Motor City Magic Meets Hoosier Hospitality: A Chick’s Guide to Fort Wayne

Hey Girl, Hey! Do you have a weekend free and are itching for a new adventure? Look no further than Fort Wayne, Indiana, a city brimming with charm, history, and a surprisingly vibrant Black community. Buckle up because we’re taking you on a journey that celebrates your melanin and feeds your soul.


First Impressions: Rest and Recharge at The Bradley

Your Fort Wayne experience starts at The Bradley, a swanky boutique hotel that oozes sophisticated luxury. Designed as a tribute to Vera Bradley, the iconic women’s fashion label co-founded by Barbara Bradley Baekgaard, the interior explodes with vibrant colors and playful patterns. Check-in, unwind, and maybe rock a Vera Bradley tote of your own. Feeling peckish? Head straight to Arbor, the hotel’s signature restaurant. With a focus on seasonal, locally sourced ingredients and a menu that changes seasonally, prepare to be dazzled. Arbor offers brunch and dinner options, so tailor it to your itinerary.


Take advantage of Birdies, a rooftop bar perched atop The Bradley, for a breathtaking city view. Sip on expertly crafted cocktails and soak in the panorama as the sun sets over Fort Wayne. It’s the perfect spot to catch up with your girlfriends, share travel stories, and plan your next adventure.


Foodie Delights: From Soul Food to Contemporary Cuisine

Fort Wayne’s culinary scene is a hidden gem, and Black-owned restaurants are leading the charge. Craving soul food with a modern twist? Head to Elijah’s. Their portions are generous, the flavors are bold, and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming. Be sure to try their signature Lemon Pepper Baked Chicken – it’s legendary!


For brunch with a contemporary flair, Rune Restaurant is your spot. With a menu that celebrates global flavors and fresh, seasonal ingredients, this vibrant eatery offers a delicious and Instagram-worthy experience.


Evening Entertainment: Blues, Cocktails, and Black Excellence

Fort Wayne’s nightlife caters to every taste, and for a truly unique experience, head to Clyde’s Club Room. This historic venue is a Fort Wayne institution renowned for its live blues music, intimate setting, and expertly crafted cocktails. Sway to the smooth sounds of local blues legends, sip on a classic martini, and let the good times roll.


For a more upscale yet intimate setting, check out Hideout 125. With an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients and innovative dishes, their dinner menu is a delight for adventurous palates. The chic ambiance and attentive staff make it the perfect spot for a celebratory dinner with your besties.


Culture Fix: Celebrating Black Art and Local Culture


For Us By Us

Fort Wayne takes pride in its rich history, and the Black community plays a significant role in that narrative. Immerse yourselves in the vibrant world of Black art at the Bipoc Incubator & Gallery. This non-profit organization fosters artistic expression and provides space for Black creators to showcase their work. It’s a fantastic opportunity to discover new artists, purchase unique pieces, and connect with the city’s Black cultural heart.


The Glass Wing

A visit to the Fort Wayne Museum of Art would only be complete with exploring the Glass Wing. This stunning addition to the museum houses an impressive collection of contemporary glass art, showcasing the works of renowned artists like Dale Chihuly and Lino Tagliapietra. It’s a feast for the eyes and a testament to the power of human creativity.


Science Geek

If you’re feeling more scientific, take a trip to Science Central. This interactive science museum is a playground for all ages. Spark your inner child with exciting exhibits that cover everything from the human body to the wonders of space exploration. Even an expansive planetarium offers dazzling celestial shows guaranteed to take your breath away.


Beyond the Itinerary: Unexpected Delights

While this guide offers a solid foundation for your Fort Wayne adventure, leave some room for spontaneity! Explore the charming streets of the historic downtown district, lined with independent boutiques and cafes perfect for people-watching. Browse the shelves of Fort Wayne’s independent bookstores, like Canterbury House or Books & Brews, and discover a hidden literary gem.


Remember to embrace Fort Wayne’s green spaces. Head to the expansive trails of the Fort Wayne River Greenway or visit the beautiful gardens at the Foellinger-Freiburger Arboretum for a serene escape from the city bustle. Bonus Tip: If you’re staying in July, try to snag tickets to the Three Rivers Festival, a vibrant celebration of music, art, and cultural diversity.


Farewell, Fort Wayne!

As your weekend adventure comes to a close, you’ll leave Fort Wayne feeling refreshed, inspired, and with a newfound appreciation for this hidden gem in the heart of Indiana. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself booking another trip back soon – Fort Wayne has a way of captivating your heart. Remember, these are just a few suggestions – Fort Wayne has something for everyone. So, pack your bags, grab your favorite girls, and get ready to experience Black Girl Magic in Fort Wayne!

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