"Never, never, never give up," is the driving mantra for David Oreck, who flew combat missions with the US Army Air Forces in World War II and returned home to build a business empire from scratch. He set out to design a machine to lighten hotel employees' load, making a lightweight vacuum cleaner as opposed to the traditional bulky, burdensome commercial cleaners. Naturally, the domestic market began clamoring for his high-powered yet easy-to-handle devices, and soon Oreck vacuums could be found in homes throughout the country.
Today, the company continues its tradition of innovation, simplifying household tasks with Steam-Glide mops for hard floors, HEPA-filter upright vacuums, and stain-killing cleaning products. Oreck's commitment to clean sends it headlong into the future, with high-tech air filters that react to their environment with automatic sensory controls, filtering odors, allergens, and curse words.
•Consistently Persistent FitBody (Franklin) Up to 10 classes •GetFit Anytime (Nashville): Up to 10 classes •GetFit Anytime (Springfield): Up to 10 classes •Basics and Beyond – Fitness, Nutrition, & Rehabilitation (Nashville): Up to 10 classes •Circuit Athletics Fitness and Wellness Center (Clarksville): Up to 10 classes •WestSide Athletic Club (Nashville): Up to 10 classes •West Dragon Kung Fu (Nashville): Up to 10 classes •Tiger King Muay Thai (Nashville): 10 classes
At more than 900 learning centers across the world, Sylvan offers kids a leg up through personalized, one-on-one programs prescribed by an in-depth skills assessment. Students build on past lessons to learn progressively, and sessions may hone in on different disciplines, granting kids the confidence to interpret literature and the rhetorical skills needed to negotiate a later bedtime. The positive mindset of personable, invested instructors helps to inspire kids to greater academic feats, as does a prize program that rewards hard work with CDs and gift cards.
If geneticist and horticulturalist Gregor Mendel were still alive today, he would marvel at Rivergate Garden Center. Owner Jonathan Buck fills the nursery with plants from breeders such as the aptly named Proven Winners and the Conard-Pyle Co., which has been developing hybrid roses since 1897. From spring through the moment when the world's executive producers decide it's winter, the center is rampant with blossoming roses, lipstick-red weigela, and violet butterfly bushes engineered to expend energy continuously in colorful abandon. These plants also require less maintenance, as their stems resist frost and mildew and quit growing once they have reached a manageable, predetermined size.
One in, one out. This must be Curious Heart Emporium's policy for managing inventory. Colorful, handcrafted lawn sculptures seem to spill out from the yellow-and-green cottage, whose interior shelves are packed to capacity with artisan gifts and novelty pieces from across North America and Europe. Kathy Corley hand selects everything that guests see in her shop, including jewelry, greeting cards, and sarcastic wall art. Corley, who left her career in the film industry as an art director, likens the shop's character to "Willy Wonka's on steroids." When shopping around, Corley often gravitates toward items that remind her of her family members. For example, tin toys remind her of her father, and flamingo-inspired pieces represent her sister, who spent her third year of life standing on one foot. Corley also enjoys handcrafted and designer Christmas ornaments and trees, and dedicates an entire room in the store to them during the holidays. Throughout the spring and summer, her partially enclosed patio and lawn feature garden décor, including metal folk-art roosters and solar-powered paper lanterns.
Atlantic Bedding and Furniture showrooms speckle the Southeast, each one a treasure-trove of fine furniture and top-brand mattresses. Attentive staffers bustle past collections of leather couches and arrangements of dark-wood dining sets, eager to assist customers in their quest to find a memory-foam mattress that best suits their sleeping habits or a rug that best covers up the dungeon trapdoor in their living room. If an item is out of stock, the attendants can have it shipped directly from the company's central warehouse—a cavernous storeroom packed with furniture from top vendors like Coaster, Sealy, and Lifestyle Solutions. Much of the furniture is available online, enabling customers to shop from the comfort of home.