At Salsa Caliente, expert instructors strive to spread their love of Salsa dance while introducing students to Hispanic culture. Stressing correct form, timing, and style, they lead groups through classes tailored to each individual’s skill level. They also offer private instruction as well as special sessions for upcoming events such as weddings. Salsa Caliente frequently opens its doors for special events, such as birthdays and quinceaneras, and hosts dance socials that allow students to mingle and explore a variety of dance styles, such as cha cha and merengue.
Dave Bee, the owner of Schwinn Shop, was practically born on the bicycle saddle—two of his uncles own cycling dealerships, and he remembers being able to ride before he could even walk. His first set of wheels, a 1968 Schwinn Pixie, now hangs on the store's wall, along with wooden-wheeled bikes and quirky items ranging from a Pee-Wee Herman doll collection to turn-of-the-century skis. Bee calls his enterprise a "museum of sorts," a testament to the freedom of spirit one can only discover from behind the handlebars. Indeed, the store's bevy of new and used bicycles entices potential owners to trade in their gas-guzzling horses and set out for new adventures. From the modern Schwinn designs to an assortment of Giant mountain bikes, cruisers, and single-speed commuters, Schwinn Shop's inventory offers options to suit any riding style. For current owners, the full-service repair shop can cure any ailment, from misaligned wheels to graying tassels, and Bee and his team of cycling technicians can customize frames with colorful tires or parts and accessories from Shimano, Origin-8, and Odyssey. The staff also rent out hybrid bikes for leisurely rides around Gainesville, catering to customers unwilling to endure the sleepless nights of ringing bells associated with bike ownership.
Spokes have populated the space around 1630 West University Avenue for 65 years, turning stoically as numerous bike shops have come and gone. The spot’s newest cycling incarnation, Chain Reaction Bike Shop, owes its staying power to owner Raleigh Faust and his staff of experts who cater to collegiate commuters, recreational cyclists, and serious athletes alike. Inside the unvarnished wooden storefront, rows of rides from Scott, Jamis Bicycles, and Surly await ownership. Every bike purchased at the shop comes with a lifetime of free service adjustments, making owning a bike as hassle-free as combing a hairless cat. Technicians see to these new rides, taking more than a dozen measurements for individualized fittingsand performing maintenance services that range from spot repairs to comprehensive tune-ups.
Brasingtons Adventure Outfitters' knowledgeable staff arms outdoor recreationists with a vast array of rugged, nature-ready products from well-known national brands. Shield eyes from sunlight and hairdos from jealous wind gusts with a variety of Columbia hats ($14–$45). Mountain Safety Research's PocketRocket portable stove ($39.95) lets campers boil 1 liter of water in less than 3.5 minutes, leaving plenty of time to mark trails with jelly beans and give a CamelBak water bottle ($8–$35) to a thirsty bear. In addition to suiting up warriors for battle with the great unknown, Brasingtons also hosts adventurous events, including kayaking demos on the Santa Fe River every Saturday.
Jules and Heather loved not just the fun of belly dance, but its malleability. When they opened Shambling Shimmies Dance Company in 2010, they knew that fusing belly dance with other styles of dance and even fitness exercises would be the best way to share their passion with others. The studio provides well-rounded instruction with classes in technique, improvisational-tribal style, belly-dance boot camp, egyptian style, and more. They can also add belly-dance routines to current wellness programs at businesses, clubs, and community groups. They can take their art to the next level for performances at special events with props such as swords, torches, and cymbals.
A trained Zumba instructor since 2009, Abby Estilong skillfully ushers pupils through the fitness technique's energetic choreography, set to a spirited soundtrack of fast-paced rhythms and latin-music beats. During each class, she engineers a series of lively dance movements that help oust lollygagging calories and yield svelte, toned physiques. Aside from standard Zumba, Abby also forges lean bods during Aqua Zumba and Hot Hula classes inspired by the traditional dances and ThighMaster machines of Pacific Island cultures.