Most homes have kitchens, but few have one that stretches to 1,500 square feet. Kitchen Thyme does, however, and rents the facility out by the hour, furnishing chefs or novices wanting to learn how to cook with the space and high-quality equipment to wine and dine parties of up to 75. Chefs can cook, roast, broil and boil with an array of different heat sources: an indoor charbroiler and griddle, a range with six burners, and four ovens. They can also chill cold dishes in a Sub-Zero refrigerator with a bottom freezer, outfitted with a glass front door that lets you make prolonged eye contact with the snowman who lives inside. Use of the kitchen is also available to non-cooking professionals and can also act as host to meetings, parties, or home-cooks wishing for a bigger kitchen.
At the Aqua-Tots in Richmond, experienced and encouraging instructors unlock aquatic territory for youth and adults while following a national curriculum recognized by the United States Swim School Association. They maintain a teacher to student ratio of 1:4 in their small group lessons, which last 30 minutes and sort pupils into eight swim levels, letting wee ones get used to splashing at their own pace and more experienced swimmers work on remembering which of an octopus’s tentacles to shake upon acquaintance. They also welcome special needs children into their Adaptive Aquatics Program and invite grown-ups in for adult lessons.
Aqua-Tots facilitates comfortable, safe learning with a modern facility whose pool contains 90-degree water even when the snow is falling. The center’s parent lounge lets progenitors watch lessons from behind a glass wall and browse the internet with free WiFi, and a play area entertains whippersnappers while their siblings are paddling.
At CrossFit Full Circle, dedicated coaches motivate students to get into the best shape of their lives. They’re guided by the no-nonsense workout ethic of CrossFit, a system that focuses on constantly varied functional exercises executed at high intensity. The gym's personal trainers draw from a wealth of experiences and certifications—owner Jason Struck is working on a master's degree in exercise physiology, and coach Matt Bahen boasts a background in serving with elite units in the navy⎯as they lead boot camps and exercises such as hurling kettlebell weights and performing pull-up reps. In order to build muscle, burn fat, and shake houseguests' hands firmly but not so firmly that they lose their arms, members use top-shelf equipment, weights, and bumper plates from brands such as Pendlay, Rogue, Kraiburg, and Dragon Door, all under the constant encouragement of a like-minded community of fellow athletes.
At ComedySportz Improv Theatre, audience suggestions keep a family-friendly and fast-paced vortex of scenes, games, and songs spinning in competitive shows that pit two improv teams against each other. Inside the intimate, 100-seat theater, spontaneity rules as a referee moderates the all-ages-appropriate hilarity pitched between the Richmond Legends and Virginia Hams. At the end of each comedic duel, the audience votes for the winning team, sentencing the losers to feed the doves that live inside the winners' top hats. ComedySportz's laugh-masters also host regular workshops to teach aspiring yuksters the art of improvised hilarity and the essential virtues of spontaneity, risk taking, and engagement with the moment. Through scene work, ComedySportz games, and short- and long-form improv, students learn to keep audiences roaring in order to jump-start a career or become a more affable bank robber.
Staffed by experienced coaches and computers who’ve sworn allegiance to the three laws of golfing robotics, GolfTEC’s motion sensors and high-speed cameras monitor swings and break down each individual’s form on a high-definition video display to get results. Sensors chirp with approval whenever they detect the perfect stroke or an especially witty golfing joke. GolfTEC’s certified personal coaches will point out flaws and strengths while providing golfers with tips on how to permanently improve their game from tee to green.
Suenaka-Ha Aikido is an effective martial art for self-defense, it also offers a positive philosophy that includes the concept of unification of mind and body. Many of the things you learn on the mat will also enhance activities in your daily life. The techniques of Aikido include a focus on taking your opponents balance an