Monday, July 22, 2024

Climb to Your Full Potential at The Delaware Rock Gym

Even if you've never so much as heard the term "belay," you're welcome to climb at The Delaware Rock Gym near Newark. Of course, you'll have to learn the basics first. Take a beginner class at this public climbing gym (the only one of its kind in the entire state) and you'll know everything you need to scale its 11,300 square feet of faux rock faces.

Since the climbing walls are constructed using steel instead of wood, they're uniquely contoured to create realistic, unusual surfaces—just like the kind you'd encounter in real life. Go for a trial climb on Saturdays or Sundays at 10 a.m. They're designed specifically for someone who's never climbed before, so one of the rock gym's highly trained staff members will stick with you every step of the way—from the ground. They'll serve as your guide, anchor, and belayer. The intro climbing classes are also held on Saturdays and Sundays if you need to learn the fundamentals first, and they kick off at 11 a.m.

The Delaware Rock Gym
520 Carson Drive
Bear, DE 19701
(302) 838-5850

Dig Into Local Mining History at the Iron Hill Museum in Newark

A wealth of information about Newark's natural history awaits at Iron Hill Museum. It pays homage to the rich past of the Iron Hill region by showcasing geological artifacts innate to the area, just like it has since opening day in 1968.

Check out the Iron Mining exhibit if you're wondering how the name "Iron Hill" came about. You'll learn about every step in the iron mining process and see iron ore before it becomes the final refined form, Pig Iron. Nearby at the Please Touch Wall, experience geology in a sensory way. You're welcome to feel the ridges in a piece of petrified wood or run your fingers over the crags in a turtle shell. Ogle rocks set ablaze (figuratively) by ultraviolet light in the Glowing Rock Room, or explore a chunk of the du Pont Rock and Mineral collection gathered around the state of Delaware and around the globe. You can even learn how the Lenni Lenape tribe used the bounty of the land (including stone) to survive in early America.

Iron Hill Museum
1355 Old Baltimore Pike
Newark, DE 19702
(302) 368-5703

Liberty Yoga: From FLY! Vinyasa to Slow-Flowing Therapeutic Classes

Liberty Yoga's co-owners Erin Sweeney and Christine Shaw come from very different backgrounds, which is what makes them such an effective duo. Christine has been immersed in the world of fitness since the '80s, back when aerobics and step classes were the status quo. She taught those classes 30 years ago, but in 1998, she discovered yoga. The slower style of strength-training intrigued her so much that she got certified and started teaching in 2004. She still incorporates some of the fast-paced fitness of her past at FLY! Vinyasa classes, which move at a quick clip and keep both mind and body engaged.

Erin, on the other hand, didn't begin teaching until 2008, and it was a much slower style of yoga that caught her attention. Erin caters to an older demographic with her therapeutic yoga classes, which are designed to stretch out aching muscles using Iyengar techniques. The classes flow at a slow pace and are perfect for someone with stiff joints or anyone new to yoga.

Liberty Yoga
700 Capitol Trail
Newark, DE 19711
(302) 273-1530

Fort Delaware State Park: A Piece of Local History with National Significance

When Fort Delaware was constructed in 1859, its purpose was simple in theory, but not so simple in reality: to protect Wilmington and Philadelphia's ports in an era distinguished by civil war. It went on to house Confederate prisoners of war, and, eventually, to serve as Fort Delaware State Park.

Hop a ferry from Delaware City, and it'll shuttle you across half a mile of waves to Pea Patch Island. From there, you'll have to board another jitney to get to the fort itself, a menacing building crafted from brick and granite. Once you're inside, you'll be transported back to a time when the fort was still in full operation: summer of 1864. The costumed docents will teach you about the ins and outs of life at the fort, including how blacksmiths made cannons and how the staff did the laundry. If you're interested in a day of learning local history, Fort Delaware is your spot.

Fort Delaware State Park
45 Clinton Street
Delaware City, DE 19706
(302) 834-7941

Judge Morris Estate: Tour the Past

You don’t have to go far to see an example of colonial living in Newark, not when there’s the Judge Morris Estate. Located on the grounds of White Clay Creek State park, the Judge Morris Estate was built in 1790 for a native Delawarean and federal judge, and is now open for tours and other functions. Reserve a private tour for up to 15 people, and your group can learn firsthand about colonial life. Explore the furnishings and history of this great old mansion. You can even add a private tea at the end of the tour. What a great idea for a day out with friends! And if you’re having a special event, what better place to have it?

