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The T-6 Texan isn't like most of the airplanes you see on the runway. For starters, it only has two seats. Then there’s the US Military aircraft crest stamped on the side of its mustard-yellow frame—a reminder of the warplane's years of service, from the 1930s to the '50s, when it carried three 30-caliber machine guns and a 400-pound bomb-load. A 1944 T-6 Texan is part of the fleet of fliers at Gauntlet Warbirds, a flight-instruction center that specializes in warplanes and aerobatic aircraft.
Chief pilot Greg Morris has been flying for more than 15 years and teaching for 10. He has a degree in aerospace engineering from USC and was awarded Master CFI-Aerobatic by the National Association of Flight Instructors. He continues to teach the T-6 to aspiring Air Force test pilots and flight-test engineers at test-pilot school as part of the Qualitative Evaulation program. Morris and his team of seasoned instructors copilot joyrides and offer training programs for mastering each aircraft in their fleet, which, in addition to the aforementioned T-6 Texan, includes the 1942 Boeing N2S Stearman, the L-39 Eastern block military jet, as well as aerobatic stunt planes such as the Yak-52, Extra 300L, Bellanca Decathlon, and Super Decathlon, all of which credit their thrill-seeking ways to strict upbringings.
43W514 US 30
Parent-chaperoned youngsters take their first, wobbling steps on ice skates while the hockey stars they may one day become whiz around the rink, perfecting their technique. Skaters of all skill levels practice side by side during open skates at Rocket Ice Arena. Their nonskating supporters can look on from the Lake Placid Lodge, sipping drinks from the onsite café and using the lodge’s free Wi-Fi to check an app that tells them whether their glass is half empty or half full.
Home to the Sabres Youth Hockey Club, the rink also offers instruction in icebound sports. Their hockey instructors can introduce novices to the sport or train more experienced skaters how to compete on high-resistance synthetic ice. A separate team of instructors specializes in figure skating and synchronized skating, which is the art of synchronizing your feet to go in a single direction. Youngsters can also explore the rink during skate parties, which come with an on-ice instructor, decorations, and balloons.
180 Canterbury Ln.
nside Bikram Yoga Plainfield’s cozy studios, soaring temperatures allow students contorted in muscle-building postures to deepen their stretching and expel toxins through perspiration. Expert instructors lead students through a series of 26 postures, each building off the next to help them build flexibility, strength, and enough confidence to never again be intimidated by a pretzel. Parents can drop off mini-yogis for childcare six mornings a week before stretching out muscles on their own mat or one rented from the studio.
13717 US Rte. 30, Suite 143
A stone-lined fountain mists in front of Bolingbrook Golf Club’s 76,000-square-foot clubhouse, foreshadowing the 18-hole golf course that teems with pristine water features. Designed by prolific design team Arthur Hills and Steve Forrest—whose footprint of original courses spans the globe—the 7,104-yard layout plays alongside seven lakes that impede passage on multiple holes, including a par 3 with a true island green that players can access only by footbridge or buoyant golf bag. A particularly challenging course with a par 5 that's 600 yards when played from the farthest tees, the layout levels the fairways for players of all abilities with five tee options. Alongside the course, the club’s driving range and academy help players to nurture their relationship with each wood, wedge, or hard-hitting spatula. The space includes grass tee and short-game areas, with lights on for night practice through the end of September. Its Rabito Golf, PGA-class golf instruction includes a free 10-minute swing analysis with video, available daily. A clubhouse with men’s and women’s locker rooms and two full-service restaurants is available to maximize comfort and convenience during visits to the club.
Course at a Glance:
- Designed by Arthur Hills and Steve Forrest
- 18-hole, par-72 course
- Length of 7,104 yards from the farthest tees
- Course rating of 73.8 from the farthest tees
- Slope rating of 135 from the farthest tees
- Five tee options
2001 Rodeo Dr.
Seven rope tows hoist skiers and snowboarders to the top of the trails at Four Lakes Snowsports, helping them take a panoramic glance before the pristine powder and carving their way back to the bottom. Five zones make up the skiable expanse, increasing in difficulty from a pair of bunny hills to a terrain park, where a gauntlet of boxes and rails slake appetites for jumps, grinds, and extreme cold-weather picnicking. As a proud member of the Professional Ski Instructors of America, Four Lakes’ ski school helps aspiring skiers and snowboarders stay safe and in control while zipping and darting about the slopes.
5750 Lakeside Dr.
Designed to mimic the French palace of Versailles, Rialto Square Theatre's magnificent interior awes showgoers with its gilded opulence. In the regal inner lobby, a 20-foot, 250-light chandelier—dubbed The Duchess—illuminates a circular series of delicate reliefs that depict allegories of man triumphing through labor and scenes from Greek mythology. A scaled-down replica of Paris's Arc de Triomphe leads from the lobby to the rotunda, adding to the space's grandeur and commemorating miniature Napoleon's victory at the adorable Battle of miniature Austerlitz.
15 E Van Buren St.
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