For a quarter of a century, Fun Makers' licensed, FAA-certified pilots have guided thousands of passengers skyward during hot-air-balloon tours of Ohio's lakes, valleys, forests, and rolling plains. Pilots update their training annually to stay informed on ballooning guidelines, and each sendoff begins with a passenger orientation that briefs guests on flight basics, personal safety, and how to deflect dive-bombing ostriches. After touching back down, passengers commemorate their voyage with a champagne toast and a first-flight certificate. In addition to hot-air-balloon rides, Fun Makers' staff travels to large and small events at colleges, festivals, and churches bearing a variety of portable entertainment including rock-climbing walls, bungee trampolines, and mechanical rodeo bulls.
Stocked with know-how and all the necessary tools, the staffers at Gone Fishin' Bait and Tackle guide fishing trips on Springfield Lake and beyond. The store equips crews with bait, lures, and fishing poles, ready to aid in an angling expedition or plucking the toupee off of a villainous middle-school vice principal. After stocking up, fishermen go solo or join up with one of Gone Fishin's guided pontoon tours that traverse sparkling waters, taking in views of the surrounding foliage.
With this deal, movie buffs can scarf down popcorn while watching action-packed celluloid at one of seven different locales, including Cleveland Heights' Cedar Lee Theatre, which won a Scene magazine readers' poll for Best Movie Theater. Arty cinephiles can catch an independent or foreign film at this theatre, where the concession stand slings out tasty baked goods, sandwiches, specialty coffees, and more. Catch a flick at the historic Capitol Theatre, nestled in the Gordon Square Arts District, a renovated three-screen spot featuring Hollywood, specialty, and 3D films. Many of Cleveland Cinemas' other theaters boast multiple screens, digital sound, a Groucho Marx robot that quips one-liners from the balcony, and stadium seating for ideal movie gawking.
Founded by sports enthusiast and former adolescent Rick Hart, Jump Start Sports works to enrich pupils' childhoods by developing useful life skills through athletics. Qualified counselors employ their wealth of experience working with children to help campers learn teamwork and fair play as well as the fundamentals of fielding baseballs, scoring soccer goals, or synchronizing pom-pom work. A course structure built around age-appropriate activities, group play, and free electives ensures that students never get bored, and an 8:1 pupil-teacher ratio enables one-on-one assistance to young champions as they practice the graceful art of pitching or the scheming intrigue of free-agent contract negotiation.
For more than six decades, the Akron Symphony Orchestra has been the bastion of bouncy melodies and cerebral classical tunes for Ohio's ovation set. Hand-picked by Billy Joel to perform in the hit Broadway musical Movin' Out, Michael Cavanaugh received Grammy and Tony Award nominations in 2003. Here he'll lead his fellow Ohioans on a foot-tapping trek through Joel's poppy piano catalogue, accompanied by the Akron Symphony under the direction of Christopher Wilkins. Sing, hum, and angrily gurgle along to all of Joel's hits, as Cavanaugh has been known to play timeless cuts such as "Piano Man," "Movin' Out (Anthony's Song)," "Keeping the Faith," and "Just the Way You Are." Since the show razzles and dazzles on Valentine's weekend, bring a special uptown girl or downtown man and nuzzle closely in prime Section B or E seating.