Every year, a crew of landscapers draws on a palate of bricks, wood, and water, as well as foliage and flowers, to fashion sweeping terraces and murmuring aquatic features. This year, in its 88th iteration, The Realtors Home & Garden Show explores the hours of the day through designs focused on facilitating morning meditation, afternoon cookouts, and evening film screenings. One installation rises from the work of international chalk artist Julie Kirk Purcell, who teases the eye with mural of a chalk garden that seems to leap in three dimensions from the floor of the convention hall.
Chatter drifts to the model patios and gardens from more than 250 exhibitors and vendors, who showcase home-improvement and landscaping techniques alongside designers of windows, cabinetry, fences, and saunas. A culinary area stands out from the rows of home wares with daily demonstrations from five chefs, including some nominated for James Beard awards. The sessions focus on topics including plating, raw food, and French dishes, all using organic ingredients from local farms. Nearby, a market bustles with guests toting potting supplies, gardening tools, and makeup kits for vain scarecrows. Outdoor furniture begs to perch on patios alongside lawn ornamentations that hint at European and Asian art traditions or highlight work by local artisans.
The ride-along gives racecar fanatics and thrill-seeking maniacs the chance to feel the g-force of a stockcar as it bursts from the starting line and rounds corners at ridiculous speeds. DriveTech Racing's experienced instructors spend three laps getting drivers up to speed and used to the controls before letting them roar away on their own. For a complete list of upcoming sessions, check the schedule of lap times here.
Mammoth Comics offers an extensive selection of obscure comics as well as current titles from publishers such as Top Cow, Wizard, DC Comics, and Marvel. Snag back issues ($2.50 each, or five for $10) or uncover a hidden gem to complete your neighbor’s Pineapple Man collection. Although Mammoth focuses mostly on comics, they also stock posters, cards, and action figures and statues for mild-mannered shelves. Mammoth's helpful, informed staff will also special-order more-obscure comics still in print, as well as offer recommendations.
Unless you're cultivating a dirty dish collection, sometimes it can feel like all you ever do is clean the kitchen. Instead of giving up your hobbies to clean the kitchen or teaching your swarm of fruit flies how to hold a soapy sponge, get spick-and-span with today’s Groupon. For $20, this deal gets you EcoMaids’s fill-in service, an expert bathroom and kitchen cleaning (a $50 value). The expert EcoMaids will go gunning for grime anywhere in their service area.
DriveTech provides classroom instruction for fledgling racecar drivers on a variety of professional racetracks across the country. Ride shotgun for five laps with a professional driver for a heart-pumping, really fast thrill ride in a safe environment that's completely free of Kurt Russell. Alternately, the 12-lap package lets you actually take the reins of a professional stock car. After a round of basic classroom instruction, you'll get to take the wheel for three practice laps and nine laps of proper green-flag racing that will leave your hair mussed, eyes bulged, and torso coated in corporate sponsorships. Both experiences eschew straight, open road in favor of high-speed turns, a hallmark of stock-car racing. Check out the schedule here.