SpitzerCares.org hopes to fund a million meals in 2012 through food pantries, shelters, kids’ cafés, and backpack programs. For every dollar it earns via community car washes, donations, and fundraising events, SpizerCares.org can provide four meals to northern Ohioans in need. Patrons can keep up with the organization’s progress online as a ticker shaped like an apple tallies the number of meals SpitzerCares.org has shelled out so far this year.
Sto-Kent has been wearing the CityVoter Best Bowling Facility badge of honor in Akron-Canton for the last three years. Today's Groupon grants fun-seekers full access to the facility's lanes and any other attractions. Strap on a pair of freshly sanitized bowling stilettos for pinsploding action ($4/person per game, $2/pair of shoes), or head outside for a round of mini golf ($5/person before 5 p.m. on weekdays, $6 after 5 p.m. and on weekends) and test the AstroTurf's resistance to hot, steamy tears. Outdoor sand volleyball courts rent at $20 per hour, and the Beach Club bar serves up drinks, pool, and TVs tuned to the latest synchronized-swimming competitions.
The movement maestros at Sharon Rae Dance School—named the best dance studio in Beacon four years in a row by Ohio.com—teach the fancy footwork of tap, ballet, and jazz to tots and youthful twirlers. In all the studios, including a colorful room designed for preschoolers, a layer of cushioning supports the shiny hardwood floors, warding off injuries as whippersnappers jive in musical-theater lessons and tumble with pompoms. All kids' classes are monitored through closed-circuit television, which keeps parents in the loop as they weld together first-place trophies in the waiting room. Students as young as 2 can build fine and gross motor skills in toddler sessions, and adults can leave their own cubicle-themed play sets to join fun Zumba workouts that combine aerobics and Latin dance moves.
Delicious fuel springs from The Pufferbelly Ltd., a railroad-themed eatery in a refurbished train depot where canoes and stagecoaches hang from the ceiling. In addition to celebrating the steam engines of yore, the restaurant’s name hints at how diners fill their bellies to the brim after whiffing hearty Americana fare such as smoked St. Louis–style ribs and reubens made of corned beef or sautéed grouper. For Sunday brunch, cooks build a sprawling buffet from housemade muffins, eggs benedict, and crispy, made-to-order waffles. As festive as a piñata stuffed with birthday cakes, friendly staffers throw seasonal parties galore, from breezy autumn clam bakes to vibrant Mardi Gras fetes.