i Flew at iFLY–Portland’s Newest Indoor Family Activity


iFly Portland Tigard

I love asking questions that make people think beyond their current reality. Things like, “If you had to choose right now, what would you do for the rest of your life? If you were an animal which one would you be?” And my kids’ favorite, “If you could have a superpower which would you choose?” These questions are often turned back on me, and to this one I can’t help but answer, “Fly, I really want to fly.”

{Disclosure: Thank you to iFLY for sponsoring this post and letting us try out this adventurous, family-friendly and educational activity for ourselves!}

I have long wanted to jump from an airplane. I swam with sharks in the Pacific and hiked into some of the most breathtaking spots on earth, but I have yet to adventure in the sky. At least, not without a pilot or a few metric tons doing the actual flying. I let that dream slip into hibernation the day I had my first child. The risk no longer felt worth it. While some do, and will continue to, fly through clouds and soar the sky after having kids, I knew I couldn’t reconcile what might happen to the babies on the ground if I went splat.

Enter iFLY. Where instead of the hard earth you can try aerial acrobatics over a trampoline-type net, should you happen to fall (which would be quiet difficult in a tube blowing high speed winds to keep you up).

The world of indoor sky diving is for the mama who wants to adventure wisely with her children in tow.

Children 3 and upCan Fly

We had our reservation, two of my children would join me to soar. I would qualify one, my 10 year old, as a risk assessor and the other, the 7 year old, as a risk taker. The older will not get on a rollercoaster and the other wants on them all. My risk analyst in the making asked a ton of questions about safety, expectations, and all the terrifying ways she could potentially be harmed. Most were absolutely ridiculous, but our instructor Blake was willing to answer every single one with a smile and put her at ease. iFLY invites children 3 and older to taste what it feels like to fly, they only need to be able to learn four signals that help them communicate in the tube.

The “flying” didn’t mess much with our equilibrium. It was easy on the system and will stock your memory full of the feelings and the fun of what it would be like to float between the clouds. If you do the high fly, which I RECOMMEND, you will also get a brief taste for what it might feel like to dive through them. We even got to observe some of the advanced flyers being trained by the experts. After the end of each session the instructors gave a short demo that helped the kids see what adrenaline-fueled feats could be achieved . They flew, flipped, and walked on the walls of the air tunnel.


The instructors were easy-going, but professional in all they did. From check-in to our moment out the door they were kind and patient with my kids. Now my kids were not being ill-behaved, but they were excited and a little nervous. We mamas know this can lead to children acting like, well, children. Mom Tip: Brush up on your aerodynamics so that you can turn the experience into a learning opportunity. There are all types of opportunities for discussions and experiments after the wind tunnel. If you get stumped, ask the staff.

More than just a good time

Remember our recent post about non-traditional extracurricular activities? Well, iFLY offers unique Kids Clubs (the Tunnel Tots and the Flying Forces) to build teamwork and develop new skills as well as STEM field trips to help children engage in an interactive learning experience. They will do their very best to help you answer all the questions of your would-be Superman or Superwoman. 

Fly and win Valentine’s Day weekend

Maybe flying with a grown-up you love is more your style. If you’re looking for a truly adventurous and unique date night, anyone flying Valentine’s Day weekend will have an opportunity to enter the iFLY Photo Booth Contest by posting their picture on social media with the hashtag #LoveIsInTheAir and #iFLYPortland. The prize is a Spread Your Wings for Two package.

They have all types of options and packages to choose from, and good thing because both kids are asking to go again. As I tucked them into bed that night, they were quite thrilled to be attending school the next morning to recount the harrowing story…

“Last night, I flew!”