Bella Via's licensed pilots maneuver their brightly colored craft through the sky as intimate groups of up to four passengers take in sweeping views of the countryside. The vessel swoops into natural beauty and dips close to the verdant treetops, granting aeronauts newfound views of the canopy and allowing them to eavesdrop on tree-house board meetings. Guests may skim across the mirrored surface of a lake or soar up to 2,000 feet above the earth to tamper with the clouds and embarrass rival meteorologists. Passengers can assist with the setup of balloons prior to takeoff, and a dedicated crew follows the vessel to its landing site to toast disembarking balloonists with an effervescent glass of bubbly and return them to their jealous automobiles.
Music courses throughout the alley as visitors sate competitive appetites with multiple bowling lanes, an 18-hole mini golf course, six pool tables, and a variety of arcade games. Bowlers first snuggle their feet into pairs of rented bowling shoes before unleashing themselves on the lanes, punishing pins with each stroke frame by frame. Bogey's automatic scoring machines make keeping tally easy so players aren't forced to scrawl numbers on the back of receipts or birth certificates. During cosmic bowling on Friday and Saturday nights after 6 p.m., black lights douse the alley in florescent color and disco balls sparkle and spin. Bogey's mini golf course awaits diminutive domination, taking putters past well-manicured greenery, winding brick paths, and loitering lawnmowers. Although not included with today's deal, guests can refuel at the bar with a beer or glass of wine or celebrate a victorious match with ice cream from the snack bar.
BBs fly across Citadel Airsoft's 60,000-square-foot indoor facility as marksmen square off in CO2-fueled contests. Three days a week, open skirmishes reward strategy in 30-minute games that follow a variety of rules and scenarios such as Downed Pilot, where rival teams compete to either rescue or capture a specific player. For more experienced sharpshooters, Citadel organizes indoor and outdoor simulations that test players' mettle with unique obstacles and targets painted on remote-control houseflies. First-time players can boost their airsoft skills during training events and add to their personal armory with safety equipment and supplies from the facility's onsite pro shop.
Pure Fitness (formerly known as Powerhouse Fitness and still owned by Scott and Nikki Holland) has a full roster of certified personal trainers and seasoned group-fitness instructors who guide exercisers to physical peaks, building strong muscles and healthy lifestyles. The workout room helps guests to slim down their silhouettes with new exercise equipment, including calorie-torching cardio machines and dumbbells perfect for toning biceps or hurling at cardboard cutouts of Charles Atlas. There's also a recently added athletic-training center.
Group classes range from Les Mills dance aerobics to CrossFit functional training, which strengthens sinews with Olympic lifting drills and gymnastics-inspired bodyweight exercises. A juice bar replenishes vitamins and minerals, and saunas banish stress with warm, dry air. To help parents squeeze exercise into busy schedules, the gym offers childcare services seven days a week.
Perhaps as a tribute to the timeless nature of the sword, the Worcester Fencing Club began as a small class held at the Higgins Armory Museum, a collection of arms and armor from medieval Europe and beyond. There, Doug Jacobs—a United States Fencing Association–certified instructor—began imparting his knowledge to a handful of students, giving them a small taste of the age-old sport that, over the years, had become unfairly associated with bullies popping balloons in the streets. Still, many of his students wished to extend their training, and—upon a suggestion of the mother of some of his students—Doug expanded his academy in 1998, forming the Worcester Fencing Club. Today, the school continues to draw fresh blood, introducing students of all ages and experience levels to modern- and Olympic-style fencing in classes still often taught by Doug himself.
Skylite Roller Skating Center has been sending families spinning round its 10,000-square-foot rink for 30 years. Skaters can don sturdy four-wheeled foot trolleys to cruise the circumference of Skylite’s sleek surface, which is kept smooth daily by the diligent tongues of 100 neighborhood cats, during any of the rink’s 2.5- to 3-hour public skating sessions (up to a $5 to $8 value/person; times and admission price vary each day), including their annual Halloween and New Year’s Eve parties. Glide in time to current and classic dance and pop tunes in a whirl of neon, black lights, and the sequin-like shimmers of an overhead disco ball. A snack bar serves pizza, french fries, and candy—not included in today’s Groupon—to failing gliders to prevent head-on blood-sugar crashes.