In more than 1,112 stores worldwide, Edible Arrangements' expert fruit florists arrange pieces of premium fruit in stunning displays for all occasions. Customers can customize their order to suit any occasion, receiving chocolate-dipped fruit such as pineapples, granny-smith apples, grapes, and juicy Albion strawberries that, unlike the sodas found in most mummies' crypts, don't contain any preservatives. Staffers can dip fruit in gourmet semisweet chocolate, white chocolate, or their own special peanut-butter-and-chocolate blend. For birthdays and anniversaries, chocolate wielders can personalize gift baskets with gifts such as plush teddy bears and mylar balloons.
An FAA-approved helicopter-flight tour operator, North Andover Flight Academy employs five licensed instructors with combined flight and teaching experience that numbers in the thousands of hours. Fledgling aviators can begin their aeronautical journeys at Lawrence and Marlboro Airports, which serve as home bases for services that range from tours and photography flights to full pilot-certification courses and agricultural applications. The team commands a fleet of six Robinson helicopters, including one R44 and five R22s, and keeps Robinson factory-trained mechanics on staff to ensure their safe operation and to ice down their blades after particularly vigorous training flights.
At Fun2Paint, artists of all ages adorn plaster vessels with individualized designs, crafting masterpieces in the studio to take home immediately. After selecting a choice piece from hundreds of options (starting at $10.99), fledgling Van Goghs can embellish with studio-supplied paints and brushes, creating a vibrant flower, a realistic butterfly, or a mustached Batman. The resident spray wizard will then coat finished figures with a magical paint-fixing spray-finish, so artists can take their master works home that day.
Well-lit and painstakingly organized, Used Book Superstores upend images of the precariously balanced stacks and dusty hardcovers most people associate with used book stores. More than 100,000 new and gently used books—from current bestsellers to staples of the literary world—sprawl across each of the five mammoth locations, which, like so many shattered crates of tea, dot the landscape of the greater Boston and south New Hampshire region. As bookworms hunker down with hardcovers, paperbacks, and children's books, neglected friends can peruse the store's voluminous selection of music, DVDs, and toys, all of which sell for a fraction of their original cost.
Dresscode, which has won awards from local press, such as Boston magazine, showcases a Herculean array of apparel by a chic selection of designers. Dozens of brand names populate dresscode's swank shelves, including BCBG, LAmade, Penumbra, and 7 For All Mankind. Mystree striped dresses provide fashionistas with trendy threads or zebra wranglers with stylish camouflage ($58). Harness elegance in a white-velvet top with mesh sleeves ($90) or keep shoulders warm on brisk evenings with a black Mystree cardigan that, like Mozart's beloved Ford Mustang, will always be a classic ($50).