Take some time to explore Nichols Arboretum. Beautiful and free. I went there a lot as a grad student.
As far as local breweries go, I really like Jolly Pumpkin, although their soured beers are not for everybody. Their food is top notch, though, and they also serve beer from the excellent North Peak Brewery in Traverse City. ABC is fine, but their food has declined in quality in recent years. That's really a shame, because they've really made a push for local and responsibly sourced ingredients, which I strongly support.
Also, do yourself a favor and drive out to Seitz Tavern in Chelsea. Awesome little bar with great taxedermy, cheap awesome burgers, and cheaper beers. And try the "Beef Plate."