FOR KIDS TO DEFY
These three family-friendly activities will
have your kids reaching new heights
FLOAT ON AIR
There’s no jumping out of a plane and no parachute involved
in the “skydiving” experience at iFLY Montgomery, the indoor skydiving facility that opened in Gaithersburg last May.
Instead, participants are lifted into the air by strong currents
inside a giant wind tunnel. Flyers feel the exhilaration of being airborne without the stomach-churning drop. First-timers
get a brief safety lesson, gear up in a ;ight suit, helmet and
goggles, and then, guided by an instructor, ;y from about 3
to 5 feet high. Packages start at $79.95 for two ;ights. For
an additional charge, ;y to the top of the tunnel during a
“high ;ight.” Children as young as 3 can participate. In Flight
School, kids ages 4 to 16 can take a series of lessons on
how to perform different moves, stunts, twists and formations.
9400 Gaither Road, Gaithersburg; 202-883-4359;
SWING THROUGH THE TREES
Climb ladders, cross swinging rope bridges, and zip-line
through the trees at The Adventure Park at Sandy Spring
Friends School. After buckling into a harness and getting a
safety brie;ng from staff, participants choose from 13 different obstacle courses that take them through the treetops.
Groups of various ages and abilities can participate, making this an activity that parents and kids can enjoy together.
Climbers advance along a series of elevated platforms ranging
from 12 to 65 feet high by crossing various types of suspended bridges and zip-lining across cables. It’s a bit like American
Ninja Warrior meets Swiss Family Robinson. There are courses
for children ages 5 and up. General admission includes three
hours of climbing plus a 40-minute orientation and costs $12
for ages 5 and 6, $47 for ages 7 to 11 and $56 for ages 12
and up. (There’s no charge for observers who aren’t climbing.)
Special events include nighttime climbs illuminated by string
lights, and glow-in-the-dark climbs with music and camp;res.
16701 Norwood Road, Sandy Spring; 240-389-4386;
CLIMB THE WALLS
Kids climbing the walls at home? Take them to Earth Treks,
the indoor rock-climbing gym in Rockville, where they can
scale more than 38,000 feet of climbing terrain up to 43
feet high. Climbers strap into a harness—gear rental is
included for all classes and open climbs—and learn about
knot-tying, belaying and climbing techniques. Instructors
also offer coaching and encouragement to help climbers
reach the top. There are lower walls for beginners, higher
and more challenging routes for experienced climbers, and
an area for bouldering (climbing minus the ropes and harness). The facility offers several options for kids as young
as 5, including open climbing sessions for $30, weekly
after-school clubs ($89 for a four-week session) and even
Friday night drop-off events for $29, when kids can climb
with instructors while parents get a night out. Memberships
and day passes are also available.
725 Rockville Pike, Rockville; 240-283-9942;
Climbers have a choice of
13 obstacle courses at The
Adventure Park at Sandy
Spring Friends School.
E;i;ors’ Pic;s: KIDS