An active Denver photographer since 1985, Bart Levy imparts hard-won wisdom to aspiring photographers in upbeat, three- or four-hour workshops. In these workshops, the seasoned shutterbug demystifies DSLR cameras, teaching pupils how to harness ISO speeds, manual settings, and flash settings to produce crisp, memorable images of lens caps. Students also learn how to compose visually striking snapshots and Levy will also demonstrate the differences in digital file formats, so acolytes can upload and share pictures without setting their web browsers on fire.
Suzanne Smith incorporates a background in neuromuscular massage therapy into her Pilates curriculum to help participants increase flexibility and free themselves from joint aches and body pains. Using an array of specialized body-limbering equipment, such as the Reformer and Cadillac, Suzanne brings stiff and stubborn sinews under her gentle yet firm tutelage, teaching them to open up to a fuller range of motion while letting go of tightly clasped tension and faded photographs of old flames. Classes meet six days each week and are capped at five students, creating space for intensive personal instruction and individual muscle whispering.
Divers Reef grants prospective plungers access to thrilling underwater worlds with a variety of classes supplying all the necessary equipment. During the two-hour Discover Scuba session, a PADI–certified introduction to the art of diving, Divers Reef's certified instructors run through safety basics, proper equipment handling, and other techniques, all in the safely confined waters of the facility’s indoor pool or other off-site locations. While you won't be certified to dive just from one class, you will be certified to sit in puddles with scuba gear on. Spunky submariners can step up to the dive bar with open-water certification classes, available in either two-day sessions or spread out over three weeks, with hours of instruction that put participants on the path to scuba certification.
At the Colorado Academy of Music and Dance, experienced instructors cultivate students' passion for the performing arts. Kids aged 2–4 hone their coordination, balance, and rhythm skills in group dance classes that include tap, jazz, and ballet programs, and adults burn calories in adult-only sessions. Students of any age can build their endurance and flexibility with high-energy Brazilian capoeira—a mix of martial arts, dance, and acrobatics—sessions that also include instruction on speaking basic Portuguese and playing Afro-Brazilian instruments. The facility's sprung floors with professional marley surfaces help prevent injury and protect joins by absorbing dancers' impact.
The academy's university-trained music teachers conduct private lessons for youngsters seeking to learn the guitar, study singing, or play the mandolin at a local battle of the medieval bands. Parents can sit in on the lesson or access complimentary wireless Internet as they relax in the spacious waiting area.
At Splash!, art and fun go together like canvas and paint. For three hours on Thursday and Saturday evenings, guests sip wine and local beer, listen to music, and meet new people while a resident artist guides them step-by-step through their personal take on the evening's painting. To make sure the subject is always fresh and unique, each evening's painting changes on a daily basis. Depending on the night they attend, guests may create anything from a landscape or city skyline to a row of autumn trees or a Van Gogh still-life. The acrylic paint dries fast, too, allowing fledgling artists to take their masterpiece home at the end of the night or trade them with their new friends. And this sense of socialization carries into the studio's unstructured activities as well—open-studio time where artists gather together to create their own one-of-a-kind masterpieces.
In 1976, busy California mother Joan Barnes wanted nothing more than to find a play place where she and her kids could enjoy age-appropriate, educational activities. Finding none, she developed her own innovative play environment within a developmental-based program structure now known as Gymboree Play & Music. Today, kids tumble and learn in more than 650 locations in 33 countries around the world, engaging in open play and classes designed to build cognitive and motor skills. As parents participate in their child’s development, their kids learn to paint, play music, and interact socially outside of their preschool knitting circles.