Founded by sports enthusiast and former adolescent Rick Hart, Jump Start Sports works to enrich pupils' childhoods by developing useful life skills through athletics. Qualified counselors employ their wealth of experience working with children to help campers learn teamwork and fair play as well as the fundamentals of fielding baseballs, scoring soccer goals, or synchronizing pom-pom work. A course structure built around age-appropriate activities, group play, and free electives ensures that students never get bored, and an 8:1 pupil-teacher ratio enables one-on-one assistance to young champions as they practice the graceful art of pitching or the scheming intrigue of free-agent contract negotiation.
Padded floors at varying levels. Beams, bars, and springs sprouting from them. Blue, red, and yellow coloring it all. It looks like a fancy playground, and in many ways it is, but its purpose is much more layered. At Bull City Gymnastics, this vibrant space is used to teach kids discipline and fitness, all while they're having fun flipping and tumbling. To teach all that and boost athleticism, instructors get kids aged 3 and older on balance beams, trampolines, and gymnastics rings during one-hour classes. They can even get parents in on the action during 45-minute parent and tot classes for little ones. Camps and parties that include games, crafts, and gymnastics also keep kids engaged and focused on healthy fun.
A comedic abode of gut-busting proportions, DSI has hosted hundreds of joke slingers that have corralled scores of laugh-seeker smiles without nitrous-oxide tanks or clips of football-privates contact. A company of 45 active performers lives underneath the 84-seat non-smoking theater, constantly training with dummy microphones and audience dummies to provide optimal quip delivery. Owner Zach Ward leads this comedic cabal, and also has trained and worked with nationally known giggle catalysts of Saturday Night Live and MADtv fame. Visitors will be able to choose from a variety of scheduled Friday- and Saturday-night shows, including improv slams, stand-up, and slide shows of platypus photos.
One of the few original theaters in Durham to remain in operation, the Carolina Theatre has endured more than 85 years of history in its quest to entertain. The venue's main room, Fletcher Hall, rose in popularity during World War II, when soldiers from Camp Butner arrived by bus to watch films on its colossal screen. In the last three decades, ongoing renovations have restored the venue to its original glory while propelling it into contemporary times with the addition of modern accoutrements, including two upstairs movie screens, stage-level dressing rooms, and landing pads on the roof for skateboard hovercrafts.
Youngsters bound across a sea of slides and playground equipment spread across the 6,500-square-foot indoor oasis at PlayNation Parties & Playgrounds of Morrisville. Rescue play time from the evil grips of rain, cold weather, and homework taped to meteorites by heading indoors for uninterrupted fun during open-play hours—Tuesday–Friday afternoons and select times on weekends. Kids burn energy as they climb on wooden playsets and rock walls, hang around on tire swings, and jump to their heart's content in a bouncy castle. Wee little ones can toddle around Breckenridge Village, a separate play area with two wooden playhouses designed specifically for pint-size citizens. Admission transfers a full day of action to each child, and punch cards can cover a single child for multiple visits or a herd of wild things for a single day.
While the kids are at play, adults relax in PlayNation's two parent lounges, which come equipped with flat-screen TVs, comfy seats, and a Wii gaming station. The sheltered playground floods every chamber with light so parents can clearly pick out their progeny. It also sports a colorful foam floor to help prevent boo-boos resulting from tiny tumbles or attempts to stage a children's production of Cliffhanger.