A Night Out In Deland

The Athens of Florida
By
Amira Shomr
Banner by Amira Shomr for Florida Smart

Deland’s thriving downtown area is rich with musicians, artists, and cultural events that could keep even the most trendsetting locals busy. The city has many nicknames that epitomize the ever-changing local culture. It's often called the “Athens of Florida” for its vivd cultural heritage and beautiful architecture. It's also fondly known as “Persimmon Hollow” for its wild persimmon trees and lush groves. The city has long been revered as a source of inspiration and beauty for local painters, sculptors, musicians, and actors. Deland is known for cultivating a culture of inclusivity, innovation, and creativity as it has become home to dedicated artists and patrons since the city was established.

Sitting inside in front of a computer all week and working the grind can make it tricky to keep up with the constant surges of social hotspots. With so many choices and places to see, how can you know what the best spots are to get the most out of your leisure time? When it’s finally time to clock out and check in for a fun-filled weekend, Deland is the perfect spot to get all your nightlife thrills in one place. Whether dinner, drinks, dancing, art, or gaming is on your itinerary, downtown Deland is the place to be. This is your quick guide to get every moment’s worth on a night out in Deland.

Photo by Byte Bistro
Photo by Byte Bistro

Dinner at Byte Bistro

Start the night right with a candle-lit dinner with friends at the intimate Byte Bistro, a modern lounge that brings beloved southern favorites to the twenty-first century with diverse fusion style. The menu offers a taste of any cuisine you can image, starting from Asian inspired appetizers to Indian and Italian inspired entrees. Try the succulent duck spring rolls and Korean fried chicken or classic fried green tomatoes and Cajun catfish. No matter what you pick, dinner at Byte will satisfy all your foodie cravings and impress all your #foodgram followers. After dinner, grab a cup of coffee and indulge in a silky serving of crème brulee, or take advantage of the daily 2-4-1 margaritas to heat things up. The bistro is also available for hosting private events and catering, so be sure to keep it on your checklist for your next soiree or gathering. Make sure to save some room after dessert to head to the next hotspot on your itinerary.

 

Photo by Persimmon Hollow Brewing
Photo by Persimmon Hollow Brewing Company

Brews at Persimmon Hollow

Next up, get ready to sip on a cool craft brew at Deland’s premier brewery Persimmon Hollow. This local favorite is known for its handcrafted homemade brews that are sure to hit the spot for any brew connoisseur. The brewery boasts and impressive tap list of thirteen house brews that change with the season. Try summertime favorites like Lake Time Lager, Daytona Dirty Blonde, or 3 Wise Guys to get a taste of the neighborhood favorites or stop by in the Fall to sample Persimmon’s rotation of spicy autumn flavors. While you’re enjoying your drink, get to know some of the furry four-legged patrons you’re bound to meet, or turn friends into enemies with a competitive game of Cards Against Humanity. Play darts, a round of pool, or grab a deck of cards for a laid-back night. Before you head out, be sure to tip your local crafters!

 

Photo by Cafe DaVinci
Photo by Cafe DaVinci Facebook

Music at Cafe DaVinci

Hear that? Right across the way from Persimmon Hollow, you’ll hear the sweet sounds of live music filling the air at one of Volusia’s best hangouts, Café DaVinci. Originally established as a jazz bar in 1993 for local artists to meet and network, this rustic down-home treasure hosts live music from up-and-coming artists and tribute bands every Friday and Saturday. Whether you’re in the mood for reggae, grunge rock, or throwback hits, the late-night set in DaVinci’s massive courtyard will get you moving and grooving. Not in the mood to dance? Grab a cue and hit the pool tables in the backyard barn, or roam through the dozens of artisan creates while you shop the Friday night Farmers Market on Artisan Alley. If you’re feeling hungry, head out front to grab gourmet street tacos from DaVinci’s irresistible partner Neighbors Artisan Taqueria. Don’t get too comfortable, because the night is still young.

 

Photo by Rewind Arcade
Photo by Rewind Arcade Facebook

Gaming at Rewind Arcade

Ready to take a time warp back into the 80’s? Grab your best retro gear and make your way to the newest addition to Deland’s nightlife scene at Rewind Arcade. Inspired by the pop gaming culture that inspired a generation of avid gamers, Rewind features classic arcade machines such as Pac Man and Mortal Kombat to take you all the way back to your playful childhood days. The arcade also caters to new wave gamers who can opt to spend hours playing Mario Kart, Super Smash Brothers, and more with an impressive selection of consoles and platforms to choose from. When you’re tired of that winning streak, try your hand at Monday night Beer Pong or grab a mic and join the karaoke madness to show off your moves and belt out your favorite jams for the crowd. Rewind Arcade also hosts theme nights to keep things fresh, featuring some of the best DJ’s and music groups Central Florida has to offer. The arcade offers all-night entertainment for ages 18-21, so bring your friends or get ready to make some new ones with trivia night, nightly drink specials, and prizes that make you feel as carefree as a kid again.

 

The next time you’re sitting at home on a Friday night and wondering where you can go to let loose, put downtown Deland on your to-do list and experience the diverse culture and community this amazing city has to offer!