating). By mid-November, the atmosphere is relatively cool with temps in the 50s and 60s, and there’s nothing more refreshing than being outside, which is why the Three Rivers Art Festival in historic Covington, LA makes for a perfectly-timed fall breakaway (also, it’s the last chance you’ll have to kick back before the holiday season goes into overdrive).

Take a break for art

The annual Three Rivers Art Festival takes place in beautiful, walkable historic Covington a weekend in mid- November. Admission is free for you to stroll among tent after tent featuring the works of 200 artists hailing from over 20 states.

There’s plenty of music, children’s activities, arts and crafts demonstrations, and delicious Louisiana cuisine to indulge in. In addition to those perks, here are a few other reasons why my family and I love art festivals:

• We get to be outside as a family walking around in an environment that is not the circle that makes up our (otherwise delightful) neighborhood. It’s relaxing to be outside in the south in mid-November. If you’ve never experienced it, trust me. You’ll have your zip up off by midday and will be enjoying the warm sun and crisp air tickling your skin as your other senses are stimulated by vivid artwork and hearty scents. You’ll kind of want to marry it the way some people want to marry their pumpkin spice latte.

• I know we can all read a calendar, but just in case it eclipsed your notice, the event is a month and a half before Christmas. Hello, unique gifts! I’m being serious. In addition to the fact that the festival supports art programs for St. Tammany Parish school students (a good deed sure to be noticed by Santa), you can also use it as an opportunity to buy pieces for your family that will have special meaning.

The art in my daughter’s room is (thus far) comprised of three different, original pieces from all over the world. One is the Eiffel Tower painting my brother gave me years ago from his trip to Paris; one my husband and I purchased in New Orleans’ Cathedral Square; and the third came from my daughter’s cool uncle in Brooklyn. I love it because we can tell her stories not only about the art in her room but also the neat places they originated.

• Speaking of gifts, you know how you have at least one impossible to shop for relative? Well, something one-of-a-kind from an art show (there’s more than just paintings) might just fit the bill (it’s better than my standby, which is a Target gift card…yeah, aren’t you glad you’re not related to me?).
At any rate, if you do turn the Three Rivers Art Festival into an impromptu holiday shopping venture, you have a world of options just outside of the festival. Historic Downtown Covington is not only picturesque, it’s also flanked by charming boutiques, restaurants, and places to stay.

Visit South, stay Southern in historic Covington

Speaking of places to stay, right now the only place to stay is Covington’s most fabulous hotel experience, the Southern Hotel.  Located in downtown Covington, it puts you right in the middle of the action. People who have visited have had nothing but words of praise for the modern, art-laden darling of a hotel (which, as we all know from reading hilarious, illiterate Yelp reviews is really hard for any venue to achieve…especially one where people spend over 12 hours in the building just looking for things to criticize).

To Southern Hotel, for evading criticism, my hat is off as are my pants because I’m ready for a good night’s sleep in one any one of your 42 fully renovated, cushy rooms. When I wake up, I think I’ll treat myself to a little gym time … or maybe the spa … or I’ll just sleep in and hit the upscale bar after another day of trolling the Three Rivers Art Festival. Decisions….

Park yourself at Ox Lot 9

Even if I can decide how to pamper myself, I know where I’ll be getting at least one meal on this fall weekend breakaway. The brand new, upscale Ox Lot 9, which is conveniently part of Southern Hotel, is a must-indulgence for all palates.

Ox Lot 9’s concept uses fresh, local products for elevated “farm-to-table” cuisine. For fellow foodies, you’ll know you’ll have an out of this world experience when I tell you that the restaurant will be operated by Jeffrey Hansell who worked under Tory McPhail at Commander’s Palace and that he was also an executive sous chef for John Besh in New Orleans and for restaurant Veranda in Birmingham. Honestly, need I say more?

So, make the Three Rivers Art Festival in Covington your fall breakaway—it gets you out of the house to enjoy the crisp weather with your sweetie (that latte I keep mentioning) or your family. It’s a perfect opportunity to experience Louisiana culture, indulge your senses, relax in a luxury hotel, and take in gourmet-quality fresh, elevated Louisiana fare before the holiday season starts and you have no time to “break” anything other than “down and cry” in Target on Black Friday because those weird My Little Pony characters that look like half-people are all sold out … at 4:30 a.m.

Seriously, pre-brining the turkey can wait; take a break, indulge yourself, and fall in love with historic Covington and all it has to offer.

Want to find out more about the Three Rivers Art Festival and what beautiful downtown Covington has to offer? Check out the Louisiana Northshore webpage and discover the splendor that awaits.

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