Though they operate more than 200 locations in upwards of 30 states, the team behind U.S. Baseball Academy aims to make each young athlete's experience a personal one. Their four- or six-week camps are taught by local instructors who are current or former coaches at the high school or college level, and typically offer a 6:1 or better player-to-teacher ratio for intense, professional-style training. The Academy's proven itinerary of hitting, pitching, fielding, and baserunning drills was developed by an advisory board of college coaches and Major League players, including Cy Young Award?winner and ace pitcher Brandon Webb.
As the AHL minor-league affiliate of the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Syracuse Crunch has primed players for the big league since 1994. They confront rivals from the Eastern Conference's East Division and beyond at The Oncenter War Memorial Arena, in front of 7,000 fans whose fiery passion for the team melts the ice beneath opposing players' feet.
Sophistications by Mahogani Hills treats guests to smooth live jazz shows led by local artists, as well as delicious lunches and dinners of smoky barbecue, delicate saut?ed and jerk chicken, and fresh garden vegetables and salads. Owners Ken and Tina Hills curate a lineup of live performances from singers and instrumentalists, as well as standup comedy, private events, and corporate parties.
The ninth annual Syracuse International Film Festival lights a fire under the socially aware with a four-day series of movie screenings that focus on the overarching themes of peace and social justice. The festival’s lineup of films from around the globe tackles hot-button subjects including South African apartheid (One Day After Peace) and GLBT rights (Unfit: Ward vs. Ward), acknowledging societal issues and telling the stories of those working toward reconciliation. The Syracuse International Film Festival also honors slain Syracuse University film student Bassel Shahade, who lost his life in June while documenting injustices in his native Syria.
In addition to spotlighting thought-provoking films, the cinematic extravaganza welcomes renowned performers to its screenings, such as two-time Golden Globe winner Karen Black. The prolific actress, known for starring in such films as Easy Rider and Five Easy Pieces, will join the festival’s opening program via Skype to answer questions about her career and whether she thinks squirrels are brown or gray. On Saturday, October 13, actor Ron Perlman, star of The City of Lost Children and TV’s Sons of Anarchy, also Skypes with fans before a screening of the blockbuster hit Hellboy. Other scheduled events include a pianist performance, a film maker's party, and a showing of Toy Story for cinema's young and young-hearted fans.
Nestled in Syracuse’s historic Armory Square district, PJ’s Pub and Grill’s unpretentious atmosphere belies the filet mignon sizzling in its kitchen. Patrons can slice into gourmet beef cuts and other upscale dinner entrees, such as a sesame-crusted tuna and portobello-stuffed ravioli, as games unfold on the eatery’s big-screen TVs. Alternatively, diners can opt for bar-style eats, which complement a bar-sized selection of wine, beer and shots. Dishes range from shepherd’s pie and grilled paninis to burgers, such as the Southwestern, crowned in pepper jack cheese and onion straws. A daily rotation of lunch and happy-hour specials adds an element of surprise to the dining experience, much like finding a winning lottery ticket in your date's wallet, and groups can retire to a choice of two brick-walled banquet halls for private celebrations.