Chapel Hill Information - Practical TeX 2005

The conference hotel is the Courtyard Marriott Chapel Hill, 100 Marriott Way / Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27517 / USA; phone: 1-919-883-0700. All classes and presentations will take place at Friday Center for Continuing Education, next door to the hotel (Friday Center floor plan).

To get our group discount on hotel reservations, please mention "TeX Users Group" if reserving by phone. The conference registration page will have a link for online reservations soon.

Airport & Travel

The nearest airport is Raleigh-Durham International Airport, airport code RDU. It has many direct flights itself. Nearby Charlotte (code CLT) is also a possibility; there is no train service from Charlotte to Chapel Hill, but there is a train to nearby Durham.

For international flights, it is likely to be significantly cheaper to fly into JFK in New York City, or BWI near Washington, DC, and take the train. It's about a 9-hour train ride from NYC, 5 hours from Washington.

There is no shuttle bus between the airport and the hotel, but there is a public bus for $2. The other choice is a taxi, and the cost is about US$40. We encourage sharing rides where possible. (There is a shuttle to get around within the downtown Chapel Hill area, with stops at the hotel. It just doesn't go to the airport.)

Driving directions are available on the hotel web site.

Stuff to do in and around Chapel Hill

See also the Chapel Hill Visitors Bureau web site If you find other sites or information that may be useful to conference attendees, please email us.

Places to go

  1. North Carolina Botanical Gardens
  2. The Ackland Art Museum (UNC-Chapel Hill)
  3. Morehead Planetarium and Science Center (where US astronauts were trained in celestial navigation)
  4. A Southern Season -- gourmet food and wine, etc.

Places to see

  1. UNC-Chapel Hill campus. Oldest State University in the U.S. Campus landmarks include the Old Well, Old East and Old West (buildings), the Reading Room in Wilson Library, the Arboretum (behind the planetarium)
  2. Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Younger sibling architecturally to the Baltimore Orioles park. AAA ball.

Places to shop

  1. University Mall. Amazing shoe store, gift shops, art gallery, jewelry, and home of A Southern Season (above)
  2. Carr Mill Mall in sister village Carrboro. Historic mill converted to shops; home of Elmo's Diner, Townsend Bertram Adventure Outfitters.
  3. Johnny T-Shirt: on Franklin Street, the heart of Chapel Hill. Great for all kinds of Tar Heel gear -- shirts, hats, etc.

Restaurants, Watering Holes, etc.

  1. Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery 100 E Franklin St, 3rd floor. Microbrew with a view. One review of the available beers
  2. Carolina Coffee Shop: 138 E Franklin St. This college institution looks charming but well used, with ageless brick walls, wooden floors, decrepit chandeliers, and wooden booths. True to its collegiate nature, breakfast is served until 2pm. Eggs Benedict and Belgian waffles pack in students and game-day alums. There is no truth to the rumor that Steve Grathwohl used to live at the Coffee Shop -- in his student days he just ate three meals a day there.
  3. Carolina Brewery 460 W Franklin St
  4. Linda's: Great low-brow bar on Franklin St. One of Steve G's professors held some of his seminars here (and office hours) back when.
  5. La Residence: 202 W Rosemary St. A Chapel Hill tradition in fine dining since 1976
  6. Spanky's: 101 E Franklin
  7. Pepper's: Not your usual pizza joint atmosphere, Pepper's features local artwork on the brick walls and caters to a young, hip crowd.
  8. Nantucket Cafe: Near the Friday Center at 5925 Farrington Rd. "...deli sandwiches, fried seafood, hamburgers, soups, salads and items like chicken pot pie. A behemoth crab dip ... lobster bisque ... pan-seared salmon with buttery potatoes and asparagus..."
  9. Crook's Corner: "A unique vision of the subtlety and diversity of American Southern cuisine." The web site is in serious need of a proofreader; but the shrimp and grits are legendary.
  10. Mediterranean Deli: Popular lunch and dinner spot for locals

Things to Do

  1. Caffé Driade You want a coffee bar? I'll show you a coffee bar. Sunk back into the woods, on a bluff overlooking Bolin Creek, you can enjoy the Driade's legendary espresso drinks or their fine selection of beers and wines.
  2. Cat's Cradle: 300 E Main Street Carrboro. "World famous live music venue, bringing the finest musical acts to Chapel Hill and Carrboro for over thirty years."
  3. The Bookshop: Amazing (and huge) selection of used and rare books.
  4. For those arriving on Saturday or Sunday, there will be an excellent vocal concert Sunday evening at 7pm by the Vocal Arts Ensemble of Durham; tickets are only $10.


  1. Chapel Hill buses are free. They run often by the Friday Center, which is the location of one of the University Park and Ride lots. Here is a route map, and schedules can be found linked on this page.
  2. The Independent Weekly: Excellent local rag. Leans left, of course. Jesse Helms never got over Chapel Hill going for McGovern over Nixon by 64% to 36% in 1972.

$Date: 2005/06/09 00:11:44 $; conference home page;
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