The Windsor athletic scene took an industrial-sized shot of adrenaline straight to the face in the summer of 2010 as Border City Brawlers’ crew of derby girls blocked and jammed their way into Windsor Arena for the first time. In founding the volunteer-run, nonprofit roller-derby league, they pioneered a fresh form of competition for women of all ages, sizes, skills, and credit scores. Joined by house teams the Hiram Stalkers and 159ers, the Brawlers, a travel team of top competitors, face off against opponents atop flat tracks across the province, but they call Windsor Arena home. There, they skate, punch, and deliver physics lectures year-round to the roar of 1,000 spectators.
Stay & Play Social Club reunites adults with their younger selves with recreational sports leagues offered year-round. Players leave the daily grind behind at Stay & Play's summer events, which include volleyball, flag-football, and kickball leagues. Come winter, competitors wander indoors for bowling, euchre, and dodgeball. After each match or game, participants are welcome to migrate to a local pub for drink and pub-fare specials provided by the social club or to train for the future of extreme dodgeball using full pint glasses. Stay & Play's funseekers also foster a healthy community, sponsoring local charities and participating in cancer-awareness races.
Established in 1959, Chelsea Lanes combines old-school charms with the modern convenience of smooth, polished lanes and automatic scoring. The lanes, which remain open until midnight on Friday and Saturday, also play host to leagues, birthday parties, and glow-bowling sessions, during which music videos and light shows cause the alley to sparkle like a disco ball at a paparazzi dance party.
The boundaries of children's imaginations expand like a sun on the horizon at the Flint Children's Museum, a creative learning space with more than 40 exhibits. The show-stopping stations are designed to engage tykes of every learning type, whether they figure out their world by experimenting, watching, hearing, or even climbing. At the Discovery Zone, kids explore environments such as the rainforest or outer space by scampering about kid-sized replicas. They get a lesson in cause and effect at the "How Things Work" section by building bridges, and try their green thumbs at urban horticulture in the Sproutside outdoor learning area. While older kids cavort about, their toddling counterparts, ages three and under, can head to the cozy Tot Spot to play with age-appropriate toys.
The slaps of hockey pucks and scrapes of carving ice skates constantly fill the cool air of Suburban Ice arena. These familiar sounds emanate from high school hockey practices, the rink's figure skating ice shows, or introductory Learn to Skate classes offered for beginners of all ages. Though the rink keeps a busy calendar, it still carves out time for private and small group lessons. Lessons are offered for figure skating as well as the hockey, which teach checking, shooting, and power skating—all skills that also translate well to surviving an unforeseen ice age.
The Detroit Institute of Arts takes the “s” at the end of its name seriously. The immense Beaux Arts building on Woodward Avenue isn’t only a setting for a top-tier collection of visual works that include Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry frescoes, a van Gogh self-portrait, and ancient sculptures from Africa and Asia. It also opens the doors of its lecture halls, event spaces, and auditoriums for craft workshops, wide-ranging talks from historians and people who know how to draw really good cubes, film, and music. The latter two art forms find a home in the Detroit Film Theatre, a gilded, neoclassical auditorium that preserves a sense of coziness amid the grandeur.