Start your engines
Rev up for family fun at Velocity 17
Just because it’s February doesn’t mean the kids are content to stay cozy and quiet inside. High energy, plus being cooped up, can percolate into a bad case of cabin fever. Time to leave the cabin and channel those high spirits into something exhilarating. Will high-speed thrills fit the bill? They can and they do for families of all ages at Velocity 17, 87 Route 17 north, Maywood, where a variety of adrenaline-pumping activities for all ages fill the 100,000 square feet of space.
First up, of course, is the racing. World-class tracks with European-style electric racers speed around twists and turns in the Grand Prix indoor track. You really feel the speed, since your seat is just inches from the floor. Helmets are a must. An electronic leaderboard tracks position and lap times, with computerized speed printouts at the end of the race, so bragging rights can’t be disputed!
High-performance racers are for licensed drivers only; standard karts are for ages 10 and up. Little ones can find their own speed with pedal go-karts.
While racing is the main drag, laser tag is a close second. At Velocity 17 the laser tag is played in a 5,000square-foot arena with a maze. Velocity 17 owner Jerry Joseph says if dads gravitate toward the race track, moms often love the laser tag. Even the mild mannered take out their aggressions (for laughs).
Joseph says he has seen his venue evolve in recent years. “We originally were a racetrack, 99 percent [of customers] were men, but that has morphed into a family destination.” Now, says Joseph, dad might check out the racing, while teens are looking at laser tag and little ones investigate the newest offering – a kids’ play area called Jungle Jerry’s Safari. Grandma and Grandpa can watch the fun from the comfort of leather-seated lounge spaces.
Racing simulators, arcade games and refreshments are also available.