Collegiate Basketball Academy’s experienced trainers, who blazed up the NCAA courts for Gordon College and Lesley and Tufts Universities, share their expertise with kids at the elementary, high-school, and college levels. Calling upon their knowledge of the sport from both the athlete’s and coach’s points of view, they school students in ball handling, shooting, and speed in both one-on-one sessions and group training academies. To help their clients find areas for performance improvement, they also come to games and film players before analyzing their forms and discussing potential fixes.
The Brattle Theatre’s screens have been glowing with an eclectic slate of films since 1953, but its cultural legacy stretches back to 1890 when it first opened as a live theater. Its productions seemed destined to eventually intertwine with the burgeoning Hollywood industry, and today, the venue keeps its artistic roots alive by showing a full roster of classic, foreign, and independent movies. The cinema-savvy staff frequently bundles pictures into special repertory series—past programs have centered around a vast array of topics, ranging from tributes to Greta Garbo and Ingmar Bergman to a series of documentaries on Clark Gable's mustache. To bolster the cinematic experience, moviegoers snack on locally-made concessions including traditional box office candy as well as baked goods and beer.
Abby E. Kidder and Captain Dwight L. Deckelmann began the nonprofit World Ocean School with an ambition to engage the public on community-building and environmental-ethics issues. They work toward this goal by providing weekly science, math, language-arts, and history programs to middle-school students in the region, as well as by teaching Boston youth maritime history and sailing skills aboard the historic Roseway schooner.
A National Historic Landmark built in 1925, the 112-foot Roseway is used today to ferry groups out to sea on day sails, corporate events, and private charters, with all proceeds being funneled back into World Ocean School’s programs. These aquatic ventures also sail up to 76 people on trips such as sunset cruises, where passengers sip beverages, lounge in the large galley, take in ocean views, and sketch caricatures of Poseidon from memory.
Mount Sunapee, hosting snow bunnies for more than 60 years, sprawls before gliding greenhorns as professional instructors lead ski or snowboard newbies toward downhill proficiency with a full schedule of daily lessons. During two-hour beginners’ sessions, students strap into provided gear, including skis or specially designed learning boards that are easier to handle than traditional snowboards made of live, rabid huskies. Groups then trudge out to the slopes, where instructors demonstrate introductory techniques and help snow-pounding protégés cultivate a well-balanced understanding of the fundamentals of their chosen downhill medium.
Lasting friendships could be a natural side effect of the fast-paced match play that occurs atop Franklin Park Tennis Association’s Shattuck Grove courts. The nonprofit organization enlists certified tennis pros to teach fundamentals during summer classes and camps and winter indoor lessons, while fostering a sense of community among players.
On Saturdays during the summer, classes for kids, youths, and adults are scheduled one after the other. This gives parents an opportunity to chat as kids play, and players get some time to connect before hitting the courts. Competitors can walk away with new comrades and a greater appreciation for active, healthy living that’s usually only obtained by blending a year’s worth of fitness magazines into a morning smoothie.
Thanks to Zoo New England, little patches of wilderness from Africa, South America, Australia, and other parts of the world now dot Massachusetts. The non-profit organization operates both Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo, each full of exotic creatures and their habitats. These microcosms represent an ideal world, one where endangered species thrive and fragile ecosystems last for generations to come.
At Franklin Park Zoo, tigers display their exotic stripes in the Tiger Tales exhibit where guests are educated on the perils these animals face in their natural habitats. Elsewhere, thousands of plants as well as mandrills, ocelots, and a pygmy hippopotamus turn the zoo into a tropical rainforest.
Stone Zoo, meanwhile, places simulations of the world's highlands next to Spot Pond. One area focuses on the Sierra Madre mountain range, which spans Mexico and the Southwestern U.S. The elevated habitat counts jaguars, coyotes, Gila monsters, and cougars among its denizens.
A portion of every admission goes to the organization's conservation efforts, which supports projects both locally and globally. For would-be zookeepers, Zoo New England hosts various adult and kids' educational programs, and lets volunteers help in the care of zoo plants and animals.