The staff at Spinner’s Rink dispatch rented roller-skates to feet of all ages and skating abilities so guests can jump, whirl, and boogie across the wooden floor. Packs of rolling revelers lap an oval track under technicolor lights during open skate sessions on Saturdays and Sundays and spin with all the grace of a gyroscope trapped in a blender. On Friday nights, kids ages 16 and younger can mingle in supervised skate and dance celebrations, and adults can skate until midnight on the first Friday of each month. After mastering their dodecatuple axels, skaters replenish themselves at the rink’s snack bar with hot dogs, pizza, and soda.
The University at Buffalo is one of the flagship schools of the SUNY system, and facilitates 20 Division I athletic teams. Football fans can head to the 29,000-seat UB Stadium to cheer on the team as they juke, jive, and shutterbug their way to victory. Newly hired football coach Jeff Quinn has led teams to five conference championships in his past eight seasons, and the Bulls defense will be helmed by preseason All-American safety Davonte Shannon.
Healthy Buffalo has one primary objective: transform Buffalo's citizens into models of health and well-being. But instead of urging everyone in the community to spend their lunch break bench-pressing a coworker, the organization has ironed out a handful of initiatives to make its goal a reality. For instance, it organizes amateur sports leagues?including dodge ball and basketball?complete with stats, jerseys, and trophies to encourage healthy competition. And it hosts youth basketball clinics for boys and girls.
Away from the fields of play, however, Healthy Buffalo stays connected to the community by maintaining a website packed with free nutritional guidance, exercise tips, and mental health information. It also works with employers to create health and wellness programs for employees to help combat rising health costs.
After posting a 9–7 record during the 2010 regular season, the Rock are ready to determine their true net worth in the team’s first playoff appearance since 2007. The Rock will face off against the Buffalo Bandits in the May 1 match—their first home playoff game since 2005. Fans can be assured that the event will contain more fast-paced, field-traversing action than you can shake a long crosse at. Cheer on Colin Doyle, Bob Watson, Garrett Billings, and Stephan Leblanc as they attempt to lead the Rock to the team’s sixth NLL championship in franchise history, starting with a win on May 1. Get your Groupon and get smothered in the athletic avalanche of the Toronto Rock.
As the American Hockey League affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Toronto Marlies take to the ice with a roster of young skaters on their way to an NHL career. Named after a legendary (but since dissolved) Junior A team, the Toronto Marlboros, the Marlies have had their share of success since their move to the city in 2005, including a 2011–2012 campaign in which they captured the Western Conference title and nearly hoisted the league's hallowed Calder Cup. Crowds of up to 8,200 fans cheer the Marlies on from their home at Ricoh Coliseum, where team mascot Duke the Dog—his own name an homage to the Duke of Marlborough—dances in the stands.
The Hamilton Thunderbirds, a shining star in the 92-year-old Intercounty Baseball League's galaxy, electrify baseball fans with a slate of matches against teams sourced from all corners of Ontario. The Thunderbirds, led by batting ace Chris Piano, take on the league-leading Barrie Baycats on May 29 and the second-place Brantford Red Sox on June 26, seeking to best their vaunted opponents in fielding, pitching, hitting, and downward-facing-dog poses. TBird Family Day Packs provide nine innings' worth of diversion for two adults and two children at the recently renovated, 2,700-seat Bernie Arbour Memorial Stadium. While cheering on the diamond's denizens or practicing astral projection, groups can split four ballpark hot dogs and four drinks between them.