Tom Paladino, owner of the 95-foot American Princess, steers passengers over the Atlantic Ocean's scenic waters on many noted tours that leave the city's commotion behind, including his seal-and-bird-watching tour that earned a New Yorker mention. Staffed by a team of experienced captains on its luxury boats, American Princess Cruises' excursions encompass a variety of sightseeing, fishing, and partying opportunities. The company's many voyages ferry passengers past scenic areas that include New York Harbor, Jamaica Bay, Long Island Sound, or the Statue Of Liberty as she readies her torch for that night's show at Madison Square Garden. Within these geographic areas, passengers cruise on tours during which it's common to spot whales and dolphins cresting the sea's surface, the Sandy Hook Lighthouse, or take in the area's flame-colored leaves in autumn.
Brimming with colorful bolts of fabric, carefully looped skeins of yarn, and rows of sewing provisions, Save A Thon Stores have been supplying New Yorkers with quality crafting necessities since 1973. With fabrics ranging from basic denim to upscale jacquard upholstery cloth from around the world, the shop showcases a range of patterned designs that can be crafted into cozy quilts or a signal to a passing ship that it would have looked better in plaid. Coils of lace ribbons and tubs of colorful beads add a decorative finishing touch to projects, which can be undertaken at home or under the tutelage of the shop's expert crafters during regular sewing classes. The teachers are also experts in the Wilton method of cake decorating and can help students artfully embellish cakes and cupcakes with fondant, tiny decorations, and tiny brides and grooms on a dessert destination wedding.
Although buying pottery pieces in a store is easier than making your own, it isn’t nearly as satisfying. At Supermud Pottery Studio, it’s this impending satisfaction that leads students aged 3 to adult toward creating their own mugs, vases, and bowls during interactive classes and children's summer camp. Pupils learn the basics, such as hand building or wheel throwing, from experienced teachers as they shape blocks of lifeless clay into utilitarian pieces or sculptures with actual heartbeats. Finished artwork may even reside in the studio's gallery, which displays inimitable ceramic works by both renowned artists and Supermud alumni.
When she isn’t busy knitting the kinds of garments that appear in collections by Donna Karan, Ralph Lauren, and Calvin Klein, Berta Karapetyan shares her skills with fellow crafters at School Products Yarn. Located in an historic Manhattan yarn shop, the store stays true to its building’s past by stocking its shelves with a vast supply of yarns, needles, and woolly Civil War–era mutton chops.
The store’s ample fiber selection ranges from affordable wool blends to skeins of luxurious cashmere. Needles come in a variety of sizes, and a collection of handy tools and accessories keeps projects running along smoothly. Berta’s 15 years of industry experience serve her well when she’s advising purchases or overseeing students as they craft socks or snuggies for their pet anacondas during knitting classes.
The masterminds behind Keansburg Amusement Park, located just off the beach, oversee a park designed to turn a day out with the family during warm weather months into a mini vacation. By dotting the park with roller coasters, go-karts, arcades, and classic boardwalk fare, the owners seem to have realized their vision while also addressing the interests of different-aged groups. Kids ride the colorful Jolly Caterpillar before he presumably morphs into a butterfly at closing time, and whole families catch panoramic bay views from the top of the Ferris wheel. With its more than 35 rides, the park has garnered accolades such as Best of New Jersey from the readers of NJ Monthly Magazine, as well as a 2011 Best of Monmouth County from the readers of Asbury Park Press.