Winter Fun: Indoor Activities Around the Country

Winter in New York has been mild this year. Same in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Cincinnati and Lincoln. But in all these places, I’ve sought out unique indoor activities. Here are two that promise plenty of fun.

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Our wooden target and throwing area.

Axe Throwing: Lincoln Nebraska

Think of axe throwing as the dangerous cousin in a family of bowlers. It’s kind of like bowling, except you throw the axe in the air. And although a bowling ball can be a lethal weapon, the sharp edge of the axe makes the whole enterprise more perilous. I mean, do you sign a waiver before bowling. But you get to wear your own (closed toe) shoes. Flannel shirt and trucker cap optional.

aimwheelsandeats
Aiming the axe

We went to Tomahawks Axe Throwing, one of two axe throwing venues in Lincoln. Tomahawks is the one without the bar, which makes it moderately less risky. [We pre-gamed at Kincaider Brewing, one of six breweries in the small city. This city has its priorities straight].

You have to be at least 15 to throw an axe. On the Saturday we went, there were couples on dates, groups of friends and at least one birthday celebration. After a brief safety instruction, we were on our own, try to follow the grip and stance and hit the target.

firewheelsandeats
Letting the exe fly

No one in our group of four had ever done this. My youngest surprised us all by consistently hitting the bulls-eye. In our hour-long session I hit the target exactly once. But that was besides the point. Just throwing the axe is fun, letting you channel your inner mountain man. And disperse any rage. Maybe my pre-throwing IPA eliminated any anger.

Beat The Bomb: We Had a Blast

Beat The Bomb is like an escape room combined with paintball. Beat The Bomb just opened in DUMBO, Brooklyn. Another is planned in Philadelphia.

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Having a blast at Beat The Bomb

My husband and I did this with another couple. Teams are from 2-6 players, so if you go with less than six, you might have to join another group. We had an hour to go through various entanglements, gaining time for the final challenge.

In our game – there are five different games- we had to do a numbers challenge, laser room, patterns and colors. In the numbers challenge, we had to hit numbers on different screens, from smallest to largest. Once we did that, the difficulty increased. First we had three and four digit numbers, then numbers where we had to avoid a certain color. You have to be quick, but also work with your team.

In the color room, we each had a wrist transponder, and were assigned a different color. We had to tap the transponder to whatever color was flashing. Then our colors switched – but we kept confusing our colors.

In the laser room, we had to cross a room without touching lasers. One person could change the patterns to help the others across, then rely on the others to get her across.

btb2wheelsandeats
We were useless with the controllers

The pattern room gave us three different patterns that we had to memorize. The we had to position ourselves in the patterns.

We gained a lot of extra time for the final challenge, where we had video controllers. Since none of us are gamers, we couldn’t figure out how to play the game and avoid getting blasted with paint. At this point, we also had plastic face shields on and the paint doesn’t hurt so it was fine that we got hit at the end. Apparently, only 8% of players avoid getting hit. I suspect that even if we had completed our challenges in half the time, we never would have figured out the video game.

You play the whole game in a protective suit, and before the final room, you get another suit as a second defense against the paint. So yes, you could play without the suit. But it makes it kind of fun and silly, everyone dressed in white onesies. [Go to the bathroom beforehand].

This is a great family game. Kids have to be at least eight to play.

Since Beat The Bomb involves a fair amount of running around, and you are wearing that onesie, dress lightly. There are lockers for coats and sweaters, and a protective bag if you want to bring your phone.

Have any fun indoor activities?

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