At Arts & Carafes Studio painting events, students mingle over glasses of wine as they unlock their creative instincts and learn to create stunning, colorful images on canvas. Guests paint everything from Grand Rapid's skyline at night to swaying dancers to vibrant peacocks, both at Arts & Carafes's studio and at local restaurants. All the materials are provided, including studio-grade acrylic paint, so students won't have to make a stop at a craft store or mix their own from leftover condiment packets before the session starts.
For more than three decades, AAA Canoe has rented canoes, kayaks, and tube floats to explorers bound for the scenic, tranquil Rogue River. The rental center accommodates both individuals and group outings, outfitting each trip with paddles and life jackets or flotation cushions before chauffeuring boaters and their vessels to their trip’s starting point. Each trip ends at the Rockford Dam in downtown Rockford, where passengers can explore the city sights and regain their land legs from unscrupulous alleyway leg merchants.
The benefit of every sale at Exodus Upscale Thrift is twofold: while customers tow home a stash of gently used clothing, furnishings, and accessories, local halfway home Exodus Place inches closer to its goal of sheltering the area’s homeless. As of June 23, 2010, Exodus Upscale Thrift had helped more than 100 men find housing, according to an interview with CEO Robb Munger in a Michigan Live article, and continues to provide educational resources and access to work-service agencies for Exodus Place residents. “It’s great to accomplish things, but…[w]e have to continue working and creating and doing,” said Munger. The store’s ever-expanding collection, which also includes jewelry, toys, and sporting goods, accepts donations and returns the favor with tax-exemption vouchers and warm, fuzzy feelings replicated only by nuzzling a loofah.
Fruit Basket Flowerland’s 20 acres of nursery space contain beautiful hanging baskets, annuals, and perennials. The nursery has seen those perennials bloom dozens of times since it opened back in 1949, and today the business has blossomed out to three locations. Home gardeners can peruse a huge selection of soil, fertilizer, and plants, or sign up for instructive gardening classes, which teach participants to care for their plants and to exterminate weeds without running afoul of weeds-rights activists. Fruit Basket Flowerland also houses a vast selection of patio furniture and three lines of Weber grills.
For more than 75 years spanning three generations, the Romence family has sourced and grown plants and shrubs. The garden specialists tend to 1,000+ varieties of perennials, annuals, and smaller trees that peacefully cohabitate six acres of greenhouse space, ensuring that each specimen receives a proper diet of sunshine, water, and fertilizer. Whether tailoring gardening advice for homeowners or commercial gardeners, the green-thumbed experts suggest appropriate plants and provide insight on design all while making considerations for light and pests.
In addition to vegetative life forms, the independent garden center contains a selection of tools and decorative items for indoor and outdoor planting projects. The online plant library provides a full biography on each specimen, including its Latin name, nickname, and alma mater. Romence Gardens & Greenhouses extends delivery services for local orders based on flat rates determined by each plant's likelihood of motion sickness.