The clock is ticking, literally. A screen mounted on the wall flashes a five-minute countdown as half of our Best Self Atlanta/Atlanta Best Media team scrambles to find the last code that opens the latch to free us.

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An alarm blares and a voice echoes over an intercom, informing us that we did not escape in time to avoid being contaminated by the virus leak — the imaginary virus of the fictional CDC lab into which we’d been locked an hour before to start our game.

The CDC Lockdown is just one of the themed rooms at the Urban Escape Games venue in Alpharetta. The first company in Georgia to present simulated escape games. Urban Escape has been setting up brainteasers and trap doors since February of 2015. Each room unravels a different story with special clues to decipher in order to solve a mystery and “escape.” Our team tried the CDC game and the Jewel Heist but weren’t able to unlock either. Now, we all want to head back to see if we can handle Buckstars Murder Mystery or Mr. Magic’s Magician room. The games and clues change regularly, offering fans the opportunity to keep playing repeatedly for new challenges.

Whether you’re bonding with co-workers, looking for a cleaver date night or hanging out with neighborhood friends, Urban Escape Games sparks curiosity and encourages you to perceive your surroundings differently. You will pull, push, left, look, count and code your way out — these games are tough. Many of the rooms have under a 50 percent escape rate because, as Marketing Director Ellis Edwards says, “It wouldn’t be fun if it was easy!”

Up to the task?

Details: 20 Mansell Ct E #275, Alpharetta, GA 30076,

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Pyme Vessyl - BSA 0316

Taking into account your age, gender, height, weight, activity level, sleep patterns and more, the Pryme Vessyl takes staying hydrated to a whole new level. This “smart” mug measures your hydration levels throughout the day by monitoring your liquid consumption and sends drink reminders to your smartphone or watch to keep you on track. Once you have reached your “pryme” levels of hydration, you’re ready to take on the world…or at least the day.


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They fly through the air with the greatest of ease … Cirque Du Soleil acrobats take circus arts to the highest level with daring feats and exquisite choreography.

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As their Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities show sets up in town, we asked Cirque performers about the physical demands of their job. Their natural-born talent, intense training and constant practice gets them under the tent, but they depend on a support crew of pros dedicated to helping them maintain their strength and flexibility throughout the show season.

Performance medical therapist Chad Fraser works with performers to keep them show-ready at all times. As a therapist in sports medicine at the university level for many years, Fraser studied the movement of circus artists, ultimately landing him a position with the elite Cirque squad. Fraser remarks that a major difference between motions of athletes on sports fields and those under the big top is an element of control. A player’s motions in a game are reactions to opponents’ actions. But circus performers must repeat precise motions, often in tandem with others. The choreography of a routine is rehearsed until it’s automatic,  “I must know [the routine] better than they do to catch an injury before it starts. We want to heal a little thing before it becomes a big thing,” he says. He anticipates each move a performer makes and notes even the slightest shift so it can be treated before the artist notices its physical impact.

Due to his constant attention to detail, he (thankfully) rarely sees serious injuries on the tour. Instead, he sees chronic injury from repetitive motions. He partners with coaches to develop modifications to regular choreography that allows injuries to heal. Each day brings a cycle of training and treatment blocks, practice and evaluation.

One of the performers he watches is Nathan Dennis, who works with the newest Cirque du Soleil feature, the acronet. Dennis describes this trampoline/net as a giant slingshot and his routines require focus and incredible strength. He feels secure knowing that team members like Fraser will notice any possible problems before he even gets off stage.

What can we all learn from the lifestyle of Cirque performers? Fraser comments that without regular movement, the body gets stiff and starts to hurt. He urges us to take a cue from his job and pay attention to the body, catching small physical changes early, before they become big problems.

Catch the whole troupe from March 3 to May 8 at Atlantic Station!


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St. Patrick's Day


Get your Irish up and help raise some “green” to support the efforts of The Junior League of Atlanta at the 12th Annual Shamrock ‘N Roll Road Race. On March 6, take to the streets of Atlantic Station at this family-friendly Peachtree qualifier – add to the fun with festive leprechaun attire for a blarney-good time!


