Mark and Amy’s son, Andrew, is Brayden and Traig’s very best friend. He proved that that goes both ways by requesting that his birthday be celebrated with just those two guys as participants. Fortunately, as Brayden and Traig’s parents, we got to be part of the deal. Michele’s family also benefited from the fact that Jackson’s summer birthday was also being thrown into the mix, so “girlfriend” Ellie, was top on his invite list.
When to make a celebration happen and what to do for that was the next issue to tackle. We eventually concluded that we could make something happen on Sunday in the Portland-ish area as Michele lives semi-close by and we were already in the vicinity on Sunday. Amy chose the Wilsonville “Family Fun Center” – a place her family had visited in the past and had loads of fun. Both Michele and I have avoided going there for the sole reason that the place screamed “expensive” by the time you doled out money for each of the individual activities offered. When Amy offered to pay for the whole lot of us to go as part of the “party expense”, we were thrilled – and excited for the opportunity to eat unlimited pizza, drink unlimited soda, and play unlimited Go-Carts, Bumper Boats, and Lazer Tag. (We could have golfed too, but we all figured we could do that any day of the week back at home). The best part of the deal was that we had four hours to do all of this, which seemed like it would be forever – but went way too fast……
The other “benefit” was the high temps. While it wasn’t quite reaching the earlier week 100’s – the 97 degrees at 4pm probably scared off quite a few of the crowds that would have otherwise frequented the attraction on a normal Sunday afternoon. It had me a little cranky upon arrival, but then a quick game of air-conditioned lazer tag – helping me to vent off all of my stress quickly transformed me (and the rest of the family) to enthusiastic participants of all things offered.
We ended up doing about four runs of the Go-carts – I never could seem to score one of the faster rigs, but Mikayla and I pulled tight corners to generally keep everyone who started out behind us – to stay behind us. She was a super happy shotgun passenger, I was very glad that she did not have an issue being sick.
The Bumper Boats were also genuinely loved by all. That was the second activity we hit and by the end, I was SOAKED. We all were….because we all were ruthless in our attempts to get each other sopping wet. SO FUN……. The group ended up doing another run towards the end of the evening, which I missed out on as I was busy transferring our luggage from our vehicle to Michele’s as the kids and I have stayed with them through today. Ellie and Jackson actually did an additional run on their own while we did the Go-Carts a final time – (they were right next to each other) – both such adventurous spirits – and both in love with the attraction.
By far, however, my favorite activity was Lazer Tag. It’s the first time I’ve ever done that – and for a kid who absolutely LOVED “Capture the Flag” it’s kind of a grown-up high-tech version and I’m hooked! Throw in some fun memories of the “Buzz Lightyear” ride in Disneyland that this reminded me of, and I was a happy camper. By the fourth round, I had the high score of our team, but I regret to say, that out of those four rounds, I was on the winning side only once. There is a location in Eugene that offers a pretty nice Lazer Tag experience – I might just have to organize a “revenge” reunion to satisfy my addictive urges!
(This is a picture of us trying to catch a look at the screen that gave us our scores after the game was over)
I want to say another final THANK YOU to the Meyers for supplying all of this fun through the planning and finances of the party – as well as their awesome company. Twas the night of fantastic, cherished memories – that’s for sure!