In the spacious room of Sip & Stroke’s new location, students of all skill levels pick up brushes and daub pigments onto canvases to create works of art during instructor-guided canvas-painting classes. The art studio especially caters to children, who can take on canvases, clay, or strings of beads on their own, or explore creativity with a parent during Mom & Me sessions. Guests of any age are always free to craft a one-of-a-kind keepsake, creating glittering baubles from the studio’s wall of beads or decorating a pre-made ceramic piece that they hand off to experts to glaze and fire.
Arthur Murray has been a leading name in franchise dance since 1912, when the entrepreneur began selling mail-order dance lessons. Expanding his reach, he enlisted teachers to spread his signature dance lessons on first-class steamships and skyrocketed to fame in the '30s after introducing the public to such dances as the Lambeth Walk and The Big Apple. By the 1950s, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, were hosting their own highly popular TV show on ABC, The Arthur Murray Dance Party, which ran for 12 years. Today, Arthur Murray's team prepares students for rug cutting at special events and weekend nightclub jaunts. Throughout lessons, instructors teach the foundations of two to four dances from a long list of styles that range from Latin to country-western, helping students to learn basic step patterns, timing, and the ability to lead or follow.
Zoo Atlanta set up shop in 1889 after a traveling circus rolled into town and stayed indefinitely. Financial hardships had driven the circus owner bankrupt, leaving a flood of out-of-work circus performers and animals without anywhere to go. With the help of generous donations from concerned residents, Atlanta adopted the animals and converted a part of Grant Park into what is now Zoo Atlanta.
Since those early days, many animals have found their home at Zoo Atlanta, from elephants and tigers to gorillas and zebras. All in all, more than 1,500 animals currently roar and romp in their respective enclosures, meeting up once a night to dish over visitors’ summer outfits.
A typical journey through the zoo begins at Flamingo Plaza, from which visitors can choose one of two paths: They either take the left path and come face to face with elephants, warthogs, and lions, or they can choose the right and find themselves amid a flurry of exotic birds and excitable children at the KidZone playground. Visitors can walk at their own pace and follow their own path, still watching otters play, the nation's largest zoological collection of gorillas and orangutans swing through trees, and pandas pretend like they don’t care people are watching them sleep.
The Atlanta History Center, one of the largest history centers in the nation at 33 acres, chronicles the life and exploits of Georgians with signature exhibits and temporary displays in the Atlanta History Museum, depicts the history of the Olympics in the Centennial Olympic Games Museum, and enlightens visitors with historic houses, trails and gardens. In the temporary exhibit, War in Our Backyards: Discovering Atlanta, 1861-1865, visitors study interactive map overlays, artifacts, and photographs to discover which Civil War battles took place in their yards and which took place where their statue of Bruce Lee stands. Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing: How the Apollo Theater Shaped American Entertainment explores the history of the Apollo Theater’s influence on American entertainment and showcases memorabilia including Michael Jackson's fedora and dresses worn by The Supremes, and the Native Lands: Indians and Georgia display educates modern Georgians on the state’s original residents, the Mississippian Indian tribes. The Atlanta History Center’s historic houses such as Swan House give visitors a glimpse of rural Georgian lifestyle during the 1920s and '30s, and gardens and trails both historic and contemporary soothe minds with lush foliage, leaving visitors as relaxed as a rubber band in a steam room.
When the Center for Puppetry Arts opened its doors in 1978, Jim Henson and Kermit the Frog were on hand to cut the ribbon. Fittingly, one of its first major exhibitions, The Art of the Muppets in 1981, attracted more than 50,000 attendees. Since then, the center has matured into a multifaceted complex equal parts museum, performance center, educational facility, and hub for working artists.
A fourth-generation artist, Rose Handy has always made time for creating. After a rollercoaster ride of life changes and moves, Rose and her potter husband Paul opened their own gallery and class space. Joined by a staff of illustrators, quilters, watercolorists, and other artisans, the owners encourage Wild Child students to find their own artistic voices, whether they're hand-building a ceramic bowl, painting a family portrait, or fusing glass pieces together to make a new glass family. The search for new avenues of creativity also extends to the studio's class offerings; beginning in January 2013, aspiring artisans can learn the intricacies of handbuilding and wheel-based pottery techniques as part of the shop's newest curriculum.
Sparks of inspiration can flare into big ideas, as evidenced by Ann Jackson’s zeal for art, which led to her opening a namesake gallery in historic Roswell in 1971. Initially an exhibit space for works from local, national, and international artists, Ann Jackson Gallery today provides a number of interior-decoration services for homes and commercial buildings, such as custom framing and art consultation and restoration. Now helmed by her three daughters, Ann Jackson Gallery maintains a colorful collection of artwork with a specialization in fine oils, including pieces by Ann Jackson herself. The gallery is also one of a few galleries in the world licensed to represent the art of Dr. Seuss, helping customers achieve the American dream of a sneetch on every wall.