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Day Trip Guide: Berkley, Huntington Woods

Thanks for helping us write this things-to-do list for visitors to our communities.

Our friends over at Huntington Woods-Berkley Patch wrote this little day trip guide to Berkley and Huntington Woods for a summer series called Patch Passport. The other Patch sites in Michigan — from St. Clair Shores to Dexter and two dozen in between — have done the same. 

Each week we'll offer up a weekly day trip guide to another southeast Michigan destination. 

But to start, here's for our own Plymouth-Canton day trip guide. Have more suggestions? Add them in the comments.

Homes tour

Begin your day by taking a stroll along the tree-lined sidewalks of the Hill Historic District on the east side of Huntington Woods, where you can admire homes designed by some of the world's most-renowned architects.

"(The district) is significant for its well-built, substantial houses, the majority of which were built prior to 1940, most during the 1920s and 1930s," according to a Historic District Study Committee report. "Homes designed by some of the most well known Detroit-based architects of the 20th century are in the district; i.e. Eero Saarinen (St. Louis' Gateway Arch), Albert Kahn (Fisher Building), and Minoru Yamasaki (World Trade Center).

As a bonus, pedestrians who follow Huntington Road south and east (see attached map) also can catch a peek into the Detroit Zoo habitat where camels and other four-legged creatures roam. You may even hear a peacock calling.

Golf

Now that you're warmed up, head over to to hit the links.

The stately course along the city's southern flank was donated by Ford Motor Company investor Horace Rackham in 1924 under the stipulation that it remain a public golf course. It has been the home of Ben Davis, one of the country's first African-American golf pros, and has been played by such luminaries as Duke Fakir of the Four Tops, Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye and Joe Louis, according to the city's website.

The 18-hole public course was designed by esteemed course designer Donald Ross and boasts of being one of his ten best public golf courses, as well having been rated one the top ten municipal golf courses in Michigan.

Late lunch

After all that activity, you'll probably be hungry. So, stop by in Berkley to grab some grub and savor a little more history.

, and operated as an auto repair business until it closed at the end of 2010, recently reopened as a restaurant dishing up comfort food, burgers, vegetarian options and decadent mac and cheese.

The restaurant also served as the namesake for the TV show "Autoweek's Vinsetta Garage" on the Discovery Channel's Velocity Network.

If the Vinsetta Garage menu doesn't get your mouth watering, there are plenty of other options around town. Browse menus and read reviews in our Patch directory.

Shopping

Variety is the name of the game among the shops along 12 Mile Road and Coolidge Highway in Berkley, including the following:

The first Thursday of each month, the businesses located along Coolidge Highway – dubbed the "Coolidge Collection" – stay open late and offer freebies, special sales and other treats. , The Berkley Book Corner and KrisTea's will give shoppers 10 percent off their purchases with a receipt from the other shops, according to KrisTea's owner Kris Sanders.

Martinis and microbrews

Unwind at the end of the day at one of Berkley's favorite watering holes.

The , which calls itself an "American Beer Garden," offers dozens  brews on tap (even some that are gluten-free), as well as live music and entertainment. You can find a lineup on the venue's Myspace page.

If you'd prefer something a little more laid-back, snag a table outside on the Tuscan-inspired patio at , where you can order from a dizzying array of pizza options – including gluten-free crust and vegan pies – and a two-page martini menu.

Amici's also has been named as a Certified Green Restaurant by the national nonprofit Green Restaurant Association.

"Some of the steps we’ve taken to improve our environmental impact include: full-scale recycling, reducing our energy consumption with energy-efficient equipment, using nontoxic cleaning chemicals throughout the restaurant, using paper products made from post-consumer recycled content, and more," the restaurant's website says.

Amici's also uses organic and local ingredients whenever possible.

What a delicious way to end your day in Berkley and Huntington Woods!

Where else?

Let potential visitors know where else they should visit by posting a comment on this story.

About this column: We're taking you on summer day trips through Michigan Patch towns.

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