In 1998, School of Rock's first location was built in Philadelphia to strengthen kids' self-confidence, develop their musicianship, and most importantly, spark an insatiable enthusiasm to learn. Today, the School of Rock franchise has branched out to more than 65 locations throughout the United States and Mexico. During the school's music lessons, encouraging instructors well versed in methods of rocking and rolling—such as strumming guitars, tickling keyboards, and causing avalanches with yodels—demystify music theory for mini Mick Jaggers of all skill levels.
School of Rock's Rock 101 program acquaints beginners with the instrument of their choice using a curriculum of weekly private lessons and group band rehearsals. Virtuosos ready to hit the stage can participate in the performance program, which prepares students for live performances that pay homage to beloved rock icons such as Queen, Led Zeppelin, and Mount Rushmore.
BounceU transports kids to an inflatable, climate-controlled playground, where they can bounce from side to side in a safe, secure environment. Your pass is valid towards any two-hour open bounce session (a $12.95 value per child). The open bounce schedule varies depending on day of the week and age; open bounces for ages 6 and under are offered Monday/Wednesday/Friday from 10:00 a.m. to noon, ages 12 and under are welcome Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4:00–6:00 p.m., and family bounces occur on Wednesday nights from 5:00–7:00 p.m. Kids can imagine they're synchronized leapers in Michael Flatley's Riverbounce as they carom around the inflatable stadium, expending energy with every leap. Adults are welcome to act like eight-year-olds and join the vivacious youngsters in the playground, where they can duel with the foam-shooting equipment or mount the climbing structures.
Flight is a magical word. It can conjure images of blue sky, sounds of rushing wind, and the feelings of a freedom only known by breaking gravity's bounds with a combination of lift, thrust, and fairy dust. Flight is a word so magical, in fact, that it can even make a word like "school" seem cool. Unlike traditional schools, Louis Fly Academy doesn't lock its students up inside a brick-and-mortar building filled with chalk dust and outdated science books. Instead, its instructors guide them through aerial tutorials inside a fleet of Cessnas and Piper aircraft. Such tours begin with discovery flights for both airplane and helicopter pilots to give aspiring pilots tastes of high altitudes, allowing them to take a set of the controls and to log their time toward potential certification. A series of instructional packages prepares students for such certifications, with curricula that range from courses for a private pilot's license to a multiengine rating.
Hounds Town USA’s friendly staff coddles pups, ushering them to peaceful, private boarding rooms to rest up for days spent cavorting with peers in the expansive doggie play area. Rovers spend the day romping with their fellow canine campers, with playtime bookended by a hearty morning and afternoon feast of Nutro dog food presented in stainless-steel dishes or on the back of a interning cat. When the capering concludes, pups make their way to their private abodes to get a good night’s sleep atop orthopedic, chew-proof bedding. Owners can outfit dogs with a pack containing their own food, bedding, and toys if desired, allowing pups to revel in the sights and scents of home more effectively than scrapbooking their favorite bones.
When the judges; scores came in, Sugar Rush Bakery's Andrew Mincher finished in second place on Food Network's Cupcake Wars. Going into the competition, he thought, "This is what I do and I thought, I’m going to have fun doing it." His positive attitude—and his recipe for banana-rum cupcakes with peanut-butter buttercream frosting—paid off.
The recognition came as a hefty endorsement for the brand-new owner of the former Di Monda Bakery. Mincher recently bought out the business with his dad and brother so that he could make cupcakes his way. Inside, customers find him doing exactly that, whipping together delicious cupcakes and other sweets such as cookies and fresh-baked breads. He decorates his creations with chunks of chocolate or cheerful frosting faces that seem to ask, "Do I look cute in this foil?"