Grove Station Farms' skilled instructors transform the casually riding-curious into ride-ready equestrians with technique and safety lessons on a stunning 65-acre plantation-style farm. During the one-hour horseback-riding session, experienced teachers guide herds of eager students through English riding techniques, including proper posture, balance, and balancing a tea set on one knee while ahorse. The spacious indoor arena protects classes from the elements as pony passengers of all ages and skill levels learn the grooming basics necessary to properly care for their hoofed charges and protect their vestigial wings from prying zoologists' eyes.
The Skate Place knows that one of the best ways to have fun is to strap wheels to your feet and fly across the floor. For 30 years, they've been providing families with a safe place to do just that, offering rental skates, birthday party packages that include pizza and drinks, and a calendar of special events such as teen nights.
Ecy – Shoes n’ Chic's extensive collection of stylish shoes, handbags, and jewelry from more than 30 designers keeps forms and feet fancy. With new styles arriving year-round, Ecy's friendly staff guides patrons through chic, seasonal foot coverings for the workplace, nights out, and mud wrestling. Piggies can dive into the snuggly warmth of Emu Paddington sheepskin boots ($199), or bask in the breeze with a pair of chic open-toed sandals from Boutique 9 ($159). The lush purple and black ADA Cierrelli handbag ($308) adds glamour to wardrobes, and the multicolored lizard clutch by W. H. Petronela ($450) wards off style criticism and cricket attacks.
Everyday Organic’s culinary wizards seek out chemical-, hormone-, and preservative-free ingredients from local farms to healthify mealtime with an organic menu that features light and fast eats alongside hearty sandwiches and salads. Starters encourage pre-entree nibbling on roasted-veggie dip, which perches atop pita wedges like a proud, amorphous bird of prey. Grilled, marinated tofu tumbles over tabbouleh salad, whereas provolone, muenster, and baby-swiss cheeses melt in unison inside a gourmet grilled cheese. Guests can wash down big bites with gulps of milk massaged from mature soybeans.
At the restaurant, a small service counter welcomes guests inside the cozy eatery, where chalkboards announce daily specials and sage-colored tables hover over cherry-wood chairs. White and beige walls soak up the sunlight that pours through a large storefront window, where budding local vegetables can watch their future careers unfold.
The flittering notes of flutes pipe through the doors of Musical Innovations, followed by the deep plucking of a string bass as novice musicians studiously master their instrument of choice. Students can try their hands at woodwinds, horns, percussion, and stringed instruments, renting music-making equipment from the shop if necessary. Led by accomplished musician and educational advocate Tracy Leenman, each one of the shop's employees holds a degree in music, and thus can yodel Beethoven's Ninth Symphony while leading shoppers through an inventory of sheet music and instruments that range from beginner models to professional quality, including custom flutes and specialty strings. Home-school programs take musical instruction on the road, and in-shop summer camp programs keep youngsters from practicing archery with violin bows.