From the vibrant tubes and slides of the multilevel FunZone playground to the squeal-inducing Tubs-of-Fun and Red Baron Bi-planes, FunStation2000's rides and games engage youngsters of all ages. As the Himalaya Rollercoaster speeds around its track, the laser-tag arena accommodates bouts between phaser-wielding teams. In the indoor batting cages, balls hurtle toward future home-run hitters and team mascots who need to practice dodging the swings of angry players. FunStation2000 continues enticing guests with a massive arcade and snack station full of treats including cheese pizzas, spicy popcorn chicken, and corn dogs.
In addition to accommodating spontaneous days of revelry, the center's staff hosts private parties, complete with game tokens, playtime, and pizza and cake served in the animal-themed party room.
For more than 20 years, the chefs and staff at Turn 4 Pizza have served up hand-tossed pies to the Mooresville community and surrounding areas. Their creative pizzas draw inspiration from auto racing terms, as evidenced by the Caution Flag—a sausage-and-onion pizza set ablaze with jalapeños, banana peppers, and crushed red pepper. On the tamer side of the menu, the Charlotte 600 pie tops a creamy alfredo base with tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms, onion, and chicken. They also sport a build-your-own option, featuring more than 20 toppings that range from meatballs and pepperoni to granulated garlic, mandarin oranges, and pepperoncini. Their specialty dessert pizzas include pies such as the cinnamon-sugar-with-icing pizza, which can also be made race-themed when served on a spare tire.
Johnny B’s friendly chefs welcome families to relax over a hand-tossed pie, baked wings, and hoagies in a festive, colorful dining room. Families sharing dinner glance over the menu to pick an appetizer such as baked salt-and-pepper wings or garlic-butter pretzel drops as addictive as stealing candy from babies. For pizza, the classic Big Toad is crowded with savory bacon, beef, and ham balanced with crunches of green pepper and black olive. An alternative to traditional mozzarella and tomato sauce, the Frozen Pond pie spreads a base of oil and garlic under tomatoes, onions, and three cheeses to bake a pie as cheesy as an Elvis impersonator raised on a dairy farm. A team of tasty wraps, hoagies, and pockets tempts diners to stray from the pizza list in favor of a buffalo-chicken wrap seasoned with ranch, Bulliard’s hot sauce, and gooey provolone or a Johnny’s club hoagie accepting membership from ham, cheese, turkey, and bacon, if it gets its act together. If diners drop in between Monday and Wednesday, they can split delicious desserts such as the house-favorite cinnamon drops.
Hawthorne's New York Pizza & Bar's dough-slingers serve a piping-hot menu of pasta, heroes, and hand-tossed pizzas, earning a 2011 Charlotte Magazine Voters' Choice award for best pizza. Edible disks are spooned with sauce and configured for specialty deliciousness with such options as the luau pizza⎯a blend of pineapple, bacon, smoked pulled pork, and caramelized onions wrapped up in a grass skirt ($9–$18)⎯and the Sicilian's thick, square crust clad only in mozzarella ($14.50). Herbs and gorgonzola cheese roam across hills of pasta and valleys stuffed with chicken or sausage in the gorgonzola pasta ($10.50), and the philly cheesesteak hero ($8.85) laces standard white american cheese with the illicit flavors of chipotle mayo. Chefs layer eggplant rollentini ($11) with a blend of mozzarella, ricotta, and romano cheeses before spackling it with pesto and oven-baking it to monumental deliciousness.
Brothers Eugene and John Jetts opened their homonymically eponymous pizza parlor in 1978, creating recipes that eventually grew the chain to more than 200 locations throughout the U.S today. Jet's Pizza's signature is the squared, deep-dish crust, which can be rolled out into a pie cut so that every piece provides bites of the crisp edges and soft interior. Their cooks also hand-toss a traditional round crust and a New York–style thin crust, all of which can be flavored in eight ways with a dusting of Cajun seasoning, poppy seeds, or a combination of butter, garlic, and romano cheese dubbed the Turbo. As masters of repurposing, cooks can also cut romano-topped pizza dough into 8-inch slices to make toasted subs or a beret that attracts comely pigeons. Salads and hot wings make deliveries into multicourse meals for easy family dinners and catered events.
Martino's authentic Italian menu offers traditional dishes forged from fresh ingredients and swathed in sauce prepared daily. Begin a meal by dunking beer-battered slices of fried zucchini ($5.49) in marinara sauce before corralling house-made meatballs within an edible enclosure of imported Italian spaghetti ($9.95). Pizzas divvy themselves by slice ($2.50 for cheese; $0.50/topping) or fly from the oven as complete saucers ($9.95–$13.95), powered by toppings such as red peppers, pineapple, ground beef, and cheese fusion ($1.75–$2.50/topping). Chefs roll locally sourced chicken cuts in breading before frying them and smothering them in provolone for the chicken parmesan hoagie, served with italian bread and fries ($6.99). Postprandial selections from a battery of 15-20 house-made gelatos sate cravings of all flavors, as long as it's frozen.
To craft their braciola (italian beef rollups), Open Kitchen’s chefs begin with a large slice of top beefsteak. They stuff the steak with fresh italian sausage, prosciutto, and genoa salami, then simmer the concoction and serve it with pasta pomodoro. This is just one example of their vast menu of Italian fare, which also includes ravioli parmigiana, pizza, and sub sandwiches. Perhaps the pièce de résistance is Open Kitchen’s mixed Italian cuisine platter—pasta covered with chicken livers, slices of veal, chicken parmigiana, meatballs, and mushrooms for one or two.