High above the Sonoran desert, on the Tohono O'odham Reservation, the Kitt Peak National Observatory keeps track of the night sky with the world's largest collection of independent telescopes. Throughout the day, guides lead tours of three of the behemoths, including the world's largest solar telescope and a historic gazing dome built in 1973 to broadcast the moon explorers’ games of golf. On those chilly desert evenings, visitors can take part in the nightly observing program and view distant planets and far-off galaxies through 20- and 16-inch telescopes. Reservations are recommended; the program is quite popular and stars tend to shyly hide behind comets around large groups.
Gym-goers know exactly what they're in for just by reading the sign above the door at Power & Physique Systems. Scheduled in the early morning and late afternoon on weekdays, classes are designed to be incoroporated into a workday routine, and include generalized boot camps and focused Butts and Guts classes. On Saturdays, they switch things up with a cycling program and high-intensity Tabata training. The rest of the time, the gym is open for business to members looking to hoist some kettlebells, take the long way up on a Stairmaster, or work with a sports science–certified personal trainer.
A small group of explorers stands beneath an open dome of night sky as pinpricks of starlight glitter against the expanse's dark blues and blacks. Each spot of light even seems to look much clearer from here—likely because the group is standing 9,157 feet above sea level. At the Stewart Observatory inside Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter at the mountain's summit, scientists guide visitors through the use of gear such as a 32-inch Schulman telescope—the state's largest public viewing telescope—to probe the far reaches of space to learn about celestial phenomena and take in magnified images of the universe just above.
Days and nights at the center bring a slew of learning experiences to budding astronomers. Accompanied by University of Arizona scientists, Discovery Days lead explorations of topics such as tree rings, hummingbirds, and meteorology, frequently beckoning students into the surrounding outdoors. During nightly SkyNights programming, groups summit Mt. Lemmon for a five-hour evening of dining and stargazing at the observatory. One-on-one time with heavenly bodies comes courtesy of Astronomer Nights, wherein site staffers grant singles or pairs lodging, private access to the Schulman telescope, and the chance to contribute directly to the field upon discovering a supernova, nebula, or handlebar mustache on the man in the moon.
Periodically, the scientific team also expounds on specific topics, such as digital celestial imaging, with the public in multiple-day workshops. Each participant builds on the Stewart Observatory's list of achievements since 1970, which include furthering infrared astronomy, surveying the moon for Apollo lunar landings, and searching for near-Earth asteroids.
High desert sandbanks surround the outdoor ranges at Adaptive Firearms Institute, creating a closed-off training ground where instructors and their classes can fire both standing still, on the move, or from behind cover such as cars and vans.
Adaptive Firearms Institute teaches immersive, six-hour classes in pistols, carbine rifles, concealed carry, and adaptive AK rifles. The programs cater to all skill levels, starting with beginner classes such as Adaptive Pistol 1 and Adaptive Carbine 1, during which instructors build a core in gun manipulation and other fundamentals.
Meet the Instructors
Instructors Paul, Quinn, and Ryan make up the team here, and each one brings a wealth of experience to his respective classes, namely backgrounds in the military and law enforcement.
What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
We are a locally owned and offer small class sizes in a safe and nurturing environment.
Every day at St. Paul's your child will be enriched with important, appropriate, and fun experiences and activities.
Do you provide any materials? What should your students expect to bring?
We provide everything your child will need for their fun, educational experience (paints, paper, educational toys, books, etc.).
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
We realized a need in the Tucson eastside community for a small, privately owned Christian preschool where we could focus on educating children according to their individual needs.
What do you love most about your job?
The safe, fun, family like atmosphere for the teachers and children.
Randy Brown was overweight at 274 pounds and 44% body fat and felt uncomfortable with his body. When a friend encouraged him to try boot camp, he reluctantly joined. Through hard work and with support from his instructor, he transformed his body and felt better than ever before. Today, Randy is a certified personal trainer weighing in at 187 pounds with 7% body fat and wants to help others do what his instructor helped him to do years ago: get in shape, gain confidence, and whistle Beethoven's Symphony no. 9. Through the years, he has grown Brown's Boot Camp from one class of 25 students to 14 different camps, and some of his students have gone on to become personal trainers themselves, which speaks to the success of his workout regimen and the camp's communal atmosphere. Randy's program focuses on improving total fitness, which not only includes strength, cardio, and flexibility but also nutritional counseling. Brown also offers one-on-one personal training and chef services.