One of the most oft-asked questions on the lips of locals and tourists has to be “What is that thing they’re building next to Dixie Stampede?” Some popular responses include “I heard it was a rock-climbing place,” or “I heard it was a ropes course,” or “I heard it was a giant playground.”
“It is exactly not that,” Fritz’s Adventure general contractor and owner representative Matt Engram said with a laugh. “It is rock cl
imbing and a ropes course, but it is (also) 40-foot treehouses that have interconnected walkways, then you meet this ‘urban jungle’ with full-fledged shipping containers, tunnels and the water tower. All this stuff is real and has been plucked out of a salvage yard somewhere and repurposed in our building.
“It’s all that and much more.”
The three-story, 80,000-square-foot building will include suspended bridges, a rock wall and utility poles for climbing, a full-size water tower, an actual “air-worthy” airplane for exploring, slides, tunnels, a parkour area, urban brick buildings to scale and a massive ropes course.
While Fritz’s Adventure features several elements that may be highlighted in other attractions throughout the country, Engram and Fritz’s Adventure Vice President of Business Development Billy Ong warn against comparing it to any of those other attractions because this one is so different.
“The best description is a family adventure indoor facility,” Ong said. “You’ve got all the things we’ve talked about, but we don’t want to be compared to anything else besides an adventure, because it’s everything you think about when you think adventure.
“There are lots of places that have a water tower or ropes courses, but to have everything under one roof, climate controlled, and all contained in one area is special,” Engram said. “It’s like, have you ever wanted to go to a construction site, jump the fence and play around? You can do it. It’s putting people in this environment to participate in real life activities.
“You can climb the utility poles like Johnny’s dad does for a living … all in a safe environment. There is no arcade, or a bunch of carnival games. It is adventure play.”
“It’s a place that focuses on exploration through realistic surroundings, physical challenges and a sense of discovery,” Ong added. “That’s a really great description of what we are. It’s the ultimate thrill package which will bring out the child in you, wether you’re 6 or 60.”
According to an earlier press release, one of the main goals of the attraction is to “deliver the sense of adventure with a perceived element of risk, all while in a strategically engineered and safe environment.
“Everything in here has been engineered to the highest standards,” Engram said. “Not just from a safety aspect, but from the technology that goes into the building itself.”
The building will also house several other amenities.
“People also don’t realize there’s a full-service restaurant in here with rooftop dining and activity areas and party rooms,” Engram said. “We’ve already talked to so many people about birthday parties and corporate outings.”
Fritz’s Adventure is currently being constructed near 76 Country Boulevard and Epps Road, where the Silver Fountain Inn once sat. Construction is set to continue through the summer in advance of a fall opening.
Once construction is complete, Fritz’s Adventure will be open rain or shine, 365 days a year.
For additional information, visit fritzsadventure.com, or grab a copy of next week’s Branson Tri-Lakes News to read Entertainment Writer Joshua Clark’s “first-hand” account of his tour of the property.
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