Ashville's Fun Depot brings together a multitude of giddy, rambunctious pastimes for competitors of all ages. Laser tag pits noble light-warriors in battle across two stories covering 1,200 square feet, as they weave and dodge around rubberized pillars in a ritualized war dance guaranteed to trip opponents ($7). Colorful, low-slung, single- and double-seater go-karts zip along a quarter-mile outdoor track ($8), while weather-immune karts race for the finish indoors ($7). Three indoor batting cages lob pitches at four speeds and adjustable heights ($1 for 15 throws), and an 18-hole indoor mini-golf course, festooned with verdant murals and a burbling waterfall, separates the birdies from the eagles ($4 for adults, $2.50 for children 10 and under). Knee-high ruffians can ricochet into a padded play area ($3 all day), with neon tunnels, slides, and a bounce area that allows them to perform calibrated experiments on relative gravitational rates.
Chelsea's Tea and Gifts dishes up a palatable menu of casual lunch and brunch fare in a quaint, Victorian-inspired setting. A rich Monte Cristo sandwich enrobes batter-dipped Texas toast in dustings of powdered sugar and maple syrup ($10.95), and tomato, basil pesto, balsamico, and mixed cheeses play a unique rendition of the classic grilled cheese’s flavor notes ($9.95). Made-from-scratch soups du jour ($3.95 cup/$5.25 bowl) flood bellies with a dizzying flavor rotation, befriending bread-bordered comestibles in a soup-and-sandwich combo ($11.95). The artisanal cheese and fruit board matches fragrant fromages from the Asheville Farmer's Market with fresh fruit, country-pork terrine, and grilled bread with basil pesto ($12.95). Seasonal Sunday brunch graces tabletops from March through December, and lunch makes an appearance Monday–Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
At O3 Health and Fitness, Keith Wimsett leads a team of certified trainers while his wife Marlena rubs down recovering muscles with therapeutic massage. Keith and his team advocate a four-tiered philosophy built around increasing strength and cardiovascular endurance while monitoring food intake and hydration. Personal trainers work with individuals or small groups to forge customized fitness plans while also eliciting sweaty smiles through group boot camps.
Akasha’s passionate instructors lead students through a robust schedule of Pilates, core-conditioning, and rehabilitative classes in a fully equipped, upbeat studio. During group mat classes, instructors help their beginning and more advanced pupils strengthen and lengthen their muscles using the classical Pilates principles of concentration, centering, and breathing, a strategy further augmented by the instructors' expertise in energy medicine. Like a child reaching for his runaway parakeet, students stretch skyward during each one-hour private session, which de-gums coagulated flows while improving balance, posture, and range of motion.
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It's a Great Day for Dancing's experienced instructors guide students through lessons in waltz, foxtrot, swing, and more. With each class tailored to the students' individual learning styles, burgeoning rug cutters should see immediate results in their hip-twisting abilities. Students can also request instruction in less ballroom-bound styles, such as salsa, West Coast swing, and shag. Aspiring hoofers test out their moves at Friday dance parties, where they can shimmy and shake alongside fellow students, instructors, and the reanimated legs of Gene Kelly.