The Vernon Club, nestled in a historic building dating back to 1886, rolls out eight gleaming lanes with automatic scoring, a new Internet jukebox, and tasty comestibles for fueling competitive appetites. Players don borrowed footwear and the letterman jackets of league-player ghosts before hurling three-holed spheres toward pins poising themselves for the welcomed whack of a spare or strike. Bowlers can rest their pin-striking biceps of fury with a gooey 12-inch pizza or maintain concentration while grasping a bratwurst in non-bowling hands. On select nights, rock bands set up shop beside the lanes and churn out foot-tapping ditties until 1 a.m. or 2 a.m.
Comedy has come a long way since Trog the Cavemedian and his side-splitting act that involved making the audience watch him skin a moose in a funny way. See the progress for yourself with today’s Groupon for one ticket to Greg Giraldo’s stand-up at The Improv Comedy Club, which is conveniently located downtown. The value of your Groupon also includes an appetizer. Like most comedy clubs, The Improv chooses your seating, enforces a dress code, and requires an additional item purchase.
Multi-platinum saxophonist Boney James is not solely a smooth jazz artist. In fact, he continually shirks the label of “jazz,” despite his Soul Train Award for best jazz album and his habit of landing atop Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz Charts. With three Grammy nominations in the pop and R&B field, Boney’s genre-spanning music reaches a wild variety of ears and incites categorization-related panic in record store clerks. Touring behind his latest album Contact, a collection of soulful numbers inspired by Quincy Jones and featuring the No. 1 single “Spin,” Boney impresses as one exhalation unleashes a stream of butterfly notes while a push of the pinky pops manhole covers with sultry steam. Buttressed by a handcuff-tight back-up band, Boney’s boisterous live performance takes fans on a euphonic voyage akin to riding a limo on rollercoaster tracks.
• For $23, you get two tickets to The Stephen Foster Story (a $46 value). Performances are held on select dates Tuesday–Sunday at 8:30 p.m., with Saturday matinees at 2 p.m., from June 11 to August 13. • For $23, you get two tickets to The Wizard of Oz (a $46 value). Performances run on Thursday and Saturday nights at 8:30 p.m. from July 7 to August 6.
Entering their 85th season, the Harlem Globetrotters have entertained millions of parents, children, and general basketball admirers with a unique brand of athletic precision and showmanship. For their latest “4 Times the Fun” North American tour, the Globetrotters will add a new 4-point shot spots located 35 feet from the basket, which is 12 feet further than the official three-point line but several thousand miles closer than the prime meridian. See the arch-nemesis Generals try to keep up as the Harlem hardwood sorcerers evade gravity’s oppressive clutches and court clairvoyants distribute unassailable alley-oops. Youngsters can learn about the benefits of teamwork while laughing along with the jovial jocks as they perform classic routines of unconventional passing and sudden transmutations of water into confetti.