Judge Morris Estate
76 Polly Drummond Hill Road
Newark, DE 19711
(302) 368-6900

Cinema Center: Catch a Current Flick in an Old School Theater

Cinema Center is perhaps, by modern standards, a bit behind the times. It only has three screens, and the auditoriums aren't necessarily outfitted with the massive cushy seats and crystal-clear sound system to which you may be accustomed. But for its regulars, these are the exact reasons why Cinema Center is so special.

The movie theater's old school vibe is all part of the charm, according to those who catch a flick here often. Despite its vintage aesthetic, the theater does screen first-run movies in its three auditoriums, so you'll be able to catch the latest blockbuster at a much more affordable price than a big megaplex. Plus, the concessions stand has all the classic snacks necessary to get you through the movie, from popcorn to Reese's Pieces. Wash down your sweet and salty feast with a Pepsi or bottled water while you enjoy the show.

Cinema Center
401 Newark Shopping Center
Newark, DE 19711
(302) 737-3720

UDairy Creamery: For the Freshest Ice Cream

Located right on the campus of the University of Delaware, the slogan of the UDairy Creamery is “from the cow to the cone,” and that means it's fresh! All of the delicious ice cream made at UDairy begins with milk from the cows that graze on the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources’ nearby farm. What that means for you is the freshest ice cream you can get. But be ready to take your time – the menu gives you an amazing array of great choices. Vanilla, chocolate, and other traditional flavors are offset with seasonal choices like Key Lime Pie, Mango Madness, and Twice Twisted, with ice cream, brownies, and cookie dough. And if you'd like to take some home, the UDairy Creamery also offers ice cream to go.

UDairy Creamery
535 S. College Avenue
Newark, DE 19716
(302) 831-2486

Painting with a Twist: They’ll Supply the Wine

Unlike similar paint-and-sip art studios, Painting with a Twist doesn't task its guests with bringing their own booze. The studio supplies it. As part of a much larger chain, the Painting with a Twist in Newark pours complimentary drinks for its pupils, including beer and wine—but also coffee and tea, if you prefer.

The free beverages are really just the icing on the cake at Painting with a Twist, though. The main even is your painting class, during which a seasoned artist will walk you through recreating a famous or simply fun and colorful painting. The instructors take it slowly so that everyone can keep up, even if you're not much of an artist yourself. Painting with a Twist holds open classes almost every night that anyone can join, and it also hosts special sessions for families and kids. You can book the entire studio for a private party if you have a larger group.

Painting with a Twist
400 Suburban Drive
Newark, DE 19711
(302) 660-1200

Newark Natural Foods: See What a Co-Op Has to Offer

Newark Natural Foods is a grocery co-op that's been serving Newark residents since 1975 when a handful of families banded together to buy organic food in bulk. Since then the co-op's membership has grown to more than 3,600 households, and the store includes thousands of different items in its inventory, while still remaining true to its founding principles: to provide goods that are produced using sound environmental principles and to extend access to organic food.

Of course, this means that the co-op specializes in providing local, organic produce, as well as grass-fed beef, free-range eggs, and other ethically produced animal products. In addition to the store's own produce section, you'll find a seasonal farmers' market in front of Newark Natural Foods during the summer weekends.

Newark Natural Foods also carries cruelty-free health, beauty, and pet products!

Newark Natural Foods
280 East Main Street
Newark, DE 19711
(302) 368-5894

Grassroots: Where Style Meets Whimsy in Newark

Regulars say you can always find something fun and unique at Grassroots, one of Newark's favorite local boutiques. Interested in a set of shot glasses shaped like miniature mason jars? You'll find 'em at Grassroots. How about a corkscrew shaped like a trout? Got that, too. Have a friend who'd get a kick out of molds that'll turn your soft boiled eggs into spooky, yolk-oozing skulls? Grassroots can deliver on that quirky desire.

You'll also find more sophisticated items: sterling silver bangle bracelets, turquoise pendants, and hand-crafted opal earrings are all for sale at Grassroots' jewelry counter. Head over to the accessories wall for a beaded leather shoulder bag and a cashmere infinity scarf to complete your outfit.

Whether you're looking for a gift for that friend who has it all, or want to find something special for yourself, Grassroots has plenty of stylish, whimsical items on offer.

93 East Main Street
Newark, DE 19711
(302) 453-9751

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