Silverbacks Indoor is celebrating their 15th anniversary this year, along with a lot of new and exciting changes. Tucked in a cul-de-sac off Brogdon Exchange Road, Silverbacks Indoor’s expansive facility can actually be a bit hard to find at first. But once discovered, you will realize it is Gwinnett’s hidden gem for kids, families and athletes alike. In 2005, Silverbacks Indoor started solely as an indoor soccer league program. And while indoor soccer is still their namesake, their core list of services has since expanded. The facility includes full-length indoor soccer fields, basketball courts, Futsal and flag football as well as a large arcade game area complete with mini bowling lanes.
“It’s the perfect place to host a birthday party,” explained Byron Beckwith, General Manager. Birthday party packages include a party facilitator/coach who will host a game of your choice: basketball, flag football, dodgeball, soccer, bubble soccer and more.
They will completely customize the experience depending on the ages and wishes of the kids. If you’d like a fun “obstacle course” style game setup or would like to play a full-length soccer game, both options can be accommodated. From there, parties go into one of their private, decorated rooms for pizza and cake, followed by free credits for game-time and miniature bowling in the arcade. With the toss-up for either rainy or hot weather upon us, Silverbacks Indoor can assure peace of mind for the parents and fun for the kids no matter the circumstance. Another perk for parents is that they are looking to add a beer and wine bar in a separate area for 21 and older guests.
Adult leagues will benefit from the possibility of a beer and wine bar as well, making Silverbacks Indoor the place to not only play the game, but to host team-building activities afterwards, too. In fact, the facility, private rooms, fields, courts and arcade area can be rented out for any occasion. But, the arcade space is open to the public every day, from 10am-9pm, and is not just reserved for special occasions.
One of the most unique aspects about Silverbacks Indoor is that they offer “indoor soccer classes” called “Silver Kickers” starting at age 18 months. “This is one of the only athletic and child development programs that I can think of that a child that young can do,” said Beckwith. Until about age three, parents participate in the classes with their children, too. The program is designed in a way that really focuses on mastering the basic skills at a fundamental level, rather than throwing three year olds on the field to just run around. “My whole approach is we want you to posses the basic skill set first. A lot of times they think you start by just putting them in a league, but we want them to learn to dribble and pass and learn the skills. To me, what we do is very important for your kids success in soccer – to learn the basic skills first – which is what the Silver Kickers is about,” he said. All Silverbacks coaches are licensed or have at least high school and college level experience. “I’m teaching 18-month-olds about balance, coordination and how to follow directions, but by disguising it in the form of activities or games that they can do and understand. Then we slowly progress them as they get older and introduce scrimmaging. But you have to go through our program to advance,” said Beckwith. Oftentimes, Silverbacks indoor soccer classes are used in the off-season for outdoor soccer players to build their skill-sets due to the faster-paced nature of the game. “Players who learn indoor soccer or Futsal first tend to play a lot better and a lot faster when they get on an outdoor field,” he explained. In fact, many local youth programs are pushing their players to play Futsal in the off-season because it is very fast-paced and improves foot skills. Futsal is played on a lined courtwhereas indoor soccer is played on a turf field with walls. Silverbacks Suwanee has the only official Futsal lined surface in the area.
Adding to their already-extensive list of services, Silverbacks Indoor offers weekly camps throughout the summer for kids, ages 5-13. Day camps run from 8:30am – 4:30pm, but to accommodate working parents they offer extended hours from 7:30am to 6:30pm. As a working parent himself, Beckwith understands the importance of flexibility for busy schedules, which is why he offers pay-as-you go or daily drop-in options for both classes and camps. Open seven days a week, he hosts youth programs or day camps every time Gwinnett County Public Schools are closed, except on actual holidays. And if you ever have to miss a class that you’ve already paid for, then he allows you to roll it over to any other alternate time or even into the next season.
One of the reasons that Silverbacks Indoor has been so successful is because of their ability to diversify themselves and to allow the community to shape the space based on their needs, demands and desires. “We’re a family friendly place and have a program for everybody: from as soon as you can walk to until you can’t walk anymore,” said Beckwith. “Whether you have a team and need a place to play or you’re a “free agent” and want to play for fun, we will find a spot for you,” he said. ■
ATLANTA SILVERBACKS SUWANEE INDOOR
4285 Brogdon Exchange NE
Suwanee, GA 30024