Although it now has more than 430 locations in 28 countries, Hooters wasn’t always welcomed by the public. In fact, when it opened in October 1983 in Clearwater, Florida, the founders of the restaurant were “quickly detained for impersonating restaurateurs,” according to the company's website. But the restaurant was able to prove it was more than just a pretty face—that it was serious about serving tasty American food and frosty brews—and its popularity exploded in the decades to follow.
Amid its beach-themed vibe and flat-screen TVs, Hooters still fuels appetites with original chicken wings, burgers, sandwiches, and fresh salads. Of course, nobody carries those casual eats and icy pitchers better than the Hooters girls. To complement their friendly smiles, their uniforms harken back to the ones the original waitresses wore in 1983: orange hot shorts and white tank tops with the emblematic owl on the front—though that owl has lost its Lionel Richie perm.
A pair of stock cars sits beneath the checkered-flag designs of NASCAR Sports Grille's exterior, which contains a chorus of cheering fans basking in the glow of three 16-foot televisions that beam live races and sports. Tables and a long, wooden bar sit beneath the towering displays, and cozy booths—each with a built-in TV—form an intimate setting where fans can attempt to feed nachos to the images of their favorite athletes. Outside, NFL banners hang from the ceiling of a covered patio, where groups share appetizers of homemade crab dip. Each of these eating arenas sets a competitive stage for grill fare all-stars, including six juicy burgers coated in eclectic toppings such as bourbon chili.
At Chesapeake Sports Park, guests of all skill levels negotiate a range of exciting, obstacle-spattered fields. At the start of matches, players lead daring charges through dense vegetation on the woodsball course or overtake a wall on an urban field as they cover an opponent in a wild spray that forges an abstract modernist painting. For a quick adrenaline boost, strategically placed tubes line the grassy hyperball field, making ideal conditions for fast-paced warfare. A field-paint-only facility, Chesapeake Sports Park's onsite pro shop stocks bags of paintballs and equipment from brands such as Tippmann, Bob Long, and Luxe. Committed to a safe experience, Chesapeake Sports Park starts new players off with a safety training and requires full-face goggles with ear protection to be worn at all times. In addition to general public play, the facility welcomes birthday parties, group outings, and other private events.
Bowling at Sparetimes is all about fun and convenience. Bumpers in each of the 32 lanes rise and fall with ease so that parents and children can share a lane, and an automatic scoring system keeps track of frames as pins clatter to the floor. The snack bar provides sustenance in the form of pizza and sandwiches, while the arcade offers a chance to stretch out fingers on both hands. Bowlers also take a break between games at the Winners Circle sports bar, where they can continue enjoy a game of pool or electronic darts. On the weekends, the lights go low during glow bowl, when music videos take over the two 10‘x12’ screens hanging above the lanes and black lights give white T-shirts a bluish gleam so that they can be used to direct approaching UFOs to the parking lot.
The picturesque waters of the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean gently lap against the alabaster hull of the Sally T, beckoning passengers to cast a line to the abundant wildlife swimming under the water's surface. Aboard the vessel—a head boat with Coast Guard approval for ocean trips—experienced nautical leader Captain Pete grants aspiring fisherpeople a chance to land prize catches with charter trips that explore the natural beauty of the famed waterscapes. Under the captain's guidance, a friendly crew sniffs out areas teeming with susceptible targets and bestows fishing tips and gear to blossoming seafarers. Groups then practice the skills necessary to catch and clean aquatic fauna and pursue underwater booty such as croakers, flounder, and pictures of Scott Baio taped inside Davy Jones's locker.
From an exterior modeled after a traditional London free house to interior furnishings imported from Europe, Park Lane Tavern mimics the feel of a European tavern inside and out. Like a hot dog curtseying to the queen, the menu blends American staples with traditions from across the pond, juxtaposing steaks and club sandwiches with shepherd's pie and jagerschnitzel. Behind a gleaming handcrafted bar, bartenders pour from a monstrous selection of libations, including more than 70 draft, bottled, and cask-conditioned beers from around the globe; numerous wines, single-malt scotches, and small-batch bourbons; and creative cocktails, each of which can be found in what the tavern has dubbed their "Beverage Bible."