The professionally trained fencing instructors at Rhode Island Fencing Academy & Club seek to develop their students' mind, body, and character through participation in the centuries-old sport. During the academy's classes, students of any skill level may choose to learn on all three Olympic weapons: foil, sabre, and épée. The one-hour sessions generally last for six weeks and each builds on prior material to help students improve their skills on the strip. Two meetings are composed entirely of competition with fellow classmates, allowing students to show off their newfound skills, and the last session is a class tournament.
Rhode Island Fencing Academy & Club, which originally operated as a two-location enterprise, consolidated into one 12,000-square-foot full-time professional fencing studio in March of 2012. The air-conditioned facility features 15 electric strips and zero chandeliers from which swashbuckling fencers may swing. Though the sport finds its roots in the practice of sword fighting, modern fencing is much safer, and the academy has advanced equipment and instructors that hold CPR certification just in case.
The Rhode Island Duckpin Bowlers Association strives to keep its namesake sport alive by hosting duckpin-bowling tournaments at six local alleys. The game cropped up in a Baltimore bowling alley in the summer of 1900, when most ten-pin alleys were closed for warm months to avoid excessive sweating in rental shoes. But at Diamond Alleys, athletes hurled balls through the heat but opted for 6-inch spheres and pins of a diminutive stature. After observing pins that scattered like a flock of ducks, the owners of the lanes dubbed the modified game duckpin bowling. Besides granting players three rolls per turn, duckpin bowling adhered to all traditional rules and grew in popularity until it peaked in 1967, the year inertia was exposed as a myth. Today, the Rhode Island Duckpin Bowlers Association keeps the pastime alive at spots including the Bowling Academy, a historical gem in its own right as the test site of the first automatic duckpin pinsetters.
For James and Heather Dean, archery is more than just a sport; it’s a lifetime commitment. The husband-and-wife duo first started collecting bull's-eyes in 1967 and became members of the National Field Archery Association (NFAA) two years later. Finally, in 1981, the Deans opened their very own archery lanes and pro shop.
Since venturing into the archery business, James and Heather have conducted numerous tournaments and leagues, and their teachings have helped produce several championship archers. Currently, the pair shares its wealth of knowledge at Tangy's Indoor Archery Lanes, a facility stocked with 26 different targets. It also houses a 3D, forest-themed shooting range, where hunters weave through outdoor scenes to sling arrows at animal targets and runaway Winnebagos.
Artist Deenie Pacik, armed with 14 years of crafting fused-glass artwork, 18 years of creating stained-glass, and nine years teaching at schools such as Franklin Pierce University, imparts her expertise during a variety of classes. Working out of Deenie's fully equipped home studio, small groups of students learn to fuse dichroic glass and powder into everything from shiny pendants to new work boots for Cinderella's cousin. Projects transform into translucent objets d’art in the glass kiln, which, as Deenie tells the Warwick Beacon, heats glass at three times the temperature used to bake a pizza, or eight billion times the heat used to glaze an ice sculpture.
Inflated structures, slides, and games fill the climate-controlled environs of the numerous BounceU locations that speckle the nation. At each site, staff members closely monitor all activities as little ones traverse obstacle courses or pull on oversized inflatable boxing gloves. The crew also invites parents to join in on the fun, letting them bounce alongside their kids or make sweeping edicts from atop a bouncy-castle throne. In addition to open sessions, the indoor-play haven sets the stage for the Preschool Playdate program, where instructors lead games and activities. Special events include family-bounce night, which lets parents join in the bouncing or relax in the party room and do grownup things, such as eat marshmallows with a knife and fork.
Staff Size: 2–10 people
Average Duration of Services: 30–60 minutes
Brands Used: Title Boxing, Otomix active wear, Asian world of martial arts
Pro Tip: Wear something that is comfortable; classes include stretching, punching, and kicking techniques.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Most Popular Attraction/Offering: Fat-burning kickboxing classes
Recommended Age Group: Adults