recaps of the top 'ask me anything' interviews from reddit and more...
IAmA former Employee of Chuck E. Cheese, Where A Kid Can Be A Kid! Ask me anything!

proof being my old employee lanyard draped over the marginal amount of relics I have from days past that I could find at a glance within arms reach in my room lol

extra proof


First time writing this my text got deleted so I’m gonna keep it brief: I worked as the party planner at my store for all of last year. I was in charge of calling parents to get info, setting up, assigning other hosts to ones I couldnt do, etc. I also did all other work in the restaurant (kitchen, register, Gameroom, etc.). I was close friends w my bosses, had a great working relationship with the district manager, and met the VP. Edit- I left at the end of November before they filed for bankruptcy

With the bankruptcy announcement I figured I’d do an AMA, since it’s kinda topical and people might have unanswered questions from childhood

And I’m just gonna get this one out of the way: of course they don’t salvage and reheat slices. The business operates as a restaurant first business, doing something like that would get them shut down so quick. If the pizza were to have gone back in the oven, it would have burned guaranteed (we warn people before they request theirs get reheated if it was left idle on their table for a while). It has an uneven shape because it’s hand stretched dough, which allows for occasionally uneven circles, and the pies get cut with a type of rolling machete, which can often warp the slices if done fast (like in a Saturday rush). Everything is made to order. Dough is even prepared and made in house

Lightening edit- I can add more proof if needed, it would just require me digging my old name tag up which I just didn’t feel like doing rn cuz I’m cleaning and don’t want to make a mess unnecessarily

Edit 2- wow ok this got more popular Than I thought it would. I have a date in a few hours but I’ll just keep answering questions til then and then maybe after

Edit 3- ok I’ve answered every question in my inbox that wasn’t about Shane Dawson or fights or the play place (stuff that was frequently asked) so I’m gonna go ahead and mute notifications on this post for now because I have to get ready for my date now. I’ll check back in later tonight to see if there’s anymore unique/more personally related questions, but if not, I had fun! Thanks for helping me while away my afternoon, everyone :))

June 26th 2020
interview date

Uh let's see.

  1. How long have you been working there?

  2. What are some things people dont know about working there

  3. Knowing what you know now would you take kids that you know to a Chucky cheese?

  1. I worked there from Jan-nov of last year (left for health reasons)

  2. In my experience, they’re horrendously understaffed. Some days I’d be at the front door spot (kid check) and you can’t leave that spot because you’re basically security, but anytime someone would want to buy something or need a game fixed, they’d come to me. Then I’d have to somehow let my boss know in the back, without leaving my spot or causing a scene, before the parent gets angry and starts harassing me (frequent occurrence). Other times, I’d be the only person for the whole operations, so I’d be doing register, prize counter, Chuck E. Live shows, kitchen, gameroom, and cleaning. On a Monday afternoon that’s not too bad, but there’d be the frequent bump where I’d be running around best I could while having parents yelling at me from every direction. If parents/kids could have at least been responsible for their trash and not just thrown it on the ground, my life would have been astronomically easier. The restaurant often gets the bad reputation of being dirty, so people think it’s ok to treat it as such, when in reality, it’s the parents who think since it’s Chuck E. Cheese, they’re allowed to not care if they smash a slice of pizza into the carpet or throw cake across the party floor, and there’s not enough staff to balance it out. That’s why it has the “dirty” reputation

  3. Well I’m only in my early 20s so I don’t know many kids but I took my sister a lot. But I don’t see a reason not to take anyone?


Some of us have good memories of Chuck E. Cheese and their corny ass music videos and birthday parties. My kids LOVED that place. Do you think that there is a place for Chuck E. Cheese type franchises in the future? Or are they too unhealthy and dangerous?


In general, it is a perfectly fine concept. Hell, I still love it, but I think the decision to start removing the animatronics was the wrong decision. I don’t think it actually happened at a lot of them, but the reasoning was that kids aren’t interested in them, but I saw that to be quite not correct. I think they might do well to go back to their roots, increase support for the animatronics, and start doing more “show” type stuff again. I think a lot of the appeal is that it’s just something different, and if they actually invested a lot of effort into the animatronic shows like they did in the 80’s/made the place a little more adult friendly in general (maybe like a sitting area for adults to hang out?) then they might draw more people back in. They’d have to rope them off tho which might ruffle feathers cuz kids love climbing on them


What was the best prize you could win at your store? How many tickets did it cost? what was the best value for your tickets?


