Classic Elegance Limousine Service packs its newly refurbished 14-passenger limo party bus with sensory stimulation for the discerning party posse. The sound system administers an auditory wet willy of delight with dual 12-inch subwoofers and six Sony speakers attached to iPod and MP3 hookups. A 32-inch flat-screen TV comes stocked with a library of music videos, a PlayStation 3, and Blue-ray and DVD players. Tinted-black windows protect the eyes from the harsh glare of pedestrian jealousy so that you can completely lose yourself in the 550 colored LED lights, two lasers, whirling disco ball, and four strobe lights. The bus is also equipped with a wet bar that includes stemware and ice bins. Libations are not provided, but there’s no shame in hauling your own store-bought or bathtub-brewed beverages.
Following the baton of music director and conductor David Stewart Wiley, the members of Roanoke Symphony Orchestra and its chorus deliver concerts that cover a wide spectrum of genres, regaling ears with everything from sci-fi soundtracks to masterpieces by classical composers. Roanoke Symphony Orchestra also surprises audiences with visits from renowned performers by the likes of singer-songwriter LeAnn Rimes and triple-threat Bernadette Peters. Before masterwork concerts, Wiley stages preconcert talks that give audiences musical insight on the pieces that will be performed. To complement its programming, the RSO records a podcast called Inside the Music, which broadcasts playlists off Beethoven’s first generation iPod.
Claytor Lake Water Sports' fleet of rental boats and water equipment lets customers float, relax, and play amid the local wildlife and camera-ready sights of Claytor Lake. Canoes, kayaks, and motorized vessels such as pontoon boats snake along the lake's 21 miles of narrow and winding waterways, where spotted bass swim and test scuba gear beneath the surface. Flanked by lush trees, speedboats race across the water and lure adventurous riders perched atop water skis and other towables.
In addition to renting boats and gear, the staff at Claytor Lake Water Sports takes sightseers on scenic lake tours. They also maintain a commitment to the environment, equipping most of their watercrafts with electronic fuel injections and four-stroke engines that produce lower emissions and brighter rainbows.
Floating is the number-one activity at this small-town fitness center, which boasts three pools. A two-story water slide ushers guests into the leisure pool via three slick loops, and a zero-depth beach entry lets them ease into the water at their own pace without getting drenched. Guests can hone their butterfly strokes in four 20-yard lap lanes or existentially ponder the nature of water in the deep end, which is heated to 86 degrees. Visitors may also dive into an Olympic–size competition pool from 5-, 7.5- and 10-meter platforms, then speed through 9-foot lanes. Those with sore joints can ease into the therapy pool, which pampers sore joints with soothing 94-degree water.
Swimmer-specific fitness equipment fills a nearby cardio room, where Vasa trainers help guests to perfect front crawls and backstrokes with body-weight exercises. Treadmills, ellipticals, and recumbent bikes bolster cross-training regimens, along with Magnum strength trainers designed to tone the entire body. The facility also boasts a wet classroom that hosts scuba trainings, a kitchen, and shower-equipped locker rooms.
A bearded and scruffy Shawn Hash launched his outfitting business 20 years ago with a spartan collection of four bicycles, two canoes, and a pickup truck. Tangent Outfitters now oversees a small flotilla of aquatic craft as it leads guests to all the outdoor adventures the New River and its surrounding valley have to offer. Tubing trips afford a leisurely 1- to 2-mile jaunt down the river, with plenty of pit stops at sunny beaches, swimming holes, or riverside nail salons. Instructors bring a slice of Hawaiian watersports to Virginia with standup paddleboard lessons or teach guests to snag unsuspecting smallmouths with guided fishing trips. The surrounding mountainous trails invite bikers to speed through their dirt-stained paths, and the riverbeds host seven different types of kayak and canoe day trips. Adventurers can stock up on excursion rations at Tangent's onsite deli.