Try something new to start new year right

We’re into the new year and those New Year’s resolutions are fast fading from sight. A suggestion: simply resolve to try something new. What exactly? Here are a few suggestions, but we leave it to you to work out the details.

Treat your palate

Heading out for a bite to eat? Skip the burger or slice of pizza and indulge in a dish you haven’t had before. Williamsburg is home to a variety of restaurants specializing in cuisine that spans the world. From Vietnamese (Chopsticks Pho Grill) and Thai (Aticha Tai Cuisine) to French (Le Yaca), Greek (Kephi Greek Kitchen), Indian (Nawab),and Cuban (Habana Hemingway Café), you can dine in a new country — restaurant — nearly every week if you wanted.

“We provide original Thai style dishes made from scratch and authentic Thai taste with family recipes,” said Ananwat Phutthasiri, owner of Aticha Thai Cuisine, which recently relocated to High Street.

Refresh your home

With the holiday finery put away for another year, your home may feel a bit underwhelming. Some easy ways to refresh your space include putting a fresh coat of paint in your bedroom or kitchen, rearranging your furniture or adding an accent such as a colorful throw or decorative pillows.

Other simple ways to bring new life to your living space include buying different light fixtures or lamps, curtains, area rugs, or even indoor plants. Visit one of Williamsburg’s consignment shops, thrifts stores, or the Habitat for Humanity ReStore on Jamestown Road for some unique, affordable finds.

Take up a new hobby

Have you always wanted to learn to knit or paint with watercolors? Well, now is a good time to pick up a needle or paintbrush and give it a whirl.

Artfully Yours Studio on Jamestown Road provides art lessons for both children and adults while beginners are also encouraged to come out for crochet or knitting classes at Yarn Matters on Richmond Road.

“The New Year is a great time to start a new hobby like knitting,” said Marina Hayes, owner of Yarn Matters. “It has a lot of benefits. It improves memory and concentration, relieves stress, keeps us from digital gadgets, and helps build relationships with other knitters.”

Meanwhile, don’t forget about the upcoming spring courses offered through Williamsburg Area Learning Tree. Last year, WALT offered nearly 200 classes that ranged from cheesemaking and origami to pottery and a four-week hands-on introduction to sailing, said Rayven Holmes, WALT program director.

“The beauty of trying a class is that you can learn fun new skills, discover potential hobbies, and have amazing experiences with members of our community without investing a significant upfront investment.”

Expand your cultural horizon

Get out and explore a new art gallery, take in some live music, or experience a show. The Triangle Restaurant in downtown Williamsburg features local musicians nearly every night of the week, while the Winter Blues Jazz Festival, presented by Culturefix, is slated for Jan. 17-20.

Meanwhile, a production of Enchanted April will be performed at the Williamsburg Players Feb. 1-16 and new art exhibits are planned at Williamsburg Contemporary Art Center and the Linda Matney Fine Art Gallery.

“Projects this year include a one-person textile installation in late April and another installation in mid-summer with Richmond artist Matt Lively,” said John Lee Matney, curator for the Linda Matney Fine Art Gallery.

“Some additional painting exhibits will be happening as well including a Feb. 17 opening for the exhibit Abound featuring paintings by Baltimore area artist Teddy Johnson and an exhibit of multimedia works by a Chinese student from the College of William and Mary, which will be on exhibit around April 10.”

Spice up your exercise routine

Take a kickboxing class at the new 9Round gym on Monticello Avenue or join one of the local running clubs. Williamsburg Winery hosts a weekly informal race on Thursdays, while the DoG Street Pub Running Club meets every Monday.

“We meet year-round,” said Lauren Moore, general manager for DoG Street Pub. “New runners can be inspired by New Year's resolutions and held accountable by their friends all running in a group. What better inspiration than a delicious beer, hearty food, and community at the end of your run?”

Class offerings at James City County Recreation Center include yoga and meditation, rowing, self-defense, strength and core training, and water fitness.

“Anyone looking to change their routine or for low impact exercise options should look at adding water fitness classes to their schedule,” said Carla Brittle, James City County Recreation Center administrator. “Changing up your routine and getting a different type of aerobic exercise is essential for achieving your fitness goals.”

That’s enough to get you going, so get going!

Copyright © 2019, Williamsburg Magazine
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