Within Space City Rock Climbing's 5,000-square-foot gym, a team of seasoned climbers recreate a variety of scalable surfaces—vertical faces, overhangs, or a neighbor's brick siding among them—to challenge climbers of every experience level. While climbing, 23 belay stations sit atop 25-foot-high routes, giving guests an opportunity to sharpen their top-roping skills. For a different kind of challenge, the gym's walls also provide opportunities for lead climbing and bouldering. When not supervising open climbs, Space City's staff organizes camps and group events including birthday parties and lock-ins. A family-friendly operation, Space City's facility caters to kids with Moonwalk inflatable bounce houses and slides.
In an effort to raise money for wildlife relief efforts, The Houston Zombie Walk of 2011 rounds up costumed participants for a mile-long loop around downtown. At 5 p.m. on September 24, the gates will open at Jones Plaza, where entertainment options include three bands, a zombie dance crew, a Halloween DJ, and cooking demonstrations that show ideal pairings for brains. The walk itself lasts from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., and participants may bring controlled canines. After the plaza closes at 10 p.m., revelers can continue on to zombie-friendly bars that serve up drink specials and host headless can-can dancers.
The seasoned paranormal investigators at the Spirit Quest Center instruct burgeoning ghostbusters in the art of spectral detection on its spine-tingling Spring Ghost Tour. Before embarking into the ectoplasmic world, Spirit Quest preps spirit walkers ages 10 and older with a Ghost Hunting 101 lesson. Students learn investigation techniques such as detecting magnetic-field disturbances, using dowsing rods to communicate directly with specters, and uncovering electric voice phenomena (EVP) in digital recordings that capture the kelpie vibrato of karaoke phantasms. A professional paranormal investigator then leads the tour past some of Old Town Spring's oldest buildings, regaling the fascinating history of the vexed settlement with frequent stops for ghostly apparitions and interaction. During the 2.5- to three-hour tour, phantom pursuers may get the chance to chat with the poltergeists through the medium’s translation, asking questions about ghostly life and what it’s like to hang out with Elvis.
In Body Evolution's recently renovated gym, rows of traditional cardio machines whir alongside an updated aerobics room and an indoor basketball court. To inaugurate their new square footage, the trainers kicked off a variety of classes, which include Zumba, boot camps, various forms of yoga, and cardio salsa. When not leading personal-training sessions or doling out nutrition advice, the staff keeps the doors unlocked 24 hours a day for all-night access to the circuit- and strength-training equipment. Ramping up results, the staff plugs patrons into a machine-assisted metabolism test that helps make nutritional recommendations such as, "Stop trying to eat this machine." To get families fit together, the gym's Kidz Zone incorporates play and health into programs such as the Wii Fit workout.
It wouldn’t be hard to spend an entire day at iT’Z Family Food & Fun—not only is there an arcade packed with more than 150 games and attractions such as go karts and mini bowling, but you can consistently refuel at an all-you-can-eat buffet with pizza, salad, and pasta. In group events, each guest is set up to enjoy the buffet and receives credits towards the rides and games. Kids birthday parties have extras such as a table reservation, dedicated host, and extra tickets for the birthday child. There are four distinct party rooms and they cater to all ages—the neon-tinged Toon’z diner has an animation theme, while the elegant Hollywood room is lit softly by wrought-iron chandeliers and dying laser tag guns.
A massive gorilla snarls from the rafters above Putt-Putt Fun House's café, powerless to snatch the ice-cream cones and hot dogs from smiling kids' hands. Indeed, kids are control at the family fun center, leading parents through a variety of indoor and outdoor attractions ranging from mini-golf to laser tag. Waterfalls, ponds, and flowerbeds surround two 18-hole mini-golf courses, 22-foot climbing towers recreate the experience of scaling limestone, and bumper cars teach reckless young drivers to safely exchange insurance information. Putt-Putt Fun House also offers an array of additional activities including bumper boats, mini bowling, a 3D motion theater, and laser frenzy.