The Priceless Parrot Preserve sounds like a jungle. The calls and conversations of more than 100 birds from 29 species form a symphony that strengthens social bonds. Well-behaved members of the flock greet visitors and play with toys hanging from the ceiling, whereas animals with behavioral issues—often the products of abuse or neglect—hang back, working with volunteers and founders Gene and Marietta Avery to grow and recover. As a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, Gene provides medical care to the often malnourished birds and ensures that they receive a rich diet of nuts and fruit.
Gene and Marietta Avery founded The Priceless Parrot Preserve to care for neglected and abandoned exotic birds. Their goal is twofold: to educate the public about the birds both as pets and wild creatures, and to give a permanent home to mistreated and unwanted birds. The couple originally adopted the birds out of their own pockets, but formed their own preserve when confronted with the sheer number of birds in need. Today, they specialize in taking in larger birds such as macaws and cockatoos that demand more attention and other birds that might be considered unadoptable.
Rising fog, flashing lights, and thumping techno beats set the scene for the laser-tag battles that unfold between stealthy bands of warriors beneath Laser Kingdom’s black lights. Players suit up in specialized vests, clutching light-emitting weaponry as they enter the field where an overhead scoreboard tracks team scores and the game’s best squeals of surprise when taken out by a well-hidden opponent. Afterward, patrons receive handouts that break down their individual performance that they can pore over to strategize for the next round or ditch in favor of playing one of the onsite arcade games.
Practice is the foundation of golf. Without it, the game can be frustrating, eventually sending golfers' into a fragile state of agitation. Knowing how important practice is, Indian Head Golf Park's instructors and staff focus their efforts on helping golfers improve their game. At the park's well-lit driving range, staff members keep golfers well stocked with buckets of range balls to blow off steam as they aim for the ball-retriever cart. Instructor Bob Greenstein works with students during private lessons to fine-tune their swings, and he hosts junior golf camps during summer to introduce youngsters to the game.
STEP Preschool's teachers don't just shape kids cognitively—they also develop them physically. That's because the state-licensed preschool employs multitalented staffers who lead clinics in soccer, T-ball, gymnastics, and other sports to help refine the motor skills and kinesthetic learning of children aged 2–5. Physical education boasts as integral a role in the curriculum as reading and writing, math, technology, and other academic areas that prepare kids for kindergarten and a tenure-track professorship.
For more than 25 years, Drama Kids International has nurtured thousands of thespian students and kids simply searching for an engaging activity, instilling children with the ability to speak clearly and confidently. Classes focus on sharpening articulated speech and encouraging creative expression. Children are placed in classes according to their age group: the Lower Primary (ages 5–8) teaches kids how to deliver lines and hone social skills, the Upper Primary (ages 9–11) delves into improvisation and dramatic movement, and the DKI Acting Academy (ages 12–17) preps scene-stealers on how to audition for their dream role. Each class includes a variety of activities for kids to unleash their imagination, which develops their dramatic abilities in a fun, easy-going setting. Drama Kids instructors foster an open, comfortable acting environment. Call ahead to schedule the first class and start your child down the path of becoming one of the more notable Baldwin brothers.