If you have a child who literally climbs the walls in your house, jumps over couches and is always trying new feats – they’re probably a fan of American Ninja Warrior. The hit NBC show is creating little ninja wannabes all over the country and our living room furniture is paying the price! Thankfully Ultimate Ninjas is here to save the day – and your couch!
We popped into Ultimate Ninjas and toured the facility live with Mike Silenzi five time America Ninja Warrior contest and manager of the facility. My kids had an amazing time and did not want to leave! Ultimate Ninjas was formerly Junior Ninja Warriors (link) and Chad gave you a detailed low down of the concept in his review of the Lincoln Park Location. The Libertyville location is the newest location of the three. All the stunts, obstacles and equipment here is built by the same company that makes them for the show. In fact some of the items, like the wing nut, were actually used on the show!
Ultimate Ninjas offers parties, classes and open play. A few notes on that open play; the course is designed for children and adults starting at age 6. I was there with my 4, 6, 10 and 12 year old and could see why first hand. This is not a playspace for toddlers or even very young elementary. My six year old struggled on some of the bigger challenges and grew frustrated. My older however flourished and really took to Mike and the space. One of the great features of Ultimate Ninjas is that you are only competing against yourself and the obstacles, so you don’t have to be a super athlete to enjoy it, challenge your self and succeed. My 12 year old was determined to beat the warp wall and he hit that all over and over and over again until he ultimately managed to get up 3 of the four heights.
Open Gym times at Ultimate Ninjas are currently Saturday and Sundays 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and it’s limited to 80 participants. You can reserve your spot online and I highly recommend it so you don’t get turned away. Open play is $12 per person for 1 hour and $20 per person for 2 hours. My experience, unless your kid is really fit and used to athletic feats for hours on end 1 hour is plenty of time. My kids, while they really wanted to stay and keep playing, were getting so physically tired at the end of our first hour that it was getting hard for them to do what they wanted. Also note that parents who want to be on the courts and play with their kids will need to pay too so if you are not interested in playing you will be standing on the outskirts watching. Their are tables and chairs and beverages for sale so you can be comfortable while you sit back and watch.
Worried about safety? Don’t be. The staff is super hands on and safety is their priority. during open play there will be staff at all the obstacles teaching and assisting all the children. Children will not be allowed to just run around and do whatever they want. It’s open play but it’s structured and somewhat controlled, it’s not a free for all.
Ultimate Ninjas Liberrtyville’s only downfall is that you might not be able to find it. The address is 732 E. Park Ave. but you need to enter off of Fifth. It’s located in the same complex/building as Feed my Starving Children and Dance Academy of Libertyville but the entrance is in the back (behind Feed My Starving Children) on fifth. There is a small (maybe a dozen?) parking spaces back there and some street parking. If you choose to park in the main lot on Park you will need to walk the path between Feed my Starving Children and the storage facility to get to Ultimate Ninjas.
If you child (or you) is a fan of American Ninja Warrior you are going to want to save the date for December 17. Libertyville will be hosting Ultimate Ninja Pro Camp III. This one day event will feature two 2.5 hour sessions with 21 (yep twenty-one) Ninja Warriors from the TV show. You will get to watch them crush obstacles, take pictures, get autographs, ask questions and train with them. It’s a not to miss experience for the American Ninja Warrior fan. Tickets are limited and on sale now.
We are so excited to finally have a place like this in Lake County. Below is our Two-Minute tour of the space, you can see our highlight reel from the morning on our Facebook page. Oh and adults if you are a fan, they have open gyms, classes and workout for you too – coming soon to Libertyville (currently only available in Chicago).
732 E. Park, Libertyville, IL 60048
(847) 787-1130 | [email protected]
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