Design a digital rock dock station. Create a chameleon. Build and race an all-terrain robot. Taste the food that astronauts eat. The children who engage in these once-in-a-lifetime activities at Destination Science camps aren't just having fun?they're learning science. At 22 camp locations in four states, counselors lead campers ages 5 to 11 through a full week of hands-on exploration in various disciplines. Aided by kid-friendly tools, entertaining demonstrations, and inventive lesson plans, they teach campers the basics of scientific inquiry through the fun of exploration and experimentation. The four main camps focus on topics ranging from human and marine biology to astronomy, engineering, and physics, often with engaging games and hands-on projects. All of Destination Science's instructors are experienced educators and university students, each focused in the sciences and chosen for their ability to relate to children and build an effective baking-soda volcano.
Beside the Rhine River in Germany or in sun-soaked fields in Tuscany and California, vines grow heavy with ripe fruit. These jewel-toned morsels fill bottles at PRP Wine International, whose consultants then share the global terroir during special events and private tastings at home. Each staff member has a library of facts about wine production and consumption on the tip of their tongue, as well as several varieties of corkscrews hanging from their mandated utility belt. An online shop organizes varietals, such as montepulciano and gewürztraminer, by their taste profile and country of origin, and sparkling wines are searchable by price point. To deepen their client's connection to their favorite bottle, they may either be etched or emblazoned with custom labels that commemorate an event or deliver a dry thank you.
Two terrace-section tickets to "Bugs Bunny at the Symphony" on Saturday, August 6, at 8 p.m. at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Irvine (a $112 value). Four tickets to The Chuck Jones Big Draw on Sunday, August 7, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the South Coast Collection shopping center in Costa Mesa (a $40 value). 10 Drop In and Draw art sessions at the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity in Orange (up to a $150 value).
Owned and operated by the Orange County Council, Boy Scouts of America, The Irvine Ranch Outdoor Education Center lays out 210 scenic acres of character-building outdoor adventures. Thrill seekers get a half-hour taste of the wild blue yonder, whizzing across gulfs on high-strung ziplines, just like early Western settlers. Depending on the size of the party, all pseudo-fliers will have multiple chances on the course. Offered daily from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., these swift sojourns provide an excellent chance to conquer fears and bond with fellow sky walkers. Participants should be sure to wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes, spinning bowties optional.
Holiday Skate Center equips roller-skating enthusiasts of all ages with eight-wheeled action during themed skating sessions. Pairs of clean, rink-ready roller skates (a $3 value per pair) propel all ages of wheeled crusaders through Flashback Skate Night ($6 admission), a musical time warp featuring '70s, '80s, and '90s tunes, offered from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. Age-specific skating sessions including Club Skate Night ($7.50 admission), offered on Friday nights for middle- and high-school-age students, and adult evening skate ($6.50 admission), a Wednesday-night event for ages 18 and older, are geared toward older ages and don’t necessarily include daytime activities such as the hokey pokey, the limbo, or naptime. Check out the website for a full schedule of roller-rink events. After ripping around the rink in an exact replication of Ben Franklin's first trip to Paris, hit up the snack bar for complimentary large sodas (a $2 value each) and bags of popcorn (a $1.25 value each) to refuel.
Today's fast-paced society asks us to race to the water cooler, the cupcake table, and the closet that stores sweaty wrestling singlets. Today's Groupon returns racing to its original form with two high-speed kart races at Dromo One for $20. Train like a professional kartist before embracing your inner velocity and fondness for competitive lap navigation.