Drop Zone 4 Kidz lures little ones into its supervised indoor play area with a loft space, a playhouse, and multitudinous toys. Young explorers can scale a pint-size mock climbing wall to test the gripping powers of new acrylic nails, and budding artists can give into creative impulses over a palette of paint. One flat-screen TV sits in all rooms, facilitating brief veg-out sessions between energetic Wii games or live ice-melting demonstrations in front of a mock stove.
A group of bridesmaids surrounds the bride for a postceremony photo. As the flashbulb goes off, the photographer, Andy Leithner, is smiling along with them. This is just one of the more than 1,500 weddings he has shot in his 26-year career, a kind of longevity attributed to his enthusiasm for capturing his subjects' energy. Having developed a photojournalistic, bride-focused approach to the big day has made him a seven-time winner of Oklahoma State's Best Custom Wedding Album award. Since training at both the Texas School of Photography and the Delta School of Photography, the award-winning portrait photographer has also documented innumerable graduations, births, and clouds shaped like Ansel Adams. In addition to owning Andy's Fine Portraits, he has been invited to serve as a visiting photography lecturer for the Professional Photographers of America and at Tulsa Junior College.
Diversity isn’t just a buzzword at YWCA Tulsa. It describes the people and activities that have made this organization thrive since 1914. To empower women and their families, its staff hosts programs focused on wellness, wealth, and education.
Women and men of all races, creeds, and sexual orientations flock to YWCA’s fitness center, where they can torch calories with cardio equipment and sculpt muscles in a weightlifting room. At the indoor swimming pool, kids learn to flutter kick as seniors practice arthritis-friendly aqua aerobics. Yoga classes cultivate strong, stretchy muscles with relaxing bends and balances, and CrossFit sessions strengthen exercisers of all levels with workouts inspired by Olympic sports such as weightlifting, gymnastics, and turnstile jumping.
About 90% of Purple Glaze Studio’s ceramics and craft supplies come from local sources, reflecting a dedication to the community that undergirds the studio’s resolve to never become a franchise. Instead, the Oklahoma-oriented Purple Glaze Studio welcomes neighbors inside to paint hundreds of ceramic bowls, frames, and figurines created in the Tulsa area. Stencils, sponges, and stamps assist crafters as they paint their projects, and an idea center helps jumpstart flagging imaginations. The studio also invites guests to assemble bright tiles and stones into mosaics—a perfect activity for a girls’ night, a birthday party, or discovering that you’re actually colorblind.
During her many years as a pet groomer, Tina Bebee witnessed grooming methods that filled her with dismay. In 1991, she decided to open her own grooming shop, naming it in a way that made its specialty clear. From a basic nail trim to a full bath with shedding treatment, each session is performed by caring mane tamers, and Gentle Pet Grooming's managers oversee and check the work of all groomers-in-training. When possible, dogs are paired with the same groomer at each visit to establish a loving bond and make the experience more pleasant for tender-headed mutts.