PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — “Enter a new world without leaving yours.” That’s exactly what you can do at a new storefront at Northwoods Mall.

Press Play opened over the weekend in Northwoods Mall.

Owner Jacoby Owens said it’s a place where you can visit destinations you have never been before in a free roam space.

“You can see the dinosaurs up close and personal, the ocean floor, and more,” he said.

Peoria born and raised, Owens said it means the world to him to be able to open his business in his hometown. He said he wanted to give kids a safe space to connect.

I want to give the kids an outlet where you can be in reality, but you can be in virtual reality at the same time. You can come with other kids from different places and you can get new friends, create new avenues where communities can touch bases with each other.

Jacoby Owens

He said virtual reality offers a team building aspect.

“When you can take kids from different places and work together for one common goal, that’s what we [Press Play] can give them,” Owens said.

Growing up, Owens said Northwoods Mall used to be the place to come and connect with all different people.

“We need the community to come all the way together,” he said.

It was a long journey to reach this point of opening Press Play, but Owens said it’s a blessing to see it come to fruition.

“You can do anything in this world, you just have to put some hard work into it and it’ll all work itself out,” he said.

Owen said he has more than 20 games to choose from. Players can also enjoy sports games, educational games, laser tag, an escape room and more.

He also has availability for birthday parties. You can book on the Press Play website to secure your spot.

Owens will be expanding to offer virtual reality exercise and much more.

Catch Owens’ full story Wednesday on WMBD This Morning at 6:30 with Kyreon Lee.