Taco Bell – Grand River, Okemos

5 12 2009
  • 2030 W. Grand River Avenue
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 349-6451
  • Website
  • Menu

Time to kill and no place to go.  It can be a dangerous thing.  I had to check out of my hotel at noon, but I didn’t have to be to work until noon.  I decided to hit up the Meridian Mall in Okemos.  I thought maybe I could kill some time, but I was wrong.  Mall’s don’t do anything for me. 

After I left the mall, I headed to Best Buy.  Since it was the middle of the afternoon, I thought maybe I could actually play their display DJ Hero.  I hung out with a pretty popular Chicago club DJ while I was in college and he taught me a little bit about mixing.  I don’t want to buy DJ Hero, but I wanted to see how the game worked. 

 It wasn’t all that fun, so I only played a couple songs then checked out some other Wii games.  Scoped out some titles for myself and for my in-laws for Christmas. 

 After I left Best Buy, I still had over an hour.  I was a little hungry and not in the mood to go hunt something out.  In the Best Buy parking lot was a Taco Bell and a Burger King.  I picked the less of two evils.

 Okemos has two Taco Bell locations.  I was closest to the location on Grand River Avenue just in front of Best Buy near the Meridian Mall.  Nothing unusual about this location.  Typical cookie cutter building.  Typical cookie cutter menu.  Read the rest of this entry »





The Original Big John Steak & Onion

5 12 2009
  • 3490 Okemos Road
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 381-2465
  • Website
  • Menu

Back in East Lansing and there’s a little bit of nostalgia this weekend.  I had to be in town a couple days, so I went looking for the cheapest hotel I could find.  Usually, the two Red Roof Inn’s are the cheapest and recently, I’ve been staying out in Delta Township because it’s five bucks cheaper.  This weekend, however, I decided to stay at the East Lansing Red Roof Inn. 

I say there’s a little bit of nostalgia because two years ago, J and I made a frantic, last-minute trip to Lansing to find a place to live.  We had been in Bristol, TN for the Nextel Cup Race the weekend before.  She got the phone call on Tuesday that she had been hired in Lansing.  We were at her parents in Chicago because we didn’t have to be back to work in Peoria until Thursday.  We packed up the car again on Tuesday and drove to Lansing to find a place to live.  We only had a week and a half to make the move. 

We had stayed in a Red Roof Inn in Johnson City, TN and were happy with it, so we found one in Lansing and we spent our first night in what would become our new home at the Red Roof Inn on Dunkel Road.  This recent trip was the first time I had stayed at that hotel since that first night.

We were given a pretty long lunch break, so I decided to go check in and drop my stuff off.  Before that, I wanted to grab a sandwich or something somewhere so I could eat while watching ESPN in my room.  I couldn’t really think of much other than fast food chains along Jolly Road so I started driving towards Okemos.  Read the rest of this entry »





Panera Bread – Okemos

26 10 2009
  • 4738 Central Park Drive
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 349-4425
  • Website
  • Menu

You’ll hear me say this a lot.  I’m not a breakfast person.  I don’t normally get out of bed earlier enough to eat breakfast.  It’s one of the nice things about being a freelancer.  I don’t work everyday.  That’s also one of the bad things about it. 

Anyway, in East Lansing.  This time, very early in the morning.  Work started at 6 AM on Sunday.  Fortunately, I still had keys to my Lansing apartment, so I was not making the drive at four in the morning.  That will happen a few times this fall/winter. 

Our lunch break came around nine o’clock.  Typically, I just go to McDonald’s for breakfast.  I like the bacon, egg, and sausage biscuit.  Add that to the fact that it’s cheap and quick.  When J could meet me, we’d actually go to a good, sit down place, but now that J’s in Kalamazoo, I’m on my own and there’s not a lot of quick breakfast choices.  There just aren’t many places that do a good breakfast sandwich. 

So, I’m heading down Grand River towards my usual McDonald’s stop when I hear a commercial for Panera Bread’s breakfast.  It sounds really good plus it will be something a little different.  Since I’m already on Grand River I keep going to the Panera in Okemos.

The Okemos Panera Bread is on Central Park Drive in a small strip mall on the corner with Grand River Avenue.  On a Sunday morning, it was the only place open, yet there were a lot of cars in the parking lot.  Seems like I wasn’t the only one that had this idea. Read the rest of this entry »





T & D Coney Grill

17 09 2009
  • 1735 W. Grand River Avenue
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 347-9066
  • No Known Website
  • Menu

 

T & D Coney Grill on West Grand River Avenue in Okemos.

T & D Coney Grill on West Grand River Avenue in Okemos.

In my runnings around Delta Township this morning, I forgot a few things I needed to do, so it was back out tonight, but this time, I decided to go to Okemos.  The store I needed to go to was out that way too and I wanted to check out another new place recommended by BernieB.

