- Rose Kennedy For the AJC
There's more to Buford Highway than meets the taste buds!
Yes, this ethnically glorious 49-mile stretch in Atlanta has wonderful food options. But it's time to branch out.
Here are five other sources of enjoyment along Buford Highway:
Karaoke for private people
Buford Highway and its side streets have numerous karaoke venues, but Karaoke Melody offers a neat twist. Private rooms make up the entire club. You pick a room format and rent it by the hour for your group (or heck, just for you if that's how you roll.) They offer a long list of songs, a nice range of cocktails and the exemplary ethnic food you'd expect in this neighborhood. Reservations and a $50 per hour minimum required.
5979 Buford Highway, Suite A-11, Atlanta
A dinner show that's kind of a drag
Drag show meets dinner theater at Lips Atlanta, one of four Lips franchises in the country. It's campy, kitschy and fabulously over the top. With disco lighting and a club sound system, Lips was pleased to be reviewed as "Ken and Barbie's Dream-house on acid." To push the envelope just one bit further, Lips Atlanta features a Dragalicious Gospel Brunch on Sundays.
There are lots of other glitz and glam shows to choose from, too, with table reservations recommended. The cover charges range from $5-10, but there's no cover on Wednesdays. And there's never a cover if you want to sit and watch from the bar — just a two-drink minimum.
3011 Buford Highway, Atlanta
Right on the corner where Chamblee and Brookhaven meet, Plaza Fiesta is a hub for festive diversity. Naturally, some of this has to do with food, but it's also a lavish shopping spot with 280 retail and specialty stores. Handbags, quinceanera dresses, village artisan handcrafts -- that's all here. Don't feel like shopping? The Plaza is a swell place to wile away rainy days with the kids. It's got an indoor playground worthy of Chuck E. Cheese and an all ages video arcade you'll hate to leave.
4166 Buford Highway, Atlanta
Friday and Saturday night until 2 a.m., Funtime Bowl on Buford Highway sets up the glow lanes, black lights and dancing music. The idea's not new but boogieing down in your bowling shoes is always a hoot.
3285 Buford Highway, Atlanta
An edgy community theater and a reverent community history museum? That's a combination you'd expect from the Buford Community Center and it delivers. Live theater, like "I Hate Hamlet" from the resident troupe, is on the schedule for the stage. That's also where you can enjoy shows as varied as singers doings Sinatra and " Squirm Burpee: A Vaudevillian Melodrama."
On the ground floor of the same building, check out where this melting pot began at the Buford History Museum. The library contains a fascinating collection of Georgia memorabilia and history books and documents. You might even find out why Buford was once known as the Leather City and what Buford teens from 1951 thought about dating and sex.
Buford Community Center
2200 Buford Highway, Buford