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Restaurants

Chuck E. Cheese Files For Bankruptcy In Hopes To Survive The Pandemic

After early reports from the Wall Street Journal that Chuck E. Cheese was looking to file for bankruptcy, the entertainment and restaurant chain has officially done so.

Photo: Mike Mozart on Flickr

A press release from CEC Entertainment, Inc., the parent company to the beloved chain, announced the entry into Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. It hopes that in doing so, the company can restructure itself to survive the economic hit that the pandemic has levied.

Chuck E. Cheese had been doing okay before the pandemic, as AP reports that store sales went up 3% during 2019. However, the strain of staying closed during the pandemic was a tough pill to swallow for both Chuck E. Cheese and the restaurant industry in general.

Chuck E. Cheese had begun to reopen locations that were closed due to coronavirus, with 266 currently open and more to follow in the coming weeks. It’s hoped that these locations, plus the others Chuck E. Cheese plans to reopen, will stay that way throughout the bankruptcy process.

Franchised locations of Chuck E. Cheese aren’t affected by the bankruptcy filing.

Chapter 11 bankruptcy allows Chuck E. Cheese to keep running operations while restructuring its organization and financial model to get back on its feet. However, part of the bankruptcy plan, which is approved by a court, may include liquidating some of the company’s assets. This may mean that stores will close in the future, but it’s possible that won’t be the case.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Chuck E. Cheese was looking for up to $200 million in loans to stay afloat earlier in the month, which may be enough to restructure and prevent store closures. We won’t know if that’s the case for sure, however, until the bankruptcy court approves a final plan that allows Chuck E. Cheese to emerge from bankruptcy.

The hope is, though, that Chuck E. Cheese won’t have to go the way of Souplantation, who closed all of their locations and began liquidating all of their assets earlier this year.

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Celebrity Grub Fast Food Video

We Tested Shane Dawson’s Chuck E. Cheese Pizza Conspiracy Theory, This Is What We Found

For a while now, celebrity YouTuber Shane Dawson has been blowing folks’ minds with deep dives into some absolutely wild conspiracy theories. The latest one he explored, which surrounds Chuck E. Cheese, has some folks concerned that employees at the chain might be recycling pizza slices.

A recent video from Dawson explores the theory, examining evidence of Chuck E. Cheese pizza pictures from the internet that seem to prove that that might be the case. Crusts that don’t join together, cut lines covered with cheese (or missing altogether), oddly sized pizza slices… something definitely wasn’t adding up.

Dawson and his crew did go to an actual Chuck E. Cheese to investigate further, and found the exact same results on the pizzas they ordered, suggesting that their “whole pizza” could actually be an amalgamation of several leftover ones.

The theory has since spread like wildfire over social media, leading to Chuck E. Cheese themselves to eventually step in. They dismissed Dawson’s video to The Verge, calling his claims “unequivocally false.”

“No conspiracies here,” a spokesperson added, “our pizzas are made to order and we prepare our dough fresh in restaurant, which means that they’re not always perfectly uniform in shape, but always delicious.”

Seems legit, but something with that response didn’t feel right to me, especially given that some of the crusts shown just could not have been from slices naturally next to each other on a pizza. As a result, I did some further investigating of my own.

A couple of years back, Foodbeasts Elie Ayrouth and Evan Lancaster went to a local Chuck E. Cheese, high on THC toffee, to review the entire pizza buffet. I went back and took a look at some of the pizzas on the buffet line, and they definitely matched the ones in Dawson’s video.

Here’s a look at one of those pies:

This close-up shot shows that there’s at least one piece at the top left where the crust sticks out at an odd length, almost as if it’s come from a different pizza.

This shot is kinda blurry, but it captures the same issue with that piece of pizza crust on the left. The crust also looks flatter on the closer half of the pie than the other half.

You can argue that most of the pie was likely from a single one, but that slice in the upper left? No way that crust is from the same pie as the two slices next to it.

So, could Chuck E. Cheese employees actually be reusing slices off of old pizzas? Based on what we saw in our own video and Shane’s, it’s definitely possible. Granted, this is a small sample to draw from, and Chuck E. Cheese has already come out and denied such claims. The evidence suggests otherwise, though, and while it’s not concrete enough to hand the verdict to one side or the other, a further investigation definitely has some merit.

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Fast Food FOODBEAST

Chuck. E Cheese’s Threw Cheetos On A Mac N Cheese Pizza And We Need It NOW

It’s safe to say that Cheetos has been peaking these past few years.

The classic cheese curls we all know and love have been popping up everywhere in ways we didn’t think possible. As if their pop-up restaurant in New York wasn’t big enough, they’ve also launched their innovative creations on a nationwide scale with Burger King’s Mac N’ Cheetos. We’ve also seen Cheetos being used in grilled cheeses, chicken, corn-on-the-cob, bagels, and even poke burritos.

Now, pizzerias are even starting to embrace the glorious Cheetos.

