Editor's Note

Mystery Room Experience Gift

Rob Brough Sep 12, 2018
group of people at an escape room attraction
Rob Brough with family and friends at the Mystery Escape Room in Salt Lake City.

Giving gifts and planning parties is stressful for me, especially when the gifts and parties are for my wife. Let me be clear, my anxiety has nothing to do with any pressure I feel from Holly. She is gracious and grateful for any degree of effort I exert. My stress is entirely self-imposed.

I’ve been able to eliminate a lot of my holiday anxiety by asking Holly to provide me a list of gift ideas each Christmas. Fortunately, she is very willing and gives me a comprehensive list. Of course, the expectation is not that she finds everything on her list under the tree or in her stocking on Christmas morning. But the likelihood of me totally missing the mark has essentially disappeared. And I always try to surprise her with something not on her list.

However, the same cannot be said for planning birthdays or other celebrations. I’ll admit it, I’m just not very good at it.

If you want to see just how far someone’s eyes can roll back in their head, ask Holly about what we did for our 20th wedding anniversary a few years ago. Oops. Blew that one. I can’t wait for our 25th anniversary next year so I can finally make amends and hopefully erase the memory of my previous blunder.

This year, undoubtedly in an effort to save me from the excessive worry of coming up with a plan, Holly offered a “suggestion” for her birthday celebration. I believe her actual words were, “I want to go to a mystery escape room for my birthday.”

I may not be proficient at coming up with party ideas, but I am quite skilled at identifying subtle hints. I called and scheduled a party in the Sherlock Holmes and the Hound of the Baskervilles room at the Mystery Escape Room in the Gateway in downtown Salt Lake City.

This was our first escape room experience. There were 10 of us ranging in age from 7 to 51. Everyone was able to participate and had a blast. After our experience, we received an email with the subject line, “You Almost Escaped!” That was overly generous, as I think we solved less than 50 percent of the mystery by the time the countdown clock reached zero. In fact, it’s probably a good thing the experience was timed, or we might still be locked in that room.

For us, however, the experience became much more than trying to solve the mystery. It was about having an enjoyable time with family and friends. We can’t wait to go back and give it another shot.

In this issue of Community, Breanna Olavson introduces readers to mystery escape rooms and identifies a few local escape room locations.

Although we were unsuccessful in solving the mysterious murders in the Baskerville family as part of Holly’s birthday celebration, I am hot on the trail of solving the mystery to reducing my party planning stress. I think I’ll let Holly choose her party each year.

It’s all elementary.

Rob Brough
Executive Vice President
Corporate Marketinging and Communications

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