Cofounded in 1988 by master puppeteer Allie Scollon and her son, John, the Columbia Marionette Theatre showcases the string-pulling artistry of its puppeteers both on its home stage and at shows across South Carolina. Expressive puppets crafted for each show breathe new life into classic fairy tales and educational programs, including shows about littering, going to the dentist, and a combo show about not discarding your old teeth in the park fountain.
Terri-hot, lemon pepper, and honey barbecue. Douse your wings in any of these three flavors, and you'll taste what Wings and Ale of Lexington is all about: creative fusion of flavors. But its menu is packed with more than just the inventive wings—which also come in standard mild, medium, and Suicide sauces. Its flair for fusion shows up as early on as the appetizer section, where the egg-roll fajita marries Asian and Mexican cuisine. And then there are also tried-and-true favorites, such as burgers, Philly cheesesteaks, and catfish platters.
With more than 35 years of kid-entertaining experience, the friendly staff at The Little Gym provide a safe and fun locale where kids can stay active in a nurturing and non-competitive environment. Visiting youngsters glean skills and confidence while participating in hands-on activities that help enhance emotional, intellectual, and social skills. During classes full of physical activity, 4 to 12 year olds can learn to focus minds and bodies through the art of karate; 3 to 12 year olds learn to summon rain and showers of candy through dance. When four consecutive weeks of engaging exercises have left young ones yearning for more, the annual membership allows for eleven more months of exploration and growth. Gymnastics, sports skills, and parent/child classes for babies are also offered. Check the schedules for Columbia and Lexington for availability and call ahead for reservations.
Servicing divers in Columbia since 1977, Wateree Dive Center's certified submersion specialists orient the fin-less to the subsurface realm with thorough training. Mammals can test out marine life before trading their lungs to a sea-witch with the Try Scuba course, a one- to two-hour test dive for first-time sea spelunkers. After arming themselves with scuba gear provided by the center, students will explore the depths of a swimming pool, learning to use their air-granting accouterments, maneuver through water, and identify swimmers by their legs. Underwater explorers interested in further subaquatic training will receive a $50 coupon toward open-water-diving classes if they enroll within 60 days.
Palmetto Outdoor Center promotes the preservation of natural rivers and forests. Because awareness is the best way to maintain the environment and cultural heritage, Palmetto spreads knowledge of local gems with river trips and walking tours. These organized tours and vessels for rent allow amateur explorers to discover South Carolina's uncluttered riverbanks while learning about how they can be protected. Civil War walking tours illuminate the history of the region, and canoe and kayak rentals plunge into the tree-lined waterways of the Congaree, which flows through protected national parkland with the continent's largest old-growth floodplain forest.