Chuck E. Cheese’s is now offering their Cheetos Mac-Cheesy Pizza at all participating locations starting today until the end of the year. For cheese-lovers, this is the real deal: A cheese pizza is loaded with macaroni and cheese, and then topped generously with crunchy Cheetos for a texture of creamy, gooey, and crunchy. Try getting it on their cheese-stuffed crusts for an even cheesier experience.

Brb, time to find a kid to babysit.

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Fast Food

These Are The Real Names Of Your Favorite Fast Food Mascots

As long as we can remember, we’ve always associated our favorite fast food spots with their respective mascots. One doesn’t think of Jack In The Box without picturing the titular figurehead Jack Box, or Kentucky Fried Chicken without seeing the Colonel’s handsome mug in their minds.

Have you every wondered, however, what the real names of these iconic mascots were?

We dug around and found the true identities of your favorite fast food stars. See if you know the names beyond these nomme de gueres.


Ronald McDonald

This one’s a no-brainer, but the clown prince of fast food has been pretty transparent with his real name since his introduction. Ronald McDonald, who’s been around since 1963, is only one of the many citizens of McDonaldland.

 

Colonel Sanders

He wasn’t always a Colonel. Before he made it big as Kentucky Fried Chicken’s brand ambassador, the man in the white suit was born Harland David Sanders. Still, if you’re a fan of finger-licking good chicken, you’ll probably know him best as Colonel Sanders.

 

Jack Box

Jack, the fictional “CEO” of the popular burger chain Jack In The Box, is probably one of the most prolific fast food mascots in recent memory. While he’s pretty transparent with his first and last name in commercials, we discovered that his full name is Jack I. Box. Wonder what that “I” could possibly stand for?

 

Chuck E. Cheese

Have you ever wondered what the “E” stood for in Chuck E. Cheese? BuzzFeed confirmed a while back that the animatronic mouse and front man for the popular children’s pizza arcade’s real name is actually Charles Entertainment Cheese. Seems like he’s found his calling.

 

Wendy’s


Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s, named the restaurant chain after his daughter Melinda Lou “Wendy” Thomas (now Morse). The name Wendy came from Morse’s childhood nickname as she struggled with her L’s and R’s as a kid.

 

Papa John

We looked for as many father figures as we could growing up. Papa John nearly made that list with his restaurant’s awesome garlic dipping sauce that came with every box of pizza. Turns out he doesn’t go by Papa in his day-to-day. The founder and figurehead of the pizza empire was born John H. Schnatter.

 

Taco Bell Chihuahua

¡Yo quiero Taco Bell!

The phrase uttered by the adorable Taco Bell chihuahua became a household expression for more than a decade anytime the taco chain was mentioned. Of course, trainers couldn’t just call him “The Taco Bell Chihuahua” every time they needed his attention. That’s why he was given the name Gidget. The character was retired after Gidget passed away back in 2009. May that pup rest in peace, hopefully in a place where the Code Red flows like wine and the chalupas are bountiful.

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Hit-Or-Miss Tastemade/Snapchat

9 Things You Didn’t Know About Chuck E. Cheese (Besides the Atari one)

A musically talented rodent that isn’t named Mickey has quite the fan base. With close to 600 pizza parlors in the U.S., South America and the Middle East, this privately-owned fun center is the old school version of Dave & Buster’s. Get to know our entertaining character, Mr. Cheese, and his fully baked empire a bit better– after you use some hand sanitizer.

 

Chuck was meant to be a coyote

PHOTO: RANKER

Due to either the founder’s or the animatronics team’s inability to differentiate between a rat and a coyote costume, a rat mascot was created. Even then, Chuck E. Cheese was supposed to be Rick Rat’s Pizza, but their public relations department thought the throwing the name of a plague-carrying rodent on their signs would turn people off. Finally, in 1995, they performed a complete overhaul of the chain and Chuck suddenly became a (more approachable) mouse.

 

In Australia, locations are called Charlie Cheese’s

PHOTO: RETRO-DAZE

In the land down under, their “Chuck” is otherwise known as a Technicolor dream, a.k.a. vomiting. Sound call, considering they’re already dealing with a rodent mascot.

 

You can cook with Chuck’s cheese at home

PHOTO: MENTAL_FLOSS

If you’re a fan of the slice, they now sell a grocery line of shredded cheese featuring the mouse man himself on the packaging. Also in stores, Chuck-branded string cheese. Although we’re most curious about the lunch box-friendly yogurt squeezes in melonberry/cotton candy tastes.

 

Chuck E. Cheese uses 7.2 million pounds of fresh mozzarella a year

PHOTO: GAWKER

They also use nearly 85,000 pounds of pepperoni monthly on cheesy pies.