Most expensive ticket prizes were the 6000 ones (think like cheap game you would have gotten as a kid that had no discernible qualities other than it being skinned with a popular movie from years ago, or a giant fucking like 5 foot long nerf football knockoff)

Best bang for your buck would actually be taking advantage of the ticket=1 penny route. There were giant like ~3 foot plush of most of the characters for 35 bucks which was always just a little too expensive imo but it’d only be 3500 tickets which, for the quality of it compared other stuff that would be around that level, nothing else even compares. Except maybe like cotton candy or giant lollipops being like 200 tickets which is negligible


Can you tell me a bit about your worst day at work?


I was out drinking w friends and a date the night before and blacked out accidentally. Woke up hungover as shit, in my clothes, and couldn’t find my phone, school Id (needed for building access), or wallet. After finding most of my effects in the bathroom, I started getting ready in the 20 min I had, and stubbed my toe really hard on my bed. Great. Get to work and it’s still hurting and I feel like toss. Hours later I look and it’s black and blue and they wouldn’t let me leave to go to urgent care which would be closed by the time I got off. So I suffered through the shift, as the only employee, then had to pay an extra 120 in extra Uber’s and my accidentally skipped out bar tab. The worst


What was one of your favorite moments working there?


I always had an interest in the franchise before I started working there, so I knew a lot about the “lore” w the characters. One afternoon, after going in on an hour bus ride after a day of classes at uni, I was exhausted and was at a mentally low point so I just didn’t want to be working. This little girl comes up to the counter and starts asking questions about Chuck E and asks how he started the restaurant so I just told her the story and she was so interested and ran up to the animatronic Chuck to talk to him about his life. That warmed my heart for a minute


What is Chuck.E the mouse's origin story?


He was an orphan who found refuge in the rafters of pasqually the chef’s pizza restaurant. The restaurant happened to be a hot spot for parties, and Chuck E grew to love the happy birthday song. He went on to work with pasqually and create Chuck E. Cheese to host birthday parties for kids to make up for the fact he didn’t have one. Jasper is his “best friend” (he’s a dog), munch is an alien that landed and found them, and tbh I’m actually unsure of helens origin, I think she’s just chucks friend


What were your worst examples of kids with temper tantrums?


Honestly, more often than not, it was the parents that would have the tantrums. I worked in a less than good neighborhood, and so many people who came in acted entitled as hell, screamed across the restaurant whenever they would want, they’d get in my face w homophobic insults (I look stereotypically queer), demand free stuff all the time, throw their trash on the floor and walk away, etc etc.

The kids were usually at least a little sweet, and if nothing else were just excited to be there (but apparently they’d be “too excited” cuz their parents would start screaming at them for being happy??)


What age was the oldest birthday boy/girl? I ask because my friend had her party there when we were 14 (sort of as a joke), and when the damn mouse came out, it started laughing at us (literally rolling around on the floor and beating his clenched paws to the ground). 😂


I can’t quite remember but definitely 12, I think 13 once. 14 is def the weird age where it’s unclear if you’re genuine or ironic. It would become funny again around 18-21, then not funny anymore


i've read you just worked last year, so im going to ask if you've ever heard if the whole five nights at freddy's popularity explosion affected business in any positive or negative way?

also, in your personal opinion: whats the secret of a good pizza?


I actually love Five nights at Freddy’s (one of my internet handles is a reference to it). But I have no idea any impact it had on business. As to the pizza, the key is a good cheese to dough ratio


Have you ever been offered sex for tokens?


Nah but a really creepy dude asked for my number once and for whatever reason my go to reaction was to laugh. I was just hella uncomfy cuz he had been staring at me the whole afternoon already and my boss wouldn’t let me stay in the back even after the interaction (he kept scraping up coins to have a reason to come buy something at the counter)


Did staff members ever get to play the games? Also, were there employee events? If so, what were some notable ones?


