Go APE! by KosherEye roving reporters Shaya (age 12), Sara, (age 11) and Rivky Scher (age 9)
On chol hamoed Sukkot, our family searches for fun activities -- destinations where we can bring our kosher food, spend a few hours and enjoy the outdoors. This year we found an awesome, fun and challenging adventure for the entire family at the Go Ape Treetop Adventure. Comprised of two ropes courses, one junior level for ages 4-10, and a standard adventure course for ages 11 and up, Go Ape entertains kids and adults of almost all ages. It is an outdoor adventure course, set among the trees in various parks around the country. The company rents the trees and sets up climbing courses and zip lines. The location we chose was in Virginia’s South Run Park located in Springfield, VA. The friendly staff at the park was extremely helpful and accommodating. They were always supervising and making sure we were comfortable, encouraging everyone in our group to confront the next challenge, follow the safety rules and ensure that the equipment was properly placed. When we were ready to start each course, we felt confident and excited. The park was organized so that all the fun was accessed from one central location where fresh water was also available to be sure everyone stayed hydrated.
For children ages 4-10, the junior level includes three courses. They were very challenging and fun for the younger members of our family and not as high as the senior course. These obstacles could be repeated as much as the participant would like within their set amount of time, which for our juniors was about two hours. The zip lines at the end of each were favorites. We also liked the swinging beams that we had to cross and the challenge of walking through an elevated net. We really enjoyed being so high in the air and being free to climb without the fear of falling. (We were always attached with a secure harness).
The standard treetop adventure had six courses in all (including a training course) filled with exciting obstacles, each with a zipline at the end. Although they were all amazing, some of our favorites were the hanging rings, the swinging balance beam and the suspended rope steps. However, our all-time favorite was the Tarzan jump. Connected to a cable by a Go Ape staff member, you jump off a platform, bounce off a net, and proceed to climb up the net to another platform. A different Go Ape staff member detaches the Tarzan safety equipment, and reattaches the regular safety harness so you can continue to the next obstacle. We were kept busy for 3 full hours.
The younger kids aged 0-3 and non-climbing adults enjoyed watching from the ground and cheering us on as we moved through the course. The rec center and playground at the facility were a welcome change for those adults who “just couldn’t watch” or those kids who needed more age appropriate climbing. With all that Go Ape in South Run had to offer, it was truly fun for the whole family and experience we will rave about for years to come. So, if you get a chance – Go Ape! Go Ape is offering a discount for KosherEye readers...If you plan to go, use code: KEZIPS18 for a 15% discount in many of the Go Ape locations, valid through 6/18. Also, Go Ape coupons are sometimes available on Groupon.