Bailey's Powerhouse Gym Basic Plus members can sweat solo on modern, well-maintained exercise equipment accessible 24 hours a day, or join others for a one-on-one training and group fitness classes. A one-hour personal-training session with one of Bailey's trained fitness gurus can bolster motivation, help design a workout routine, or refresh your memory about hard-to-remember state capitals. Then, pump muscle with exercise accessories available 24 hours a day at every Bailey's gym, including a smorgasbord of cardiovascular equipment, a plethora of strength-training machines and free weights, and a boatload of synonyms for the word many. Other amenities vary from gym to gym, but may include boxing rooms, saunas, or cardio theater rooms stuffed with big-screen TVs and surround-sound speakers designed to distract exercisers from their toil or the fact that their hair is on fire.
As one of the world’s largest beer brewers, this Jacksonville outpost of Anheuser Busch is surprisingly open about its process. The looming facility offers free tours on how they brew and package Budweiser, with guests catching glimpses of the state-of-the-art technology, giant tanks, carefully controlled temperature rooms and bottling and packaging facilities, all of which can be seen through glass viewing windows. There’s also information on the recycling program, energy recovery and conservation of wildlife in the surrounding Jacksonville wetlands. After the tour, stop in the hospitality room and sample some beer. For the truly curious, the more in-depth Beermaster Tour is for true connoisseurs and a one-off Beer School class introduces patrons to different beer styles, proper pouring and a variety of craft beer and food pairings. There’s also a gift shop on hand, and occasional events take place on the property.
When the Jacksonville Zoo first opened in 1914, it had only one attraction––a red fawn. Today, nearly a century later, it’s home to more than 2,000 rare and exotic animals and 1,000 plant species, and welcomes an ever-changing lineup of visiting exhibits. Guests stroll along the boardwalk in a large, open environment called the Plains of East Africa, where cheetah, antelope, and warthogs roam in environs that simulate their native habitat. The African loop also includes Elephant Plaza, where elephants stir up tidal waves playing marco polo in a 275,000-gallon pool. Visitors can also pet and feed stingrays, stand eye-to-eye with a giraffe, and head to the award-winning Range of the Jaguar exhibit to roam a replica of an abandoned Mayan temple. During summer months, kids get wet at the Play Park and Splash Ground, where they can climb into a treehouse or peer through an underwater window to see penguins swimming overhead.
After guests explore the wildlife, rest and relaxation await within botanical gardens such as the Asian Bamboo garden, where patrons cross a traditional moon gate to see a tranquil waterfall, komodo dragons, and an interactive bamboo mist forest. The zoo also features a carousel, train rides, and several restaurants where humans can tap into their own wild instincts by hunting their natural prey—the sandwich.
Nestled beside a crystal clear, spring-fed lake, Flamingo Lake RV Resort sprawls across 50 acres of scenic landscape. Guests park their RVs at one of the resort’s 288 full hookup sites, and then kick back for some quality time with nature enhanced by amenities including a playground, pool, exercise room, and bonfire area. They can spend the day soaking up sunlight on the beach, or wake up with the birds to watch the sunrise while casting a line for large-mouth bass and bluegill. The onsite Sunrise Café serves up steaming cups of coffee to accompany trips to nearby attractions such as the Jacksonville Zoo, beaches, military bases, or Alltel Stadium. Additional amenities include a general store, laundry room, and bathhouse, as well as rental cabins and a banquet hall for hosting special events, such as a ceremony honoring the hawk you captured and taught to speak English.
The inspiring trainers at each MetaBody location lead troops of workouteers in results-oriented workouts several times weekly. Fun sweat sessions utilize a variety of exercises and disciplines to produce full-body results in a supportive environment ideal for both beginners and hard-core core hardeners alike. Begin a day of litigating with a refreshing early-morning boot-camp session, or wind down by burning caloric evidence with a late-evening yoga class. Muscles are kept guessing with new and challenging moves during each session, so participants never fall into a boring, ineffective routine, such as regular teeth brushing. In addition to the fitness classes, students receive a success guide to help prepare for imminent pound loss, a nutrition guide, and a $100 gift certificate for individual coaching. Since the pass sets a 10-class cap at any given location, roving fitness mavens can further shake up their workout regimen by vetting a series of classes or instructors that work best for them.
Each 60 minute Jazzercize class incorporates moves from hip-hop, yoga, Pilates, jazz dance, kickboxing, and resistance training (with handheld weights) to a total-body workout complete with cardio, strength training, and stretching techniques. Dancing With the Stars multiple-champion Cheryl Burke is a big fan of Jazzercise's improvisational workouts, though luckily you won't need her dance moves to get the most out of your class. If you're prone to first-class jitters, simply review the basic moves online before you go. Expect to burn off up to 500 calories with each go-round.