The professionally trained fencing instructors at Rhode Island Fencing Academy & Club seek to develop their students' mind, body, and character through participation in the centuries-old sport. During the academy's classes, students of any skill level may choose to learn on all three Olympic weapons: foil, sabre, and épée. The one-hour sessions generally last for six weeks and each builds on prior material to help students improve their skills on the strip. Two meetings are composed entirely of competition with fellow classmates, allowing students to show off their newfound skills, and the last session is a class tournament.
Rhode Island Fencing Academy & Club, which originally operated as a two-location enterprise, consolidated into one 12,000-square-foot full-time professional fencing studio in March of 2012. The air-conditioned facility features 15 electric strips and zero chandeliers from which swashbuckling fencers may swing. Though the sport finds its roots in the practice of sword fighting, modern fencing is much safer, and the academy has advanced equipment and instructors that hold CPR certification just in case.
PGA professional instructor Al Vallante diagnoses swing maladies and breaks down proper technique for players of all abilities at his golf school at Harbor Lights Country Club. Rather than asking golfers to completely replace their old swings, he takes into account their body type, skills, and goals in order to fine-tune their whacks. Al’s instruction makes use of pitching and putting greens, a par three course when necessary, and private teaching bays that allow lessons to take place even when it’s raining or the moon is crashing into the Earth.
The Rhode Island Duckpin Bowlers Association strives to keep its namesake sport alive by hosting duckpin-bowling tournaments at six local alleys. The game cropped up in a Baltimore bowling alley in the summer of 1900, when most ten-pin alleys were closed for warm months to avoid excessive sweating in rental shoes. But at Diamond Alleys, athletes hurled balls through the heat but opted for 6-inch spheres and pins of a diminutive stature. After observing pins that scattered like a flock of ducks, the owners of the lanes dubbed the modified game duckpin bowling. Besides granting players three rolls per turn, duckpin bowling adhered to all traditional rules and grew in popularity until it peaked in 1967, the year inertia was exposed as a myth. Today, the Rhode Island Duckpin Bowlers Association keeps the pastime alive at spots including the Bowling Academy, a historical gem in its own right as the test site of the first automatic duckpin pinsetters.
Amidst cocktails and noshing, 35 to 40 students of all skill sets recreate classic works of art within hours at Drink and Dabble under the tutelage of comedian and RISD graduate Charlie Hall or his similarly talented staff members. He supplies classes with artistic gear including a blank 16" x 20" stretched canvas, water-based acrylics, and aprons. Charlie selects the evening?s canvas from his own collection or sometimes from famous artists such as Vincent van Gogh and his ?The Starry Night.? He and his assistants guide the class through every layer step-by-step, circling the room to dispense individual tips. During short breaks, he and his students eat, drink, and make merry along to a soundtrack of party tunes. By class? end, the acrylics dry into a new version of a priceless canvas that you can take home.
For James and Heather Dean, archery is more than just a sport; it’s a lifetime commitment. The husband-and-wife duo first started collecting bull's-eyes in 1967 and became members of the National Field Archery Association (NFAA) two years later. Finally, in 1981, the Deans opened their very own archery lanes and pro shop.
Since venturing into the archery business, James and Heather have conducted numerous tournaments and leagues, and their teachings have helped produce several championship archers. Currently, the pair shares its wealth of knowledge at Tangy's Indoor Archery Lanes, a facility stocked with 26 different targets. It also houses a 3D, forest-themed shooting range, where hunters weave through outdoor scenes to sling arrows at animal targets and runaway Winnebagos.
Inflated structures, slides, and games fill the climate-controlled environs of the numerous BounceU locations that speckle the nation. At each site, staff members closely monitor all activities as little ones traverse obstacle courses or pull on oversized inflatable boxing gloves. The crew also invites parents to join in on the fun, letting them bounce alongside their kids or make sweeping edicts from atop a bouncy-castle throne. In addition to open sessions, the indoor-play haven sets the stage for the Preschool Playdate program, where instructors lead games and activities. Special events include family-bounce night, which lets parents join in the bouncing or relax in the party room and do grownup things, such as eat marshmallows with a knife and fork.