Staff Size: 11?25 people
Parking: Parking lot
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Recommended Age Group: All ages
When and how did you first develop a passion for your work?
In 2013, after I had my son. He is full of so much energy and loves to be outside. I started Play Loud Clothing to offer some cool shirts and hats for all ages while promoting a more active lifestyle. Our motto is "Get up, get out, and Play Loud." Soon after starting our clothing line, I decided to put together a fun run to help promote an active lifestyle. The Haunted Woods 5K is what we ended up putting together.
I'm a first-timer. How do you get me ready for the experience?
This is a fun run, so don't stress to hard about training. There are some obstacles, mud, and scary things out in our woods. Work on your endurance and a little upper body strength. Most of all, just be mentally prepared to have the crap scared out of you.
What?s your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part is when other people get just as excited as I do when they see a new shirt design. I also love hearing how pumped people are to participate in the Haunted Woods 5K. When you put so much effort into something, it is very rewarding to know people appreciate what you've done.
A piece of metal and a ball of clay. They may seem completely different at first glance, but for Stephanne and John Martin those two basic materials represent the same thing: creative possibility. Stephanne has worked with clay for more than 20 years, and she sculpts and fires everything from functional dishes to abstract sculptures. For his part, John has spent nearly three decades turning steel and aluminum into furniture and fine art works?including metal saltwater gamefish, which are made out of plaster in real life.
The two artists formed Martin Galleries in 1997. In the studio, they work with clients to create commissioned sculptures along with masterpieces completely out of their own imaginations. They also host lighthearted educational sessions, including Corks 'n Clay classes in which people can throw clay on the wheel with one hand, sip wine with the other, and sculpt intricate designs into the clay with their teeth.
At each of its 31 area locations, the YMCA of Greater Houston pursues a mission to bring health, wellness, and personal growth to communities. Kids leap into activities ranging from swim lessons and youth sports to a teen Youth & Government program that stirs up confidence and leadership abilities in students, preparing them for mudslinging student-council campaigns.
Zumba, ballroom dance, and Les Mills group exercise classes shake up adult workout routines, as complimentary childcare frees up parents to pursue fitness goals. Meanwhile, adult sport leagues such as basketball and racquetball result in friendly competition and hyper-literate team names inspired by obscure philosophers.
When the sun finally sets, Glow in the Park gives the green light to runners and walkers, setting them loose during 5K races that raise money for local non-profit organizations. Equipped with, and indeed wearing, an arsenal of glow-in-the-dark goodies, participants beam through the darkness, their bodies blank canvases for multitudes of bright colors. They wade through crests of foam, burst through plumes of neon powder, and splash through puddles of glowing water sprayed by volunteers or radioactive fire hydrants. At the finish line, groups gather in a glowing mass to show off their new neon and dance to the beats of a live DJ.
At Fun Little Tykes, kids up to age 9 jump and slide through a primary-colored indoor playground as focused on fun as it is on safety and education. The supervised facility features miniature stairstep "roller coasters," a springy jumping area, a clubhouse, and plenty of other intriguing surfaces to climb and crawl over, as well as Zumba dance-fitness and structured classes. And the Tykes team hasn't forgotten about the parents. A cafe offers snacks for sale, as well as a microwave, fridge, and buried treasure chest for snacks brought from home.
Facing the unknown can be as scary as it is invigorating. The course organizers at Mud Challenger pepper their 4- to 6-mile courses with a devious array of obstacles, many of which remain unknown to racers until they encounter them live in the mud-filled field of play. To this end, the only real guarantee at any given Mud Challenger is that participants will get a little muddy, and get as rowdy as they please at a post-race party complete with food, beer, music, and the chance to make many, many mud angels.