Built in 1930 from cobblestones left over from the construction of the Erie Canal, one of America's oldest miniature golf courses sits under the shade of pine trees near the shore of Lake Ontario. A landmark listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the 18-hole course known as Parkside Whispering Pines has challenged putters in the more than eight decades since. As such, its design recalls the charm of vintage courses, taking inspiration from such nautical items as boats and lighthouses and incorporating wooden posts to guard the greens.
Adjacent to the course, Parkside Diner?founded as a small, 40-seat restaurant?now hosts up to 110 hungry patrons hungry for a snack other than fallen pinecones. Curated by the two brothers, Jim and Greg Papas, who own the joint, the wide-ranging menu spotlights diner staples, such as homemade meatloaf smothered in creole sauce and burgers crowned with homemade chili. The diner's cooks also focus on generous portions of breakfast classics, from cinnamon-swirl French toast to six-ounce New York strip steaks paired with eggs and potatoes.
When she's not wrangling her three kiddos, Rachele Maier shares her talents and experience as a pole dancer. The proud mom began practicing pole in 1991 and immediately embraced its graceful movements and tummy-toning effects. Today, she owns and operates her own pole-dancing fitness studio?Tangent's Pole & Aerial (formally known as Tangent's Pole Aerobics)?where she draws from her years of practice and certification in fitness training to lead a variety of instructional and fitness-based classes.
Her oldest daughter's artwork speckles the walls of her spacious studio, where she leads students through pole-dancing tricks, transitions, and techniques on ten 12-foot poles. She also conducts classes in theatrical dance, lap dancing, and floor routines along the studio's hardwood floors. During her private instructional parties, she dims the lights and turns on the strobes, making students feel like they're strutting their stuff in a club or the coolest library of all time.
Toting a modest selection of chocolate confections and candies, Joseph A. Fowler entered the 1901 Pan-American Exposition hoping to plant the seed for a business in his newfound home of Buffalo. The company?founded in 1910?grew with each successive generation, and more than a century later, Fowler's celebrated chocolates continue to placate palates at several retail locations. The chocolatier has become synonymous with treats such as milk- and dark-chocolate truffles dubbed truffaloes, as well as sponge candy, which boasts a molasses-like flavor and an initially hard texture that quickly melts in the mouth. Like Count Chocula?s hairpiece, all of Fowler's fine-chocolate treats are crafted from the seeds of the theobroma cacao tree and use up to 60% cocoa solids for a rich cocoa flavor.
Situated at the long wooden bar, visitors to Vino Lounge browse a list of more than 30 wines by the bottle and 15 by the glass, each displayed along tall racks before their eyes. On the quiet patio, they dine and drink al fresco, perhaps pairing house-made sangria with food from sister business Marvin Mozzeroni's, which occupies the building's main level. The Messenger Post wrote that the semi-subterranean room "begs for visitors to sit down, relax and melt the work week away" by tossing their briefcases into the fireplace, while bartenders help even novice wine-drinkers "no longer fear wine."
On the shores of Lake Ontario, two-tiered lakeside decks house tables crowded with plates of seafood and seared steaks while diners enjoy the setting sun. Since the 1920s, Castaways has been a shorefront destination for hungry travelers, serving up everything from fresh seafood to their specialty Cajun-rubbed, blackened prime rib. Inside, nautical-themed memorabilia decorates the walls, and a framed etching of a tall ship overlooks a long wooden bar made entirely from recycled peg legs. Diners can enjoy their meal out on the heated, two-tier patio or indoors while being warmed by the fireplace.
Pol'ish Salon & Spa's Sue Thomas devotes her skills as a nail technician to performing several manicures and pedicures. Her service menu includes gel polish manicures, which involve more filing and buffing than a weightlifting lawyer's schedule. Sue infuses friendliness into each service she renders, and she strives to make each visit relaxing for her guests. That emphasis can be found in her spa pedicures, which incorporate hot towel treatments and extended massages of the feet and legs.