Puzzle escape room opens in Tahlequah

BY STACIE BOSTON
Multimedia Reporter
03/17/2016 08:15 AM
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Kristene Watson, a Cherokee Nation citizen and co-owner of Zero Hour, stands in front of the Zero Hour sign in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Watson said Zero Hour is great for a date night or even a team-building exercise. STACIE GUTHRIE/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Main Cherokee Phoenix
From left to right are Mark Wright, his wife Lonni Wright, son Lain Wright and Lain’s girlfriend Rylee Flowers. The group tried out Zero Hour’s “Supertanker” room. Although they didn’t solve the puzzle within the hour time limit they stayed the extra time to crack the mystery. STACIE GUTHRIE/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Cherokee Nation citizen Kristene Watson, co-owner of Zero Hour, fluffs a pillow in the “Supertanker” room at Zero Hour in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Zero Hour is a puzzle escape room business located across from Domino’s Pizza in the Midtown Crossing Plaza. STACIE GUTHRIE/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Cherokee Nation citizen Kristene Watson, co-owner of Zero Hour, points towards numbers on the wall of the “Deadbolt” room at Zero Hour in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. The room calls for participants to solve four puzzles in order to escape the room. STACIE GUTHRIE/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Tahlequah has a new source of entertainment as it welcomes Zero Hour to its list of amusement locations in the city.

Cherokee Nation citizen Kristene Watson, a co-owner of the business, said Zero Hour is a puzzle escape room in which participants have 60 minutes to find clues and solve a puzzle by working as a team.

“It’s a great couples date night, team-building exercise, working together to find out where things are hidden and solve the puzzle before the clock runs out,” she said.

Watson said she and her business partners were inspired to start it after trying a puzzle escape room in Tulsa.

“We were inspired to create Zero Hour by a friend of mine that suggested that we go try this out in Tulsa,” she said. “We went and I was reluctant to go. It’s not really my thing. We went and I had a great time. We all had a wonderful time.”

Watson said Zero Hour has two rooms available for booking with a third soon to be included.

“We have ‘Supertanker,’ which is a 1960s hotel room, and we have ‘Deadbolt,’ which is a variety puzzle room. And the third room is ‘Nightshade.’ There are some unique features about that room as well that make it an intriguing puzzle to solve,” she said.

She said she and her partners hope to expand to six rooms with the potential of swapping them periodically.

“We will swap those rooms out about every six months or so, so you can come back and try a different room,” she said.

Watson said they are also looking into creating rooms for younger ages.

“Right now our rooms are geared toward high school, college and up,” she said. “We’ve had several requests for kids that are a little bit younger, preteen age, and so hopefully that will be something that we’ll offer soon.”

She said since opening in February she has seen people leave “grinning and looking forward to coming back and doing the other rooms.”

“This is a unique experience. Different from going to see a movie where you sit next to your significant other and you don’t really talk to each other, you’re not really engaged,” she said. “Coming here reveals things about your relationship and about each other, how you work together, how you solve problems. It gets you communicating and it’s a good relationship builder.”

Tahlequah resident Mark Wright tried the “Supertanker” room with his family. He said he thought the room would be easy to solve but was wrong.

“My biggest thing was I thought we were going to get in there and solve it in 10 minutes and be done, but it was very challenging,” he said. “Once you get going it’s really pretty neat because then you get the ball rolling and you kind of start figuring it out, but it was pretty tough.”

Wright said he and his family enjoyed their time at Zero Hour and plan to come back.

“We’ll be back to try all the other ones,” he said. “It’s really a good time. It’s pretty neat trying to figure it out.”

Watson said she is glad to give Tahlequah an opportunity to participant in a new activity.

“It gives me an opportunity to provide something that we wouldn’t ordinarily see here in Tahlequah, and an opportunity to stay local for people that are maybe looking for something exciting to do that won’t drive to Tulsa,” she said. “We really hope that Zero Hour takes off. It’s starting slow and so hopefully as the word gets out we will be able to stay for a long time.”

Although Zero Hour accepts walk-ins on Saturday and Sunday, Watson said it’s better if people book ahead of time to ensure a time slot for the room they want is available. Three people can book a room for $60 with an additional $20 for every person after that. She added that group rates are also offered.

