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Helios Pro in Hawaii

Aloha! I am just back from an amazing vacation to Hawaii that included so many remarkable highlights (a luau, a helicopter tour of the island, cruising with the dolphins and snorkeling with the ocean life...I actually held an octopus!), but the catalyst for planning the trip that included all of this fun was my desire to play tag at the one and only laser tag arena in the state, Tiki's Family Fun Center in Honolulu on the island of O'ahu.

This was absolutely my biggest tag trip to date with the most complicated travel arrangements. It's about 13 hours to fly to Hawaii. Until now I had never needed to enlist the help of a travel agent, but I give a big shout out to Danielle at Liberty Travel for coordinating a great hotel within walking distance to Waikiki beach and only about three miles away from the arena. Some people think that Alaska must be the most difficult state to get to, but personally I found planning for Hawaii to be an even greater undertaking. Now, this trip was over six months in the making and so I had of course contacted the arena before booking the flight because I wanted to be certain they would be open during my visit. I confirmed my plans with manager Romalyn who was very helpful and met me upon arrival.

Even before I got there I had decided to purchase a membership for this site (both to take home the card and to enjoy the unlimited tag that the membership afforded me for the night).

Then Romalyn took us on a tour of the arena between games to see their facility. First passing through the briefing room...

And then a walk through the arena, which is a little under 3000 square feet with a red base in the far left corner and the blue base in the closer right corner as you enter.

They have an Aztec theme and I understand they have undergone a renovation since becoming a Zone site. Previously this arena was called Rascal's and at that time they were a Laserforce location, but I was told the center was purchased by the new ownership a couple of years ago, became Tiki's and converted to Helios Pro.

There was a nice flow to the arena and it was easy to pick out a couple of choice locations with good sight lines. The experienced players understood the value a good base defense and were the most fun to play against, although throughout the night it was a mixed bag of players. In spite of fighting the jet lag and the six hour time difference (which had really tired me out) we enjoyed playing several games with some of the members and the public players.

However, the best part was the surprise of running into Michael and members of the Hawaiian team that I had played against at Battle For The Fort 4 the last time I was in Indiana. I really should have connected the dots prior to the trip...obviously with one arena in the entire state this MUST be the place where the Hawaiian team practices. However, I had not thought about that until we made re-introductions in the arena and realized that we had already played against each other at that tournament. What's great about laser tag is that it facilitates friendships all over the country (and even the world) and I am pleasantly surprised very often to run into people I already know while traveling in other states. Here I am hanging with Michael, Dave and Chris (aka Obi, Hito and Master Yoda).

We spent half the night just talking tag and sharing stories. They taught me a couple of words in Hawaiian (my little gecko in Hawaiian is called mo'o and the octopus I held earlier in the day is called a tako) and this made the experience even nicer. I hope we cross paths again at another tournament soon! :)

So that was my experience playing laser tag in Hawaii, my 45th state. This tag adventure has taken me to so many remarkable places for amazing adventures. And since I've mentioned "tako" a couple of times let me share with you a pic of the octopus and other ocean life we encountered in the Pacific...

And a few spectacular views taken from the helicopter...

Aloha Hawaii!

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