Merle Norman Day Spa and Boutique's beauty specialists are the three graces of the Merle Norman brand, whose American-made tonics have nourished skin since 1931. Owner Shannon Burroughs Mangrum leads the trio with more than a decade of experience and two diplomas folded into an imposing origami saber. Relying on her clinical aesthetics degree from Jon Nave University, she safely blends rejuvenating chemical compounds into five types of facial peels, and mans mechanical devices that gently exfoliate dead skin or cover it in bronzer. Her degree in permanent cosmetics from the Texas Institute of Permanent Cosmetics focused on the OSHA and CDC safety guidelines for an art that helps those with allergies, loss of motor abilities, or a lack of free time create enduring beauty. Associate Alyssa lends her nimble fingers to more conventional makeovers that will wash off after nights out under a waterfall, as well as treatments that create smooth skin all over the body and relaxed muscles underneath.
Tending fires of 1,300 degrees, the artisans of Designs by Sylvanye Glass Studio create jewelry, glass art, and dishware from molten materials. Their students, who range from aged 9 to adult, learn to use cutting systems, grinding equipment, and designing tools as they build their own pieces in a safe and supportive environment.
For inspiration or purchase, shelves and shelves of luminescent custom designs inhabit the studio's gallery and workspaces. The school also keeps independent artisans supplied with innovative products, including the pint-size MicroKiln, designed for use in a standard microwave oven.
At CiCi’s Pizza, feasters can sample hearty slices of pizza and a wide selection of buffet fare ($4.99 per person over 10 years of age), filling bellies like a pouch-stuffing kangaroo preparing to weather the harsh Australian winter. Offering endless helpings of fresh salads, tantalizing pastas, tasty desserts, and oven-fresh pizzas, CiCi’s tames the most voracious hunger attacks via all-you-can-eat tactics. Pizza dough is made fresh daily and doused in a savory sauce crafted from vine-ripened tomatoes and prescience-instilling spices, while salads are hand-tossed with the freshest ingredients delivered hourly via teleportation.
Thorntons independently distributes gas while keeping clean convenience stores filled with snacks to help drivers stay awake, nourished, or quenched. Power depleted, flex-fuel-friendly cars, trucks, vans, or tail-finned Zeppelins with E-85 Flex Fuel, a renewable fuel source that minimizes earth-detrimental emissions.
Closing out Lamplighter's "A Place to Belong" season, the comedic play Leaving Iowa tells the story of a family packing their bags and hitting the open road on a vacation undermined by haphazard hilarity. With the same enthusiasm he used to pilot the theater’s productions of My Fair Lady, Pride and Prejudice, and Guys and Dolls, seasoned director Greg Wilson leads the cast as they act out the trials and tribulations of spending quality time with the family. Relatable, sentimental moments abound while the kids vie for control of the back seat, the dad points out uninteresting landmarks, and the mother attempts to keep the peace and rouse everyone's spirits.
Mary Michael Designs carries more than 30 brands, including Trollbeads, which Mary Michael Designs peddles as the area's only Gold Level Trollbeads retailer. Personalize a set of Trollbeads ($28+), embroider key chains ($12), try on a pair of Aroma Home slippers ($25), or embroider the name of a favorite sandwich on any one of Mary Michael’s collections of duffle bags, baby bibs, backpacks and totes. Mary Michael Designs, located in a converted, residential house, will wrap all purchases for free.