Anger Clinic smash room is all the rage in Dickinson

·4 min read

May 4—DICKINSON — Traditional therapy might not be everyone's cup of tea, and one Dickinson business is smashing conventional stress-relieving practices and replacing them with a more immersive experience.

From shattering plates to annihilating appliances with golf clubs, the Anger Clinic rage room in Dickinson offers a spin on anger management providing a safe environment to either manage stress or have an exciting night out with friends and family.

"We've had a few people come in here because they have some stuff going on in life where they just need to let loose and this is a good way to do that in a controlled environment or people just want to go out and have fun," Owner Michael Aragon said.

Just like a doctor's visit, people are often nervous before their first visit to the clinic and unsure of what to anticipate, but Owner Michael Aragon assures that everybody leaves feeling better than when they walked in.

"They come in here not knowing what to expect you know, like, maybe this is not gonna be fun and then they leave smiling and laughing," Aragon said. "Even when they're in there you see their whole personality change and it's pretty amazing."

While describing a rage room can be challenging to put into words and might sound intimidating, Aragon calls it safe controlled chaos and notes that parents have nothing to worry about.

"We did have a couple of parents who were really iffy about it, but then they saw how it's chaotic but it's controlled chaos. They see it and they get relieved like this is actually really great for the kids, they find out they go home and sleep like a baby," Aragon said.

Located in the former St. Josephs Hospital and Health Center, the Anger Clinic has stuck with the hospital theme, offering packages like emergency visits where visitors have 10 minutes to break 10 items for $10, or smash therapy which is similar but in increments of 20.

Before entering the rage room, visitors are equipped with full safety gear including hard hats, coveralls, safety glasses, face masks and foot protection.

After that, as Aragon put it, the party starts. The music is turned up, overhead lighting is replaced with LED laser lights and the destruction begins.

Aragon, his brother-in-law Ernesto Almanza and his childhood friend Rusty Montoya started this business last August after making the move from Colorado to North Dakota to pursue careers in the oil field.

While the trio knew they wanted to start a side business of some kind, the idea of a rage room happened randomly Aragon said.

It all started when Aragon and Alamanza bought a storage unit at an auction. After having a garage sale they had a few leftover odds and ends that they weren't sure what to do with, and while cleaning up, a broken plate would end up leading to a brilliant business idea.

"I think it was my sister that threw a plate in the trashcan and it broke. So we all started doing it, and then we just kind of thought 'We should do something with this'" Aragon said.

At the time they didn't know that rage rooms were beginning to gain popularity around the country, but they felt that Dickinson could use more entertainment options so they began developing what is now the Anger Clinic.

Since its opening last August, the group has thrown everything from birthday parties to themed holiday specials during Christmas and Halloween. They also have a gender reveal option, which they haven't done yet, but will offer the first booking free they said.

Aragon welcomes donations from the community to maintain their operation which welcomes everything from dressers and desks to T.V.'s, vases, beer or liquor bottles and essentially anything that is not a hazardous material Aragon said.

It's a balancing act for the three men as they continue to work in their oil field careers while managing their growing business and spending time with their families.

"We really take turns the other two owners, they'll come in when they can or our wives usually come in when we can't," Aragon said.

Aragon and his partners look forward to growing the business and have plans to add on a paint splatter room soon too, but they are ultimately thankful for the community support and feedback throughout their journey.

Bookings for the Anger Clinic are by appointment which can be found on their Facebook page along with a full list of their options, rules, and waivers. Children aged 6-15 must be accompanied by an adult or parent with a waiver.