Pump It Up party centers pique the spirits of young and restless rovers with safe, clean, and climate-controlled indoor arenas packed with a bevy of custom bounce houses, obstacle courses, and merry-making inflatables. Their trained staff continuously casts watchful eyes over young bouncers, ensuring that kids safely burn off excess energy as they leap, duck, and dive with abandon during open play sessions, summer camps, and birthday parties. The customizable, multi-hued playscape, vibrant with primary colors and a sound system, captures the romping imaginations of tykes and magazines alike, earning a mention in Parents Magazine?s list of "Six Fun Places to Party." Parents are always admitted for free with their child, and may join in the fun as well, engaging their inner youth as they lovingly supervise, socialize with other parents, or fill out patent papers for the world's first inflatable minivan.
As they observe the vibrant exhibits of aquatic life inside the Miami Seaquarium, many guests don't realize that they are walking through a movie set and a hospital. In the onsite lagoon, bottlenose dolphins swim through waters once traversed by Flipper, who filmed several television episodes and films at the venue. The Seaquarium is also recognized as a manatee critical care facility. Its staff has accomplished several historic treatments, including monitoring the conception and arrival of the first manatee born under human care and conducting the first manatee neurological surgery.
These facets of the Seaquarium—along with its many conservation efforts, educational programs, and shows—underscore a united commitment to wildlife consciousness. The animal attractions enable visitors to witness the allure and fragility of oceanic fauna up close, whether they are petting the back of a stingray or washing a dress shirt on the rough back of an 8-foot nile crocodile. Special encounters decrease the distance even further, sending patrons on underwater Sea Treks through the reef display or helping them to lead marine-mammal training routines.
It's hard to pinpoint the biggest personality inside the Seaquarium tanks, but Lolita the killer whale—who performs daily alongside pacific white-sided dolphins—claims the title of heaviest, period. On the other end of the scale, macaws and cockatiels perch around the Tropical Wings section of the park, and endangered sea turtles lounge at Discovery Bay. Elsewhere, a watery playground and three-story ropes course keep legs from growing too wobbly after a trip to Shark Channel or a smooch from a sea lion.
Grand Prix Tampa's sprawling grounds host adrenaline-spiking activities including go-karting, miniature golf, and a ropes course. The big track's tire-bordered speedway invites drivers to rev through tight corners and speed-encouraging straightaways, and the family track welcomes single- or double-seat karts during more tot-friendly races. Racers can catch their breath and calm skittish fuzzy dice on one of two 18-hole mini-golf courses, where dimpled spheres roll through miniature castles and dodge fountain-speckled waterways on their way to the hole. A towering geodesic dome houses a winding ropes course, which challenges climbers to hop across bouncing wooden steps and pegs while supported by a safety harness. The turbo bungee's elastic trampolines launch tethered guests into the ether, where they can catch the wayward baseballs soaring from nine onsite batting cages. Meals at Grand Prix Tampa's Pit Stop Cafe silence hunger pangs with sandwiches, snacks, and kids’ meals, which guests can dine on beneath the Castle Arcade's twinkling panoply of claw machines and air-hockey tables.
At first glance, Battleground Orlando’s grassy Field F may look suspiciously unoccupied, dotted with only trees, a few wooden forts, and some stacks of tires. But the regulars know better. They sit still as statues, gripping their laser guns and surveying the landscape for peeking heads and dashing bodies. This mix of strategy and stealth resembles a video game, and that’s by design. The course, inspired by the video game Call of Duty, is one of six courses at Battleground Orlando Laser Tag, each with their own mental and physical challenges, ambiance, and 99-life-granting cheat codes.
Keeping with this realistic aesthetic, the laser-tag facility hands out advanced lasers designed for military use and outfitted with a red dot sights, sight rails, infrared beams, and RF signals with a 1,000-foot range. Players can partake in team battles as well as scenario games such as “capture the flag,” “last man standing,” and “whiten my teeth before my big job interview.” The facility, which also houses Orlando Paintball, is the largest indoor and outdoor laser tag facility in Florida, and it's open daily from noon to midnight and until 6 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.
At Action Town Florida, battles take place with paint, lasers, and putters. A professional paintball team designed the outdoor paintball arena, which sprawls across 2 acres and encompasses urban-warfare and garage areas. Area 51, the laser-tag arena, fuels competition with high-tempo music and glow-in-the-dark obstacles. The nine-hole miniature golf course also glows in the dark, offering a helpful way to distinguish between real obstacles and imaginary friends' heads. Action Town Florida also fills its facility with arcade games, bumper cars, and climbing walls, as well as a bounce-house city with very reasonable property taxes. Its party packages give guests a taste of all offerings, along with refreshments and food.