Pikeville’s company gives a twist to reality
PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) – If you’re looking for a hero to help you escape reality, you’re in luck.
VR Heroes, a new venture in Pikeville, is a virtual reality experience center to bring adventure, education and games to the Pikeville area.
“You don’t have to be a billionaire to go to the outer reaches of space. You can experience it in a virtual and simulated environment that is safe and affordable right here in Pikeville, ”said co-owner Jason Belcher.
The company, born out of the pandemic, enables more than just a gaming environment. Belcher said the space will also serve as a getaway to more desirable places and a gateway for information.
“We were stuck at home during the lockdown with few options and not a lot to do. And I started to think, if possible, is there a way for people to have adventures or have a good experience while you are still within the confines of a space? Belcher recalled. ” And that’s just the beginning. You don’t have to go to Egypt to see the pyramids; you don’t need to go to China to see the Great Wall or explore the Great Barrier Reef. If there are places like this where you wanted to go, you can experience them in VR in a safe and affordable environment. “
The company currently has three virtual reality stations and headset rental is available in 30-minute increments, with a two-hour limit for optimal charging. Belcher said the business has already generated some interest from locals.
“And it’s just from the image of someone with a virtual reality headset. I think it stimulates the imagination and curiosity. People just want to see what it looks like. And this is really the main thing. It’s an experience, ”he said. “You will feel like you are somewhere else. You will feel like you are where the virtual environment has taken you.
Belcher says it’s about more than just playing.
“I hope their parents will know that for kids who use VR gear, it’s not like staying home and playing your video games. You are very active. Not only are you learning, but you’re also burning calories at the same time, ”he said.
While the Belchers hope to see the experience attract more people to the city center, they also have ideas for boosting tourism using their wares in a different way. Belcher said the apps and programs available at the center can create a new virtual tourism initiative that would benefit local tourism boards.
“You can make contact from the local area, create an app for the headset and that will be sent around the world and across the country for people to see and experience. So you can bring them east of Kentucky to spark their interest in tourism and maybe come here physically, ”he said.
The doors officially open on Friday at 3 p.m. The business will operate from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday to Friday, from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
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