Small new stuff on the south side, State Street

Join me, won’t you, for a quick drive up a couple blocks of State Street?

If you live in Michigan, you have no doubt stored beverages on your patio or deck, in your garage, or otherwise taken advantage of the winter climate to rapidly chill them. And you know what it’s like – if it’s warm enough or you don’t forget about them for too long, it’s nice and cold. If it’s too cold for too long, they freeze up and burst. But once in a while you manage to dance the line between liquid and frozen, and when you open the super-cooled drink it instantly chills into a slush right in the bottle. There are YouTube videos about this but leave it to the innovative beverage scientists at Coke to reproduce this effect on demand: behold, the Arctic Coke Machine.

“Arctic Coke” cooler at Speedway, State and Ellsworth. (C)A2R.S

This skirting of the laws of physics is now available as a value-add for Coke, Sprite, and Powerade at the State and Ellsworth Speedway store. It is right next to 12 taps of ICEE beverages, including Coke, but I guess sometimes it’s worth extra to drink it out of a plastic bottle? Oooookay. At least you get the science-experiment part.

Ellsworth west of State Street. From left: Timbits, tenantless, Tireman. (C)A2R.S

Across Ellsworth from Speedway, at the northeast corner of the roundabout, a lot was accidentally left vacant when Tim Horton’s and Belle Tire crammed into the area behind the oil change place. Fortunately, this oversight is quickly being corrected. A sign at the Jimmy John’s driveway says “Join Jimmy John’s and Pearle Vision,” so count on Pearle showing up in this building when it’s finished, and possibly leaving Briarwood? Pearle is currently next to Apple; does Apple take the empty Pearle shell over and finally get that Somerset-size store? …nah.

Burger King and Hyatt Place signs adjacent to northbound State Street. (C)A2R.S

This small, lit “Burger King” sign recently showed up by the side of State Street. While the Hyatt Place sign behind it is right next to the new Hyatt’s driveway, this Burger King sign is not really next to anything. (I was near the gas pumps of the overpriced Mobil station here when I snapped this photo.) I believe it was placed here to advertise the presence of a Burger King on Victors Way, behind the Mobil station, but if you tried to turn at this sign, you would be a little lost, because the BK parking lot is not connected to the other parking lots. Not that this would stop Mark Borchardt (warning, language):

Burger King’s investment in a permanent sign, no matter how low-profile, leads me to think its distinctive Victors Way location is here to stay. That building in front of the Hyatt is currently being finished and now displays a “Retail For Lease” sign. No drive-thru. Still not sure what it’s going to be.

I haven’t spent much time in Briarwood lately, although I did photograph a small change to a big part of the mall last time I was there, and friend-of-the-blog Chris was good enough to remind me to mention it. When I first noticed it last month, I thought it was an oversight, or an odd joke — the winking neon “OPEN” sign, in the window of the hollowed-out shell of MC Sports.

Parking lot entrance of former MC Sports, currently Colby Bounce. (C)A2R.S

However, it turns out the space has been filled with a bouncery and minigolf establishment, Colby Bounce.

Mall entrance of Colby Bounce, Briarwood Mall. (C)A2R.S
“Colby Bounce” entrance with policy sign. (C)A2R.S

Which returns this space’s purpose to, once again, an ephemeral enterainment destination. Can movie screens be far off? Is “bouncery” a real word?

(pɹoʍ ןɐǝɹ ɐ ʇou sı ʇı ‘ou ؛uɹnʇǝɹ ɹǝʌǝu ʎןǝʞıן ןןıʍ puɐ ɟɟo ɹɐɟ ǝq ʇɔɐɟ uı uɐɔ ʎǝɥʇ ‘sǝʎ :sɹǝʍsuɐ)

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