The course itself carries on that fun vibe, too. Winding through city streets and local parks, the 5K route is dotted with hydration stations that dole out hot chocolate. Holiday music, a giant Santa inflatable, and snow blowers help to set
At South Beach Fitness’s two Columbus-area locations, experienced trainers lead exercisers through calorie-torching classes such as kickboxing, Pilates, and Zumba. In addition to the more than 20 classes offered each week in the cardio cinema and aerobics studio, the spacious club houses high-tech cardio equipment and free weights. A 40-yard dash area facilitates intensive speed training or very short walks. After all the hard work, a nutritional-counseling area helps clients keep fitness goals in line with their dietary habits.
Though Old Silo Restaurant smokes all of its meat in house, it might be more apt to say that they do it on the green. The dining room—part of the golf course's 6,000-square foot clubhouse—connects to a back deck, where diners can take in the bluegrass landscape along with their meals.
This scenic perch embraces its Kentucky roots with a menu of country entrees. Barbecue is a mainstay, and the chefs' special sauce decorates ribs, chicken, and pulled pork. Dinner dishes include fresh-cut steaks and fried catfish, as well as the "Love me Tender" platter: homemade breaded chicken tenders served Buffalo-style or with secret Old Silo sauce, made inside the Old Silo's adjacent Old Alchemy Chamber. As the kitchen preps these plates from scratch, players conquer the 18-hole course outside, exploring lush fairways to a burbling soundtrack from Somerset Creek.
Nature lovers feed their scaly critter fascinations with the Kentucky Reptile Zoo's collection of more than 80 types of snakes, turtles, and other cold-blooded creatures. Various vipers, cobras, rattlesnakes, and an 18-foot reticulated python entrance snake-charmed visitors. Kids get a kick out of shell dwellers in the Turtle Tracks area, a habitat for both tortoises and aquatic turtles.
The third annual Beer Cheese Festival celebrates Kentucky’s iconic beer-bathed cheese spread with a cornucopia of events hosted in its place of origin: Clark County. Fromage festivities center around commercial and amateur beer cheese competitions, which invite cheese connoisseurs to sample and vote for locally made spreads of all stripes, which will also be scored by a panel of judges that includes food writer Sharon Thompson and brew maestro Mike Palmer. Lactose lovers can expand their palates through approximately 40 vendors who tease tongues with cheese-free delights, such as candy, Sno Cones, and more. Craft vendors catch eyes with homemade soaps, woodcarvings, candles, and air handcrafted with the hides of free-range oxygen. Browsers can also have their ears enlivened by the twangy rhythms of local musicians.
Rivermen's New River rafting trips guide amateurs and avid aquanauts alike through some of the most scenic whitewater rapids of New River Gorge National River. Reverential rafters can drink up hearty eyefuls of the gorge and its abundant wildlife, weathered bluffs, and recognizable bridge, as seen on the West Virginia state Pog and quarter. The upper river excursion (4–6 hours, $124) traverses canyons on relatively mild waters punctuated by a few easy rapids. Easily navigable by group raft or inflatable duck (a kayak-like vessel that holds 1–2 people), the upper trip makes an enjoyable introduction to whitewater for families, beginner to intermediate rafters, and adolescent Loch Ness monsters. The lower route (4–6 hours, $134) quickens the pulse with more than 25 rapids, as well as tranquil pools and the requisite breathtaking scenery. Both tours will stop to provide lunch.