The avid paddlers at River City Canoe & Kayak draw upon years of experience navigating Kentucky’s waterways to empower budding aquaphiles to do the same. They stock their vast showroom with boats, accessories, and apparel, and happily help paddlers hone in on an ideal vessel for whitewater or sturdy paddle for impromptu jousting. Their expertise extends beyond the showroom: American Canoe Association–certified instructors lead classes in water safety, and rent out a fleet of kayaks, canoes, and standup paddleboards from their Harrods Creek launch site.
The saga of the world-famous Putt-Putt chain dates back to 1954, when founder Don Clayton opened his first course in Fayetteville, North Carolina. After the hole-in-one, Don started selling franchises the next year, and now his miniature empire counts the Louisville Putt-Putt Fun Center among its ranks. Three 18-hole indoor courses test mini golfers' mettle with distinct challenges and themes. On one course, a waterfall scintillates soothingly, and on another, animals stand watch and try to store errant golf balls for winter's semipermanent nap. An arcade tests hand-eye-screen coordination, and an outdoor party pavilion hosts birthday parties and events.
Founded by author and naturalist Joseph Yurt, Children's Nature Guide forges connections between youngsters and nature by emphasizing study, play, cultural diversity, and environmental stewardship. Groupon buyers may choose from a wealth of reading material stocked in the Nature Guide Bookshop, with each tome representing another step on the grassy path towards eco-enlightenment. Sweeten dreams with a bedtime rendition of Good Night, Little Bear by Richard Scarry ($3.99), intended for ages prekindergarten and up, or encourage fidgety young fingers and nimble toes to dig into Return to Fairyopolis by Cicely Mary Barker ($19.99), a suggested read for ages 7–9. Flora fanatics will go bananas for North American Wildlife: Trees and Nonflowering Plants ($16.95), suggested for ages 10 and up, and fully formed persons may wish to roll their eyes around the pages of A Year On the Wing: Four Seasons In a Life With Birds ($24), which chronicles author Tim Dee's 40 years of ornithological observation.
A reading specialist with decades of experience, Candace Meyer couldn't stop wondering why some kids have trouble in the classroom, while others excel. She noticed, however, that many of her struggling students shared the same difficulties: poor balance, lack of rhythm, and difficulty with visual tracking. To her, these symptoms all pointed to one root?the inner ear.
Meyer's research led her to establish connections between inner-ear functionality and learning ability in children. It also inspired her to found Minds-in-Motion, an organization that combines brain training with movement more safely than hosting lectures in the middle of a football field. The company's specialists create customized programs for each student based on assessments that measure sensory and motor skills. By helping children to develop both types of skills at the same time, Minds-in-Motion encourages them to succeed in school and life.
A member of USA Fencing, Royal Fencing International stands as one of just seven clubs representing the sport throughout the state of Kentucky and has been featured on WHAS11. Coach Shen brings over 18 years of experience to the sport of Fencing, having been a member of the Chinese national team, and winning two gold medals in the national championships. Coach Shen helms a comprehensive program that introduces students from ages 5 to 85 to the fundamentals of competitive fencing, from displaying the proper footwork to choosing an appropriately intimidating French nickname. Along with group and private classes, the club offers membership perks such as unlimited open fencing, discounts on classes, and coaching at local and regional competitions.
A cheer and tumbling school, GymTyme instills athletes of all ages with the skills necessary to complete and even lead dynamic, gravity-defying routines. Coaches lead cheer camps and six progressive levels of classes that begin by covering basic tumbling form and jumps, then work up to full twisting layouts, bounding, and other advanced choreography. Open gym sessions provide a less-structured opportunity to practice technique on padded areas under the supervision of a coach instead of a remote camera controlled by B?la K?rolyi. No matter how intense the flips and spins get, though, the school follows all USASF safety guidelines. In addition to education, the gym's other specialty is choreography: staff design moves and choose the soundtrack for routines from the middle school to collegiate level.