The expert staff at Camelot Center invites patients into a tranquil abode for treatments that target both physical and mental maladies. Sign up for a reflexology session and surrender hands and feet to the healing massage of a professional practitioner who stimulates the body's qi, or universal life energy. The therapist can use the medium to treat problems, such as stress, physical pain, or a tendency to wear shoes on the wrong feet, in everyone from babies to the elderly, ultimately improving quality of life.
The stakes are undoubtedly high. At the current rate of donation, more than 30% of people on the National Organ Transplant Waiting List will never get the organs they need. California Transplant Donor Network aims to change that by educating people and raising awareness. They also put boots on the ground, facilitating organ and tissue donation by offering assistance to 175 hospitals in California and Nevada. In addition to their donation work, the network holds events such as 5Ks to raise funds and invites families of donors to contribute memories to the Donor Memorial Quilt Project.
After the birth of her first child in 2001, Baby Boot Camp’s founder, certified trainer, and spin and Pilates instructor, Kristen Horler, wanted a postnatal fitness program that didn't require her to leave her baby at the door. Her solution was to start a suite of programs just for new and expecting parents where mothers could bond with their infants while soaking up the support and camaraderie of their peers. During Strollfit and Strollga sessions, certified trainers and Radio Flyers equipped with outboard motors lead ladies through innovative routines that incorporate baby-filled strollers into yoga, cardio, and strength training. For long-term fitness, coaches encourage aspiring runners to break through the tape during the 5K training program, and Kristen's own Nutrition Solutions teaches the benefits of healthy eating habits during a four-week program designed by registered dietitians.
In the current landscape of big-box stores and chain restaurants, many fear the dissolution of the small business. The worry is understandable, as many of these local ventures are what give cities, towns, and neighborhoods their distinctive flavor. It doesn't help that, on average, only 13% of the money spent at corporately-owned emporiums actually finds its way back to the community. This means that 87% of the dollars spent find themselves in a faraway bank account with nothing but a distant memory of the newborn pennies they left behind at home. When people give local shops and restaurants their business, however, an average of 45% of their money goes toward keeping the area and its unique culture thriving.
Fueled by this understanding, the folks at Localize It! helm The Alameda Summer Stroll, an evening of neighborhood appreciation, art, and live music. During certain days throughout the season, participants meander along several streets of the bay-adjacent burg to peruse the goods from local operations and sample locally crafted food, beer, and wine. They can even participate in a wine tasting and food pairings, as well as take advantage of discounts at area restaurants, such as Pasta Pelican, Calafia Taqueria, and East Ocean Seafood Restaurant. Along the way, neighborhood crawlers can stop to take in the musical strains of Jim Parodi and Friends or admire masterpieces by local Alameda and Oakland artists.
What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
Our goal is not to build "beach bodies." Rather, we focus on the fundamental goals of physical activity: increased endurance, greater strength, more energy, stress management, etc. Chances are, the latter will result in the former. Or you?ll be so darn happy that it won?t matter how flat your abs are.
Exercise is challenging. How do you keep clients motivated and engaged?
We're inspired by our sideline fan club (our children in their strollers) and unique, fun workouts every single session.
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
After having my first child, I was afraid of being alone and afraid of giving over my body to motherhood. Working out with other moms combats both.
What do you love most about your job?
As night falls, participants in the noncompetitive Rave Run pull on neon T-shirts, don glow-in-the dark glasses, and stuff their pockets with glow sticks. Spectators look on as the throng of illuminated runners, which includes kids and adults, make their way through a 5-kilometer course that winds through city streets.
The event culminates with an after party, where a DJ spin tunes and powerful lasers cast out beams that illuminate wide smiles and the secret locations of any lost arks in the vicinity. Fog machines and CO2 jets help create a high-adrenaline atmosphere as attendees dance with their glow-in-the-dark compatriots. All the fun is for a good cause; The Rave Run partners with a local charity in each participating city.