At Icon Nightclub, droves of partygoers dance to pumping tunes on one of the city's most expansive dance floors. Revelers can energize themselves for late-night shimmying with drinks or sharpen multi-tasking skills by simultaneously dancing the funky chicken and the Harlem shake. Premium sips help foster an air of refinement, and imported beers help drinkers cultivate a sense of worldliness through hoppy osmosis. On Thursday and Saturday nights, Cadence lights up the club stage with rhythmic jams that earned the group a top 10 spot on America's Got Talent and vehement shushes from the nation's librarians.
With its sleek decor of black leather seats, graphic black prints on white walls, gilded mirrors, and a wall of wine illuminated by cobalt lighting, it’s easy to think The Cosmopolitan Bistro is a chic lounge in the city, not an intimate bistro in the Ozarks. That’s exactly the type of feeling founder Liezl Stevenson-Perme was going for when she opened eatery in April 2011, and it has been so successful that it counts music producer and singer Tony Orlando as one if its patrons.
But the decor isn’t the only appealing thing about The Cosmopolitan Bistro. Oversize white plates arrive at tables topped with artfully arranged entrees of upscale American cuisine, such as new york strip steaks, grilled salmon smothered in rosemary-butter-cream sauce, and seared ahi tuna. On certain nights of the week, the bistro comes to life with the sounds of live jazz music, DJ-spun tracks, or auto-tuned baby laughs.
Though they may sound like the titles of Hardy Boys escapades, Buccaneer's Booty, Redbeard's Riches, and Russian Treasure hold different surprises in store, as they?re just a few of the 800 slot machines at Grand Lake Casino. Open 24 hours a day, the 45,000-square-foot floor also hosts games of blackjack, three-card poker, and Texas hold'em, and its casual onsite eatery, The EndZone Restaurant & Bar, provides a place for high rollers to replenish their stacks of potato chips.
Located 2 miles from the casino?just a free shuttle ride away?Grand Lake Casino Lodge accommodates guests with simply appointed rooms furnished with soft Serta mattresses. There, visitors can break from the energy of the gaming floor by watching a movie on the flat-screen TV or get even rowdier by playing shuffleboard on the hardwood floor.
When it was built in 1923, The Historic Shrine was hailed as the largest auditorium west of the Mississippi and all twenty of its doubled consonants. But even if it hadn't been so large, the building would be notable thanks to its unique design, marked by red brick walls, terracotta turrets, and colorful stained glass windows. And, thanks to thoughtful renovations and landing a spot on the National Register of Historic Places, the venue's beauty hasn't dimmed in the intervening decades. The Historic Shrine's historic stage continues to host acts both classic and fringe, including circuses, roller derbies, and even a surprisingly under-attended Elvis concert.
At Ernie Biggs dueling piano bar, musicians Mike Tuten and Chris Porcelli face off across 176 black and white keys, taking requests and inviting party people up on stage to join them on Fridays and Saturdays. Meanwhile, dozens of beers, martinis, and cocktails, and a menu of submarine sandwiches and specialty pizzas keep spirits high.
Young comedians from across the Midwest throw their microphone-callused thumbs into the air to hitch a ride on the Truckload O'Comics monthly comedy showcase. Springfield native Kenny DeForest hosts each show with up to three performers whose adult-themed material doesn't shy away from taboos on sex, religion, or which hand sanitizer to use after holding a friend's baby. On February 25, two opening acts tip the room's humor scales for headliner and Chicago comic Drew Michael. Then in March, the absurdist verbosity of writer-turned-comedian Adam Burke delivers clever quips that have been likened to the '70s standup routine of Steve Martin. In a Chicago magazine profile, the English-bred Burke admits that his "accent is weird … It's not exactly Irish and it's not exactly Scotch. It's more like bourbon."