Off the Grid provides thrill-seeking fun for all ages

Published 8:08 am Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Thrill-seeking can be dangerous in many ways, but many people pursue activities like zip lines, bungee-jumping and other activities for the fun they can have with others. For one Elizabethton company, that sense of fun is not dependent on age.

Off the Grid has been in operation at Bluff City since late 2014, when owner Monie McCoury was looking for a place to move his business.

“We were looking to start at a new location in the tri-cities,” McCoury said. “This area did not have a lot like this.”

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Off the Grid offers a variety of adrenaline-inducing activities like zip lines. Unlike other companies, however, McCoury said he built the park with the express purpose of making everything as accessible as possible. He has children as young as 14 months old and people as old as 101 participate in the zip line.

“Most zip lines require you to wear gloves, so you can brake to a stop yourself,” he said. “This can get hard, because for many, you either brake not hard enough and only the pole is stopping you at the end, or you brake too hard and have to be extracted. We have a braking system, so you do not have to be an advanced zipliner.”

As for the children participating in the zip line, the park offers a dual zip line system that lets adults ride the zip line alongside a child.

“We do that all the time here,” McCoury said.

The nature of the park’s “fun for all ages” approach to business necessitates an extra level of safety in how the activities are set up.

“We run a very safe operation,” he said. “We are in control of everything. You have to have confidence in your equipment and your staff.”

He said the park hosts one of the longest zip lines in the region, and he said he built his business with the local economy in mind.

“If you Google other zip line places, they charge about $100 a person,” he said. “With us, you pay 39 dollars. People will drive two or three hours to save hundreds of dollars instead of going to the park right next to them.”

He said the park offers an experience the tri-cities community does not get often.

“We get to see so many people have fun and conquer their fears,” he said. “People look scared when they first go, and when they are done, they want to do it again. We get to make friends here.”

Off the Grid does not limit itself to a zip line, however. McCoury said the park is more of an outdoors adventure area than just a zip line place.

Those interested in visiting the adventure park can contact them at 423-707-6022 or by visiting 1825 Hwy 19E North.

The park features a “Quick Fall” in which participants wearing a bungee cord free-fall off a platform for 23 feet before being lowered down by the system the remaining 37 feet, as well as a Giant Swing that hoists participants 50 feet in the air on a pendulum.

“The sound is always the same: everyone screams,” McCoury said.