English Gardens began as a single, family-owned nursery in 1954, and has since blossomed into a full-service landscaping and garden center with multiple locations, all owned and operated by second-generation family members. Each location facilitates both indoor and outdoor gardening projects. The florist department brings the outdoor flourish inside by arranging fresh-cut floral bouquets and gift baskets for all manner of occasions. Workshops and in-store presentations also allow the green-thumbed experts to impart advice on common gardening and decorating topics such as building a kitchen herb garden or housetraining a dogwood tree. During the summer season, English Gardens holds a summer planting sale as well as weekly in-store gardening tutorials every Saturday at 10 a.m.
At The Black Market, the day's prices slither across a sprawling stock ticker on the wall. But the restaurant's hardwood floors aren't filled with traders, they're filled with diners hoping to catch a discount on a meal or a few drinks. Prices change in accordance with popularity, and the wait staff is trained to haggle if guests have an itch to barter. Families can sink teeth into signature barbecue-chicken sandwiches or burgers with specialty exotic meats, including kangaroo, alpaca, yak, and lion. The late-night crowd packs the floor during DJ sets, much like night traders at the stock exchange.
Stocking shelves with new and recycled duds since 1971, Ragstock fortifies wardrobes with a storefront brimming with new and recycled men's and women's clothing and accessories. In addition to mainstream garments, stores sling eclectic outfit accouterments such as neon suspenders ($9.99) and thick-rimmed spectacles ($4.99+) that allow shoppers to evoke the air of literature professors without blithely quoting Joyce.
The experienced crafters at Paper Kutz Scrapbooking host festive group crops and cull fine scrapbooking supplies in a cheerful and organized environment. Each Friday-night Super Scrap begins at 3 p.m., when solitary preservationists or groups of five arrive to snip, glue, and doodle their photos into pleasing configurations. As guests take their seats at long tables dotted with cutting mats, they commence the archival preservation of precious wedding photos, baby pictures, and calligraphied blackmail. Wastebaskets politely gather scraps, and diminutive wall art ensures that guests' handiwork takes center stage. To refresh each artist, staff members serve catered meals complete with dessert and beverages. Guests must call ahead to reserve their place, or they will be forced to scrapbook on the roof. Though not included in this deal, more events can be found on Paper Kutz's online calendar.
Founded by two wilderness guides in 1992, Moosejaw has merged an Everest-sized variety of top-flight outdoor goods with thoughtful, friendly service, leading CityVoters to name the retailer the Best Outdoor Apparel store for two years running. Beloved brands such as The North Face, Patagonia, Mountain Hard Wear, Marmot, and Arc'teryx decorate the walls, and Moosejaw's own product line has fanatics worldwide. Outfit a summer surfing trip with some funky boardshorts ($19.99–$59) and some Hyperflex Mesh gloves ($23.95) to ensure maximum tread when open-face slapping disorderly waves. There's an extensive array of footwear to pacify and protect your lower paws. Lace haters and hip Dutch tulip farmers can slip on the snug Merrell clogs ($70). Moosejaw's glut of gear covers a wide range of activities, from snowboarding and rock climbing to indoor sunglassing and extreme strollering.
At Giuseppe's International Oils & Vinegars, fresh, single-cultivar extra-virgin olive oils and aged balsamic vinegars appease international palates with complex, nutrient-packed flavors. A bottle of Arbequina oil ($11.95–$30.95) from Chile lubricates salads, pasta, or heads stuck between fence rails with creamy, peppery flourishes. Cobrançosa oil ($11.95–$13.95) makes an appearance from Portugal, stunning crowds with aromas of green apple, a mildly bitter finish, and well-placed shots from a taser. Barrel-aged dark-chocolate vinegar from Modena, Italy resonates with the harmonies of three types of chocolate ($11.95–$30.95). Shoppers can also explore the realms of crisp white vinegars, such as the honey and ginger vinegar ($11.95–$30.95), whose sweet honey blankets waves of spicy heat.