Manitoba

Winter got you down? Winnipeg has plenty of fun, indoor activities to beat the cold

If the chill of winter has been keeping you indoors, we've got some family-friendly ideas for you to get out of of the house and get moving, while staying toasty warm.

From indoor beach volleyball to virtual reality, CBC rounded up the best indoor activities in the city

Did you know that you can play beach volleyball in February — inside — in Winnipeg? We have the scoop on this and other fun, indoor activities to help you beat the cold. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

You may be looking outdoors with a feeling of frustration and are longing to get out and get moving, but not in all of that snow and cold.

If the chill of winter has been keeping you indoors, we've got some family-friendly ideas for you to get out of of the house and get moving, while staying toasty warm.

Beach Volleyball Centre

At the Beach Volleyball Centre, you can take a trip the beach without leaving on a jet plane.

There are four courts set up atop of a floor of sand that may make you feel like summer is already here. So, you are welcome to wear your flip flops, or just leave your shoes at the door and go barefoot in the sand.

You don't even have to play a sport to have a good time. Kids are welcome to come in and play soccer and build sand castles. Grownups can enjoys tropical beverages, sans shoes, at the tiki hut.

Kelly Crerar, co-owner of the Beach Volleyball Centre, says he got the inspiration to have the indoor haven back when the Pan Am Games came to Winnipeg in 1999. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

Co-owner Kelly Crerar says he got the inspiration for the indoor haven back in 1999, when he has an employee at the 1999 Pan Am Games in Winnipeg. It's the the first year the games had beach volleyball as a sport.

"It became the fastest-growing sport both from a television perspective and with the U.S. colleges," he said.

"We just saw the marriage of that with indoor in Manitoba, and finding something to do indoors that really piqued the interested of a multitude of different consumer types."

The centre provides a sandy getaway without stepping on a plane. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

The indoor volleyball spot, which opened last April, sees plenty of activity through volleyball leagues, parties, and drop-ins. For booking information, visit The Beach Volley Club website. The centre can be found just beyond the Perimeter at 2600 Wenzel St. A one hour drop-in fee is $15 plus GST.

Ctrl V Winnipeg

Ctrl V Winnipeg is a virtual reality experience for all ages that has been open for one year. You are in your own world, so to speak, as you are immersed in another reality.

After a brief introduction to how it works, players are ushered into individual cubicles. Each of the cubicles has a flat blue mat that tells you where to stand once you've put your helmet and hand pieces on. Outside of each cubicle is a TV monitor that shows observers what you are seeing, so parents can can watch what games their little ones are playing.

There are 50 games on the menu. Beats Saber turns your wrists into lasers and has you break red and blue blocks. Job Simulator, which is popular with kids, puts you into the world of work and customer service. However, the most popular game is Arizona Sunshine, where its humans against zombies.

You can also team up with one or more friends and meet up in the same game, even though you are physically separated in your respective cubicles.

Owner Rob Fedoruk says that accommodations can also be made for those with mobility challenges.

"We have had individuals in wheelchairs, older and younger. We can pick the type of experience which is going to be the best for them where there's not a lot of movement."

Ctrl V Winnipeg is located at 1045 St. James St. A one-hour session costs $25.99 per person.

Bad Axe Throwing

If the cold weather has given you an axe to grind, we have the perfect way for you to put it to good use.

Bad Axe Throwing, which opened in Winnipeg three years ago, is one of the few places where it's OK to place with sharp objects.

Get out some of your pent-up aggression at Bad Axe Throwing. (Jeff Stapleton/CBC)

Inside the business, there are four wooden targets set up, full of cuts and knicks from all the axes and hatchets that have struck the surface. Nearby, there is a big pile of wood that axe throwing coach Dan Blair uses to make repairs as needed.

"A lot of people think it's super easy. That you just come in there and huck an axe," said Blair.

"Then they start to realize there's more to it than just throwing an axe. Form, power, distance. It all adds up."

Axe throwing coach Dan Blair says he's seen all ages at the centre. (Jeff Stapleton/CBC)

Blair says that axe throwing is a sport that is suitable for all ages. "The oldest I've had in here so far was an 83-year-old grandmother. The youngest I've has in here was four years old."

Bad Axe Throwing is located at 1393 Border St. Most axe throwing sessions are by appointment only, which can be made online. However, some walk-in times are available. The cost is $20.00 plus tax for the first hour.

Uptown Alley

Academy Lanes bowling alley closed up last spring. However, in early December the business was reborn at a new location as Uptown Alley.

The new, and much grander space, has 43,000 feet of entertainment for families to enjoy. There are two separate bowling alleys, with a combined 30 lanes. One alley also has a restaurant, the Bistro, overlooking the lanes. Then there's the video game arcade and a space-themed laser tag game.

"The entertainment space is getting more competitive. A lot more things have come into the market since Academy opened 40 years ago," said Uptown Alley president Todd Britton.

"We really wanted to offer something to excite people and make them want to stay longer."

The pay-to-play process is quite simple. You purchase a card loaded with credit, which can be used for any of the activities.

Uptown Alley is located at 1301 St. Matthews Ave. It's open every day at 10 a.m.

Activate Games

The newest entry on this list is a unique concept that combines video gaming and physical activity.

Activate Games opened in January. It's the brainchild of the people behind The Real Escape, Adam and Megan Schmidt.

Activate Games gives participants a chance to play video games in real life. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

There are 11 different rooms at Activate Games, and each one does something different. For example, one room has giant lasers that you must avoid — or lose one of your five lives. Another has coloured squares where you need to step on the blue squares while avoiding the red ones.

Each room is designed for teams of three to five people. If you have less than three people in your party, you will still need to pay for three people.

The experience is controlled by a wristband that give you 90 minutes of play time. It also creates a profile and keeps track of your score on the leaderboard.

Because the startup costs for an escape room are relatively low, the Schmidts were able to take the profits towards manufacturing a live-action video game.

Adam Schmidt holds his wrist band up to log in as a player for one of the games. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

"We've been designing the whole concept for about the past two years. We had a shop around the airport where we built a lot of these rooms and tested them," said Megan.

"It is the first that we know of in the world. We've never seen anything that is exactly like this."

The game rooms are appropriate for participants aged 10 and up. Soft-soled shoes are recommended. You can reserve a spot for your group online. The $25 price includes a $5 reservation fee. Activate Games is located at 3338 Portage Ave.