History is everywhere at The Landmark Restaurant, where many rooms are covered in vintage photographs, antique clocks, ornate chandeliers, and built-in china cabinets. In 1908, the gabled-roof building was a Mormon church that hosted Sunday-school classes, dances, and Boy Scout meetings. The building was also the original site of Mesa Community College before its transformation into a restaurant in 1981. Today, chefs stuff apple corn bread inside pork chops and slow-cook pot roasts slathered in housemade gravy. Try the chicken-fried chicken topped with housemade country gravy or the 14-ounce new york strip basted in blue cheese. Guest can finish with a raspberry cheesecake or pecan pie.
Chef Brian Banasek and the staff at Serenade Catering fuel festivities with tasting menus and rentable chocolate fountains. Referencing a special recipe that spurs chocolate flow without oil, they build their elegantly displayed fountains to heights of up to 44 inches. After teaching venus fly traps the importance of oral hygiene, customers can expand the fountain's uses with a selection of dipping items ($2.35+/guest), including strawberries, pound cake, pretzel rods, and caramel squares. The staff also helps put a stamp on celebrations by carving ice sculptures.
For more than 10 years, the staff princesses at the family-owned and -operated Mrs. Potts Tea Party have hosted kids and parents for birthday parties and Girl Scout-troop gatherings. Within a historical house adorned with purple curtains, chandeliers, murals by a local artist, and wallpaper that gives the room the look of a castle, children learn to enjoy traditional tea service while dressed up in a selection from the costume closet.
The roots of Kerby’s Furniture stretch back to 1959, when Rex and Ruth Kerby founded the store to bring together bedroom and dining-room sets, mattresses, and other home essentials. Today, staffers dispense advice to shoppers in a showroom flush with beds, couches, and tables by brands such as Ashley, Broyhill, and Best Home Furnishings. Browsers can compare the cushiness of the Hanway chair, a foldout sleeper sofa dressed in subtle olive pinstripes, with the Joplin, a salmon swivel rocker with a reversible T-cushion seat. Youth bedroom sets come in mouth-watering finishes such as cream, espresso, and walnut, and mattresses by Simmons and Corsicana summon more z’s than a honeybee’s typewriter.
Furniture Plus began in 1983 as a tiny furniture shop in a rented house with an outdoor concrete slab for a show room, and has since grown into a 20,000-square-foot space, brimming with pieces from popular brands such as Ashley Furniture, Robert Michael, and aspenhome. Though it would have been easier to move the store into a shopping center, the owners chose to remain in their own facility in order to maintain a low overhead—and therefore, lower prices—on the same furniture carried by big-box stores and traveling furniture salesmen.