Mayor keen to have Crate Escape in Timaru

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Timaru is being endorsed as a prime location for Crate Escape, one of Christchurch’s latest attractions.
Mayor Damon Odey was ‘‘100%’’ keen to see the attraction brought to Timaru and would put forward a case to increase the chance of that happening, he said.
Crate Escape is a game in which players are locked in a room and have to use elements to solve a series of puzzles and escape within a set time limit.
Mates Phil Johnston, Henry Jones, Brett O’Donnell and Logan McMillan established the initiative on the corner of Armagh and Manchester Sts, in Christchurch, this month.
The game follows a storyline and is set in three eras — 1980s New York, 1960s New Zealand and 1940s London.
It involves a time traveller who must be brought to justice. Groups of up to six people have one hour to solve the puzzle.
Mr Johnston said the concept was one the team wanted to eventually take on the road, which was why they established the game inside a shipping container instead of a building.
‘‘We’re already planning the next one,’’ he said.
‘‘By the time we get the next one built, it might be eight months’ time, the Christchurch one will need to be refreshed.’’
Once the second instalment was completed, it would replace the existing one, which would be transported to another city or town, so the game could live on in other communities.
Mr Odey was keen for Timaru to be one of those new locations.
‘‘[It would be] an awesome opportunity to showcase our district.’’
Timaru’s involvement in Crate Escape would be a way to ‘‘keep flying our flag . . . and reinforces we are up for any challenge and engagement’’, he said.
Mr Odey could not confirm where the container could be placed if Timaru was to be a successful contender, but had one idea in mind.
‘‘[It is] not for me to say, but if the Piazza was strong enough, [maybe] drop it up there.’’
There are 3000 escape rooms around the world. However, the potential touring aspect of Crate Escape would add a different dimension to many other escape rooms.
Aoraki Development chief executive Wendy Smith was also keen for the concept to be brought to Timaru.
‘‘The Crate Escape would add intrigue, mystery and a sense of fun to the town,’’ she said.