March is when the dirt starts flying at Bar2Bar MX Park in Maize, on the northwest edge of Wichita. The off-road motorcycle racing complex organizes 10 events from March through November - including three national competitions - and opens to the public four to five times each month for training, practice and recreation. The track hosts amateur racers from age 4 to 74 and also is home to a few pros who train and practice there frequently. The track attracts riders throughout the region because it's one of only a few in the Midwest built with loose, sandy loam and it is Kansas' only American Motorcyclist Association(AMA)-sanctioned track. The owners rebuild the entire track every year to change the layout and introduce new obstacles.
Whether you're a viewer or a doer, spring is a great time to check out extreme sports activities with your friends or family. Wichita has plenty of things to do to get your adrenaline pumping. Here are a few options.
In addition to Bar2Bar MX Park, Wichita has the Jeeps Motorcycle Club Inc. north of the city. Jeeps is the oldest, continuously active motorcycle-oriented association in our area and has 80 acres of riding fun on seven tracks.
Wichita's new full-service indoor climbing gym opened in November 2015 and the family-run operation is getting rave reviews from avid climbers along with those new to the sport for the friendly staff and state-of-the art facilities. Bliss Climbing and Fitness has been called the best climbing facility in the state and among the top in the Midwest. The complex offers 38-foot top-rope walls, a bouldering area and a training area, each with an assortment of fun, inventive routes that change regularly and are safe for those learning to climb and challenging for more experienced climbers.
Urban Air Trampoline Park is a 30,000-square-foot indoor trampoline park and family fun center in west Wichita. They have areas like the foam pit, slam-dunk zone and dodgeball courts, as well as a specific area for kids 7 & under. They offer daily open jump sessions for all ages.
The newest trampoline park is Aviate Extreme Air Sports, inside the Wichita Sports Forum in northeast Wichita. Aviate has 20,000 square feet of foam pits, obstacle courses, dodgeball, dunking, flying trapeze, aerial silks and more. There's an area designated for kids 6 & under. Tuesday evenings are two-for-one admission.
Wichita has your need for speed covered - from indoor electric go karts at The Alley Indoor Entertainment to separate outdoor tracks for children and adults at the eastside All Star Adventures and the westside All Star Sports, which runs NASCAR-style cars. All three facilities offer complete entertainment, with a variety of games, rides, activities and food.
The Wichita Ice Center is a great place to enjoy leisure skating during public skate sessions, but did you know you can also learn to play hockey or how to figure skate or speed skate? Once skaters learn the basic skills, they'll learn about competitive racing by speed skaters from the Air Capital Speed Skating Club.
The virtual range at Gander Mountain in downtown Wichita lets you hold a Glock pistol while feeling and hearing the sound and trajectory of real bullets using carbon dioxide cartridges. They have a target range that tests your handgun grip, stance, use of sights and trigger control as well as 180- and 300-degree ranges that test your speed and judgment. It features a 2 million-pixel screen and multiple targets of your choice, which have simulated distances ranging from 3 to 50 yards.
Thunderbird Firearms Academy is one of the state's largest indoor shooting and training facilities, with more than 27,000-square-feet dedicated to 28 climate-controlled shooting lanes. They offer a large selection of semi-automatic handguns, rifles and machine guns for rent.
Golf with a shotgun is a fun and safe shotgun sport for the entire family. Shady Creek Sporting Clays, 20 minutes south of Wichita, is an outdoor shotgun range open to the public. They operate two fully automated sporting clays courses along a wooded creek bed with a wide range of target presentations for all skill levels. Ammunition, shotgun rental and lessons are available.