Sidelines Guidelines: 10 places in Murfreesboro worthy of a Spring Break visit

Photos and story by Katrina Johnson / Contributing Writer 

After a grueling week of taking midterm exams, facing a plethora of due dates and undergoing an unnecessary amount of stress, Spring Break is finally here. So do you have big plans? If you’re traveling beyond the Tennessee border, props to you! If you’re not, know that Murfreesboro is a city full of must-visit places. Just follow this guide and channel your inner tourist, and you’ll be well on your way to experiencing an unforgettable break, right here in Murfreesboro.

City Cafe

Start your Spring Break off right by grabbing breakfast with friends at the historical City Cafe, which is located on the Murfreesboro square on Main Street. This breakfast and lunch cafe encompasses a history so rich it dates back to the 1900s. While visiting, be sure to observe the many rustic pictures plastered on the walls, because there’s truly nothing like the City Cafe atmosphere. Plus, the food is just as memorable: The moment you bite into the biscuits and french toast is the very moment you’ll come to appreciate the quality — and overall freshness — of the restaurant’s homemade goods. 

City Cafe continues to be one of the city’s hottest spots in Murfreesboro, Tenn. (Katrina Johnson / MTSU Sidelines)

Gateway Island

Now, if you follow my advice and trek over to City Cafe, you’re going to need a place to walk off your morning-time guilty pleasure. Gateway Island is the perfect next stop. Located on W College Street, Gateway Island includes a path full of vibrant flowers and natural waterfalls, and it even has an intriguing gazebo perfect for an Instagram-worthy photograph. And who doesn’t want to show off their Spring Break 2018 adventures?

The Soda Bar

After that walk through Gateway Island, reward yourself at one of Murfreesboro’s hottest dessert shops: The Soda Bar. They offer everything from craft sodas and floats to Hawaiian shaved ice and sweet treats such as edible cookie dough. They also have a really cool outdoor bar sitting area!

The Soda Bar offers unique sweet treats in Murfreesboro, Tenn. (Katrina Johnson / MTSU Sidelines)

The Ascent

If you’re feeling venturesome and are looking to get a bit more daring, try your hand at rock climbing at The Ascent. Located on Park Avenue, a single rock climbing session will cost you $14, but it’s totally worth the money spent. If you go with a group of friends, you could even make it a competition to the top. Last one up owes the others a hardy serving of ice cream.

Frozen Treats From Mars

Speaking of ice cream, head downtown to Frozen Treats From Mars, which is located on Church Street. This ice cream parlor is not like your average ice cream chain. What sets this place apart from the others is that Frozen Treats From Mars hand-makes their ice cream treats. This parlor not only serves delicious ice cream but popcorn and gluten-free options, too.

Attack Barcadium

Right next door to Frozen Treats From Mars is a retro arcade and bar called Attack Barcadium. It’s $15 for admission, but inside lies rows of both old-school and classic arcade games. It’s a super fun and friendly environment that not only provides video games, but also hot dogs, nachos, soda and beer.

Mayday Brewery

If you’re into craft and locally made beer, plan a trip to Mayday Brewery. Plus on Saturdays Mayday, located on Old Salem Road, offers free yoga classes. I know, that’s not your normal yoga session, but isn’t that what spring break is all about, doing unusual things? Ring in your Saturday mornings the right way by doing some relaxing and revitalizing yoga poses at the brewery. What an experience!

The Goat

The Goat serves as one of the city’s go-to spots in Murfreesboro, Tenn. (Katrina Johnson / MTSU Sidelines)

I know what you’re thinking — spring break needs to include pool tables, mixed drinks and live music. Well, The Goat, on Adwell Street, supplies all of those things and more. It’s a true hang out spot, that’s for sure. Just make sure you order a buffalo chicken wrap and their Guinness Chocolate Pie. You’re welcome.

Barfield Crescent Park

If you didn’t get enough walking at Gateway Island, explore the trails of Barfield Crescent Park. This park is loaded with seven miles of walking, hiking and biking trails. Don’t forget to pack a picnic basket, because the greenery found at this park is the ideal setting for an outdoor meal. They even have picnic tables available for a quick break from hiking. 

The Pottery Place

On Wendelwood Drive is a place ready for you to showcase your artsy side. The Pottery Place allows you to choose a pottery piece  — that could even symbolize your Spring Break — and after your masterpiece is finished they will pour a glaze on it to make it look all shiny and pretty. It’s only $6 per painter plus the price of the piece, and the available pottery ranges from bowls, cups, vases and even turtles. If you don’t want a clay piece, they have other options that include ceramic pieces, glass fusing and mosaic.

There you have it, a cheap and fun-filled spring break that doesn’t require you driving– or flying — several hours away. All you have to do is follow this guide and visit some of Murfreesboro’s finest places, and your break will surely be one to remember.

To contact Lifestyles Editor Tayhlor Stephenson, email

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