Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Tori’s Travels: Ruston Does It Right

Written by Tori Ward, CVB Marketing/PR Assistant

Hey y’all! Nearly two months ago I moved to Ruston, La., and I never imagined I would STILL be exploring the town and discovering new things every single day. Honestly, I thought “Tori’s Travels” would probably be wrapping up at this point, but I’m still going strong and have a long list of places I still want to visit. I’ve been a busy bee exploring Ruston the past few weeks, and I’m all jazzed up to fill you in on some of the awesome places I’ve discovered in this adorable town.

Louisiana Military Museum display
I’m a sucker for history; it just never ceases to fascinate me. Ruston has some amazing history behind it, and it’s also home to one of the most incredible military museums in the South. Walking into the Louisiana Military Museum, I was floored. I had no idea that there could be SO MANY historical items on display in this building. They have everything from weapons to military uniforms to small items that a soldier would have carried with him in the war. 

Louisiana Military Museum display 
I was so impressed by the wide array of battles and wars that were represented in this museum.They have displays from the American Indian War, the Spanish American War, the Civil War, both World Wars, Vietnam, Desert Storm and even the War on Terror, just to name a few. And these aren’t cheesy displays, either. They’re elaborate and jam packed with tons of neat and fascinating items. I’m a fashion lover, so seeing the uniforms over time was the coolest thing to me. If you are in the area, I definitely recommend you take an hour or two out of your day to visit the Louisiana Military Museum and talk to Mr. Ernie, the director of the museum. He has so much information to share and the museum is truly something special!

My family on my father’s side is very Italian, so my love of Italian food runs deep. I’ve heard great things about Roma Italian Bistro from several people since I moved here, and I knew I had to try it for myself. I loved this place from the moment I walked through the door. With dim lighting and soothing music, the atmosphere was absolutely perfect for a fun date night out. I have a major weakness for pasta, so the Chef’s Special pasta with grilled shrimp, scallops and chicken in a blush sauce was the obvious choice. I paired it with a glass of pinot noir (they have awesome happy hour prices), and it was absolutely delicious! I ended my dining experience with their Tiramisu, which had a perfect coffee flavor and creaminess. Long story short: I waddled out of there full and happy.

Chef's Special at Roma
Tiramisu at Roma

Rolling Hills' book selection 
I’m a major bargain shopper, so I was quite delighted when I recently discovered a bargain-shopping gem in Ruston. Rolling Hills is an incredible, local thrift store that is run by Rolling Hills Ministries. This is by far the nicest thrift store I’ve ever shopped at. The store is extremely organized, which is pretty rare for thrift shops, and it has a great selection of merchandise at KILLER prices. I’m a bookworm, so I was very excited to see their large and diverse selection of books that were all in great condition. They also have movies, home décor, glassware, furniture, children’s toys, jewelry, various kitchen appliances, tons of clothes and more. I purchased a book and two cute shirts for a grand total of $6. Yes, you read that correctly, $6! Don’t you worry Rolling Hills, I’ll be back soon. Probably today. And tomorrow. 

A Ruston restaurant that has quickly become one of my go-to spots is La Bamba Mexican Restaurant. Mexican food is my absolute favorite and I have very high standards when it comes to chips and salsa. But let me tell you, La Bamba exceeds my standards time and time again. Everything I’ve ever ordered here has been downright delicious, although I usually only eat about two bites of my meal because I’m notorious for filling up on chips and salsa. The Burrito La Bamba is one of my favorite meals here, but the steak fajitas might tie for first. Their queso and margaritas are also top notch! La Bamba always has something cool happening like salsa dancing, live music or karaoke, so prepare yourself for a fun time when you go eat there!

Steak enchiladas at La Bamba

After weeks of exploring Ruston, I've definitely picked up on the fact that from museums to dining to shopping and everything in between, Ruston does it right. 
Thanks for catching up with my latest adventures! Keep following the blog for more of my travels; I'm looking forward to discovering more of what this charming city has to offer! See y'all around town!

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