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Hovey’s Pizza & Grinders

August 11, 2014
  • Hovey's PIzza & Grinders226 Enterprise Drive
  • Three Rivers, MI 49093
  • (269) 273-1111
  • Website
  • Menu

I wish I could spend every weekend on the lake.  As a Michigander, I feel a little left out when all of my friends go to their family’s lake house for a quick weekend.  My family is not from around here…and we don’t have a lake house anywhere, so trips to the lake only happen about once a year.

When I say “my family” I mean my immediate family.  My dad’s cousin actually does have a lake house near Three Rivers on Pleasant Lake.  For the last two years, we’ve been able to get my whole immediate family and my dad’s cousin and her husband to meet up for a day of jet skiing and boating…as well as drinking and eating.

We grilled burgers and brats for lunch after a couple hours of swimming and attempting to ski.  When dinner time rolled around, I asked what the plan was and was told we were thinking pizza.  My dad’s cousin only had a couple of menus to places in the area and one of them she said took forever..the other was Little Ceasears.  I knew we could do better than that, so with the last ounce of battery life, I quickly searched for pizza places in Three Rivers.

The best hit I got was for a little place on the north end of town.  I got the name before my phone died and told J to look it up.  She found the Facebook page and they posted a pretty good deal just an hour earlier, so we all decided that Hovey’s Pizza & Grinders was going to be our place.

Hovey’s Pizza & Grinders is in a strip mall just off of Main Street near where Main meets up with US-131 on the north side of town.  The strip mall is anchored by a Goodrich movie theater and the address is actually on Enterprise Drive which intersects with Main.   Read more…

Wingstop Crestwood

August 11, 2014
  • Wing Stop13211 S. Cicero Avenue
  • Crestwood, IL 60445
  • (708) 385-9464
  • Website
  • Menu

One of my favorite days all year is the day that my dad, brother, one of my best friend from grade school and I go to a White Sox game.  It’s a tradition that we started at my bachelor party five years ago.   No strip clubs for me.  I just wanted baseball and beer and that’s what I got.  Since then, we have made it a yearly tradition for the four of us to get together, get wings and beer and do our best to stumble in to US Cellular Field for what passes for baseball on the South Side.

That very first year, I stumbled upon the best wing place ever.  We used it for the next three years, but last year, it abruptly closed and didn’t pop back up anywhere.  We scrambled for a new place last year that I enjoyed but everyone else was “eh” on.  So, this year, I was on the look out again for someplace new.

A few weeks ago, J and I were driving down Cicero Avenue in Crestwood for something and out of the corner of my eye, I spotted the word “wings”  It turned out to be a chain I had heard of, but have never actually been to.  I got online to see if they did large orders.  They did and we found a new wing place for this year’s trip.

Wingstop on Crestwood is on busy Cicero Avenue just to the just south of Cal Sag Road.  It’s in a small strip mall with a few other business, but along that stretch of road, it sort of blends in with it’s surroundings.

I was meeting the rest of the gang at 3:30 at a gas station on the corner of Cicero Avenue and 167th Street near the Intersection with I-57.  That meant I needed to pick up wings around 3:00.  Around 1:00, I got online and put in my order.  I asked for it to be ready by 2:45.

The order was for 75 classic wings.  I could have gotten up to five flavors, but I stuck with four because both my dad and I really like Garlic Parmesan wings.  I ordered 30 of those while getting 15 of the other three flavors.  Those flavors were Louisiana Rub, Mild, and Hickory Smoked BBQ.   Read more…

Hitts The Spot Cafe & Ice Cream

July 30, 2014
  • Hitts The Spot1053 E. Wilcox Avenue
  • White Cloud, MI 49349
  • (231) 689-5080
  • No Known Website
  • Menu

You know how I’ve said many times I never know where I’ll end up for work?  Yeah.  It’s been one of those weeks.

On Monday, a co-worker and I were quite a ways north of Grand Rapids.  We were heading home on M-37 in northern Newaygo County when she asked if we could stop for dinner.  I’m not really familiar with that area, so I said we could look for something.

Whenever I drive through an unfamiliar town, I head towards the main business district.  I did the same once we got to White Cloud, but didn’t really see a lot.  I was starting to give up and just keep heading south when the co-worker noticed a sign in front of an ice cream joint.  They were advertising chili dogs.  She didn’t want chili dogs, but figured if they had that, they might have burgers.

The old, white building is called Hitts The Spot Cafe & Ice Cream.  It sits on Wilcox Avenue which appears to be White Cl0ud’s downtown area right across the street from the Newaygo County Complex.

They have the traditional walk up ice cream window, but there is also a little cafe with a dining room and table service attached to it.  They had a menu hanging out front and they did have burgers among other things, so we went inside and put in an order to go.

I sort of skimmed the menu, but all I really wanted was a burger.  I ordered the 1/2 lb hamburger with cheese and bacon (both extra).  I then upgraded to a basket to get fries and slaw but asked them to just keep the slaw.   Read more…

Flat Lander’s Barstillery

July 26, 2014
  • 855 Michigan Street NE
  • Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • (616) 259-9700
  • Website
  • Menu

I always feel sorry for co-workers who don’t normally work Friday nights get stuck working with me on Friday nights.  I’m used to having no social life and plucking away while the rest of the country is gearing up for the weekend.

