Armed with an army of innovative and certified shutterbugs, Olan Mills Portrait Studio provides families with high-quality portraits, continuing a mission that was established more than 75 years ago by founder Olan Mills Sr. Skilled in the art of capturing infants, children, families, and bunny-ears-giving ghost orbs on film, Olan Mills’s experienced smile snappers will take a series of poses amid a variety of backgrounds and lighting options. The studio is equipped with a selection of props—including numbers for birthdays, toys, and boxes—and patrons may bring their own photo-enlivening items from home. The resulting photos find their way to prints in natural color, black and white, or sepia tones; they can also be immortalized in the studio's signature Old Masters style, a canvas brushed with highlights to recreate look of an oil painting. Like the gentlemanly mariners of ages past with their full schedule of sea-battles, the photographers welcome appointments, but do not require them.
For over 75 years, Rogers Jewelers has lavishly exhibited a sparkling smorgasbord of fashion and bridal accoutrements. The professional staff guides customers to ensure informed purchases. Accessorize with a Diamond Key Pendant, a take on the old-fashioned skeleton key design ($59). Rogers provides free inspection and cleaning of jewelry, as well as a lifetime guarantee with each purchase of a diamond or promise to have children for the sole purpose of purchasing diamonds in the future. Rogers also donates to the American Red Cross and local school programs.
With in-store samples and a massive online inventory of crafting patterns, fabric, and supplies, MMIJA quenches any quilting or sewing thirst with a wide variety of high quality products. The large selection of fabrics and prints is fit for any ambitious project, such as a vintage-style dress, a snazzy pillowcase, or a luxury duplex blanket fort. Sew a patch over tiny scuffed knees with bumblebee fabric from Melly & Me ($9.99 per yard), or amp up your kickball team’s patriotism with jerseys festooned from Old Glory navy striped cotton ($8.99 per yard). A hefty supply of patterns is on hand for fashioning handmade gifts or punching up home decoration. With a variety of sewing and embroidery kits ($20–$78.95) crafters can knit a fashionable tracksuit or expertly fend off swarms of killer quilting bees.
Packard’s Games and Movies fuels friendly competition and hours of virtual entertainment with an eclectic abundance of gently used media. Gamers can fire up current consoles with a collection of used games, such as Halo 3 ($9.99) and Fable II ($7.99), which carry the ghosts of past triumphs to challenge their new owners. Those yearning for pixels of the past can dive into a rich selection of retro games ($2.99+) for vintage systems including Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Guide virtual superheroes as they jump across flames and elude persistent tax collectors with controllers for the Playstation 2 ($9.99+), Super Nintendo ($9.99+) or the Nintendo 64 ($12.99–$19.99). Stacks of previewed DVDs ($4.99) and Blu-rays ($8.99+) provide ample fodder for future movie nights. Each store has a slightly different selection, so call ahead for specific inquiries or simply browse through the cartridge- and disc-packed aisles in person.
In 2011, WBIR-TV reported that local racecar driver Trevor Bayne dropped by Oakes Farm to see his face carved into the cornfield. The farm had adopted Bayne as that year's maze theme, shaping the field to look like his face and his racecar when viewed from above. On the ground, however, the maze was a tangle of curves and dead ends that often took guests 90 minutes to solve, longer if they neglected to learn ancient Greek in order to ask the minotaur directions.
The farm updates its agricultural labyrinth annually to reflect a new motif, but it never fails to entertain explorers with its routes and interactive games. Just as delightful are the hayrides that ferry visitors to and from the pumpkin patch, the smell of autumnal sweets from the Cornfections stand, and the echoes of laughter from inside the Mine Shaft—a giant slide in the farm's Back 40 entertainment area. These attractions, alongside animal exhibits, pedal karts, and open zones for freeform play, draw families to the seasonal hotspot. In the days approaching Halloween, however, the farm endeavors to make patrons flee with its haunted attractions and pop quizzes for school children.
Lisa Foster, who has more than 20 years of floral-design experience, cut ties with her former flower shop in 2004 in order to realize her dream of opening her own design studio, Lisa Foster Floral Design. Though she worked out of her home for the first few years, she gained so many clients—128 brides in 2008—that she knew she had to open a storefront to keep up with the demand. By 2010, Lisa was arranging blooms for more than 200 brides as well as gussying up birthdays, anniversaries, or anticipated video-game releases with red roses, yellow sunflowers, and white orchids. Lisa is committed to making her clients' celebrations special, and so she only creates custom arrangements that are never "cookie-cutter" designs. She also wants to make events as stress-free as possible. This is why she rents out special-occasion equipment, such as crystal trees, candelabras, and wandering minstrels, and offers her brides links to her favorite trusted vendors on her website.