Battle Tested: Paintball is Fun for the Whole Family

Warriors are poised at Cousins Paintball in Calverton. Photo courtesy of Cousins Paintball

Hundreds of pellets zoom past your eyes, exploding into man-made obstacles with a cacophony of colors. You make a charge at a sword in the center of the arena, but just as you’re about to become king in the game of Excalibur, boom! Purple paint explodes across your chest.

While only one man, woman or child is left standing in the end, the joy of the chase is what has made Cousins Paintball in Calverton such a success.

“We do tons of kids parties, corporate outings, families, just friends coming out, enthusiasts who come out on the weekend and have their own equipment, and some have teams,” said Dean Del Prete, an owner of Cousins Paintball, which also has locations in New Jersey, Staten Island and Dallas, Texas. “We have beginner and advanced. We always have two groups. If we get 100 people show up, you might have 70 on one field and 30 on another. It’s something we’re managing all the time. People come and go during the day.”

Getting hit by a paintball can sting a little, but mostly you can barely feel the hit, Del Prete said, even as pellets travel near 290 feet per second, which is the maximum speed allowed by law. Shooting up close is not allowed and protective equipment is essential. There is also a low impact version of the game for children, which Del Prete said is sweeping the nation in popularity.

The facility in Calverton features public and private fields. A public field might have dozens of participants at a time, while a private arena could be just 10 children at a birthday party. The public fields are open Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., while the private fields are available seven days a week with advanced notice. Costs vary, but $50 per day will get you 500 paintballs in the public arena, while private groups are between $35 and $89 per person depending on time and the number of paintballs.

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