Dimensions’ conservationists showcase talent and preserve creativity by converting frameless works into framed masterpieces. The gallery and workshop walls house a large moulding selection, affording customers the choice between hundreds of striking customizable frames running the gamut from hand-finished Italian wood to contemporary metal. Custom-framing options are virtually limitless and vary greatly in price, beginning with basic frames of 8”x10” ($24+) or 16”x20” ($42+). Aestheticians can elevate refrigerator art to masterpiece status with an ornately molded frame, or commemorate a parking ticket you successfully overturned in court. Nimble fingers measure and prepare artwork for a lifetime of pristine display, showcasing family portraits, oil paintings, and macaroni re-imaginings of Richard Nixon’s resignation.
A marksman aligns his sight on the target 25 yards away. He pulls the trigger, steadies the recoil, and watches the round pierce near the bull's eye—but he never fired a bullet. The target wasn't actually 25 yards away, either. That's how precise Gander Mountain Academy's virtual range can render its simulated targets, from scaling distance to adding bullet holes based on its laser-guidance system. The range's technology delivers an array of training benefits, such as making the experience less intimidating for novice shooters, allowing more repetition by cutting out ammo costs, and letting advanced marksmen choose more-sophisticated target scenarios.
Gander Mountain's ownership developed this training technology upon recognizing that with nearly 120 stores, it was among the nation's largest retailer of firearms. This led to Gander Mountain Academy, a place where technology such as the virtual range meets elite-training resources previously available only to the military and law enforcement. Blending multimedia classroom and hands-on range training, instructors use the academy's FRS Learning System—an acronym standing for fundamentals, repetition, and simulation—in every class, from youth-safety programs to advanced tactical training. The live-fire range's booths are wide enough to comfortably accommodate both a shooter and instructor, and fully armored partitions encase each booth in bulletproof protection.
For even more in-depth training, firearms instructors load simulations that challenge marksmen in up to a 300-degree space. Time on the ranges or in the simulator can be prebooked through the academy's online reservation system or by phone.
Complete Nutrition provides a variety of nutritional supplements for weight loss, sports nutrition, and healthy aging. For those who have accidentally stored too much water for the winter hibernation, the Complete Essentials Water Pill is a diuretic that removes up to 10 lbs. of the excess body water that can cause puffiness and bloating ($39.99). A top selling product is the TONE body toner, which effectively attacks fat cells while maintaining lean muscles and allowing you to catch all afternoon reruns of Jeopardy ($49.99). No bodily system is overlooked in the product array, including the hair, skin, and nails, which can recharge and flourish via Complete Essentials proprietary growth formula ($39.99).
At more than 1,000 Mattress Firm locations around the country, shoppers sink into plush mattresses, recline on firm beds, and belly-flop onto pillow tops. Knowledgeable staffers can help customers create an ideal bedtime environment by dispensing advice based on sleep preferences and illuminating the difference between the many kinds of mattresses. And to the delight of their customers, much of Mattress Firm's bedding wears the label of a premium brand, such as Sealy, Serta, Simmons Beautyrest, or Stearns & Foster.
The bead barons at Fat Cat Beads teach students how to craft beaded jewelry during two-hour classes held on weekends and weekday evenings. Beginners classes lay out the basics, and sessions on the russian spiral or viking knit teach pupils more complicated designs. Cuff-style bracelet classes illustrate how to suspend beads in loops of leather cord, a skill that, once mastered, will give students a sense of satisfaction that’s unmatched even by drafting an impressive fantasy curling team or finally realizing that you’re (spoiler alert) a ghost. Students should check the necessary supplies for each class, as some require pupils to bring or purchase beads.