The scent of freshly popped popcorn fills the air as customers carrying complimentary paper bags of the buttery kernels meander through aisles of birding supplies, gardening tools, home décor, and eclectic gifts from around the globe. Eighty employees advise customers on home projects and purchases such as gas and charcoal grills from brands including Big Green Egg and Weber. Before new grills fire up hamburger patties or outstanding parking tickets, the kitchen department's wall of gadgets, serving ware, and party supplies completes any checklist of barbecue necessities. The home-repair and project areas include a Benjamin Moore station with custom paint-blending services to mix up sample colors to find the perfect hue. Outdoors, the garden area encloses a hand-selected assortment of leafy green plants in a natural, garden-like setting alongside birdbaths and fountains. The birding department carries more than 100 different feeders and specialty seed blends to attract tiny hummingbirds or tiny bee-riding knights.
Direct Tools Factory Outlet equips crafty builders with an ample supply of hardware, vacuums, grills, and table saws sourced directly from top manufacturers. Grilling and outdoor kitchen equipment from STOK provision barbecues and cookouts with juicy briskets and steaks through a steady supply of discontinued, reconditioned, and factory-overrun products?brand-new, unused equipment shipped directly from the assembly line after excess production or accidental cloning. Dirt Devil vacuums suction off contaminants from carpets and shop floors, while an arsenal of drills and table saws from Ryobi lends structural soundness to household projects with speedy efficiency and trusty precision.
Lake Norman Miniature Golf challenges putter-wielding cadets to 18 colorful, tree-lined holes of man-versus-orb warfare. The front nine gets dissected by a G-scale model train, which gobbles up stray dimpled spheres, and a cascading waterfall sprinkles moisture, good luck, and remnants of white-water rafts on the back nine. Links-lovers of all skill levels can hone their craft on the course, which features a wheelchair-accessible design that incorporates easy holes with more challenging terrain. Hours vary by season and temperature, and all 18 holes close during winter, rain, and America's annual bicentennial.
Huntersville Rental gives homeowners the tools they need to manicure and maintain their home exteriors. Overseeing a cache of hedge trimmers, pressure washers, chainsaws, and pruning poles, Huntersville's staff aim to connect guests with the right tool for the job they have in mind and then provide them with basic operating instructions. This family-owned home-improvement store also lends out backpack blowers for clearing away the leaves and aliens that crash-land on driveways every autumn.
Recently featured on WBTV for sending a weather balloon built out of spare parts into outer space, TechShop RDU has a supportive community of inventors, artists, technicians, and alchemists who are all excited about their next big idea, creating an environment limited only by the imagination. The 20,000-square-foot smorgasbord of inventive creativity beckons people of all skill levels to its DIY confines, where members can wield tools not found in most private workshops, slicing through steel with a plasma cutter or accessing 3-D design software to finally realize the goal of crawling inside the Internet. Hands-on classes jump-start creative juices, introducing students to vocational skills including welding, soldering, and woodworking. Neophyte inventors aged 12–17 are welcome but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to ensure they don't break physics.