Twenty-one runs streak across the Toggenburg Mountain Winter Sports Center trail map, furnishing skiers and snowboarders with ample real estate to perfect swerves and test nerves in the crisp high country air. Five lifts—two doubles, a triple, and a pair of beginner rope tows—hoist snowy revelers to the top of runs such as the black diamond Oh My Goat, the blue square Angora Alley, and the green circle Capricorn Caper, as well as two terrain parks. Here, a gantlet of rails, boxes, and tables not only give daredevils the chance to show off their aerial acrobatics, but also provide a rough idea of what it would be like to wear skis into a furniture store. First-timers and skiers in need of a refresher can sign up for snow school, where expert instructors illuminate proper technique during private, semiprivate, and group lessons.
Off the mountain, Chilly Choices ski shop keeps skiers and snowboarders warm on the outside with hats, gloves, goggles, and apparel. Meanwhile the Foggy Goggle and Toggenburg Cafeteria keep them warm them on the inside with toasty eats such as braised tenderloin tips and pizza.
Shortly after Cherian Abraham moved to the United States from his Indian homeland, he opened the small video store that would blossom into Kashmir Groceries and Imports, a vibrant crossroads of South Asian sundries. Cherian’s son and the store’s present owner, Bijo, continues his father’s tradition of supplying local households with imported South Asian fare, Bollywood video rentals, and other knickknacks seized from Marco Polo’s suitcase at customs. Heavy sacks of basmati rice, cans of pickles and chutney, and rows of exotic spices line the grocer's shelves alongside fresh produce and certified halal meats. Phone cards keep loved ones up-to-date on juicy gossip and local monsoon reports, and a DVD-conversion service digitizes the essences of Indian cinema for at-home enjoyment.
Sam Mondello Jr. operates a family grocery of his own where he peddles fine Italian imports. The cozy neighborhood spot is a treasure trove of treats, with glass display cases packed with specialty meats and cheeses, produce coolers full of housemade sauces, and shelves loaded with espresso makers and Italian ceramics. The shop offers a sweeping variety of pastas made from premium ingredients, such as fettuccine made from whole wheat and rotini made from melted-down ancient Roman coins.
Sam and his staff extend their culinary expertise to preparing a wide variety of premade meals, whipping up Italian-style subs in the deli and freezing freshly made trays of lasagna and pizza. The skilled chefs provide hot Italian specialties to cater a wide-variety of special events, from large office functions to intimate football-game gatherings.
Since 1981, Denise and her bevy of talented riding instructors have been providing personalized horseback-riding lessons to students of all skill levels. Denise Vespa Stables satisfies storybook expectations with a big barn and a plethora of four-legged creatures, but proves television is nothing but lies when its horses respond to polite conversation with only neighs. An outdoor ring, a 1/5-mile sand track, and an indoor ring make comfortable, year-round riding possible. Group lessons can accommodate up to eight riders. Horse-happy hopefuls should arrive 15 minutes before their scheduled lesson to get their horse set-up and saddled. After a full half-hour of mounted riding, students will be hard pressed to remember the sensation of walking with two legs. Once dismounted, those same students help to put away the tack and then brush their horses to fully thank their trusty steed and practice the true skills of horsemanship.
For more than 25 years, Play It Again Sports has bedecked kids and adults with high-end, wallet-friendly athletic armor and gear so that they can kick, swing, punt, and take flamboyant exception to referee calls with gusto. New inventory arrives every day, and the friendly staff can lead quality-seeking shoppers to the top brands lining the spacious storefront shelves, including Callaway, TaylorMade, Nike, Adidas, Easton, Horizon Fitness, and more. Fans can outfit themselves with a hockey or football jersey ($14.99 on average) or a pair of ski gloves ($14.99 on average), while divot devotees can load up on used golf balls ($14.99 per dozen) or disc golf discs ($9.99–$19.99). Otherwise, get started on a random collection of medicine balls, hockey sticks, and 25-pound weights so that you're prepared to play any sports that appear to you in dreams.
G&G Fitness caters to both bodybuilding buffs and amateurs wishing to enhance their earthly edifices at home with a range of premium equipment, including such notable brands as Life Fitness, Octane Fitness, and Precor. As trained physique formers, G&G's friendly staff members easily hunt and lasso the ideal muscle-molding or heart-strengthening apparatus for each individual customer's specific needs. Avoid outdoor biking's headaches of potholes and projectile burritos by staying indoors on an immobile Vision Fitness E1500 ($499), an upright exercise bike that offers a comfort arc seat, contact heart-rate sensors, and easy-to-adjust pedal straps. Elliptical machines ($799+) and treadmills ($1,495+), offer great ways to calibrate cardiovascular chronometers any time of the day or night. For muscle-sculpting, home-gym systems (starting at $1,299)—which combine benches, pulley systems, and weight stacks in one space-saving package—give exercisers a way to bolster biceps and strengthen solar plexuses without having to traverse crowded gym floors.