Julie Berger's memories are saturated with images of dancers— teachers who inspired her, students she worked with, and professionals she revered. Entranced by the beautiful and transformative art form, Julie practiced dance throughout her life, attending intensive dance programs, performing in competitions, and teaching at local dance centers. Julie discovered salsa dancing while studying in England, and she instantly fell in love with its sultry movements and lively steps. Determined to share the newfound style with others, Julie founded her own salsa-dancing studio.
At Salsa in the Suburbs Dance Studio, Julie and her staff of passionate dancers lead classes in a variety of styles, including salsa, ballroom, and belly dance. The instructors work with students of all levels, helping them master form, technique, and rhythms. The teachers also offer children's classes in ballet, tap, and Zumba, ideal for youngsters trying to be more active or hoping to include a lively dance section in their next chemistry presentation.
For four decades, Putt-Putt Golf and Games has hosted friendly competition with four putt-putt golf courses and an array of games. Colorful blossoms and rocky waterfalls add character to 18-hole putt-putt golf courses, and creative hole designs add challenge. Groups of partygoers can request a staff chaperone to guide them through the labyrinth and hand over a treasure map to the course’s bounty of nougat-filled golf balls.
In the Game Zone, visitors settle competitive challenges at an air-hockey table or face-off against digital emissaries in the Terminator Salvation arcade game. Outside, the Jump Shot is a trampoline basketball hoop that launches athletes toward slam-dunks in lower orbit.
It can be difficult to tear your gaze from Tavola Restaurant & Bar's dining-room windows, which overlook the lush rolling hills, majestic pines, and rustic gazebo of the surrounding country club. But soon, an enticing aroma compels your nose to turn toward the kitchen. Inside, chefs bustle about, folding fresh herbs, aromatic sauces, and crisp vegetables into a variety of Italian specialties—including the buttery shrimp scampi lauded by reporters from CBS Philly. A nearby brick oven melts mozzarella cheese onto gourmet pizzas.
The elegant dining room hosts diners swirling strings of pasta beside chandelier-illuminated oil paintings, and the cushy white sofas of the bar area support guests sipping Italian and American wines. Those seeking the best views venture to the outdoor patio, where they can watch seasoned golfers play on Springfield Country Club’s course or make sand angels in the sand traps.
There’s no water underneath Napoli School of Music and Dance’s floating dance floor. Instead, there’s high-density foam, which absorbs precise steps, occasional stumbles, and the dog pile that ends every classical ballet. Atop the foam lies marley, the same vinyl composite surface used in Riverdance. Within this professionally equipped studio, Napoli’s experienced dance faculty teaches small groups of aspiring dancers, starting with three- to five-year-olds in creative movement sessions. For older students, instructors focus on an array of dance styles, from the axel turns of jazz to the heel clicks of tap.
Similarly proficient teachers – including graduates of Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music—staff Napoli’s music faculty. During one-on-one sessions, they focus on each student’s specific musical goals and interests, always drawing examples from pupils’ favorite musical styles. While instructors of guitar, bass, and drums train the next generation of arena rockers, woodwind and brass teachers guide players through classical clarinet melodies or jazzy trumpet solos.
Bally enshrines exercise classes, calorie-burning equipment, and a fitness-focused staff within its sanctuaries of health. A 30-day membership includes access to a spread of group exercise classes, including Pilates, Reaction Cycling, and Step Fitness (class offerings vary by location). For self-guided worker-outers, cardio equipment such as treadmills, elliptical machines, cross-trainers, and stair climbers torch calories while entertaining the brain with video entertainment and integrated music systems that occasionally whisper quotes from Charles Atlas. Bally also boasts an array of strength machines, free weights, and small-apparatus equipment, and grants gym-goers access to on-site locker rooms, showers, and, at some locations, a pool and steam room. Visit each location's webpage for a list of specific amenities and the lineup of classes.