Ken Cappelletty and Fred Moor, the men who man Ken’s Flower Shops, didn’t grow up dreaming about buds and stems. Raised by a local policeman, Ken likely spent more time playing cops and robbers than sniffing the neighbor’s rosebushes. It wasn’t until he helmed the cash register at a neighborhood florist in L.A. that he discovered his knack for design. Here, he started to see flowers as more than just plants, viewing them as art supplies that happen to smell nice. When Ken returned to Ohio, his parents helped him launch a small shop that arranged blooms in the morning and delivered them in the afternoon. Two years later, in 1967, his friend Fred took some of the reins, helping him grow the business into three local stores affiliated with FTD and Teleflora. From this labor of love, a legacy began to take root. At each shop, seasoned designers incorporate customers’ requests into birthday bouquets, wedding corsages, and gift baskets filled with wine, house-baked cookies, and stuffed toys cute enough to melt hearts and plush enough to sop up the mess. Their talent and creativity takes center stage as well, whether they’re filling vases with orchids, crafting wreaths from roses, or building bouquets from singing balloons. To this day, Fred often answers the phones, discerning customers’ style preferences from friendly chats rather than pilfered diary pages. To make giving easy as getting, the shop’s wares can be delivered locally or internationally, seven days a week.
English Gardens began as a single, family-owned nursery in 1954, and has since blossomed into a full-service landscaping and garden center with multiple locations, all owned and operated by second-generation family members. Each location facilitates both indoor and outdoor gardening projects. The florist department brings the outdoor flourish inside by arranging fresh-cut floral bouquets and gift baskets for all manner of occasions. Workshops and in-store presentations also allow the green-thumbed experts to impart advice on common gardening and decorating topics such as building a kitchen herb garden or housetraining a dogwood tree. During the summer season, English Gardens holds a summer planting sale as well as weekly in-store gardening tutorials every Saturday at 10 a.m.
The seasoned chefs at Biwako Sushi, led by head chef and owner Andy Kwon, concoct a variety of traditional Japanese and Korean dishes, often experimenting with playful sushi arrangements. Rolls can be found laid out in neatly staggered rainbow rows, organized into the shape of a heart pierced by an arrow, or arranged as tiny dioramas populated with plants, sushi clusters, and tiny sushi traffic lights. Casual splashes of soy sauce and garnishes surround exotic and custom rolls, tightly wrapping ingredients such as tempura shrimp, masago, and eel.
The more than 25-dish menu also encompasses Korean meals such as kalbi, bibimbap, and tonkatsu, letting diners sample a range of flavors without having to stow away in a UN ambassador's luggage. When not crafting dishes in the secrecy of the kitchen, Chef Kwon teaches others the art of sushi-roll preparation in hands-on classes.
For 26 years, the experienced instructors at Divers Incorporated have taught students about scuba skills and environmental awareness. Divers Incorporated is a PADI Five Star Instructor Development Center, and its staff of PADI-certified instructors introduce guests to scuba with a broad variety of classes designed to appeal to potential divers with varying levels of interest in the underwater world. The entry-level PADI Discover Scuba Diving Experience gives divers the opportunity to learn scuba basics in a low-pressure environment. First, classes view an instructional video and learn how to use the equipment, after which they take to the pool and learn how to breathe beneath the water's surface. Five-week instructional courses take a more thorough tack, instructing students on the fundamentals they need to know to take an open-water dive and secure their certifications.
The cycle savants behind Town N Country Bikes take pride in their vast collective knowledge of all things velocipede. In addition to carrying a full array of bikes and products from lines such as Specialized, Kink Bikes, and Fit Bikes, they offer upkeep and repair services to keep two-wheeled companions in excellent condition, as well as rent bikes. The staffers help riders of all stripes find their ideal bikes and accessories based on individual experience level and the number of buses they're able to jump over at once.
Town N Country Bikes also caters to wintertime sports. Technicians keep skis and snowboards in gear with waxing services, allowing alpine adventurers to plummet down slopes at maximum velocity, and edge sharpening, which helps them carve deep into the snow, control their speed, and swerve around yodelers.
Stuffed animals are our first friends as children, comforting us during long scary nights and on road trips to unfamiliar new solar systems. Chelsea Teddy Bear Co.?s employees realize how important these companions are to children, so they pay the utmost attention to detail as they stitch together soft, plush fabric, ensuring that the custom furry friends last a lifetime. The comforting pals range in size from 4.5-inch key chains to 20-inch animals that inspire reassuring hugs. Children can outfit their choice of a bear or other wild creature, ensuring that their companion is suitably dressed for tea parties or waging war on an infestation of Furbies.