Consider activities that take about an hour to complete: a trip to the grocery store, a relaxing massage, watching a favorite television show. Rarely, if ever, do haunted houses fall into this category—unless you're talking about Cutting Edge Haunted House in Fort Worth. In 2009, the attraction’s length caught the attention of Guinness World Records, which deemed Cutting Edge the longest walk-through haunted house in the world.
Looming in a section of the city dubbed “Hell’s Half Acre,” Cutting Edge populates an abandoned meatpacking plant that was originally built in the late 1920s. The plant’s equipment is still fully operational, and still resides inside—only today, it processes humans. To escape such a grisly fate, guests must grope through a multi-storied labyrinth replete with unthinkable horrors such as live monsters, realistic special effects, and salsas made in New York City. Cutting Edge is so terrifying, in fact, that it even earned the top spot on HauntedHouseRatings.com's list of the best haunted attractions in 2013.
Fiendish ghouls and lost souls stagger across Chaos Crew Presents Mischief Manor and Chaos Academy, the successor to the 13-acre Texas Scaregrounds, which was lauded as one of the top haunted venues in the United States by Haunted Attraction magazine. After the twists, turns, and bloodcurdling screams of the dozens of strobe-light-filled rooms inside Mischief Manor Haunted House, visitors can try their luck at the interactive zombie-themed apocalypse training ground, an abandoned town where the leftover denizens' favorite food is brains. After surviving both attractions, visit Panic's Playground, where you can play games or get your face painted with the likeness of friendly zombie butterflies or carnivorous flowers.
Can plants help save the planet? That's a question the researchers at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas ask themselves every day. The institute has been around since 1987, and since that time it has become a center that uses conservation ideas and plant research for the greater good. Whether researchers are discovering new plant species or coming up with solutions to pollution using botanics, they stay curious about the plant world and then share their findings with the public. Visitors to the campus can also tour the super-efficient facility—built in 2011—and explore its herbarium, libraries, and expansive grounds.
As hosts of the world-renowned Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, the Van Cliburn Foundation has shown a commitment to classical music cultivation. From Bass Performance Hall's mezzanine or orchestra II seating (back right, left, or center orchestra section, typically in rows BBB–B), experience the euphoric euphony of award-winning mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, who makes her Dallas–Fort Worth debut, MacArthur Fellow Stephen Hough, or Olga Kern, the returning Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Gold Medalist.
Tours with Classic Carriages have been clip-clopping through the streets of Texas for more than 20 years, and charming excursionists with reliable animal chauffeurs and well-tended carriages. Nab up to three friends and troll around town inside of a luxurious open-air carriage. Wheel-riders can wave like parade princesses at jealous bipedaling compatriots as the cheerful driver steers his prancing team of elegant equines through Fort Worth's scenic downtown cityscape. If poor weather interrupts plans for a stormless sojourn, the top of the carriage can be pulled up, allowing looky-loos romantic views while leaving them undampened by rain or the drool of a hungry cloud.
Though she’s clad in her finest tiara and dress, the princess does not, in all the excitement, notice that there is icing on her nose. However, this potential party faux-pas goes unnoticed by her fellow princesses, as they’re all occupied with contributing to the symphony of giggles and jubilant chatter reverberating off the tea room’s pale pink walls. Despite their attire, this royal crew is not based in a fairy tale but rather partaking in one of Chelsea's Tea Room & Boutique’s glamorous princess dress-up parties. Dedicated to fostering magical moments such as these, the tearoom’s staffers help youngsters let their imaginations run wild via well-planned parties and events.
Amid the elegant tearoom, staffers gild the faces of partygoers in makeup and festoon their nails in fairy dust before unleashing them upon the wardrobe of dress-up clothes. Wee guests hop into the finery of their choice, solidifying their official princess status during a regal strut across the stage and down the runway. Newly minted sovereigns then sip giggle tea and snack on treats such as scones, teapot cookies, and chocolate truffles. Trained in the art of make-believe, staffers remain on hand throughout parties to entertain crowds with riveting stories and etiquette sessions that teach skills, such as table manners and the importance of saying "please" and "thank you."
Along with glitzy parties, Chelsea's Tea Room & Boutique also hosts Princess Summer Glamour Camps designed to promote values such as self-respect, spoken and written communication skills, and confidence among its campers. Its shelves brimming with vibrant decor and sparkly togs, the on-site boutique enables guests to stock up on all things girly during pre- or post-party shopping sessions.
In honor of Women’s History Month, Groupon is celebrating an inspiring group of women: business leaders whose companies and brands enrich their communities. Thanks to the dedication and ingenuity of these leaders, local communities across the country are stronger and more diverse.
Shop the Women in Business collection.