 

You can book a special appearance

PHOTO: NOBLE ACADEMY COLOMBUS

While only non-profit private and public schools with over 75 students can book an event, the perks are pretty sweet. Fifteen percent of sales are donated back to school, and educators earn a free meal and trip in the Ticket Blaster. If you’ve always wanted to stand in a large wind tube and collect the tickets flying around, now’s your chance.

 

They’ve got three ways to score free tokens

PHOTO: CRAFTHUBS

“Tokens for Grades” will reward kids with 10 gold doubloons when they show up with a current report card. Or download and complete their “Daily Chores” calendar after two weeks of tasks for more coinage. In addition, an incentive to book a party online includes 100 bonus tokens the day of your event.

 

If that doesn’t happen, discounted game tokens are available

PHOTO: EBAY

You can find Chuck E. Cheese tokens for about half-price off eBay. Make sure the tokens are legit (with Mr. Cheese pictured on them), and not generic ones. Using non-Chuck E. Cheese tokens in their games is considered theft. Don’t get too many, though. Corporate is working on a rechargeable card to take the place of tokens.

 

In 1995, Mattel started selling Chuck E. Cheese-themed Barbie dolls

PHOTO: MENTAL_FLOSS

Barbie has never shied away from a little brand placement. Although, it is a bit much for her to have a pair of cheesy, Chuck E. Cheese outfits. The first iteration featured a custom shirt and tote to go with her tuxedo. More recently, in 2001, she was spotted sporting a bold logo graphic.

 

There’s a feature film starring Mr. Cheese

PHOTO: TV TROPES

Released in 1999, Chuck E. Cheese in the Galaxy 5000 followed our determined dairy leader to planet Orion to race in the Galaxy 5000. Gold diggers, cheaters and doubts of self-confidence almost cause Chuck to throw in the towel, but cheesiness prevails. Never heard of it? It was a direct-to-video release (ask your parents about VHS tapes).

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Hit-Or-Miss Now Trending

Watch These Families Start A Massive Brawl At A Chuck E. Cheese’s

Chuck E. Cheese’s seems to be a hot bed for ratchetry, and it’s understandable. No one really wants to be there. Their pizza might be fire, but other than that, it’s musty, smells like feet and ass, and you’re probably around people you hate, just to celebrate some asshole little kid’s birthday.

Video of a brawl was posted to Twitter by Krystel Jimenez, as a group of Floridians lost their cool after some dirty looks were given, and families didn’t appreciate it, according to the Miami Herald.

A Chuck E. Cheese’s spokesman told WSVN 7 News that “an argument between two guests escalated into a physical altercation.”

Thank you, Chuck. We can see that.

This was a good old fashioned baseball-style brawl where four or five different fights were going on at the same time, and everyone was just jumping around, trying to get a piece of anyone they could get their hands on.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen things go down at the kids restaurant, as an even bigger, 50-person brawl broke out in a Pittsburgh Chuck E. Cheese’s once.

Thankfully, it looked like no kids got caught in the crossfire, although you do see a little girl run across the bottom of the screen, trying the get the heck out of there.

h/t brobible

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Deals Fast Food

Chuck E. Cheese’s Unveils Their Sketchy New Spaghetti Pizza

Despite how gross this might sound to most adults, it would come as no surprise if this freak-from-the-oven resonated really well with kids. After all, it’s universally known that children are really big fans of pizza and spaghetti, so how would combining them be?

Well, Chuck E. Cheese’s set out to discover the answer to that question by doing that exactly: combining them. The finished product is, at the very least, interesting to look at.

Screen Shot 2016-04-06 at 4.15.08 PM

The pizza is made with their standard dough, a layer of marinara, a helping of spaghetti noodles spread all around it, a drizzle of marinara on top, some classic Italian mozzarella, then finally a handful of meatballs.

Although the spaghetti pizza is not a permanent menu item, the fusion food will be available at all participating Chuck E. Cheese’s until June 30th, 2016.

 

 

via Brand Eating

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Hit-Or-Miss

A Violent 50-Person Fight Broke Out At This Chuck E. Cheese’s [WATCH]

Maybe Chuck E. Cheese’s isn’t the classiest joint in the world, but it’s still a kid’s indoor playground where they should feel safe.

That safe feeling was violated Sunday as a 50-man brawl erupted inside a Pittsburgh Chuck E. Cheese’s, leading to a couple of arrests and a lot of high emotions.

The party involved was celebrating a 1-year-old’s birthday, according to CBS Pittsburgh, and the fight seemed to have started over some baby daddy drama.

Two women reportedly got in an argument in the restaurant. One woman was the child’s mother and the other was the father’s current girlfriend. Eventually, the girlfriend started swinging at the birthday boy’s daddy and police were called.

While everyone in the building probably hovered around the fight, like a baseball brawl, the kid’s dad and the girlfriend were the only ones arrested in the whole mess.

The party kept going, no one was hurt, not even Chuck himself, but there were probably a lot of screaming children, which was probably worse than the fight itself.

featured image/wwe.com