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Gibi - Gibi Technologies, Inc. - BSA - 0316

Every pet parent fears the possibility of their furry friend going missing one day. Gibi, a lightweight and waterproof device attached to your dog’s collar or harness, allows you to set up virtual fences for your dog to explore in. If your dog leaves the designated safe play space, you will immediately be notified via text or email. In conjunction with Google Maps, Gibi provides you with information regarding their exact location, and—Voila!—Fido has been found!


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Sisters By Choice - BSA 0316

This year, one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. alone. Thousands more will be unable to receive screenings or treatments simply due to a lack of resources in their area. Peach State Health Plan, in conjunction with Atlanta nonprofit Sisters by Choice, is hitting the road to bring breast care to the medically underserved areas of Georgia. The new free Mobile Breast Clinic will be equipped with the latest technology for breast cancer detection and treatment and specialists to provide more than 3,000 screenings this year.


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Boka Box-Leslie Plesser-BSA 0316

In an age where you can get a subscription box for just about everything it’s about time your teeth got in on the action too. Boka box brings dental health to your doorstep by delivering high-quality toothbrushes, natural toothpastes and floss right to your home. Every three months, you receive a fresh new brush to keep those pearly whites strong and bright. Customize your box to fit your family so the kids get more excited about brushing when they start getting mail for their mouths. And for every Boka brush purchased the company donates a toothbrush to those in need through their partnership with the nonprofit Surge, which brings water and sanitation solutions to global communities in need.


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My Forgotten Self

The book, My Forgotten Self: A Story about a Girl, A Powerful Encounter and A Universal Message, follows Tiev, a playful young girl who embarks on a journey to find out what it really means to follow your dreams.  After Tiev’s well-intentioned family dismisses her lofty ambitions, she meets a being called “I am,” who helps her discover her true self. Written by Family psychologist Lynyetta G. Willis, PhD, Forgotten Self reminds parents that children surrounded by hope, love and encouragement are empowered to reach their full potential.


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As we gear up for our 6th annual Over 40 & Fabulous! contest, we have decided to check-in with our previous winners to see what they are up to now.

Nominations for this year’s Over 40 & Fabulous! contest are open now until March 1st.
Doug GradySince becoming one of our 2011 Over 40 & Fabulous! Top 10 winners, Doug Grady has continued to help others reach their highest potential through his international speaking tours in Toronto and Vancouver, his personal development program, 40 Days of FOCUS, and his widely read and endorsed book, The Ripple Effect.

Doug’s faith has continued to play a large role in his life. He recently developed and facilitated 40 Days of FAITH as a small group for Covered Bridge Church, along with creating a Men’s Ministry.  He has also participated in several mission trips to Ecuador to build homes for those in extreme poverty.

In her personal life, Doug recently married his wife Allison Kusic (now Allison Grady), attended his 25th Homecoming at Tulane University and had bilateral total hip replacement surgery.

He is now looking forward to speak on the 2016 Secret Knock lineup, one of Forbes magazine’s top five conferences for entrepreneurs.

To learn more about Doug Grady and our other 2011 Over 40 & Fabulous! winners, check out our June 2011 issue.

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As we gear up for our 6th annual Over 40 & Fabulous! contest, we have decided to check-in with our previous winners to see what they are up to now.

Nominations for this year’s Over 40 & Fabulous! contest are open now until March 1st.

Bruce Salzinger

Since becoming one of our 2011 Over 40 & Fabulous! Top 10 winners, Dr. Bruce Salzinger has continued to pursue his passion for philanthropy. Over the last several years he has become greatly involved with Gear For Goals (G4G), a 501c3 charity organization that is a division of Dreamweaver International. Bruce has been helping the organization to collect “gently used” sporting equipment and musical instruments by accepting donations at his office (405 Pharr Road Northeast, Atlanta GA 30305) and consolidating the donations for shipment to Kenya, Dominican Republic and many others where they are well received. He is also helping the organization in their mission to partner with houses of worship and porting organizations such as little leagues, soccer leagues, etc.
To learn more about Gear for Goals visit their Facebook page at To learn more about Dr. Bruce Salzinger and our other 2011 Over 40 & Fabulous! winners, check out our June 2011 issue.

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