For more than 50 years, Van Tuil Photo and Imaging has specialized in protecting, beautifying, and restoring its customers' sentimental items. Photo experts enlarge prints and digital images to new, high-resolution sizes, and restore aged photos and video to like-new condition. The shop's framers fit pictures of all shapes and sizes in custom frames and a range of colorful mats, completing most jobs in under a week. Van Tuil also specializes in preservation framing for items ranging from photos to vintage sports memorabilia.
When the Roff family donated a plot of land to be used for a schoolhouse in the 1930s, they probably didn't predict the 250 craft microbrews that later would represent that site. They probably didn't expect a pool table either. Or burgers and pizzas whose flavors are as bold as the plates' bawdy names. But time brings many changes, and, lucky for beer and beef fans, the site of Roff School Tavern has slung tavern fare since 1977. It seems every inch is steeped in history, even when things change. Today, the 8,000 square feet of a German-style beer garden encourage sunlit eating punctuated by frisbees. Inside, knots in the walls' wood panels echo the wooden bar top and the circular trunk slices that act as tables.
Roff School Tavern's menu works in an inventive way: it lists 20 different topping combos and gives customers the option of placing them on burgers or pizzas. Ciabatta bookends handmade steak patties. Pizza crusts are made with a choice of white or whole flour, and topping combos include the Wake 'n' Bake with sausage gravy, fried egg, and mozzarella, or the Bluth's Banana with fried plantains, pulled pork, banana peppers, and thousand-island dressing.
Founded in 1936, Culligan has spent the better part of a century supplying customers throughout the state with bottles of purified water, which is free of lead, chlorine, and other impurities. The company’s rigorous, IBWA- and EPA-compliant water-purification process reduces microscopic contaminants more effectively than standard carbon filters or a Lilliputian with a butterfly net. A personable employee installs the freestanding water cooler, which dispenses round-the-clock chilled aqua and comes in several spill-proof, futuristic designs that complement the décor of any living room or the lounge area of any spaceship. Producing a crisp liquid that’s safer and tastier than tap water, Culligan’s coolers can ably irrigate parched pets, foster a tastier tea or coffee, and eliminate the need for pollutant plastic bottles.
Playthings Etc. displays a huge selection of more than 3,000 toys, games, and hobby items inside a futuristic store shaped like a life-size stealth bomber. Playful staffers aboard the ship demonstrate pogo sticks ($40+), rockets, and unicycles as customers explore shelf after shelf of games and goodies. The Dance Charades game ($19.99) by Milliwik challenges players to turn their clues into dance moves set to music. Kids take down arch nemeses with the ZX Crossbow ($29.99) by Zing Toys, with suction-cupped arrows that can carry love notes to the exterior of an upstairs bedroom window. Perplexus Puzzles ($19.99–$29.99) by PlaSmart prepare children for the real-life challenge of finding a spot in a parking garage by maneuvering a small metal ball through a 3-D maze. The store also carries an assortment of frisbee golf disks ($7–$20).
In many ways, Freedom Farms isn't your typical American farm. In 2009, brothers Joe, Tim, and Pete King founded Freedom Farms and reunited their entire family?nine brothers, a sister, and mother "Mama Bear" Lisa?on the property to run the land. If that sounds familiar, that's because Freedom Farms has its own reality show, "Farm Kings" on GAC, based on the day-to-day lives of the family.
As unconventional as Freedom Farms might seem on paper, its origins are fairly traditional. The King kids grew up on a family farm and today work toward connecting their community with local food. For passers-by, Freedom Farms has become a neighborhood stop for just that. Since opening, the property has grown to feature markets and even a sandwich and a donut shop. The family even publishes a monthly magazine so fans can check out the family's recipes, gardening tips, and keep up with all the show's happenings.
Formerly a private course for more than 50 years, Oakview Golf Club now welcomes the public to take on its lengthy, 6,098-yard layout. The course nestled in Butler County features immaculate bentgrass fairways that veer through tree lines of a dense forest. The golf course demands that golfers not only demonstrate distance and control but also the ability to look both ways when crossing the street in search of a wayward tee shot or a pet headcover that has run away. The club's strong membership base keeps greens buzzing with local loyalists well into the season.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 70 course * Total length of 6,098 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 70.4 from the back tees * Course slope of 124 from the back tees