Thursday, September 17, 2020
We’ve gone over the activities you can find along the Mary Black Foundation Rail Trail before. From a park for your four-legged friends, to an area where you can see how you’d rank among NFL prospects, to the paved walking/running/riding trail itself, the Rail Trail has a little something for everyone. But so too does the area around the Rail Trail.
When you’re on the Rail Trail, don’t be surprised when the pleasant aroma of coffee fills your nose as you approach the Fretwell, the newest project along the trail, opened in May 2022.
Redeveloped by a group of Spartanburg entrepreneurs, this former industrial area and cotton gin site is capitalizing on growth along the Rail Trail, inspired by popular trailside developments across the Southeast. Fretwell is home to a mixed-use gathering space featuring Little River’s headquarters and roasting facility, and a concessions trailer inside a permanent food truck selling sandwiches, specialty drinks, beer and wine, and snacks. The Fretwell is also home to a stage overlooking the trail and a large grassy area for games, activities and more for the whole family.
Now, let’s get into the food. The newest addition with great proximity to the Rail Trail is Flock Shop, Spartanburg’s one-stop-shop for all things hot chicken. A great place to grab lunch whether you’re dining inside or outside, you’ll be in fried chicken heaven, even if you’re hesitant to handle the spicier options.
To stay friendly to concerns about the coronavirus, Flock Shop has a special area for take-out order pick-ups, and an outdoor dining set up. Several tables inside the restaurant are also situated next to garage doors that can be opened to let fresh air in, with several tables also overlooking The Bike Park, the Rail Trail’s newest addition.
As far as recommendations go, go for the Freebird sandwich, Flock-Style for the full experience. And you can’t forget the pimento mac-n-cheese and Rail Trail Pale brewed locally in collaboration with RJ Rockers.
If you’re in the mood for something milder but still fitting of South Carolina’s barbecue prestige, head to Little Pigs BBQ of Pine Street. Little Pigs has all the classic barbecue favorites like pulled pork, smoked ribs and chicken, and a long list of side dishes like macaroni and cheese, baked beans, potato salad and Cole slaw.
And, for that perfect dessert, or a sweet side dish, you have to get the sweet potato crunch.
Once you’ve had your fill of food, or even before you go eat, check out unique-to-Spartanburg gifts, décor, clothing and accessories at Vintage Warehouse. Open Tuesday-Sunday, Vintage Warehouse offers a different kind of shopping experience, featuring one-of-a-kind and handmade items from a changing selection of more than 60 artists from around the area.
Whether you’re fueling up before your trip to the Rail Trail, or looking to unwind and grab some grub after your visit, there is a plethora of interesting options to explore in the radius around Spartanburg’s most-used outdoor recreational area.