The menu at Knight's Bistro is decidedly unselfish—its large plates of Italian food encourage the sharing of covetous bites. Diners break off pieces from large specialty pizzas decorated in eggplant cutlets or pass the bruschetta and one of four stuffed shells brimming with ricotta cheese to their neighbor. Plates overflow with pastas dressed in one of eight sauces sopped up by housemade rolls.
Families pass these bites back and forth beneath golden cone-shaped lamps that hang above the restaurant's diner-style booths. The staff permits diners to bring their own libations from home, an easier way to facilitate social dining than forcing people to drink from an eight-pronged crazy straw. Weekly dinner specials also play into the convivial theme: Tuesday nights feature classic clambakes with crab legs, lobster claws, and other seafood, whereas Mondays consolidate a large pizza and four soft drinks under a single price.
My Gym Children's Fitness Center, which currently has more than 200 international locations, began more than 30 years ago as a structured place for children to safely play, acquire new skills, and romp off a sugar buzz. All classes are organized according to age level?starting as young as 4 months?and designed to incorporate the latest physiological and psychological research. Tiny Tykes gets babies moving with help from their parents, Mighty Mites teaches toddlers self-reliance and beginning sports skills, and Champions, a class for kids aged 6?8, emphasizes the importance of using teamwork to master more complex sports skills and achieve group goals such as building a human pyramid to reach the cookie jar. My Gym's energetic instructors are experts at using music, dance, and gymnastics to build youngsters' strength and self-esteem while stimulating their giggle-plexes. The noncompetitive environment fosters creativity and hands-on activities boost children's learning retention and fun quotient.
It's a child's paradise in the Garden State Discovery Museum, where pint-size patrons can climb up rock walls, cavort with wildlife, and imagine themselves as vets, doctors, and news anchors in hands-on exhibits. Red-eared turtles lounge in the wildlife area, inviting kids to gaze upon their slimy shells, and science displays teach guests about gravity, lava, and light.
For many local residents, rolling around the rink at Cherry Hill Skating and Fun Center is a bit of a tradition. The center has been open well over 35 years?so for many visitors, strapping on a pair of skates brings a wave of nostalgia. It also doesn't hurt that they have adult skate nights, when DJs spin tunes from the '70s, '80s, and '90s. Of course, the center also caters to children; in addition to open-skate sessions, Cherry Hill Skating and Fun Center hosts youth hockey and birthday parties. An onsite shop also sells skates, wheels, and accessories, so people can roll over all the flat surfaces they find out in the wild.
There's room for all types of workouts in Nexxt Level Sports' 22,000-square-foot, climate-controlled facility. Basketball players can hone their technique on two NBA-length hardwood courts, and baseball players can perfect their swings in 70-foot batting cages instead of going to an orchard and waiting for regulation-sized apples to fall. In group-training classes, meanwhile, gym patrons can focus on strength or build endurance with varied circuit workouts, including strength and resistance training. For a more private workout, personal trainers also lead one-on-one sessions, tailoring their exercises to the clients' fitness goals.
Westbrook Family Bowling Center allows guests to bowl whenever the mood strikes, whether it is 4 p.m. or 4 a.m. Laser-light shows illuminate the alley during cosmic-bowling events, and pizzas refuel kids during birthday parties, which feature lanes lined with bumpers, if desired. Adults can chill out until 2 a.m. in the Joe 300 Lounge, which is filled with pool tables, dart boards, and televisions.