Thanks for all the responses!
My husband made our dog a flirt pole and yes, he loves it!
It's a good way to get those wiggles out for sure.
We don't really walk him for exercise. He goes to the dog park to play "chuck it" and/or catch the Frisbee for an hour in the morning and usually an hour in the evening too. We don't have a yard (apartment/city dwellers), so we are out there at the dog park rain or shine. I know dog parks aren't better than having your own yard, and there are many issues surrounding them, but we're lucky to live near two very nice ones. They are large and wooded and he can run around a lot. He also loves to play "hide and seek", where one of us goes into the woods and calls to him and he "finds" that one, then vice versa. He likes the other dogs just fine, and will sometimes play with them, but he's really there to play "games" with us. He's quite intense about having his "game time", but otherwise at home he's a lazy dog asleep in front of the a/c vent or by my chair.
When this crazy stuff happens we are on a walk, but for bathroom activities. He usually wants to walk up and down the block before he does his business. I'll find some other corner to take him to, though--good idea. It may be something under the grass, or it may be something else. I have noticed that he is much more keyed up at night, very "on alert." The night time crazy was so scary, though. I kind of wonder if he got scared of something or if something set him off. I guess it could have been a zoomies thing too, but it was so much more intense than his day time "grass attack."
Does anyone else have that too? A bit of change in personality from day to night?
I take him practically everywhere with me and he LOVES being out on the town, so he's really happy to meet people/be social/etc at restaurants and stores (pet stores, Home Depot, etc)...I think he thinks "running errands" means "we go in the car and then strangers tell me I'm so handsome and give me treats." [We live in a city where even at Chick Fil A, the drive thru person will give your dog a dog biscuit with your order if he's in the car with you.]
Anyway, at night he gets very alert and more "Shepherdy" about guarding our home (standing and looking out the window, chuffing under his breath). He also does "patrols" because I've heard him walking around the house at night (we don't crate him). I wonder if he could be afraid of the dark?
Thank you all for your responses! This forum is great--especially for a newbie owner like me! Lots of great advice on the threads. Thanks again!