The crowd murmurs with excitement, crunching on popcorn and sending out their final texts before turning off their cellphones. Then the lights dim, and all eyes affix to the starlet’s illuminated face, already wrought with emotion that will build in the 90 minutes to follow.
This is the scene that takes place again and again as Jurupa 14 Cinemas screens 3-D masterpieces and other films fresh from Hollywood, where trees are actually just cardboard cutouts. To enhance the movie-watching experience, Coca-Cola freestyle soda machines let drinkers combine flavors for more than 125 different fizzy concoctions that pair with candy and popcorn.
Arthur Murray Dance Studio has been a leading name in franchise dance since 1912, when the entrepreneur began selling mail-order dance lessons. Expanding his reach, he enlisted teachers to spread his signature dance lessons on first-class steamships and skyrocketed to fame in the '30s after introducing the public to such dances as the Lambeth Walk and the Big Apple. By the 1950s, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, were hosting their own highly popular TV show on ABC, the Arthur Murray Dance Party, which ran for 12 years. Today, Arthur Murray's team prepares students for rug cutting at special events and weekend nightclub jaunts. Clients who arrive to lessons partnerless will be paired up with an instructor as the teachers assess their current skill level and make recommendations on the most appropriate program. Throughout lessons, instructors teach the foundations of two to four dances from a long list of styles that range from Latin to country-western, helping students to learn basic step patterns, timing, and the ability to lead or follow.
Bartenders mix more than 30 specialty martinis at Lounge 33, a riverside bar that owes its sophistication to owners Angela and George Tavaglione. The owners’ extensive menu of mixed drinks includes nods to highbrow entertainment, including The Godfather, a drink that fuses Johnnie Walker Green Label and Disaronno amaretto, or the Dirt and Spice martini, an avant-garde combination of Absolut Peppar and olive juice, Tapatio hot sauce, and lemon. Though the focus is on mixed drinks, the Tavagliones also stock wine and beer, while their skilled cooks prepare flatbread pizzas and italian meatball sandwiches guaranteed not to pop a meatball out and send it rolling to the top of Mount Smokey.
Since 2006, Angela's Casino Entertainment has enlivened parties, fundraisers, and corporate events with Vegas-style games such as craps, roulette, blackjack, and poker. Rather than using real money or car pink slips, players gamble with Angela’s customized “Casino Cash,” which showcases a picture of each soiree’s guest of honor on the bills. Personnel deliver, setup, and remove each piece of equipment, which ranges from wheels and tables to chips and cards, and expert dealers oversee every round of play.