The squeal of tires echoes from the ceiling as go-karts tear around the indoor track at Jam Raceway. Suspended inches off the ground, racers drive electric European karts that catch speeds up to 45 miles per hour. Each 14-lap race around the quarter-mile track takes about 10 minutes. Spectators can keep an eye on the action on the projection screen, which displays lap times and current standings. Drivers can check their statistics on the score sheet they receive after each race. The raceway's staff changes the track layout on a regular basis to keep racers on their toes.
The promoters behind Valley Comedy draw from a rib-tickling lineup of local comedians and touring funny folk to host monthly shows at Shamrock's Irish Pub in Bakersfield, Silver Dollar Hofbrau in Fresno, and the venerable Western-themed Old Town Saloon in Clovis. Valley Comedy also works with the community to arrange public and private events, dispatching standup comedians to fundraisers, corporate events, parties, and glum parent-teacher conferences throughout the Central Valley.
Like many of her fellow dance teachers at Gotta Dance Studio, owner Cindy Gebelein first donned ballet flats at age 6. Throughout a lifetime of performing and 35 years of teaching, she’s worn through copious dance shoes while sharing her passion with others. She opened Gotta Dance Studio in 1995 to further pass on her love for performance, arming younger generations with the technical skills to develop into true artists.
The instructors elucidate a variety of dance styles, from perennial favorites such as ballet, jazz, and tap to modern styles such as hip-hop and contemporary. For students truly taken with the stage, a musicaltheater and performing arts program builds upon the physical conditioning and movement training of dance with voice- lessons and resume-building performances. Three dance troupes, each with their own particular focus, partake in demonstrations and competitions at both the local and national level. Thanks to their travels, these squads have come home with multiple awards and at least a dozen stray tap-dancing cats.
The Valley Performing Arts Center’s stunning performance hall unites the timbres of plucked strings and tapped piano keys in harmonious compositions performed by some of the world’s most esteemed classical musicians. Powered by a belief in communication and shared understanding through art, the center’s Classical Series features a trio of virtuosic performances that pull from monolithic Romantic composers such as Brahms and Chopin as well as 20th-century sound-weavers Stravinsky and Shostakovich. The series commences with a moving performance from the Mariinsky Orchestra, founded by Catherine the Great in 1783 and renowned for giving Russian ballets more layers than a matryoshka doll shoved inside a wedding cake. Still reveling in his triumph as winner of the 1970 Chopin International Piano Competition, Garrick Ohlsson marches with the well-tuned troops of the Wroclaw Philharmonic Orchestra through fields blossoming with Romantic symphonies and concertos. Vladimir Spivakov and Olga Kern team up for a fitting conclusion to the series, capping off the performance by shooting fireworks out of their respective violin and piano.
Cleaved between the Pacific Ocean and the foothills of Santa Ynez Mountain, Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club is among the oldest polo facilities in the U.S. The Club was established in 1911 and quickly became a focal point of competition and social interaction. In fact, by the 1920s, spending Sunday at the club had already become a celebrated social event. Visitors would don the latest fashions and picnic at the fields, some even hiring helpers to assist with the noonday meal and deliver jokes during intermission.
Although some conventions have changed, the club retains its reputation as an elegant destination to enjoy the “Sport of Kings.” It features a trio of world-renowned polo fields, plus eight tennis courts, a fitness center, and a pool for recreational use. The club still draws some of society’s most noble figures, too—Prince William and Catherine visited during 2011, a trip that saw Prince William compete in a charitable match.
The instructors at Airealistic Circus & Flying know a thing or two about gravity, having defied it on behalf of Cirque de Soleil, De La Guarda, and Franco Dragone productions. For example, program director Carmen Curtis uses a foundation in gymnastics to elevate her cirque routines, which she showcases as a member of Airealistic Theater Company. These experiences grant her the expertise to lead her aerial classes, which are taught alongside gymanstics and yoga classes. Whether teaching family circus or acroyoga classes, all staff members prioritize safety as they introduce kids and adults to aerial apparatuses.
In addition to gymnastics, booty bar, and Vinyasa yoga sessions, the trainers teach AIReal Yoga, Acro and Tumbling, Hatha yoga, Power Barre, Barre Fitness, Contemporary Dance, Pilates and Afro-Brazilian Dance, believing that one's choice of style reflects his or her own unique character. Their aerial and acro-yoga variations also encourage students to test their notions about human flight in a noncompetitive setting. Each class incorporates a fitness component into its exhilarating routine, and the schedule includes classes at all times of day.