Web Master By Day Escape Room Entrepreneur By Night

By Mike Danahey
The Courier-News, Elgin, Ill.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Entrepreneur Keisha Thomas has recently opened “Escapade 360” which includes two escape rooms. In escape room games, players head into a themed room and have to use elements of the room to find clues and solve a series of puzzles to escape within a set time limit.

The Courier-News, Elgin, Ill.

The latest gaming craze has hit downtown Elgin with the arrival of Escapade 360, a business with two escape rooms, one with a Sherlock Holmes theme, the other a Leonardo da Vinci theme.

Over the weekend, entrepreneur Keisha Thomas of Belvidere had a soft opening for the business in a 3,000-square-foot space on the third floor at 77 S. Riverside Drive. A grand opening with ribbon cutting is set for Aug 9.

“This is great for Elgin,” Elgin City Council member Tish Powell said. “It’s unique businesses like this that will draw people downtown.”

With escape room games, players head into a themed room and have to use elements of the room to find clues and solve a series of puzzles to escape within a set time limit.

“Downtown Elgin proved a great location, because we were able to get a spot right on the lovely Riverwalk that would allow us to not only open the rooms we want now but provides us space to grow,” Thomas said. “The space was affordable and near a community of business owners that has been very friendly and welcoming. The city was also very helpful and supportive as we went through the necessary processes to be able to operate within Elgin.”

Such gaming is springing up across the country. Online and classroom versions also are growing in popularity. There are already escape room businesses in Aurora, Naperville, McHenry, St. Charles, Schaumburg, Wheaton, quite a few other suburbs and in Chicago.

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