Since opening in 1981, Rochester Fencing Club has produced two world-champion fencers and a slew of prodigious Olympian qualifiers, including five members on the 1996 team, four on the 2000 team, and one on the 2008 team. Two of those Olympians, sisters Iris and Felicia Zimmermann, have returned to the facilities as co-owners and instructors. Iris’s fencing aptitude has earned her a position as the president of the Stanford Fencing Association, while Felicia’s fencing prowess—she was the first and only woman to win the NCAA championship in both foil and épée—remains unrivaled despite rumors that rhinoceroses will now be allowed to compete. Continuing the club’s tradition of excellence, the staff cultivates talent among young fencers in summer camps and classes of all levels. Two-hour birthday parties teach kids fencing basics, followed by an hour of frenzied birthday-cake consumption and duels with piñatas.
At RockVentures, climbers of all ages and experience levels scale challenge-filled walls lining the 18,000-square-foot facility. Classes impart students with surefooted spirit and fundamental climbing skills such as anchoring the rope for comrades. In addition to individual challenges, the center hosts several group events, ranging from team-building weekends to kids' birthday parties and summer camps. Rock Ventures grants discounted admission to veterans and their families with advance reservation on Saturday mornings, and helps disabled climbers conquer the rocks by using block-and-tackle systems to hoist themselves up.
Owner Kent Winchester informs his work at RockVentures with a multifaceted history of leadership and team-building experience, including a stint in the Peace Corps.
Colony Dry Cleaners, a company that has been grooming garments since 1969, restores sullied clothes to a pristine state with dry-cleaning and laundry services that include complimentary home or office pick-up and delivery. Skilled clothes cleaners apply gentle cleansers and solvents to delicate fabrics, obliterating traces of dirt, sweat, and sauce. Begrimed shirts ($2.50+) and pants ($5.75+) can find stain-free redemption, or clients can have more complicated vestments such as wedding gowns and hazmat suits cleaned and taxidermied. Prep for power lunches with a freshened suit ($11.75) and tie ($4.25) or ready beds for power naps with a newly immaculate comforter ($17+). Apparel experts take special care with delicate fabrics, sequins, and belts with social anxiety disorders.
The certified personal trainers at Hard Core Fitness put all of their eggs in one basket, and then they dead lift that basket until they’ve hit their target health goals. Every ounce of Hard Core's personal trainers’ energies goes toward motivating their clients, whether they're athletes or people recovering from injuries, during one-on-one sessions that last between 30 and 90 minutes. To clear up the murk and mire that can sometimes make getting in shape confounding, they clear-cut a path to fitness by designing, step by step, programs for each client that not only help them hit their fitness goals but blast right through them, unlike the Kool-Aid man trying to quench the thirst of a guard inside Fort Knox.
Through strengthening regimens that fortify backs and the muscles around bad knees, they work on functional correction and address strength and balance issues with customizable workouts for seniors or people that like to wrestle on tightropes. They also specialize in postnatal exercises, mold eight-week weight-loss programs to suit clients needs, and plan to open Zumba studios that host the upbeat dance-party workouts in a supportive group setting.
Michael Krupnicki had been in the welding business for 18 years when it occurred to him that there was no reason for the excitement and satisfactions of welding to be limited to tradesmen. He began offering classes at his workplace, and it caught on—he helped train more than 3,000 students in welding before opening Rochester Arc & Flame Center. In addition to a core curriculum of welding classes, he and his expert staff at the center also offer sessions in other fiery arts, including blacksmithing and glass blowing. The classes go beyond the basics and delve into the histories of each art, such as the rise and decline of blacksmithing and glass blowing’s early origins in dragon taming.
Schools rarely teach etiquette, which was once dubbed "the science of living" by its preeminent writer Emily Post. Cynthia L.S. Ely co-founded The Refinement Studio to fill this void. A student of English, music, and art, Ms. Ely teaches both children and adults how to appreciate and respect the finer things in life. Her workshops aim to build character and self-esteem through subtle gestures that grease the wheels of social interaction. In addition to children's tea parties, there are classes on proper grooming, correspondence, and professional etiquette. She also helps her students foster polite conversations by expressing gratitude and reminding them to never call a teapot short and stout.