For proof of how frightening Psycho Ward & Nightmares Haunted House truly is, you need only look at the chicken list. It keeps track of the number of people who couldn't make it through the two eerie indoor/outdoor attractions without high-tailing it to the nearest exit. There were 265 fraidy cats in 2012 alone, although that should come as no surprise, given the property's assortment of ghouls and maniacs.
Inside Psycho Ward, the experiments of the mad Dr. Floyd Cranston are eager to reconnect with other humans after years of unspeakable treatments and surgeries. Meanwhile, in the nearby Nightmares Haunted House, fears come to life in all forms, from demonic clowns to a radio that only plays John Tesh songs. Naturally, it's recommended that only guests 12 and older venture onto the haunted grounds.
Echo Valley brings together tobogganing, tubing, and ice skating into one snowy spot for wintertime revelry. At the tobogganing hill, quarter-mile runs accelerate sledders to speeds as fast as 60 MPH before bringing them to a safe halt at the bottom, where the staff then sends the toboggan back to the top via an overhead lift. Ice skaters find ample space for gliding and pirouetting on the 43,000 square-foot rink. After tubing to their heart’s content or taste-testing snowflake appetizers, visitors can warm themselves around the lodge’s circular fireplace or observe fellow snow-goers from the expansive observation deck while sipping on hot chocolate or nibbling on snacks.
Wings Stadium plays host to more than just board-slamming checks during the Kalamazoo Wings' home hockey games. On select days, the 8,023-seat venue opens its frozen confines to amateurs interested in all sorts of winter sports. Skaters of all ages can glide across the smooth ice during open-skating sessions, and members of the Kalamazoo Curling Club practice and face off throughout the fall and winter. On weekend nights, hockey fans can bring their own skates to a K-Wings home game and finish their night skating and checking the ice for lost incisors.
Stacy Hess—owner and operator of Hillcrest Stables, LLC—brings more than two decades’ worth of experience to her year-round saddleseat riding lessons. As a trainer, she specializes in American Saddlebred, Hackney Pony, and Saddleseat Friesian; however, all 21 of her steeds can be ridden in shows and lessons. Beginners through advanced riders can learn how to show inside a heated facility as friends and family cheer and make bets as to the horse’s shoe size in the facility’s comfortable viewing room.
Kalamazoo Speedway’s five-in-one shows exhilarate onlookers with five back-to-back races under a star-flecked dome of night sky. Rocket-powered roadsters whip around the 3/8–mile track in successive divisions, each with distinct vehicle specifications. Outlaw Super Late Models spin spectator heads with speeds of up to 115 mph, and Cyber Stocks provide less-experienced dragsters the chance to defend their place in the pavement pecking order without resorting to dangerous midrace rounds of paper-rock-scissors. The May 7 show is the first autograph night of the 2011 season, allowing fans to score John Hancocks from their favorite bumper-rubbers at 6 p.m. before the races start, as well as in the open pit area following the final checkered flag.