Shots ring out over Eldorado Valley, filling the air with the distinctive crack of rifle fire. Within the foothills of the McCullough Mountains, visitors of all abilities refine their aim under the watchful eyes of the staff at Pro Gun Club. Spanning 160 acres of rolling terrain, the shooting grounds cover areas for firearms practice, shotgun sports, and even the chance to blow up a vehicle. There?s also a dedicated space for archery and opportunities for airsoft games. Between shooting sessions on the field, visitors can head to the clubhouse, which brims with amenities such as a fully stocked bar and flatscreen televisions.
Vegas Off Road Experience's wilderness-worthy Roughrider trucks harness the rage of a six-cylinder Ford engine and encase drivers and passengers in stable cockpit conditions cradled by 24-inch tuned suspension. On-staff instructors provide handling instruction and a warning against feeding the engine Mountain Dew after dinner, so that participants can harness the vehicle's maximum potential during short-track and desert-challenge excursions. Visitors maneuver the resilient metal monsters across natural desert jumps and mountain passes, or take to the professional-grade closed course to launch off of 40-foot tabletop jumps and around sharp turns. The on-staff instructors have competed in the Mint 400 race and pass on their speedy prowess through a racing-training program. Whether exploring their truck's off-road capabilities or hunting down tumbleweeds that cut them off during a desert romp, drivers are always equipped with safety gear, GPS, and radio communication.
Scubafy Dive Center's veteran dive instructor, cofounder Charlie Franks, an instructor, regional training director for IDEA, and evaluator, draws on thousands dives’ worth of experience while teaching scuba courses. Charlie and his instructors guide small-group classes of budding divers aged 12 and older through open-water certification courses, which impart the skills needed to explore the liquid depths of nearby Lake Mead, international waters, or Zeus's hot tub. The shelves and racks of Scubafy's well-stocked dive shop are laden with new and pre-owned gear for divers of all skill levels. Rental equipment is available by the day or week, and air-tank refills, repair services, and all-inclusive introductory packages equip those who are getting their feet wet for the first time.
A sea-centric oasis in the heart of the desert, Texas Star Oyster Bar serves up a tongue-tantalizing menu of fresh fish dishes and stiff signature cocktails inspired by taste traditions stretching from the Bayou to the Gulf. Begin your culinary quest with a Texas mai tai, Malibu rum and a hint of Southern Comfort mingling with orange and pineapple juice in a geometrically challenged 10-gallon hat ($7.50). Next, slurp down a half dozen fresh oysters on the half shell ($11), or throw back an edible shooter such as the tequila madness, an oyster lounging with Sauza tequila, spicy tomato juice, and fresh lime in a shot glass ($4). Entrees include hearty classics such as New Orleans gumbo ($18), as well as lighter options including the mediterranean salmon sautéed with olive oil, white wine, tomato, capers, and basil ($16).
Every year, Legacy High School robotics team The IncrediBULLS builds a working robot from scratch. With raw materials such as aluminum and screws, they brainstorm and build a mechanical creation, programming it to respond to the world. Six weeks is all they have though, so they work hand-in-hand with professional scientists and engineers as they explore the fundamentals of STEM subjects—science, technology, engineering, and mechanics—and dip their toes into scientific-career fields. Once they complete the robot, the team showcases it at community events, such as the Las Vegas Science Festival, to spread the word about the program and the brightness of their futures. Then, they compete against other high-school teams from around the country at the 2013 FIRST Robotics Competition, striving for the national title.
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In 1976, Joan Barnes—a California mom frustrated with the lack of spaces where she could take her kids for safe and age-appropriate play time—took matters into her own hands and founded Gymboree Play and Music. In the decades since Gymboree’s founding, Joan’s vision of a safe place where youngsters could build confidence and creativity has come to fruition and spread to 30 countries around the globe. Staffed by attentive and expertly trained instructors, each Gymboree outpost adheres to a curriculum of activities designed by experts to foster the development of children's cognitive, physical, and social skills through structured play and close readings of Goodnight Moon. The staffers also conduct entertaining classes for parents, newborns, and children under 1 year that cover subjects ranging from music to sports, imparting valuable lessons of imagination and physical activity to developing minds. To further set apart her business, Barnes employed nationally renowned playground designer Jay Beckwith to design the proprietary play equipment at her centers.