I visited Chuck E. Cheese last month in September. The restaurant chain wasn't a very big part of my childhood, and it wasn't even really on my mind until just a couple months ago. After watching videos and finding out more about it, I was interested in visiting. I enjoyed my visit.
My Birthday is in October. After finding out that there's no age limit for having Birthday parties at Chuck E. Cheese, I decided I wanted to celebrate my Birthday there. I hadn't celebrated my Birthday since 2008 (at least), so I contacted my family and told them I wanted to have my Birthday there.
We ordered a Birthday Package on the Chuck E. Cheese website, and reserved a table for 7:00 pm. Since it is October, I also got to visit during their "Boo-tacular" Halloween event.
Arriving at the Restaurant
It was a long drive, but I arrived at the restaurant a few minutes before 7:00. Most of my family wasn't there yet. Before going in, I took a picture of the restaurant. As you can see, the location I went to still uses an older logo from the "Avenger Chuck" era instead of the current logo used at several other locations. To be fair, this is probably one of the more iconic Chuck E. Cheese logos. And it looks cool at night when it is lit.
The inside of the restaurant was decorated with cobwebs, ghosts, and bats. My server for the night greeted me as soon as I entered. The table was already decorated with a cloth, balloons, cups, plates, utensils, and a Birthday sign.
While the package was already ordered and my table was already setup, I still needed to order pizza and drinks before I could play any games. I asked if I could have a "pumpkin pepperoni pizza" that was mentioned on the website. She wrote it down. She told me I could order two drinks, and she would fill two pitchers. The restaurant has Pepsi drinks. I quit drinking Coca-Cola and Pepsi a few years ago, but figured my family wanted Pepsi so I ordered it as well as some Mountain Dew (which was what I drank when I visited last month). My server told me that a live show with Chuck E. Cheese (a Birthday dance) was part of the package, and asked me if I wanted it. I said no, but told her that I'd like to get a picture with Chuck E. I was then asked if I wanted a picture on my cake. The website mentions a few different pictures, like Batman and Hello Kitty. I told her I wanted a picture of Chuck E. Everything was ordered, but I still couldn't play any games yet. I brought my card from my previous visit, but it was empty. They have kiosks there for reloading the cards, but I chose not to use them because I was supposed to receive a wristband (called a "Play Band") as part of the package.
After waiting a few minutes, my server came back to the table and gave me a Play Band with 45 points on it. I was ready to play some games while the pizza was cooking but decided to wait for the rest of my family. They arrived a few minutes later and were given Play Pass/All You Can Play cards.
It wasn't very busy, which I guess is to be expected since it wasn't Saturday. I only had time to play three games: Luigi's Mansion Arcade, Super Monkey Ball: Ticket Blitz, and Cars, all of which I played during my previous visit. My family played games too (yep, even my parents). I started with Luigi's Mansion. Right before playing, I saw Chuck E. walk by holding a ticket sign. He walked near the entrance, where he did his "Haunted Dance" for the kids.
Like my previous visit, I played Luigi's Mansion alone. At least for a few minutes. Eventually, my brother (who was playing a different game) joined me (the game allows up to two players). I got through the first mansion and beat the boss. I played through only part of the second mansion because I needed to get back to my table soon and so I moved on and played Super Monkey Ball.
When playing Super Monkey Ball, I ran into a similar situation as when I got to track 8 in Rad Racer last month (one of the games on my list in the backlog challenge topic). As soon as I got to the goal, the timer ran out and I didn't beat the level. I continued and got through the level on my next try. I didn't get much further; I can't figure out how to beat the bonus levels (I always just barely miss the ring).
The only other game I had time to play was Cars. Just as I sat down to play it, my server asked me if I was hungry and said my pizza was ready. I played Cars for only a few minutes and returned to the table.
A lot of people say the pizza at Chuck E. Cheese is "bad", but I like it. The crust has a lot of flavor and stuffed crust made it even better.
My server put a slice on my plate and filled my (small) Chuck E. cup with Mountain Dew (I helped myself after).
Cake and Birthday Song
After eating a few slices of pizza, my server came back to the table with my chocolate cake. I guess they didn't have number candles, so they put one regular candle on it. Yes, it was lit. Chuck E. appeared for a few minutes, and my family and server sang Happy Birthday. At first, I wasn't sure I wanted them to sing Happy Birthday. But it's been fourteen or fifteen years since I last celebrated mine, so I thought "OK, why not?". After blowing out the candle, it was time to get a picture with Chuck E.
Photo-op with Chuck E.
As mentioned above, I told the server I wasn't interested in the live show/Birthday Dance so we skipped that and I got a picture with Chuck E. I'm not going to show my face, but that's me there with Chuck E. As you can see, I'm wearing a Mega Man shirt. If you're wondering why my right leg looks a bit chubby, it's because my wallet was in my pocket. I weigh only about 160 pounds.
