Under the sprawling roof of First Niagara Pavilion, music greats such as Billy Joel, Rush, and Jimmy Buffett have all taken over the stage as fans throughout the amphitheater space watch, transfixed. Whether enjoying the show from the open-air pavilion or the verdant lawn, concertgoers demonstrate their love for the performers by dancing along to the music or holding up lighters engraved with the lead singer’s astrological sign.
At Muddy Rose Pottery, the staff strives to highlight the therapeutic nature of hand-thrown pottery. Though the studio is open to artists of all ages and abilities, the instructors focus most of their energy on intellectually and developmentally disabled students, who use the pottery wheel to create works of art and develop self-esteem and confidence. The studio welcomes all visitors to try their hand at the wheel during a variety of classes, which range from simple one-hour sessions to longer, more advanced 10-hour courses spread out over several weeks.
Arena's Performing Arts Centre offers a variety of classes for inner and outer children alike. Adults can choose fitness ($8 for a drop-in class) and 10-week dance classes (starting at $110 for 45-minute classes) from a summer schedule that includes zumba, tap aerobics, ballet tech, pointe, pre-pointe, and kickboxing. For kids, summer camps such as Camp Rock and Blues ($100) and Arena's Best Dance Crew ($125) teach boogie-ready anklebiters the joy and discipline of dance. Or surprise your mini-me with a themed birthday party at Arena's. Monthly tuition for gymnastics and musical-theater classes starts at $40. The friendly instructors at Arena's are experienced, patient, and willing to work with all age and skill levels.
The Archer's Edge's passionate staff helps all levels of bow hunters hone their craft with wide array of equipment alongside real and virtual targets. Aspiring hunters can get acquainted with their armaments in a 20-minute session with one of The Archer’s Edge’s pro staff members, who will explain the importance of safety, proper form, and playing the bow as a fiddle. In the indoor range arrow-hurlers can empty quivers at seven 20-yard, temperature-controlled lanes (reservations recommended). With the AIS TechnoHunt, archers use their own equipment to explore more than 700 realistic hunting scenarios and a virtual partner who decries the high price of earmuffs. Although range targets are not included in today's Groupon, they are available for purchase in The Archer's Edge's full-size pro shop.
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. 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.
Originally constructed in the 1940s, Sheffield Lanes has seen its interior evolve as the decades have changed. The original owner's son and his wife now head the bowling alley's staff, overseeing numerous renovations and quelling occasional bowling-pin uprisings. Over the years, the 20 lanes have been outfitted with contemporary accouterments: digital scoring systems and walls swathed in vibrant purples, blues, and pinks. Players have embraced the changes, convening upon the modern digs for cosmic bowling, weekly league matches, and frequent tournaments, and working to hone their skills enough to garner immortality via Sheffield Lanes' Honor Roll of high scores.
Elsewhere in the two-story edifice, chefs at Ricky Dee's Pizza—a Sheffield Lanes mainstay during the '90s that reopened in 2007—refuel bowlers with pies and oven-baked sandwiches cushioned by fresh, daily-made dough. After using their taste buds to decipher the pizzas' secret sauce recipe, guests mosey over to the Sheffield Lounge, where candles embedded into repurposed bowling balls illuminate tabletops, and walls dappled with bowling trinkets and photos provide revelers with a crash course in the bar's 50-plus-year history. Live music from onsite concert venue The Fallout Shelter enhances the cacophony of crashing pins and rowdy coasters.