Bowlers of all ages and experience levels roll bowling balls down 16 synthetic runways at Northfield Lanes, doing their best to knock down all 10 pins. Automatic scoring machines make it easy to keep track of the results, and bumpers provide an added advantage, if desired. In between games, adults can head to The Tap, a full-service bar with a variety of draft beers.
Following in the Ribeiro tradition and teaching system, Ribeiro Jiu Jitsu Grand Rapids uncorks a wealth of wisdom during classes for men, women, teens, and kids. Head instructor Ryan Hyde—who has shared the mat with black belts, world champions, and professional MMA fighters—leads the facility’s teaching efforts. In addition to teaching the physical movements of BJJ, Ryan builds his teaching philosophy atop four main pillars: humility, respect, perseverance, and compassion. He deploys his pedagogical prowess during classes where he offers specific advice, but he also dusts off his teaching chops during the facility’s open mat sessions, when he takes on more of a mentorship role. In those sessions, students sharpen their skills by practicing with each other rather than sparring with the mall mannequin that keeps giving everyone the hairy eyeball.
Once each new batch of beer has passed through Hideout Brewing Company's 280-gallon system, brewers transfer it from fermentation drums into kegs one by one. The hands-on process takes time, but brewmasters still manage to keep The Hideout's 32 taps filled. Drafts like the Smuggler's Hazelnut Stout and the Gangster IPA are available year-round, thought most of the bar's selection rotates among specialty and seasonal beers, as well as occasional hard ciders and meads. The brewers are often playful with different styles of beer, steeping chocolate and jalapeños or using wild yeasts that build a complex maze of flavors.
Along with food from outside vendors, Hideout's pours pair well with a modest menu of bar snacks such as mini tacos, corn dogs, and soft pretzels. Drinking and dining commences on the main floor, where Prohibition-era photographs surround weekly rounds of board games and chess. Karoake wednesdays feature locals on vocals while Saturdays bill live bands for entertainment. Competitive shouts can always be heard drifting from dartboards, and there’s also a horseshoe pit in Hideout's backyard garden, where steeds respectfully leave their hoofwear before coming inside for a drink.
Family Fitness and FitZone for Women Centers are spread across eight locations, but they share a common goal: to help guests find their ideal physique. They accomplish this mission by filling their 15,000- to 25,000-square-foot facilities with ellipticals, arc trainers, and treadmills that engage cardios, cores, and limbs alongside group training classes led by certified personal and group fitness instructors. Visitors can also keep tabs on their progress with the centers’ fitness monitoring program and body mass testing.
For Charlie’s Bar & Grille owner Charlie Boylen, it’s not enough to see her customers’ empty plates—she wants to know how they feel about the whole experience. That’s why she frequently mingles with diners to gauge what she and her staff are doing right and what they could be doing better. And for most patrons, the chefs are doing a lot of things right with their diverse menu of American favorites, Mexican staples, and fried seafood. They update traditional dishes to include interesting flavors, marinating chicken breast in a raspberry honey glaze and topping portobello sandwiches with a tangy rosemary aioli. While they specialize in unique entrees, they still serve up classic pub appetizers such as potato skins spiced with colby jack cheese and bacon, and coconut shrimp that comes topped with fruity salsa just like a house lease in Hawaii.