Voted No. 3 on the 2011 Beacon’s Best for top movie theaters, Lake Cinemas 8 advertises a rotating octet of first-run films on a nostalgic marquee that heralds the refurbished theater's entryway. Viewers settle into comfy seats as they share puffed kernels of corn, sip sodas, and, as the lights dim, recall fond memories of tunneling into bank vaults. Visitors can choose from a selection of popular new releases or anxiously anticipate a bevy of coming attractions.
Crowned the Best Irish Pub of 2010 by CityVoters, Brubaker's serves up an extensive menu of pub edibles alongside a lively atmosphere and TVs sporting the latest in athletic endeavors. Quiet nagging hunger mufflers with appetizers such as barbecue-chicken potato skins ($5.75) and the super pretzel with mustard, salsa, or nacho cheese ($2), or tongue-dive into a specialty dish, such as the chicken cordon "bru" ($6.75), the buffalo-chicken wrap ($5.50), or the mega dog ($4). Brubaker's burritos wrap various fillings in the fresh-baked arms of nine-inch tortillas and come in varietals such as the Popeye ($5.50), a hulkifying combination of spinach-artichoke dip, tomatoes, onions, shredded cheddar, and ranch dressing. Brubaker's also offers a wide-ranging beer selection to indulge the fermented fantasies of Prohibition-era taste buds.
The Office provides enough delicious eats and drinks to stuff the belly’s briefcase to the buckle. Appetizers entice professional palates with sophisticated options—such as wasabi-stuffed shrimp cocktail and seared scallops with asparagus and mushrooms (both $10.95)—but also assuage simpler salivations with comforting pre-dinner fare such as wings ($7.95 per dozen), loaded Irish nachos ($8.95), and herb-and-parmesan fries ($4.95). Once your mouth is warmed and ready, direct its incisor specs to the entrees like temporally displaced Napoleonic soldiers toward a Russian teahouse. Bacon acts as the ambassador of turf-born protein on the otherwise surftacular plate of pan-seared salmon and lobster, which swims in a sea of tomato-compound butter ($17.95). The mushroom and swiss burger ($7.95) and flat-iron steak ($15.95), on the other hand, stand their ground as terra firma edibles. Lighter bites that are equally heavy on flavor include the mesclun salad, which is a fresh toss of strawberries, candied pecans, dried cherries, feta, and balsamic vinaigrette ($6.95 for a full).
Part of the Firestone Country Club, Hackers' cozy, family-friendly establishment is open to its links-loving members and the non-golfing public alike. The inviting glow of ten plasma screen televisions beckon guests to the bar, where Hackers serves a whistle-whetting list of domestic beers and wines by the glass ($4–8), as well as liquor and mixed drinks. Pub classics such as fish and chips ($12), pizza ($12–15), and customizable burgers ($8), vie for menu dominance against vitamin-laden salmon salads ($10) and Asian-inspired sweet and sour shrimp ($14). Golfers can continue to bully tiny spheres off the course and sink their teeth into an order of Akron sauerkraut balls ($6). The restaurant's atmosphere is comfy and cozy, with a toasty fireplace, golf-themed décor, and a wall of windows that look out onto the 9-hole course, allowing smug sandwich-eaters to marvel at how many strokes it takes some people to escape from the sandtrap.
The movement maestros at Sharon Rae Dance School—named the best dance studio in Beacon four years in a row by Ohio.com—teach the fancy footwork of tap, ballet, and jazz to tots and youthful twirlers. In all the studios, including a colorful room designed for preschoolers, a layer of cushioning supports the shiny hardwood floors, warding off injuries as whippersnappers jive in musical-theater lessons and tumble with pompoms. All kids' classes are monitored through closed-circuit television, which keeps parents in the loop as they weld together first-place trophies in the waiting room. Students as young as 2 can build fine and gross motor skills in toddler sessions, and adults can leave their own cubicle-themed play sets to join fun Zumba workouts that combine aerobics and Latin dance moves.
Thanks in large part to its "great food," The Beer Haus landed a first-place spot on Akron Life’s 2012 Best of the City list in the New Restaurant category. Diners sidle up to the bar for a gander at more than 100 regional and international microbrews or cozy up in the casual dining room for German-inspired food, custom burgers, and spirited rounds of Wagner’s entire Ring Cycle. With 21 high-definition TVs, pool tables, and dartboards, The Beer Haus maintains a steady buzz fueled by sports, brats, and the occasional barfly.