Have you ever wanted to be “lighter than air”? Well, we have – especially in a hot air balloon! Now that we live in Oklahoma, one event we are really looking forward to attending is the world famous Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. But other than dreaming of hot air balloons and taking the occasional airplane flight, the closest we get to being lighter than air is listening to a song of the same name by our friends at Recess Monkey. That is, until we learned of iFLY.
iFLY is a thrilling, but safe, indoor skydiving experience. This weekend, the Full Van Fun crew is excited to check out the new iFLY in Oklahoma City and tell you all about it – from both the adult as well as the child perspective. At iFLY, they provide training and all of the equipment you need to safely fly and even have special offers for returning flyers, groups, and birthday parties. At Full Van Fun, we’re all about experiences parents and children can enjoy together – so will it measure up?
Did it ever! We pulled up to iFly nervous, but excited or as our girls would say “nervouscited.”
We were greeted by one of the very friendly clerks who led us through the check-in process. We were asked a few questions, weighed, and then filled out our waivers at the kiosk. Next, we walked over to a waiting area where we could check out the vertical wind tunnel.
We were then introduced to our Flight Instructor, who lead us on a tour of the facility including their party/special function rooms. iFLY can accommodate gatherings of up to 100 people and members of your group can fly as young as three years old. Whether you are hosting a corporate event or a private party iFLY offers everything from customized packages to flight enhancements and from catering to transportation to and from your event.
Finally, as Tom Petty would put it, we were “Learnin’ to Fly”! In the classroom, our certified flight instructor taught us proper body position as well as hand signals we would use to communicate with our instructor during our flight. It was then time to gear up! Our flight instructor took us to the counter where we were given our flight suits, goggles, ear plugs and helmets.
While mom and daughter suited up for their flight, everyone else checked out the wind tunnel to try and figure out how it worked. Fully geared up, the flight instructor took us to the flight chamber where we sat and waited to fly.
We waited for a few in our group to go first, and then it was time to enjoy our first flight. For the package we had, you received two minutes of total flight time broken into two one minute flights. Our first flight was 60 seconds of blistering wind, halted breath, and soaring freedom. The flight instructor is with you from the moment you “fall” into the tunnel and and holds you until you are in a stable position, letting go for the brief moments as you achieve stability. When the first flight is over the instructor guides you to the tunnel entrance where you simply hold on to the doorway and pull your feet up towards your chest then gently to the floor.
For the second round in the wind tunnel, we paid a small additional fee for an exciting flight enhancement. At the end of our flight the instructor takes you on a “High Flight” where they hold on to your suit and you soar high into the air with your instructor, ascending and descending three times! This was by far the most thrilling part of the entire experience.
iFLY was an amazing and unforgettable experience. All of the kids especially were excited about trying it, although from watching other families, we’d probably recommend the children be at least 5 or 6 to really have an enjoyable experience. Everyone is excited to try it again, everyone that is, except our youngest.