In 1984, Sunshine Convenience Mart founder Harry Fong established his business on the pillars of friendly service and speedy, convenient access. Today, the store is minded by Harry's son, Chris, whose head is full of memories of his father awakening him at the crack of dawn to get ready for work. Guests can ogle the well-stocked shelves brimming with domestic and imported microbrews, liquors, and snacks, or pull up to the handy drive-thru window to pick up cups, soda, and ice without leaving their car or dismounting their hovercraft.
When Dwight Heard, the future founder of Phoenix's Heard Museum, purchased a swath of fertile riverbed land in the 1920s, he saw it as an opportunity to promote rural self-sufficiency instead of urban development. Nestled beside South Mountain, the 10-acre farm demonstrates the same commitment to rustic tranquility today, earning azcentral.com's 2010 readers' choice award for Best Local Treasure and serving as a romantic backdrop for a 2012 episode of The Bachelor, according to the Phoenix Business Journal. In addition to a small farm of naturally grown flowers and produce, The Farm at South Mountain includes three separate restaurants for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The original of these three restaurants, The Farm Kitchen, satisfies noontime cravings with picnic lunches in an idyllic patio setting that Frommer's described as "an oasis reminiscent of a deep South pecan orchard." A shade-casting canopy of pecan trees and locally grown clouds surrounds visitors as they sample sandwiches with slow-roasted turkey and chipotle mayo or salads with organic field greens and roasted seasonal vegetables.
Dr. Rogel A. Carlos, who speaks fluent Tagalog and Spanish, banishes plaque, straightens teeth with ClearCorrect invisible braces, and whitens smiles with the intensive Kor Whitening deep-bleaching system—a system the doctor personally uses. He can install porcelain veneers, prevent jaws from clicking with TMJ treatments, and treat sleep apnea inside his office, which surpasses all standards set by OSHA and the Center for Disease Control. Dr. Carlos also keeps himself at the ready at all times, fielding dental emergencies such as cracked molars and missing dental crowns stolen by the greedy tooth fairy.
The Arizona Humane Society has provided shelter and rehabilitation to homeless and abandoned animals since 1957, watching over more than 46,000 dogs, cats, and smaller critters every year as they await new homes. After proving their eligibility for adoption and consulting with the shelter staff, new owners can choose a companion from any of the pets prowling the menagerie, from puppies and kittens up to 9 months old to adult dogs and cats. Rabbits and ferrets also scurry about, searching for farmers' carrots carelessly planted in an animal shelter. For current owners, the society provides low-cost spaying and neutering services as a public service, as well as education and outreach programs to promote compassion and ensure a safe home for all creatures.
Flex Fitness challenges both beginning and seasoned exercise enthusiasts with results-oriented classes and training programs. Designed by founder Ryan Ehler, Flex Fitness’s Fit Camps remold undefined frames with cardiovascular and strength-training exercises performed in a small group setting. Visit up to three times per week as instructors constantly adapt routines over the course of each 30-minute class, keeping muscles confused and participants entertained, challenged, and convinced that they might be the Hulk's secret identity. The gym’s schedule busts up overmatched calendars, with numerous morning and evening classes scheduled Monday–Saturday. Augment in-class workouts with extra credit in the form of a personal-training session, poring over fitness strategies, nutrition plans, and the oral history of the dumbbell with one of Flex Fitness’s sagacious trainers.