When Mike Busley walked into Julian Pie Company, he found something unexpected—a sense of purpose. Returning with a dream of opening his own café with his wife, Denise, Mike convinced Julian’s owner to show them how to make pie so flavorful that it could alter a person’s life, just as it had theirs. The couple found themselves armed with newfound know-how, leading them to quit their careers in defense and medical sales, have a tough but healthy breakup talk with San Diego, and venture to Michigan to open Grand Traverse Pie Company.
Though now a franchise throughout Michigan and Indiana, Mike and Denise continue to run the original shop, and each location adheres to their vision of favoring ingredients from Michigan growers. Each day, chefs bake more than 25 flavors of pie, which have received attention from publications such as O, The Oprah Magazine. They also prepare an extensive selection of comfort fare for breakfast, second breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
While cigarettes from Smoking Vapor curb nicotine cravings, they never emit a puff of smoke. The electric cigarette's LED tip lights up as it releases customizable doses of nicotine in time with users’ drags, stripping the smoking experience of tobacco, toxins, and smoke itself. Long-lasting rechargeable batteries or strikes of lightning power each of the cigarettes, which immediately detect users’ puffs via a microprocessor and sensor, with no button pushing required. Smokers can select from traditional or flavored nicotine cartridges. A variety of flavors are available in stores, including Grape, Coffee, and Strawberry.
LaZeez International Market & Deli culls tastes and trinkets from across the globe to stock its store, deli, and restaurant with distinctive finds. In the Indian eatery, tandoor-style ovens unfurl to crown plates with marinated meats and naan bread as cauliflower, potatoes, and paneer mingle to forge a slate of meat-free dishes. A children's menu offers pint-size American dishes for hungry kids and picky founding fathers, and many dishes can be bundled to go from the in-house deli. The international market takes a more global approach by stocking grocery and gift items hailing from countries such as China, Greece, and Brazil to let shoppers bring their own piece of foreign flair home via unique spices, drinks, apparel, and incense.
Roxy’s Beauty Bar began as a popular Bay City tanning salon and has since expanded into a full-service salon, offering everything from trendy cuts to airbrush makeup. Stylists help heads adopt a new shade with coloring and highlighting services or add bling in the form of hair tinsel, hair crystals, and feather extensions. Nail artist Xaviera dresses fingertips with intricate designs, such as zebra stripes and Burberry-inspired plaid, and eyelash extensions pump up each wink’s flirt factor with semi-permanent strands by Reese Robert. Staying true to its tanning roots, Roxy’s also continues to bronze bodies with airbrush tans, which are sprayed on by a trained technician instead of by a machine or an artistically trained elephant.
Since 1888, the Bavarian Inn has transported visitors to an Old World village whose whimsical fairy-tale spires and cascading waterfalls sprawl across 13 acres of riverfront. Amid the restaurant's polished oak confines, strong-armed contenders in the Bavarian Strongman contest will hoist a 1-liter glass stein of Hofbräu into the air, then keep it there until either their brawny bicep gives out or their arm snaps off at the shoulder. The current claimed world record for holding time is 19 minutes. Those who outlast all foes in their round progress to the state finals on August 14, where they'll face off against an entire gaggle of brew-bearing Michiganders in order to win a trip to New York City, ultimately vying for a chance to win a trip to Germany during Oktoberfest. Win or lose, contestants will get to add their souvenir stein to their collection of less impressive teacup- and Coke-lifting trophies—and drink the beer it contains as a reward for their feat of strength.