Fanny Kerwich, Lone Star Circus’s founder and current creative director, was born with the circus in her blood. An eighth-generation member of a renowned French circus family, she has been performing since age 6, delighting international audiences at Paris’s Lido and Moulin Rouge, Germany’s Circus Roncalli, and San Francisco’s Teatro ZinZanni.
Fanny’s performing experience and artistic vision now guide the nonprofit Lone Star Circus, which is a two-branched operation. Its performance troupe’s grace and athleticism shine during shows such as the upcoming winter spectacle, Cirque Banquisté. The circus’s school hosts classes for youngsters and adults, teaching them how to swing from trapezes, scale silks, and contort their frames so they can more accurately pantomime what Gumby would look like during a high-speed car chase.
International Scuba's PADI-certified crew of submarine-impersonating instructors offer open-water diver-certification classes that get students sea legal within days. Before beginning class, students should pick up the educational materials and brush up on basic cephalopod-communication skills. After three or four small-group confined-water sessions—held on weekday evenings or weekends—students venture to natural bodies of water for four checkout dives in their adopted aquatic habitat. Depending on the season and the student's desires, the open-water excursions can take place as near as the Clear Springs Scuba Park in Terrell or as far away as the Caribbean, should divers opt to join any of the center's tropical dive trips. Scuba-park entrance fees ($10–$30) are not included and vary by location, as does the likelihood of encountering shipwrecks packed with pirate ghosts.
Big Boar Tactical doesn't train their clientele on a typical gun range with stationary, paper targets. Instead, their trainers—each of whom has more than 12 years of professional armed bodyguard experience—take beginner shooters outdoors, where they move through a series of obstacles and shoot multiple targets set to various heights, distances, and parallel dimensions. Each drill teaches a relevant skill, from learning to draw a gun and move and shoot during the intro to handgun class to honing one-handed accuracy and using cover and concealment during the tactical combat handgun training course. Instructors can also help customers obtain concealed handgun licenses or master the use of various other firearms, including shotguns and rifles.