Flushed from his position, a player dashes from behind a tree and toward a bridge. Just as he reaches the opposite side, he hears "Dead man!" as an opponent pops up from underneath. Paintball Country's outdoor fields?which include an air ball field, six speedball fields, and five woods fields?present combatants with loads of such tactic-testing terrain. As referees maintain house rules to keep players safe, teams navigate obstacles such as two-story tower buildings, upturned cable spools, and corrugated tubing. Between firefights, Paintball Country's staff serves refreshments such as pizza, nachos, and victory-flavored energy drinks. An onsite pro shop also caters to guests with advice and equipment sales.
The name itself is a fusion of two soul-feeding concepts: "Gaia," the Greek goddess of the earth, and "I am." This fusion is represented in Gaiam's logo, the Flower of Life, symbolizing the planet's connection with the people who call it home. Founded more than a quarter-century ago, Gaiam's goal is to provide students of wellness with everything they need to achieve mental and physical fulfillment, from premium yoga mats and fitness gear to eco-friendly workout clothing and inspirational DVDs. Of course, there's also a full range of casual clothing and sustainable home goods such as organic cotton bedding and towels. Gaiam also features a selection of fair-trade jewelry and décor for everyday green living.
BlastZone Paintball's 20 acres of outdoor playfields incorporate the area's dense trees and open fields. Across six wooded courses, fallen branches, trails, and leaves set the stage for stealthy play, and a speedball field fosters quicker games. As colorful barrages fly, BlastZone's safety equipment absorbs the shots and protects the body from welts or hail damage. Away from the paint-covered battlefield, certified techs man an on-site gear shop. A free-to-use grill cooks up visitors' brought-from-home eats, which they can nibble at a covered picnic area.
The experts at West Chester Cyclery have been selling, maintaining, and unbreaking bikes since 1982, the year that enjoyed a short-lived fad of children flying their bikes across the surface of the moon. The cyclery's bike surgeons are well trained, friendly, and bike buffs themselves, so you can be sure that your trusty two-wheeled steed will be in good hands when it goes under the knife. The basic tune-up includes brake and gear adjustments, wheel truing, and a safety check to guarantee that most riders will be able to glide smoothly through downhill mountainside switchbacks and unriskily ramp over boiling tarpits. Most repairs can be completed within two or three days.
Run Jump-n-Play takes away Mother Nature's power to spoil a day of fun. No matter if it's hailing or raining, the haven gives kids a space to do all activities recommended in its name. Indoor playground sessions feature swings, slides, trampolines, and basketball hoops, whereas open inflatable play lets wee ones bounce and climb to their hearts' content. Not only can they play ball in inflatable arenas, they can also explore an inflatable ocean filled with sharks, dolphins, and treasure, or head to the Cosmic Glo arena for glow-in-the-dark bowling and golf. Taken as a whole, Run Jump-n-Play becomes not only a great place for children to burn off steam, but also a favorite spot to celebrate birthdays and work through an irrational fear of air.
Running shoes designed by New Balance, Mizuno, and other brands line the walls at Buckeye Running Company, a boutique dedicated to those who jog, race, or participate in marathons. Patrons can also peruse racks of athletic apparel designed by companies such as Saucony and Moving Comfort. The shop also holds events at which visitors can meet celebrated runners or learn techniques to avoid injuries.