Combining the individual attention of personal training with the supportive environment of a group class, CrossFit Awaken's instructors lead workouts designed to provide an accessible challenge for students of all fitness levels. They provide feedback throughout each session, ensuring that everyone practices safe, proper form while allowing attendees to scale the load and intensity of each exercise as they see fit. Each high-intensity workout is designed to help patrons improve their functional movements in every-day life?such as lifting, running, throwing, and jumping?with a combination of exercises to enhance their strength, stamina, and flexibility. And although every workout begins with stretching and a brief warm-up, no two workouts are ever the same. One day, a workout might include squats to help guests travel quickly up stairs, and the next it might include medicine-ball tosses to help them hoist heavy objects.
However, the CrossFit regimen doesn't focus on physical fitness alone. The workouts also promote healthy minds and bodies by helping students push themselves to new heights and develop the mental fortitude needed to make healthy lifestyle changes.
With years of experience both performing and teaching music, the instructors of The Modern Music Studio help students discover the world of musical self-expression. They strive to make lessons fun as well as rewarding, incorporating music theory, technique, and practical skills such as tuning, restringing, and learning the perfect spot to pat on your belly so it sounds like a real bongo. Students can take lessons in piano, guitar, violin, drums, or voice, and can focus on classical music, jazz, or popular hits. The studio also offers instruments for sale.
Creating a sushi roll is as much an art project as it is cooking. The chefs at City Sushi and Grill have a colorful, modern style of preparation. They present their delicious rolls on stark white plates, decorated with purple flowers, black squiggles of sauce, and even—in the case of the tempura california roll—decorative glasses emitting tendrils of smoke. The sushi remains the real star of all plates, though, with ingredients chosen with color and flavor considered in equal measure. The ultimate tiger tempura, for instance, features bright-orange fish draped over crispy, fried crust, streaked with dark stripes of sauce to make it resemble the wild cat from which it takes its name.
Tacos & Beer keeps its menu simple with authentic recipes to keep its customers happy. Tacos using handmade tortilla come stuffed with hearty meats including carne asada, grilled chicken breast, and lamb; vegetarian options include potato tacos and fiesta salads. Patrons can sip fruit-flavored agua frescas, made fresh daily, or enjoy a Michelada beer cocktail or another beer from the wide selection. Thursdays after 6 p.m., mariachi bands fill the restaurant with lively sounds and colorful costumes.
The ASE master-certified automotive technicians at Bud’s Automotive keep cars and trucks cruising smoothly with fix-it services for every part of the vehicle. The team employs computer diagnostic equipment before performing maintenance and repairs on car parts such as the engine, brakes, and transmission, thereby reducing the possibility of human error or a cyborg uprising. As a courtesy to customers, the gang doles out free light and brake inspections every Wednesday.
Melanie Ramiro's work isn't all about airbrushed Hollywood glamour. "I probably find more beauty in the primal nature of things than in an artificially created façade," she explained to Steve Robles, a former coworker. This devotion to realness is evident in the work she's done with women from all walks of life—including single moms, married women, and breast cancer survivors. No matter the clientele, Melanie caters her shoot to individual visions, be they sweet—filled with softly lit, high angle shots of women in classic pinup poses or tangled in sheets—or sultry, featuring darker lighting, higher contrast, and a larger dose of femme fatale. "I like my work to tease and tempt but never give it all away," she says, and her work achieves this through the use of plain backdrops, minimal props, keeping the focus solely on her subjects. As a former dancer and acrobat, Melanie's eye is naturally drawn to interesting lines and flattering poses, a skill that helps women of all shapes and sizes feel comfortable in front of the camera. "I want my images to be show-stoppers," she exclaims, "I want people to be breathless for a moment when they first see them. I want a strong reaction."