It’s now March and one of my favorite days of the year, Spring Daylight Savings Time, is right around the corner. Why is it one of my favorite days? After a brutal winter, it is the single most optimistic day of the year! It usually means warmer temperatures and more opportunities to be outside in the sun. Unfortunately, Old Man Winter seems to have a different idea this year.
I may not be able to get my “fun in the sun” wish, but since we apparently live in Siberia’s twin region, our activity and sporting businesses have adapted and learned to compensate for the cold weather and snow. Activities that you would normally associate with warmer temperatures and summertime can actually be done, wait for it…inside! I’ll take a compromise at this point. I’m talking go-karting, golf, batting cages and more!
JD Racing Indoor Karting at 44225 W. Twelve Mile Rd., in Novi knows a thing or two about indoor karting. There are multiple activities to do in the go-karts here: Arrive and Drive, racing leagues, racing schools and even one-on-one individual coaching. Arrive and Drive is available on a first-come, first-serve basis, so making reservations may be in your best interest.
Kart 2 Kart located at 42705 Van Dyke in Sterling Heights is also a solid option for some go-karting fun. Not to be outdone, Kart 2 Kart also has an Arrive and Drive option, as well as many leagues and races. Challenge a group of friends and race against them in The Grand Prix, which includes a practice and qualifying session, as well as a final race. Leagues and endurances races are exciting activities for the more experienced racers.
Great Lakes Golf and Sports Complex located at 3951 Joslyn Rd., in Auburn Hills offers Michigan’s largest golf dome, with a fully automated ball tee-up system. The indoor golf facility is a beautiful specimen and has recently been updated. Did I mention this place offers beer on tap or in a can? If you weren’t sold yet, you should be now. It is a multi-sport facility too. So, soccer, softball, flag football and even lacrosse are all viable activities.
Oasis Golf Center, 39500 Five Mile Rd., in Plymouth offers the only indoor practice facility in Wayne County. The heated indoor range is open from October to April (we can only hope by that time it will be warm again). Get a group of friends together and indulge in “The Bottomless Bucket” with unlimited balls while your session lasts. As I hinted towards earlier, my golf game is pretty embarrassing. Still, I do like to go to a driving range every so often.
On the Dunes, 2055 Haggerty Rd. Commerce, is simply the place to be. The golf simulators here are state-of-the-art. Seriously, I mean brand new. Some of the features of the simulators: access to play on 24 real-world golf courses, a driving range, mini games, and more. In addition, you get your own waitress to take your orders.
The Drive-In, at 11 E. Fourteen Mile Rd., in Clawson is another great place to go to practice your swing all year round. Bring in your own clubs and get acquainted with them even in this rough winter. The ball reacts to images on the screen—it may disappear behind a hill, bounce off trees or slice into that water hazard if you’re not careful. You can even change course conditions!
Extra Innings located at 51162 Filomena Dr., in Shelby is where to go to work on your form in the winter. It offers three token-operated indoor baseball and softball batting cages with five different speeds, ranging from 40 to 80 miles per hour. The ceilings are 24-feet high and the height-controlled cages make sure that every pitch hits the strike zone. It’s the perfect place to make sure you don’t lose a step on your swing.
LineDrive Sportz, 5977 E. 14 Mile Rd., Sterling Heights, is another great indoor facility to take a few cuts at. Four premiere batting cages provides you with the opportunity to work on your game whenever you want. Interchangeable jug machines and an automatic “Iron Mike” pitching machine helps make the experience that much better. You can rent the machine for $20 an hour until 4 p.m. and $35 per hour after 4 p.m. and on the weekends.
Zap Zone has Indoor “Glo Golf” at its Canton, Farmington and Taylor locations. The course is under black lights; hence the “Glo” part of the name. Of course Zap Zone offers laser tag and other activities too! Perfect place to take the kids, but also fun with a group of friends.
For our more adventurous readers, Planet Rock has locations in both Ann Arbor and Pontiac, with a Madison Heights building in the works. It has several different climbing routes you can try, as well as many boulder “problems.” First timers, ages 14 and older must take a course to learn safety, knots and belaying (how to hold the ropes). For the more qualified climbers only, Planet Rock also offers an aerial skills class and a lead lessons class.
These are all fun ways to wash away my seasonal sadness and get my mind off of this absolutely absurd winter we’re having. Maybe you’ll see me hanging out at some of these places. Now, get up and go!