Shopping in Forest Acres


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“It’s like having Mr. Rogers teach your child to swim,” said one parent who left it up to The Swim Lessons Company’s Jim Reiser to show her child the secrets of not sinking. A third-generation swim teacher and coach, Jim approaches his pupils from a gentle, comforting angle that’s especially calibrated to meet the needs of infants, preschoolers, and adults disguised as Toys 'R' Us kids, employing fun activities and drills to impart skills. His friendship with water began in elementary school, and it was a friendship destined to last. To pay for college, Jim leased the university pool and used it to train young swimmers; he went on to teach aquatic courses at the University of South Carolina and lead multiple swimmers to state championships. "The Swim Professor"—a nickname Jim earned after founding Swim Lessons University, an online learning resource loaded with educational videos—now spends his days sharing the magic of swimming with people of every age, imparting the tips and tricks they'll need to survive in a pool, from holding their breath to performing a proper backstroke and catching Marco Polo.
8910 Farrow Road
Columbia,
SC
US
Juicy tidbits of chocolate-dunked fruit arrive on the doorsteps of family and friends, done up in colorful bouquets and candy boxes by the skilled fruit arrangers at Edible Arrangements' more than 1,100 franchises worldwide. The company's in-house chocolatiers drizzle albion strawberries and daisy pineapples in a trio of chocolate flavors. Once properly chocolated, the workers organize the preservative-free sweets into lush arrangements that resemble flowers in bloom. Customers can choose to plop their bouquets in a variety of vessels, including vases, mugs, and sports- or holiday-themed containers that add a personal touch to the edible gifts. Alternatively, customers can opt to adorn gifts with the cheery, red lids of candy boxes, nestling 12 chocolate-dipped morsels inside to build anticipation and determine if loved ones have x-ray vision as they guess whether fruit will come dusted in shredded coconut or drizzled in white chocolate.
605 Harden St
Columbia,
SC
US
Bumble attires sprouting young seeds, from infants to tweens, in stylish duds from hard-to-find boutique brands. Anavini hand-smocked clothing ($66–$81) outfits toddling girls and a Guitar Rex tee by Wes & Willy ($25.50–$27.50) stands up to the wear and tear of boyhoods spent rolling in mud pits and eating ketchup by the handful. For fancier occasions, a Wee Ones large grosgrain bow headband ($9.25) pairs well with an owls Viola top by Zutano ($28). Bumble’s collection of tutu sets and capes outfits the whimsically minded, and a large collection of toys, books, and dolls makes for a great kid-distracter while the earthworm habitat is served an eviction notice.
4840 Forest Drive
Columbia,
SC
US
With art degrees from the University of South Carolina, Tom Lockart and Mark Woodham teamed up to found One Eared Cow Glass, a glass-working studio and gallery. The duo started out in a rent-free Bishopville barn, according to Columbia Living, and named their enterprise after a carved wooden cow’s head that was nailed to the door. Much like Mike Tyson’s teddy bear, the cow had only one ear. Today, at their studio location in downtown Columbia, Lockart and Woodham host live demos throughout the week. During these demos, the pair shape molten glass—which can heat up to 2,300 degrees Fahrenheit—into the translucent artwork that lines their gallery’s shelves. Their work ranges from vases to birdfeeders, though they specialize in indoor and outdoor light fixtures.
1001 Huger St
Columbia,
SC
US
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.
1270 Bower Pkwy
Columbia,
SC
US
With a passion for the great outdoors, the outfitters at Get Your Gear On provide equipment and instruction for navigating trails and waterways. While leading groups, expert guides glide through scenic locales in search of wildlife views and serene experiences. Their canoe trips drift along the warm urban areas and tree-littered landscapes that run along the Congaree River, and their stand-up-paddleboard rentals allow guests to view the banks of Lake Murray from a perspective previously exclusive to sightseeing mermen. They also offer cycling equipment and maintenance along with hiking gear for dry climates, snowy landscapes, and rooms where the sink has been left on all night.
208 Candi Ln
Columbia,
SC
US
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