Select Traveler

MAR-APR 2017

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selecttraveler.com 29 M A R C H / A P R I L 2 0 1 7 "The Candle Lab is constantly one of the most popular stops on any itinerary here in Columbus," said Roger Dudley, senior tour- ism manager for Experience Columbus. "It's really fun for a group. People love to pass the candles around and smell them to see what everyone made." Groups first sniff a wide range of fragrances to determine their favorites. The store stocks more than 120 fragrances throughout the year, with seasonal and new options constantly being introduced. Once they settle on about three fragrances, participants hand pour the amount of each scent they would like in their candle. After this 30- to 45-minute process, the candle needs about 90 min- utes to harden before groups can take it home. During this time, you can either send your group shopping or dining, or combine the experi- ence with the Igloo Letterpress, which lies across the street from the Worthington location. There, groups can engage in another experiential activity and learn how to hand set antique wooden type while they wait. MAKING WHOOPIE PIES Learn the secret behind creating an unforgettable cream-filled bite of whoopie pie at Mrs. Turbo's Cookies. Groups can decide how much cream is too much when they squirt filling into their take-home whoopie pies. This new experience allows groups not only to drool over the other gourmet cookies, brownies and cakes in the shop, but also to understand the process behind making a dessert from scratch. Mrs. Turbo herself gives the tours and talks about how baking cookies for her husband's co-workers in 2012 led to her own shop. "You get to meet the owner and hear her story on how the shop came to be," said Dudley. "After you make your cookie, you can ei- ther eat your cookie right then or take it with you. It's great because you don't have to wait for them to bake." Mrs. Turbo also explains the shop's unusual name, which origi- nated from her husband's nickname of Turbo, given because of his love of cars. She also loves discussing the kitschy interior modeled after retro 1950s-style bakeries, compete with pinup girl artwork. ALL ACCESS PASS AT BALLETMET OPEN HOUSE If you've ever marveled at the graceful twirling and twisting of a ballet performance, you can try your own pliƩ moves during the All Access Pass at BalletMet Open House. The dance class designed for the typical novice goes through some basic dance moves and stretch- es for a glimpse at the hard work ballet dancers go through every day. Groups can book the experience when the ballet company is ac- tive in Columbus from September through May. The workshop begins with a tour of the facility and a chance to watch the professional bal- let dancers rehearse for an upcoming show. The rehearsals illustrate some of the behind-the-scenes work involved in making complicated choreography look effortless during the live performance. Part of the magic of ballet also lies in the elaborate and fanciful costumes, which is why most groups love to tour the costume shop, where you can touch the fabrics and learn the intricate process in- volved in constructing them. "Visiting the costume shop is everyone's favorite part," said Dud- ley. "The costume designer talks to them about the type of fabric needed to be able to do all the jumps and moves a ballerina needs to do. You get to ask questions to a member of the professional design team of the ballet." After the tour, groups learn a few easy ballet steps with a BalletMet Academy faculty member to see if they've missed their calling as a dancer. GLENN AVENUE SOAP COMPANY You'll never look at your bar of soap the same way after you've attended a workshop with Glenn Avenue Soap Company. The craft soap shop has recently started offering a hands-on way for groups to discover the secrets behind the cold-process method of making soap. "We just started marketing this experience this year," said Dudley. "It's not a huge production, so you get to hear from the owner about the company and what goes into creating these products." Instead of being an enterprise to make money, the Glenn Avenue Soap Company first began because founder Sandra Metzler wanted to create skincare products for her family with only organic ingre- dients. She used her doctorate in biomedical engineering to experi- ment with the chemistry and aromatherapy involved in soap-making. Her first batch of soap became an immediate hit with family and friends, leading her to eventually open the shop filled with a vari- ety of products, such as beer soaps, body butters and bath bombs. Groups learn how to turn essential oils into custom soaps before cut- ting some already-cured bars for their own soup souvenirs. www.experiencecolumbus.com Whoopie pies from Mrs. Turbo's Cookies BalletMet class

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