The crescendo and decrescendo of buzzing 200cc Subaru Robin engines swing through the interior of Grand Prix Raceway like a pendulum. The noise loudens as the Italian go-karts dart past the checkered starting line, then softens as they speed away at up to 35 miles per hour. Audible during races, parties, and leagues, the karts weave through a winding quarter-mile European-style racetrack that has a banked corner, an AMB computerized scoring and timing system, and enough width to drift through corners without bumping into cops.
Within Brookwood Equestrian Center’s 20,000-square-foot indoor arena, spectators seated in the heated viewing area grow quiet as small riders urge their mounts to trot, canter, and finally leap over jumps. The Center—which has served amateur and experienced horseback riders for more than 19 years—helps young riders take the reins in individual and group riding lessons as well as riding day camps. Brookwood’s 50,000-square-foot all-weather outdoor arena is constructed to Olympic standards, allowing horses to pursue their dreams of winning shot-put gold when they are not lazing about in 45 matted indoor stalls with automatic waterers or playing in a mud-free turnout area.
Today, Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad and Museum stands as a bridge to the past, whisking passengers through timbered foothills, alongside mountain streams, and across wooden trestles aboard trains led by restored locomotives. But roughly 34 years ago, the company was just an idea bouncing around the head of Tom Murray Jr., who made it his mission to preserve the sights, sounds, and experiences of a bygone era.
With the help of a friend, and later, many volunteers, Tom established MRSR as a tourist train service, a title the company retains to this day. As a result, the last three decades have been filled with seasonal weekly excursions that send customers chugging around the forestry that unfurls in the shadows of Mt. Rainier. Volunteers still maintain the majority of the organization, and with every ride, passengers are reminded that railroads have linked the United States in a manner that airplanes, cars, and gas-powered pogo sticks never could.
Skate Tiffany's! Roller Skating & Family Fun Center exudes so much fun that it was used in a commercial for an Xbox 360 video game. After a quick look at the recently renovated rink, that's not so surprising: colorful bulbs fan out neatly from the center of the ceiling, with paper lanterns and LED lights also glimmering down onto the shiny hardwood floor. A brand new JumboTron TV playing sporting events hangs from the center of the skating floor which skaters whiz past on their quad or inline skates.
Between laps around the floor, groups can catch their breath in the arcade or fuel up in the snack bar, where the menu includes Hebrew National hot dogs, soft pretzels, and whatever else it is that roller skates like to eat. Tiffany's is also prime real estate for parties, as the staff often customizes packages for kids' birthdays, corporate events, and school field trips.
An Xbox 360 console, a 40-inch high-definition television, and a surround-sound headset: all of this is yours alone at PLAYlive's individual gaming stations. But that doesn't mean each round of gaming has to be a solitary affair. The gaming center hosts parties and weekly tournaments, too, pitting players against each other in live contests with titles such as Call of Duty and NBA2K. For members, the lounge even hosts monthly mixers where gamers can participate in mini tournaments or debate which Mario brother made their mother prouder. Beyond its comfy lounge, PLAYlive can enrich your gaming experience with its shop that specializes in repairing Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo Wii consoles.
Since 1957, Daffodil Bowl has been a fun, safe atmosphere for bowlers to while away the day and night. Families and friends gather amongst its 24 glossy lanes to send pins a-clattering, with bumpers available for kids still learning how to keep their balls out of the gutter or parents who aren't that great at bowling. Meanwhile, players can send a representative to the Rock N Bowl Cafe for pizza or sandwiches or visit the on-site video arcade.