Situated along the banks of the Cosumnes River, Fog Willow Farms sows the seeds of laid-back living across 9 acres of tranquil farmland. The property is passionate about sharing its easygoing vibes with visitors, especially during autumn, when it transforms into an interactive playground for families to celebrate the season. Come October, Fog Willow Farms flourishes with rows of pumpkins ready to be inspected, fitted with a matching family sweater, and picked, and its petting zoo introduces guests to more than 100 farm animals. The facility also offers hayrides, weekend pony rides, and an adventure course, all of which can be enjoyed during casual visits or special events such as science farm field trips and birthday parties.
The sounds of clopping hooves carry across High Standard Equestrians’ expansive facility, where active and retired show horses kick up dirt on indoor and outdoor rings. A member of The United States Equestrian Federation and United States Hunter Jumper Association, the family-friendly establishment employs an expert staff that leads competitive training sessions and interactive lessons. While retired Dutch Warmblood, Welsh Pony, and Westphalian show horses host students on their saddles, the facility’s active show horses train for upcoming competitions. Their daily workouts include galloping around the ring, jumping over hurdles, and chasing ranch hands for playing with their shoes.
The trainers at Muay Thai Lao Kickboxing Academy impart martial arts knowledge from both nations at the academy's Sacramento and Elk Grove locations, where punching bags line concrete walls and wait patiently for flurries delivered by padded fists. A full schedule of morning, afternoon, and evening kickboxing classes welcomes men, women, and children ages six and up. Kick-boxers of all skill levels can participate in muay-thai training to achieve a variety of personal goals, such as shedding weight or walking the path of muay-thai champion.
In the horror films of the 1960s and '70s, zombies were represented as hordes of frightening—albeit sluggish—undead. These days, the typical zombie has a little more spring in his step. During zombie apocalypse–themed tag at Play2Survive, the undead chase after humans who seek shelter at several designated checkpoints. Fortunately, the zombies are only fellow participants, who "infect" the living by tagging them. Meanwhile, racers who retain their humanity must reach a minimum of five checkpoints scattered around the course before crossing the finish line. The first survivors in the team and solo categories to make it back to headquarters receive prizes. The top flesh-eaters among the zombies also get rewards, presumably including a spot as a backup moaner on some pop star's new album.
The touring event is the brainchild of Project TMD, a group of friends who spent their college days scouring California for large-scale role-playing opportunities. Eager to share their passion for fitness and fun with others, the Project TMD crew now stages their own events across the state. The group also does its part to provide local high schools with resources for physical fitness and outdoor play. Project TMD encourages Play2Survive participants to sponsor a local high school of their choice. The school whose sponsors earn the most points receives a portion of the event's proceeds—as does the parks and recreation district hosting the game.
For more than two decades, Emerald Lakes Golf Course has challenged golfers of all skill levels with a scenic assortment of hazards, including redwood forests, a host of lakes, and the Delta Breeze. The course features a relatively easy first hole, after which things get much harder at hole #2—a 195-yard par-3 made longer by the prevailing winds. Before heading in for the day, golfers must make a difficult decision at the 362-yard, par-4 dogleg ninth hole. They can aim over the lake in hopes of hitting the green directly, lay up in the center of the fairway, or hit the ball in the opposite direction to approach the hole by crossing the entire globe first.
Course at a Glance: * 9-hole, par-33 course * Total length of 2,307 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 62 from the back tees * Course slope of 106 from the back tees * Two sets of tees per hole * Scorecard
Instructor Mike Uhlinger knows the challenges of being a Brazilian-jiu jitsu student—he still trains daily, learning from world champion Cassio Werneck. He also keeps his skills sharp by competing in tournaments and sparring with his wife and assistant instructor, Lenna Uhlinger. Both are present for every class at Mixed Grappling Arts, where they teach adults and children the fundamentals of ground fighting.
Their lessons cover fitness warm-ups, drills, and live training with a partner. All of these exercises focus around the central law of jiu jitsu: that you can subdue a stronger, larger opponent if you use leverage to your advantage. Mike and Lenna give individualized feedback to their pupils as they demonstrate various joint locks and holds, ensuring that each class has a supportive atmosphere in which students can hone their techniques.