Checking in with the Locals: Erin O’Hare

Posted on July 1, 2014 by


It’s been one year since we started checking in with the local-loving people of Charlottesville, featuring the faces of Cville and their top picks every week.

For this special occasion, we’re checking in with the Cville Niche Team! This group of locals is passionate about what they do in this great city. So far we’ve checked in with founder Katerina Diplas, editor Linnea White, and arts writer Elizabeth Casey. In the coming weeks, get to know the faces of Cville Niche!

Check out our past year of local check-ins!

Erin O’Hare


Photo credit: Linnea White

You may know her as the gal behind our Tuning In series, a feature that showcases a local music personality’s playlist every other week. Erin’s timeless taste for records, vintage style, and even yoga have made her an invaluable asset to our team. We can’t wait to see what she does next!

Describe what you do in town.

During the day, I work for the U.Va. Alumni Association as a writer and editor for U.Va. Magazine. After 5pm and on weekends, I can be found doing yoga, hiking, taking in a show, listening to records in my cottage, baking a pie or eating at one of C’Ville’s many delicious restaurants.

Describe yourself in 5 syllables or less.

Where will I go next?

Top Picks

A favorite dish in town.

Coffee ice cream in a waffle cone at Chaps. Everyone in my family loves ice cream; we have quite a few family stories that center around buying ice cream, eating ice cream, someone eating the last of the ice cream. My family is up in New England– kind of far away– so every time I have a cone at Chap’s, all of those memories resurface and I can’t help but feel a bit closer to my family.

A favorite drink in town.

Negroni, C&O – I’m a sucker for the gin and campari combination. It’s a clean, tasty combination.
Old Fashioned, Commonwealth – The Old Fashioned is my favorite drink of all time, but not every bar gets it right. The bartenders downstairs at Commonwealth do a great job– just the right combination of whiskey, bitters and sugar, with a twist of orange rind (no cherry).

A favorite weekly or monthly drink special.

Happy hour at Mono Loco. Sometimes (ahem, once a week) you just need a margarita with salt and some bean dip.

A favorite local musician.

I’m super into music, but I’ll admit I don’t see/listen to a lot of local music here in town. I hereby pledge to hear more local music from this point forward! That said, I’m suuuuper excited about New Boss (Thomas St. Clair Dean‘s new band) and can’t wait to hear them at The Southern on July 10.

A favorite local fitness class or fitness event.

I’ve been practicing Bikram yoga (now Hot Yoga Charlottesville) for four years now. I love the teachers, the students and the practice. It’s a home away from home.

I’m also fortunate to have access to the U.Va. facilities, so I do a lot of exercise there as well. I love swimming in the North Grounds pool, then taking a dip in the hot tub afterwards. I also take vinyasa yoga classes from my good friend (and elite runner) Ann Mazur. Her classes help me stretch after running, and they’ve helped enormously with my overall strength.

Of course, I enjoy a good run around town when it’s not too hot out, and I love hiking out in the Blue Ridge.

A favorite local artist (any type other than musician).

Michael Fitts, a painter who works with oils and scrap metal, is my favorite local artist. Mike is a close friend of mine, but my bias is totally justified. He paints hyper-real, almost trompe l’oeil, objects on scrap metal. The objects he chooses to paint, like neon squirt guns, popcorn boxes, Crayola crayon boxes, Monopoly pieces, brightly colored popsicles, etc., are all familiar and evoke a certain nostalgia in all of us. I’ve seen his work in his studio, hanging at Angelo, and hanging in the homes of some of my friends. The paintings work everywhere. Mike is a serious talent.

A favorite local shopping destination.

Melody Supreme. I shop there at least once a week, to feed my growing record collection.

Oh, wait, do you mean, shopping for clothes? Low vintage on 5th Street SE is my jam. I’ve found so many great, unique dresses there recently. I often lament the fact that I missed out on mid-century fashion– I’ve always loved the shapes and patterns of 50s and 60s dresses. Buying vintage usually means no one else will have it. I like that.

A favorite local music venue.

The Southern! I haven’t had a bad experience, or seen a bad show there. The bands rock (and are often floating around and happy to chat), the sound is pristine, and the size is not too big, not too small. It’s just right. I saw the best show of my life (so far) there in November 2012. It was the night before the election, and The Whigs played with Kuroma. It was a true rock ‘n’ roll show, with great music, cool dudes, a lot of jumping and hair tossing and beer drinking. There was this amazing, electric energy in the air that hasn’t been matched at any show I’ve been to since. The next morning, I woke up, voted, then visited a farm to film a video article for work. It was a very patriotic 24 hours. Plus, The Southern now has a grilled cheese menu. Great bands, great music, great vibe, great sound, grilled cheese. What more could you want?