A puzzling escape

Six families come together to open Twisted Room Escapes in Perry Township

Heidi Randall and Hope stand in The Cabin room.

When Perry Township resident Heidi Randall used to host Haunt Out Hunger, a haunted attraction which collected canned goods for Hunger, Inc., she and her family would spend three months building the set. After a month, they would have to tear it all down.

Six families from around Central Indiana found a way to offer a similar, entertaining experience year round – without the scare. Combining their talents in the haunt and entertainment industry, they opened Twisted Room Escapes at 3145 E. Thompson Rd. in February. Admission is $28 per person. A private room booking, up to 8 players, can be purchased for $200.

An escape room is a game in which participants are locked in a room that has hidden clues to help them solve a puzzle. Currently Twisted Room Escapes has two rooms, giving guests an hour to escape. In the Missing Maestro, concerned concert patrons search for an arrogant symphony conductor before the show. In the Cabin, lost hikers stumble upon a cabin and must find a way to rescue themselves. Additional rooms are currently being planned.

“You go to escape rooms and either have really good scenery or really good puzzles,” Heidi said. At Twisted Room Escapes, they’re aiming to achieve both. “You have to make it realistic, think about what would really be available or what you can use. We either try to build it from scratch or so it matches. That’s the hard part.”

Why did you open this business?

Escape rooms are derivative from the haunt industry. Four of the six owners are in haunted attractions. We go to all of the haunted attraction shows and you see all this escape room, new stuff, it piqued our interest. We went to a show last year at the end of March, TransWorld, and started learning more about escape rooms. The four of us have always liked building things, rather than purchasing things. We like making things do something it wouldn’t normally, the element of surprise when something does what you think it wouldn’t. The creativity that comes with it, imagineering, is what we thrive on.

What did you do to prepare for opening your business?

We came up with a couple good, solid ideas that we knew we wanted to run with. We could find a location, but you have to have good rooms. We had some really good ideas of some rooms that could be really innovative and immersive. In the cabin, it smells a little woodsy and like an old cabin. We want the person to walk into that escape room and feel like they’re in the maestros private quarters, in the cabin, or whatever room we build. The idea is to take it to the extreme where it hits all five of your senses.

Who is your ideal customer/client?

It’s good for a family event. We’ve had great response from smaller children. We’ve had groups of teenagers that come. We’ve had grandma and grandpa bring the grandkids. It’s really a game for everybody. It’s a mind game. It’s thinking. It’s communicating. It’s working together. You really should be reaching out to everyone.

How do you plan to be successful?

We’re focusing on a couple marketing campaigns. We’re reaching out to the community. We’re doing a lot of Facebook, Google ads. We’re also reaching out on a corporate level for team building efforts.

What would we be surprised to learn about you or your company?

There’s all sorts of surprises in here. It’s a theatrical approach from a Halloween thing. You’re not trying to scare them. You’re trying to immerse them in the atmosphere.

Twisted Room Escapes

3145 E. Thompson Rd.

Indianapolis, IN 46227

(317) 757-2857