Read any interview with the brash young band Sleeper Agent and the first thing you’ll notice is the group’s hometown pride. Incubated in the same Bowling Green, Kentucky, punk scene that bred Cage the Elephant, Sleeper Agent are quick to credit their local heroes for both nurturing and encouraging them. Which can be a bit disorienting to those of us in other parts of the country because — Bowling Green? Really? So we asked the members of Sleeper Agent to set us straight, and they happily obliged. Below, Sleeper Agent plan us one day in Bowling Green, Kentucky. — J. Edward Keyes
Bowling Green has a greasy-spoon diner at every corner, and we’ve been to nearly all of them several times. However, our favorite is a tiny place called Con-Con’s. Endless cups of coffee so strong it’ll make you tweak, a $4.95 breakfast special with the best eggs, bacon, fresh sausage and home fries in town. Plus the servers are incredibly nice, attentive and remember your face on repeated visits. “Ya’ll come back now!”
Shopping: The Great Escape: Records and Comics
This is the only place in Bowling Green to buy new and used vinyl. For years, The Great Escape has supported local music by featuring local music in their inventory and by hosting shows. They also have a great selection of old-school video games and a huge comic book and magazine backlog, DVD and VHS collection.
Nature: Take your pick
There’s a lot of it in Kentucky. Parks, trails, fields, caves and farms surround the area. Depending on the season, you can check out Jackson’s Orchard (apples, pumpkins, animals), take a hike at Shanty Hollow, have a cookout at Kereiakes or explore Lost River Cave.
Lunch/Dinner: Greener Groundz
Bowling Green is well known for having a ridiculous amount of chain restaurants. However, local gem Greener Groundz is a great spot for specialty gourmet pizzas, sandwiches, coffee, beer on tap and a full wine bar. Greener Groundz are also host to intimate acoustic performances from local and regional musicians. Check out their “Budget Wednesdays” for $1 PBRs, mini sandwiches and wacky pizza.
Downtown Bowling Green is home to most of the area’s bar scene. Tidball’s is a bar with a lot of charm, and it’s Bowling Green’s only consistent music venue. It helped launch bands like us, as well as Cage the Elephant, Morning Teleportation and Mona. Tidball’s is where local musicians get their chance to showcase their music to the buzzed and the sweaty. For a $5 cover, Tidball’s “Thirsty Thursday” special features all-you-can-drink draft beer from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m. and live music.
Afterparty: Other people’s houses
Bowling Green, Kentucky, is a close-knit college community. House parties and house shows make for a lot of the nightly entertainment. Everything from a dubstep DJ to a rockabilly band can show up to play a friend’s house. Always interesting, never stable.