Beneath the purple-and-white-striped walls, ladies of all ages and fitness levels twirl around poles and sink seductively into chairs during The Perfect Poleforma’s alternative fitness classes. Instructors lead groups of up to 10 women through beginning, intermediate, and advanced classes. The classes start with basic pole spins and leg-strength exercises and graduate to swinging upside down, hanging onto the pole with just the inner thighs, and climbing flagpoles to add stars as new states are discovered. They also conduct parties for bachelorettes and birthday girls, allowing groups of friends free rein of the ceiling-mounted poles.
Lions and tigers lurk on the glowing murals of Wildcat Station’s jungle-themed, black-light miniature-golf course, where balls roll toward nine challenging holes. More competition flanks the greens at the arcade, where 8 balls sink into the pool table’s pockets, pucks ricochet against the sides of the air-hockey table, and virtual races commence at video-game stations. Postgame birthday celebrations commence in the mirror-lined party area with pizza and soda feasts. Though it accommodates group or special events seven days a week, Wildcat Station typically closes on Tuesdays and Wednesdays during the school year so youngsters can catch up on their geometry homework and gain an advantage on the seventh hole.
At Baker Range, Inc. cups of freshly brewed coffee accompany rented firearms and shooting lessons. Former Airborne Infantry Lieutenant of the 82nd Airborne Division and longtime lawman Gordon Hutchinson leads private lessons, where he dispenses tips on technique and safety. Instructor Shael Stringer heads up the range's security-training department. Required by the Louisiana State Board of Private Security Examiners, his training classes have steadied the hands or prehensile feet of thousands of security guards.
Since its arrival on the community-theater scene in 1946, Baton Rouge Little Theater has continued to flout its moniker with a seasonal audience of 30,000 and more than 150 theatrical performances, workshops, and classes each year. The upcoming season’s five main-stage productions promise a heaping dose of musical comedy and more drama than a high-school cafeteria. The curtain opens on September’s stage with Crazy for You, a frenetic comedy with toe-tapping dance numbers and songs by George and Ira Gershwin. Director Keith Dixon breathes new life into the sultry Southern airs of A Streetcar Named Desire, and Almost, Maine punctuates the holiday break with a story of love and loss that, unlike an amateur pole-vaulter, never falls short.
Members at Curves, a fitness center designed exclusively for women, rotate around a 30-minute circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with female bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage participants’ machine maneuvering and muscle making, and a soundtrack of fun, upbeat music includes cues that tell participants it's time to move on to the next station. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use your own body weight, fitness level, and aerodynamic water bottle to create resistance that matches 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. Between each weight machine, ladies pause at recovery stations to keep hearts pumping as exercisers walk, run, or jog in place. With each workout warrior exercising at a different station, the only competition that exists is with one's own burgeoning muscles.
Copper Mill Golf Club fuses the traditional design of a links-style layout with the swaying native grasses and scenic wetlands of the Cypress Bayou for a 6,866-yard course lauded by Golf Digest as one of Louisiana's top 10 golf destinations. Each hole showcases a colorful moniker that forecasts its unique challenges, such as the high-risk, high-reward second shot at "Wise Man's Folly," the precariously elevated green at "Cliffs of Despair," or the caddy-eating Cyclops that stalks the 632-yard trail at "Odyssey." The cool shade of centuries-old oak trees blankets golfers as they encounter memorable shots throughout the round, including the concealed green at the par-3 sixth hole and the rustic mill ruins that hug the left side of the 17th hole.
After rounds, clubbers can head to the Palmetto Grill, which serves a menu of steaks and seafood. The semiprivate club also encompasses two lighted tennis courts, a resort-style pool, and a spray park, where youngsters and thirsty golf carts frolic through miniature geysers and soak one another with squirt-gun turrets.
Course at a Glance: