At Lil Learners, students ages 3–12 gather in groups of 3–10 to hone skills in arts and athletics classes, each of which focuses on developing a different part of the brain. Young pencil-wielders in visual arts classes sharpen a studioful of skills including fashion design, comic-book drawing, photography, and building toothpick models of San Francisco. Alternatively, little limbs can kick and chop their way through the athletics curriculum, which includes fencing, martial arts, and synchronized spitball-slinging, or choose between four different dance classes to learn a melody-oriented approach to appendage-whirling. Foreign-language classes teach youthful vocal chords to warble unfamiliar syllables, and music and theater classes round out the school’s eclectic agenda with performance-ready flair.
The laundry masters at family-owned Hi-Tone Cleaners suss out stains and eradicate unpleasant odors with a variety of services honed over the course of three decades. Clothes caretakers make linens preen under the affectionate grandmother-like embrace of a dry cleaning, and shirts bask in the soppiness, then dryness, of an old-fashioned laundering. The team can also shape up ill-fitting duds during alterations and repairs and grant boots with enthusiastic go-go owners a pulchritude-bestowing makeover during shoe care and repair. Hi-Tone Cleaners' stain fighters also makes same-day services available in case of dry-cleaning emergencies such as an impromptu party or a rumor that Publishers Clearing House will show up by the end of the day.
At The Paragon School of Pet Grooming, textbooks walk in on all fours. More than 150 pets come into the school each week, which means students get ample hands-on practice as they master bathing and brushing or work their way to becoming full pet stylists. The school's instructors teach how to work with cats and dogs, purebreds and mixed breeds. Pet owners also benefit from the school's dog- and cat-grooming services, which are available to the general public.