Although Sapora Playworld's mascot Rocky the polar bear lives miles from the South Pole, he's rarely seen without his signature scarf. He doles out free hugs to birthday-party guests, then points them to the indoor playground. Soft surfaces cushion kids as they clamber up ramps and shuttle down slides. The main playground is safe for kids aged 5 to 12. Tots aged 4 and younger enjoy a separate area, where they can plot ways to steal the last piece of pizza.
Aside from hosting the Oregon youth hockey program, the nonprofit Oregon Community Sports Arena welcomes ice dancers to its multifunctional indoor rink for open skate, family skate, open hockey, and speed skating. Hockey and broomball teams occupy the icy terrain throughout the week, and expert instructors oversee regular skating schools and athletic camps on the frosty floors. An onsite shop supplies skaters with apparel and used sporting goods, and a large community room hosts regular open martial-arts classes and can accommodate birthday parties of up to 150 guests or 500 Lilliputians.
Booming top 40 hits echo throughout Just for Fun Roller Rink’s two vast arenas, amping up the entertainment as skaters glide and showcase moves in open-skate sessions and parties. The glittering of disco balls and the surreal glow of black lights transform the colored wheels of rental roller skates, speed skates, or roller blades into vibrant blurs as they spin across polished floors. While smooth movers hold hands and stack themselves into speedy human pyramids, video-game enthusiasts can get their fix at the arcade games along the side of the rink, and food enthusiasts can whet their palate with pizza, hot dogs, and snacks. Come Saturday night, the rink transforms into a live-music venue for local bands, and on holidays and special occasions such as New Year's Eve, Halloween, and Insomniac-Appreciation Day it puts on all-night celebrations.
The word TraXside artfully sprayed on one wall of the rink is the first clue that this is not a retro-style skate rink. At TraXside Skating, a family-oriented business, the colored lights reflect on the slick skating surface as skaters glide on bright-colored wheels around the rink. The ceiling arches overhead. Between laps around the rink, skaters refuel at the onsite snack shop or peruse the racks at the pro shop.
Some old-timey types of recreation are best left in the past—jousting, croquet, long pensive walks—but Skate on Grand gives roller-skating relevance to modern-day fun-seekers. A far cry from the roller rinks of yesteryear, its smooth, colorful skating surface comes to life beneath a rainbow of flashing lights and the sparkle of a disco ball. Its arcade also boasts contemporary bells and whistles including video games and an air hockey table. However, the snack bar’s staff recognizes that some things, such as ringing a bell to warn of invading enemy troops, simply can’t be improved upon, and dole out time-tested favorites such as pizza, hot dogs, and root-beer floats.
Aurora Roller Skate Center's gleaming wooden rink beckons wheel-hitched feet to orbit its oblong track beneath glowing white globe lamps. Gather four friends or nine members of the Walton family and lace up classic four-wheel skates before gliding through daily open-skate sessions (upgrade to inline skates for additional fee). A slew of special events and theme nights fill the skate center with movie and costume parties, and DJ Suave Smooth electrifies Friday and Saturday evenings with Top 40 hits and Schubert dirges that bellow through the rink's stentorian speakers as colorful lights flicker across the floor. On the sidelines, retro booths coddle weary gams, and skaters nosh on pizza and slushes from the snack bar or fawn over new trinkets from the novelty shop.