On a sprung bamboo floor, the dance instructors at Ancient Art Studios lead groups and individual students through routines in the various forms of belly dance. Inside the spacious and warmly hued studio, where large mirrors let visitors watch their body postures, staff members also hosts troupe rehearsals, special workshops, and recitals.
Surly Johnson Sports Bar & Grill's cooks assemble a menu of hearty pub fare, which diners fork into while cheering on their favorite sports team or battling in trivia. The fried turkey Gobbler piles deep-fried turkey, stuffing, and homemade cranberry sauce pile onto a hoagie roll ($7.99)—a traditional sandwich invented by pilgrims in the 1960s—and asian beef skewers ($6.99) spear char-grilled sirloin steak as lightly pan-fried crab cakes dip into chipotle sour cream ($8.99). Flat-screen TVs broadcast sports games as patrons perched at a long, dark wood counter bite into Surly Johnson’s signature Surly Pizza ($11.99), a pie loaded with bacon, sausage, pepperoni, and bolognese sauce. On Trivia Tuesdays, the 10-ounce Stockyards bistro steak teams up with blue-cheese butter ($13.99) to answer questions such as, "What is the capital of India?" and "Who was the first president to time-travel?"
Thanks to a $50 loan from his grandfather, Chef James Messinger was able to promote his small catering business in the local classifieds, kicking off the career he dreamt about as a student at the Culinary Institute of America. The unlikely success from this small ad helped The Crazy Chefs Caterers to flourish and allowed Messinger to finance a long-desired wine-tasting odyssey through Spain, where the local cuisine quickly captivated both his tongue and imagination. Upon arrival back home, he established Loco Tapas & Wine Bar with his wife, brandishing fresh, quality ingredients from local farms to construct traditional tapas influenced by Spain's Catalonia, Basque, and La Rioja regions. The highly praised seasonal menus flaunt a rotating arsenal of small plates and elegant entrees, including a saffron-rice paella with chicken, chorizo, and mussels that the Boston Globe declared as one of "40 fantastic dishes" in the Boston area.
Hovering above Loco Tapas & Wine Bar's fully stocked bar, a chalkboard announces a handwritten roster of Spanish wines by the glass. Elsewhere in the dining area, dangling chandeliers and flickering candles set the stage for shadow-puppet tours de force upon rich crimson walls. Striking black accents, tablecloths, and furniture punctuate the sleek color scheme.
ClubWest Dance Studio's instructors help students master social and ballroom dancing, whether they are beginners, moderately experienced, or already at ease on dance floors. Instructors adjust each 40-minute private lesson to the student's experience level while lavishing them with undivided attention to help skills and confidence blossom. If a student doesn't have a partner, the studio will provide another dancer or a robotic vacuum cleaner to practice the choreography.
During group lessons, students put the steps and timing skills they learned into action while following styles such as the rumba, the foxtrot, the cha-cha, and swing. Private lessons can be arranged at times that conveniently mesh with students' schedules, and drop-in group classes take place on most evenings Monday?Thursday. Beyond dance lessons, ClubWest's curriculum extends to dance aerobics, as well as a wedding program to help engaged couples prepare for the bride and groom's first break dance.
Film buffs across six states stare wide-eyed at large cinema screens, losing themselves in first-run Hollywood movies and the smell of fresh, buttery kernels within Your Neighborhood Theatre's 17 locations. Though all theaters prioritize comfortable seating, old-fashioned friendly service, and high-stakes preshow trivia slideshows, each location encompasses its own distinct charm, be it through arthouse décor, 3-D screens, or Rhode Island's vintage 1950's drive-in setting.
• For $104, you get two tickets for seating in the back half of section 4, 5, 7, or 8 (a $158 value before fees, or up to a $206.10 value online, including all Ticketmaster fees). • For $114, you get two tickets for seating in the front half of section 4, 5, 7, or 8 (a $178 value before fees, or up to a $226.50 value online, including all Ticketmaster fees).