Though they operate more than 200 locations in upwards of 30 states, the team behind U.S. Baseball Academy aims to make each young athlete's experience a personal one. Their four- or six-week camps are taught by local instructors who are current or former coaches at the high school or college level, and typically offer a 6:1 or better player-to-teacher ratio for intense, professional-style training. The Academy's proven itinerary of hitting, pitching, fielding, and baserunning drills was developed by an advisory board of college coaches and Major League players, including Cy Young Award–winner and ace pitcher Brandon Webb.
The Arkansas State Parks fete vibrant visitors and loping locals alike with a dizzying array of landscapes, natural and cultural resources, and myriad learning opportunities at parks scattered throughout the state. Familial units with children 18 and under can flex their pass muscles multiple times throughout the year at a wide range of museums, gleaning valuable state knowledge while conversing with park guides or well-read white-tailed deer.
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Canada's Classical Theatre Project shatters modern preconceptions about the dryness of Shakespeare by infusing the romantic tragedy of Romeo and Juliet with a potency and youthful electricity that snuffs reluctance in the Bard-averse. On an inventive chalk-circle set, the Toronto players whisk viewers to an Elizabethan marketplace in the 16th century, engaging the imagination without relying on cumbersome stage props. Hearts melt as Romeo, the Montague, and Juliet, the Capulet, fall in love against the odds, sweeping the audience along on their way to ghost prom. Shakespeare’s colloquies come naturally from the mouths of the virile acting talents, who translate the text for this generation’s ears without changing a word. Classical Theatre Project's rendition of Romeo and Juliet, intended for ages 11 and older, treats Shakespeare's tragedy like a rock concert, except with better enunciation and a higher mortality rate. A surviving artifact established in 1890, the historic and lovingly restored Orpheum Theatre adds majesty to the performance with its brocade draperies and crystal chandeliers.
Founded by Jack Belz (chairman and CEO of Belz Enterprises and Marilyn Belz, the Belz Museum of Asian & Judaic Art has displayed its collection of paintings, sculptures, textiles, and more from Asian and Judaic artisans since 1998, when it was originally called the Peabody Place Museum. Old-school art lovers can spend hours perusing Belz's collection of pieces from the Chinese Qing and other dynasties, including a 19th-century scene intricately carved in ivory tusk, or studying elaborate pottery from the Han dynasty. In addition to the four admissions, the deal also includes four collection catalogs ($6 each), so exhibition scrutinizers can study up on the museum's collections.
For roughly a decade, the museum has been inviting curious rockers and the occasional roller to take a stroll through a musically guided journey through time. What started as an exhibit at the Smithsonian quickly took on a life of its own, developing into an independent museum commemorating the hoots and hollers of a genre. The historical galleries begin at the literal grassroots of the movement, chronicling the field music sung by rural agricultural workers. The galleries continue through the seventies, where a great deal of soul came into the mix and things really started to take off. In between, learn about the iconic label Sun Records, tips on growing a gnarly rock-n-soul beard, and how the music influenced an entire generation during the civil rights revolution.
A multitude of hands-on, eye-opening museum exhibits outline more than 10,000 years of the Mississippi's majesty, providing a comprehensive history of the heartland's life-giving artery. Learn how the mighty water mass shaped the foundation of countless civilizations through colorful displays and more than 5,000 artifacts, from the pottery, tools, and maps of early native settlers to the engines, paddle wheels, and regalia of ancient steamboat tribes, found in the River Room. Temporary exhibits include Water and Money – The Currency of Civilizations, which traces the river's historical parallels to valley cultures in Carthage, Rome, and Constantinople through collections of rare coins, diagrams of water and resource management, and bouts of gladiatorial mud wrestling. Access to the Swiss-constructed monorail is included in your Groupon, providing scenic views of the river as it reflects the skyline of downtown Memphis.