Chad Surdich, a two-time Golden Glove semifinalist, surveys his red-walled boxing gym from behind the chainlink fence that circles the ring. Around him, boxing pupils wham their fists into focus mitts during small-group classes, or work up heart rates by hopping onto cardio machines. Chad and his expert instructors make use of North Shore Fit Pit’s bountiful array of weight machines and heavy ropes to lead boxing classes, cardio boxing classes, and hot boxing classes that amp up workouts with detoxifying heat and squirts of tabasco snuck into water bottles.
Since opening its doors in 1998, Language Stars has introduced more than 30,000 children to foreign languages with small-group classes and full-immersion activities. Through a selective process, Language Stars recruits ambitious teachers from more than 20 countries who share a common goal of revolutionizing how and when American children learn foreign languages. Parents and Tots Classes are available for children between 1–3 years old, and Kids Only classes are available for children 3–5, 5–8 and 8–10 years old. Absorbent little minds soak up Spanish, Mandarin, French, German, or Arabic with the help of their FunImmersion approach, learning naturally through games, songs, activities and art projects to help kids finally understand their foreign-exchange imaginary friends.
Artist Lisa Jones, the founder of Art by the Glazz, has a painting hanging in the White House and one in the Pentagon. Both locales are impressive places for the artwork of any artist to reside, particularly one who “found out [she] liked to paint by mistake.” Lisa began her painting life in her 30s shortly after the death of her mother. A friend convinced her to go to a painting class in the hopes of alleviating Lisa’s depression, and within three weeks of this class, Lisa had three clients who were commissioning work from her.
A few years later, Lisa created Art by the Glazz, originally intending to use the operation as a fundraising tool for nonprofits. Today, a portion of Lisa’s painting classes still benefits art education in public schools, and she stations these informative, fun sessions throughout the Washington D.C. metro area and takes them on tour through New Jersey and Chicago. Throughout the years, Lisa estimates that she’s swapped paint and sipped wine with more than 1,000 people. One memorable student, a woman who had suffered a stroke, hadn’t painted for five years until her husband brought her to Art by the Glazz, where she once again took to the canvas with paint and brush. Most of Lisa’s students arrive to class with no formal artistic training, and their level of fun, Lisa says, “depends on how much [they] let [themselves] go.” It’s easy for her to tell when the class has gone for it. Colorful palette flourishes mingle with laughs, toasts, and even songs, as budding artists recreate a favorite landscape, still life, or parking ticket.