Though they operate more than 200 locations in upwards of 30 states, the team behind U.S. Baseball Academy aims to make each young athlete's experience a personal one. Their four- or six-week camps are taught by local instructors who are current or former coaches at the high school or college level, and typically offer a 6:1 or better player-to-teacher ratio for intense, professional-style training. The Academy's proven itinerary of hitting, pitching, fielding, and baserunning drills was developed by an advisory board of college coaches and Major League players, including Cy Young Award–winner and ace pitcher Brandon Webb.
The telltale sounds of fun fill the air at either Magic Mountain Fun Center location, as friends and families careen around tracks in go-karts, compete on mind-bending mini-golf courses, or do battle in bumper cars. Piping-hot pizzas fuel days of rides and arcade games, and the park's varied birthday packages catapult parties into a fun-filled gamut of feasting, bumper boats, and laser tag. Open late, the parks afford guests the opportunity to while the night away or lure their night terrors in front of a speeding bumper car.
Nestled in a snug turquoise storefront, the Little Art Theatre festoons its silver screen with independent flicks and films helmed by local auteurs. Cineastes can treat peepers to current and upcoming features, such as the Ewan McGregor–starring dramedy Beginners, or Buck, a moving documentary about Buck Brannaman, the inspiration for The Horse Whisperer and its sequel The Horse Whisperer 2: Whisper Harder. Crafted by an artist more than 50 years ago, six stoic houselights preside over enraptured audiences cushioned in the intimate 180-seat theater. Two cartons of buttery popcorn grease up thumbs for swift up-or-down critiquing, and curious patrons can eat while pondering the projector room’s celluloid secrets.
Under the choppy surface of Ohio's quarries and waterways, the Columbus Scuba team guides students into the world of underwater exploration with specialized training courses. In order to prepare students for diving situations and encounters with bullies in schools of minnows, the team also holds classroom sessions, including PADI open-water certification. In addition to training students, Columbus Scuba dedicates itself to the diving community by operating the Mid-Ohio Divers club, through which they organize barbecues, camping trips, and group dives in far-off reefs and caves.
Skydive Warren County is a labor of love for the Stewart family with roots as far back as 1945, when the patriarch purchased 40 acres of land and lived in a house attached to a hangar at Waynesville Airport. Such proximity caused the Stewarts to grow up with an appreciation for aviation that eventually brought them to skydiving. Since 1969, the business has been imbued with their enthusiasm, teaching novices and experts alike how to hone their skills in airborne sports with the help of licensed professionals.
At Scarborough East Tennis & Fitness Club, manager Bob Hilborn and his dedicated staff of tennis professionals impart cross-court wisdom to racket wielders of all ages. The team keeps members and guests in shape year-round by hosting lessons on indoor courts during cold months and on outdoor courts when it starts to rain inside. Membership programs gives ball swatters the ability to reserve courts, plus they get access to the workout facility, complete with computerized bikes, rowing machines, free weights, saunas, and towel service. Members can also take advantage of exclusive opportunities such as the yearlong junior program. This multilevel program pairs up to four students with an instructor who will attempt to help them hone their forehands and fine-tune their volleys.
For more than 14 years, Simply Dancing Dance Studio has offered the community a place for individuals and pairs to learn the sensual movements of the tango, the upbeat rhythms of swing, and how to lead gracefully while waltzing. Along with its wealth of social- and ballroom-dancing classes, suitable for sashayers of any experience level, the studio also offers sweat-inducing dance-fitness classes and centering yoga sessions.