Zero Hour is located at 1024 S. Muskogee Ave. For more information, visit zerohourgame.com or call 918-708-9692.
ᏣᎳᎩ

ᏓᎵᏆ, ᎣᎦᎵᎰᎹ – ᏓᎵᏆ ᎢᏤ ᎢᎬᏛᏗ ᎤᎭ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏓᎵᎮᎵᎬ ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎢᎬᏩᎾᏛᏗ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎠᎵᏘᏍᏗ ᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ ᎾᏍᎩᏗᎾᏁᎶᎲᏍᎩ ᎤᏂᎮᏍᏗ ᏑᏓᎵᏍᎪ ᎢᏳᏔᏬᏍᏔᏅ ᏧᏂᏩᏛᏗ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏃᎷᏩᏛᏗ ᏚᏂᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᏔᎵᎪᎯ.

“ᎣᏍᏓ ᏯᏛᎾ ᎠᎨᏯ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏍᎦᏯ ᎢᎸᏢ ᏯᏁᎦ, ᏗᎵᎪᎯ ᎠᎵᏏᎾᎲᏍᏙᏗ, ᎢᏧᎳ ᏚᏂᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᎤᏂᏩᏛᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎬᏍᎦᏝᎾᎾᎥᎢ ᎠᎴ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎢᎬᏁᏗ puzzle Ꮟ ᏄᏓᏒᏅᎾ ᏩᏥ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ.

Watson ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎤᏩᏌ ᎠᎴ ᎤᎾᎵᎪᎯ ᏚᏄᎪᏛ ᎤᎾᎴᏅᏗ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏄᎾᏛᏁᎴ ᏧᎾᎵᏘᏍᏗᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎪᏢᎭ ᎾᎿ ᏔᎳᏏᎢ.

“ᎾᏍᎩ ᎣᎩᎾᏓᏅᏖᎸ ᎣᎩᏃᏢᏗ ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᏦᎦᎵ ᎣᎩᏂᏃᎯᏎᎸ ᏝᏅ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏱᏂᏣᏛᏁᎰ ᎣᎩᏃᏎᎸ ᎾᎿ ᎤᏠᏯ ᎾᎿ ᏔᎳᏏ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ. “ᎣᎩᏁᏅᏒ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏯ ᏝᏙ ᏯᏆᏚᎵᏍᎨ ᎠᏇᏅᏍᏗ. ᏝᏙᎯᏳ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏯᏆᏚᎵᏍᎨ ᎠᏇᏅᏍᏗ. Ꮭ ᏙᎯᏳ ᏯᎩᎸᏉᏓ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ. ᎣᎨᏅᏒᏃ ᎢᎦ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᏇᏙᎸᎢ. ᏂᎦᏓ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏬᎩᏙᎸᎢ.”

Watson ᎤᏛᏅ ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏔᎵ ᏕᎧᏅᏑᎵ ᎾᎿ ᏧᏃᏪᎶᏗᎢ ᎾᎿ ᏦᎢᏁ ᎾᏞᎬ ᎨᏎᏍᏗ.

“ᏙᎩᎭ ‘Supertanker,’ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏐᏁᎳᏚ ᎢᏍᎪᎯᏧᏈ ᏑᏓᎵᏍᎪ ᎤᏕᏘᏴᏌᏗᏒ ᏧᏂᏒᏍᏗ ᎨᏒ ᏕᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ, ᎠᎴ ᏙᎩᎲ ‘ᏍᏓᏯ ᏗᏍᏚᏙᏗ’ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᎸᏍᎩ ᎢᏳᏓᎴ ᎠᏍᏆᏂᎪᎯᏍᏗ ᎧᏄᏑᎵ. ᎠᎴ ᏦᎢᏁ ᎧᏅᏑᎸ ᎾᏍᎩ ‘ᎤᏒ ᎠᏓᏩᏛᎯᏍᏗᏍᎩ.’ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏃᎴ ᏧᏍᏆᏂᎪᏓ ᏚᏙᏢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ ᎾᎿ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏂᎦᎵᏍᏗ ᎠᏍᏆᏂᎪᎯᏍᏗ ᎢᏗᎬᏗ ᎪᏟᏍᏗ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ.

ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎾᎿ ᎠᎴ ᎤᎾᎵᎪᎯ ᎤᏚᎩ ᎤᏅ ᎤᎾᏔᏃᎯᏍᏗ ᏑᏓᎵ ᏗᎧᏅᏑᎵ ᎢᏳᏅᏗ ᎢᏴᏓᎭ ᏗᎦᏁᏟᏴᏏᏓᏍᏗᎢ.

