Casual and determined athletes alike will find their sport at Game On Sports Center, a complex that hosts everything from drop-in open gyms and parties to private instruction and weeklong camps. Adults and kids can play volleyball, basketball, floor hockey, soccer, and dodgeball on three courts, their fancy footwork benefiting from the all-purpose Sport Court flooring endorsed by the NBA and the NCAA. An additional baseball and softball practice area features two 70-foot batting cages, as well as pitching mounds, L-screens, tees, and other equipment. Though Game On hosts a regular rotation of clinics and camps led by athletes that have played and coached at high school, collegiate, and semi-pro levels, all of their supervised facilities are also available to rent for private parties or for dramatic sports-movie montages.
Putting requires intense concentration, which is especially difficult when you have an elephant standing over your shoulder. At Sport-N-Fun, miniature golfers putt their way through three 18-hole courses adorned with statues of exotic wildlife such as gorillas and giraffes. These distractions are one of the many obstacles on the terrain, where bank shots and undulating hills stand between players and holes-in-one.
Sport-N-Fun's other exhilarating activities likewise vie for visitors' attention. Thrill-seekers zip around the curves and down the straightaways of the Go-Kart track, or leap skyward while securely harnessed on the bungee trampoline. In seven batting cages, machines pitch balls toward batters at speeds of up to 85 miles per hour, offering a range for different skill levels. Inside, classic games blip and bleep as players frantically tap buttons at the arcade. Amidst all the action, GG's Pizza renews energy with servings of pizza and fountain drinks.
C.J. Barrymore's encompasses 25 acres brimming with energetic laser tag, a vast arcade, and various other attractions for the young, young-at-heart, and young-at-spleen. With four laser-tag tickets, tyke clans ages 7 and up can simulate battle tactics through fog and pylons in 15-minute team-based matches that, much like court hearings, come enhanced by a roaring sound system and spectacular light shows (a $24 value). Meanwhile, joystick junkies can feed their 132 tokens to myriad arcade games in the neon-lit game room, including old-school favorites such as Ms. Pac-Man and the hands-on sportitude of basketball and air hockey (a $25 value). After all tokens have been spent, gamers can redeem their earnings at the prize counter, choosing from hundreds of rewards to take home, and become the envy of all the neighborhood playground pals and reclusive Peter Pans.
The baseball and softball instructors at Great Lakes Baseball Academy share their passion for America's pastime with students as they draw upon accolades that include two national minor-league titles and a high-school state softball record for strikeouts in one year. Inside the year-round, 5,000-square-foot facility, coaches with experience at the major, minor, and high-school levels enrich players' skills during private lessons and team-training sessions. Line drives echo through three climate-controlled, 80-foot batting and pitching tunnels, which include Iron Mike pitching machines that hurtle balls from 40 to 90 mph and occasionally charge the plate. Along with their training grounds, the academy's shop stays stocked with such gear as the latest bats and gloves.
Putterz wraps three 18-hole miniature golf courses, four batting cages, and game room packed with arcade cabinets into a single fun center for all ages to play together. Players putt golf balls around colorful obstacles, such as bathing elephants, spinning windmills, and tumbling waterfalls, in hopes of hearing the unmistakable sound of the ball rattling in the cup and a whispered approval from the ghost of their Scottish nanny. Each of the batting cages can be adjusted for fast pitch baseball or slow pitch softball, and a large game room challenges visitors and birthday partiers to compete for tickets and high scores.