By Guest Blogger Leslie Morgan

Regardless of where your college basketball allegiance may be, Chapel Hill – and its beloved Franklin Street – offers several excellent reasons to pack up the kids and take a day trip. Located just 60 miles east of Greensboro (and 90 miles east of Winston-Salem), the driving is easy and the destination is worthy.

I made this short trek during Spring Break with my two young daughters (at that time they were ages 6 and 3). We started our morning at the Morehead Planetarium which offers a series of kid-friendly shows. Fortunately, the Morehead Planetarium offers several choices of shows that are appropriate for young children. For a full listing of shows and events, plus hours of operation and ticket information, visit the web site.

From there, we simply strolled across the sprawling university campus – walking the brick paths through beautifully-landscaped quads, exploring the student “Pit,” and then snapping the necessary photos at the infamous Old Well. By this time, we had worked up quite an appetite for lunch. Luckily, being in a college town means there are plenty of affordable and tasty dining options. Let your palette be your guide – pizza, pasta, grilled sandwiches and burgers, quesadillas, fresh salads…take your pick! If you are fan of soda-fountains and counter dining, be sure to visit Sutton’s Drug Store at 159 E. Franklin Street (open Monday-Friday, 7am-6:30pm, Saturday 7am – 4:30pm and Sundays, 9am-3pm).

In the ever-changing retail landscape of Franklin Street, there is a shop that you simply must put on your to-do list:LocoPops, a gourmet popsicle shop. I admit the the idea of a “gourmet popsicle” had never crossed my mind, but a friend had recommended it so enthusiastically that I simply had to check it out. Wow – was it worth it! LocoPops are inspired by paletas (Mexican popsicles) which are made with a variety of interesting and flavorful ingredients, such as mango-chile and tamarind, and quirky ones like honeydew-lavender and chocolate-rosemary. Don’t worry – there are also traditional American frozen favorites as basic as “chocolate brownie”. You and your kids will have an equally enjoyable time in this shop! (Hint: bring your wipes!)

If you’re looking for more excitement after you get all sugared up at LocoPops, check out KIDZU, a children’s museum a children’s museum which has temporarily relocated to 123 West Franklin Street in University Square. You can get the 4-1-1 on its website.

I hope this has given you proper inspiration to pack up the kiddies and head out for an adventure east of the Triad. Franklin Street with kids is worth the effort. A LocoPop is your reward!

Got a Day Trip Idea that is not already archived on our site here?  Email  We would love to have you blog about your idea!