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Since its birth in 1949, The Alley, or at least the North Shore ground on which The Alley resides, has come full circle. During its earliest years, it was known as Mary Jane Lanes, a 10-lane bowling center that buzzed with family-friendly competition throughout the 1950s and '60s. That buzzing continued at a much louder decibel level during the 1970s, when Mary Jane Lanes became Minstrel's Alley, a go-to music venue rocked by the riffs of bands such as REO Speedwagon and The Ramones. In the 1980s, after crews restored its lanes and dug out all the burnt electric guitars embedded into its gutters, the building returned to its origins as a family-first bowling center. Today, The Alley has been updated with automatic scoring, projection TVs, and pool tables ready to accommodate guests of all ages. Every Friday and Saturday, though, The Alley detours back through the '70s, as live bands revive the facility's glory days during Rock and Bowl.

210 Green Bay Rd
Highwood,
IL
US

Physicist turned "Capture the Moment" photographer. Worked in 38+ countries photographing people in their natural surroundings. Fell into working with kids as the main part of my business. Printed all my own images up to 30x40 from 1973 and now digital since 1998. Take real pride is satisfying a clients needs.

1292 Old Skokie Rd
Highland Park,
IL
US

The inspiring trainers at MetaBody lead troops of women workouteers in results-getting one-hour workouts several times weekly. The fun classes utilize a variety of exercises and disciplines to produce full-body results in a supportive environment ideal for both beginners and hard-core core-hardeners alike. MetaBody's motivational instructors will use your instinctual distrust of routine to their advantage. They’ll keep your muscles guessing with new and challenging moves during each session, so you’ll never fall into a boring, ineffective routine, such as regular teeth-brushing. Begin a day of litigating with a refreshing early morning boot camp session, or wind down by burning evidence and pounds with a late evening class. In addition to the fitness classes, you will receive a success guide to help prepare for imminent pound-loss, a nutrition guide, and a $100 gift certificate for individual coaching.

1480 Old Deerfield Rd
Highland Park,
IL
US

Performance Factory Training doesn’t look like your average gym. Grunts and shouts echo off the rafters of the 5,000-square-foot facility, a cavernous warehouse that’s mostly empty, save for a smattering of kettlebells and cast-iron weight plates. The students here have little use for gimmicky equipment, as they focus on functional movements—pushing, pulling, squatting, and lifting, to name a few—that rely on body weight for resistance.

Though PFT’s instructors offer everything from personal training to football-specific workouts, their flagship program is CrossFit. This functional fitness phenomenon consists of a series of short, intense workouts that combine grueling strength and cardio training with basic gymnastics.

To prove that CrossFit’s for everyone, the instructors offer a two-week On Ramp program designed to get new students up to speed on the foundational movements. It’s hard not to get caught up in the daily workouts, seeing as how no two are ever the same. One day might involve shoulder presses and deadlifts, while another might require you to haul the tires of a car that was double-parked in the facility’s parking lot.

525 Bank Ln
Highwood,
IL
US

The sales associates at Verizon Wireless Cellular Connection at Moorehead Communications aren't just store clerks: they're matchmakers. While they don't spend their days finding dates for their customers, they do work with them to find the ideal mobile device and accessory package to match their needs. At the store's six locations, customers can test out brand-new devices, ask questions regarding their operations, and purchase add-ons such as car chargers that provide mobile power, or cases that keep phones from blushing every time they're outside of a pocket.

2090 Skokie Valley Road
Highland Park,
IL
US

The soft glow of 30,919 carved pumpkins lit up the night sky on Saturday, October 22, 2011—the night the town of Highwood set the Guinness world record for most jack-o’-lanterns lit in one location. And this year should be no different. The three-day Great Highwood Pumpkin Festival, which has gained coverage from The Rosie Show and Trib Local, invites guests from all over the country to contribute to its wall of carved pumpkins, an experience that will be captured by HGTV’s “Pumpkin Wars”.

Patrons can decorate prescooped pumpkins at the designated carving stations (or bring their own precarved candidate) as they enjoy a weekend of live music on multiple stages, treats from local vendors, a gourmet farmers’ market on Saturday, hayrides, and a New Orleans–inspired night parade. Participants can even test out their newly carved pumpkin sneakers during the festival’s 5K run, which raises funds and awareness for the Leukemia Research Foundation. The festival culminates with the lighting of the wall of jack-o’-lanterns at 7 p.m. on Saturday, and, when all is said and done, pumpkins won’t be left in the dark as their owners are encouraged to take their record-breaking masterpieces home with them.

1866 Sheridan Rd
Highland Park,
IL
US

Highland Park Scene