An array of gently used apparel and accessories eagerly await loving wardrobe homes through Second Chances' consignment program. Though inventory changes frequently, recent items have included Dooney & Bourke wallets ($20) and a like-new Coach bag ($75), which team up with skirts from Banana Republic ($14.99) or a flattering pair of Seven Jeans (all jeans less than $30). Among the fabric-filled racks, a selection of gowns ($100 and less) begs to be included in momentous wedding celebrations and trips before obedience-school deans. A dedicated formal room, replete with a multitasking style consultant, personal shopper, and seamstress, helps fashionistas make elegant selections like Judi Dench picking a kickball team.
If geneticist and horticulturalist Gregor Mendel were still alive today, he would marvel at Rivergate Garden Center. Owner Jonathan Buck fills the nursery with plants from breeders such as the aptly named Proven Winners and the Conard-Pyle Co., which has been developing hybrid roses since 1897. From spring through the moment when the world's executive producers decide it's winter, the center is rampant with blossoming roses, lipstick-red weigela, and violet butterfly bushes engineered to expend energy continuously in colorful abandon. These plants also require less maintenance, as their stems resist frost and mildew and quit growing once they have reached a manageable, predetermined size.
On the Academy Of Self Protection’s indoor shooting range, instructors Rob Corcoran and Ian Palmer lend their expertise as former United States Military personnel—a Combat Arms Instructor and weapons armorer respectively—to classes that train citizens in armed self-defense. Their backgrounds in the USAF also qualify them to teach military and law-enforcement officials, drilling them in using nonlethal weapons such as chemical sprays, expandable batons, and a disarming smile. In addition to the range, the academy also houses a pro shop where gunsmith services are available.
Growing up, C.V. Hunt spent more time around Christmas trees than the typical kid; during the summers, he'd make extra money helping out on Christmas tree farms, including one owned by his uncle. In 1980, he decided to open his own farm, naming it Hunt Tree Company. On 500 acres, he grows fraser firs, douglas firs, and other evergreens, some of which stand up to 12 feet tall.
Some people love the scent of fresh-cut grass; others salivate at coffee's rich, earthy fragrance. But for a certain contingent of humanity, the smell of books beats out any other aroma. For those bibliophiles—and anyone else with an interest in classic literature, non-fiction, crafting books, and a slew of other texts—Book Attic should be a destination. In business since 1987, the shop is home to a rotating stock of more than 45,000 paperbacks, 25,000 hardcover titles, and 1,500 audio books.
Clothes Mentor stocks its high-end resale racks with lightly used, stylish clothing, handbags, and accessories. Carrying sizes 0–26, as well as petite apparel, it supplies the raw materials for women of any body type to radiate glamour like countesses caught in a solar storm. Customers can savor seasonal looks in a spring top by New York & Co. ($7) or slip into flattering pairs of Express jeans ($16). Sweaters from Ann Taylor Loft ($16) and White House Black Market skirts ($16) pair together for a professional ensemble. The store also pays cash on the spot for gently used, high-quality items, keeping store shelves buzzing with a steady influx of fresh arrivals.