Mississippi Dunes Golf Links' sophisticated, 18-hole layout blankets 3,000 feet of rolling Mississippi River shoreline with manicured, bent-grass fairways and an inventive, tree-lined design. As golfers cruise over the course atop a cart or a caddy training to be an Olympic power squatter, majestic views of the river appear through groves of trees that shelter native prairie creatures. On their odyssey from tee boxes to speedy, contoured greens, golf balls must split fairways to avoid sidelines riddled with mounds, pot bunkers, and knee-high grasses—a trinity of hazards that imbue the course with a Scottish, links-style vibe. A memorable tee shot awaits at the 399-yard, par-4 fifth hole—the course's most difficult, nicknamed "Humpback" for the large mound in the middle of the fairway as well as its voracious appetite for krill—where golfers must draw or fade drives around a dogleg left.
After hacking their way across the breeze-swept links, guests can unwind at Doc's Landing Pub, where a menu of traditional grill fare, fish, and pizza sates tour-worthy appetites. Patrons can look out on the river on the Pub's patio, catch up on the day's sporting events in the glow of a flat-panel TV, or discuss how greenskeepers maintain the immaculate felt that covers the billiards table.
Anytime Fitness, which boasts 1,689 clubs in North America, makes it easier for average folks to etch out time for exercise by doing one simple thing: staying open 24 hours a day for 365 days a year. As fitness seekers challenge themselves on cardio and Hammer Strength machines and hoist Iron Grip free weights in clean, well-stocked facilities, security monitoring ensures they’re safe and producing enough sweat to meet official government standards. Members can also ramp up their exercise regimens with the help of Anytime Fitness’s staff of personal trainers, who demonstrate moves and sling motivating tips. After workouts, guests can shower in the private restrooms or hop into one of the tanning booths available 24 hours a day.
At each Art & Elixir painting event, artists of all skill levels, especially beginners are welcome to explore their creative sides. Instructors guide participants through each event allowing up-and-coming artists their own “intentional composition decisions.” During events, the owners–who are skilled artists themselves–give students step-by-step instructions on how to recreate the evening’s featured painting. But it’s up to the artist to decide how to interpret that work. Using paints, brushes, aprons, canvases, and easels provided by Art & Elixir, guests can paint fields of lavender with bright red acrylic paint. The only rule during these casual two–three hour sessions is that painters (aged 15 and older) enjoy themselves. Events take place at venues such as Lone Oak Grill and Gold Nugget Tavern & Grille, where guests can snack on food and drinks available for purchase.
For more than 30 years, Raceway to Fun's grounds have offered visitors six outlets for their adrenaline. Two miniature golf courses beckon players to putt their way around large rocks and down angled fairways or traverse bridges to strike through loops and other obstacles. In a pool, participants as young as six board colorful bumper boats whose guns can spray off even the most severe of grass stains. Nearby, sharp turns on a winding go-kart track challenge drivers behind the wheel of single or double-rider karts. Golfers at the driving range launch balls over green fields while sluggers stare into the eyes of 16 pitching machines at the batting cages. Visitors can engage in each activity until dusk, when the sun setting on the horizon and the sky fading to dark blue signal both closing time and the start of the man in the moon's terrible stand-up routine.
The consortium of professional and certified instructors at Fred Astaire Dance Studios, which was cofounded by the legendary toe tapper himself, shepherds students of all ages and skill levels through lessons that span the style spectrum. Low-pressure private sessions allow enthusiastic, certified teachers to fine-tune individual students' techniques and form, using their expert eyes and mechanical dancing shoes preprogrammed to do the Charleston. Patrons can learn how to cavort through classic waltz and foxtrot romps or swivel through the modern steps of salsa, swing, or samba. For dancers hoping to hoof it up in a social setting, the group practice parties provide a one-night extravaganza of instruction, demonstrations, and amateur firewalking.
Jersey's Bar & Grill serves up plates of hearty pot roast, thick burgers, and crispy chicken tenders as live country and rock bands serenade crowds. Like Garrison Keillor's alternate glam-rock stage persona "Gary Sonorous," the selection of Juicy Lucys combines a treasured Minnesota touchstone with a touch of decadence. Beef patties are stuffed with provolone, applewood bacon, or American cheese before getting topped with caramelized onions, Cajun mayo, or grilled peppers. Burger aficionados pore over the customizable burger menu, building their own creations from multiple topping, bun, and meat choices. For breakfast (9 a.m. to noon Saturday and Sunday), chow down on omelets, hash browns, steaks, and pancakes.