Four times a week, the Sanford Orlando Kennel Club unleashes its greyhound dogs for live, competitive contests with up to 16 races per day. Spectators can nosh trackside on savory American fare or wander the grandstand or clubhouse between heats while gazing at the tidy midfield and lush foliage framing the track. A full card of simulcast racing compliments the live action. On monitors throughout the club, nationwide greyhound, thoroughbred, and harness races beam in stretch runs and photo finishes. Once a week, amateur poker players assemble at tables overlooking the track, hoping to win a slot at a monthly or regional tournament, or to get the rare opportunity to play cards with a dog.
The Sanford Orlando Kennel Club nurtures their canine athletes long after retirement with the Adopt a Greyhound program. The initiative places dogs into loving homes with the help of four area adoption agencies, who also find school-bus-driver vacancies for retired stock-car drivers.
With more than 18,300 square feet dedicated to all manner of bounce, Rebounderz Indoor Trampoline Arena's original location in Longwood invites guests to leap and bound across more than 10,400 square feet of specially engineered indoor trampolines. After working up a sweat during rounds of air dodgeball or plunging into foam pits, bouncers can take a break with a game of ping-pong or hit the arcade games. A café refuels visitors and bakes up pizzas for birthday parties, which are an ideal way to celebrate kids for surviving this cruel world thus far.
Serenity Now Yoga centers anxious minds and forges substantial mind-body connections for students of all skill levels during yoga classes in a variety of modalities. Sprinkled throughout the studio's weekly schedule, gentle beginners sessions banish stressful thoughts and recurring nightmares by giving patient instructors the opportunity to introduce fundamental poses at a slower pace while imparting invaluable deep-breathing techniques. The Vinyasa Flow class challenges experienced students with sequences of vigorously transitioning poses that occasionally incorporate headstands, handstands, and kickstands, honing the unwavering focus needed to maintain balance during a staring competition. To ease withheld tension in the body's canvas of connective tissues, the Yin Yoga class loosens tightly spooled muscles and opens inflexible joints with deep stretches and mindful breathing.
Each day, golf carts trundle over wooden bridges, their wheels thwacking against each plank as they cross the myriad waterways that dot Alaqua Country Club's 18-hole layout. Designed by golf legend Gary Player, the 6,662-yard course is sculpted through tunnels of 55-foot trees and incorporates water hazards that come into play on 16 holes. One shining example is the par 3 hole 13 with an island green that tests golfers' iron play and ability to use those same clubs to fight off feral caddies that use flagsticks as swords. Surrounded by the Lower Wekiva Preserve State Park, the course enchants golfers with palms draped in billowing spanish moss and occasional sightings of deer and wild turkeys.
Alaqua Country Club's new, adobe-accented clubhouse offers weekly dining specials served to tables draped in white linens, where guests can unwind after rounds or fold chocolate brown napkins into festive new club head covers.
With a collection of Flyboards, which combine jet-ski horsepower and jetpack form, at their disposal, FlyBoard Rentals of Orlando grants momentary relief from the burden of gravity. Invented by champion jet skier Frank Zapata, the Flyboard's foot- and arm-mounted nozzles harness the turbocharged engine of a modern jet ski to propel riders up to 30 feet into the air, beneath the surface of the ocean, and directly into Justice League headquarters.
At Kinder Kicks, parents and children exercise, learn, and bond during get-togethers that fuse age-appropriate activities with applicable life lessons, from sharing to traffic safety and self-control. Three different age groups—Remarkable Me, Jumping Joey, and Leadership Lion—divvy up the action for newborns through 4-year-olds, with each tier focusing on skills and principles that are easily digestible for its participants.
Remarkable Me sessions, for instance, offer tactile, auditory, and visual stimulation for toddlers while their parents engage in cardio- and strength-training workouts. As kids advance, so does the curriculum: by the time they reach Leadership Lion status, youngsters are practicing basic martial arts to develop a positive attitude toward physical fitness and learn how to kick through their bedroom's forcefield when they're grounded. Little ones are ushered through this progression by friendly instructors, along with The Remarkables—a team of animal characters that makes visits all the more enjoyable.
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