Established in 1994 as a professional African dance company, Bi-Okoto Cultural Centre helps spread awareness and appreciation of African heritage—and other cultures—through a variety of classes and programs. Classes include lessons in martial arts, Zumba fitness and Salsa dancing, and practice in West African drumming and dance. Along with the nonprofit centre's classes and outreach programs, Bi-Okoto continues to support its traditional dance company, which performs and tours throughout the United States and around the world.
Laurie specializes in capturing radiant photos of newborns, small children, and high schoolers in need of senior pictures. For 60 minutes ($75 value), Laurie's hands, eyes, and camera will set aside their differences to carefully snap high-resolution images of you or a loved one, treating each shot as a piece of art. After you select your three favorite poses, Laurie will arrange them into one custom-matted storyboard collage ($364 value). The background mat can be colored to coordinate with your outfits or a scenic backdrop of exploding zeppelins. Call to schedule your appointment.
Students in 60- to 90-minute classes at the Cheesy Gourmet learn how to make bagel-ready spreads, sliceable block cheeses, and crumbly feta using nothing but cheesecloth and a splash of milk. Participants can snack on provided cheese and crackers or sip wine they brought themselves as they watch Cheesy chefs demonstrate techniques inside a quaint kitchen painted robin’s-egg blue. After the class, guests leave with enough cheesecloth to make their own cheeses or dairy-based paper-maché art projects at home.
Mixologist Molly Wellman and chef Dan Wells combine their expertise at Japp's Cocktails and Candy Classes, where they teach groups to concoct their own cocktails and candies. In classes that are half hands-on learning and half demonstration, students twist handmade candy canes or make sheets of nutty peanut brittle. Glasses brim with virgin cocktails mixed with ingredients such as plum cider or root beer bitters; for an additional fee, a bartender will splash in shots of liquor. After classes have ended, students leave with their own printouts of the day's recipes.