Spanning the eastern shores of the U.S. from New York to Florida, Scuba Network’s staff has overseen thousands of completed scuba certifications throughout its eight locations. Group NAUI certification courses keep learning to dive simple with a three-step process that includes online academic training, pool sessions, and open-water dives with sharks that have had their teeth removed by a dentist. Staffers supplement dives with know-how on equipment, from masks and snorkels to underwater cameras.
In 2004—on a mission to bolster its community’s wellspring of art, creativity, and education—the nonprofit Bergen Performing Arts Center took over the former John Harms Center, an art deco–style movie and vaudeville palace built in 1926. Today, in the same antique theater where Shakespeare screened his first car-chase movie, the Bergen Performing Arts Center hosts 150 yearly events that bring dance, music, and theatrical productions to an estimated 250,000 annual audience members. Networks like HBO, PBS, and MTV all have filmed international broadcasts on Bergen Performing Arts Center’s stage, which has seen the likes of Tony Bennett, Woody Allen, and the Dixie Chicks.
Open for business from the first blossoms of spring until the last leaves of autumn, Decker Farm stocks its shelves with organic fruits and vegetables harvested each day from its 11-acre field. Crisp stalks of asparagus beckon shoppers away from ripe tomatoes and juicy lemons, and fresh foods—such as sourdough bread, cheeses, and raisin fennel semolina prepared onsite—add local touches to dinner parties or food-pyramid Halloween costumes.
Daily stresses in life, injury, and pregnancy strain the body's joints, and it's the job of exercise to strengthen muscles, easing the strain and supporting the skeletal system. That was the idea that led Joseph Pilates to create his signature method, performed at Pilates of New Jersey. Five certified instructors—one a physical therapist experienced in physical rehabilitation—teach students the ins and outs of Pilates' various machines and maneuvers. Along the way, they discuss the rationale behind each movement, handing out tips on how to move safely without wasting energy or how to safely tickle strangers' cats.
Glowing hardwood floors support rows of reformers, towers, and exercise balls, all used to enhance the intensity of Pilates motions. Crimson walls fortify the studio, the color echoed in every piece of Pilates equipment within the clean, newly outfitted space.
At Creative Kids, imagination is the driving force behind the programming for each day. The school’s facility boasts an art room, a movement and dance area, and a parent’s lounge, with rooms painted in bright solid hues of purple, green, and orange. Kids are encouraged to express themselves and discover new talents, whether that means building robots out of LEGO blocks, rocking out in a music class, or embracing their inner Picasso in an art class. With such a wide variety, kids can let their imagination run wild and choose from a broad selection of signature party themes and activities.
A nonprofit organization, The Riverdale Art Center's only aim is to weave creativity into the everyday life of its community. To this end, its instructors host A Glass of Art BYOB art classes for adults, and pARTy pizza-and-art classes for kids and teenagers. Additionally, the art center offers studio and gallery space for local artists.