Ever visit the Nautical Mile? How about Greater Mack Ave? I have been familiar with both of these streets my whole life, but it wasn’t until recently that I was able to become more intimately acquainted with the area. From Lake St. Clair to I-94, there are tons of great spots that add to the appeal of living in or visiting St. Clair Shores!
One of the best places to drive through to see the sights is Jefferson, or as most like to call it, the Nautical Mile. Beautiful houses, flourishing parks and charming businesses border this stretch of land. In particular, there are lots of great restaurants. Since the city is off of the water, many of the establishments go for a fish or seafood theme. Fishbone’s, a cajun restaurant at the intersection of Jefferson and 9 Mile, is no different. If this becomes your dinner choice, I suggest trying out the catfish beignet appetizer. It is small pieces of seasoned catfish with light breading and a side of flavorful dipping sauce. If you’re like me and not the biggest fan of seafood, I also recommend their gumbo ya-ya and, of course, you can’t go wrong with a burger.
Another great food option is Mike’s on the Water. As implied by the name, it sits beside the lake with indoor and outdoor seating with a great view of the water. You can eat your dinner and watch the boats roll in at the same time! “It’s the go-to place for a summer cocktail and lobster roll,” co-worker Janelle Arbuckle-Michael told me, and when I checked it out myself, I couldn’t help but agree. If you are a first time customer, in order to get to the restaurant you will need to enter through the Colony Marine parking lot. From there, head towards the gates and they will open automatically for your car. Then, you will need to drive towards the water until you reach Mike’s. I have to admit that this confused me my first time going, and I ended up passing the entrance three times!
If you’re more in the mood for a snack, Eos Coffee is another pleasant establishment to stop by. The ambience is lovely, the workers are friendly, and the food is good! It’s a great place to escape to when the summer heat gets too unbearable. Another spot that has a great atmosphere is Baffin Brewery. With a wide variety of beers and a menu that’s always changing, this brewery is the perfect place to have a cold one with friends.
More interested in having some fun outdoors? St. Clair Shores has lots of nice parks to choose from. Wahby and Blossom Heath, for example, are lovely, and if you happen to take a stroll through Wahby Park, you may find turtles in the water!
Blossom Heath sits behind Wahby and offers space for tons of activities. There is a large playground, seating around fire pits, volleyball nets, indoor rest areas and a dock for boats. Not to mention, the park is host to the St. Clair Shores Farmers Market as well, which happens every 2nd Thursday and 4th Sunday of the month until October. Blossom Heath is also where this year’s Bass Brews and BBQ festival will take place in September.
Farther down from these two parks is Veterans Memorial Park, another wonderful area to bring the family. Some of the amenities include the splash pad, a volleyball net, a fishing area, many pavilions and a walkway that goes around the park which you can bike or stroll through at your leisure. They also hold their 2021 summer concert series, “Music on the Lake”, here every Wednesday at 7pm. To gain access to Veterans Memorial Park, as well as the others listed above, you must be a resident of St. Clair Shores. More information can be found here.
St. Clair Shores doesn’t just have the Nautical Mile. There’s also the downtown common district of the city that, despite being small, is filled to the brim with venues to visit. Ever since I was child I’ve been going to Shores Inn Food & Spirits, a restaurant and bar with good food and fun company. This is definitely a spot to visit on game days! Across the street, there’s a plaza full of other great establishments to stop by. For example, if you’re in the mood for mediterranean, Cedar Garden is a delicious option. There’s also the Caffe Far Bella where you can sit down for a sandwich, soup or a nice cup of coffee, as well as the Travis Coffee Shop across the street. The Copper Hop Brewing Company is also situated here on Greater Mack Ave, another great option for beer, cider or wine if you have already been to Baffin Brewery. St. Clair Shores’ common district is very walkable, so all you would have to do is park your car at one location in order to visit all of them!
Lastly, I would like to recommend Cold Cow Ice Cream, a place not in the common district or along the Nautical Mile, but still just as good as any of the establishments there. Cold Cow offers soft-serve and hand-dipped ice cream, frozen yogurt, sundaes, shakes, flurries and more. Beside the outdoor seating area there’s a dog bowl with water for if you bring your canine companion along for a treat. For more ice cream options in St. Clair Shores and Macomb County, you can check out our list here.
These are the places I explored during my trip to St. Clair Shores, but I’m sure there is lots more to do. What is your favorite place to visit?
Rachel Dearing is an intern for Macomb County Planning and Economic Development.