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Grand Illusion Escape

Program Used:

Tourism Product Development Grant

Program Used:

Tourism Product Development Grant


Chad Kimmel, the owner of Grand Illusion Hard Cider, wanted to create value from an unused portion of the third floor of his cidery and restaurant in downtown Carlisle. He envisioned a creative and fun experience for visitors that would complement the “magic” theme of the business. Based on his personal interest in escape rooms, he met with a consultant to explore establishing an escape room at Grand Illusion.

The escape room would provide a new offering to the Carlisle area drawing more visitors to downtown and creating further spending opportunities while also providing an additional revenue stream for Grand Illusion.

CAEDC assisted Chad with a $62,138 Tourism Product Development Grant to turn his vision into a reality. The grant covered building improvements, HVAC, audio/video, fire alarm/strobes, game furniture and equipment, pre-opening labor and marketing graphics, and webpage development.

After a lengthy delay due to COVID-19, Grand Illusion Escape opened in October 2021 with two different escape rooms for visitors to enjoy.


“The tourism grant program provided significant support for our new escape room at Grand Illusion Escape. Given the upfront costs of renovation and escape game development, we could not have opened this attraction if it were not for the support of CAEDC.” – Chad Kimmel, owner

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