Team USA vs. The World may sound like the title of Shaquille O'Neal's autobiography, but it is in fact a mixed martial arts competition that pits 12 of this country's finest mixed martial arts athletes against teams of fighters from Australia, Ireland, and Poland. Stuff your pockets with miniature American flags and gird your thrillcitement nodes for an evening of leg tussles, arm bars, and rear naked chokes. With ground-floor seats, you'll be close enough to see the beads of sweat on the fighters' brows and smell the adrenaline puffs as they condense into clouds shaped like clenched fists in the air above the ring. Fighters scheduled to battle for Team USA include John Hansen (205 lbs.), the 2008 USA National Champion in the LHW Division, Alex White (155 lbs.), who won in the 2009 Ringside World Boxing Championships, and Eric Daigle (155 lbs.), who obtained the lightweight title during the ISCF National Tournament in 2009.
Specializing in the art of nail design, Tracy Nails Salon’s team of technicians spend their days gilding nails in vibrant coats of chip-free polish. While their focus remains on digits, staffers also bustle about the salon restoring radiance to complexions with meticulously applied facials or easing shoulders achy from serving as a perch for overweight parrots with the soothing kneads of a relaxing massage.
True to its meat-loving Chicagoland roots, TCs Pub grills up deep-fried, bacon-wrapped hot dogs and stuffed burgers that are so big you can barely hold them together, let alone bite them. The sports pub is fresh off a recent remodeling, but the chefs still sling handcut french fries, ribeye sandwiches, and gooey pizza puffs that have kept locals and visitors coming back. Fresh salads and fried zucchini offer a vegetarian-friendly alternative. Diners can wash down their meal with one of the 28 beers that are on tap, or sip from an extensive selection of ciders, with flavors that include black cherry, peach, and pear. Game night and beer pong are some of the weekly events. On the weekends, people pack the dance floor to shimmy to live DJ and band music, or the syncopated clinking of spoons and forks.
For more than a decade, Jack Desmond’s Irish Pub has been a friendly meeting spot for all members of the southwest suburbs—even serving as a hub of the Irish-American community. With a party room, drink specials, and beer garden, the family-friendly pub hosts any number of events, even the big event that happens each night— dinner. The menu combines Irish and American favorites, from Irish curry fries and bangers and mash to a tasty assortment of wraps and pizzas.
Don’t let the shepherd's pie, fish 'n' chips, and draft beers fool you. Though Tilted Kilt snatches up the best cultural fragments of Scotland, England, and the Emerald Isle, the eatery started in Las Vegas. Restaurateur Mark DiMartino sought to combine the communal, rousing feel of pubs in the British Isles with the campy fun of American sports bars, pairing hearty food and traditional trappings with televisions and waitresses clad in mini kilts and alluring plaid halter-tops modeled after William Wallace’s eveningwear. Since its founding, Tilted Kilt locations have popped up in 25 states and two Canadian provinces, serving all manner of hybrid dishes such as the Scottish cheese steak, the Sloppy Jane made with sliced turkey or shaved rib eye, and the Tilted Guilt, an ice-cream sundae perched atop a cookie.
The chefs at Palos Hills Village Pub charbroil 10-ounce Angus beef burgers and toss a slew of pastas with meats and seafood. Servers ferry pub fare favorites to patrons powwowing on barstools, watching sports between sips of beer. The eatery’s private party room seats as many as 50 guests around its cloth-covered tables, ideal for office parties, birthdays, or conventions for linen enthusiasts.