A coalition of ice arenas endorsed by the Dallas Stars, Dr Pepper StarCenters help nurture athletes of all ages and skill levels with activities on or off the ice. Dr Pepper StarCenters house NHL-regulation ice-hockey rinks that host hockey leagues for players of all ages, eradicating the need to play on dangerous frozen lakes dotted with irritable frozen geese. StarCenters' skate academies instill students with the fundamentals of ice hockey or figure skating, allowing them to progress to hockey leagues and local skating competitions if they choose. To warm up after laps around the Euless ice rink, skaters can check out the onsite baseball stadium, batting cages, soccer fields, and Texas Star Golf Course. All locations are open for birthday parties and special events; see each location's website for details.
The aquatic playland at Surf and Swim aims to bring the quintessential beach experience to a controlled water park. Inner tubes and their passengers float atop a wave pool's sprawling waters, splashing as the sun lovingly stares deep into their eyes. Pipes, plastic animals, and fountains pepper the kids area, and the aptly named Chill and Grill Cafe serves up burgers and fries. On select nights, the park transforms into an outdoor movie theater, where groups can swim and bob for their ticket stubs while watching a full-size screen.
Zone Action Park thrills family members young and old with themed fun zones that quench thirsts for go-karting, bouncing, mini golf on two brand new 18-hole courses, and batting practice. The Speed Zone pits kids as young as 3 years old against each other for zipping go-kart action, whereas a bounce area lets them hop safely on inflatable jumps or slides. Batters practice against slow- or fast-pitch machines in the Strike Zone. Inside, the Game Zone fosters friendly competition with family-friendly games such as Big Bass Wheel and Treasure Quest fueled by hot fresh pizza from their cafe that happily serves large parties and birthdays.
For the past 20 years, Zero Gravity Thrill Amusement Park has been one of Dallas’ primary sources of satisfied screams, launching Texans into lower orbit with palpitating rides that test the confines of physics. Thrill-seekers can exhaust adrenaline reserves on hair-raising attractions, including the seven-story bungee jump, the Skycoaster, and the Texas Blastoff, which acts like a giant slingshot that rockets riders 70 miles per hour toward the sky. Nothin’ but Net sends amusement park goers plummeting on a 130-foot freefall, and the Skyscraper's enormous propellers whip guests around with 4 gees of force before serving up views of the city’s stunning skyline. Thanks to precautions designed specifically for each ride, Zero Gravity boasts a flawless safety record, whereas the park’s flexible schedule jump-starts hearts seven days per week, making it the perfect place for family, weekend, nighttime, and group activities.
When a building starts to sway, it's generally a sign of stiff winds or poorly maintained architecture. At Pump It Up, however, it's merely an indication that another energetic child has occupied one of the bouncy fortresses. The facility boasts a climate-controlled indoor playground, complete with inflatable slides, obstacle courses, and, of course, houses that beg kids to safely bounce off the walls. The staff invite parents and kids for open playtime and also help host private birthday parties and camps that combine playtime with arts, crafts, and pizza.
GattiTown’s All-You-Care-To-Eat-And-Drink Buffet fills familial units with unlimited pizza, pasta, salads, and desserts in a fun environment (valid drinks are non-alcoholic). The sight of Gatti’s famous pizza will make your plate’s mouth water and subsequently beg for seconds. For dessert (or just a brief intermission between cheese sticks and SpaGatti), foster creative instincts by creating miniature Eiffel towers out of cinnamon sticks and slices of Dutch-apple dessert pizza. Diners can also accompany their meal with a televised view in one of the dining rooms. The sports room gives you a chance to bet on your favorite team using a stack of warm and buttery breadsticks. For movie critics young and old, the fun-flicks room flickers with family entertainment, and the café’s quiet, low-key atmosphere is tailor-made for devouring spaghetti blindfolded while discussing the influence of John Cassavetes's use of cinéma vérité on the Shrek movies. To make sure your feast doesn’t go straight to your thumbs, retire to the game room for 6,000 square feet of video games, skee ball, and more. However, the truly daring diner will want to stuff his or her stomach to bursting, then take in a few rounds on the bumper cars.