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No matter the reason -- whether to hit a large bucket of balls or hold a company tournament -- Camas Meadows is Clark County's choice for top golf course.
Camas Meadows has been rated as the best public course in Oregon and Washington. While a mix of narrow, tree-lined fairways and some 50 bunkers and water features can make the course challenging, the winding fairways through grassy and flower-filled fields are pleasing to the eyes.
At least, according to our voters who have voted Camas Meadows as the top golf spot four years in a row for many reasons, including:
"Lots of nonprofit events are hosted here."
"Great place to grab lunch and hit a bucket of balls."
"Great Course and well organized."
"Beautiful golf course, well maintained, extremely friendly staff for general golfing and also tournaments."
WINNER: Camas Meadows, 4105 NW Camas Meadows Drive, Camas, WA 98607, (360) 833-2000.
RUNNERS UP: The Cedars, Green Meadows
As it was in 2010 and 2011, so is it again in 2012: Anytime Fitness was your choice for top Fitness Facility.
And we'll just let you tell us why...
"John, Paul, and Traci Pax are locally involved and knowledgable about their craft. Paul offers Muay Thai at the Esther Shore location. I'm always amazed by the clean facilities and the friendly staff."
"This gym has everything I need and I always feel welcome and get great advice to further my workout. I'm not just another member; the owners know who I am and take a genuine interest in my progress."
"Customer service and great staff. Locations are always clean and have state of the art equipment. I have been a member at several gyms and Anytime Fitness is by far the best facility around."
"Anytime Fitness has the cleanest facility, the nicest staff and the best equipment. I love working out there!"
"Always clean. The staff takes a genuine interest in you as a person and in your goals. Non-judgemental. Always supportive. Great corporate citizens."
WINNER: Anytime Fitness, downtown at 710 Esther St., (360) 630-5350; 5115 NE 82nd Ave. #101, 98662, (360) 450-6096.
RUNNERS UP: Northwest Personal Training, 24 Hour Fitness, Lakeshore Athletic Club
A fully-equipped studio with Stott Pilates equipment, Westside Pilates was voted the top place to get your posture on.
Westside offers mat, reformer and power circuit classes as well as Tai Chi and Qi Gong. Private and semi-private classes are available as well.
Westside Pilates focuses on "helping you feel better in your body, look better in your clothes and attain mind body connection for optimal health and wellness."
And while there are beginning classes for any fitness level, many voters appreciated the advanced-level training:
"Laura is a fantastic Stott certified instructor. No two classes are ever the same and she always challenges her students."
WINNER:Westside Pilates, 7409 NE Hazel Dell Ave, Vancouver WA 98665, (360) 281-4775.
RUNNERS UP: Northwest Personal Training, Anytime Fitness, Barre 3
A winner in 2010, Athlete's Corner has done some growing in the past few years.
Both stores moved to bigger digs during the past few years, but both stores are still offering that home-town commitment to the community.
"They have everything," one voter said. "They're local, not the mega chain."
Having been in the area for over 30 years, Athlete's Corner knows it's way around the neighborhood. Offering letterman's jackets, jerseys, uniforms, braces, bats, tape, scorebooks and more, their motto rings true: "Nobody puts you in the game like Athletes Corner."
WINNER: Athlete’s Corner, 8014 NE 13th Avenue, Vancouver, WA 98665, 360-574-1010; 2100 SE 164th Avenue, Suite 102B, Vancouver, WA 98683, 360-256-9662.
RUNNERS UP: Fit Right Northwest, Big 5
As far as swimming' holes go, the Firstenburg Community Centers aquatic area is pretty stacked.
Yes, there is a three-lane therapeutic lap pool as well as a spa for those of you that want the great workout that swimming provides. There are also several other classes available, including Aqua Power, Aqua Zumba, SilverSplash and Power Express.
But during open swim, a few more of the features can really come in to play. There's the Lazy River where swimmers can jump on an inner-tube and float on by and, as a main attraction, a 17-foot high water slide that's 130-feet long. According to the City of Vancouver website, it is the longest slide in Clark County.
No wonder one voter commented that Firstenburg is a "Great community center with a pool that was made for families."
