Although he climbed the corporate ladder at a sprinter's pace in his young life, Kirk Robinson understood the only place he belonged was out on the ocean. He was known to his coworkers as a superior business mind⎯that is, when they actually managed to find him at his desk and not at the beach windsurfing. So, after reading The Road Less Traveled and Do What You Love, the Money Will Follow, Kirk found the inspiration to start Captain Kirk's Inc. in 1992. He then quickly gathered a team that also possessed his passion for watersports, including his kiteboarding wife, Kitty, and set up shop.
Today he and his crew show others how to get the most out of the ocean through kiteboarding, windsurfing, and standup paddleboarding lessons. Additionally, Captain Kirk's retail includes all the supplies needed to master those three activities. Completing the trifecta, Kirk also owns CK's Beach Resort in La Ventana, where guests can bask in the beauty of aqua waters, a private beach, and luxurious lodging while experiencing everything from kiteboarding and standup paddleboarding to windsurfing, sportfishing, and scuba.
The Coast Guard–approved Odyssey treats up to 42 seafarers to three levels of indoor and outdoor seating. Carefully controlled with hydraulic stabilizers and piloted by a certified crew, the 58-foot-long yacht glides through the salty sea air in pursuit of frolicking dolphins or sets off into the sunset. Buffet tables and ice chests help make harbor cruises ideal for parties or company events, whereas fishing excursions facilitate sporty bonding. A big screen TV is on board, along with a full stereo system with karaoke capabilities that blasts tunes, and guests may bring their own MP3 players, food, alcohol, and freshly caught sea-bass piñatas.
Tango San Pedro gets students stepping during beginners' and mixed-level group lessons, as well as private sessions for individuals and couples. But the dancing doesn't stop there. Outside the classroom, the business organizes special events, including weekly gatherings fueled by traditional tango music and art exhibits. Tango San Pedro also host Social Tango Dance events called Milonga which includes snacks and wine with an entrance fee.
The friendly attendants at Cycle San Pedro put patrons in the saddles of rental bikes and nudge them in the direction of LA's many landmarks and attractions. Riders can point their handlebars in the direction of the LA Maritime Museum or the Battleship USS Iowa, or content themselves with a leisurely cruise along the waterfront so they can gather some air in their lungs to keep as a souvenir. Rentals are available by the hour, while tours put a knowledgeable guide in the point position for explanations of the route's sights and sounds.
Nobody leaves the Splash Dash 5K dry. A series of splash stations equipped with massive showers, shallow pools, and careening water balloons litter the 3.1-mile course, waiting to soak every participant before they cross the finish line. Down one straightaway, runners may confront a gang of volunteers ready to blast them with water guns, only to turn a corner and face the deluge of a fire hose. After braving the watery gauntlet, runners of all ages celebrate their victories at the Splash Dash Bash after party, where prizes are awarded for the best costumes and finish times as runners dance to music and attempt to dry off by matching the speed of their washer's spin cycle.
Since 2000, Tim and Tom Ryan, twin brothers and the founders of Atomic Boxing, have put their black belts to use and help patrons harness the health benefits of martial arts without the violent aspects of the sport. Fists and feet pop against personal punching bags as personal instructiors motivate students to burn fat and pump up endurance. To set the mood for muscle building and to bolster adrenaline, speakers fill the gym with driving beats or fighter pilots reading their to-do lists. Near the punching bags, free weights clatter at benches and machines target muscle groups. In addition to group sessions, instructors host one-on-one workouts.