For more than 30 years, skate wheels have rumbled across the boards at Salem Fun Factory. Skaters strap on classic quads, inline, or speed skates, and do laps around the rink while lively music plays. But when they want to set feet on solid ground, the fun doesn't have to end. Among the laser-tag arena's dim lights and glowing obstacles, players duck and hide as they chase down their enemies to try to win the game or just give them noogies. Meanwhile, in the play area, kids winnow through tunnels and down slides before racing over to win prizes at the arcade. Parents who are just watching can skip the admission charges and jump on the free WiFi to pass the time until their broods are ready for milk shakes and pizza at the concession stand.
When you look around the 150'x80' rink at Kent State University Ice Arena, you can’t help but be amazed at the variety of things going on. Throughout the week, the rink plays host to skating lessons, hockey leagues, and public skating sessions in which families and couples can spend a day zooming around. Sports players learn the intricacies of being the best hockey player around or learn a new sport in the rink’s broomball league. After hands and feet start to chill, guests can grab a snack and a hot beverage at the concessions stand, with the fireplace always crackling so guests can warm back up.
An indoor skating rink, The Pond Family Friendly Ice Rink hosts skaters of all abilities during public-skating sessions—offered seven days a week. As the frosty stomping ground for the Geauga Youth Hockey League and the Chagrin Valley Figure Skating Club, The Pond helps young skaters find their stride on the ice without having to carve a treadmill out of a glacier. Skaters of all abilities can learn to glide gracefully across the rink during Learn to Skate lessons, which are offered multiple times a week.
Ice Land USA's rinks cater to skaters of all experience levels, offering lessons and league opportunities at their two locations. The instructors at Hoover Arena and Serpentini Arena teach skaters how to improve their on-ice finesse, and youth and adult hockey leagues allow players to compete against rival teams or take shots on a zamboni posing as a goalie. At other times, the Colorado Avalanche-affiliated Lake Erie Monsters take the ice to practice for bouts against American Hockey League opponents.
Skate Zone Fun Center houses six different zones that give visitors a variety of entertainment options. The skating rink entices them to strap on a set of wheels and glide through crowds while a live DJ spins popular radio hits. Laser Storm thrusts competitors into a friendly game of laser tag that requires quick reflexes and cunning to outscore their opponents. Suspended over the skating rink, Web City contains 10,000 square feet of rope mazes and obstacles. The 18-hole mini-golf course tests players' putting skills, and the bumper cars arena provides student drivers with a safe way to practice true-to-life parallel parking. Meanwhile, video game players in the arcade zone can redeem their tickets for prizes.
Making its home at Michael A. Ries Ice Rink, the nonprofit Forestwood Figure Skating Club connects young skaters with goal-oriented coaching. Once beginners pick up the fundamentals in the Learn to Skate program, they can move on to private instruction with the club's coaching staff, which combines for more than 25 years of experience. These sessions prepare each student for serious competition, affording access to sanctioned competitions and private ice time on a rink uncluttered by fellow skaters or rush hour Zamboni traffic. The organization is certified by the U.S. Figure Skating Association, the governing body that oversees testing and competitions for all Olympic hopefuls.