A still figure stands silently behind a few thin trees. When he sees someone emerging from a long, metal tube several yards away, he takes aim with his marker, squeezes the trigger, and watches a blot of brightly colored paint materialize on his friend's shoulder. Such friend-turned-foe scenarios play out daily at Urban Assault, a paintball facility whose outdoor battlefields in Cecil and indoor arenas in McDonald attract players from all around the area. In the outdoor arenas, the surrounding wooded landscape adds variety of terrain and barricade possibilities, letting staffers add touches such as metal crawl tubes and other strategic bits of architecture that paintballers have come to depend on for cover. The competitors engage in open play on five such outdoor fields—each with unique features—as well as in the company's two indoor spaces that total some 30,000 square feet. Indoors, paintball contests go from sparsely adorned to almost disco-like as players stalk their enemies while traipsing across catwalks and navigating a demanding maze of fog machines, black lights, and adrenaline-boosting music inside one of the fields. The brains behind Urban Assault also offer special rates to large groups, military veterans, and members of the CIA's finger-painting brigade.
Canonsburg's Iceoplex at Southpointe isn't just a free-skating haven—it's the practice spot for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Participants can twirl and spin on the same surface as the Steel City's three-time Stanley Cup winners, building skating skills or simply body-checking casual acquaintances. In addition to the celebrated rink, a large sports arena hosts rousing matches of football, indoor soccer, lacrosse, volleyball, or basketball during league times or lessons. After working up an appetite, players can head to Jay's Sports Bar and Restaurant where a menu of classic American fare and drink specials fuels post-skating revelry.
Established in 1832, J.J. Gillespie Gallery furnishes its walls with a wide range of art from American and international artists. In an attached workshop, a master framer meticulously preserves keepsakes inside custom wood or metal frames. The gallery also hosts an onsite art expert, who can appraise oil-based works or clean and restore them to their former luster.
Use the riding lesson at Caustelot Farms for an introduction or refresher aboard the second-oldest form of transport, the first being logs with saddles. Those opting for the private session receive 30 minutes of one-on-one attention, while the longer small-group session puts cowpersons atop temporary animal companions for an hour of dusty trail hitting and hoof trotting. The small class sizes allow both beginners and experienced horse masters alike to receive the personalized attention necessary to truly learn the secrets of horse whispering.
The Little Gym fosters the healthy growth of children by allowing them to progress at their own pace in a nonthreatening, nurturing environment. As wee ones from 4 months to 12 years-old tackle challenges, overcome fears, and learn to confidently express their opinions about Platonic theory, The Little Gym's original music graces their ears and supports their lessons. The month includes four classes that let tots develop through weekly, age-specific curriculum, with programs including pre-school/kindergarten gymnastics, dance, sports-skills development, and karate.
The Pilates Body’s team of certified instructors empowers musculature with yoga and Pilates classes using machines and mats that stretch bods, decompress spines, and calm minds. Pilates mat classes chisel midsections with a 55-minute regimen of resistance workouts that force bodies to reckon with the indefatigable scourge of gravity while focusing on Pilates fundamentals such as mindful breathing, correct spinal and pelvic alignment, and awareness of the body’s desire for pineapple shaved ice. Beginners can attend open-level mat classes and ease into training methods that move at a pace as gentle as a young Bambi, and experienced practitioners challenge limbs in the more rigorous high-intensity Pilates mat class. Students stave off bodily boredom by mixing Pilates with the salubrious stretching of Vinyasa yoga classes or therapeutic hot-yoga classes, where instructors guide pupils through a series of asanas in sweat-breaking 95-degree heat, ideal for purging the body of toxins and the mind of John Mellencamp lyrics.