If all this sunshine has you thinking about entertaining your kids when school finally lets out, we’ve got you covered. Ocean5, Gig Harbor’s new family entertainment complex is a daycation in and of itself. With 22 bowling lanes, a wicked cool arcade and a two-story laser challenge arena, it’ll keep your crew busy from sun up to sun down. Read on for the inside scoop on this latest hot spot the locals are raving about!
At the heart of Ocean5, and a driving force of owner Troy Alstead’s vision, is a community gathering place, one where neighbors and friends can get together over food and drinks to relax and play, in a stylish setting that’s busy but doesn’t overwhelm. And that’s good for families because that means plenty to do under one roof. Here are three ways your crew can get their play on when you visit.
photo: Lisa Barker
Roll with it on one of Ocean5’s 22 bowling lanes, where they offer both 10-pin and duckpin bowling. If you’re feeling traditional, 10-pin in the way to go, and you’ll find all the standard family-friendly options here that make things easy for your kids to play, like bumpers, ramps and small ball sizes. But if you want to change things up, we recommend duckpin bowling. Not only are the smaller, chunkier pins super cute, but the ball is too. Just 5 pounds and no holes means even the tiniest bowling fans can easily roll it down the lane in their quest to score. It’s the prefect game for first-timers or pint-sized rollers who just wanna have some fun. Games are priced on a per hour basis ($25-$35/hour), and prices vary based on day and time. Plus, shoes are $4 to rent. Be sure to reserve a lane ahead of time through the online system or plan a weekday visit to avoid long wait times.
photo: Ocean5 Facebook page
Challenge your kids to a round of laser tag when you step into this epic two-story arena. The intricately designed game room takes laser challenge games to the next level, both during game play and with gaming elements. To start, expect plenty of play time during the 30 or 60-minute sessions that can accommodate up to 40 players at a time. Then, it’s all about being on the move, ducking and weaving around obstacles, running up and down ramps, as you work to tag the opposition while keeping yourself and your teammates safe from being hit. Finally, families will find laser facilitators around the room, ready to dish tips and tricks to help move the game along and keep players totally engaged. These wild sessions will leave your kids wanting more—and lucky for you, they can do it all over again after you’ve checked out some of Oean5’s other play spots. Like the bowling lanes, the laser challenge pricing varies based on day and time. Expect to pay between $15-$25 for 30 minutes of play, or $25-$35 for an hour (including a 100-point arcade game credit). To sign up, simply head over to the laser challenge kiosk and get your name on the list.
photo: Jahni R. via Yelp
It’s hard to miss Ocean5’s arcade room, with its over-sized games and inviting lights that kids find irresistible. But even here, parents will notice a mellower vibe than the typical arcade game room thanks to Ocean5’s thoughtful design elements. Plus, we love how easy it is to get your vid-fix here. There aren’t any coins or tickets for kids to keep track of. Instead, players use electronic bands to track their tokens and the tickets they’ve won that can be exchanged for goodies or experiences at the prize counter (psst… the bands are reusable so be sure to register yours online and bring it along each time you visit). As for game options, families will find everything from traditional faves, like Skee-Ball, the toy claw and a ginormous Pac-Man four-player game, to newer arcade titles like Jurassic World. Expect to spend about 5-10 tokens per game.
photo: Lisa Barker
If all this gaming has worked up your fam’s appetite, you’re in luck. Ocean5’s own restaurant, Table 47 is just inside the front door, and its focus on locally sourced, sustainable dishes will leave you as pumped to eat here as your kids are to play. We love that many of the herbs used in the restaurant are grown in planting boxes along walls and counter tops, helping to create a fresh, healthy vibe that characterizes this upscale restaurant. And families will appreciate the different sized meals that reduce food waste and give parents a chance to try lots of different dishes without having to share… too much. You can just as easily order a “taste” of the forest mushroom risotto or medjool dates and cheese, as you can order “half” or “full” portions delish main dishes, like Rancho Verde Pork Shoulder or a Farm Beet Salad. The kids menu offers farm-fresh takes on familiar faves with total kid appeal like mashed potato taquitos or bucatini and grilled meatloaf with pricing that won’t break the bank ($6-$8). Add in plenty of vegetarian and gluten-free options and we’re sure everyone who’s worked up an appetite will find something to sate it. Psst..we recommend making an online reservation at this popular local spot!
photo: Ocean5 Facebook page
At the Lanes and All Around
One of the best parts about Ocean5 is that families don’t have to stick to the restaurant to enjoy Table 47’s good eats. How? They serve modified menus all around the facility. So if hunger strikes while your Littles are on a roll in the bowling lanes, you can order from a slightly modified, although still totally farm fresh menu, there. (Psst… same goes for you, parents). Or order dinner and drinks at the Fire Circle or Salish Sea Lounge. Both are comfy spots where families can regroup, wait for a lane or the next Laser Challenge game to start, grab a bite and then head out for more.
photo: Ocean5 Facebook page
Love Your Mother
Behind all of the fabu food and fun that epitomizes Ocean5 is their commitment to environmental sustainability. It’s in the elements you can’t see, like the underground geothermal heating and cooling system that runs the large walk-in freezers and cools (or heats) the entire building in an eco-friendly way all year-long. Or in the LED and refraction lighting found around the bowling alley. Even the Laser Challenge Arena is a green spot—the LED lighting used there uses significantly less energy than a typical laser gaming arena does. Families can also find evidence of Ocean5’s sustainability in the elements they can see, like the reclaimed wood used around the building—all of which was sourced within 100 miles of the entertainment complex. Or in the paper straws that come with any drink you order. Even the Glassybaby’s found on each table support green initiatives. In this case, proceeds were donated directly to Harbor WildWatch, a local group focused on—you guessed it—ocean conservation and education. If you want to know more about the sustainable practices used here, check out the digital board by the Laser Challenge desk. It helps tell the stories behind Ocean5.
photo: Scooter B. via Yelp
It’s a Party!
During the month of June, Ocean5 will be celebrating their grand opening with events and specials that will add a little somethin’ somethin’ to your family’s experience. From black light bowling, to giveaways, to a Family P.J. movie night, planning your trip around one of these events is the way to make the most of the Ocean5 experience. After all, who doesn’t love a good party?
Turn the drive down to Ocean5 into a daycation when you explore the area’s other activities. From the local Harbor History Museum to beach combing events with Harbor WildWatch, this is a hot spot for families, even when the sun isn’t shinning. And did we mention the summer trolley that carts residents and visitors alike from uptown to downtown all season long for just a buck, so you don’t have to miss out on any of the fun this boutique town has to offer.
5268 Point Fosdick Dr. N.W.
Gig Harbor, Wa 98335
Hours: Mon-Thurs., 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Fri: 11 a.m.-midnight; Sat., 9 a.m.-midnight; Sun., 9 a.m.-10 p.m.