202. Hamlin Corner – October 23, 2016 – Royal Oak, MI

20161023_12531420161023_134905Hey guys! I hope you are having a fantastic week and finding yourself time to get out there and explore.

I had some shenanigans in Royal Oak this past weekend. I was down there Sunday for the third time in about a week and a half – this time at restaurant/bar Hamlin Corner, partaking in a special event put on by CycleBar Royal Oak. It was a Lions afternoon viewing party/brunch – preceded by a half-hour spin bike class that was conducted outside, on the sidewalk outside of the bar.

Have you guys ever taken a spin class? This was my first one, and I must admit, it was harder than I expected. Damn, my legs burned!

Note to self: don’t go to spin class already sore from the prior day’s workout.

Despite the challenging (and losing) battle of trying to spike my RPM (Rotations per Minute, according to my spin-savvy companions), it was a fun and novel experience. The music was bumping, the CycleBar instructors were lively, and bemused passersby were entertained, so that helped to distract me from the burn of the bike. And even though it was grueling for me, I expect that it wasn’t the most difficult of spin classes. Once I was done, I forgot all of my pain and was like, “Yeah, I’d do this again!” And I never felt any more sore in my legs than I already was – no hobbling down stairs gripping the guardrails for days like I am after some hardcore workout classes.

And after the workout, there was the buffet (including BACON – sweet, sweet reward! – and fruit and scrambled eggs and cubed hash browns and toast). We sat and brunched and watched the Lions game. Then we helped the CycleBar instructors wheel their exercise bikes back to their studio across and a little ways down Main Street, which was hilarious. I can now lie on my deathbed some day when I am super old and breath a sigh of relief that yes, I have really lived: I have pushed a stationary bike on wheels across a major road amongst a string of other people pushing other stationary bikes on wheels. 😛

I’m not sure how often CycleBar Royal Oak hosts such events at Hamlin Corner. You can check out its class schedule at this link to see if any such events are currently scheduled:

Spin workout aside, Hamlin Corner appears to be a pretty solid venue. It’s got a relaxed yet classy vibe; it feels like the perfect venue to chill, grab some food, and watch a big game with a group of friends. There are plenty of TV screens studded around its sleek interior and various seating options, including a long bar rail and tables that can accommodate larger parties. And it’s obviously open to hosting unique events!

386 N. Main St.

Royal Oak, MI 48067

189. Bald Mountain Recreation Area – September 4, 2016 – Oakland Charter Township, MI



Hello, all! Happy Sunday! I hope wherever you are, the weather is phenomenal, as it has been here in the Metro-D this weekend. Fall is here, and it’s gorgeous!

I love fall, but I held on to summer kicking and screaming this year, because our summer was so wonderful. I was not ready for cooler temps! But with the official first day of fall Thursday, a flip switched in me. I was finally ready. I’ll be pulling out my autumnal leaf garlands and pumpkin couture today!

You know what one benefit of fall is? No mosquitoes. Seriously, the mosquitoes have to be dead by now, right? I hope so! I am the kind of person who sets bugs I find in my house free out of doors. But if mass exstinquishing by seasonal change is part of the mosquito’s natural life cycle, well, I’m not going to protest that – especially after my visit to Bald Mountain Recreation Area during Labor Day weekend. The little buggers were still alive and well then – in droves.

I went on a four-mile hike on a portion of the north part of the park’s trails with an outdoor-oriented Meet-Up group. The hike was in preparation for my recent trip to Portugal, which was a hiking-focused trip. I am not an avid hiker, and I wanted to break in my new boots before going. The boots were great, and the trail was gorgeous – manageable up-and-down terrain snaking through woods and a meadow with a pond in it, sprinkled with a few little boats. The mosquitoes, on the other hand, were absolutely disgusting. They swarmed us constantly. I applied bug spray three times during the duration of the hike, and still, the back of my neck was totally chewed up. So unfortunately, I did not enjoy the natural beauty of the park as much as I would have liked to. But you can learn from my lesson and visit the Bald Mountain Recreation Area trails during fall, when all of the mosquitoes are gone!

In case you are interested in hiking the same section of trail that I did (which is arranged as two loops that encompass about 7.5 miles), you can access it right off of a tiny dirt parking lot at the corner of West Predmore and Harmon roads in Oakland Charter Township.

Speaking of location, I had the hardest time deciding on the city to use for this visit. Because Bald Mountain Recreation Area is so huge – broken into a north and a south territory over 4,637 acres (!) – I’ve seen addresses for it given in Lake Orion and Orion Charter Township in addition to Oakland Charter Township. But because I visited the park within Oakland Charter Township, that’s the city I decided to count for my visit. So welcome, Oakland Charter Township, to the blog! Any of the three cities actually would’ve been a first for 100 Places in the D. I do not make it out to that neck of Oakland County very often – that will have to change!

Official park address:

1330 E. Greenshield Rd.

Lake Orion, MI 48360

(But the Bald Mountain – North trails that I hiked can be accessed at the corner of West Predmore and Harmon roads in Oakland Charter Township.)

114. CC Plus at the Center – April 11, 2015 – Mount Clemens, MI


This was not my first visit to CC Plus at the Center, the awesome community fitness center in Mount Clemens. I actually first visited it back in February, but I didn’t immediately think to write a post on it. And then I kept needing to get a photo of it. So here I am now – better late than never!

CC Plus at the Center is a really gorgeous facility that offers a variety of fitness classes – yoga, zumba, pilates, 20/20/20, to name a few. The classes are drop-in, meaning you can go whenever is convenient to you; a $28 10-pack of classes is available to new learners, which is what initially helped to lure me in. Every instructor I’ve had has had a really good energy, and the desk staff has been very helpful in giving me background information on all the various classes. Check it out if you live in the area – it’s a great place to get in shape for summer!

56. Shake Shimmy Sweat Group Fitness – September 6, 2014 – Clinton Township, MI

I found a Groupon for this place where you can get 10 fitness classes for only $25 and decided to check it out. I liked that it offers a variety of fitness classes, including a hot yoga class on Saturday mornings, which I went to today. It was great – a mix of challenging (I’m not the most flexible gal – I could definitely benefit from more yoga!) and relaxing, and I loved the heat. I kept thinking it would feel amazing to come into on a frigid winter’s day!

I can’t wait to try some of the other classes.

35490 Groesbeck Hwy.

Clinton Twp., MI 48035