No events, but game room could “play” the games by testing them, and once we got a bunch of new ones and it was a slow week day so we spent the afternoon playing them. That was a pretty good day


Do they ever disinfect the play structures?


My store didn’t have them, I believe they did start phasing them out a few years back over sanitary concerns but I’m not positive. But yes, they would have gotten cleaned nightly by gameroom staff (this is both on training documents as well as just stories I heard from bosses)


Were you working on or around October 15, 1993 and were you the person in the Chucky suit that I kicked? If so... I am so sorry.


Wasn’t me, but Honestly I can prob speak for them and say If all you did was kick the mascot and not grab their ass or anything else for whatever goddamn random reason, then you prob weren’t the worst kid they dealt w that day


What would be your #1 top rule you would implement if they stayed open?


Hmm, small or large spectrum? One store or all stores? Entertainment change or financial one? QoL improvements?

Generally I’d want to say better attention to detail/more staffing, but in a rush, no one pays attention to details, and I was never management so I assume they were working with the hours they had


Is that fucking thing a rat? Because it looks like a rat, not a mouse, and it is a rat, and no one can convince me otherwise, and we have a fucking rat in our apartment right now, and it's not going into the peanut butter traps and it is PISSING. ME. OFF.

EDIT: Seven hours later: Roommate who owns lease (staying with his parents during pandemic in Long Island) realizes apartment has rats, isn’t renewing lease, one month from now — I’m out of this shithole city they call the Big Apple after 12 messy years. AMA.


DO they ever clean the ball pit???


Ball pits got removed like 20 years ago. They actually made light of the joke of having dirty ball pits in one of their animated clips that played in the restaurant (iirc something like “don’t throw me in the ball pit!” “Well actually, we got rid of those over 20 years ago, why does everyone think we have them still”)


Have you ever tried/beaten a kid in a arcade game? And follow up, have you ever encountered misbehaving teens at the restaurant? Thanks!


Never played against any kids, I didn’t typically work in game room. But sometimes teens would roll in if kid check was lazy (they technically need an adult but no one cares enough to stop and ask teenagers for an id before going in) and cause some problems and they’d have to be kicked out. Problems were typically of the “oooo hahah I’m 14 in a Chuck e CHeESe what?!??1” variety


Any animatronics where you used to work? I remember as a kid trying to get the courage to peek under the curtains, and seeing their lifeless bodies standing still in the dark.


Yes the full band was at my place


Ever have anyone hack some of the ticket games? I've seen those videos where they do some special move on the bass-fishing-handle game to automatically win the jackpot. I'm always tempted to try at places like Dave & Busters but since I always go with the kiddos, I don't wanna get kicked out or banned and then have to explain to my kids why I did the wrong thing lol.


Never saw it happen


I have never been but always been curious how was the value of going to the restaurant was it cheaper or more expensive than Dave and busters? What games did you have to play? What was your most bratty kid story?


It would be WAYYYY cheaper to go to CEC as opposed to D&B. You can get 2 hours of unlimited games for 30 ish bucks at cec. Dave n busters charges insanity


Where do you recommend I go to pick up single moms now?


The roller rink, man. There’s always single moms there at kids birthday parties, esp on Monday afternoons at ones across the street from strip clubs


Used to go to Chuck E Cheese all the time during the 80s and early 90s when I was a kid.


1) Is there sugar in the pizza to make the kids want to play longer?

2) Do they still serve beer to adults? (My dad used to get absolutely hammered there and I'm pretty sure that is why my parents always chose CEC for birthday parties)

  1. There was never sugar as far as I’m aware/I never used it. I suppose it could have been in the tomato sauce but that might be true of all pizza sauce to a degree

  2. Yes but my place didn’t


Did something happen in '87?

Also how good do you consider the pizza compared to other chains?


I have no comment about an incident that may or may not have happened at an independent franchisee’s location around November of 1987

I think the pizza is pretty top notch tbh, especially compared to chains


Did you ever have adults show up without kids? What was the policy? I figure some adults might just want to play video games and eat pizza.