 

 

T & D Coney Grill is a new addition to the Okemos restaurant scene that sits in a strip mall at the corner of West Grand River Avenue and Dobie Road.  It takes up the space that used to be Villegas.  They do breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the small, family run diner, but it was dinner that I was looking for.

I pulled in just before 8:00 on a Thursday night.  There were a few other people in the restaurant which is divided into two dining rooms.  It’s just the layout of the space.  There’s not really a reason the room is divide.  Tying the two spaces together is a lunch counter that overlooks a window to the kitchen.

Since I was alone, I grabbed a seat at the lunch counter in front of the large LCD TV which was tuned to Wolf Blitzer.  When I sat down, I was asked if I was dining in or if I wanted carry-out.  I had no place to be, so I sat down to eat.  Read the rest of this entry »





Wild Wing Cafe

1 08 2009
  • 2085 W. Grand River Avenue
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 349-2321
  • Website
  • Menu
Wild Wing Cafe on Grand River Avenue in Okemos.

Wild Wing Cafe on Grand River Avenue in Okemos.

When I rolled out of bed this morning…er, afternoon, J started asking about lunch.  She was hungry.  I was hungry, so we started getting ready to leave the house.  Last night, I gave her the option of Mexican or wings.  Today, I wasn’t really in the mood for Mexican so I made the call to head to Okemos to try out the new chain in town. 

Wild Wing Cafe is on the corner of Grand River Avenue and Okemos Road in the building that used to be Bennigan’s.  The chain is an east coast franchise based in South Carolina.  The Okemos location is both the farthest north and west. 

I never went into the Bennigan’s, so I have no idea if anything has changed inside.  The dining room is anchored by a large bar in the middle that is covered with LCD TV’s.  In fact, that’s pretty much the whole design theme.  LCD TV’s everywhere.  Everywhere!  The place really has a sports bar theme.  The TV’s are accented with MSU pictures that have been blown up and hung on the walls. 

There are tables and booths that fill in the space around the bar.  We were shown to a table near the stage that hosts local bands on weekends.  A waitress came over and took drink orders while we looked over the rather large menu.  I knew I wanted wings, but there were a lot of options.  J isn’t in to the traditional wing as much as I am, so she needed a little more time to work her way through the choices.  Read the rest of this entry »





McAlister’s Deli – Okemos

15 07 2009
  • 4760 Marsh Road
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 381-3100
  • Website
  • Menu
McAlisters Deli on Marsh Road in Okemos

McAlister's Deli on Marsh Road in Okemos

It’s not very often that J and I make appointments for the early afternoon, but today, we had something to do in Okemos around one o’clock.  Our appointment wasn’t going to take long, so we decided we could squeeze lunch in after what we needed to do and before she needed to go to work.

Since we didn’t have a whole lot of time, I asked the question, bar food or deli.  She chose deli which narrowed the choices to Panera or McAlister’s.  Since I’ve only eaten at a McAlister’s once and she never had, I chose the latter. 

McAlister’s Deli is a chain of restaurants founded in the late nineties in Oxford, Mississippi.  There are three locations in the Lansing area.  Since we were in Okemos, we went to the Marsh Road location which is near the intersection with Grand River Avenue in a small strip mall. 

When we walked in, J’s first thought it was a sit down restaurant, but the aisle from the door leads you right to the order counter.  The decor is made to resemble the original restaurant which was in a gas station.  The lighting is pretty dark and the tables are sectioned off with dark wood dividers Read the rest of this entry »





Frank’s Press Box East

10 07 2009
  • 2314 Woodlake Drive
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 347-8810
  • Website
  • Menu
Franks Press Box East near the I-96 exit in Okemos.

Frank's Press Box East near the I-96 exit in Okemos.

Yup, it’s Friday again.  For some reason, I get lazy on Friday and don’t feel like cooking.  Today, I had another reason though.  My family is coming to town late tonight and J and I spent all morning cleaning.  I’m a pretty messy cook.  It’s not unusual to find flour or a little bit of cheese on the floor after dinner.  Instead of taking that chance, J suggested we go out. 

A few weeks ago, we went to Applebees in Okemos for dinner.  I chose that location because we J wanted to go to a chain, but being Friday night, it was a good idea to have a back up option just in case.  Tonight, that back up became the main attraction.

Frank’s Press Box East is on Woodlake Road just off of I-96 in Okemos.  Like so many businesses in that area, they don’t have a store front on Okemos Road.  There is a little sign on the road, but it’s easy to miss.  It was a long time before I even knew Frank’s had a second restaurant in Okemos.

