The staff at Sports Mania, a locally owned athletic shop, stocks its shelves with a wide array of sneakers and fan gear. Feet find sanctuary in shoes by Nike, New Balance, and ASICS, and jerseys adorned with gators, bulldogs, jaguars, and narwhals advertise college-team pride. With the beach located only blocks away, patrons can easily slip on their new footwear and go jogging in the Atlantic breeze.
A'propos carries trendsetting textiles for customers to peruse and try on for size, including blouses, handbags, designer jeans, and dresses. Designer handbags, such as the red suede clutch ($79), accentuate ensembles with functionality, and wardrobe staples such as Linq fuchsia thermal cardigan ($68) offer practical comfort that pairs with a variety of styles. Miss Me jeans embellish back pockets with rhinestones and buttons ($98), and leg-shirts by Makers of True Originals grace backsides with unique stitching designs ($89). Shoes ($42+) and accessories also accentuate outfits with subtle additions such as expandable bangles ($142) that double as dysfunctional slinkies.
A family owned business, Crafts & More fosters artistic inventiveness with an eclectic stock of more than 40,000 crafting tools and art materials from esteemed brands. A kaleidoscope of Liquitex acrylics and Winsor and Newton Artists' Oil paints adorn canvases, and cutting boards, stamps, and adhesives wait in the wings for eager scrapbookers. A selection of children’s art kits helps whippersnappers ace school projects or create detailed maps to cookie jars. Knowledgeable staff members stand ready to assist customers with concerns and questions, and they also extend their expertise during frequent classes and outreach workshops.
Originally opened in 1981 by Greg and Veronica Burghardt, the Rockaway Garden Center is now tended to by the couple's sons, Greg Jr. and Brian, who draw on their childhood gardening experience and a pair of Rutgers University degrees in plant science and landscape design, installation, and maintenance to nurture the verdant nursery. The nursery blooms with Florida-friendly vegetable plants, flowers, trees, and shrubs, and arms gardeners with a full line of Dr. Earth organic soils and fertilizers. During the Yuletide season, a tree lot teems with Fraser, Douglas, and Concolor firs from the family's upstate New York farm. Rockaway's team of landscaping specialists delivers and installs professional arrangements for home yards, customizing designs to best complement a customer's style or collection of He-Man garden statues. True to its mission of promoting local gardening, the center partners with Seabreeze Elementary School to lead students in nurturing herbs, vegetables, and plants in their school's greenhouse, which can be purchased at the garden center and 10% of the proceeds go back to the school.
Pillowy dollops of icing sit atop Caketails Cupcakes’ gourmet miniature cupcakes, whose flavors find inspiration in classic fruit and chocolate cocktails. Though free of alcohol and perilous olive spears, each pintsize dozen packs in the tempting tastes of drinks such as piña coladas, mimosas, and strawberry daiquiris. Lift a round of champagne cupcakes high into the air for a poignant post-dinner toast, stage impromptu fiestas on palates with the moist cake of the margarita, or bob for cherries nestled into the icing of caramel appletinis. After a 48-hour advance order, cupcakes pop out of the oven and don crowns of fluffy frosting studded with decorative treats such as chocolate, fruit, and gummy candies.