It never happened but adults are welcome without kids technically


Hi fellow former CEC employee here. I honestly despised working for that company. I feel like they paid you shit pay for the amount of work they expected from you. The fact that they served alcohol in an establishment meant for kids. I can't tell you how many times I saw drunk parent attempting to drive their kids home. What are your experiences with these things? Is there anything you hated? What do you think about CEC as a company?


Also hated the pay and def saw some less than favorable parenting practices (we didn’t even sell alc) but I love cec as a business. I think the pizza is pretty solid, the concept is neat, and it was fun to get to bring happiness/magic to the boring every day life of some kids


How many fights have you witnessed? I ask because I've heard in the past that chuck e cheese is the restaurant with the most fights in the US.


Never saw any actual physical fights


When I was a kid I remember that being some bomb ass pizza. Did the bomb assness of the pizza decline over the years?


I think it’s actually gotten better tbh


Have you ever tried to re enact five nights at Freddie's?


One day last summer our power went out and when I got in the next morning the kitchen was pitch black. Chica was definitely up to something back there but it was NOT on me to figure out what


What was the worst thing you had ever seen a parent do?


Def not the worst but the immediate one is just put their infant on the floor 20 feet from the bathroom and changed the diaper in the middle of everything


Is it true that Chuck E. Cheese stock can now only be redeemed for prizes on the middle shelf or below?


Unfortunately, now it’s only the front case :/


In a fight do you think chuck e cheese would win or mickey mouse?


Chuck e was raised on the streets. That pampered little frat boy wishes he could take Big C


Do you regret it? The only one I want answer to be honest.


Not a minute of it. I truthfully didn’t want to leave, but health problems prevented me from working by the end of last year. Would go back if it was closer/paid better/was opening again


What do you think CEC could have done better?

And I mean that broadly. From the top down to the bottom.


Better pay, more employees/hours, I think withdrawing support from the animatronics however 20 odd years back was a mistake, removing them even moreso, maybe expand the menu a little more, or add an adult lounge area for adults to talk with each other if they want to take turns watching kids or whatever


Did you ever meet Charles Entertainment Cheese himself?


You could say I’ve walked a mile in his shoes


Did the Shane Dawson pizza theory really effect the company?


I had to throw out everything in a now publicly displayed trash can in the middle of the floor for a month when it released, but otherwise no


Is Chuck E. Cheese a restaurant or a family entertainment center?


It operates as a restaurant primarily


Do you have any good poopoo or peepee in the play place stories?

As a child, I'll never forget crawling in a tunnel of piss.....on my fucking birthday. Ugh


Fortunately, my store axed it’s play place years before I worked there


Is Mr. Cheese as nice as he seems or is he a showbiz diva?


Nah I wouldn’t say he’s a diva, moreso just a little mousy


What makes that Hershey’s chocolate cake so damn good?


It’s made with extra love 💕


What can I get for 78 tickets?


The amount of tickets I’d get compared to the 100 my male coworker would


Former CEC employee here too! Did you have the ice suit to wear under the chuck e suit?





Why did the animatronic thingies have such creepy looking faces and dead eyes?


Would you rather one of them look into your soul with vividly life like eyes ?


What was the trashiest behavior you've ever seen from parents and kids in the party area? Was the beer a part of it?


I wasn’t there for it, but once a group of mainly teens and adults (w a few kids obvi) walked in minutes before closing, stayed an hour in the party area, and left after having an all our multi cake food fight. Boss told me they were there past midnight that night (2 hours later than normal)


Were any of the games rigged?


Not that I know of


Are the ticket play machines actually “hackable” like these YouTube videos suggest? Have you ever caught someone? Did you confront them or leave it?


I’ve never heard of them being hackable. You’d have to have a key to get into the computer parts of it


with everyone asking nore about the games and pizza and fights etc, my question is how many times did the band break? Is there like a specific team that comes out to service them and make sure all the mechanical parts are working?


We had a maintenance guy who worked on them if they broke (also did games). The most it would break would be when a kid would rip a piece off, or a mouth would hang open or something, or it just wouldn’t move anymore. Nothing ever exciting


How does it smell inside that rat suit?


How much puke?


