Operated by Silicon Valley Sports & Entertainment, the parent company of the NHL's San Jose Sharks, Sharks Ice skating centers professionally maintain solid-water rinks and facilities to accommodate a full range of activities. Each Friday night (7:30–9:30 p.m. in San Jose; 7:15–9:15 p.m. in Oakland) customers have full run of the centers' Olympic-sized rinks for public skating and fashionable displays of warm, Cosby-inspired outerwear. In addition to skating amenities, each Sharks Ice center features a full-service pro shop that sells NHL athletic apparel and other skate supplies and accessories. The centers also feature public snack bars and spacious public areas for socializing and frigid recitations of 18th-century Russian poetry. Sharks Ice San Jose also houses Stanley's Sports Bar, a full bar and restaurant overlooking the three rinks. Skate rental is included, but if you prefer to bring your own foot-blades, the general admission price without today's Groupon is $8, which still makes the Groupon the better deal. Hours are subject to change, so please call ahead to confirm.
Recently in the news for auctioning off a Steve Martin–created piece, the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art has delighted art lovers for 30 years with its massive array of intriguing modern-day masterpieces. A friend-level membership is good for unlimited free admission for two people into the gallery and its exhibits. The most recent exhibit, Tony May: Old Technology, showcases the San Jose artist's whimsical multimedia creations, including his T. Tree House—a surreal cross between a backyard tree house, studio, gigantic lantern, and Japanese teahouse, complete with a stuttering robot that generates the day's secret word. You'll also get two admissions to the annual Fall Art Auction, discounts at San Jose restaurants, and admission to the talking art discussion series, which will answer questions such as "Is this stain on my shirt art?" Migrant aesthetes will also enjoy free admission to more than 450 museums throughout the country.
The staff at UGMX Development Studios teaches children to explore their creativity through lessons in guitar, piano, drums, and beat making, and empowers students to record their own music at an onsite recording studio. Other lessons introduce students to the business side of the music or fashion industry, fostering an understanding of marketing and networking.
A full-service recording studio, Tone Def facilitates aural artistry with an impressive array of production equipment and on-site engineers. Record a new single alone or with a crew of studio musicians, and let the expert sound technicians mix and edit the result until it's ready to make its debut on any home sound system or on Brian Eno's answering machine. This Groupon entitles artists to two copies of their in-studio recording, and additional CDs cost $5 each. For an additional $40, the studio’s audiovisual wizards can immortalize the entire session in video, perfect for sending as a gift to Grandma or her friends at MTV.
After forming the San Jose Glass Artist Alliance, area artists took their creative passion one step further with the Art Glass Center of San Jose, a refracted haven where they could share their individual expertise with students. Inside the spacious, brightly lit confines, the artists instruct fledgling glassworkers on how to craft distinct pieces in the form of picture frames, coasters, and sun catchers. Following classes, students are encouraged to stay for open lab time, where they can continue working on projects while wearing their old 7th-grade-science lab coats.
• For $10, you get two general-admission tickets (a $20 value). • For $18, you get four general-admission tickets (a $40 value). • For $30, you get two VIP tickets to seats near the ring and a meet-and-greet autograph-and-photo session with the stars (a $60 value).