Thinking of the city rarely calls images of fog-ringed mountains and wolf-filled forests to mind, but Discover Outdoors—formerly known as Outdoor Bound—turns these scenes into reality. Owner, avid outdoorsman, and eight-time marathon runner Kirk Reynolds makes sure of it. He and a staff of experts—each a licensed trail guide and Wilderness First Responder or Wilderness EMT—temper the stress of city living with day trips to nearby natural enclaves and weekend camping excursions]. The getaways thrill with activities such as hiking, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, kayaking, and horseback riding.
International trips, meanwhile, quench a thirst for life-defining adventures beyond trips to the grocery store during peak Saturday hours. Among them: hikes up famed Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, treks to Machu Picchu in Peru, and jaunts through the Canadian Rockies. Some of the journeys even grant travelers the opportunity to fundraise for a worthy cause as they explore.
Hush Hip Hop Tours aims to educate and entertain guests in the history of hip-hop, showing the evolution of a truly New York art form through the eyes of actual artists. Each jam-filled journey is led by pioneers, including but not limited to GrandMaster Caz (Cold Crush Brothers), Kurtis Blow, Rahiem (Furious Five), and Reggie Reg (Crash Crew). They'll take you through their old stomping grounds while sharing personal stories and anecdotes as only a pre-old-school rhyme master could. Follow in their footsteps with your choice of two tour options, each covering different boroughs and slices of history. The two-hour guided Walk This Way tour takes movement neophytes and artistic aficionados on an easy stroll through Harlem's historic streets, with photo-friendly pit stops at the legendary Apollo Theater and an array of clubs. Or stake your seat on the four-hour Birthplace of Hip-Hop bus tour, which cruises through Manhattan and the Bronx to learn about the form in its formative years and see its rare, embarrassing baby photos.
The field at TM Baseball & Softball Academy extends both inside and outside letting players play during warm weather, cold weather, or nonexistent indoor snowstorms. During daily training sessions, the TM Baseball & Softball Academy coaching staff helps high school and college-level players–as well as children as young as 3 years old–hone their hitting, defense, and fielding abilities. They also infuse sessions with strength, conditioning, and agility exercises so that players can field line drives and beat mascots during 7th inning dizzy-bat races.
New York City Photo Safari coordinates year-round educational excursions that blend hands-on photography lessons with tours of NYC's most famous locales. Owner Diem "Zim" Pham—who works as a travel photographer, a position that often requires the skills to create compelling images in less-than-ideal conditions—and Zim’s team of instructors are all professional photographers currently working in the industry. Safari sizes stay cozy at no more than eight people, allowing for a wealth of personalized feedback and troubleshooting advice for each apprentice. The Metropolitan Museum of Art safari employs the lauded museum halls as a setting for lessons in the use of light and how to overcome difficult lighting challenges, whereas the avant-garde High Line Elevated Park course instructs eyes in the art of composition. Aspiring politicos can embark on the City Hall safari, which fills memory cards with crisp shots of neo-classic architecture and caped superheroes flying to and from the mayor’s office.