Gaming At Chuck E Cheese
Two Chuck E. Cheese games on the app store are keeping children engaged over the continuing lockdown.
One is our Chuck E. Cheese Skate Universe, says McKillips. Its a fun and entertaining game for kids. We have millions of gameplays on it, and this is something that, between visits, allows us a great brand connection to our guests. And in addition to having interactive games on the app store, as part of our Afternoon Fun Break, we have live games with Chuck E. Cheese, and downloadable activity sheets and games to play at home as well.
Gaming also has a role in drawing people back as the lockdown eases and people return to the venues, albeit in a socially distanced and mindful manner.
Its part of that whole entertainment experience. We have anywhere between 90 and 100 games, many of which are customised to the Chuck E. Cheese experience.
Our demographic is very young, anywhere between three and eight years old. So we have participatory games, and, for a slightly older audience, we have traditional games such as Alley Rollers. Then there are sports games. What we really try to encourage is participatory play between parents and kids.
The Untold Truth Of Chuck E Cheese Pizza
Chuck E. Cheese is one restaurant thats all about the experience. Whether its a good one of childhood fun or an adult nightmare , probably the least memorable thing about Chuck E. Cheese is its food. In fact, what kind of food do they even serve there? Birthday cake? Well, yes, but they do offer a full menu, as well, since Chuck E. Cheese is actually a restaurant as well as an entertainment center.
While they do offer such snack foods as wings, mozzarella sticks, and pretzel bites as well as desserts including churros and Dippin Dots and kid-sized servings of chicken nuggets and subs, they really offer only one type of main dish, that being pizza. Well, unless you count the salad bar, but who goes to Chuck E. Cheese to eat salad? Pizza is the entree of choice for hyped-up kids running from game to game as well as long-suffering adults moodily nibbling on the crusts while wishing themselves anywhere else on Earth. Still, if you ask anyone over the age of 9 what they think of Chuck E. Cheese pizza, the answer you get will likely be something along the lines of: they try not to think of it at all.
Buyout And Modern Redesign
By 2012, CEC was struggling with decreasing revenue. They ran a rebranding campaign, changing the rat mascot into a rock star guitar-playing mouse. In-store restaurant sales continued to decline through 2013 but merchandising and box office revenue increased.
In February 2014, Apollo Global Management acquired CEC Entertainment, Inc. for $54 per share, or about $950 million. In October 2014, under Apollo Global Management, CEC Entertainment announced that they would purchase their Phoenix-based competitor, Peter Piper Pizza from ACON Investments.
In August 2017, the company began to pilot a new design concept at seven remodeled locations , branded as Chuck E. Cheese Pizzeria & Games. These locations feature more upscale decor with a “muted” interior color scheme, an open kitchen, the “Play Pass” card system to replace arcade tokens, and the animatronic stage show replaced by a dance floor area. These changes, along with expansions to food offerings, were intended to help the chain be more appealing to adults and encourage family dining as opposed to primarily hosting parties.
Recommended Reading: Philly Steak Pizza Recipe
Chuck E Cheese Pizza May Not Be The Worst Youve Ever Eaten
The intrepid staffers of MEL Magazine set out to test the hypothesis that Chuck E. Cheese pizza is the absolute worst of the worst, ordering pizza for delivery so they could sample it free of the distractions provided by what well politely term CECs carnival atmosphere. Of the seven staffers involved in taste-testing, five found it to be more or less mediocre, with faint endorsements like: This pizza stands solidly on the bottom rung of franchise brands that dont have Skee-Ball on the premises,Surprisingly inoffensive, and Chuck E. Cheese pizza isnt even close to the worst pizza Ive ever had.
One taster invoked the old trope comparing bad pizza to bad sex in that even when its bad, its good, but calling Chuck E.s version a serviceable facsimile, but worth running away from the moment it gets up and goes to the bathroom. Two reviewers waxed nostalgic, one calling the pizza the taste of his lost youth, and the other enthusing over the glorious goodie bag he received as a freebie despite the pizza tasting of cardboard and chemical cheese. A senior editor, however, said that as a Brit he knew bad pizza, but found Chuck E.s to hit new lows and summed up his review by saying, F*** the world for allowing this to exist
Chuck E Cheese In Portage May Be Permanently Closing
Chuck E. Cheese may never reopen its doors after the Covid-19 pandemic.
This isnt just a Portage, Michigan problem. CEC Entertaintment, the company behind Chuck E. Cheese, is trying to figure out a way to handle their now $1 Billion debt. Theyre asking lenders for a $200 million load to keep the business a float. Even if they get the loan, all 610 locations probably wont survive. If they dont get the loan, bankruptcy and a permanent closure of all stores is likely according to people.com.
CEC Entertainment proposed paying CEO David McKillips $1.3 million dollars to stay on during these hard times according to their SEC Filing on June 1st. They will also pay President J. Roger Cardinale $900,000 and Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer James Howell $675,000 to help keep the family and fun pizza place a float.