“ᏙᏍᏗᏁᏟᏴᏍᎨᏍᏗ ᏕᎧᏅᏑᎸ ᏯᏛᎾ ᏑᏓᎵ ᎢᏯᏅᏓ ᏳᏓᎵ, ᎾᏍᎩ ᏱᏣᎷᏥ ᎤᏓᎴᎢ ᏱᎩ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ.

Watson ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎠᏂᎦᏕᏃᎯ ᏧᏃᏢᏗ ᎤᎪᏛ ᏧᏂᏅᏑᎶᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎩᎳ ᏗᎾᏛᏍᎩ ᎬᏩᎾᏙᏗ.

“ᏃᏊ ᎨᏒ ᏕᎧᏅᏑᎸ ᏗᎪᏢᏅ ᎾᎿ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏗᏂᏂᏙᎯ ᏗᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᎩ, ᎠᎴ ᏩᎦᎸᎳᏗᏴ ᎠᎴ ᎦᎸᎳᏗᏢ,” ᎤᏛᏅᎢ. “ᎢᎸᏍᎩ ᎤᏂᏁᏨ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏗᏂᏲᏟ ᎤᏅᏙᏗ, ᎠᎴ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎡᎵᏊ ᎾᏞᎬ ᎢᎦᏲᎬᏗ ᏱᎩ.”

ᎠᏓᏍᎬ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎬᏩᏂᏍᏚᎢᏓ ᎾᎿ ᎧᎦᎵ ᎧᎸ ᏚᎪᎯ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎠᎾᏂᎩᏍᎬ “ᎤᏂᏰᏨᏍᎪ ᎠᎴ ᏗᎠᎾᎦᏔᎲᏍᎪ ᎤᎾᏚᎵᏍᎬ ᎤᏂᎷᎯᏍᏗ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎢᏧᏅᏗ ᏗᏐᎢ ᏕᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ.”

“ᎯᎠ ᎤᏩᏌ ᏄᏍᏛ. ᏄᏓᎴᎢ ᎾᎿ ᎠᎾᏓᏴᎸᏛᏍᎬ ᎠᎪᏩᏛᏗ ᎠᎴ ᎩᎶ ᎤᏬᏢ ᎾᎥ ᏦᏬᏠᎢ ᎠᎴ Ꮭ ᏙᎯᏳ ᏱᏍᏓᏟᏃᎮᎯᎰᎢ, ᏝᏙ ᏱᏗᏍᏙᏠᎢ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ. ᎥᎦᎷᎬ ᎠᎭᏂ ᎬᏂᎨᏒ ᏂᎦᎵᏍᏗ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏄᏍᏛ ᎾᎿ ᏍᏓᎵᎪᎯ ᎠᎴᏍᏓᏟᏃᎮᏗ, ᎾᎿ ᏂᏍᏓᏛᏁᎲ ᏕᏍᏗᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎲᎢ, ᏍᏙᎵᎬ ᏧᏓᎴᏅᏓ. ᎠᏙᏢᏍᎪ ᏗᏟᏢᎮᏗ ᎠᎴ ᎣᏍᏓ ᏗᏙᏟᏍᏗ ᎠᏙᏢᏍᎪᎢ.”

ᏓᎵᏆ ᎡᎯ Mark Wright ᎤᏁᎶᏔᏅ ᎾᏍᎩ “Supertanker” ᎧᏅᏑᎸ ᏚᏓᏘᎾᎢ ᏂᎦᏓ. ᎤᏛᏅ ᎠᏓᏅᏖᏍᎬ ᎠᎯᏓ ᏴᎪᎵᎦ ᎧᏅᏑᎸ ᎨᎵᏍᎬ ᎠᏎᏃ ᎠᎩᎵᏓᏍᏗᏍᎬᎢ.

