Through the use of Legos, Bricks 4 Kidz encourages children to explore their imaginations and introduces them to the basics of engineering and architecture. Using Lego's bricks and robotics software, kids learn the basics of scientific concepts, such as torque, friction, and gravity, while developing creativity and critical-thinking skills. Aside from classes, Bricks 4 Kidz also offers open play, mommy-and-me sessions for preschoolers, and summer camp.
It’s always nice to have talented friends. For more than 20 years, photographer Jeff Tureaud has been his friends’ go-to person for capturing special events, and his growing reputation led him to start his own studio in 2007. Since then, the award-winning photographer has accommodated clients with wedding coverage, on-location portraits, in-studio appointments, and outdoor shoots on his acre of gardens.
Jeff’s individual and group sessions yield upward of 50 images, which he retouches in Photoshop, previews for patrons, and dispenses as digital images all on the same day as the shoot. In addition to capturing new memories, Jeff restores older ones with photo repairs, digitization services, and DVD slideshows that set up to 150 pictures to each customer’s favorite pop song or whale call.
The shelves at Color Me Mine’s studio teem with whimsical bisque-ceramic pieces—pony and princess figurines, piggy banks, and kitchen items—each stark white and waiting for the brush strokes of a budding artist. That artist might be a birthday boy at a party with up to 25 of his friends, or a grown-up unwinding at a girls' night out. No previous experience is required, as the studio staff dispenses plenty of painting tips, stencils, and artistic inspiration. Afterwards, the staff will fire the resulting pieces, which can then be used as décor or dinnerware thanks to Color Me Mine's lead-free, food-safe, paints. In addition to open painting and private parties, the studio hosts after-school enrichment programs, field trips, camps, or scout-troop events.
At Grape Beginnings, passionate wine aficionado Frank D’Aponte splits his time between producing his own high-quality vintages and instructing others on how to do the same. Frank has a decade of winemaking experience under his belt; as a third-generation winemaker, grape juice runs through his veins. Frank has deepened his knowledge with extensive travel throughout the Napa and Sonoma valleys, studying under master winemakers such as James Allen of Sequoia Grove Vineyards. Novice vintners delve into every aspect of the process, including pressing fresh grapes from California, Chile, Italy, and Argentina, racking in oak barrels, and bottling with custom-made labels.
Passersby that peer inside the windows of CKO Kickboxing won’t see treadmills, ellipticals, or stairclimbers. Instead, they’ll spot rows of heavy bags lurching backward and sideways from the force of participants’ kicks and right hooks. The kickboxing-focused gym doesn’t need excessive equipment or a catalog full of workout programs—the high-intensity fitness regimen of kickboxing is more than enough to shape up CKO members. Students of all levels reap the system’s multifaceted benefits, burning up to 1,200 calories per class, releasing stress, and developing a six-pack more realistically than drawing on their midsections with a marker.
If a subject is art-related, chances are you can learn about it at Around the Corner Art Center. With a slate of teachers who specialize in working with specific age groups and art mediums, students can learn how to sketch or sew, hone their brush strokes, and construct mixed-media pieces. With all these disciplines under one roof, there is a class for everyone from children to college art students to adults. The staff's love of art even extends to the birthday parties they host, with artistic themes that may include recreating a famous painting or learning how to draw cartoons, anime, and manga.