Surprisingly minimal


Hey fellow Sun Devil!

Have you ever played FNAF? Was it weird? Do you think you're more or less afraid of animatronic critters than your average person?



I love the fnaf franchise, it’s actually part of the reason I wanted to work there in the first place. But I’m def less afraid lol. I used to pose for pictures w them


Is there anything unsettling with the franchise that would make the public cringe?


I've never been to a Chuck E Cheese. What did I miss?


A headache and some pretty good pizza


How often do the rides and stuff get cleaned?


Nightly. It’s closing game rooms biggest job


So are all locations closing ?

We took my brother a few times when he was younger. The really young kids really enjoy it. Are you guys really shutting down all locations?


I don’t work there anymore so I have no more knowledge than anyone else would at this point


Did any kid ever save up enough tickets to buy the most expensive toys?

I remember going there semi recently, and did the math that it'd take like $500 worth of tokens/tickets to get the top prize.


A family came in once w saved receipts for >10k. That was a wild afternoon. They didn’t get top prize tho, a bunch of middle ones


What was your favorite part of the job?


Probably my bosses/the actual business itself. I was a fan of cec and really liked making kids feel special on their bdays. Felt like the closest I could get to experiencing bringing “Disney magic” to a kid for now


Does the birthday party routine continue to haunt your dreams?


When we say happy, you say birthday!


What's the cut off for kid/adult?


Adults can just go in, kids are required to be accompanied by at least one adult


What will you do now? Will you run a franchise? It try your hand on something new?

Thanks for sharing something that has been part of many of our lives. I remember my mum taking us there for some kids birthday party or something to get my brother to go play while she read the newspaper.


I haven’t actually worked there in half a year, I recently started w another gig, but might be moving to small business ownership soon


Do you guys really put unfinished pizzas together to make new pies like the Shane Dawson video??


It’s long answered in my post but No


What were your thoughts when Five Nights at Freddy's came out? Had you ever thought of a restaurant like Chuck E Cheese's as a possible location for a horror film/game before then?


Wasn’t working there when it released


Could you describe the smell of the mouse costume using the most colorful euphemisms you can think of?


The closer I got the worse it smelled

I guess that’s more of a double entendre but I tried my best




copy and pasted from my post

And I’m just gonna get this one out of the way: of course they don’t salvage and reheat slices. The business operates as a restaurant first business, doing something like that would get them shut down so quick. If the pizza were to have gone back in the oven, it would have burned guaranteed (we warn people before they request theirs get reheated if it was left idle on their table for a while). It has an uneven shape because it’s hand stretched dough, which allows for occasionally uneven circles, and the pies get cut with a type of rolling machete, which can often warp the slices if done fast (like in a Saturday rush). Everything is made to order. Dough is even prepared and made in house


Was the food as good as I remember?


Why’s the pizza and food quality so poor? Is the pizza made of sand and cheese?


Asking in a non bitchy way, but when was the last time you went? I love their pizza, and used to bring it home to have for dinner through the week. Dough is made fresh in house, cheese is shredded fresh, etc. it’s a genuine restaurant. They underwent a change like 5-6 years back so I ask cuz if it has been a while, you might not know how it is now (I think they brag about having beat Pizza Hut in a blind taste contest but that isn’t that hard to do tbh)


Your sweatshirt says ASU so I assume you live in AZ. I believe that most if not all of AZ is franchise. If you are from AZ, will your stores stay open?


I stomp around in az on occasion but no I do not live there, although I believe at least one in Phoenix is open rn


What are your thoughts on the official Chuck. E Cheese Twitch account?


I don’t have a twitch but their insta is silly


How often did you contract norovirus? I feel like 90% of the times I was pukey sick was after visiting Chuck E Cheese when I was a kid.


I stopped working there before it all happened


Question what’s the most disgusting practice that Chuck E. Cheese has that you’ve seen? Also what’s the easiest or stupidest reason you’ve seen someone get fired?


The business is still a business, I never saw any unseemly practices.

Fastest/easiest was someone leaving the kid check area for a minute. That’s instant termination because if you’re not there, an adult could walk in or out w someone else’s kid


How long did it take you to become numb to constant vomit?


