By Melanie Preis
As the saying goes, it’s never too late to learn; and Atlanta offers adults many opportunities to learn something new. From popular classes like dance and drawing to out-of-the-box subjects like improv and aerial silks, everyone can learn something new in the new year. In addition to introducing new skills, these classes help boost confidence, forge friendships and social interactions and, most importantly, add fun to your life. Take a look at just a few of the coolest classes in Atlanta!
Live out your Dancing with the Stars fantasies by learning how to rumba, salsa, cha-cha and waltz…minus the harsh judges. Street and ballroom dancing offer so many benefits: ups cardio exercise, increases flexibility, strengthens memory with intricate choreography, bolsters social life and much more. Regardless of the type of dancing, these Atlanta classes get you moving and grooving with a bunch of other people looking to accomplish the same fun 8-count. Get your groove on at Atlanta Ballroom Academy, Dance FX, Dance 101, or Dance With Me Buckhead.
2. Cooking & Baking
Unleash your inner Masterchef with cooking and baking classes that improve your kitchen skills. In addition to lessons about the science and fun behind delicious recipes, some food- centric classes even focus on hosting and the art of entertaining as well. Most classes provide the ingredients and supplies to make on-site; students take home the recipe and try to recreate the culinary magic for the family. Fire things up at hotspots like Team Building with Taste, Bellina Alimentari, The Cook’s Warehouse and Cake & Sip for a flavorful adventure!
Whether you’ve never sewn a button or want to go to the next level and sew an entire ensemble, sewing classes will help! Learn how to needle and thread, use a sewing machine, and everything else to mend, design and wear the coolest fabrics. Learn how to quilt, knit, crochet, embroider and more with fun sewing and crafting classes. The classes at Fabricate Studios, Atlanta Sewing Academy and Easy Going Sewing promise a stitch- perfect journey of fun and style.
If Covid has taught us anything, it’s that crafting the perfect cocktail is harder than it looks! Learn how to pour tasty drinks by following trained bartenders and mixologists. Depending on the time of year you attend, the cocktail curriculum focuses on holidays and matching seasons. Learn how to pour tasty drinks at your next event by taking a cocktail lesson or make the lesson the actual party! Places like ShakeUp ATL and Pour Up Atlanta will come to your home or venue to lead a cocktail class with all your friends (don’t worry, you will get to drink the fruits of your labor). You can also mix it up with the pros at 12 Cocktail Bar, Rooftop L.O.A. or Kyma.
Finding the perfect candle that emulates your scent and style can be close to impossible (plus, that’s a headache waiting to happen when it comes to sniffing candle after candle). Create your own custom scent and style by learning the ancient art of candle making – you can even name your own creation! Custom-made candles make adorable gifts for birthdays, holidays and just-because days. Bonus? Some of the Atlanta spots offering candle classes host perfume-making classes as well! Ignite a love for candle making at Bear & Honey Candle Company, Lot 23 Chandler Co. or Indiehouse Fragrance.
Comedy and acting classes not only unlock stage talents, but they can benefit other aspects of your personal and professional life. Improv classes are great ways to instill confidence and improve public speaking. Thinking on your feet and learning to speak in front of strangers also benefits social skills – be the life of the party at your next soiree or even a blind date? Boost your confidence and conquer your fears at Dad’s Garage, Alliance Theatre, Whole World Theatre and Village Theatre.
Glass blowing is a thrilling way to create art – using pure fire to mold and transform viscous glass into a hardened piece of art feels miraculous. (I speak from experience – it’s one of the coolest art forms I’ve tried). If glass blowing isn’t your thing, budding glass artists can learn to create stained glass, fused glass and glass bead-making projects. Shape up something new at Decatur Glassblowing, ATL Glass Works or Spruill Center for the Arts.
The only thing better than learning something new is getting to show off those new skills by wearing them in the form of jewelry! Learn how to design and fabricate rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings, either for yourself or as gifts for others. Depending on the jewelry class, students will work with metals(including silver, copper and brass wire), beads, resin and more materials. Craft a unique statement piece at Callanwolde Fine Arts Center, Spruill Center for the Arts or Red Seal Craft Studio.
Shoot your shot, or rather arrow, and become an expert archer with dynamic archery classes in Atlanta. Using sharp vision, practiced stillness and a whole lot of focus, students can learn new outdoor (or indoor) skills sure to hit the fun bullseye every time. Sharpen your skills at the Atlanta Archery Club or the Kennesaw Archery Club.
Whether you want to create it or just paint it, pottery is a relaxing activity that pretty much anyone can do. Aiming to create a vase and then realize it’s totally misshapen? Now you’ve got a toothbrush holder, a spoon rest, a jewelry dish or even a coin and key bowl! The opportunities are endless to add ceramic pieces to your home…or if things don’t go well, ceramic pieces to hold the colorful tchotchkes around your house. Dive into the world of ceramics at Atlanta Clay Works, Roswell Visual Arts Center, Art & Soul Studio, Callanwolde Fine Arts Center or the Johns Creek Arts Center.
11. Martial Arts
Sure, tennis leagues and CrossFit are beloved forms of fitness for many adults, with pickleball on the horizon to take over as the No. 1 activity. But what about some good old cardio mixed with self-defense and competition? Throughout metro Atlanta, adults can take various martial arts classes, including karate, jiu-jitsu, taekwondo and muay Thai. Consistently work hard by earning skill-based belts or focus on personal safety and security. Try your hand at martial arts at SBG Atlanta, Atlanta Kick, Karate Atlanta or ATOS.