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.
At The Pet Spot, a team of over 30 animal-loving dog and cat specialists train and groom the furry guests of their day care and kennel. Felines will vacation in luxury cat condos while their human roommates are out of town, while dogs enjoy plenty of belly rubs, baths, and exercise during daycare and boarding. Each kennel room is climate-controlled and replete with elevated beds, glass windows, and flatscreen televisions showing dog-related programming and local news translated into barks.
The professional animal chaperones go to great lengths to ensure the safety of each pet—they carry out extensive temperament tests to prevent fights, and webcams for owners to check in on their furry friends remotely.
While the décor at HD Beans and Bottles Café may not change when the lunch hour comes to a close, the atmosphere certainly does. That’s because as the baristas file out after a long day of pouring coffee and crafting light sandwiches, the bar staff begins preparing for nightly activities. The chatter that fills the shop revolves around a range of activities and themes, which range from karaoke and UFC fights to hip-hop on vinyl and half-price wine nights. During these events, bartenders grab glasses to pour in one of more than 100 different beers and wines or whisper in reviews of popular films. Chefs keep preparing meals throughout it all, creating croissant sandwiches, veggie burgers, and flatbread pizzas.
The staff at Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt rejects the oft-touted claim that Americans don?t care about nutrition. The problem, they say, has more to do with selection than anything else; most low-calorie sweets don?t hold a candle to a fudge brownie or a warm slice of apple pie. They kept this in mind when crafting their frozen-yogurt recipes, working tireless to develop a healthy?and equally delicious?alternative to the dessert status quo by turning to decadent confections and just-picked fruits for inspiration.
Their experiments thus far have yielded more than 60 frozen yogurt flavors, which take turns pumping through the self-serve machines that line their colorful shop?s wall. Before taking a seat in a bright orange chair, guests fill their dishes with cool, low-fat swirls of chocolate cheesecake, strawberry banana, and a classic tart that bites as pleasantly as a teething kitten. Juicy pears, crunchy granola, and gooey chocolate sauce headline a smorgasbord of at least 30 toppings ready to scooped or poured into cups before their final weigh-in.
You won’t find stale cookies and days-old cakes within the glass display case at Sugar Darlin’s Sweets and Such. In fact, you won’t even find a display case. That’s because Sugar Darlin’s is an online sweet shop, helmed by loving couple and resident bakers Candece and Greg. The duo makes each of their decadent treats to order, from batches of red velvet whoopee pies to signature 3-D cakes customized for special events. They use an old family recipe to craft their decadent pie crust and pour more than a dozen fillings, such as pumpkin, cherry, and blueberry, inside. Crust-less desserts also reign supreme at the shop in the form of cakes and cheesecakes in nearly 30 different flavors, such as carrot cake, banana pudding, and sweet-potato streusel. Because they make everything by scratch and by themselves, Candece and Greg require at least 48 hours notice or a time machine for most orders.
Red Dog Pet Resort & Spa founder Ray Schneider understands why his clients would want to pamper their pups with massage and reiki sessions or warm-water swims. As he told Dan Monk of the Business Courier, "It’s a relationship that’s very hard to explain. When you have a dog, you can understand it.” The Blue Ash resident and entrepreneur created the sprawling, 25,000-square-foot pet hotel—and its second location in Boston—because he realizes the lengths to which people will go to care for their furry friends.
Swathed in upscale atmosphere, the spa is outfitted with all the comforts of home and more; after touring the facilities, Jeff Elkus of David's Voice said, "I wish the last resort I visited had half the amenities of Red Dog." Dogs can stay in private, themed boarding suites with flat-screen TVs and owner-monitored webcams. They exercise and socialize in climate- and airflow-controlled play areas, romp in a three-acre dog park, and don buoyancy vests to soothe achy joints in the heated aquatic center. The hotel also offers multilevel lodging for cats, as well as canine grooming and training services.
Schneider hired and trained a staff for around-the-clock supervision and care. Dogs who are aging, have health issues, or secretly write reviews for Frommer's get special attention in a room with a fireplace and stretch lounges.