July 15, 2011

Chuck-E-Cheese's




I celebrated my fourteenth birthday at Chuck-E-Cheese's.

This wasn't by choice.

I'm the oldest of seven and the indoor arcade was the only place where all of my younger siblings could be safely contained.

Needless to say, I was traumatized by the experience of being forced to wear a party hat as a surly teenager and have a large mouse sing "Happy Birthday" to me.

There is another reason why I haven't frequented Chuck-E-Cheese's as much as my kids would like: the pizza.

By design or default, Chuck-E-Cheese's pizza has never been one of its strengths. It is the company's hope that that is all about to change.



This afternoon, my kids and I tried out the restaurant's new pizza recipe on the house...and it's pretty dang good. I'd place it alongside its competitors in terms of quality and value.

This is good news if you are like me and spend every other Saturday at the Cheeser celebrating the birthday of one of your child's classmates. It is also good news for those of us who were scarred for life at Chuck-E-Cheese's as teenagers and are looking for a way to reclaim what was lost.

After today, I'm entertaining the idea of celebrating my next birthday at Chuck-E-Cheese's. On purpose.

17 comments

Mal said...

My mum avoided Chuck-E-Cheese's like the plague--probably because she was worried it carried the plague. Ya know, the rats and all. I never stepped in the place until I married into my husband's family. Yeah...I'm converted to my mum's method: don't mention the place unless it is to slander it.

Q said...

I used to work there in high school. I cannot imagine ever having a birthday party there. I never worked the parties. ugh. I worked behind the cashier and the ticket stand. But sometimes, my mother would stop by with my baby brother (9 years younger) to let him play. I'd slip him a big roll of tokens. Mom would read a book. He would play.

kristina said...

I actually like their pizza! They changed it?! Although, I probably only like it because I have good childhood memories of being there and the pizza brings that back.

CSIowa said...

When my fourth child was born my parents came for a visit. My dad asked my four-year-old what he'd like to do. What did he say? "Chuck-E-Cheese!" I loved my dad's response: "You're in luck! I have one trip to Chuck-E-Cheese in me per generation and this is it!"

Lora said...

The Rat Palace. Who doesn't have go to there for birthday parties? But good news re: the pizza recipe being updated. It's sorely needed.

HD said...

Growing up it was called Showbiz Pizza by us--same theme song and everything, just change the formal name wording. I celebrated a birthday or two there and thought it was the most amazing place on earth.

I had a friend in college who worked at a place similar to it, a knock off, and heard horror stories. Now all I see is a pee-covered playground. Sanitize!

Winchell Clayworks said...

Isn't Chuck-E-Cheese mentioned in Dante's Inferno as one of the circles???

curegirl0421 said...

I refuse to enter a ChuckECheese, no matter how good their pizza may be. My poor deprived child never got to go once I had an honest-to-goodness panic attack in one; she's gotten by. Of course, we live in Denver, wherein lies the Casa Bonita, so we still get crappy food and sticky tables, but we get cliff divers instead of animatronic mice, so ya know... ;)

Mom of 12 said...

The first time I tried Chuck-E-Cheese was when I was in high school on a trip back east. I was absolutely amazed by their animated singing creatures. But what can you expect from a girl from small-town Utah?
Sandy
www.twelvemakesadozen.blogspot.com

Mal said...

@ Winchell Clayworks: hahahahahahahahahaha! I love it.

BeckyB.West said...

I was just telling my husband I've never been to a Chuck E Cheese. You've sold me on the idea of eating there for the next special occasion in my life.

The Bus Driver said...

I think the one and only time I ever went to a chuck E cheese was with my grandmother. I dont even think we stayed that long. and the only thing i remember from it was they had a "mouse" size door for kids to go through.

The Bus Driver said...

also, theres something eerily creepy about a rat promoting pizza.....

Tammy said...

Not so surprised to see that I'm not the only one who's had a panic attack in that place! Ugh!

Amy M. said...

I can count on one hand how many times my parents took us to Chuck E Cheese growing up and can barely count with one hand how many times my parents take their grandkids to Chuck E Cheese in a two-three week visit. It's not fair! But everytime we go now, we go to CiCi's pizza first so we don't eat at Chuck E. Cheese. Sure, you say it is okay now but I'd rather not fork $30 for a pizza and a few tokens to find out. First impressions always count.

Jessica said...

I just want to say that 12-17 are the most ungrateful ages, when I was 13, my parents took me to Wash DC (each kid got to choose a place to go as their present and got to go alone). My parents knew a senator, so we got a special tour of the White House, which then ended in the White House cafeteria where I got happy birthday sung to me by all the senators. I was mortified. Why? I have no clue why - guess just the attention. Luckily my Mom hissed that I'd better be grateful and nice to the senator's wife who had arranged it, I shudder to think what I might have said if she hadn't given me the evil eye.

Ashley 2 said...

I have been there once so far in my life and I loved it! I am going there next week I am taking my nephew for his 5th birthday!