Madison Heights has an assortment of sit-down restaurants and fast food joints scattered throughout the area, many of which sit on John R. Road. Diners can choose from a diverse cluster of restaurants on John R. Road, from eateries that serve authentic Mexican cuisine to places known for fresh Vietnamese dishes.
Tienda Mexicana serves street-style tacos filled with sauce-drenched meats and spicy salsa. Locals recommend skipping the cheese if you order a taco so you can fully appreciate the flavor of the meat, vegetables and cilantro stuffed between the corn tortilla. The restaurant sells glass bottles of Mexican soda to wash down its authentic Mexican cuisine, and you can dine inside or take your order to go.
Guests visit Que Huong Restaurant for the egg noodle soup, kiwi smoothies and meat-topped rice. Try the marinated, deep-fried quail if you want an alternative to duck and chicken. A friendly staff runs this small restaurant, and the restaurant opens its doors to diners every day of the week except Wednesday.
The Breakfast Club began as a tiny, eight-table restaurant. The restaurant has grown over the years, but this popular place still fills its indoor and outdoor tables quickly. Locals warn that the restaurant's small parking lot does not always have enough space for diners, but guests can park along the street when the lot fills up. Visitors rave about the custard-stuffed creme brulee French toast and the generously sized banana pancakes. The restaurant also serves lunch dishes, and you can order soup, salad and sandwiches until 2 p.m.
When stars begin to dot the sky, locals head to On the Rocks for budget-friendly beverages, karaoke and games. Visitors can compete for prizes during a live trivia competition or mingle with friends while enjoying one of more than 15 menu items priced below $6. The spacious bar has enough floor space for patrons to dance during karaoke songs.
Magic Bag Theatre hosts performances by local bands and well-known entertainers. When the business doesn't have live music, its visitors can catch a comedy show or watch a film. Admission prices vary depending upon the evening's lineup, but folks can always find affordable appetizers and drinks.
Madison Heights separated from Royal Oak Township in 1955 to become a standalone city. The city's population has decreased slightly over the last 50 years, but the area's demographics have remained roughly the same. The city's percentage of Vietnamese exceeds the national average, which may explain why Madison Heights has a significant amount of Vietnamese-owned businesses and restaurants.
Madison Heights does not house any museums or well-known art venues, but residents can visit the Detroit History Museum and the Detroit Institute of Arts just 20 minutes away. The city hosts various events throughout the year, including its annual Holiday Blanket Drive and Easter egg hunt. Sterling Heights, a city located near Madison Heights, hosts a Memorial Day parade each year.
Residents have multiple options when it comes to choosing the best way to access the restaurants, parks and businesses in Madison Heights. The city has a few bike-friendly roads, but some roads are unpaved or rocky, so it may be best to travel by automobile or bus. A local cab company, Southfield Taxi, accepts phone reservations for rides 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and Uber's ride-share service is available as well.
Residents can also use the public transportation system in Madison Heights for just a couple of bucks. The SMART bus has five different stops in the city, and connector buses transport riders beyond the city's boundaries. Two different highways run through the city, so accessing neighboring cities for work or leisure takes very little time.
Many businesses in the city, including the Madison Heights Days Inn, offer complimentary public parking. Residents can also park on the street if a road has no signs banning drivers from leaving their vehicles there.
Madison Heights residents earn a median salary lower than the national average, but things balance out because the city has a cost of living lower than the average for downtown Detroit and the rest of the country. Renters pay around $708 per month for a one-bedroom apartment, and a trip to the city's center costs between $2 and $4 for residents who rely on public transportation.
Gas prices sit approximately 10 percent lower than the national average. A night out with friends won't set you back too far, as a draft beer typically costs around $3.
Madison Heights does not have its own mall, but shoppers can find department stores and candy shops inside of Lakeside Mall in Sterling Heights. Residents of Madison Heights shop for home furnishings and cleaning supplies at well-known chain favorites, including Target and Home Depot. Loyal comic book readers find out what's new in the lives of their favorite superheroes by visiting Comics and More, while Micro Center solves software snafus and Internet issues in a jiffy.
The locals stock up on traditional American foods at Meijer, but Madison Heights also has some speciality grocers. Kim Nhung Superfood has fresh herbs and live seafood, while Fuji Market carries hard-to-find Asian sauces and spices. Madison Heights does not have its own farmers market, but residents can take a short trip to Royal Oak for the Royal Oak Farmers Market, in addition to numerous other farmers markets available in the Detroit area.
Residents take in the beautiful Michigan landscape, watch their children play and exercise with friends at the large, family-friendly parks in Madison Heights. Dogs can visit all of the free parks in the area, but pet owners may find it best to pay the small annual fee for Red Oaks Dog Park, which contains picnic tables, grassy fields and even a hose to rinse off pups after they finish playing.
Fitness-minded folks can practice their backhand in the spring or skate around the ice rink in the winter by visiting Ambassador Park. When summer arrives, the locals head to Civic Center Park for sand volleyball. Civic Center is the second-largest park in Madison Heights and has two different playgrounds, making it an excellent place for families, classrooms and childcare facilities to visit.
Some parks host sporting events, and residents can also find concerts and festivals throughout the years. Concerts and festivals generally do not require an admission fee, but visitors do have to pay for their own snacks and drinks.