With a passion for the great outdoors, the outfitters at Get Your Gear On provide equipment and instruction for navigating trails and waterways. While leading groups, expert guides glide through scenic locales in search of wildlife views and serene experiences. Their canoe trips drift along the warm urban areas and tree-littered landscapes that run along the Congaree River, and their stand-up-paddleboard rentals allow guests to view the banks of Lake Murray from a perspective previously exclusive to sightseeing mermen. They also offer cycling equipment and maintenance along with hiking gear for dry climates, snowy landscapes, and rooms where the sink has been left on all night.
Scuba John's Dive Shop owners John Baker, his wife Amanda, father Mendle, and a number of scuba-diving instructors—go out of their way to make customers feel welcome. The staff believes everyone should be able to explore underwater worlds—and that they should stay safe and avoid buying ocean-floor real estate while doing so. To that end, the store is stocked with top-flight dive equipment and accessories by brands such as Hog, Omer, Ocean Rhino, Aeris, and Edge.
All of the classes are led by an instructor and conducted to meet SDI standard. Courses are designed for all levels, from beginner to master diver, instructors, and professionals. In specialty courses, participants learn skills required to become an enriched-air nitrox diver, deep-sea diver, or rescue diver. Students hone their open-water diving and dolphin-language skills in the warm depths of Florida Springs and other sites.
The instructors at Defense Dynamics take firearms seriously—they had to during their previous careers in law enforcement and the Armed Forces. Proud veterans with more than 50 years of combined military service, these gunslingers draw upon their professional training to lead beginning and advanced firearms courses that combine classroom learning and hands-on range time. Students can also sign up for NRA-sponsored classes that cycle through the association's established safety practices and shooting fundamentals with passion and practicality.
At its two Columbia locations, Plex Indoor Sports aims to provide complete indoor recreation with artificial-turf fields, ice arenas, inflatables, basketball courts, family entertainment center, and full-service cafe. Both facilities offer after-school programs providing access to soccer, football, and lacrosse programs, ensuring that children learn the proper techniques required to work toward goals and play safely. Total-fitness classes are also available throughout the week, highlighting invigorating methods such as yoga, Zumba, and hip-hop aerobics. The Sandhills location hosts a roller-skating rink, and the Irmo location houses an NHL regulation-sized ice rink with public skate times in between hockey games and practice sessions of the local ice-fishing team.
A 30-foot rock-climbing wall towers over the Family Entertainment Center, granting visitors an elevated view of a facility packed with wall-to-wall inflatables and family activities. Visitors can roller skate, set new high scores at the arcade, or attempt to stay atop a mechanical bull. Other attractions include bungee jumping, a rock-n-roll ride, and more.
Measuring 6,074 yards from the tips, the course at The Club at Rawls Creek doesn't demand extreme distance off of the tee to score well—but it will challenge golfers' short game and putting skills. Installed in 2006, the course's mini-verde Bermuda grass greens create an ultra-fast surface, requiring a touch more delicate than a headcover made from a pink feather boa. The layout also features numerous par-threes with elevated tees, where tee shots drop as much as 60 feet to reach the flagstick.
After their round draws to a close, golfers can refuel at the Creekside Grille. There, four flat-screen TVs broadcast the day's sporting events, and porch seating lets guests look out onto the grounds and discover constellations from the divots in the grass.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 71 course * Length of 6,074 yards from the tips * Four tee options
The Workshop Theatre of South Carolina keeps theater-goers guessing with its rousing rendition of Victor/Victoria. A musical romp based on the 1982 movie starring Julie Andrews, Victor/Victoria follows the fate of a woman posing as a female impersonator in 1930s Paris.