Like a child going through a growth spurt, Hyderhangout: Quilt Fabric & More has spent its first few years outgrowing its increasingly larger locations. Now situated in the Five Points museum district, the store continues to fill up every available nook and cranny with acres of fabric that range from brightly patterned cottons to flannels and fleeces cozy enough to keep you warm when an ice-fishing partner uses you as bait. Hyderhangout rounds out its selection by snagging vintage fabrics at auctions and estate sales. In addition to acquiring bolts of fabric, quilters can pick up precut swatches or fabric custom cut into precise shapes by an AccuQuilt system, and staffers will happily order quilting notions not found in the store. Needle artists can also find supplies for knitting and crocheting.
For crafters not yet settled on a specific project, Hyderhangout stocks patterns for apparel and kits for quilting projects and purses sturdy enough to hold a stash of gold bullion. Staffers provide even more guidance during classes that focus on both basic quilting techniques and advanced projects such as a quilted batik jacket.
Jim and Jeanette Greiner have been helping people escape the concrete ecosystems of everyday life since 1971. That's the year that they founded Wildwater, and as its name suggests, it started as a rafting outfitter that led groups down the rushing waters of the Chattooga River. Today, Wildwater's trained guides still navigate a number of rivers—the Ocoee, Nantahala, and Pigeon, in addition to the Chattanooga—but they've expanded their reach to the land as well. The company offers canopy tours with a combination of ziplines and elevated bridges, inviting guests to take a thrilling trip through the treetops. If clients prefer to stay within a few feet of the ground, they can opt for jeep tours that explore paths beyond the main roads.
Since Wildwater's team values the beauty of the natural environment, they embrace eco-friendly practices intended to help protect the areas they explore. Each of the company's locations strives to minimize its impact by using solar-powered water heaters for the showers, composting leftover food, and painting all of the outdoor equipment with chlorophyll.
During her history of irrepressible creativity, Rhonda Wilkins has dabbled in fabric painting, woodcrafts, scrapbooking, stenciling, and more. She hoped to turn her passion into a career a decade ago by starting Fabulous Finishes, a decorative painting business, which eventually added a social concept: the painting party. Rhonda’s Create and Celebrate Studio now hosts easygoing classes that extend this variety of creative therapy to students of all ages and skill levels with step-by-step instruction. The focus of each session runs the gamut of art history, from serene Tuscan landscapes to iconic mustache graffiti. Groups of neophyte artists can also organize group and kid’s parties, which include materials, instruction, and time for cake and presents.
Ocoee Zipz lines up seven exciting ziplines over a mile-long course that runs next to the mighty Ocoee River, with each line featuring a Wizard of Oz-themed name and opportunities to observe native fauna, such as raccoons, deer, and tropical penguins. Mount the 30-foot Cowardly Lion and soar on the wings of a zipper to Dorothy, whose cables will usher you onward to several other stations, finally ending with a 65-foot soar across the Wizard. As you whip along at speeds of up to 45 mph, flying monkey guides ensure that the trip progresses smoothly and safely.
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.
Purchases made at most TNT Fireworks locations benefit partner non-profit organizations, strengthening programs in local communities. The company also has a commitment to both safety and customer satisfaction. Many of TNT's higher-charged products include a Glo-Fuze, which guides revelers safely to the fuse in poorly lit conditions, and a No Dud Guarantee ensures that non-functional fireworks can be refunded with ease.