The Bergen Academy provides fine-tuning tutoring for music students of all ages, offering private lessons in piano, guitar, voice, and a multitude of woodwinds. A free 15-minute trial session allows students or their parents to parlay with one of more than 20 potential teachers, introducing musicians to their instruments, the instructors to the instructees, and the instruments to the concept of human companionship.
New York Sports Clubs, part of Town Sports International's network of fitness loci, opens up a number of equipment-stocked facilities across New York to exercisers. Strength-training gear, such as circuit machines, free weights, and medicine balls, molds muscles into chiseled depictions of physical might. Sessions on cardio machines, ranging from treadmills and ellipticals to upright and recumbent stationary bicycles, inspire burnt calories to pack up and move to cooler climates. Each club offers a schedule of group classes that draws from more than 100 fitness styles, including Pilates, yoga, and boxing, ensuring that no member has to jazzercise without a spotter. Each location rewards exercisers for sweating in its vicinity with special features such as babysitting, saunas, and steam rooms.
New York Mountain Tours guides the wild at heart and spleens through natural landscapes and local alpine skylines. Aspiring mountaineers will meet at one of two pick-up locations—the Cross Roads Shopping Plaza in White Plains at 6:20 a.m. or the I-87 exit 14 park and ride on Rt. 59 at 6:50 a.m.—leaving the driving, tolls, and high-speed trolley chases to the New York Mountain Tours experts. Explore the wondrous white vistas of Hunter Mountain while marching through the snow with a tour guide, gliding up the lift with your lift ticket, or soaring through the air on a hot-wired magic carpet. Hungry site seekers end the day with a snack before heading home at 4:20 p.m. Groupon customers who wish to rent any snowy accoutrements can upgrade to a ski or snowboard rental ($38), and those seeking snow-based instruction can spring for a group lesson ($30).
Gotham Dream Cars lets drivers grip the throttle of exotic speed machines such as the Ferrari F430, Lamborghini Gallardo, and Bentley Continental GT for personal rental or specialized thrill experiences. During the Dream Car Sprint, auto enthusiasts slip into a Ferrari or Lamborghini on a closed course and whip their more than 500-horsepower drive three times around the autocross track, learning how to tame their power with the aid of an instructor before coming out of the third lap on a straightaway to open the engine up to its full potential. Drivers conduct an orchestra of firing pistons and camshafts for three laps before crossing the finish line and parking to the pianissimo of the softly purring V8 engine. Gotham Dream Cars snaps pictures of the sprint, so drivers are sent home with hands they will never wash and a CD of images to parade before jealous coworkers and humbled shopping carts.
In 1998, School of Rock's first location was built in Philadelphia to strengthen students' self-confidence, develop their musicianship, and most importantly, spark an insatiable enthusiasm to learn. Today, the School of Rock franchise has branched out to more than 65 locations throughout the United States and Mexico. During the school's music lessons, encouraging instructors well versed in methods of rocking and rolling?such as strumming guitars, tickling keyboards, and causing avalanches with yodels?demystify music theory for mini Mick Jaggers of all skill levels.
School of Rock's Rock 101 program acquaints beginners with the instrument of their choice using a curriculum of weekly private lessons and group band rehearsals. Virtuosos ready to hit the stage can participate in the performance program, which prepares students for live performances that pay homage to beloved rock icons such as Queen, Led Zeppelin, and Mount Rushmore.
Mandy Grant is an expert at working up a sweat; she?s been a fitness enthusiast for decades. So it?s no surprise that the avid exerciser went on to open her personal yoga studio, which she lovingly named after the Zulu word for sweat. Students will also be pleasantly surprised to learn that Mandy donates 15% off all profits from this studio?s classes to assist AIDS orphans in South Africa and all donations from community classes to other charities.
Mandy?s passion to help others doesn?t stop there. At the Bergen County studio, students of all levels are given ample attention during 75-minute yoga classes, which are rooted in Hatha but also incorporate elements of Vinyasa flow, pranayama, and meditation. This style of teaching encourages yogis to connect their breathing with their postures and calming thoughts. Mandy and her dedicated instructors also spice up workout routines with heated Vinyasa sessions and mat Pilates.