The full-time professional flight instructors of WNC Aviation help aspiring aeronauts unfurl their wings and also refresh professional pilots on essential flying skills with a personal and career-training curriculum. Crews let experienced aviators take to the skies in an aircraft from the fully insured fleet, or teach beginners flight basics within a private or small-group setting. A full-motion simulator allows captains to perfect their “fasten your seatbelt” speeches, and an FAA-certified training program runs through the entire certification process under real-world conditions at the school’s controlled, uncongested airport.
Specializing in noninvasive treatments, Dr. Alireza Falahati and the staff at Lisse Laser and Aesthetics revitalize skin with laser wavelengths and products from SkinCeuticals, GlyMed, ColorScience, and Clarisonic. The facility's chic waiting area greets clients with wooden floors, artwork-clad walls, and black, leather couches that showcase the luxury of hairless arms and legs.
Pin the Tail on the Donkey and Red Rover might be fun party games, but they do little to help burn off tykes' excess energy. This is where the crew at Incredible! Inflatables & Amusements comes in. In the time it takes to do the Hokey Pokey or do the Hokey Pokey backwards, they can outfit parties with inflatable slides for kids to race down and bounce houses for them to leap around in. Carnival-style games and concessions make celebrations more fun as partygoers take big bites of cotton candy and win prizes by knocking down cans with bean bags.
Chef Gina Marie Kirkland harnesses seasonal ingredients from local butchers and farmers to furnish weddings, events, and weekly Sunday brunches with elegant cuisine. The chef began honing her epicurean abilities and counterfeit cookbook-spotting skills at age 14 in a small-town bakery in South Carolina. After years spent working in the engineering industry, Gina Marie enrolled in a top-notch culinary school and quickly ascended to the position of executive chef at a nearby restaurant. Now the head of her own catering company, Gina Marie pilots Sunday brunch at The Claddagh Inn, a historic bed and breakfast constructed in the 1880s and once owned by a member of Jesse James' infamous outlaw crew. The brunch menu changes weekly, but complimentary Irish coffee, mimosas, and spiked flatware regularly accompany the selection of fresh, classic American brunch fare.
The idea for an annual barbecue expo began slow-cooking in 2010 at a family lunch. The Boyds thought about organizing a little barbecue competition and ended up luring 8,500 barbecue enthusiasts to their "small" cook-off and fundraiser. Now in its third year, the charitable event continues to develop flavor and raise money for local schools while packing bellies with some of the area's best barbecue recipes.
With napkins in hand, attendees can follow the smoky scents and sounds of sauce-splattered high-fives from the tents of a variety of vendors. Ten teams of grilling gurus face off in a whole-hog cook-off, with the winners earning a cash prize and a spot in the state championship later this year. A new Chick-fil-A sauce competition sifts through the day's top toppings until a winner is crowned. Between bites, guests can also savor the festival's many attractions, including a police dog demonstration, a petting zoo, and a BMX bike show, where riders wow onlookers by performing tricks and bunny-hopping over smokers.