This little girl looks like a butterfly landed on her face, and this is only part of the reason why she's smiling so brightly. A face-painting brigade is visiting Play Town, decorating visages with intricate designs before sending kids down the tube slide.
Play Town is no ordinary indoor playground.
Sure, sock-footed kids age six and under can tight rope across a balance beam, scamper up a ramp to a network of tube slides, or play real-estate agent in a cottage playhouse but Play Town also enhances their playtime with a calendar of events that includes visits from face painters, cartoon characters, and princesses. Kids can also take movement classes or spend a few hours making crafts, while infants and toddlers play with soft blocks and parents take advantage of free wireless internet access.
A family-owned-and-operated farm nestled in the hills of Jamul, Hidden Haven Farms maintains the camaraderie of the Old West lifestyle through relaxing horseback rides and educational field trips. In its tranquil setting far from metropolitan stressors, the farm's owners lead visitors along serene jaunts atop equestrian counterparts, meandering through the farm’s rolling countryside and ranch layout to take in sites and look out for time-traveling rustlers trying to take livestock back to the 1860s.
Hidden Haven's pastures also provide a space for outdoor education, as the family welcomes visitors for field trips, home-school programs, summer camp, and birthday parties. During these visits, guests can master the process of shearing a sheep, watch bee pollination, and witness the first seconds of new life at a live egg hatching. Horses model student-attached saddles and optional sets of subwoofers before trotting field trippers around the farm. Throughout the experience, guides stress the importance of maintaining a healthy connection and respect for all four-legged comrades.
With 20 years of experience working with horses, Anna Baker makes her equine expertise available to the public through an array of riding services. Students as young as 5 can receive a proper introduction to horses through a firm hoof shake followed by private lessons in the English and Western riding styles. Baker also trains horses, offering their owners packages that include room and board for their equine friends as well as trailer parking.
At Inflatable World, 35-foot slides tower above 40,000 square feet of carpeted space as youngsters cavort among the outdoor park's 24 air-filled attractions. Nestled among the soaring slides, bounce domes shelter leaping tykes and obstacle courses challenge adventurers to navigate obstructed terrain. Themed inflatables in the shapes of dragons, pirates, and saber-toothed tigers host open-play participants, as well as parties and fundraisers. Inflatable World also rents out its stock for events, pairing football enthusiasts with end-zone bounce houses or existentialists with specially deflated items.
Wine and Canvas sends local artists to restaurants and comfortable bars to guide students through featured paintings from the studio's monthly calendar. As instructors offer step-by-step instructions, pupils mimic the motions of their brush to re-create scenes inspired by nature, Impressionist masters, and alcoholic libations themselves. After the night has ended, students carry their finished masterpieces home to hang proudly on their walls or avant-gardely on their fish tanks.