Oregon Inflatables' fleet of bouncy chambers, water slides, games, and obstacles courses brightens birthday parties, graduations, and backyard barbecues with an old-school carnival flair. Each bouncy structure decks out air-filled cavities with themed decorations, dressing up playpens to resemble sunny stacks of crayons, turreted castles, or formidable pirate fortresses. Water slides and dunk tanks cool off partiers with romps through refreshing molecules of H2O, while obstacle courses, sumo suits, and games add a touch of friendly competition to gatherings. Oregon Inflatables couples its castles and water spouts with rentable cotton candy and snow-cone concessions that entertain taste buds with the sweet notes of spun sugar and flavored snowman meat.
In 2011, Aarun Carter won the National Oldtime Fiddlers Contest in Weiser, Idaho, and in 2012, her band, the Concrete Cowboys, was recognized as Oregon's best country band. At Red Barn Studios, she shares her gift for music with students by teaching violin, fiddle, guitar, and voice lessons. Students also can opt for online classes held over Skype, during which Carter chats live feedback.
The whoosh of baseballs against protective screens and leather mitts drifts through Extra Innings’ 11,000-square-foot facility even when rain is pouring down and baseball season seems far away. Athletes training for all levels of play can shut themselves in under the black meshing of eight multiuse batting and pitching tunnels, where they crush ball after ball to sharpen the minute movements of their swing. The tunnels, one of which is equipped with ProBatter ATEC7600 simulator, are all equipped with L screens and ping machines and are ideal for practicing sliders. A staff of current and former professional, college, and high-school athletes offers step-by-step instruction and on baseball- and softball-specific strength conditioning. In private lessons and group clinics, Extra Innings puts students of all ages on the path toward big-league skills such as hitting the curve and spitting sunflower seeds into the shape of a beautiful sunset.
Following a curriculum designed by Dr. Lin Day, a British child-development expert, the classes at Baby Sensory help to forge the bond between parents and their infants by engaging all the baby’s developing senses. Sessions begin with a song accompanied with sign language before diving into one of 40 unique lesson plans, which incorporate everything from exercise and stretches to music, puppet shows, and tactile games with scarves and feathers. Parents and children then split off into an exploratory play area—suited for both noncrawlers and babies strapped into tiny roller skates—to engage in play together and meet other families in a comfortable and safe environment. Lessons conclude with more structured sensory activities based on the latest research and developmental theories.
Michael Lary and Guruhans Kroesen—cofounders of The Source Climbing Center—create a pleasurable indoor ambiance for their clientele of outdoorsy climbing enthusiasts. The building, developed specifically to be a climbing center, keeps members busy with top-rope and lead climbing walls, plus 1,200 feet of bouldering terrain. They designed their air-conditioned rock scaler's paradise with a wall of east-facing windows 32 feet tall, allowing early morning sun to wash over visitors enjoying daybreak climbs, just as they do when climbing a faraway mountain or helping the Mount Rushmore presidents floss.
A short online video presentation and a computer-generated animated tour provide a closer look at the building's design features.