A lot of big things start in a garage; Boston Paintball, however, needed a warehouse. The team of paintball enthusiasts came together in 1992, and they spent 10 years in a downtown warehouse, introducing thousands of people to the sport and spilling more paint than an artist working on a tilt-a-whirl. But even that space eventually proved too small, and the company has since expanded to three locations in the greater Boston area.
Fully stocked pro shops and indoor fields greet players at the Chelsea and Ashland outposts. Maynard, on the other hand, takes the game outdoors. At every location, the staff keeps competition safe and fair, pairing up players based on ability from beginners all the way up to tournament level.
Inside Playground's family-oriented play palaces are the creative invention of a mother and veteran pre-school teacher with expertise in combining fun activities and learning. Kids aged 6 and younger remove their shoes and gleefully enhance motor skills in a supervised carnival of colored ball pits, inflatable structures, and safe child-size gym equipment. In addition to the main play area, the indoor, year-round facility also supplements the scampering with an array of sit-down games and puzzles designed to nourish developing neurons. Party rooms host birthday shindigs with plenty of parent-friendly seating and free WiFi. Inside Playground has a schedule of weekly events, such as visits from Barney the dinosaur, Elmo, and magicians who pull rabbits out of children's ears.
The instructors at EMS Schools traverse rocky, paved, and watery terrain from New England down to Virginia, imparting people with their love of the outdoors along the way. Dating back more than 40 years, the EMS Climbing School teaches pupils of all ages the tenets of climbing through introductory classes and more advanced maneuvering in self-rescue, alpine climbing, and glacier-skills classes. The watery wing of EMS's operation includes kayaking and standup-paddleboard lessons, which can help students earn certification in these water-bound endeavors, and group tours. EMS-led bike tours trace a path through the rolling hills of the Berkshires, the mansions of Newport, as well as the powdered-sugar-topped White Mountains of New Hampshire.
To help women achieve their fitness goals, the certified personal trainers at Get In Shape For Women focus on four areas: weight training, cardio training, nutrition, and accountability. In small group sessions, trainers modify exercises to suit up to four ladies' fitness levels, beginning by calibrating strength-training sessions—such as free weights, lunges, and squats—to each client's abilities while still ensuring they are challenging themselves. Then comes high-intensity cardio interval-training sessions in which trainers encourage exercisers to achieve optimal results on the treadmill or elliptical.
The trainers supplement the group workouts with nutritional planning centered around the concept of eating six small, balanced meals six days a week. They set aside the seventh day as a "free day" for a bit of indulgence, be it eating a favorite sweet or lusting openly after bacon. To hold their women accountable, trainers talk nutrition on the floor during scheduled appointments, and the ladies' progress toward reaching their goals is measured by trainers each week.
Jump Around Parties & Playdates boasts a sprawling indoor gymnasium of inflatable bounce houses, obstacle courses, and interactive games designed to give kids' energetic limbs and imaginative minds a place to explore. During open-jump sessions, staff members supervise children while they take on winding obstacle courses, break free from gravity in the moon bounce, and sharpen their jump shot during bounce-enhanced basketball games. The facility's two private party rooms host birthday celebrations that dazzle kids with pizzas, Cold Stone Creamery cake, and balloons in between their romps inside the climate-controlled gym. The center's invitation-creation center makes up quality invites so parents can use their time party planning instead of mastering calligraphy.
Stationed a safe distance away from the crowded city center, Easteleigh Farm has kept bygone eras alive since the early 1900s in Framingham. Current ownership converted Eastleigh back to a dairy operation in the early 2000s, and visitors have reaped the benefits ever since. During stops at the on-site store, visitors find fresh-from-the-farm products, including raw milk, cheeses, eggs, and honey. Even the farm's land exudes a high level of verdure: instead of crop-dusting the property with protein powder, Eastleigh uses all-natural nutrients such as fish oil to keep the land healthy. Visitors can see just how healthy the bounty is, too, during tours and hayrides around the farm.