We pulled into the parking a little after seven and there were a lot more cars than I expected.  I almost had doubts that we wouldn’t get a table.  I don’t know what I was expecting, but I was expecting what we found. Read the rest of this entry »





Press Release – Girl Scouts and DQ

8 07 2009

From a Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan press release….

Girl Scouts Learn Business Skills at Okemos Dairy Queen

(Lansing –) Girl Scouts in the Heart of Michigan are learning how to run a successful business with the help of their local Dairy Queen owner during the second annual DQ Girl Scout Appreciation Week from July 20 – 26. Girl Scout Appreciation Week is part of a two-month promotion with Dairy Queen that includes the introduction of the new Girl Scouts Tagalong Peanut Butter Patties Blizzard Treat as the July Blizzard of the Month and the return of the Girl Scouts Thin Mint Cookie Blizzard in August.

Locally, the Dairy Queen store at Meridian Mall, 982 W. Grand River in Okemos, will host Girl Scouts on July 22 from 11 am – 3 pm and 5 pm – 8 pm. During that time, girls will have the opportunity to develop their entrepreneurial and leadership skills with a behind-the-scenes tour of the DQ store. Girls will receive tips on running a successful business, see how products are developed, and increase their financial literacy by learning how a restaurant makes a profit. The free event is open to current Girl Scouts and to girls and adults interested in joining or volunteering with Girls Scouts. For more information on this event, contact Elizabeth Duran at 517-699-9400 or email eduran@gshom.org.

DQ Girl Scout Appreciation Week reflects the Girl Scouts’ strategy to develop alliances that show girls how their hometown businesses work. “Girl Scout Appreciation Week is a great way to expose girls to savvy business leaders in their own communities,” said Jan Barker, CEO of Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan. “Our girls are seeing firsthand how community involvement can help them shape their futures.”

Community events such as these help raise awareness for local Girl Scout troops. Troop membership is on the rise and volunteers are needed to lead troops or share their talents through programs for girls. Girls and adults interested in joining Girls Scouts can learn more at http://www.gshom.org or by calling Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan Lansing Regional Center at 517-699-9400 to speak directly with a membership or adult recruitment specialist.





Applebees Neighborhood Bar & Grill – Okemos

26 06 2009
  • 2284 Woodlake Drive
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 347-4892
  • Website
  • Menu
Applebees near I-96 & Okemos Road in Okemos

Applebees near I-96 & Okemos Road in Okemos

We’ve been good all week.  I’ve made dinner every night and we haven’t eaten out since last Saturday.  Before J left for work today, I asked if she wanted me to pick her up for dinner.  Of course, she said yes. 

I’ve learned the hard way that we can’t really head towards Michigan Avenue or East Lansing on her dinner break, but the edge of Okemos is usually ok.  She actually said she wanted to eat at a chain tonight and I said Applebees.  Yes, we could have just went to the South Lansing location, but it is Friday night and if they were busy, I wanted to make sure we had options.  There’s plenty of other restaurants near the Okemos location, so that’s where we went.

The Applebees in Okemos is just off of Okemos Road and I-96.  You would think the address would actually be Okemos Road, because it faces that street, but the address is on the side street that you turn on to which is Woodland Lake Drive. 

Like I figured, the parking lot was packed.  Still, I found a spot in the front parking lot, so I was holding out hope.  We made our way to the door where a waitress/hostess was there to greet us by opening the door….something that I’ve noticed at pretty much all the chain restaurant we’ve been to in the last year.  Once we were inside, we were stuck behind what must have been a large group.  It took three people to figure out where to put them.  The hostess that opened the door finally grabbed a couple menus and showed us to a booth in the dining room that is to the left of the bar. Read the rest of this entry »





Wild Wing Cafe Coming to Mid-Michigan – UPDATED

23 06 2009

As I was perusing Craigslist this evening, I came across an add for a new restaurant opening in the Okemos/East Lansing area.  There aren’t a whole lot of details and to apply, you need to fill out an application at Bennigan’s.  The name of the new place is Wild Wing Cafe.  The chain started on Hilton Head, but that’s about all I could find.  I fired off an e-mail to corporate to see if I can get some more details…I’ll update this post if I do…

I do like me some wings….

UPDATE – 6/24/08 – 1:55 PM – The mystery of why you need to go to Bennigan’s to fill out an application has been solved.  I got this e-mail this morning from Shelly Nelson who is the Wings Over America Inc. Assistant Franchise Director. 

First of all we are so excited to be “Spreading our Wings” to the North.  The new Wild Wing Cafe will be a Franchised location owned and operated by the Labelle Management group.  The Bennigan’s restaurant located at 2085 W. Grand River  Okemos, MI  48864 will be converted into a Wild Wing Cafe with a projected opening date of July 31st.  Please keep checking our Website at www.wildwingcafe.com for more opening information as it becomes available.