By Laurie Paolicelli
Hillsborough was founded in 1754 on the spot where the Great Indian Trading path crossed the Eno River, and though over 260 years have passed since then and much has changed, somehow this small town in the middle of North Carolina has been able to maintain historical luster.
Landmarks abound including one for the Riverwalk, a trail along the Eno River (which flows through the middle of town, including alongside the Historic District and Downtown). Riverwalk connects Occaneechee Mountain State Park to various local parks, the Occaneechee Speedway, and Ayr Mount via a trail along the river — all part of North Carolina’s Mountain to the Sea Trail.
During the COVD-19 crisis, health experts have encouraged spending time outdoors in nature and Town officials are making it even safer now by keeping park restrooms open during regular hours and cleaned and sanitized daily. So lace up your shoes, wear a mask, and hit the trail with your family.
Many Hillsborough retail businesses have opened their doors. And numerous local restaurants are seating customers.
Sampling of Hillsborough Retail Shops with NEW HOURS Now Open to Walk-in Visitors
108 Churton Boutique
Monday: 11am – 3:30pm
Tuesday – Saturday: 11am – 4:30pm
Carlisle and Linny Vintage Jewelry
Local shop specializing in vintage costume jewelry, estate jewelry, cufflinks, vintage bags and hats plus more.
Now open Wednesday – Friday: 12pm – 5pm and Saturdays 11am – 4pm
Hillsborough Arts Council Gallery and Gift
For more information click here.
Gallery & Gift Shop Hours:
Seeing customers: Wednesday & Saturday: 12pm – 4pm, or by appointment.
Melissa Designer Jewelry
Melissa Designer Jewelry is a locally owned jewelry boutique specializing in the work of designer-goldsmith Melissa Booth.
Now Open Wednesdays and Saturdays
Wednesdays: 11am – 5pm
Saturdays: 10am – 4pm
To meet with Melissa, please call for appointment.
Phone: (919) 643-2600
Walk-in shopping & repair drop off welcome.
Purple Crow Bookstore
Purple Crow Books is located at 109 W King Street in downtown historic Hillsborough NC. Purple is associated with both nobility and spirituality. The crow is a symbol for strength for the turn in the road, and signifying an advent of change.
Monday – Friday: 10am – 2pm
Saturday: 10am – 2pm
Phone: (919) 732-1711
Spiral Studios and Magpie Estate Jewelry
Handmade Sterling Silver jewelry by Jeannine Rogers. New pieces made daily.
Tuesday – Friday: 10am – 6pm
Saturday: 11am – 5pm
Closed Sunday and Monday
Phone: (919) 732-2013
A Sampling of Restaurants Now Seating Customers. Hours are NEW.
Italian food in Historic Downtown
Tuesday – Sunday
Lunch: 11am – 2pm
Early Bird: 4pm – 5:30pm
Dinner: 4pm – 9pm
Carry Out & Delivery: 11am – 8pm
Hillsborough Cup of Joe
Temporarily pick-up only at our contactless tables in front of the shop. Coffee, bakery goods.
Monday – Saturday: 7am – 1pm. Closed Sunday.
The patio is open.
Wednesday & Thursday: 4pm – 8pm
Friday: 4pm – 9pm
Saturday: 12pm – 9pm
Sunday: 12pm – 8pm
Soups, salad, sandwiches and entrees, including house specialties.
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday: 11:30am – 2pm
108 S Churton St.
Tucked upstairs above 108 Churton Gifts
Phone: (919) 732-2214
Good eats, craft beer, neighborhood gathering place.
Tuesday – Sunday 11am – 9pm (curbside takeout)
Limited patio seating:
Tuesday – Friday: 4pm – 9pm
Saturday – Sunday Noon – 9pm
Phone: (919) 932-0134
Hillsborough BBQ on Nash Street
Tuesday – Thursday: 11:30am – 9pm
Friday – Saturday: 11:30am – 9pm
Sunday: 11:30am – 8pm
Phone: (919) 732.HOGS
Whit’s Frozen Custard of Hillsborough
Next to Hillsborough BBQ
Bringing frozen custard to customers at the door
240 South Nash Street
Nash Street, Hillsborough
Phone: (919) 245-8123
Other Ways to Indulge
- Cabana Boy Smoked BBQ Food Truck: Friday night, August 7, and every other Friday, this award winning BBQ truck sets-up in front of 200 N Churton St, Hillsborough, 4:00 to 6:30 p.m. Save the dates in August: August 7, 21, 28. www.cabanaboybbq.com
- Former Mayor Tom Steven’s gallery has an open house the Last Friday of the month (usually 6pm-8pm) — individual appointments are available 7 days a week – and most of the artwork can be viewed online at www.ThomasStevens.com
- Matthews Chocolates: https://www.facebook.com/Matthewschocolates
- Hillsborough Spa: https://hillsboroughspa.com
- The Parlour On King: https://www.facebook.com/The-Parlour-On-King-Salon-Spa-350147495541448
- Haven Salon: http://www.hillsboroughhaven.com
For a complete list, visit: www.visithillsboroughnc.com
Says Mayor Weaver:
“Our local retailers and restaurants are taking every precaution, not just because it is required, but because their livelihoods depend on keeping themselves, their employees, and their customers safe,” said Mayor Jenn Weaver. “The Hillsborough community has valued “buy local” long before it was a slogan, and whether folks are rooted here or passing through, supporting our homegrown businesses is essential for our local small town economy to thrive.”
Laurie Paolicelli is the Executive Director of the Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau.