Venture Out held its grand opening of the Odyssey, a new obstacle course at its facility, Tuesday.
Venture Out has undergone many changes in the last 13 years, Department of Student Life Assistant Director Janna Basler said in an opening speech. The tower was once located behind the Veterinary School but has since been moved to where it is now on Epple Field off Providence Road.
Basler said she wants people to come see the Odyssey.
“I encourage you not to pass up this incredible opportunity in your own backyard,” Basler said.
Justin Cooks, senior facilitator at Venture Out, described the Odyssey as a high ropes course with several obstacles to go through.
“You get clipped into harnesses and cables, and you have to make it through,” he said. “You get debriefed at each obstacle, and there is a zipline at the end, which is how you get down.”
Each person must make it through numerous obstacles, including the Swinging Bridges, Complex X, High Y, the Matrix, the Team Traverse and the Lateral Limbo, Cooks said.
Venture Out has two separate courses. The main difference between the two courses is that on the Odyssey, you are hooked onto safety cables, and it is more obstacle-based. Compared to Venture Out’s other obstacle, the Alpine Tower, the Odyssey is a better high ropes course for team building, Cooks said.
“It is different than the Tower we have,” Cooks said. “The Tower is more free, and the Odyssey is more obstacle based. It is better for team building, since we are a team building organization.”
The last obstacle of the Odyssey is a pulley system.
“You really need to be able to trust and support the other person, Cooks said. “You need to rely on the other person.”
To get down off of the Odyssey, the participants must use a zipline. Cooks said he thinks the zipline will be a big draw.
“People love the zipline,” Cooks said.
Cooks said he and the other workers at Venture Out had to train on the Odyssey.
“It’s really fun,” Cooks said. “I really enjoyed it.”
The Venture Out facility draws a wide variety of people, Cooks said. Outside businesses can use the facility as well as MU-affiliated organizations. Most student organizations, the athletic department and ROTC use the courses as team-building activities.
Seniors Taylor Larson and Carson Anderson were among the first students to complete the Odyssey. They had been to Venture Out in the past and wanted to come see the new attraction.
“We did Venture Out last year and climbed the other course,” Larson said. “We saw the announcement for the new course, and it sounded fun so we wanted to come check it out.”
Larson and Anderson said they both enjoyed the course and would definitely return to the course again.
“I thought it was fun,” Anderson said. “On some obstacles you have to work together, and I liked that.”