The instructors at Creations Bayou, formerly known as Sadie’s Closet, encourage students to let their artistic instincts run wild during painting classes, sewing classes, and children's summer camps. In a flurry of brushstrokes, aspiring Claude Monets create their own interpretations of reference pieces, painting wall-worthy pictures depicting lovebirds on a tree branch, multicolored sunsets, and blossoming foliage. During camp sessions, youngsters take on a different artistic endeavor each day, tie-dyeing pillowcases, constructing picture frames, or spelling out their favorite Supreme Court Justice’s name in glitter. Creations Bayou also regularly hosts art-themed parties for both kids and adults.
Since its arrival on the community-theater scene in 1946, Baton Rouge Little Theater has continued to flout its moniker with a seasonal audience of 30,000 and more than 150 theatrical performances, workshops, and classes each year. The upcoming season’s five main-stage productions promise a heaping dose of musical comedy and more drama than a high-school cafeteria. The curtain opens on September’s stage with Crazy for You, a frenetic comedy with toe-tapping dance numbers and songs by George and Ira Gershwin. Director Keith Dixon breathes new life into the sultry Southern airs of A Streetcar Named Desire, and Almost, Maine punctuates the holiday break with a story of love and loss that, unlike an amateur pole-vaulter, never falls short.
With the clatter of bowling pins, the pings and buzzes of skee-ball, and the cries of victory from the laser-tag arena, the freewheeling return to youth that Quarters grants its grownup visitors is palpable. The 40,000-square-foot facility lets the good times roll as late as 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday evenings, offering a dose of after-hours entertainment that makes ordinary bars and clubs pale in comparison. Adding to the adult appeal is an on-site restaurant serving artisan bar snacks such as hand-battered onion rings and half-pound turkey burgers, topped off with classic and creative cocktails mixed with Bombay gin and Avion tequila.
Visitors indulge their competitive spirits within the multi-level laser tag arena, which pits two teams against each other in series of six-minute mock firefights. Teams navigate the maze of obstacles, ramps, and benevolent minotaurs, earning points by tagging opponents or ambushing one of the eight bases scattered throughout the arena. The plush couches that line Quarters' 10 bowling lanes also beckon competitors, as does a multi-table billiards room and an arcade packed with classic games such as Pac Man and air hockey.
Leaps & Bounds founder, Michelle Lavergne, leads an enthusiastic team of certified gymnasts and party planners to vivify childhood birthday dreams. After a brief introduction, each two-hour natal anniversary celebration commences with an hour and 15 minutes of ebullient activity time. Partygoers can run through obstacle courses, jump on trampolines, dig mountaineering bivouacs, and slide down slides.
The well-balanced instructors of C.G.'s Gymnastics bring years of coaching and competition experience to the mat as they edify students ages 2–adult. One 55-minute class per week helps beginning balance-beamers discover their inner Mary Lou Retton, whereas seasoned handspringers can work toward a lifelong goal of flipping across America. Boys' and girls' beginner classes teach the basics of routines seen in the Olympics, including vault, floor exercise, and synchronized medal-twirling, and an average ratio of eight students per instructor enables personalized attention. After the first month, Groupon customers can enroll in the remainder of the semester without the added cost of a registration fee.