Within the historic 4th Avenue Market Place is the Alaska Experience Theater, a time capsule of state history and a portal for cultural exploration through film. The curators perennially screen four short documentaries on Alaskan history, projecting one about the devastating Good Friday Earthquake of March 27, 1964, in an earthquake simulator that rocks on hydraulic lifts designed to soothe Zeus in his infancy. A 40-foot screen commands attention in the 96-seat main theater, where the documentaries are relayed in vivid detail by a 3-D Christie Digital Projection System along with cult classics, independent films, and wide-release blockbusters. Out in the marketplace, dancers perform native Alaskan dances to the beat of drums, and two permanent exhibits reveal more information about the earthquake and display the full collection of prints by Alaskan artist Fred Machetanz.
Aboard the deck of the Rainisong, a 65-foot U.S. Coast Guard–certified charter boat, the licensed boat captains and experienced crew of Seward Fishing Club steer guests into salmon-rich waters during morning or afternoon fishing trips. Shipmates cast professional bait and tackle into the sea with enough time to nab a silver salmon or entertain schools of fish with synchronized worm kick lines. In between reeling, guests can amble across the walk-around decks to stare at the scenic surroundings, or venture below the cabin to relax in the wooden interior, equipped with seating, 16 bunks, and two bathrooms.
In 1937, the nonprofit Anchorage Ski Club coalesced with the aim of preserving the Arctic Valley, which is surrounded by 320 acres of snow-dusted peaks that loom up to 4,000 feet high. The valley encompasses the 6-mile Arctic Valley Road as it weaves through sites for seasonal fun. During warm months, visitors chow down at the trailhead's picnic tables before hiking the 4-mile Rendezvous Peak trail, an easy path that overlooks the Anchorage Bowl, Cook Inlet, and other scenery that inspires awe and spontaneous poetry slams. As the sun sets on summer, wintry activities such as tubing and skiing take center stage. Ski routes range in difficulty, but each powdery course exudes the calm and isolation of backcountry with the safety features of a resort. Kids who are too young to surf the slopes can mold snow into forts, sled, or relax at Alpenglow Lodge. The sunny lodge lures in both youngsters and parents with two floors lofted over panoramic views of Anchorage.
Since its inception in 2007, Rage City Rollergirls has developed an avid following of fans and fellow roller-derby enthusiasts, training women in the finer points of the hard-hitting formation skating sport. As a member of the Women's Flat Track Derby Association, Rage City Rollergirls ensures each of its members adheres to a high standard of skills as they maneuver and nudge their way around the track, resulting in a fun, high-speed sport that draws droves of spectators.
Ever since The Alaska Club opened its first location in 1986, they've been striving to serve their members by adding amenities, classes, and opening new locations. Though each location’s offerings vary, they supplement their well-stocked fleets of cardio machines and strength equipment with cycling studios, climbing walls, basketball courts, swimming pools, and play centers for the kids. The club also offers spa services including hydromassage beds, tanning, and saunas.
Group fitness classes include yoga, step aerobics, and Pilates, and personal trainers stand at the ready to help clients focus on fitness goals. The clubs also offer swim lessons and summer camps for kids, setting in stone their commitment to making The Alaska Club a place for the whole family, not the half-formed family, which needs at least seven more years to gestate in the laboratory incubator.