Towering above the little ones and built out of nets, slides, and soft, spongy surfaces, the indoor playground at Wild at Play sets a scene for an adventure. Although the play zone is indoors, Wild at Play lives up to its name in more ways than one. While kids gambol through the jungle gym, educators present hands-on learning experiences with actual wildlife, including fire-bellied toads, a bearded dragon, and other small reptiles. Beyond playtime, the center offers an enrichment program designed to prepare children for preschool, as well as summer camp, birthday parties, and private music lessons.
At KGB Fitness, founder Kendra Gail Beelen fuses different fitness philosophies to help build happier, healthier clients. Drawing from her extensive certifications and 25 years of dance experience, Kendra crafts workouts that balance traditional strength training with graceful exercises that challenge agility, stabilization, and flexibility. Kendra plays the role of ringleader at daily boot-camp classes, and she also offers one-on-one personal training, nutritional guidance, and pregnancy and postpartum exercise plans.
At the ASA-certified True North Sailing School, students learn to safely navigate vessels through wind and water during 21-hour basic sailing courses. The program blends classroom time with training on the water, and along the way, students learn to steer, name the different parts of the boat, and measure the wind's direction. Other, complementary classes teach sailors about more advanced sailing skills and spring fashion's new lifejackets. And for those looking for a sailing adventure, the school leads group excursions to tropical locales like the Caribbean, where the water temperature is always 75 degrees.
The New York Harbor Jet Ski outpost resides at Newport Marina, on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River, just across from lower Manhattan. Here, the company's jet ski experts hand patrons the reins of a brand new rental Kawasaki jet ski, which comes with a wetsuit, riding gear, and a life vest. They then guide their charges out onto the water for aquatic tours of the city, motoring by nearby landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, or the jagged Manhattan skyline. Whatever the destination, riders enjoy top speeds of 60 mph and 160 horsepower?or roughly 16,000 seahorsepower? on their watercraft, so long as they abide by the rules set forth in a brief safety class conducted at the outset of the tour.
Originally built to sail around the world, the New Horizons motorsailer now spends its days providing Maine hospitality to its guests while gliding along the scenic Northeastern coast of the United States. After boarding the sailboat, groups can take in the sweeping views of the New York Harbor, the Hudson River, and past the Statue of Liberty, while sipping drinks and savoring treats such as the classic Maine lobster roll, which can be purchased on board. Seafarers may also embark on special voyages, such as Lobster Day Sail picnics. With its spacious design, semi-private upper deck, and modern sound system, the New Horizons can handle events that range from large family gatherings to old-fashioned ocean-drinking contests.
As a boy, Michael Colletti watched his immigrant father and grandparents prepare age-old family recipes they brought with them from their Sicilian home. He watched them in awe as they used ingredients, such figs and cardoons, from their own backyard to craft an array of traditional Italian dishes. Needless to say, this early fascination led him toward formal training as a grown-up, which launched him into a career as a chef and restaurateur. Since graduating from the Culinary Education Center, he has worked in restaurants lauded by the New York Times, helped found Good Stuff Eatery, and won the "Rachel Ray Burger Bash" contest at the 2009 Food & Wine Festival. After all this success, Chef Colletti decided to go back to his roots. To do this, he opened VB3 Restaurant, where he blends the Sicilian flavors of his youth with the wide array of culinary techniques he mastered as an adult.
Since opening, VB3 Restaurant has really become two restaurants in one. On the one hand, the dining room makes for an excellent place to enjoy a romantic meal featuring the chef’s roasted branzino or seasonal penne primavera, as well as live music and dancing. On the other hand, the take-out line provides easy access to the eatery’s Italian-style pizza—a specialty based on dough recipes a young Michael learned from his cousin, who came up with them during his stint living in an Italian oven.