The adults hanging out inside Zen and Now Clay Studio look blissfully filthy. Soft clay slicks their hands and sticks to their smocks as they sculpt a pastoral scene onto a platter during a class or develop their own style of relating to Patrick Swayze during open studio time. In the white, utilitarian workroom, artists gather around a central table for hand building—helped by tools such as a slab roller, extruder sets for creating tubular shapes, and slump molds—or form clay on one of several electric pottery wheels. The staff later glazes and fires all student work in a process that takes about two weeks.
Adding to the enjoyment of creating art, Zen and Now's instructors organize events such as couples nights that give adults a chance to enjoy wine and cheese in the company of people they sculpted themselves, and a Boy Scout pottery merit badge workshop encourages kids to explore creativity in the studio and in the broader community. Helping students further explore 3-D modeling, the studio also offers drawing and painting classes in watercolor and Sumi-e, a classical form of East Asian ink painting.
The sound of fans cheering the Atlanta Braves or the neon lights beaming from the nearby laser-tag course signals to guests entering Stars and Strikes' 55,000-square-foot facility that they are far from their neighborhood's bowling alley. At state-of-the-art bowling lanes, guests enjoy food and bar service while watching sporting events on large TVs. An adjacent room crisscrossed with a thicket of neon-green lasers joins a bumper-car arena where players raucously prepare for their workday commute. Complimenting the myriad activities and arcade with more than 100 games is a restaurant and bar boasting gourmet pub fare such as blackened-tilapia salads, popcorn-shrimp wraps, and green-bean fritters.
At Action Bartending School, instructors with more than five years of behind-the-bar experience train pupils in bartending fundamentals. During private workshops or classes that are capped at six, students practice their cocktail-making skills at their own station in an actual bar environment. They’ll learn what glasses to use for cocktails, how to make garnishes, and ways to signal their piano players to switch over to the minor key when a bad guy enters. Within one week, students graduate with their certification, at which point Action Bartending School assists them in finding a full-time bartending job.
With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, you'll move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage your machine maneuvering and your muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines use your body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches your abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
Galaxy's somewhat predictably-themed, glow-in the-dark mini golf course beckons gamers of all ages and skill levels. Take on iridescent aliens, blazing rocket ships, and lazy, ball-blocking space stations for 18 holes of indoor fun. The glowing outer space hazards and moving obstacles make for challenging courses presenting dangers to wayward golf balls and wandering dark matter. Each ticket gets two avid gamers two full 18-hole rounds on the black-lit course, with the last hole awarding a prize to anyone making a hole-in-one. Mini-golfers with miniature mini-golfers can take advantage of children's tickets ($4) for a family fun night, day, or indeterminably-blacklit timeperiod.
Calling Stone Mountain massive is something of an understatement. The natural attraction covers a total of 583 acres, and its peak towers 825 feet into the sky. That summit grows closer and closer through the window of Stone Mountain Park's signature attraction, The Summit Skyride. The high-speed cable car sweeps over the mountain, passing by the giant figures etched into the Confederate Memorial Carving and granting its passengers incredible views. Visibility stretches more than 60 miles in all directions, revealing lakes, the Atlanta skyline, and the Appalachian Mountains.
Even with the stunning views, visitors might be tempted to descend from Stone Mountain's top to experience the Lasershow Spectacular in Mountainvision and dozens of attractions offered by the park, including the Scenic Railroad, Ride The Ducks, and SkyHike, one of the nation's largest adventure ropes courses. During warmer months, guests can take to the Songbird Habitat & Trail to hear the songs of local birds. In other parts of the park, they'll find the century-old Grist Mill and a quaint covered bridge. Later in the year, snow falls on Memorial Lawn and brings with it the opportunity to build a snowman, tap him on the shoulder, and then quickly slide away down a 400-foot tubing hill on the mammoth snow park.?Seasonal events?including fall festivals and other holiday festivities?pack the park's calendar, ensuring that lovers of both natural and man-made spectacles find something to marvel at.