At JayVee Dance Center, children learn more than the techniques to impress audiences. As they master ballet, jazz, tap, and hip-hop moves, they also gain life-long values, such as self-esteem, discipline, and a sense of responsibility. The youth classes—catering to kids as young as age 2—include the staple sessions, but also branch out into unexpected disciplines such as Tahitian hula and break dance, which boldly breaks all the rules of the Hokey Pokey. The adult schedule is just as diverse, covering fitness-oriented areas such as Zumba, pole fitness, and [Streetease], which is a saucy combination of pole fitness, burlesque, and hip-hop.
In the unusual parlance of the Hunger Runs 5K, runners are “dedications,” teams are “organizations,” spectators are “assemblies,” and the race is known simply as “the hunt.” The race’s creators, the “huntmakers,” devise a series of obstacles specifically designed to encourage teamwork and camaraderie, and they set up “challenge centers” demanding expert bow-and-arrow skills, simian climbing abilities, and courage in the face of flaming objects. Organizations that finish fastest or with the most points in their designated wave earn bragging rights, awards, and cheek pinches from their proud grandmothers. Dedications are strongly encouraged to wear fun costumes and comfortable sneakers and to come bearing team spirit and the will to win.
In 1938, Kurt and Max Laemmle, the nephews of Universal Pictures founder Carl Laemmle, opened their very own movie house dedicated to Hollywood and foreign pictures alike. Though it's since grown to encompass seven locations, Laemmle Theaters is still a family-run business that remains dedicated to its original mission.
A mix of blockbuster and art-house flicks are projected digitally into auditoriums with stadium seating, and share showtimes with special events such as premieres and one-night screenings. To spotlight smaller films, the Sneak Preview Club features upcoming movies for free, an easier way to see new releases than changing your name to Steven Spielberg. Complement each cinematic voyage with one of Laemmle Theaters' classic concessions, such as popcorn drenched in real butter.
Arlene Santos’s love of dance has been a constant her entire life, starting as a childhood curiosity and transforming into a lifestyle. Since founding Lumina Academy of Dance in 2003, Santos has created a salsa curriculum that leads small groups through basic steps to advanced, performance-ready moves, all with an emphasis on salsa as a social dance. At her studio, she invites dancers to come with or without a partner and start at any experience level before she turns them loose at parties. Her classes emphasize lead-and-follow techniques, and she encourages her students to rotate partners so they can practice with various statures, experience levels, and numbers of feet. To complement the grace and rhythm of her dance classes, Ms. Santos also offers exercise-based classes such as yoga and hip-hop boot camp, which combines sweat-inducing moves with invigorating music.
At Actors Youth Academy, working-actor instructors follow the Michael Chekhov method, which emphasizes imagination, concentration, and straightforward guidance as the most effective way to learn the ropes of acting in film and television. Classes are divided into three levels: beginner, advanced, and professional, and students are placed based on their ability. Beginner acting classes cater to kids or adults who want to dip a toe into the drama pool, advanced sessions are for actors preparing for an agent, and professional classes welcome those who have already booked a job or audition and need some extra guidance. All classes focus on preparing youths for a career in the film and television industry.
For more than 50 side-splitting years, The Ice House’s stage has been propping up comedy heavyweights and future legends by the likes of Robin Williams, Lily Tomlin, George Carlin, George Lopez, and Jerry Seinfeld. Each week, the club continues its tradition of inverting frowns with an ever-growing lineup of up-and-coming jokesters, as well as occasional drop-ins by stars that have included Rob Schneider, Tom Green, and Nick Cannon. No seat within the intimate club is further than seven rows from the stage or 30 feet from the inflatable slides that serve as emergency exits. Guests typically arrive 45 minutes before each show to settle in and dig into shareable snacks.