If you grew up in the '90s, there are a few things you definitely remember having a big impact on your life. Things like pogs, boy bands, and Beanie Babies.
(Maybe things got a little out of control with that last one.)
And you probably remember spending time at Chuck E. Cheese. Whether it was your birthday, your sibling's birthday, one of those "everybody in the second grade class is invited" birthdays, or just a special treat on a Friday night, few things probably brought you as much joy as playing a couple games of skee-ball and eating that surprisingly delicious pizza.
And of course, there was that big animatronic band, featuring Chuck E. Cheese and his pals. Know what those robotic animals are up to now?
Heading to the dumpster. (Sorry to crush your childhood memories.)
Yes, your favorite childhood playplace Chuck E. Cheese announced some changes it's making at several of its southwestern locations on a trial basis. The shake-ups include an updated and expanded menu (it now includes wraps, as well as gluten-free and thin crust pizza), a sleek redesign of the interior, a dance floor, and most importantly: the removal of that iconic/creepy animatronic band.
This announcement was met with mixed reviews by nostalgic parents who seem to fall into one of two camps.
1) “No! The animatronics are an important part of my childhood—don’t take them away!”
2) “Jeeeez the animatronics still exist? Those things are nightmare-inducing.”
Both arguments are completely valid, but the parent company of Chuck E. Cheese, CEC Entertainment, says love for the animatronics has been dwindling for years among kids. According to Spin, CEC’s chief executive Tom Leverton explained that today's kids much prefer dancing with employees dressed in mascot costumes over the animatronic band. “The kids stopped looking at the animatronics years and years ago, and they would wait for the live Chuck E. to come out,” he said.
The changes are being implemented in four locations on a trial basis, but Leverton says he has a "strong hypothesis" that other franchise locations will follow suit before long.
In the meantime, if you need one last nostalgic boogie with those furry robotic musicians, YouTube has got you more than covered.
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