There was surprisingly little vomit encounters. The only one I can think of was once I was at the front and a woman comes up to me very calmly and says like “my kids vomiting” and points to her kid just walking around the restaurant, stopping every few feet, throwing up a little, and continuing. Then I noticed the amount she was holding in her hand. I really don’t know what she wanted me to do to help in that moment so I just turned around


Has anyone offered cash for prizes instead of using tickets and/or is this even possible?


There’s a 1 to 1 exchange so a 2000 ticket prize is 20 dollars and vice versa. Almost never is in your favor to pay cash for a ticket price, but tickets for a cash prize was always a bargain


During an average workday, how many times did you contemplate taking the life of a fellow human being? How many times did you contemplate taking your own life?


Another’s, never

My own, probably an unhealthy amount for a minimum wage job


Any horror stories where the mechano-band crapped out?


Nah but once I looked over at Helen and at the exact moment I did, her torso pivoted in a way it rarely did and she looked me dead in the eye.

I went home early that day


Do you have any tips for going pro at Skee Ball? I always seemed to suck at it and never won many tickets.


Waste your first throw to learn that machines personal quirks/how the balls move along it. Every one was different where I worked


Favorite ticket game to play?


When I worked there, for a while we had a “haunted house” game that was a bunch of spinners and if you climbed to the top you’d get hella tickets if you’re lucky. That was fun til it broke. Basketball was always solid


Did you ever have to arrest someone that looked 'suspicious'?


No but we had to kick out a homeless person or two


Has there ever been a time where an actual pizza was being made instead of a "cardboard" pizza?


Yeah, every time


Are you going to miss the pizza?


I haven’t had it since I worked there and tbh I do miss it


Obvious question, but do you prefer the new point cards or the old-fashioned tokens?


From a practical stand point, the cards are so superior. But the tokens have a certain charm I miss


Is your name based on the line from Titanic?

Did you ever have a legit WTF moment?


Yes, and yes I’m sure I did but my memory issues are proving to be a little worse rn I’m sorry :/


Did you do anything different about adults who would come into Chuck-E-Cheese by themselves?

I missed the pizzas from my childhood, so I was tempted to come into Chuck-E-Cheese by myself to order a pizza, but I did not feel right doing so without a child of my own.


I truthfully doubt you’d even phase anyone. Most times I’d just assume they were joining a family, if not I’d watch them leave shortly after w pizza and be like oh they just wanted pizza gotcha


was it a fun job?

what were some of your favourite, and least favourite, things about the job?


I actually really loved the job, and for the most part it was a positive experience. I loved working the kitchen, and birthday parties would be fun. I hated kid check (standing stock still for ~7 hours w no phone or someone to talk to is maddening) and the stress would be a lot sometimes, esp on days w a lot of call outs (frequent)


what is your favorite song parody and how quickly did you get tired of it?


Not a song but they did a stranger things parody in the fall. Never saw the show but picked up enough and saw the charm in it


Did you see any children being lured by a man in a rabbit suit to be stuffed into the animatronics?


Nah but sometimes I thought I could see some blood and mucus coming from their eyes..weird


What's your high score in skeeball?


I think I topped 40k once


How did you get all of those balloons from the ceiling??


Oh I actually like this answer !! We would spray them with water/mist and the weight of that would pull them down


Have you ever had to deal with pedophiles?


Thankfully no




I’ve both answered this directly in my post and in several comments


Are you British? Why do you say stuff like "uni" and "toss"? Are you an exchange student or something?


Am American


The news articles say only 20% of the stores will be closing. Is your store one of them?


Don’t work there anymore




Nah but the VR one gave me a good jump or two


What is Arizona State like?


Since you serve booze now have you ever had any terrible incidents of smashed parents ruining a kid's day?


Our store didn’t sell any


I'm not seeing a single question so far about the Frankenstein pizzas. Have you ever seen anybody make one, made one yourself, or heard of them being made at any other locations?


I hope this question is satire


Any weird sex stories involving party moms? For some reason I have always thought this was a thing.


I’m a girl so not really. Our store didn’t really have any male party hosts which I thought was kinda lame

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