By Vanessa Willoughby

Who says that you can’t be young again? Recapture the joy of youth without the awkward trappings of adolescence by visiting these select venues for a different take on a night out. While most of these locations in Connecticut are certainly appropriate for the kids, but they also haven’t lost their adult appeal.

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WhirlyBall East Coast
1265 John Fitch Boulevard
South Windsor, CT 06074
(860) 289-2306
Hours: Mon to Sat – 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sun – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Price: Hourly; Sun to Thurs, $180.00 per hour; Fri to Sat, $202.07 per hour; Open Games: $20 per hour

Feeling the need for speed? WhirlyBall East Coast is equipped with bumper cars to placate your inner Maverick. However, these aren’t your average bumper cars. Reaching top speeds of 100 miles per hour, WhirlyBall East Coast’s bumper cars are sure to satisfy the speed demon within. Arrive with your game-face on, as WhirlyBall is sure to foster some friendly competition. A combination of basketball, lacrosse and bumper cars, WhirlyBall can best be summarized as a high-speed, motorized game of lacrosse for 10-130 players.

Waterford Speed Bowl
1080 Hartford Turnpike
Waterford, CT 06385
(860) 442-1585

Can’t make it to the Daytona 500? Don’t give up hope; the Waterford Speed Bowl can provide just as much excitement and thrills as NASCAR’s pièce de résistance. Originally founded in 1951 by Bob Swift, the Waterford Speed Bowl continues to captivate audiences. Check out Wild ‘n’ Wacky Wednesdays for special deals and races with super x-cars and x-cars. Saturdays showcases stock cars, in addition to SK Modifieds and SK Light Modifieds.

Sports Center of Connecticut
784 River Road (Route 110)
Shelton, CT 06484
(203) 929-6500
Hours: Mon to Thurs – 10 a.m. – 9:30 p.m., Fri – 10 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sat – 9 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sun – 9 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Sports Center of Connecticut seems to have it all—from golf to laser tag and batting cages to bowling, this is your one-stop sports center. Spend the day and into the night indulging in a few rounds on the golf course or practice your batting skills at the cages. Whatever you choose to do, you won’t have a shortage of options!

Nomads Adventure Quest
100 Bidwell Road
South Windsor, CT 06074
(860) 290-1177
Hours: Mon to Thurs – 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., Fri – 4 p.m. to 12 a.m., Sat – 11 a.m. to 12 a.m., Sun – 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Think that Nomads Adventure Quest is just for the kids? Think again, Nomads is fun for all ages! With over 65,000 square feet of space, Nomads offers laser tag, glow in the dark black light mini golf, bowling, a climbing wall, over 50 video/arcade games, two full size basketball courts, a billiard room, bar, and full service café. With so many options, it won’t be difficult to find something that appeals to everyone.

AMF Circle Lanes
525 Main Street
East Haven, CT 06512
(203) 467-6351
Hours: Mon – 12 p.m. to 11 p.m., Tues to Wed – 12 p.m. to 10 p.m., Thurs to Sat – 12 p.m. to 12 a.m., Sun – 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Who doesn’t love a game of good old fashioned bowling? AMF Circle Lanes in East Haven offers well-kept facilities and a staff with a propensity for professionalism. Kick back and enjoy AMF’s services. The kids may have their Wii, but nothing beats hitting up the bowling alley for a little live-action fun.

Vanessa Willoughby lives in Waterford. A recent graduate of The New School’s MFA program, she also blogs for the entertainment and music website,