What do you think of the posibility of losing Chuck E. Cheese? Did you and your family ever enjoy the Chuck E. Cheese band in Portage? Let us know in the facebook comments.
Click here to stay up to date on local business closures.
Also Check: What Is In Taco Bell Nacho Cheese
Also Check: Harry And David Cheese Not Refrigerated
How Do You Tell The Difference Between A Mouse And A Rat
A mature mouse can be distinguished from a young rat by its larger ears and longer tail compared to its body length than the rat. A young rat also has distinctly larger feet and head compared to the body than a mouse. Mice are usually light grey or brown in colour with a lighter shade on their bellies.
The Growth Of Chuck E Cheese
McKillips envisages the pandemic experience will drive long-term change in a number of ways.
Theres no question that digital needs to be a complementary brand extension to Chuck E. Cheese, he says. Our long-term goals are, essentially, to grow the Chuck E. Cheese brand. Were the number one family entertainment brand in the world we want to expand internationally.
Our long-term goals are, essentially, to grow the Chuck E. Cheese brand
I dont want to have a United States brand that has an international division. I really want Chuck E. Cheese to be a global family entertainment brand. We are having those discussions now, even in the pandemic, which is so exciting. When the pandemic is over, well be well-positioned to expand all over the world.
You May Like: What Sauce Is On Dominos Philly Pizza
Looking To The Future
The brand has a successful remodelling programme in the US.
We are going to continue to look at reinvesting in our locations to modernise them, and to bring in digital technology, says McKillips.
The last thing that Im super-excited about is that, of course, Chuck E. Cheese is known for its family entertainment centres, but we are now, in addition, launching an entertainment division, looking at how we license and create original content for animation, for features, for consumer products, toys, games, and other areas of entertainment.
The entertainment division will focus initially on merchandising. But its goal will be to turn Chuck E. Cheese, the mouse familiar to millions of 3-8-year-olds, into a movie star.
As David McKillips says:
Chuck E Cheese Parent To Close 45 Locations
CEC Entertainment filed a motion Thursday with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas seeking to abandon 45 leases at closed or underperforming locations. These locations were already closed and are currently vacant. Of these, 27 were closed due to COVID-19, four were closed due to lockouts, three were closed following expired leases and 11 were permanently closed before the coronavirus closures. The closed locations, which include 35 Chuck E. Cheese units and 11 Peter Piper Pizza restaurants, are in 24 states.
You May Like: Dominos Philly Cheesesteak Pizza
‘there Won’t Be Any Hope’
Watsons grim view up and down his supply chain is similar to that in many consumer industries right now. Downstream, his main customer has filed for bankruptcy. Upstream, many of his suppliers in China and South Korea have gone quiet, no longer returning messages.
One of his former suppliers started trying to sell him disinfection chambers instead of childrens rides, he said.
In Zhongshan, Chinas capital for amusement ride manufacturing, many of Watsons suppliers are struggling for survival. In April, Zhongshan amusement ride manufacturers reported to provincial officials that overseas orders had ground to a halt, making it difficult for them to meet factory rents and worker salaries, according to an account published by an industry group.
The local government arranged bank loans and other subsidies to help tide them through, but several have filed for bankruptcy in recent months.
Sun Junhao, the general manager of Zhongshan-based industry magazine Amuse China, said that among the hundreds of childrens ride makers there, many are suffering, especially those that had relied on foreign exports.
Exports have almost stopped, he said, of the U.S. and European markets. We believe there wont be any hope before the end of the year.
Procurement from Europe usually starts in March, she said. This year, their procurement has not even started yet.
A New Chuck E Cheese Childrens Ride But No One To Ride It
This spring, Dave Watson flew from his British factory to Dallas to present the restaurant chain Chuck E. Cheese with his new coin-operated childrens ride.
The machine, which Watson said cost his company about $64,000 to develop, featured a miniature train chugging around a grinning likeness of Chuck E. Cheeses mouse mascot.
Then the pandemic shutdowns hit, forcing many businesses to close or rethink everything from how to serve customers to how to get supplies. Bankruptcies were not far behind. A wave of major U.S. corporate brands have sought Chapter 11 protections.
The parent company of Chuck E. Cheese did it in late June.
This machine has been there since March and still has not had a child ride on it, said Watson, general manager of Jolly Roger Ltd. Sums the whole problem up I guess.
Fallout from the bankruptcies of dozens of American companies is rippling across the globe, as suppliers find themselves with orders abruptly canceled and customers saying they cant pay their debts.
One major problem for suppliers: they are at a lower priority level for debt repayment under Chapter 11 bankruptcy rules compared with secured creditors such as banks. That means for many factories, their new orders have not only stopped, but they face grim chances of recouping payment for products already shipped.
Pier 1 Imports did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Recommended Reading: Tallarico’s Steak Sandwich Sauce Recipe
Equivalent To Chuck E Cheese In The Uk
Chuck E Cheese has always remained a very American concept.
