Foothills Golf Group’s four golf courses each carry the company’s signature: immaculately groomed sweeping landscapes. The 7,142-yard behemoth that is Club West Golf Club showcases this purity of the turf with a challenging course design filled with elevation changes and stunning views of the surrounding hillsides. The Duke At Rancho El Dorado and The Foothills Golf Club represent classic Arizona golf, leading players along a lush emerald carpet that winds through a desert landscape peppered with shrubs and cacti. The 6,713-yard Ahwatukee Country Club rounds out the portfolio with a fair layout that challenges all skill levels to keep the ball out of the desert sands haunted by the ghost of Peter O'Toole's caddy.
Youthful shrieks and the slap of feet on mats fill the air at Southwest Gymnastics Training Center, drifting past a climbing rope and floor-level trampoline. Coaches preside over the 10,500-square-foot facility, improving more than somersaults?they also help give kids the self-esteem and discipline to excel in school or run a successful ant farm. The safety-certified coaches encourage positive traits in their young charges during recreational and competitive classes for ages 18 months to 18 years. Designed to adhere to USA Gymnastics guidelines, the curriculum helps kids build skills in a logical order, ensuring that no one has to do a cartwheel before learning what a wheel is.
The coaches also teach trampoline and tumbling skills, occasionally retiring to the sidelines to supervise open gym sessions. During these unstructured play sessions, kids can safely experiment with any equipment or practice pushing a wheelbarrow full of gold medals. Recreational classes for girls aged 6?18, boys aged 6?18, little ones aged 18 months?5 years, and athletic action figures, as well as competitive classes for advanced-level acrobats. Tumbling and trampoline lessons build knowledge of the sport, with a bouncier surface than a circus seal's mattress.
Each of Le Tutor Language School's experienced instructors is a native speaker of the language they teach, and they believe that anyone can learn a foreign language. The staff crushes communication barriers and expands cultural horizons with dynamic, interactive language programs that teach students of all ages to master conversational skills. Through step-by-step instruction, these teachers dive into cultural fluency as they impart both speaking and listening skills with simplified learning strategies. Their pedagogical prowess is available for small group classes, private lessons, and kids' classes. Le Tutor’s team teaches more than 15 languages—including Russian, Farsi, Chinese, and American Sign Language—in beginner to advanced levels. The sessions can help students communicate in real-life situations, increase business opportunities, and find more enjoyment in travels to exotic locales, such as the basement, where one might find a surly teen refusing to speak English to his family.
Le Tutor Language School is the official language partner of the Phoenix Sister Cities, which include Catania, Italy, Ennis, Ireland, and Taipei, Taiwan.
Wherever Sonia Kang has gone, she has always found a place to exercise. While earning her business degree from Arizona State University, she always managed to squeeze a few dance classes into her schedule—a mental and physical flexibility she continued to hone while working at a PR firm in Boston and enrolling in classes at the B.K.S. Iyengar Center. Ultimately, Kang supplemented her bachelor of science with an avalanche of certifications, including those from the Pilates Method Alliance and the Yoga Institute. After digging her way out from the mountain of paper, Kang founded Weon Keyong Health Center, where she and a team of instructors help others keep their own planners filled with Pilates classes that challenge physiques with a full-body workout. For more personalized attention, the teachers offer semiprivate classes—capped at four students each, as most end up stretching their torsos to become 10 feet tall—and host an array of workshops that focus on topics such as nutrition and working out with specially designed towels.
While working as a personal trainer, Skye Roberts stepped back and surveyed the fitness scene. She saw a needle of female personal trainers in a haystack of male personal trainers. She heard her female clientele complaining about the bodybuilding culture at male-oriented gyms. Having seen and heard enough, she felt compelled to create a female-oriented fitness regimen and open a women-only health club. Today, at Luna Fitness of Tempe, she and her all-female staff preach the Luna Fitness Program, which strives to help women understand their monthly cycles and alleviate their symptoms through diet, exercise, and awareness of the lunar phases. Underneath this comprehensive umbrella, staff members stage their mix of physically, mentally, and emotionally centered services. They schedule Zumba, yoga, and signature fitness classes when calories are napping to catch flab off-guard, and they offer an array of services, such as acupuncture, life coaching, hypnotherapy, spray tanning, and massage therapy, to round out well-being.
A safe space. That's what the Boys & Girls Clubs of the East Valley give to more than 43,000 kids each year. But along with keeping kids out of harm's way after school lets out, the Boys & Girls Clubs enrich children's lives though their programs. Kids get creative in arts classes, learn social interaction and fitness skills in sports programs, and prepare for the future with technology courses that ensure they won't buy stock in companies that only produce floppy discs.
But the Boys & Girls Clubs impact kids beyond afterschool care. In addition to the East Valley clubs having the first Arizona club to serve a Native American community, the clubs' Ladmo branch has Mona Dixon, who was named National Youth of the Year for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America in 2010.
Her path of success, encouraged by the Boys & Girls Clubs, led her from a girl homeless and worried about her family's survival to a young woman with a full ride to college and named one of the Top 28 Most Influential Black Women in America by Essence magazine.