Aside from being a premier venue for watching sports, Saloon on Calhoun is a bacon utopia with a daily all-you-can-eat bacon happy hour, bacon-infused vodka, and a menu of bacon-accented pub classics. Widescreen TVs speckle the wooden walls throughout, allowing patrons to catch game replays and Martha Stewart knitting segments from the bar, pool tables, or Internet jukebox. As darts bust cork, thin-crust pizzas present guests with slatherings of homemade sauces and bacon burgers, wraps, and beer-battered fish emit puffs of steam in solidarity with the ears of infuriated cartoon characters. In addition to weekly trivia, karaoke, and live blues events, a fully stocked bar with 15 craft beers tests the limits of patrons' tolerance for fun.
Warehouses are often drab and dusty, but not the colorful, warehouse-sized interior of Cream City Skatepark. Graffiti and illustrations of pop culture staples such as the California raisins and The Simpsons enliven the spacious indoor park, whose layout was meticulously designed by skateboard enthusiasts. For each skater’s street and vert pleasure, the park includes wooden ramps, a massive bowl, brick ledges, and sets of stairs and handrails.
Along with open-skate sessions, the park accommodates camps that combine instruction and games, as well as occasional demos from touring teams such as Zero and Volcom. If they need new gear, such as decks or trucks, skaters can head to Cream City’s onsite skate shop before kickflipping their way into the park.
Elite Sports Clubs and its staff of smash-savvy, nationally experienced tennis pros can turn any mechanical stroke into fluid forearmed success on one of more than 30 well-maintained indoor and outdoor training courts. For players seeking to get back into the game or meet the game for the first time, an instructor will spare no bead of sweat breaking down the basics in a comprehensive fashion. Semi-private lessons are limited to two to four students ($30, four players; $35, three players; $40, two players), which means all practitioners develop a variety of techniques in the atmosphere of constant feedback and encouragement. All lessons must be scheduled in advance online. Students can either provide their own racquet or purchase one on-site.
At Axiom Health & Fitness, wellness experts fortify everyday routines with exercise, house-made health foods, and relaxation. The scent of house-made granola fills the 5,500-square-foot facility, where calories melt faster than a snowman at a chili cook-off. Treadmills and elliptical machines dare visitors to sprint, glide, and climb toward fitness goals, and plate-loaded weight machines replaces fat with lean muscle. For a more intense, focused regimen, boot camps throw guests into the ring with functional-training tools such as sandbags, kettlebells, and weighted chains, and personal and group training helps with everyday obstacles so that clients can lift a child without pain, or outrun a rollerblading cheetah. The gym's fitness experts also work hand-in-hand with clients who want to lose weight, offering tips on how to eat healthier and increase energy levels.
Runners embarking on the Honky Tonk Marathon, Half Marathon, and 5K won't need headphones to hear twangy country tunes. That’s because the hilly Wisconsin Dells course features live bands and DJs along the route to keep participants energized as they race toward the finish line. The party-like atmosphere doesn’t end with the race, as a full-blown celebration complete with food, beer, and line dancing awaits runners and their family and friends. Aside from age-group awards for the top three males and females in each race, finish-line gifts include a Honky Tonk cowboy hat and goodie bag for all participants, a finisher-medal buckle for marathoners and half marathoners, and an ice bath for those who decided to pogo stick the entire 26.2 miles. The Honky Tonk marathon and half-marathon course is USA Track & Field certified and is also a Boston Marathon qualifier.
No matter the hour, the rhythmic beat of sneakers hitting treadmills resounds in Snap Fitness's 24-hour studio. The network of gyms stretches across the country, each housing state-of-the art cardio and strength-training equipment that scorches huge batches of calories, like an Easy-Bake Oven scorches cookies when it's souped up with nitrous oxide. IPod hookups and TVs turn treadmills and stair steppers into personal entertainment centers. Unlike impersonal big-box gyms, Snap Fitness's staff subtracts intimidation from the experience with free equipment orientations, custom workout plans, nutrition tips, and hand-crocheted workout shorts for all members. During staffed hours, peppy instructors lead fitness classes such as turbo kickboxing, plyometrics, and aerobic blast.