WINNER: Firstenburg Community Center, 700 N.E. 136th Ave., Vancouver, WA 98684, (360) 487-7001.
RUNNERS UP: Lacamas Swim and Sport Club, Marshall Community Center, Cascade Athletic Club.
For the second year in a row, Camas Bike & Sport was voted as the top bike store in Clark County. But beyond that, Camas Bike & Sport was also one of the top comment getters in the 2012 edition of Best of Clark County.
Clearly, their fans are committed to Camas Bike, and here are just a few of their reasons why:
"Friendly & helpful, and they always get the job done right!"
"The personal attention of the owner and staff is outstanding."
"Helpful people and always expanding their offerings!"
"Great support for all your biking needs."
WINNER: Camas Bike & Sport, 240 NE 3rd Avenue, Camas, WA, (360) 210-5160
RUNNERS UP: Bad Monkey Bikes, Vancouver Cyclery
When Clark County goes hunting -- or spends any time in the great outdoors -- Big 5 is their store for stocking up.
Also a winner in 2010, Big 5 has all you outdoorsy needs, from rifles, shotguns, ammo and targets to backpacks, sleeping bags, tents and shelters.
And, with weekly specials, you may even be able to save a little bit of money along the way.
WINNER: Big 5, various locations
RUNNERS UP: Camas Bike & Sport, Wholesale Sports, Sportsmans Wharehouse
Bike riders chose two different landscapes as their favorite bike ride.
On the one handlebar, there's the Waterfront Renaissance Trail, a five-mile jaunt that goes along the Columbia River and passes by shops, restaurants, Marine Park, the Water Resources education Center and the Kaiser Viewing Tower and Shipyards. On the other, Burnt Bridge Creek covers 8 miles, many of which goes through thick forests and grass bottomlands. Either way, though, bikers can't lose.
Vancouver Lake/Frenchman's Bar and Lacamas Lake were also mentioned as top biking destinations. As one voter said, "Too many great routes to list and free access to anyone!"
WINNERS: Burnt Bridge Creek and Waterfront Renaissance (tie)
RUNNERS UP: Vancouver Lake/Frenchman's Bar, Lacamas Lake
Protect by the "Pioneer Mother," Esther Short Park has five acres of open grassy areas, playground equipment, water features and a big gazebo right in the middle. There are also plenty of benches to take a rest and, perhaps most important, bathrooms for those sudden potty breaks.
But, Esther Short is also a playground for the older folks, too. with Noon concerts and Six to Sunset concerts during the summer, and spring through Fall, the Vancouver Farmer's Market is open every weekend.
The Marshall Community Center Park, Felida Community Park and Lewisville Park also garnered votes.
WINNER: Esther Short Park
RUNNERS UP: Marshall Community Center Park, Felida Community Park, Lewsiville Park
Clark County has numerous places to catch a walk. Along the Columbia River on the Renaissance Trail, beside the water at Lacamas Lake and close to the East Fork of the Lewis River at Lewisville Park.
But voters decided on the 3-mile paved surface of the Salmon Creek Trail. Starting (or ending, depending on where you begin) at the Felida Bridge at NW 36th Ave and extending to Klineline Park and the Vancouver Girls Softball Association Fields, the relatively flat trail winds through wetlands, ponds and restored habitats.
"It's relatively flat, much of it has an open skyline and the scenery is beautiful," said one voter. "There are often birds singing, many are visible, I once saw a bald eagle there."
WINNER: Salmon Creek Trail
RUNNERS UP: Waterfront Renaissance, Lacamas Heritage Trail, Lewisville Park
One voter has your jog along the 5-mile Waterfront Renaissance Trail already mapped out:
"What a beautiful setting on a summer, spring or fall day. Park at Officers Row and jog through Fort Vancouver pathway, over the Highway 14 Land Bridge, all the way to Wintler Park area. What an amazing setting next to the Mighty Columbia River!"
That pretty much sums it up, doesn't it?
WINNER: Waterfront Renaissance Trail
RUNNERS UP: Lacamas Heritage Trail, Salmon Creek Trail, Lewsiville