Cookies by Design distributes tasty, seasonal greetings in the form of gourmet cookie bouquets, specially crafted for holidays and festive occasions. Cookies weigh in at about 4 ounces each, and reach doorsteps or inflatable castles freshly baked and hand-decorated with detailed edibles that add imagination to each sugary bite. A creepy cast of characters, including witches, ghosts, and pumpkins, congregates inside Halloween arrangements, and Thanksgiving baskets host a healthy harvest of vibrant leaves and sunflowers. Christmas baskets soar to destinations to help celebrate the holidays or successful avoidance of jury duty.
Looking for a fresh turn in their respective careers, Joe and Dawn Taylor planted the first grapes at Sleepy Creek Vineyards in 2002. In 2007 they opened the winery, where they sell their wines and swap stories with visitors. Amid 10 acres of expansive grapevines, a timber-frame barn houses the winery and tasting room. While sipping Sleepy Creek's varietals, guests can browse the gift shop, peruse the upstairs art gallery, and sample local cheeses from Ludwig Farmstead Creamery and Ropp Jersey Cheese. Above the winery, bed-and-breakfast-style accommodations allow visitors to relax amid the countryside and eavesdrop on rumors spreading through the grapevines outside.
So established is Circle K Midwest that even brand-new vehicles recognize what its red-and-white logo stands for—fuel, snacks, and everything else a car might need to keep powering down the road with its driver. Circle K's story starts back in 1951, when Fred Hervey bought three Kay's Food Stores in El Paso, Texas. Under his guidance, these three little shops grew into the more than 3,000 convenience stores that crouch on our nation's street corners today.
After rolling up to a Circle K, drivers can pump their faithful roadsters full of high-octane fuel and send them skipping through a car wash to experience the cleansing touch of Blue Coral Beyond Green and Rain-X products. Then it's time to step inside the air-conditioned shop for a peek at the provisions. Rows of sodas hibernate behind glass doors, and snacks, candy, and their ATM guardians stand boldly out in the open. Some Circle Ks also offer the Take Away Fresh Café, which presents an appetizing lineup of healthy road fare including sandwiches, fruit cups, and fresh-cut vegetables. Drivers can gear up for a long drive with premium coffees or enjoy a cold Polar Pop, whose specially formulated cup keeps drinks colder thanks to the family of tiny snowmen trapped in its foam walls.
The cooks at Blue & Gold Pizza fashion fresh dough into thin crusts, thick crusts, and deep Chicago-style pan crusts before layering on housemade tomato sauce and cheese from the Grande Cheese Company. They also prepare loaded salads, seasoned bread sticks, and sausage sandwiches on italian bread. Daring diners can take on the Blue & Gold Pizza eating challenge: downing an entire 12-inch Chicago-style pizza that, according to EatFeats, weighs 6 pounds, in 45 minutes or less.
Misty and Josh Barnett, owners of Three J's Pizza, named their pizza joint after their three kids, Jeremiah, Joslyn, and Josiah. The family-minded eatery serves everything from the 10-topping Jaegar pizza to pastas, meatball sandwiches, homemade breadsticks, and cinnamon sticks. The kitchen staff even encourages customers to submit their own creations, whether they're topping combinations for pizza or blueprints for meatball-made houses.