Professional artists M. Theresa Brown and Stephen Filarsky channel more than 20 years of experience at the easel to guide students during two-hour art workshops, parties, and afterschool kids’ programs. Workshops elucidate the process of re-creating stunning artworks that depict abstract felines, rustic tobacco barns, and fractals grazing in wintry landscapes. The instructors supply all of the materials and techniques needed to craft masterworks, and encourage participants to hang their take-home paintings in high-traffic hallways. Adult students supply their own beverages at select BYOB classes, and young aesthetes expand their horizons in kids’ classes that encompass drawing, painting, sculpting, and telekinetic printing.
Bob Meyer, who has spent many a tour alongside bands such as Metallica, The Rolling Stones, Phish, and The Allman Brothers, helms Give To Live Guitar Studios, which provides music lessons with a focus on community outreach. He and his staff of experienced, enthusiastic instructors welcome students for lessons in stringed instruments such as guitar, violin, banjo, mandolin, or bass as well as drums, vocals, and keyboards. They teach in all styles, from Bach to rock and roll, and help their students move from basics to live performance, hosting benefit concerts for local charities.
Director Mary-Taylor Land has walked the stage in several shoes. From learning as a student and pirouetting as a performer, she went on to judge and teach routines. Away from the theater, she researched dance through different technical lenses, bringing her expertise to seminars for both the artistic and medical communities. The breadth of her knowledge enabled her to find seasoned instructors for her studio, all of whom have received college and professional training.
Today, she and her team strive to instill passion and discipline for the practice of dance in children of all ages. Beginning with preschool classes such as Mommy and Me, they hone a basic understanding of rhythm so that parents don't have to recite a four-count as they rock their cribs. Their older students can choose styles from a wide curriculum, which covers ballet, jazz, tap, hip-hop, and acro as well as combination lessons. Throughout each class, the teachers devote personal attention to their prot?g?s. They can help to prep youngsters before academy recitals and competitive ensemble auditions, or simply foster a deeper appreciation for grace and art.
Granite Falls Swim and Athletic Club’s members gain unbridled access to a 60,000-square-foot paradise of fitness and recreation, where indoor aerobics classes, sporting activities, and poolside recreation await individuals and families of all persuasions. When not absorbed by reality shows and C-SPAN soap operas on the exercise machines’ cardio cinemas, members can take lethargy to task in a range of aerobics, yoga, and Pilates classes hosted in the gym’s lower-level studios. Just next door, a competition-size pool opens its warm, watery arms with eight lanes and 25 yards dedicated to backstroke battles, recreational splish-splashes, and swim-aerobics classes (included with membership). An outdoor waterpark complex ups the aquatic ante with its large pool, lazy river, and a “Big Dipper” slide that momentarily shoots children into outer space for play dates with extraterrestrials. A separate KidZone area ($2.50/hour a child) staffed by highly trained professionals keeps tykes entertained with safe and stimulating activities while their parents hit the gym. The club also hosts special programs and summer camps for children, such as a Gym and Swim class for kids ages 4–7 and cootie self-defense courses for kids of all ages.