Rich purple walls and a bar outfitted with a zebra-print façade sounds more like club decor than the decor of a school. For the past 20 years, however, the National Bartending School of Atlanta has put on mixology clinics in just this kind of lounge-style setting. At its six learning stations, teachers train professional bartenders during hands-on certification courses that cover more than 100 drink recipes, as well as eclectic topics such as free pouring or the art of making a cocktail from whatever falls down a waterfall. Alternatively, students can dabble in the art of cocktail creation during two-hour, noncertification courses, which focus on classic drinks such as the cosmo and the margarita.
Headquartered amid a 6-mile stretch of the Chattahoochee River, Urban Currents equips its guests with 46-inch inner tubes designed for leisurely drifts down the softly flowing stream, though that's not to say they have no sense of adventure. Throughout the week, Urban Currents offers SUP board river trips, rafting trips, and sit-on-top kayaking trips.
Since 2000, Pinnacle Fitness Bootcamp owner David Nash has been fine-tuning his fitness-coaching expertise along with a trained staff. In addition to picking up certifications in health and physical education, nutrition, first aid, and other areas, the certified personal trainer has also honed specialties in athletic performance and the biomechanics of human movement. Rae Stampley, head trainer at the Smyrna location, draws from a background of playing competitive sports and teaching health and physical education and is currently an A.C.E. certified personal trainer.
At Pinnacle Fitness Bootcamp, the staff shares its fitness training and nutritional-guidance expertise with students during indoor boot-camp sessions. During classes, students go through a variety of workouts from walking lunges to relay races and partner team pushups.
Roller skating often evokes images of ‘50s-era teens clad in poodle skirts and the black-and-white makeup that was customary at the time. But at both freshly renovated Sparkles Family Fun Centers, roller-skating proves itself as a 21st-century pastime by incorporating contemporary technology. From a DJ who spins family-friendly beats at both locations to the laser-tag zone and black lights that set the Gwinnett rink aglow, modern-day touches pervade each space. The arcades are stuffed with extra helpings of bells and whistles; skee-ball and electronically scored basketball compete for attention with racing video games that re-create famous auto duels or the 1954 Drake Relays. At nearby multistory indoor playgrounds, kids get back to physical recreation, scurrying across bridges and whipping down slick slides.
Sprawling across expansive, velvety knolls that roll softly beneath soaring Georgia pines, Fox Creek Golf Club is a challenging par 62 course that serves golfers of all abilities on its freshly cut Champion Bermuda grass greens. Under the experienced instruction of PGA teaching professionals, a duet of 45-minute lessons ($65) fine-tunes all aspects of your short game and long game, including driving, putting, and parallel parking golf carts. Once you’ve honed your swing’s pendulous power and precision, you can show off your stroke during a rousing round of 18 holes with cart included, which spares you the hassle of traversing the course on foot and answering the riddles of its many bridge-dwelling trolls.
Informed by an ever-growing body of developmental research, classes at The Music Class introduce tots to tunes and concepts that boost creativity and listening skills. In Music Pups (a $72 value) courses, children under 4 years of age gleefully sing, dance, and bang away on rudimentary instruments such as the drums or theremin. Four and 5-year-olds learn concepts of tone and rhythm in the Music Cats course (a $77 value), which lets kids experiment with keyboards before defending their dissertations on the narrative redundancies of "Old MacDonald Had a Farm." Each 45-minute course meets four times in one month-long segment, and includes CDs for parents to play at home to follow up on in-class tutelage. This Groupon may also be used toward The Music Class' ten-week music courses.