In 2005, Jason Williams and Ken Faught assembled a team of experienced racers and designers to create the driving experience at Pole Position Raceway. Williams, a motocross racer since 1984, and Faught, a three-time land-speed record holder at the Bonneville Salt Flats, recruited professional drivers Kurt Busch and Jeremy McGrath to help their engineers. They reimagined every detail of the track from the ground up, creating indoor courses that balance the grip of asphalt with the swervy fun of polished, concrete slick tracks. Pole Position?s Formula EK20 Pro Karts rumble over the track powered by 18-horsepower motors (nearly triple that of average gas karts), which reach speeds up to 45 miles per hour without filling the temperature-controlled arenas with fumes.
After the first Pole Position Raceway opened in Corona, California, it soon spawned 14 locations stretching to the Atlantic. Technicians maintain the fleet via handheld computers, and top drivers are regularly sent out to evaluate karts? handling and reading comprehension. During races, up to 12 guests compete in contests that last about 10 minutes.
At The Rinks, visitors lace up their inline skates and zoom around a smooth hockey-style rink during public skating sessions. Would-be hockey players can also suit up in free gear and inline skates to learn the ins and outs of the game as part of the The Anaheim Ducks Learn to Play program, which allows kids and adults to experience the sport before joining a paid program.
Favoring small group swimming lessons targeted to all ages, The Aquatic Zone's instructors are trained in the Aquatic Concepts, Inc. method, and use positive reinforcement to teach beginning swimmers the basics of water comfort, body balance, and movement. Once budding amphibians have gotten their foot-flippers wet, they'll try out various strokes and other swimming must-knows such as wall kicks, breathing patterns, and psychic communication with sea life. Lessons are available for children as young as six months and are offered at multiple skill levels for every age group. The goals at each stage are clearly presented and taught, ensuring that the time spent in the pool is always productive and goal-oriented. Awards such as toys, certificates of completion, and surgically implanted gills are bestowed upon students when all the elements of a particular level are mastered. Sessions typically last a half hour, and the saltwater chlorination pools keep water clean without irritating eyes or skin.
Creaky coffins are strewn throughout the shadowy fearsome forests Coffin Creek, where nighttime gives way to a hair-raising hauntsperience featuring five different scare stations, including Scarecrow Trail, Chambers of the Mausoleum, and Shady Hollow Hayride. Local legend warns of a troublesome cacophony of mysterious sounds and foggy apparitions that await trespassers of the abandoned sepulchers and scattered remains left from the desolate Guatsi Cemetery at the frightful floodplain. Each strobe-lit step reveals elaborate props and a talented squad of professional scare-masters. With one flash of your VIP pass, you'll be rewarded unlimited self-guided exploration of Coffin Creek's terrifying terra firma, the freedom to cut to the front of the lines at each attraction, and a backstage buffet of fake-blood bottle-service and zombie slam poetry. Check the schedule to plan your scare cruise.
A 200-foot downhill tee shot opens Champions Club at the Retreat, rendering the 485-yard, par 5 first hole reachable in two strokes. Such elevational considerations color play throughout the 18-hole course, cradled as it is within the Temescal Valley's undulating canyons adjacent to the Cleveland National Forest. Bermuda grass fairways slink through the rocky outcroppings and low-lying brush, corralling foursomes onto smooth greens of bent grass. Yet despite its imposing appearance, a major renovation in 2011 tempered the course's difficulty a tad, eliminating some of the more punishing aspects of the course such as 16 bunkers.
Anchoring every round is the 25,000-square-foot clubhouse. Done up in a Tuscan theme and accessorized with trickling fountains and golden sunshine, the structure immerses visitors in creature comforts before they tee up. Players can stop for post-round drinks or fuel up for a round with pub-style eats on the grand patio, which overlooks the 9th and 18th greens.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Total length of 6,765 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 73.9 from the back tees * Course slope of 145 from the back tees * Four sets of tees per hole * Scorecard