The Wright State Raiders aim to overcome a bumpy season start to propel a run of backboard-slapping matches into success at February's Horizon League tournament. The challenge inspires energetic head coach and well-known public speaker Billy Donlon—now in his second year at the helm after four years as assistant coach—to further psych up his roster with canny strategy and an all-team Henry V discussion group. As cheers ricochet around the arena, junior guard Julius Mays pops off screens for soft jump shots and jukes defenders for ardent drives to the bucket. Meanwhile, sophomore forward AJ Pacher patrols the paint with nearly 7 feet of rebound readiness. From corner seats in the Wright State University Nutter Center, fans command a panoramic view of the court and the freshly baked new video board that gleams amid a sea of raucous students and other faithful basket boosters.
For more than a quarter-century, the tutors at U-Learn Academy have been boosting the collective IQ of their community without contaminating the town reservoir with superfoods. New students complete a diagnostic exam, which places them at the right level of performance, and then they dive into academics with their tutor. Instructors customize tutoring sessions to meet students' individual needs, including learning disabilities. Content ranges from test-taking techniques for college entrance exams to basic math and spelling.
The knowledgeable instructors of MacAir Aviation Services take aspiring aviators aloft during 30-minute simulated flights. Pupils climb into a mock cockpit to roam the wild blue pixels as aeronautical mentors dispense helpful advice regarding aircraft control, instrumentation readings, and swiping the freshest grapes from Amelia Earhart's cloud-top villa. Preflight, students can fuel up by sipping complimentary coffee or garner elevation inspiration while watching the comings and goings of airplanes that stop by the full-service fixed-base operator for fuel, supplies, and maintenance.
It began with a simple camping trip in 1910. Carl B. Kern led a group of 12 young men on a hike from Lebanon, Ohio, to a small camping area along the Little Miami River. Naming the area Camp Ozone, since there were no signs of civilization, Kern continued to bring campers back there each summer until he died unexpectedly in 1917. Camp Kern – YMCA is now located on the original spot where the first group of campers stayed. It has grown from a boys-only summer camp into a 485-acre, coed, year-round facility that offers everything from summer camps to zipline canopy tours.
Some things at the camp haven't changed, though. As part of the YMCA of Greater Dayton, the camp's staff members continue their mission to strengthen kids, families, and communities by teaching core values. They lead outdoor education sessions where students explore Native American mounds built 2,000 years ago and gather 500-million-year-old fossils to learn about nature and what hats were popular in prehistoric times. Ranch camps teach equestrians how to care for horses, whereas family and adult programs revolve around archery, canoeing, and climbing.
The crew also hosts literary-themed summer camps, including one that immerses kids in the world of the Ranger's Apprentice book series by John Flanagan. The author visited the camp in November 2012 and told WDTN 2 News, "I had no idea that you were actually recreating and enacting so many parts of the Ranger legend…I think it's fabulous, I wish I was a kid and I wish I could do it."
The FAA certified flight instructors at Champion City Aviation jet students into the skies with both college and casual training programs. The facility's combination of ground school and in-the-air education covers vital aviation techniques, including flight rules and regulations, radio procedures, and how to handle inclement weather. Ground school sessions unfold inside a modern classroom equipped with computer technology, and air training utilizes Champion City's fleet of training aircraft.
Jelly Bean Junction specializes in tutoring programs for moldable child brains; however, they also provide daycare services for infants through kindergarteners and summer camps for school-aged children. Infant care ($215 per week) is individualized to each wobbly bairn; infants are fed, changed, and napped on their own schedule, all of which is tracked on a daily report. Toddler care ($190 per week) lets the wee ones explore and grow in a carefully planned environment, which includes mealtime, naps, and sensory-rich games. Preschool care ($160 per week) is designed for ages three to five and incorporates developmentally appropriate experiences and learning materials as well as outdoor play. Kindergarten care ($145 per week) involves nutritious snacks, computer games, and creative materials that focus on art, science, and more.