We rarely have free, sport free weekends where we can do things with friends or family, but when we do it’s always nice to do something other than the basic dinner or movie.
Recently we decided to get together with a few friends and try out an escape room.
Probably you have heard of these fun, new destinations that seem to be popping up in cities all over the place.
If not, let me break it down for you.
Basically, you go to a location with a group of friends looking for an out-of-the-box way to have a good time. Once there, you, along with these friends, are “locked” into a themed room where you are tasked with getting yourselves out. To do so, you have to find a series of clues that will lead you to the solution that will allow you to unlock the doors –freeing you and your co-escapees. It is timed and, while your ultimate goal is to get out, you also want to do so as quickly as possible.
It is an awesome place for a date night with your partner, a night out with a group of friends, a team building activity with some coworkers, a family outing, or even a birthday party.
Hearing so much about how enjoyable the experience is, I reached out to one of the local locations, <a “no follow” href=”http://clueiq.com/”>Clue IQ, a Frederick escape room, and set up a visit for the Dude family and a family we like to hang out with from time to time. They were nice enough to host us for an evening of fun in their Excalibur room.
Based on the story of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, the entire room is set in a castle and, to be successful, we were tasked with solving the clues that would allow us to remove the sword from the stone and unlock them room within an hour.
Sadly, even with 8 of us putting our heads together for a full 60 minutes, we fell short. Fortunately, they let us out anyway.
While not all escape rooms are the same, there are a few things they tend to have in common.
Escape Rooms: 6 Things to Know Before You Go
You’re not really locked in.
And no one is expecting you to escape. In fact, you are welcome to leave anytime you want and you can even step out to go to the bathroom if you have to. Just know that while you’re busy using the facilities, your time in the room will be ticking away, so maybe think about taking care of that before you’re “locked in”.
They aren’t usually scary.
Most people I’ve told about our experience asked this question first, but escape rooms aren’t Halloween related experiences or meant to be frightening.
What they are is a thinking challenge.
If you enjoy riddles and puzzles, you will probably enjoy going to an escape room. And, if you’re like me and you find puzzles and riddle frustrating, you will still probably have fun if you go with people you like hanging out with. Likely, the desire to win will overtake you and you will get swept up in the fun of it with your friends. The good thing is that anyone can participate –big, little, strong, weak all you need is your brain because you have to use logic to escape, not brute strength or speed (although it will help if your mind works quickly).
It’s most fun with a group.
And it’s easier too. You will want to have others you can put your head together with to make solving the puzzles easier.
Don’t feel bad if you fail.
Seriously, tons of people don’t finish escape rooms. You’re still totally smart, just maybe puzzles aren’t your jam.
It’s fun for kids too.
Even little kids. It’s important to note, however, that most escape rooms are not geared at young children. You have to be able to read and decipher clues and it’s not something very young children are super likely to be successful at. That doesn’t mean you have to leave them at home. Our younger ones weren’t as into it as the adults in the room, but they still enjoyed playing in the room and helping out with the clues a bit. They thought exploring the room was cool and they spent a lot of time trying on the helmets and playing with the jewels they found.
Living local? Check out Clue IQ, an awesome Frederick escape room.