Travel

The Best Places To Picnic In The South

The memory of my mother’s cherished picnic basket lingers in my mind. Crafted from sturdy rattan, its leather latch opened to reveal a delightful surprise—an array of dining supplies nestled within vibrant yellow fabric. Each compartment held its own treasure: dainty cups for tea, forks adorned with melamine handles matching the plates, which cleverly featured dividers to keep food in place. I always begged to use it, and my mother graciously obliged, accommodating not only me but also my friends.

Our idyllic tea parties as children were sprawled on a bedspread, basking in the beauty of the verdant summer marshes of the Lowcountry. A gentle breeze seemed ever-present, enhancing the magic of those moments. To this day, I find myself irresistibly drawn to well-crafted picnic baskets in stores, hoping to recreate those cherished memories with my own family, spreading a blanket in a breathtaking location and simply reveling in each other’s company.

For Southerners, picnics offer a delightful opportunity to savor our favorite foods. Finger-friendly fried chicken takes center stage, while skillfully slicing watermelon creates a natural green handle for enjoying its juicy sweetness. Simple and unadorned, corn shines in the summer, requiring no elaborate accompaniments. Tomato sandwiches with their crusts trimmed fit snugly alongside containers of deviled eggs and potato salad. And should the peaches prove delightfully juicy, worry not—a trusty cloth napkin is always at the ready to handle the delicious mess.

Picnics embody the essence of easy enjoyment, allowing us to relish the Southern culinary delights we hold dear. They provide a charming and carefree way to savor life’s simple pleasures, fostering cherished memories and fostering a deep appreciation for the beauty of nature and the joys of shared meals. So let us embrace the tradition of picnicking, carrying on the legacy of delightful moments, mouthwatering dishes, and heartfelt connections.

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