Longtime Columbia resident Chris Moseley opened his Play It Again Sports store in 1997, eventually earning his parent company's Gold Standard Seal for exemplary customer service and for the quality and range of his inventory. The shop's revolving selection outfits athletes of all persuasions with protective apparel and appropriate gear. Cleats, mitts, and baseball bats fill shelves, along with golf clubs and lacrosse sticks. Moseley's shop also supports waterborne sports, such as kayaking and chasing mermaids, as well as wintertime pursuits, such as skiing and chasing snowmen. Exercise equipment such as weights, kettlebells, and treadmills also helps keep bodies in good health.
Supplying academic athletics' programs from primary to university levels since its season opener in 1944, Todd & Moore has also been recognized as the Best Athletic Wear Store in 2011 by Columbia Metro magazine. Featuring a wide range of jock-stock for the all-American activities such as football, lacrosse, volleyball, and competitive soliloquizing, these sporting salesmen boast a nearly unfathomable stock of more than 300 athletic shoe brands and styles ($18.99+).
Soccer Plus owner Tripp Miller brings more than 20 years of soccer coaching and training experience to his soccer sporting-goods store. The shop boasts sports gear and athletic apparel from major brands, such as Adidas, Under Armour, and Nike, and cleats and multicolored soccer balls line Soccer Plus’s walls in order to distract customers from the back room’s deflated ball graveyard. Sports enthusiasts bound for a practice session on the pitch can cocoon their bodies in Adidas shorts and shirts ($19.99+ each), adult athletic shoes ($44.95+), and a pair of Oakley sunglasses ($59.95+). An Under Armour sweatshirt ($39.99+) wraps torsos in durable fabric that can withstand assaults from chilly breezes and the pouring tears of defeated opponents.
Amid clanking plates and clients groaning to grind out that last set, Julius "JT" Thomas's voice can often be heard giving instructions. As the lead trainer at Freeplay Athletic Training, JT—a college football player with a biology degree—leads sports-specific workouts and training regimens to foster fitter, stronger, faster clients. The gym facilitates these goals by offering 24-hour access to weight machines, free weights, cardio machines, and areas devoted to explosive workouts with exercise balls and box jumps.
Named Best Kitchen Store by Columbia Metropolitan magazine in 2009, 2010, and 2011, Mary & Martha's harbors a staggering selection of cutlery, cookware, and crockery. The Martha side of the store outfits at-home chefs with tools designed to keep kitchen time at a minimum, such as mixing bowls ($10 and up), skillets ($49.99 and up), and salt and pepper mills ($10 and up), while the Mary side houses the store's showy pieces, elegant dishes, and drink ware.