Escape rooms have become the new rage. You're locked in a series of rooms with your friends and have a certain amount of time to figure out the clues to escape. Cayo Industrial is bringing a new escape room to Utica. But it's unlike any escape room you've ever been in.

The Atrophy Escape Ward will have eight-rooms inside the Archana Asylum, where you'll be trapped inside the mind's of a patient and the surgeon. Each room will have puzzles and messages to help free yourself from the confinements of the asylum.

Joshual Reale is the brains behind the dream world experience at the Atrophy Escape Ward, an idea he had years ago. "I designed one in 2012 but got too busy to build it."  Since Reale also designs sets for Hollywood horror movies, the escape room has to be scary. "My life is dedicated to creativity. I live, eat and breathe imagination."

We got a sneak peek of the first two rooms and it was not only scary but really intense. The minute you walk in all your senses are attacked. You see a doctor's waiting room and hear eerie music playing while sitting on an old, lumpy couch. It even smells musty.

The freightening walk down the asylum halls, past ghostly patients, to the nurse's office is almost enough to make you turn around. If you're brave enough to stay, the nurse, who will give you the creeps, will tell you when the surgeon is ready for you.

Then your game begins. But it's so much more than just searching the room for clues. I won't spoil the surprise but I'm still having nightmares about the surgeon. And that's only the first room.

You can get a sneak peak of the two rooms during the October Cayo season. Tickets for the escape ward are limited and sold only as a package deal that includes all four horror attractions.

The Atrophy Escape Ward is expected to be open by early March 2018. Reale says they plan to have it running every other month.

Cayo Industrial is open October 27th - 31st. Get more information at or on their Facebook page.


More From Big Frog 104