Chop Chop: Axe Throwing, or “Bringing People Together, One Bullseye at a Time.” New to the attraction scene in Philadelphia is Urban Axes which, as its name implies, involves people throwing hatchets (they weigh one-and-and-a-half pounds) at wooden targets. Participants score points based on where they stick their axes on a target. Group events at Urban Axes last 2.5 hours and must be booked in advance. All events start with safety instructions and 1-on-1 throwing practice, led by fully trained coaches in a private throwing area. Once a player has sharpened his or her skills, there is a round robin tournament followed by final knockout round to award an axe-throwing champion. Staff coaches take care of all scoring and smooth flow of the tournament so you can relax and enjoy the sport. At the end of every round robin tournament, one member of the group is the winner. One definitely needs to book ahead for group events. Currently, participants must be 21 years of age or older. For more information, visit: https://www.facebook.com/urbanaxes/, or call 267.585.2937. (Additional facilities are planned for Austin, Baltimore and Cincinnati.)
The Mall of the Future? Disguise it as a Theme Park. Completion of the $5 billion American Dream Mall at the Meadowlands Sports Complex in East Rutherford, N.J., finally seems within reach. The mall, which will look more like an amusement park than a shopping venue, just received a $1.1 billion bond financing to resume construction after years of fits and starts and delays. Canadian developer Triple Five Group—among its developments are the West Edmonton Mall and the Mall of America—is building what some call an anti-mall at the northern New Jersey location, just west of Manhattan. Phase 1 of American Dream is now scheduled to open in March 2019, it is rising beside MetLife Stadium, where the National Football League’s Giants and Jets play. It will encompass three million square feet, with half devoted to 13 attractions, including a DreamWorks Waterpark featuring elements of “Shrek’s Soggy Swamp,” a Nickelodeon Universe theme park, and a 16-story Big Snow America Indoor Ski Hill. For more information, visit: http://www.americandream.com/
NFL is Teaming up with Cirque du Soleil to offer a permanent interactive exhibit to football fans visiting New York. Their Times Square Experience is slated to open soon. The partnership marks the first sports venture for Cirque du Soleil, which has partnered in the past with names such as The Beatles and Michael Jackson. “We see the NFL Times Square experience as an opportunity to leverage our creativity to bring to life another one of the world’s greatest brands and expand our capabilities beyond live productions,” said Scott Zeiger, Cirque du Soleil’s theatrical president and managing director. The 40,000 square feet exhibit will span four floors and include a 350-seat theater, showing 20-minute shows that will recreate what it feels like to be part of a game, on the sidelines or behind the scenes. The exhibit will also feature regular updates. The NFL experience will also show NFL content on a giant exterior digital screen seen by the more than 300,000 pedestrians who pass through each day. For more information, visit: www.nflexperience.com.
Beverly Hills CVB Launches Free Trolley Shuttle to Rodeo Drive as part of a traffic management program. Home to arguably the most famous shopping venue in the USA—Rodeo Drive—Beverly Hills, California has taken some steps to its effort “to accommodate both individual leisure travelers as well as large groups” that visit and walk through and about the business triangle that is home to Rodeo Drive, as well as the famous shops and restaurants located in the area. The mix of measures taken include passenger loading zones, active loading zones and staging zones for tour buses, as well as hours of operations for tour buses. Please visit www.beverlyhills.org/tourbus and www.beverlyhills.org/smblvd for more information, or call 310.285.1128 for assistance.