It’s Official: Downtown Wilmington Is Named Nation’s Best Al Fresco Dining Neighborhood

Best Al Fresco Dining NeighborhoodA little over two weeks ago, we wrote a blog about the contest that USAToday was hosting with and it’s official, Wilmington has snagged the title of Best Al Fresco Dining Neighborhood! In 2014, we earned a similar honor with receiving the nod for a 10 Best Readers’ Choice winners list as Best American Riverfront.

The top 10 winners in the category Best Al Fresco Dining Neighborhood are as follows:

  1. Historic Downtown – Wilmington, N.C.
  2. 5th Avenue SouthNaples, Fla.
  3. Main StreetGreenville, S.C.
  4. Vail Village – Vail, Colo.
  5. Larimer SquareDenver
  6. State StreetSanta Barbara, Calif.
  7. River WalkSan Antonio
  8. Wicker ParkChicago
  9. Peachtree Road – Atlanta
  10. Adams Morgan – Washington

Some of the reasons highlighted for Wilmington’s win are:

200-Restaurants Outside-Eating Cape-Fear-River

A panel of experts picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote. Experts Caroline Potter (OpenTable, Inc.), Eric Grossman, Megy Karydes, M. Linda Lee (10Best), Akila McConnell (The Road Forks), Larry Olmsted (Great American Bites) and Kim Sunee were chosen based on their extensive knowledge of food and travel.

Other nominees for Best Al Fresco Dining Neighborhood included Back Bay in Boston, Chicago‘s Riverwalk, Dupont Circle in Washington, French Quarter in New Orleans, Garden District in New Orleans, Georgetown in Washington, Lake Travis and Lake Austin in Austin, Meatpacking Districtin New York, Montana Avenue in Santa Monica and Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia.

Visit to see a video provided by USAToday in partnership with Wilmington and Beaches Convention and Visitors Bureau highlighting some great spots in downtown Wilmington as well as other national winners in categories such as:

– Best Farmers Market

– Best Factory Tour

– Best Food Trail

– Best Local Food Scene

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