Situated on a flat-water river whose mouth opens into Great South Bay, Carman's River Canoe & Kayak has something for all levels of paddlers. In addition to providing equipment, the staff rents out single and double kayaks, as well as multiperson canoes, and suggests routes that can include the Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge or––for those with a bit more experience––trips out to Fire Island.
Parking: Free street parking
Most popular offering: Gifts, candles, pottery, soaps
Pro Tip: Original works, many made by local artists and artisans; most of the store inventory is made in the USA
Good for Kids: Yes
Walk-ins Welcome: Yes
In 1913, German-born Carl Braunhart debuted a shop of high-quality cycles that eventually migrated stateside and, over the years, traded hands to his great-grandson. In 1980, Fred Feller bought the shop from the Braunhart family, and when his son, Darren, graduated from college, Carl Hart Bicycles once again became a multigenerational family business.
Today, Fred and Darren's staff of factory-certified technicians and cycling enthusiasts, some with backgrounds in semiprofessional racing, help patrons sift through an impressive inventory of quality bicycles from top industry brands such as Trek, Specialized, and Cannondale. Most two-wheelers come in five to eight sizes for myriad heights, and staffers measure customers to find the best fit. But when a traditional bicycle won't suffice, they send measurements to Seven Cycles or Guru factories, where workers craft customized frames. Custom-fit bikes contour to riders' bodies, cushioning the stress of frequent biking and the need to throw bikes at slow-moving pedestrians.
Before committing to any purchase, customers are encouraged to take a test spin around the parking lot or stop by on Demo Days. On these days, bike manufacturers bring their cycles to the store and patrons can try them on for size as they pop wheelies over unassuming companions or traverse miles of mountain trails that branch out from the shop. On Saturdays, Darren or an assistant manager takes groups of up to 35 cyclists on 36-mile excursions. Afterwards, athletes refuel with bagels at the shop.
The staff at Medford Fast Lube possesses more than 25 years of collective experience, which they parlay toward every broken shock and overheated engine they come across. They're open seven days a week and offer a wide array of repair services, from smaller jobs, such as soothing a GPS navigator's sore throat, to transmission rebuilds and engine repairs. And they also provide 10-minute oil changes that come with free car washes, as well as state inspections and tune-ups to keep cars from limping back into the garage before it's time for their next scheduled service.