Meet The Owner – Game On NW

March 26, 2022

Events in Everett, Everett

Editor’s note: is working to introduce our readers to more independent business owners here in Everett, Washington. We want to highlight their businesses, tell their stories and invite you to shop locally and help move Everett forward. If you know of a business we should feature, send us a suggestion via email: Leland Dart – Publisher

Owner Brad Halbach plays a round of “Sling Putt” on their 10-table course.

An axe-throwing lane with a traditional target.

A lane with a digital target that allows you to customize games.

“Everything I do is about trying to make things more fun.” That’s how Brad Halbach, one of the partners behind the new Game On NW venue in south Everett describes his philosophy. Halbach, along with business partner Luke Goff opened High Trek Adventures back in May of 2017 at the south end of Paine Field. That facility features a high ropes course and zip lines, laser tag, mini golf, axe throwing, gelly ball and a climbing wall. The thing is, High Trek Adventures is an outdoor venue which becomes very limited in the winter and early spring.

“We were looking for a way to beat the seasonality,” Halbach said when we met at Game On earlier this week. “We have 60 employees in the summer but in winter we’re down to one and we want to build up and support our full time staff.”

They spent two years looking for the right-sized indoor location before coming to a deal for the former Pier 1 Imports store at 1425 SE Everett Mall Way. After extensive remodeling they opened what they call their indoor social-competition venue two weeks ago.

The number one draw is the axe throwing course. There are eight lanes, four with traditional targets and four with digital targets that allow you to modify the games, change to tic-tac-toe or different sizes of scoring rings and more.

Axe-throwers stand 12 feet from the target and use a 14 inch hatchet. The target backing is made of a special material that absorbs the landing so the axe drops down and doesn’t come bouncing back at the thrower. We asked Halbach if axe-throwing is hard?

“No, almost always our staff is able to work with the thrower to stick the axe,” he said. “It’s about technique and following the instructions to open your hands when the axe gets vertical and it will make a rotation and stick.”

In addition to the axe-throwing course there is a 10 hole “Sling Putt” table top course, football bowling, hockey shoot, a six-player virtual reality course and a large laser tag room that covers the back half of the facility.

It’s designed to be family friendly and currently has a snack bar and soda. There are plans to add a liquor license after the State finalizes the rules for axe-throwing venues but that will be very limited. “We want to keep it a family friendly venue geared towards adults, teens, and tweens,” Halbach said. “We’ll even let people bring in their own pizza or birthday cakes for their events here,” he added.

He also sees Game On NW as a place for team building and team bonding, much like what happens over at High Trek Adventures where companies bring staff and project teams together. That market is especially bright with the Pandemic tapering and companies bringing people back together at the office who may not have interacted personally in the past two years.

Halbach wrapped up our visit by saying, “I love bringing joy. I’ve always wanted to get out from behind a desk and do something not so corporate and I’ve got all these games in my head that I can test out here and develop. My kids make great game testers and we focus on fun.”

Game On NW is designed for kids age 10 and up. They’re open Wednesday – Sunday. Click here to visit their website, learn more and pre-register or make a reservation.

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My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring news and events in Everett, Washington. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett.

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