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Escape room makes debut on Broadway

If you are bored with the “been there, done that” syndrome, an entertainment experience that is totally unique, fun and family friendly has opened in Jim Thorpe.

Interactive brain teasing/puzzle solving qualities filled with magical stories that allow the participants to immerse themselves in a world of strange creatures following in the footsteps of Alice in Wonderland.

Based on various interpretations of Lewis Carroll’s stories, and a year in the making with hurdles to overcome, this new business is the vision of Ed and Vanessa Maddock.

The Maddocks, enthusiasts of escape room games, settled on West Broadway in 2020.

Ed credits his mom, Patricia Maddock, for introducing him to Alice in Wonderland books as a boy, and then being instrumental in inspiring and physically helping him with the project.

“From the moment we experienced our first escape room as a couple, we were hooked!” Ed said.

“To us, it felt like an interactive movie in which we were the main characters in a fictional world, working together at problem solving to complete a story line.”

These real-life adventure games first became popular in East Asia before spreading to North America and Europe by 2010, becoming especially popular among “highly stressed students and overworked young professionals.”

Wonderland On Broadway in Jim Thorpe offers fantastical experiences that are entertaining as well as educational and cognitive. The game encourages teamwork and cooperation rather than competition among the players, rewarding the proverbial “thinking outside the box.”

Based on Alice in Wonderland, the Maddocks chose this classic children’s book and gave its selected tales their own quirky interpretations to keep the game surprising and exciting.

“The puzzles are tricky!” Ed warns.

Adult supervision is required for children under 18 years of age.

If the players get stuck and are unable to move forward, or become frazzled, they can always ask for helpful hints from a live game master, whose role is to watch the players’ progress and safety.

Comprised of three parts, Wonderland On Broadway is a one-hour journey that starts with the Rabbit Hole, an entry point at which the players receive instructions about the rules of the game and watch an informatory video about the story line.

From there, the game master leads them into the Victorian Sitting Room, where the clock starts ticking.

The next step is the Cheshire cat’s Lair, where the fascinating word of Wonderland comes to life.

The players will be helping Jack Spade, the head gardener of the Queen of Hearts, who many, many years ago, to his misfortune made the mistake of planting white rose bushes in the Queen’s garden instead of red. The playing party needs to enter the Cheshire cat’s Lair and use his magic to turn white roses into red permanently, before the monarch’s grand arrival at her annual celebrity croquet match betrays his mistake.

The Wonderland On Broadway escape room offers a sensorial and tactile artistic experience that incorporates hand made props, surreal artworks and interior decorations created by a team of local artists and contractors.

Located in the historic part of town at 158 West Broadway, close to the Old Jail Museum, Wonderland On Broadway is set to become a trending star attraction.

For more information visit https://escapejimthorpe.com.

The Cheshire cat is a focus of the Wonderland on Broadway, shown in this “Aunt Adelaide” painting by Yvonne Wright. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS/YVONNE WRIGHT
Local artists contributed to the escape room, including general contractor Darren Reinart. Shawn McCarty and Dani Davison built the outdoor railing. Brian Quinn's “Mad Hatter Tea Party” is shown here.
Danielle Buery's “The Rabbit Hole.”
Jillian Franco's “Flower Faces.”