Crab Apple Whitewater sends adventure seekers on river-bound thrill rides daily from early April through mid-October using inflatable kayaks for Class I–II rapids and larger group rafts for Class II–IV rapids. Crab Apple Whitewater charts routes through the Berkshire Mountains on rivers such as the Deerfield, making use of natural flows and daily dam releases in order to control the challenge for kayakers and rafters of all skill levels. Trips are consistent due to dam control, but vary based on interpretations of fortunes found in the guide’s tea leaves the night before. All adventurers strap on provided helmets and life jackets and attend a safety lecture prior to casting off.
An outdoorsman since birth and G. Loomis–endorsed guide, GSOutfitting's owner, Eric Gass, grew up hunting and fishing the Pioneer Valley and Berkshires. After graduating from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Eric returned to guiding and now fishes and hunts with his faithful gordon setter, Duncan, by his side.
Eric leads fly-fishing trips aboard his 13.5-foot Aire drift raft, as well as local hunting trips for turkey and grouse. GSOutfitting also trains gun dogs and companion dogs, ensuring every hunter will have a loyal sidekick during the season.
The artists at Wine and Canvas awaken their students’ inner Rembrandts and Van Goghs with classes that pair a featured painting with specialty cocktails and wines. The mobile studio’s monthly calendar includes themed classes in which instructors expound on the nuances of painting Parisian street lamps, Japanese flowers, or Venetian cityscapes. The master painters—many of them local artists—provide step-by-step instructions while students mimic each stroke and periodically dip their brushes into glasses filled with crimson cabernet. Each of the studio’s various drink-friendly venues boasts a specialty libation selected to incite creativity or conversations with fellow painters. When the artistic frenzy concludes, students return home with a finished masterpiece large enough to conceal any wall safe or mirror portal.
President of the International Candlepin Bowling Association, Ralph Semb presides over French King Bowling Center, which has been in his family for 53 years. The Center’s 16 lanes feature candlestick bowling, a 10-pin variation that utilizes taller, lankier pins and smaller balls that have not yet sprouted finger holes. The food court serves up burgers, pizza, and soda to bolster bowlers, and a video arcade provides an alternative to ball hurling. Neon bowling on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays lets guests experience what it would be like to bowl inside a lava lamp. Birthday parties for up to 10 guests include one hour of bowling followed by an hour-long party with pizza, french fries, soda, and ice cream. Each guest also gets quarters to feed hungry arcade games and toy dispensers.
Your average golf course might take up as many as 4,000,000 square feet, yet Mountain Meadow's sports lounge is only around 10,000. That doesn't mean golfers still can't get in a full round, thanks to the facility's four state-of-the-art golf simulators, which invite players to get some practice in no matter whether the forecast calls for wet rain or pesky sunlight. But the fun doesn't stop at golf; visitors can also play pool, shoot darts, or retire to a private card game room for some Texas Hold 'Em or high-stakes Go Fish atop professional tables. Larger parties can also rent out the facility's event room, named the Pinnacle, which comes replete with a stage and lighting effects.
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Average Duration of Services: 2?4 hours
Recommended Age Group: All Ages
Pro Tip: No experience necessary
Paint Rage's instructors demystify the artistic process in fun, social classes that they describe as "filled with lots of fun and laughter." They hold these beginner-level painting classes in restaurants, residences, and even outdoor spaces, providing all necessary supplies, and taking gathered students through the painting process step-by-step. During the class, students can socialize with one another and sip on cocktails or wine, and at the end of the evening, they'll have a completed 16" by 20" canvas painting that they can take home to frame and hang over their mantel or on top of an old, broken, flatscreen TV.