I’m the mom who for years has done the drive-by at ShadowLand, dropping off and picking up kids. My 12 and 16-year olds have a long history with laser tag parties – both the formal ones and the impromptu snow day gatherings. It wasn’t until my 6 year-old daughter picked ShadowLand for a birthday party venue that I finally got to strap on one of the blinking vests.
Having finally played the game, I have to say, chances are next time we go to ShadowLand, it’ll be my idea.
To start with, the staff at ShadowLand is top notch. They have a process, they follow it and it works, makings for good, clean fun. A couple party guests were a bit skeptical about joining in at first—hence my participation in the game. I couldn’t blame them really, the vests are almost as big as they were, and you’re let loose in a big, dark room with blinking lights and sound effects. Within about 30 seconds of the game, however, both were in the mix running and ducking and tagging their friends.
If you haven’t done laser tag, here’s the low down. You wear a vest with bubble lights. Your “phaser” is attached to the vest – it really doesn’t have a weapon feel to it. It looks like something from the Jetson’s cartoon that you hold with two hands and press buttons to “tag” the other team with beams of light. When you get hit, your bubble lights flash for a few seconds, and your vest vibrates. There are levels of games you can play – we had little kids in our party, so we played the straight-up version where you just tag anyone with bubble lights of a different color.
After the game, the group then moved into one of the party rooms with ice cream cake, balloons, beverages, and all. It was the best mom plan ever – totally turnkey. They provided everything. You can also bring in your own supplies if that’s more your style.
The players all chose aliases for the game, and the staff deliver the game results to the party room. I’m proud to announce that “Minivan Momma” wasn’t in last place!
We all left ShadowLand tired but not over it. We had no fits or meltdowns. My daughter seemed to have had just enough fun: A rarity.
ShadowLand Laser Adventures
Multiple Locations in MD and VA
(Chantilly, VA location was reviewed.)
Photo by Kat Forder of www.katforder.com