The state-of-the-art equipment, convenient amenities, and variety of exercise classes at Courthouse Racquet & Fitness's six locations earned the club several of Jackson Free Press's Urban Living awards in 2011 and 2012, including Best Fitness Center/Gym and Best Yoga Instructor. Visit the flagship Lakeland location to swim in a pool of professional athletic proportions. Explore the 13,000-square-foot Madison 51 facility's yoga, spin, and boot-camp classes or the Northeast center's indoor and outdoor tennis courts.
The newest location in Brandon boasts more than 100 treadmills, elliptical machines, rowers, and other pieces of cardio equipment. Women can take advantage of the Downtown site's ladies-only cardio area. Three locations offer childcare, and the Byram facility has launched an afterschool program, where kids can do arts and crafts and engage in healthy physical activities in an environment devoid of teddy-bear drill instructors.
Wedgewood Golfers' Club and North Creek Golf Course integrate the scenic landscapes of northern Mississippi into their par 72 layouts, taking golfers across rolling hills and rippling waterways.
The North Creek course's bermuda-grass fairways weave along the edges of Horn Lake Creek with a relatively open layout and mounded terrain that channels the links-style charm of golf's Scotch-Irish forebears. Slightly easier than its counterpart, North Creek caters to clubbers of all stripes with four tee options and optional bumper greens.
North Creek Golf Course at a Glance:
Cleaved through a combination of dense tree lines and intervening ponds, The Wedgewood course's bermuda-grass fairways sprawl across 6,863 yards of arduous terrain. With trees hugging most holes, and water hazards kissed against the underside of two doglegged fairways, the course frequently forces players into tough course-management decisions, such as when to smash a driver, when to play lay-up with a three-wood, and how to coerce fellow golfers into giving you unlimited mulligans. Though challenging from the back tees, the course's inventive layout is forgiving enough for players of all abilities.
Wedgewood Golfers' Club at a Glance:
At Gattitown, a vast buffet quells the hungers caused by romping through up to 10,000 square feet of violence-free arcade games, bumper cars, and mini bowling. Before meals, kids scurry between more than 150 exciting games, including virtual-reality racing and tax-filing simulations. In the bumper-car arena, wee ones determine driving dominance by crashing and cruising around a spacious floor. Players then hone their underhand tosses with mini bowling and skee-ball, shooting for tickets to spend on doodads, gadgets, and teddy-bear ransoms inside the Gatti goods store.
Designed by celebrated architect Frank Gehry, the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum of Art exalts the work of George E. Ohr, a ceramic artist and moustache enthusiast known as the "Mad Potter of Biloxi." After it was destroyed in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina, the campus reopened in 2010 amidst a grove of ancient live-oak trees, featuring a series of six aesthetically impressive pavilions that include a welcome center, a gallery of African-American art, and an interpretive center inside a reconstruction of the house of emancipated craftsman Pleasant Reed. Current exhibitions include collections from some of the art world's biggest names, including Andy Warhol and ceramic sculptor Jun Kaneko, as well as selections from Ohr's Gulf Coast collection, which inspired the American Modernist movement and several MLB baseball teams to wear ceramic pots instead of baseball hats.
Long the home of the Mississippi Choctaw Indians, Dancing Rabbit Golf Club derives its name from the waterway that snakes across its grounds, which the Choctaw referred to as "the creek where rabbits dance." The club's name is not the only thing that hearkens back to a bygone era: towering, mature pines and hardwoods cast their shadows across the 700-acre plot, which hosts two handsome, challenging 18-hole layouts designed by course architect Tom Fazio and former PGA star Jerry Pate. Opened in 1997, the Azaleas course connects Bermuda fairways and bentgrass greens in a 7,128-yard layout that takes full advantage of the surrounding water. The zoysia fairways and Bermuda greens of the Oaks course, meanwhile, offer a slightly different feel, though the two courses are similar in length, difficulty, and topography.
Regardless of which course they play, golfers will have to keep their wits about them until the very last shot, as both feature 18th greens guarded by water hazards. Before hitting the course, guests can warm up at a practice facility that includes a driving range with seven target greens and three contoured putting greens, as well as a bunker where they can practice sand shots or dig for ancient divot tools.
Azaleas Course at a Glance:
Oaks Course at a Glance:
Mid-South Ice House sparks heated competition amid icy environs by hosting hockey, curling, and broomball teams. The center also caters to figure skaters with regular freestyle sessions. In addition to athletic endeavors, it supports family-friendly revelry with regular open skates, lessons for ages 2 to adult, and a private party room. Cosmic Skate sessions every Saturday night capture the dazzle of the northern lights, sending a multihued glow over glinting ice.