Harnessing the equine expertise of two renowned members of the Professional Horsemen's Association, Caughman Farms advances students of all skill levels in both English and Western riding styles. The content and length of each lesson will depend on the student's individual experience, rate of improvement, and collection of tasseled chaps, but all pupils will learn the basics of horse care, cleaning, and equipment. The mild-mannered canter of a retired juvenile competition horse permits fledgling steed steerers a large margin of error and level of comfort. Two instructors accompany small children to ensure each tyke's safety and feeling of security while instilling the important life lesson that all good things come in stereo. Leaving behind the small, covered beginner area, more advanced equestrians can gallivant around the spacious indoor arena atop a homebred stallion.
Jeffery Archery's craftsmen hand shape natural hardwood into traditional longbows, and their pro-shop stocks contemporary compound bows from brands such as Bowtech. The facility also includes a 12-lane indoor range, where archers can practice at distances from 5–20 yards.
Hampton Hill is a privately owned and operated athletic club with fitness equipment, classes, spa services, and a high degree of commitment to its members’ satisfaction. The multi-leveled fitness oasis has three main gyms with weight machines, free weights, stationary bikes, treadmills, and elliptical machines, making each workout as varied as the Eskimo word for 'snow.' The abundant class offerings run the gamut of fitness, from yoga, Pilates, spin, abs, all the way back to total-body cardio. The gym’s Biggest Loser Challenge invites members with serious weight goals to join their peers and shed pounds in a positive, supportive environment—as many as 80 people have participated at a time, with winners dropping as much as 60–70 pounds over the course of the six-week program.
Sometimes, you just need a fairy godmother to make your dreams come true. Wings & Whimsies has such a creature, and her name is Babbling Brooke. The magical Brooke flits about town with fairy friend Zephyr, bringing along all the games, decorations, and costumes necessary to create a fantasy-themed birthday party for young children. In the span of mere hours, Babbling Brooke and Zephyr transform backyards and local parks into fantastical worlds complete with knights and dragons, kings and castles, or auditors and tax evaders.
When they're not injecting a little magic into kids' lives with birthday parties, they're doing it with storytelling and music at library and school events. The two fairies have no trouble captivating their young audiences; after all, they are both members of storytelling guilds such as the National Storytelling Network.
Riverbanks Zoo and Garden garnered a best-day-trip award from Charlotte magazine in 2009 for its copious collection of exotic and endangered animals that captures the majesty and variety of the wild. Explorers of all ages journey through nine locales that artfully re-create natural habitats, encountering ring-tailed lemurs, slender-tailed meerkats, and tale-spinning birds that sing of their raucous college days. When it's time to smell the roses, adventurers may cool their heels in one of five botanical gardens, each representative of a different plant group. Budding zoologists and their families may engage in animal demonstrations and discover the keys to keeping rattlesnakes or learn that giraffes, unlike their animal-cookie cousins, love being fed.
Palmetto Boxing strives to showcase the best boxers and mixed-martial-arts fighters in the world, presenting high-quality fights and top-shelf testosterone. The February event will feature such renowned fighters as undefeated middleweight Chris "The Irish Ghost" Fitzpatrick, welterweight world champion Ayi Bruce, and undefeated mixed-martial-arts fighters Tre Moss and Chris Yandle. Buyers who opt for later matches should pause from daily rounds of rear naked chokes to check the website as lineups and times are announced closer to the date.