As one of America's oldest and final bastions of the pizza, arcade, and animatronic-variety-show trifecta, Chuck E. Cheese upholds an important entertainment legacy. Though their core philosophy and slogan, "Where a Kid Can Be a Kid," sounds like a simple-enough mantra to maintain, many years have passed since Atari inventor Nolan Bushnell opened the first location in San Jose.
Despite the ever-changing nature of entertainment consumption, Chuck E. Cheese has done nothing but flourish. Intrinsic to this continuing knack for capturing kids' imaginations is its incorporation of modern entertainment and adherence to the robotic act that got it started in the first place. Chuck, Jasper T. Jowls, and Helen Henny are all still there, suspending a new generation's disbelief in gargantuan singing animals. Their charms, though, have been bolstered for the appetites of modern kids with more immersive games, wilder rides, and sweeter prizes.
Skytubes traverse the ceilings as an oversize human Habitrail, offering fantastical escape for energetic kids above the lights and sounds of the arcade. Staples such as skee ball and hoops now stand alongside sense-saturating simulator rides and the latest video games. At many locations, even the variety show has been modernized for the digital era. In its place is an interactive experience dubbed Studio C, where, thanks to bluescreens and video cameras, kids get to jam with Mr. Cheese himself.
One of the original pioneers of the yogurt industry, Golden Spoon has been whirling yogurt since the early 1980s. With six small servings of frozen yogurt to redeem, sweet-teethed customers can enjoy a several of the rotating flavors, including tastes such as just chocolate, peanut butter, café latte, butterscotch, and boysenberry. At 25–29 calories an ounce, health-conscious consumers can enjoy licks without translating each tongueful into the number of jumping jacks or flying-starfish impersonations needed to offset it.
Majestic cannons extend from the wall of a realistic pirate ship in Pirate Island Pizza's fantastical surroundings, as family-friendly fare and adventurous entertainment satisfies swashbuckling sprouts and hungry adults alike. Esurient expeditions can set sail with a dish of Pirate Coconut Shrimp ($8.99) and follow with a choice of bread bundles such as the Buccaneer Beef Sandwich, a fresh ciabatta bun filled with grilled black Angus steak, chipotle mayonnaise, sautéed peppers and onions, and draped in melted swiss cheese ($7.99).
The expert bakers at Cupcake Chic combine fresh ingredients with pastry mastery to craft fluffy morsels of delectability from scratch, made with neither mixes nor artificial flavors. Like crossword puzzle difficulty and the capital of Maine, the menu‘s offerings vary based on the day of the week. Perennial favorites include silky red velvet, coconut topped with cream-cheese frosting, key-lime pie springing from a graham-cracker crust, and dark chocolate sporting a stylish fudge pompadour ($2.50 for individual cupcakes, $15 for six). Rotating daily specials range from cinnamon sugar with cream-cheese frosting (Tuesdays and Fridays) to carrot ginger flecked with pecans (Wednesdays and Saturdays). Cupcake Chic also serves up seasonal treats, such as lemon cake with strawberry frosting and a campfire-ready s’mores varietal that knows all 34 verses of “Kumbaya.” Gluten-free flavors are available for allergy sufferers.
Coneys Frozen Custard opened its doors in September 2003 in Orem, Utah. Coneys was originally created to bring frozen custard to Utah County. It soon became a popular destination for its premium hamburgers and gourmet hot dogs. Coney’s continues to focus on providing a superior dining experience.