Thursday, July 06, 2006

Chucky E. Cheese has it's pros and cons

Having recently moved from California to Texas, I didn't have much time to prepare for my daughter's 4th birthday. I'm all about keeping birthday parties simple and still fun (as I wrote in Happy, Happy Birthdays). I thought about a simple party at one of my family members' homes, and then I remembered that my daughter still talks about her friend's Chucky E. Cheese birthday party that was almost a year ago. Now I hate Chucky E. Cheese's because as a parent, you're so involved watching the kids play games that you don't really get to TALK to any other adults. The conversation is minimal and often interrupted. But, this isn't my party and kids love Chucky E. Cheese. My daughter was incredibly excited to have her party there. I planned the party in less then 5 days and here are some tips to a better Chucky E. Cheese party:
-Have the party early on the weekend (like when they open & before the crowds) Our party was on a Wednesday evening from 5:30pm to 8pm. We had a small party and the location was convenient for the family to get to after work.
-I didn't pay for the Official party. It does include everything but I found it expensive for a small 8 kid/12 adult party. (Most adults don't like the pizza there anyway-they want wings or salad) There are coupons in the paper for combos that include pizza, drinks and tokens at about a $20 savings from the every day combo specials. I bought my own themed plates, napkins and forks. I also brought my own cake. You can still sit in the birthday area with the mechanical Chucky characters.
-I gave each kid a plastic token cup with 15 tokens to start (I'd pass out more as they were needed)-I made the mistake of assuming every Chucky E. Cheese sells beer and wine (most do). I'd call ahead to check.The one we went to had stopped selling it and PawPaw, the great aunts and me were none to happy. It's much easier to swallow a little Chucky E. Cheese with a beer or wine chaser!
-I purchased really cool party favors at the dollar store that didn't look like they were from the dollar store (Disney spinning top, individually wrapped Ritz crackers, individually wrapped Sponge Bob crabby patties, blow pops, mini M&M tubes, glowing rubber bouncing balls, Disney swirly straws)
One thing I do like about Chucky's is they stamp each parents hand with a stamp that cooresponds to their kids. This way is the maze and craze of people you have some comfort that no one can walk out with your child. All kids' and adults' stamps are checked on the way out.



Burfica said...

I love that they stamp and then check. I haven't done a chuck e cheese party, being as we don't have one within 400 miles. hehehe But this past year we did a bowling party. Him and his 4 friends got together and bowled a couple games, and had pizza and cake and presents.

We had a nightmare with the place, they didn't have our pizza's ready, they served half the drinks they charges us for, and they had none of the decorations up. Thank god the kids don't care and don't notice, but I blew a gasket up at the people, and got a bigger discount.

Kelley said...

a bowling party sounds like fun-I'll have to remember that for when the kids get older.

TL said...

I passed on the info to my cousin's wife. My goddaugther loves Chuck E. Cheese.