Bonafede-family matriarch Anita started JoJo's Pizza Kitchen more than four decades ago, and her discerning taste for ingredients is still identifiable in the menu. Though her son Joe, who napped on flour sacks in the back of the restaurant as a child, now runs the eatery, fresh basil and plum tomatoes grown in Stanislaus County still release aromas that hint at sun-soaked furrows. Through a dining room window, guests catch glimpses of chefs tossing freshly risen dough for pizzas or smaller chefs for their adorable giggles. They grate fresh parmesan cheese as wine cooks slowly down with mushrooms on the stovetop and chicken marinates in lemon and garlic. Servers bustle past, filling glasses with house wines or draft beers.
A night at Chaparral Entertainment Centers means more than just a few games of bowling—with its up to 48 shining lanes are the main attraction. The alley's lounge hosts live music on Friday and Saturday nights, so bowlers can jam out to a band, karaoke, or a DJ, who might accept requests for "We Are the Champions" after every strike. There's also a big-screen TVs, six pool tables, shuffle board, darts, and an arcade in the lounge. At a full-service snack bar, bowlers can order appetizers to tide them over between frames, and they can choose from up to 44 beers on tap, wine, and liquor.
A silence settles over the typically boisterous bar as eyes fixate on the TV set, where the ball hangs in midair before carrying over the fence, falling through the hoop, or landing in the arms of a receiver. Before long, the silence explodes into cheers, and glasses clink together as more rounds of beer make their way to the tables.
This is a common scene at Happy’s Grille, where sports fans of all stripes and allegiances assemble to watch games while savoring 50-cent appetizers, hearty pub sandwiches, and domestic and premium beers. The nightly crowd lingers long after the final buzzer Thursday–Sunday, when DJs spin danceable hits and live bands rile up the crowd with guitar solos, thumping bass lines, and melodic recitations of the game’s play-by-play broadcast. Open seven days a week, Happy’s Grille keeps midweek crowds entertained with live karaoke and, of course, numerous televised sporting events.
Oak Tree Lanes pulls in pin snipers with three-dozen lanes and a full slate of bowler-friendly amenities. Take aim at a clustered quarry and send your spheroid down the lane, leaving the alley's electronic scoring system to deal with the arcane rules and complex logarithms that govern the tallying of each frame. Bumpers are available to help kids and adults with childlike motor skills keep pin torpedoes on the right track, and a playroom is also on hand to cater to children (ages 2–7) too frightened by alternative footwear to take part in the lane games. Because bowling, like most rock-throwing activities, is better in the dark, Oak Tree Lanes also offers Thunder Alley, a Friday- and Saturday-night bowling experience filled with black lights, lasers, satellite radio, and fog machines, giving adults a fun alternative to conventional bowling and helping kids prepare for renting DVDs of Pink Floyd laser light shows. Oak Tree Lanes also offers weary lane warriors and pin pacifists a number of options for refueling, including a snack bar and sports bar.
Resembling a space ship abandoned by aliens who had recently time-traveled to hang out with Le Corbusier, The Glass House is a portal to rock and dance sounds for music-lovers of all ages. It’s also a cornerstone of downtown Pomona’s close-knit arts district, surrounded by record stores, cafes, and vintage shops. Holiday-themed shows and fundraising concerts join young, on-the-rise bands on the calendar, along with established favorites such as New Found Glory and The Faint.
Oktoberfest at Fairplex celebrates Bavarian culture with authentic German food, music, and plenty of beer. Each night, oom-pah-pah music supplied by The Rheinlanders fills the airwaves as visitors enjoy various German beers from Warsteiner and Beck’s. Domestics such as Bud Light and AmberBock also tickle taste buds, as do Jägerbombs. As fall pairs with colorful leaves and pumpkins that fly south for the winter, so also beer pairs with German cuisine such as bratwursts, black forest cake, and apfelstrudel. King Taco also serves up Mexican cuisine as tribute bands such as Sounds of Santana and Queen Nation rock out on stage.