March 6, 2017
Written by J. L. Haler
Holy Smokes! We had the best time the last two weekends. We kept hearing about Panic Room and thought it sounded like a blast. Panic Room is a business that creates escape games. For those who don’t know what that is, an escape game is where you are locked in a room for an hour. You have that one hour to solve all the puzzles in the room to find the key to unlock the door and escape. There are a variety of types of puzzles to make it enjoyable for everyone. As much as I would love to tell you about all the awesome, creative, enjoyable puzzles and clues, I will not. It’s not fair to reveal the activities in the room to others. It would ruin all of the hard work the owners put into creating the rooms and it would ruin the fun for anyone wanting to participate in the activity. But let’s just leave it with, pick any slang word from any generation you want: awesome, cool, the cat’s pajamas, the bee’s knees, groovy, fly, gnarly, wicked, sweet, rad, nifty, etc. It’s that.
At present, they have two options available, Pirates Lair and Eye Spy. They are currently building another area that will be a race/competition room. Two groups in two identical rooms compete to see who can solve the puzzles first.
Arrr, Matey. First weekend’s choice be the Pirate’s Lair. It do be a quest to find the missing pirate. Ok, I can only pirate talk for so long. Apparently, a few sentences is my limit. I don’t do well on National Talk Like a Pirate Day. Oh well.
We met the owners who are very nice, signed a waiver, watched a short video, locked our personals in a chest, and then they walked us to the room. Once inside they start your countdown clock and lock you in. So make sure you pee first. :) We started solving puzzles. Woo! We had a blast working as a team. They have an emergency key near the door in case there is a reason you need to get out, as well as they watch you on camera the whole time and keep track of which puzzles you have solved and which you still need to figure out. They have cards you can use if you are stuck and would like a clue for help. You just hold it up to the camera. It gets intense as you watch the clock count down every time you find yourself stuck. Sadly, we did not get out in time on this one. We were close, just not fast enough. At the end, they bring you out and you get to pose with props and signs for a picture they put up on their Facebook page.
Put on your fedora and trench coat. The second weekend we became sleuths determined to find a missing detective. We again, locked up personals, signed a waiver, watched a video, used the bathroom, and then got locked in a private eye’s office. Just like in the old Hall and Oates song Private Eyes, the owners are watching you and see your every move (I just made myself laugh there. I’m a dork. I know). Again, if you need help you can choose to hold up a clue card. We redeemed ourselves this time with a win! WOOOOOO! We were extremely excited to pull this one off as it is deemed more difficult than the Pirate’s Lair. We stood for our win photo and celebrated.
The games are meant to be for 13 years and older but our son, who is 12, went and did a great job. He solved puzzles others couldn’t. The Pirate’s Lair can be adapted if you let them know in advance for kids 10-13 years old. The rooms hold six people. If you go as a group of two there is a chance others can book the same time. Since we had five of us each time no one else joined us in the room.
Overall, Panic Room is worth trying and checking out if you enjoy puzzles. We had so much fun, we were wishing they had more rooms to do. We are looking forward to the race rooms being finished and we are going to keep an eye on the place in case they change the rooms so we can go again.
I love spending time with my family doing all the wonderful activities in the Inland Northwest.