“ᎦᏓᏅᏖᏍᎬ ᏫᏓᏲᏥᏴᏟ ᎠᎴ ᏂᎦᏓ ᏓᏲᏦᎵᏣᏂ ᏍᎪᎯ ᎢᏳᏔᏬᏍᏔᏅ ᎨᎵᏍᎬ ᎠᎴ ᏓᏲᏥᏍᏆᏓ ᎠᏇᎵᏒ, ᎠᏎᏃ ᎢᎦ ᏍᏓᏱᏳ ᎨᏒᎢ” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ. “ ᏃᏊᏃ ᏯᎴᏅᎭ ᎠᎯᏗᏴ ᎨᏒ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏯᏂᎩᏌ ᎠᏙᏢᏁᎪ ᎢᎪᎵᎬᎢ ᎠᏎᏃ ᎡᎵ ᏍᏓᏱᏳ,”

Wright ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎤᏩᏌ ᎠᎴ ᏚᏓᏘᎾᎥ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎤᏁᏙᎸ ᎾᎿ ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᎠᎴ ᏏᏊ ᏫᏛᎠᏁᏙᎸ ᎤᏛᏅᎢ.

“ᏫᏛᎣᏤᏙᎵ ᎠᎴ ᏂᎦᏓ ᏭᏩᎪᏛ ᏂᎦᏓ ᏙᏓᏲᏣᏁᎶᏔᏂ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ “ᎣᏍᏓ ᎡᏓᏍᏗ. ᎤᏍᏆᏂᎪᏛ ᎡᏓᏍᏗ ᎡᏁᎶᏗᏍᎬ ᎪᏟᏍᏗᎢ.”

Watson ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎠᎵᎮᎵᎬ ᎠᏁᎲ ᏓᎵᏆ ᎠᏓᏜᏅᏓᏗᏍᎬ ᎨᎳᏗᏓᏍᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎢᏤ ᎤᏃᏢᏒᎢ.

“ᎠᏆᏝᏅᏓᏕᎰᎢ ᎠᏁᎶᏗ ᎪᎱᏍᏗ ᎾᎿ Ꮭ ᏂᎪᎯᎸᏊ ᏱᏗᎪᏩᏗᏍᎪ ᎠᎭᏂ ᏓᎵᏆ, ᎠᎴ ᏯᏟᏅᏓᏗᏍᎪ ᎠᎭᏂ ᎨᏒ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎠᏁᎲ ᎠᏂᎦᏖᏃᎰ ᎪᎱᏍᏗ ᎤᎾᏛᏗ ᎢᎾ ᏂᎨᏒᎾ ᎠᎴ ᏯᏛᎾ ᏔᎳᏏᎢ ᎢᏴᎢ.” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ “ᏙᎯᏳ ᎣᎪᎯᏳ ᎾᎿ ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎨᏎᏍᏗ. ᎠᏓᎴᏂᏃ ᎤᏍᎦᏃᎵ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᏃᎮᏍᎬᏃ ᏛᏓᎴᏅᎯ ᎠᏂᏁᏉᎬ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎠᎴ ᎪᎯᏓ ᎤᏙᏢᏎᏍᏗ.”

ᏙᎯᏳᏃ ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᏓᏯᏂᏍᎨᏍᏗ ᎠᏂᎷᎦ ᏙᏓᏈᏕᎾ ᎠᎴ ᏙᏓᏆᏍᎬᎢ, Watson ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᏓᏤᏟ ᎢᏳᏃ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᏱᏓᏃᏪᎵᎠ ᎢᎬᏱ ᎤᏂᎷᎯᏍᏗᎢ ᏙᎯᏳ ᎾᎿ ᏕᎦᎷᏤᎬᎢ ᎾᎿ ᏕᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ ᏂᏓᏅᏗᏍᎬᎾ ᏱᎩ. ᎠᏂᏦᎢ ᎡᎵᏊ ᎤᏃᏪᎶᏗ ᏌᏊ ᎧᏅᏑᎸᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏑᏓᎵᏍᎪ ᎢᏕᎸᎢ ᏩᏝᎯ ᏔᎵᏍᎪ ᎢᏕᎸ ᎾᎿ ᏂᎦᎥᎢ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎠᏂᎷᎬ ᎣᏂ. ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎦ ᎾᏍᏊ ᏓᎬᏩᎶᏗ ᎾᏍᏊ.

ᎧᏂᎩᏓ ᏑᏟᎶᏓ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᎾᎿ 1024 S. ᎫᏐ ᎦᎳᏅᏛᎢ. ᎤᎪᏛ ᎠᏕᎶᎰᎯᏍᏗ, visitzerhourgame.com or call 918-708-9692.

About the Author

stacie-boston@cherokee.org • 918-453-5269

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