Guiding golfers along a lush chlorophyll carpet that stretches for 6,524 yards from the back tees, the course at Choctaw Creek challenges all oncomers with tight, tree-lined fairways and treacherous approaches into elevated greens. The course's titular creek snakes its way through seven holes of the front nine, demanding cautious attention from golfers wary of the unplayable lies and amphibious gophers likely hiding in its murky depths. The back nine demands precise bifurcation of narrow fairways, lest drives stray into the fairway-lining foliage or greenside bunkers. After golfers work up ravenous appetites over 18 holes, the Creekside Grill stands at the ready to refuel them with sandwiches and house-made soups.
Course at a Glance:
John Conrad Golf course, constructed in 1971 by Floyd Farley, bestows golfers with ample opportunity to challenge friends and skills. The 6,854-total-yard course thwarts players' efforts for low scores with a slew of obstacles, including tree-lined roughs, sand bunkers, babbling creeks, and ball washers filled with maple syrup. Precise shots are welcomed by bermuda grass fairways leading to smooth bentgrass greens, which golfers deftly traverse in the provided golf cart. Before taking to the turf, visitors can warm up rusty drivers and test theoretical dimple-to-distance math ratios with a bucket of range balls at the John Conrad Golf Course driving range.
A mainstay at local art festivals and cultural events, the belly-dance troupe comprised of confident ladies and their twisty abdomens also tutors rigid tummies in the art of undulation. The staff’s extensive training in Middle Eastern and North African dance prompts shimmying amateurs to loosen up their abs, enhance their posture, and build core-muscle strength. Within a friendly, open environment that celebrates bodies of all shapes and sizes, students will ripple and roll like the waves of the ocean or silk bloomers billowing on the clothesline. Though the sensuous belly rolls, hip drops, and shoulder shimmies appear effortless, seminar students will isolate core muscles to perform each gesture with precision and hone their bodies into lean, serpentine shapes that are perfect for catching field mice or navigating gutters.
There on the wall inside Conan's Kickboxing, Karate, Boxing Academy, next to four World Kickboxing Championship belts, hangs a photograph of founder Scott “Conan” Mincey donning a mustache and shaking hands with one of his numerous mentors, Chuck Norris. In fact, during his 34-year career, Scott has worked with a constellation of martial-arts stars and, since 1996, has brought that experience to his self-titled academy.
Scott teaches recreational and competitive fighting styles to a diverse student base which includes men, women, teens, and children. His classes blend equal doses of self-defense techniques with workouts designed to build lean muscle strength, speed, and endurance. Students can throw jabs in the pursuit of a leaner self, or train for all manners of blood-sporting competition in the gym's boxing ring, octagonal cage, or shark tank.
Winner of the 2009 Nickelodeon Parents’ Pick award for Best Martial Arts Class, the trophy-hoarding instructors from Cheatwood’s Family Martial Arts enlighten pupils of all ages in the art of self-defense. With its smorgasbord of classes, the dojo specializes in everything from kids’ karate and anti-bullying to adults’ kickboxing and extreme body makeovers, all without the hassle of spirit possession. Between them, instructors Troy and Chris Cheatwood and Jim Butin have won world championships in kickboxing and continuous sparring. Cheatwood’s furnishes all necessary equipment for each class, and today's deal also includes either a uniform or gloves, tailored to the physical demands and psychic brainwaves of each class. Alongside lessons in throws and submission holds, children’s classes promote self-esteem by instilling young karate choppers with a sense of confidence and self-discipline.
Since 1978, players have dodged trees and chased flagsticks across the 6,602 yards that make up the 18-hole championship course at The Trails Golf Club. With just two par 5s total and two par 3s longer than 200 yards, birdie opportunities are scarce, but the course often yields to a smart strategy and threats to pour salt in a divot. Three sets of tees make the course enjoyable for all players, ranging from weekend warriors up to the extremely skilled entrants in both the Men’s and Women’s State Amateur tournaments held at the course. Instruction from PGA and LPGA professionals is also available to help any player strive for champion status.
Course at a Glance:
Ever a resilient warrior, Marybeth Davis chose to see the destruction of her New Orleans home by Hurricane Katrina as a direct challenge. Not only did she grit her teeth and rebuild, the mother of four also started her own boot camp. In her capacity as a certified personal trainer, she pulls from her years of experience in championship martial artistry to lead classes for fitness seekers of all abilities. Having overcome weight issues and injuries, Marybeth employs empathy to scale each of her high-intensity workouts to accommodate all fitness levels, from beginners to professional athletes. The coach also strives to create a motivational and non-intimidating community amongst her students, discouraging screaming, insults, or unprovoked outbreaks of water balloon fights.