As reported by the DesMoinesRegister.com, Pickett's pub could be carved from the timber of an enormous tree, with stacked log walls, a fireplace, and a menagerie of mounted moose heads. Though moderately unobtrusive from the road, diners are greeted to pool tables, video games, darts, and a large horseshoe-shaped bar where mixologists sling beers as well as concoctions of mixers and fruity schnapps. Pickett's also grills up juicy full-pound burgers and daily specials such as jumbo shrimp and full-pound top sirloin steaks.
The skilled chefs at Carlos O’Kelly’s Mexican Cafe whip up burritos, enchiladas, and sizzling fajitas to fill an extensive menu of south-of-the-border cuisine. Diners push aside still-steaming nacho and quesadilla starters as a waiter approaches, arms meticulously stacked with plates of enchiladas and burritos ($8.99–$9.99 each). Chefs slather spinach and mushroom enchiladas in butter garlic sauce, and the burro en fuego specialty burrito befuddles meat detectors by burying contraband shredded beef and spicy chili sauce deep inside a warm flour tortilla. Diners can also look over a gluten-free menu to bite into enchiladas and fajitas prepared on corn tortillas as, in the kitchen, blenders buzz up pomegranate and strawberry frozen margaritas into salt-rimmed glasses for frozen fruit consumption without fear of stuck tongue.
At Nova Cinema, cinephiles and casual moviegoers alike nosh on popcorn while watching first-run movies projected on full-size silver screens. Nova Cinema’s selection of talkies changes weekly, with current high-octane thrillers, family flicks, and love stories showing seven days of the week. Recent selections include The Hunger Games, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, _ and _Dr. Seuss' The Lorax, as well as 21 Jump Street, a coming of age story about street signs learning to conquer their fear of heights.
Viva La Bamba's saves flailing tongue buds from edible ennui with its menu of authentic Mexican dishes, specials, and mixed drinks. A combination of tacos, enchiladas, burritos, and vegetarian eats make for steadfast meal mates ($6.25–$7.75), while inventive house specials tantalize palates, such as the Viva La Bamba, a fajita love fest that marries chorizo, shrimp, chicken, and rib-eye steak in delicious matrimony ($12.50). Those looking to sturdy their sea legs sans restrictive sailor suit can choose a pescatarian plate such as the camarones a la diabla, a serving of shrimp piqued with spicy red sauce ($9.50), or the sautéed salmón Viva La Bamba ($9.25).
Owner Darlene Olson holds court over Merle Hay Lanes’ sleek bowling lanes, where the sounds of laughter and pins crashing fills the air. An Olson family heirloom since 1993, Merle Hay caters to amateurs and pin-toppling veterans alike with open bowling and league play for a variety of age and skill levels. Bowlers quench competition-induced thirsts at Bowlwinkles Lounge with a formidable lineup of drink specials. The bowling alley also plays host to a variety of special events including birthday parties and corporate outings, preventing coworkers from having to bowl in the alley behind the office.
Recently remodeled Brunswick lanes and automatic Qubica BES scoring systems helped Plaza Lanes to earn—according to Cityview readers—the title of 2012 Best Place to Bowl. Off the lanes, the center further encourages competition with outdoor games of sand volleyball as well indoor arguments over sporting events shown at Trophy's Sports Bar & Grill. Sandwiches, pizza, and entrees such as ribs, steaks, and chicken highlight the onsite restaurant's menu.