As Luis Niño programmed the printer for another press run, all he could hear was the ocean—the waves rolling against the boat's hull, the wind whipping across the sails. After navigating waters from the Florida Keys to the Bahamas for years as a recreational sailor, he dreamed of one day captaining his own ship, eventually taking the leap and launching Sailing on Biscayne Bay.
Today, Captain Niño and his wife, first mate, and professional photographer Mabel welcome passengers with English and Spanish salutations as they board the Dorinda, a Tartan 34 sailboat. They charter two- or three-hour, half-day, and full-day sails through Biscayne Bay along Miami, Brickell, and Key Biscayne. Luis and Mabel entertain guests with drinks and snacks and can also arrange a catering menu.
Each day, the cracks of bats connecting with fastballs and the smacks of baseballs arriving in leather mitts can be heard echoing throughout Hitters Hangout’s climate controlled indoor facility. The staff here encourages serious baseball and softball improvement within the facility’s three cages: a Major League cage for live batting practice, a Minor League cage outfitted with Iron Mike pitching machines, and a training tunnel for pitching, catching, and witnessing where mascots are kept during off-hours. The professional staff of instructors–which includes Orlando Palmeiro of the 2002 World Series champion Anaheim Angels, former Marlins catcher Jorge Fabregas, and Yuniesky Betancourt of the Brewers–pass along their insights on hitting, pitching, catching, and fielding during private and group lessons.
After logging more than 1,000 hours of flying time, organizing six competitions, and gaining 34 years of experience, Scot Trueblood can safely be dubbed a hang-gliding devotee. His passion for flight is only matched by his enthusiasm to share the sky with others. That’s why he founded Paradise Hang Gliding Inc., which allows Scot to take novices for atmospheric tandem rides over the stunning waters of Florida Bay and the Straits of Florida.
As students soak up views of blue waters spread out beneath them, Scot teaches them the important aspects of operating a hang glider. He generally starts beginners off on the Wills Wing Condor 330, a glider with a lightweight frame and large wingspan. These attributes allow it to take off while moving at extremely slow speeds, ensuring a comfortable ride for hesitant newcomers or cowardly penguins.
Spend a day cruising around the briny blue in a variety of specialized watercrafts. Each is equipped with GPS and Sirius satellite radio, devices that will periodically gain self-awareness and argue with each other. This will keep you on track on an oceanic highway with no roads, while occupying your ears with noises other than seductive sirens and dolphin clicks. The radios are iPod ready, enabling you to provide your own soundtrack if the one beaming from outer space is too alien. PonTunes provides life jackets for everyone except minors, so either remember to bring preservers for your kids, or conveniently forget to bring your kids.
Nautilus Spearfishing prepares patrons to tackle new underwater frontiers with education in safe aquatic exploration. Beginners' freediving courses familiarize students with techniques necessary during breath-holding journeys into underwater ecosystems. Each introduction to freediving and safety course begins in a classroom setting as students discuss safety protocol, rescue procedures, and strategies to avoid offending a barracuda. When fully versed in breathing techniques and current shellfish slang, students don course-provided articles of aquatic formalwear to implement procedures in the pool session. Sessions include two to six students, allowing instructors to provide each diver with personal attention and thoughtful answers to questions asked via sonar.
The management team at Stone Hart's Gun Club isn't shy about the value they place in hard work and personal sacrifice: they named their club for delegates Thomas Stone and John Hart, two courageous and outspoken signers of the Declaration of Independence. Drawing inspiration from these two historic figures and years of experience in the firearms industry, they manage their outfit with up-to-date safety measures such as eye and ear protection, automated target retrieval, and an OSHA-friendly air-filtration system. Certified NRA instructors lead free basic-safety training and precision-shooting and tactical-training courses. Female students can also enroll in a women-only course led by History channel's Top Shot contestant Gabby Franco. For inquiries about range rules and regulations, see the club's frequently asked questions.