The Bobcats made their NBA debut in the 2004–05 season. The franchise gradually improved its performance every year until the 2009–10 season, when they posted their first above-.500 record and first playoff appearance. The team makes its den in Time Warner Cable Arena, where 20,000 fans cheer and taunt the players with cans of tuna to intensify their hunger for a first league title.
Greenville Glides' experienced guides shuttle bands of merry sightseers through Downtown and its surrounding neighborhoods. The fun-loving leaders' history lessons wash over group and private tours propelled by such trusty steeds as segways, vans, and mechanical bulls. Restaurant tours delight palates with local gourmand delights, and city tours explore the history, architecture, and quirky aspects of each locale.
Yann Thefaine was dissatisfied with the country-club approach to tennis lessons. After instructing at a local club and witnessing its exorbitant rates, he decided to open the Tennis Academy of North Carolina, a teaching community where reasonably priced instruction would foster a widespread passion for tennis. This was more than a decade ago. Today, Yann, a USPTA-certified Professional 1 instructor, and his talented staff of instructors continue to develop lesson plans that cultivate solid tennis strokes and wallets fuller than the penalty box during a family croquet game. Their expertise adapts to the needs of beginners and advanced tennis players during clinics and private lessons in which coaches hone techniques in a way that benefits individual learning styles.
During cardio-tennis classes, teachers motivate pupils of all skill levels through segments of dynamic stretching and short aerobic exercises to the sound of music. Students sharpen their game and ascend to higher levels of fitness in an encouraging group environment. The same camaraderie flourishes at summer camps for ages 4–14. Divided by age and ability, kids enjoy hours of sporty sparring and instruction as the summer sun bronzes skin. The clinics combine structured drills with live match play, giving pupils time to hone their technique and sharpen their competitive edge.
Former professional driver and expert instructor Randy Baker and his team have been guiding drivers toward greatness for more than 20 years; past pupils include Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Jeff and Ward Burton, and the shadowy pit mechanic known only as Racer X. At SpeedTech Auto Racing School, Randy combines a fleet of super-speedy rides—authentic, metal-bodied vehicles boasting 650-horsepower V-8 engines—with a serious emphasis on safety to prepare drivers for any mishap on the track. Gearheads, speed junkies, and people who still sleep in a racecar bed despite their adult children's protestations soak up Randy's knowledge during one of SpeedTech's many race programs, varying in length from 3 laps to more than 100. With the school's built-in HD video feeds, drivers can commemorate their laps or prove to the family car it's been cheating on them with the hotel's valet.
Haunted rides amble through picturesque stretches of the Latta Plantation Nature Preserve, surrounding guests in the season's spine-tingling chills and frightful sights on select October evenings. Rolling through the dark shadows of the haunted forest, the ride activates guests' latent scream sensors while it creeps past eerie haunts and awkward zombie family reunions. After hopping off the macabre vehicle, groups are free to peruse the premises' plethora of fall activities, such as a jaunt through the twists and turns of the straw maze ($3), a ride on the cow train ($2), or malicious marshmallow roastings over an open flame ($1) (additional activities are not included with this offer).
Triangle Rock Club's, awarded with the 2013 Pinnacle Business Award, state-of-the-art facility houses more than 9,000 square feet of expertly crafted terrain with upward of 100 routes. During small-size classes, drop-in sessions, and rock-climbing camps, novice and seasoned climbers scale freestanding boulders, dodging manmade obstacles while gripping the wall's slanted surface. Founded by two former Marines, Triangle Rock Club offers customers a large fitness center where guests can complement climbing's full-body workout with weights, kettlebells, squat racks, and spontaneous arm-wrestling matches. Other amenities include a climate-controlled interior and a lounge with WiFi and an HDTV.