King George Aviation Flight School's squadron of instructors use their decades of combined experience to introduce novice pilots to the skies. Official licensing courses range from navigation and mountain flying to radio procedures or instructor ratings, and their Discovery flights give beginners a taste of the skies while proving to nonbelievers that clouds are, in fact, made of marshmallow. The school also rents its planes to pilots for day trips and sells certain models.
Bisqueware-lined walls and buckets of bright paint await sparks of creativity to bring them into full-colour radiance. At Vikki's Clay Art Studio, artists first select an unfinished piece of pottery or a fused glass project-in-potentia, and then set to work with provided tools, patterns, stencils, and glazes to create their own unique piece. Expert supervision is always on hand as guests decorate pots or piece together cut glass under expert supervision. Once finished, the pieces disappear into the studio's kiln and emerge ready for pickup after about a week. Private parties let crafters socialize over glass or bisque art while testing out ideas for a set of risqué tea saucers on pals first.
With the propeller of a Cessna 180 whirring just above its glassy surface, the Fraser River appears to tremble in anticipation of the floatplane’s imminent takeoff. After launching off the aquatic runway, the roaring plane elevates above British Columbia’s wilderness as passengers peer out at the lakes and glacier valleys below.
This is just another day at work for Fort Langley Air, Ltd.’s experienced pilots, who regularly soar above the mountains and glaciers of Garibaldi Provincial Park and Pitt River valley on sightseeing tours, charter flights, and seaplane training courses. While manning the plane’s controls, pilots point out native wildlife, interesting rock formations, and ice sculptures carved by the mountains’ reclusive yetis. Their charter services allow passengers to easily bypass less scenic forms of public transportation, and their seaplane rating courses train pilots to safely land on water with 50 hours of flight time.
Hailed by the Vancouver Sun for “gathering an exciting inventory of plants” that has helped him build Phoenix Perennials into "one of the best known destinations for home gardeners and plant enthusiasts from all over the Lower Mainland,” Gary Lewis keeps his shop stocked with a selection of upwards of 4,000 varieties of garden plants. Under Gary’s capable helm, a knowledgeable staff tends to the greenhouse’s lush vegetation, assisting shoppers and answering questions about rumours of killer tomatoes. To further bolster patrons’ flora-centric savvy, Gary imparts his substantial know-how upon pupils of all ages with monthly e-newsletters and a host of workshops and classes held throughout the year. An in-nursery design service pairs patrons and a trained design professional who architects a custom garden blueprint based upon photos of the space, a detailed client questionnaire, and the dimensions of existing secret gardens.
For more than 30 years, Coastal Pacific Aviation has taught altitudinal abecedarians the methods of airliner helming. A licensed flight instructor will escort you through a unique 30-minute introductory tutorial to replicate the operational motions of a jumbo jet with greater accuracy than pointing a fan at your face while sprawling on a table Superman-style. Aerial coxswains maintain control of the simulation from beginning to end as they settle into the captain’s chair of a Boeing 747 simulator concordant with the ones used to prime pilots-in-training for the high skies. For a more encyclopedic session, Groupies can add an extra half-hour for an additional $100 fee.