These Delaware Hotspots Could Be Your New Third Place

Looking for a third place? From local cafes to craft breweries and hobbyist hotspots, here are some potential "third places" in Delaware.

Dominated by digital “places,” it’s been said that our modern world has a lack of physical “third places” to socialize and wind down. People tend to go straight home after work. For many, the only escape from this mundane routine exists digitally in things like social media or video games.

Unfortunately, social media often serves to make people feel even less connected with others. The term “doom-scrolling”—the act of consistently scrolling through negative content and bad news—has been popularized in recent years. This habit can have a negative effect on mental health and motivation.

A potential solution: disconnecting and reconnecting. For most people, this means finding a third place—somewhere aside from work and home to socialize with friends, meet new people and spend time among casual acquaintances. Think the bar from Cheers or Friends’ Central Perk coffee shop.

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If you’re on the search for a third place in Delaware, bookmark this list for inspiration. Here are some hotspots to check out that just might offer the escape you need from work and home.

Cafes

A place to wind down doesn’t have to involve drinking. Delaware is also home to many cozy cafes, which offer a place to meet and socialize on the afternoons and weekends. Many cafes in Delaware also serve as event spaces, yoga studios and more in the evenings.

Kaffé KARMA

kaffé KARMA was intentionally designed to be a third place for people who crave overall wellness—the cafe’s tagline, “Your Third Place,” pays homage to that goal. Due to owner Katie Kutler’s passion for physical and spiritual wellness, the retail, menu and events are all wellness-focused. A cafe by day and yoga studio by night, this shop is the perfect place to socialize and invigorate your mind and body.
342 Buckley Mill Road, Greenville

 

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Scout Cafe

This Wilmington newcomer has already become a popular hangout for many people in the surrounding neighborhoods. It’s a cozy place to hang out and grab a quick bite or coffee. Scout also hosts evening events like vegan dinners, art workshops and more.
2316 Baynard Boulevard, Wilmington

 

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Brew HaHa

One of Delaware’s premier independent coffee shops, Brew HaHa locations each have a unique personality and offer a place to read, socialize or pull out a laptop and get some work done. With rotating menu specials and flavors, Brew HaHa is an essential hangout for java lovers in Delaware.
Multiple locations in New Castle County

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Craft Breweries, Distilleries and More

Brewery tasting rooms often provide an atmosphere that differs from the typical bar. Because brewers and owners are typically on-site, they’re available to educate patrons about their products. This cultivates a welcoming environment for new customers. Due to the friendly atmospheres, it’s commonplace to walk into a Delaware brewery and quickly find yourself socializing with regulars, tasting their recommendations and making connections within your community. Here are just a few breweries, distilleries and more that are already incredible third places for many Delawareans.

Wilmington Brew Works

A repeat Best of Delaware winner, people love Wilmington Brew Works for the atmosphere as well as the brews. The Alamo Room at Wilmington Brew Works is an event space that can also serve as a venue for concerts or comedy. There are always fun events from trivia to drag shows to vinyl record nights.
3129 Miller Road, Wilmington

Dewey Beer Co.

With two locations near the Delaware beaches, Dewey Beer Co. is the perfect hangout for lovers of craft beers at the beach. The Harbeson location includes the production facility and a sizeable tasting room, while the Dewey location is a full-service restaurant with fun events, great brews and entertainment for all beer lovers.
21241 Iron Throne Drive, Milton
2100 Coastal Highway, Dewey Beach

Liquid Alchemy

With quirky decor, unique products and friendly owners, Liquid Alchemy is an ideal hangout in Wilmington. Rotating weekend food trucks and unique events keeps things fresh while regular patrons provide a friendly and homey atmosphere for newcomers.
28 Brookside Drive, Wilmington

Brimming Horn

Viking vibes, incredible libations and plenty of fun events make this Southern Delaware meadery an ideal hangout for history buffs and mead enthusiasts. If you love history and mythology, the Brimming Horn Meadery is a great place to meet like-minded people. Along with the Viking vibes and references to Northern European mythology, Brimming Horn also brews amazing products that appeal to a variety of palates.
2815 Lewes Georgetown Highway, Milton
106 Spring Street, Seaford

 

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Easy Speak

Enjoy locally distilled spirits, cocktails and delicious food at this Milford hangout. Plus, Easy Speak also houses weekly open mic nights and special events to attend and enjoy.
586 Milford Harrington Highway, Milford

Painted Stave

Painted Stave is another Delaware distillery perfect for afternoon and weekend hangouts. The Smyrna tasting room is a great spot to meet friends for cocktails or catch a fun event like cocktail classes, pairings and more. With a taco truck on-site, you’ll never leave hungry!
106 West Commerce Street, Smyrna

Hobbyist Hangouts

If you have a niche hobby, there is likely a space for you in Delaware. Along with plenty of great eateries, breweries and cafes, Delaware is also home to many clubs, gyms and more.

The Days of Knights

This Delaware tabletop game store provides so much more than retail. The shop hosts board game nights and Magic: The Gathering tournaments and serves as a place for tabletop gamemasters to find new players and try out new campaigns.
173 East Main Street, Newark

The Delaware Pinball Collective

Delaware’s premier pinball club launched in January 2022. Since then, the clubhouse has attracted some of the top pinball enthusiasts from across the country. The club offers a place for pinball enthusiasts to socialize, participate in tournaments and more.
1100 First State Boulevard, Wilmington

Lefty’s Alley & Eats 

From a bowling league and a full arcade to weekly line dancing and amazing food and drinks, there are plenty of reasons to hang out at Lefty’s. For axe throwing, private karaoke, live entertainment, bowling and more, check out this Lewes staple.
36450 Plaza Boulevard, Lewes

The Delaware Rock Gym

Whether you prefer a rugged outdoor climb or indoor rock gyms, the Delaware Rock Gym is a great place to exercise and meet other climbers, especially during the winter months.
520 Carson Drive, Bear

Related: 16 Off-Season Attractions to Check out at the Delaware Beaches

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