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Meet me at MaryMac’s

Travel South USA and its local hosts treated all media one evening to dinner. The groups were split up — domestic and international media — following a reception and tour of the CNN studios in downtown Atlanta.

  Mac Lacy, publisher of The Group Travel Leader, joined the domestic group for a dinner at a downtown Atlanta institution: MaryMac’s Tea Room.

“This place has been an icon in downtown since the 1940s,” said Lacy.  “What a wonderful touchstone for a city of this magnitude. We sat down, and they started bringing us fried okra, fried green tomatoes, homemade biscuits and homemade cinnamon rolls.

“There is a glass in the center of each table filled with pencils,” said Lacy. “When you sit down, you grab a pencil and fill out your own order on a ticket and hand it to the waitress.

“A full dinner followed that included meatloaf, chicken and dressing, mac and cheese and vegetables. And then we had peach cobbler, and they brought this huge bowl of vanilla ice cream with it so you could just grab a scoop if you wanted it. 

“If you told me this was in a small Georgia town somewhere off a state highway, I’d believe you. But if you told me I was a couple of blocks from Centennial Park and the CNN building, I’d have to walk outside to believe it.”