When you're shopping, it's always nice to shun the big-box store and support the little guy... but when you're about to drop a grand on a single item, you want to make sure you've considered your options. Enter Surf World: the little guy with the big selection. The team that runs this family-owned business has been known to brag that it has "more paddleboards in stock than all the other paddle shops in South Florida combined" (not to mention a killer selection of sandals and skateboards). The place sells all types of SUP equipment, from inflatables that you can stash in your studio apartment to specialty models for racing, plus a selection of board shorts to wear in the ocean and the waterproof video camera with which to capture your radical exploits. It also does sales, rentals, and lessons ($50 for a group lesson, $80 for a private), so you can go from knowing nothing to knowing everything in no time.

Fitness. Focus. Fun. That's what you'll get at Studio 4 Martial Arts, which is focused more on helping people develop excellent character and self-esteem and less on getting all "hi-yah!" on a stack of bricks. (Stay long enough, though, and you'll learn cool tricks like that too.) The cool moms are opting out of soccer practice and instead bringing the tots here to the instructors, who instill respect, focus, and positive attitudes in kids — without costing their parents an arm and a leg. No contracts are required at Studio 4, so you're free to check it out with no strings attached.

No, tiger mom, Junior doesn't want piano lessons. He wants to record some beats for a killer hip-hop mixtape or tour the EDM circuit and make Avicii-level cash. The deals at Fort Lauderdale-based CMPS — $60-per-month mentoring, or $2,500 for a full music engineering and audio production course (check out the free trial first) — are pocket change compared to paying room and board at Full Sail. CMPS proprietor and super-nice guy Ed Unger explains that, more important than just learning how to use a specific piece of equipment or software, his students develop a deeper understanding of recording, mixing, and mastering that will stick with them even as technologies evolve. The full course is taught online over seven sessions. After an instructor helps students identify their goals and obstacles, they use their home computers to watch tutorials and record tracks. Instructors give homework, feedback, and troubleshooting advice. And because they also help students develop business plans, the course will come in handy even after Junior gives up his electronic dreams and opens that dermatology practice.

Hey, let's be honest here — you can buy condoms anywhere; there is no need for some special trip if you want the basics. But basically, if you're looking to do anything but the basics, Spice of Life is where you should be buying your condoms. Because while you're at it, you can pick up custom play gear or themed lingerie — whatever you're into, this place has it. The vast assortment of videos, lotions, potions, games, and books makes for a fun shopping experience that inevitably results in warming up the ol' credit card... but your partner will thank you.

Family-owned and -operated, Majestic Car Wash has been keeping Fort Lauderdale's whips nice and shiny for more than 20 years. They've been detailing cars since before GPS was a thing, back when the only talking car out there was KITT on Knight Rider. Majestic Car Wash offers everything from a basic exterior wash to a complete and total auto face-lift, and it does it all with speed and precision. Plus, it's right next door to Best Buy, so you can shop around for computers and stuff while you wait for the patient professionals to fish the fossilized French fries out from between your seats.

It sure was nice of the Toyota dealer to whisper "Psst... what will cost you $1,000 here will run you under 300 bucks down the street" and scribble down this address. And it sure was nicer of the staff here to stick around to replace a catalytic converter at 4:45 on a Friday. If an auto parts store can be "charming," it's this one, its walls decorated with wood paneling, muffler parts, and grease, and the longtime owner, Doug Ketcham, behind the counter writing out receipts by hand, as he has for more than 30 years.

Investing in a car with a price tantamount to a (pre-bubble) mortgage isn't a decision you want to make with any Slick Rick; it's like getting married. So there's a reason so many customers have said "I do" to Alpine Jaguar. This place earned the title of "#1 Jaguar Dealership in the World" in 2009, 2010, 2012, and 2013, and it took the top spot nationally in 2014. Go ahead, listen to that little devil on your shoulder when she's whispering "There's nothing stopping you" in your ear. And rest assured that after you take the leap, the five-star service department will coddle your new baby for years to come. Now, will that be a convertible or the coupe?

Readers' Choice: JM Lexus

Courtesy of Two&

If Two& isn't your favorite bicycle shop, it should be. Maybe you already have a favorite bicycle shop, where they charge you a fair price, custom-build you a bike, or craft a hybrid built from various components tailored to specific needs. They might even know the relative merits of fixed gear, freestyle, BMX, road, vintage, cyclocross, velodrome, freak bikes, urban, cruisers, and mountain bikes. But can they do all that and also pour you a beer? Two&, owned by husband-and-wife bicycle-loving team Elmo and Zoe Love, is a bike shop, a bar, and an all-around fun place to hang out. Maybe you've always loved cycling but have never found that special cycling someone to bike through life with. Maybe you haven't owned a bicycle since you hit puberty, but hell, you could use a hobby and some new friends. Check out ongoing events such as World Music Fusion with JokerLive on Tuesdays and "Don't Quit Your Day Job" open mic with Stu on Thursdays.

If Amy Bloom can help organize a marathon with 40,000 entrants, she sure as hell can organize your shindig. With a dose of Southern sweetness she developed in Atlanta, plus a get-it-done ethos she honed in Chicago, Bloom is now applying her mad event-planning skills to South Florida. She's worked with a broad array of corporate and nonprofit clients and helped produce the iconic 101 Gay Weddings event in South Beach as soon as same-sex marriages began this year. Since then, she's made gay weddings one of her specialties. (Though straights will def want to hire her too!) Ultra professional and impossible to rattle, Bloom can pull together any event, even when the flower-delivery truck gets a flat tire or the singer calls in sick. Pretty much all you have to do is show up.

Sorry, Jungle Queen, but Bluefoot Pirate Adventures has become the must-do attraction in Fort Lauderdale. Captain Black Sparrow meets families at the dock by Bahia Mar and hooks them up with pirate vests, face paint, eye patches, and swords. Then they hit the water for a cool trip down the Intracoastal Waterway, Sparrow narrating — and sneaking in some adult jokes — while a superfriendly lady pirate, Black Rose, entertains the kids. The fun of blasting water cannons is superseded only by blasting them at a terrible pirate who — surprise! — ambushes the ship in his own boat. The 90-minute ride goes by too quickly, but you can use the picnic tables under a tent for cutting birthday cake or walk across the street to Fort Lauderdale Beach, where a playground is conveniently located. If you're stressing about whether to invite just a few people at $25 per or rent out the whole boat for your party, we say just bite the $600 bullet and fill 'er up. Your kid will remember this one forever, and it's amaaaazing how suddenly those aunts and uncles who dread kids' birthday parties are suddenly clamoring to get on your guest list.

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