At Pine River Stables, experienced equestrians and instructors pair guests with patient, well-trained horses for lessons or scenic rides through more than 100 acres of rustic expanse. For more than 40 years, expert instructors have been teaching horsemanship and proper riding techniques. Trails weave throughout the land, leading riders over peaceful hills and meadows and alongside a seasonal creek that migrates south every winter to become a Florida beach rivulet.
Part of the venerable Paul Mitchell network, Michigan’s outposts of Paul Mitchell The School channel its storied doctrines of style and mane-manicuring techniques through a skilled squad of student coiffure-carvers and professional instructors. Under the close supervision of an experienced professor of pulchritude, Paul Mitchell student-stylists perform a wide array of services at their Sterling Heights and Port Huron locations, including cute cuts ($10–$14 at Sterling Heights; $7–$10 at Port Huron) and up-styles ($25–$30 at Sterling Heights; $20–$25 at Port Huron). A stylish steaming via iron work ($10–$14 at Sterling Heights) bestows locks with a luscious look while protecting domes during office dodgeball breaks. Clients can also undergo a body-pampering spa service at the Sterling Heights location, such as a facial ($6–$8), lip waxing ($6–$8), or makeup session ($8–$10) to bait more admiring looks than a baby wrapped in hundred dollar bills. Though not included with today's Groupon, high-quality products by the one-and-only Paul Mitchell are for sale to take home, providing a souvenir of your first date with your new ’do.
The building that houses the Port Huron Museum is a piece of history in its own right. Originally constructed by Andrew Carnegie in 1902, it served as the public library, and was slated for demolition just a few decades ago before being saved and lovingly restored by volunteers. Today it's home, not to books, but to more than 45,000 objects relating to the history of the Blue Water area, including Native American artifacts and one of Michigan's largest model ship collections. Alongside physical displays, the museum also hosts educational programs and field trips to teach visitors all about subjects as wide ranging as Mount Everest and the history of cartooning.
But beyond the walls of the main building, the Port Huron Museum also includes several historic locations where visitors can step back into the region's past. These include the Huron Lightship, a floating lighthouse that was stationed at the Great Lakes in the 1900s, as well as the Thomas Edison depot, where the young inventor once published his own newspaper for the train riders.
FunFlicks Outdoor Movies’ inflatable screens transform backyards, gymnasiums, and parks into pop-up cinemas, complete with the accessories needed to screen media of all types. Helpful attendants drop off and set up the screen for an evening’s viewing, along with high-definition projectors, DVD and Blu-ray players, and booming audio equipment or an optional short-range FM broadcast. Screens in 12’ and 18’ sizes provide intimate viewing for groups numbering in the dozens, whereas behemoth 45’ screens can support audiences of more than 5,000 or act as a comfortable air mattress for a sleepy giant. The rentals can also be used to display slide shows, video games, and live television, and additional amenities such as popcorn machines provide guests with theatrical comforts.
At Cutting Edge Health and Fitness, exercisers can choose from more than 150 name-brand strength-training and cardio machines. But for those who can't exercise alone because their imaginary spotter isn't very good, the fitness center also offers personal-training sessions and more than 20 different group fitness classes, including Pilates and cycling. And to make workouts just a little more enticing, the wheelchair-accessible facility offers convenient amenities such as towel service, saunas, and onsite childcare and tanning services.
Everything from Arabian sport horses to shetland sheep roams the grounds of Shimmering Moon Farm, where breeders and trainers raise a whole herd of animals fit for English, western, eventing, and the simple pleasures of an afternoon trot. At the farm's outdoor ring, instructors teach equestrian basics—such as grooming, tacking, and English and Western riding techniques—during private lessons, progressing at each rider’s pace and focusing on safety to keep students from getting tangled in the reins.