While Chuck E. dresses up as a vampire at other locations, here he wasn't really dressed up like that. He had the fangs, but didn't appear to be wearing a cape. I'm not sure if the employee forgot (or chose not to) wear it, or if they don't have a cape at this location.
I got some presents, which I opened at the restaurant. Back to the Future is my favorite movie series of all time, so my family already had an idea of what to give me even though I didn't give them any ideas. I also got a Birthday Card, a Walmart Gift Card, some t-shirts (not the Mega Man shirt, which I got from a friend several years ago), and a new Hat. Maybe I'll use the Walmart card to buy Season 4 of Cobra Kai, which I read was recently released on DVD.
It's October, so of course the restaurant was decorated. While my Birthday celebration wasn't quite over yet, I decided to get off my chair and take some pictures in the Studio C area (the area with the TV's, and where my table was). Also, as I mentioned in my previous Chuck E. Cheese blog, the location I went to still has a Chuck E. Animatronic.
Some Chuck E. Cheese Halloween music videos were playing on the TV's (as well as some shorts), some of which I've actually already seen on YouTube. A few songs were released this month:
"Howl-O-Ween" - I'm not really into Country music, but this song was surprisingly good. It features Jasper T. Jowls, the dog. The other main characters (Chuck E., Helen, Mr. Munch, Pasqually, and Bella) make an appearance near the end. Despite the fact that I'm not into Country music, this turned out to be my favorite of these new Chuck E. Cheese songs. AAAAWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
"Witches Crew" - Features the characters Helen, Bella, and Dino. Despite featuring three characters, it focuses on Helen about 75% of the time. I think Bella is kind of an underrated character and wish she had more screen time in this music video. It does get a little better about halfway through, with Bella getting a few close-ups and Dino suddenly getting a voice. Even though this song is targeted mainly at female Chuck E. Cheese fans, I like it a little more than the song below.
"If Everyday Was Halloween" - A hip-hop song. The beginning and end of the video features Chuck E. and Mr. Munch, apparently returning home from trick or treating. The actual song, though, only features Chuck E. I admit I'm a little biased towards Chuck E., so I thought this would be my favorite of these three songs. Surprisingly, it turned out to be my least favorite. It's not a bad song, but...maybe it would've been a little better if Mr. Munch was part of the song too. Also, while I know the song is titled "If Every Day Was Halloween", the music video is clearly a reference/advertisement for the restaurants "4 Seasons of Fun" ("Boo-tacular", of course, is one of them).
When Chuck E. makes his appearances in the restaurant (at the 30 minute mark every hour), he does a "Haunted Dance" for the kids this time of year. Apparently, the employees were also giving away candy. I didn't get any, but that doesn't matter since I eat some on Halloween (and also watch Horror movies).
I joined Spotify a few weeks ago (and recently got Premium for free). I've listened to a few Chuck E. Cheese songs here as well. My favorite Chuck E. Cheese song is "Let's Have a Party." I believe the new Halloween songs are also on Spotify.
The Ticket Blaster
The server left fifteen minutes before the restaurant closed. She gave me two "Magic Tickets", worth 500 Tickets each. On the website, it mentions "Bonus E-Tickets" as part of the Birthday packages. I guess these were the Bonus Tickets, but they were physical instead of digital. I looked at the words on the Tickets, and noticed they were meant for the Ticket Blaster. I was reminded that I didn't use the Ticket Blaster machine yet (which was part of the package). The restaurant was closing in ten minutes. I talked to the Manager, and she allowed me to go in the Ticket Blaster even though the restaurant was about to close.
I was given thirty seconds to catch as many Tickets as I could. While I did manage to catch a handful, I didn't get that many. It's a little hard when they're being blown around all over the place. The Manager gave me a handful of Tickets I didn't catch. I don't know why. Does touching Tickets or Tickets landing on my shoulders count as "catching" them? I don't know. Anyway, including the "Magic Tickets" I was given before, I had 1300+ Tickets.
The Gift Shop
Before leaving, I went to the Gift Shop. The Chuck E. Cheese website mentioned some Halloween merch: a Chuck E. Vampire Plush, a light-up Cup, and some Halloween bags. They were sold out of these items, which didn't surprise me since there Halloween event started last month.
I got a few Chuck E. items with my Tickets, and got the ball for $20. I also took home most of my Birthday items.
If you've read up to this point, you're probably thinking I'm out of my mind for having my Birthday at a "kids" restaurant. First of all, I'm never too old for pizza and video games. Second of all, there's no age limit for parties and Chuck E. Cheese is for families not just kids. As a video game player and collector since 1990, as well as a lover of pizza, it made perfect sense for me to celebrate my Birthday at Chuck E. Cheese.
I plan on visiting again next year (multiple times).
Edited by MegaMan52
Fixed typos and added pictures