It was pouring down rain and both my boys had off from school. There was no way we were staying inside all day. I figured a trip to an indoor miniature golf place would make for a fun afternoon.
My boys have been begging to visit this Monster Mini Golf in Columbia where everything is glow-in-the-dark and ‘monster-themed’. My kids adore anything Halloween-related and will watch the movie Nightmare Before Christmas any day of the year. We even listened to the soundtrack in the car just the other day. So, of course a creepy miniature golf place sounded perfect for them! We even checked out their website and looked all around the facility with their 360-degree Google map view. The boys were out of their minds excited!
The location was a little tricky to find, located in the back of a shopping center. And as we walked up, the completely black doors were a little ominous, but the boys bravely pushed them open and walked in to a very, very dark arcade area. We all stood blinking a little, adjusting to the dim black-lights. We walked past the colorful arcade and the two Party Rooms, which looked very creepy and cool with their sinister décor. I pointed them out to James, mentioning they might make for a fun Birthday Party spot since his Birthday falls just a few days after Halloween.
Since it was a weekday afternoon, there were only a few other families playing golf. We walked up to the counter where I purchased our rounds of golf, which cost $8.99 per child and $10.99 for me. In hindsight, I really shouldn’t have purchased my own round since I just spent the whole time helping the kids. They do offer discounts throughout the week, but none were valid that day since it was a ‘school break’ day. We walked up to the course entrance and the boys were looking in at all the spooky, neon glow-in-the-dark decorations. Suddenly one of the props in the middle of the course, a large wooden box shackled in chains, started to jump and shake. The kids watched in horror, expecting something to come bursting out of it. It eventually stopped. I assured them it was just pretend, something to make the whole golf experience more fun. They weren’t convinced.
They warily started on the first hole, keeping a close eye on the far-away box. By the second hole, they were intrigued by a large life-sized Frankestein prop that was chained to a table in the middle of an upcoming hole. It too eventually ‘came to life’, rising up on the table making loud groaning and screaming noises before finally laying back down. Well that did it, my 6-year old James was done. He had his ears covered and was looking for the exit. My first thought was, “Well there goes $30 down the drain.” Surprisingly, my younger 4-year old, though wary of the props, wanted to stay and was enjoying himself. James begrudgingly walked along the rest of the course with us, never taking his hands off his ears, while his little brother played through each hole. The props moved probably about every 10 minutes or so and eventually I think the boys got used to them. There was fun loud music on which I think was a helpful distraction from some of the more scary elements. By the end they both were dancing and laughing to the “Monster Mash” and “Rock Lobster.”
After the final hole, James hurried to turn in his club. He practically ran out the exit door. On the other hand, his little brother wanted to stay and play in the arcade, to which I told him he would have to come back another day with Dad while I stayed home with his not-quite-as-brave brother. In the car, James announced how proud of himself he was for ‘trying’ Monster Mini Golf. He also announced that he would not like to do it again until he was older and braver. I guess we won’t be doing his Birthday party there this year…but maybe his brother will!
Mandy Watts is a stay-at-home mom who lives in Crownsville with her husband, Justin, who runs their family business, and their two sons, 5-year-old James and 3-year-old Luke.