Masked by opaque helmets, eight racers at a time tense up to counteract the G-force pressing them to the sides of their karts. As they approach the fastest sweeping turn on the course, The Catapult, they sharpen their focus in order to out-manoeuvre the other racers, their final position hanging in the balance. Grand Prix Kartways' 47,000-square-foot facility's alternating red and white barriers blur as electric, Italian-made karts accelerate into the last straightaway, cheered on by spectators watching from the VIP lounge. Once across the finish line, the competitors clear the track for the next race, using instant printouts of the results to compare placing, reveal who had the best lap times, and determine who was throwing all the koopa shells and banana peels. Between races, daredevils can relax and take a seat in the cushy trackside lounge equipped with leather couches, a restaurant menu, and a full bar. The arcade also offers a view of one of the track's hairpin curves between billiards shots, simulator races, and video games on Kinect-equipped Xbox 360 systems.
Reflecting on this childhood, Chris Keating sometimes feels as if he didn't exist. His parents' divorce left him with very little tangible evidence of his formative years, so he's spent his adult life as a photographer making sure children can look back fondly at warm family memories. Chris Keating and his Calgary staff have made this a reality for more than 3,000 families since opening the doors to Towne Photography in 2006. There, the professional photographic crew shoots posed and candid shots of families, children, couples, and babies at picturesque parks or against their studio backdrops, and they also snap triumphant graduate portraits, intimate prenatal shots, and provocative passport pics that make border crossing a breeze. Their ironclad guarantee allows unsatisfied clients to request reshoots, reprints, or resizing on all photographs, and they vow to remake or recapture any artwork that sustains damage over the years. Chris also takes his photographic knowledge on the road to conduct Betterphoto Workshops across the United States and Canada, teaching novice photographers how to artistically preserve their most precious memories.
Madd About Zumba’s name speaks to that of its founder—Maddalena Pignatari. With a BFA in Dance from York University and a Zumba certification, Maddalena is particularly mad about dance fitness. She specializes in Zumba classes, whose Latin-inspired routines incorporate occasional workout-intensifying props and weights. High-octane latin-pop music provides a soundtrack to the classes, as well as small-group or private personal-training sessions, whose curricula are more tailored to their participants. Personal-training regimens prevent fitness plateaus with three distinct workout phases, and can include a nutrition plan.
The London Tap House's full kitchen serves dinner on its pub level seven days a week, extending its exciting bar experience until 2 a.m. each night. A snack-and-meal riddled menu urges wallflower appetites to tango with buttermilk-chicken salad steeped in egg, avocado, and chicken strips ($9–$12). The blue-cheese banquet burger strides hunger laps of all lengths ($12), and goat cheese and shrimp stay snug inside handmade ravioli ($15).
Through public science forums and more than 200 interactive exhibits, Canada South Science City hopes to foster an excitement for science that helps families understand their relationship to the universe and inspire children to work towards Science-based careers. The 30,000-square-foot facility houses attractions such as Dinosaur Alley, where a model T-Rex skeleton looms as kids dig for prehistoric bones and fossilized cassette tapes. Live snakes, turtles, and tree frogs send a symphony of hisses and warbles from the Big Lagoon, an exhibit that offers up fun facts about biodiversity. Elsewhere, models of Jupiter and Saturn overhang an open-gym area that demonstrates the properties of sound and space.
Canada South Science City also hosts special events including science panel discussions and educational programs for students. These include workshops that challenge kids to solve problems, such as keeping a dropped egg from breaking or a black hole from opening in their lunchbox.