A nonprofit organization, Shoestring City Ranch is run by instructors that dedicate their time to teach teamwork and leadership skills to city-slicker kids by having them work with rescued animals. The environmentally friendly ranch hosts clinics on communicating with pets and group horseback-riding classes that teach everyone from tots to adults how to groom and ride. They also host fun events in addition to classes, such as the 5K Gallop and 1-Mile Tot Trot and a Roping Clinic 101, where a professional rodeo cowboy teaches students how to use a lasso.
Named a top place to play in Southern California by Golf Digest, the course at Rio Hondo Golf Club leads players on a zigzagging path toward glimpses of glittering lakes and waterfalls. Separated from adjacent holes by aisles of stately pine, the narrow fairways traverse rolling hills and mounds strategically placed to create tricky lies and inhibit golf-cart drag racing. When a rusty swing holds back progress, the club facilitates game improvement with a lighted, 30-stall practice range, as well as lessons with head PGA professional Steve Labarge and his band of instructors. The new 23,000-square-foot clubhouse houses the buzz of activity, inviting players to down cold beers while enjoying the emerald panorama.
Course at a Glance:
18-hole, par-71 course
Total length of 6,360 yards from the back tees
Course rating of 70.5 from the back tees
Course slope of 122 from the back tees
Four sets of tees per hole
The second annual LA Prostate Cancer 5K enlists pavement pounders to help raise money for new therapies and better screening tools in the attempt to show prostate cancer who’s boss. Hosted by the USC Institute of Urology, the 5K opens its campus-side route to all levels of runners, walkers and electric boogalooers, divvying up participants into age-specific categories. Dr. Inderbir Gill kicks off the spirited event with a welcoming speech, and recognition of survivors, pre-run warm-ups and the National Anthem dispense the daily recommended dose of motivation. Beginning at the Tommy Trojan statue–unmistakable for his bronze sword and noble stance—marathoners whiz through University Park and the grounds of Exposition Park. Following the race, an award ceremony recognizes top performers and invites every participant to bask in the synchronized huffs and puffs of accomplishment.
Salsa dancing is an art that relies on cooperation. The owners of LearnSalsa.com take that to heart, collecting an ensemble of talented teachers to lead each of their dancing boot camps. These instructors help as many as 100 students at a time master the basic steps of salsa or bachata. Backed by heart-pumping tunes, they fill entire gymnasiums with the swiveling hips and shuffling steps of aspiring dancers attempting to hone their technique or to build up enough static charge to jump-start a car battery.
When you enter Tapout Training Center’s main workout area and turn around, you’ll see a large graffiti mural with the word “tapout” clutched between the talons of a red-eyed bald eagle. The bird reminds everyone why they’re here—to partake in workouts that merge exercise and self-defense. Students can spar in the octagon ring, wrestle in the grappling area, punch and kick hanging bags, or sign up for one of many fitness classes, including boxing, muay thai kickboxing, and jujitsu. Every activity is monitored and motivated by an experienced staff led by Brazilian jujitsu and MMA instructor Frank Colcher, a mixed martial artist who’s been able to break oil paintings over his knee for more than a quarter of a century.
Relive your childhood fantasy of playing goalie in the NHL with seats behind the net for one of three LA Kings games. With today's Groupon, $31 gets you a seat in the 200 level of the Staples Center ($62 value), that's far enough to give you a full-rink view, yet close enough to hear lonely mumbles of the Zamboni driver.
Sensei Takashi Hasegawa, a third-degree black belt, instructs kids and adults in the ancient art of karate at Kyokushin Karate. Classes are catered to kids (aged 4–6 and 7–12) and adults (aged 13+), with some classes emphasizing sparring.