In 1976, Joan Barnes—a California mom frustrated with the lack of spaces where she could take her kids for safe and age-appropriate play time—took matters into her own hands and founded Gymboree Play and Music. In the decades since Gymboree’s founding, Joan’s vision of a safe place where youngsters could build confidence and creativity has come to fruition and spread to 30 countries around the globe. Staffed by attentive and expertly trained instructors, each Gymboree outpost adheres to a curriculum of activities designed by experts to foster the development of children's cognitive, physical, and social skills through structured play and close readings of Goodnight Moon. The staffers also conduct entertaining classes for parents, newborns, and children under 1 year that cover subjects ranging from music to sports, imparting valuable lessons of imagination and physical activity to developing minds. To further set apart her business, Barnes employed nationally renowned playground designer Jay Beckwith to design the proprietary play equipment at her centers.
Puck hosts blossoming local artists onstage in a bustling jazz club atmosphere, augmented by a full menu of casual pub fare served on the fresh-air patio. Gum gallop through the salmon's horseradish-crusted terrain accented with flowing streams of raspberry sauce ($10.95, dinner service only) to bring out savory flavors and prompt splash fights, or scatter caramelized onions and mushrooms across the grilled steak doused in sun-dried tomato and gorgonzola sauce ($12.95, dinner service only). An 8-ounce burger burrows in a pillowy bun ($8.95) with savory snuggle buddies such as bacon and chili ($1 each), and behemoth chicken fingers stir up dangerous rip tides in seas of barbecue sauce ($6.95).
Originally from Ukraine and England, dance partners Mechyslav and Gemma were selected to represent the United States at the 2012 WDSF World Championships in Australia. The talented dancers are just two of Joy2Dance's skilled instructors, who teach social and competitive dance in standard and American styles.
Students learn how to sassily swivel their hips during salsa and bachata classes, sweep gracefully across the floor during ballroom classes, and bust a move during hustle and swing classes. Meanwhile, private dance lessons help couples impress the guests at their weddings.
The Tony Award-winning McCarter Theatre produces a bevy of captivating plays each year, often staging incendiary interpretations of traditional works and contemporary classics. This year's production of A Christmas Carol marks the McCarter's 30th incarnation of Dickinson's tale since its introduction to the theatre's season in 1980. The production will be performed in the 75-year-old, recently restored Matthews Theatre auditorium. Director Michael Unger gifts audiences with a heartfelt tale of Ebenezer's redemption guaranteed to cure mild to moderate cases of Scroogedom and Santaclaustrophobia.