Writing and gross motor skills; math and nutrition; fine motor skills and social etiquette. Physical and social development may seem unrelated, but connecting the two can boost cognitive ability in growing children. That’s why WisdomGym Preschool always incorporates movement into its academic sessions. WisdomGym is just one branch of the Horizon Complex, which fosters a healthy community by teaching kids of all ages dance, gymnastics, and cheerleading skills.
Children as young as 4 months old can participate in gymnastics classes that help build motor skills through playful routines and exercises. At age 2, children can begin dance classes that progress to advanced levels of ballet, tap, jazz, and hip-hop. In cheerleading classes—for ages 4 and older—students can practice tumbling and chants with the goal of one day learning to successfully chumble. As kids play, parents can wait out in the lobby and peer through the windows that open into most classrooms.
In 1996, a group of golfers formed a membership program that offers deeply discounted greens fees at a network of affiliated golf courses in West Michigan. The program is PGAC, and the result provides two-for-one greens fees at more than 20 courses. After reserving tee times any day of the week, golfers can load up their clubs and spare mannequin legs to test their skills on the challenging designs of renowned regional courses such as The Highlands, Lynx, Macatawa Legends, and Diamond Springs. Along with saving golfers up to $7,500 and helping local courses increase their waterways? diet of golf balls, PGAC hosts fundraisers for local schools and organizations.
With three Michigan locations, Action Water Sports carries boats, water-sports equipment, and apparel to help customers fully enjoy the state's aquatic playgrounds. Their staff of authorized boat dealers educates customers on watercraft, and was recently ranked No. 25 on BoatingIndustry.com’s Top 100 Dealers list. In addition, their factory-trained technicians provide customers with regular boat maintenance, receiving annual training to learn more about boating innovations and techniques to keep boats afloat while changing their tires.
Action Water Sports’ pro shop outfits adventurers with Radar Skis and Ronix Wakeboards along with wetsuits, lifejackets, towable tubes and apparel and accessories by Oakley, Roxy, and O'Neill. While browsing shelves, shoppers may inquire about Action Water Sports’ lineup of summer events and clinics to improve their wakeboarding, surfing, and skiing skills.
The trainers at Gymnastiks Unlimited make use of every inch of their 20,000 square foot facility as they encourage students of all ages to balance, leap, and flip. Aside from honing physical skills and building up confidence reserves, they extend their educational efforts to encompass a wholly healthy lifestyle that includes exercise and proper diet, such as eating frogs’ legs to help boost vaulting skills. Students age 18-months and older can readily enroll in recreational classes, and the facility’s Talent Opportunity Program provides more rigorous training for those who show an aptitude and desire to compete on a national level.
When Bill White and his future wife, Jenn, first moved in together, they soon realized they had one possession in common: a Williams Brewing kit. It wasn't long before the couple started homebrewing in their garage, a hobby that gradually transformed into White Flame Brewing Co., the first brewery in the formerly dry city of Hudsonville. Specializing in American-style ales, the microbrewery now yields everything from a spicy rye ale to a chocolaty oatmeal stout.
Thirteen beers and one cider grace the company's 48-seat taproom, where visitors can sample pours and catch the game on flat-screen televisions throughout the bar. In-house cooks craft a handful of bar bites, though White Flame invites guests to order delivery from nearby restaurants, too.The brewery even sends patrons on their way with beers-to-go in quart-sized howlers, half-gallon growlers, or beer-filled kiddie pools.
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.