Briarstone Riding Academy’s Jena Larsen went “horse crazy,” as she puts it, around age 10—when she took her first horseback-riding lesson. She quickly developed her riding skill, competing in shows and eventually even training other riders. Now at Briarstone, which she opened nearly a decade ago, she brings that expertise to horseback-riding lessons, focusing not only on flawless showmanship, but also responsible horsemanship, sportsmanship, and fun.
Pairs cruise around The Ridge Golf Course's scenic tree-lined fairways in a four-wheeled conveyance, trying their hand at the par 3 through par 5 holes while carefully avoiding hazards. Located on the site of an old farm, the 18-hole playground provides a vintage, homey backdrop to four hours of meandering play. After finishing tee-projectile sessions, duos can refuel stomach supplies with a $10 credit at the Log Cabin Restaurant. Set inside a 240-year-old wooden dwelling, the eatery serves up homestyle cooking to links-rambling souls in need of a good meal to celebrate accidentally hitting that defunct Soviet satellite.
Trek Bicycle Store's team of passionate cyclists outfits customers with the same brand-name clothing, accessories, and bikes they know and use themselves. Firsthand knowledge of road, mountain, and city bikes from top industry brands such as Trek, MirraCo, and Gary Fisher means cycling specialists can fit each client with gear that best suits their needs. They help protect riders with helmets from Bontrager and guard them against inclement weather or hitchhiking bugs with jackets and gear from Pearl Izumi.
Trek Bicycle Store also offers repairs, tune-ups, and free maintenance services during the first few months after the purchase of a new bike. Driven by all things cycling, they also host in-store events such as socials and tech clinics.
Five Star Pool Care makes pool maintenance go swimmingly with round-the-summer care for residential pools. When it’s time to open for the season, technicians travel to homes to uncover resting pools, including removing any stains, assembling equipment, and filling them back up with chilled champagne. During the dog days, maintenance experts keep backyard oases in top shape by vacuuming the pool and performing full inspections. As fall approaches and the temperature drops, closing services prep the water for the winter months by lowering the water level and adding shock and algaecide to keep lagoon monsters from hibernating inside.
Interactive bumper cars, 80 arcade games, and the tubes, tunnels, and slides of a soft playground all nestle within the 12,000-square-foot Swing-A-Round Fun Town facility in Fenton. Outside, waterfalls and fountains surround three professionally designed outdoor mini golf courses, and a mammoth pond accommodates 15 colliding bumper boats. The fun continues at the kiddie kart track for youngsters 3–8 years old or the more than 1,100-foot adult track, where kids can join a parent in a double-seat go-kart whose second steering wheel allows tykes to pretend drive and practice ignoring hitchhikers. Elsewhere, nine batting cages test players' homerun hitting skills with softball slow and fast pitches or baseballs flung at 35–80 mph. Swing-A-Round Fun Town's St. Charles location hosts nine batting cages as well, plus two 18-hole miniature golf courses and an arcade.
Unlike summer etiquette lessons or math camp, four days of baseball keep kids active and healthy while teaching them social skills and confidence. Whether or not kids go on to become players, they’ll learn the importance of sportsmanship as the friendly instructors make each day fun. Balls-n-Strikes pairs one certified instructor to every six kids. This ensures that the game will not have to go into the 16th inning before your child gets a chance to bat, and also removes the need to make up additional outfield positions such as "assistant to the regional shortstop" and "human foul pole."