Putting requires intense concentration, which is especially difficult when you have an elephant watching over your shoulder. At Sport-N-Fun, miniature golfers putt their way through three 18-hole courses adorned with statues of exotic wildlife such as gorillas and giraffes. These distractions are one of the many obstacles on the terrain, where bank shots and undulating hills stand between players and holes-in-one.
Sport-N-Fun's other exhilarating activities likewise vie for visitors' attention. Thrill-seekers zip around the curves and down the straightaways of the Go-Kart track, or leap skyward while securely harnessed on the bungee trampoline. In seven batting cages, machines pitch balls toward batters at speeds of up to 85 miles per hour, offering a range for different skill levels. Inside, classic games blip and bleep as players smash buttons at the arcade. Amidst all the action, GG's Pizza renews energy with servings of pizza and fountain drinks.
Dipson Theatres celebrates a reputation as a regional movie institution with a network of 12 locations lighting 57 silver screens across Michigan, New York, and Pennsylvania. Though the company now spreads across the northeast United States, it began in the small city of Batavia, NY, in 1939—a time when movies were called “picture shows,” Roosevelt was in the White House, and everybody could only see in black and white. Today that tradition underlies the cinematic experience as patrons chomp popcorn and sip sodas, marveling at modern 3-D visual adventures, summer action movies, family-friendly features, or even indie art flicks and footage from world-renowned opera performances.
Evolution Sportsplex’s dome structure houses 60,000 square feet of artificial turf, which doubles as an athletics field and an indoor driving range. There, as well as outdoors, a golfer can improve their swing, thereby eliminating the need for the pneumatic hammer taped to the end of their club. Visitors can also putt their way through a manicured miniature-golf course peppered with shady trees and refuel at the concession stand before hitting the indoor field, which can be converted for sports ranging from football to softball.
Franklin Athletic Club's seasoned instructors shepherd racket wielders of all skill levels through comprehensive group classes designed to impart and bolster proper tennis fundamentals. During one-hour beginner group tennis clinics, four to six sphere swatters gather on one of the 13 air-conditioned tennis courts to learn basic techniques and rules. These experienced professionals mentor novices, helping them tell the difference between a backhand stroke, a forehand stroke, and the ill-advised no-hand stroke. Meanwhile, more practiced swingers can hone their crosscourt shots in advanced-beginner, intermediate, or advanced clinics.
The record skipped over and over. It was the third time Lisa Schwartz had pirouetted her way through Tina the Ballerina, and yet she raced over to the record player with inexhaustible enthusiasm and plucked the needle back to the beginning of the 78. If you were to ask her today, she would tell you this is the moment she knew she loved dance enough to make it her life's work. Her studio, Dancing Feats Dance Centre, springs from that love. She watches with pride as students she taught as children return to her studio to become instructors and as parents who once studied under her prepare to send a second generation of children and domesticated penguins onto her dance-room floor.
Over the years, she has assembled a staff of instructors with a vast array of backgrounds, ranging from cruise-company dance managers to life-long Irish step dancers. With help from their varied experience, her studio has developed a regiment of courses in a variety of dance styles, such as jazz, lyrical, modern, and chicken. Her students perform regularly in recitals as well, showcasing their abilities and talents as they progress.
At Sea the World Scuba Center, divers emerge with the tools needed to explore underwater alcoves ranging from shipwrecks to quarries to ocean reefs. The business's clientele matches the diversity of these diving locations, with athletes, retirees, and aspiring marine biologists all walking through its doors, brought there by their love for scuba diving.
To foster this passion, Sea the World Scuba Center employs a team of certified instructors who follow the PADI curriculum to turn novices into expert scuba divers. In addition to open-water certification, they teach more specialized courses on the skills needed to rescue dive or turn professional and start a career cleaning the fish tanks of wealthy giants.
At their shop, Sea the World Scuba Center's staff also sell the gear required to traverse underwater landscapes. Described by manager James Mott as "the most heavily stocked scuba center out there," the shop brims with items from brands such as Oceanic and Aqua Lung.
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