This past Friday, I had a co-worker who switched at the last minute with my regular nightside partner out of the sheer goodness of her heart.  He had been invited to a wedding last minute so she stepped up and switched shifts with her so he could go.

It was a pretty easy night and we got to a stalled point in the evening.  I asked if she wanted to find something for dinner.  Normally at work, we pick up fast food or find a quick sit down place, but we had some time and I knew she was in a bad mood because she was stuck at work on a Friday night, so I suggested a nicer place that I’ve been wanting to try.

I chose Flat Lander’s Barstillery on Michigan Avenue just east of of Eastern Avenue.  It’s in a new mixed use development.  I first heard about the place about a month when I saw it as a new addition on Urbanspoon.  I pointed it out to J, but we don’t really take a lot of trips to Grand Rapids and when we do, it’s always with a toddler.

The bar is on the corner of the strip mall.  There’s a large parking lot in front and off to the side of the building plus it’s right on a bus line.  When we pulled up, I noticed the patio was full and I thought we might be out of luck.  We had time to eat, but we didn’t have time to wait for a table.

The space inside Flat Lander’s is awesome.  It’s a multi-level lay out with a very whiskey cellar like feel to it.  There is a small ball when you first walk in to the place and there are different dining spaces on three different levels in the space surrounding the bar. Read more…

The Hot Dog Shack

July 22, 2014
  • The Hot Dog Shack105 E. Monroe Street
  • Bangor, MI 49013
  • (269) 302-0274
  • Website
  • Menu

Is there anything better than a summer day at the beach?  I love living within an hour of a great beach in South Haven.  For reasons beyond our control, we just haven’t been able to make it over this year as much as we’d like to.

This past weekend, we were finally able to get to South Beach for an afternoon.  We got there a little before noon and swam and played in the sand for almost two hours before L started to get exhausted.  To get her back to the car, we promised her we’d stop and get ice cream on the way home.  We were going to do so in South Haven, but downtown is too far to walk with an overly tired toddler and parking on a busy weekend isn’t very easy either.

Instead, we started heading back towards Kalamazoo.  On the way too the beach, we passed a place in Bangor that advertised ice cream and hamburgers….something for everyone.

The Hot Dog Shack has been open about six months on the east side of Bangor.  I always remembered seeing the place as a Mexican restaurant called El Palenque.  We never stopped there, but it always stood out as a large red pole building just on the edge of town.

Surprisingly, L stayed awake for the drive back to Bangor, so we lived up to our promise and stopped in for ice cream.  I hadn’t eaten lunch yet because we stopped at McDonalds in Bangor on the way to the beach to get something little for L so she wouldn’t be going to the beach hungry.  I’m somewhat forced to eat fast food a lot during the week at work, so I passed and just went hungry until we could get someplace better.   Read more…

Paisano’s Bar & Grill

July 20, 2014
  • Paisanos Bar & Grill16 N.  Main Street
  • Three Rivers, MI 49093
  • (269) 278-8525
  • Website
  • Menu

J and I can never go anywhere without finding a place to eat.  We took a late morning trip to Three Rivers to check out the Scidmore Park Petting Zoo.  We spent 45 minutes or so there before we needed to grab lunch and head home.

On our way to the park, we drove through downtown Three Rivers and there were a couple places that jumped out.  J noticed Paisano’s Bar and Grill.  I mentioned that I had heard good things about it, so J said we should stop there for lunch on our way home.

Paisano’s is on Main Street in downtown Three Rivers just to the north of Michigan Avenue.  It takes up a couple of store fronts in the old row building downtown.  We found a parking spot on the street on the other side of the road just because we were heading that way.  On a Saturday afternoon, there is plenty of parking near your destination.

The bar is separated in to several spaces.  When you walk in, there is a small dining room.  That’s where we chose to sit.  There’s also a large, open bar area with pool tables, dart boards and a huge space that could be used for live bands.

The three of us took a seat in a large booth near the kitchen.  A waitress popped her head out and saw we had sat down, so she brought us menus.  A different waitress came over a few minutes later to get drink orders.  They have a decent beer selection, but I stock to a pop and ordered a Coke while J got a Sprite. Read more…

Scidmore Park Petting Zoo

July 20, 2014
  • Scidmore Park Petting Zoo140 W. Michigan Avenue
  • Three Rivers, MI 49003
  • (269) 273-1845
  • Website

A few years ago, someone told us about a free petting zoo in Three Rivers.  The annoying thing we found is that there is almost no info about this place online.  Whenever I did a search, I’d come with stuff from 2010 and newspaper articles talking about the zoo falling on hard times.

Earlier this month, I somehow stumbled on Facebook page for the Friends of Scidmore Park Petting Zoo.  At least I knew it was still open, but again, there was very little information and no information on when it was open.

We really wanted to check this place out with L, so I put a  message on their Facebook wall and got an answer pretty quickly. The good news was that it was open Saturday and Sunday from 10AM to 5 PM.

Three Rivers isn’t all that far from Kalamazoo, so heading down there before I had to go to work on a Saturday wasn’t going to be an issue.  J woke me and we got out of the house by a little before 11:00.

We arrived at the large park on the corner of Michigan Avenue and Spring Street just to the west of downtown.  We found a little parking lot off of Spring Street which is situated between the petting zoo and a really nice playground that we let L climb on for a while before we left. Read more…

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