On September 21, a dragon boat ceremony set to the thumping percussion of taiko drums kicks off the 2013 Asian Pacific Festival of Arts & Music By the Sea, a two-day affair brimming with cross-cultural peace and understanding. Stocked with cultural exhibits, eating contests, and opportunities for horizon broadening, this year's festival theme, “Reflection Through a Shining Community,” honors the rich heritage and many successes of immigrant populations hailing from all Asian countries. While visitors sample delicious cuisine and lend their ears to native music, a number of programs will compete for attention, including fashion shows, a kids' area, a hip-hop dance competition, and muay thai boxing demonstrations.
While smartphone apps simulate the thrill of battling produce, Fruit Warriors gives participants a taste of real, produce-fueled combat. Inside a walled-off arena, warriors garbed in eclectic costumes and safety goggles seek out and pelt their rivals with expired fruit, creating a large-scale food fight not seen since the Boston Tea Party. In a post-fight party, rivals put aside their arena battles to dance to the sounds of performing bands and DJs, or laugh at comedians. While playing in food all day may make one hungry, Fruit Warriors comes prepared to settle growling stomachs with a number of food trucks and brews inside the Alcohol Palace.
The clatter of toppling pins resounds through the walls of the 89 locations of Bowling Centers of Southern California, which are scattered across Southern California, Nevada, and Hawaii. Each alley abounds with modern lanes and equipment, and many boast concession stands, lounges, and game rooms. The family-friendly centers host regular public bowling sessions and league tournaments. Many of the centers also host private birthday parties, which science has proven to be more fun than birthday parties covered by the paparazzi.
All across California, Western Bowling Proprietors Association sends pins scattering at a network of bowling alleys, each with its own personality. In addition to open bowl on automatically scored lanes, many locations host special events that heighten the experience with enhancements such as vibrant lights, lively music, and laser systems that do double duty protecting the alleys' diamond collections. The alleys also house refreshment facilities, pro shops, and diversions that range from arcade games to billiards.
At Boomers!, thrill-seeking families and fun-enabling friends can attack a variety of appealing attractions, including mini golf, batting cages, bumper boats, and the button-mashing joys housed inside the exhilarating game room. The Vista location entertains families of sharpshooters with a blacklight-illuminated laser-tag arena before little ones climb and crawl through the Kidopolis play area. The El Cajon and San Diego locations let rivals celebrate the spirit of competition as they fly past each other in speedy go-karts or have a snail-paced Ferris wheel race at the kid's county fair. Unlimited pass holders at the El Cajon location can also scale the 32-foot-tall climbing wall, which, like America, enables citizens to climb to the top via myriad routes.
When Brian McInerney reflects on the humble beginnings of Wheel Fun Rentals, Inc., he points to his childhood passion for bikes. "As far back as I can remember, I had a real love affair with bicycles," he recalls. During a trip to Italy in 1987, Brian's affinity for cycling blossomed into a full-fledged obsession when he spotted locals' transporter of choice, the surrey. Inspired, he began importing the Italian four-wheelers to a rental business in the U.S. that eventually expanded into Wheel Fun Rentals, now a nationwide web of shops that also loans out bikes, electric cars and mopeds, and man-powered watercraft. Adventuresome athletes can also compete in activities such as surrey scavenger hunts and blindfold obstacle courses navigated via shouted instructions from a seeing teammate or exceptionally long rounds of trial and error.