Rick the Reptile Guy, the resident reptile connoisseur of Boulder Ridge Wild Animal Park, guides visitors through interactive reptile shows followed by tractor rides through the rest of the park’s sweeping expanse. During each private 45-minute reptile show, guests can pet and cavort with slithering wonders such as giant pythons, boa constrictors, and bodybuilding earthworms. Giant turtles and life forms of the crocodilian variety also preen for audiences. Outside the boundaries of the cold-blooded extravaganza, visitors can relax on a tractor ride through 80 acres of exotic creatures such as zebras, monkeys, and parrots that have retired from their careers as extremely blunt telemarketers. Groupon customers can bring additional guests to their private reptile show for an additional fee of $8 per person (the cost of park admission).
Despite the race’s assertion that, “the Old Farts course is no joke,” the 5K and full- and half-marathon event is still presented with quite a bit of levity. Top 10 finishers in the 5K, for instance, are awarded whoopee cushions for their efforts in a race known colloquially as the Who Cut the Cheese? 5K, and the full marathon crests a hill named after the actor and human punch line Chuck Norris. Amid this casual atmosphere, runners of all ages compete on wooded courses that are as beautiful as they are difficult. Hundreds of feet of elevation changes unfold as the course progresses through a mix of tree-lined trails, gravel roads, and pavement.
At Arts & Carafes Studio painting events, students mingle over glasses of wine as they unlock their creative instincts and learn to create stunning, colorful images on canvas. Guests paint everything from Grand Rapid's skyline at night to swaying dancers to vibrant peacocks, both at Arts & Carafes's studio and at local restaurants. All the materials are provided, including studio-grade acrylic paint, so students won't have to make a stop at a craft store or mix their own from leftover condiment packets before the session starts.
Signature service: Piano Lessons & Music Classes
Staff Size: 2–10 people
Average Duration of Services: 30–60 minutes
Brands Used: Faber, Alfred, Bastien, Hal Leonard, Marlais
Pro Tip: Come with a smile and prepare to have fun exploring all the "plusses" at Piano Plus LLC.
Snap Fitness's around-the-clock gyms enable visitors to fortify their physical well-being with a cornucopia of advanced fitness equipment and certified personal trainers. With 24-hour access, members don't have to let The Man or one of his many secretaries tell them when to help themselves to Snap's strength-training gear or top-of-the-line cardio machines, which feature televisions and other media diversions. A friendly, unintimidating atmosphere provides a refreshing change of pace from aloof gym employees and ear-splitting pump-up jams. Members also enjoy nationwide access to all Snap Fitness locations, ideal for working out while traveling.
Nestled among oak trees and apple orchards, the 18-hole, par 72 course at Deer Run Golf Club hosts weeping willows that have been ducking golf balls for more than four decades. Golfers start out at the course’s second-hardest hole, navigating a dogleg left in the last fourth of the fairway and hitting past two bunkers that stand sentry just in front of the green. The second hole, a handicap 18, lets players catch their breath or show off by wearing a diamond-studded blindfold while driving, but the 13th hole—the course’s toughest—gives even the most gifted swingers a challenge with a dogleg right and a green guarded by a slither of fairway-bifurcating water.
Before hitting the course, players warm up at one of the driving range’s 25 hitting stations or by bench-pressing a golf cart. After, they generally decamp to Deer Run's clubhouse, which complete with a hardwood dance floor and fireplace ready for hosting special occasions. Here, up to 250 guests can party away the night, celebrate weddings and other occasions, or host a conference on turning the state of Indiana into a 1,800-hole championship course.
Course at a Glance:
18-hole, par 72 course
Total length of 6,964 yards from the back tees
Course rating of 74.1 from the back tees
Course slope of 134 from the back tees
Four sets of tees per hole