Theres just something about the combination of arcade and pizza restaurant and animatronics that doesnt seem like it would fit in the British market, and there are no Chuck E Cheeses in the UK.
If youre looking for a direct equivalent, there isnt one.
Unlike where I can tell you that there are American diners here that could quell your craving for an IHOP in the UK or that you can go to ASDA instead of Walmart in the UK, I cant come up with any restaurant arcades known for their childrens birthday parties and weird costumed characters.
I can, however, come up with a couple of somewhat alternatives to Chuck E Cheese in the UK.
If you know of any that are more related, let me know!
History Of Chuck E Cheese
If youve been to a Chuck E Cheese, you know that it is basically a bunch of arcade games including my favorites like Skee Ball, usually a dedicated childrens play area, lots of tables and a restaurant style seating area near the main stage, and some animatronics or costumed characters up front.
Chuck E Cheese is mostly known for being a childrens party venue, but you can also go there with your family if you are really into lots of loud noises and eating pizza while your kids play arcade games.
Chuck E Cheese was first a concept in 1977, when the first restaurant opened with a different name.
Over time, it morphed into what it is today, and officially became Chuck E Cheese in 1990.
Today, it has its headquarters in Irving, Texas and owns over 600 locations across the United States, South America, and the Middle East.
The concept still hasnt changed, though there is less focus on the characters in some restaurants nowadays, with most of the emphasis being placed on the restaurant and the arcade.
The arcade works by spitting out tickets you can redeem for prizes at the end, which is the best kind of arcade for every child over the age of like 3.
Recommended Reading: Does Laughing Cow Cheese Need To Be Refrigerated
We’re Not Ready To Say Goodbye To Chuck E
In this slowly reopening world, social distancing will shape the way we live life. Were all thinking about whether were ready to eat at restaurants again, how many people were comfortable with having over, if its possible to stay six feet apart at the beach, and on and on.
This change poses a problem for businesses that thrived on packing attendees in enclosed spaces or having multiple customers play the same games . Chuck E. Cheese, unfortunately, falls into both categories. Because of COVID-related complications, it might have to close the doors at its 610 locations for good.
Now Kroger Sells Frozen Chuck E Cheese Pizzas That You Can Enjoy At Home
Chuck E. Cheese frozen pizzas are fresh out of the oven in as little as 15 minutes, and you can snag one right now at Kroger. spotted the pepperoni version recently, noting that the chain had “officially brought his handcrafted pizzas from the arcade to your house!”
Kroger has both cheese and pepperoni options available for $6.99. One-fourth of a cheese pizza has 260 calories, 30 grams of carbs, 9 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, and 600 milligrams of sodium.
Also Check: Can You Melt Babybel Cheese
Chuck E Rocks Now With Rewards
As an avid Chuck E. Fan, I had been previously been enrolled in More Cheese Rewards. This new program is much better as you earn rewards more frequently the more you visit. You get 1 point for every dollar spent before taxes. Reward are 50, 100, and 200 points each. The rewards are e-Tickets , All You Can Play time, or menu items . If you visit CEC a lot, its a no brainer to download and sign up! If you only visit once in a blue moon, this app may help you visit more frequently!!! It should be noted that Chuck E. Cheeses has been through a lot lately such as the bankruptcy and is trying to bounce back. I give them full kudos for coming back stronger than before. If youre a kid at heart, a family, parent, grandparent, kid, etc. you can have fun at Chuck E.s Place!!! For reference- AYCP is the best gaming value in the arcade industry and unlike Dave & Busters CEC includes ALL games in their AYCP time. The games are a lot of the same as well games are typically the same as D& B just with tickets adjusted so if youre a kid or a college student, adult or a teenager youre bound to have fun!!!Fun has no age limit- so go enjoy the fun at your local CEC and download the app!!! Its fun for all!Have a Chuck E. Day!
Utilize The Free Options For As Long As Possible
Every Chuck E. Cheese is different, but most of them have some kind of free-play option involved. Whether its a play structure, a ball pit or the dance area in front of the weird animatronic Chuck, there is usually a place you can corral your kids before things get real.
You can cycle back through the free-fun again later, but some kids will be full-games-ahead once they start, so I like to delay using our Play Pass Points for as long as possible. I like to tell my kids that the games dont open until youve been there for half an hour or so, until Chuck E. Cheese has done the ticket toss, etc.
And Abe STILL doesnt know that the motorcycle ride is anything but something to sit on, so play that card for as long as you possibly can.
Read Also: How Long Does Babybel Last In The Fridge
About Half Of Chuck E Cheese Locations Remain Closed
Although Chuck E. Cheese has begun the reopening process, 289 of the chains 555 restaurants remain closed due to coronavirus. The bankruptcy protections will help Chuck E. Cheese reorganize financially, but without being able to operate at full strength, some of those locations will probably never reopen.