Amid the ballroom's dramatic red walls, professional rug cutters impart proper dance techniques, shepherding feet through wedding dance interludes and styles such as salsa, swing, waltz, and the fox trot during group and private lessons. Five primary curricula await pupils, who start off with classes from the basic introductory program before boogying on to the Associate Bronze, Bronze, Silver, and Gold programs. As classes progress, Bronze sessions get students comfortable and stylish on any dance floor, whereas Gold classes prep more advanced dancers for exhibitions and competitions. Event-specific classes are also available to prepare Sweet 16 guests of honor, aspiring brides and grooms, bar mitzvah attendees, and tiny plastic cake toppers for properly getting down on party floors.
New York Sports Clubs, part of Town Sports International's network of fitness loci, opens up a number of equipment-stocked facilities across New York to exercisers. Strength-training gear, such as circuit machines, free weights, and medicine balls, molds muscles into chiseled depictions of physical might. Sessions on cardio machines, ranging from treadmills and ellipticals to upright and recumbent stationary bicycles, inspire burnt calories to pack up and move to cooler climates. Each club offers a schedule of group classes that draws from more than 100 fitness styles, including Pilates, yoga, and boxing, ensuring that no member has to jazzercise without a spotter. Each location rewards exercisers for sweating in its vicinity with special features such as babysitting, saunas, and steam rooms.
Studio Art supplies the media and the instruction for customizing everything from canvases and pottery to skateboards and sneakers. During birthday parties, afterschool programs, and camps, artists transform everyday objects into one-of-a-kind works of art. Mirrors, moccasins, and belt buckles dress up in an arsenal of paints, glitters, jewels, and trinkets according to creative whims or the demands of the preschool fashion scene. Classes hone specific skills such as sewing and fashion design, and teen night occupies adolescents with henna, beading, and scrapbooking in an informal setting.
The Village Artist’s experienced portrait pedagogues guide aspiring artists through a bevy of media. Pintsize Picassos will spend the morning or afternoon in a focused workshop under the tutelage of experienced instructors. The three-hour sessions (for ages 6–12) concentrate on fun right-brain pursuits that include working in watercolors, drawing cartoons, and sculpting life-size clay models of the Great Wall of China. Meanwhile, those ages 13–18 hone their individual creative cachets in a guided portfolio workshop, which devotes 2.75 hours to channeling the muse of their chosen medium while free from distractions such as recreational trigonometry. Village Artist also publically exhibits the eye-catching output of its students, reaping accolades for Monets in training and opening doors to future art opportunities.
The YMCA of Long Island is committed to promoting three focus areas: youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. In fact, it's easy to see how everything the organization does contributes to at least one of those goals. The on-site child care, the day camps, and the youth sports programs help kids learn teamwork, discipline, and other skills. The cardio fitness centers, weight rooms, and group exercise classes keep members in shape. And finally, the counseling services, financial assistance, and volunteer opportunities prove the centers are more than just a place to play sports or go for a swim. All of these programs and services are available at the five Long Island locations, which together spell out the letter "Y" on a map if you squint really hard and believe.
Huntington Bay Music's instructors are rarely seen without a guitar in their hands or glued to their stomach. But while they keep their axes close, the teachers also instruct students a variety of other instruments, from piano to violin to trumpet, sax, and clarinet. To complement their lessons, the duo outfits budding musicians with guitars, also available as rentals.