Tall nets surround Sunset Golf Center’s driving range, their forgiving springiness easing wayward balls back toward the range's lush green. Here, golfers launch balls from the center’s 50 practice stalls, more than half of which are sheltered from the elements. Artificial-grass mats carpet each stall with blades soft enough to mimic real fairways but short enough to avoid attracting artificial cows, and across the grounds, a stone Statue of Liberty oversees play atop the 18-hole miniature-golf course. From his post at the center, golf instructor Sandy Sutherland helps both juniors and adults to hone their links prowess.
The Grill at Silver Creek Lanes treats bowlers and spectators to hearty American feasts. As diners watch bowlers haul spheres down alleys lit by blacklight and 135" projection screens, they can keep hunger at bay with slices of pizza and chicken strips. The menu also includes cheeseburgers and jumbo hot dogs, complemented by sides such as sample platters, cheese sticks, onion rings, and curly fries.
Blanketed in wall-to-wall trampolines, Sky High Sports delights barefoot fun seekers with 45,000 square feet of springy terrain. Guests can hone front flips, backflips, and belly flops during intense free-bounce sessions. Each trampoline comes equipped with a specially designed spring-loaded frame and 2-inch-thick safety pads that grant patrons a landing cushier than a corner office at a marshmallow factory. Pintsize aerialist posses can safely practice their synchronized salchows on 360 degrees of trampoline walls while court supervisors watch from the sidelines and award hard-earned praise with oversize scorecards. Sky High also offers AIRobics fitness classes and monthly dodge-ball tournaments to help jumpers explore the outermost stratospheres of trampoline possibilities.
Bill Scheller took a leap into an untested space when he registered the domain name GolfClubs.com in 1995. The internet was still a big, giant question mark, but whereas most golf stores were constrained by space and stocked a limited amount of equipment, clothing, and robo-caddies, physical space was not an issue on the wild frontier of e-commerce. Bill set out to assemble the biggest selection number of irons, drivers, and apparel on the planet and couple that selection with great customer service.
Though the GolfClubs.com homepage looks different than it did in 1995, Bill's original vision remains the same. Golfers of all stripes can look to the website for equipment from major brands such as Callaway, TaylorMade, and NIke—indeed, just about anything that helps them play the game they love. Players can also head to the company's brick-and-mortar location in Portland to sample that same selection in person instead of online.
When Jimmy DeBatty isn't racing downhill trails or learning new BMX tricks, the bike specialist can be found in the workshop of Fat Tire Farm, keeping his customers’ cycles in shape. Along with the rest of the Fat Tire Farm team, Jimmy has been turning wrenches and testing gears for more than 10 years.
In addition to performing tune-ups, overhauls, and routine bike physicals, the Fat Tire Farm team stocks a range of bikes and necessities from makers including Ibis, Specialized, Giant, Santa Cruz, Dainese, Fox, and Dakine. Though they specialize in mountain bikes, they’re also able to equip riders with gear for cross-country cycling, free riding, urban riding, and downhill racing.
Easily accessible by public transportation and with plentiful parking, Western Bikeworks' new 10,000-square-foot shop stocks an array of velocipede-friendly gear and perks up patrons with cups of coffee from the indoor café. Prospective riders can find a fitting frame for their metal steed or outfit themselves with cruising apparel, and accessories from brands such as Axiom, Cannondale, and Felt. Guard heads and vulnerable cantaloupe passengers with the proper helmet, or upgrade a two-wheeler with Avid disk-brake pads ($18.99). The Blackburn Voyager Mars' high-powered LED lights aid riders who prefer to ride under the cover of darkness ($22.99), and a pair of Ryders jolt sunglasses ($38.99 each) guard peepers from wildly whipping wind and meddling sunshine.